Shari Liss is the Executive Director of the SEMI Foundation, a nonprofit arm of SEMI that focuses on Workforce Development programs and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiatives supporting more than 3000 companies globally. Shari has more than 25 years of experience supporting education, career awareness and workforce development throughout the technology industry.
Under Shari’s leadership, the Foundation has launched numerous national and global workforce development initiatives and secured millions of dollars to fund programs that support industry image and awareness, welcome more women and people of color to the industry, and help veterans and those transitioning out of the military find careers in microelectronics. Shari has been instrumental in developing large-scale cross-sector partnerships that are working to bridge industry, education, and the workforce to address the industry’s critical workforce needs. Shari testified before Congress at the House Research and Technology Subcommittee hearing titled “Strengthening the U.S. Microelectronics Workforce,” where she made the case for increased industry visibility, stronger investments in K-12 STEM education, and a greater focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the industry.
Shari was formerly the CEO of Ignited, one of the nation’s most successful STEM teacher professional development organizations. Their work connected companies to classrooms throughout Silicon Valley and gave over 4,000 teachers and 3.2 million students more insights into the skills and experiences needed to succeed in STEM-oriented professions and companies. Prior to Ignited, Shari was a teacher and curriculum developer, serving in a variety of positions with a focus on mathematics and at-risk students. She has developed an alternative school on the East Coast serving at-risk high school students, created curriculum for NASA and established a mathematics program for both gifted and challenged students in the San Francisco Bay Area.