Founder and CEO at Breaking Glass Forums
Ms. Cynthia Owyoung is the Founder and CEO of Breaking Glass Forums, accelerating diverse leaders and inclusive organizations. She has established and led talent development and diversity initiatives for nearly 15 years at organizations both large and small. Ms. Owyoung is known for integrating a diversity and inclusion lens into all aspects of the business, from talent management to product development
As GitHub’s first Head of Talent Development, Employee Engagement and Inclusion, Ms. Owyoung established the learning and development function. Her responsibilities included designing a comprehensive learning and development strategy, building a diverse and inclusive work environment and delivering leadership and career growth opportunities to a fast-growing, globally distributed workforce. Github is the world’s largest code host, with over ten million users building amazing software together.
Previously, Ms. Owyoung led Global Diversity and Employee Engagement Initiatives at Yahoo for over seven years. In that role, Ms. Owyoung was responsible for developing and implementing Yahoo’s global diversity and employee engagement strategies designed to create an inclusive culture and an engaged, high performing workforce. Partnering with Yahoo’s senior executives, Ms. Owyoung directed the development of the corporate diversity strategy, recognition programs, career development initiatives and engagement metrics.
Prior to joining Yahoo!, Ms. Owyoung managed Diversity and Compliance Programs at Intuit. During her tenure there, she launched six employee networks, rolled out Intuit’s first diversity training program and managed all Affirmative Action Plans with their respective compliance audits. Before Intuit, Ms. Owyoung founded a strategic planning consultancy, working with non- and for-profit organizations to increase their capabilities in organizational development, brand marketing and business strategy. Earlier, Ms. Owyoung built a decade-long career as a Brand Strategist for leading global brands and advertising agencies, developing campaigns for Microsoft, Levi Strauss and Apple.
Ms. Owyoung currently serves on the Board of Directors for Abilities United, a non-profit dedicated to the advancement, inclusion and independence of people with developmental disabilities. She has served on the Steering Committee for the Silicon Valley Chief Diversity Officers Consortium, launched the Bay Area Diversity Peer Network, and chaired the Employee Resource Group Advisory Council.
Ms. Owyoung has been a featured speaker at conferences and events hosted by the Conference Board, Talent Management Magazine, and USC’s Center for Effective Organizations among others. She has also contributed to Diversity Woman Magazine and ExecBlueprints, an executive-focused publication that provides best practices insight on strategic business issues.
Ms. Owyoung earned an MBA in Organizational Behavior from UCLA’s Anderson School of Management, a BS in Marketing and Finance from UC Berkeley’s Haas Business School and a BA in Psychology, also at UC Berkeley. A San Francisco native, Ms. Owyoung still lives in the area and enjoys ballroom dancing, the occasional Pixar movie and exploring new playgrounds with her husband and two young sons.