Sodexo’s SVP Is a Dynamic Leader and a Global Succes

Deborah Roberts, Sodexo’s North America senior vice president of facilities for the health care market, has over 25 years of leadership experience in business operations, sales, and general management. She has lived and worked in Singapore and Shanghai, China, for nearly five years, where she led facility management and OE product businesses. Deborah was responsible for more than 3,000 employees in Asia, and her team in Singapore implemented an innovative and highly successful customer engagement program which led to retention, employee engagement, and growth.

“I believe my greatest career leap was during expat assignments in Asia—three years in Singapore and two in Shanghai,” said Deborah. “Through prior global roles, I thought I had a good foundation with cultural differences. However, expat assignments are life-changing experiences and offer unique insight. From these came my understanding of the significance of diversity as a prerequisite for leading global engagement and growth.”

Deborah and her husband have volunteered with Habitat for Humanity for more than 20 years. They most recently volunteered for two years at the Shanghai Baby Home in Shanghai, China—a nonprofit that helps orphans with correctable medical problems. While in China, they were foster parents for one year to a special needs baby and adopted a 13-year-old girl.

Deborah’s commitment to maintaining the highest standards of care and delivery for customers and teams brings her the most satisfaction. As a mentor to scores of employees, she has been able to help advance the careers of many team members, specifically women and diverse candidates and employees. Many of her mentees have gone on to senior leadership positions. And her One Team approach has resulted in employee engagement, client satisfaction, and business success.