HWA Exclusive Speakers

HWA has broad reach to connect you with virtually any speaker worldwide, including some speakers which you'll find exclusively with HWA.  

These speakers seek to be represented exclusively by HWA since they value how we uniquely prepare them for your event and handle the logistics of getting the speaker to you.  Take a look at our offering of exclusive speakers and contact us to get started.

News about our Exclusive Speakers

<p><strong>Women Making History: Journalist Amna Nawaz paves the way </strong></p>

Women Making History: Journalist Amna Nawaz paves the way

Co-host of PBS NewsHour AMNA NAWAZ smashes glass ceilings. The widely respected journalist happens to be the first Muslim-American to anchor a nationally broadcasted news program, as well as the first Asian American and the first Muslim American to moderate a presidential debate. Nawaz has been recognized for her work with Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies’ Vision Award and the Media Award from the Muslim Affairs Public Council’s Media Award in 2022. She was previously honored with the American Muslim Institution’s Excellence in Media Award in 2018. She told The 19th, “There was just never anyone like me in this kind of role… There’s still a lot of work to be done when it comes to newsrooms and news organizations accurately representing the same audiences and communities we are meant to be serving.”

Watch Amna Nawaz on PBS NewsHour here >>

Watch Amna Nawaz in conversation at the Aspen Security Form here >>

<p><strong>Ginni Rometty speaks on opening doors for others with ‘Tell Me More with Kelly Corrigan’ on PBS</strong></p>

Ginni Rometty speaks on opening doors for others with ‘Tell Me More with Kelly Corrigan’ on PBS

Former IBM Chairman, Wall Street Journal bestselling author, and three-time Fortune “#1 Most Powerful Woman” GINNI ROMETTY described creating wide-scale opportunities for upward mobility with Tell Me More with Kelly Corrigan on PBS. Rometty chairs the coalition OneTen, which is committed to upskilling, hiring, and promoting one million Black Americans without four-year degrees into family-sustaining jobs and careers by 2030. Rometty seeks to share her success, a concept she calls “good power” in uplifting talks and her bestselling memoir, Good Power. Sharing the personal stories of strength, ambition, and collaboration which have informed her life’s work, she inspires audiences to act for themselves and others.

Watch Ginni Rometty speak at SXSW >>

Watch Ginni Rometty’s NC State commencement address >>  

<p><strong>Matt Iseman captivates Good Days Exchange audience with an inspirational keynote speech</strong></p>

Matt Iseman captivates Good Days Exchange audience with an inspirational keynote speech

Doctor-turned-comedian MATT ISEMAN joined the Good Days’ annual Exchange conference to deliver an inspiring keynote on “The Ties That Bind.” In his uplifting speech, Iseman reflected on the bonds that are built through challenging experiences – for example, the journey of mutual support during health challenges. The beloved media personality shared his own experience battling Renal Cell Carcinoma, while keeping his message energetic and empowering. Good Days’ event planner says, "Matt Iseman's electrifying performance at our event was an absolute highlight. He completely captivated the audience with his infectious energy and witty humor. His seamless engagement and natural stage presence made for an unforgettable experience. Just a genuine and outstanding person at the core."

Watch Matt Iseman’s speaking reel here >>

Watch Matt Iseman moderate the Survive and Thrive Celebrity Challenge with the Arthritis Foundation >>

<p><strong>Julián Castro is a political analyst with insider experience</strong></p>

Julián Castro is a political analyst with insider experience

Politician, author, and analyst JULIÁN CASTRO uses his expertise as an elected official in his work as a political analyst. Formerly major of San Antonio, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, and Presidential candidate, he joined NBC and MSNBC to break down today’s pressing political issues.

Secretary Castro also hosts his own podcast, Our America with Julián Castro, to bring forward unheard voices and advocate for change. A gifted analyst and moderator, Castro adeptly lays out the challenges facing the U.S. today with his esteemed guests, providing a road map towards a brighter future. Castro’s White House insider’s perspective will provide valuable insight into upcoming elections.

Watch Julián Castro speak at Villanova University >>

Watch Julián Castro speak at Harvard University’s Kennedy School >>

<p><strong>Activist Andrew Zimmern invited to the White House to feed the U.S.</strong></p>

Activist Andrew Zimmern invited to the White House to feed the U.S.

Award-winning chef, TV personality, and anthropologist ANDREW ZIMMERN was tapped by the U.S. government to share his perspective at the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health. Zimmern is an outspoken advocate for solving hunger. He also serves as a Goodwill Ambassador for the U.N. World Food Programme. In this endeavor, Zimmern worked with policymakers to better serve vulnerable populations. Zimmern’s humanitarian impact can be felt at home and abroad as he works to create a more sustainable, delicious future.

Watch Andrew Zimmern’s keynote at U. of Minnesota here >>

Watch Andrew Zimmern host a fundraiser at Second Harvest Heartland here>>

<p><strong>Adam Savage’s NYT bestseller, ‘Every Tool’s a Hammer’ shares the golden rules of creativity</strong></p>

Adam Savage’s NYT bestseller, ‘Every Tool’s a Hammer’ shares the golden rules of creativity

One of the most beloved figures in science communication, MythBusters co-host ADAM SAVAGE never backs down from a creative challenge. He’s built contraptions ranging from a bifurcated boat to life-size model of a Boeing 747. His ability to tackle any build is powered by his golden rules of creativity, a mindset Savage has carried through the ups and downs of his career. These rules are laid out in his New York Times bestselling memoir and guidebook, Every Tool’s a Hammer: Life is What You Make It. At its core, Every Tool’s a Hammer distills Savage’s forty years of creative experience into an easily transferrable roadmap. An inspiring presentation for any audience, Savage’s writing and speaking motivates audiences to explore their fascinations and dive deeper into creative passions.  

Watch Adam Savage deliver a keynote at Wired by Design here >> 

<p><strong>Republican strategist Ana Navarro inspires future leaders</strong></p>

Republican strategist Ana Navarro inspires future leaders

Republican strategist, political analyst, and community leader ANA NAVARRO believes in teaching future generations to appreciate open and honest discourse. In considering the future of conservatism, Navarro believes that students have an opportunity to change the world for the better. When visiting colleges, Navarro inspires students to use their voices for good. Educational institutions such as Michigan State University, Denison University, Texas Woman’s University, and more have invited her to speak on the future of the Republican party to students, faculty, and community members. Hudson Community College said, “The event was a great success. Those who attended really enjoyed themselves, and her perspective… was down to earth and really understood our audience.”

Watch Ana Navarro on a Spertus panel here >>

Our Exclusive Speakers

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KEVIN MCCARTHY

  • 55th Speaker of the House

55th Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy is described as a man exuding “true American grit.” Prior to his election to Congress, McCarthy served as the fastest rising Minority Leader in the California State Legislature. In Congress, he held nearly every elected leadership position in the House Republican conference and served under four Presidents, during two economic crises, and through consistent political upheaval while always maintaining his approach to governing as a Happy Warrior. After his election to Speaker, McCarthy went on to secure $2T in deficit reduction. McCarthy’s decade and a half at the pinnacle of U.S. government has imbued him with powerful insights into politics, leadership, and values.

Throughout his career, McCarthy fought for a more effective, efficient, and accountable federal government. McCarthy’s invaluable perspective as a Washington insider, as well as his sharp insights and analysis, make him the ideal voice on the future of the U.S.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GENERAL MARK MILLEY

  • 20th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (2019-2023)

General (Ret.) Mark A. Milley served as the 20th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the nation's highest-ranking military officer, and the principal military advisor to the President, Secretary of Defense, and National Security Council. He retired Sept. 29th, 2023. Prior to becoming Chairman on October 1st, 2019, General Milley served as the 39th Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army. General Milley is currently a distinguished fellow in residence with the Security Studies Program in the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and a Charles and Marie Robertson visiting professor and visiting lecturer at the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA). 

In addition to his degree in Political Science from Princeton University, General Milley has multiple master’s degrees – in International Relations from Columbia University and in National Security & Strategic Studies from the U.S. Naval War College. He is also a graduate of the MIT Seminar XXI National Security Studies Program. In the past more than four decades, General Milley has had multiple command and staff positions in six divisions as well as Special Forces. General Milley’s substantive experience in leadership provides impressive and enlightening insight for every audience who engages with him.

General Milley’s depth of knowledge and discernment of today’s geopolitical issues gives shape and meaning to the shifting power centers in the global operational environment. His perspective is invaluable for audiences looking to understand the impact of current conflicts and managing risks on boards of directors and leadership teams who are responsible for making strategic decisions and identifying vulnerabilities. More than a lesson in history or current events, General Milley helps audiences understand the significance of this moment in time as a potential turning point in history.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SANNA MARIN

  • Former Prime Minister & Head of Government of Finland (2019-2023)

Sanna Marin is the Former Prime Minister of Finland (2019-2023) and the leader of the Finnish Social Democratic Party. Appointed at the age of 34, Marin served as the youngest Prime Minister of the world when taking office in 2019. In 2015, Marin was elected to Parliament on her first run, where she was a member of the Grand Committee, Legal Affairs Committee, and Environment Committee. She has also served as Chair of the Social Democratic Party since 2020. Marin’s government has been considered one of the most successful in handling the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in terms of lost lives and economical damage caused by the pandemic. Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Marin led her country through the most swift NATO accession process in the whole history of the alliance. Marin now specializes in topics of geopolitics, strategic autonomy, climate change, and female leadership.

Marin has been actively engaged in politics since 2006. “Being involved and making a difference represent civil rights for me. Changing things takes commitment. The welfare state or the ground rules for working life should not be taken for granted; they are the result of hard work and determined efforts.” Environmental values are also close to Sanna Marin’s heart: “Climate change and loss of biodiversity are some of the biggest problems of our times. Addressing them takes strong political will and determination.”

Marin made history as the longest-serving woman prime minister of Finland, leading a parliamentary coalition entirely headed by women and a majority-women cabinet. She has spoken at Davos AM23, the Lowy Institute, the Munich Security Conference, and for New York University’s 2023 Commencement, among others. In addition to the historical challenges during her leadership, Marin’s government passed many progressive reforms in Finland, including world's most ambitious climate laws aiming for carbon neutrality by 2035, family leave reform sharing paid leave with both parents equally as well as major reforms improving healthcare, education and human rights.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BORIS JOHNSON

  • Former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

Rt. Hon. Boris Johnson is a champion of democracy, freedom, and free market capitalism. He served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Leader of the Conservative Party, Foreign Secretary and Mayor of London. Mr. Johnson believes that the sheer innovative power of the west will take us through the ramifications of the Ukraine war and post-Covid shocks, as well as defeat struggling authoritarian regimes. He believes technology, driven by free market democracies, will ultimately defeat our biggest challenges on health, science, and global warming. Mr. Johnson is sought-after for his illuminating insights on global security, the world economy, and his continued work supporting freedom around the world.

Mr. Johnson argues that in the 21st century, countries must be able to deregulate and be as competitive as possible. That is why he successfully campaigned for Brexit – taking back control of U.K. law, marking the biggest constitutional change for half a century, and enabling the United Kingdom to generate the fastest vaccine approval in the world and the fastest vaccine rollout in Europe – with all the subsequent economic benefits. In addition to his work in politics, he is an award-winning journalist, writer, and editor. He is the author of almost a dozen books, from the globally bestselling historical biography of Winston Churchill, The Churchill Factor, to the self-illustrated children’s book The Perils of Pushy Parents. He edited the Spectator magazine for six years and has written for dozens of major publications including, most notably, London’s Daily Telegraph. He currently writes a weekly column for the Daily Mail. Mr. Johnson is the kind of politician and visionary thinker who takes risks for the principles of democracy, freedom, and free markets, and stands alongside those fighting against authoritarian regimes.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DAVID PLOUFFE

  • Obama Campaign Manager and White House Senior Advisor

A pioneering force of innovation in politics, technology, and grassroots leadership, David Plouffe has distinguished himself as a proven field general and idea generator. He served as Campaign Manager of Barack Obama's historic victory in 2008 and then as Senior Advisor to President Obama in the White House, where he stood at the center of the debate on key issues now facing our country – from tax and entitlement reform to immigration reform and foreign policy challenges. Combined with his pathbreaking work at Uber, and policy and advocacy efforts at the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Plouffe is a transcending force at the intersection of politics, policy, and business. He now consults for leading companies in the consumer, social media, crypto, and technology sectors. Plouffe delivers unprecedented insights on disruptive innovation, from the front lines of momentous shifts in both politics and business.

Plouffe is known for thinking beyond the conventional. With his tenacious, methodical, and proven methods, he knows the essential ingredients to crafting a team built for success. He is the author of two New York Times bestsellers including The Audacity to Win: The Inside Story and Lessons of Barack Obama’s Historic Victory and is a political analyst for NBC News. Plouffe’s array of accomplishments demonstrate his profound ability to bridge the gap between dreaming and achieving.

With his unassuming style, Plouffe communicates motivated and innovative solutions pertinent to any organization seeking to be at the forefront of change in their industry. Drawing people in with rapid-fire, detail-oriented, and visceral stories from the ground, he shares his playbook for success when facing overwhelming and seemingly insurmountable odds. Still deeply immersed in political data and electoral trends, Plouffe can breakdown what could happen in 2024 better than anyone.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GINNI ROMETTY

  • Former Chairman, President, and CEO of IBM

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JOE SCARBOROUGH

  • Creator and Co-Host, MSNBC's 'Morning Joe'

MSNBC's Morning Joe co-host, New York Times Bestselling author, and former U.S. 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. In August of 2023, Morning Joe was the most watched morning show on all of cable. 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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

AMANDA GORMAN

  • Inaugural Poet for President Joe Biden

Award-winning wordsmith, change-maker, and #1 New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller Amanda Gorman is the youngest inaugural poet in U.S. history. Amanda began writing at only a few years of age and has become one of the most recognizable poets in the world. A committed advocate for the environment, racial equality, and gender justice, her activism and poetry have been featured on The Today Show, PBS Kids, and CBS This Morning, and in the New York TimesVogue, and EssenceAmanda has performed multiple commissioned poems for CBS This Morning, and she has spoken at events and venues across the country, including the Library of Congress and Lincoln Center.

Amanda has appeared on the cover of TIME, was the first poet to grace the cover of Vogue, was one of 5 Variety Power of Women honorees and cover star, as well one of 3 cover stars for Glamour's Women of the Year. She has received a Genius Grant from OZY Media, is the recipient of the Poets & Writers Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award, and is the youngest board member of 826 National, the largest youth writing network in the United States.

Amanda is the author of the special edition of her inaugural poem The Hill We Climb, as well as the poetry collection Call Us What We Carry and the children’s book Change Sings, all debuting at #1 on New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists. Her next children’s book, Someday, Something, is due out in the fall of 2023. Amanda’s profound and uplifting remarks ensure an unforgettable experience for her audience.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DE KAI

  • Statesman of AI and Pioneer in AI Ethics and Policy

De Kai is a pioneering AI scientist who is widely regarded as “the Statesman of AI.” A founder of the contemporary AI field as known today, three decades ago De Kai invented and built the world’s first global-scale online language translator. De Kai continues to push boundaries in AI research, alongside speaking to philosophical questions about the fears and possibilities of humanity's new technology and how we can be empowered to shape our future. De Kai is Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at HKUST and Distinguished Research Scholar at Berkeley’s International Computer Science Institute. His cross-disciplinary works relating AI, cognition, language, music, creativity, media arts, ethics and society centers on enabling cultures to relate, and stems from a liberal arts perspective emphasizing creativity in both technical and humanistic dimensions.

De Kai’s groundbreaking projects have spurred the paradigm shift toward today’s state-of-the-art statistical natural language processing technologies. He has done research at Berkeley, UCSD, University of Toronto, Bell Laboratories, Columbia University, TU Munich, and Toronto. He founded HKUST's internationally funded Human Language Technology Center which launched the world's first global-scale online language translator over twenty years ago.

De Kai is among only 17 scientists worldwide named by the Association for Computational Linguistics as a Founding ACL Fellow and has been named one of the 100 most influential figures of Hong Kong. He serves on the board of AI policy think tank TFS (The Future Society), which is heavily involved in drafting the European Union’s forthcoming AI Act. In 2018, Google named De Kai as one of eight inaugural members of its AI Ethics council, ATEAC (Advanced Technology External Advisory Council). Over the past decade, De Kai has given hundreds of talks worldwide on AI ethics, society, and safety.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KIM SCOTT

  • NYT & WSJ Bestselling Author, 'Radical Candor' & 'Just Work' (To be re-released as 'Radical Respect' in May 2024)

Leadership & culture expert Kim Scott is the author of the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller Radical Candor: Be a Kickass Boss without Losing your Humanity, which launched a global management revolution. Kim is the co-Founder of Radical Candor®, LLC – a company dedicated to helping organizations and teams move from a culture of command and control to one of collaboration. Previously, Kim led AdSense, YouTube, and Doubleclick Online Sales and Operations at Google, and then joined Apple to develop and teach a leadership seminar. She has been a CEO coach at Dropbox, Qualtrics, Twitter, and several other tech companies.

Kim was the co-Founder & CEO of Juice Software – a collaboration startup, and led business development at Delta Three and Capital Thinking. Earlier in her career, she worked as a senior policy advisor at the FCC, managed a pediatric clinic in Kosovo, started a diamond cutting factory in Moscow, and was an analyst on the Soviet Companies Fund. Kim is the author of three novels, and her book Just Work: How To Root Out Bias, Prejudice, and Bullying to Create a Kick-Ass Culture of Inclusivity (which is being re-released as Radical Respect in May 2024) is an essential guide leaders and their employees need to create more just workplaces and establish new norms of collaboration and respect.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DR. MARK T. ESPER

  • U.S. Secretary of Defense (2019-2020) and Secretary of the Army (2017-2019)

Mark T. Esper, PhD has led a distinguished career as a visionary leader, innovator, reformer, and change agent with a proven record of accomplishment in a wide range of roles and organizations. He attributes his success to the importance he places on character and values, coupled with boundless energy and a can-do spirit that puts the organization and its people first, and treating everyone with dignity and respect. Dr. Esper became the 27th Secretary of Defense in July 2019 when he was confirmed in an overwhelming 90-8 vote by the U.S. Senate in rare bipartisan fashion. Esper went on to successfully lead the Defense Department through an unprecedented time in the nation’s history, while driving R&D on Artificial Intelligence, directed energy, robotics, and hypersonics, and launching the biggest initiative in decades to improve diversity and inclusion in the armed forces. Esper’s memoir A Sacred Oath is a New York Times bestseller, chronicling this turbulent and critical period of modern American history.

Dr. Esper is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Aspen Strategy Group, and the Atlantic Council, among others, and is a frequent commentator on CNN, FOX, Bloomberg, and other news outlets. He is the Distinguished Chair of the Modern War Institute at his alma mater, West Point. Secretary Esper also serves on a number of private equity and venture capital portfolio company boards and is a partner in the venture capital firm Red Cell Partners, where he also serves as the chairman of its national security practice.

Mark T. Esper offers audiences an array of insights, ideas, forecasts, and strategies based on relevant experience, fostering the success of both individuals and teams.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

RON KLAIN

  • Chief of Staff to President Biden (2021-2023)

Ron Klain was the longest serving first Chief of Staff for any Democratic President (2021-2023). As Chief of Staff to President Biden, Mr. Klain oversaw the Biden-Harris White House staff and served as a member of the Cabinet. President Biden called Ron Klain “a once-in-a-generation talent with fierce intellect and heart.” Mr. Klain has been praised for his bipartisan legislative achievements, a historic focus on judicial nominations, and guiding the White House to an unexpected victory in the midterm elections. A frequent guest on TV news shows, Mr. Klain was a well-known spokesperson for the administration. Mr. Klain was selected for the TIME 100 list of global leaders while serving as Chief of Staff.

Mr. Klain held senior posts in private law practice and spent more than a decade as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Revolution LLC, an investment firm launched by AOL Co-Founder Steve Case in 2005. He is now a partner in global legal giant O'Melveny's Litigation Department and serves on the firm's Executive Committee. In addition, Mr. Klain has devoted many years to public service. He has served as on the Executive Council of TechNet, the Democracy Forward Foundation, and a member of the external advisory boards of the World Economic Forum’s Global Health Security Project and the Ending Pandemics Project. Mr. Klain has worked on eight Presidential campaigns, serving as a top debate preparation advisor to Presidents Biden, Obama and Clinton, and Democratic Presidential nominees Al Gore, John Kerry, and Hillary Clinton.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

VAL DEMINGS

  • U.S. Representative (D-FL, 2017-2023)

Former Congresswoman and Orlando Police Chief Val Demings is a rising political star who has made an impact with her message, “everyone counts, and everyone is accountable.” A lifelong public servant, Demings broke numerous glass ceilings in her rise through the Orlando Police Department, her election to Congress, her appointment to prosecute the first impeachment of former president Donald Trump, her campaign for Senate in Florida, and her consideration as a potential running mate to President Joe Biden. She is heralded as a tireless champion for public safety, civil rights, the rule of law, and the American Dream – Demings shares her perspective and insights as a riveting keynote speaker.

Demings served as the U.S. Representative for Florida’s 10th District from 2017-2023, and held positions on numerous House Committees including Judiciary, Intelligence, Homeland Security, and Oversight and Government Reform. Demings was a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, Women’s Caucus, and New Democratic Caucus, as well as a member of the Law Enforcement Congressional Badge of Bravery Review Board and the Elections Security Taskforce, to name just a few. At sought-after events with groups including the National Association of Real Estate Brokers, the Orlando Economic Partnership, League of Women Voters, 92nd Street Y, and many others, Demings shares her uplifting and inspiring vision for the promise of what America could be, if we have the courage to fight for it.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MICHAEL SPENCE

  • Nobel Laureate, Economic Sciences

Nobel Laureate and award-winning professor Michael Spence is the author of The Next Convergence and co-author of Permacrisis: A Plan to Fix a Fractured World. Spence is the Philip H. Knight Professor Emeritus of Management in the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University, a Senior Fellow of the Hoover Institution at Stanford, and a Distinguished Visiting Fellow of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is an Adjunct Professor at Bocconi University in Milan, and an Honorary Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford University. In 2001, Spence received the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for his work in the field of information economics.

Spence is a Senior Advisor to Jasper Ridge Partners and a Senior Advisor to General Atlantic Partners, and chairs GA’s Global Growth Institute. He chairs the Advisory Board of the Asia Global Institute and was the Chairman of The Independent Commission on Growth and Development (2006-2010). He is a member of the Advisory Council of the Luohan Academy in Hangzhou. He previously served as Dean of the Stanford Business School (1990-99) and Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University (1984-90). Spence was awarded the John Kenneth Galbraith Prize for excellence in teaching and the John Bates Clark Medal, awarded to American economists under age 40 for a "significant contribution to economic thought and knowledge."

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KAI BIRD

  • Pulitzer Prize-Winning Biographer, Historian, and Journalist

Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer, historian, and journalist Kai Bird is the co-author of American Prometheus, the exhilarating biography that inspired Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer. Released in 2005, American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer received enormous acclaim – the New York Times called it “exhaustive and exhilarating” and The Boston Globe called it “an achievement not likely to be surpassed or equaled.” Bird and his work have received tremendous accolades – in addition to the Pulitzer, he won the National Books Critics Circle Award, the Duff Cooper Prize for History, and is an elected member of the prestigious Society of American Historians. Bird is both a relentless chronicler of history and a consummate storyteller – elevating lessons from the past to undeniable relevance for audiences of today.

Bird is the New York Times bestselling author of The Good Spy: The Life and Death of Robert Ames, and biographies of Jimmy Carter, John J. McCloy, McGeorge Bundy, and William Bundy. He chronicled his childhood in the Middle East in his memoir, Crossing Mandelbaum Gate: Coming of Age Between the Arabs and Israelis. He is the Executive Director and Distinguished Lecturer of the Leon Levy Center for Biography at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York City. Bird’s work includes critical writings on the Vietnam War, Hiroshima, nuclear weapons, the Cold War, the Arab-Israeli conflict, and the CIA. His current project is a biography of Roy Cohn, to be published by Scribner.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

REV RUN

  • Hip-Hop Icon and Front Man of RUN DMC

Hip-hop icon, DJ, and preacher Rev Run is one of the most iconic figures in music. The front man of seminal hip-hop group RUN DMC, Rev has sold tens of millions of records worldwide and is widely credited for ushering rap music into mainstream culture. An inductee of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, RUN DMC was named the greatest hip-hop artist of all-time by both MTV and VH1. Describing his considerable impact, Rolling Stone writes, “[Run] took hardcore hip-hop from an underground street sensation to a pop-culture phenomenon... In the process, [Run] helped change the course of popular music, paving the way for rap’s second generation.” A cultural icon, Run has been invited to countless corporate conferences and large-scale events as a motivational speaker and celebrity DJ.

Run remains a dynamic figure in entertainment today. He is the author of several books, is an ordained minister, and a beloved TV personality. His hit MTV show, Run’s House, aired for six seasons and became one of the most widely viewed shows on cable television. Run created and starred in Rev Run’s Sunday Suppers (Food Network), Rev Runs Around the World (Travel Channel), Rev Run’s Home Renovation (HGTV), and All About the Washingtons (Netflix). Most recently, Run starred in The Hip Hop Nutcracker (Disney+) and Disney’s Christmas Holiday Show (ABC Network). Run is in demand for his uplifting style, which resonates across audiences from Black History Month celebrations to mission-driven organizations to corporate clients looking to create an unforgettable experience.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ZIWE

  • Acclaimed Comedian, Writer, and Actress

Comedian, writer, and actress Ziwe has captured audiences with her signature candor, wit, and salient commentary on race and politics in America. Ziwe hosted the A24 produced late-night variety sketch show, Ziwe, which was heralded by audiences and critics alike. As one of TIME’s 100 Next Gen Leaders, her refreshing approach to broadcast journalism represents the renaissance of late-night. Her guests have included Fran Leibowitz, Gloria Steinem, Stacey Abrams, Chet Hanks, and Julia Fox, among others. Ziwe is the author of a much-anticipated book of essays, Black Friend, which is due out Fall 2023.

Hailed as the multi-hyphenate comedic voice to emerge from social media, Ziwe garnered attention during the early months of the pandemic with her provocative and hilarious interviews on her Instagram Live & YouTube talk series, Baited. The show featured interviews full of hard truths with the likes of Caroline Calloway, Alison Roman, Rose McGowan, and Jeremy O. Harris. She has released an album of songs from her Showtime show, Ziwe: A Famously Iconic Soundtrack, and has been featured as an actor on Succession, The Great North, Dickinson, and more. Ziwe’s iconic comedic voice, balanced with her incisive perspective as a cultural critic, ensures a memorable event that will resonate with audiences of all kinds.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ROCHELLE WALENSKY, MD, MPH

  • Former Director of the Center for Disease Control (2021-2023)

Former Director of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Dr. Rochelle Walensky is a renowned expert exploring the challenges and gifts of what it means for leaders, organizations, and the world to protect public health. Dr. Walensky was the chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital and served as the 19th director of the CDC and the ninth administrator of the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. Having received an M.D from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, she also trained in internal medicine and earned an MPH in clinical effectiveness from the Harvard School of Public Health in 2001. In the earliest part of the pandemic, Dr. Walensky served on the front lines, taking care of patients, serving on the Massachusetts General Hospital incident management team, and conducting research on vaccine deliver and strategies to reach underserved communities. Dr. Walensky’s tenure at the CDC began on January 20th, 2021, when she led the nation - and the world - through unprecedented times, facing the largest density of infectious threats likely ever seen in this country.

Dr. Walensky has worked to improve HIV screening and care in South Africa, led health policy initiatives, and researched clinical trial design and evaluation in a variety of settings. She was chair of the Office of AIDS Research Advisory Council at the National Institutes of Health from 2014 to 2015. She has also been a member of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Panel on Antiretroviral Guidelines for Adults and Adolescents and had been co-director of the Medical Practice Evaluation Center at Massachusetts General Hospital since 2011 before assuming the position of CDC Director. Sought-after for her perspective on public health and crisis management, Dr. Walensky has spoken for groups including Boston University, Northeastern University, Bloomberg, Milken Institute, Aspen Ideas, and more.

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AMBASSADOR TERRY BRANSTAD

  • Former U.S. Ambassador to China (2017-2020)

Former U.S. Ambassador to China Terry Branstad is the president of the World Food Prize Foundation, and the longest serving governor in the history of the United States. In addition to his role as president of Des Moines University Medical School, his public service includes election to the office of Lt. Governor and three-terms in the Iowa House of Representatives. He is a founding partner of the Branstad Churchill Group, a strategic consulting firm that provides advice, guidance and solutions to organizations, corporate leaders and investors seeking to navigate the complexities associated with conducting business in China and the United States.  

During his tenure as U.S. Ambassador to China, Branstad’s two greatest accomplishments included the signing of the historic Phase-One Trade Agreement in January of 2020 and successfully lobbying the Chinese government to stem the flow of fentanyl into the United States. Last year, Branstad was named “Ambassador-In-Residence” at Drake University in Des Moines, where he received his Juris Doctorate.  He continues his public service as the national co-chair of the capital campaign to modernize the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum in West Branch, Iowa. Branstad has spoken for groups including KraneShares, the Committee of 100, US Meat Export Federation, National Pork Producers, and more.

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BEN HARRIS

  • Vice President and Director of Economic Studies, Brookings Institution

Prominent economist and author Ben Harris is Vice President and Director of Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution. Harris recently served as Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy and Chief Economist with the U.S. Treasury Department. In this role, Harris was a close adviser to Secretary Yellen, the Administration’s lead official on the price cap on Russian oil, and a key staffer in the development of the Build Back Better legislation. Harris has been a long-time advisor to President Biden, serving as his chief economist in the Obama White House and acting as the senior economic advisor to the Biden campaign. The New York Times called him "the quiet architect of Biden's plan to rescue the economy." Harris has been sought-after for speaking events at the Argus European Crude Conference, MIT Sloan Business School, Harvard Kenney School, American Enterprise Institute, among many others.

Prior to joining Treasury, Harris was the Executive Director of the Kellogg Public-Private Initiative and a research associate professor at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management, in addition to serving as the chief economist to the evidence-based policy organization Results for America. Harris recently published The Retirement Challenge with Martin N. Bailey, addressing some of the most vexing problems facing the American retirement system. Harris has also published a variety of academic papers and policy briefs related to topics in public finance and has been regularly cited in media reports related to fiscal policy. His op-eds have been widely published, including frequent publication in the Wall Street Journal. Earlier in his career, he was the policy director of The Hamilton Project, a fellow in Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution, and deputy director of the Retirement Security Project.

Covering a wide variety of key topics, Harris is an expert on such timely topics as the macroeconomic economic outlook, Biden Administration policy, global energy markets and the price cap on Russian oil, the debt ceiling, and Congressional negotiations. 

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JOHN AVLON

  • Senior Political Analyst and Anchor, CNN

Many-time bestselling author, columnist, and commentator John Avlon has been called “a trusted, grounded, and welcome voice” emphasizing bipartisanship and real solutions. Avlon is a Senior Political Analyst and Anchor at CNN, known for his “Reality Check” segments across the network. He is an award-winning columnist and the author of Independent NationWingnutsWashington’s Farewell, and Lincoln & the Fight for Peace as well as co-editor of the acclaimed Deadline Artists journalism anthologies. He was the editor-in-chief and managing director of The Daily Beast between 2013 and 2018 and served as chief speechwriter for the Mayor of New York. Avlon’s essay, “The Resilient City” was selected to conclude Empire City: New York through the Centuries and won acclaim as “the single best essay written in the wake of 9/11.”

Avlon has appeared multiple times on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Real Time with Bill Maher, The Daily Show, PBS, and C-Span. He has spoken at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, the National Constitution Center, and other civic organizations around the nation. Avlon is also a co-founder of No Labels – a group of Democrats, Republicans and Independents dedicated to the politics of problem-solving and making government work again. Highly regarded for his shrewd analysis of the headlines of the day, offering historic perspective on the current political climate of the U.S., and the role of journalism in politics, Avlon offers reasoned discourse that focuses on real solutions.

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VICTORIA EADY BUTLER

  • Award-Winning Master Blender, Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey

Award-winning whiskey master blender Victoria Eady Butler is one of the key women behind the fastest-growing whiskey brand in U.S. history, Uncle Nearest, Inc. A relatively new face in the spirits world, whiskey is definitely in her blood. Butler is the great-great-granddaughter of the first known African American master distiller Nearest Green and carries on her family’s legacy first-hand. An Imbibe 75 alumnus, Butler was concluding a successful career as an analytical manager for the Regional Organized Crime Information Center in Nashville when Uncle Nearest Whiskey Founder and CEO Fawn Weaver invited her onboard. Butler quickly transitioned to master blender after curating a definitive batch of whiskey for the brand, which sold out immediately and won numerous awards, including two double-golds at international competitions.

Butler is a member of the executive team, and oversees the blending process of the core and Master Blend portfolios for the many-time award-winning Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey. Butler has been sought after to speak for groups including the Bourbon Women Association, the Vibe Conference, The Mercantile Library, Tennessee Whiskey Festival, the Black Bourbon Society, to name a few.

Butler is one of Imbibe Magazine’s “75 People to Watch,” and has been featured in Wine Enthusiast Magazine, The New York Times, Garden & Gun, Food & Wine, and many more. Butler currently oversees the Nearest Green Foundation, a 501(s)(3) non-profit organization that provides scholarships to Nearest Green’s descendants, which is funded by the sales of Uncle Nearest whiskeys. An industry trailblazer, she was the first female to be awarded Master Blender of the Year at the American Icons of Whisky Awards and in 2022, she became the first person in history to win that title back-to-back. In compelling keynotes, moderated conversations, and Q&As, Butler shares her incredible journey to the top of her industry and her insights about building a purpose-drive and profitable brand.

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CHRIS VOSS

  • Former FBI Lead Hostage Negotiator and Authority in High-Stakes Negotiation

Former international FBI hostage negotiator and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Chris Voss share a methodology that can used anywhere in the world, a strategy to build stronger relationships in a shorter period of time and enable audiences to negotiate deals they never thought would be possible. Chris was the lead international kidnapping negotiator for the FBI, as well as the hostage negotiation representative for the National Security Council’s Hostage Working Group. During his government career, he also represented the U.S. Government at two international conferences sponsored by the G-8 as an expert in kidnapping. Prior to becoming the FBI lead international kidnapping negotiator, Christopher served as the lead Crisis Negotiator for the New York City Division of the FBI. Christopher was a member of the New York City Joint Terrorist Task Force for 14 years. He was the case agent on such cases as TERRSTOP (the Blind Sheikh Case – Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman), and the TWA Flight 800 catastrophe and negotiated the surrender of the first hostage taker to give up in the Chase Manhattan bank robbery hostage taking.

Voss is the Wall Street journal bestselling author of Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It and The Full Fee Agent: How to Stack the Odds in Your Favor as a Real Estate Professional. Drawing on his 24-year tenure in the Bureau and training by not only the FBI but also Scotland Yard and Harvard Law School, Voss teaches a popular MasterClass and is the Founder & CEO of The Black Swan Group. He is a recipient of the Attorney General’s Award for Excellence in Law Enforcement and the FBI Agents Association Award for Distinguished and Exemplary Service. Voss leverages his many years of experience in international crisis and high-stakes negotiations to develop a unique program and team that applies these globally proven techniques to the business world.

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GEOFF DUNCAN

  • Georgia's 12th Lieutenant Governor (2019-2023)

A former professional baseball player, CNN contributor and successful entrepreneur, Geoff Duncan served as Georgia’s Lieutenant Governor from 2019-2023. As the state’s second-most powerful Republican and president of the State Senate, Duncan used a bipartisan approach to navigate the chamber through a global pandemic, civil unrest, and economic tumult. Duncan has established himself as a bold leader, especially in the areas of health care, public safety, technology, and economic development. His efforts to spearhead Georgia becoming the “Technology Capital of the East Coast” have been nationally recognized. After rising to national prominence, he authored a book entitled, GOP 2.0: How the 2020 Election Can Lead to a Better Way Forward for America's Conservative Party.

Prior to public service, Duncan enjoyed a successful career in the private sector. In 2001, he founded a marketing company that sold promotional products to mid-size and large corporate clients nationwide. In 2003, he launched a tech-enabled literature fulfillment division for several large corporate clients. In 2016, Duncan was hired as the CEO of a health care company where he successfully raised several rounds of early round growth capital. In 2019, he founded a consulting business to help growth stage private companies work directly with their management teams. Duncan also serves as a strategic advisor to several venture capital firms around the country.

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JOEL BERVELL

  • 'Medical Mythbuster' - Over 760K Followers and 120M+ Views

Ghanaian-American medical student and science communicator Joel Bervell is known as the ‘Medical Mythbuster’ for creating viral medical content on social media that is at the forefront of conversations about racial disparities in healthcare, the hidden history of medicine, and overlooked biases in the healthcare industry. After entering medical school, Bervell became a highly respected TikTok and Instagram creator, with over 760K combined followers and 120M+ views. In his videos, as he does in speaking engagements, he breaks down complex topics about how healthcare fails to serve marginalized groups. A gifted educator and engaging speaker, Bervell has been sought after to share his unique and inspiring perspective with groups like Meta, Google, TikTok, the Clinton Foundation, General Electric, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and on behalf of the Congressional Black Congress, among others.

Bervell has been featured on Good Morning America, Business Insider, NPR, YahooNews, WebMD, and more, and has advised organizations like TikTok on efforts to increase Diversity & Inclusion. The Medical Mythbuster serves on councils including the White House Office of Public Engagement’s Health Care Leaders in Social Media, the Council for Responsible Social Media, and the World Health Organization’s ‘Operation Fides’. He has collaborated with brands including Neutrogena, Google, Samsung, Listerine, Gushers, and the American Medical Association. Bervell’s work earned him the honor of being named a Smithsonian Channel ‘Cyclebreaker’, a Scientific American ‘Revolutionary’, a 2022 National Minority Quality Forum “40 Under 40 Leader in Minority Health,” and the 2022 recipient of the American Medical Student Association’s Racial Justice in Medicine Award.

For leaders and organizations looking to understand diversity, equity, and inclusion in healthcare, increase understanding of overlooked stories, or examine the changing landscape of social media, Bervell offers an unparalleled perspective that will resonate with audiences.

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BAN KI-MOON

  • Secretary-General of the United Nations (2007-2016)

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.

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HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON

  • 2016 Democratic Presidential Nominee

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.

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PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON

  • Founder, Clinton Foundation

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.

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PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA

  • 44th President of the United States of America

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.

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FORMER FIRST LADY MICHELLE OBAMA

Growing up on the South Side of Chicago, Michelle Obama never imagined that she’d become First Lady of the United States. She never imagined that one day, she would inspire people all around the world and drive historic change. As the daughter of a city water-pump operator and a stay-at-home mom, girls like her aren’t supposed to do any of that.

But Michelle Obama has spent her life challenging us to reconsider where that “supposed to” comes from — and who determines it. Her life shows us that you don't have to look a certain way or act a certain way to fit in; you don't have to make a lot of money or come from a certain group or class or faith in order to matter. Each of us can write our own story. And when we share those stories with one another, we can lift each other up along the way.

That’s why, as an author, Michelle speaks candidly about her experiences as a wife, mother, Black woman, and First Lady of the United States, telling her story in a way that empowers others to see the beauty in their own. Through her advocacy work, she strives to help young people see the power of their voice and the boundless promise inside of them.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

INDRA NOOYI

  • Chairman & CEO of PepsiCo (2006-2018)

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."

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AMY POEHLER

  • Award-Winning Comedian, Actress, and Producer

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.

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TINA FEY

  • Award-Winning Actor, Producer, and Writer

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.

 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GARY COHN

  • Vice Chairman of IBM

Finance industry legend Gary Cohn brings unparalleled private and public sector leadership experience to offer an unmatched perspective on the forces impacting the global and U.S. economy, the intersection of finance and technology, and economic policymaking. 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 and former chief economic advisor to the President of the United States. A pro-business and pro-growth champion, Cohn speaks on issues ranging from monetary policy to fiscal policy, trade to tech, regulatory policy to the legislative process, translating uncertainty into tangible takeaways for audiences worldwide.

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 Bloomberg New Economy Forum. Cohn is the former Director of the U.S. National Economic Council and served as President and Chief Operating Officer of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. from 2006-2016. Cohn 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.

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STEVE MARTIN

  • Iconic Actor and Comedian

Beloved entertainer Steve Martin is an award-winning comedian, actor, writer, producer, and musician. The multi-hyphenate creative rose to prominence on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour (1967-1969). He has since delighted audience on screens through his standup on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and NBC’s Saturday Night Live alongside his iconic films: Planes, Trains & Automobiles, Roxanne, Parenthood, L.A. Story, Father of the Bride, Pink Panther, and many more. Also an accomplished musician, Martin has composed multiple award-winning, boundary-pushing bluegrass albums. 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.

Martin’s Netflix special with Martin Short, An Evening You Will Forget For The Rest Of Your Life, received four Emmy nominations. Their tours, Now You See Them, Soon You Won’t, and The Funniest Show in Town at the Moment, were smashing successes showcasing Martin’s creative versatility. Martin and Short also star together in Hulu’s must-watch comedy series, Only Murders in the Building.

For his multi-medium work, Martin has won an Academy Award, five Grammy awards, an Emmy, the Mark Twain Award, and the Kennedy Center Honor. He has been welcomed to speak by hosts such as the Getty Research Institute, Center Stage Entertainment, the New Yorker Festival, and more. Audiences flock to Martin’s melodic performances, warm stage presence, and indelible humor.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KEVIN HART

  • Superstar Comedian and Actor

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 MaddyFatherhood 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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

RYAN REYNOLDS

  • Acclaimed Actor, Comedian, Film Producer, and Screenwriter

Ryan Reynolds is one of Hollywood’s most diverse leading men seamlessly transitioning through varied genres of drama, action and comedy in his rich and ever evolving career.  He is equally as successful off-screen as a producer, screenwriter, entrepreneur, and marketing powerhouse.

He is the Golden Globe nominated star and producer of the 20th Century Fox billion-dollar franchise Deadpool.

Beyond acting, Reynolds is a successful entrepreneur and an award-winning marketer, creating breakthrough campaigns for Deadpool as well Aviation Gin, Mint Mobile and the Match Group. He is an owner of Aviation Gin, Mint Mobile, Wrexham Football Club, Chief Creative Officer of MNTN and a co-founder of Maximum Effort Productions. He has been recognized as one of the most creative people in business by Fast Company, The Hollywood Reporter, Wall Street Journal and AdWeek among others.

Reynolds is an in-demand speaker for engaging, insightful conversations about his storied career in Hollywood and significant business endeavors.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

TOM BRADY

  • Seven-Time Super Bowl Champion Quarterback

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SULLY SULLENBERGER

  • 'Miracle on the Hudson' Captain

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MOHAMED EL-ERIAN

  • Chief Economic Advisor at Allianz

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

STACEY ABRAMS

  • Political Leader, Voting Rights Activist, and Serial Entrepreneur

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."

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SYMONE SANDERS TOWNSEND

  • Political Strategist and Former CNN Political Commentator

Seasoned political strategist, former CNN political commentator, and author Symone Sanders Townsend is a gifted communicator with a passion for problem solving, social justice, and in-depth analysis of today’s most important issues. Sanders Townsend 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 Townsend 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 Townsend 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 Townsend worked on leading-edge solutions to tough political and social problems. Sanders Townsend 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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

TINA BROWN

  • Award-Winning Journalist, Author, and Editor

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

PEGGY NOONAN

  • Pulitzer Prize-Winning Columnist for The Wall Street Journal

Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and bestselling author Peggy Noonan has provided unique and thoughtful analysis of our nation and its leaders to millions of readers worldwide. Her Wall Street Journal column, Declarations, has run weekly since 2000. Forbes Magazine hailed her column as “principled, perceptive, persuasive, and patriotic.” She was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for distinguished commentary in 2017. Noonan has 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. Noonan’s speeches are filled with humorous anecdotes and political insight, as entertaining as they are thought-provoking.

A current political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, Noonan provides unique and thoughtful analysis of our nation and its leaders. Noonan has spoken to groups as diverse as the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, World Affairs Council, the University of Charleston, the 92Y, and more.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MIKA BRZEZINSKI

  • Celebrated Commentator on Current Events, World Affairs, and Women's Empowerment

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MASAI UJIRI

  • Vice-Chairman and President, Toronto Raptors

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JULIA GILLARD

  • 27th Prime Minister of Australia (2010-2013) & First Woman to Hold the Office

27th Prime Minister of Australia, world leader, and acclaimed author Julia Gillard offers fresh insights on geopolitics, the global economy, gender equality, and global health. The first woman to serve as Australia’s Prime Minister, Gillard received worldwide attention for her speech in Parliament on the treatment of women in professional and public life. Gillard is the author of three books: her memoir, My Story, Women and Leadership: Real Lives, Real Lessons, co-authored by Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, which analyzes the influence of gender on women’s access to positions of leadership, and Not Now, Not Ever: Ten years on from the misogyny speech, which explores the history and culture of misogyny and the roadmap for the future.

Gillard is a Distinguished Fellow with the Center for Universal Education at the Brookings Institution in Washington and serves as an Honorary Professor at the University of Adelaide. She currently serves as Chair of beyondblue – one of Australia’s leading mental health awareness bodies, Wellcome – a global charitable foundation which supports science to solve urgent health challenges, and is the inaugural Chair of the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership – which is addressing women’s under-representation in leadership through research, practice, and advocacy. She previously led the Global Partnership for Education – the global funding body for education in developing countries. Gillard was appointed to lead South Australia’s Royal Commission into Early Childhood Education and Care.

Named to Forbes list of “The World’s Most Powerful Women,” Gillard’s expertise in leadership, global and mental health, and gender equality has established her a global leader and key voice in today’s most important conversations.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GREG GUTFELD

  • Host, 'GUTFELD!' #1 Rated Late Night Show

Political satirist, libertarian, New York Times bestselling author, and hit TV host Greg Gutfeld has been called “outrageous and outspoken,” neither of which he denies. Greg is the host of the #1 rated late night show GUTFELD! on FOX News, where he parodies current events and tackles key issues with his trademark humor. One of the biggest stars of cable news, he also contributes to his own digital community The Gutter, where he covers every lifestyle topic imaginable with his unique comedic conservative-libertarian perspective. A gifted speaker, Greg delivers a custom tailored experience, enabling him to connect with every audience he meets, providing both a highly entertaining and thought-provoking event.

Greg is also a many-time New York Times bestselling author of The Joy of Hate, Not Cool, How to be Right, The Gutfeld Monologues, and The Plus: Self-Help for People Who Hate Self-Help. His next book, The King of Late Night, reveals how Greg took a throw-away time slot in the middle of the night and turned it into a cult classic, becoming who The Weekly Standard calls “the most dangerous man on television.” Greg consistently receives rave reviews, such as: “Greg was outstanding and the crowd loved him! People are still talking about how much fun they had and how funny and smart Greg was.” (Morris County Republican Committee)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KIZZMEKIA CORBETT-HELAIRE

  • Lead Scientist, COVID-19 mRNA Vaccine Development

Dr. Kizzmekia Corbett-Helaire 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-Helaire 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-Helaire 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. 

 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SHAQUILLE O'NEAL

  • Member NBA Hall of Fame & 15-Time NBA All Star Player

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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

WHOOPI GOLDBERG

  • EGOT Award-Winning Actress and Comedian

Legendary artist and creator Whoopi Goldberg is one of an elite handful of entertainers and the first Black woman to achieve the EGOT status by winning an Academy Award, an Emmy Award, a Grammy Award, and a Tony Award. She has also won the prestigious Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. She is also a prolific producer, and successful entrepreneur, and she is recognized worldwide for her humanitarian endeavors. Goldberg is a New York Times bestselling author of numerous books for children and adults, including The Sugar Plum Ballerinas series, Whoopi’s Big Book of Manners, and retrospective memoirs reflecting on her illustrious life and career. She is the moderator of ABC’s Emmy Award-winning The View.

Beyond her remarkable film, theater, and television career, Goldberg 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, Goldberg is a Goodwill Ambassador to the United Nations. Her engaging stage presence, inspiring story, and signature wit have been sought out by 92Y, Kean University, DragCon NYC, Goodwin College, and more.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

LIN-MANUEL MIRANDA

  • Award-Winning Composer, Lyricist, and Performer

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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SIR TIM BERNERS-LEE

  • Inventor of the World Wide Web

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JOHN BOEHNER

  • Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives (2011-2015)

Former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives John Boehner has spent his political career working towards a smaller, less costly, and more accountable federal government. He took the gavel as Speaker of the House following a historic election in which Congressional Republicans, under Speaker Boehner’s leadership, picked up 63 seats in the U.S. House. Speaker Boehner represented the Eighth Congressional District of Ohio in the U.S. House for over two decades, serving as Chairman of the House Committee on Education & the Workforce, House Minority Leader, and House Majority Leader during his tenure. Boehner led the government through many pivotal historical moments, giving him a holistic view of politics, leadership, and decision-making.

For insight into what is happening behind closed doors in the current political landscape, turn to Speaker Boehner's firsthand perspective. His book, On the House: A Washington Memoir, recalls Boehner’s five years as Speaker of the House. Hosts such as Stanford University, Edison Electric Institute, the National Restaurant Association Public Affairs Conference, BMO Financial Group have sought his expert remarks.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JIM YONG KIM

  • President, World Bank Group (2012-2019)

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 amplifying 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 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

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ROBERT GIBBS

  • Executive Vice President & Global Chief Communications Officer, McDonalds (2015-19)

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JULIÁN CASTRO

  • Political Analyst, NBC News and MSNBC

Politician, author, and analyst 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. Castro serves as CEO of the Latino Community Foundation, the nation’s largest Latino-serving foundation. 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.

His memoir, An Unlikely Journey: Waking Up from My American Dream, is a candid account of race and poverty in America. His views on equality, housing, and the future of America have been sought by America Votes, The National Association of Colleges and Employers, New York University, and more. In sharing lessons learned from the struggles and successes of his political journey, Castro gives audiences insight into how any group can make a significant change when it comes to America's most pressing issues.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CHRIS CHRISTIE

  • Former Governor of New Jersey

55th New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is a high-profile figure in U.S. politics. He 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, setting a bipartisan example for storm recovery. Gov. Christie is currently a Senior Legal and Political Commentator for ABC News and the Managing Member of the Christie Law Firm and Christie 55 Solutions, LLC. Previously, he served as Chairman of the Trump Presidential Transition Committee. He is the author of The New York Times bestseller Let Me Finish, detailing his life and career in New Jersey and as a candidate for President. In his book What Would Reagen Do? Gov. Christie reflects on the past, present, and future of U.S. leadership. Lauded for his trademark charisma and candor, Gov. 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.

Gov. Christie highlights achievable solutions and unrelenting leadership which will help move us forward and help solve the most pressing issues in Washington. His insights have been sought by hosts such as Concordia, Motorola Solutions, the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation & Institute, and more.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

RIZ AHMED

  • Award-Winning Actor, Writer, Producer, Director, and Musician

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MAE JEMISON

  • First African American Woman in Space

American icon Dr. Mae C. Jemison broke more than the sound barrier in 1992 when she climbed aboard the space shuttle Endeavour – she became the first woman of color to travel into space. Dr. Jemison was NASA’s first Science Mission Specialist, performing experiments in material science, life science, and human adaptation to weightlessness. She now leads 100 Year Starship (100YSS), a bold, far reaching nonprofit initiative to assure the capabilities exist for human travel beyond our solar system to another star within the next 100 years. Dr. Jemison is a highly sought-after speaker on issues of health care, social responsibility, technology, education, STEM, and motivation.

Dr. Jemison is the Founder and President of The Jemison Group, Inc. (JG) – a technology consulting firm integrating critical socio-cultural issues into the design of engineering and science projects, as well as BioSentient Corporation - a medical devices and services company focused on improving health and human performance is such a company. An inductee of the National Women’s Hall of Fame and the International Space Hall of Fame, she is the author of Find Where the Wind Goes: Moments from My Life and editor of 100 Year Starship Canopus Award Anthology. Dr. Jemison is in demand with groups including DePaul University, MKTG, Girl Scouts of the USA, Qatar Foundation, among many others.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DICK COSTOLO

  • CEO of Twitter (2010-2015)

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

URSULA BURNS

  • Former CEO & Chairman of the Board of the Xerox Corporation (2010-2017)

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 is also Co-Founder of Integrum Holdings, a private equity firm. Burns is 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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DAN SCHULMAN

  • Fmr. President & CEO of PayPal (2015-2023)

Visionary former CEO of PayPal and tech leadership expert Dan Schulman blends profit with purpose and focuses on improving the financial health of people, families, and businesses around the world. Frequently recognized by Fortune as one of the “Top 20 Businesspersons of the Year,” Dan encourages his audiences to embrace stakeholder capitalism, diversity, inclusion, and more, while prioritizing responsible and world class business practices. Prior to his role at PayPal, he served as Group President at American Express, President of the Prepaid Group at Spring Nextel Corporation following its acquisition of Virgin Mobile USA, Inc., where he led the company as its founding CEO for eight years, and President and CEO of Priceline Group, Inc. Dan is currently on the Board of Directors for both Verizon and Cisco. Dan has lead global brands through major periods of transition, consistently delivery results and building a reputation as a difference-maker. With his extensive experience in payments, e-commerce, and mobile technology, Dan is uniquely positioned to speak to the challenges and opportunities facing companies today.

Dan is consistently featured on “Best CEO” lists, including being named one of Glassdoor’s “Top 50 CEOs” and Fast Company’s “Top 100 Most Creative People.” Dan was also named one of Fortune’s “World’s 50 Greatest Leaders,” heralded for his willingness to step up and make the world better, inspiring others to do the same. Under his leadership, PayPal was named one of the top companies on JUST Capital and Forbes’ JUST 100 list, featuring “companies doing right by America.” PayPal was named to Morning Consult’s “Most Trusted Brands” list and has also been recognized as a Fortune Change the World company for its work to tackle the biggest challenges facing society today. In sought-after talks, Dan empowers audiences with his insights about the future of money, values-driven business, reimagining how merchants can continually strengthen their businesses, and innovative leadership.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SIMON SINEK

  • Renowned Leadership Expert

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."

 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

LORI GREINER

  • Shark on ABC’s 'Shark Tank'

Heralded as a legendary entrepreneur and inventor, Lori Greiner started with one idea and turned it into a multi-million-dollar international brand. Recognized as one of the most prolific inventors of retail products of our time, Lori has created and marketed over 1,000 products, holds 120 U.S. and international patents, and has a 90% success rate for new items launched. Lori is known for her impeccable negotiating skills and uncanny ability to know, identify, and launch emerging brands.

Lori is a leading Shark on ABC’s four-time Emmy-winning entrepreneurial business show, Shark Tank, where she invests in companies and helps turn peoples’ dreams into a reality. Lori has brought her engaging expertise on innovation, growth, and the world of business to groups including Verizon, Coldwell Banker, PayPal, IBM, Adobe, Chase, and many more.

At the heart of Lori’s success is the winning combination of her talent, hard work, and perseverance. A strong role model and true inspiration to many, she was honored with the Sherry Lansing "Woman of the Year" Award and by the Paley Center as an Important Woman in Television, listed as one of Success Magazine’s "Top 25 Personal and Professional Development Influencers to Follow," ranked by Business Insider Magazine as one of the "Top 30 Best Women Early-Stage Investors of 2023," and voted as a fan favorite on Shark Tank. Lori is a committed philanthropist and author of the international bestseller Invent It, Sell It, Bank It!. A force to be reckoned with in the business world and beyond, Lori delivers empowering insights and buzz-worthy takeaways, emboldening her audience to thrive in work and in life.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SERENA WILLIAMS

  • 23-time Grand Slam Champion, Entrepreneur, and Founder of Serena Ventures

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

VENUS WILLIAMS

  • Legendary Tennis Champion: 7-Time Grand Slam Singles Champion, 5-Time Wimbledon Champion, 4-Time Olympic Gold Medalist

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)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

AL GORE

  • Vice President of the United States (1993-2001)

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.

 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DICK CHENEY

  • Vice President of the United States (2001-2009)

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BOZOMA SAINT JOHN

  • Trailblazing Brand Marketing Executive

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MARCUS BUCKINGHAM

  • New York Times Best-Selling Author, Researcher, and Founder of the Strengths Revolution

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. 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.

HWA

MIKA BRZEZINSKI & JOE SCARBOROUGH

  • Hosts of MSNBC's 'Morning Joe'

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

EHUD BARAK

  • Prime Minister of Israel (1999-2001)

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GLENNON DOYLE

  • #1 New York Times Bestselling Author of 'Love Warrior' and 'Untamed'

Author, activist, and philanthropist Glennon Doyle was anointed the “patron saint of female empowerment” by People Magazine. She is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller UNTAMED, a Reese’s Book Club selection which has sold over 3M 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 currently hosts the WE CAN DO HARD THINGS podcast, which debuted at #1 on Apple’s podcast charts and was named the #1 New Podcast of 2021 on Apple Podcasts. She is the founder and president of Together Rising, an all-women-led nonprofit organization that has revolutionized grassroots philanthropy – raising over $50 million for women, families, and children in crisis. She brings her unmatchable energy, insightful analysis, and creative spirit audiences love to every live discussion.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ERIN BROCKOVICH

  • Iconic Environmental Activist and Consumer Advocate

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.  

HWA EXCLUSIVE

PETE DAVIDSON

  • Famed Comedian and Actor

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

STEVE FORBES

  • Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, Forbes Media

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KARL ROVE

  • Foremost Conservative Commentator & Strategist

Iconic campaign strategist Karl Rove is one of the most sought-after political pundits of our time, widely respected for his robust knowledge of major political issues. Rove served as Senior Advisor and Deputy Chief of Staff to President George W. Bush overseeing the Offices of Political Affairs, Public Liaison, Intergovernmental Relations, Strategic Initiatives and as Deputy Chief, the White House Policy process. Before the White House, he ran Rove + Co., a public affairs firm that consulted on over 75 GOP campaigns for Senator, Governor, Congress, and statewide office. Rove writes a weekly op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, appears frequently on Fox News, and is the author of the New York Times bestseller Courage and Consequence and The Triumph of William McKinley. Conservative editor and columnist Fred Barnes called him “the greatest political mind of his and probably of any generation.”

From major international conferences and association meetings to college campuses and corporate events, Rove's shrewd analysis resonates with audiences. Diverse organizations including the National Association of Chain Drug StoresSinai Health SystemCignaYahoo!University of North Carolina-Wilmington, and more have sought out Rove as a speaker. Sponsors hosting Rove have reported his remarks "were extremely insightful and very helpful to our industry leaders"(Edison Electric Institute) and "provocative, lively and thoughtful" (Nomura) with audiences" often erupting in applause" (Wabash College) and for presentations praised as "one of the highest-rated" (The TriZetto Group). 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MICHAEL STRAHAN

  • Legendary Super Bowl Champion and Hall of Fame Member

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CECILE RICHARDS

  • Co-Founder, Supermajority

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BEN SHERWOOD

  • Founder and CEO, MOJO sports tech and media company

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)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

RONAN FARROW

  • Pulitzer Prize-Winning Investigative Reporter and New York Times Bestselling Author

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".

HWA EXCLUSIVE

LAWRENCE SUMMERS

  • Economic & Financial Thought Leader

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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

AMY SCHUMER

  • Emmy Award-Winning Comedian, Actor, Writer, Producer, and Director

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

TYLER PERRY

  • Famed Actor, Producer, Writer, and Director

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.

HWA CO-EXCLUSIVE

ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER

  • Governor of California (2003-2011)

California’s 38th Governor, Hollywood icon, and philanthropist Arnold Schwarzenegger is known globally for his impact in the worlds of sports, entertainment, environmentalism, and philanthropy. He continues to inspire global audiences as the #1 New York Times bestselling author of two books reflecting on his success: Be Useful: Seven Tools For Life and Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story. Gov. Schwarzenegger’s iconic life story, impeccable presentation style, and insightful takeaways leave audiences buzzing for weeks. The Association of Energy Engineers called him “an excellent speaker with an excellent message.”

Gov. Schwarzenegger champions a wide range of philanthropic causes. He advances solution-oriented policy at the USC Schwarzenegger Institute and environmental innovation at The Schwarzenegger Climate Initiative. His perspective on global issues has been sought by hosts such as the Cardiovascular Research Foundation, the Association of Energy Engineers, and the Zero Emission Conference.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

STEVEN VAN ZANDT

  • Musician, Songwriter, Music and TV Producer, and Actor

Musician, producer, actor, activist, and historian Steven Van Zandt is internationally recognized as one of the world’s foremost authorities on rock and roll. After creating the “Jersey Shore” sound with the Asbury Jukes, he became a founding member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band. He is the founder of Renegade Nation, Renegade TV, and Wicked Cool Records, and launched the internationally syndicated radio show Little Steven’s Underground Garage and its “country cousin” Outlaw Country. As an actor, Van Zandt co-starred in The Sopranos – the single most critically acclaimed TV drama in history. Van Zandt has been called “the ultimate rock and roll rebel” (Real Time with Bill Maher), “the coolest DJ in the country” (MTV), and “the planet’s most charismatic, dedicated, and visible crusader scrapping to preserve the dirty purity of Rock ‘n Roll” (BruceSpringsteen.net).

Van Zandt has organized and performed for political causes for four decades. He created the Rock and Roll Forever Foundation to support music education and help inspire kids to stay in school. Van Zandt became the first Ambassador for the Ronald McDonald House Charity, and has received countless awards and honors, including the We are Family Foundation’s Humanitarian Award for his continued fight against racism. An epic presence of insightful commentary and contagious humor, Van Zandt says:  I do believe Rock and Roll can change the world.  It’s about bands, and that for me suggests brotherhood, family, friendship, and community.”

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ALEX RODRIGUEZ

  • Chairman and CEO, A-Rod Corp

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 addition to his ownership role, Rodriguez serves as a strategic advisor to the Professional Fighters League (PFL) and is an investor in Blue Crow Sports. 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 co-hosted 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 the Boys and Girls Club of America and is in the National Alumni Hall of Fame, and the Boards of Trustees of the University of Miami. His gifts to the University of Miami and Florida International University have provided scholarships to dozens of students.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

LINDSEY VONN

  • One of the Most Successful Skiers of All Time

Olympic gold medalist and one of the most successful skiers 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.

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MICHAEL EISNER

  • Chairman & CEO, The Walt Disney Company (1984-2005)

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.

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MARK WAHLBERG

  • Award-Winning Actor and Producer

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KATE MCKINNON

  • Emmy Award-Winning Comedian and Actress

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.

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JOHN MULANEY

  • Two-Time Emmy Award-Winning Writer and Comedian

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.

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RICHARD THALER

  • Winner of the 2017 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences

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.  

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JOHN KRASINSKI

  • Famed Actor, Writer, and Director

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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

WENDY DAVIS

  • Founder, Deeds Not Words - nonprofit for women's empowerment

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JIMMY WALES

  • Founder, Wikipedia - world's 5th most visited website

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)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

AUSTIN CHANNING BROWN

  • Leading and Inspired Voice on Racial Justice

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

AYỌ TOMETI

  • Human Rights Leader and Co-Founder, #BlackLivesMatter

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.

HWA CO-EXCLUSIVE

MAX BAUCUS

  • U.S. Ambassador to the People's Republic of China (2014-2017)

Former United States Senator and Ambassador to China Max Baucus is a leading voice on business, public policy, and international affairs. As 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. He held the position of Chair of the Senate Finance Committee for nearly a decade. 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. Baucus’s insights on all topics politics, policy, and trade are at the cutting edge of international understandings.

In-demand for his views on politics and industry, Baucus serves on the board of Ingram Micro and previously served on the board of advisors to the Alibaba Group and External Advisory Board to the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. 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. His influential voice has been sought by hosts such as Princeton University, AMG National Trust Bank, the Retail Industry Leaders Association, and more.

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PAUL TUCKER

  • Chair, Systemic Risk Council

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.

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SUNNY HOSTIN

  • 3x Emmy Award-Winning Legal Journalist

Sunny Hostin is a three-time Emmy Award-winning legal journalist, two-time New York Times bestselling author, and co-host of The View. She is a sought-after keynote speaker who earns rave reviews for her events. Hostin’s debut novel Summer on the Bluffs, first in her "Summer" trilogy, skyrocketed to #11 on the New York Times Bestseller List and is being adapted as the first major project for Sunny Hostin Productions alongside Octavia Spencer's Orit Entertainment. She recently released the second book in her acclaimed ‘Summer’ series, Summer on Sag Harbor. 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, The CUT, Latina, and Ebony, amongst others. A sought-after public speaker, she has spoken at and moderated panels for the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, Corporate Counsel Women of Color, the National Bar Association, and more. Hostin served as a witness at the Federal Judiciary’s Congressional Hearing for the Public’s Right of Access to the Courts, and was she was part of the groundbreaking ABC primetime newscast, “Soul of a Nation,” the first broadcast network newsmagazine aiming to put Black life in America front and center. An inescapable voice from the top echelons of news and entertainment, Sunny continues to use her platform to advocate for and give a voice to the marginalized.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

LAWRENCE O'DONNELL

  • Host, MSNBC's 'The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell'

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JANE PAULEY

  • Host, 'CBS Sunday Morning'

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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CHARLES BLOW

  • Op-Ed Columnist, The New York Times & MSNBC Analyst

Columnist, New York Times bestselling author, and MSNBC Analyst 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 an analyst on MSNBC, 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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SEKOU KAALUND

  • U.S. Bank Executive Vice President and Head of Branch and Small Business Banking

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GLORIA STEINEM

  • Iconic Visionary of the Women's Movement

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)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ASHLEY JUDD

  • Award-Winning Actress

Actor, activist, and New York Times bestselling author 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)

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MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY

  • Academy Award-Winning Actor

Academy Award-winning actor, New York Times bestselling author, and philanthropist Matthew McConaughey is a force of nature both onscreen and in business. He has appeared in over 40 feature films that have grossed over $1B. McConaughey’s first book, Greenlights, became an instant #1 New York Times bestseller and has sold over 3M copies worldwide. His second book, a children’ book titled Just Because, also debuted as an instant #1 New York Times bestseller. In 2019, McConaughey became a professor of practice at the University of Texas at Austin, as well as Minister of Culture/M.O.C. for the University of Texas and the City of Austin. McConaughey is co-owner of The Austin FC Soccer Club, co-creator of his favorite bourbon, Wild Turkey Longbranch, and co-founder of tequila brand Pantalones. McConaughey is heralded for his constant career reinvention, inspiring audiences globally to chase their dreams.

An outspoken advocate for public education, McConaughey founded the just keep livin’ Foundation to impart students with the tools to lead active lives and make healthy choices for a better future through after school fitness programs. McConaughey has spoken on empowerment, education, and achievement to AMC, Credit Suisse, the Texas Apartment Association, and many more. In engagements equally empowering and entertaining, McConaughey shares lessons from his life and career, the impact of his philanthropic efforts, and the importance of following passion.

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RICKI LAKE

  • Actor, Producer, and Documentarian

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.

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KEVIN HASSETT

  • Managing Director, Milken Institute & Distinguished Fellow, Hoover Institution

29th Chairman of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) Dr. Kevin Hassett is among the world’s leading economists. Prior to becoming Chairman of the CEA, Hassett was an economist at the American Enterprise Institute, serving as a Director of Research. Dr. Hassett was a senior economist at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and an associate professor of economics and finance at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business of Columbia University. He has also served as a visiting professor at New York University’s Law School, a consultant to the U.S. Treasury Department, and an advisor to political campaigns. Sought out by numerous presidential candidates, Dr. Hassett served as an economic adviser to the presidential campaigns of George W. Bush (2004) and John McCain (2000, 2008).

With his finger on the pulse of today’s markets, Dr. Hassett currently serves on One River Digital Asset Management's Academic and Regulatory Advisory Council, Managing Director at the Milken Institute, and the Brent R. Nicklas Distinguished Fellow in Economics at the Hoover Instituion of Stanford University. Dr. Hassett remains a foremost voice in economic forecasting, advising major institutions and news outlets on policy, trends, and best practices.

While at the White House, Dr. 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, even running televised White House press briefings. Dr. Hassett has spoken to hosts such as TC Energy Corporation, the National Association of Realtors, Young America’s Foundation, and more.

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ELIZABETH NYAMAYARO

  • Humanitarian and Voice for Global Social Change

Elizabeth Nyamayaro is an award-winning humanitarian, author, and former United Nations Senior Advisor on gender equality. 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, UN Women and the United Nations World Food Programme. 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.

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ITZHAK PERLMAN

  • 16 Time Grammy Award-Winning Violinist

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.

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ELLIE KEMPER

  • Emmy Award-Nominated Actress and Comedian

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.

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ALEX MOFFAT

  • Actor, Comedian, and Writer

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.

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VANESSA BAYER

  • Emmy-Nominated Comedian and Actor

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.

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W. KAMAU BELL

  • Sociopolitical Comedian, Producer, and Documentarian

Sociopolitical comedian, Emmy- and Peabody-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.

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CHARLES DUHIGG

  • New York Times Bestselling Author, 'The Power of Habit', 'Smarter Faster Better', and 'Supercommunicators'

Charles Duhigg’s The Power of Habit has spent three years on the New York Times Bestseller list. His new book, Supercommunicators: The Power of Conversation and Hidden Language of Connection, delivers a simple but powerful lesson: With the right tools, we can connect with anyone. Duhigg’s work explores why – and how – people and companies develop habits (and how to change them), and how we can communicate during some the most important, and most difficult, conversations in life.

In his two books, as well as Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business (2016) Duhigg explains that managing how you think—rather than what you think—can transform your life. Duhigg's journalistic accomplishments, including a Pulitzer Prize, have made him an in-demand speaker for organizations from the UCLA School of Management to Google and Microsoft to Fortune 500 companies and the National Association of Science Teachers. His presentations are filled with stories, case studies and actionable advice about how to communicate with anyone – and become the best versions of ourselves. He current writes for The New York Times Magazine and The New Yorker, and previously hosted the How To! podcast for Slate Magazine. He has received the Scripps Howard National Journalism Award, numerous other honors, and was a 2020-2021 Business News Visionary Award recipient

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ELIZABETH DUKE

  • Governor of the Federal Reserve (2008-2013)

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.

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TIMOTHY SNYDER

  • #1 New York Times Bestselling Author of 'On Tyranny' and 'Our Malady'

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 EarthSnyder explains the Jewish Holocaust in ways that help us to better understand the basic predicaments of our own time. In The Road to UnfreedomSnyder 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.

 

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TOM BOSSERT

  • Former Homeland Security & Counterterrorism Advisor

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.

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ANDREW YOUNG

  • Civil Rights Activist & Former Executive Director, Southern Christian Leadership Conference

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.

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KEN LANGONE

  • Co-Founder, The Home Depot

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. 

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KAY BAILEY HUTCHISON

  • U.S. Senator (R-TX) (1993-2013)

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 TexasLeading 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.

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JOY-ANN REID

  • Award-Winning Journalist

Award-winning political analyst, New York Times bestselling author, and MSNBC national correspondent Joy-Ann 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.

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OLYMPIA SNOWE

  • Bipartisan Leader in Congress

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.  

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JOE LIEBERMAN

  • Advocate for Centrist Policies to Break Partisan Gridlock

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.)

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CLARENCE PAGE

  • Pulitzer Prize Winning Journalist

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. 

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DEVAL PATRICK

  • Former Governor of Massachusetts (2007-2015)

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.

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STEVEN LEVITT

  • Bestselling Author, Freakonomics Series

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.

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STEPHEN DUBNER

  • Bestselling & Award-Winning Author, 'Freakonomics' Series

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.

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JIM MESSINA

  • CEO, The Messina Group

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.

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JENNIFER PALMIERI

  • Former White House Communications Director and Strategist

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, 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 was 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.

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FELIPE CALDERON

  • President of Mexico (2006-2012)

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. 

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OLIVIER BLANCHARD

  • Former Chief Economist, International Monetary Fund (2008-2015)

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.  

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WAYNE GRETZKY

  • National Hockey Legend

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.

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MARIA SHARAPOVA

  • International Tennis Icon

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. 

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KAREN G. MILLS

  • Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration (2009-2013)

Small business expert, author, and venture capitalist Karen G. Mills is a leading authority on U.S. competitiveness, entrepreneurship, and innovation. Mills is a Senior Fellow at Harvard Business School, served in President Barack Obama’s Cabinet as the Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) from 2009 until 2013, and was a member of the President’s National Economic Council. During her tenure at the SBA, Mills took steps that led to record-breaking years for lending and investments in growth capital. Additionally, her efforts helped small businesses create regional economic clusters, gain access to early-stage capital, boost exports, and tap into government and commercial supply chains.

Mills is the author of Fintech, Small Business & The American Dream: How Technology is Transforming Lending and Shaping a New Era of Business Opportunity (second edition to be released in 2024), as well as numerous other publications on fintech, innovation policy, and the supply chain economy. She is a venture capitalist and the President of MMP Group, Vice Chair of Envoy, and a Director of several Churchill Capital entities. Mills is a trusted voice on how new technologies are revolutionizing how small businesses can leverage growth and economic opportunity, and how institutions large and small can be a catalyst for innovation and change.

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TOM COLICCHIO

  • Award-Winning Chef and Restaurateur

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.

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JOSEPH LUBIN

  • Founder and CEO, ConsenSys - a blockchain venture studio

Blockchain founder, CEO, and former VP of Technology at Goldman Sachs Joseph Lubin is the co-founder of blockchain computing platform Ethereum and founder and CEO of blockchain venture studio ConsenSys. ConsenSys is one of the largest and fastest-growing companies in the blockchain technology space, building developer tools, decentralized applications, and solutions for enterprises and governments that harness the power of Ethereum. Named to CoinDesk’s “Most Influential in Blockchain,” Lubin’s compelling keynotes reveal the transformative power of blockchain technology and his vision for a decentralized future.

Lubin focuses on the intersection of cryptography, engineering, and finance. He graduated from Princeton University with a degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and worked in the Princeton Robotics Lab. He held positions as Director of the New York office of Blacksmith Software Consulting, and VP of Technology in Private Wealth Management at Goldman Sachs. Sought-out to speak at events ranging from The World Economic Forum to SXSW, Lubin is equal parts informative and inspiring, shedding light on how new technologies have the power to transform industries and how organizations can reap the benefits.

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PHILIPP HILDEBRAND

  • Chairman, Governing Board of the Swiss National Bank (2010–2012)

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).

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PHIL LIBIN

  • Digital Entrepreneur & Venture Capital Investor

Digital entrepreneur and venture capital investor Phil Libin is an expert in using technology to enhance humanity, productivity, and business on a global scale. A serial tech entrepreneur, 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. In addition, Phil recently launched mmhmm – a video presentation app that makes you more engaging on video calls and recordings. Sought-after as a leader on innovation, Libin provides audiences with an engaging look at what it takes to reinvent productivity at global scale.

Libin offers audiences an engaging look and insider perspective on new digital technologies and how to take advantage of automation and AI tools to take performance and productivity to the next level. He is also a sought-after visionary who helps people change the world through entrepreneurship and invention. When Phil speaks, he consistently receives rave reviews: Phil commands the room and it’s clear he knows what he is talking about” (APEC 020 Summit) and “We are very much satisfied with the work and the speeches of Phil Libin. Especially the fireside chat was very inspiring for the audience.” (Swiss Economic Forum)

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MARTIN SHEEN

  • Award-Winning Actor

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.

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MORGAN DEBAUN

  • Founder & CEO, Blavity Inc.

Morgan DeBaun, a visionary leader in media and technology, serves as the Founder and CEO of Blavity Inc. Since its inception in 2014, Morgan has steered the company to become a global corporation serving multicultural consumers. Blavity Inc. is renowned for its diverse brands including AfroTech, Travel Noire, and Shadow and Act.

Recognized for her dedication to inclusive advertising and tech innovation, Morgan has been honored with several prestigious awards, such as the American Advertising Hall of Fame, Inc.’s Female Founders, and Forbes' "30 Under 30." Some of her recent clients include Nike, Microsoft, American Express, Capital One and Newell Brands. Her commitment is further exemplified through her influential role as an angel investor and a board advisor to American Airlines, Pepsico and the Black Economic Alliance. 

A proud alumna of Washington University in St. Louis, Morgan is an advocate for small business owners and workplace equity. She frequently speaks on global platforms, sharing her insights and inspiring change. Beyond her executive role, Morgan nurtures future leaders as a podcast host and advisor, focusing on elevating entrepreneurs.

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BILLIE JEAN KING

  • Sports Icon and Equality Pioneer

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.

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CARLI LLOYD

  • Two-Time Olympic Gold Medalist and Two-Time World Cup Champion

Two-time Olympic gold medalist, two-time World Cup champion, and New York Times bestselling author Carli Lloyd is an iconic American soccer star heralded for her contribution to U.S. and world soccer history. Lloyd is the two-time recipient of the highest, most prestigious award in soccer: FIFA World Player of the Year. She played for the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team for 17 years (2005-2021). Lloyd is a two-time Olympic gold medalist and a bronze medalist. She is the only American player to score in four different Olympics and holds the record for All-time leading scorer in USWNT Olympic history with 10 goals. She also competed in four Women’s World Cup tournaments and is a two-time World Cup Champion. She became the first player in FIFA Women’s World Cup to score a hat trick in a World Cup final. She was awarded the Golden Ball (MVP) and Silver Boot at the 2015 World Cup. Carli has played in more World Cup (25) and Olympic matches (22) than any other USWNT player. She has scored 134 goals across in 316 games, ranking 3rd of all-time for men and women internationally. Carli currently runs her own CL10 Soccer Clinics. She is also a minority owner in her prior NWSL club, Gotham FC, making a splash in investing, entrepreneurship, and team ownership. Her own grit was proved yet again while winning FOX’s Special Forces: World’s Toughest Test, proving toughness is a mindset. Lloyd’s career has been marked by consistent production over the course of her career, her extreme dedication to the game, and her relentless pursuit of self-improvement.

Carli is a role model who empowers and inspires others to be “Better Every Day” and to never give up on achieving their goals. The New York Times 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. She has spoken to audiences at Golden Sachs, Bank of America, Cornell University, Microsoft, Intuit, and more.

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CAROLINE RANDALL WILLIAMS

  • Award-Winning Poet and Author

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)

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HER MAJESTY QUEEN NOOR

  • Global Humanitarian & Activist

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.

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JEAN-CLAUDE TRICHET

  • President, European Central Bank (2003-2011)

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.”

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BONO

  • Humanitarian & Philanthropist

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.

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WOLF BLITZER

  • Emmy Award-Winning Journalist

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.

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RICK SANTORUM

  • U.S. Senator (R-PA) (1995-2007)

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.

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BRET STEPHENS

  • Op-Ed Columnist, The New York Times

U.S. foreign policy expert and highly awarded columnist Bret Stephens is renowned for his “incisive columns on American foreign policy and domestic politics, often enlivened by a contrarian twist.” Bret is an op-ed columnist for the New York Times after a long career with The Wall Street Journal, where he served as deputy editorial page editor and wrote the “Global View” foreign affairs column – for which he was awarded the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for distinguished commentary. He is the author of America in Retreat: The New Isolationism and Coming Global Disorder and is currently working on a book about the future of the free world. Audiences value Bret’s timely insights and “breath of fresh air” delivery, and he has been in-demand with groups including the American Technion Society, the Chief Executives Organization, the Jewish Federations of Northeastern New York and Chicago, Community Advocates, Inc., and many more.

In addition to his work at The Times, Bret serves as Editor-in-Chief of Sapir – a Jewish quarterly published by the Maimonides Fund which offers ideas for a thriving Jewish future. Previously, he was Editor-in-Chief of The Jerusalem Post. Bret is the recipient of numerous awards and distinctions, including three honorary doctorates and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. In 2022, the government of Russia banned him for life from visiting that country. He sits on numerous academic advisory boards and was a co-Founder of the Renew Democracy Initiative – an organization dedicated to advancing democratic principles throughout the world. Bret consistently receives rave reviews for speaking engagements, such as: “Bret was TERRIFIC last night. We had a large crowd, his talk was superb, and he was a pleasure to deal with. It couldn't have gone more smoothly. You have a lot of happy customers in LA.” (Community Advocates, Inc.)

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NATAN SHARANSKY

  • Chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel

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.

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GENO AURIEMMA

  • Legendary Head Coach, University of Connecticut Women's Basketball

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.

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JANE LUTE

  • Cybersecurity & Homeland Security Expert

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. 

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HASAN MINHAJ

  • Peabody Award-Winning Comedian

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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CASEY NEISTAT

  • YouTube Personality, Filmmaker, and Digital Creator

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

LIZA DONNELLY

  • Award-Winning Cartoonist, The New Yorker

Award-winning author, writer, and cartoonist Liza Donnelly uses her creativity to draw (literally) connections between global events, feminism, and what’s funny. An innovator of digital visual journalism, Liza has live-drawn events including the Oscars, the Olympics, presidential debates, and White House Press Conferences. By disrupting how we make sense of everything from global politics to pop culture to gender equity, from history to the present, Liza invites audiences to shift their perspective, think differently, and innovate better.

Liza is known for her viral TED Talk “Drawing on humor for change,” which has been translated into 40 languages. She has written 18 books for adults and children, and is a contributor to The New York Times, Washington Post, Forbes, Medium, CNN, and CBS News. Liza’s most recent book, Very Funny Ladies: The New Yorker’s Women Cartoonists, is being developed into a documentary about women cartoonists globally. She teaches a virtual class with the 92Y on the history of the famous and beloved cartoons in The New Yorker and writes a wildly popular Substack newsletter “Seeing Things,” with an ever-growing readership. Liza’s unique and interactive programs enhance events, empower teams, and inspire innovation.

 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

LISA LING

  • Emmy Award-Winning Journalist

Emmy Award-winning journalist and bestselling author Lisa Ling has spent more than two decades focused on groundbreaking storytelling. Lisa is a contributor for CBS and previously served as the host and executive producer of the acclaimed series This is Life on CNN and Take Out on Max. Throughout her career, Lisa has reported from dozens of countries around the world, covering issues and highlighting voices that are too often ignored. For her sought-after events, Lisa consistently receives rave reviews: "Lisa was absolutely outstanding! She was so interesting and provided such great commentary on our questions. Feedback from our attendees was outstanding and we had great engagement with 15+ questions from the audience. Definitely one of our favorite speakers for this series!" (SAP NS2)

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. She is an advisory board member for Fostering Media Connections, The Amani Project, and a Baby2Baby angel. Lisa has spoken for groups including American Express, the AARP Purpose Prize, Capital One, the Dallas Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Independent Schools, and American Express, who said: “We had a great event with Lisa. She has such amazing energy and opened up in a very real and personal way. The feedback we received from colleagues was exceptional.”

HWA EXCLUSIVE

EDWARD NORTON

  • Award-Winning Actor, Screenwriter, Director and Producer

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ANN CURRY

  • Emmy Award-Winning Journalist

Seven-time Emmy-winning journalist Ann Curry is a cornerstone of U.S. news and journalism. Her reporting is raw, bold, and deeply personal, fueled by human connections. She has appeared before the camera on some of America’s largest networks, including NBC News, PBS, TNT, and more. Her TED talks have been viewed around the world. Curry brings the same deep meaning, message, and sharp intellect to her speaking events as she does her iconic interviews.

Curry is recognized not only as a journalist but also as a humanitarian. Her work has garnered honors such as the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award for Global Citizenship, the Simon Wiesenthal Center's Medal of Valor, the NAACP's Excellence in Reporting Award, the Centre for Responsible Leadership's Truth in Media Award, the Edward R. Murrow Lifetime Achievement in Journalism Award, and more. Hosts such as Colgate University, the Holocaust Memorial Center, the National Court Reporters Association and more have been captivated by her memorable stories.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KEVIN WARSH

  • Member of the Board of Governors, Federal Reserve System (2006-2011)

Monetary policy expert and economist Kevin Warsh’s insights are sought by financial authorities globally. Governor Warsh served as a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (2006-2011). He was named the Federal Reserve's representative to the Group of Twenty (G-20), where he became Administrative Governor, managing and overseeing the Board's operations, personnel, and financial performance. Prior to his appointment to the Board, Warsh served as Special Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and Executive Secretary of the White House National Economic Council (2002-2006). Previously, Warsh was a member of the Mergers & Acquisitions department at Morgan Stanley & Co. in New York, serving as Vice President and Executive Director. Warsh’s experiences across the private and public sectors give him a holistic understanding of global markets. As a speaker, Warsh draws on his decades of experience across financial institutions to advise organizations on the impact of ongoing fiscal policy rollouts.

Warsh currently sits on several boards and is a member of the Group of Thirty (G30). He is also a Shepard Family Distinguished Visiting Fellow in Economics at the Hoover Institution and lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Warsh’s deep expertise in the inner workings of major global financial institutions fuels his independent research in the field of economics. Central banks often seek his advice. Recently, British Parliament has adopted Warsh’s independent report to the Bank of England proposing reforms to the conduct of monetary policy in the United Kingdom. His authoritative and enlightening presentations on both domestic and international economic issues help audiences and corporations understand the impact of U.S. and foreign monetary policy.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

VICENTE FOX

  • President of Mexico (2000-2006)

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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

AUTHORS OF FREAKONOMICS

  • International Bestselling Authors of Freakonomics Series

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ALEXA VON TOBEL

  • Serial Entrepreneur and Venture Capitalist

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", IncMagazine'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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ERICA KESWIN

  • Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author, 'Bring Your Human to Work', 'Rituals Roadmap', and 'The Retention Revolution'

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 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.

Erica's newest book, The Retention Revolution: 7 Surprising (and Very Human!) Ways to Keep Employees Connected to Your Company, which is due out September 23, 2023, is a game-changing playbook filled with accessible and actionable case studies and research that will prove how transforming old ideas into new beginnings is good for people, great for business, and just might change the world.

Keswin and her work have been featured in Harvard Business ReviewForbesHuffington PostO Magazine, Better Homes and GardensMogul, 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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

J. CRAIG VENTER

  • Pioneering Scientific Researcher on the Existence of Life & Human Genome

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MATTHEW WALKER

  • Founder and Director, UC Berkeley's Center for Human Sleep Science

Preeminent neuroscientist and psychologist Dr. Matthew Walker is a celebrated sleep expert. A Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology at UC Berkeley, Dr. Walker is also the founder and director of the school's Center for Human Sleep Science. Dr. Walker’s New York Times bestseller, Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams, was hailed as an "important and fascinating book" by Bill Gates. Dr. Walker has received numerous funding awards from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health and is a Kavli Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences. In 2020, Dr. Walker was awarded the Carl Sagan Prize for Science Achievements. At the intersection of science and industry, Dr. Walker has served as scientific counsel for numerous technology companies, including Google, Hello, and Fitbit. Dr. Walker translates his work for any industry and audience, offering his insights to business leaders, technology firms, and medical and healthcare professionals.

Dr. Walker 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 has shed light on his groundbreaking research everywhere from Google to TED, where his talk "Sleep is Your Superpower" has 20M+ views. Dr. Walker has spoken about sleep to hosts such as the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, TED, Google Zeitgeist, and many more.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DAVID KESSLER

  • Chief Empathy Officer, Empathy

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 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, which inspired his book, Finding MeaningDavid’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.

David is the Chief Empathy Officer of Empathy, an HR product companies offer to employees who are facing loss and grief. He is also the founder of www.grief.com which has over 5M visits yearly from 167 countries.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BILL FRIST

  • Chairman of the Global Board, The Nature Conservancy

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ALLYSON FELIX

  • Holder of 13 Global Titles, 10 U.S. Championships, 11 Olympic Medals, and a World Record

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)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

STEPHEN A. SMITH

  • Famed Sports TV Personality and Journalist

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)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MARA BROCK AKIL

  • Trailblazing Screenwriter and Producer, 'Girlfriends' and 'The Game'

Groundbreaking Hollywood visionary and power player Mara Brock Akil is the writer and producer of 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.  

As a passionate, dynamic, and empowering speaker, Akil has been sought-out to speak at Google, George Washington University, The Wing, and more. Akil 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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MOHAMED ELBARADEI

  • Director General Emeritus, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)

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.

 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

AMARYLLIS FOX

  • Former CIA Clandestine Service Officer

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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KAREN HUGHES

  • Counselor to President George W. Bush (2001-2002)

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. Hughes has 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). 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MICHAEL NUTTER

  • 98th Mayor of Philadelphia - stewarded the city to an A credit rating for the first time in decades

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JOYCE BANDA

  • Africa's Second Female President; Former President of Malawi (2012-2014)

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MATTHEW BERRY

  • Emmy Award-Winning Senior Fantasy Sports Analyst

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

HOWARD DEAN

  • Chairman, Democratic National Committee (2005-2009)

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

RICHARD PHILLIPS

  • Hero of the High Seas & Real Life Inspiration for the Movie 'Captain Phillips'

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

R. GLENN HUBBARD

  • Chairman of the U.S. Council of Economic Advisors (2001-2003)

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ALAN DERSHOWITZ

  • Renowned Defense Attorney

Civil liberties lawyer, law professor, and bestselling author Alan Dershowitz has been called one of the “most distinguished defenders of individual rights, “the best-known criminal lawyer in the world, and “the top lawyer of last resort. 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 10K students. Dershowitz continues to represent numerous defendants and takes half of his cases pro bono. In his speeches, he challenges audiences with thought-provoking perspectives on today’s foremost social, legal, and ethical issues.

Dershowitz is a vocal defender of civil liberties and the constitution. He is the author of many fiction and non-fiction books, including seven bestsellers. Dershowitz’s widely circulated column for The Hill, as well as his frequent appearances on major news outlets including the New York Times, Forbes, FOX News, and CNN, reflect his position as a leading voice on civil liberties and make him an in-demand speaker. His voice has been sought by Purdue University, Elon University, the Center of the American Experiment, the Institute for Policy Innovation, and Jewish Federations around the world, among countless others.

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MOIRA FORBES

  • President and Publisher, ForbesWoman

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.

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ALEX GUARNASCHELLI

  • Acclaimed Chef and Recipe Developer

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 JournalThe 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.

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MARCUS SAMUELSSON

  • James Beard Award-Winning Chef and Restaurateur

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)

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GUY FIERI

  • Award-Winning Chef and Restaurateur

Chef, restaurateur, and Emmy Award-winning television host Guy Fieri is one of the world’s most recognizable, influential culinary stars. Fieri began his culinary career selling soft pretzels from a three-wheeled bicycle and washing dishes in local restaurants in his early teens. In 2006, Guy won the television competition Next Food Network Star and has been a nonstop presence on the network ever since. With a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, he is best known as the “Mayor of Flavortown” and face of Food Network favorites Diners, Drive Ins & Dives, Guy’s Grocery Games, and Tournament of Champions. His thriving brand empire has grown to include over 80 restaurants worldwide, a 175-location food delivery service, and a diverse portfolio of brands. Fieri’s cultural and culinary preeminence brings a unique star power fueled by his electric personality to all of his endeavors.

Fieri’s enthusiasm for food is matched only by his passion for helping others. He founded the Guy Fieri Foundation to support culinary education as well as provide financial resources to aspiring chefs and feeds frontline workers, first responders, and military personnel. He has been invited by Morgan Stanley, the Foodservice Equipment Distributor’s Association, and more to speak on his many personal and business endeavors. Fieri’s events ignite and inspire any audience with his infectious energy and passion.

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DAVID CHANG

  • Award-Winning Chef, Restaurateur, and Founder of Momofuku

David Chang is the founder of Momofuku and Majordomo Media. Since opening his first restaurant, Momofuku Noodle Bar, in 2004, he has been named one of “the most influential people of the 21st century” by Esquire, received six James Beard Awards, recognized as GQ’s Man of the Year and a Time 100 honoree. He is the creator of Ugly Delicious on Netflix and Secret Chef on Hulu, and is the host of The Dave Chang Show and Recipe Club podcasts. His cookbooks Momofuku and Cooking At Home as well as memoir Eat A Peach are all New York Times bestsellers. This season, David joined the Amazon Thursday Night Football as a culinary contributor. 

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ADAM SAVAGE

  • Hollywood Special Effects Designer

Beloved science communicator Adam Savage has spent most of his life gathering skills to build his dreams into reality. Over his career, his work has appeared onscreen to the delight of millions. While best known as a co-host of the Discovery Channel’s flagship show, MythBusters, Savage has worked on a number of iconic titles behind the scenes. His fabrications appear in Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones, The Matrix Reloaded, and more. Savage currently hosts Tested, a YouTube channel exploring the intersection of science, pop culture, and emerging technology.

Savage is a natural fit to engage audiences in explorations of creativity, imagination, and science. In his New York Times bestseller, Every Tool’s a Hammer: Life Is What You Make It, Savage shares his golden rules of creativity, problem solving, and much more. He sits on the boards of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum and the Center for Policing Equity and is an advisor to the California Academy of Sciences. From finding what inspires you to following through on making an idea a reality, Savage encourages audiences to push the boundaries of what's possible. Speaking to audiences around the world, Savage challenges and inspires people to turn curiosity into creation.

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ROBIN ARZÓN

  • Vice President of Fitness Programming & Head Instructor, Peloton

Robin Arzón is Vice President of Fitness Programming and Head Instructor at Peloton. She believes that sweat transforms lives, and her story is living proof. Formerly a corporate lawyer, Arzón left behind a successful law career to embark on new adventures in the health and wellness space and has since reinvented herself into a 27x marathon and ultra-marathon runner, MasterClass instructor, GMA contributor, highly-sought after keynote speaker, Editor-in-Chief of The Pivot by Robin, 2x New York Times bestselling author, and author of Welcome, Hustler: An Empowerment Journalpublished in September of this year. Most recently, Robin founded Swagger Society, a lifestyle membership club for those looking to architect their next level and develop a relentless growth mindset. 

Organizations such as American Family Insurance, KPMG, Google, BetterUp, Wells Fargo, Cisco, and Salesforce have sought out Robin’s voice to inspire, motivate, and transform. In 2020, she was named one of the most influential people on Fortune "40 Under 40" list. Audiences leave Robin’s engagements feeling energized and ready to conquer their goals.

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DAPPER DAN

  • Legendary Fashion Innovator

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.

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DR. DAVID KATZ

  • Founding Director, Yale Prevention Research Center

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.

 

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JOE LOCKHART

  • Strategic Communications and Media Expert

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

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JUDITH JAMISON

  • Legendary Dancer and Choreographer

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.

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MARGARET I. CUOMO

  • Board-Certified Radiologist

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.

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KURT ANDERSEN

  • Peabody Award-Winning Host, Public Radio's 'Studio 360'

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.

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MICHAEL CHERTOFF

  • U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security (2005-2009)

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.

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DESIREE ROGERS

  • CEO and Co-Owner, Black Opal Beauty and Fashion Fair Cosmetics

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

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STEVEN ROBERTS

  • Renowned Journalist & Leading Political Pundit

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. 

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MICHAEL MOSS

  • #1 New York Times Bestselling Author, 'Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us'

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. 

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CODY KEENAN

  • White House Director of Speechwriting for President Barack Obama (2013-2017)

Cody Keenan wrote alongside President Barack Obama for 14 years, rising from a campaign intern in Chicago and deputy pirate to become Obama’s chief speechwriter at the White House and his post-presidential collaborator. He’s been named the “Springsteen” of the Obama White House, even though he can’t play an instrument, and Obama calls him “Hemingway” for reasons that have little to do with his talent or seasonal beard (ask him sometime). Even British GQ once named Cody one of the “35 Coolest Men under 38 (and a Half),” ahead of Ryan Gosling, but behind Tom Hardy. 

Together, Keenan and Obama crafted some of the most unforgettable speeches of our time. From Tucson to Newtown to Charleston, Cody helped Obama fill his role as Consoler-in-Chief. From a sermon in Selma to Obama’s Farewell Address, the two 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 work of Abraham Lincoln, described 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.” 

A sought-after expert on politics, messaging, and current affairs, Cody is now a partner at leading speechwriting firm Fenway Strategies and teaches a popular course on political speechwriting to undergraduates at his alma mater Northwestern University. His first book, GRACE: President Obama and Ten Days in the Battle for America, became an instant New York Times Bestseller.

Cody’s commencement addresses at NYU in 2015 and Northwestern in 2018 were highlighted as some of the year’s best, and in 2020, Northwestern’s graduating class of seniors chose him over all other professors to deliver their “Last Lecture.” He has appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Morning Joe, The Today Show, Showtime’s The Circus, and often live in studio after State of the Union Addresses, and he continues to be a sought-after speaker for events with audiences of all kinds.

With his humor, unparalleled insight, and aversion to cynicism, Cody regularly receives rave reviews from his hosts, like this one from Hilton Hotels: “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.”

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ELLIOTT ABRAMS

  • U.S. Special Representative for Iran and Venezuela at the Department of State (2020-2021)

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). 

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DAVID MAKOVSKY

  • Expert on U.S. Policy in the Middle East

Washington Insider, author, U.S.-Middle East policy expert David Makovsky is one of America’s leading commentators with deep knowledge about this region developed over decades. He delivers informative presentations on topics concerning today’s news, scholarship, and geopolitics in the Mideast. 

Makovsky is currently 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 in the Office of Secretary of State. He is a lifetime member of the Council on Foreign Relations, as well as the International Institute for Strategic Studies. He brings his experience as a senior adviser as well as his keen analysis of the current situation to accessible, engaging conversations about 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.

Makovsky is a sought-after commentator. He has spoken about Israel and the Mideast across over 175 American campus visits. Many have seen him on the PBS Newshour for decades. He is often quoted in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, and other leading publications. His op-ed commentary has appeared in those and other key media outlets. A veteran journalist, Makovsky previously served as the Executive Editor of the Jerusalem Post. He was also 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.

Makovsky’s experience speaking nationally on the hardest topics of today positions him to thoughtfully address any audience. The Wilsher Boulevard Temple says, “David was dynamite! His energy, his intelligence and his humor all fill the room as he covers the tough subjects of the Middle East peace process… He responded thoughtfully and warmly to challenging questions.”

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DANIEL GORDIS

  • Senior Vice President and Koret Distinguished Fellow, Shalem Center

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 TimesThe New Republic, New York Times MagazineAzure, 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)

 

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HADASSAH LIEBERMAN

  • Inspiring Speaker on Issues of Health, Women & Judaism

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.

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JONATHAN SARNA

  • Leading Commentator on Jewish History, Religion and Life

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. 

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DAVID HOROVITZ

  • Founding Editor, The Times of Israel

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.

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DAN GILLERMAN

  • Chairman of Blackstone Israel

Ambassador Dan Gillerman is Chairman of Blackstone Israel, Senior Advisor to the Blackstone Group, and a Member of Blackstone’s International Advisory Board. He is the Chairman and CEO of Gillerman Global, a Global Strategic Consulting firm. He served as Israel's Ambassador to the United Nations from 2003-2008 and was elected Vice President of the General Assembly in 2005.

 

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JOSEPH TELUSHKIN

  • Widely Acclaimed Authority on Judaism & Ethics

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. 

 

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MATT ISEMAN

  • Emmy Award-Winning TV Host and Comedian

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

LAURA BLUMENFELD

  • Prize-Winning Middle East Correspondent

Bestselling author, prize-winning journalist, and researcher Laura Blumenfeld has dedicated her life to analyzing conflict in the Middle East.

Blumenfeld previously served in the U.S. State Department as senior policy advisor for the Middle East Peace Process. She spent two decades as a reporter for the Washington Post covering the Middle East, national security, and presidential politics. She has also been a senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund and a public policy fellow at the Wilson Center, where she worked on the project of “U.S. Responsibility to Lead.” Blumenfeld’s memoir, Revenge: a Story of Hope, recounts her global travels in search of the terrorist who shot her father in cold blood. She is currently a Middle East analyst at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

Blumenfeld has written on peace in the Middle East for The New Yorker, New York Times Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, and more. Her perspectives on politics and conflict in the region have been sought by AIPAC and AJC, alongside JCCs and Jewish Federations across the country.  

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DANIEL KURTZER

  • Critical Voice on the Middle East, Israel & Egypt

Public policy and diplomacy expert Daniel Kurtzer is a uniquely qualified speaker on the Middle East, offering a distinct perspective on geopolitics formed through firsthand experience. In over three decades in the U.S. Foreign Service, Ambassador Kurtzer served as the United States Ambassador to Israel (2001-2005) and as the United States Ambassador to Egypt (1997-2001). 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. Ambassador Kurtzer’s hands-on experience with diplomacy and clear, engaging breakdown of the major regional issues leads to informative talks with practical takeaways.

Ambassador Kurtzer currently teaches diplomacy and conflict resolution at Princeton University’s School of Public and International Affairs. He is also 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. Ambassador Kurtzer’s well-researched opinions, history-first understandings, and experience speaking on the Middle East ensure a nuanced conversation that leaves audiences feeling more connected to the issues of discussion.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DR. RAE WYNN-GRANT

  • Renowned Wildlife Ecologist, Conservationist, and Storyteller

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 is the Host of a new NBC series, Wild Kingdom - a new version of the iconic wildlife show premiering Fall 2023.

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JEFF BENEDICT

  • Expert on Leadership and the Mindset of a Champion

New York Times bestselling author, producer, and commentator Jeff Benedict is a sports journalist and expert on leadership and the mindset of a champion, whose storytelling power has captivated audiences across mediums. Jeff has written seventeen non-fiction books and many feature stories about some of the most iconic figures in sports history. He has been tapped as executive producer and writer for documentary adaptations of his books, including a 10-part series based on his bestseller The Dynasty, the definitive inside story of the New England Patriots, with Imagine Entertainment for Apple TV. In 2021, he co-produced a documentary for HBO based on his #1 bestselling biography Tiger Woods. He is an executive producer on a Netflix documentary for his book Poisoned, co-produced the feature film adaptation of his book Little Pink House, and was a writer for the NFL Films documentary based on Steve Young’s biography QB. Jeff is a sought-after commentator for his unmatched ability to get to the heart of a historic moment or figure, sculpt a narrative, and look for the untold story.

Jeff has been a special-features writer for Sports Illustrated, the Los Angeles Times, and The Hartford Courant, and his essays have appeared in The New York Times. His stories have been the basis of segments on 60 Minutes, CBS Sunday Morning, HBO Real Sports, Discovery Channel, The Today Show, Good Morning America, 20/20, 48 Hours, NFL Network, and NPR. His latest book is the instant New York Times bestseller LeBron, the definitive biography of basketball superstar LeBron James.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DUSTY BAKER

  • Legendary Baseball Player & Future Hall of Famer

Legendary baseball player and retired manager Dusty Baker shares his love and skill with sport for all. The future Hall of Famer dedicated 50 seasons to Major League baseball, 19 as a player, 5 as a coach and 26 as a manager. Over 26 seasons with the Houston Astros, he became the oldest manager in MLB history to take a team to and win the World Series as well as the first African-American manager to have 50 post-season wins. Dusty has been named to the All-Time Los Angeles Dodger team as a player and the All-Time San Francisco Giants team as a manager. The first MLB manager to reach the playoffs with five different teams, Dusty shares his expertise in motivational leadership, coaching a high-performing team, and winning under pressure.

Dusty is also a entrepreneur, media personality, and philanthropist. He is the founder of both Baker Solar Team and Baker Family Wines. He was a TV commentator and broadcast analyst for TBS. A survivor of an aggressive cancer diagnosis, Dusty has helped raise over $1.5M for cancer research and is a passionate advocate for cancer survivors everywhere. He has spoken for countless groups including Houston Methodist Hospital, California State Automobile Association, General Motors, SBC Global Services, and more.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DEMI-LEIGH TEBOW

  • Miss Universe and Miss South Africa

Entrepreneur, influencer, model, and philanthropist Demi-Leigh Tebow utilizes her platforms as Miss South Africa and Miss Universe to educate and inspire on a global scale. While traveling the world and representing South Africa on an international stage, she witnessed the universal need for every individual to be heard, loved, and valued. Always a community-minded leader, Tebow aims to leverage her platform to fight for those who cannot fight for themselves. After surviving an attempted carjacking, she founded the #Unbreakable Campaign to educate, uplift, and empower women by equipping them with the skills and knowledge to be able to handle dangerous situations. Tebow shares her passion for living a values-driven life, her purpose inspired by her faith in God, and her insights about making an impact in sought-after keynotes and conversations.

Demi-Leigh lends her philanthropic vision to the Tim Tebow Foundation, working to raise awareness for the fight against human trafficking, providing support to children with medical needs, among other impactful mission work. Demi currently serves on the board for several organizations worldwide focused on supporting survivors of human trafficking and empowering them to find lasting independence. She is also an entrepreneur with a passion for supporting businesses that have ethical practices and use their platforms for impact. Tebow offers practical takeaways for those entering the entrepreneurial space, navigating their current careers, and audiences of all kinds looking to combine their business ventures with moral excellence.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CHRISTOPHER WYLIE

  • Data Scientist and Social Researcher

Best known for his role in setting up – and then taking down – the cyberwarfare firm Cambridge Analytica, Christopher Wylie has been called “the millennials’ first great whistleblower.” Wylie sparked a global conversation when he gave The Guardian and The New York Times documents detailing the secret workings behind the company's alleged unauthorized possession and misuse of personal data from millions of Facebook users. Wylie’s revelations exposing the rampant misuse of data rocked Silicon Valley, forced Fortune 500 companies to overhaul cybersecurity and user privacy practices, and led Congress to hold its first-ever hearings on the impact of social media on democracy.

When Chris speaks out about the future of technology, governments around the world listen – he has testified before the United States Congress five times, as well as at the parliaments of the European Union, the United Kingdom, and Canada. He has been named to TIME 100, Forbes’ “30 Under 30,” Politico’s “50 Most Influential People in Politics,” and Business Insider’s “100 Coolest People in Tech.” Wylie is currently the Director of Research for H&M – the largest global fashion brand – and his work on quantifying fashion style and supply chain with AI systems is having a major impact on the fashion sector. He is the bestselling author of Mindf*ck: Cambridge Analytica and the Plot to Break America.

With his signature neon hair and brutally honest candor, Wylie engages audiences around the world and makes AI, weaponized algorithms, and the future of cyber crime and resilience compelling, understandable, and actionable.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MIKE MUSE

  • Music Executive & Co-Founder, Muse Recordings

Former record label co-founder and change agent Mike Muse is a pop culture and political expert who uses his platform to create social change. An industrial engineer turned media entrepreneur and tech entrepreneur, he is a co-Founder of LawChamps - advocates for access to justice, social, and legal reform. Mike is host of SiriusXM’s award-winning show, The Mike Muse Show, co-host of Sway in the Morning, and was recently named ABC News Contributor for ABC News Live and the Good Morning America family. Mike has given two TED Talks, and is in demand for his dynamic, funny, and insightful talks about policy as lifestyle and leveraging AI for social good.

Mike served as a member of President Barack Obama’s National Finance Committee and was appointed to serve in the United States Small Business Administration as My Brother’s Keeper Millennial Entrepreneurial Champion, as well as the U.S. SBA's Federal Commission for the Council of Underserved Communities as the Millennials in Business Representative. His passion is tech – the future of AI and algorithmic inclusion – and he is one of Google’s NextGen Tech Policy Fellows. In addition to speaking tours with Meta and Chevrolet, Mike has given numerous keynotes for Disney, Google, Verizon, Harvard Law School, and more.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JUDIT POLGÁR

  • Chess Grandmaster & World Chess Hall of Fame Member

Chess Grandmaster Judit Polgár is the best female player in chess history. At the age of 12, Polgár took the lead in the adult women’s world ranking, which she would hold for the next 26 years. By 14, she was already a two-time Women's Chess Olympic Champion (1988, 1990). Polgár won two further silver medals as member of the Hungarian men's team. At the age of 15 years and 4 months, she became a male international grandmaster, breaking Bobby Fischer's age record. In October 2005, Polgár ranked 8th in the absolute world ranking, as the first and, to date, the only female top 10 chess player. Polgár gave the informative and entertaining TED Talk “Giving checkmate is always fun,” and her talks on breaking the glass ceiling and strategic decision-making have delighted audiences worldwide.

Since retiring, Polgár has focused on the international promotion of the sport of chess, writing, and the Judit Polgár Chess Foundation. The World Chess Hall of Fame inductee has authored many books on chess, including Chess Palace, the Best European Learning Materials award-winning program now used by 40K children daily. Polgár has been an expert commentator at major international tournaments. Polgár has spoken at TED Conference, Morgan Stanley, CITI Bank, Exxon, the Warwick Economics Summit, and McKinsey: “We collectively think the speech Ms. Polgar gave during her presentation at our Executive event in September was excellent.”

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MICHAEL MIGNANO

  • Technology Entrepreneur, Executive, and Investor

Technology executive and entrepreneur Michael Mignano is passionate about building products that change the world. After serving as VP of Product for Aviary, and growing the photo editing platform’s audience to over 100M creators before an acquisition by Adobe, Michael co-founded Anchor which was acquired by Spotify in 2019 for $170M and is the world’s largest podcasting platform. His work on Anchor transformed podcasting from a niche medium into a universal form of creative expression adopted by millions worldwide. After Anchor was acquired by Spotify, Michael served as Head of Talk Audio for Spotify, where he lead the podcast, live, and video businesses for the world’s leading audio streaming platform. Michael has joined Lightspeed Venture Partners, a venture capital firm, as a partner.

Michael has been recognized by Fortune on their “40 Under 40” list, and he is an angel investor and advisor to more than fifty of the world’s most promising early-stage technology companies, including Cameo, Coda, The Infatuation, Parade, Pipe, and Stir. His career has been focused on building world-changing products that scale to hundreds of millions of users and empower people to express themselves creatively across mediums. In compelling keynote and conversations, Michael shares insights on shifting global culture through powerful ideas, leveraging your passion into an impactful career, and maximizing productivity through communication at work and in life.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

MATT MEDVED

  • Co-Founder, CEO, and Editor-in-Chief of nft now - Award-winning web3 digital media platform.

Founder of nft now and digital economy expert Matt Medved has worked to bridge the worlds of music, culture, and technology to uplift artistry for nearly a decade. Medved is the Co-Founder, CEO, and Editor-in-Chief of nft now – an award-winning web3 digital media platform building the future of tokenized media to combat AI disinformation and pioneer a community-centric media model. Since launching in 2021, nft now has become a leader in leveraging AI to power its content strategy, and has brought to market innovative web3 products like the Now Pass and industry-leading events like The Gateway and NFT100.

Previously, Matt served as the SVP of Content at Modern Luxury and the EiC of SPIN, where he directed the iconic music and culture title’s 2019 rebrand. Before leading SPIN, Matt founded Billboard Dance in 2015 and grew the vertical into the leading dance/electronic music publication in North America. Medved is the co-creator of nft now's NFT Marketing Bible and has helped numerous Fortune 500 brands successfully enter and navigate web3 while understanding and harnessing its benefits for business.

An early adopter of web3 and AI, Medved has spoken for groups including Harvard Business SchoolSXSWNFT NYCNew York Media FestivalSyracuse UniversityBillboard Live Music Summit, and Institute for Public Relations. He previously conducted human rights field research and wrote $2M in funded grants to the U.S. Department of State and USAID as a consultant for conflict resolution NGO Search for Common Ground in Nigeria — where he also reached more than 6M listeners as a guest DJ at Africa’s largest radio station. Medved is a multihyphenate creative who taps into the business case for new technology in a way that is relevant, accessible, and actionable for audiences of all kinds.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KATY BOHINC

  • Poet & Artist

Artist, founder, and mathematician Katy Bohinc is an award-winning data scientist and visionary polymath Fortune 500 marketer. Bohinc began her career as a data scientist for leading marketing agencies, operationalizing big data adoption. Her work garnered Assembly Media (now Assembly Global) Ad Age’s Agency of the Year award. She has published three books of poetry, along with two edited volumes. Bohinc served as Director of Tender Buttons Press (2013-2020). Her latest endeavor as founder & CEO of The Ratio – an AI startup which applies data science to the ancient traditions of astrology – marks her as a leading creative and scientific mind.

Bohinc is a captivating, visionary speaker, bringing her highly acclaimed poet's voice to a powerful and unique weaving of cultural, technological, and marketing insights. Her voice draws from her incredibly diverse background across data science and AI, literature and the arts, world history, and marketing. She has spoken on the intersections of arts, science, and futurism at MoMa Ps1, LACMA, Princeton University, Cambridge University, Ezra Pound’s Castle, and hundreds more. Bohinc's insightful ability to connect seemingly disparate intellectual disciplines into a case study of the human experience opens audiences' minds to new avenues of creativity. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SEEMA HINGORANI

  • Founder and Chair, Girls Who Invest

As Founder and Chair of Girls Who Invest and Managing Director at Morgan Stanley Investment Management (MSIM), Seema Hingorani is a powerhouse in the investing sphere who is revolutionizing the industry by creating opportunities and increasing representation and diversity. Prior to joining Morgan Stanley, Hingorani was the Founder and CIO of SevenStep Capital, an opportunistic investment platform focused on seeding women portfolio managers, as well as serving as CIO for the New York City Retirement Systems, which had assets of $160B, and Head of Public Equities & Hedge Funds for the pension funds, which was named Hedge Fund Manager of the Year (Large Public Pension Plans) by Institutional Investor under her leadership.

While working at the highest levels in the public and private sector, Hingorani saw few faces like her own, and leveraged her experience and industry connections to solve this ‘pipeline’ problem by founding Girls Who Invest, a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing the number of women in portfolio management and executive leadership in the asset management industry. Since founding the organization in 2015, she has raised over $25M to fund summer programs for over 2,500 diverse college women across the U.S. that offer training, mentorship, and internships with over 100 leading asset management firms in the U.S., U.K. and Canada, creating the next generation of leading investors.

Hingorani has worked with several organizations focused on issues concerning women and girls, and has garnered numerous accolades for her groundbreaking work: receiving the insignia of the Chevalier of the National Order of the Legion of Honor from France in 2021, listed as one of Barron’s“100 Most Influential Women in U.S. Finance” as well as The Bloomberg’s 50’s “Ones To Watch,” and Traders “Wall Street Women Entrepreneur of the Year” in 2015. She served as a member of the National Finance Committee of Secretary Clinton’s 2016 Presidential Campaign, is an active member of The Economic Club of New York and 100 Women in Finance, and is a prolific speaker on the topic of a more robust inclusion of women in the corporate sector.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ROHINI KOSOGLU

  • Former Deputy Assistant to President Biden & Domestic Policy Advisor to Vice President Harris

Nationally-recognized policy expert and leader Rohini Kosoglu has been at the forefront of driving transformative change and shaping critical policy discourse in the areas of technology, social, and economic policy. Kosoglu is a Venture Partner at Fusion Fund – focused on early-stage technology and health care investments. Kosoglu has served the last two decades as a senior White House official, chief of staff in the United States Senate, and organizational leader on multiple presidential campaigns. As the first South Asian American woman to hold the roles of both Domestic Policy Advisor to the Vice President and Chief of Staff in the U.S. Senate, Kosoglu promoted domestic policies to lift up the middle class, invest in American innovation, and strengthen our nation’s democracy. Vice President Harris praised Kosoglu as “a brilliant and trusted leader” who “brought vision, strategic judgement, and a depth of experience as our Administration has addressed some of the most urgent challenges facing our nation.”

Kosoglu is also a Fellow at the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence (HAI) and Director of Innovation Policy at the Stanford Byers Center for Biodesign. Her career in Congress included over a decade of leadership positions designing policy initiatives, leading negotiations on bipartisan laws around social and economic policy, technology, and health care. Kosoglu offers unique insight on the perspectives driving politics and policy today, and reveals how the potential outcomes will effect individuals and industries.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CATHY O'NEIL

  • Big Data Scientist

Data skeptic and New York Times bestselling author Cathy O’Neil is a thought leader exploring the realities and dangers of social networking, the consequences of algorithm design, and defending human dignity in the context of predatory capitalism. A prolific voice in academia and the private sector, O’Neil is the New York Times bestselling author of Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy, which was a semifinalist for the National Book Award. She is also a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a renowned blogger, and her expertise was featured in the critically acclaimed documentary The Social Dilemma. O’Neill is the Founder of ORCAA, a consultancy providing algorithmic auditing services focused on safety, fairness, and principled use of data, and launched the Lede Program in Data Journalism at Columbia University. Her latest book, The Shame Machine: Who Profits in the New Age of Humiliation, investigates how shame functions as a tool across sectors including government, the healthcare system, and the wellness industry. With a mathematics Ph.D. and background in finance and AdTech startups, O’Neil offers unparalleled insight and analysis about the challenges that lie ahead for individuals and businesses in our increasingly algorithmic world.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ABIGAIL HING WEN

  • AI Expert & Intel's Former Senior Director of Emerging AI Tech

Woman-in-tech leader, New York Times bestselling author, and filmmaker Abigail Hing Wen has been called “one of the voices of her generation” by Pop Culturalist and “one of the most respected voices in fairness and AI” by Forbes. Abigail was the host of Intel’s Artificial Intelligence Podcast, featuring leading industry experts including Andrew Ng, META's Chief AI Scientist Yann LeCun, The World Bank, Google Deepmind, Genentech, and U.S. Congresswoman Kelly. In her career in tech, she has negotiated multibillion dollar deals on Wall Street and in Silicon Valley, advised members of the C-suite and government officials on AI, and worked in venture capital.

Abigail is a frequent speaker on topics of artificial intelligence, leadership, equity, representation, ethics, and creative careers, including Talks at Google, the California Commonwealth Club, recurring talks at META/Facebook AI, a virtual talk with Lea Salonga, Pinterest, Adobe, Target, Twitch, LinkedIn, the Barnes & Noble podcast, as well as Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, Dartmouth, and Berkeley among other venues. Abigail serves on the board of Harvardwood.

A New York Times bestselling author, Abigail served as executive producer for the Paramount Plus film Love in Taipei, the first film adaptation of her bestselling novel series, Loveboat, Taipei. Abigail is passionate about democratizing access to and information about artificial intelligence and has written multiple books and articles on the subject.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ROB LOWE

  • Hollywood Icon, Actor, Producer, and Director

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)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DAVID MCRANEY

  • Science Journalist

Science journalist, podcaster, and internationally bestselling author David McRaney is an expert in the psychology of reasoning, decision making, and self-delusion. His wildly popular blog became the international bestselling book You Are Not So Smart, revealing and celebrating our irrational and thoroughly human behavior. His second bestseller, You Are Now Less Dumb, gives readers a fighting chance at outsmarting their brains. His most recent book, How Minds Change, is a brain-bending and big-hearted investigation into the science of belief, opinion, and persuasion. An in-demand speaker, McRaney shares his insights about popular science, psychology, and how we think, offering analysis that resonates in today’s most important conversations.

McRaney’s work has been featured in PoliticoSalonBoing BoingThe Atlantic, and many others. He hosts the podcast You Are Not So Smart, interviewing scientists who study the psychology of reasoning. He also created and hosted Exploring Genius: In-Depth Study of Brilliant Minds, an audio documentary for Himalaya, and is working on a TV series about how to better predict the psychological impact of technological disruption. McRaney's diverse body of work was honored with The Society for Personality and Social Psychology's Excellence in Science Journalism Award. McRaney is an inspiring thought leader, and his science-backed and practical takeaways make a major impact on audiences of all kinds.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JOANNE LIPMAN

  • No. 1 Bestselling Author, 'That's What She Said' and 'Next! The Power of Reinvention in Life and Work'

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

EMMA GREDE

  • CEO and Co-Founder of Good American

Self-made mogul, CEO, and Founder Emma Grede is a groundbreaking and globally successful executive known for building incredible teams and beloved brands. Emma is the CEO and co-Founder of Good American, the first fully inclusive fashion brand that celebrates all dimensions of female power. She launched Good American alongside Khloé Kardashian and they engineered the largest denim launch in history. Their brand is now an iconic inclusive fashion line, and has expanded to ready-to-wear, swim, shoes, and activewear. Emma is also a founding partner of SKIMS, a solutions-oriented brand creating the next generation of underwear, loungewear, and shapewear, and co-Founder of Safely, the plant-powered cleaning brand delivering chemical-free cleaning products to the masses. Emma’s passion for bettering the world through socially responsible and conversation-advancing decisions is consistently reflected in the culture of her teams and the businesses she builds, and she shares her actionable insights in sought-after keynotes and conversations.

Emma is a recurring Shark on ABC’s critically acclaimed Shark Tank, making history as the first Black woman to serve as an investor on the show. She joins the upcoming season of the BBC's Dragons' Den, set to air in 2024. As an activist as well as an investor, Emma has used her wealth of experience to identify and invest in groundbreaking entrepreneurs and start-ups rooted in inclusivity, diversity, and sustainability. She was named one of “America’s Richest Self-Made Women” (2022 & 2023) and “America’s Richest Self-Made Women Under 40” by Forbes, and sits on the Glamour Women of the Year Advisory board. Emma serves as Chairwoman of the Fifteen Percent Pledge and also as a board member of Baby2Baby. As an immersive leader, she continues to advocate for inclusive representation across industries, while finding opportunities to foster real change. Emma’s leadership perspective is in-demand at notable events such as Forbes Women’s Power Summit, Hubspot INBOUND, MediaSlopes, Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Summit, Stanford Black Leadership Conference, among others.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CHELSEA CLINTON

  • Advocate and Public Health Expert

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)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

KEVIN GRIFFIN

  • Singer, Songwriter, and Producer Known as the Frontman for Better Than Ezra

Hit songwriter, Better Than Ezra front man, bestselling author, and philanthropist Kevin Griffin has produced, written, and co-written albums and songs that have sold over 30M copies and songs that have been streamed over a billion times. Griffin has produced and written songs performed and recorded by artists such as Taylor Swift, Train, Dierks Bentley, Barenaked Ladies, and James Blunt among others. He is the founder of the Better Than Ezra Foundation, which has raised more than $4M for charities, many of which are devoted to children and the arts around New Orleans and the gulf coast. Griffin is the author of The Greatest Song: Spark Creativity, Ignite Your Career, and Transform Your Life, a bestselling, creative nonfiction book with lessons for every profession and industry. Griffin has also served as adjunct professor and writer-in-residence at NYU’s Clive Davis School of Recorded Music.

In addition to songwriting and performing, Griffin is involved in artist management, publishing, and lectures on the subject of keeping a creative and competitive edge to groups and companies such as Live Nation, Disney, Nike, WPO, and Salesforce. He is a founder and partner along with Justin Timberlake in Pilgrimage Music & Cultural Festival, which is a two-day event located in Franklin, TN. After its inaugural year, Rolling Stone commented that Pilgrimage had “an A-list lineup (arguably the best curated of the year)” and “established itself as a festival to watch.” An in-demand and entertaining keynote speaker, Griffin has spoken for groups including NovationWhichWichGoogle, and Young Presidents’ Organization on topics of investing in your potential, sparking creativity, and leadership.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GABRIELLE BERNSTEIN

  • Spiritual Teacher

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.

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BROOKE BALDWIN

  • Respected Journalist & Peabody Award Finalist

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.

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EITAN BERNATH

  • Chef, Author, and Entrepreneur

Culinary personality, entrepreneur, and Gen Z social media influencer Eitan Bernath is best known for his viral cooking videos on social media showcasing his captivating presentation style. The multifaceted entertainer debuted on the first ever kid’s episode of the Food Network’s Chopped and has since amassed 6M+ followers across his social media empire. Bernath is also the Principal Culinary Contributor for The Drew Barrymore Show on CBS as the first TikTok star to expand into a recurring role on daytime television. His popular debut cookbook, Eitan Eats The World: New Comfort Classics to Cook Right Now, built on his work as a contributor to The Washington Post, Food & Wine, Saveur, and Delish. Eitan helps audiences of all kinds lean into what makes them unique, identify their passion, and leave them with the tools and inspiration to pursue their goals.  

A pioneer in digital media and content development, Eitan Bernath is the CEO of Eitan Productions, the eponymous entertainment studio overseeing his media ventures. Heralded as a master of quick-cut content, he has been profiled by nearly every prominent media outlet in the country including Vanity Fair, Forbes, and more. His brand partners include Walmart, PayPal, Whole Foods Market, DoorDash, Spotify, TikTok, and KitchenAid. With his entertaining delivery across platforms, Bernath can connect to any audience that likes to eat. Tastewise's CMO, Jacques Botbol, described his keynote speech at the Tastewise Generative AI Food Pioneer’s Summit as “a masterpiece of adaptability, charisma, and professionalism that left an indelible mark.”

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AMANDA MONTELL

  • Linguist and Expert in Language & Contemporary Culture

Critically acclaimed author, linguist, and podcast host Amanda Montell is the author of two bestselling nonfiction books, Cultish: The Language of Fanaticism and Wordslut: A Feminist Guide to Taking Back the English Language. Cultish was named a best book of 2021 by NPR and is currently in development for television. She is also the creator and co-host of the hit podcast, Sounds Like A Cult, which won "Best Emerging Podcast" at the iHeart Radio Podcast Awards, and has been praised by The New York Times, Vulture, Wired, Esquire, Marie Claire, and more. Amanda has given keynotes all over the world for book festivals and library series, universities and high schools, corporate events and consulting, and TEDx.

Amanda is an expert in language and contemporary culture, able to speak with accessibility and enthusiasm on timely topics from how cult language secretly shows up on social media and in the workplace, to how to make your company language more gender inclusive, to cognitive biases in the modern age. She is currently at work on her third book, The Age of Magical Overthinking: Notes on Modern Irrationality (to be published by OneSignal, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, in 2024). The book is an exploration of contemporary delusion — how cognitive biases show up in our personal lives, on social media, and in public policy.

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STEVEN LIM

  • Award-Winning Digital Media Creator

Entertainment entrepreneur, YouTube personality, and viral storyteller Steven Lim offers uplifting and entertaining talks about following your dreams, AAPI representation, and the power of food to create world peace. Lim is a former chemical engineer who worked at Procter & Gamble and went home from work to create virally popular YouTube videos. He was tapped by Buzzfeed to join their staff, and worked his way up to become an Executive Producer. Lim is known for creating and hosting Buzzfeed’s biggest food show, Worth It – a Webby winner and three-time Streamy Winner that has racked up billions of views and reshaped food criticism.

Lim is the CEO and co-Founder of Watcher Entertainment, a digital media studio that creates television-caliber, unscripted series that aim to bring joy, inspire curiosity, and genuinely connect with our audience. An advocate for diverse representation in media, Lim is passionate about amplifying diverse voices and creating a space where all stories – and storytellers – matter. Sought after for uplifting and relevant conversations with groups like Georgia Tech, SMU, University of Michigan, and more, Lim’s presentations, keynotes, and moderated conversations leave audiences with a feeling of connection and hope.

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LINDSEY STIRLING

  • Award-Winning Violinist, Composer, and Dancer

Lindsey Stirling is one of the biggest artist development breakthrough stories in recent years. An acclaimed violinist from Gilbert, Ariz., Lindsey has entered a futuristic world of electronic big beats and animation using her classical violin training to leap through the music industry with almost 13 Million YouTube subscribers, 3 Billion+ views on her YouTube channel, 2 Billboard Music Awards, Billboard chart-topping hits and albums, as well as sold out tours worldwide. She’s created a new music world where modern classical meets the infectious energy of dance and electronica. Lindsey Stirling embodies the true spirit of today’s independent recording artist whose symbiotic relationship with her fans has led to a worldwide audience filled with positivity. By using her own story to show young adults that confidence in the very thing that makes you unique is the key to success, she continues to be a light in today’s entertainment scene and brings her own brand of ‘Magic’ to the many lives she has touched.

Since the release of her 2012 self-titled debut, the electronic music impresario, violinist, dancer, and artist quietly and humbly became one of the 21st century’s most innovative stars by clinging to her groundbreaking vision of cinematic violin-driven electronic music. She has continued to build an impressive fan base that stretches across all demographics forging her own path for future young artists to emulate. 

Lindsey’s musical talent and success on YouTube also launched a successful career into television. Driven by a strong international fan base, Lindsey was runner-up on Season 25 of ABC’s hit show Dancing with the Stars with her partner Mark Ballas and did a stint on NBC’s America’s Got Talent as well.

Her highly anticipated fifth-studio album, Artemis, released in 2019 to critical acclaim and debuted at #1 on the Dance/Electronic Album Chart. In the wake of the cancellation of her 2020 tours due to COVID-19, Lindsey funded and directed a virtual livestream concert that received over 100,00 unique viewers. She started the 2021 year with the release of “Lose You Now”, a single featuring Artist/Producer Mako that reflects on loss. 

A motivational speaker in her spare time, recently through various podcasts and live audio chats, Stirling uses her own story to show that you’ve got to have confidence in the very thing that makes you unique – then wait for the world to catch up.

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DAN RUNCIE

  • Founder of 'Trapital' - a media company that's home for the business of hip-hop

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 TimesThe Wall Street Journal, NPR's All Things ConsideredBBC 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.

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TINX

  • Digital Creator and 'TikTok's Big Sister'

Digital creator, advice expert, and podcast host Christina Najjar – popularly known as Tinx – possesses an effortless ability to capture the cultural zeitgeist. Described as ‘TikTok’s Big Sister’, Tinx has developed a devoted fanbase of those who come to her for expert advice and to have a great laugh at the same time. From her satirical ‘Rich Mom’ content and takes on pop culture, to her theories on sex, dating, and relationships, to her honest reviews and recommendations for everything from food and restaurants to beauty, fashion, and lifestyle products, Tinx has her finger on the pulse of pop culture. Her wit and candor have established her as a resounding voice for women, with her unique engaging and empathetic approach to content resonating with millions.

Tinx launched her podcast and live call-in radio show with SiriusXM, It’s Me Tinx, sharing everything her followers have come to know and love about her content while offering an intimate glimpse into her life. Her undeniable impact on social media earned her the distinction as one of Forbes’ Top Creators 2022. With her insights on entrepreneurship, female empowerment, and managing career changes and relationships, Tinx makes a major impact with college and university audiences, and with groups of all kinds.

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RYAN BERGARA

  • Actor & Media Entrepreneur

Actor and media entrepreneur Ryan Bergara is a self-described “ghost hunter,” known for creating beloved viral content across platforms for years. Bergara is the co-Founder of Watcher Entertainment, a digital media studio that creates television-caliber, unscripted series that aim to bring joy, inspire curiosity, and genuinely connect with our audience. Bergara hosts shows such as Ghost Files, Mystery Files, Puppet History, and Are You Scared. He is the creator and host of the BuzzFeed Unsolved franchise – which has amassed over 998M views and 187M hours (over 2,140 decades) watched. Bergara leverages a wealth of experience at every level in the media industry to share insights on creativity, creating viral content, and how to connect with your ideal audience.

Bergara is a sought-after speaker for groups including University of Pittsburgh, Chapman University, Virginia Tech, Syracuse, University of California – San Diego, University of California – Riverside, University of California – Irvine, and more. Bergara brings star power and entertaining insights to any audience.

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EUGENE LEE YANG

  • Producer, Actor, Director, and Writer

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.

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GALEY ALIX

  • Interior Designer and Viral Content Creator with 4.7M Followers

Home renovation expert, 10-year Goldman Sachs Executive, and viral content creator Galey Alix has curated a unique approach to reinvention that is winning over audiences. After a tough life experience, Galey decided to take a hiatus from social media and prioritize her mental health and wellness. When she logged back on several months later, she discovered her home makeover videos had gone viral, and seized the opportunity to found Galey Alix Design. As the CEO of her own company, Galey surprises deserving families with weekend home renovations – which has earned her 4.7M followers online. She is the Host of MAX's Home in a Heartbeat with Galey Alix. Galey is in-demand for her insights about finding your purpose, balancing professional opportunities with personal goals, and building a values-based business.

Galey and her work have been featured in Business InsiderForbesVogueCosmopolitan, on The Today Show, Rachael Ray ShowTamron Hall Show, the BEHIND THE BOSS Podcast, and more, and she has been ranked the 4th most influential designer in the world by Vogue. Beyond her wildly popular projects reinventing spaces, Galey is also an advocate for mental health and resilience, sharing her journey of overcoming an eating disorder and how she handles the cyberbullying she has faced as a viral content creator online. In powerful keynote speeches and conversations, Galey shares her message of the power of asking for help and the importance of prioritizing kindness no matter the obstacles you’re facing.

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TAYLOR CASSIDY

  • Viral Content Creator on TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube

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.

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KAHLIL GREENE

  • Yale's First Black Student Body President

Kahlil Greene uses his unique leadership experiences and Gen-Z perspective to provide a youthful, forward-looking, and much-needed intervention to commonplace and antiquated DE&I strategies. He has authored op-eds about organizational equity in the LA Times and Washington Post; and his article “Dear CEO’s: A Gen Zer’s Open Letter to His Future Employers” was published in the Harvard Business Review. As a junior in college, Greene completed a summer internship with McKinsey and Company and later earned a Hall of Fame designation from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington for his fundraising and support of the nonprofit.

Prior to this, Kahlil Greene was elected the first Black student body president in Yale's 318-year history. At the end of his year and a half-long term--which lasted through the COVID-19 pandemic--his administration’s successes included grassroots fundraising over $57,000 for racial justice organizations in one week; launching six affinity networks to increase racial, socioeconomic, and gender representation on the Council; and kickstarting a walk-in mental health counseling program for students. Greene stayed true to his campaign promises to be direct in critiques of Yale’s administration and actively supportive of student-led movements and protests--a hallmark of his presidency.

Today, Greene is also a New York Times featured social media influencer who is verified on Instagram and has over 440k followers and 12mm views on TikTok. Both Instagram and Facebook, Inc. have collaborated with and sponsored Greene’s work directly. He often engages in political discourse with social media influencers and users from all backgrounds, and now uses his influence to generate awareness around social issues as they arise in real-time.

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JIMMY DARTS

  • Content Creator with Over 17M Followers

Content creator and philanthropist Jimmy Darts always felt drawn to a hospitality mindset and a love of people. While traveling the world after high school, he fell in love with serving others. Today, he partners with companies to showcase their generosity and use the power of social media to inspire all generations to live selflessly across the street and around the world. Boasting over 17M followers across platforms, Jimmy overwhelms his viewers with kindness and generosity, combining his lifelong passions of serving others and creating compelling content.

Jimmy created The Jimmy Darts Foundation to showcase love through larger acts of giving. The Foundation’s mission strives to uplift those facing homelessness, combat the impact of childhood bullying, and empower children with resources to live better childhoods to empower the next generation. The foundation offers not just immediate help but a path to lasting restoration through impactful grants and partnership with effective organizations in each space through practical aid, and diverse, lasting support. In uplifting events, Jimmy motivates his audience to make a difference through kindness on an immediate and personal scale and through their capacity to create worldwide change for the better.

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VIC BLENDS

  • Entrepreneur and The World's Most Famous Barber

Motivational speaker, entrepreneur, and barber Victor Fontanez – known by his social media handle Vic Blends – is the most famous barber in the world and the leading motivational voice of the new generation. Vic started cutting hair in his mother’s garage his senior year of high school, and this side hustle quickly turned into passion, then passion turned into purpose. Within five years Vic has amassed more than 18M social media followers and has risen to international success. Beyond his success on TikTok, he became the lead talent in Rockstar’s Latinx Equity Campaign which aired during the NBA Finals. Vic is passionate about making a social impact and shares an empowering message of personal growth, mental health awareness, social change, and more.

Giving back to his community and leaving a legacy are two major pillars for Vic, which prompted him to launch Vic Blends Academy – an online curriculum for the next generation of barbers. Thousands of inspired fans and students have already signed up. Building on his passion for bettering the community has grown from there, when Vic announced the launch of the first licensed barber schools in California Prison history. This program will give incarcerated people the opportunity to obtain their barbers licenses with hopes of setting them up for success upon release. He also funds and hosts an annual giveback to his hometown of Fayetteville – giving thousands of families supplies they need during the holidays. In honor of this monumental project, he received the key to the city of Fayetteville from its mayor. An effusive and energizing voice in conversations about social changing and impact, Latinx culture, and anti-bullying, Vic shares his inspiring insights worldwide.

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KENDALL TOOLE

  • Top Peloton Fitness Instructor - "Never Knocked Out"

Athlete, community builder, and mental health advocate Kendall Toole is a lightning rod of energy and natural-born fighter who knows how to harness the collective attention in any room. A top Peloton fitness instructor, Kendall is also a content creator and lifestyle entrepreneur on a purpose-driven mission to empower others. Kendall is passionate about destigmatizing mental health and is an ambassador for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and considers her own mental health journey a part of what makes her powerful.

Kendall spent time as a multi-sport athlete, amateur boxer, and actress, and realized her drive to change culture and empower communities, particularly women, to step into their light. This ultimately led Kendall to her role at Peloton, which has catapulted her into pop culture stardom and viral reach on social media. Kendall has quickly become one of the most influential names in health & fitness and has amassed a loyal fanbase through her ability to stay “Never Knocked Out.” Through her in-demand classes, content, and speaking engagements, Kendall leaves a positive mark on her audiences by motivating those around her to find their voice and believe in their inner strength.

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VIVIAN TU

  • Wall Street Trader-Turned-Expert Educator

Former Wall Street trader-turned-expert, educator, and entrepreneur Vivian Tu is on a global mission to make the financial industry less "male, pale, and stale.” Tu is the founder and CEO of financial equity phenomenon, “Your Rich BFF” – making the rules of personal finance accessible and digestible to non-experts and marginalized communities. Tu has earned cross-platform fame and notoriety, garnering 6M followers and spots on Forbes “30 Under 30 – Social Media” and the inaugural “Top Creators” lists. Tu’s debut book, RICH AF: The Winning Money Mindset That Will Change Your Life, is the definitive book on personal finance for a new generation.

Tu is the host of her top-charting podcast Networth and Chill – a first-of-its-kind podcast offering accessible advice and lessons in finance, featuring Vivian alongside notable experts, professionals, and famous faces to break down the economics of our lives. Her affinity for turning finance into an approachable topic has transformed her into one of today’s most desirable public speakers, and she has given panels and keynote presentations at events including SXSW, Snapchat’s Financial SeminarForbes’ Top Creator eventBuzzFeed’s Content Creators Showcase, Glow Recipe’s Empowerment SummitNextShark’s AAPI College Readiness Conference, and Her Campus Media’s Her Conference, to name just a few.

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MISSY FRANKLIN

  • Four-Time World Record Holding Swimmer

Olympian Missy Franklin was one of the best swimmers in the world. She began swimming competitively at the age of 5 and competed in her first international event at the age of 14. At 16, she launched to international fame when she won 5 medals, 3 gold, at the 2011 FINA World Championships. Franklin’s precocious success was followed by her appointment to the U.S. National Team, with whom she won 5 Olympic gold medals. After winning 6 more gold medals at the 2013 FINA World Championships, Franklin became the most decorated female swimmer in history. Franklin has been inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame for her outstanding successes in the pool. Touch the Wall, a documentary following her life and preparation for the Olympics, was released with two thumbs up from swimmers and non-swimmers alike. Franklin’s story has inspired millions globally.

Recognized for her bright smile and engaging personality, Franklin has been named “World Swimmer of the Year" and "American Swimmer of the Year" by Swimming World Magazine and earned the ESPYs for Best Female Olympian and Best Female College Athlete. Franklin now speaks on teamwork, excellence, and success while supporting awareness and fundraising efforts for genetic diseases.

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WENDELL POTTER

  • Preeminent healthcare system thought-leader shaping discourse about its reform

Renowned healthcare system thought leader and advocate for healthcare reform, WENDELL POTTER provides fresh, high-caliber insight that shapes conversations and U.S. policy. His influential views are frequently cited in The New York Times and Washington Post, and as a news commentator on CNN, NPR and MSNBC among other media outlets. Potter’s level of understanding of American health insurance companies, one of the largest and most important industries in the world, is unique in its level of inside insight into how insurers play their game.

Potter's career trajectory from investigative reporting to the communications helm of a major health insurance corporation took a remarkable turn when he chose to blow the whistle on the industry's business practices as a Congressional expert witness. His courageous exposure of profit-driven decisions that often compromised patient well-being became a turning point, marking him as an individual committed to transparency, ethics, and a fundamental reevaluation of the healthcare landscape.

 

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ANITA ELBERSE

  • Award-Winning Professor of Business Administration

World-renowned, award winning professor of business administration Anita Elberse is acclaimed for her publications on products in the entertainment, media, sports, and other creative industries, using econometric modeling techniques and case studies to examine media-industry problems. Professor Elberse teaches an MBA course covering the "Businesses of Entertainment, Media, and Sports," which ranks among the most sought-after courses at HBS and chairs an eponymous executive education program. Professor Elberse has published her case studies on dozens of entertainment companies, personalities, and other entities across major industry publications, such as the Harvard Business Review, Marketing Science, the Journal of Marketing, and several other journals. Several of her case studies are described in her bestselling book, Blockbusters: Hit-making, Risk-taking, and the Big Business of Entertainment.

Professor Elberse is acclaimed for her work on furthering equality in sports media. She chairs a semester-long mentoring program, "Crossover Into Business," specifically designed for professional athletes and leads the Summer Venture in Management Program for college students from minority backgrounds. Poets & Quants named her one of the "World's Best Business School Professors Under the Age of 40," and she has received teaching awards on multiple occasions from both students and Harvard Business School itself. Professor Elberse provides actionable takeaways for organizations to effectively manage products and talent in media, reflecting her fruitful work on digital-media strategies. As a speaker, Professor Elberse provides insightful stories, commentary, and case studies unpacking the best of sports, media, and pop culture.

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KEECHANT SEWELL

  • SVP of Security & Guest Experience, The Mets at Citi Field

Leadership and security expert Keechant Sewell is currently the Senior Vice President of Security and Guest Experience for the Mets at Citi Field. Previously, Sewell was a U.S. police officer and administrator who served as the 45th New York City Police Commissioner, where she oversaw a comprehensive strategy focused on the safety of New Yorkers and improving core features of the NYPD. During her tenure, Sewell launched the Innovation Steering Committee, which made nearly 250 recommendations for improved data analytics, community engagement, technology, officer safety, and more. She has also leveraged technology to better connect to the public and keep officers and the city safe, in addition to a myriad of crime-reduction strategies. Sewell has forged meaningful and lasting relationships between the Department and communities, businesses, elected leaders, and government agencies. Sewell’s innovative leadership has resulted in a more diverse workforce, measurable results, and community initiatives. Sewell brings a unique perspective to topics including innovative leadership, manager effectiveness, teambuilding, and public safety.

Sewell has the distinction of becoming the first sitting NYPD Commissioner to be named “PBA Person of the Year” and recognized with the first annual Torch Award from MovementForward Inc., among numerous other awards and accolades. She is a graduate of the FBI National Academy, where she was selected to give the commencement address. To learn more on transforming institutions through innovation both human and digital, turn to Sewell’s expertise spanning both the private and public sectors.

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STACY SCHIFF

  • Pulitzer Prize-Winning Author of 'The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams', 'Cleopatra: A Life', and 'The Witches: Salem 1682' Among Others

Pulitzer Prize-winner Stacy Schiff is the author of multiple award-winning bestsellers and an acclaimed historian. The Wall Street Journal called her “perhaps the most seductive writer of nonfiction prose in America in our time.” Her book The Witches: Suspicion, Betrayal, and Hysteria in 1692 Salem was hailed by The New York Times as “an almost novelistic, thriller-like narrative.” Joseph Ellis deemed Schiff’s the finest account to date of the witch trials; David McCullough declared the book “brilliant from start to finish.” Schiff’s #1 bestseller Cleopatra: A Life was published to great acclaim – it appeared on numerous year-end “Best Book” lists, including The New York Times “Top Ten Books of 2010,” has been translated into more than 30 languages, and won the PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for Biography. She is the author of Pulitzer Prize-winner Véra (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov), Pulitzer Prize finalist Saint-Exupéry: A Biography, and A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France, and the Birth of America, winner of the George Washington Book Prize. All New York Times Notable Books. Apple TV produced a TV series based on A Great Improvisation starring Michael Douglas. In engaging moderated conversations Schiff captivates audiences with her power as a storyteller, drawing connections between the past and the most important issues today.

Schiff has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities and was a Director’s Fellow at the Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library. Among other honors, she was named a 2011 Library Lion by the New York Public Library, a Boston Public Library Literary Light in 2016, and in 2017 received the Lifetime Achievement Award in History and Biography from the New England Historic Genealogical Society. She received the 2019 Peggy V. Helmerich Distinguished Author Award. In 2018 she was named a Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture. Awarded a 2006 Academy Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, she was inducted into the Academy in 2019. Schiff has written for The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New York Review of Books, The Times Literary Supplement, and The Los Angeles Times, among many other publications. Her most recent book, The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams, is already a bestselling revelatory biography, and Ron Chernow has hailed it as “a glorious book that is as entertaining as it is vitally important” and The Wall Street Journal declared it a "tour de force."

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ALEXIS COE

  • Presidential Historian

Presidential historian and New York Times bestselling author Alexis Coe is heralded for her lively, genre-defying, myth-busting essays, books, documentaries, and podcasts. Both of Coe’s books were critically acclaimed: Alice+Freda Forever: A Murder in Memphis was praised by the New Yorker as having “the liveliness of a novel,” and her instant New York Times bestselling biography of George Washington, You Never Forget Your First, made every major publication’s Best Books of 2020, including TIME Magazine’s 100 Books To Read and an NPR Concierge “Best Book of the Year.” Coe has been sought-after for speaking engagements at Columbia, West Point, Georgetown, Sarah Lawrence, NYU, The New School, the University of San Francisco, and many others, and has given talks sponsored by Hulu, Chanel, and Madewell.

Coe regularly contributes to the New York Times, the New Yorker, the New Republic, Paris Review, Elle, and many others. She has appeared on CNN, the History Channel, C-SPAN, and CBS. Coe served as a consulting producer on the History Channel’s three-part series on Washington, hosted The Wing’s award-winning podcast No Man’s Land, and co-hosted Audible’s Presidents Are People Too! podcast, which recasts each of the American presidents as real-life people, complete with flaws, quirks, triumphs, scandals, and bodily ailments. Known for her engaging, informative, and charismatic delivery, Coe consistently receives rave reviews: "Alexis was a delight, and gave us important context for today's events at both of her talks” (Enoch Pratt Free Library) and "We had a terrific event.  Alexis Coe was amazing.” (Muskingum County Library System)

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TIFFANY D. CROSS

  • Journalist and Former Host, MSNBC's 'The Cross Connection'

Celebrated journalist, bestselling author, and revered political analyst Tiffany D. Cross delivers every time in motivational, insightful, and thought-provoking events. She is the current co-host of iHeart Media’s Native Land Pod, which debuted in 2024 on Apple as the number one downloaded podcast in America across all categories. Cross also hosts ACross Generations, a broadcast show and podcast with Will Packer Productions and iHeart Media, where she focuses on a variety of topics from a multigenerational perspective. Cross previously hosted The Cross Connection on MSNBC, averaging 4.6M viewers a month. She is a longtime cultural commentator, having previously served as the D.C. Bureau Chief for BET Networks, an Associate Producer for CNN, and freelancer. She is also the founder of 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)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

SEAN EVANS

  • Emmy Nominated Host & Co-Creator of 'Hot Ones'

Emmy-nominated Hot Ones host Sean Evans has two superpowers: interviewing celebrities and eating extremely spicy foods. Against the odds, he's managed to combine the two into the massively popular YouTube show Hot Ones on First We Feast. Each week, Evans shares a plate of progressively spicier chicken wings with his celebrity guests, eliciting some of the most hilarious and honest answers you've ever seen from stars like Kevin Hart, Gordon Ramsay, and Jennifer Lawrence. Hot Ones has spawned a worldwide base of 8M+ YouTube fans and has racked up almost 60M views.

Despite his extreme tactics, Hot Ones guests respect Evans' deeply researched questions and commitment to his craft. The Chicago native grew up studying heroes like David Letterman and Howard Stern – and gaining an appreciation for extra-hot salsa from his dad – before cutting his teeth as a Complex News host. His interviews with the likes of Allen Iverson and Manny Pacquiao made him a favorite on the sports-media circuit, and his willingness to try just about anything – including a day of The Rock's diet and fitness regimen – helped propel his online profile. Evans has been nominated for and won several Webby Awards and was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Talk Show host in 2021.

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NATE BERKUS

  • Award-Winning American Interior Designer

Nate is one of the world’s most influential designers. Since his first appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show in 2002, his elevated yet deeply personal approach to design has cultivated a loyal following. Nate’s expertise, approachability and signature style have made him a beloved household name and a trusted authority for almost three decades.

Nate’s design philosophy has inspired popular product collections and his work has been featured in Architectural Digest, New York Times, WSJ, Harper’s BazaarVOGUE, and People, among many others. He is included on the ELLE DÉCOR “A-List” of the world’s top designers and the AD100 list. Audiences have followed Nate through his own TV shows, including The Nate Berkus ShowAmerican Dream Builders on NBC, and most recently The Nate & Jeremiah Home Project on HGTV. He is the author of two New York Times bestselling books, Home Rules and The Things That Matter

Throughout his career, Nate has used design to truly empower people to live beautifully. He is also sought after for his insights on entrepreneurship, his incredible 30-year career journey, as well as his inspirational perspectives on love, grief, and life. Berkus has engaged and uplifted audiences across the globe for groups including Soaring Spirits International, American Express and more.

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MEGHAN, THE DUCHESS OF SUSSEX

Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex is a feminist, champion of human rights and gender equity, and global role model. Her lifelong advocacy for women and girls remains a constant thread she weaves through both humanitarian and business ventures. She is noted as one of the most powerful and influential women in the world, topping lists such as TIME Magazine’s Most Influential People, The Financial Times’ 25 Most Influential Women, Variety Power of Women, and British Vogue’s Vogue 25. 

She and her husband, Prince Harry have also been the recipients of the NAACP President’s Award as well as the Robert F. Kennedy Ripple of Hope Award. Meghan’s global impact, and strong stance on resilience, equality, and compassion through action, have made her one of the most iconic public figures of this generation.

Born and raised in Southern California, Meghan attended Los Angeles based all-girls Catholic School, Immaculate Heart, which she continues to support as an alumna, before moving to Chicago to attend the prestigious Northwestern University. While there, she double majored in Theater and International Relations, and went on to intern at the US Embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina, as well as to study abroad in Madrid, Spain. After graduation, Meghan turned her focus to the entertainment industry, landing her big break as a lead actor on the hit series, ‘Suits’ which she starred in for seven seasons. During her time off between filming, Meghan travelled to Rwanda, India, and across the globe working on humanitarian missions, and serving in key roles such as: UN Women’s Advocate for Women’s Political Participation and Leadership, a World Vision Global Ambassador, and a leading Counsellor to One Young World, where she inspired youth and women around the world through her passionate advocacy and hands-on approach to being of service. She also travelled to support the military community on a USO Tour, visiting six military bases in seven days including Bagram, Afghanistan.

In 2018, Meghan married Prince Harry, becoming The Duchess of Sussex.

An accomplished writer, she has contributed pieces to publications in the UK, US, and Ireland, and parlayed that skill into the creation of the successful lifestyle website, ‘The Tig’, where her thoughtful and inspiring op-eds cultivated a global fanbase. The Duchess of Sussex was the first guest editor in the history of British Vogue for their July Issue in 2019, which was the fastest selling copy in the history of the publication.

She and Prince Harry founded The Archewell Foundation in 2020 to support communities in need at a micro and macro level, in both moments of crisis as well as for long term aid. At The Archewell Foundation, they hold the value that charitable work should not simply be ‘a handout, but rather a hand held’, a phrase which Meghan first coined when supporting UK charity Smart Works, of which she is patron, that uplifts and prepares underserved women to enter the workforce. Meghan and her husband also founded and oversee production company, Archewell Productions and podcasting arm, Archewell Audio.

In 2022, Meghan launched ‘Archetypes’, a record-breaking podcast exploring the labels that try to hold women back; ‘Archetypes’ debuted at Number 1 in The US, UK, Australia, Ireland, and New Zealand, and topped the charts as the Number 1 podcast in 47 countries, demonstrating her unparalleled global reach. After its first season, Archetypes was awarded The People’s Choice Award in the podcast category.

She is a NY Times Best Selling author, publishing her highly celebrated children’s book, ‘The Bench’, and “Together: Our Community Kitchen” a publication she spearheaded with the women of the Hubb Community Kitchen in the UK, who were displaced after the tragic Grenfell Fire. True to her character, The Duchess of Sussex mobilized to turn pain into purpose, working alongside this dynamic group of women to help them heal, grow, and develop their own business enterprises in the face of adversity. In addition to topping the NY Times Bestsellers list, “Together,” also debuted as number one on the UK’s Sunday Booklist, with proceeds going to the Kitchen.

Meghan’s influence in fashion has been coined “The Meghan Effect” with items selling out within hours of her wearing them. Her ‘effect’ has transcended fashion, shifting cultural conversations as seen with her op-ed for the NY Times “The Losses We Share.” The piece detailed a heartbreaking personal loss which spiked the conversation surrounding miscarriage to the highest it had been spoken of in over two decades at the time of publishing. 

Meghan is a passionate advocate for mental health and family care, the holistic support of women and children’s rights, and the immeasurable value of one’s self worth. Her core belief that representation matters, and her connection to community through the lens of learning, healing, and inspiring have helped define her as a cultural catalyst for positive change.  

Meghan resides in California with her husband and their children Prince Archie Harrison and Princess Lilibet Diana, and their three dogs.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

JOHN LEGEND

  • EGOT Winner: Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony

EGOT-winning, critically acclaimed, multiplatinum singer-songwriter John Legend has garnered 12 Grammy Awards, two Emmy Awards, an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, and a Tony Award, among others. Legend is the first African-American man to earn an EGOT and one of only fifteen people in the prestigious EGOT club. Legend has released seven celebrated albums over the course of his career and is also a coach on The Voice.

Beyond his music career, John, along with partners Mike Jackson and Ty Stiklorius, is a principal of Get Lifted Film Co. Most recently, Get Lifted produced David E. Talbert’s acclaimed holiday film Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey for Netflix, the HBO, IDA Award-winning docu-series Atlanta's Missing and Murdered: The Lost Children, the IFC and AMC comedy series Sherman's Showcase and Sherman's Showcase: Black History Month Spectacular, and Rhythm + Flow for Netflix. Get Lifted and Erik Feig’s PICTURESTART formed Picture LIFT, a joint venture focused on developing, producing and financing multiple films in the $10M range, featuring diverse filmmakers and inclusive casts. 

From a young age, Legend aspired to use his position in the entertainment industry as a platform for social change. Throughout his career, Legend has committed his time, energy, and resources to social justice and equality. His philanthropy and advocacy has focused on building just, equitable, and thriving communities. Legend initiated the #FREEAMERICA campaign in 2015 to change the national conversation surrounding our country’s misguided criminal justice policies and to end mass incarceration. In 2007, Legend started The Show Me Campaign, to give every child access to a quality education as well as address systemic issues in our criminal justice system that disproportionately impact the poor, minorities, and disadvantaged.

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RICHIE JACKSON

  • Award-Winning Broadway, TV, and Film Producer

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.

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LINDSAY GOTTLIEB

  • Head Coach, USC Trojans Women's Basketball Team

On May 10, 2021, the USC Trojans announced the hire of Lindsay Gottlieb to lead the Lady Trojans Basketball program to restore the glory that once defined the program. Gottlieb’s basketball acumen, passion, and authenticity are widely recognized across the sports world and have not only greatly contributed to her success, but to her reputation as a trailblazer in the industry.

Gottlieb, who is no stranger to being a top coach in the Pac-12 conference, previously coached the Cal Bears women’s team to 7 NCAA tournaments, including a Final Four appearance in 2014. Her accomplishments and dominance in college basketball ultimately led her to become the first NCAA women’s head coach to join an NBA staff in 2019 when she was hired as an Assistant Coach by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2019. With this landmark hire, Gottlieb has continued to push boundaries and redefine what is possible for women in sports.

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MAX LUGAVERE

  • Health and Science Journalist

Health and science journalist and New York Times bestselling author Max Lugavere shares the secrets of wellness through nutrition and boosting mental health to achieve extraordinary performance. Lugavere is the author of the New York Times bestseller Genius Foods: Become Smarter, Happier, and More Productive While Protecting Your Brain for Life, a cutting-edge guide to supporting peak performance through dietary and lifestyle choices, which has been published in numerous languages. His book The Genius Life: Heal Your Mind, Strengthen Your Body, and Become Extraordinary focuses on strengthening mental wellness and resilience, and his new cookbook Genius Kitchen was an instant Wall Street Journal bestseller and has been featured in Forbes and on PBS NewsHour. Lugavere leverages his background as a creative to spread his powerful message of health literacy, and he is an internationally sought-after speaker, giving talks for groups like SXSW, TEDx, the New York Academy of Sciences, the Biohacker Summit in Stockholm, Sweden, and many others.

Lugavere appears regularly on The Dr. Oz ShowThe Rachael Ray Show, and The Doctors, and has been featured on NBC Nightly News, The Today Show, and in The New York Times and People. He has contributed to Medscape, Vice, Fast CompanyCNN, and the Daily Beast, and he is the creator and host of the #1 iTunes health podcast The Genius Life. Lugavere offers practical takeaways and inspiring insights for brain health, developing resilience, and making health-positive choices in one-of-a-kind events for audiences of all kinds.

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MICHAEL SMITH

  • Journalist and Commentator

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.

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ADRIANA TRIGIANI

  • New York Times Bestselling Author of 20 Books Including 'The Good Left Undone'

Filmmaker, television writer, and producer Adriana Trigiani is the New York Times bestselling author of twenty books of fiction and nonfiction, including her latest, The Good Left Undone. Her work is published in 38 languages around the world, and her screen credits include writer/director of the major motion picture of her debut novel, Big Stone Gap, the adaptation of her novel Very Valentine, and director of Then Came You. Her novels have been chosen by Book of the Month Club, UK's Richard and Judy Book Club twice, USA Today Book ClubPeople’s Book of the Week seven times, Lifetime Book Club, as well as other renowned national and international book clubs. Adriana has been profiled in The New York TimesUSA TodayBritish VoguePublishers WeeklyRed Magazine, Writer’s Digest, Hallmark MagazineItalian America Magazine, among others. She was featured in The New York Times 'By the Book', regularly contributes to the Richmond Times-Dispatch op-eds, and wrote the advice columnist ('Agony Aunt') for the Irish Independent. Adriana is in-demand as a guest speaker with organizations and universities, including New York University, the Women’s Fund of East Tennessee, The New School for Social Research, the New York City Italian Welfare League, and Fordham University, to name a few.

Adriana serves as one of the first-ever authors contributing to Meta’s Bulletin column in conjunction with her international Facebook Live show, Adriana Ink, of which Adriana has hosted over 400 bestselling authors and counting with a reach of 1.4M viewers. She has appeared on The Today Show for 22 years, CBS Sunday MorningCBS This Morning, The ViewGood Morning America as a featured summer read, and regularly appears on Good Day New YorkPBS and NPR, making her one of the most sought-after speakers in the world of books today. She is also a popular host and emcee for galas, fundraisers, and large venue engagements around the country, including the Audie Awards, Poets and Writers Gala, New York City ArchCare Gala, and serves as the permanent host of the Erma Bombeck Arizona Women’s Board Authors Luncheon, the Charleston Post & Courier Book and Author Luncheon, and the Library of Virginia Literary Awards. With her swath of knowledge in storytelling, filmmaking, and the Italian American experience, Adriana offers enlightening and lively presentations, discussions, and workshops that challenge audiences to lead creative and impactful lives, and she does it with comedy.

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AFUA HIRSCH

  • Award-Winning Writer, Journalist, and Filmmaker on Issues of Race and Equality

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)

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AJA BROWN

  • Mayor, City of Compton (2013-2021)

Trailblazing community leader Mayor Aja Brown made history as the youngest mayor ever to serve the City of Compton. Leveraging her expertise as an urban planner, an economic developer, and community servant, Brown quickly became known for her pragmatic 12-Point Vision for Compton revitalization strategy, deploying evidence-based initiatives and attracting new record levels of reinvestment from the private sector. Prior to her ground-breaking tenure as mayor, she co-founded Compton Community Development Corporation, a non-profit emphasizing education programming, scholarships, and small business loans. Brown is a strong and consistent leader in the movement for equity and justice, lending critical support to actionable policy changes, and has joined with mayors around the country committed to guaranteed income, launching the largest city-based guaranteed income program in the country, The Compton Pledge. Brown is an inspiring changemaker, motivating audiences of all kinds through her visionary leadership and commitment to community-driven change.

Brown has been profiled in Vogue, Elle, ESSENCE, TIME, and many more. She participated in Policy Link and ESSENCE’s All-In Cities Initiative, which brings Black women mayors around the country together to share, ideate, and then build better communities. Brown is highly sought-after for keynote speeches as well as moderated conversations, and regularly receives rave reviews, such as: “The event was wonderful!!! She was a hit. Everyone had nothing but positive feedback on her and said it was probably one of THE best lunch and learns we have ever had! So kudos to the Mayor! She is really delightful and inspiring” (Intuit Inc.).

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ALANIS MORISSETTE

  • Award-Winning Musician and Singer-Songwriter

Award-winning musician, singer-songwriter, actor, and activist Alanis Morissette is an enduringly popular artist whose celebrated body of work stems from a fierce commitment to authenticity. Her breakthrough album Jagged Little Pill – which earned four Grammys and sold more than 30M records – spawned a worldwide fanbase and became a hit Broadway musical, earning fifteen Tony Award nominations. As an actor, Alanis’s film and TV projects include Dogma, Sylvia, De-Lovely, Sex and the City, Curb Your Enthusiasm, and Weeds, among others. On stage, she has starred in The Vagina Monologues and The Exonerated.

Beyond the entertainment world, Alanis is an avid supporter of mental health, women’s empowerment, as well as spiritual and physical wellness. She supports numerous causes that focus on empowerment, art, and environmental causes, and touches on these important issues in her insightful events. Alanis is the recipient of the Global Tolerance Award from the United Nations and Rock the Vote’s Patrick Lippert Award for her dedication to making the world safer for young people. Her uplifting keynotes have connected with audiences at events including the Wisdom 2.0 Festival, UCLA, The Embodiment Conference, and the Engendering Love Summit, where the host raved, “It was a delightful conversation, and I got tons of good feedback how much people appreciated it and Alanis’s insights. Please pass my deep heart felt gratitude to Alanis.”

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ALEX WAGNER

  • Acclaimed Broadcast Journalist

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 AmericaSlate’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.

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ALEXIS MCGILL JOHNSON

  • President & CEO, Planned Parenthood

Respected political and cultural organizer Alexis McGill Johnson is the President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund. Planned Parenthood, which provides vital health services to 2.4M people each year through more than 600 health centers across the country, offers a vision of a world of equity: where sexual and reproductive rights are basic human rights; where access to health care doesn’t depend on who you are or where you live; and where every person has the opportunity to choose their own path to a healthy and meaningful life. Alexis, a researcher by training, co-founded and co-directed the Perception Institute, which creates solutions that reduce bias and discrimination and drive equity and belonging. Alexis is a thought leader on brain science and narrative change, has written and spoken extensively on equity, race, and culture, and is sought-after for events with groups like Viacom, SXSW, MAC World AIDS Day, the United Nations Global Compact Gender Equality Summit, and more.

A tireless advocate for reproductive freedom, Alexis has served in Planned Parenthood’s leadership for more than a decade. She also serves on the boards of Color of Change and is the Founder of The Culture Group. Alexis is uniquely positioned to offer in-depth analysis, actionable insights for individuals and organizations, and shares an affirmative vision of protecting and expanding reproductive health care.

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ALIE WARD

  • Emmy Award-Winning Host, 'The Henry Ford's Innovation Nation with Mo Rocca'

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

AMNA NAWAZ

  • Peabody and Emmy Award-Winning Broadcast Journalist

Peabody and Emmy Award-winning broadcast journalist Amna Nawaz currently serves as co-anchor of PBS NewsHour. Her diligent reporting and skillful moderation have shaped coverage of some of the most important events in recent history. Amna’s portfolio is broad, delving into politics, foreign affairs, education, climate change, culture, and sports to great acclaim, with her NBC News Special ‘Inside the Obama Whitehouse’ earning her an Emmy Award. From her distinguished position as NBC’s Islamabad Bureau Chief & Correspondent to her Peabody Award-winning work for NewsHour’s 'Global Plastic Problem', Amna’s signature thoughtful and thorough analysis establish her as one of the foremost voices in journalism today.

Leading notable panels such as the Aspen Ideas Festival and the RespectAbility #ADA30 Summit 2020, Amna’s insightful moderation elevates conversations. In a ground-breaking moment, she co-moderated a 2019 Democratic Primary Debate, becoming the first Asian American and first Muslim American to do so. Amna has interviewed international newsmakers, influential voices in the arts, and travelled from border towns to Appalachia covering vital issues and enriching national and international dialogue.

Amna’s work has appeared on ABC NewsNightlineNBC NewsNBC Nightly NewsThe Today ShowDateline NBCMSNBC, and MSNBC.com. Nawaz was a Fall 2021 Fellow at Georgetown University’s Institute of Politics and Public Service and she is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Asian American Journalists Association, the South Asian Journalists Association, and the Inter-American Dialogue. Amna consistently receives rave reviews for her speaking engagements, such as: “Amna was outstanding! Gracious, delightful, simply perfect. The tone of her speech hit the spot. Everyone loved it.” (Greenwich Academy)

HWA CO-EXCLUSIVE

ANA NAVARRO

  • Political Analyst for CNN, CNN en Español, and Telemundo

Republican strategist, analyst, and TV personality Ana Navarro is a vital voice in political media today. The Miami New Times named her a “Republican power-consultant,” and the Tampa Bay Times called her “a sought-after voice in Republican politics and an adviser for any presidential hopeful.” Navarro is respected on both sides of the aisle for her straight shooting and candor.

Navarro first served as ambassador to the United Nation’s Human Rights Commission, a special advisor to the government of Nicaragua, and one of the primary advocates for NACARA (Nicaraguan Adjustment and Central American Relief Act). Navarro then transitioned to the private sector. She has also played a role in several federal and state races in Florida. She served as the national Hispanic co-chair for Governor Jon Huntsman’s campaign and the national co-chair of John McCain’s Hispanic Advisory Council. She served on Governor Jeb Bush’s transition team and was his first director of immigration policy.

Navarro frequently appears in the media, sought after by Meet the Press, Bill Maher’s Real Time, Anderson Cooper 360, and more. She is a co-host of ABC’s The View. From both her media work and political insider perspective, Navarro is in touch with the political issues of today. In presentations, Navarro discusses the latest hot button issues in politics, giving audiences an insider’s view of the upcoming elections and a roadmap for where the country is headed.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ANDY GRAMMER

  • Multi-Platinum Singer-Songwriter

Multiplatinum recording artist and Emmy-winner Andy Grammer has brought inspiration and a deep sense of empathy to people across the world for over a decade. A former street performer, Andy shot to fame with pop hits like the quadruple platinum ‘Honey, I’m Good’, and platinum singles ‘Keep Your Head Up’, ‘Fine By Me’, gold single ‘I Found You’, and many more. Recognized as the #1 streaming artist in the world in the category of Happy/Pop, Andy takes audiences on an inspirational journey of music that nourishes the soul, heartwarming personal stories, and an authentic conversation about mental health and finding your true self for an unforgettable event.

Andy has earned a Sports Emmy for “Outstanding Music Direction” and a Clio Award for his song ‘Don’t Give Up On Me’, which was featured in ESPN’s Annual V Week for Cancer Reach. His music has been featured on TV and in films like Five Feet Apart. Andy has electrified TV audiences with performances on The TODAY Show, Jimmy Kimmel LIVE!, Good Morning America, American Idol, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, and The Late Late Show with James Corden, in addition to appearing as a contestant on Dancing with the Stars. Through interactive musical events, keynotes, and as a consummate host, Andy makes an impact with his empowering message of grounded optimism and finding your true self.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ANNA MALAIKA TUBBS

  • NYT Bestselling Author, 'The Three Mothers: How the Mothers of Martin Luther King Jr., Malcom X, and James Baldwin Shaped a Nation'

New York Times bestselling author, sociologist, and advocate Anna Malaika Tubbs holds a Ph.D in Sociology and a Masters in Multidisciplinary Gender Studies from the University of Cambridge, in addition to a Bachelors in Anthropology from Stanford University. Her research, writing, and talks are centered on gender and race issues in the U.S., especially as these relate to the erasure of Black women. Tubbs is the author of The New York Times bestseller The Three Mothers: How the Mothers of Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and James Baldwin Shaped a Nation, a New York Times Editors’ Choice and an Amazon Editor’s Choice book, among many other accolades. She is currently working on her first fiction, and recently sold her next two non-fiction books. Tubbs’ TED Talk How Moms Shape the World has already garnered over 1.4M views, and she is highly sought-after for her focus on feminism, intersectionality, and inclusion, offering profound insights that make an impact with audiences of all kinds.

Tubbs has been published in TIME, New York Magazine, The Guardian, CNN, and Motherly, and her work has been featured in The New York Times, Forbes, The Washington Post, and more. She has appeared on MSNBCCBS, C-Span, and NPR, among others. Tubbs previously served as the First Partner of Stockton, CA, and co-authored the first ever “Report on the Status of Women in Stockton” to help guide policy decisions with the experiences of diverse women in mind. As a result of her work while in Stockton, she was named one of six pivotal powerbrokers in the Bay Area by San Francisco Magazine in 2019. Tubbs has given compelling keynotes for groups including Cisco, Wells Fargo, Proctor & Gamble, Blavity, Yale University, Goldman Sachs, Google, and the Enoch Pratt Free Library, and many more.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ANUPAM B. JENA

  • Physician-Economist

Dr. Jena is an economist, physician, and professor at Harvard. As one of a small group of physician-economists in the world, and one of the most creative and prolific social scientists in medicine, Dr. Jena is uniquely positioned to explore where the worlds of medicine and economics collide, based on his experiences as a practicing physician at Massachusetts General Hospital and his unique training as an economist. 

His creative use of natural experiments – chance occurrences that we are exposed to, but often unaware of, in our lives – help us understand how health care works, the subject of his 2020 TEDMED talk. He is the host of the popular Freakonomics, M.D. podcast, where he tackles questions at the intersection of medicine and economics, including questions from his own research on why mortality rates rise in cities on the days that they host large marathons, why cardiac patients do better when cardiologists are out of town at national cardiology conferences, and why kids with summer birthdays are more likely to be diagnosed with A.D.H.D. Dr. Jena’s book, Random Acts of Medicine: The Hidden Forces That Sway Doctors, Impact Patients, and Shape Our Health, will be published by Doubleday in the summer of 2023.

Dr. Jena’s work is frequently featured in the media, including The New York Times, Washington Post, and Wall Street Journal.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ANNIKA SORENSTAM

  • Hall-of-Fame Golfer

Hall of Fame golf legend, entrepreneur, and philanthropist Annika Sorenstam is regarded as one of the greatest female golfers of all time, and has shifted her competitive edge to building a business empire. During her fifteen year career at the top of her sport, she amassed over 90 worldwide victories, including 72 on the LPGA and 11 Major Championships. Sorenstam is a ground-breaking player, and continues to change the way women’s golf is played, viewed, and covered. Notably, she received international media attention when she became the first woman in 58 years to play in a PGA Tour men’s event. After stepping away from the course, she has founded numerous businesses under her ANNIKA brand, including a collection of high-end apparel, a wine label, a fragrance, a golf academy, as well as her golf course design business, through which she continues to break barriers and challenge stereotypes. Called the “First Lady of Golf” by the PGA, Sorenstam is an in-demand speaker for her insights from her legendary golf career, business ventures, and staying at the top of your game in any field.

Sorenstam has been profiled in Forbes, Vanity Fair, The New York Times, and received numerous awards, including a Presidential Medal of Freedom, becoming the first female golfer and only the third female athlete to receive the honor. She holds a record eight Rolex Player of the Year awards, six Vare Trophies for the lowest scoring average in a season, and is the only female golfer to break 60 in an official event, earning her the moniker ‘Ms. 59’. Sorenstam created the ANNIKA Foundation, which provides golf opportunities at the junior, collegiate, and professional levels while teaching young people the importance of a healthy lifestyle. An ambassador for her sport, Sorenstam is a powerful advocate for equal opportunity, an entrepreneurial mogul, and an expert in developing a champion’s mindset, building a brand with integrity, and overcoming obstacles to exceed expectations.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BILL SELF

  • Head Men's Basketball Coach, University of Kansas

University of Kansas Head Men’s Basketball Coach Bill Self has cemented the Jayhawks as one of the best basketball programs in the country. In his eminent 19-season tenure at Kansas, Self has led Kansas to 556 victories (and counting), eighteen straight NCAA Tournaments, eleven Sweet 16 appearances, nine Elite Eight berths, four Final Four runs, and two National Championships in 2008 and 2022. Self’s acumen, authenticity, and endless pursuit of excellence has instilled a culture and work ethic that is unparalleled in college basketball, and resonates across industries.

Self has also won an array of individual accolades, including two AP National Coach of the Year awards (2009, 2016), the 2012 Naismith and Adolf Rupp National Coach of the Year award, and eight conference Coach of the Year awards, among numerous others. He was enshrined as a first-ballot honoree in the Class of 2017 Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, and is the only active coach to have won multiple NCAA titles. Self’s unprecedented program at Kansas is a testament to his leadership, passion, and undeniable determination to succeed, and he shares his inspiring takeaways with audiences of all kinds.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BLAIR BRAVERMAN

  • Dogsledder and Adventurer

Adventurer, dogsledder, and author Blair Braverman is a riveting storyteller and expert in perseverance. She and her team of dogs have traveled through thousands of miles of wilderness in Alaska, the Yukon, and Scandinavia, and completed the famed Iditarod race. Braverman is the author of Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube, which was called “stunning and sharp” by The New York Times Book Review, and Dogs on the Trail: A Year in the Life. She shares epic stories and practical takeaways about developing a practice of grit and courage, working as a team to thrive in high-pressure situations, and breaks down common misconceptions about what makes a powerful leader.

Braverman is a contributing editor for Outside magazine, and her writing has been featured in The New York Times, Vogue, and on the This American Life podcast. She and her dog team have been featured on The Today Show and in O: The Oprah Magazine, The Washington Post, TIME, Teen Vogue, and on NPR. An in-demand speaker on cultivating bravery and embracing the unknown, Braverman regularly receives rave reviews such as: “My team at Microsoft was incredibly impressed with Blair’s passion, her depth of knowledge, and her storytelling. Over a year later, we still quote Blair about how there is always a way to get something done. She inspired the team in ways I had not predicted.” (Microsoft)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BILL COURTNEY

  • Football Coach and Subject of the Academy Award-Winning Documentary 'Undefeated'

Football coach and entrepreneur William B. Courtney is renowned for his inspirational lessons on teamwork and resiliency. 

Bill began volunteering at Memphis’ inner city Manassas High School in an effort to turn its underperforming football team around. When Bill started, the team had 19 players with a dismal 4-95, 10-year record. Within five years, the team’s record improved to 18-2, with 75 players. The story was so compelling that a Hollywood film—Undefeated—was produced about it. It won an Academy Award for Best Feature Length Documentary. Bill's book, Against the Grain: A Coach's Wisdom on Character, Faith, Family, and Love, shares his convictions on the fundamental tenets of character, commitment, service, leadership, civility, and others that, in his decades of success as an entrepreneur and educator, have proven to be the keys to a winning and meaningful life and career.

Inducted into Bridge Builders for leadership in diversity, community, and justice, Bill is the recipient of numerous awards including the Liberty Bowl’s Harry Zinn Spirit of 1776 award for distinguished citizenship, the Carnival Memphis’ King’s award for outstanding achievement in Business and Industry, and the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame Memphis chapter’s award winner for The Distinguished American for Contribution to Amateur Athletics.

Bill is also the founder of Classic American Hardwoods, Inc. Today he serves as the company's President and CEO. The company employs 120 people with a 45 acre manufacturing facility and domestic sales offices in Memphis, TN and international sales offices in Shanghai, China, and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. A winner of the Memphis Business Journal’s Small Business of the Year Award, Classic American Hardwoods is based on a commitment to community service.

 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BOB ODENKIRK

  • Emmy Award-Winning Actor and Writer

Award-winning writer, actor, and New York Times bestselling author Bob Odenkirk is known for playing slippery lawyer “Saul Goodman,” a character he originated on AMC’s Breaking Bad and went on to play in the hit spinoff Better Call Saul. He has been nominated for numerous awards for his work, including Emmys, Golden Globes, and has won the Critic’s Choice Award twice. As an actor, Odenkirk has also appeared in The Larry Sanders Show, Oscar-nominated film Nebraska, the Sundance hit The Spectacular Now, and Netflix original Girlfriend’s Day, which he also co-wrote. From his cult status as a comedy writer, to his reinvention as an award-winning actor in drama and an action-film star, Odenkirk shares his journey in engaging and hilarious events.

A legend in the comedy-writing world, Odenkirk has won Emmys and acclaim for his world on Saturday Night Live, Mr. Show with Bob and David, and many other seminal TV shows. His writing has appeared in The New Yorker, Vice Magazine, and Filter Magazine, among other publications. Odenkirk is the author of A Load of Hooey, which resembles nothing so much as a hilarious sketch comedy show for your mind, and the New York Times bestseller Comedy Comedy Comedy Drama: A Memoir. His memoir, which is an Editor’s Pick on Amazon, has been called “essential” (Entertainment Weekly) and “hilarious” (AV Club). In memorable moderated conversations, Odenkirk opens up about the highs and lows of his career and shares his trademark unflinching drive, inspiring audiences of all kinds.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BRIAN KELLY

  • Founder of The Points Guy

The Points Guy (TPG) Founder Brian Kelly the leading voice in loyalty programs, points, miles, credit cards and travel. Kelly has been helping travelers and other consumers navigate the increasingly complicated loyalty universe for over a decade and has grown TPG to be a powerhouse travel and lifestyle media platform that reaches over 11M unique monthly visitors around the world. Kelly has found a unique way to reach his audience and inspire millions to live their best lives through his supercharged personality, deep industry knowledge and extensive worldwide travel.

Kelly has been recognized with awards and accolades, including AdWeek’s "Young Influentials" list in 2019 and Forbes’ #1 travel influencer. His long-standing knowledge and expertise has garnered the trust of the nation’s top morning shows, with appearances on TODAY ShowCBS This MorningGood Morning America, and Kelly & Ryan, among others. Kelly’s passion for travel is shared by a belief in using travel as a global force for good, and he currently serves as a Committee Member for Rainbow Railroad, Global Ambassador for PeaceJam, Co-Chair of the Gbowee Peace Foundation Leadership Council, Goalkeeper for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and member of PTTOW.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CANDACE PARKER

  • 3x WNBA Champion, WNBA Finals MVP, 2x WNBA MVP, and 2x NCAA Champion

Entrepreneur, activist, sports analyst, and two-time Olympic Gold Medalist Candace Parker is one of the most influential athletes of this generation and one of the most decorated women’s basketball players of all time. A legendary basketball star, Parker has won two WNBA MVP Awards, is a two-time NCAA Champion, as well as a three-time WNBA Champion, leading both the Los Angeles Sparks and the Chicago Sky to victories. She is the only player in WNBA history to win three championships with three different franchises. She is also the first woman and WNBA player to appear on the cover of an NBA 2K game, for the WNBA 25th Anniversary Special Edition, and became the first active player to serve as an in-game analyst in the 2K broadcast booth. A rising star in the broadcast world, Parker works as a sports analyst and commentator for the NBA on TNT, NBA TV, and NCAA Tournament coverage. Off the court, she hosts the podcast Moments with Candace Parker, which celebrates the victories, messy failures, and brave decisions of parenthood. Parker is a highly sought-after speaker offering bold and inspiring thought leadership and passionate insights about the importance of women’s rights, voting rights, mental health awareness, racial justice, and Black Lives Matter.

Parker was the first woman to join the Social Change Fund, which invests in organizations working to make a greater impact in underrepresented communities of color. She was featured in the Disney+ docuseries Becoming, profiles for The New York Times, Forbes, and more, and was named to TIME's list of the "100 Most Influential People in 2022." Parker launched her media company Baby Hair Productions, and has produced a documentary exploring the impact of Title IX. Expanding her entrepreneurial portfolio, Parker and her daughter became co-owners of the Angel City FC National Women’s Soccer League expansion team. Parker gave an electrifying TEDWomen Talk How to break down barriers and not accept limits that went viral instantly with over 1M views, sharing her journey as a trailblazing sports icon, what it takes to break barriers, and the lesson she learned from her daughter about not accepting limitations.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CHARLI TURNER THORNE

  • Legendary Basketball Coach & 2-Time Pac-12 "Coach of the Year"

Legendary basketball coach Charli Turner Thorne has been sharing her expertise on leadership and inspiring people to be all they can be for the last 25 years. As the winningest coach in ASU women’s basketball history, Turner Thorne holds the second-most career wins in the Pac-12, has received the Pac-12 “Coach of the Year” award twice, and has been inducted into the ASU Hall of Fame. In addition to tremendous success on the court, she has been heralded for her impact beyond basketball – embracing the community and building a program that motivates her team in every aspect of life. In entertaining and informative presentations, Turner Thorne tailors her remarks to businesses and organizations of all kinds, speaking to the unique goals of her audience.

In her coaching and consultations, Turner Thorne is sought-after for her insights on building a Championship Culture. She has used her ability to manage her large and diverse staff – and consistently field winning teams at the highest level – to help numerous corporate clients, leaders in education, and other eclectic populations create winning strategies to have a healthy culture and maximize success. Turner Thorne shares practical takeaways and actionable strategies for values-discovery, setting high standards, improving communication skills, and maintaining mental and emotional wellbeing that resonate with audiences of all kinds.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CHARLIE DAVIES

  • Former Olympian and International Professional Soccer Player

Olympian, CBS sports analyst, and philanthropist Charlie Davies is passionate about uplifting others through inspiration and positive reinforcement. Davies has had an international career spanning twelve years, playing in Sweden, France, Denmark, and MLS, and represented the U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team at the 2008 Olympics. He currently serves as a broadcast analyst for CBS Sports, Major League Soccer, and the New England Revolution. Davies also co-hosts Call It What You Want, a U.S. soccer podcast for CBS. Davies is the Director of The ‘Quin Impact Fund, The ‘Quin House’s philanthropic arm. Leveraging his passion for creating a spark for change, he directs the club’s fundraising initiatives, programming, and fosters relationships with nonprofits and corporations. Davies is a motivating speaker on the topics of the power of a positive mindset, overcoming adversity and finding resilience, and philanthropy and the impact of giving back.

Passionately immersed in community service, Davies is a U.S. Soccer Foundation Ambassador, a New England Revolution Club Ambassador, focusing on sponsorships, fundraising, and community relations. He is a survivor of liposarcoma, a rare type of cancer, and is a spokesperson for the American Cancer Society’s “Real Men Wear Pink” campaign. He serves as a member on the Philanthropic Board of Advisors at Boston Children’s Hospital, on the boards of Beacon Academy, Boston’s Institute of Contemporary Art, in addition to volunteering with a myriad of organizations including The Steve Nash Foundation, the Boys & Girls Club of Boston, Horizons for the Homeless, and many others. In sought after engagements, Davies shares his personal story overcoming obstacles to become an Olympian, and how he uses his platform to make a difference.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CHASE BRYANT

  • Country Singer-Songwriter

Country singer-songwriter and mental health advocate Chase Bryant shares his powerful journey surviving mental health crisis and suicide through stories and songs. Bryant grew up dreaming of a life in music, and by age 21 was known for multiple Top 10 singles and tours with Brantley Gilbert and Tim McGraw. But when he achieved early fame, he also struggled with anxiety and depression. He hit rock bottom in a gas station parking lot, and attempted suicide – but after pulling the trigger, he found he was miraculously still alive. Bryant began the long road to recovery from his mental health crisis, eventually writing his extraordinary album Upbringing, which received wide acclaim and was featured on NPR, in People, Taste of Country, and others.

In his songs and impactful speaking engagements, Bryant shares his inspiring message with audiences of all kinds: “they’re not alone in this fight, that somebody’s out there listening and has their back.” Through facing his demons head on, learning to be comfortable in his own skin, making peace with being alone, learning to be okay with not being okay all the time, Bryant has found strength and resilience. He regularly receives rave reviews for his authentic and uplifting speaking engagements, such as: “Everything went great! They loved him and he was so nice and gracious and inspiring. The kids at the Center loved him too.” (Clarity Child Guidance Center's Annual Summit)

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CHRISTINE SIMMONS

  • Strategist | Impact Maker | Operator | Speaker | Entrepreneur | Creator

Trailblazing leader, entrepreneur, and executive Christine Simmons brings vast experience in some of the most prominent organizations in the world to her spellbinding keynote presentations. Simmons is the Founder of consulting firm Alis Volat Propriis, LLC – which means “she who flies with her own wings” in Latin – advising businesses at every scale on operational excellence, strategic planning, business development, and representation initiatives, and more. Her clothing and merchandise line, Unapologetically™ Christine, encourages everyone to live UNAPOLOGETICALLY™ - which she defines as “Being Bold, Attacking Life’s Challenges in Extraordinary Fashion, & Loving Oneself – Flaws and All!” In 2019, Christine was named Chief Operating Officer at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science – the first Woman and Black person to hold the position. Prior to this role, Simmons was President & Chief Operating Officer of the three-time WNBA Champion Los Angeles Sparks, and was an Executive Vice President with Magic Johnson Enterprises, where she evaluated investment opportunities and was responsible for business development. Speaking globally on topics including business, strategy, leadership, inclusion, and empowerment, Simmons has been sought after by groups including the Bank of America Women’s Conference, UCLA Velocity Conference, and The Black Employee Network from Blue Shield of California, among others.

With over two decades of leadership experience in creating strategic alliances, leading business development, and driving corporate initiatives, Christine has worked with many Fortune 500 corporations and multi-million-dollar companies including Disney and NBCUniversal. A proud UCLA graduate, Simmons currently holds seats on UCLA Foundation Board of Directors and the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Advisory Board. Previously, she served on the UC Board of Regents, where she served on the Finance and Capital Strategies, Public Engagement and Development, Investments & Basic Needs committees. She is a Past President and Director on the Board of the UCLA Alumni Association representing all 500,000 global Bruins. Simmons is on the Advisory Council for Playbook Makers, Spry, Next Play Capital, Shared Harvest Fund, and MyCOVID MD. She also volunteers for Better Futures for Thomazeau – a small, grassroots nonprofit that provides aide and is currently building a vocational school in Haiti. A huge advocate of mentoring, Christine formally mentors the next generation of Black and Brown women through Cari Champion’s foundation, Brown Girls Dream, and has informally mentored countless others.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DANA COWIN

  • Award-Winning Food and Lifestyle Tastemaker

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DANA PERINO

  • Former White House Press Secretary, Political Commentator, and Journalist

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DAVID SINCLAIR

  • World's Foremost Expert on Human Longevity

Leading researcher on aging and bestselling author, Professor Dr. David Sinclair is regarded as the world’s foremost expert on human longevity. A professor in the Genetics Department at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Sinclair heads a leading research lab that has discovered why we age and how to control it. He is the inventor on more than 50 patents, has published over 180 papers that have been cited 83,000 times, and is the author of the New York Times bestseller Lifespan: Why We Age and Why We Don't Have To, which The Wall Street Journal called “brilliant and enthralling.” Dr. Sinclair is a serial entrepreneur who has co-founded more than a dozen successful companies including MetroBiotech, EdenRoc Sciences, Tally Health, and Life Biosciences. An expert communicator of complex medical and scientific material, Dr. Sinclair is a highly sought-after speaker for his cutting edge innovations, insights about the influence of science on our lives and lifespans, and more.

Dr. Sinclair and his work have been featured on 60 Minutes, Today, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Fortune, and Newsweek, among others, and has been named to TIME’s lists of the “100 Most Influential People in the World” as well as the “Top 50 People in Healthcare.” He has received more than 40 awards for his research and scientific breakthroughs, including Innovator of the Year, NIH’s Pioneer Award, and an appointment as an Officer of the Order of Australia – the equivalent of a knighthood – for his work in scientific communication and national security. His podcast Lifespan is one of the world’s most popular in the health and fitness category. Dr. Sinclair holds board seats on for-profit and non-profit organizations, co-founded the scientific journal Aging, as well as Fully Aligned LLC, which works to democratize access to knowledge and tools to enhance mind and body wellbeing.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DEREK DELGAUDIO

  • Writer and Performer, 'In & Of Itself'

Derek DelGaudio is a writer, artist and performer, primarily known for his highly acclaimed theater show, and now award-winning film, In & Of Itself. He served as the Artist-in-Residence for Walt Disney Imagineering and co-founded the performance art collective, A.BANDIT.

DelGaudio’s debut book, AMORALMAN is out on Knopf.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DR. JESSICA B. HARRIS

  • A Leading Authority on the Food of the African Diaspora

Jessica B. Harris is considered by many to be one of the ranking authorities on the food of the African Diaspora. A New York Times bestselling author, she is the author, editor, or translator of eighteen books, including twelve cookbooks documenting the foodways of the African Diaspora. Her award-winning book, High on the Hog, was the basis for the acclaimed Peabody Award-winning Netflix series of the same name.

She has lectured widely and written extensively for scholarly and popular publications. Harris consults internationally, is leading the Culinary Institute of America’s team to establish an African Diaspora concentration, and worked with the Smithsonian Museum of African American History and Culture conceptualizing its cafeteria.

Dr. Harris holds degrees from Bryn Mawr College, Queens College/CUNY, The Université de Nancy, France, and New York University. She was granted an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Johnson & Wales University and holds numerous awards and accolades. Dr. Harris was a professor at Queens College/CUNY in New York for five decades and is currently professor emerita at that institution. In 2019, Harris’s books were inducted into the James Beard Cookbook Hall of Fame and she was the 2020 James Beard Lifetime Achievement awardee. She was named to the 2021 TIME Most Influential People list, and is the winner of the 2023 IACP Award for Culinary History.

Visit Dr. Harris' website for more information.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

DR. MARCIA CHATELAIN

  • Professor of History and African American Studies - Georgetown University

Pulitzer Prize-winning author and scholar of African American life and culture Dr. Marcia Chatelain helps organizations respond to and solve the challenges that confront them. Dr. Chatelain was a Reach for Excellence Assistant Professor of Honors and African American Studies at the University of Oklahoma in Norman, and is currently a Professor of History and African American Studies at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. She also served on the Georgetown University Working Group on Slavery, Memory, and Reconciliation, and is a renowned voice on universities, slavery, and reparations. Her first book, South Side Girls: Growing up in the Great Migration, reimagines the mass exodus of Black Southerners to the urban North from the perspective of girls and teenage women. Dr. Chatelain uses her deep background and experience as a facilitator to help organizations create practical strategies to achieve their goals.

Dr. Chatelain won a 2021 Pulitzer Prize for her latest book, Franchise: The Golden Arches in Black America, which examines the intersection of the post-1968 Civil Rights struggle and the rise of the fast-food industry. Franchise was chosen as a New York Times Critics’ Top 10 Book, and received the Hagley Prize for Best Book in Business History, the Organization of American Historians’ Lawrence W. Levine Award, as well as the James Beard Award. She was a 2019 Andrew Carnegie Fellow, and was named a Top Influencer in Higher Education by the Chronicle of Higher Education in recognition of her curation of #FergusonSyllabus, a response to the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri in 2014. She also serves as a consultant for many media outlets including The Atlantic, C-Span, MSNBC, CNN, and BBC America. Dr. Chatelain has offered her insights about the many ways history impacts our present and shapes our future in sought-after events with groups like St. Olaf College, Creative Mornings, The Aspen Institute, the Smithsonian Institution, A&E Networks, and more.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CANDACE NELSON

  • Founder, Sprinkles, Pizzana, CN2 Ventures; Guest Shark, Shark Tank Season 15

Candace Nelson is the Founder of Sprinkles and Pizzana, a New York Times bestselling author, and an expert in turning one’s passion into a profitable business. Her initial venture Sprinkles grew from ‘the world’s first cupcake bakery’ to one of the most successful cupcake brands ever, and led to the New York Times bestselling The Sprinkles Baking Book and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Sweet Success: A Simple Recipe to Turn your Passion into Profit. Nelson followed with the launch of Pizzana, a growing chain of Michelin Bib Gourmand-awarded pizzerias, and continues to expand her portfolio: co-founding the children’s sensory learning centers Play 2 Progress and launching CN2 Ventures with her husband, Charles Nelson, to invest in early stage consumer companies. She is a highly sought-after speaker on topics such as building a breakthrough brand, harnessing purpose to create a great company culture, and cultivating a community of brand loyalists.

Nelson’s book, Sweet Success, published by HarperCollins Leadership is a guide to entrepreneurship. With her characteristic warmth and humor, Candace leverages her entrepreneurial expertise to offer inspiration and practical strategies for individuals looking to spark creativity, build resilience, cultivate innovation, and build a brand that customers adore. Nelson is also a contributor to The Wall Street Journal, where she writes on the challenges and opportunities facing small business owners today. Candace has appeared on Good Morning AmericaTodayThe ChewThe TalkShine On With Reese Witherspoon, Nightline and a Guest Shark on Season 15 of Shark Tank. She has also been featured in Inc., O MagazineVanity Fair, Bon AppetitFood and WineThe New York Times, and The Los Angeles Times. Candace was the star of the syndicated Food Network hit show Cupcake Wars, an Executive Producer and star on Netflix’s Sugar Rush, and is an Executive Producer on the upcoming Hulu show, Best in Dough, featuring Pizzana’s Executive Chef.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

CALEB GAYLE

  • Award-Winning Journalist and Writer

Award-winning journalist, writer, and historian Caleb Gayle is a leading voice in conversations about the impact of history on race and identity today. After studying as a Truman Scholar at University of Oklahoma, and a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar at Oxford, Gayle went on to complete both his MBA and master’s degree in public policy from Harvard Business School and Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government as a Paul & Daisy Soros Fellow for New Americans. Previously, he worked for a social enterprise empowering women entrepreneurs from marginalized areas in Mexico, served as a program officer at the George Kaiser Family Foundation, and was a consultant with Boston Consulting Group. A former U.S. News Fellow at The Guardian, Gayle is a professor at Northeastern University, a former Lecturer at the Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership at the City College of New York, a Fellow at the Harvard University Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, and a Visiting Scholar at the Arthur Carter Journalism Institute at NYU. He is also a Visiting Professor for Nonfiction at Columbia University's School of Arts. A sought-after keynote speaker, Gayle is renowned for his insights drawn from his personal history, the immigrant experience, and the historical context he offers to explore the modern cultural and political landscape with depth and sincerity.

Gayle’s writing has been featured in The New York Times, The Guardian, The Atlantic, Harvard Review, Pacific Standard, New Republic, and many more. His work has been recognized by the Best American Essays anthology, and he received the prestigious Matthew Power Literary Reporting Award, as well as the PEN American Writing for Justice Fellowship, the Center for Fiction Emerging Writers Fellowship, the New America Fellowship, the Demos Emerging Voices Fellowship, among others. Gayle’s debut book, We Refuse to Forget: A True Story of Black Creeks, American Identity, and Power, is an Amazon Editor's Pick for "Best History," a finalist for the Oklahoma Book Award, the Massachusetts Book Award, the Hurston Wright Foundation Legacy Award for Historical Nonfiction, and is a landmark work of un(der)told history sure to reshape our understanding of identity, race, and belonging.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

BRANDON KYLE GOODMAN

  • Actor, Writer, and Social Justice Activist

Actor, writer, and activist 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. Goodman's first book You Gotta Be You explores the intersections of their race, sexuality, and gender, and was Audible's Best of the Year in Well-Being. 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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

EMERIL LAGASSE

  • Famed Chef and Restaurateur

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

EMILY OSTER

  • Expert on Health Economics

Economist, academic, and New York Times bestselling author Emily Oster brings a data-driven focus and champions a strategic approach to today’s most important questions. Oster holds a PhD in Economics from Harvard University, and is a Professor of Economics at Brown University. Known for her New York Times bestselling books The Family FirmExpecting Better, and Cribsheet, Oster proposes a classic business school framework for making decisions thoughtfully and deliberately – which she says is less about a specific answer and more about taking the right approach. She is a highly sought-after speaker for events with groups like Spotify, Athena Health, Capital One, and more.

Oster’s thought leadership is featured in her twice-weekly newsletter ParentData, which has over 100K subscribers on Substack, as well as her contributions to The Atlantic. She is an in-demand voice on health economics and statistical methods, and has been featured in The New York TimesWall Street JournalSlateThe Cut, and others. Oster was named to TIME’s list of “The 100 Most Influential People of 2022, and the profile by Steven Pinker described her work saying: “Oster shows how ‘data’, a scary word, can be a humanizing force.” Though her approach discusses parenting specifically, her talks offer a smart and winning guide on how to think clearly – and with less stress – about any key decisions in life, for both organizations and individuals.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

ERIN & BEN NAPIER

  • Stars of HGTV's 'Home Town', 'Home Town Takeover', and More

Entrepreneurs, designers, and beloved TV hosts Erin and Ben Napier are the face of America’s sweeping small town renaissance movement. Six days after meeting in college, Erin and Ben decided to get married and have been inseparable ever since, sharing their journey in Make Something Good Today: A Memoir. Erin is an artist, designer, and the New York Times bestselling author of the children’s book The Lantern House. Ben is a woodworker, author, and the founder of Scotsman Co. He served as president of Laurel’s Main Street America chapter dedicated to promoting the rebirth of their historic downtown district. They work side by side as the founders of Laurel Mercantile Co., designing American-made heirloom wares that transform a house into a home. Erin and Ben are leaders in their passion for small-town revitalization, inspiring individuals and organizations to commit their creativity, authenticity, and imagination to the places they call home.

Erin and Ben’s hit show Home Town was the highest-rated pilot in HGTV history, and the #1 show on the network in both its 4th and 5th seasons as well as one of the Top 5 shows on all of cable television. The hit show has inspired numerous series, from Home Town Kickstart Presented by PEOPLE, to Home Town Takeover – a record-setting spinoff event series – which takes Ben and Erin’s favorite phrase “make something good today” into the stratosphere while impacting the community for generations to come. In Home Town: Ben’s Workshop, master woodworker Ben shares his expertise in craftsmanship with a bevy of celebrity guests in one of the most-streamed original series on all networks. In sought-after events, Erin and Ben share their support for American craftsmanship, small business, and commitment to thriving local economies that demonstrate resilience in the face of adversity by working together.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

EUGENE DANIELS

  • White House Correspondent

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

EZRA FRECH

  • Youngest Member of the U.S. Paralympic Track & Field Team

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. 

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GINA BELAFONTE

  • Actress, Producer, and Activist

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.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GMONEY

  • Futurist. Disruptor. Ape.

Renowned NFT cultural thought leader, educator, and community authority gmoney has built an enormous following and reputation in the crypto economy space while remaining pseudo-anonymous. With over fifteen years of experience primarily in traditional financial sectors, gmoney is known for his iconic orange beanie-clad CryptoPunk ape, and is one of the largest collectors of NFT’s in the world. He is a futurist and credible voice in conversations about understanding blockchain technologies, developing a diversified portfolio, and making complex technologies understandable for corporations and communities alike.

gmoney is a highly regarded investor, builder, and influencer in the crypto space, partnering with adidas and advising major corporations on strategies for entering the Metaverse. As an advisor and angel investor in over 80 blockchain projects, he has unparalleled access and insights about the most innovative technologies. Named on Fortune’s inaugural NFTy 50: “The 50 Most Influential People in NFTs" as well as Vogue's "Business 100 Innovators" list, he is an in-demand speaker for keynotes and Q&As at [INSIDE], HedgeEye TV, and more, has been featured in Forbes, CNBC, HypeBeast, and elsewhere. He also picks the brains of noteworthy individuals in the NFT/Web3 space on his podcast Admit One with gmoney. gmoney leverages his understanding of economic principles, verticals, and concepts to create an accessible vision for corporations and consumers entering the Metaverse, and uses his platform to elevate diversity and inclusivity in the crypto space.

HWA EXCLUSIVE

GRANGER SMITH

  • Award-Winning Country Music Singer-Songwriter

Award-winning country music singer-songwriter, author, entrepreneur, and philanthropist Granger Smith has always had the power of music in his hands. A proud Texan, American, father, husband, and Christian, Smith has produced countless hit records and is also the co-author of the bestseller