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Success Story: Indra Nooyi captivated audiences at PCMA Convening Leaders, beaming in as a hologram
Business powerhouse and former CEO and Chairman of PepsiCo, INDRA NOOYI was a tremendous success as keynote speaker at the Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) Convening Leaders conference. Nooyi ignited the audience with her experience as a pioneering female business leader and insights on how focusing on family will unleash the economy’s full potential in her keynote, “Leading Through Tremendous Growth, Disruption, and Change.” The globally renowned corporate innovator was in attendance as a hologram – beamed live from a state-of-the-art studio for a completely unique and memorable audience experience. “‘I just watched Indra Nooyi deliver a captivating performance […] At times, I found my eyes full of tears as she spoke about anchoring your change strategy based on megatrends, balance of time, motherhood, and leading others. Running to download her new book.’ … ‘Really interesting & just as impactful with the conversation of being there in person.” (Crowd Comments from PCMA on social media)
Dr. Kizzmekia Corbett gives trusted vaccine advice to families all across America, including on Sesame Street
Lead scientist in the development of the Covid-19 mRNA vaccines KIZZMEKIA S. CORBETT joined the beloved cast of Sesame Street for a town hall, ‘The ABCs of Covid Vaccines: A CNN/Sesame Street Townhall for Families.’ Corbett provided accessible vaccine information to Big Bird, Rosita, Elmo, and the rest of the muppet cast, ensuring that audiences of all ages could understand the most up-to-date scientific news. In response to a question from a child at home Corbett answered, “Is the vaccine a superhero? Ok, you know what? I like to think about you being the superhero. The vaccine is just your training camp for you to become the superhero so that you can fight away the virus.” Her generosity amplifies her expertise, speaking to her belief in the power of teamwork as well as her position as a leader inspiring a rising generation of women of color in STEM. Corbett brings this vital blend of gravitas and grace to every event and audience.
Speaker Spotlight: Al Gore is a gifted orator and vital leader on climate change, tech innovation, and sustainable investing
Former Vice President and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate AL GORE is at the epicenter of the global conversation surrounding sustainability and solving the climate crisis. An environmental, business, and tech visionary recognized as one of the world’s leading voices for climate action, Vice President Gore offers a unique perspective on national and international issues, including the threats of climate change and the future of tech. Gore is at the forefront of sustainable investing, making headlines for calling “sustainability history’s biggest investment opportunity” and providing eye-opening and actionable insights on Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Investing in powerful keynotes and interviews at the World Economic Forum, The Milken Institute, and more, with a powerful message that resonates with live and virtual audiences: "We found Al Gore to be intellectually impressive, extremely knowledgeable, and highly entertaining. The most commonly used description of his speech was 'inspirational.'" (Merrion-Capital)
LaTosha Brown is a national treasure, tailoring memorable messages of hope and shared humanity
When LATOSHA BROWN stopped by the Harry Walker Agency for a virtual visit, we were simply blown away by her high-energy message of hope and shared humanity. Ms. Brown is an award-winning organizer, political strategist, and consultant with over two decades of experience working in the non-profit and philanthropy sectors, and is perhaps best known for co-founding the Black Voters Matter Fund. As she says, Ms. Brown has the “unmitigated gall to believe humanity can be better,” drawing on her experience as an organizer and Black feminist thought leader to invite us to close our eyes and envision the future, and specifically the democracy, that we deserve. A gifted and one-of-a-kind orator, Ms. Brown thoughtfully tailors each event, working with clients to understand what their unique audiences need to ensure the biggest impact possible. Our team described the resounding message of connection as “spirit-lifting” and “amazing!”
Baseball star and business mogul Alex Rodriguez is building an empire
Known for his unparalleled accomplishments on the baseball field, mogul ALEX RODRIGUEZ brings the same tenacity, vision, and unrivaled focus to building his business empire. He looks for long-term opportunities to provide financial capital, work alongside founders and leadership, and amplify the growth of each company. In a recent no-holds-barred profile for Bloomberg Wealth, Rodriguez revealed that he draws inspiration from fresh opportunities, seeing a clean slate and the chance to exceed all expectations. He is a highly sought-after speaker, tailoring his tremendous business expertise for each audience and receiving rave reviews: “Powerful, poignant, persuasive… To say impressed in an understatement. Your expressive and raw discussion turned heads and changed mindsets. A remarkable feat… The surprise and delight of your talk had everyone on the edge of their seats. The question and answer session in particular where many of your themes and advice organically came forth proved to be invaluable.” (Intuit)
Scottie Pippen talks perseverance, team dynamics, and tells his truth in New York Times bestselling new memoir Unguarded
Scottie Pippen is one of basketball’s most talented, versatile, and successful players, and now on the 30th anniversary of the Bulls’ first championship, Pippen is finally giving millions of adoring fans what they crave – his story, in an unflinching new memoir Unguarded, which rocketed to the top of the New York Times bestseller list. Pippen offers a fascinating look at an iconic time in sports history, and offers transparent takes on some of the biggest names in basketball – Michael Jordan, Phil Jackson, Dennis Rodman – sharing with riveted audiences what it takes to make a basketball dynasty. He opens up about the challenges of being an unsung hero for his team, reveals never-before-told stories about some of the most famous games in league history, and claims his place as a legend. Audiences are always thrilled to talk with Pippen about his blockbuster career, insider perspectives on some of basketball’s iconic figures and compelling moments, and what he’s learned from a life above the rim.
Career diplomat and eighth Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon has spent his eminent career in public service inspiring international cooperation and advocating for human rights and sustainable development. Prior to taking on what has been called “the most impossible job on this earth” at the helm of the UN, Ban served as the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of South Korea. In his memoir, Resolved: Uniting Nations in a Divided World, Ban chronicles his decade at the helm of the UN mobilizing world leaders around a new set of global challenges. He is the Founder of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens, a non-profit whose mission is to empower women and youth to live in a peaceful and prosperous world. Among the most respected and well-known statesmen of his generation, Ban is sought-after for his gift of transforming his tremendous experience into an inspiring call to action for audiences of all kinds.
Ban has been named a “Top 100 Global Thinker” by Foreign Policy for his achievement of making the Paris Agreement a legally binding treaty less than a year after it was adopted. He has also been named to Forbes list of “The World’s Most Powerful People,” and is a recipient of France’s Legion of Honour. Ban serves as President and Chair of the Global Green Growth Institute, and chairs the Global Commission on Adaptation as well as the International Olympic Ethics Commission. At events worldwide with groups like the World Economic Forum, The Barclays Asia Forum, WE Day, and more, Ban’s sought-after perspective on our most pressing global issues inspires leaders, lawmakers, and global citizens to take action for a healthier, more peaceful, and more equitable world.
HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON
Hillary Rodham Clinton served as the 67th Secretary of State of the United States from January 21, 2009 until February 1, 2013, after nearly four decades in public service as an advocate, attorney, First Lady, and Senator.
PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON
William Jefferson Clinton, the first Democratic president in six decades to be elected twice, led the U.S. to the longest economic expansion in American history, including the creation of more than 22 million jobs. He is the founder of the Clinton Foundation which focuses on tackling a number of the worlds' greatest challenges.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA
Barack H. Obama is the 44th President of the United States.
Few presidents have walked a more improbable path to the White House. Born in Hawaii to a mother from Kansas and a father from Kenya, Obama was raised with help from his grandparents, whose generosity of spirit reflected their Midwestern roots. The homespun values they instilled in him, paired with his innate sense of optimism, compelled Obama to devote his life to giving every child, regardless of his or her background, the same chance America gave him.
After working his way through college with the help of scholarships and student loans, Obama moved to Chicago, where he worked with a group of churches to help rebuild communities devastated by the closure of local steel plants. That experience honed his belief in the power of uniting ordinary people around a politics of purpose, in the hard work of citizenship, to bring about positive change. In law school, he became the first African-American president of the Harvard Law Review, then he returned to Illinois to teach constitutional law at the University of Chicago and begin a career in public service, winning seats in the Illinois State Senate and the United States Senate.
On November 4, 2008, Barack Obama was elected the 44th President of the United States, winning more votes than any candidate in history. He took office at a moment of crisis unlike any America had seen in decades – a nation at war, a planet in peril, the American Dream itself threatened by the worst economic calamity since the Great Depression. And yet, despite all manner of political obstruction, Obama’s leadership helped rescue the economy, revitalize the American auto industry, reform the health care system to cover another twenty million Americans, and put the country on a firm course to a clean energy future – all while overseeing the longest stretch of job creation in American history. On the world stage, Obama’s belief in America’s indispensable leadership and strong, principled diplomacy helped wind down the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, decimate al Qaeda and eliminate the world’s most wanted terrorists, shut down Iran’s nuclear weapons program, open up a new chapter with the people of Cuba, and unite humanity in coordinated action to combat a changing climate.
In times of great challenge and change, President Obama’s leadership ushered in a stronger economy, a more equal society, a nation more secure at home and more respected around the world. The Obama years were ones in which more people not only began to see themselves in the changing face of America, but to see America the way he always has – as the only place on Earth where so many of our stories could even be possible.
Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, are the proud parents of two daughters, Malia and Sasha.
FORMER FIRST LADY MICHELLE OBAMA
Michelle Robinson Obama served as First Lady of the United States from 2009 to 2017, transforming the position and becoming a role model, champion and inspiration for women, families, and young people across America and around the world.
As First Lady, Mrs. Obama launched and led four key initiatives:
Mrs. Obama attended Chicago public schools until enrolling in Princeton where she studied sociology and African American studies. She graduated cum laude from Princeton in 1985 and received a law degree from Harvard Law School in 1988. She then joined the Chicago law firm Sidley & Austin, where she met her future husband, Barack Obama.
Following her time at Sidley & Austin, Mrs. Obama served as an assistant to Mayor Richard Daley and as Assistant Commissioner of Planning and Development for the city of Chicago, before becoming the founding Executive Director of the Chicago chapter of Public Allies, an AmeriCorps program that prepares young people for public service careers.
As part of her continued focus on community service and engagement, Mrs. Obama joined the University of Chicago in 1996 as its Associate Dean of Student Services focused on fostering connections between the campus and community. She also served as Vice President of Community and External Affairs for the University of Chicago Medical Center.
In 2018, Michelle Obama published her memoir, Becoming, which sold more copies than any other book published in the United States in 2018, achieving that status in just 15 days and instantly rising to the #1 slot on the New York Times Best Sellers list. She won a Grammy for her audio recording of Becoming and more than 15 million copies of Becoming have been sold worldwide. She also published a young readers edition of Becoming in 2021, adapted for children ages 10 and up.
In 2018, Mrs. Obama and President Obama launched Higher Ground, a company focused on lifting up diverse voices in the entertainment industry. As part of Higher Ground, Netflix launched the Becoming documentary rooted in her memoir.
In 2020, Mrs. Obama released the Michelle Obama Podcast where she hosted conversations with family, friends and colleagues exploring the relationships in our lives who make us who we are. In 2021, Higher Ground Productions also launched Waffles + Mochi, a culinary children’s series on Netflix. Alongside the release of the series, Mrs. Obama launched Pass the Love with Waffles + Mochi, a joint campaign with the Partnership for a Healthier America, which aims to provide meals to families experiencing food insecurity. Visit wafflesandmochi.org for more information.
Mrs. Obama was born on January 17, 1964. She married Barack Obama in 1992. They currently live in Washington, DC and have two daughters, Malia and Sasha.
JUAN MANUEL SANTOS
Juan Manuel Santos is the two-term President of Colombia (2010-2014 / 2014-2018). Recognized as one of the most influential leaders in the world, President Santos ushered in a new era of prosperity, peace, equity, and education throughout Colombia during his tenure.
Due to his tenacity and determination to achieve peace and reconciliation in Colombia, in 2016 the Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded President Santos the Nobel Peace Prize "for his resolute efforts to bring the country's more than 50-year-long civil war to an end." Santos has also been twice-named to TIME’s "100 Most Influential People" and was honored with the World Economic Forum’s Global Statesman Award.
During his administration, Colombia became the region´s leader in economic growth, job creation, reduction of poverty and extreme poverty, sustainable development and the enhancement of Information and Communications Technology. In addition, his administration reduced the housing deficit by half and launched the most ambitious infrastructure plan in Colombia's history. He also published several books, including The Third Way, which he wrote with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, and Jaque al Terror (Checkmate to Terror), in which he describes how he successfully fought the FARC.
Sought-out to speak everywhere from Harvard University to the World Economic Forum, in his compelling keynotes Santos shares his reflections on the challenges of leadership, revealing what allowed him to change Colombia's history and make the impossible, possible. He delivers a message of unity and humanity that is inspiring, refreshing and necessary amid these turbulent political times. Santos also offers shrewd insights and analysis on issues such as the global economic outlook, global security, and foreign affairs.
Former Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of PepsiCo Indra Nooyi is a business powerhouse, globally renowned for leading the company through a decade of tremendous growth and change. Praised for her prescient and strategic thinking, she was responsible for growing PepsiCo's revenues from $35 billion when she became CEO, to $63.5 billion in 2017. She oversaw a portfolio of global brands and diversified products enjoyed by consumers more than one billion times a day in more than 180 countries and territories around the world. As PepsiCo’s director of global strategy for over a decade, Nooyi led the company's restructuring, including the divestiture of its restaurants into the successful YUM! Brands, Inc; the acquisition of Tropicana and merger with Quaker Oats; the merger with PepsiCo’s anchor bottlers; and the acquisition of Wimm-Bill-Dann, the largest international acquisition in PepsiCo’s history. An advisor to several early-stage companies, Ms. Nooyi currently serves on the boards of Amazon, Philips, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and the Partnership for Public Service, and is an independent director of the International Cricket Council. She is a trustee at the National Gallery of Art, and is on the Dean’s Advisory Council at MIT’s School of Engineering.
Celebrated for her hallmark motto of "do well by doing good," Nooyi was chief architect of Performance with Purpose, PepsiCo’s pledge to do what’s right for the business by being responsive to the needs of the world through sustainable growth initiatives such as making healthier and more nutritious products, limiting the company's environmental footprint, and empowering associates and people in the communities PepsiCo serves. With multiple appearances in Forbes' "The World's 100 Most Powerful Women," Fortune's "Most Powerful Women," and TIME's "100 Most Influential People in The World," Nooyi has been sought-out for her unparalleled business insights and empowering messages on leadership, inclusivity and change everywhere from The World Economic Forum to The Aspen Institute. In 2019, her portrait was inducted into the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, and in 2022 she was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame. She is the author of the New York Times bestselling book My Life in Full: Work, Family and Our Future, published by Penguin Portfolio in September 2021, and teaches the MasterClass "Leading with Purpose."
Tina Fey continues to be applauded for the iconic and groundbreaking seven-season run as the Executive Producer, head writer, and star of NBC's three-time (2007, 2008, 2009) Emmy Award-winning, one-of-a-kind comedy series, 30 Rock. Her performances as 'Liz Lemon' earned Fey an Emmy, two Golden Globes, four SAG Awards, and a People's Choice Award. In 2009, 30 Rock was nominated for a record 22 Emmy Awards, the most ever of any comedy series on television in a single season. From 2012 to 2013, 30 Rock received a total of 13 nominations for its final season, six of which were individual nominations for Fey.
Prior to creating 30 Rock, Fey completed nine seasons as head writer, cast member, and co-anchor of the "Weekend Update" segment on Saturday Night Live. Fey is an Emmy winner and two-time Writers Guild Award winner for her writing on Saturday Night Live and won an Emmy in 2009 for Guest Appearance by an Actress in a Comedy Series for her portrayal of Sarah Palin on the 2008-2009 season of SNL. Fey also made Emmy history in 2016 when she and Amy Poehler became the first joint winners of “Best Comedy Series Guest Actress” for their SNL co-hosting appearance.
Fey expanded to feature films in spring 2004 as both a screenwriter and an actress in the hit comedy, Mean Girls, which earned her a nomination for a Writers Guild Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. On the big screen, Fey starred opposite Amy Poehler in the film, Baby Mama, for Universal Pictures, which exceeded the $50 million dollar mark at the U.S. box office. In 2010, Fey starred in 20th Century Fox's film, Date Night, opposite Steve Carell and was a featured voice in the Dreamworks animated film, Megamind.
In April 2011, Fey released her first book entitled Bossypants, which topped the New York Times best seller list and remained for 39 consecutive weeks, and received a Grammy nomination for “Best Spoken Word Album”. Bossypants was released in paperback in January 2012 and has sold over 3.75 million copies thus far.
In 2015 Fey and writing partner, Robert Carlock, co-executive produced and created the hit Netflix original comedy, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, starring Ellie Kemper. The series was nominated in the “Best Comedy” category for the 67th Primetime Emmy Awards, boasting four nominations for the talented cast, including a guest actress nod for Fey. After four successful seasons, the show wrapped the first ever comedy interactive special for Netflix, an exciting conclusion to the series.
In 2018, Fey's Broadway adaptation of Mean Girls opened at the August Wilson Theater. Directed by Casey Nicholaw, and with music written by her husband Jeff Richmond, the show received 12 Tony Award nominations, including best book by Tina Fey.
Fey lives in New York with her husband, Jeff Richmond, and their two daughters.
Amy Poehler is one of Hollywood’s most versatile and sought-after talents with credits including that of actress, writer, director, producer, and bestselling author.
Poehler is perhaps best known for her starring role on the Emmy-nominated NBC comedy series Parks and Recreation, which completed its seventh and final season in February 2015. Her portrayal of Leslie Knope earned her a 2014 Golden Globe award for “Best Actress in a TV Series, Musical, or Comedy,” the award for “Best Actress in a TV Comedy” at the 2014 American Comedy Awards, and a 2013 Gracie Award. For her work on the show, Poehler also received six consecutive Emmy nominations, two additional Golden Globe nominations, and three Screen Actors Guild Awards nominations.
In the film world, Poehler recently made her directorial debut in the buzzed-about Netflix comedy Wine Country, which she also starred in and produced. Her additional film credits include The House, Sisters, Wet Hot American Summer, They Came Together, A.C.O.D., Free Birds, Are You Here, Baby Mama, Blades of Glory, and Mean Girls. She lent her voice as the character Joy in Disney Pixar’s Oscar-winning smash hit Inside Out and could also be heard in Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel, Monsters vs. Aliens, Horton Hears a Who!, and Shrek the Third.
Poehler’s first book, Yes Please, was released in October 2014 and debuted at #1 on the New York Times Best Sellers list. The book went on to spend over 23 weeks on the list. Poehler co-hosted the Golden Globe Awards alongside Tina Fey for three consecutive years from 2013-2015, a role that was consistently met with critical acclaim. In January 2021, she returned as host with Fey for the special telecast.
Global finance industry leader and former Director of the U.S. National Economic Council Gary Cohn draws on his unparalleled private and public sector leadership experience to offer a key perspective on the global economy and financial markets in riveting remarks. Heralded by The Wall Street Journal as “an economic-policy powerhouse” and called a “go-to figure on matters related to jobs, business and growth” by The New York Times, Cohn is the current Vice Chairman of IBM. He previously served as President and Chief Operating Officer of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. from 2006-2016, and was a member of the firm’s Board of Directors and Chairman of the Firmwide Client and Business Standards Committee. Cohn speaks on issues ranging from monetary policy to fiscal policy, trade to taxes, translating uncertainty into tangible takeaways for audiences worldwide.
Cohn served as Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and Director of the National Economic Council from January 2017 through April 2018. As chief economic advisor to the president of the United States, Cohn managed the administration’s economic policy agenda and led the successful effort to grow the U.S. economy, create jobs and increase wages through tax and regulatory reform. e serves on the corporate boards of Abyrx, Gro Intelligence, Lazurite and Nanopay and is the Chairman of the Board of Pallas Advisors. Additionally, Mr. Cohn serves on the advisory board for Starling. He is a member of the Systemic Resolution Advisory Committee (SRAC) of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
Cohn’s expertise in the global financial system, tech advances, and the inner-workings of economic policy have him in-demand everywhere from the World Economic Forum to the Global Financial Leadership Conference. He brings both a CEO’s and White House insider’s point of view to each engagement, sharing prescient, tangible insights with an engaging sense of humor.
Steve Martin is one of the most well-known and pervasive talents in entertainment. His work has earned him an Academy Award®, five Grammy® awards, an Emmy®, the Mark Twain Award, and the Kennedy Center Honor.
Martin began his career on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour (1967-1969), for which he earned his first Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing Achievement in Comedy, Variety or Music in 1969. In the mid-1970s, Martin shone as a stand-up on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and NBC’s Saturday Night Live. Martin’s films are widely popular successes and are the kind of movies that are viewed again and again: The Jerk (1979), Planes, Trains & Automobiles (1987), Roxanne (1987), Parenthood (1989), L.A. Story (1991), Father of the Bride (1991), and Bowfinger (1999).
As an author, Martin’s work includes the novel An Object of Beauty, the play Picasso at the Lapin Agile, a collection of comic pieces, Pure Drivel, a bestselling novella, Shopgirl, and his memoir Born Standing Up. His writing often appears in The New Yorker.
Steve Martin is also an accomplished Grammy Award-winning, boundary-pushing bluegrass banjoist and composer. In 2013, Steve Martin released his third full-length album called Love Has Come For You, a unique collaboration with songwriter Edie Brickell. Love Has Come For You, won a Grammy ® for “Best American Roots Song” for the title track and inspired their new musical Bright Star, which was first staged at San Diego's Old Globe Theater in 2014 and opened at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. on December 17, 2015, followed by a Broadway premiere in 2016.
Martin and Brickell’s second album together So Familiar was released on Rounder Records in October. The album features 12 remarkable new songs that bring the acclaimed duo’s musical collaboration into fresh creative territory.
Kevin Hart is Hollywood’s box office powerhouse, opening ten films as the number one movie opening weekend. He was recently named the highest grossing comedian for the second straight year by Forbes who described him as a “built-in marketing machine.” Per Entrepreneur magazine, “Kevin Hart is building a brand and an empire that will outlive his fame.”
Hart launched his digital network, the Laugh Out Loud Network, which serves as a platform for emerging comedians. He has started and runs his own production company, Hartbeat Productions, and has several successful brand partnerships with companies like Fabletics Men, Chase J.P Morgan, Hydrow, Brüush, Tommy John and Therabody. Hart is the Founder and CEO of HartBeat Ventures. HBV is Kevin’s VC, and its mission is to invest in disruptive companies, specifically companies that can help elevate underserved communities by providing a platform for everybody to thrive.
Kevin’s memoir, I Can’t Make This Up, debuted at number one on The New York Times Best Seller list and remained on the Top 10 Print Hardcover Bestsellers List for ten weeks straight. His new book, Markus Makes a Movie (Random House) is his first book for his younger audience, debuted at number 6 on the coveted list and remained on the list for three weeks. Hart’s first Audible original, The Decision, was nominated for an Audie award for “Best Original Audiobook in 2021.”
Hart is currently in production filming Sony’s action-comedy, The Man From Toronto, which he is starring in alongside Woody Harrelson and Kaley Cuoco. Hart can currently be seen starring in the feature film Fatherhood, he also produced through Hartbeat Productions. Based on the best-selling book, Two Kisses for Maddy, Fatherhood tells the story of a single dad navigating parenthood after his wife unexpectedly dies a day after giving birth. The movie has been watched by more than 61 million accounts globally making it one of the most successful original dramatic movies on Netflix.
In remarks that are empowering, inspiring, and downright hilarious, Hart discusses his life and career, and the lessons on resiliency, overcoming adversity, and success, he's learned along the way.
Actor, comedian, producer, and writer Ryan Reynolds is a Hollywood icon and entrepreneur. Known for roles in Sabrina the Teenage Witch, The Proposal, and Deadpool, Reynolds has appeared in numerous films and TV series across genres, receiving nominations for Golden Globe Awards and Critics’ Choice Movie Awards. He launched the Maximum Effort production company and its marketing division, which was acquired by MNTN Software and has produced several high-octane brands. Expanding his entrepreneurial portfolio, Reynolds acquired a stake in Aviation American Gin with plans to expand his active role in the business, overseeing creative direction with his industry-tested marketing expertise. His additional business ventures include an ownership stake in Mint Mobile, serving on the board of Match Group, and the Wrexham Supporters Trust partnership takeover of the Welsh football club Wrexham AFC. Reynolds is an in-demand speaker for engaging, insightful conversations about his storied career in Hollywood and significant business endeavors.
Seven-time Super Bowl champion, New York Times bestselling author, and entrepreneurial mogul Tom Brady has garnered accolades on and off the field as a leader and expert in peak performance. Brady has won 19 division titles, seven Super Bowls, three NFL MVP’s and three first-team all-pro awards, all while pioneering a holistic approach to preparation, performance, and recovery. Building on this honed expertise, in 2013 Brady and longtime body coach, Alex Guerrero, co-founded TB12, a health and wellness brand, to share his proven TB12 Method and holistic systematic approach to wellness. Brady’s motivational book, The TB12 Method: How to Achieve a Lifetime of Sustained Peak Performance, has gone on to become a New York Times #1 bestseller.
Brady’s serial ventures include his namesake next generation apparel brand BRADY and his global, multi-platform content company 199 Productions, which already boasts numerous high-profile projects including a partnership with ESPN, Disney, and Religion of Sports to produce the tentpole docuseries Man in the Arena, which won the 2022 Sports Emmy for Outstanding Documentary Series. Most recently, the company partnered with Paramount Picutres on the film 80 for Brady. He has long prioritized philanthropy, sustaining relationships with a number of non-profits including the TB12 Foundation, Best Buddies, Make-A-Wish and more. Among other notable achievements, Brady has been honored as ESPY’s “NFL Best Player,” Sports Illustrated’s “Sportsperson of the Year,” TIME’s “100 Most Influential People,” and being named to the NFL 100th Anniversary “All Time Team.” Brady shares personal stories of perseverance, leadership, and disruption as well as savvy business insights about the latest trends in impactful conversations for audiences of all kinds.
Ambassador “Sully” Sullenberger has been dedicated to the pursuit of safety his entire adult life. He recently served as the U.S. Ambassador and Representative to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), a United Nations Specialized Agency, after being nominated by President Biden. As a global thought leader, he has now resumed his profession as a sought-after keynote speaker to audiences around the world and continues his advocacy for safety in global air travel.
Born in Denison, Texas, Sullenberger pursued his childhood love of aviation, learning to fly at 16. He is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy, and served as a fighter pilot in the United States Air Force. He went on to be an airline pilot, instructor, and accident investigator. He still flies privately.
Sullenberger became internationally renowned on January 15, 2009, as Captain of US Airways Flight 1549, when he and his crew safely guided their disabled jetliner to an emergency water landing in New York City’s frigid Hudson River, during what has been called the “Miracle on the Hudson.” Sullenberger and his crew received international acclaim for their actions, including the passage of a Congressional resolution recognizing their bravery. Sullenberger was ranked second in TIME's "Top 100 Most Influential Heroes and Icons of 2009” and was awarded the French Legion of Honour.
Sullenberger is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Highest Duty: My Search For What Really Matters and also wrote Making a Difference: Stories of Vision and Courage from America's Leaders. Clint Eastwood directed the major motion picture about Sullenberger, titled SULLY, based on Highest Duty, with Tom Hanks in the lead role. The film was released to critical acclaim in September 2016. Highest Duty was republished that year as SULLY: My Search for What Really Matters.
Sullenberger is an international lecturer and keynote speaker on how to achieve the highest levels of performance, reliability, and safety through effective crisis management, continuous learning, leadership, and culture.
Internationally respected economist and financier Mohamed El-Erian is a go-to voice around the world on how to decode the global economy, policies, and international markets – markets hang on his analysis and insight. With experience at the highest levels of business and government, El-Erian currently serves as the Chief Economic Advisor at Allianz, the corporate parent of PIMCO where he formerly served as Chief Executive and co-Chief Investment Officer. He is the President of Queens’ College, the University of Cambridge, Chair of Gramercy Fund Management, a columnist for Bloomberg View, and a contributing editor at the Financial Times. El-Erian receives resoundingly positive feedback for his events, such as: “In my thirteen years as an event producer, I have never received such positive feedback from a keynote speaker before. I can say with 100% confidence that this was a wise investment in our business.” (Information Management Network)
El-Erian has been named to Foreign Policy’s list of “Top 100 Global Thinkers” for four years in a row. Since 2014, he has been serving on the jury for the Financial Times/McKenzie Book of the Year award. He also served as Chair of President Obama’s Global Development Council from December 2012 to January 2017. He serves on two corporate boards and several advisory committees and non-profit boards. He has been a LinkedIn top influencer. Meeting planners share their praise for El-Erian’s ability to connect with audiences through a humorous laid-back style, and to clearly explain the complex issues of the global economy.
Political leader, business owner, and bestselling author Stacey Abrams is heralded for her candid insights on politics, leadership, entrepreneurship, social justice, and being a true force for change. A tax attorney by training, Abrams served eleven years in the Georgia House of Representatives, seven as Minority Leader, and became the Democratic nominee for governor in 2018 and 2022. She has launched multiple nonprofit organizations devoted to democracy protection, national and local voter engagement, tackling social issues, and building a more equitable future in the South.
An incomparable entrepreneur, Abrams has built a remarkably broad portfolio across nonprofit, political, and business sectors. She co-founded financial services firm NOWaccount Corp., Nourish, Inc. – a beverage company with a focus on infants and toddlers, and Insomnia Consulting to specialize in development, investment, and consulting for complex infrastructure projects, including transportation, waste-by-rail transfer, energy, facilities, and water. Abrams and her business partner published Level Up – a guidebook for entrepreneurs.
Abrams is also the CEO of Sage Works Productions, Inc., an entertainment production company. She conceptualized and produced the Academy Awards-shortlisted documentary All In: The Fight for Democracy and wrote the New York Times bestselling books Our Time is Now and Lead from the Outside. She is also the author of the political thrillers While Justice Sleeps and Rogue Justice, two children's books, and several romantic suspense novels, three of which are under development. She has been nominated for an Emmy and received the NAACP Image Award in 2021, 2022, and 2023.
Sought-out to speak everywhere from TED, where her talk has almost 7M views and counting, to college campuses, to corporate board rooms, to the Commonwealth Club and Chatham House, Abrams is a powerful and passionate speaker. As TIME wrote of her, "People tend to remember the first time they heard Stacey Abrams speak, and it’s easy to see why."
SYMONE D. SANDERS
Seasoned political strategist, former CNN political commentator, and author Symone D. Sanders is a gifted communicator with a passion for problem solving, social justice, and in-depth analysis of today’s most important issues. Sanders previously served as the national press secretary for U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign, the youngest person to ever hold that title. She served as a senior advisor for President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign and was appointed as a senior member of the Biden-Harris administration, and will now bring her nuanced and critical insight to MSNBC as the host of SYMONE, as well as serving as an anchor and hosting a show on The Choice, MSNBC’s digital streaming arm. In her book No, You Shut Up: Speaking Truth to Power and Reclaiming America, Sanders shares her take-no-prisoners approach to life, politics, and career success, advocating for a new generation to be powerful in their own right. A rousing call to leadership, Congresswoman Maxine Waters raved, “Symone’s honest and profound reflection on standing up and speaking out is sure to inspire young people across the country to become the change agents the world needs.”
Sanders is a highly sought-after commentator and speaker, from her TED Talk Stop asking permission!, to an invigorating conversation at SXSW, Politico’s 2019 Women Rule Summit, the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity, and many more. She served as the National Chair of the Coalition of Juvenile Justice Emerging Leaders Committee, a member of the Federal Advisory Committee on Juvenile Justice, and in her role as principal of the 360 Group, Sanders worked on leading-edge solutions to tough political and social problems. Sanders shares her expertise in communication and political strategy, in-depth analysis of key political issues, and the challenges and possibilities for radical change with authenticity, humor, and insight.
Legendary editor, journalist, CEO, and New York Times bestselling author Tina Brown is an expert on leading through extreme disruption. Brown transformed Vanity Fair, increasing sales from 200K to 1.2M, reinvented The New Yorker, and pioneered online journalism as the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Daily Beast. Now CEO of Tina Brown Live Media, she was the visionary Founder of Women in the World Summits and served as the CEO from 2010-2020. An engaging and talented speaker and moderator, Brown offers lessons on reinvention, shifting business models and market conventions, and taking risks.
Brown is the author of New York Times #1 bestselling biography The Diana Chronicles as well as The Vanity Fair Diaries: 1983-1992, which was named as one of the best books of 2017 by TIME, The Economist, Vogue, and more. Her new book The Palace Papers: Inside the House of Windsor – the Truth and the Turmoil, which has been heralded as one of the most anticipated books of 2022, highlights Brown’s expertly observed insights into the world of the royal family. A leader in one of the most disrupted industries in our time, Brown was featured in CNBC’s documentary The Brave Ones, championing her leadership and legacy. Whether she’s sharing stories of triumphant turnarounds or offering concrete tools and inspiration for embracing risks, Brown is an engaging and powerful speaker who makes an impact with both individuals and organizations.
Peggy Noonan is a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for the Wall Street Journal and bestselling author of nine books on American politics, history and culture. Her Wall Street Journal column, Declarations, has run each week since 2000, garnering millions of readers. In 2017 when she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for distinguished commentary, the prize committee cited her, "For rising to the moment with beautifully rendered columns that connected readers to the shared virtues of Americans during one of the nation's most divisive political campaigns." Forbes Magazine has also hailed her column as “principled, perceptive, persuasive, and patriotic.”
A current political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, Noonan also served as a Special Assistant and speechwriter to President Ronald Reagan. In the Reagan White House, she worked alongside the President on speeches that span the 40th anniversary of D-Day, the Challenger disaster, and his Farewell Address.
Peggy Noonan provides unique and thoughtful analysis of our nation and its leaders. Her speeches are filled with humorous anecdotes and political insight, making them as entertaining as they are thought-provoking.
Creator and co-host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe and former Florida Congressman Joe Scarborough ignites audiences with his no-holds barred political commentary and far-reaching insight. Drawing on his experience as an influential player in Republican politics – and now one of the most in-demand commentators – Scarborough speaks candidly about the important issues facing Americans every day. A Washington Post and New York Times bestselling author, Joe’s books and his keynotes offer an incisive perspective on the trends in Republican politics, what that means for business, and the values that resonate with audiences.
As popular on stage as he is on TV, Joe brings the same energy to his events as a speaker. He is a member of the Cable News Hall of Fame and has been named to the prestigious TIME 100 list. With his signature off-the-cuff commentary, he offers a dynamic and fast-paced perspective on the current political and media landscape and cuts through the headlines of the day to get to what really matters to your audience.
The co-host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe, founder of “Know Your Value,” and New York Times bestselling author, Mika Brzezinski is a celebrated, go-to voice on current events, world affairs, and women's empowerment.
Mika's “Know Your Value” is a nationwide movement in partnership with NBCUniversal to support an empowered and inclusive community that helps all women recognize, and be recognized for, their worth in business and in life. Mika is the author of seven bestselling books which serve as essential and inspiring guidebooks for empowering women, offering encouragement and practical advice on claiming and communicating their worth.
A former anchor of CBS Evening News Weekend Edition and CBS News correspondent who frequently contributed to CBS Sunday Morning and 60 Minutes, Mika has covered some of the most pivotal moments of the 21st century, from the September 11 attacks to multiple presidential elections.
Mika offers empowering insights into women's equality and work-life balance as well as a dynamic perspective on the current political and media landscape.
Vice-Chairman and President of the Toronto Raptors Masai Ujiri is a charismatic and visionary leader credited with driving his team to its most successful period in franchise history, including an NBA Championship. Having been named Toronto’s most influential person, he urges citizens to “believe in this city – believe in yourselves.” He has received numerous accolades for his executive leadership, and few speak as authoritatively about the strategy, teamwork development, and entrepreneurial mindset required to execute a turnaround the way Ujiri has done for several franchises as an executive, coach, and player. Ujiri's personal story reflects his entrepreneurial journey from Nigeria to being the most sought-after executive in the NBA.
A native of Nigeria, Ujiri speaks passionately about his development work in Africa, which is based on investment, not charity, and lifting up communities by empowering women and young people. Masai co-founded Giants of Africa, an organization which uses sport as a tool to enrich the lives of African youth and create opportunities for them on and off the court. Masai’s ethos is to “Dream Big,” and now GOA connects with youth – both boys and girls - in more than 17 African countries and territories. Ujiri has also served as the director of the NBA’s Basketball Without Borders program, and recently hosted the Moving Sports Forward: Turbo Charging Africa forum at the United Nations Unstoppable Africa Conference in New York City.
A global citizen, Ujiri’s perspective is shaped by his executive and player experience around the world. He played professionally in Europe for six years, with stops in Belgium, Germany, England, Greece, and Finland. He has scouted all over the world, including Europe, Africa, Asia, and South America. Ujiri has also managed and coached the Nigerian junior and senior national teams. In 2020, Masai launched thatshumanity.org, inspired by his experiences and the lessons learned from leaders like Nelson Mandela. “For me,” he says, “it’s about seeing each other. Really seeing. Trying to understand what someone else is going through. And helping if we can. Even if it’s just a kind word. Some encouragement. That’s humanity.”
Julia Gillard was the 27th Prime Minister of Australia.
She currently serves as the Chair of Beyond Blue, one of Australia’s leading mental health awareness bodies; is Chair of the global funding body for education in developing countries, the Global Partnership for Education; is the inaugural Chair of the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership, which through research, practice and advocacy, is addressing women’s under-representation in leadership. She was recently appointed as the Chair of Wellcome, a global charitable foundation which supports science to solve urgent health challenges. Her second book Women and Leadership: Real Lives, Real Lessons which is co-authored by Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, was released in 2020. Gillard was named to Forbes' 2021 List of "The World's Most Powerful Women."
Greg Gutfeld has been called “outrageous and outspoken,” neither of which he denies.
A libertarian, political satirist, humorist, magazine editor and author, he is perhaps best known as the co-host of the daily hit show The Five and as the former host of the legendary Fox News Channel programs The Greg Gutfeld Show. and Red Eye where he covered a variety of topics, including news, entertainment, sports, and gossip.
Greg is also now host of the #1 rated late night show GUTFELD! on the Fox News Channel where he parodies current events and converses on key issues with his trademark humor on a nightly basis.
In his free time Greg contributes to his own digital community, The Gutter, where he covers every lifestyle topic imaginable with his unique comedic conservative-libertarian perspective. He is the author of nine books, among them, five New York Times best sellers, The Joy of Hate, Not Cool, How to be Right, The Gutfeld Monologues, and most recently The Plus: Self-Help for People Who Hate Self-Help.
The Weekly Standard calls him “the most dangerous man on television.”
“Trust me, you don’t want him setting his sights on your hypocrisy and public failings. Consider yourself warned.” – Andrew Breitbart
KIZZMEKIA S. CORBETT
Dr. Kizzmekia Corbett was the scientific lead of the Vaccine Research Center’s coronavirus team at the U.S. National Institutes of Health where she studied coronavirus biology and vaccine development. Those 6 years of research led to the groundbreaking discovery that a stabilized version of a spike protein, which is found on the surface of all coronaviruses, would be a key target for vaccines, treatments, and diagnostics. At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, she and her colleagues were central to the development of the Moderna mRNA vaccine and the Eli Lilly therapeutic monoclonal antibody, both of which were first to enter clinical trials in the world. As a result, her work is having a substantial impact on ending the worst respiratory-disease pandemic in more than 100 years. Dr. Corbett is now an assistant professor in the Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Her work now extends beyond the rapid development of COVID-19 vaccines to the outlook of this pandemic and future viral pandemics.
Perhaps just as important as her scientific accomplishments, Dr. Corbett has burst onto the public stage as the face of a diverse and rising generation of talented scientists who will transform the world. She is a stellar science communicator, explaining the vaccine and the virus in highly accessible ways to media outlets, two U.S. presidents, and audiences around the globe.
Few individuals ever become iconic enough to be known by one name – Shaq. A cultural icon, Shaquille O’Neal is best known for an NBA career spanning nearly two decades and earning him the sport’s highest honors including membership in the NBA Hall of Fame. He electrifies the room with his larger-than-life personality and audiences always give him standing ovations for his motivational keynote speeches. When Shaq is at your event, every seat is filled and your event gets a lot of buzz.
Whoopi Goldberg is one of a very elite group of artists who have won the Grammy, the Academy Award, the Golden Globe, the Emmy, and the Tony. She is equally well-known for her humanitarian efforts on behalf of children, the homeless, human rights, education, substance abuse, and the battle against AIDS. Among her many charitable activities, Whoopi is a Goodwill Ambassador to the United Nations.
Beyond her remarkable film, theater, and television career, Whoopi is the author of several children’s books, as well as a New York Times bestseller.
Award-winning composer, lyricist, and actor Lin-Manuel Miranda's groundbreaking and history-making Broadway shows have impacted and inspired audiences worldwide.
The creator and original star of Broadway’s smash-hit musicals Hamilton and In the Heights, Miranda is the recipient of countless prestigious awards including the Pulitzer Prize in Drama, three Tony Awards, three Grammy Awards, an Emmy Award, a MacArthur Fellowship, and a Kennedy Center Honor.
A passionate and dedicated philanthropist, Miranda has been instrumental in providing support for Puerto Rico and is a vocal advocate for equality nationwide.
Funny, candid and inspiring, Miranda sheds light on the creative process and innovative thinking, his life and career, and the power of supporting the missions that matter to you.
SIR TIM BERNERS-LEE
Named one of TIME magazine’s “100 Most Important People of the 20th Century,” one of the UK’s "100 Greatest Britons,” and one of the world's "Most Influential Thinkers”, Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the most powerful communication medium in the world — the World Wide Web — and gave it to the world for free. It is no exaggeration to say that Sir Tim’s visionary work has transformed every aspect of our lives. In these uncertain times, governments, organizations, and the public are all experiencing how invaluable the Web is to connect and solve problems together. Sir Tim’s genius is in understanding the next, new future. In his speeches, Sir Tim shares his insights about the unimagined potential of innovation, business, government and humanity with audiences who learn how to lay the groundwork for new technologies for competitive advantage and his thoughtful consideration about the how the future of the web will impact our recovery and how we can create the future we want.
A former small businessman, John Boehner served as Speaker of the United States House of Representatives for nearly five years during which he led the drive for a smaller, less costly, and more accountable federal government. Speaker Boehner focused on removing government barriers to private-sector job creation and economic growth, cutting government spending, reforming Congress, and rebuilding the bonds of trust between the American people and their representatives in Washington.
His new book On The House: A Washington Memoir released in the Spring of 2021.
JIM YONG KIM
12th President of the World Bank Group Jim Yong Kim is a global visionary devoted to improving the lives of people in developing countries and championing the cause of global health. Renowned for his pioneering approaches to tackling global health issues, education, and economic development at the World Bank, Kim re-defined the institution's work to amplify the voices of the world's poor, vowing to end extreme poverty by 2030.
Before his time at the World Bank, Kim served as President of Dartmouth College – becoming the first Asian-American president of an Ivy League institution – and as Executive Director and co-founder of the internationally renowned non-profit medical organization Partners In Health (PIH). At PIH, Kim helped launch a movement that changed global health forever, tackling some of the world's most difficult health problems, and proving experts wrong in what medical treatments and results are possible in communities of extreme poverty. Kim's work at PIH has now been replicated in more than 40 countries and is chronicled in the award-winning documentary Bending the Arc and bestselling book Mountains Beyond Mountains. Kim also served as Chief of the Department of Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School and director of the World Health Organization's HIV/AIDS department. At WHO Kim led the groundbreaking "3 by 5" initiative, the first-ever global goal for AIDS treatment.
Sought-out to speak everywhere from TED to the World Economic Forum, Kim's ideas and efforts have changed the way the world thinks about global development. A physician and anthropologist, he is the recipient of a MacArthur "Genius" Fellowship and has been recognized as one of America's "25 Best Leaders" by U.S. News & World Report, named to TIME's "100 Most Influential People in the World," and listed to Forbes' "World's Most Powerful People." Kim inspires people to change the world and provides eye-opening and empowering insights on just how we can do it.
Top political advisor, communications expert, and trusted commentator Robert Gibbs offers audiences a unique perspective on today’s political, business, and media environment. A long-time senior advisor to President Barack Obama, Gibbs served as the White House Press Secretary from 2009-2011. After nearly a decade in Washington, he became Executive Vice President and Global Chief Communications Office of McDonald’s (2015-19). Following his departure, he became Senior Counsel at Bully Pulpit Interactive, where he focuses on executive communications, building social impact plans, and corporations’ responses to crises. Drawing on his experience as both a Washington insider and executive at one of the most recognizable companies in the world, Gibbs provides robust insights into everything from the economy and regulatory environment to healthcare reform.
With decades of communications experience at the highest levels, Gibbs brings a unique perspective to sought-after commentary and speaking engagements. He is a regular contributor for MSNBC and NBC News, as well as a co-host for the U.S. political podcast Hacks on Tap, alongside David Axelrod and Mike Murphy. Gibbs is uniquely positioned to lead brands, campaigns, and causes through times of immense change and strengthen reputations in a world which is constantly demanding more.
Julián Castro has distinguished himself as a strong leader and successful public servant for nearly two decades. A former Democratic candidate for President, Castro served as the 16th Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Barack Obama from 2014 to 2017, and as mayor of San Antonio from 2009 to 2014. Today, Castro serves on the board of directors of the LBJ Foundation and is a political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC.
As mayor, Castro brought a strong focus to expanding educational achievement and making America’s seventh largest city a leader in the 21st century global economy. Under Castro’s leadership, San Antonio implemented Pre-K4SA, a high quality early childhood learning initiative that has earned praise as one of America’s strongest public pre-kindergarten programs. During his tenure, San Antonio ranked first on the Milken Institute’s Best Performing Cities List, received an A+ grade for doing business by Forbes, and was the only Top 10 city at the time to achieve a Triple A bond rating with each of the three major ratings agencies. A native Texan, Castro made history in 2012 when he became the first Latino to deliver the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention.
His memoir, An Unlikely Journey: Waking Up from My American Dream, is a candid account of race and poverty in America. Born to unmarried parents in a poverty-stricken neighborhood of a struggling city, Castro details his unlikely journey to becoming an emerging national icon.
From education to technology to safe and affordable housing, Castro has been at the forefront of some of the most innovative partnerships, programs and achievements in the public sector. In sharing lessons learned from the struggles and successes of his political journey, he gives audiences insight into how any group can make a significant change when it comes to America's most pressing issues. He empowers groups to engage and take action, even when things seem at their most bleak. Castro’s own personal story is proof that the American Dream still lives, and in his inspiring talks, he shares actionable items people can accomplish in their day-to-day lives to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to fulfill their potential.
55th New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is currently a Senior Legal and Political Commentator for ABC News, the Managing Member of the Christie Law Firm and Christie 55 Solutions, LLC, and the author of The New York Times bestseller Let Me Finish, about his life and career in New Jersey and as a candidate for President. Previously, he served as Chairman of the Trump Presidential Transition Committee.
Governor Christie spent his two terms in office emphasizing the issues of fiscal responsibility, pension, health benefit reform, education reform, and the opioid crisis gripping his state and the nation. He also devised the state’s groundbreaking response to Super-storm Sandy, leading the rebuilding of the state’s housing, infrastructure and public schools, and setting a bi-partisan example for storm recovery.
Lauded for his trademark charisma and candor, Governor Christie provides an in-depth understanding of what is happening in the nation’s capital and what it means for your industry, organization and employees. He highlights that achievable solutions and unrelenting leadership will help move us forward and help solve the most pressing issues in Washington.
Emmy award winner Riz Ahmed is a critically acclaimed actor, writer, producer, musician, director and activist.
Best known as the star of the explosively successful "The Night Of" on HBO, for which Ahmed became the first man of Asian descent to win an acting award at the Emmys, Ahmed has graced the cover of TIME’s “100 Most Influential People” and earned inclusion in the "Variety 500."
As Riz MC, Ahmed came up in the London music scene as a rap battle champion, going on to write and perform both as a solo artist and with his band, Swet Shop Boy. A vocal activist and advocate, Ahmed has raised awareness and funds for Rohinya and Syrian refugees, and his award-winning piece in the Nikesh Shukla–edited collection of essays, The Good Immigrant, has been dubbed “essential reading.”
Ahmed has been sought-out to speak everywhere from the British Parliament’s House of Common, where he was an invited guest to speak on diversity, to the BBC, where he’s spoken on harmful stereotypes and representation. He provides powerful remarks on diversity and inclusion, combating negative stereotypes, and harnessing creativity for good.
Dr. Mae C. Jemison broke more than the sound barrier in 1992 when she climbed aboard the space shuttle Endeavour and became the first woman of color to travel into space. She was also NASA’s first Science Mission Specialist performing experiments in material science, life science and human adaptation to weightlessness. Dr. Jemison is a highly sought after speaker on issues of health care, social responsibility, technology, education, STEM, and motivation.
Time magazine named Dick Costolo one of the 10 Most Influential U.S. Tech CEOs. In his speeches, Dick Costolo calls on his experience as a digital entrepreneur, business executive, and surprisingly, his experience as an improvisational comedian to deliver entertaining, insightful speeches with a powerful message about the future of social media and the Internet. He is a digital entrepreneur who has launched a series of highly successful ventures, but when he became CEO of Twitter in 2010, he realized he was helping run more than digital platform. Twitter had become a tool to collapse regimes, a tool that gave a powerful voice for the unempowered, and created a new way for businesses to connect and news to be reported. More than ever before, social media was forcing ambitious and significant changes to politics, business, ethics, governance, democracy and inclusion. Twitter was enabling all of that while trying to grow revenue, manage rocket-speed growth, and court investors.
Ursula Burns made history as the first Black woman to lead a Fortune 500 company when she became CEO of Xerox in 2009. Her journey from the lower east side projects, to earning two engineering degrees, and landing an internship at a company she would one day run, is a story that will inspire many. Burns is the author of Where You Are Is Not Who You Are: A Memoir, which received a rave review by the New York Times.
When Ursula took the helm at Xerox in 2009, she was tasked with turning around a company that was quickly becoming obsolete. Pushing for diversification and development of new products and services, and spearheading the largest acquisition in Xerox history, Ursula oversaw a monumental transformation and massive growth.
Ursula regularly appears on Fortune’s and Forbes’ list of the world’s most powerful women. She helped lead the White House national program on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) from 2009-2016, currently sits as the Chairwoman of the Board at Teneo Holdings LLC and is on the board of Exxon Mobil, Endeavor, and Uber, and was previously on the board at Nestlé. She's also on the Board Diversity Action Alliance, leading an effort to support diversity on corporate boards.
An absolute force and American icon, Ursula shares her executive insights on leadership in a time of disruption, and instructs leaders how to answer the call to create more inclusive and diverse organizations. Her powerful and important conversations challenge and inspire audiences.
Dan Schulman is a cutting edge leader and inspiring example of what a CEO can be, blending profit with purpose to lead PayPal as a tech CEO focused on improving the financial health of people, families, and businesses around the world. Dan has frequently been recognized by Fortune as one of the "Top 20 Businesspersons of the Year" and in 2021, named to Fortune's 50 World's Greatest Leaders list. He has also been named one of the "Top 100 Most Creative People" by Fast Company and, in 2019 he was named one of Glassdoor's "Top 50 CEOs." In addition, he has been recognized as one of the "Top 10 Most Innovative CEOs in Banking,” and is frequently presented with awards recognizing his commitment and influence in the space of equality and human rights. Schulman speaks about the future of money, values-driven business, and is most in-demand for his talks about leadership and innovation. He encourages audiences to embrace stakeholder capitalism, inclusion, equality, and more – while also prioritizing responsible and world class business practices.
With extensive experience in payments, e-commerce and mobile technology, Dan is leading PayPal to empower people in their financial lives and reimagine how merchants can continually strengthen their businesses. Under Dan’s leadership, PayPal has been named as one of the top companies on JUST Capital and Forbes’ JUST 100 list, featuring “companies doing right by America.” PayPal has also been recognized as a Fortune Change the World company for its work to tackle the biggest challenges facing society today and named to Morning Consult's "Most Trusted Brands" list.
Dan has consistently delivered successful results over the course of his career, demonstrating his effectiveness as a leader and difference maker. Prior to his role as the CEO of PayPal, Dan served as Group President at American Express. Previously, Dan was President of the Prepaid Group at Sprint Nextel Corporation following its acquisition of Virgin Mobile USA, Inc., where he led the company as its founding CEO for eight years. Earlier in his career, Dan was President and CEO of Priceline Group, Inc., where he led the company through a period of rapid growth and expansion.
Simon Sinek is an unshakable optimist. He believes in a bright future and our ability to build it together. Described as “a visionary thinker with a rare intellect,” Sinek teaches leaders and organizations how to inspire people, foster cooperation, build trust, and effect change.
The author of the global bestsellers The Infinite Game, Start With Why and Leaders Eat Last, Sinek is an ethnographer by training. Fascinated by the leaders who make an impact on the world and the companies and politicians with the capacity to inspire, Sinek's work focuses on the remarkable patterns in how such people and organizations think, act and communicate.
With a bold goal to help build a world in which the vast majority of us wake up inspired, feel safe at work and return home fulfilled at the end of the day, he is leading a movement to inspire people to do the things that ignite their passion, creativity, and joy.
Sinek is posting videos and encouragement on LinkedIn for these challenging times. Here’s one of his gems: "It is rare for all humanity to have an opportunity to come together to help each other. This is one of those times."
Lori started with one idea and turned it into a multi-million dollar international brand. She is well known as a self-made inventor, entrepreneur who created and marketed over 1,000 products, holds 120 US and international patents and has a 90% success rate for new items launched. She is recognized as one of the most prolific inventors of retail products of our time.
She’s a leading Shark on ABC’s 4x Emmy Award-winning entrepreneurial business show, Shark Tank, where she invests in companies and helps turn people’s dreams into a reality. Several of her investments are the highest success stories on Shark Tank to date, having the top 10 out of the top 20.
She’s well known for her impeccable negotiating skills and uncanny ability to know, identify and launch emerging brands.
At the heart of Lori’s own success is a combination of talent, hard work and perseverance. She is a strong role model for women of all ages and was honored with the Sherry Lansing 'Woman of the Year' Award and by the Paley Center as an Important Woman in Television.
Lori's international bestseller Invent It, Sell It, Bank It! is a step-by-step guide on how to turn an idea into a million-dollar reality.
Serena Williams has overcome insurmountable odds to win a staggering 23 career Grand Slams. Her remarkable tennis achievements, combined with her off-court success in business and fashion make her one of the most recognizable icons in the world and a powerful voice for women and mothers.
In March of 2022, Serena Ventures launched its inaugural $111M venture capital fund and currently maintains a portfolio of over 60 companies with a focus on diverse leadership. Williams’ fashion brand, S BY SERENA, celebrates body positivity and female empowerment. Her brand partnerships include Nike, Lincoln, Cash App, Just Egg, Gatorade, Michelob Ultra, Audemars Piguet, and Gucci.
Legendary tennis champion, New York Times bestselling author, and entrepreneur Venus Williams has made a lasting impact on and off the court with her entrepreneurship, advocacy, and fight for equality. Venus has won 7 Grand Slam titles, 5 Wimbledon championships, and 4 Olympic gold medals, and was formerly ranked No. 1 in the world. One of the most accomplished and inspiring women in the history of sports, she has been a steadfast advocate for equal pay, women’s empowerment, and social justice. Venus is also the New York Times bestselling author of Come to Win. Venus shares her insights in motivational speaking events for groups including Capital One, Ernst & Young, Infor, Gannett, and many more.
Heralded for her innovative business acumen, Venus is the Founder of V Starr, a full-service commercial and residential design firm, and the fashion-forward activewear brand EleVen by Venus Williams. She has expanded her portfolio with the launch of her plant-based protein company Happy Viking. Venus recently served as the Executive Producer on the Academy Award-winning Warner Bros. biopic King Richard – which told the story of her father’s impact on her childhood and career as she became a tennis icon and changed the sport for generations to come. Venus has been honored with Variety’s “Power of Women” Award, as Glamour Magazine’s “Woman of the Year,” CARE Impact Award for Gender Equality, ESPN’s “WTA Player of the Year,” and one of Forbes’ “Celebrity 100.”
Venus consistently receives glowing reviews for her events, such as: “Venus was absolutely incredible. Everyone is still talking about her fireside chat. She was so gracious with her time and brought such amazing energy to the event.” (eXp World Holdings)
Al Gore was referred to by TIME magazine as “a businessman who is out to change the world.” An environmental, business, and tech visionary recognized as one of the world's leading activists, Vice President Al Gore offers a unique perspective on national and international issues, including the threats of climate change and the future of tech. He is the Founder and Chairman of The Climate Reality Project, a nonprofit devoted to solving the climate crisis, and a co-founder of Climate TRACE.
Gore is the author of the #1 New York Times bestsellers An Inconvenient Truth and The Assault on Reason, the NYT bestsellers Earth in the Balance, Our Choice: A Plan To Solve the Climate Crisis, The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change, and most recently, The New York Times bestseller An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power. He is the subject of the documentary An Inconvenient Truth, which won two Oscars in 2006 - and a second documentary in 2017, An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power. In 2007, Gore was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, along with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, for “informing the world of the dangers posed by climate change.”
Consistently an active leader in technology, Al Gore is uniquely in touch with the opportunities and challenges in charting a new digital society. Vice President Gore’s status as a leader in global politics, technology and business influences his positions as member of the Board of Directors of Apple and a Senior Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Silicon Valley’s preeminent venture firm. In addition, he is a Founding Partner and Chairman of Generation Investment Management, an asset-management company incorporating sustainability values into the financial-services world.
Across four decades of public life, American statesman Dick Cheney has served at the highest levels of the U.S. Government and private sector. As White House Chief of Staff in the aftermath of Watergate and America’s withdrawal from Vietnam, Wyoming’s Congressman and a member of the House Republican leadership during the Reagan years, Secretary of Defense as the Cold War ended and America defeated Iraq in Desert Storm, former CEO of Halliburton, and Vice President of the United States on 9/11 at the dawn of the Global War on Terror, Cheney has participated in many of the events that have shaped our nation for over four decades. Few Americans alive today can match the breadth and depth of his experience and service. As a statesman, policymaker, businessman, and politician Cheney’s insight, experiences and knowledge are unparalleled.
Cheney has been recognized by many as the most powerful and consequential vice president in American history, remaining steadfast to the ideals that define him and true to his principles. He continues to shape the future of the energy industry in profound ways as a board member of WellAware, a leading industrial Internet of Things Company that offers data analytics solutions for the oilfield industry. Cheney is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of several books, including his memoir In My Time, Heart: An American Medical Odyssey, and Exceptional: Why the World Needs a Powerful America, which he co-authored with his daughter, Congresswoman Liz Cheney. In his writing as well as in virtual speaking engagements, Vice President Cheney shares his enduring political vision with courage and without compromise.
David Rowan explains compellingly how emerging technologies will impact business — and how leaders should prepare now. As founding Editor-in-Chief of WIRED magazine’s UK edition, David came to know the founders of WhatsApp, LinkedIn, Google, Didi, Spotify, Xiaomi, Nest, Twitter, and countless other ambitious startups from Tel Aviv to Shenzhen. He has since invested in more than 80 early-stage tech companies, including three that became billion-dollar “unicorns,” and built a health-tech and climate-tech fund, and he’s an adviser to Lakestar, one of Europe’s largest venture-capital funds. His bestselling book Non-Bullshit Innovation: Radical Ideas from the World’s Smartest Minds (Penguin, 2019) has been translated to Japanese, Korean, Russian and Ukrainian. The book, a 20-country quest for bold corporate innovation in the face of technology-led disruption, sets out 17 proven strategies for future-proofing a successful business — from “Turn products into services” to “Empower your team” and “Become a platform.”
David has been a technology columnist for The Times, GQ, Condé Nast Traveller and The Sunday Times, and founded the VOYAGERS not-for-profit community of 400 innovators working to solve health and climate problems. He has received repeat requests to keynote for clients such as Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Google, KPMG, McKinsey, Chanel, and Unilever, and has moderated events for the World Economic Forum and the UK and French governments. And he is still searching for the future.
David will customize a talk for your meeting. His recent themes include:
• How to build a radical culture of innovation
• How emerging technologies will transform your industry
• What AI, data analytics and blockchain mean for business leaders
• How to optimize customer engagement
• What talent wants in the new world of work
• Why purpose plus profit is the new business mantra
BOZOMA SAINT JOHN
A trailblazing and genuine change-agent, Bozoma “Boz” Saint John is a Hall of Fame Inducted Marketing Executive, author, and entrepreneur who is worthy of the Harvard Business School case study written about her career, titled “Leading with Authenticity and Urgency.” Few people have the depth and breadth of experience that Boz has. Couple that with her remarkable success at Netflix, Pepsi, Apple, Uber, and the Endeavor brands (WME | IMG, Miss Universe, Ultimate Fighting Champion, Professional Bull Riders, and more) and you have one of the most effective marketers of any generation. On February 21, 2023, Viking Books published her memoir, The Urgent Life.
With almost 20 years of experience that spans multiple industries including digital music and entertainment, consumer packaged goods, fashion, sports and automotive, Bozoma is a leader heralded for her bold thinking and cutting-edge ideas. Prior to Netflix and Endeavor, she served as the Chief Brand Officer at Uber, where she was tasked with telling the stories of millions of riders and driver-partners across over 600 cities, and as the Head of Global Consumer Marketing for Apple Music and iTunes, where she built and launched Apple Music, as well as spearheaded campaigns geared towards growing consumer brand recognition, loyalty, and equity around the world.
Recognized for her breakthrough work by both the industry and her peers, Boz is a member of the Billboard Hall of Fame, the American Advertising Federation Hall of Achievement and American Marketing Association Hall of Fame. She has been the recipient of numerous awards, named Forbes #1 Most Influential CMO in 2021, Executive of the Year by Billboard Magazine, and featured in lists such as Fortune’s "Most Influential CMOs," Fast Company’s and Ad Age’s "100 Most Creative People," and more.
Hailed as the "coolest person to ever go on stage at an Apple event,” by Buzzfeed, Bozoma brings unparalleled energy, transformative thinking, and innovative ideas to each engagement.
Marcus Buckingham is a global researcher and New York Times bestselling author focused on unlocking strengths, increasing performance, and pioneering the future of how people work. He is the author of two of the best-selling business books of all time, First, Break All the Rules, and Now, Discover Your Strengths, and his tenth book, Love + Work (Harvard Business Review Press) is a WSJ bestseller and has been heralded by Forbes as one of the ten must-reads for career and leadership in 2022. Marcus’ 2019 Harvard Business Review cover article, "The Feedback Fallacy," was selected by HBR as one of the most influential articles of the last 100 years, and Marcus’ strengths assessments have been taken by over 10 million people worldwide. Building on two decades of experience as a Senior Researcher at The Gallup Organization, Marcus leveraged his data-based discoveries to build a $100M tech company focused on helping people find and contribute their strengths at work. He currently guides the research agenda of the ADP Research Institute as Head of People + Performance.
MIKA BRZEZINSKI & JOE SCARBOROUGH
Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski are morning television’s hottest political duo and the co-hosts of MSNBC's Morning Joe, one of the most popular and influential shows on politics because of who watches it – namely, every member of the Washington political ecosystem, from journalists and legislators to staffers and consultants.
An entertaining pair, they are as popular on stage as they are on TV. Tailoring their remarks to every audience, they can speak about the current political environment, current events, the current media landscape, and leadership and business news.
Few individuals have the breadth of political, economic and military leadership experience as former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, enabling him to speak with authority on a wide range of issues, including international diplomacy, global economic matters, and terrorism.
From an economic perspective, PM Barak served for many years as an advisor to hedge funds and private equity firms, and is currently a member of the CIFC— a NASDAQ credit manager with $14 billion under management. A respected voice on economic matters, PM Barak has offered his insight at the World Economic Forum, SkyBridge Alternatives (SALT) Conference, and to various international firms and businesses.
Author, Activist, Founder of Together Rising, and Host of the We Can Do Hard Things Podcast
Glennon Doyle is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller UNTAMED, a Reese’s Book Club selection, which has sold over two million copies. She is also the author of GET UNTAMED: The Journal; the #1 New York Times bestseller LOVE WARRIOR, an Oprah’s Book Club selection; and CARRY ON, WARRIOR.
Glennon hosts the WE CAN DO HARD THINGS Podcast, which debuted at #1 in May 2021 and was named the #1 New Podcast of 2021 on Apple Podcasts.
An activist and “patron saint of female empowerment” (People), Glennon is the founder and president of Together Rising, an all-women-led nonprofit organization that has revolutionized grassroots philanthropy – raising over $40 million for women, families, and children in crisis.
Say the name Erin Brockovich and you think, strong, tough and stubborn. Erin is all that and more. A formerly-unknown legal researcher who became a 20th century icon overnight thanks to Julia Roberts Oscar-winning tour de force, Erin’s dogged persistence was the impelling force behind the largest medical settlement lawsuit in history.
And she’s kept fighting for the people one town at a time. In her latest book, Superman’s Not Coming, she brings to light the stark truths of America today: resources are exhausted; corruption is rampant; infrastructure is outdated; water and health issues affect us all - rich and poor, Republicans and Democrats. Erin gives permission and empowers people to take action so that they can save their families, their communities, and the planet.
Erin uses her life experiences to motivate and bring inspiration to audiences worldwide, providing lessons on her four steps to success, her motto for resilience and perseverance, and advocacy for the causes that matter. Her motto comes from famed biologist Rachel Carson: "We are challenged as mankind has never been challenged before to prove our maturity and our mastery, not of nature, but of ourselves."
Erin teaches that it will be up to us, we the people, to change our course.
Stand-up comedian, actor and writer Pete Davidson recently completed his seventh season as a cast member on Saturday Night Live.
Davidson, 27, is the first SNL cast member to be born in the 1990s. Davidson shot his first one-hour stand-up special for Comedy Central in 2016 and was named one of Forbes’ 2016 “30 Under 30.” In 2020, he released the stand-up special, “Pete Davidson: Alive From New York,” on Netflix.
Davidson co-wrote, executive produced and starred in the critically acclaimed film The King of Staten Island, released in 2020. He has also starred in the independent film Big Time Adolescence, Netflix’s Mötley Crüe biopic The Dirt, Netflix’s Set It Up and John Turturro’s The Jesus Rolls. He was most recently on screen in The Suicide Squad.
Davidson’s upcoming film projects include Meet Cute, I Slept With Joey Ramone, Worst Man and Bodies, Bodies, Bodies.
Davidson is from Staten Island, N.Y., and his birthday is Nov. 16.
Steve Forbes is Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Forbes Media, and an internationally respected authority in the worlds of economics, finance, and corporate leadership. With the economy at the forefront of conversation on a global level, Mr. Forbes offers long-standing insights that capitalism, free markets, and a flat tax are essential to a healthy economy. This is a message Mr. Forbes has been delivering as editor of one of the world’s most successful business magazines for decades, and he continues to be one of the most sought-after speakers on this and other economic issues leading the economic debates around the world.
Karl Rove, an iconic political strategist and one of the most sought-after political pundits of our time, is best known for his provocative and robust knowledge of major political issues. Rove served as Senior Advisor and Deputy Chief of Staff to President George W. Bush. Before the White House, he ran Rove + Co. a Texas based public affairs firm that consulted on over 75 GOP campaigns for Senator, Governor, Congress and statewide offices in 24 states. Rove writes a weekly op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, appears frequently on the Fox News Channel, and is the author of the New York Times bestseller Courage and Consequence. His latest book is The Triumph of William McKinley.
Rove was described by author and columnist Michael Barone as “…unique…no Presidential appointee has ever had such a strong influence on politics and policy, and none is likely to do so again anytime soon.” Washington Post Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter David Broder wrote that Rove was a master political strategist whose “game has always been long term…and he plays it with an intensity and attention to detail that few can match.” Conservative editor and columnist Fred Barnes, called him “the greatest political mind of his generation and probably of any generation… He knows history, understands the moods of the public and is a visionary on matters of public policy.”
From major international conferences to college campuses and intimate corporate events, Karl Rove's shrewd analysis helps him resonate with audiences. Sponsors hosting Rove have reported his remarks "were extremely insightful and very helpful to our industry leaders" (Edison Electric Institute); "stimulating and valuable" (The Fraser Institute); and "provocative, lively and thoughtful" (Nomura); with audiences "often erupting in applause" (Wabash College) and his presentations consistently praised as "one of the highest-rated" (The TriZetto Group).
Two-time Emmy winner, Super Bowl Champion, and Peabody Award-winning journalist Michael Strahan is a business mogul with an ever-expanding portfolio. After a spectacular NFL career that earned him a spot in the Hall of Fame, Strahan joined the ranks of top sports broadcasters and co-hosted the hit talk show LIVE with Kelly and Michael and headlining FOX's Thursday Night Football Pregame Show. He currently co-hosts ABC’s Good Morning America, serves as an analyst for FOX NFL Sunday, in addition to hosting ABC’s game show favorite $100,000 Pyramid. Strahan’s New York Times bestselling book, Wake Up Happy: The Dream Big, Win Big Guide to Transforming Your Life, encapsulates the uplifting and inspiring energy he brings to his sought-after keynotes and conversations, for memorable events with audiences of all kinds.
Strahan is the Co-Founder of SMAC Entertainment, and the MICHAEL STRAHAN brand encompassing clothing, lifestyle, skincare, and an NFL licensed apparel line. He made history as the first American News Anchor to go to space, participating in the Blue Origin spacecraft launch. Strahan is a committed philanthropist, donating his hands and heart to numerous charities including the USO, HELP USA, and Merging Vets and Players. Heralded for his highly sought-after perspective, Strahan talks about his storied career, how to overcome self-doubt to pursue your passion, and ‘Strahan’s Rules’ – a mix of mental discipline, positive thinking, and a sense of play – making a major impact with individuals and organizations.
Cecile Richards, Co-Founder of Supermajority and Former President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America and Planned Parenthood Action Fund (2006-2018), is a globally respected activist and social justice leader. Named to TIME’s “100 Most Influential People in the World”, Richards is celebrated for her vocal, dedicated and strategic leadership as well as her extensive advocacy experience at grassroots organizations, in the non-profit sector and in Washington. The author of a new book, and instant New York Times Bestseller, Make Trouble: Standing Up, Speaking Out, and Finding the Courage to Lead, Richards offers powerful insights and sharp commentary on leadership, women’s rights, social justice, and politics. A dynamic and empowering speaker who has addressed audiences everywhere from Talks at Google to Harvard University, Richard motivates audiences to action.
In 2019, Richards launched Supermajority, a new home for women’s activism, training, and the mobilization of a multiracial, intergenerational community to fight for gender equality. While at the helm of Planned Parenthood, Richards led a federation of more than 600 health centers, providing high-quality health care to millions of people each year, and directed a staff of more than 500 in the national offices. Under Richard's leadership, Planned Parenthood expanded advocacy efforts to include fighting for access to health care, and she leaves Planned Parenthood with 12M supporters and counting, four times more than when she joined.
Before joining Planned Parenthood, Richards served as deputy chief of staff for House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. In 2004, she founded and served as president of America Votes, a coalition of 42 national grassroots organizations working to maximize registration, education, and voter participation. She began her career organizing low-wage workers in the hotel, health care, and janitorial industries throughout California, Louisiana, and Texas.
Top media executive, New York Times bestselling author, and innovative tech entrepreneur Ben Sherwood offers game-changing insights on bold leadership in times of disruption. An award-winning journalist, Sherwood previously served as President of ABC News, as well as Co-Chairman of Disney Media Networks, and President of Disney|ABC Television Group. He is the author of multiple bestselling books, including the New York Times bestseller The Survivors Club, which explores the secrets and science of the world’s greatest survivors. Sought after for his masterful storytelling, Sherwood shares the secrets to unleashing creativity and innovation, and leading through disruption.
Consistently ranked in The Hollywood Reporter’s annual list of “Most Powerful People in Entertainment,” he is also the Founder and CEO of MOJO, a sports tech and media company on a mission to make youth sports fun, easy and accessible for everyone. Leveraging his experience managing a 12B business with Disney|ABC, Sherwood has pivoted to scale his startup within a year to high-profile partnerships with the NBA, MLB, NFL FLAG, and FC Barcelona, winning the 2021 Webby Award for “Best Sports App on the Internet” and recognition from Front Office Sports as one of the 30 Best Employers in the global sports industry. A compelling keynote speaker, Sherwood regularly receives rave reviews such as: “Ben's message is deep, highly relevant, and of great intrinsic value. He hit the ball deep into the seats.” (The Masters Forum)
Ronan Farrow is a contributing writer to The New Yorker, where his investigative reporting has won the Pulitzer Prize for public service, the National Magazine Award, and the George Polk Award, among other honors. His stories for The New Yorker exposed the first sexual-assault allegations against the movie producer Harvey Weinstein and the first misconduct allegations against CBS executives, including then C.E.O. Leslie Moonves. He was also responsible for the first detailed accounts of payments made by the National Enquirer’s parent company in order to suppress stories about Donald Trump during the 2016 Presidential campaign. Farrow's latest book, Catch and Kill is a New York Times bestseller with a companion Peabody Award-winning podcast which has topped the Apple Podcast charts. Farrow is also currently producing documentaries for HBO.
Before his career in journalism, Farrow served as a State Department official in Afghanistan and Pakistan. He is also the author of the New York Times bestseller War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence.
Farrow has been named one of Time Magazine's "100 Most Influential People" and one of GQ's "Men of the Year". His speeches have been selected among NPR’s “Greatest Commencement Speeches Ever” and Huffington Post’s "Top 10 Speeches of the Year".
Award-winning journalist, renowned TV host, and philanthropist Tamron Hall takes on the most captivating and thought-provoking issues facing the world every day. As the host of The Tamron Hall Show, Hall has received two Daytime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Informative Talk Show Host, in addition to two prestigious Gracie Awards from the Alliance for Women in Media Foundation. The Variety “Power of Women” honoree is also the host of the Court TV series Someone They Knew, her second true crime series following Deadline: Crime with Tamron Hall, and recently released her debut novel As the Wicked Watch, an instant Editor’s Pick on Amazon. In demand for events with groups like Microsoft, Google, Accenture, YWCA, the American Heart Association, and more, Hall inspires audiences with conversations about overcoming obstacles, creating connection, and thriving in the ‘now’.
Hall and her expansive cultural impact have been featured in Forbes, Vogue, The Washington Post, and many more, and she made history as the first African American female co-host of NBC’s TODAY, and served as the anchor for MSNBC’s Live with Tamron Hall. Audiences have turned to Hall – regardless of the network or medium – for her courageous curiosity, her warmth, and her devotion to issues like the prevention of domestic abuse through her work with Safe Horizon. Hall empowers and inspires audiences with conversations about overcoming obstacles in the workplace and at home; domestic violence, homelessness, and literacy; her storied career; journalism and the media; and much more.
An expert on domestic economics and a leading authority on international finance, Larry Summers is one of the most distinguished voices on the issues and policy impacting the global economy. His frequent commentary is regarded as essential input to crafting economic policy, and he has remained for decades a well respected statesman of the American economy.
Prior to serving in the Obama Administration as Director of the National Economic Council, Dr. Summers was 71st Secretary of the Treasury during the Clinton Administration, President of Harvard University, and Vice President of Development Economics and Chief Economist of the World Bank. Dr. Summers’ tenure at the U.S. Treasury coincided with the longest period of sustained economic growth in U.S. history. He is the only Treasury Secretary in the last half century to have left office with the national budget in surplus. During his tenure in the Obama Administration, Larry Summers emerged as a key economic decision-maker and continues to be called upon as the number one resource for the most pressing economic debates of the day.
Amy Schumer is an Emmy-winning and Golden Globe-nominated standup comedian, actress, writer, producer and director. She is the creator, star, writer and executive producer of the award winning Inside Amy Schumer, the popular Comedy Central television series, which premiered in April 2013 to the network’s highest season premiere ratings of that year. Inside Amy Schumer won numerous awards including a Writers Guild Award for Best Comedy/Variety Sketch series, the first-ever Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Sketch Variety Series, and the prestigious Peabody Award. In 2019, she was nominated for an Emmy in the Outstanding Writing For A Variety Special category for her comedy special Amy Schumer Growing. Schumer’s latest one-hour Comedy special titled The Leather Special is currently streaming on Netflix.
Schumer’s first book, the #1 New York Times bestseller The Girl with The Lower Back Tattoo, is a refreshingly candid and uproariously funny collection of personal and observational essays.
Schumer is also known for her work in films, including Universal Pictures film Trainwreck, the mother-daughter comedy Snatched, which she also produced, and the drama Thank You For Your Service. In 2018, Schumer starred and produced the STX comedy, I Feel Pretty.
Often touring theaters and arenas all over the world, Schumer is the only female comic to headline Madison Square Garden. She is a proud founding member of Time’s Up. Her podcast, Amy Schumer Presents: 3 Girls, 1 Keith premiered its fifth season on Spotify this past March.
In July 2020, Schumer’s three-part documentary series, Expecting Amy premiered on HBO Max. The docuseries takes viewers behind-the-scenes as Amy battles through an extraordinarily difficult pregnancy, while documenting the formation of her latest comedy special. She also premiered the second season of her cooking show, Amy Schumer Learns to Cook, with her husband Chris Fischer who is an award-winning chef on the Food Network this past August. Up next: Life and Beth, a comedy series via Hulu which Schumer will star in, write, direct and executive produce, and Stephen Karam’s The Humans that Schumer will star in.
Tyler Perry is an established American actor, director, screenwriter, producer, playwright, and author. Born into poverty and raised in a household scarred by abuse, Tyler fought from a young age to find the strength, faith and perseverance that would later form the foundations of his work.
Tyler started his career writing plays, many of which later became the inspiration for his film projects and included the introduction of the now-legendary Madea character, played by Tyler himself. Tyler’s first feature film, Diary of a Mad Black Woman, debuted at number one nationwide. His ensuing films include Madea's Family Reunion, Daddy's Little Girls, Why Did I Get Married?, Meet The Browns, The Family That Preys, I Can Do Bad All by Myself, Why Did I Get Married Too?, For Colored Girls, Madea's Big, Happy Family, Good Deeds, Madea's Witness Protection, The Single Mom’s Club, Boo! and Boo! 2: A Madea Halloween, A Madea Family Funeral, Gone Girl, Vice and more.
With the historical official opening of Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Perry is the first African American man to ever be at the helm of a major studio.
In conversation, Perry touches upon all of his experiences, ranging from his work in film and television to his activism on behalf of others and the journey it took for him to get where he is today.
The world first knew Arnold Schwarzenegger as a famous bodybuilder and a Hollywood action hero, and now as California's 38th Governor, an environmental crusader, a successful businessman, and a generous philanthropist.
STEVEN VAN ZANDT
Musician, Performer, Songwriter, Arranger, Music Producer, Music Supervisor, TV Producer, Actor, Director, Broadway Producer, TV and Film Composer, and Live Event Producer, International DJ, Activist, Historian, Teacher, member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and recognized internationally as one of the world’s foremost authorities on both Contemporary and Traditional Rock and Roll.
“He’s not the only one, nor the oldest, nor the richest. But Little Stevie Van Zandt might currently be the planet’s most charismatic, dedicated and visible crusader scrapping to preserve the dirty purity of Rock ‘n Roll.” - BruceSpringsteen.net
“I know it sounds a bit silly but I do believe Rock and Roll can change the world. It’s about bands, and that for me suggests brotherhood, family, friendship, and community” - Stevie Van Zandt
Alex Rodriguez is a businessman and the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of A-Rod Corp, a broad-based investment firm that bets on world-class startups and partners with leading global companies across the real estate, health and wellness, technology, and sports & entertainment industries. While best known as one of the world’s greatest athletes (a 14x MLB All-Star and a 2009 World Series Champion with the New York Yankees), for more than 25 years, Alex leads a team of experts building high-growth businesses and enhancing the value of more than 30 companies in the A-Rod Corp portfolio.
Alex founded A-Rod Corp in 1995, purchasing a duplex apartment on the theory that investing his MLB earnings wisely would protect him from the kinds of financial struggles that afflict too many professional athletes. While he racked up extraordinary stats on the field (696 home runs and more grand slams than any other MLB player in history), Alex simultaneously assembled an impressive team at A-Rod Corp, bought apartment units across the southeastern U.S., and built a fully integrated real estate and development company. In 2020, Alex joined CGI Merchant Group's hotel investment fund to acquire and develop properties across North America and the Caribbean.
Following his success in real estate, Alex has invested in a variety of sectors where he has expertise. He looks for long-term opportunities to provide financial capital, work alongside founders and leadership, and amplify the growth of each company.
In addition to leading A-Rod Corp, Alex is CEO of Slam Corp, a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) with Antara Capital Chairman Himanshu Gulati as equal partner. Slam Corp is seeking to acquire a leader in the consumer tech, media, entertainment, and health and wellness sectors.
In 2021, Alex joined the NBA’s Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx ownership group. In the same year, Alex formed A-Rod Media, a strategic pillar within the organization to house all media activity. A-Rod Media offers scalable, multimedia capabilities, including original content creation, compelling narrative storytelling, and audience engagement across all marketing platforms.
Alex is an Emmy Award-winning MLB analyst for Fox Sports and ESPN. He has been a judge and investor on ABC’s Shark Tank, mentored financially distressed ex-athletes on CNBC’s Back in the Game, and currently co-hosts the podcast The Corp with Barstool Sports’ Dan Katz, interviewing CEOs, entrepreneurs, and sports legends. Committed to creating opportunities for young people to succeed, Alex serves on the Board of Directors of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade where he is an Alumni Hall of Fame Honoree, the Boards of Trustees of the University of Miami, and The Paley Center for Media.
Olympic gold medalist and the most successful female skier of all time Lindsey Vonn also a New York Times bestselling author, sports broadcaster, and mental health advocate. Following a stellar career as an alpine skier, Vonn pivoted to lend her knowledge of the sport to NBC’s coverage of the Beijing Olympics, appearing on the Today Show, in the studio, and as an alpine analyst sharing her many insights. She is the New York Times bestselling author of several books, including Strong is the New Beautiful and her memoir, Rise: My Story. An elite athlete, Vonn is a clear example of how leadership and determination lead to winning results. She is the Founder of the Lindsey Vonn Foundation, an organization established to empower young girls, and launched "Lindsey Vonn's Virtual Career Day" which brings together young scholarship winners from the Lindsey Vonn Foundation with an expert in their intended field. Vonn speaks authentically about her career and her challenges, sharing insights and takeaways about resilience, risk-taking, and overcoming adversity that empower audiences of all kinds.
Michael Eisner teaches audiences how to develop corporate creativity and strategically invest in innovation, based on his experiences as CEO of Disney and as Founder of The Tornante Company, a fund to invest in and develop companies in the media and entertainment sector. Both Fortune 500 CEO and entrepreneur, Mr. Eisner knows that even large global companies can innovate and adapt to new markets, new economies and new technologies. Through his remarks, he not only inspires corporate innovation, he gives parameters for successful execution such as brand building, establishing strategic partnerships and employee work teams.
Under the leadership of Michael Eisner, Walt Disney Company revenues grew from $1.7 billion to more than $170 billion by focusing on the power of ideas, pursuing the innovative vision, and taking creative risks. As a leader in the media industry for four decades, Mr. Eisner has overseen organizations recognized for their inventiveness and innovation, experienced an explosion of technological advances that have impacted his business and led his companies through the advent of the next big ideas. In his presentations on leadership, he shares his insights on what it takes to run a company that must always grow and change.
Mark Wahlberg earned both Academy Award® and Golden Globe® nominations for his standout work in the family boxing film, The Fighter, and Martin Scorsese’s acclaimed drama, The Departed. He has played diverse characters for visionary filmmakers such as David O. Russell, Tim Burton, and Paul Thomas Anderson. His breakout role in Boogie Nights established Wahlberg as one of Hollywood’s most sought-after talents.
Wahlberg’s remarkable film career began with Renaissance Man, directed by Penny Marshall, and The Basketball Diaries with Leonardo DiCaprio, followed by a star turn opposite Reese Witherspoon in the thriller, Fear. He later headlined Three Kings and The Perfect Storm with George Clooney and The Italian Job with Charlize Theron. Wahlberg then starred in the football biopic, Invincible, and Shooter, based on Stephen Hunter’s best-selling novel, Point of Impact. Wahlberg reunited with The Yards director James Gray and co-star Joaquin Phoenix for We Own the Night, which he also produced. In 2013, he teamed with director Peter Berg on military drama, Lone Survivor, and 2 Guns with Denzel Washington. The following year, he starred in Ted 2 with Seth MacFarlane and Daddy’s Home opposite Will Ferrell. Wahlberg’s additional credits include The Gambler, The Lovely Bones, The Other Guys, Pain & Gain, Contraband, Ted, and Transformers: Age of Extinction. Also recently, he starred in Deepwater Horizon, Patriots Day, Transformers: The Last Night, Daddy's Home 2, All the Money in the World, Mile 22, and Instant Family. He will soon star in the Netflix film, Wonderland.
An accomplished film and television producer, Wahlberg has produced Instant Family, Mile 22, Daddy's Home 2, Patriots Day, Deepwater Horizon, Entourage, The Gambler, Lone Survivor, Broken City, Contraband, The Fighter (for which Wahlberg was nominated for an Oscar® for Best Picture), and We Own the Night. For television, Wahlberg is executive producer of Emmy-nominated Wahlburgers on A&E and hit comedy Ballers on HBO. He executive produced HBO’s Entourage through its impressive eight-season run as well as Boardwalk Empire, How to Make It in America, and In Treatment. He recently executive produced three seasons of Shooter for USA Network. For his work in television, Wahlberg has received a BAFTA, a Peabody, seven Emmy nominations, six Golden Globe® nominations, and a Golden Globe® Award for Boardwalk Empire in 2011.
A committed philanthropist, Wahlberg founded The Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation in 2001 to benefit inner-city children and teens. He was inducted into the Boys and Girls Clubs of America’s Alumni Hall of Fame in 2012. Additionally, he is the recipient of the Bob Hope Award from the Medal of Honor Society for his work to support our military.
Kate McKinnon won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series in 2016 and 2017 and has been nominated every year from 2014 to 2020 for her work on Saturday Night Live. In addition, she earned a Critics’ Choice Award for Best Actress in a Comedy Series in 2016.
McKinnon’s recent roles include Jay Roach’s Bombshell opposite Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Margot Robbie, Danny Boyle’s Beatles inspired romcom Yesterday, starring opposite Mila Kunis in the Lionsgate action-comedy The Spy Who Dumped Me, Paul Feig’s reboot of Ghostbusters, Rough Night opposite Scarlett Johansson, and Office Christmas Party with Jason Bateman and Jennifer Aniston. In addition, she has voiced roles in several animated projects, including Oscar-nominated Ferdinand, Angry Birds and Pixar’s Finding Dory. She has also voiced several TV series, including The Magic School Bus Rides Again for Netflix, The Simpsons and Family Guy. She was nominated for a 2017 Daytime Emmy for her work on the PBS animated series Nature Cat and can be heard as ‘Queen Mortuana’ in the Audible medieval fantasy-comedy series, Heads Will Roll, which she co-created.
Upcoming projects include the Fox Searchlight/Hulu limited series The Dropout, where she’ll be portraying Theranos founder, Elizabeth Holmes and playing Carole Baskin in the UCP limited series, Joe Exotic, based on the Wondery podcast and characters made popular on Netflix’s doc series, Tiger King for Comcast/Peacock.
John Mulaney is a two-time Emmy and WGA award-winning writer, actor, and comedian.
In 2018, he traveled the United States with sold out Kid Gorgeous tour, which was later released as a Netflix stand-up special and won the Emmy for Outstanding Writing in a Variety Special; In 2015, he released The Comeback Kid, also a Netflix original, which The AV Club called the “best hour of his career;” In 2012, his Comedy Central special New In Town had Ken Tucker of Entertainment Weekly hailing him as “one of the best stand-up comics alive.” Starting March 2022, he’ll be touring with his newest hour John Mulaney: From Scratch.
Solidifying himself as a fan favorite, John Mulaney has been invited to host Saturday Night Live five times. He began writing for SNL in 2008 and created memorable characters such as ‘Stefon’ with Bill Hader and appeared as a “Weekend Update” correspondent. He has written for IFC’s Documentary Now! and Netflix’s Big Mouth, on which he voices the character of Andrew. John will star in the new reboot of Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers on Disney Plus this Spring opposite Andy Samberg.
He’s also starred on Broadway in the runaway hit written and performed alongside Nick Kroll in Oh, Hello On Broadway. The duo have since release a Netflix special of the same name, as well as Oh, Hello: The P’dcast, based off their characters Gil Faizon and George St. Geegland.
In December 2019, the critically acclaimed and Emmy nominated musical variety special John Mulaney & The Sack Lunch Bunch debuted on Netflix. It was recently announced that festivities will continue with a pair of holiday themed Sack Lunch Bunch specials coming to Comedy Central in the near future.
Nobel Prize-Winner Richard H. Thaler studies behavioral economics and finance as well as the psychology of decision-making which lies in the gap between economics and psychology. He investigates the implications of relaxing the standard economic assumption that everyone in the economy is rational and selfish, instead entertaining the possibility that some of the agents in the economy are sometimes human.
Thaler is the co-author (with Cass R. Sunstein) of the global best seller Nudge (2008) in which the concepts of behavioral economics are used to tackle many of society’s major problems. In 2015 he published Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioral Economics. He has also published numerous articles in prominent journals such as the American Economics Review, the Journal of Finance, the Journal of Political Economy, and is a regular contributor to the New York Times Economic View column. In 2018, he was elected to the National Academy of Sciences.
Thaler is a Founding Principal at Fuller and Thaler Asset Management where they manage about $10 billion in U.S. equities. He was an informal advisor to the coalition government led by David Cameron, the Obama administration, several professional sports teams, and the Alliance for Decision Education.
John Krasinski has established himself as one of the most exciting talents as an actor, writer and director, engaging audiences on the big and small screen. Having first rose to fame as Jim Halpert in the award-winning television sitcom The Office, Krasinski has gone on to co-write, direct and star in the Academy Award-nominated A Quiet Place, star in Sony Pictures Classics film The Hollars, direct Brief Interviews with Hideous Men, and star in the current Amazon series Jack Ryan, among many other commercially and critically successful projects.
Krasinski also produces a diverse slate of projects through his production venture, Sunday Night, which he formed with Allyson Seeger.
In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, Krasinski created and hosts Some Good News, a Youtube web series entirely dedicated to good news. Operated from inside Krasinski's home, and featuring special guests from David Ortiz to the cast of Hamilton, the show has over 1.5 million subscribers, with multiple episodes going viral.
In engaging, hilarious, and inspiring remarks, Krasinski shares lessons-learned over the course of his career, insights into the creative process, and how to use your platform for good.
Former Texas State Senator and Founder of the non-profit Deeds Not Words, Wendy Davis is renowned as a passionate advocate for women in social, economic and political spheres. After skyrocketing to near celebrity status through her historic 13-hour filibuster in the Texas Senate to stop a legislative effort that would have dramatically reduced women’s access to healthcare, Davis emerged as a leader in the national conversation surrounding women’s leadership and issues which threaten our individual opportunities. Long before she was a Texas State Senator and Texas’ Democratic nominee for Governor in 2014, Davis struggled with the same obstacles faced by women around the country. Determined to break the cycle of poverty she’d been born into, Davis fought to juggle school, career and single motherhood and uses those experiences to connect with others in order to shape perspective. Through Davis’ work at Deeds Not Words, for which she earned a spot on Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business,” she is shaping the next generation of leaders and directly working to foster diversity, inclusivity, and change at the highest levels of business and government.
At the podium, Davis combines the power of personal storytelling with her deep policy understanding to explain why equitable policies matter in the lives of women as well as the overall health and vibrancy of our economy, guiding organizations across industries toward a better understanding of the institutional value in creating diverse work environments, and key issues such as pay equity, family leave, and harassment policies. A living testament to the ability we each possess to rise above challenges and succeed, Davis demonstrates the power of each of our unique voices, and the value in raising them for what we believe in. Audiences are left inspired to utilize their individual strengths into meaningful contributions, and organizations are left with the tools and insights needed to advance positive change.
Leading futurist and ground-breaking tech entrepreneur Jimmy Wales is one of the most sought after visionaries in business and technology. Wales is the Founder of Wikipedia, the 5th most-popular website in the world, which strive to create free access for all to the sum of human knowledge. The stunning feat of democratization of information celebrated it’s 20th anniversary, having become a cultural phenomenon and remaining a leader in the fight against the proliferation of false information online. The tech giant creator is also the Founder of WT.Social, a collaboratively editable social networking platform, which aims to change the way we digest news. Driven by his passion for innovation, disruption, and the endless possibilities in the future of tech, Wales is a compelling and motivational keynote speaker for audiences of all kinds.
Named one of TIME’s “100 Most Influential People, Wales has also been heralded by the World Economic Forum as one of the top 250 leaders across the globe for his accomplishments, his commitment to the society, and his potential to shape the future of the world. Audiences praise Wales for his optimism for the future as well as his masterful ability to speak on complex issues ranging from AI, trends in new media, disruption, and resiliency. He consistently receives rave reviews for his in-demand events, such as: "We were all so thrilled with Jimmy. He was so open and dedicated to share with us, McCann people, media, students and the keynote audience such inspiring stories about him, Wikipedia and basically about such a wide array of interconnected subjects. We were all inspired in such a fantastic way by his presence here." (McCann/Thiess)
AUSTIN CHANNING BROWN
New York Times bestselling author, media producer, and sought-after speaker Austin Channing Brown is a leading and inspired voice on racial justice in America. Austin is known for her New York Times bestseller I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness, which was a Reese’s Book Club pick, and her adaptation with new stories for young readers, I’m Still Here: Loving Myself in a World Not Made for Me. I’m Still Here shot to the top 20 of Amazon’s bestsellers list, has been featured in all major publications, and received acclaim from Kirkus, Publisher’s Weekly, Booklist, and more. Austin’s workshops and talks are incisive, fun, disarming, and above all, transformative. She’s been sought-after by groups including Wells Fargo, Elon University, the Coalition of Black Social Workers, and many more.
Austin is also the Founder and CEO of Herself Media, and creates content that centers the experiences of Black women, dismantling the foundations of white supremacy. She is also the Executive Producer and Host of The Next Question – a web series that imagines how expansive racial justice can be. Her nationally-celebrated first season of TNQ featured MacArthur Genius Nikole Hannah-Jones, NYT bestselling authors Brené Brown, and Jasmine Guillory. In addition, Austin is a co-host of the Full Reset podcast. By using an intentional mix of humor, pop-culture, story-telling, and audience engagement, she awakens people to the current realities of systemic racism and the everyday actions which allow racism to thrive. Austin evokes thought, feeling, and action as she celebrates Blackness and the possibility of justice in our organizations and communities.
Ayọ (fka Opal) Tometi is one of the most influential human rights leaders of the century according to TIME magazine. As one of the three women co-founders of Black Lives Matter digital platform and chapter-based network, her name is etched in history. Hailed as a feminist freedom fighter, Ayọ is respected for her track record of uniting communities, and for her thought leadership on race, immigration, and gender. In 2019 she completed nearly a decade of service as the Executive Director of the Black Alliance for Just Immigration (BAJI), the first immigrant rights organization for people of African descent in the United States. Ayọ is a trusted advisor and serves on the board of Atlantic Fellows for Racial Equity and the International Living Futures Institute. She has graced the cover of magazines because of her achievements and received numerous recognitions including an honorary PhD, being named most influential women of the century by USA Today, TIME Magazine, and Most Influential People by Forbes, Marie Claire, Glamour and Cosmopolitan magazines. Ayọ was also honored by the City University of New York (CUNY) with a scholarship in her name to support immigrant students pursuing law degrees. In 2019 she also received the Coretta Scott King Center Award and Douglass 200 Award, and is currently featured in a video installation at the Smithsonian’s National Museum for African History and Culture for her contributions in thought-leadership for the betterment of the diaspora. As the daughter of Nigerian immigrants, Ayọ has set her movement sights on an even bigger struggle: uplifting Black lives worldwide. In 2020 she founded Diaspora Rising, a new media and advocacy hub dedicated to strengthening the bonds amongst members of the global Black family. Additionally, she's focused on other social enterprises. With nearly two decades as a human rights champion, she still feels her work has only just begun.
Former United States Senator and Ambassador to China, Max Baucus is a leading voice on business, public policy, and international affairs. In his years as an elected official and diplomat, Baucus was engaged in the most consequential issues of the past half-century, and continues to provide counsel as co-founder of the Baucus Group.
Montana's longest-serving senator Baucus established himself as one of the Senate’s most productive and least partisan members, building a record of accomplishment on a broad range of policy issues both domestic and foreign. As Chair of the Senate Finance Committee for seven years, Baucus served as the principal author and advocate for the Affordable Care Act, and led the passage and enactment of Free Trade Agreements with 11 countries and worked to increase U.S. exports by knocking down trade barriers. He was also deeply involved in orchestrating congressional approval of permanent normal trade relations with China in 2000 and in facilitating China’s entrance into the World Trade Organization in 2001, and is credited with holding China accountable on issues of intellectual property, human rights and currency.
In-demand by numerous private companies and public organizations, Baucus currently serves on the board of directors of Ingram Micro and previously served on the board of advisors to Alibaba Group until May of 2019, and the External Advisory Board to the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency until July of 2019. He now devotes much of his time to the Max S. Baucus Institute at the University of Montana, founded to give young adults opportunities in politics, government, and overseas studies.
Sir Paul Tucker is one of the most respected central bankers and financial policy makers of our time. He is Chair of the Systemic Risk Council, a Harvard University Fellow, and former Deputy Governor of the Bank of England. Tucker spent more than three decades in central banking, including experience in Asia, and was knighted for his reforms, which are creating a more resilient international banking system. Internationally, he was a member of the G20 Financial Stability Board, leading its work on “too big to fail”, and a director of the Bank for International Settlements. Tucker’s most recent book, Unelected Power, examines the extraordinary powers central banks have wielded in the wake of the financial crisis, and what needs to be done to ensure they remain legitimate stewards for the common good. At the podium, Tucker reveals and unpacks key insights into everything from the future for monetary policy, the future of Europe, Brexit and international trade, to stability in the financial system, and the evolving role of central banks.
Sunny Hostin is a three-time Emmy Award-winning legal journalist, former federal prosecutor, New York Times bestselling author, and co-host of The View. In May 2021, Hostin released her debut novel, Summer on the Bluffs (William Morrow), which skyrocketed to #11 on The New York Times Bestseller List. The first book in her Summer trilogy is being adapted into a series as the first major project for Sunny Hostin Productions. In the fall of 2020, Hostin released her memoir, I Am These Truths: A Memoir of Identity, Justice, and Living Between Worlds, with HarperOne.
Hostin has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes Woman, Essence, Newsweek, The New York Post, Latina, and Ebony. A sought-after public speaker, she has delivered a TEDxTalk called “A Possibility Model” and spoken at and moderated panels for the U.C. Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, Corporate Counsel Women of Color, and the National Bar Association, and served as a witness at the Federal Judiciary’s Congressional Hearing for the Public’s Right of Access to the Courts. Hostin lives with her husband and two children in New York.
Lawrence O'Donnell is an Emmy-winning producer and the host of MSNBC's The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell. Bringing his extraordinary background in politics, entertainment and news to the nightly program, O'Donnell provides the last word on the important issues and most compelling stories of the day.
A sought-after speaker for his straight talking political commentary, O'Donnell has an uncanny ability to go beyond the headlines to provide audiences with prescient analysis.
Prior to his time as a political analyst, O'Donnell served as an executive producer for the acclaimed series The West Wing, a senior advisor on Capitol Hill, and a political columnist and writer.
A familiar face on television, one of broadcasting’s most respected journalists and host of CBS Sunday Morning, Jane Pauley is praised by audiences for her relatable and personal inspirational message. She advocates for people 50+ starting different careers, making a difference and pursuing their dreams. She is a also a highly regarded advocate for mental health, children’s health, and education issues. Jane Pauley's celebrity fills the room with optimism, and audiences often bring her back more than once, citing the warm reception she received by the audience.
Prior to anchoring on CBS, Pauley had a 13-year career on NBC's Today program and was also a co-host of Dateline NBC for 12 years.
Columnist, New York Times bestselling author, and CNN commentator Charles Blow fearlessly tackles today’s most pressing issues with depth, nuance, and tremendous insight. Now an Op-Ed columnist at The New York Times, Blow previously served as the paper’s Graphics Director, leading The Times to significant awards. He has also worked as the Art Director of National Geographic Magazine and for The Detroit News. Blow is the New York Times bestselling author of Fire Shut Up in My Bones, which won a Lambda Literary Award, the Sperber Prize, and appeared on numerous “best of” lists. A memoir, the book was called “searing and unforgettable” by People Magazine and was adapted into a critically-acclaimed opera with a groundbreaking run at The Metropolitan Opera – the first performance of an opera there by a Black composer. His second book, The Devil You Know: A Black Power Manifesto, draws on both his personal experience and observations of society to call for an end to systemic racism. Blow is a prolific and insightful commentator on politics, public opinion, and social justice, often challenging those in power with clarity and candor.
Heralded for his forward-thinking coverage of American politics and society, as well as his skill in graphic design to create powerful narratives with compelling visuals, Blow is also an in-demand speaker and gifted moderator. He has appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, SalonTV, CBS News, and regularly as a commentator on CNN, and has been featured in The Washington Post, The Ringer, Oprah Daily, and more about his highly acclaimed work. An advocate for social justice and racial equity, Blow speaks about income inequality, xenophobia, and mental health, generating impactful conversations that resonate with audiences of all kinds.
Secretary of the Treasury Jack Lew (2013- 2017) has served as the most senior economic official in the U.S. government, helping to shape policies that drove the longest economic recovery in American history. At Treasury, he oversaw all aspects of international and domestic fiscal policy, including issues related to financial regulation, global sanctions regimes, tax policy, debt management, and trade. As a speaker, he brings the freshest insights and an insider's knowledge of the individual people and policies affecting the direction of the global economy. Secretary Lew addresses these issues both from an historical perspective -- given his over 30 years of government experience -- and by looking forward to how the new Administration and Congress may tackle the many challenges they face. With his unique perspective, Secretary Lew presents an engaging view of how complex financial and geopolitical forces are shaping our economy, both domestically and overseas.
U.S. Bank Executive Vice President and Head of Branch and Small Business banking, Sekou Kaalund has two decades of Wall Street experience spanning leadership in institutional and retail businesses, making him a highly regarded authority on strategic leadership and targeted, sustainable impact. A former leader at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York as well as Citi, Kaalund has established key connections across client segments and industries, and is a highly sought-after speaker for his insights on strategizing growth, developing talent, and forming inclusive teams that have a major impact on organizations of all kinds. Prior to joining U.S. Bank, he spent the last 15 years at JPMorgan Chase in a variety of leadership roles across institutional and retail businesses, most recently serving as Head of Consumer banking for the Northeast division. While managing complex firmwide relationships, he launched Advancing Black Pathways, the first global corporate initiative that leveraged a data-driven strategic framework to develop scalable programs to reduce the racial wealth gap, which led to a historic five-year firm-wide $30B commitment to advance racial equity. He has offered riveting keynotes at the Milken Global Conference, National Urban League, the Whitney M. Young Jr. Memorial Conference, and many more, and has led engaging conversations at Chase Talks with Kevin Hart, Grant Hill, Dominque Wilkins, among many others.
Kaalund’s contributions have received numerous accolades including being named on Ebony’s “Power 100” list as a “Titan of Industry,” the SAID Institute’s Mark of Excellence award, World of Money’s Wall Street Legacy Award, and being named one of Face2Face Africa’s “30 Black Stars.” He has been featured in Forbes, Black Enterprise, Essence, and on the BBC, NBC, and CNBC. Kaalund has been honored by the All Stars Project for leadership and community impact, the Council of Urban Professionals, the Harlem YMCA, and the Boys and Girls Club of American inducted him into the Hall of Fame in 2011. He serves on several boards, and his leadership initiatives include the tech partnership “Advancing Black Entrepreneurs” StartupBus, a hackathon on wheels.
Writer, political activist, and feminist organizer Gloria Steinem is an iconic visionary of the women’s movement. She founded New York and Ms. magazines, and is the New York Times bestselling author of The Truth Will Set You Free, But First It Will Piss You Off!, Revolution From Within, Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions, and My Life On the Road, which was named one of the “best books of the year” by both O: The Oprah Magazine and Harper’s Bazaar and became the basis for the biopic The Glorias, directed by Julie Taymor and starring Julianne Moore. One of the most visible symbols of the movement, Steinem continues to be an ever-present and sought-after speaker on all fronts of social activism.
Steinem is the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, as well as the Freedom Award from the National Civil Rights Museum. For her writing, Steinem has received the Lifetime Achievement in Journalism Award from the Society of Professional Journalists, the Society of Writers Award from the United Nations, among many others. Steinem co-founded the National Women’s Political Caucus, the Ms. Foundation for Women, the Free to Be Foundation, the Women’s Media Center, Equality Now, Donor Direct Action, and Direct Impact Africa. She produced Viceland TV’s WOMAN, a series exploring human rights and violence against women around the world. As an in-demand speaker, Steinem consistently receives glowing reviews such as: "Gloria was absolutely amazing. It was like an out of body experience to hear from her. Everyone was blown away." (The Robert Toigo Foundation)
Renowned actress, humanitarian, and political activist Ashley Judd is heralded for her unforgettable performances and tireless advocacy work. From starring roles in box office hits and award-winning independent films, Judd’s films tell very personal stories that tap into larger issues, and she brings this gift for storytelling to all her speaking engagements. A voice for the often voiceless, she shines an illuminating light on the vulnerable and the at-risk. Judd has traveled the world with her international public health work, from maternal health to child survival, human rights to disease prevention and treatment. She has been working with NGO’s, grass roots organizations, governments, and supranational bodies since 2004, and detailed her experience in her New York Times bestselling book, All That Is Bitter and Sweet. For her sought-after speaking engagements, Judd regularly receives glowing praise such as: “Ashley Judd walked onto the Ford Hall Forum stage and hit it straight out of the park from her first word to her last. She is not only incredibly intelligent and a top-notch presenter, but also thoroughly knowledgeable and committed... It was clear that the audience found Judd completely captivating and a true inspiration.” (Ford Hall)
Judd was named one TIME’s “Persons of the Year” for her role as a silence-breaker and change-maker of the #MeToo movement, shifting the culture and conversation around sexual abuse and harassment. She is a sought after public speaker and frequent OpEd author on topics as diverse as conflict mineral mineral mining and child marriage. She serves as the Global Goodwill Ambassador for UNFPA, the Global Ambassador for Population Services International, and is Chairperson of the Women’s Media Center Speech Project: Curbing Abuse, Expanding Freedom. She has received the Muhammad Ali Kentucky Humanitarian Award and her alma mater, the University of Kentucky, established the Ashley T. Judd Distinguished Gradate Fellowship in the Office for Policy Studies on Violence Against Women. Judd illuminates topics of women’s rights, mental health, the environment, and more with her indelible storytelling and global experience, and hosts rave about her impact: "Ms. Judd was the perfect choice for the closing keynote. She had obviously done her homework on the ATHENA leadership principles because she connected her remarks directly to them. She was intelligent, thought provoking, humorous, sincere, warm and extremely engaging. Conference attendees raved about her and she and her staff were delightful to work with. I would highly recommend her as a speaker." (Güd Marketing | Marketing That Matters)
Academy Award-Winning Actor Matthew McConaughey's impressive career has spanned 40 feature films that have grossed over $1 billion dollars. A Texas native heralded for his constant career reinvention, McConaughey is a dedicated philanthropist whose just keep livin' Foundation empowers high school students to lead active lives and make healthy choices for a better future.
A force of nature both onscreen and in business, McConaughey serves as creative director for Wild Turkey, has co-created his own bourbon called Longbranch, is part owner of Austin FC, and serves as the Minister of Culture/M.O.C for the University of Texas sports arena and Austin FC MLS Soccer Club.
In his New York Times #1 bestselling book, Greenlights, McConaughey writes what he calls a love letter to life. Greenlights takes readers on a journey of lessons he grappled with throughout his life reminding us to connect with grace, truth, and the beauty of being alive.
In engagements that are equal parts empowering and entertaining, McConaughey shares lessons from his life and career, the impact of his philanthropic efforts, and the importance of chasing your passion.
Pop culture icon Ricki Lake has built an award-winning acting and producing career on her graciously candid sensibility and her authentic, relatable nature. A storyteller, talk show host, documentarian, and passionate activist, Lake has worked hard to make this world a better place through the use of her voice and platform. Lake’s legacy is undoubtedly her ability to share the truth on a wide variety of subjects through her unique lens.
Rising to fame at 18 years of age as the original Tracy Turnblad, in John Water’s Hairspray, she went to on make more than 20 films including Cry-baby, Serial Mom, and Mrs. Winterbourne among others. Ricki then went on to become the youngest talk show host in history at the age of 24. Her show was the voice of the younger generation and the success of her show was unprecedented and changed the genre of talk television forever.
Lake’s award-winning documentary The Business of Being Born has become a national platform and tool for childbirth education in schools and hospitals, and is hailed as the “must see” film among mothers to be. In addition to other successful film projects, Lake also executive produced documentary film Weed the People, which examines the use of cannabis as medicine for children with pediatric cancer and its status as a Schedule I prohibited drug in the United States.
The author of Never Say Never: Finding a Life That Fits, Lake speaks to worldwide audiences, offering actionable advice for those struggling in their own skin. In empowering, impassioned conversations, Lake shares her journey from troubled childhood to weathering near-bankruptcy, an extremely difficult divorce, and the suicide of a deep love to ultimately finding success and happiness. In recalling the ups and downs of her experience, she reminds audiences that life always hands you the unexpected, so you should never say never. With her signature informative yet conversational delivery, Lake educates people on how to make informed choices when it comes to their health and inspires any group to let go of their own fears to find happiness within themselves.
Dr. Kevin Hassett is among the world's leading economists, and served as the 29th Chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers from 2017 through 2019. He was recently called back to the White House to serve as a special economic advisor to President Trump to manage data-driven decisions in response to the Coronavirus economic fallout.
While working in the Trump White House, Hassett was a key force driving internal and external debate on virtually every economic topic, from taxes and trade, to substance abuse and deregulation. While at the White House, Hassett was the top public spokesperson for the White House on economic policy and the state of economy, appearing regularly on Fox, Fox Business, CNBC, MSNBC, Bloomberg, CNN, and more. Hassett was even drawn upon at times to run the televised White House press briefings.
Sought-out by numerous presidential candidates, Hassett served as John McCain's chief economic adviser in the 2000 presidential primaries and an economic adviser to the campaigns of George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential election and McCain in the presidential election of 2008.
Elizabeth Nyamayaro is an award-winning humanitarian and Special Advisor for United Nations World Food Programme. Born in Zimbabwe, Elizabeth has worked at the forefront of global development for over two decades improving the lives of underserved populations, and has been instrumental in fighting global inequalities, advancing social justice, and challenging the status quo to accelerate women’s rights around the world – through her leadership roles at the World Bank, World Health Organization, UNAIDS, and UN Women. Elizabeth is the mastermind behind HeForShe, a United Nations global solidarity movement for gender equality that took the world by storm, generating more than 1.2B conversations on social media and galvanizing men in every single country in the world in just five days. With her TED Talk garnering more than 1M views in its first weeks alone, Elizabeth is a prominent thought-leader and has engaged at global forums such as World Economic Forum in Davos, Cannes Film Festival, Skoll World Forum, Harvard, Oxford, the British Parliament, among others.
Named as Apolitico’s "100 Most Influential People in Gender Policy" in 2018 & 2019, Elizabeth has been touted by The New York Times as “one of only two women transforming Davos.” She has been featured in Vogue, Fast Company, Wired, Fortune, Elle, BBC, and CNN. She has also served as a Glass Lions jury at Cannes Lions and has received the PR Council Trailblazer Award for Social Impact and the Feminist Majority Foundation’s Global Women’s Rights Award. A Political Scientist by training, Elizabeth holds a Masters of Science in Politics from the London School of Economics & Political Science and leadership education from the Harvard Business School. Elizabeth wrote a memoir about her life and experiences, I Am A Girl From Africa.
One of the only household names in classical music today, Itzhak Perlman enjoys superstar status rarely afforded a classical musician. Beloved for his charm and humanity as well as his talent, he is treasured by audiences who respond not only to his remarkable artistry, but also to his irrepressible joy for music-making and communicating with music lovers around the world. In his presentations, Mr. Perlman's joy of music is brought to life on stage as he uses his violin to demonstrate the power of music by emotionally connecting with his audience.
Robin Sharma is one of the world's premier speakers on Leadership and Personal Mastery, named one of the World's Top Leadership Gurus. As a presenter, Sharma has the rare ability to electrify an audience yet deliver uncommonly original and useful insights that lead to individuals doing their best work, teams providing superb results and organizations becoming unbeatable.
For nearly 20 years, many of the most well-known organizations on the planet, ranging from Nike, GE, Microsoft, FedEx, PwC, HP and Oracle to NASA, Yale University and YPO have chosen Robin Sharma for their most important events, when nothing less than a world-class speaker will do.
Sharma's books such as The Leader Who Had No Title have topped bestseller lists internationally and his social media posts reach over six hundred million people a year, making him a true global phenomenon for helping people do brilliant work, thrive amid change and realize their highest leadership capacities within the organization so that personal responsibility, productivity, ingenuity and mastery soars.
Sharma has been ranked as one of the Top 5 Leadership Gurus in the World in an independent survey of over 22,000 businesspeople and appears on platforms with other luminaries such as Richard Branson, Bill Clinton, Jack Welch and Shaquille O'Neill.
Known for her television roles on the American version of The Office and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Ellie Kemper is an actress, writer, comedian, and the author of My Squirrel Days, a collection of personal essays that detail her journey from adolescence to Emmy-nominated actress.
In conversations that are equal parts funny and inspiring, Kemper shares behind-the-scenes stories from her time on two of America’s most beloved modern shows; her rise from a struggling actor to a television star; the importance of mentorship in her career; balancing her acting career, publishing a book and having a child in the span of two years; how to keep a positive outlook when facing the challenges of the modern world; and how to effectively follow your dreams.
Emmy Award-nominated actor, writer, comedian, podcaster, and author Vanessa Bayer is known for her seven seasons on Saturday Night Live, which garnered her an Emmy nomination and an American Comedy Award. Other notable projects include NBC’s Will and Grace, FOX’s Brooklyn Nine-Nine, ViacomCBS’s Drunk History, HBO’s Crashing, and ABC’s Modern Family and Single Parents, and films include Trainwreck, DC League of Super Pets, and Ibiza, among many others. Bayer also co-hosts the interview podcast How Did We Get Weird? with her brother, and is the co-creator and star of Showtime’s I Love That For You, a comedy series inspired by her own story of overcoming childhood leukemia. One of Hollywood’s funniest actors working today, Bayer brings comedy and commentary to your next event and makes an impact for audiences of all kinds.
Bayer’s children’s book How Do You Care for a Very Sick Bear? teaches children and adults how to support friends through long-term illnesses, inspired by her own battle with leukemia. For her advocacy raising awareness, she was honored with The Gilda Award from Gilda’s Club. Bayer is the Co-Creator, Executive Producer, and star of Showtime’s new series I Love That For You, which is inspired by her own story of overcoming childhood leukemia. Bayer shares with humor and candor insights from her rising stardom, her journey overcoming adversity, and how she cultivated resilience through comedy and storytelling in memorable keynotes and conversations.
Actor, comedian, and writer Alex Moffat recently wrapped a six-season run on Saturday Night Live as a main cast member. He is best known for his impersonations of Joe Biden, Eric Trump, Mark Zuckerberg, Anderson Cooper, Joe Scarborough amongst others, as well as his prolific original recurring Weekend Update character ‘Guy Who Just Bought a Boat’. Alex has appeared in the indie film Susie Searches, which recently appeared at TIFF, as well as Holidate for Netflix, the live action hybrid feature Clifford for Paramount, Someone Great for Netflix and the indie Opening Act. On the television side Alex will appear in Bill Lawrence’s Bad Monkey for Apple, and can also be seen in Showtime’s Billions. Alex has lent his voice to Disney's sequel Wreck-it Ralph 2 as well as the upcoming Daria re-boot for Paramount.
Alex creates personalized, hilarious performances for any audience looking for an upbeat and lighthearted event. Moffat has been a hit with trade associations, corporate meetings, and college groups, adding levity to every program. Spending the earlier years of his career in Chicago, he was a regular performer at iO and The Annoyance Theatre as well as an official acro-dunker for the renowned Chicago Bulls. He played in the Celebrity All-Star game in February 2020. Both in character and as himself, he receives raves from in-person and virtual audiences, and is a gifted host, moderator, and emcee who leaves a lasting impression on any audience.
W. KAMAU BELL
Sociopolitical comedian, Emmy-winning producer, and New York Times bestselling author W. Kamau Bell is a revered cultural commentator, using hilarity and profound insight to illuminate today’s biggest issues – and where we can go from here. He is the host and executive producer of the Emmy Award-winning CNN docuseries United Shades of America with W. Kamau Bell, in which he explores communities across America to understand the unique challenges they face. Kamau is known for his Netflix stand-up comedy special Private School Negro, his one-man show The W. Kamau Bell Curve: Ending Racism in About an Hour, and his FX & FXX comedy series Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell. His first book, The Awkward Thoughts of W. Kamau Bell: Tales of a 6' 4", African American, Heterosexual, Cisgender, Left-Leaning, Asthmatic, Black and Proud Blerd, Mama's Boy, Dad, and Stand-Up Comedian, is a humorous, well-informed take on the world today from “the most promising new talent in political comedy in many years” (The New York Times). Kamau is the co-author of the New York Times bestseller Do the Work!: An Anti-Racist Activity Book, with Kate Schatz. In sought-after talks, Kamau leverages humor as a tool for transformative conversations.
Kamau serves on the advisory boards of Right To Be (formerly Hollaback!), Donors Choose, and is the ACLU Celebrity Ambassador for Racial Justice. He’s been nominated for multiple NAACP Image Awards, a GLAAD award, and has been featured on Conde Nast’s “Daring 25” list. He has hosted three critically acclaimed podcasts: Kamau Right Now!, Politically Re-Active, and Denzel Washington is The Greatest Actor of All Time Period. Kamau is the director of the critically acclaimed documentary Cultureshock: Chris Rock’s Bring the Pain, and is the director and producer of the four-time Emmy-nominated docuseries We Need to Talk About Cosby. Kamau tackles some of the nation's most longstanding complex issues in accessible and empowering talks for audiences of all kinds.
Charles Duhigg’s The Power of Habit has spent three years on the New York Times Bestseller list. His latest bestselling book, Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business (2016) is a fascinating exploration of the science of productivity, and why, in today’s world, managing how you think—rather than what you think—can transform your life. Duhigg's journalistic accomplishments have made him an in-demand speaker for organizations from the UCLA School of Management to Fortune 500 companies and The Johnson Foundation to the National Association of Science Teachers. His presentations are both descriptive and prescriptive, and speak to a wide range of groups from the fields of business, science, medicine, and education. He is a Pulitzer prize-winning investigative reporter and writes for The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, and other publications. Duhigg hosts the "How To!" podcast for Slate Magazine and is a 2020-2021 Business News Visionary Award recipient.
Mayim Bialik starred on the hit CBS comedy, The Big Bang Theory as Amy Farrah Fowler, for which she received two Critics Choice Awards, four Emmy Award nominations, and a SAG Award nomination. From playing the young version of Bette Midler’s character in Beaches to her turn as Blossom Russo in the iconic 90’s sitcom Blossom, Bialik has appeared in numerous beloved roles throughout her dynamic acting career. She currently stars as the lead in the Fox comedy show Call Me Kat, and is a co-executive producer on the show.
Bialik puts her Neuroscience degree to use in her podcast, Mayim Bialik's Breakdown, where she breaks down the topic of mental health, especially to bust myths and misunderstandings. After a successful guest hosting turn at Jeopardy!, Bialik hosts Jeopardy! spinoff series for broadcast, cable, and streaming platforms.
An acclaimed author, Bialik has written two #1 New York Times best sellers, Girling Up: How to Be Strong, Smart and Spectacular, and the recently released Boying Up: How to Be Brave, Bold and Brilliant. She has also written a parenting book, Beyond the Sling, and a cookbook, Mayim’s Vegan Table. Bialik has recently dedicated her skills as a writer, actress, neuroscientist and mother to driving the lifestyle website GrokNation.com, which she started in 2015.
Following the end of Blossom, Bialik left acting for twelve years to earn a BS in Neuroscience from UCLA in 2000 with a minor in Hebrew & Jewish Studies. She went on to complete her PhD in Neuroscience, also at UCLA, and then completed her doctorate in the fall of 2007, which examined the role of oxytocin and vasopressin in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder in adolescents with Prader-Willi syndrome. While at UCLA, Bialik was a dedicated student leader in UCLA Hillel, including conducting and writing music for UCLA’s Jewish acapella group.
Elizabeth “Betsy” Duke is a highly regarded banker with many firsts as a woman in banking. Although she has been a key decisionmaker in the boardroom of both the Federal Reserve and a major US bank, her commonsense view of the world was shaped in 30 years of community banking and small business lending. She joined the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in 2008, just as the financial crisis got underway. With her practical understanding of the banking industry, she was the Fed’s point person on housing, consumer and small business issues during the crisis and the recovery. She stepped up to chair the board of directors of Wells Fargo after the discovery of serious sales practices issues required that company to take a hard look at its culture. As Board Chair she oversaw a nearly complete replacement of the board and management team and maintained regular dialogue with investors and regulators.
Today, her understanding of the perspectives of both investors and public policymakers combines with her high-level experience and crisis-tested judgement to give color and texture to her remarks. Audiences appreciate that Duke has walked down Wall Street, Main Street, and Constitution Avenue. Her speeches and panel discussions highlight the interplay between the banking system and the economy with a focus on fiscal, monetary, and regulatory policy. With a conversational style, she approaches policy from the standpoint of the factors that shape it and the consequences that flow from it.
Yale University historian of Nazism and communism Timothy Snyder was described by the New York Times as a "public intellectual unafraid to make bold connections between the past and present." His book On Tyranny was #1 on the New York Times Bestseller List more than two years after its publication, thanks to Snyder’s unique ability to distill practical guidance for action from the darkest chapters of history. It has been used around the world in defense of democracy.
His newest book Our Malady is a short, urgent examination of healthcare as a human right which begins from Snyder's recent and nearly fatal illness. From his hospital bed, he rethinks the connections between the health we lack and the freedom we need. In a time of authoritarianism and pandemic, the timeliness of this book cannot be overstated. Both a cri de coeur and a data-driven argument, it shows the way towards an America that is both healthy and free.
Snyder is also well known internationally for the prize-winning Bloodlands, which explains the most murderous events of the time of Hitler and Stalin in Europe. In his book Black Earth, Snyder explains the Jewish Holocaust in ways that help us to better understand the basic predicaments of our own time. In The Road to Unfreedom, Snyder charts the path from democracy to tyranny (and back). All five of these books were or are New York Times bestsellers.
A masterful presenter, Snyder is sought out by groups around the world to understand the direct line between big ideas of the past and our lives today.
Former Homeland Security Advisor to two presidents, Tom Bossert has been a leading voice on U.S. cybersecurity operations and policy for over a decade. During his time in the Trump Administration, Bossert was the Chief Advisor on global health security, cybersecurity, homeland security, and counterterrorism. In his 2017 talk at the Aspen Security Conference titled "The Next Pandemic," he offered a prescient warning to the world about the coronavirus, urging the administration and the global health community to invest in coordinated pandemic response. Prior to his role in the Trump Administration, Bossert served as Deputy Homeland Security Advisor under President George W. Bush and worked as a lawyer and risk management consultant in private practice. Bossert is now the president of Trinity Cyber, a fast growing, disruptive cybersecurity company, and sought after by businesses and global leaders alike for his insider's perspective on politics – both on domestic issues and America's place in the world – and the ways businesses can guard against foreign influence in their own networks.
Bossert is a National Security Analyst to ABC News, and his analysis has made headlines in virtually every major media outlet, including The Washington Post, Axios, and The New York Times, among others. He is a Senior Fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy at the U.S. Atlantic Council, and was named one of The Washingtonian’s “500 Most Influential People” in D.C. Bossert has been an invaluable counselor to the likes of Disney Chairman Bob Iger, dozens of Fortune 500 companies, several of the nation’s largest university systems, and countless government entities and officials. Audiences are delighted by Bossert’s refreshing candor, and he is an engaging, well-armed speaker who leaves audiences with balanced and detailed understanding of what's ahead in politics, national security, and cybersecurity.
Ambassador, Congressman, Mayor, and Civil Rights icon Andrew J. Young has been serving and shaping our country for almost 70 years. Ambassador Young became active in the Civil Rights movement as leader of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and worked closely with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to teach non-violent organizing strategies. Considered the diplomat among Dr. King’s community, he was a key strategist and negotiator in the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Now a Patriarch in the Civil Rights movement, audiences look to Ambassador Young as a powerful voice honoring the legacy of Dr. King’s work and the future of human rights.
Ambassador Young became the first African American representative from the Deep South to serve in Congress since Reconstruction, and was appointed to serve as the first African American U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. He served as Mayor of Atlanta, worked with GoodWorks International to facilitate sustainable economic development in the Caribbean and Africa, and produced and hosted the Emmy Award-nominated docu-series Andrew Young Presents, exploring contemporary issues. He is the author of several books, including An Easy Burden: The Civil Rights Movement and the Transformation of America, which is being updated and re-released in a special edition commemorating his 90th birthday.
The veteran civil rights leader received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and France’s Legion d’Honneur, each representing the highest civilian honor for that nation, and was awarded the NAACP Springarn Medal, an Emmy Lifetime Achievement Award, and his portrait is in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery. The Andrew J. Young Foundation, Inc. supports and promotes education, health, leadership, and human rights in the U.S., Africa, and the Caribbean, building on his legacy and developing new generations of innovative leaders to tackle this era’s global challenges. Ambassador Young has been a powerful and active voice in the movement for Civil Rights for more than half a century, honoring the past and shaping the future, and shares a message of hope and humanity that uplifts and inspires audiences of all kinds.
Iconoclastic entrepreneur and business legend Ken Langone is renowned as the co-founder of The Home Depot, where he was lead director and a member of the executive committee of its board since the company's founding, helping it expand to a national chain with over 2,000 locations and 400,000 employees. A pillar of corporate America for decades, Langone is the Founder and CEO of investment banking firm Invemed Associates LLC, served as CEO and President of Geeknet, Inc. (2011-2013), and was a director of the New York Stock Exchange.
Langone's New York Times bestseller, I Love Capitalism!: An American Story, tells his compelling personal story rising up from a low-income family to becoming one of America's most successful businessmen. A passionate defender of the American Dream, Langone demonstrates that everyone is entitled to dream big and reach their maximum potential. Langone provides on-the-nose business insights, sharp analysis on the current political and economic climate, and real-life, empowering, inspiration on success and leadership.
A world-class philanthropist, Langone's many contributions include a major gift to NYU's Medical Center, resulting in its renaming as the NYU Langone Medical Center. He also serves on the boards of Unifi, Inc., Micell Technologies, Relationship Sciences and Juice Press.
Foreign Policy Magazine named Henry Kissinger one of the "Top 100 Global Thinkers" for a "half-century ruling the U.S. foreign policy community." World-renowned for his unparalleled skills in the art of diplomacy, Dr. Kissinger is one of the shrewdest, best-informed and most articulate figures ever to occupy a position in Washington. A vital presence in international and national politics, Dr. Kissinger understands firsthand the delicate balance of world power and America’s influence.
KAY BAILEY HUTCHISON
For more than four decades, Kay Bailey Hutchison has leveraged her expertise in the public and private sectors. She served in the U.S. Senate for twenty years representing the state of Texas. As a member of Senate leadership, she was elected Vice-Chairman of the Republic Conference and later Chairman of the Republican Policy Committee, the fourth-highest ranking Republican Senator. Then in 2017, she became the permanent Representative of the U.S. to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, where she held the alliance together and strategized the U.S. working relationships with Russia, China, and the rest of the world. Highly regarded for her commitment to bipartisan solutions, Ambassador Hutchison offers an insider’s perspective and practical, non-partisan insights to issues central to the national economy, homeland defense, and foreign affairs in her engaging talks.
Kay Bailey Hutchison was named one of the world’s 100 most powerful women by Forbes. She served two terms as Chairman of the Board of Visitors of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and previously worked as a prominent attorney at Bracewell, LLP, an established international law firm in Dallas, Texas. She is a Senior Adviser to the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a bipartisan, nonprofit policy research organization dedicated to advancing practical ideas to address the world’s greatest challenges, and is the namesake for the KBH Center for Energy, Law and Business at the University of Texas. Ambassador Hutchison is the New York Times bestselling author of three books, including Unflinching Courage: Pioneering Women Who Shaped Texas, Leading Ladies: American Trailblazers, and American Heroines: The Spirited Women Who Shaped Our Country. With her breadth of experience, she is a masterful, knowledgeable speaker on national security, foreign policy and America's agenda on the world stage.
Award-winning political analyst, New York Times bestselling author, and MSNBC national correspondent Joy Reid is the renowned Host of MSNBC’s The ReidOut. Reid made history with her namesake show as the first Black woman to host a primetime cable news program. Prior to The ReidOut, she hosted the hit weekend morning news show AM Joy. Reid is the author of Fracture: Barack Obama, the Clintons, and the Racial Divide, We Are the Change We Seek: The Speeches of Barack Obama, which she co-edited, and the New York Times bestseller The Man Who Sold America: Trump and the Unraveling of the American Story. She also hosts two podcasts Reid This, Reid That, with Emmy-winning journalist Jacque Reid, and a books podcast What to Reid. MSNBC’s new special, The Culture Is, features Reid as co-host, moderator, and executive producer for the first episode, The Culture Is: Black Women. A sought-after keynote speaker, Reid is celebrated for her no-nonsense commentary and insights, taking audiences beyond the headlines in impactful engagements.
Reid has been featured in Washington Post, Forbes, The New York Times, Vogue, Black Enterprise, Fast Company, Ms., among many others, and her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, The Miami Herald, New York Magazine, and The Daily Beast. She was a 2022 NAACP Image Award winner for The ReidOut, 2003 Knight Center for Advanced Journalism fellow, and has received awards from the Women’s Media Center, the National Action Network, the National Association of Black Journalists, and been nominated for an Emmy, a GLAAD Media Award, and two prior NAACP Image Awards. Reid has taught at Syracuse University and is a Hearst Visiting Professor at Howard University, teaching a course on the impact of race and gender on political coverage. Drawing on her decades-long experience in politics and passion for addressing the intersections of race, justice, and culture, Reid offers in-demand analysis on today’s most important issues.
Olympia Snowe is recognized as a policy thought-leader in Washington. She is also an inspiration for the barriers she overcame to become one of the most powerful women in Washington. The Washington Post summed up Senator Snowe's powerful legacy as a politician, "with several historic distinctions to her name: She is the first woman in U.S. history to serve in both chambers of a state legislature and both chambers of Congress. She was the first Greek American woman to serve in Congress, the youngest Republican woman elected to the House and the first Republican woman to serve on the Senate Finance Committee."
She made the decision not to seek a fourth term in the United States Senate when she arrived at a stark reality: that the excessive political polarization in Congress would not diminish in the short term. As a result, she joined the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington, to take her fight for bipartisanship in a different direction. At the BPC, she serves as a Senior Fellow where she is able to harness her insider’s knowledge to promote change from outside of Congress.
Senator for 24 years and Democratic candidate for Vice President in 2000, Senator Lieberman is a voice of bipartisan reason in hyper-partisan times. Widely respected by Democrats and Republicans alike, he is known as a thoughtful, principled, and effective leader, advocating for centrist policies to break partisan gridlock. Throughout his service as Connecticut’s Independent representative from 1988-2012, Senator Lieberman established himself as a national leader – working across party lines to find common ground, building bridges, and facilitating mutually beneficial strategic agreements. He is a straight talker with a sense of humor, and an expert on topics ranging from the economy to international relations, national security, cybersecurity, and environmental protection.
After serving four terms in the U.S. Senate, Senator Lieberman has amassed impressive credentials in business and law. He went on to lead Kasowitz, Benson & Torres’ Government Affairs and Strategic Counsel Practice Group, providing strategic counsel to individuals, firms, non-profits and trade associations at the intersection of law, business and public policy. In sought-after and engaging talks, Senator Lieberman is uniquely positioned to shed light on what’s ahead for Washington as well as the challenges and opportunities of partisan politics. He regularly receives rave reviews, such as: “The program was marvelous. It was truly a pleasure. His remarks were poignant and extremely well-received,” (Anti-Defamation League) and “Everything with Senator Lieberman was fantastic. He was brilliant onstage and truly delightful to work with. Everyone at Stephens was thrilled and really enjoyed having him." (Stephens Inc.)
Pulitzer Prize winner Clarence Page is one of the most nationally recognized and highly regarded syndicated columnists in the country. A member of the Chicago Tribune’s editorial board, Page is also a regular contributor of essays to The News Hour with Jim Lehrer and has been a regular on The McLaughlin Group, The Chris Matthews Show, Nightline and Lead Story news panel programs.
A go-to voice on American culture and politics thanks to his sharp, thoughtful and moving analysis, Page has received lifetime achievement awards from the Chicago Headline Club, the National Society of Newspaper Columnists and the National Association of Black Journalists. In his speeches, he decodes top political issues with clarity, balance and humor.
Deval Patrick served two terms as the 71st governor of Massachusetts. An accomplished executive, passionate leader and gifted orator, Deval Patrick will capture—and hold—the attention of any audience. Guided by the advice of his grandmother to “hope for the best and work for it,” he entered office in 2007, a first-time candidate propelled by an unprecedented grassroots campaign and lead the Commonwealth to top national rankings in education, health care, energy efficiency, economic competitiveness and more. Through a challenging economic environment, the Governor maintained a disciplined growth strategy of investment in education, innovation and infrastructure.
The Governor was a candidate for the Democratic nomination for President of the United States where his platform included opportunity and economic growth, reforming our healthcare and criminal justice system, an accessible and functioning democracy, and collaborative global leadership for the 21st century.
His next step in public life is TogetherFUND, a political action committee to support progressive politics, candidates for the United States Senate and House in so-called "swing" states and districts, and grassroots groups working to drive turnout and engagement among disenfranchised and marginalized voters. The Governor will join the Harvard Kennedy School as a Professor of Public Leadership, the Roy E. Larsen Senior Lecturer in Public Policy and Management, and Co-Director of the Center for Public Leadership.
Co-author of the New York Times bestselling Freakonomics series, and 2003 recipient of the American Economic Association’s prestigious John Bates Clark Medal, given to the country's best economist under 40, Steven D. Levitt works with businesses to apply his Freakonomics approach (combining data, economic theory, and unorthodox thinking) to the corporate world.
Stephen J. Dubner is an award-winning author, journalist, and radio and TV personality. He is best-known as co-author of the New York Times bestselling Freakonomics series. They have sold more than 7 million copies in more than 40 countries. Dubner is also the host of the Freakonomics Radio podcast, which gets 5 million downloads a month, and he maintains the popular Freakonomics blog, which has been called “the most readable economics blog in the universe.”
Freakonomics, published in 2005, was an instant international bestseller and cultural phenomenon. Hailed by critics and readers alike, it still appears regularly on The New York Times bestseller list. SuperFreakonomics followed in 2009, to similar acclaim, and in 2010 a documentary film version of Freakonomics was chosen as the closing film of the Tribeca Film Festival.
The most recent successes in the series include Think Like A Freak (2014), which became an instant New York Times bestseller, and When to Rob a Bank (2015), which is a collection of the best Freakonomics.com blog posts.
Renowned Democratic strategist and international consultant Jim Messina is widely regarded as one of the world’s most successful political advisors. Messina is the mastermind behind former-President Obama and then-Vice President Biden’s 2012 re-election campaign, which Google’s Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt called “the best-run campaign ever.” The “Campaign Strategist of the Year” merged technology and politics and established the modern presidential campaign. While serving as the Obama-Biden administration’s Deputy Chief of Staff, he earned the nickname “The Fixer,” building bipartisan support for the historic Affordable Care Act, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and the landmark repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” For over two decades, Messina served as Chief of Staff for various Senate and House offices, developing strong relationship on both sides of the aisle. Messina has gone on to elect over a dozen Presidents and Prime Ministers on five continents including: the UK’s Theresa May and David Cameron, Mexico’s Enrique Peña Nieto, Argentina’s Mauricio Macri, Italy’s Matteo Renzi and Spain’s President Mariano Rajoy, who he helped secure a surprising re-election win. Messina has upended the way that cutting-edge organizations think about strategy, and he delivers tangible takeaways with substance and some much-needed humor.
Messina is an in-demand voice at the crucial intersection of politics, business, and technology. He is a fixture on news outlets such as MSNBC, CNN, FOX News, Bloomberg, BBC, and more, and serves on the boards of Blockchain.com, Fortera, Vectra.ai, LanzaTech, the United States Soccer Foundation, and the Montana Land Reliance. At the helm of The Messina Group as CEO, Messina provides strategic consulting to top businesses around the world, including Uber, Airbnb, Google, Delta Air Lines, Hutchison Whampoa, and over 300 others. Among the most sought-after legislative D.C. insiders, Messina provides illuminating, actionable insights on our political and business landscape.
Renowned communications expert, political strategist, and writer Jennifer Palmieri has been on the frontlines of national politics for more than two decades. Author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Dear Madam President and She Proclaims: Our Declaration of Independence from a Man’s World, Palmieri served as White House Communications Director for President Obama and head of Communications for the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign. With her unparalleled level of knowledge and experience in the West Wing, she is sought-after for her shrewd insights about crisis management, voter mindset, and the media environment impacting current events.
One of the most accomplished communications advisors in politics today, Palmieri is the co-host of Showtime’s Emmy-nominated political docu-series The Circus, pulling back the curtain with insightful analysis and a unique perspective on the role gender plays in electoral politics and the media. She is a contributing editor to Vanity Fair and hosted the podcast Just Something About Her. After losing her sister to early-onset Alzheimer’s in 2017, she has written and spoken about her family’s experience in an effort to aid other families facing the same disease. In moderated conversations and engaging point-counterpoint debates, Palmieri has been in demand for events with groups like Starbucks, Google Zeitgeist in London, the Center for American Progress, the Bloomberg MAKERS Women’s History Month event, and more.
Penny Pritzker is an entrepreneur, civic leader and philanthropist with more than 30 years of experience in numerous industries. Named by Forbes as one of the 100 most powerful women in the world, Pritzker is the founder and Chairman of PSP Capital Partners and Pritzker Realty Group, a global private investment firm that takes a long-term, fundamental approach to investing in and building market-leading businesses in sectors such as professional services, real estate, technology, agriculture, industrial services and consumer products.
From June 2013 through January 2017, Pritzker served as U.S. Secretary of Commerce in the Obama Administration. Pritzker was a core member of President Obama’s economic team and served as the country’s chief commercial advocate, leading the Administration’s trade and investment promotion efforts. During her tenure, she launched SelectUSA, the first federal initiative aimed at attracting foreign direct investment to the United States, which facilitated $23 billion in investment to date and created or retained tens of thousands of good paying American jobs. Pritzker also developed the agency’s first comprehensive digital and data agenda, chaired the Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship (PAGE) program and served as the Administration’s point person on manufacturing.
Felipe Calderón is the 56th President of Mexico. Establishing economic reform as a top priority of his administration, Calderón implemented policies that catapulted Mexico into a powerful player in the global economy. Since leaving his post as President, he has focused his leadership and attention on the economic benefits of acting on climate change, and has positioned himself as a leading voice on this global issue. In 2022, he was named President of the Environment and Sustainability Commission for the International Automobile Federation. President Calderón has hosted and chaired the G-20 Summit of Leaders, the most important forum of heads of state and government. He also chaired the UN Conference on Climate Change COP 16, which marked a new era of cooperation in this field. He was named "Statesman of the Year" by the World Economic Forum and "Champion of the Earth" by the United Nations, and received the Teddy Roosevelt Award for the Environment, the GLOBE Award from the Global Legislators Organization for a Balanced Environment, the International Star of Energy Efficiency award, and TIME magazine has designated him as one of their top 100 influential people in the world.
Olivier Blanchard is a renowned international economist and former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund. Since October 2015, he is the Fred Bergsten Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, in Washington. He is also the Robert M. Solow Professor of Economics emeritus at MIT.
Hockey legend, beloved sportscaster, and entrepreneur Wayne Gretzky is widely considered to be the greatest hockey player of all time. Known as “The Great One,” Gretzky dominated on the ice for two decades unlike any player in history. After winning four Stanley Cup Championships, three Canada Cup tournament titles, and countless personal accolades, the NHL bestowed on the Hockey Hall of Famer the unique distinction of the retirement of his jersey number by all member clubs – “No. 99” will never be worn by another player. Gretzky was Head Coach and Executive Vice President of the Phoenix Coyotes, and was named Vice Chairman of the Edmonton Oilers from 2016-2021, in addition to serving in various leadership roles for Team Canada, guiding the Olympic Hockey Team to a gold medal win. He holds virtually every offensive record in the NHL and his tireless support of the game has contributed significantly to the popularity it enjoys today. His invaluable lessons in cultivating an athlete’s mindset and playing to your strengths resonate with audiences of all kinds.
Gretzky is the lead studio analyst for TNT’s hockey broadcasts, and the author of 99: Stories of the Game, an Amazon Editor’s Pick for Best Biographies & Memoirs. He is a serial entrepreneur, with a restaurant, winery, a new apparel line Greatness Wins, and a major partnership with EBay as the featured athlete in their first collection of NFTs. In addition, The Great One teaches a MasterClass on the athlete’s mindset, inspiring audiences to aim for greatness in their own lives. A dedicated philanthropist, the hockey star created The Wayne Gretzky Foundation, serves as the Honorary Chairman of Ronald McDonald Children’s Charities in Canada, and is an Athlete Ambassador and Honorary Member of the Board of Trustees of Right to Play – an athlete-driven humanitarian organization. He is also a participant in “Hands That Shape Humanity,” a project for the Desmond Tutu Peace Centre.
Troy Aikman is one of the most recognizable and accomplished personalities in sports and beyond, as a Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback, Emmy nominated broadcaster, philanthropist, and serial entrepreneur. Aikman is the new voice of ESPN's Monday Night Football alongside Joe Buck. Together with Buck, Aikman is part of the second-longest broadcast tandem in NFL history — his voice has become synonymous with the game. Aikman harnesses his tenacity, drive, and likeability from the field and brings it to every project and partnership off the field.
An empowering and insightful speaker, Aikman engages audiences with conversations about how to identify (and maximize) the individual assets of members on any team, how to use unexpected change and setbacks to grow, what he learned from the struggles and triumphs of his football career, and more.
Maria Sharapova is a world-class tennis champion and entrepreneur. Her passion for craftsmanship and detail is reflected in everything she does — both on and off the tennis court.
After moving to the United States from Russia at age six to pursue her tennis career, Maria turned professional at age 14. She won Wimbledon at age 17 - the first of her five career Grand Slam titles - and has been ranked #1 in the world by the WTA on five separate occasions. Maria was also the 7th female player in the open era to complete the career Grand Slam and the first female athlete to serve as the Olympic flag bearer for the Russian delegation. Maria chronicles much of her tennis career in her New York Times best-seller, Unstoppable: My Life so Far.
Outside of tennis, Maria Sharapova is an active founder, CEO and business investor. She founded her premium candy line, Sugarpova, and has artfully designed and scaled all aspects of the company. She oversees the day-to-day decision-making and growth of the business — from creative branding and packaging to product R&D and retail expansion. Maria is also passionate about supporting the next generation of entrepreneurs — investing in several companies and participating in mentorship programs for women in business.
A curious person by nature, Maria is always seeking opportunities to learn and grow from others. She has taken courses at Harvard Business School and is collaborating with architect Dan Meis on a new concept for boutique wellness centers. Maria brings a creative and hands-on approach to all of her projects, spanning tennis, business, design and more.
In her passionate remarks, Sharapova addresses everything from business advice and how to perform like a champion to women's empowerment and her own inspirational life story.
KAREN G. MILLS
Karen Gordon Mills is a renowned expert on fintech, small business, entrepreneurship, job creation, and the economy at large. Businesses and governments (including officials in the United Kingdom, Australia and the European Union) seek her insight not only for her higher-level ideas of growth and innovation, but also for important small business tactical insights such as access to capital, regional economic clusters, hiring skilled workers, boosting exports, and tapping into government and commercial supply chains. Mills was widely praised for doing this on a national level when she served in President Barack Obama's Cabinet as Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration and as member of the President's National Economic Council. Mills is the President of MMP Group and a longtime venture capitalist and private equity investor, having built companies that range from tech platforms to Annie’s macaroni and cheese.
Author of Fintech, Small Business & The American Dream: How Technology is Transforming Lending and Shaping a New Era of Business Opportunity, Mills is a leading voice on how new technologies are revolutionizing the small business lending market, and how traditional institutions can create the impetus for innovation and change.
Tom Colicchio spent his childhood immersed in food, cooking with his mother and grandmother. It was his father, however, who suggested that he make a career of it. Tom taught himself to cook with the help of Jacques Pépin’s legendary illustrated manuals on French cooking, La Technique and La Méthode. At age 17, Tom made his kitchen debut in his native town of Elizabeth, New Jersey, at Evelyn’s Seafood Restaurant.
Colicchio then cooked at prominent New York restaurants including The Quilted Giraffe, Gotham Bar & Grill, Rakel, and Mondrian. During his tenure as executive chef of Mondrian, Food & Wine magazine selected him as one of the top 10 “Best New Chefs” in the U.S. and The New York Times awarded the restaurant three stars.
In July 1994, Tom and his business partner Danny Meyer opened Gramercy Tavern in Manhattan’s Gramercy Park neighborhood. Tom’s cooking at Gramercy Tavern won consistent recognition, garnering three stars from Ruth Reichl of The New York Times and earning him The James Beard Foundation’s 2000 “Best Chef-New York” Award.
In 2001, Tom opened Craft one block south of Gramercy Tavern. Soon after, The New York Times awarded Craft with three stars, deeming the restaurant “a vision of food heaven.” Craft was awarded The James Beard Foundation Award for “Best New Restaurant” in 2002. That same year, Tom received The Bon Appétit American Food and Entertaining Award for “Chef of the Year.” The New York Times revisited Craft in September 2011, ten years after its debut, upholding its three stars and stating that the restaurant is “as magical and delicious as it was when it opened.”
Crafted Hospitality, currently includes New York’s Craft, Riverpark, and Temple Court; Craft Los Angeles; Las Vegas’ Heritage Steak and Craftsteak; and Small Batch in Garden City, NY.
Tom has published three cookbooks to date. The first, Think Like a Chef (Clarkson Potter/Publishers, 2000), won The James Beard Foundation “KitchenAid” Cookbook Award in May 2001. Tom’s second cookbook, Craft of Cooking, was released by Clarkson Potter/Publishers in 2003. A sandwich book inspired by ‘wichcraft, was released by Clarkson Potter/Publishers in March 2009.
Since 2006, Tom has been applying his experience and expertise to cable television as the head judge on Bravo’s hit reality cooking series Top Chef. The Emmy-winning show is currently in its 18th season.
In May of 2010, Colicchio was awarded The James Beard Foundation’s coveted “Outstanding Chef” award, the culmination of his 30 years of hard work in the restaurant industry.
Tom appears in and served as Executive Producer on A Place at the Table, Participant Media’s documentary about food and security in America. It was produced and directed by Kristi Jacobson and Colicchio’s wife Lori Silverbush and premiered at the 2012 Sundace Film Film Festival. Magnolia Pictures released the film on March 1, 2013.
Tom and his restaurants give back to the community by supporting charities including Children of Bellevue, City Harvest, Alex’s Lemonade Foundation, United Way of New York, and Food Bank for New York City. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife, Lori Silverbush, and three sons.
Emmy-nominated Padma Lakshmi is internationally known as a food expert, model, actress and bestselling author, and activist. Lakshmi serves as host and an executive producer of Bravo’s Emmy award-winning Top Chef, which is currently in its 16th season. She is also the host and producer of the acclaimed Hulu show Taste the Nation, winner of the 2021 Critics Choice Award, and which explores the rich and diverse food culture of various immigrant groups- ultimately revealing stories that challenge notions of identity, belonging, and what it means to be American.
Lakshmi established herself as a food expert early in her career, having hosted two successful cooking shows and writing the bestselling Easy Exotic. Lakshmi followed this success with the publication of her second cookbook, Tangy, Tart, Hot & Sweet, and her food memoir, the New York Times bestselling Love, Loss and What We Ate.
In addition to her work as a TV host and producer and writer, Lakshmi is a savvy businesswoman, having had multiple companies of her own, including her home décor line, The Padma Collection, and Padma’s Easy Exotic, a collection of frozen rices, lentils and other culinary products.
An ambassador for the ACLU, focusing on women’s reproductive health and immigration issues, Lakshmi is also co-founder of the Endometriosis Foundation of America.
Today’s unprecedented speed of change is forcing companies to pivot like never before and leverage their most innovative assets -- their PEOPLE. For centuries, our workforce has been focused on specific roles and siloed divisions, but now the path to growth will come by inspiring every employee (from leader to individual contributor) with a new path to bring different, untapped sides of themselves to work, and ultimately become more curious, creative and action-oriented. This process of creating a more holistic person and organization is what Abigail Posner refers to as expansiveness. Tapping into her Harvard background in social anthropology, as well as her practical application in business through her work at Google, where she pioneers a focus around Humanizing Digital, Abigail provides an inspirational narrative and a roadmap for how people and organizations can embrace a new WHOLE-istic approach to business innovation and growth.
Posner is a member of ENDI Corp’s Board of Directors and sits on the advisory boards of the 890 Fifth Ave, SwiftArc Ventures, Global Leadership Diversity Exchange, Realm, TheSocialArchitects & the Conference Board’s Marketing & Communications Team; and has been featured in a host of publications including: NYTimes, Business Insider, Forbes, Adweek, Huffington Post, La Presse, CNBC, Mumbrella, AdNews, B&T & Globes Israel.
If you are looking to guide people in your organization to embrace more than a siloed vision of their roles, as well as become more vested in using their unique perspectives and skills to be more creative and innovative, then Abigail is the perfect guide to spark novel thinking and lead your people to action. Beyond her role at Google, she is a world-renowned speaker, podcaster, writer, beauty blogger, and lifestyle influencer. From appearances before packed audiences at Lincoln Center and SXSW, to speaking in over 10 countries, Abigail has shared her insights on culture, technology and leadership to audiences of thousands and proves that her own expansive approach to life has infused her work with a creative and innovative edge.
Joseph Lubin is a Co-Founder of Ethereum—the most superior advanced blockchain platform by size, functionality and application—and founder of ConsenSys, one of the largest and fastest-growing blockchain companies in the world.
Named to CoinDesk’s “Most Influential in Blockchain,” Joseph co-founded the Ethereum Project and founded ConsenSys as a venture production studio focused on building developer tools and decentralized applications on the Ethereum platform. Prior to working on Ethereum, Lubin’s career focused on the intersection of cryptography, engineering, and finance, including his role as VP of Technology in Private Wealth Management at Goldman Sachs.
Sought-out to speak at events ranging from The World Economic Forum to SXSW, in his compelling keynotes Joseph reveals the transformative power of blockchain technology and his vision for a decentralized future. Equal parts informative and inspiring, he sheds light on how new technologies have the power to transform industries, and how organizations can reap the benefits.
Not only is Philipp Hildebrand "a thinker and strategist," according to the Financial Times, "many economists and policymakers argue that his bold moves and non-bureaucratic mindset are just what is needed amid the economic turmoil." He is currently Vice Chairman of BlackRock Inc. He most recently served as Chairman of the Governing Board of the Swiss National Bank, where he was a strong advocate of the bank’s policy of capping the franc against the euro. He was also one of the first western central bankers to publicly demand tougher capital standards for banks in 2007, before the Lehman Brothers crisis in 2008. During the financial crisis, Dr. Hildebrand played a prominent international role as a member of the Financial Stability Board (FSB) and as the Swiss Governor of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Phil is a co-founder and the CEO of All Turtles, an Artificial Intelligence (AI) startup studio. He is also the co-founder and former CEO of the global productivity tool Evernote, which created an epic transformation in workflow and has redefined the way individuals and teams work today. A sought-after leader on innovation, Libin provides audiences with an engaging look at what it takes to reinvent productivity at global scale. His investment focus is generally on using technology to enhance humanity, productivity, and business globally.
Endeared to audiences nation-wide for his acting career which spans more than five decades, Martin Sheen uses his dynamic presence and celebrity status to lend an inspired voice to political and humanitarian causes around the globe.
Morgan DeBaun is a serial entrepreneur and corporate advisor. As the Founder & CEO of Blavity Inc., the leading digital media company for Black culture and millennials, Morgan has grown the company into a market leader for Black media, reaching over 100 million readers per month through a growing brand portfolio which includes: Blavity News, 21Ninety, AfroTech, Travel Noire, Shadow & Act, and Lunchtable. Under DeBaun’s leadership, Blavity has launched several leading consumer summits, including Summit 21 for Black women creators, and AfroTech, the largest tech conference for Black innovators and founders.
DeBaun acts as an advisor to influential global brands and companies including Disney, American Airlines, CES, Pantora Bridal and Rosen Skincare. She is also an angel investor in Golde, a consumer brand present in over 200 stores, and Public, which has a $1B+ valuation.
DeBaun is a recipient of Ad Color’s Innovative Award, has been recognized by Forbes in the “30 Under 30” and America’s Top 50 Women in Tech lists, and was named as one of the 100 Most Influential African Americans by The Root.
BILLIE JEAN KING
As one of the 20th century's most respected and influential people, Billie Jean King has long been a champion for social justice and equality. She has created new inroads for both genders in and out of sports during her legendary career and she continues to make her mark today, primarily through the Billie Jean King Leadership Initiative, which is dedicated to promoting equality and inclusion in the workplace.
King, who won an astounding 39 Grand Slam tennis titles during her career, blazed trails for women everywhere in 1970 when she became one of nine players to break away from the tennis establishment and accept a one dollar contract to compete in the newly created Virginia Slims Series. The revolt led to the birth of women's pro tennis and the formation of the Women's Tennis Association. King went on to star in one of the greatest moments in sports history when she defeated Bobby Riggs in the famous match dubbed “The Battle of the Sexes,” which was immortalized on the silver screen in the film of the same name. Her memoir, ALL IN: An Autobiography, published by Knopf in August 2021, is garnering rave reviews.
Named one of the "100 Most Important Americans of the 20th Century" by Life, King is a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award, and France's Légion d'honneur. King moves audiences with empowering lessons on leadership, inclusivity, equality, and finding your purpose.
Two-Time Olympic Gold Medalist and Two-Time World Cup Champion Carli Lloyd is a former soccer legend who played for the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team for 17 years (2005-2021). Carli was awarded the most prestigious and highest award in soccer: FIFA World Player of the Year (2015 and 2016); only one other American player has received the award twice.
She was best known for her clutch performances in the biggest moments, but it was Lloyd’s consistent production over the course of her career, her extreme dedication to the game and her relentless pursuit of self-improvement that perhaps best exemplifies her contribution to U.S. and world soccer history.
Carli is a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist (2008 and 2012) and a Bronze Medalist (2020). She holds the unique distinction of scoring in every Olympic medal match, including the 2008 gold medal match against Brazil, a brace in the 2012 gold medal game against Japan, and a brace in the 2020 Bronze medal game against Australia. Carli holds the record for All-time leading scorer in USWNT Olympic history with 10 goals. She is the only American player to score in four different Olympics (2008, 2012, 2016, 2020).
She also competed in four Women’s World Cup tournaments (2007, 2011, 2015, and 2019), and is a two-time World Cup Champion (2015 and 2019). She became the first player in FIFA Women’s World Cup to Score a Hat Trick in a World Cup Final (2015). She was awarded the Golden Ball (MVP) and Silver boot at the 2015 World Cup. Carli played in more World Cup (25) and Olympic matches (22) than any other USWNT player. She scored 134 goals, in 316 Caps (games played), which ranks 3rd All-time on the international stage for men and women.
Carli is a role model who empowers and inspires others to be Better Every Day and to never give up on achieving their goals. Carli also runs her own CL10 Soccer Clinics for ages 8-18 years of age for both boys and girls. The bestselling author of When Nobody Was Watching, Carli empowers audiences to find their own success with lessons from both in and beyond the world of sports.
CAROLINE RANDALL WILLIAMS
Award-winning poet, author, performance artist, and scholar Caroline Randall Williams is a change-maker and a catalyst. She rose to the international stage with her powerful New York Times piece You Want a Confederate Monument? My Body Is a Confederate Monument, a reckoning in the movement to dismantle systemic racism. A multi-genre writer, Caroline co-authored the NAACP Image Award-winning cookbook Soul Food Love with her mother, as well as The Diary of B.B. Bright, Possible Prince, which won the Harlem Book Fair’s Phyllis Wheatley Prize. Her debut collection of poetry, Lucy Negro, Redux, has been turned into a critically-acclaimed ballet by the Nashville Ballet, and she is currently working on her first non-fiction book, under the working title Body Politik, which will examine the stories written on and by the body, through the lens of her lived experience. Caroline will host Disney+’s Hungry for Answers, a new docuseries and revelatory cooking show focused on Black food history in America produced by Viola Davis. A highly sought-after speaker, Caroline speaks to the places where art, business, and scholarship intersect, moving people closer to their best lives and corporations closer to their ideal identities.
Caroline has been recognized by Southern Living as “One of 50 People Changing the South,” and she was named to The Root’s list of “The Most Influential African Americans in 2020.” She is the Writer in Residence in Vanderbilt University’s Medicine, Health, and Society Department, where she has been a Cave Canem Fellow and a Global Voices Fellow. Caroline has appeared on MSNBC’s Morning Joe and The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell, Dr. Oz, among many others, and her writing has been featured in The Iowa Review, The Massachusetts Review, Essence, The New York Times, and more. Her recipes can also be found in the feature cookbook for Cherry Bombe, as well as Southern Living Magazine. Caroline regularly receives rave reviews of her speaking engagements, such as: “After you hear Caroline your life will never be the same! And if it is the same… you weren’t listening!” (Tennessee Film, Entertainment and Music Commission)
Founder of Drybar, serial entrepreneur, and New York Times bestselling author Alli Webb shares actionable and inspiring business insights in captivating talks. Webb is the co-Founder of Drybar – which skyrocketed from an affordable in-home service offered by Webb herself into a 150+ location, nationally recognized, and highly sought-after brand. Diversifying the brand, Webb created a line of products and tools – this division was acquired by Helen of Troy for $225M. Webb is the President of Canopy, and the co-Founder, advisor, and angel investor for Squeeze – the latest extension of her expanding empire. She has also partnered with an LA-based jewelry designer to launch Becket + Quill, continuing her innovation in the affordable luxury space, and recently launched Brightside – a wellness space. In her informative, actionable, and inspiring remarks, Webb demystifies creating a company and brand culture that will transform any industry.
Webb has been on the cover of Inc. Magazine’s “How I Did This” issue, named one of the “100 Most Creative People in Business” by Fast Company, featured on Fortune’s “40 Under 40” list, and was one of Fortune’s “100 Women Building America’s Most Innovative and Ambitious Businesses.” She has appeared on ABC’s Emmy-nominated Shark Tank as a guest shark, and is the New York Times bestselling author of The Drybar Guide to Good Hair for All. Webb delights and motivates audiences with talks ranging from business innovation, to how to tap into the entrepreneurial spirit, to the challenges and opportunities in being a female entrepreneur, and beyond.
HER MAJESTY QUEEN NOOR
Her Majesty Queen Noor is an international public servant and advocate for cross-cultural understanding and conflict prevention and recovery issues such as refugees, missing persons, poverty, climate change and disarmament. Her peace-building work has focused on the Middle East, the Balkans, Central and Southeast Asia, Latin America and Africa.
Former President of the European Central Bank (2003-11) and Chairman of the Bank of France (1993-2003) Jean-Claude Trichet is a global authority on financial markets and the economy. While at the helm of the European Central Bank, Trichet oversaw the Eurozone's handling of the Great Recession and European Debt Crisis in the aftermath of the 2008 financial collapse. Currently the Chairperson of the Board at Bruegel-- a leading European think tank focused on economic policy-- Chairman of the Group of Thirty, and European Chairman of the Trilateral Commission, Trichet offers razor shop analysis on risks and opportunities facing the global economy.
Trichet has been named to the Financial Time's “Person of the Year” and “Fifty Faces that Shaped the Decade,” as well as listed on International Economy magazine's “Policy Maker of the Year,” Newsweek's “World’s Most Powerful” and TIME's “Most Influential People in the World.”
Bono uses his rock star status to raise awareness about the crises in Africa: unpayable debts, uncontrolled spread of AIDS, and the unfair trade rules which keep Africans poor. Bono co-founded DATA (Debt, AIDS, Trade, Africa) to raise public awareness of the issues in its name, and influence government policy on Africa. On behalf of DATA, Bono has lobbied U.S. Presidents and Congressional leaders, along with the heads of many other G8 nations. DATA is a founding member of the One Campaign to make poverty history, which is part of a global network of millions of people campaigning against extreme poverty.
Dolly Parton is the most honored female country performer of all-time and, according to Nielsen, is country music’s #1 most marketable, recognizable and beloved artist in the world. Additionally, Parton’s coveted Q Score ranking—which measures public appeal and branding affinity—lists the superstar among the highest-ranked celebrities across the entire entertainment industry.
An international icon, Parton has made countless contributions to the music industry. Achieving 25 RIAA certified gold, platinum and multi-platinum awards, she has had 25 songs reach number 1 on the Billboard Country charts, a record for a female artist. She has 41 career top 10 country albums and 110 career charted singles. She has won 7 Grammy Awards, 10 Country Music Association Awards, 5 Academy of Country Music Awards, 3 American Music Awards and is one of only five female artists to win the Country Music Association’s Entertainer of the Year Award.
In 1999, Parton was inducted as a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, and in 2001 she was inducted into the National Academy of Popular Music Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2001. Broadcast Music, Inc. honored Dolly with their Icon Award in 2003, and in 2004, the U.S. Library of Congress presented her with their Living Legend Award for her contribution to the cultural heritage of the United States. This was followed in 2005 with the National Medal of Arts, the highest honor given by the U.S. government for excellence in the arts. In 2006 Dolly was honored by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for her lifetime of contributions to the arts. In 2007, Dolly was named the recipient of the prestigious Johnny Mercer Award from the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame. She has her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Parton opened her own theme park, Dollywood, in 1986. Dollywood would go on to become the state’s number one tourist attraction. In 1988, Dolly founded a group of dinner attractions called Dolly Parton’s Stampede. In 2001, she built Dollywood’s Splash Country, which is Tennessee’s largest water park.
Dolly Parton’s entertainment businesses attract 4.5 million visitors annually and employ more than 3,000 people. In 1988, she began the Dollywood Foundation. Currently the foundation funds the Dolly Parton Imagination Library which gives every preschool child a book each month from the time he or she is born until the child reaches kindergarten. With the help of local sponsors, this program has expanded to over 800 communities in 41 states. In 2016, Parton announced her My People Fund, to help victims of the wildfires in Sevier County, Tennessee. In 2017, she created the Mountain Tough organization to provide continued support to fire victims, and pledged over $3 million to this cause.
One of the most insightful journalists in America today, Wolf Blitzer draws on his unique international breadth of experience and depth of understanding when discussing the issues facing Washington and the world today.
A passionate champion of America’s founding principles, Senator Rick Santorum's impressive presidential campaign positioned him as a leading voice of the Republican Party. Senator Santorum began his first presidential campaign as a dark-horse candidate, but with a victory in the Iowa caucuses, he became a center-stage challenger who went on to win another ten states, over 3 million votes, and claim the mantle of conservative alternative to the front-runner. In four years in the U.S. House of Representatives, 12 as U. S. Senator, Rick Santorum earned a reputation as a passionate fighter for conservative values and a vocal advocate for smaller government, cutting wasteful spending, a strong national defense, and a return to our country’s founding principles.
A World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and one of the “50 Leading Female Futurists” in the world, April Rinne is equal parts global authority, advocate, ally and adventurer. She sees trends early, understands their potential, and helps others do the same. Focus areas include the digital economy, sharing economy, future of work, travel and tourism, and public policy.
April helps individuals and organizations navigate a world in flux. Even before 2020, the pace of change was mind-boggling. Then a pandemic hit and accelerated many shifts already underway, ushering in a "new-now-next-never normal" that humanity has yet to fully grasp. Yet the future does not see a return to stability or certainty. Quite the opposite: around every corner, there is more change. So how do we move forward?
In her keynotes, presentations and book Flux: 8 Superpowers for Thriving in Constant Change, April guides the way. April has been weaving a story about how to thrive amid flux for as long as she can remember, drawing on her history as a futurist, advisor, global development executive, microfinance lawyer, investor, mental health advocate, certified yoga teacher, globetrotter (100+ countries) and insatiable handstander. She brings global perspective and extraordinary cross-cultural understanding to how we see, think about, struggle with and ultimately forge positive relationships with change.
April also harnesses her very personal experiences with flux, including the death of both of her parents in a car accident when she was 20. She shares how she learned to let go of her own future, buck convention, create a "portfolio career" and find meaning – and how you can do so, too.
Learn more about navigating a world in flux on April Rinne's website.
Bret Stephens is a U.S. foreign policy expert and highly-awarded columnist for "his incisive columns on American foreign policy and domestic politics, often enlivened by a contrarian twist." Audiences value Mr. Stephens' timely insights and also his "breath of fresh air" delivery.
Bret Stephens is an op-ed columnist for the New York Times. He previously spent 16 years at the Wall Street Journal, most notably writing "Global View," the foreign-affairs column, for which he was awarded the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for distinguished commentary.
Natan Sharansky is a former Soviet dissident, political prisoner and a symbol of human rights who has spent his life championing democracy and freedom. As a member of the Knesset, he has served in different Israeli governments and various Cabinet positions, including Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of the Interior, and Minister of Diaspora Affairs.
Legendary Head Coach Geno Auriemma has redefined the meaning of success in his 34 years at the University of Connecticut. During his illustrious tenure, Auriemma transformed the women’s basketball program into the gold standard – both on and off the court. Under his guidance, the Huskies went from one winning season to 11 national titles, 20 Final Fours, have had six perfect seasons, and won 51 Conference titles. He also served as the head coach o the U.S. National Team, which won gold at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and the 2016 Games in Rio. In his empowering remarks he shares lessons from on and off the court on teamwork, perseverance, finding motivation, and overcoming obstacles that resonate with any organization.
An inductee to both the Basketball Hall of Fame and Women Basketball Hall of Fame, and a recipient of numerous awards including 27 National Coach of the Year honors, Auriemma has set the bar not only in coaching – but also in team building, motivation, and a tested brand of everyday leadership that creates winning organizations. He shares his insights in a highly-rated MasterClass on 'Leading Winning Teams' as well as in sought-after speaking engagements, delivering motivational insights on building sustainable success.
Jane Holl Lute has dedicated her career to preventing terrorism, enhancing global stabilty and security, and helping those in crisis. It says something about the times in which we live that Ms. Lute now focuses on cyberterrorism, the source of today's most menacing threats to nations, businesses and individuals. Audiences praise Ms. Lute for grounding her remarks about cybersecurity in her roots as a United Nations Peace builder and Assistant Secretary-General of the U.N. responsible for comprehensive on-the-ground support for humanitarian operations in crises. She has also served as Deputy Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security where she was responsible for the day-to-day management of the Department's efforts to prevent terrorism and enhance security, secure and manage the nation's borders, administer and enforce U.S. immigration laws, strengthen national resilience in the face of disasters, and ensure the nation's cybersecurity.
Ms. Lute is currently strategic director for SICPA SecurInk, a privately held Swiss company that provides security solutions to protect the integrity of most of the world’s banknotes. Ms. Lute serves as director on the board of Union Pacific Railroad, Marsh McLennan Corporation, and Shell plc. Previously, Ms. Lute served as Chief Executive Officer of the Center for Internet Security, an operating not-for-profit organization and home of the U.S. Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) providing cybersecurity services for U.S. state, local, tribal and territorial governments.
Pioneering, two-time Peabody Award-winning comedian Hasan Minhaj is the creator of Netflix's comedy show, Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj, which brought an inclusive and nuanced perspective to global news, politics and culture.
As Host of The Daily Show Trevor Noah wrote in TIME: "Patriot Act is the manifestation of Hasan’s whip-smart commentary, charisma and sincerity. It’s also a consistent reminder that Hasan is America. And America is Hasan.”
Named to TIME's "100 Most Influential People in the World," Minhaj originally rose to prominence as a senior correspondent on The Daily Show. He has gone on to host the White House Correspondents' Dinner and air his own critically-acclaimed one-hour Netflix comedy special, Hasan Minhaj: Homecoming King.
A first generation American, Minhaj comes from a Muslim family originally from India. In his comedy and at speaking engagements, he draws on his personal history and the immigrant experience to explore the modern cultural and political landscape with depth and sincerity.
YouTube star, digital creator, filmmaker sensation, and multi-media leader Casey Neistat has redefined brand content on the internet, setting a new standard for the way brands interact with digital creators. He has worked with major brands including J. Crew, Mercedes-Benz, Samsung, and Nike, and pioneered the ‘daily vlog’ format in the early days of YouTube. Neistat, who got his start working as a dishwasher, is a self-taught filmmaker who attained commercial success with HBO’s The Neistat Brothers and the indie film Daddy Long Legs. Boasting over 14M subscribers, he has parlayed his success as a digital creator into advertising, tech, and startup ventures. He created a video-sharing app called Beme, which was acquired by CNN for $25M, and pivoted to launch 368, a collaboration workspace. Heralded for his motto, “Do What You Can’t,” Neistat empowers audiences to think outside the box and redefine their creative potential.
Neistat was named one of Fortunes’ “Creator 25,” a list honoring those charting unique territory in the world of social media, and was a Fellow of the prestigious New Frontier Artist Residency program at MIT. He has launched a filmmaking masterclass with online course platform Monthly, and his documentary Under the Influence premiered at SXSW to critical acclaim. Neistat is an investor in Angel City FC as well as the bitcoin-rewards startup Lolli, and is an advisor for Ponto, which provides financial infrastructure for Web3. In keynotes that are as engaging and humorous as they are informative, Neistat shares actionable lessons on innovation and creativity, as well as cutting-edge insight into how to level-up your organization’s brand and content strategy.
With award-winning cartoons covering a gamut of topics from global politics, to pop culture, to gender equality, New Yorker cartoonist Liza Donnelly proves that pen and ink are a powerful catalyst for engaging conversation about political and social issues. Donnelly's TEDTalk on how humor and art can empower has racked up over 1,200,000 views, and her work appears in The New York Times, Forbes, Medium, Politico, Huffington Post, Daily Beast, Salon, CNN, The Nation, National Lampoon, Glamour, Good Housekeeping, and most recently as Contributing Cartoonist on CBS This Morning. Donnelly's "Live Drawing"—where equipped with nothing more than an iPad and her quick hand she is able to bring high-profile moments to life—has allowed audiences to engage with major events including the Women's March on Washington, The Olympics, The Oscars, the 2017 Presidential Inauguration, and more.
Donnelly is also a Cultural Envoy for the US State Department and a member of the United Nations initiative "Cartooning for Peace," which has brought her to the global stage to speak about freedom of speech, world peace, women's rights and other world issues. She is the author of 15 books, numerous essays and her spot-on ability to observe the world with a thought-provoking and humorous lens is resonating with audiences around the world!
Lisa is the Executive Producer and host of This is Life on CNN, now its eighth season. For the show, Lisa has embedded with a notorious biker club and explored the medicinal use of psychedelics in psychotherapy. She is also the Executive Producer and Host of Take Out on HBOMax.
For five seasons prior, Lisa EP’d and hosted Our America on OWN. She was also a field correspondent for The Oprah Winfrey Show and contributor to ABC News' Nightline. For these shows she reported from dozens of countries; covering stories about gang rape in the Congo, bride burning in India and the Lord's Resistance Army in Uganda, among other issues that are too often ignored.
Lisa was the first female host of National Geographic’s flagship show Explorer which sent her to cover the phenomenon of female suicide bombing, the spread of the MS-13 gang—considered the world’s most dangerous gang, and the humanitarian crisis inside North Korea.
She got her start in journalism as a correspondent for Channel One News where she covered the civil war in Afghanistan at 21 years of age. She later went to become a co-host of ABC Daytime's hit show The View, which won its first daytime Emmy during her time at the show.
Lisa is the co-author of Mother, Sister, Daughter, Bride: Rituals of Womanhood, and Somewhere Inside: One Sister’s Captivity in North Korea and The Other’s Fight to Bring Her Home, which she penned with her sister Laura.
Edward Norton is an award-winning actor, screenwriter, director and producer. He is a visionary entrepreneur and committed social and environmental activist. Norton is a founding partner of CrowdRise, a web-based technology platform that changes the way organizations share their mission and involve those who support their causes. He speaks personally about his fundraising efforts and our responsibilities, particularly with regard to sustainability and natural resource management in our industrial economy.
What is the Ann Curry difference? She is more than a highly esteemed, award-winning journalist. Ann brings stories to life. Her reporting is raw, bold, and deeply personal, because she knows how to connect with each person she interviews. Her passion to share someone else’s truth so that she can better inform the world, comes from a deep understanding of the importance of service and it continues to be the driving force of her work on and off camera or stage. Audiences praise her for her “…genuine interest, insights, compassion for others, passion for your work, and obvious intellect and talents ... Your message was inspirational.” (Welcome House of Northern Kentucky, Inc.) Her celebrity status in the “Who’s Who” of the journalism world is a wonderful vehicle bringing her to events around the world, but at the end of the day, Ann is a person who will connect with every member of an audience and share a message that will leave each person forever changed.
Kevin Warsh is a monetary policy expert and economist who served the United States in the Federal Reserve and the White House, and whose insights are sought by Central Banks around the world. Most notably, he was hired by the Bank of England, where he issued an independent report proposing reforms in the conduct of monetary policy in the United Kingdom. Parliament recently adopted the report’s recommendations.
Kevin Warsh serves as the Shepard Family Distinguished Visiting Fellow in Economics at the Hoover Institution and lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He advises several private and public companies, including service on the board of directors of UPS. Warsh is also a member of the Group of Thirty (G30). He played a significant role in stabilizing the economy during the U.S. financial crisis. His authoritative and enlightening presentations on both domestic and international economic issues are helping audiences and corporations understand how U.S. and foreign monetary policy impacts large and small businesses, as well as individuals. Warsh is particularly well-positioned to explain the risks and rewards of Brexit, as well as economic strategy under this U.S. administration.
A visionary leader with a deep understanding of the economic and social challenges facing Latin America, President Vicente Fox is one of the world’s most important voices on the contemporary geopolitical landscape and the role of business in the developing world. When elected to the presidency of Mexico in 2000, he broke the stranglehold that the ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party had held on the State for seven decades. A charismatic reformer, he is credited as playing a vital role in Mexico’s democratization, and with strengthening the country’s economy. After leaving office in 2006, President Fox and his wife founded Centro Fox, a non-profit dedicated to discover, exercise, and harness the leadership qualities we all have inside of us.
AUTHORS OF FREAKONOMICS
Since the remarkable success of the International Bestsellers Freakonomics and SuperFreakonomics (more than 5 million copies sold worldwide), its much heralded authors, Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner, have given more than 1,000 lectures, some to audiences as large as 10,000, and are still in high demand. The books have made economic analysis and "out of the box thinking" so accessible and interesting to the general population that the Freakonomics team has gained additional success, including: the Freakonomics blog, which receives 2 million page views per month; Freakonomics Radio, which is No. 1 on iTunes, with 5 million downloads per month, and broadcast on public-radio stations across the country; their Twitter feed has over 600,000 followers; their Freakonomics documentary, was a hit at the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival, and a hit on iTunes, Netflix and....Showtime; and both Levitt and Dubner continue to have national media exposure. Levitt and Dubner offer story after story, with research backing each theory, that address ways to create behavior change and show which incentives work and don't work.
The duos most recent book successes include Think Like A Freak (2014), which became an instant New York Times bestseller, and When to Rob a Bank (2015), which is a collection of the best Freakonomics.com blog posts.
ALEXA VON TOBEL
Renowned serial entrepreneur, CEO and founder, New York Times bestselling author, and podcast host Alexa von Tobel, CFP leads conversations that resonate with the full entrepreneur experience – everything from nuts-and-bolts operations to the craft of company-building. Alexa is the Founder and Managing Partner of Inspired Capital – a $500M+ venture firm focused on the entrepreneurs of the future. Prior to Inspired Capital, she founded LearnVest with the goal of helping people make progress on their money. After raising nearly $75M in venture capital, LearnVest was acquired by Northwestern Mutual in one of the biggest fintech acquisitions of the decade. Following the acquisition, Alexa joined the management team of Northwestern Mutual as the company’s first-ever Chief Digital Officer, and later assumed the role of Chief Innovation Officer, through which she oversaw the venture arm. She is the New York Times bestselling author of Financially Fearless and Financially Forward, and hosts the weekly podcast Inc. Founders Project with Alexa von Tobel, which features conversations with the best founders across the country. In sought-after talks, Alexa shares accessible and actionable insights about personal finance, entrepreneurial strategy, leading-edge industries, and more.
Alexa has appeared on the cover of Forbes, been interviewed on NPR’s How I Built This, and has been featured in a wide variety of publications from The New York Times to Vogue. She is a member of the 2016 Class of Henry Crown Fellows and served as an inaugural member of President Obama’s Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship. Alexa has been honored with numerous recognitions including: Fortune’s "40 Under 40", Fortune's "Most Powerful Women," Forbes’ "30 Under 30", Inc. Magazine's "30 Under 30,” and was named World Economic Forum's Young Global Leader. From her expertise in navigating a recession while staying connected to customers, to leveraging investor strategy in the fintech and Web3 arenas, Alexa’s high-impact talks will resonate with audiences of all kinds.
Bestselling author and workplace strategist Erica Keswin has spent the past twenty years working with some of the most iconic brands in the world as a consultant, speaker, writer, and professional dot-connector. Her book Bring Your Human to Work: Ten Sure-Fire Ways to Design a Workplace That is Good for People, Great for Business, and Just Might Change the World became a Wall Street Journal bestseller in its first week, serving as a powerful guide to a workplace revolution that honors relationships and puts people first. Her newest book, Rituals Roadmap: The Human Way to Transform Everyday Routines into Workplace Magic, is a #2 Wall Street Journal bestseller and an indispensable guide to taking your employee engagement to the next level. In Erica's game-changing keynotes, she highlights how relationships are the most powerful driver of success for individuals and companies striving to attract and retain talent and loyal customers.
Keswin and her work have been featured in Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Huffington Post, O Magazine, Better Homes and Gardens, Mogul, and Conscious Company, among others. She is also the Founder of the Spaghetti Project, a platform devoted to sharing the science and stories of relationships at work. Leaving audiences deeply informed and engaged, Keswin reveals her tried-and-true, human roadmap for people seeking a more meaningful and connected work life, and provides actionable insights on everything from how to cultivate a work culture of diversity and inclusion, to how to connect with customers in an authentic way.
J. CRAIG VENTER
Few speakers are able to answer, "What is the meaning of life?" more than just rhetorically, but J. Craig Venter helps his audiences understand the meaning at its scientific essence. He is regarded as one of the leading scientists of the 21st century for his numerous, invaluable contributions to genomic research and the study of life, and through his studies he has become a teacher and policy advisor on health, longevity and the environment. He is co-founder of Human Longevity Inc. and a scientist of human existence—from sequencing the human genome to actually creating synthetic life.
A Sleep Scientist at Google, Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology at UC Berkeley, founder and director of the school's Center for Human Sleep Science, and now bringing his science directly to the public as host of The Matt Walker Podcast, Dr. Matthew Walker is a celebrated sleep expert. The author of the New York Times bestseller Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams, hailed as an "important and fascinating book" by Bill Gates, Dr. Walker explains how we can harness sleep to dramatic effects including: to improve learning, mood and energy levels; regulate hormones; prevent cancer, Alzheimer’s, obesity, and diabetes; slow the effects of aging; increase longevity; enhance the education and lifespan of our children; and boost the efficiency, success, and productivity of our businesses. Previously, Dr. Walker was a Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and served as Chief Scientist and scientific counsel for numerous technology companies, including Hello and Fitbit.
Dedicated to the communication of science, Dr. Walker has shed light on his groundbreaking research everywhere from Google to TED, where his talk "Sleep is your superpower" has over 3 million views. He discusses the impact of sleep on human health and disease in a way that is digestible for any audience and provides tangible takeaways on wellness and peak performance. Dr. Walker translates his work for any industry and audience, and also offers workshops of various kinds to business leaders, technology firms, and medical and healthcare professionals.
David Kessler is the world’s foremost expert on grief and loss. His experience with thousands of people on the edge of life and death has taught him the secrets to living a happy and fulfilled life, even after life’s tragedies. He is the author of six books, including the new bestselling book, Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief. His books and work have received praise by so many, including Saint (Mother) Teresa.
David’s personal experience as a child witnessing a mass shooting while his mother was dying in a hospital helped him begin his journey. For most of his life, David has taught physicians, nurses, counselors, police, and first responders about the end of life, trauma, and grief. He facilitates talks, workshops and retreats for those experiencing grief. However, despite his vast knowledge on grief, his life was turned upside down by the sudden death of his twenty-one-year-old son. It inspired him to write his newest book, Finding Meaning
David’s volunteer work includes being an LAPD Specialist Reserve for traumatic events as well as having served on the Red Cross’s disaster services team. He is the founder of www.grief.com which has over five million visits yearly from 167 countries.
Margaret Trudeau is celebrated for her role as a respected mental-health issues advocate and proponent of living a vibrant, joyful life especially as we age. From becoming the Canadian prime minister’s wife at a young age, to the loss of both her son and her former husband, to living with bi-polar disorder, Margaret shares her personal stories to remind others of the importance of nurturing the body, mind, and spirit.
Uniquely qualified to discuss the challenges and solutions in health policy, Senator (and Dr.) Bill Frist is consistently recognized among the most influential leaders in American healthcare. He is Chairman of the Global Board of The Nature Conservancy, the nation's largest conservation organization. He is a nationally acclaimed heart and lung transplant surgeon, former U.S. Senate Majority Leader, and chairman of the Executive Council of the health investment firm Cressey & Company, as well as a founding partner of Frist Cressey Ventures. He is also the host of healthcare podcast A Second Opinion: Rethinking American Health (over 200 weekly episodes).
Senator Frist has also been a leader in community health, having founded NashvilleHealth, a collective impact organization that is creatively collaborating with business, academic, faith-based, and non-profit leaders to improve the health and well-being of all Nashvillians. As the Chair of the Global Board of The Nature Conservancy, he is also committed to preserving the health of our planet, recognizing that population health is empirically linked to healthy ecosystems.
Senator Frist has been at the forefront of many debates and government initiatives that have shaped a myriad of policies over the years, including the 2003 legislation that created the Medicare prescription drug plan and Medicare Advantage, as well as PEPFAR, the largest commitment by any nation to address a single disease in history, saving 21 million lives from HIV/AIDS. He brings an experienced voice to the current issues of health reform, education, government policy, climate change, global health issues and volunteerism.
He is actively engaged in the business as well as the medical, humanitarian, and philanthropic communities.
Athlete icon, entrepreneur, and advocate Allyson Felix is the most decorated Track & Field Olympian in U.S. history. An eleven-time Olympic medalist. Seven-time Olympic Champion. World Record Holder. She has won a mind-blowing thirty-one global medals at the Olympics and World Championships. Felix has redefined athletics as she continues to cement her iconic status on and off the track. She is an investor in multiple companies, serves as an advisor to a female-led and focused venture fund, and is the Founder of her own shoe company for women, Saysh. Sought after for her empowering insights about striving for greatness in business and in life, Felix has captivated audiences across industries.
Felix has been featured in major publications including Forbes, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, Glamour, Essence, Self, O Magazine, Sports Illustrated, and Elle. She is passionate about her community and serves on the Board of Directors for &Mother, Right to Play, and others, and through partnerships with Voice in Sport, the Women’s Sports Foundation, and more. Felix has received numerous accolades for her athletics and her advocacy, including being named to TIME’s “100 Most Influential People of the Year” in both 2020 and 2021 as well as the Sports Illustrated ‘Unrelenting List’. In demand with groups such as Trellance, Princeton University, Paypal, and World 50, Inc., to name a few, Felix consistently receives rave reviews for her speaking engagements: “The event with Allyson Felix was a great success! She presented such a genuine, focused, inspirational story that displayed her journey of ups and downs; her great lessons and appreciation of what teamwork can bring. A true champion.” (ATG Global Entertainment)
STEPHEN A. SMITH
Legendary sportscaster, veteran journalist, actor, author, and podcaster Stephen A. Smith offers powerful and humorous lessons from the world of sports – and beyond – on overcoming adversity, leadership, building a personal brand, and ethics. After getting his start in journalism working for the New York Daily News and the Philadelphia Inquirer, Smith transitioned to TV and landed at ESPN in 2003. Known for his memorable catchphrases and thought-provoking analysis, Smith is a host on ESPN’s First Take, an NBA analyst and insider on SportsCenter, and hosts his own weekly NBA show, SportsCenter with Stephen A. Smith. Smith released his bestselling memoir, Straight Shooter: A Memoir of Second Chances and First Takes, on January 17th, 2023. As he does in sought-after events, Smith shares his personal journey to becoming a giant of sports media, the adversities he has overcome, and how sports became his salvation.
Smith is set to host a new podcast, Know Mercy, with Cadence13/Audacy and featuring a range of notable guests and thought leaders. The fan-favorite commentator and ‘The Face of ESPN’ will offer his candid perspective on politics, entertainment, social issues, criminal justice, business, and of course, sports. He is a proud HBCU graduate, a brand ambassador for HBCU Week, and his Mr. SAS Productions is in development for Black Excellence, a documentary series examining the legacy of Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Revered for speaking his truth and engaging audiences, Smith consistently receives rave reviews for his events, such as: ”Amazing! They loved him. He was the ultimate professional and inspiring at the same time. I’ve booked a lot of speakers, and I’d book him again and again. He knocked it out the park.” (Chrysler Minority Association)
MARA BROCK AKIL
Groundbreaking Hollywood visionary and power player Mara Brock Akil has written and produced nearly 400 episodes of television, truly leaving her mark on the industry. A trailblazer in many ways, Akil created the seminal television series Girlfriends-- a witty, intelligent and honest exploration of the many facets of black womanhood. Additionally, Akil developed the spin-off series The Game, which became the most-watched scripted-series premiere ever on ad- supported cable. The series continued on for a total of 9 seasons, earning praise throughout its run for its verisimilitude and, during the reality television boom, as one of the few shows on television that felt truly specific to its moment. Akil is also the creative force behind BET’s Being Mary Jane, which further cemented her ability to tell powerful and engaging stories that speak to women through honest, true-to-life reflections, The CW’s Black Lightning, and OWN’s Love Is___. Now, she is co-executive producing Netflix's adaptation of Ibram X Kendi's three anti-racism books, which will be a mix of a documentary and scripted features.
A regular on the Hollywood Reporter's Women in Entertainment Power100, Akil is a leader in her field. She's been honored with the prestigious Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award; Essence magazine’s Visionary Award; named to Variety and The Hollywood Reporter’s Showrunner Power Lists; and been inducted into Northwestern’s Medill Hall of Achievement.
A passionate, dynamic, and empowering speaker Akil has been sought-out to speak everywhere from Google to The Wing. She shares remarks on self growth and love, finding the power to be bold, loving life at every age, and breaking barriers in all facets of life.
Ben Rhodes is the author of the New York Times bestsellers After the Fall: Being American in the World We've Made and The World As It Is; a contributor for NBC News, MSNBC and Crooked Media; the co-chair of National Security Action; and an advisor to former President Barack Obama. From 2009-2017, Rhodes served as a Deputy National Security Advisor to President Obama. In that capacity, he participated in nearly all of President Obama’s key decisions, and oversaw the President’s national security communications, speechwriting, public diplomacy and global engagement programming. He also led the secret negotiations with the Cuban government which resulted in the effort to normalize relations between the United States and Cuba, and supported the negotiations to conclude the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Iran. Prior to joining the Administration, he was a Senior Speechwriter and foreign policy advisor to the Obama campaign. From 2002-2007, he worked for former Congressman Lee Hamilton, supporting his work on the 9/11 Commission and Iraq Study Group.
For the past two decades, Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei has played a key role in the most high-stakes conflicts of our time. Director General Emeritus of the International Atomic Energy Agency, he offers unparalleled insights from his 12 years at the agency's helm, which earned him and the IAEA a joint Nobel Peace Prize. A prominent voice for peace, freedom and democracy in the Arab and Islamic worlds, he comments on today's most pressing matters such as threats from Iran, Syria, Turkey and North Korea. Audiences look to Dr. ElBaradei to add context to the drastic and often dark headlines we read every day and guides audiences through his vision for stability and peace without terrorism.
A New York Times bestselling author, peace activist, and former CIA Clandestine Service Officer Amaryllis Fox has stopped at nothing to improve the world we live in.
From interviewing Suu Kyi for the BBC while working with the Burmese democracy movement – which briefly landed her in prison – to spending time in Dili, East Timor, working to settle IDPs in the world’s newest country, Fox has spent years doing hands-on work to drastically enhance global communities. As a political and terrorism analyst for South East Asia, and then a Clandestine Service officer overseas, Fox was deployed as a spy under non-official cover--the most difficult and coveted job in the field. Her intensive training included everything from how to get out of flexicuffs while locked in the trunk of a car, to how to withstand torture, to the best ways to commit suicide in case of captivity. Her remarkable experiences spending a decade hunting the world’s most dangerous terrorists in sixteen counties-- all while getting married and giving birth to her daughter-- are chronicled in her New York Times bestselling memoir Life Undercover: Coming of Age in the CIA.
The book has been translated into 23 languages and was chosen by Time Magazine, the Washington Post, the New York Times and People Magazine as a notable book of the year. It is being adapted into a television series by Apple, featuring Brie Larson. She is the host of Netflix's hit documentary series The Business of Drugs, which ranked #1 in the United States on Netflix the week of its release. Her viral video about listening to our enemies has been viewed over 130 million times worldwide. Previously, she hosted History Channel’s American Ripper and starred in Freak Power, a feature film about Hunter S. Thompson's campaign for Sheriff of Aspen in 1970. Amaryllis has offered guest commentary on global events everywhere from FOX News to BBC.
Sought-out to speak at TED, Fox's remarks are equal parts informative and inspiring. She brings the conflict resolution, communication, and teambuilding techniques and strategies she learned during a career in counterterrorism to audiences worldwide, and shares invaluable insights on human nature and how to apply these findings to daily life, vastly enriching our relationships and unlocking the power to communicate, collaborate, and together achieve common goals.
One of the world's foremost communication strategists, Karen Hughes specializes in strategic messaging, crisis communications and executive positioning with clients ranging from global corporations to Fortune 500 CEOs. The current Worldwide Vice Chair at esteemed communications agency Burson Cohn & Wolfe, Hughes also served as counselor to President George W. Bush and Under Secretary of the State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs. For her work in Washington D.C., Hughes has been described as "the most powerful woman ever to serve in the White House" (Dallas Morning News) and "the most powerful public diplomacy czar in decades" (The Boston Globe).
Michael Nutter served as the 98th Mayor of the City of Philadelphia, his hometown. He served 22.5 years as an elected official in Philadelphia, serving 14.5 years as a City Council member, and then 2 four year terms as Mayor, leaving office on January 4, 2016 due to term limits.
Mayor Nutter was considered one of the foremost leaders in innovation, tackling challenges of public safety, increasing funding for educating children, revitalizing the economy and spurring economic growth, restoring ethics and integrity to city government, ensuring fiscal discipline and making Philadelphia one of the great green and sustainable cities in America.
Known for keeping an active and engaged schedule as Mayor, Michael Nutter is doing the same as a private citizen. He's a Professor at Columbia University, a Senior Fellow with Bloomberg Philanthropies What Works Cities Program, Chair of the Mayors Advisory Board for Airbnb, and holds numerous Fellowships and Advisory positions in academic, political, non-profit and corporate entities. Mayor Nutter is actively engaged in the work of cities and trying to make them work better on behalf of their citizens.
An entrepreneur, activist, politician and a philanthropist, Dr. Joyce Banda is the former president of Malawi, making her the country's first female president and Africa's second. Voted as Africa's most powerful woman by Forbes magazine and voted as one of the most powerful women in the world, she is a champion for the rights of women, children, the disabled and other marginalized groups. Continuing her tireless work encouraging women to enter political office and championing the rights of women and the disenfranchised, Dr. Banda has taken on a Distinguished Visiting Fellowship at the Center for Global Development, jointly with the Woodrow Wilson Center, where she brings her invaluable experiences as a leader in African politics. She is also a member of the United Nation's Council of Women World Leaders, and was recently named Honorary Chairperson of The Women Empowerment & Development Society in Asia-Africa.
Emmy Award-winning sports analyst and New York Times bestselling author Matthew Berry is universally regarded as “the face of fantasy football.” Berry, also known as ‘The Talented Mr. Roto’, is a fantasy football commentator and analyst for NBC across all platforms, including appearances on Football Night in America, Sunday Night Football Final, a daily audio and video podcast, and a weekly fantasy football show. Previously, Berry was the Senior Fantasy Sports Analyst for ESPN, where he hosted the award-winning Fantasy Football Show with Matthew Berry on ESPN+ and was the most-read weekly columnist on ESPN.com during football season. He won an Emmy for his work on ESPN2’s Fantasy Football Now, and is the author of the New York Times bestseller Fantasy Life, which spent many months on the list. His multi-award-winning podcast Fantasy Focus: Football regularly ranks in the top ten in the sports category. Berry brings his candid and entertaining perspective to memorable events for audiences of all kinds.
Berry was named Marketer of the Year by the Academy of Marketing Science (2013) for his leading role in fueling the national growth of fantasy football. He has also been named one of USA Today’s “NFL’s 100 Most Important People”, Sports Illustrated’s “Top 100 to Follow on Twitter,” and Mashable’s “32 Must Follow Accounts for NFL Fans,” boasting over 1.5M highly engaged social media followers. Berry was named FSTA “Analyst of the Year” by his peers (2017) and is one of only four people to be named to the Hall of Fame for both the Fantasy Sports Trade Association and the Fantasy Sports Writers Association.
Appointed by President Barack Obama, Daniel Shapiro served as the United States Ambassador to Israel from July 2011 until the end of the Obama Administration. As Ambassador, Shapiro won praise from leaders of both countries for his deft management of the U.S.-Israel relationship during Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, the Iran nuclear agreement, regional instability, and periods of significant bilateral tension and disagreement. Among Shapiro's major contributions were negotiating the $38 billion Memorandum of Understanding for U.S. military aid to Israel, unprecedented public outreach in fluent Hebrew to Israel’s diverse communities, and 40 percent growth in U.S.-Israel trade.
Shapiro's time as the Ambassador to Israel followed a diverse career of over 20 years in senior foreign policy and national security positions in the United States government, including as the Senior Director for the Middle East and North Africa at the National Security Council.
Currently, Shapiro is the Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Tel Aviv University’s Institute of National Security Studies. His remarkable breadth of insights have been featured across the major media networks, and his writing has appeared in Foreign Policy, The Atlantic, Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC, Israeli Channel 2, and more.
Dean’s groundbreaking campaign for the U.S. Presidency and subsequent four years as Chairman of the Democratic National Committee provided him with both an insider's view and a reformer's commitment to the economy, foreign trade policy and international relations. His 12 years as Governor of Vermont and his Chairmanship of the National Governor's Association have given him a vast knowledge of domestic issues. Prior to entering the political realm, Dean was a physician and used that expertise during his political career as a champion of healthcare reform. Today, he uses his dual knowledge of politics and healthcare to speak on the current issues.
His skillful stewardship of the party as Democratic National Committee chair began in 2005 and continued through the inauguration of President Barack Obama. As Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Governor Dean made the Democratic Party competitive in every race, in every district, in every state and territory, while integrating national and state party operations and standing up for Democrats' core values.
R. GLENN HUBBARD
An economic advisor to Presidents, a well-respected Professor, leading Republican economist R. Glenn Hubbard has been the architect of policies that affect millions. Event planners invite Hubbard to speak at their events not only to offer their audiences shrewd economic commentary but also to ensure their program maintains the gravitas they've worked so hard to cultivate. Hubbard is that rare economic policy speaker who entertains as he delivers a complex message clearly and concisely - the same skills which have made him a familiar face on political and economic television news programs.
While we all aspire to live bravely in the face of life's significant challenges, few of us are tested to live bravely before the guns of hostile Somali pirates who threaten our leadership and authority, our lives, and the lives of our colleagues. Before Somali pirates hijacked his cargo ship and held him captive for five days, making him the center of a riveting international drama which played out live on television, Captain Richard Phillips was as normal as each of us doing our best at work and home. Audiences connect with Captain Phillips on a personal level, become friends with him by the evening's end, and leave lifted by his inspirational message.
Professor Alan M. Dershowitz is a Brooklyn native who has been called “the nation’s most peripatetic civil liberties lawyer” and one of its “most distinguished defenders of individual rights,” “the best-known criminal lawyer in the world,” “the top lawyer of last resort.” He has been named America’s most “public Jewish Defender,” -- “the Jewish state’s lead attorney in the court of public opinion.” He is the Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law, Emeritus, at Harvard Law School. Dershowitz, a graduate of Brooklyn College and Yale Law School, joined the Harvard Law School faculty at age 25 – the youngest in the school’s history -- and became an Emeritus professor after 50 years of teaching and 10,000 students.
In his speeches he continues to challenge audiences with his thought-provoking perspectives on today’s foremost social, legal, and ethical issues.
As the Executive Vice President of Forbes Media, Moira Forbes is responsible for driving new business initiatives across the company’s diverse media platforms, and branding Forbes events worldwide. She is also the President and Publisher of ForbesWomen, a multi-media platform dedicated to successful women in business and leadership. Apart from hosting "Success with Moira Forbes," a video series on the Forbes Video Network featuring candid, one-on-one interviews with today’s top women leaders and "The Takeaway with Moira Forbes," a video series on Forbes where Moira interviews bold leaders weekly, she also writes a dedicated leadership column for Forbes.com profiling today’s most dynamic business leaders. In 2013, Moira launched the annual Forbes Women’s Summit in New York City, which brings together 250 female leaders to discuss and solve the world’s most intractable issues.
Iron Chef Alex Guarnaschelli is a world-renowned chef and one of Food Network’s top stars. Guarnaschelli first appeared on the network in 2006 and has since been part of hundreds of episodes of programming on the network, including as a judge on Chopped, co-host of The Kitchen, host of Supermarket Stakeout, and star of Alex vs America. As a competitor, she beat nine rival chefs to win The Next Iron Chef: Redemption, joining the ranks of Kitchen Stadium Iron Chefs. She also hosts the award-winning digital series, Fix Me a Plate, and is the author of the cookbooks Old-School Comfort Food: The Way I Learned to Cook (2013), The Home Cook: Recipes to Know by Heart (2017), and most recently Cook with Me: 150 Recipes for the Home Cook (2020).
Guarnaschelli attended La Varenne Culinary School in Burgundy, France and began her international culinary journey training in Paris and New York with some of the world’s most acclaimed chefs including Guy Savoy and Daniel Boulud. In 2003, Guarnaschelli was given the opportunity to expand her repertoire and become the executive chef at Butter in New York City, where she has since created her own eclectic American and green-market inspired menu. In sought-after keynotes and live demonstrations, Guarnaschelli provides lessons from a life steeped in culinary education and adventure, her own travels, and experiences as a mother and in world-renowned kitchens.
Guarnaschelli is regularty a guest on national television shows such as Today, Good Morning America and Live with Kelly & Ryan and has also been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and Food & Wine. A popular mainstay on social media and Head of Twitter’s Food Council, Guarnaschelli also premiered her one-woman live comedy show Busting My Chops at Caroline’s on Broadway. A passionate and dynamic speaker, Guarnaschelli enjoys serving as an emcee and provides engaging cooking demonstrations to the delight of audiences.
Acclaimed chef, restaurateur, New York Times bestselling author, and beloved TV host Marcus Samuelsson inspires audiences with his powerful storytelling and engaging cooking demos. Samuelsson is the chef behind many renowned restaurants worldwide, including Red Rooster Harlem, Red Rooster Shoreditch, and Marcus B&P. He was the youngest person ever to receive a three-star review from The New York Times, and has won multiple James Beard Foundation Awards including “Best Chef: New York City.” Samuelsson is also the author of multiple books including the New York Times bestselling memoir Yes, Chef – which The New York Times called “one of the great culinary stories of our time,” Make It Messy, The Red Rooster Cookbook, and his latest groundbreaking cookbook The Rise: Black Cooks and the Soul of American Food. Through his insightful conversations and thoroughly delightful live demos, Samuelsson offers uplifting, entertaining, and though-provoking experiences that resonate with audiences of all kinds.
Samuelsson was crowned champion of the TV shows Top Chef Masters and Chopped All-Stars, and served as a mentor on ABC’s The Taste. His PBS series No Passport Required celebrates the wide-ranging diversity of immigrant traditions and cuisine woven into American food and culture. A committed philanthropist, he co-produces the annual week-long festival Harlem EatUp!, which celebrates the food, art, and culture of Harlem. Samuelsson serves as a UNICEF Ambassador, a member of the U.S. State Department’s Chef Corps, and as the co-chairman for the organization Careers Through Culinary Arts Program. He was selected as a guest chef at the White House under the Obama Administration, where he planned and executed the administration’s first state dinner honoring Prime Minister Singh of India. For his sought-after programs, Samuelsson receives consistent rave reviews: ”Wow! You were utterly amazing. Added such depth and perspective. We can't thank you enough! Hope you'll join another at some point in the future” (Crain’s New York Business) and ”Marcus was thoughtful, personable, and left us wanting more!” (Kraft Heinz Company)
Chef, restaurateur, and Emmy Award-winning television host Guy Fieri is one of the world’s most recognizable and influential culinary stars. With a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, he is best known as the Mayor of Flavortown and the face of Food Network favorites Diners, Drive Ins & Dives, Guy’s Grocery Games, and Tournament of Champions. His thriving business empire has grown to include over 80 restaurants worldwide and a 175-location food delivery service, Flavortown Kitchen, Hunt & Ryde vineyard, Santo tequila, and an upcoming cigar brand.
Guy began his culinary career selling soft pretzels from a three-wheeled bicycle at the age of 10 and washing dishes in local restaurants in his early teens. By 16, he’d earned enough money to spend a year in France as part of a high school exchange program. It was there that he found a deep appreciation for international cuisine. After graduating from the University of Nevada Las Vegas, he gained industry experience as a restaurant manager before pursuing his entrepreneurial dream of opening his own restaurant. In 2006, Guy won the television competition Next Food Network Star and has been a nonstop presence on the network ever since.
Guy’s enthusiasm for food is matched only by his passion for helping others. In 2011, he started the Guy Fieri Foundation which supports culinary education for middle school and high school students, provides financial resources to aspiring chefs and feeds frontline workers, first responders and military personnel in the field. In 2021, the foundation awarded $20,000 in scholarships and served over 21,000 meals. In a true example of leadership, Guy partnered with the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation during the pandemic and helped raise more than $21.5 million in aid for over 43,000 unemployed restaurant workers.
He currently lives in Northern California with his wife and two sons.
David Chang is the chef and founder of Momofuku. Called one of “the most influential people of the 21st century” by Esquire, David has appeared on numerous television shows, and was the first chef to be featured on the Emmy-award winning PBS television show, The Mind of a Chef. His cookbook Momofuku and memoir Eat A Peach are New York Times bestsellers. Along with Academy Award-winning Director Morgan Neville, David is a creative force behind Ugly Delicious, an eight-part Netflix original documentary series about foods we love and the stories that shape them. He is also the creator and host of Hulu's docu-series The Next Thing You Eat, and The Dave Chang Show podcast featuring conversations with thought-provoking guests.
One of the most beloved figures in science and technology, Adam Savage has spent most of his life gathering skills that allow him to take ideas and make them real.
In his book, Every Tool’s a Hammer: Life Is What You Make It, Adam shares his golden rules of creativity, problem solving, and much more. This inspiring read not only explores the MythBusters star’s journey through 40-plus years as a maker and creator, but offers readers profound advice on how to pursue what truly inspires them.
In speaking to audiences around the world, Adam challenges and inspires people to turn their curiosities into creations. From finding what inspires you to following through on making an idea a reality, Adam encourages you to push the boundaries of what's possible, and provides a toolbox of techniques to achieve personal and professional success.
Two-time New York Times bestselling author of Shut Up And Run and Strong Mama, Robin Arzón discovered her passion for athletics after healing from a traumatic experience through movement. She fearlessly left behind a successful law career to embark on new adventures in the health and wellness space, and has since reinvented herself into an avid ultra-marathoner and renowned fitness coach.
As Vice President of Fitness Programming and Head Instructor at Peloton, she believes that sweat transforms lives, and her story is living proof. She successfully partners with major lifestyle and fitness brands, using her powerful influence to connect directly with consumers through social media. In 2020, she was named one of the most influential people on Fortune Magazine’s "40 Under 40" list. Her life’s mission is to redefine, reform, and rethink possibility through movement.
A New York Times bestselling author and global fashion icon with a remarkable rags to riches story, Dapper Dan pioneered streetwear in the early 1980s with his eponymous store on 125th Street. Co-opting luxury branding to design original garments with high-end detail, Dapper Dan first drew powerful New York City hustlers as clientele, who flocked to him thanks to his strong street reputation as a legendary professional gambler and dandy. He then went on to outfit the world’s top entertainers and celebrities, all leading to his notoriety.
Dapper Dan’s incredible personal journey from a hungry boy with holes in his shoes, to a teen who gambled drug dealers out of their money, to a beloved legend in the worlds of Harlem, fashion, and hip hop, is chronicled in his New York Times bestseller, Dapper Dan: Made in Harlem. It’s also a story that inspires and resonates with audiences worldwide, and is now being developed into a premium drama series and a documentary series. In his empowering and riveting remarks, Dapper Dan highlights the importance of tenacity, curiosity, and determination to make ones wildest dreams a reality.
DR. DAVID KATZ
David L. Katz, MD, MPH, FACPM, FACP, FACLM is a specialist in Internal Medicine, Preventive Medicine/Public Health, and Lifestyle Medicine, with particular expertise in nutrition. He earned his BA at Dartmouth College (1984); his MD at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine (1988); and his MPH from the Yale University School of Public Health (1993). Katz is the founder and former director of Yale University’s Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center (1998-2019); Past President of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine; Founder of the non-profit True Health Initiative; and Founder and CEO of Diet ID, Inc. He is a Fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine; the American College of Physicians; the American College of Lifestyle Medicine; and Morse College, Yale University.
The recipient of numerous awards for teaching, writing, and contributions to public health, Katz was a 2019 James Beard Foundation Award nominee in health journalism, is a 2023 recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Doctors’ World Gala, and has received three honorary doctorates. He holds multiple US patents; has over 200 peer-reviewed publications; and has authored/co-authored 19 books to date including multiple editions of leading textbooks in nutrition, preventive medicine, and epidemiology.
Joe Lockhart is widely recognized as one of the top communications and public affairs professionals in the world, and offers strategic communications counsel to CEOs, C-suite executives, and Washington's most powerful leaders. He knows how to handle a crisis and regain control of a narrative, honed through decades of experience in public affairs, corporate communications, administration, and political campaigns. Lockhart is perhaps best known for his service as White House Press Secretary under President Bill Clinton from 1998 to 2000. He has also worked for the National Football League (NFL) as executive vice president, overseeing communications, government affairs, social responsibility and philanthropy, and for Facebook as vice president of global communications. Lockhart's current role is to advise corporations and organizations on their communications strategies and vulnerabilities. He was vice chairman for public affairs at Edelman; he was also previously the founding partner and managing director of the Glover Park Group, and was executive vice president at Bozell Sawyer Miller.
An award-winning journalist, he is also a frequent contributor to CNN and reflects on the week's news with Katie Barlow as they co-host the Words Matter podcast.
Judith Jamison - American dancer, Choreographer and Artistic Director of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater - is a legendary icon in the world of the performing arts. Ms. Jamison, who as a dancer with the troupe, became the most stellar of modern dance's female performers and was appointed Artistic Director of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in December 1989 at the request of her mentor, Alvin Ailey, who personally chose her to succeed him. Ms. Jamison has shared her talent and artistic oversight at one of the most respected dance companies in the world for more than 50 years. Audiences respond to her passionate and electric remarks, and carry with them the truth of their own potential.
MARGARET I. CUOMO
Margaret I. Cuomo, M.D. is a board certified radiologist, teaching professional, and national advocate for the prevention of cancer, heart disease and diabetes. A trusted expert on health and wellness who empowers people to make lifestyle decisions to tangibly improve their health, Dr. Cuomo explores the ways in which food, exercise, sleep and stress management and more can reduce the risk of cancer, diabetes and heart disease and how lifestyle modification—altering long-term habits— not only promote general health and well-being, but can be used to treat and prevent a wide range of diseases. Some of Dr. Cuomo’s other areas of expertise include: preventive medicine, public policy as it relates to health and wellness, toxic chemical reform, and the ways in which government, the medical community, the media, academia and more should partner in order to effect change in the "war on cancer."
Her book, A World Without Cancer: The Making of a New World and the Real Promise of Prevention, presents a provocative and surprising look into the ways that profit, personalities, and politics obstruct real progress in the war on cancer. This groundbreaking book, based on her own first-hand experience with cancer patients, has been described as “urgent and powerful,” “an eye-opening look at the way we fight cancer,” and a “call for bold leadership to transform our system from treatment to prevention.”
A fearless advocate for the health of all people worldwide, Cuomo also addresses the power and necessity of STEM education and provides people with the tools and inspiration needed to transform their lives.
Kurt Andersen–a brilliant analyst and synthesizer of historical and cultural trends, bestselling novelist, groundbreaking media entrepreneur, and host of public radio’s Studio 360– takes a smart and refreshingly hopeful approach to our culture and politics. A bestelling author of many social and political commentaries, most recently, Evil Geniuses: How Big Money Took Over America, Andersen provides audiences with a fascinating examination of America’s culture that brilliantly displays how we’ve gotten to where we are today, and where we are going.
Michael Chertoff is a renowned security expert whose extensive experience includes serving as the second Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. He founded the Data Equilibrium Project to explore data protectionism and the gap between privacy and national security. He is also co-founder and executive chairman of The Chertoff Group, a security and risk management firm where he provides high-level strategic counsel to corporate and government leaders on issues from risk identification and prevention to preparedness, response and recovery.
JONATHAN SAFRAN FOER
Award-winning and New York Times bestselling author Jonathan Safran Foer engages audiences in thoughtful dialogue on his books, culture, and society. Foer is known for his novels Everything Is Illuminated, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, which was named “Best Book of the Year” by the Los Angeles Times, Washington Post Book World, the Chicago Tribune, and more, Tree of Codes, and Here I Am. His non-fiction works include Eating Animals – which the Los Angeles Times hailed as placing him “at the table with our greatest philosophers” – and his latest book, We Are the Weather, described as “life-changing” by The Guardian. In compelling keynotes and conversation, Foer delves into vital questions that touch on some of today’s most pressing issues while remaining deeply personal: how we define ourselves, and the choices we make in food, in love, and in life.
Foer and his work have frequently been featured in The New York Times, The Guardian, The Washington Post, The New Yorker, and many more. He serves on the board of Farm Forward and is a passionate advocate for climate change solutions and more conscientious individual choices toward sustainability. Foer is the winner of The Guardian’s First Book Prize, the National Jewish Book Award, and the New York Public Library Young Lions Prize. He was named one of Rolling Stone’s “People of the Year,” Esquire’s “Best and Brightest,” and The Forward’s “Forward 50” list of the most influential Jewish-Americans of the year. Foer’s powerful storytelling and insights have been sought after by groups like Google, San Francisco Contemporary Museum, the John Adams Institute, and the Social Good Summit.
An influential business leader, Desiree Rogers has helped major organizations reinvent business models and reach new and more diverse audiences with tangible results. The first black CEO and Co-Owner of Black Opal Beauty and Fashion Fair Cosmetics, and a former CEO of Johnson Publishing Company, Rogers is heralded for her uncanny business acumen and innovative approach to marketing and brand development. Beyond her experience in the private sector, Rogers was appointed by President Obama as White House Social Secretary, re-positioning the White House as the “People’s House” and implementing innovative events.
Named to the "50 Most Influential People in the Multicultural Market" by WWD, "Top 25 Women to Watch" by Crain's Chicago Business, and "Top 50 Most Powerful African American Business Women" by Black Enterprise, Rogers offers insights on everything from how to make marketing work in a digital and global age, to how to talk about race and foster a positive, inclusive work environment. Sought-out to speak at TED, Rogers has the unique ability to connect with her audience, energize and inspire teams, and illuminate new strategic pathways and operational approaches.
"If you are afraid, there is no way to be open. Reach beyond, take a chance, be respectful, and always think of what you can do for others." - Desirée Rogers, TEDx Speech, 2016
Steve Roberts has been a journalist for almost 50 years, covering some of the major events of his time, from the antiwar movement and student revolts of the 60s and 70s to President Reagan's historic trip to Moscow in 1988 and twelve presidential election campaigns.
A well-known commentator on many Washington-based TV shows, Roberts also appears regularly as a political analyst on the ABC radio network.
Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist and author of the New York Times bestsellers Hooked: Food, Free Will, and How the Food Giants Exploit our Addictions and Salt Sugar Fat, Michael Moss is a leading expert on the food industry, health and wellness, and marketing. Taking audiences on an eye-opening journey deep inside some of the world's biggest and most successful companies, he offers audiences an illuminating and surprising look at the researchers, marketers, strategists, and CEOs who seduce us with their products. Moss brings to vivid life the creative ways food manufacturers use the science of human behavior, biology and marketing to hook us. Using humor, case studies, and insight gleaned from investigative reporting that won him a Pulitzer Prize, he shows how companies get consumers to buy, often at the expense of their health.
Informative, engaging and often hilarious, Moss also offers lessons on the new world of health food, smart marketing strategies regardless of industry, and the state of journalism today. Hailed as "extraordinary" (University of the Sciences), "powerful" (Epicure) and "riveting" (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation), Moss tailors his remarks to every audience, ensuring they leave deeply informed and with actionable takeaways.
Renowned speechwriter and messaging expert Cody Keenan rose from a campaign intern in Chicago to become Chief Speechwriter at the White House and Barack Obama’s post-presidential collaborator. Together, Keenan and Obama's efforts resulted in some of the most unforgettable addresses of our time. From commencement addresses to Selma to Obama’s Farewell Address, they redefined the essence of the American creed and charted an inspiring, optimistic course for a new generation’s active citizenship. Their collaborations have been compared to the works of Abraham Lincoln, described by CNN as “the ‘I Have a Dream’ speech for the 21st century,” and categorized even by prominent Republicans as “speeches every child should read in school.” Keenan continues to serve as Obama’s collaborator and post-presidential speechwriter. He is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir Grace: President Obama and Ten Days in the Battle for America.
A sought-after expert on politics and current affairs, Keenan is now a partner at the leading speechwriting firm Fenway Strategies, and teaches a popular course on political speechwriting to undergraduates at his alma mater Northwestern University. He was described by NBC News as the ‘Springsteen’ of Obama’s White House, and included on British GQ’s list of the “35 Coolest Men Under 38 (And a Half).” He’s appeared in the History Channel’s nine-part special The Obama Years, on Showtime’s The Circus, in the Smithsonian Channel’s The Obama Years: The Power of Words, and elsewhere. Keenan’s commencement address at New York University’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service was highlighted by both The New York Times and The Washington Post as one of the year’s best, and he continues to be a sought-after motivational speaker for events with audiences of all kinds. With his humor and unparalleled insights, Kennan regularly receives rave reviews for speaking engagements, such as: “Cody stole the show at our global corporate affairs gathering. He brought his warmth, richness of experience, and incredible sense of humor together to give us the guidance we needed to cultivate authentic storytelling at Hilton. I was not surprised to see that he rated the top speaker in our program.” (Hilton)
An expert on U.S. foreign policy around the globe and a top White House adviser on Middle Eastern issues, Elliott Abrams has served in major foreign policy positions for three Republican U.S. Presidents, George W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, and Donald Trump. He is a Senior Fellow for Middle Eastern Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, D.C.
He served as Special Assistant to the President & Senior Director for Democracy, Human Rights, and International Operations (2001–2002), Special Assistant to the President & Senior Director for Near East and North African Affairs (2002–2005), Deputy Assistant to the President & Deputy National Security Advisor for Global Democracy Strategy (2005-2009), and most recently, as the U.S. Special Representative for Iran and Venezuela at the Department of State (2020-2021).
David Makovsky is an author and an expert on U.S. policy in the Middle East. A distinguished fellow at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy and Director of the Koret Project on Arab-Israel Relations, Makovsky previously served as a senior advisor to the U.S. Special Envoy for Israeli-Palestinian Negotiations. He brings his experience as a senior adviser as well as his keen analysis of the current situation to accessible and engaging talks on the past, present, and future of U.S. policy in the Middle East and the Arab-Israeli peace process, shedding light on challenges and opportunities. A long-time adjunct professor of Middle East Studies at Johns Hopkins University in the School of Advanced International Studies, Makovsky is also an in-demand voice for college audiences for both in-person and virtual events, including a TEDx Talk A Middle East Mount Rushmore, and hosts the Decision Points podcast, an exploration of history and contemporary policy decisions impacting Israel, the U.S., and the Middle East at large. Makovsky co-authored the book Be Strong and of Good Courage: How Israel’s Most Important Leaders Shaped Its Destiny, which Henry Kissinger called “A powerful statement on the style and principles of leadership that are critical for shaping the Middle East peace process.”
A veteran award-winning journalist, Makovsky previously served as the Executive Editor of the Jerusalem Post, and was the diplomatic correspondent for Ha’aretz, as well as contributing editor to U.S. News and World Report. He was awarded the National Press Club’s Edwin M. Hood Award for Diplomatic Correspondence, and his commentary has appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, International Herald Tribune, Chicago Tribune, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, and National Interest. Makovsky is a sought-after commentator on Arab-Israeli affairs, and has appeared frequently for decades on PBS NewsHour, Charlie Rose, NPR, CNN, Fox, the BBC, and more. He has testified before the full U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, the full U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs, and on multiple occasions before the House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs Middle East Subcommittee. Makovsky is a lifetime member of the Council on Foreign Relations, as well as the International Institute for Strategic Studies.
Award-winning author Daniel Gordis is a revered scholar and commentator on matters pertaining to Israel. Gordis is the author of twelve books, including Israel: A Concise History of a Nation Reborn – which received the 2016 National Jewish Book Award as “Book of the Year.” Of his book We Stand Divided, Ambassador Michael Oren wrote, “Impassioned, brilliant, and riveting… the essential book for understanding American Jewish-Israel relations.” Gordis’ newest book, Impossible Takes Longer: 75 Years After Its Creation, Has Israel Fulfilled its Founders’ Dreams? is due out in April of 2023. In his writing as he does in his talks, Gordis offers a balanced perspective and a deft and multifaceted assessment of Israel. Leonard Fein has written that Gordis is “perhaps the single most popular speaker on Israel to American Jewish audiences.”
Alan Dershowitz has called Gordis “one of Israel’s most thoughtful observers,” and his writing has appeared in The New York Times, The New Republic, New York Times Magazine, Azure, Commentary, and Foreign Affairs, while his books have received numerous awards. Gordis is a sought-after speaker who consistently receives rave reviews for his speaking engagements, such as: "Dr. Gordis was over the top fabulous. Warm, friendly, and brilliant. Roundtable, cocktail receptions, and program… he nailed every tier of our event. Articulate, knowledgeable and passionate. You could hear a pin drop during his keynote address. Our audience was completely engaged." (Tampa Jewish Federation)
Hadassah Lieberman charms audiences with stories from her extraordinary life, focusing on women’s health issues, assisting nonprofit organizations, and promoting international understanding. Ms. Lieberman successfully tailors her remarks to fundraising objectives that enable an organization to reach their goals.
Martin Indyk has been an active participant in the dramatic Middle East peace process and plays a leading role in advising on U.S. Middle East policy and U.S.-Israel relations. Ambassador Indyk's speeches are full of vivid details of high-level negotiations in Washington and the Middle East. He provides an insider's account of the players and dynamics that shape the volatile region and impact the prospects for peace. Currently a Distinguished Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, Ambassador Indyk was the last U.S. special envoy for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. He has now written a history of Henry Kissinger's role as the first U.S. Middle East peace envoy.
Dr. Jonathan Sarna is the Joseph H. & Belle R. Braun Professor of American Jewish History and Chair of the Hornstein Jewish Professional Leadership Program at Brandeis University, as well as Chief Historian of the new National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia.
Dubbed by the Forward newspaper in 2004 as one of America’s fifty most influential American Jews, he was Chief Historian for the 350th commemoration of the American Jewish community, and is recognized as a leading commentator on American Jewish history, religion and life.
David Horovitz is the founding editor of The Times of Israel, the Jerusalem-based current affairs website that launched in February 2012. The Times of Israel, which provides independent coverage of Israel, the region and the Jewish world, is the fastest-growing news site in the Jewish world, and now also publishes in French, Arabic and Persian.
Horovitz was previously editor-in-chief of The Jerusalem Post (2004-2011). Before that, he was editor and publisher of the award-winning news magazine The Jerusalem Report.
He has written from Israel for newspapers around the world, including The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Irish Times and (London) Independent, and is a frequent interviewee on CNN, the BBC, Sky, Fox News, NPR and other TV and radio stations.
Horovitz lectures widely in Israel, the United States and Europe on Israeli current affairs, regularly giving the introductory briefing on Israel to Congressional delegations brought to Israel under the aegis of AIPAC.
Joseph Telushkin, once named by Talk magazine as one of the 50 best speakers in the United States, is one of America’s leading ethicists. His book, Words that Hurt, Words that Heal, inspired Senators Joseph Lieberman’s and Connie Mack’s Senate Resolution #151 to establish a National Speak No Evil Day in the United States, a day in which Americans would go for twenty-four hours without saying anything unkind or unfair about, or to, anyone. An invaluable sourcebook of tools for businessmen, Words that Hurt, Words that Heal, contains suggestion after suggestion of how and when to criticize, how to keep a disagreement from turning into a quarrel, and the one technique that will keep you, even when angry, from ever saying something that can destroy a relationship.
His newest book building on the groundbreaking title, Words That Hurt, Words That Heal: How the Words You Choose Shape Your Destiny, was released in January 2019.
Emmy-winning TV host, comedian, physician, and cancer survivor Matt Iseman is beloved for his energetic, charismatic style and empowering message of overcoming obstacles. When Matt quit medicine to pursue stand-up comedy, his dad – a world-renowned physician – gave him the advice that still guides him today: “Life is short, do what makes you happy.” Renowned as the host of the four-time Emmy-nominated American Ninja Warrior, Matt combines his winning sense of humor, unique experience, and perspective as a doctor-turned-comic to deliver high-impact events. He shared his medical expertise and health and wellness insights on Hallmark’s Home & Family, won an Emmy for his hosting on Style’s Clean House, has hosted numerous live specials including The Macy’s 4th of July Special for NBC and Evel Live for History Channel and can be seen frequently as the in-house game show host for The Kelly Clarkson Show. Matt talks ninjas, tells jokes around the world and, in general, proves laughter is the best medicine.
Matt shares his inspiring story of battling Renal Cell Carcinoma and has become a spokesperson for the American Cancer Society. His ongoing battle with Rheumatoid Arthritis transformed him into a strong supporter of the Arthritis Foundation – for his work over the past decade and a half, Matt was named the 2018 “Arthritis Warrior of the Year.” Matt also supports the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and serves as an Ambassador for the Armed Services Arts Partnership. Sought after for events of all kinds, he is an in-demand speaker for both medical and business events including Texas Children’s Cancer Center, Feather River Hospital, Edwards Lifesciences, and CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, who raved: “Matt was fantastic! The audience really enjoyed his talk and he created the type of buzz we were looking for! He was also a pleasure to work with very energetic, kind, personable, and relatable. He hit all of the emotions, which was great!” His dynamic remarks cover everything from battling cancer, to overcoming obstacles, to the paramount importance of following your dreams.
Having served in numerous positions of international influence, Daniel Kurtzer is a uniquely qualified speaker with a distinct perspective on the geopolitical realties and culture of one of the world's most troubled regions. During a 29-year career in the U.S. Foreign Service (including U.S. Ambassador to Israel and U.S. Ambassador to Egypt) he was instrumental in formulating and executing U.S. policy toward the Middle East peace process. After retiring from the State Department, he served as a member of Secretary of State John Kerry’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board, and as an advisor to the bipartisan Iraq Study Group.
He is the co-author of Negotiating Arab-Israeli Peace: American Leadership in the Middle East; co-author of The Peace Puzzle: America’s Quest for Arab-Israeli Peace, 1989-2011; and editor of Pathways to Peace: America and the Arab-Israeli Conflict.
LeVar Burton is an actor, director, producer, and podcaster whose decades-long body of work includes Roots, Star Trek: The Next Generation, and Reading Rainbow. He is the honored recipient of six NAACP Awards, a Peabody, a Grammy, and 15 Emmys, including a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Inaugural Children’s & Family Emmys.
A lifelong literacy advocate, Burton recently partnered with Osmo’s Reading Adventure, an innovative technology that uses speech recognition and digital storytelling to teach children to read. His first documentary, The Right to Read, premiered at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival in February 2023.
Burton continues to exercise his passion for storytelling as the award-winning author of Aftermath, The Rhino Who Swallowed a Storm, and A Kids Book About Imagination. He launched his first bookclub with Fable, a digital book club community, and partnered with Masterclass, to share the power of storytelling.
His production company, LeVar Burton Entertainment (LBE), develops projects in the film, television, podcasting, and publishing space with the mission to share stories that fosters empathy, champions diversity, and builds community.
Now in its 11th season, the enormously popular LeVar Burton Reads podcast has over 175 episodes in its catalog, boasting 25M downloads. LBE’s first Kids & Family podcast, Sound Detectives, will debut on Stitcher in July of 2023.
As a pop culture icon, Burton has the unique ability to reach across all ages, ethnicities, and socioeconomic groups – communicating to a large fan base that is highly engaged and motivated to embrace his message.
Hollywood icon, New York Times bestselling author, podcaster, and philanthropist Rob Lowe is a passionate advocate for resilience in the face of adversity and leverages his platform to make an impact on the world. Known for his decades-long career in film, television, and theater, Lowe has been nominated for numerous Emmy, Golden Globe, and Screen Actors Guild Awards, winning two. Notable roles include St. Elmo’s Fire, About Last Night, The Outsiders, The West Wing, and Parks and Recreation, as well as directing The Bad Seed and serving as executive producer for Holiday in the Wild and 911 Lonestar. He shares his complicated path to stardom in two New York Times bestselling memoirs, Stories I Only Tell My Friends and Love Life. With his signature wry humor, candor, and moving personal anecdotes, Lowe is an in-demand speaker about his work in the fight against cancer, his journey to three decades of sobriety, and for his insights about overcoming obstacles, developing resilience, and finding joy.
Lowe hosts FOX’s Mental Samurai, a mental challenge competition, and two highly acclaimed podcasts: Literally! With Rob Lowe, on which he interviews leaders in the world of entertainment, and Parks and Recollection, co-hosted with showrunner Alan Yang, which takes a behind-the-scenes look at the hit TV show. He is a gifted host, moderator, and keynote speaker, and regularly receives rave reviews such as: ”Everyone was THRILLED! Rob was warm, funny, gracious and a pleasure to work with. Thanks for making this so memorable.” (Memorial Sloan Kettering)
Norman Pearlstine has led some of America’s most prestigious news organizations, including The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Time Inc., Bloomberg, and, most recently, the Los Angeles Times.
During a career that has spanned more than five decades, working in the U.S., Asia, and Europe, Pearlstine has championed technology and innovation in response to the waves of disruption that have roiled the media industry.
One of America's most respected and experienced journalists, Pearlstine understands today's geopolitical and economic issues and the media in covering them.
Journalist and author Mary Childs is a co-host for NPR’s award-winning Planet Money podcast known for balancing in-depth analysis of the most pressing financial topics with tenacious clarity, and offering accessible insights and takeaways for individuals and organizations. Previously, Childs worked as a senior reporter for Barron’s magazine, where she covered the alternatives industry, the bond market, and capitalism; a correspondent for the Financial Times; and a contributor to Bloomberg News. Her forthcoming book The Bond King: How One Man Made a Market, Built an Empire, and Lost it All was listed as one of LitHub’s most anticipated of the year. She's reported deeply about the pioneering of new asset classes, proposals to solve inequality, and diversity in the finance industry.
Named a 2015 Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Honoree, Childs’s award-winning work has been chosen as The New Yorker’s “Best Business Reporting” and highlighted on The Daily Show. Childs has appeared as a commentator for Bloomberg TV, Fox Business, Yahoo TV, and Nikkei TV, as well as consulting for HBO on a finance-related program. Her writing has appeared in Quartz, The New York Times, and New York Magazine.
As a former senior partner at PwC and a founder of their Real Estate Advisory Practice, Mitch Roschelle provides insights into what's next for business and the economy. He's called up by Fox News and other media outlets for his entertaining, actionable commentary as he is able to translate larger economic trends into next steps. Given his approachable style and cache as a macroeconomic, market strategist, and policy analyst, Roschelle is often asked to moderate panel discussions, and is able to pull from high-level conversation the takeaways business audiences need to know now.
Respected political correspondent and chief national affairs analyst Kasie Hunt has covered campaigns, Congress, and Washington for almost two decades, including three presidential campaigns. Kasie currently serves as a CNN anchor and the network’s chief national affairs analyst, after more than eight years at NBC where she anchored Way Too Early with Kasie Hunt, Kasie DC on MSNBC, and served as the Capitol Hill Correspondent. Kasie is widely respected for her hard-hitting exchanges with major players in Washington D.C., earning a reputation for adding fresh angles to the political news cycle. She is also a brain tumor survivor. Just 36 years old when she was diagnosed and underwent brain surgery, she brings a unique perspective on resilience in an unstable world. Kasie in in-demand with a wide range of audiences from students to advertising executives to major philanthropic groups, including events with the BUILD Series, SXSW, Politicon, and the George Washington Elliott School of International Affairs.
Hunt started her career in journalism as a print reporter, covering health policy for National Journal, including the passage of the Affordable Care Act, the 2012 presidential campaign of former Gov. Mitt Romney for the Associated Press, and the 2010 midterm elections for Politico. She has appeared regularly some of the nation’s most influential programs, including NBC’s Meet the Press, MSNBC’s Morning Joe, CNN’s Inside Politics, and PBS’s Washington Week. In 2018, Kasie led the NBC News investigative team that was awarded the Joan Shorenstein Barone Award for its reporting on sexual harassment allegations on Capitol Hill. In sought-after events, she offers rare behind-the-scenes insights into the inner workings of presidential campaigns and Congress, as well as the cutthroat world of TV news.
Critically acclaimed author and journalist Alex Wagner is the host of MSNBC’s Alex Wagner Tonight, delivering compelling storytelling and field reporting about the central issues facing Americans today. Previously, she served as co-host and Executive Producer of Showtime’s The Circus – an Emmy-nominated weekly documentary series chronicling American politics. Wagner was a contributing writer at The Atlantic, and is the author of Futureface: A Family Mystery, An Epic Quest, and the Secret to Belonging, a critically acclaimed memoir about identity and immigration. President Barack Obama describes Futureface as “A thoughtful, beautiful meditation on what makes us who we are… and the values and ideals that bind us together as Americans.” In her writing and reporting, as she does in her riveting speaking engagements, Wagner exudes an inspiring curiosity for who we are – as citizens and communities – and what unites us in the challenges we face and overcome.
Wagner is a former special correspondent with CBS News and co-host of CBS This Morning: Saturday. Prior to this, she was the host of the Emmy-nominated NOW with Alex Wagner on MSNBC. She was a reporter with the Huffington Post, where she covered innovation and the American economy, and also served as the White House Correspondent for AOL’s Politics Daily. Wagner has hosted several podcasts, including Crooked Media’s Six Feet Apart, a limited-run series about the pandemic, as well as Podcast for America, Slate’s weekly political podcast. She is also the host of the reboot of The Mole on Netflix, a classic competition game. Earlier in her multi-faceted career, Wagner was the executive director of Not on Our Watch, a grant-making and advocacy non-profit created to stop mass atrocities. Before that, she spent four years as the editor-in-chief of The Fader magazine, covering music and culture around the world. To sought-after moderated conversations, Wagner brings a savvy balance of political and cultural insight, advocacy for underrepresented voices, and humor.
Michael is one of the sports industry’s most versatile, creative, and accomplished storytellers. He’s currently the co-host of the new Peacock show, “Brother From Another.” In 15 years at ESPN, he served in a variety of roles and worked across all of the network’s platforms – including as a reporter, commentator, host, and anchor. Respected from locker rooms to owners’ boxes and beyond, Smith brings a long list of both sports and entertainment industry relationships throughout his stellar 20-year career in media. Prior to joining ESPN, Michael was a reporter for the Boston Globe, serving as the paper’s NFL and New England Patriots beat writer.
Michael began his journalism career while a student at Loyola University in his hometown of New Orleans, serving as a sports reporter and copy editor for the New Orleans Times-Picayune and sports columnist for the award-winning Loyola Maroon. Michael received his BS in mass communication from Loyola in 2001. He lives in Connecticut with his wife and three children. Michael is a member of the 2017 Class of Henry Crown Fellows within the Aspen Global Leadership Network at the Aspen Institute.
Author, Emmy-winning journalist, and Latinx advocate Paola Ramos is sought after for her informative, relatable, and engaging programs. Ramos uses multi-media platforms – in both English and Spanish – to uplift the voices of marginalized communities, break down stereotypes, and mobilize people toward civic engagement. She was the former Deputy Director of Hispanic Media for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 Presidential Campaign, a political appointee during the Obama Administration, and also served in President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign. Ramos is a host for VICE News, as well as a contributor for MSNBC and Telemundo News. An in-demand voice for making sense of the latest headlines as well as meaningful shifts in culture and politics, Ramos has been an impactful speaker for groups such as Comcast, Planned Parenthood, UTA, Athena Health, Syracuse University, Orrick, and more.
Ramos is the author of Finding Latinx: In Search of the Voices Redefining Latino Identity, an empowering cross-country travelogue for which she embarked on a journey to find the communities of people defining the controversial term, “Latinx.” Ramos and her work have been featured in Forbes, Washington Post, The Cut, Hola!, among many others. Ramos is a Hauser Leader in the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard Kennedy School, where she received her Masters in Public Policy, and recently joined her alma mater Barnard College’s Board of Trustees. With every speaking engagement, Ramos receives rave reviews, such as: “We had an incredible fireside chat with Paola Ramos. She was informative, relatable, and engaging. Our audience learned about different Latinx communities and shared their own experiences during the event.” (Athena Health)
Emmy Award-winning science correspondent, host, and podcaster Alie Ward is an expert in curiosity, engaging audiences across mediums with her explorations in science, inventions, and food. Alie won a Daytime Emmy Award for her work as a correspondent for CBS’s The Henry Ford’s Innovation Nation with Mo Rocca, hosts Did I Mention Invention? on the CW, and appears on Netflix’s Brainchild and 100 Humans, and the Science Channel’s How to Build Everything. She is a Consulting Producer for the Obamas’ Higher Ground Productions on their Netflix shows Ada Twist, Scientist and Waffles & Mochi, making STEM and cooking fun and accessible for young audiences. Alie is best-known for her podcast Ologies, a comedic science podcast that consistently ranks among the top five science podcasts, captivating audiences and making us think outside the box.
Alie is a culinary host, appearing on the Cooking Channel’s Food: Fact or Fiction and Unique Sweets. She also created the Cooking Channel series Tripping Out with Alie and Georgia. Alie was a staff writer and editor for the Los Angeles Times, an on-air contributor for KTLA, and is a co-founder of the science communication collective Nerd Brigade. In 2022, Ologies won Best Science Podcast at the iHeart Awards, and continues to top "best of" lists in numerous publications. With her fascinating background and witty point of view, Alie inspires audiences to find and follow their passion, try something new, and let curiosity reign.
Celebrated journalist and author Joel Stein is a sharp, thoughtful, and hilarious moderator and emcee for events worldwide. As a speaker, he also provides insights on today's political climate and cultural moment, and the ways in which we can get disparate-- and often disagreeing-- groups to come together.
A TIME columnist for nearly two decades, Stein has written over a dozen cover stories on everything from pop culture, to politics, sports, business, and technology. He's also been a columnist for Men’s Health, Entertainment Weekly, and the Los Angeles Times.
Stein’s the author of two books, Man Made, and most recently, In Defense of Elitism, which explores the power of people with seemingly opposing mindsets coming together, and makes a compelling argument for a return to empathy and understanding in society today.
Sought-out to speak and moderate everywhere from Ted to Google to college campuses nationwide, Stein customizes his remarks for every audience, infusing them with his sense-of-humor and unique ability to bring unexpected-- and fascinating-- details to light. As a moderator he's interviewed Barbara Streisand, Seth Rogen, Joan Rivers, Joseph Gordon Levitt, Questlove, Fred Armisen, and more. He's heralded for bringing out the best stories and thoughtful analysis from his subjects, and keeping the conversation moving in organic and dynamic ways.
Award-winning journalist, editor, and author Phillip Picardi is known for his role in revolutionizing Teen Vogue, Allure, and Out Magazines. Under Picardi’s leadership, the digital audience of Teen Vogue grew from just 2M unique visitors per month to over 12M, making the Condé Nast title the fastest-growing women's magazine in America for two years running. He was then appointed by Anna Wintour to oversee the digital operations of Allure, where he concepted “The End of Anti-Aging,” an industry call to action for brands to eradicate the shame and stigma around getting older. Dubbed “the prince of Condé Nast” by The New York Times, Picardi went on to launch a community-driven platform for LGBTQ+ youth called them. From building empowered and diverse teams to generating disruptive and out-of-the-box ideas, Picardi’s speaking engagements offer an abundance of insights.
Picardi went on to rebrand and relaunch Out Magazine, the largest and most influential publication for the queer and trans community. An expert in building empowered teams, he assembled and led the most diverse staff in the brand’s history. During Picardi’s career, he has been a sought-after consultant for clients like Levi's, Ralph Lauren, Lego, Burberry, and Nike. He is also the recipient of multiple awards, including Fast Company's 100 Most Creative People, the Forbes 30 Under 30, the AdWeek Hot List, a GLAAD Award, and more. Picardi recently graduated from Harvard Divinity School, where he was one of eleven students selected for the inaugural Masters of Religion and Public Life program. His studies inspired a podcast about religion and spirituality from Crooked Media called Unholier Than Thou, and his Substack newsletter Religiously Blonde. He is currently working on his forthcoming memoir based on his thesis, “Is Jesus Kinda Hot?” In motivational events, Picardi shares his expertise that resonates with corporate leaders as well as college audiences, and moderates powerful conversations with cultural luminaries.
Social justice leader, change maker, and artivist Gina Belafonte has spent her life at the intersection of arts and activism. As Co-Founder and Executive Director of Sankofa, she embodies her father Harry Belafonte’s work to educate, motivate, and activate artists and allies in service of grassroots movements and equitable change. Belafonte and Sankofa enlist the support of today’s most celebrated artists and influential individuals, in collaboration with grassroots partners, to elevate the voices of the disenfranchised and promote peace, justice, and quality, as well as cultural and civic engagement. She is also the Lead Producer of the award-winning and internationally acclaimed documentary Sing Your Song, among countless other projects. Most recently, Belafonte expanded her work for equity rights by launching a virtual reality mental health program, expanding access to this vital care using cutting edge VR/AR technology. She is a visionary, drawing on a powerful legacy and building community to focus on the most pressing issues of our time.
Belafonte and her work have been profiled in Elle, AfroTech, Essence, for Newsy, and more. Her arts and activism initiatives include directing the award-winning hip-hop spoken word musical Lyrics From Lockdown, which addresses mistaken identity, mass incarceration, and police brutality, and producing the Many Rivers to Cross Social Justice Arts and Music Festival, uniting 40 artists and 50 social justice organizations to center voting rights, mass incarceration, and poverty. Her collaborations include: For Freedoms on the 50 State Initiative and the reimagining of Norman Rockwell’s Four Freedoms, INTO ACT!ON, and many more. A gifted moderator and inspiring keynote speaker, Belafonte shares lessons from her ground-breaking work and empowers audiences of all kinds to embrace the opportunity to be a force for positive change.
Tyler Oakley is an independent creator on YouTube, one of the largest digital platforms to date. With over 7.5M+ subscribers on YouTube and over 23M+ across his social media platforms, he has been established as one of the most influential LGBTQ+ vloggers and is an A-Lister in the digital age. Tyler’s videos are hilarious, engaging, and unapologetically personal. With an undying love for all things pop culture, his quick wit, and an innate sassiness, Tyler is immediately lovable and undeniably viral. Tyler and his best friend Korey Kuhl launched Psychobabble, a weekly podcast discussing "unfiltered gossip" and untold stories and it has gone to number one in the iTunes podcast chart, while the duo also placed 3rd on season 28 of The Amazing Race. He also completed 30 stops of his international Slumber Party themed tour, was on the New York Times Bestseller List for 11 consecutive weeks for his book Binge, and released his much anticipated documentary, SNERVOUS.
Among his many accomplishments, Tyler has been a consultant for both the President and the First Lady of the United States on using digital platforms to connect with youth, raised over $1M for The Trevor Project, has been nominated and won Teen Choice Awards, Streamy Awards, Shorty Awards, and a Webby! With extensive experience hosting red carpets (i.e., Grammy Awards, the Vanity Fair Oscar Party, Kids Choice Awards, mtvU Fandom Awards), and hosting award shows (The Streamy Awards), he's got plenty of behind-the-scenes Hollywood stories to share. Tyler was also named one of Time Magazine’s 30 Most Influential People on the Internet, was considered one of Time Magazine's Next Generation Leaders, and was included in The Hollywood Reporter’s Top 25 Digital Stars list two years in a row and on this year’s Forbes 30 Under 30 list & OUT Magazine's Power 50 list.
Social media virtuoso, media innovator, and successful entrepreneur Eric Kuhn has brought some of the world’s largest and most prestigious organizations into the new age while working at UTA, CNN, the NBA, and CBS News. Most notably, he was a Co-Founder and CMO for Layer3TV, a next generation cable provider spearheading a new era of home entertainment. Kuhn subsequently joined United Talent Agency and was dubbed “Hollywood’s first social media agent,” harnessing the power of social media for top industry talent. He is a renowned bridge-builder between Silicon Valley and Hollywood, advising emerging technology companies and Fortune 500 corporations on how to harness content, technology, and social media to accelerate business.
In sought-after and engaging keynotes speeches, Kuhn shares fresh ideas and actionable data that inspire listeners to re-think the way they understand and utilize innovation and technology. He provides real, practical takeaways — in the form of raw industry data, anecdotes, and actionable strategies — that organizations and leaders can readily apply to their own entrepreneurial goals. Kuhn has keynoted and moderated numerous industry conferences and events around the world and regularly speaks with companies and private equity funds to help them better understand technology and innovation.
Digital media expert and entrepreneur Dan Runcie is the Founder of Trapital, a media company that’s home for the business of hip-hop. Leveraging his background in business, Runcie pivoted to focus his analysis on the innovative strategy of hip-hop executives who are some of today’s most successful business leaders. Runcie and Trapital cover hip-hop’s influence in leading edge business development, early-adoption of the latest in tech from the advent of streaming to the mainstreaming of NFTs, among other key issues. Through Trapital’s newsletter (16K subscribers), the podcast Trapital, which Runcie hosts, as well as in-depth case studies, Runcie offers vital insights about corporate leadership, entrepreneurial inspiration, and collaboration that make a major impact across industries.
Runcie has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, NPR's All Things Considered, BBC World News, and other publications. He has appeared on countless podcasts and panels, and has been sought after to speak to groups including YouTube, SoundCloud, Sony, the National Association of Black Journalists, and more. Runcie unpacks major themes and strategies from the hip-hop world and shares actionable takeaways for companies looking to develop innovative strategies, improve creativity, and upgrade their media strategies.
Award-winning food and lifestyle tastemaker Dana Cowin is an innovator in media, food, and entrepreneurship. Her work spans advising creatives, founders and non-profits as well as creating editorial through podcasts, social, video, zines and books. For 21 years, she served as Editor in Chief of Food & Wine magazine and transformed the magazine into a must-read lifestyle publication and digital outlet. An influencer in the food world, she is a sought-after speaker on topics from trendspotting to lifestyle and motivation, leadership, and branding. And of course, good food! Cowin was the keynote speaker for the Bacardi Spirit Forward first national tour, a frequent judge on Top Chef and Beat Bobby Flay, presenter at TedXManhattan on food waste, interviewed experts at SXSW and Fast Company Innovation Festival, among many others.
Through her brand consulting work, Cowin advises growing companies on storytelling, food, PR, and marketing, lending her expertise to businesses such as Dig Food Group (where she was Chief Brand Advisor), to Neiman Marcus, to the Trust for Governors Island. She is an investor and advisor to startups in the culinary space, has a longstanding commitment to supporting opportunities for economic growth through culinary training. Cowin serves on the boards of Food Education Fund, Hot Bread Kitchen, and the Food Council of City Harvest. Cowin is host of Speaking Broadly, a podcast that features visionary women at the intersection of creativity, sustainability, and food. Inspired by their singular experiences, Cowin selected more than a dozen women to write their own stories in the first Speaking Broadly zine, published spring 2022, and developed the Giving Broadly project - a gift guide highlighting incredible products from women-owned brands.
Famed NFL Wide Receiver, founder, and podcaster Torrey Smith is a highly regarded philanthropist who focuses on putting community first. A two-time Super Bowl Champion, he helped the Baltimore Ravens win in the 2012 season after being drafted in the second round. Torrey later played with the San Francisco 49ers, where he was the team’s 2016 nominee for the NFL’s Walter Payton Man of the Year Award for his commitment to community involvement. He and his wife Chanel created the Torrey Smith Family Fund, now Level82, which works create a more equitable society that we all deserve, want, and need. They have partnered with Baltimore City Recreation and Parks to launch the LEVEL Up Leadership Academy, revitalizing a recreation center that will host Level82’s dynamic programming including academic support, athletic and enrichment activities, mental health resources, and social services. In compelling moderated conversations, Torrey shares highlights from his time in the NFL and insights about his philanthropic work that resonate with audiences of all kinds.
Since retiring from the NFL, Torrey has established himself as a sought-after voice in the media. He launched a podcast Trending Thoughts with Torrey Smith, featuring engaging conversations about sports, politics, parenting, and a lot more. He also co-hosts The Opening Drive on Sirius XM NFL Radio, offering game analysis and insights. An advocate for mental health, Torrey joined Rose Health as an Investor and Brand Ambassador – sharing that the company’s app has contributed to his own mental wellbeing, from figuring out his strengths and weaknesses, to building resilience. Torrey brings star power to memorable events and his unique perspective about mental health awareness and making a difference in the lives of others.
Award-winning investigative journalist, producer, and documentarian Sahar Zand is highly regarded for her work on some of today’s most pressing topics: the Iran Nuclear Deal, mental health in Afghanistan, the refugee crisis, climate change, and many more. Zand has worked for the BBC, Channel 4, ITV, Vice News, and numerous other international media outlets, and her report “The Moroccan warrior women beating men at their own games” was chosen as one of the best reports by BBC reports in 2016. Her documentary Britain’s Virginity Clinics for ITV Exposure was nominated for many awards including the Royal Television Society Programme Awards, Amnesty Media, the BAFTAs, and a True Honour Award from the Iranian and Kurdish Women Rights Organisation, where she will also serve as their patron. Zand’s creative and disruptive style of journalism has earned her high praise within the industry, and she is a highly sought-after speaker on the nuances of major global issues of conflict and human rights.
Zand was born in Iran, fled the country to avoid political persecution, and overcame adversity once she found asylum in the U.K., which has given her an insight into marginalized communities that enables her to report from a unique perspective rarely seen in mainstream media. She has been personally affected by poverty, racism, and identity issues, and is a passionate advocate for raising awareness and championing the most marginalized. Zand is a prolific storyteller, and her immersive and impact-driven work connect with a global audience. Her insights about the role of journalism in the rising disinformation epidemic, her personal experience overcoming adversity, and finding strength and resilience are impactful for audiences of all kinds.
Eric Schlosser is a writer and filmmaker whose work explores subjects too often ignored by the mainstream media, shedding light on worlds that have been deliberately hidden. He is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Fast Food Nation (2001), Reefer Madness (2003), and Command and Control (2013).
Fast Food Nation helped to start a revolution in how Americans think about what they eat. Reefer Madness exposed the absurdity and injustices of the war on drugs, while revealing the exploitation of undocumented immigrants and the vast fortunes earned in America’s underground economy. Command and Control explored the effort, since the dawn of the atomic age, to prevent nuclear weapons from being stolen, sabotaged, or detonated by accident. It was a finalist for the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in History.
Schlosser has also helped to produce a number of films, including Fast Food Nation (2006), directed by Richard Linklater; There Will Be Blood (2007), directed by Paul Thomas Anderson; Food, Inc., (2008), directed by Robert Kenner; and Food Chains (2014), co-produced with Eva Longoria and directed by Sanjay Rawal. Schlosser was the co-creator and co-director of the bomb (2016), a multimedia installation staged at the Tribeca Film Festival, the Berlin Film Festival, and the Nobel Peace Prize ceremonies in Oslo.
He has lectured at universities throughout the United States and spoken at the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, the Parliaments of the United Kingdom, Sweden, and Norway, as well as at the United Nations. Schlosser is currently at work on a book about the American prison system.
Kat Timpf is a journalist, comedian, and libertarian commentator, currently contributing to Fox News and the co-host of Gutfeld! on Fox News weeknights at 11pm. She is also a prolific writer and was a columnist for National Review for nearly six years who has also worked at Campus Reform, The Washington Times, Barstool Sports, Total Traffic Network, and Boston Market. Timpf stands out in a sea of pundits because of her libertarian perspective and use of comedy and satire to get her no-nonsense points across.
While Timpf is steadfast in her strong libertarian beliefs, she is a firm believer in the power of conversations to bridge gaps, political or otherwise. Kat loves connecting with folks across the country and around the world and talking about the things that are on everyone’s minds, but no one's lips. And she is sure to do so with a great deal of respect and humor.
Stephanie Shepherd is an environmental advocate and social entrepreneur. Formerly the Chief Operating Officer of Kardashian West Brands, she has since established her own platform. With close to 2 million followers, Stephanie's expertise is leveraging her social influence to inspire global activism.
In addition to co-founding Future Earth, Shepherd is an ambassador for “Days For Girls International,” “The Environmental Working Group,” and a board member of Former Vice President Al Gore’s “The Climate Reality Project.” She also recently joined "World War Zero," a climate change initiative led by Former Secretary of State, John Kerry. Through her advocacy, Shepherd has generated millions of dollars and thousands of volunteer hours for organizations who, like her, relentlessly pursue human flourishing and environmental preservation.
Politico White House correspondent and Playbook author Eugene Daniels draws on his vast experience in the political sphere to offer vital insights and moderate timely conversations. Since joining Politico in 2018, Daniels has covered the midterms, the Democratic presidential primary, and the general election through print, video, journalism, and podcasts. As White House correspondent, he focuses on Vice President Kamala Harris, First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, the Second Gentleman, and emerging power players in Washington. During the country’s reckoning with race in 2020, Daniels moderated Politico's “Confronting Inequality” Town Hall series that examined how inequities in policing, housing, healthcare, education, and employment permeate and plague the United States.
Daniels is a Senior Contributor for MSNBC’s Morning Joe and a frequent guest on PBS’ Washington Week. He has been featured in Forbes and The Advocate, among many others. Prior to Politico, Daniels covered elections and national politics as a political reporter at Newsy, after starting his career in local television in Colorado Springs. As an engaging moderator and compelling keynote speaker, Daniels shares his unparalleled perspective on culture and diversity, what’s to come in U.S. politics and policy, and how the media and voters are making sense of the headlines.
JAY CASPIAN KANG
Jay Caspian Kang is a writer-at-large at The New York Times Magazine and the author of The Loneliest Americans. He was a founding editor at Grantland and an Emmy-nominated correspondent on Vice on HBO. He writes about race, identity, and economics for a variety of publications and outlets including This American Life, The New Yorker and The Nation and can speak at-length about a variety of topics, city planning, the history of immigration in the United States, education policy, Affirmative Action and gambling. Jay is a co-host of the podcast, Time to Say Goodbye, providing commentary, reporting, and links about Asia, the Coronavirus and Asian-America.
Award-winning writer, journalist, lawyer, and filmmaker Afua Hirsch is known for her work on Black culture, history, identity, and culture in the African diaspora and worldwide. Hirsch is the author of the Sunday Times bestseller Brit(ish): On Race, Identity and Belonging, which won the Royal Society of Literature Jerwood Prize, and Equal to Everything, a children’s book about the U.K. Supreme Court. She served as a judge for the 2019 Booker Prize. She was a correspondent, social affairs editor, and anchor for Sky News, and founded the media entertainment company Born In Me Productions. In partnership with Fremantle, Born In Me specializes in telling stories from truly diverse perspectives and underrepresented voices that appeal to an international audience. Hirsch presents the BBC’s documentary series African Renaissance: When Art Meets Power, which has just been renewed for a second season, as well as Samuel L. Jackson’s Epix series Enslaved about the history of the transatlantic slave trade. In sought-after keynote speeches and moderated conversations, Hirsch delves into how communities and organizations can explore identity and find belonging.
Hirsch is a regular contributor to The New York Times and The Guardian, and has written multiple cover stories for Vogue and TIME. She has appeared on Amanpour & Co., CNN, among many others. A journalist since age fourteen, Hirsch currently serves as the Wallis Annenberg Chair of Journalism at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, and is the co-founder of the fashion brand Sika. She was named to the BBC’s Powerlist 2021, which honors “the most powerful people of African, African Caribbean, and African American heritage in the U.K.,” and was named Advisory Chair of the prestigious Edinburgh TV Festival. Hirsch regularly receives rave reviews, such as: “It all went fantastically well! Afua was really inspiring and generous with her time, we have received lots of excellent feedback on her keynote speech.” (Transport for London)
Kay Adams hosts the NFL Network’s Emmy-nominated morning show, Good Morning Football. Prior to her role with NFL Network, Kay had several on-air hosting roles including NBC Sports Network's Fantasy Football Live, and DirecTV’s Fantasy Zone.
This upcoming fall, Kay will continue as host of Amazon's flagship football show, NFL Now. In addition to her responsibilities in the football world, Kay is also the host of the syndicated daily program People, an extension of the prestigious magazine.
Kay has also hosted various events including the red carpet at the NFL Honors Ceremony, Nickelodeon's Superstar Slime Showdown, TruTV's Impractical Jokers Live Special, and has served as a special correspondent for EXTRA & Entertainment Tonight. This past year, she also served as host of the mobile app version of Who Wants to be a Millionaire for SONY.
Described by TIME Magazine as “one of the most powerful disabled people on the planet,” Eddie Ndopu is perhaps best known for his human rights advocacy with respect to advancing disability justice at the forefront of the international development agenda. An award-winning and internationally acclaimed humanitarian, storyteller, public intellectual, and disability practitioner, Eddie is a thought leader and advocate for social equity, sustainability, and disability-based innovation. Ndopu describes himself as a queer, Black, disabled individual, fighting for social equity and the environment, and his influence is felt worldwide. A Global Changemaker, Eddie actively champions climate justice, fights global poverty and demands equity for the world’s most marginalized segments of society in his capacity as one of the UN Secretary-General’s 17 official advocates for the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Ndopu is a highly in-demand speaker for his insights about the intersections of disability, sustainability, and how we can best work together to make meaningful change for our planet’s future.
Ndopu is the Founder of A Billion Reasons, a groundbreaking social impact incubator established in partnership with the World Economic Forum to tackle the U.N.’s SDGs through a lens of universal design and disability-based innovation. Eddie serves on several global Boards, including as a member of the board of directors of the United Nations Foundation. He also sits on the advisory boards of The Valuable 500, IMAGINE and Verizon’s Global Advisory Board for Accessibility and Disability Inclusion. He formerly served as a member of both the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council for the New Agenda for Social Justice and the World Economic Forum’s Partnering for Racial Justice in Business Initiative. Eddie’s debut memoir, Sipping Dom Pérignon Through a Straw, which chronicles his challenging experience as a disabled student attending Oxford University, is slated for global release on August 1, 2023.
Featured in a profile by TIME, and recognized as one of Pacific Standard’s “Top 30 Thinkers Under 30,” Ndopu receives rave reviews after speaking events, and is sought-after for keynotes and conversations at venues such as Facebook, Amazon, Discovery Health, the COP26 Climate Change Summit, The World Economic Forum, the GlobalCitizen Summit, and Salesforce’s Dreamforce event, where he was described as, “one of the most powerful voices on the planet right now.”
Tara Palmeri is an investigative reporter and host of the acclaimed podcast "Broken: Seeking Justice." She co-writes Playbook, a prominent political newsletter by Politico. She's a former White House correspondent for ABC News, where she covered the most important political stories for flagship programs like Good Morning America and World News Tonight.
Previously Tara was White House Correspondent for POLITICO and a CNN Political Analyst and broke many significant stories about the Trump Administration. Before joining POLITICO’s D.C. political team, she reported for POLITICO's European edition where she covered the Paris and Brussels terror attacks, the Greek financial crisis and the British referendum. At the time, she was a CNBC contributor where she provided commentary on-air.
Prior to moving to Europe, Palmeri reported on New York City politics for the New York Post. She started at the newspaper in 2010 as a reporter for Page Six. During President Obama's first term, she co-authored the Washington Examiner's “Yeas & Nays” column on people, power and politics in the U.S. capital.
Palmeri started her career in journalism in 2008 as a broadcast intern for Voice of America while pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Communications at American University in Washington, D.C. She graduated summa cum laude in December 2008 and was hired shortly after by CNN to assist live production.
In addition to ABC, CNN, and CNBC, she has made television appearances on MSNBC, BBC, Fox News Channel and CBS.
John Rich is an American dream chaser. Armed with confidence, ambition and determination, John Rich is a multi-platinum hit generator, lifestyle-brand entrepreneur, and host of The Pursuit! with John Rich on Fox Business Network. John speaks with authority on entrepreneurism, the music industry, politics, current events, and the importance of family and God.
Whether through a raucous party anthem or a sober reflection on hard times in the heartland, Rich’s ability to capture the American zeitgeist in song has made him one of the most successful and prolific entertainers in the music business today. John is a 3 time consecutive ASCAP Songwriter of the Year winner and has penned over 2,000 songs in his career. In 2011, Rich impressed Donald Trump and American TV audiences with his business acumen and leadership skills, winning NBC’s The Celebrity Apprentice and raising $1.5 million for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
Rich is the founder of a national lifestyle brand called "Redneck Riviera" which celebrates 'Work hard, play hard' Americans. The brand boasts a successful national whiskey, Redneck Riviera Whiskey, a beef jerky line and a full-blown honky-tonk on the famed Lower Broadway in Nashville, Tennessee, with several more set to open across the US. The Redneck Riviera brand supports Folds of Honor and has now funded over 100 college scholarships for kids who have lost a parent in combat.
In addition to hosting his own show, Rich makes regular appearances on such top-rated shows such as the Today Show, Good Morning America, Fox News Channel’s The Five, Hannity, Fox and Friends and many more.
Serial entrepreneur, author, investor, and podcaster Jaclyn Johnson is a powerhouse innovator rewriting the rules for women in business. Johnson is the Founder and CEO of Create & Cultivate, a high-impact media company uniting female entrepreneurs and CEOs through education and community, hosting over 100 events with celebrity speakers and panelists sponsored by top Fortune 500 companies. With two million-dollar exits behind her, Johnson understands first-hand what it takes to create your own space in the market, and recently launched New Money Ventures – a venture capital firm and brand incubator seeking to fund and mentor the next generation of female-led brands. In electrifying keynote speeches and conversations, Johnson shares practical takeaways for cultivating determination, finding your innovative niche, and elevating workplace equality that impact individuals and organizations alike.
Johnson has been profiled in Forbes, Ad Week, The Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, The Los Angeles Times, Entrepreneur, and more, and was recognized as an Ad Week Disruptor and named to Forbes’ “30 Under 30,” among other accolades. She is the author of WorkParty: How to Create & Cultivate the Career of Your Dreams, a rallying cry for women in the workplace, which Bustle called “one of the most informative and practical advice books for millennial women.” The book’s accompanying podcast, WorkParty, features compelling guests and was named to Forbes’ “21 Podcasts to Listen to in 2021” list. A gifted speaker as well as an insightful moderator, Johnson is a leader in conversations about women in the workplaces, building companies from the ground up, and creating community as a values-driven leader.
Lara Spencer is an Emmy-winning anchor and reporter for Good Morning America, and has been a journalist with ABC news since 2000. She is also the creator, host and Executive Producer of HGTV’s Emmy® Award-winning “Flea Market Flip” as well as “Everything But the House."
Spencer has written two New York Times Bestselling books: I Brake for Yard Sales, and Flea Market Fabulous. In addition to her career, Spencer is the mother of two children and very active at her Alma Mater Penn State University where she was an All-American platform diver. She is also a dedicated advocate for pet adoption and has 3 rescue dogs of her own.
Craig Ferguson is an Emmy Award-winning actor, writer and comedian with a diverse career that encompasses film, television and the stage. Ferguson is the author of three books, most recently Riding the Elephant: A Memoir of Altercations, Humiliations, Hallucinations, and Observations.
As the host of Celebrity Name Game, Ferguson was awarded the Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Game Show Host two years in a row and was nominated for a third. Ferguson recently concluded his wildly popular daily SiriusXM program “The Craig Ferguson Show.” In 2014, Ferguson concluded his ten-year run as the host of CBS’ The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, which had set all-time viewer records and earned him a Primetime Emmy nomination and the 2009 Peabody Award for Excellence in Broadcasting for his interview with Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
Ferguson has written the feature films The Big Tease and Saving Grace. In 2003, he made his directorial debut with I'll Be There, which he also wrote and starred in. I'll Be There went on to receive the Audience Award for Best Film at the Aspen, Dallas, and Valencia film festivals. Craig was also named "best new director" at the Napa Valley Film Festival. Ferguson’s other film credits include, Niagra Motel, Lenny the Wonder Dog, Prendimi l’anima, Life Without Dick, Chain of Fools and Born Romantic. In 2011, Ferguson portrayed ‘Owl’ in the Disney classic Winnie the Pooh, and in 2012 he portrayed ‘Lord Macintosh’ in Disney’s animated feature Brave. He has appeared as ‘Gobber’ in the animated feature series How to Train Your Dragon.
Ferguson has achieved notable success on the North American comedy circuit and has performed to sold-out theaters all across the country, including Carnegie Hall and Radio City Music Hall. He has five widely acclaimed stand-up comedy specials: “A Wee Bit O’ Revolution"; “Does This Need to Be Said”; “I’m Here to Help”, which earned him a Grammy nomination for Best Comedy Album; “Just Being Honest”, which earned him a second Grammy nomination for Best Comedy Album; and “Tickle Fight”.
With “a comic identity as distinctive as his name,” according to The New York Times, Conan O’Brien has firmly established himself in the late night comedy universe. Hailed by The Washington Post as “modest, wry, self-effacing and demonstrably the most intelligent of the late-night comics,” O’Brien’s unique brand of comedy has earned Conan the title “Late Night’s King of Cool” from Entertainment Weekly.
A Harvard graduate and two-time president of the venerable and notorious Harvard Lampoon, O’Brien moved to Los Angeles upon graduation and joined the writing staff of HBO’s Not Necessarily the News. During his two years with the show, he performed regularly with several improvisational groups, including The Groundlings.
By 1988 his talents had come to the attention of Lorne Michaels, executive producer of Saturday Night Live, who hired O’Brien as a writer in January of that year. In 1989 his work on SNL was recognized with an Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy or Variety Series.
Starting in the Fall of 1991, O’Brien signed on as a writer/producer for the Fox series, The Simpsons, where he later became the show’s supervising producer. Of all the episodes he wrote, his favorite is “Springfield Gets a Monorail.”
On April 26, 1993, Lorne Michaels selected O’Brien to succeed David Letterman as the new host of Late Night on NBC. According to Michaels, O’Brien was selected from among the many talented potential hosts of Late Night for his particular and unique mix of “vitality, wit and intelligence”.
From 1993 to 2009, O’Brien combined his talents as writer, performer and interviewer as the award-winning host of Late Night, which The Boston Globe dubbed, “the most consistently funny and original show on late night”. During that time, he hosted the Primetime Emmy Awards several times. As part of a long-term plan at NBC, O'Brien moved from the host of Late Night to The Tonight Show. In 2010, O'Brien launched a brand-new talk show on TBS, appropriately titled Conan.
When he's not interviewing guests on Conan he's interviewing them on his long-running, highly entertaining podcast Conan O'Brien Needs a Friend.
Born in Brookline, Massachusetts, O’Brien is married with two children and currently resides in Los Angeles.
Mikey Day recently completed his sixth season as a cast member on Saturday Night Live after joining the show as a writer for the 2013-14 season.
During his first season as a cast member, Day gained recognition for his wildly popular “Haunted Elevator (ft. David S. Pumpkins)” sketch with Tom Hanks as well as his Donald Trump Jr. impression.
Day is the host of Netflix’s hit baking contest series Is It Cake?, which will return for a second season.
Day was a member of the Groundlings comedy troupe in Los Angeles and a cast member on Nick Cannon’s MTV comedy series Wild ‘N Out for seven seasons. He was also a head writer on Cartoon Network’s Incredible Crew, co-head writer and cast member on NBC’s Maya & Marty and co-writer for the 2016 comedy Brother Nature. Alongside SNL writer Streeter Seidell, Day wrote Home Sweet Home Alone. The duo is currently writing the Disney reboots of Inspector Gadget and Space Camp, as well as The Rugrats Movie for Nickelodeon/Paramount.
Day's film credits include Brittany Runs a Marathon, the Will Packer-produced comedy Little, opposite Issa Rae, the Adam Sandler film Hubie Halloween, and most recently Black Adam starring The Rock. He is currently filming the Jerry Seinfeld film Unfrosted for Netflix.
Ashley Graham is an American model, designer, author, and entrepreneur whose influence has reshaped the fashion and media industries and redefined traditional beauty standards. Ashley has worked in numerous areas of the fashion industry including editorial, catalogue, runway, commercial, television and film. In February 2016, Ashley made history as the first size 14 model to ever be featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated Swim. In January 2018, she became a brand ambassador for Revlon, making her the first curvy model of her generation to receive a major beauty contract.
Ashley has been featured on the covers of Vogue, British Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar UK, Cosmopolitan, SELF, New York Magazine, Maxim and many more. She has received numerous accolades for her work, including Forbes’ coveted “30 Under 30” list and cover feature; Glamour’s “Woman of the Year,” with Mattel simultaneously creating a one-of-a-kind Barbie in her likeness; People’s “25 Most Intriguing People of the Year”; Time’s “100 Most Influential People in the Word”; The Daily Front Row’s “Fashion Force of the Year,” and is the United Nations’ Women for Peace Association’s first “Women Empowerment Award'' recipient.
Ashley is a sought-after television personality and has hosted internationally televised programs such as Miss Universe, Miss USA and Lifetime's American Beauty Star, a competition series to find the next best hair or makeup artist. She also hosts her podcast Pretty Big Deal.
Ashley is regularly invited to speak about body image, self-acceptance and female empowerment. Her first TEDx talk “Plus Size? More Like My Size” given at TedxBerleeValencia was viewed over 4.3M times.
Keltie Knight is an Emmy Award winning television personality and Entertainment Tonight host. She has co-anchored CBS’s broadcasting of national events such as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and the Grammy Awards Red Carpet.
Knight was able to combine her entertainment and entrepreneurial expertise into a podcast she co-created and co-hosts, The LadyGang. Since its inception in 2015, the popular podcast has boasted almost 100 million downloads, making it one of the most popular podcasts for women in the world. The show has been nominated for a Webby award, a People’s Choice award and in 2016 was named 'Podcast of the Year'. LadyGang has been featured on the Today Show, Good Morning America, Entertainment Tonight, The New York Times, The Hollywood Reporter, People magazine and on Entertainment Weekly’s coveted "must list.”
The LadyGang's first book Act Like a Lady became a New York Times instant bestseller, a USA Today bestseller, an Amazon best pick of the month, and a Toronto Star bestseller in Canada. Knight recently collaborated on their first fashion collection nationwide with Express, and in 2018 E! aired 16 episodes of the TV version of the podcast with Knight serving as star and executive producer.
What began as a movement to help women feel less alone, by offering content that was unapologetic, unfiltered, and very real, has grown in the millions and become a powerhouse media brand that has also partnered with major brands including Disney, Netflix, Anheuser-Busch, Vogue, and Chanel.
Knight is frequently seen contributing on The Talk, CNN, HLN, and and as a moderator for Vanity Fair. With best dressed mentions in Vogue, Elle, Glamour, Us Weekly, People Stylewatch and The New York Times, it’s no surprise Project Runway invited her to be a guest presenter.
As passionate as she is about media, she is just as dedicated to service. Knight has a long history in philanthropy, working with groups like the Humane Society and the Beagle Freedom Project. She helped raise over $300,000 for the National MS Society as a part of the team, BeatMS, and nearly 1 million dollars throughout her years hosting the Circle of Hope/ Dancers Against Cancer Charity Gala.
Known for her quick wit and fearless personality, she’s interviewed the biggest stars in the world including Oprah, Meryl Streep, Taylor Swift, Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts and Jennifer Lawrence. Harry Styles kissed her twice. Pharrell Williams deemed her “…a spirited journalist and a star.”
Emmy-Award winning host Jeannie Mai can be seen each weekday on the nationally syndicated talk show The Real. In 2018, Mai and her fellow The Real co-hosts received a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Talk Show Host. The show, which is in its seventh season, has received multiple Daytime Emmy nominations for Outstanding Talk Series, and received an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Talk Series. Jeannie serves as a sideline correspondent for ABC’s extreme mini-golf competition series Holey Moley and recently competed on season 29 of the hit series Dancing with the Stars. This May, Mai was honored for her activism work in the AAPI community as a part of the A100 list, which highlights the most influential Asians within their respective industries.
A former professional makeup artist and celebrity stylist, Mai is a style expert and producer. Mai launched her web series titled Hello Hunnay, which takes fans on her journey through fashion, fitness, finances and relationships. The digital series releases weekly on Kin, Facebook and YouTube with over 650K subscribers and continues to grow weekly. Mai also hosts the podcast Listen Hunnay, where she interviews everyone from sex therapists to divorce lawyers and morticians to crime scene investigators in an effort to understand the journeys of the heart of the human being behind the career.
Jeannie Mai is Chief Brand Officer of Owl's Brew, an alcoholic tea beverage available in Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Target and more. In late 2021, Mai will debut her own clothing line with a major national retail chain.
Deeply committed to charities that advance women’s interests, Mai serves as a board member for various organizations, including Dress for Success and Same Sky, which builds the business potential for women. As a first-generation daughter of immigrant Vietnamese and Chinese parents, Mai strives to give back to her homeland by frequently traveling to Asia to volunteer her time with inspiring organizations dedicated to helping those who are less fortunate. For the last several years, she has served as an advocate to fight human trafficking and has been an ambassador for the Pacific Links Foundation, Step Up, Nightlight International, Not For Sale and Heartbeat Vietnam. In 2017, Mai executive produced Stopping Traffic: The Movement to End Sex Trafficking, a documentary that investigates the international crisis of human sex trafficking from a deeply personal point of view. She is currently working on the follow up, Stopping Traffic 2: Surviving Sex Trafficking, due out in 2022.
Coach, sportscaster, Emmy Award-nominated filmmaker, podcaster, and New York Times bestselling author Yogi Roth is known for his relentless positivity, vital insights about the role of masculinity in sports, and powerhouse motivational keynotes. After coaching college football, he co-authored the New York Times bestseller Win Forever with Pete Carroll and his memoir From PA to LA. He is currently the lead analyst for the Pac-12 Network and has also worked as host and analyst for ESPN, FOX, and as a correspondent for CBS’ Entertainment Tonight, and has hosted the Elite 11 on ESPN, Bleacher Report, the NFL Network, and YouTube. A gifted storyteller, he has executive produced and hosted The CW’s All American Stories, and produced and directed numerous documentaries with the NFL Films, Bleacher Report, and ESPN, as well as the docuseries ProtectHer. A prolific creative, Roth has produced or directed numerous documentaries, including the Emmy-nominated Keep Climbing: 2013 Elite 11 and the LA Emmy Award-winning feature Fight On: A Jackson Family. He was the co-founder of Win Forever, which was dedicated to developing coaches hone their coaching philosophy. He is a gifted speaker, sharing insights about how finding our unique story can help us make an impact in our lives, communities, and the world.
Roth is an in-demand speakers for events with Nike, World Surf League, JC Penny, Dignity Health, IMG College, Capital One, the TEDx Austin Women’s Conference, and many more, and he spoke at the SXSW Festival addressing masculinity in sports. He hosts the podcast The It Factory: Pac-12 Football, where he interviews esteemed guests about their journeys to success, and co-hosted Season of Sam. He partnered with One World Play Project as a Story Ambassador, celebrating teams that demonstrate resiliency, and is the cofounder of Win Forever, which is dedicated to developing coaching philosophy. Roth inspires individuals and organizations to explore their potential, and maximize it by striving together to achieve goals.
Emmy Award-winning journalist and trailblazing sportscaster MJ Acosta-Ruiz is the acclaimed host of NFL Total Access. Acosta-Ruiz is the first ever Afro-Latina and woman of color to host a show at the NFL Network, and as she is fully bilingual in English and Spanish, contributes across multiple platforms for NFL Mexico and NFL Español. She has covered sports, entertainment, and breaking news for over a decade, while advocating for representation and equality. Acosta-Ruiz recently co-hosted NBC Sports’ On Her Turf podcast, which highlights amazing women and allies who motivate people to be the best versions of themselves. In her reporting, moderating, and as a keynote speaker, she shares her insights on overcoming obstacles, embracing your authentic self as part of the path to success, and amplifying the voices of marginalized communities to create a more just world.
In addition to her work as an award-winning journalist, Acosta-Ruiz works as an advocate for women’s empowerment and representation and equity for marginalized communities. She works closely with A Seat at the Table, a mentorship community for young women interested in careers in sports. Acosta-Ruiz is a sought-after speaker, sharing her inspirational journey and takeaways about strategizing for success, embracing what makes you different, and breaking barriers in her empowering talks.
Veteran broadcast journalist, sports anchor, and multimedia game-changer Cari Champion has revolutionized and pioneered the sports media industry for women today. For nearly a decade, she served as anchor and host at ESPN – her roles included co-hosting SportCenter’s Coast to Coast, hosting SportsNation, and moderating ESPN’s popular debate talk show, First Take. She currently hosts TNT’s The Arena, creating a thought-provoking forum for provocative topics from the most popular voices in sports. Most recently, she served as co-anchor of NBC’s primetime studio show, Tokyo Tonight on NBC’s Peacock Channel during the 2020 Summer Olympic Games, as well as co-host of NBC’s reality competition series The Titan Games. Champion made history with her move to Vice TV, working alongside Jemele Hill as the first Black women to host a late-night cable show, Cari & Jemele: Stick to Sports. Champion shares her unparalleled insights about creating her own path to working at the top of her field, the intersections of race, ethnicity, and gender in sports and media, and how to cultivate leadership, teamwork, and perseverance at work and in life.
Champion has been profiled in Sports Illustrated, Vogue, Bustle, The Grio, Essence, and more, and she was honored by Essence at its inaugural Black Women in Sports event. She is the Founder of Brown Girls Dream, a powerful mentorship network supporting high potential women of color, inspired by the mentorship she received early in her career. Champion’s influence resonates across mediums, and she is the host of the podcast Naked with Cari Champion, showcasing her authentic interview style that brings refreshing and nuanced conversations to the forefront from thought-leaders and culture-shifters within the entertainment industry. She also writes a bulletin for META, ‘I Said What I Said’, debunking harmful stereotypes and unpacking provocative stories. Champion is a gifted keynote speaker and moderator, getting to the heart and soul of today’s biggest issues, and making a lasting impact on audiences of all kinds.
HENRY LOUIS GATES, JR.
Emmy and Peabody Award-winning filmmaker, literary scholar, and journalist Henry Louis Gates, Jr. is an acclaimed cultural critic and institution builder. Professor Gates is the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and Director of the Hutchins Center for African & African Research at Harvard University. Among his dozens of books are the recent New York Times bestsellers Stony the Road: Reconstruction, White Supremacy, and the Rise of Jim Crow and The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song. He has also produced and hosted more than 20 documentary films, most recently PBS’ The Black Church and HBO’s Black Art: In the Absence of Light. His groundbreaking series on genealogy and genetics, Finding Your Roots, is now in its eighth season on PBS.
Professor Gates has received countless awards and honors, including a George Polk Award for his social commentary in The New York Times, a MacArthur Fellowship, the Chicago Tribune Literary Award for lifetime achievement, and the prestigious Gold Medal from the National Institute of Social Sciences, among many others. His filmmaking has received Emmy, Peabody, and NAACP Image Awards, as well as an Alfred I. duPont Columbia University Award. Professor Gates serves on the boards of many notable institutions, including: the New York Public Library, the Aspen Institute, the Brookings Institution, and is a member of the Council of Foreign Relations. A consummate scholar and esteemed public intellectual, Professor Gates is a highly sought-after keynote speaker for his riveting addresses to audiences of all kinds.
Linsey Davis is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, ABC News and ABC World News Tonight Radio correspondent, and bestselling author whose timely and balanced reporting have earned her many honors including two Emmy Awards and a regional Edward R. Murrow Award. Davis is renowned for her tough but fair moderating skills in the arena of political debate, as well as insightful interviews with major influential figures, including Hillary Clinton, Mike Pence, and Dr. Anthony Fauci. She is a sought-after moderator, having led the first roundtable discussion with Black female mayors of Atlanta, Washington, D.C., Baton Rouge, and Tacoma, as well as a series of interviews with the spouses of presidential candidates in a series called Running Mates. In addition to her wave-making reporting, Davis is the bestselling author of books for children: The World is Awake, One Big Heart, Stay This Way Forever, and How High is Heaven. As a speaker and moderator, Davis’ voice is in-demand on a dynamic array of subjects and audiences are energized by her presence.
Senior Washington correspondent Pamela Brown currently anchors the weekend primetime edition of CNN Newsroom based in Washington, DC. Most recently, Brown covered President Donald Trump and his administration for all of the network's programs and platforms. Brown previously served as the network's Justice and Supreme Court correspondent covering law enforcement, as well as issues related to the Department of Justice and the U.S. Supreme Court.
See some of Pamela's recent reporting as White House Correspondent >>
Known for her journalistic tenacity, Brown inspires audiences to advocate for themselves and stay the course when someone tries to shake them off. She also shares her experience covering Trump's White House during both of her pregnancies, and how she's learned to mix motherhood with her demanding career.
Brown shares a deep empathy with those who struggle with Alzheimers and those who care for them. She speaks with audiences about her grandmother's Alzheimers journey and the impact it had on her family, as well as poignant lessons learned along the way about love, grief and caregiving.
Emmy Award-nominated sports journalist Taylor Rooks is an acclaimed interviewer whose probing questions give rise to some of today’s most pressing discussions beyond the game. Rooks is the Host and Executive Producer of Take It There With Taylor Rooks, her interview show for Bleacher Report, among other duties for Turner Sports. Previously, she worked as a host, reporter, and correspondent for the Big Ten Network and as a sideline reporter for CBS Sports Network. Rooks has recently been tapped to join Amazon's Thursday Night Football as a Feature Reporter. She is known for asking daring questions that lead to revelatory conversations with some of sports’ biggest stars.
Praised in a profile by the New York Times: “Taylor Rooks gets the interviews that go viral.” She shares meaningful insights about succeeding in her industry by focusing on making connections and honoring the humanity of the players, as well as understanding the larger context behind the game. With her incomparable coverage of the NBA season during the pandemic, Rooks was tapped as featured writer for GQ’s “Men of the Year” issue. She offers unparalleled analysis based on her expertise in media as a keynote speaker, host, or interviewer to amplify meaningful events for audiences.
Former White House Press Secretary, political commentator, podcaster and New York Times bestselling author Dana Perino is a revered voice on current events, politics, and foreign policy. Perino served as White House Press Secretary, the second woman to hold that position and the first to do so in a Republican administration. She is a mainstay of Fox News programming, previously anchoring The Daily Briefing with Dana Perino, now co-hosting The Five as well as co-anchoring America’s Newsroom with Bill Hemmer & Dana Perino, is a featured panelist for election coverage, and is known by fans as “The Voice of Reason.” Perino, who was born in Wyoming where her family still ranches, offers unique insights from her time in the White House and as a journalist about message management during times of crisis, cultivating the qualities of powerful leadership, and the key issues facing companies and organizations in today’s political climate, and skillfully moderates thoughtful conversations that get to the heart of the matter.
Her book And the Good News Is… Lessons and Advice from the Bright Side debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list and espouses her values of determination, optimism, and restoring civility to our personal and political conversations. Her latest book Everything Will Be Okay: Lessons for Young Women (from a Former Young Woman) is a no-nonsense how-to guide for reframing thinking, finding confidence, and learning to take risks, and became the basis for her podcast Everything Will Be Okay, in which she interviews experts that make a difference in the lives of others. Perino is passionate about individual and economic freedom for women, and founded Minute Mentoring, a program that connects young women with mentors. She was nominated by former President Barack Obama to serve on the Broadcasting Board of Governors.
Emmy Award-winning journalist, documentarian, and author Laura Ling has dedicated her intrepid career to reporting from dozens of countries on the most critical issues facing the world today. As Head of Programming for Hearst Television’s Streaming Video Services, Ling oversees content development and strategy for Hearst’s new OTT platform Very Local. While Director of Development for Discovery Digital Networks, Ling produced and created original web series that received hundreds of millions of views. A consummate host and moderator, Ling helms the web series Going Off the Grid, Rituals with Laura Ling, the mini-documentary series The Power of Kindness, and her podcast Everyday Bravery, eloquently blending her principles of gratitude and perseverance. In 2009 while reporting on the trafficking of women, Ling was arrested and held captive in North Korea. She recounts her experience in a memoir written with her sister Lisa, Somewhere Inside: One Sister’s Captivity in North Korea and the Other’s Fight to Bring Her Home. Ling captivates audiences with anecdotes from her storied career and powerful lessons learned with a global perspective.
Ling has received many accolades for her work, including an Emmy Award and the prestigious Edward R. Murrow Award for her work as a correspondent for SoCal Connected and a Gracie Award. Under her leadership as Vice President of the journalism department, Current TV’s Vanguard received the prestigious Alfred I. DuPont Award and several Emmy nominations. Her work has appeared on ABC's Nightline, NBC, and PBS, and she has written editorials for the Los Angeles Times and CNN.com.
Multiple award-winning national and international CNN senior correspondent Sara Sidner is renowned for exposing injustices and uncovering truth in the most extreme environments. In 2016, Sidner took on a beat which focused on social, racial, and political conflict across the U.S. and in 2020, she helped lead CNN’s coverage in Minneapolis, Minnesota after the police killing of George Floyd. She has shaped the national dialogue with her work covering the first known coronavirus outbreak, the Charlottesville White Nationalist Rally as well as the trial of the Neo-Nazi who killed anti-racism protestor Heather Heyer, and the protests in Ferguson, Missouri following the police murder of the unarmed Black teenager Michael Brown. Previously, Sidner worked for CNN as an international correspondent based in India, then Jerusalem, and later Abu Dhabi. She hosts The Big Picture for CNN+, an in-depth look at the most important and interesting story of the day. Sidner has received rave reviews as a keynote speaker and moderator from groups such as the Alliance of Women Philanthropists, NAACP, the 92nd Street Y, the Arnolt Center for Investigative Journalism, and many others.
Sidner has received numerous honors including a regional Emmy, an Edward R. Murrow Award, and multiple Gracie Awards from the Women in Media Foundation. She has reported from over twenty countries around the world, from the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks to the fall of Tripoli. She was part of the team that won a Peabody Award for CNN’s coverage of the Arab Spring, and shared the Achievement of the Year Award from SKY Women in Film & Television in the U.K. for her work. As an insightful moderator, inspiring keynote speaker, and renowned investigative journalist, Sidner offers her compelling and candid perspective as a journalist, woman, and citizen on the most intense and important news stories of our time.
Emmy and Peabody Award-winning comedian, writer, political satirist, and New York Times bestselling author Stephen Colbert offers unparalleled and often hilarious commentary on politics, culture, and the biggest issues of today. After appearing as a correspondent on Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, Colbert went on to co-create and host the political satire The Colbert Report, which received two Peabody Awards, five Emmy Awards, and thirty-seven total Emmy nominations. He currently executive produces, writes, and hosts CBS’s Emmy-nominated The Late Show. Colbert is the author of five books including New York Times bestsellers I Am America (And So Can You!) and America Again: Rebecoming the Greatness We Never Weren’t, which also won a Grammy Award for “Best Spoken Word Album.” He has acted in and voiced characters for numerous projects for TV, film, and stage, and hosted the Kennedy Center Honors and the Primetime Emmy Awards. Known for his legendary characters, expansive interests, and deep insights about the state of the world, Colbert is a memorable and impactful guest for audiences of all kinds.
TIFFANY D. CROSS
Celebrated journalist, bestselling author, and revered political analyst Tiffany D. Cross delivers every time in motivational, insightful, and thought-provoking events. A cable news veteran, Cross previously served as the D.C. Bureau Chief for BET Networks, an Associate Producer for CNN, and hosted MSNBC’s The Cross Connection. She co-founded The Beat DC, a platform that provides critical analysis of national politics, policy, business, and media, highlighting their impact on and relationship with communities of color. An influential voice in the discourse of the moment, Cross is in-demand with groups including the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., the Society of Social Work Research, TriNet, Santa Cruz Nutritionals, Howard University, and more.
A 2020 Resident Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics, Tiffany has spent time on the campaign trail covering and working on numerous local, state, and federal campaigns. She is the bestselling author of Say It Louder: Black Voters, White Narratives, and Saving Our Democracy, which Kirkus Reviews hailed as “a compelling exploration of how Black voters have the power to shape the country's future.” Cross regularly receives stellar feedback for her events, such as: ”Tiffany was superb. A joy to work with, engaging and fully invested in making the event a stand-out” (Robert Toigo Foundation Annual Gala) and ”The event was absolutely wonderful and well received! Tiffany Cross was outstanding and prolific.” (Society for Social Work Research)
Political analyst, Senior National Correspondent for CBS, and New York Times bestselling author John Dickerson is a veteran journalist and trusted voice to interpret current events. He is the host of CBS Primetime with John Dickerson. Previously, Dickerson was a correspondent for 60 Minutes, co-anchored CBS This Morning, anchored Face The Nation, and served as Chief Washington Correspondent for CBS News. He is currently the Chief Political Analyst for CBS News, a Senior National Correspondent, and a CBS Sunday Morning contributor. Dickerson started his career at TIME, covering economics, Congress, and the presidency, worked as Slate’s chief political correspondent, and is a contributing writer to The Atlantic. An expert and thoughtful interviewer, he co-hosts Slate’s Political Gabfest podcast and hosts the Whistlestop podcast. Dickerson is the author of On Her Trail, about his mother’s trailblazing work as CBS News’ first female correspondent, as well as the New York Times bestsellers Whistlestop: My Favorite Stories from Presidential Campaign History and The Hardest Job in the World: The American Presidency. Dickerson is an in-demand speaker for his insider insights about politics, the role of journalism in an increasingly partisan culture, and finding meaning through adversity.
Dickerson has moderated presidential debates, covered the last seven presidential campaigns, and delves into the skills needed to be a successful leader. He is the recipient of the Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on the Presidency and the David Broder Award for political reporting. Dickerson is highly sought after for keynotes and moderated Q&A sessions, covering a range of topics from Washington’s inner workings to practical takeaways for cultivating the attributes of impactful leadership.
Two-time Emmy Award-winning host, actor, author, producer, and social activist Mario Lopez is a consummate entertainer across mediums, using his platform to promote social equality, health for the whole family, and inclusivity in Hollywood. As the beloved host of NBC’s Access Hollywood, Lopez has won two Daytime Emmy Awards, and he also hosts iHeartRadio’s nationwide radio show “Countdown with Mario Lopez”, as well as the iHeartMedia podcasts On with Mario Lopez and The 3 Knockout Rule. Lopez has written bestselling books on fitness and inspiration, a memoir Just Between Us and several children’s books, engaging audiences with personal anecdotes, inspirational values of health and perseverance, and devotion to family. His easy humor, captivating storytelling, and winning congeniality make him an outstanding choice as host or emcee for any event.
A dedicated partner of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Lopez was recently named the Alumni Ambassador of Fitness for the organization’s BE GREAT campaign. Through philanthropy and as a producer, he advocates for today’s young people and for inclusive positive images, particularly for Latinx communities. He co-created and executive produced the Netflix series The Expanding Universe of Ashley Garcia, and appeared in and produced the Saved by the Bell reboot for NBC’s Peacock, reprising the role that made him a household name in the hit 90’s teen series. He hosts Triller TV’s Fight Club, and has also appeared NBC’s This is Us, Jane the Virgin on The CW, and Disney’s Elena of Avalor with his daughter Gia, to name a few. Lopez has starred in numerous Lifetime holiday films including the upcoming Holiday in Santa Fe.
Globally recognized entrepreneur, bestselling author, and performance coach Ed Mylett is an expert at inspiring his audiences to live life at the highest level. Mylett began his career in the financial services industry, achieving incredible success that earned him a place on Forbes’ “50 Wealthiest Under 50” list. He has expanded his portfolio into technology, real estate, health, food & nutrition, and more. Mylett describes himself as a “team-made millionaire,” and a glowing profile in Forbes describes his “passion for mentoring and coaching others on what it takes to become a champion in all areas of life.”
Ed is the bestselling author of #MaxOut Your Life, which offers no-nonsense, step-by-step strategies to become an elite performer, and his latest book The Power of One More: The Ultimate Guide to Happiness and Success. His online audience has grown to more than 3M followers in a few short years, and his weekly podcast The Ed Mylett Show features diverse thought leaders and peak performers including Megyn Kelly, Barbara Corcoran, Martin Luther King III, Vivica A. Fox, and many more. In his books, podcast, and speaking events – which range from intimate gatherings to mega-venues of 50K attendees to online audiences of hundreds of thousands – Mylett offers high-octane inspiration and actionable, motivational takeaways engineered to make a major impact.
Veteran journalist, Peabody Award finalist, and bestselling author Brooke Baldwin has covered some of the biggest breaking stories in the U.S. and around the world, and is a champion for women’s empowerment. Brooke hosted her own live daily news show CNN Newsroom with Brooke Baldwin for more than a decade, and was renowned for her versatility, authenticity, and humanity at the news desk. During her time at CNN, the widely respected journalist had the privilege of meeting Presidents and interviewing former first ladies, members of Congress, scientists, teachers, nurses, astronauts, actors, activists, rock stars, and ordinary Americans in extraordinary circumstances from surviving mass shootings to hurricanes to COVID-19. Brooke is the author of the Wall Street Journal bestselling book Huddle: How Women Unlock Their Collective Power, redefining the ‘huddle’ to explore how women lean on one another to provide support, empowerment, inspiration, and the strength to enact meaningful change. In addition to the book being a WSJ bestseller, Huddle is also included in Amazon’s Top Ten Books in Biz & Leadership.
Brooke is a highly sought-after speaker and a gifted moderator for events with groups Women in the World, 92nd Street Y, Buick x TOGETHXR, Commonwealth Club of California, Acronis #CyberFit Summit, among many others. She and her writing have been featured in The Atlantic, Fast Company, Self, Fortune, and she is currently traveling the country hosting “huddles” in partnership with media and commerce company Togethxr, along with corporate sponsor Buick, to elevate women’s voices, particularly around sports. From her experience reporting on the most important issues of today with a front row seat to history, to her work amplifying and advocating for women around the world, Brooke makes a lasting impact on audiences of all kinds with her unique insights on current events, transformational workplace strategies, and authentic motivation.
CNBC correspondent and author Julia Boorstin delivers insightful analysis with a focus on the intersection of media and technology. Boorstin serves as CNBC’s Senior Media & Tech Correspondent, playing a central role on the network’s bicoastal tech-focused program TechCheck. Before joining CNBC as an on-air reporter in 2006, she served as a reporter for Fortune magazine, and was an intern for Vice President Gore’s domestic policy office. Boorstin released her debut book When Women Lead: What They Achieve, Why They Succeed, and How We Can Learn from Them in October 2022, which features lessons from the leadership approaches of women running the world’s most innovative and successful companies.
Boorstin has contributed to CNN and CNN Headline News, among others. She is the creator of the CNBC “Disruptor 50,” an annual list she curates highlighting private companies transforming the economy and challenging companies in established industries. She also helped launch the network’s ‘Closing the Gap’ initiative, which covers people and companies closing gender and diversity gaps. In her writing, reporting, and speaking, Boorstin is a sought-after expert exploring groundbreaking leadership and business innovations that resonate across industries.
Lilly Singh is a multi-faceted entertainer, actress, producer, writer and creator. A leading force in popular culture, she has amassed a global audience of nearly 40 million followers across her social media channels.
A trailblazer from her start on digital media to traditional airwaves, Singh was the only woman to host a late-night show on a broadcast network television in nearly two decades for her NBC show A Little Late with Lilly Singh. She now has first-look deals with Universal Television Alternative Studio (UTAS) and Blink49 Studios and Bell Media with her Unicorn Island Productions banner and is developing numerous projects across film and television. She is also attached to star in a Netflix comedy series.
Named one of TIME’s "30 Most Influential People on the Internet," Forbes’ "30 Under 30," and Fast Company's "Most Creative People," Lilly has developed a massive, engaged fan base thanks to her hilarious sketch videos on YouTube, collaborations with brands including Smashbox, Calvin Klein, Pantene, Johnnie Walker and Olay, and her inspiring New York Times bestselling books How to Be a Bawse: A Guide to Conquering Life and Be a Triangle.
Heralded for her candor and comedy, Lilly offers hilarious, empowering, and informative conversations about her career, diversity, activism, pop culture and more.
Ginni Rometty is a leader, innovator, and convener who believes that how we work and lead is as important as what we achieve. As the ninth Chairman, President, and CEO of IBM, Ginni transformed the 100-year-old company, reinventing 50 percent of its portfolio, building a $25B hybrid cloud business, and establishing IBM’s leadership in AI and quantum computing. She drove record results in diversity and inclusion and supported the explosive growth of an innovative high school program, P-TECH, to prepare the workforce of the future in more than twenty-eight countries. Ginni is the author of the Wall Street Journal bestseller Good Power: Leading Positive Change in Our Lives, Work, and World (Harvard Business Review Press). In the book, as she does in sought-after events, Ginni shares milestones from her life and career while redefining power as a way to drive meaningful change in positive ways for ourselves, our organizations, and for the many, not just the few – a concept she calls “good power.”
Through her work with the Business Roundtable, Rometty helped redefine the purpose of the corporation. She has been named Fortune’s #1 Most Powerful Woman three years in a row, is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and has been honored with the designation of Officier in the French Légion d’Honneur. Today, Rometty serves on multiple boards including J.P. Morgan Chase, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and co-chairs OneTen, a coalition committed to upskilling, hiring, and promoting one million Black Americans without four-year degrees by 2030 into family-sustaining jobs and careers. She offers unparalleled insights on leadership, organizational and societal transformation, DEI, the future of work and education, and more, and is in-demand for events with groups including the World Economic Forum at Davos, The Milken Institute, Fortune's Most Powerful Women Summit, the Consumer Electronics Show, and Grace Hopper, to name a few.
NFL player, entrepreneur, and philanthropist Damar Hamlin inspires audiences with his vision for making an impact through his life and work. Hamlin has always put his family and his community first. As he told the Point Park Globe, "I wanted to give my city bragging rights, bring my city something and just give the city another reason to smile." While playing football at the University of Pittsburgh he was named first-team All-State and the Class AAAA Defensive Player of the Year. Hamlin plays starting safety for the Buffalo Bills, standing out as a leader on the team early in his NFL career. While still in school, Hamlin launched his popular Chasing M's clothing brand – which “tells the story of your come up through clothing and puts a community of like-minded people behind you to help achieve the life you want.” While expanding his portfolio as a fashion entrepreneur, he created The Chasing M’s Foundation – a vehicle to bring lasting impact to his community supporting toy drives, back-to-school drives, kids’ camps, and more. Hamlin shares his perspective on leadership and standing up for those who need it the most in sought-after speaking engagements.
During a Monday Night Football game on January 2nd, 2023, Hamlin completed what looked like a routine tackle, only to collapse on the field moments after. He had suffered a cardiac arrest – and received swift medical attention as teammates and fans looked on in shock. His heartbeat was restored on the field, and he was rushed to emergency care. In the coming days, Damar’s teammates and fans were relieved to hear he was making progress. Communicating by writing on a clipboard due to his breathing tube, Damar asked, “did we win?” His trauma surgeon replied, “Yes, Damar, you won. You won the game of life.”
In his first public comments since his cardiac arrest, Hamlin shared on social media that he is thankful for the love he has received and asks for continued prayers for the long road ahead. In a massive show of support, fans donated to Hamlin’s 2020 GoFundMe campaign for The Chasing M’s Foundation’s annual toy drive. Dozens of NFL players, coaches, and executives donated to the campaign, which has raised over $9M so far. A gifted and motivational speaker, Hamlin illuminates how his faith and gratitude have helped him overcome obstacles, and offers motivational insights about entrepreneurship, community impact, and authentic leadership.
Spearheading social media, Taylor Cassidy is a content creator on TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube teaching millions of unsung Black history figures accompanied by her quick wit and strong passion. Seen in her series Fast Black History and Black Girl Magic Minute, she uses her platform to advocate for inclusion, representation, and love for one’s culture.
By creating an open environment for discussion around self-esteem, and mental health, she’s earned a Streamy Creator Honor from Liza Koshy and listed as TikTok’s 2020 Top 100 under "Voices of Change: Most Impactful Creators." Generous with sharing her story on Black identity and finding her creative voice, she is passionate about encouraging others to dream bigger for themselves.
Hannah Beachler is an Academy Award-winning production designer and curator known for blockbuster projects like Black Panther and Beyoncé’s stunning visual concept albums Lemonade and Black is King. She became the first African American to win an Academy Award for Production Design for her work on Black Panther. Hannah designed the interstitials for Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s mega tour OTRII, and was tapped by the Metropolitan Museum of Art to curate and design the exhibit “Before Yesterday We Could Fly: An Afrofuturist Period Room.” Other notable film designs include Fruitvale Station, Creed, Miles Ahead, No Sudden Move, Dark Waters, and Moonlight.
Following her groundbreaking Oscar Award, Hannah was named one of Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business,” one of Marie Claire’s “50 New Guard,” Ellevate’s International Woman of Change, and was listed on Elle’s “2019 Women in Hollywood’s Power List” and InStyle’s “50 Badass Women List.” She is a sought-after speaker for events, engaging audiences at Google, Ford’s World Symposium, Detroit CityLab, UX Week 2018, MoMa NYC, World 50, Inc., Harvard University Graduate School of Design, and United Nations African Descendants. Hannah offers insights about her work in the film industry, the power of storytelling, and the role of art and design in innovating for the future.
Award-winning gender economist and former Global 500 global executive Katica Roy is a programmer, data scientist, and the CEO and founder of an award-winning SaaS company, Pipeline. Pipeline uses advanced technology to enable companies to realize the economic opportunity of intersectional gender equity and launched the first gender equity app on Salesforce's AppExchange. Pipeline, which is backed by both Accenture and Workday, was named one of TIME Magazine’s Best Inventions of 2019 and awarded Fast Company’s: 2023 and 2020 World’s Most Innovative Companies, 2021 Next Big Things in Tech, and 2022 World Changing Ideas.
CNN, MSNBC, CBS, Bloomberg, Cheddar, MarketWatch, Yahoo Finance, Wharton Business, Newsy, and NBC have sought Katica for her sharp and unconventional take on the day’s headlines. She has interviewed President Biden, Vice President Harris, Senators Booker and Gillibrand, Secretary Pete, Canadian Pay Equity Commissioner Karen Jensen, Sophia Bush, Eve Rodsky, Gretchen Carlson, and Dr. Maya Rockeymoore Cummings.
She has spoken on over 100 stages across the world including major stages at SXSW, CES, Web Summit, The Atlantic, and for major corporations such as JP Morgan, Google, Microsoft, Salesforce, Cisco, Edelman, BNP Paribas and more.
Katica’s high-octane, visionary articles have been published by the World Economic Forum, Fast Company, Fortune, Forbes, Bloomberg, NBC, Entrepreneur, The Hill, The Advocate, Harvard Business Review, and Morning Consult, garnering over 2.9 billion impressions. She has received numerous accolades, including being named a 2019 Top 25 Most Powerful Women in Business and awarded the 2019 Stevie Entrepreneur of the Year—Gold Award, the 2020 Colorado Entrepreneur of the Year as well as one of LinkedIn’s Top Influencer for gender equity in 2022. She is a member of Fast Company’s Impact Council and Bloomberg’s New Economy Forum. Katica offers illuminating insights into fixing the leaky talent pipeline, the economic opportunity of gender equity, engineering gender equity into the future of work, AI and the future of revenue, the intersection of gender equity and climate change, and more.
Famed actress and author Tiffani Thiessen got her breakout as America’s Sweetheart Kelly Kapowski on the hit NBS series Saved by The Bell. She catapulted to stardom appearing in over 400+ episodes of television spanning a career from 1989 to present. She starred in the USA hit series White Collar for six seasons, with the show earning 11 awards nominations. Most recently, Tiffani starred in the Netflix series Alexa & Katie, earning a coveted Daytime Emmy Nomination for her role.
As an innovator and entrepreneur, Tiffani channeled her love for cooking by creating and hosting the hit series Dinner at Tiffani’s. The series ran for three seasons on the Food Network, finishing every year as "one of the most watched shows on the network." Tiffani currently hosts MTV’s viral sensation Deliciousness, which recently premiered its third season. She is the author of the critically acclaimed cookbook Pull Up A Chair, which Publisher’s Weekly called “inspiring” and “a celebration.” Her highly anticipated follow up Here We Go Again, exploring the magic of leftovers, will be published on September 26, accompanied by a national media rollout.
As an artist and influencer, Thiessen has also successfully participated in campaigns for various Fortune 500 brands such as: GLAD, Hershey’s, Quaker, 3M, Albertson’s, Carnival Cruise, Coke, Crest, H&M, Heinz, and Nokia. Tiffani is a warm and engaging speaker, delighting audiences with her insights in keynotes and moderated conversations.
Senior Rabbi, award-winning commentator, and New York Times bestselling author Steve Leder has been called one of the most influential rabbis in America (Newsweek). Steve currently serves as the Senior Rabbi of Wilshire Boulevard Temple, a prestigious synagogue in Los Angeles with three campuses and 2,700 families. He is the author of five books: The Extraordinary Nature of Ordinary Things, More Money Than God: Living a Rich Life Without Losing Your Soul, the bestsellers More Beautiful Than Before: How Suffering Transforms Us and The Beauty of What Remains, and the New York Times and LA Times bestseller For You When I Am Gone: Twelve Essential Questions to Tell a Life Story.
Steve is a contributor and guest on The Today Show, CBS Sunday Morning, CNN, and NPR, and writes for TIME, USA Today, Women's Day Magazine, and the Los Angeles Jewish Journal where his Torah commentaries were read weekly by over 50K people. He has a segment on Spectrum 1 News Los Angeles called Wisdom Wednesdays With Rabbi Steve Leder. His sermon on capital punishment was included in an award-winning episode of The West Wing, and he is the creative consultant for the new Netflix series Shiksa produced by Steve Levitan (Modern Family) and written and produced by Erin Foster. He is a highly sought-after speaker who received the Louis Rappaport Award for Excellence in Commentary from the American Jewish Press Association, the Kovler Award from the Religious Action Center in Washington D.C. for his work in Black/Jewish dialogue and has presented twice at the Aspen Ideas Festival.
JOHN DELLA VOLPE
Youth expert, pollster, strategist, and bestselling author John Della Volpe is the Director of Polling at the Harvard Kennedy School Institute of Politics, where he leads polling initiatives on understanding American youth. Della Volpe was referred to by the Washington Post as one of the world’s leading authorities on global sentiment, opinion, and influence, and is the Founder of SocialSphere, a public opinion and analytics company. His new book, an Amazon Editor’s Pick for “Best Nonfiction,” Fight: How Gen Z is Channeling Their Fear and Passion to Save America, is an impeccable investigation into how Generation Z – those born in the 1990s and early 2000s – are rising to the unprecedented challenges of their time to take control of their country and our future. The recipient of an Eisenhower Fellowship, his research focus is data-based as well as qualitative, and he has advised heads of state, military generals, and blue-chip brands around the world, unlocking the secrets to winning the hearts, minds, and loyalty of Gen Z.
Della Volpe was appointed to the U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission on Media in 2011, and serves as senior advisor and pollster to President Joe Biden. His work has been featured in The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, TIME, and more, and he is a political contributor on MSNBC offering his insights and strategies for engaging the Millennial generation.
Della Volpe is the author of the Substack newsletter JDV on Gen Z, which puts public opinion into context while creating a pathway to understanding, empowering, and engaging Gen Z.
QIAN JULIE WANG
Civil rights litigator and New York Times bestselling author Qian Julie Wang uses her unique gift for storytelling to transcend the business, legal, political, and literary worlds and focus on the humanity at the heart of these issues.
Qian Julie’s debut Beautiful Country: A Memoir became an instant New York Times bestseller, and was heralded as “an incandescent debut from an astonishing new talent.” Lauded as an “essential book for our times” and named one of the New York Times Book Review’s “Notable Books of 2021,” Beautiful Country is a poignant and heartrending literary memoir that intimately retraces Qian Julie’s childhood footsteps where at age seven, she moved from China to Brooklyn, New York with her parents, and overnight went from being the daughter of professors to being deemed “illegal.” As a litigator, Qian Julie has been praised by clients as "exceptionally talented" and "exemplary.” For a decade, she has represented Fortune 500 corporations, governmental entities, and individuals in complex civil litigation. Qian Julie is now a managing partner at Gottlieb & Wang LLP and is dedicated to advocating for marginalized communities' education and discrimination rights.
Qian Julie’s writing has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Cut, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, and she has appeared on PBS Newshour, ABC News, NPR, BBC World Outlook, C-SPAN, The TODAY Show, among many others. A highly sought-after keynote speaker, Qian Julie is in demand for events with groups like the Association of Small and Rural Libraries, Datadog, the Nantucket and Savannah Book Festivals, Sentara Healthcare, and Central Synagogue, to name a few. For her open heart and strong passion for advocacy and bringing awareness to marginalized communities, she regularly receives rave reviews, such as: “Thanks to Qian Julie for a tremendous program last night. She gave such a beautifully crafted, powerful talk that had the audience alternatively chuckling, nodding, wiping their eyes, and occasionally even startled… Qian Julie is a supremely talented writer and thinker, and I am sure she will continue to challenge the world with her sharp and nuanced insights. And she couldn’t have been nicer and more gracious to staff and guests and trustees alike." (Museum of the City of New York)
Powerhouse journalist Joanne Lipman has transformed newsrooms across the country – and now she’s turned her keen eye to transforming work and life in the post-pandemic era. In her blockbuster new book, Next!: The Power of Reinvention in Life and Work (March 2023), she offers a deeply reported, delightfully readable look at how to change your life, your workplace, or your career -– and how to inspire innovation in others. It follows her No. 1 bestseller That’s What She Said, about achieving gender equity at work and at home, inspiring men as well as women to join together to promote diversity, innovation and excellence.
One of the nation’s most prominent journalists, Lipman is the former editor-in-chief of USA Today and the USA TODAY Network, Conde Nast Portfolio, and The Wall Street Journal Weekend Journal, leading those organizations to six Pulitzer Prizes. Dubbed “innovator in chief” by The New York Times and “star editor” by CNN, Lipman began her career at The Wall Street Journal, where she rose to become the highest-ranking woman in the paper’s history. Lipman has been in-demand with groups such as Motorola, Google, Aetna, Chevron, NBC Universal, among many others.
Lipman is sought after for her insights, appearing on ABC, CNN, MSNBC, NBC, and CBS, and is an on-air contributor at CNBC. Her work has appeared in publications including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, TIME, Fortune, and Harvard Business Review. She teaches a popular Yale University course on Media & Democracy, focused on issues including polarization and combatting misinformation. A lively and entertaining speaker, Lipman offers action-oriented insights and critical analysis into issues ranging from workplace culture, to personal and business growth and transformation, to fostering diverse and equitable organizations, and more.
HAROLD FORD, JR.
Former five-term Congressman Harold Ford, Jr. is the Executive Vice President and Vice Chair of Corporate and Institutional Banking for PNC. In addition to his work leading critical strategic initiatives, Ford Jr.'s also serves as chairman and chief executive officer of Empowerment & Inclusion Capital I Corp, a PNC-sponsored mission-based special purpose acquisition company. He is also a sought-after commentator, serving as a co-host of FOX News Channel’s The Five as well as a frequent contributor to Special Report with Bret Baier. A Democrat, Ford Jr.'s politics, as well as his time in office, are characterized by a belief in compromise and working across the aisle to make progress solving problems for businesses, industries, and people.
After serving in the House of Representatives, Ford Jr. spent more than ten years in investment banking with Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley. In addition, he was non-executive Chair of Rx Saver, a patient-directed prescription medication search engine platform. Ford Jr. brings his robust experience as a policy maker and shrewd insights as a business leader to talks that are informative, engaging, and memorable for audiences of all kinds.
SARAH ELIZABETH LEWIS
Public intellectual, scholar and associate professor at Harvard University in the Department of History of Art and Architecture and the Department of African and African American Studies, Sarah Elizabeth Lewis' research focuses on the intersection of African American and Black Atlantic visual representation, racial justice, and representational democracy in the United States from the nineteenth century through the present. Her scholarship and research have been profiled by outlets including The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, and her presentations on race in America are sharp, knowledgeable, and insightful.
One of the most eloquent speakers on the national conversation on race, Lewis believes the fight to end racial injustice cannot be merely legal or political. It has to involve images and it has to involve culture, because the fight is a struggle for visibility. A popular and in-demand speaker, her talks at the nexus of art, race, and justice leave audiences not only inspired, but rejuvenated and hopeful. A frequent speaker at universities and conferences, her mainstage TEDTalk, Embrace the Near Win, has received over 3M views.
Her award-winning “Vision & Justice” issue of Aperture magazine received the 2017 Infinity Award for Critical Writing and Research from the International Center of Photography and launched Vision & Justice, based on the topic of her core curriculum course at Harvard University, filled with compelling inquiry and a sense of timeliness. Lewis says that the point of her course, Vision & Justice magazines, and the talk is to answer the following questions: How is representational democracy tied up with visual representation? How can our culture shift the narratives we have about who counts and who belongs in society?
Lewis is also the bestselling author of The Rise, a fascinating examination of how our most iconic creative endeavors — from innovation to the arts — are not achievements but conversions, corrections after failed attempts. Translated into six languages, the book is a successful lesson on creativity, innovation, and discovery.
Award-winning marketer, author, podcaster, personal branding expert, and global mentor Aliza Licht has built her expertise for over two decades in marketing, communications, and digital strategy in the fashion industry. Licht is the Founder of LEAVE YOUR MARK, a multimedia brand and consultancy that focuses on brand-building and career development. She was formerly known as social media phenomenon DKNY PR Girl, an award-winning social media personality and pioneer fashion influencer with over 1.5M fans worldwide. Her reveal generated over 230M media impressions.
Licht’s first book, Leave Your Mark: Land Your Dream Job. Kill It in Your Career. Rock Social Media. has been described as “a mentorship in 288 pages.” It has ranked on Book Authority’s “100 Best Career Development Books of All Time” every year, has been translated into multiple languages, and is required reading for many communications majors in U.S. universities. Her weekly podcast, LEAVE YOUR MARK, delivers essential advice and inspiration. Named one of “America’s Next Top Mentors” by The New York Times, Licht is a sought-after consultant for brand clients as well as a members-only career coach, mentoring people on how to shape and amplify their personal brands to drive success.
Licht has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, in TIME’s “Six Women Who Rule the Fashion World,” and in New York Daily News’ “Top 50 Most Powerful Women in New York.” Business Insider named Licht one of the “Top 20 Most Innovative Career Coaches,” and she offers motivational keynotes about the importance of building your personal brand in a world where personal and professional lines are blurred and how you position yourself can determine the opportunities presented to you or handed to someone else. In demand for events with groups like LinkedIn, TEDx, SXSW, Salesforce, Facebook, and more, Licht shares her empowering message: the most important thing you can have is a strong sense of self. Her upcoming book, ON BRAND: Shape Your Narrative. Share Your Vision. Shift Their Perception will be published on April 18, 2023, by Union Square & Co.
Richie Jackson is the author of Gay Like Me: A Father Writes to His Son published by HarperCollins. He is an award-winning Broadway, television, and film producer who most recently produced the Tony Award-nominated Harvey Fierstein’s Torch Song on Broadway. He executive produced Showtime’s Nurse Jackie (Emmy and Golden Globe nominee for Best Comedy Series) for seven seasons and co-executive produced the film Shortbus, written and directed by John Cameron Mitchell.
As an alumnus of NYU Tisch School of the Arts, he endowed a fellowship program at his alma mater in 2015 to assist graduates in the transition from academia to a lifelong career in the arts called The Richie Jackson Artist Fellowship. He and his husband, Jordan Roth, were honored with The Trevor Project’s 2016 Trevor Hero Award.
Renowned human rights lawyer, writer, front-line defender, and activist Steven Donziger has been internationally heralded for his focus on addressing human rights abuses and corporate malfeasance. Known for his “Herculean tenacity” (Business Week), Steven is part of the team working with indigenous and farmer communities in the Ecuadorian Amazon rainforest, who won a historic $9.5B judgement against Chevron for the environmental cleanup of what experts consider to be one of the worst oil-related catastrophes in the world. Following the stunning victory, he became the main target of a retaliatory campaign by Chevron – the only person ever to be prosecuted by a corporation – and was wrongly imprisoned, receiving support from 68 Nobel Laureates and 120 NGOs working for his release. In a piece for VICE, he reveals the challenges he and other activists have had to overcome for trying to hold a corporation accountable. More on the ongoing story and latest updates can be found at FreeDonziger.com. Steven is sought after for events with groups like Tomorrowland Music Festival, NYU Law, Stockholm+50 Climate Conference, the Hay Festival, the World Rainforest Day Summit, and more.
Steven is the Founder of Project Due Process, a legal advocacy group for Cuban detainees who arrived in the United States in the Mariel boatlift. He previously served as the Director for the non-partisan National Criminal Justice Commission that produced the landmark study, The Real War on Crime. Steven’s analysis and commentary on human rights, environmental, and criminal justice matters has been featured in numerous legal publications, academic journals, and news outlets. In 1991, Steven led a mission to Iraq of lawyers, public health specialists, and military experts to assess the impact on civilians of the bombing during the first Gulf War. The group’s report, which found that an estimated 100K children would die following the end of hostilities due to damage to the Iraqi healthcare infrastructure, was adopted by the United Nations and covered in more than 400 media outlets around the world. He is the former chief correspondent for United Press International in Nicaragua, where he reported for a variety of publications during the U.S.-backed contra war. Steven currently serves on the Board of Advisors to the Fortune Society, the largest self-help organization for ex-offenders in the United States. In impactful events, Steven offers insights from his tremendous career as a litigator and advocate, from his decades of work addressing human rights abuses, to cutting edge issues regarding the climate crisis, and how these global events impact individuals, organizations, and communities today.
A renowned rebel with a green thumb, Ron Finley is widely known as the Gangster Gardener. After growing up in the South Central Los Angeles food prison – a geographic location where access to healthy food options is extremely limited or nonexistent – Finely is intimately familiar with the impacts of a lack of fresh produce. In 2010, he set out to fix the problem by planting vegetables in neglected dirt patches, and after being cited by the city of Los Angeles for gardening without a permit, he fought back and won – starting a petition with fellow green activists and demanding the right to garden and grow food in his neighborhood. Finley has shared his bold and tender vision for communities – and a world – transformed through gardening at events with groups like Netflix, Chase, Cornell University, Google, Salesforce, and Amazon.
Finely has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, Vogue, Oprah Daily, on The Ellen Show, and more, as his passion for agriculture and food equity continues to resonate with audiences of all kinds. In 2020, he created one of the most popular classes on the Masterlass platform – with over 9M views, it was the most-watched course of the year. The Gangster Gardener founded the Ron Finley Project, an organization that spreads the movement for urban gardening and turning food deserts into food sanctuaries. Heralded for his humor and his profound message, Finley leaves audiences feeling empowered to explore new knowledge and increase their wellbeing, togetherness, and freedom through gardening.
DR. RAE WYNN-GRANT
Renowned wildlife ecologist, equity and justice advocate, and storyteller Dr. Rae Wynn-Grant is a trail-blazing conservationist whose insights about STEM, equity, and the power of nature inspire audiences of all kinds. As an active scientist, Dr. Wynn-Grant researches how human activity influences the behavior of wild animals, spending long periods in the wilderness tracking and observing black and grizzly bears in the Western U.S. and African lions in rural Kenya and Tanzania. Her wildlife exploration and media work has taken her to six of seven continents and over 25 countries. A native Californian, Dr. Wynn-Grant attributes her interest in wildlife and conservation from the nature shows she watched on television as a child, and today she uses media to increase representation of Black scientists and explorers.
Dr. Wynn-Grant envisions a near-future where the outdoors is a safe, equitably accessible, and positively transformative space for all people, and she shares her passionate insights in riveting keynotes and conversations. Dr. Wynn-Grant is a faculty member at the Bren School of Environmental Science and Management at University of California at Santa Barbara, serves on the Golden Gate regional board of NatureBridge, and is a National Geographic Explorer. Her PBS podcast, Going Wild with Dr. Rae Wynn-Grant, takes listeners deep into the heart of the world’s most remote jungles, savannas, tundras, mountains, and deserts with her as she studies wild animals in their natural habitats. A phenomenal leader in her field and a compelling speaker, Dr. Wynn-Grant uses the power of storytelling to make science accessible, emphasizing the importance of creating equitable opportunities for young people to experience nature first-hand.
Award-winning musician, academic, and sustainability advocate Adam Met is a thought leader at the intersections of entertainment, policy, and tech. Adam rose to international prominence as the bassist for the band AJR, which has over 5B streams, touring internationally on sold out tours and earning numerous platinum certifications. Beyond his global impact as a musician, Adam is passionate about finding actionable and collaborative solutions for climate change. He is the Founder and Executive director of Planet Reimagined, and consults with politicians, organizations, and industries to innovate wide-reaching and meaningful solutions.
Adam serves as an advocate for the United Nations Development Programme, drawing on his PhD in international human rights law to foster awareness of sustainability solutions. His writing has been featured in Fortune, Billboard Magazine, Rolling Stone, and more, and hosts his podcast Planet Reimagined. Adam has shared his uplifting and interdisciplinary insights at events with groups like Project Everyone, the United Nations, the Concordia Annual Summit, Columbia University, the Adcraft Conference, and more, and he moderates nuanced conversations with global experts, making complex and difficult topics relatable and actionable.
CATHERINE COLEMAN FLOWERS
Internationally recognized environmental activist, author, and MacArthur “genius” grant recipient Catherine Coleman Flowers has dedicated her life’s work to advocating for environmental justice. Founder of the Center for Rural Enterprise and Environmental Justice (CREEJ), Flowers has spent her career promoting equal access to clean water, air, sanitation, and soil to reduce health and economic disparities in marginalized, rural communities. Her leadership and fervor in fighting for solutions to these issues led her to one of her most notable appointments yet — Vice Chair of the Biden Administration’s inaugural White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council. Flowers is the author of the acclaimed and award-winning book Waste: One Woman’s Fight Against America’s Dirty Secret, in which she shares her inspiring story of advocacy, from childhood to environmental justice champion. Whether addressing equal access to water, the effects of climate change on different communities, or the effect of history on today's inequities, Flowers' lens of leadership in environmental justice and climate change engages and inspires attendees with tangible solutions and ways to take action.
Flowers serves as Rural Development Manager for Bryan Stevenson’s Equal Justice Initiative (EJI), is a Board Member for the Center for Earth Ethics at Union Theological Seminary, and sits on the Board of Directors for the Climate Reality Project and the Natural Resources Defense Council. Flowers is also Co-Chair of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences Commission on Accelerating Climate Action and Practitioner in Residence at Duke University. She has written powerful pieces for the New York Review of Books, The Guardian, The New York Times, and Frontline Magazine, and has been profiled by 60 Minutes. Thought-provoking and informative, Flowers’ talks have left lasting impressions at the American Institute of Architects, the Triple Bottom Line Americas Conference, the Bloomberg Green Festival, the Global Philanthropy Forum, Georgetown University, Wheaton University, and more.
JUDY MURRAY OBE
Scottish tennis coach Judy Murray OBE is one of the most influential and inspiring voices in the sport. A former captain of Great Britain’s Billie Jean King Cup team, Judy was the tartan Chris Evert of her time, winning 64 Scottish titles. She is also the mother of two World No. 1 tennis players – capturing Grand Slam and Olympic titles along the way. For a decade, Judy was the National Coach of Scotland, and was the first woman to pass the Lawn Tennis Association’s Performance Coach Award. Judy offers expert insights and inspiration on building teams, developing resilience, nurturing talent, creating a champion mindset, and the parallels between sport and business.
Judy has created several initiatives to grow grass roots tennis globally and has played a pivotal role with many governing bodies in encouraging more girls to play, as well as increasing the number of female coaches and developing female leaders. In 2017, Judy was awarded an OBE for her services to tennis, women in sport, and charity. In addition, she is known for her appearance on the reality TV show, Strictly Come Dancing and is the presenter of the Driving Force docuseries - which explores the back stories of 20 of Britain's most successful female athletes. Highly respected for her creativity and insight, Judy shares her inspirational story with groups including Brodies LLP Solicitors, HSBC, JP Morgan, WTA, IBM, Salesforce, Deloitte, Peugeot, PayPal UK, among others.
BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS
Peabody Award-winning comics creator and Amazon and New York Times bestselling author Brian Michael Bendis is one of the most successful writers working in mainstream comics. In almost two decades at Marvel, Brian completed historic runs on Spider-Man (18 years), Avengers (9 years), Iron Man, and Guardians of the Galaxy, a 100-issue run on the X-Men franchise, and wildly successful projects Avengers Versus X-Men, House of M, Secret War, Secret Invasion, Age of Ultron, Civil War 2, and Siege. Brian’s multi-faceted move to DC Entertainment made international headlines. He currently writes Superman, Action Comics, Batman:Universe, Legion of Superheroes, and curates Wonder Comics featuring the return of Young Justice, Dial H for Hero, Wonder Twins, and the breakout original new character Naomi, which has become a series for The CW executive produced by Ava DuVernay. Brian has been in demand for events with TEDx, MIT, and many more, sharing his engaging and unique perspective on creativity, imagination, and focusing on positive.
Brian has received countless awards for his work: five Eisner Awards, including ‘Best Writer of the Year’ two years in a row, the prestigious Inkpot Award for comic art excellence, the Cleveland Press ‘Excellence in Journalism’ Award, and a Certificate in Excellence from the CIA for his work on diversity issues. Brian’s Words for Pictures – an intricate look at the creation of comic books and graphic novels – shot to #1 on Amazon. He is the creator of the Jinx line of crime comics, which has spawned graphic novels Goldfish, Fire, Jinx, Torso with Marc Andreyko, and Total Sell Out. His creator-owned imprint Jinxworld includes the return of the United States of Murder, Inc. with his Powers co-creator Mike Avon Oeming. Brian executive produced and wrote for Sony’s live-action series based on Powers. Brian also served as Executive Producer and consultant for the Oscar-winning Spiderman: into the Spiderverse. He co-created the character Miles Morales alongside Sara Pichelli and won a Peabody Award for his work as the co-creator of Jessica Jones on Netflix from Marvel TV. From inspiring stories about his work on some the world’s most beloved characters, to deep insights about what comics have to say about our culture and our world, Brian creates a memorable impact with audiences of all kinds.
Award-winning producer, director, and screenwriter Ryan Coogler is a singular storyteller and one of the greatest filmmakers of his generation. Coogler is known for the history- and headline-making films Fruitvale Station, Creed, and The Black Panther and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. The Black Panther shattered box office records to become the highest-grossing film of all time by a Black director. Coogler’s work is not just critically and commercially successful but has been hailed for celebrating often overlooked cultures and characters and bringing unprecedented diversity to the silver screen. As a speaker, Coogler offers eye-opening insights on the power of storytelling, creating racial equality, and innovative approaches to changing the world.
Coogler has been named to TIME’s “30 People Under 30 Who Are Changing the World,” and has won numerous awards, including four NAACP Image Awards and three Academy Awards. His short film Locks won the Dana and Albert Broccoli Award for Filmmaking Excellence at the Tribeca Film Festival, and his breakout film Fruitvale Station received the U.S. Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award at Sundance. Coogler’s upcoming projects include a series with Disney+ set in the world of Wakanda as well as a scripted drama for Onyx Collective for Hulu, Sheba – the story of the first African queen’s rise to power, based on true events. Coogler has been in demand for events with groups like Google and Salesforce, who shared this rave review after his keynote presentation: “Ryan was a firm favorite both with the team and the audience.”
Accomplished sports broadcaster, host, and emcee Tom Abbott brings a polished and engaging energy to his work as a sought-after host and emcee. During his time at the GOLF Channel, Abbott has worked on numerous major championships and Solheim Cup broadcasts, and has contributed to NBC Sports Group’s Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup tournament coverage. He was part of the NBC Sports Broadcast team for both the Rio and Tokyo Summer Olympics and reported on Biathlon for NBC Sports at the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. Abbott is an accomplished speaker and host for groups including Chevron, Evian, AIG, MGM Resorts, Dow Chemical, and The Rolex LPGA Awards – which he has hosted for the past decade.
Abbott is the youngest person in U.S. television history to broadcast The Ryder Cup, Solheim Cup, Walker Cup and Presidents Cup – completing this quartet in his early-thirties. He has reported on some of the game’s most memorable moments, including the 2009 Open at Turnberry when Tom Watson made a historic run at the Claret Jug, and from Copenhagen on the vote to restore golf as an Olympic sport. Previously, he contributed to several of the network’s original production projects, most notably the original series, Big Break, where he served as host for 11 seasons.
Abbot consistently receives rave reviews, such as: "Tom is the consummate professional – intelligent and engaging, the ultimate combination. His preparation takes place behind the scenes but is extensive and results in flawless execution when he has a microphone in hand. His delivery and engagement with audiences allows his personality to shine through and create what feels like individual connections with audience members." (Chevron)
Award-winning and internationally bestselling author Mohsin Hamid is a radically inventive storyteller with his finger on the pulse of the world. Called “one of his generation’s most inventive and gifted writers” by The New York Times, Hamid is the author of Moth Smoke, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia, the New York Times bestseller and Notable Book The Reluctant Fundamentalist, New York Times Best Book of the Year Exit West, and his upcoming novel The Last White Man. With the publication of his book of essays, Discontent and its Civilizations: Dispatches from Lahore, New York, and London, Foreign Policy described him as “a master critic of the modern global condition.” As a writer and in-demand keynote speaker, Hamid transports audiences with universal themes and timeless storytelling, touching on today’s most vital issues with his wide-reaching perspective as a journalist and visionary storyteller.
Hamid and his work have been featured in Financial Times, The Guardian, The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Paris Review, and more. He has won numerous awards including the Aspen Words Literary Prize, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the Betty Trask Award, and his work has been shortlisted for the International Dublin Literary Award, the Man Booker Prize, the Kirkus Prize, and the PEN/Hemmingway Award, among others. Hamid has been named to Foreign Policy’s list of “100 Leading Global Thinkers,” is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and has received Pakistan’s Sitara-i-Imtiaz, the Star of Excellence. An inimitable speaker on literature, culture, politics, and globalization, Hamid has been sought after by groups such as Columbia University, Literary Arts, Inc., the Chicago Humanities Festival, and many more.
Human rights activist, pioneer for racial equality, author Richard Lapchick has leveraged his standing in the sports world to advocate for inclusion, encouraging players to speak out against injustice for more than 50 years and consulting with companies as an expert on managing diversity. He has received countless awards and honors, including the Arthur Ashe Institute Leadership Award in 2021 in recognition of his trailblazing work and dedication to diversity and social justice, the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian of the Year Award in 2021 (watch his acceptance speech here >>), and he was included on Beyond Sport's Inspirational 50 people (living and passed) who used sport to change the world along with Billie Jean King, Muhammad Ali, and Nelson Mandela. He has also been honored with the John Carlos and Tommie Smith Social Justice Champion Award. Lapchick imparts meaningful insights about building thriving, inclusive teams and creating a culture of equality in sport, in our companies, and in life.
Lapchick believes sport can be an effective instrument of positive social change, and launched the DeVos Sports Business Management Program, which SportsBusiness International called one of the top programs in the world. A prolific author, Lapchick has published 17 books and is a regular columnist for ESPN.com and The Sports Business Journal. Considered among the nation’s experts on sport and social issues, he has spoken in the United States Congress, at the United Nations, the European Parliament, and the Vatican, most notably. He is a board member of the Women’s Sports Foundation, the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games, United Abolitionists, and the onePULSE Foundation. He founded the Hope for Stanley Alliance and Shut Out Trafficking.
Comedian, actor, and musician Melissa Villaseñor makes a major impact on audiences with her uncanny impressions, personal stories, and hilarious insights. Best known for her groundbreaking work as the first-ever Latina cast member on Saturday Night Live, she got her start blowing audiences away with her expertise in comedic impressions as a semifinalist on America’s Got Talent. Villaseñor has since appeared on Comedians in Cars Drinking Coffee, Barry, and Crashing, and voiced characters for Toy Story 4 and Wreck It Ralph 2. She tours nationally, headlining clubs and theaters, and recently appeared on Netflix’s The Standups. The star is an exemplary storyteller, and she uses her comedic gifts to imitate celebrities and create characters, captivating crowds and leaving them doubled over with laughter in keynotes tailored to each audience.
Villaseñor has appeared on NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, the PBS series Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates Jr., and hosts the podcast Laughing with Myself, on which she “discusses silly things and maybe sings and definitely does all the voices to make herself laugh alone.” She released her pop album Dreamer in 2019, and her upcoming workbook Whoops I’m Awesome, filled with personal stories, activities, prompts, and original art to help you embrace your most awesome self, is being published by Chronicle Books Fall of 2022. With her multifaceted talents and immense charisma, Villasenor is sure to make your next event a memorable one.
An accomplished athlete and sought-after motivational speaker, Ezra Frech was born with congenital limb differences, missing his left knee and left shin bone, and with only one finger on his left hand. Now 17 years-old, Ezra has used a prosthetic leg since he was 11 months and a running blade since he was 4 years old.
In 2016, Ezra was 11 years old watching his friends and mentors compete on the world’s stage at the Rio Paralympic Games when he told his mother, “I want to go to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games” and immediately started training. Fast forward to June 2019 when Ezra made the US Paralympic Track and Field Team as a 14 year-old and competed in three international events, including the Junior World Para-Athletics Championships, where he won three medals, the Para-Pan American Games where he won two silver medals, and the World Para-Athletics Championships, where he placed in the top 8 in all three of his events and was the youngest athlete out of 1,400 competitors.
Ezra continued to train through the pandemic before finally getting back on the track in January 2021 at his school to began a regimented training program, all the while being a full-time 10th grader. In the spring of 2021, Ezra performed well at the U.S. Paralympic Track and Field Trials, where he become the T63 National Champion in the 100M and Long Jump, set an Americas record in the long jump, and punched his ticket to Tokyo in the high jump by hitting the A Standard of 1.8 meters. Ezra competed in the T63 Long Jump (making the finals and earning 8th place) and the T63 High Jump (placing 5th) at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games.
Ezra has been featured on dozens of radio and network television shows, including the Ellen DeGeneres Show and Good Morning America, sharing his story and raising awareness and understanding for the physically challenged. Since he was 4 years old, Ezra has done motivational speaking at schools, hospitals, companies, and leadership conferences, bringing his message that “Being Different is OK.” Ezra’s motto is “You can Dream it, You can Hope for it, or You can Make It Happen.” and he believes you should “Focus on What You Have Versus What You Don’t Have.”
Ezra is the inspiration behind and co-founder of Angel City Sports, a high-growth, high-impact non-profit organization dedicated to providing the joy of sports to children and adults with physical disabilities.
QUIARA ALEGRÍA HUDES
Quiara Alegría Hudes is the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright of "Water By the Spoonful"; author of a memoir, My Broken Language; and screenwriter for the major motion picture In the Heights. Previously, she wrote the book (aka script) for the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical and Hollywood blockbuster In the Heights and authored other plays and musicals that have been produced around the world. Her notable essays include "High Tide of Heartbreak" in American Theater Magazine and "Corey Couldn’t Take It Anymore" in The Cut. In opposition of the carceral state, Hudes and her cousin founded Emancipated Stories, a platform where people behind bars can share one page of their life story with the world. As a barrio feminist and joyous mischief maker, Quiara y su hermana created the Latinx Casting Manifesto.
Dynamic, significant, and prophetic, Jemar Tisby is a public historian with the ability to explore racial justice solutions and cultural conversations that compel listeners to action. Tisby brings history to bear with contemporary relevance. His style provides audiences with richly-informed explorations, unflinching moral insight, and clear paths forward.
Tisby is the founder of The Witness, Inc. He is the author of How to Fight Racism and The New York Times bestselling book, The Color of Compromise: The Truth about the Church's Complicity in Racism. His latest book, How to Fight Racism Young Reader's Edition: A Guide to Standing Up for Racial Justice, was published in January 2022. Jemar has been a co-host of the Pass The Mic podcast since its inception seven years ago. His writing has been featured in The Washington Post, The Atlantic, and The New York Times, among others. He is a frequent commentator on outlets such as NPR and CNN's New Day program. He speaks nationwide on the topics of racial justice, U.S. history and Christianity.
Tisby received his PhD in History at the University of Mississippi studying race, religion, and social movements in the twentieth century.
Tech entrepreneur, author, and Hollywood creative Chad Sanders is a thought leader on creating equity in our workplaces, values-driven leadership, and creativity. Chad started his career at Google, later serving as the Head of Expansion for a startup that was eventually bought by Kaplan. But he felt racially marginalized in these corporate environments and pivoted to a creative career in writing. Chad credits this shift to what he calls Black Magic – the resiliency, creativity, and confidence forged in his experience navigating America as a Black man – and he tested his theory by interviewing Black leaders, scientists, artists, activists, and champions. The result is his critically acclaimed book of essays Black Magic: What Black Leaders Learned from Trauma and Triumph. An insightful and motivational speaker, Chad shares his personal journey back to his authentic self, practical takeaways for creating more equitable and welcoming workplaces and teams, and inspires audiences to commit to themselves to experience joy and success.
Chad’s writing has been featured in The New York Times, SLAM Magazine, TIME, Teen Vogue, Fortune, and more, and has been celebrated by literary luminaries such as Brené Brown, Angie Martinez, and Shea Serrano. He has appeared on CBS News, NPR, Dare to Lead with Brené Brown, Harvard Business Review’s IdeaCast, Armchair Expert with Dax Shepard, among others. Chad has written for ABC Freeform’s Grown-ish and HBO’s Rap Sh!t. He has collaborated with powerhouses such as Spike Lee, Morgan Freeman, and Will Packer, and is the co-host of the Quitters Podcast alongside Julie Bowen. An in-demand keynote speaker, Chad has been sought after for events at Google, Netflix, Target, Twitter, New York University, Columbia Business School, Pymetrics, Berlin questions, The Michelle Meow Show at the Commonwealth Club of California, and many more.
The first woman and openly gay coach to coach in a Super Bowl, former San Francisco 49ers Offensive Assistant Coach Katie Sowers paves the way for equality in the workplace. Coach Sowers is Defensive Coordinator and Director of Operations of the Ottawa University women’s flag football program and Ottawa’s Director of Athletic Strategic Initiatives. She is the Offensive and Defensive Scheme Advisor for the Ottawa Braves, coaching them to a national championship. She also coached a year with the Kansas City Chiefs under the Bill Walsh Diversity Fellowship.
Through hard work and dedication, Katie has found success in a male-dominated industry and is creating an environment that welcomes all types of people, no matter their race, gender or sexual orientation.
In her authentic talks for groups including Mercedes, Paypal, Verizon, Advance Auto Parts, Putnam Investments, and more, Katie encourages audiences to find their “why” and become an irreplaceable asset to their team. An inspiration to anyone afraid to pursue their passions, she shows how it’s possible to break down barriers and make dreams come true.
Korean American singer-songwriter, TV host, and entrepreneur Eric Nam is one of the most popular and recognizable celebrities in Asia, whose music and advocacy is having a global impact. In an interview for GQ, Nam was describe as having “amassed one of the most varied and entrepreneurial legacies to come out of the K-Pop scene.” After growing up in Atlanta, Georgia, and deferring a job offer from Deloitte Consulting, Nam was invited to audition for Korea’s version of American Idol, which launched his meteoric rise as a TV host and pop icon. He was named one of GQ Korea’s “Men of the Year,” one of Forbes’ “30 Under 30 Asia,” and YouTube’s Global Trending “Artist On the Rise,” eventually co-founding and serving as Creative Director for DIVE Studios (DS) – a K-pop focused media company with multiple award-winning podcasts. With the help of his brothers, Nam launched Mindset, a mental health and wellness platform with a library of authentic and intimate video and audio collections from world-renowned celebrities. Passionate about social impact, diverse representation, and mental health advocacy, Nam has been sought-after to speak for groups like Milken Institute, UNESCO, Cornell University, Johns Hopkins University, The Korea Society, NYU, and Colby College, among others.
Nam has been featured in Forbes, Vulture, NPR’s Bullseye with Jesse Thorn, TIME, and many more, and was awarded the Embrace Unity Award by the Council of Korean Americans. He wrote a powerful op-ed for TIME, raising awareness about anti-Asian violence and inspiring change. Nam hosted the DS podcast Daebak Show, celebrating spectacular music, media, and people. Eric's first independent album There And Back Again, which debuted at #3 and #7 on the US and UK Spotify Charts and peaked at #22 Album Sold on Billboard Charts, is inspiring the next generation of change-makers. In 2022, Eric played 60 shows in 54 cities in Europe, North America, Asia, and Oceania with over 85K hard ticket sales. Additionally, Nam recently announced his acting debut in the psychological thriller, Transplant, set to release in 2023, further expanding his illustrious career. With authenticity and insight, Nam sparks thought-provoking conversations on important contemporary issues that make an impact with audiences of all kinds.
EUGENE LEE YANG
Producer, actor, director, and writer Eugene Lee Yang is one of today’s most recognizable queer Asian-American performers, with his work as a digital producer receiving billions of views, distinguishing him as a preeminent culturally influential YouTube creator. A multi-hyphenate creative in the visual space, Yang’s work is mission-driven, leveraging his colossal platform for philanthropic goals – his viral video I’m Gay raised $150,000 for The Trevor Project, and his documentary We Need to Talk About Anti-Asian Hate raised over $600K for GoFundMe’s Stop Asian Hate campaign. The expertise of Yang’s storytelling prowess enables him to dip into comedy and vulnerability, sharing insights about creativity, connection, and how telling our unique stories can change the world.
A prolific creator, Yang is known as a vital member of Buzzfeed’s comedy quartet ‘The Try Guys’, who launched an independent production company that has led to significant projects: the New York Times bestselling book The Hidden Power of F*cking Up, an international live tour, and an upcoming Food Network series. Yang has spoken to spellbound audiences at events for The Trevor Project, Korean American Story, and the Human Rights Campaign, who honored him with their Visibility Award.
Renowned comedian, actress, writer, and disability advocate Maysoon Zayid jokes that if there were an ‘Oppression Olympics’, she would win gold: “I’m Palestinian, I’m Muslim, I’m a woman of color, I’m divorced, disabled, and I live in New Jersey.” Zayid has performed around the world, headlining the Arabs Gone Wild Comedy Tour and The Muslims Are Coming Tour, in which comedians toured the U.S. in an effort to counter Islamophobia. She is the co-founder and co-executive producer of the New York Arab American Comedy Festival and The Muslim Funny Fest. In her New York Times bestselling memoir Find Another Dream, Zayid shares her hilarious and poignant journey of failures, successes, and insights about what it takes to make your dream a reality. Known for her famed TED Talk I got 99 problems… palsy is just one, which has over 11M views, Zayid is a highly sought-after speaker for events with groups like the Ralph Lauren Foundation, Fidelity, Veeam, the Asia Society, Salesforce, and many more.
Zayid served as a full-time on-air contributor for Countdown with Keith Olberman, and has been featured on The Nick Cannon Show, including Cannon’s Comedy Club, Let’s Kiki with Miz Cracker, CNN, The Wall Street Journal’s Secrets of Wealthy Women podcast, in The New York Times, and Glamour, which hailed her as “the most fearless comic alive.” Her writing has been featured in Refinery29, The Daily Beast, among many others, and Zayid is currently working on her second book and first middle grade graphic novel, Shiny Misfits, which is slated to be published in 2023. A current Princeton University Arts Fellow, she teaches in-demand courses on comedy, brand messaging, and collaboration. Hilarious, disarming, and sharing a message of inclusion that matters, Zayid’s comedy and commentary resonate with audiences of all kinds.
Gold Medal Olympic figure skater Nathan Chen is setting records and redefining men’s figure skating, one extraordinary win at a time. With his inspiring performances at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Chen cemented his position as ‘Quad King’ – landing multiple quadruple jumps in both his programs and setting Olympic records. Starting on the ice at age 3, he built an impressive competitive resume, and in 2017 he became the youngest man to win the U.S. Championship in more than five decades. Chen has earned numerous titles, winning three World Championships, six Grand Prix events, two Grand Prix Finals, and six U.S. titles, with flawless technique, fearless programs, and exuberant performances. With his second trip to the Olympics, Chen is the first Asian American man to win an Olympic title, and the first Asian American male skater to win U.S., World, and Olympic titles. An expert on developing a winning mindset, Chen offers insights about cultivating focus, harnessing the power of positive self-talk, and enjoying the moment, that have a major impact on audiences of all kinds.
Chen has been featured in GQ, Vox, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Teen Vogue, Forbes, and many more. Following his historic win, Chen thanked figure skating legend Michelle Kwan for being a role model and dedicated his gold medal to his mother for “her never-ending support.” In addition to accolades on the podium, he was named the 2019 Team USA Male Olympic Athlete of the Year, and was included on Forbes’ 2019 “30 Under 30: Sports” list. In captivating conversations, Chen shares his strategies for overcoming obstacles and his triumphant journey to winning Olympic gold.
BRANDON KYLE GOODMAN
Actor, writer, and social justice advocate Brandon Kyle Goodman has emerged in the entertainment industry as a powerful force with a voice to be reckoned with. As an actor, Goodman is known for Netflix’s Feel the Beat, Amazon’s Modern Love and People Just Do Nothing, Alive in Denver, The Blackout, The Relationtrip, Hulu’s Plus One, and Blue Fox’s Papi Chulo, among others. As a writer, Goodman’s work is showcased in the acclaimed Netflix animated series Big Mouth and its spin-off series Human Resources. Goodman is also the creator, writer, and star of their solo show The Latrell Show, performed virtually in partnership with the IAMA Theatre Company. Goodman is proud to be a nonbinary, queer Black leader and a staunch advocate for Black lives, and is a sought after voice in the vital conversations shaping our world today.
Goodman continues conversations and meaningful action on behalf of Black lives through their podcasts: Black Folx, which features Black personalities of various identities, and Do the Work, discussing all things race and personal relationships. They will also co-host the upcoming podcast series accompanying HBO’s In Treatment, discussing mental health representation in communities of color. This fall Goodman will release their first book You Gotta Be You, which explores the intersections of their race, sexuality, and gender. In their writing as well as in memorable keynote speeches, Goodman shares insights on nuanced topics with humor and authenticity that will resonate with audiences of all kinds.
Dr. Lucy Kalanithi, MD, FACP, is the widow of the late Dr. Paul Kalanithi, author of the #1 New York Times bestselling memoir, When Breath Becomes Air, for which she wrote the epilogue. At the cross-section of her career as a medical professional and her personal experience standing alongside her husband during his life, diagnosis, treatment, and death, Dr. Kalanithi has special interests in healthcare value, meaning in medicine, patient-centered care and, end-of-life care. She explores these issues in her Gravity podcast, and has appeared on PBS NewsHour, NPR Morning Edition, and Yahoo News with Katie Couric, and been interviewed for People, NPR, and The New York Times.
An internal medicine physician and faculty member at the Stanford School of Medicine in Palo Alto, CA, she completed her medical degree at Yale, where she was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha national medical honor society. She completed her residency at the University of California-San Francisco, and a postdoctoral fellowship training in healthcare delivery innovation at Stanford’s Clinical Excellence Research Center.
New York Times bestselling author and psychotherapist Amy Bloom has been described by The New Yorker as getting “more meaning into individual sentences than most authors manage in whole books.” Bloom is the author of the NYT bestselling novels White Houses, Lucky Us, and Away, and Love Invents Us, a National Book Award Finalist. She has written the critically acclaimed short story collections Where the God of Love Hangs Out, Come to Me, a National Book Award nominee, and A Blind Man Can See How Much I Love You, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Her most recent book, the widely acclaimed New York Times bestselling memoir In Love, has been described as "the most heartbreaking, honest and funniest" writing about life, offering profound insights about grief, loss, and cultivating resilience.
Bloom’s work has appeared on numerous “Best of the Year” lists including The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, The Washington Post, Financial Times, Real Simple, and O: The Oprah Magazine. Her writing has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, The London Times, The Guardian, and from Shanghai to Seville. Her work has been translated into 18 languages. A practicing psychotherapist for four decades, Bloom’s first book of nonfiction, Normal, is a staple of university sociology and biology classes. From the intersection of her expertise as a writer and psychotherapist, Bloom offers hilarious and compelling takeaways about building community, creating (and surviving!) change, balancing home and work, and mastering effective communication, that make an impact on people of all kinds, from diverse backgrounds, bringing together an unusually wide audience.
Renowned spiritual teacher and #1 New York Times bestselling author Gabby Bernstein has been hailed as a “next-generation thought leader” by Oprah Winfrey. Bernstein is the author of nine bestselling books including The Universe Has Your Back, Super Attractor, and her latest New York Times bestseller, Happy Days: The Guided Path from Trauma to Profound Freedom and Inner Peace. Her empowering perspective and compassionate insights inspired The New York Times to call her, “a role model for a new generation of spiritual seekers.” Bernstein is the creator and host of the podcast Dear Gabby, where she connects with her community and offers insightful, real-time coaching, straight talk, and BIG LOVE. Through her presentations and generous Q&A sessions, Bernstein makes a major impact on individuals and organizations alike, and she has been sought-after by groups such as Google, the AOL Build Series, TED Talks, Oprah’s SuperSoul Sessions, and many more.
Bernstein frequently appears on Today and Good Morning America, among others, to share her expertise in meditation, manifestation, and cultivating inner peace. She co-hosted the Guinness World Records’ largest guided meditation with Deepak Chopra, and was named to Oprah’s “SuperSoul 100” – a dynamic group of trailblazers whose vision and life’s work are bringing a higher level of consciousness to the world. Bernstein is a highly sought-after keynote speaker, offering a profound message of peace that resonates with audiences of all kinds.
NFL running back Trey Edmunds is a member of a legacy football family and an authority on overcoming setbacks, creating a positive mindset, and motivation. Trey and his brothers, Terrell and Tremaine, made history as the first squad of three brothers to play in the NFL at the same time since 1927, and their father Ferrell was a two-time Pro Bowler himself. While playing college football at Virginia Tech and Maryland as a four-star recruit, Trey suffered multiple career halting injuries, and overcame those obstacles through his positive mindset. After going undrafted in 2016, he doubled up on his determination and won a place on the New Orleans Saints lineup, playing in all 18 games. Then Trey was signed to the Pittsburgh Steelers, reuniting with his brother Terrell for several successful seasons. In motivational talks, Trey inspires audiences with insights about how to find the way to best serve your team, organization, or community.
Trey has been sought-after for motivational events with audiences of all ages, from the Dairy Alliance Fuel Greatness Event for the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons celebrating Communities in Motion, to the Saints Touchdown Club, for which he offered an inspiring keynote and connected with the crowd. Trey is passionate about giving back to his community and serving as a positive mentor in the lives of young people after experiencing so much support himself. In addition to hosting an annual sports camp in his hometown, he also speaks out about mental health awareness. Trey’s story of grit and resilience leaves audiences feeling empowered to achieve their dreams.
Professional basketball player Grant Williams is a leader on and off the court, as two-time back-to-back SEC Player of the Year and Vice President of the National Basketball Players Association. He is recognized by fans of his college team as one of the best players in their history, and has been called “a true student of life and basketball” by the Boston Globe. Known for his passion for strategic thinking, Williams is a dedicated academic mentor. He graduated in just three years from the University of Tennessee with a degree in supply chain management from the University of Tennessee, one of the top public programs in the country for supply chain management. The league’s Senior VP of Player Development, Jamila Wideman, called him "an incredible storyteller" with a good sense of humor and a willingness to be vulnerable. Williams brings humor and insight to high-powered events, touching on leadership, teamwork, mental health awareness, and more.
Dubbed a “high-energy Renaissance man” in a glowing Forbes profile, he’s received accolades for his commitment to giving back to the community, a passion which is central to his purpose. The Celtics Teammate of the Year finalist created a group mentoring programming during the Covid-19 pandemic, leveraging his platform as an NBA rookie to make a major impact in the lives of young people. For his work empowering young people, he received the Bill Russell Mentoring Award. Williams invigorates audiences with his sharp wit, compelling personal story, and his belief that your dreams should be central to your everyday life for maximum success.
Award-winning science journalist, speaker, and author Catherine Price has been hailed in The New York Times as “the Marie Kondo of brains.” Price is the author of numerous books including How to Break Up With Your Phone: The 30-Day Plan to Take Back Your Life, which has been published in more than 35 countries and was featured in a New York Times piece that went viral, receiving 2M+ hits in less than a week. Her newest book, The Power of Fun: How to Feel Alive Again has received international media coverage and, in addition to serving as the inspiration for her popular TED talk, was named the overall best self-care book of the year by The Independent. As the creator and founder of ScreenLifeBalance.com, Price is dedicated to helping people scroll less, live more, and have more fun.
Price’s work has been featured in outlets including The Best American Science Writing, NPR, The New York Times, Popular Science, The Los Angeles Times, TIME Magazine, Wired, Vox, Refinery29, BBC World News Service, Good Morning America, The Today Show, CBS This Morning, and The Guardian among many others.
Having spoken in front of audiences and clients including TED, Leadercast, SXSW, Intel, Cigna, Hyatt, T. Rowe Price, Warburg Pincus, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Yale University, and more, Price is an in-demand speaker, consultant, and workshop leader who offers lively and uniquely tailored programs full of what she called “science-backed self-help” that are compelling and actionable for audiences of all kinds.
She is comfortable and experienced in both in-person and virtual formats, and particularly enjoys moderated Q&As and fireside chats.
Groundbreaking aviator, author, and retired Colonel Merryl Tengesdal made history as the first and only African American woman USAF U-2 Pilot. For over two decades, Tengesdal served as a Naval Aviator and Air Force Combat Pilot, deploying worldwide in support of combat and military operations and piloting the “Dragon Lady” high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft. She has extensive command and senior leadership experience, most recently serving as the Director of Inspections for the Air Force Inspector General overseeing a program for 860K Airmen, and was the first woman selected to be Commander of Warner Robins Air Logistics Center, Detachment 2, overseeing a multi-billion-dollar testing program. Tengesdal’s remarkable journey is chronicled in her memoir, Shatter the Sky: What going to the stratosphere taught me about self-worth, sacrifice, and discipline, and her riveting storytelling leaves audiences feeling motivated, inspired, and ready to reach new heights.
Tengesdal starred on CBS’ Tough as Nails, promoting increased minority involvement in the Trades. She has also appeared as a commentator on PBS’ UNLADYLIKE2020: The Bessie Coleman Story, as a technical consultant on Bridge of Spies, and as a featured contributor for Smithsonian Channel’s Air Warrior. Tengesdal was inducted into the 2019 Gathering of Eagles Foundation as an aviation pioneer and is a dedicated advocate for increasing women and children of color in STEM. In sought-after events with groups like Lockheed Martin, Women Impacting Storebrand Excellence, the Transportation Leadership Forum, and more, Tengesdal shares her experiences and insights on leadership as a woman and person of color in spaces where women and people of color are underrepresented, maximizing physical and mental health, and applying military leadership to business enterprises and everyday life.
Abby Wambach is a two-time Olympic gold medalist, FIFA World Cup Champion, and six-time winner of the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year award. She was the United States’ leading scorer in the 2007 and 2011 Women’s World Cup tournaments and the 2004 and 2012 Olympics.
An activist for equality and inclusion, Abby is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller WOLFPACK: How to Come Together, Unleash Our Power, and Change the Game, based on her inspiring, viral commencement speech to Barnard College. She authored the instant NYT bestselling adaptation for young audiences, WOLFPACK for the next generation. Abby is a highly sought-after speaker for events with groups like Paypal, Dell Technologies, Equinix, Inc., Northwestern Mutual, and many more, offering motivating insights on leadership, social change, the champion’s mindset, and how to build a strong team.
Abby is the host of ABBY’S PLACES on ESPN+, in which she showcases what makes her beloved sport of soccer a worldwide sensation. She also co-hosts WE CAN DO HARD THINGS with Glennon Doyle, which debuted at #1 in May, 2021 and was named the #1 New Podcast of 2021 on Apple Podcasts.
Abby sits on the Board of Directors for the all-women-led nonprofit organization Together Rising, and is a co-founder and part-owner of Angel City FC, the first majority-female-owned soccer team in history. She consistently receives rave reviews for events, such as: “She was OUTSTANDING! The team felt so inspired and energized after her conversation. I think we could have listened to her for 5 hours.” (Momentive Inc.)
Chelsea Clinton is a #1 New York Times bestselling author, advocate, and public health expert. As Vice Chair of the Clinton Foundation, Dr. Clinton provides vision and expertise to flagship programs like the Clinton Global Initiative, Too Small to Fail, and the Clinton Global Initiative University (CGI U), a global program that empowers student leaders to turn their ideas into action. Dr. Clinton also serves as the vice chair of the Clinton Health Access Initiative, which has helped over 11M people in more than 70 countries access critical HIV/AIDS medications and works across more than 125 countries around the world to build and strengthen sustainable health systems.
In addition to her Foundation work, Chelsea teaches at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. She has written several books for young readers, including the bestselling She Persisted series. She is also the co-author of The Book of Gutsy Women with her mom Hillary Rodham Clinton, and the two star-in and executive produce the adapted, critically-acclaimed series GUTSY on Apple TV+. Chelsea consistently receives rave reviews for her speaking engagements, such as: ”Chelsea was an incredibly generous speaker. The audience raved about her and she drove her message home in a very compelling manner. She was honest and personal and all around a huge hit. It was both a pleasure and an honor to interview her on stage.” (Business and Creativity Conference)
Two-time Big 12 Coach of the Year Scott Drew has transformed the Baylor basketball team as their Head Coach, leading them to nine NCAA Tournaments and winning the 2021 National Championship. The unprecedented renewal of the Baylor team is a testament to Drew’s passion, positivity, and relentless pursuit of excellence, and he shares his strategies for team-building success with audiences who are invigorated by his authenticity and humility.
In rebuilding the team from the ground up, he has earned an array of individual accolades, including back-to-back Big 12 Coach of the Year awards and being named the 2020 NBC Sports National Coach of the Year. Drew has intentionally cultivated an unrivalled organizational culture and championship mindset, and is a celebrated expert in perseverance and servant leadership through faith, offering takeaways that will benefit every industry.
Motorsport executive, VC investor, and former racing driver Toto Wolff delivers star power balanced with expertise in high-performance leadership and organizational culture. Toto is the Co-Owner, CEO, and Team Principal of the Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team. A former racing driver turned investor, Toto started his career by founding a tech-focused venture capital firm in Austria. He entered F1 with an ownership stake in the Williams F1 Team in 2009, before acquiring a 30% stake (now 33%) in the Mercedes-Benz works team in 2013. Toto has since led the team, featuring the most successful F1 driver of all-time, Lewis Hamilton, to unprecedented heights, winning eight Constructor World Championships and seven Driver World Championships.
Toto’s high-performance leadership philosophy was the subject of a Harvard Business School Case Study in 2022, “Number One in Formula 1.” He regularly visits Harvard to work with MBA students and teach the case study, leading discussions on high-performance leadership and organizational culture. Toto is also an Associate Fellow at Oxford University’s Saïd Business School where he imparts lessons on entrepreneurship and innovation, as well holding an Honorary Doctorate from Cranfield University. In sought after talks, Toto leverages his understanding of winning culture, team leadership, and personal effectiveness.
Former Green Beret, NFL player, and filmmaker Nate Boyer is what many would deem a renaissance man – he shares his motivational message with groups including Microsoft, Budweiser, USAA, General Mills, and more.
The Army Green Beret – who was deployed to both Iraq & Afghanistan over his ten-year military career – is also a philanthropist and humanitarian. Despite never playing a down of organized football prior to his time in the Special Forces, Nate played for the University of Texas Longhorns and became the oldest rookie in NFL history at 34 while playing for the Seattle Seahawks. As a member of the military veteran and athlete communities, he saw an opportunity to tackle their transition struggles together through Merging Vets & Players (MVP) – a charity he co-founded with Jay Glazer. Nate is sought-after by Veteran groups, athletic organizations, as well as business looking for a message of inspiration and motivation.
Nate is also an actor, writer, director, producer, and TV host. He co-created, executive produced, and hosted the NFL Network series Indivisible with Nate Boyer, discussing issues relevant to local communities and how football unites us all to solve these problems. Nate’s new film MVP is his directorial debut and tells a real-life story about the struggles of veterans and athletes who found purpose and renewed life together. Boyer’s belief that “Anything is Possible” has served him well throughout his life and students, veterans, businesspersons, athletes, and people from all walks of like can take something away from his unique story.
Award-winning community organizer, political strategist, and jazz singer LaTosha Brown is a trusted expert and resource in political strategy, rural development, and special programming for philanthropies. Brown is the co-Founder of Black Voters Matter Fund – a power-building southern-based civic engagement organization – leveraging over two decades of experience as a revered institution-builder in non-profit and philanthropy sectors. A renowned philanthropic consultant, she has served as an advisor for groups such as the Ford Foundation, Friends of New Orleans, and the Clinton Global Initiative for over 25 years, and is the principle owner of TruthSpeaks Consulting, Inc. Brown is the Visionary, Founder, and Co-Anchor of the Southern Black Girls & Women’s Consortium, a $100M, 10-year initiative to invest in organizations that serve Black women and girls. She has launched and served countless organizations with her nationally recognized expertise in issues related to social justice, economic and leadership development, wealth creation, and civil rights.
Brown has served as an American Democracy Fellow with the Charles Warren Center at Harvard University, and is a Senior Practice Fellow in American Democracy at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at Harvard’s Kennedy School. She serves on the board of the National Coalition on Black Civic Engagement (NCBCP), the Southern Documentary Fund, and is an active member of several national and international organizations. She and her work have received numerous awards, including the Redbook Magazine Spirit and Strength Award, NCBCP’s Spirit of Democracy Award, the White House Champion of Change Award, the Philanthropy Women Breakthrough Award for Thought and Strategy Leadership, and many more. Sought after for her uplifting keynote speeches, Brown shares message of hope and shared humanity, inviting audiences to envision a future and a democracy we deserve.
Emeril Lagasse is the chef/proprietor of 8 restaurants, including three in New Orleans (Emeril’s, Meril, and Emeril’s Table at the MSY Airport); two in Las Vegas (Emeril’s New Orleans Fish House and Delmonico Steakhouse); one in Miramar Beach, Florida (Emeril’s Coastal); and his most recent and his first restaurants at sea, Emeril’s Bistro 1396 on Carnival Cruise Line’s Mardi Gras and Emeril’s Bistro 1397 on Carnival Cruise Line’s Celebration.
As a national TV personality, he has hosted more than 2,000 shows on the Food Network and was a food correspondent for ABC's "Good Morning America." Most notably, Amazon launched an original series featuring Lagasse called Eat the World with Emeril Lagasse. The series received five daytime Emmy nominations and won Outstanding Culinary Program. The series was also a James Beard semifinalist in the category Outstanding Personality of Host. Lagasse has appeared as a guest judge in five seasons of Bravo’s hit food series, “Top Chef,” and two seasons of “Top Chef Jr”. He was named a co-host on three seasons of the “Rachael Ray Show.” Most recently, The Roku Channel released two original series, "Emeril Tailgates" and "Emeril Cooks." Lagasse is the bestselling author of 19 cookbooks, the latest titled Essential Emeril: Favorite Recipes and Hard-Won Wisdom from My Life in the Kitchen.
In 2002, Lagasse established the Emeril Lagasse Foundation to support children’s educational programs that inspire and mentor young people through the culinary arts, nutrition, healthy eating, and important life skills. To date, the Foundation has distributed over $18 million in grants benefitting children’s charities in New Orleans, Las Vegas and on the Gulf Coast. In 2013, Lagasse was named the Humanitarian of the Year by the James Beard Foundation for his dedicated efforts to further the culinary arts in America, as well as his philanthropic work supporting children’s educational programs through his Foundation.
Lagasse's restaurant company, The Emeril Group, is located in New Orleans and houses culinary operations and a test kitchen for recipe development. For more information visit emerilsrestaurants.com.
JESSIE JAMES DECKER
Jessie James Decker is a dynamo who takes her fans along for the ride. She is a singer, songwriter, TV personality, fashion designer of Kittenish, beauty and lifestyle entrepreneur, and New York Times bestselling author. She's an unstoppable force of talent and energy, and fans love to connect with Jessie through her brands and music.
Signed to Warner Music Nashville, Jessie’s passion for music has made the multi-talented artist one of music’s true breakout firebrands. The singer’s authentic style immediately captivated listeners everywhere on her 2009 self-titled debut. She continued to keep it real with her second studio album, 2017’s Southern Girl City Lights, which debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart. She's the host of several tv shows, not to mention New Year's Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest.
She founded the Eric and Jessie James Decker Foundation with her husband, which strives to positively impact the lives of the United States military service members, veterans and animals. As part of the foundation, Deckers Dogs, helps fund the rescue, care, and training for military service dogs.
Decker’s first book, the New York Times Bestseller Just Jessie, is her guide to love, life, family and food. In Just Feed Me Jessie shares her the favorite recipes of her family - her husband, retired NFL player Eric Decker, and their three children.
Leah McSweeney is a streetwear pioneer, entrepreneur, and cultural provocateur known for Bravo’s The Real Housewives of New York, her brand Married to the Mob, and her podcast Improper Etiquette. McSweeney launched Married to the Mob, one of the first streetwear brands for women, by women, and Happy Place for sustainably sourced premium sleepwear, and offers candid insights about women’s leadership and creative entrepreneurship. She is a contributor to Penthouse, Hypebae, and Mass Appeal, and author of the memoir Chaos Theory: Finding Meaning in the Madness, One Bad Decision at a Time. McSweeney is an advocate for female empowerment and breaking the stigma around mental health, and shares her transparent and dynamic perspective in memorable events.
Lena Waithe is an award-winning writer, creator, producer, actor and CEO establishing herself as a Hollywood powerhouse, who expertly taps into emerging cultural sensibilities with a sharp wit and unique perspective, challenging audiences to think outside conventional norms. Lena became the first Black woman to win the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series for her work on the critically acclaimed Netflix series Master of None. She continues to grow her body of work with diversity, charisma, and comedy.
Beyond the screen, Lena’s production company Hillman Grad Productions has partnered with Indeed to launch Rising Voices, a $1.35M investment in BIPOC filmmakers to fight against the status quo by giving marginalized storytellers the opportunity to access the industry and tell their stories. A tireless advocate for representation, Lena was honored at the 2020 Essence Black Women in Hollywood event, took home a Gracie Award for her Showtime series The Chi, and was featured on the 2018 TIME 100 list in a tribute written by Vice President Kamala Harris. Lena is a sought-after leader in the entertainment industry, speaking to the endless possibilities of intentional collaboration that centers under-represented voices.
NIKKI AND BRIE GARCIA
WWE Hall of Fame Inductees, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, and New York Times bestselling authors Nikki and Brie Garcia – The Garcia Twins – are legendary for fearlessly breaking barriers and building a global brand based on hard work, authenticity, and kindness. Nikki and Brie joined the WWE main roster in 2008 and became one of the best tag teams in the history of WWE and the first female twins to rise to international acclaim, earning a Divas Title reign apiece in 2011 and 2012. As sought-after motivational speakers as individuals and a tag team, The Garcia Twins bring a dash of ‘Twin Magic’ to every event, making a major impact with audiences of all kinds.
Brie became Divas Champion in 2011, and was named Diva of the Year in 2013, entertaining millions around the world with her athleticism, confidence, and genuine personality as a star on FOX’s The Real Dirty Dancing. Nikki, who earned the accolade Longest Reigning Divas Champion and the fan title ‘Fearless Nikki’, was seen as a judge on NBC’s America’s Got Talent Extreme, and is set to host the upcoming celebrity competition show Barmageddon for NBC. The Garcia Twins starred on E!’s hit reality TV show Total Divas, and executive produced and starred on six seasons of their spinoff series Total Bellas.
Their dual debut memoir, Incomparable, became an instant New York Times bestseller and revealed their journey to the pro-wrestling ring, the obstacles they overcame, and how they broke the glass ceiling in their sport to push female performers from divas to superstars. The Garcia Twins share their humor and uncensored insights with their massive audience as hosts of The Bellas podcast. Nikki and Brie are the founders of Birdiebee, Nicole + Brizee Beauty, Bonita Bonita Wine, and serve as investors and collaborators for Colugo. With their expertise in entrepreneurship, excelling in a male-dominated industry, and commitment to testing the limits, Nikki and Brie inspire audiences to dominate in their own lives and never give up.
Award-winning chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and media personality Bobby Flay offers high-energy, dynamic insights on business success, perseverance, food and lifestyle, and balancing the many flavors in our work and lives.
The first chef to ever receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Bobby Flay is behind famed restaurants in New York City, Las Vegas and beyond, such as Gato, Amalfi, Bobby Flay Steak, and Bar Americain. He also several outposts of his fast-casual concept, Bobby’s Burgers, across the United States. He's the author of 16 best-selling cookbooks, an Emmy award-winning star of countless Food Network programs, and both a James Beard and Rising Star of the Year Award-winner.
A powerhouse in the kitchen, on-screen, and at events, Bobby has been sought-out to speak (and do cooking presentations) everywhere from Google to The New York Times. He leaves audiences energized and empowered to improve the way they live and work.