The Larraine Segil Scholars – LSS – my passion to mentor and support the next generation of women leaders


As some of you may know, some years ago I set up endowment funds – and am so proud of the young women who are benefiting from them. They call themselves the Larraine Segil Scholars. We will be creating a dedicated website to the group soon and will link from this site.

The Larraine Segil Scholars ( LSS) are appointed from candidates at Southwestern University School of Law and The Pepperdine Graziadio School of Business, Presidential Key Executive MBA Program both in Los Angeles, and The Kingsmead College for Girls in Johannesburg South Africa. I attended and graduated from all three institutions.

The criteria for choosing the scholars are:
1. Women who walk the road less traveled
2. Women who are square pegs in round holes
3. Women of integrity
4. Women who are good students but do not have to be the top of the class                            5. Women who have an interest in strategic collaboration, alliances and partnering – on which I have written 6 books and spoken all over the world to companies, executives and governments.                                                                                                                                          6. Women who are prepared to be mentored by me for the rest of my life and willing to mentor each other and those who come after them in this group for the rest of their lives

I have an extensive network and credibility and am making that available to these very special women whom I have chosen. They will in addition receive a small financial scholarship – small compared in value to the mentoring they will receive. The group will continue in perpetuity – and creates its own leadership so that the LSS are not dependent on me for their sustainability.We are changing lives for the better – one by one. These women are already leaders – and will be the future generations of leaders enabling others to excel at the same time as paying it forward to others.

Two new winners have just been selected. They are Leila Curic and Jacqueline McCauley – both are MBA PKE candidates at Pepperdine.

 Leila Curic

Global Partner Account Executive Microsoft

Leila is a global partner account executive at Microsoft. In this role, Leila works with Microsoft key global partners on joint go-to-market strategies. She works with Microsoft leaders to find and prioritize Microsoft investments in partners and joint partnership opportunities. Prior to this role, Leila was account strategist at Microsoft. She was responsible for building and growing relationships with large enterprise customers. She advised large enterprises on how to leverage technology to meet business demands. Before joining Microsoft, Leila owned her own system integration and advisory business with focus on mid-market. Leila has strong working experience in financial services, healthcare, construction, logistics and retail sectors. She started her career as a software developer and moved through engineering, networking and management roles. Leila holds a Computer Science and Computer Engineering degree from USC.         LinkedIn:

Jacqueline McCauley


Jacqueline is a successful entrepreneur based out of Colorado. Her career began in finance within the non-profit sector then moved into the telecommunication industry. As one of three executives, she assisted in the launch of a successful startup called GoLive! Mobile, a mobile content provider and an Inc. 500 winner – #1 in Media and #47 overall in 2011. She then helped facilitate another startup from inception, AirPush Inc., a mobile advertising platform provider where she held the position for the last four years as vice president of finance. AirPush ranked #2 in the 2014 Forbes list of “Most Promising Companies” among many other awards. Navigating the waters of outsourcing to India and the Philippines, she has more than 9 years of experience working virtually across the globe including overseeing the acquisition of a Pvt. Ltd out of India. She recently launched her own organization, Cubed Communications, assisting small businesses and entrepreneurs in the area of outsourcing, HR, Finance, & IT. She earned her Bachelors of Science degree in Business and Entrepreneurship while raising her six children as a single mom. She loves practicing yoga and scuba diving.


Leila and Jacqueline join the other 8 amazing young women who are already part of the group. And within the next few months we will be welcoming our 10th grade South African High School Scholar who will win not only the financial award but also a trip to Los Angeles to meet the other LSS women and visit their businesses and both universities,  when she matriculates in three years time.  Since between 2 and 4 new scholars join the US group every year, she will have many hosts and mentors including myself. Lucky girl!

What is making me very happy is that this program is inspiring others to do the same – a professor at Columbia University who is mentoring women is planning to create a similar program after we spoke, as is another woman philanthropist in Los Angeles – what could be better than that!

More to come on this….. welcome Leila and Jacqueline! And below them are some of the LSS ladies!Leila Curic Leila Curic above Global Partner Manager at Microsoft

Jacqueline McCauley below – Serial Entrepreneur
Jacqueline McCauley

Phoebe Dewing below –  PhD UCLA in Human Genetics and MBA Pepperdine – Senior Director at major cancer contract research organization
Phoebe Chang Pepperdine 2014 awardeePhotoPaulette Pantoja

Paulette Pantoja above, MBA Pepperdine and CEO Of Blufocus and President at BluEvo

Linda Lore below Pepperdine MBA and former CEO of Georgio of Beverly Hills, Fredericks of Hollywood and Entrepreneur owner of InJoy Consulting

Linda Lore

Meredith Lierz below JD MBA Drucker School,  Practicing Attorney with Class Action Law FirmMeredith Lierz

Lauren Plunkett below  – JD and IT Enterprise Architecture Expert and Practicing Attorney in Construction and Land Use  (picture pending)

Esme Williams below MBA Pepperdine and Chief Content Officer at Master and Muse

Esme Williams

Mehrnaz Hadian MD Intensivist at Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Candidate for JD at Southwestern
Mehrnaz HadianAnd Hindi Stohl   ( OBGYN and Neonatal-Perinatal Specialist – UCLA Harbor medical) Candidate for JD at Southwestern – photo to come!

Aren’t they amazing ?

The Larraine Segil Scholars now have their own website – check it out!




About Grandma

I have reinvented myself many times during my life -teacher, lawyer, business woman, CEO, Entrepreneur, Board member, Professor, Mom, Wife, Farmer, Chef, Musician, Author and now my best role of all - Grandma to multiple grandchildren, grandnephews and nieces worldwide.
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