HWA connects you with people who are actively engaged in changing the world. These fresh voices add new perspective and insight to today's most important conversations.
Give us a call to chat about these HWA New Speakers for a timely, buzz-worthy, straight-from-the-headlines event.
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Powerhouse corporate innovator Indra Nooyi centers sustainability from the C-Level
Globally renowned corporate innovator and former CEO and Chairman of PepsiCo INDRA NOOYI is a sought-after expert on using values-driven leadership to foster innovation and address global issues like Climate Change. Growing up in a town that was significantly water-distressed, Nooyi understood deeply the challenges facing the over 40% of the world’s population that do not have enough water. She used this awareness to lead Pepsi to be “Net Water Positive,” reducing absolute water use and replenishing back into the local watershed more than 100% of the water used in high water-risk areas. In riveting keynotes and conversations, Nooyi offers unparalleled insights on disrupting siloed thinking to find breakthrough solutions, nurturing meaningful relationships and amplifying local solutions, and investing in sustainable solutions that embolden companies, organizations, and individuals alike.
Joy expert Radha Agrawal can tell you how to create community at work and in your life
Entrepreneur and global sensation-creator Radha Agrawal is on a mission to share the science of connection and unveil the secrets of joy and belonging. As the Co-Founder, CEO and Chief Community Architect of Daybreaker, a multi-generational global movement, Radha is a force in the wellness space changing how we create togetherness. In her bestselling book Belong, Radha has distilled the science she’s harnessed and the lessons from exuberant gatherings she’s helmed with half a million people in 30 cities worldwide, including a 2020 tour with Oprah and WW. Using the leading-edge technology in her personal studio, Radha creates virtual events that generate unbelievable intimacy without compromising the stadium-scale effects. A coveted keynote speaker, Radha has fostered memorable and culture-shifting experiences for Wisdom 2.0, Nike, and Facebook’s Global Marketing Summit asking, “How can we design more authentic connections?”
Award-winning science correspondent Alie Ward invigorates audiences with her boundless curiosity
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. 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 inspired by a seemingly endless list of passions and carves out her unique place in content creation by listening to her instincts. She 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. She is a warm and witty moderator, adeptly asking questions that spark engaging and thought-provoking conversations. With her multi-hyphenate background and fascinating point of view, Alie inspires audiences to find and follow their passion, try something new, and let curiosity reign.
Lilly Singh’s new book ‘Be a Triangle’ is about coming home to your truest and happiest self
Comedian, entrepreneur, and New York Times bestselling author of How to Be a Bawse LILLY SINGH is teaching readers to ‘unsubscribe’ from cookie-cutter ideals in her new book Be a Triangle: How I Went from Being Lost to Getting My Life into Shape. With her signature blend of vulnerability, light, and humor, Singh instructs readers to ‘be a triangle’, creating a solid foundation for your life to support you if you face adversity, as she puts it: “we must create a place, a system of beliefs, a simple set of priorities to come back to should life lead us astray, which it definitely will.” Like a wise, empathetic friend who always keeps you honest, Singh pushes you to adjust your mindset and change your internal dialogue. The result is a deeply humane, entertaining, and uplifting guide to befriending yourself and becoming a true “miracle for the world.” Heralded for her candor and comedy, Singh offers hilarious, empowering, and informative conversations about her career, diversity, activism, pop culture and more.
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.
Geno Auriemma has redefined the meaning of success in women's college basketball in his 34 years as head coach of the University of Connecticut.
During his illustrious tenure, Auriemma has transformed the UConn program into the standard that all others are measured, both on and off the court. Under his guidance, the Huskies have been transformed from a program with only one winning season, to its current state, which includes 11 national titles, 19 Final Fours, six perfect seasons, and 47 Conference titles. He also served as the head coach of the U.S. National Team, which won the gold medal at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and the 2016 Games in Rio.
An inductee into both the Basketball Hall of Fame and the Women Basketball Hall of Fame, and the recipient of numerous awards including 27 National Coach of the Year honors, Auriemma sets the bar in coaching. He teaches a highly-rated MasterClass on 'Leading Winning Teams' - sharing lessons in how to lead any kind of team, inspire others to new heights, and build sustainable success. In his empowering remarks he shares lessons from on and off the court on teamwork, perseverance, finding motivation, and developing an ethic of success.
Mike Jackson is an Emmy® and Tony® Award-winning film, theater, and television producer. As co-founder and managing partner of Get Lifted Film Co., a Los Angeles based production company which has developed projects with major networks including ABC, NBC, FOX, HBO, Showtime, Netflix, and FX, Jackson harnesses his Philly hustle and unparalleled tenacity to bring elevated multi-cultural content to global audiences alongside Ty Stiklorius and EGOT-winner John Legend. Additionally, Get Lifted and Erik Feig’s Picturestart have formed Picture Lift, a joint venture focused on developing, producing and financing multiple films in the $10M range, featuring diverse filmmakers and inclusive casts.
Jackson’s forthcoming projects include The Black Cyclone, a feature drama film about cycling champion Marshall Walter “Major” Taylor, the film The Long Way Down based on Jason Reynold’s award-winning novel which will be distributed by Universal, and the film adaptation of S.A. Cosby’s novel Blacktop Wasteland.
Most recently, Jackson and Get Lifted produced HBO’s The Legend of the Underground, a feature documentary that premiered at the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival, focused on resilient Nigerian youth fighting anti-LGBTQ laws. Additionally, the team produced Netflix’s Monster, as well as Nancy Buirski’s documentary, A Crime on the Bayou, that holds a Rotten Tomatoes “Tomatometer” score of 100% and profiles brave individuals who fought for justice in and around the Civil Rights era.
Notably, Jackson executive produced HBO docu-series Atlanta's Missing and Murdered: The Lost Children, which received the AAFCA TV Honor for Best Documentary and was awarded “Best Multi-Part Documentary” by the International Documentary Association. Jackson and Get Lifted also executive produced the HBO documentary 40 Years A Prisoner and the Netflix documentary Giving Voice. Additionally, Rhythm + Flow for Netflix, which won the 2020 NAACP Image Award, Damien Chazelle’s Oscar®-winning musical La La Land, as well as NBC’s 2018 Emmy®-winning Jesus Christ Superstar Live and the 2017 Tony® Award-winning August Wilson play Jitney.
Actor, director, author, podcaster, and entrepreneur Justin Baldoni is a change-maker on a mission to create impactful media and entertainment. Baldoni spreads a powerful and vulnerable message of positive masculinity via brutal honesty and self-reflection that first went viral in his 2017 TED Talk Why I’m Done Trying to be ‘Man Enough’, which became the basis for his book Man Enough: Undefining My Masculinity and his hit podcast The Man Enough Podcast. He is the co-founder of Wayfarer Studios, a pioneering purpose-driven film and television studio that aims to elevate the human spirit and inspire change. Best known as Rafael on Jane The Virgin, Baldoni first created and directed “My Last Days,” an award winning uplifting documentary series about life as told by courageous people living with a terminal illness, and made his feature film directorial debut in March 2019 with “Five Feet Apart,” which went on to become CBS Films’ third highest grossing film of all time earning over $91 million worldwide. In 2020, he directed and produced Wayfarer Studios’ first film project “Clouds,” which is now streaming on Disney+. The film is Disney’s first-ever narrative acquisition on its global platform. An insightful cultural commentator, his passionate anecdotes and analysis resonate long after the event’s conclusion.
Baldoni is also co-founder and co- chairman of BeLove.org, a non-profit organization dedicated to transforming the way communities see and respond to the needs of people experiencing homelessness. He is an in-demand speaker for college events, motivating audiences to reconsider their role in relationships and community, and transform their narratives to become true agents for social change by first transforming the person they see in the mirror.
On April 1, 2021, the University of Texas announced the hire of Chris Beard to lead the Longhorns basketball program to new heights. College basketball’s 2019 AP National Coach of the Year Chris Beard has one of the most unconventional paths to stardom in the history of coaching. From living out of his car at the start of his coaching career, coaching Division II Angelo State from 2013-15, to having the Texas Tech Red Raiders 12 seconds away from winning the 2019 National Championship four years later, Beard has beaten the odds at every turn to become one of the elite coaches in the profession.
In just six years as a Division I head coach, Beard has won over 70% of his games, three conference Coach of the Year awards, two National Coach the Year awards, three conference championships, one Final Four appearance, and one National Championship appearance (2019). Coach Beard’s remarks are a masterclass in building a career from the ground up, establishing organizational culture, perseverance, and developing the work ethic and habits that lead to unprecedented success.
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.
MARA BROCK AKIL
Groundbreaking Hollywood visionary and power player Mara Brock Akil has written and produced nearly 400 episodes of television, truly leaving her mark on the industry. A trailblazer in many ways, Akil created the seminal television series Girlfriends-- a witty, intelligent and honest exploration of the many facets of black womanhood. Additionally, Akil developed the spin-off series The Game, which became the most-watched scripted-series premiere ever on ad- supported cable. The series continued on for a total of 9 seasons, earning praise throughout its run for its verisimilitude and, during the reality television boom, as one of the few shows on television that felt truly specific to its moment. Akil is also the creative force behind BET’s Being Mary Jane, which further cemented her ability to tell powerful and engaging stories that speak to women through honest, true-to-life reflections, The CW’s Black Lightning, and OWN’s Love Is___. Now, she is co-executive producing Netflix's adaptation of Ibram X Kendi's three anti-racism books, which will be a mix of a documentary and scripted features.
A regular on the Hollywood Reporter's Women in Entertainment Power100, Akil is a leader in her field. She's been honored with the prestigious Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award; Essence magazine’s Visionary Award; named to Variety and The Hollywood Reporter’s Showrunner Power Lists; and been inducted into Northwestern’s Medill Hall of Achievement.
A passionate, dynamic, and empowering speaker Akil has been sought-out to speak everywhere from Google to The Wing. She shares remarks on self growth and love, finding the power to be bold, loving life at every age, and breaking barriers in all facets of life.
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.
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.
Marcus Buckingham is a global researcher and New York Times bestselling author focused on unlocking strengths, increasing performance, and pioneering the future of how people work. He is the author of two of the best-selling business books of all time, First, Break All the Rules, and Now, Discover Your Strengths, and his tenth book, Love + Work (Harvard Business Review Press) is a WSJ bestseller and has been heralded by Forbes as one of the ten must-reads for career and leadership in 2022. Marcus’ 2019 Harvard Business Review cover article, "The Feedback Fallacy," was selected by HBR as one of the most influential articles of the last 100 years, and Marcus’ strengths assessments have been taken by over 10 million people worldwide. Building on two decades of experience as a Senior Researcher at The Gallup Organization, Marcus leveraged his data-based discoveries to build a $100M tech company focused on helping people find and contribute their strengths at work. He currently guides the research agenda of the ADP Research Institute as Head of People + Performance.
AUSTIN CHANNING BROWN
Austin Channing Brown is a speaker, writer and media producer providing inspired leadership on racial justice in America. She is the author of New York Times' bestselling I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness - recently chosen as a Reese Witherspoon Bookclub pick - and the Executive Producer of web series The Next Question.
Her workshops and lectures are incisive, fun, disarming and transformative. 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. Her book shot to the top 20 of Amazon’s bestsellers list, leading in its categories for months. I’m Still Here has received acclaim from Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Booklist, and more. It has also been featured in OnBeing, The Chicago Tribune, WNYC, The Religion News Service, with Shondaland declaring it, “[a] deeply personal celebration of blackness that simultaneously sheds new light on racial injustice and inequality while offering hope for a better future.” It was also selected as the book of the month for Reese Witherspoon x Hello Sunshine book club.
As a media producer, Austin creates content that centers the experiences of Black women, dismantling the foundations of white supremacy. Her nationally-celebrated first season of The Next Question included Macarthur Genius Nikole Hannah-Jones, NYT bestselling authors Brene Brown, and Jasmine Guillory, and more. Alongside her co-creators Chi Chi Okwuand Jenny Booth Potter, the hosts examine complex topics affecting social justice while simultaneously celebrating the humanity of their guests.
Austin has a Bachelor of Arts in business management from North Park University as well as a Masters in Arts in social justice from Marygrove College in Detroit. Austin’s professional career began in the non-profit sector including homelessness/housing, youth engagement, fund development, and church operations.
55th New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is currently a Senior Legal and Political Commentator for ABC News, the Managing Member of the Christie Law Firm and Christie 55 Solutions, LLC, and the author of The New York Times bestseller Let Me Finish, about his life and career in New Jersey and as a candidate for President. Previously, he served as Chairman of the Trump Presidential Transition Committee.
Governor Christie spent his two terms in office emphasizing the issues of fiscal responsibility, pension, health benefit reform, education reform, and the opioid crisis gripping his state and the nation. He also devised the state’s groundbreaking response to Super-storm Sandy, leading the rebuilding of the state’s housing, infrastructure and public schools, and setting a bi-partisan example for storm recovery.
Lauded for his trademark charisma and candor, Governor Christie provides an in-depth understanding of what is happening in the nation’s capital and what it means for your industry, organization and employees. He highlights that achievable solutions and unrelenting leadership will help move us forward and help solve the most pressing issues in Washington.
Global finance industry leader and former Director of the U.S. National Economic Council Gary Cohn draws on his unparalleled private and public sector leadership experience to offer a key perspective on the global economy and financial markets in riveting remarks. Heralded by The Wall Street Journal as “an economic-policy powerhouse” and called a “go-to figure on matters related to jobs, business and growth” by The New York Times, Cohn is the current Vice Chairman of IMB as well as co-Chairman of Cohn Robbins Holding Corp. He previously served as President and Chief Operating Officer of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. from 2006-2016, and was a member of the firm’s Board of Directors and Chairman of the Firmwide Client and Business Standards Committee. Cohn speaks on issues ranging from monetary policy to fiscal policy, trade to taxes, translating uncertainty into tangible takeaways for audiences worldwide.
Cohn served as Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and Director of the National Economic Council from January 2017 through April 2018. As chief economic advisor to the president of the United States, Cohn managed the administration’s economic policy agenda and led the successful effort to grow the U.S. economy, create jobs and increase wages through tax and regulatory reform. He is now Chairman of the Board of Pallas Advisors and serves on the corporate boards of Abyrx, Gro Intelligence, Lazurite, and Nanopay. Additionally, Cohn serves on advisory boards for Spring Labs and Starling. Cohn’s expertise in the global financial system, tech advances, and the inner-workings of economic policy have him in-demand everywhere from the World Economic Forum to the Global Financial Leadership Conference. He brings both a CEO’s and White House insider’s point of view to each engagement, sharing prescient, tangible insights with an engaging sense of humor.
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.
Morgan DeBaun is a serial entrepreneur and corporate advisor. As the Founder & CEO of Blavity Inc., the leading digital media company for Black culture and millennials, Morgan has grown the company into a market leader for Black media, reaching over 100 million readers per month through a growing brand portfolio which includes: Blavity News, 21Ninety, AfroTech, Travel Noire, Shadow & Act, and Lunchtable. Under DeBaun’s leadership, Blavity has launched several leading consumer summits, including Summit 21 for Black women creators, and AfroTech, the largest tech conference for Black innovators and founders.
DeBaun acts as an advisor to influential global brands and companies including Disney, American Airlines, CES, Pantora Bridal and Rosen Skincare. She is also an angel investor in Golde, a consumer brand present in over 200 stores, and Public, which has a $1B+ valuation.
DeBaun is a recipient of Ad Color’s Innovative Award, has been recognized by Forbes in the “30 Under 30” and America’s Top 50 Women in Tech lists, and was named as one of the 100 Most Influential African Americans by The Root.
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".
Successful fashion designer Tan France is renowned as the witty wardrobe wiz leading the charge in the fashion department on the Emmy-winning makeover hit and Netflix re-boot, Queer Eye. Ready to make America fabulous again, one makeover at a time, France showcases how the experience is so much more than just new clothes; it’s about real-life issues, changes, and acceptance on all sides.
Following the global success of Queer Eye, Tan released his New York Times bestselling memoir, Naturally Tan, which reveals what it was like to grow up gay in a traditional South Asian family, as one of the few people of color in South Yorkshire, England. Tan also released the 1st season of his viral YouTube series, Dressing Funny, which features him making over his celebrity friends, including Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Nick Kroll, Miranda Sings, Pete Davidson, and John Mulaney. He also co-hosts a Netflix competition series Next in Fashion and a MasterClass Style for Everyone. He is the host of the Queer Icons podcast and has a gender-neutral clothing line, Was Him.
With his trademark wit, humor, and radical compassion, Tan shares empowering lessons on creativity and innovation, diversity and inclusion, and what it takes to break down barriers to foster human connection and acceptance. He provides a unique perspective on the happiness found in being yourself.
MARRA B. GAD
Award-winning author, filmmaker, and advocate Marra B. Gad offers powerful insights about belonging, overcoming bias, and finding unity in keynotes and conversations that are tailored to each audience. Gad is the author of THE COLOR OF LOVE: A Story of a Mixed-Race Jewish Girl, a powerful memoir about her experience as a transracial adoptee, which won the 2020 Midwest Book Award for autobiography. Describing herself as ‘a grateful child of adoption’, she is a gifted storyteller who shares her experiences being a Black and Ashkenazi Jewish child adopted by a White and Jewish family in 1970. Gad is an in-demand speaker on topics of diversity and inclusion, mental health awareness, and the power of embracing one’s personal history to find belonging.
Gad is the recipient of the 2022 Women’s Empowerment Award from Women of Reform Judaism, which honors “those who strengthen the voices of others, empower women, and promote progress Jewish values,” and serves on the inaugural Inclusivity Board for SOHO House International. She is the Founder and President of Egad! Productions, overseeing the development and production of scripted TV series and films across genres. Gad is deeply committed to expanding and exploring the notion of belonging across multiple spectrums, and has shared her uplifting message with groups like SOHO House, the St. Louis Jewish Book Festival, University Synagogue in LA, the University of Maryland Panhellenic Association, FCB Global, and more.
Ashley Graham is an American model, designer, author, and entrepreneur whose influence has reshaped the fashion and media industries and redefined traditional beauty standards. Ashley has worked in numerous areas of the fashion industry including editorial, catalogue, runway, commercial, television and film. In February 2016, Ashley made history as the first size 14 model to ever be featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated Swim. In January 2018, she became a brand ambassador for Revlon, making her the first curvy model of her generation to receive a major beauty contract.
Ashley has been featured on the covers of Vogue, British Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar UK, Cosmopolitan, SELF, New York Magazine, Maxim and many more. She has received numerous accolades for her work, including Forbes’ coveted “30 Under 30” list and cover feature; Glamour’s “Woman of the Year,” with Mattel simultaneously creating a one-of-a-kind Barbie in her likeness; People’s “25 Most Intriguing People of the Year”; Time’s “100 Most Influential People in the Word”; The Daily Front Row’s “Fashion Force of the Year,” and is the United Nations’ Women for Peace Association’s first “Women Empowerment Award'' recipient.
Ashley is a sought-after television personality and has hosted internationally televised programs such as Miss Universe, Miss USA and Lifetime's American Beauty Star, a competition series to find the next best hair or makeup artist. She also hosts her podcast Pretty Big Deal.
Ashley is regularly invited to speak about body image, self-acceptance and female empowerment. Her first TEDx talk “Plus Size? More Like My Size” given at TedxBerleeValencia was viewed over 4.3M times.
Greg Gutfeld has been called “outrageous and outspoken,” neither of which he denies.
A libertarian, political satirist, humorist, magazine editor and author, he is perhaps best known as the co-host of the daily hit show The Five and as the former host of the legendary Fox News Channel programs The Greg Gutfeld Show. and Red Eye where he covered a variety of topics, including news, entertainment, sports, and gossip.
Greg is also now host of the #1 rated late night show GUTFELD! on the Fox News Channel where he parodies current events and converses on key issues with his trademark humor on a nightly basis.
In his free time Greg contributes to his own digital community, The Gutter, where he covers every lifestyle topic imaginable with his unique comedic conservative-libertarian perspective. He is the author of nine books, among them, five New York Times best sellers, The Joy of Hate, Not Cool, How to be Right, The Gutfeld Monologues, and most recently The Plus: Self-Help for People Who Hate Self-Help.
The Weekly Standard calls him “the most dangerous man on television.”
“Trust me, you don’t want him setting his sights on your hypocrisy and public failings. Consider yourself warned.” – Andrew Breitbart
Jake Gyllenhaal is an Academy Award and Tony nominated actor, as well as a producer of note with his company Nine Stories. Alongside Hollywood's greatest filmmakers, Gyllenhaal starred in Sony Pictures highest grossing film of all time, Jon Watt’s’ Spider-Man: Far From Home; Ang Lee's classic Brokeback Mountain, for which he received an Oscar® nomination and won a BAFTA for Best Supporting Actor; Dan Gilroy’s Nightcrawler, for which he received Golden Globe, BAFTA, SAG and Independent Spirit Award nominations; Bong Joon Ho’s Okja; David Ayer’s End of Watch; Antoine Fuqua’s Southpaw; Dennis Villeneuve’s Prisoners and Enemy; Richard Kelly's Donnie Darko; David Fincher's Zodiac; Sam Mendes' Jarhead; Nicole Holofcener's Lovely and Amazing; Ed Zwick's Love and Other Drugs, for which he received a Golden Globe nomination, and Tom Ford’s Nocturnal Animals, for which he earned a BAFTA nomination. His stage work on Broadway includes the Tony nominated "Sea Wall / A Life" (Tony nomination Best Actor, Drama League Award) ; "Sunday in the Park with George;" "Constellations" (Drama Desk Award); and "Little Shop of Horrors." Off-Broadway includes "If There Is I Haven't Found It Yet"; and on the West End, "This is Our Youth" (Evening Standard Award). Gyllenhaal re-teamed with director Antoine Fuqua and starred in The Guilty for Netflix, which Nine Stories produced.
Nine Stories produced Antonio Campos’ The Devil All The Time for Netflix starring Tom Holland, Sebastian Stan, Mia Wasikowska, and Robert Pattinson, and Reinaldo Marcus Green’s Good Joe Bell starring Mark Wahlberg, Connie Britton, and Gary Sinise. Nine Stories has produced Paul Dano’s Wildlife; David Gordon Green’s Stronger; and executive produced the documentary Hondros. Gyllenhaal also produced End of Watch and Nightcrawler, the latter of which earned him an Independent Spirit Award for Best First Feature. For the stage, Nine Stories produced the Broadway revival of "Sunday in the Park with George", "Sea Wall / A Life" (4 Tony nominations including Best Play and Best Actor for Gyllenhaal and Tom Sturridge), David Cale’s "We’re Only Alive for a Short Amount of Time", and the Broadway debut of Jeremy O Harris’ groundbreaking Tony-nominated "Slave Play" (12 nominations). Both “Slave Play” and “Sea Wall / A Life” received 16 Tony nominations combined for the 2020 Broadway season—both received nods for Best Play.
Two-time Olympian and Women’s Basketball Hall of Famer Becky Hammon made history when she became the first woman to coach full-time in the NBA for the San Antonio Spurs. Hammon had a successful career as a player, including two Olympic appearances, an Olympic medal, a six-time WNBA All-Star, and being named one of the leagues “Top 15 Players of All-Time.” No stranger to breaking barriers in the sports world, Hammon joined the Spurs in 2014 in a leadership role as assistant coach. When Head Coach Gregg Popovich was ejected in the second quarter of a Spurs game, she made history again as the first woman head coach to lead an NBA team in a regular season game. Hammon, now the Head Coach of the WNBA Las Vegas Aces, is the first rookie WNBA coach to win the title and has been named "WNBA Coach of the Year." She offers her unique perspective as the first female coach in a men’s league, offering takeaways for those looking to become game-changers at work and in life.
Hammon has been inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame, and named to the Sports Illustrated “Unrelenting List,” the most powerful, influential, and outstanding women in sports right now. She is included on The W25, a list of the 25 most influential players in WNBA history. In impactful keynote speeches and moderated conversations, Hammon shares her journey to the NBA, revealing vital leadership lessons and inspiring audiences to pursue their dreams relentlessly and stand up for what they believe in.
Dr. Kevin Hassett is among the world's leading economists, and served as the 29th Chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers from 2017 through 2019. He was recently called back to the White House to serve as a special economic advisor to President Trump to manage data-driven decisions in response to the Coronavirus economic fallout.
While working in the Trump White House, Hassett was a key force driving internal and external debate on virtually every economic topic, from taxes and trade, to substance abuse and deregulation. While at the White House, Hassett was the top public spokesperson for the White House on economic policy and the state of economy, appearing regularly on Fox, Fox Business, CNBC, MSNBC, Bloomberg, CNN, and more. Hassett was even drawn upon at times to run the televised White House press briefings.
Sought-out by numerous presidential candidates, Hassett served as John McCain's chief economic adviser in the 2000 presidential primaries and an economic adviser to the campaigns of George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential election and McCain in the presidential election of 2008.
Rachel laid the foundation for her lifestyle brand and media company with the same unfiltered honesty and staunch inclusivity that made her a three-time New York Times bestselling author of Girl, Wash Your Face; Girl, Stop Apologizing; and Didn't See That Coming. Hollis connects with a highly engaged and growing global audience of women who treasure her transparency and optimism. She is one of the most sought-after motivational speakers, is the founder of #1 personal development conference focused entirely on women, plays host to some of today’s top podcasts (Rachel Hollis and Your Fave's Faves), and is a proud mama of four who uses her platform to empower and embolden women around the world.
QUIARA ALEGRÍA HUDES
Quiara Alegría Hudes is the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright of "Water By the Spoonful"; author of a memoir, My Broken Language; and screenwriter for the major motion picture In the Heights. Previously, she wrote the book (aka script) for the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical and Hollywood blockbuster In the Heights and authored other plays and musicals that have been produced around the world. Her notable essays include "High Tide of Heartbreak" in American Theater Magazine and "Corey Couldn’t Take It Anymore" in The Cut. In opposition of the carceral state, Hudes and her cousin founded Emancipated Stories, a platform where people behind bars can share one page of their life story with the world. As a barrio feminist and joyous mischief maker, Quiara y su hermana created the Latinx Casting Manifesto.
“Life is short, do what makes you happy.” That’s the advice that Matt Iseman got from his dad, a world renowned physician, when Matt quit medicine to pursue stand up comedy. And those words still guide Matt today.
Renowned as the host of the four-time Emmy-nominated American Ninja Warrior and as the winning contestant of the newest Celebrity Apprentice, Matt is beloved for his energetic, charismatic style. A regular on multiple TV programs, Matt shared his medical expertise and unique lifestyle tips on Hallmark’s Home & Family; won an Emmy Award for his hosting on Style's Clean House; and combined his lifelong passions of sports and comedy to host Sports Soup on Versus (now NBC Sports Network).
Matt's ongoing battle with Rheumatoid Arthritis transformed him into a strong supporter of the Arthritis Foundation. His battle with Renal Cell Carcinoma has also made him a spokesperson for the American Cancer Society.
Heralded as "fantastic...energetic, kind, personable, and relatable" (BlueCross BlueShield), Matt combines his winning sense of humor and unique experiences and perspective as a doctor turned comic, who also hosts a smash hit show. His dynamic remarks can cover everything from battling cancer, to overcoming obstacles, to the paramount importance of following your dreams.
TV personality, entrepreneur, crypto economy advocate, and activist Matt James is known for his historic role as the first Black male lead on ABC’s The Bachelor, which gave him the opportunity to be a role model for young people and encourage important conversations around racial justice and social change. While pursuing a career in finance and real estate, Matt co-founded ABC Food Tours, which creates experiences for students facing the challenge of food insecurity and adversity at home and seeks to provide opportunities on a larger scale. He is also a minority owner, ambassador, and shareholder in Lettuce Grow, a hydroponic farming company. Matt uses his platform of over 1M followers to foster awareness for food justice and human rights.
In addition to being a fan-favorite TV personality, Matt is a leader in the crypto economy, taking his advocacy work into cryptocurrency, blockchain, and NFTs. Matt is a co-founder of Encrypted Energy, a cryptocurrency mining company that sources clean energy to mine bitcoin. He is also a member of Crypto for Black Economic Empowerment, a collective of the most influential Black crypto and blockchain thought leaders. James is also an owner and supporter of the NFT movement, focusing on artists of color and female creators, and has partnered with crypto marketplace BlockFi to create crypto educational content geared toward women & communities of color and is working with Gemini to develop a financial literacy curriculum. He is a sought-after advisor for several digital media companies on the future of the Metaverse and Web3. He is an avid supporter of the Lebron James Family Foundation, Hack the Hood, and the Getting Out and Staying Out Foundation.
Bestselling author and workplace strategist Erica Keswin has spent the past twenty years working with some of the most iconic brands in the world as a consultant, speaker, writer, and professional dot-connector. Her book Bring Your Human to Work: Ten Sure-Fire Ways to Design a Workplace That is Good for People, Great for Business, and Just Might Change the World became a Wall Street Journal bestseller in its first week, serving as a powerful guide to a workplace revolution that honors relationships and puts people first. Her newest book, Rituals Roadmap: The Human Way to Transform Everyday Routines into Workplace Magic, is a #2 Wall Street Journal bestseller and an indispensable guide to taking your employee engagement to the next level. In Erica's game-changing keynotes, she highlights how relationships are the most powerful driver of success for individuals and companies striving to attract and retain talent and loyal customers.
Keswin and her work have been featured in Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Huffington Post, O Magazine, Better Homes and Gardens, Mogul, and Conscious Company, among others. She is also the Founder of the Spaghetti Project, a platform devoted to sharing the science and stories of relationships at work. Leaving audiences deeply informed and engaged, Keswin reveals her tried-and-true, human roadmap for people seeking a more meaningful and connected work life, and provides actionable insights on everything from how to cultivate a work culture of diversity and inclusion, to how to connect with customers in an authentic way.
Amanda Kloots is a television host, bestselling author, Broadway actress, award-winning fitness entrepreneur, and most recently a finalist on the 30th Season of Dancing with the Stars. Amanda can currently be seen as a co-host of The Talk, CBS’ Daytime Emmy Award-winning talk show highlighting current events, pop culture, family, celebrity and trending topics of the day. In the Summer of 2021, Amanda released her memoir, the New York Times bestseller Live Your Life: My Story of Loving and Losing Nick Cordero that was co-authored with her sister Anna Kloots.
A former Broadway dancer and Radio City Rockette, Kloots performed on a variety of stage, film and TV productions for over 17 years. Her love of dance and fitness led her to work and lead classes at one of New York’s premiere fitness studios. Kloots developed the jump rope method after years of trying different ways to stay in great shape. In 2016, Kloots decided to focus full time on her AK! Fitness brand – her signature classes feature jump ropes and dance mixed with cross training to create a unique full body workout. In addition to the AK! Fitness brand, Kloots and her sister, Anna Kloots, launched the apparel company Hooray For.
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. Her No. 1 bestseller That’s What She Said, about achieving gender equity at work and at home, inspires men as well as women to join together to promote diversity, innovation and excellence. In her upcoming book, on the art of reinvention, she tackles cultural transformations, focusing on issues including the Great Resignation, the future of work, and career transitions.
Lipman, one of the nation’s most prominent journalists, has served as editor in chief of USA TODAY, 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, created Weekend Journal and Personal Journal, and supervised coverage that won three Pulitzer Prizes. At Gannett, in addition to her editor in chief roles, she was chief content officer, overseeing more than 3,000 journalists at 110 newspapers, and leading the organization to an historic three Pulitzer Prizes.
Lipman is a familiar face on television, appearing on ABC, CNN, MSNBC, NBC, and CBS, among others, 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.
Lipman also teaches a Yale University course on the Media & Democracy, focused on issues including polarization and combating misinformation.
A lively and entertaining speaker, Lipman offers action-oriented insights into issues ranging from workplace culture, to reimagining work and life in the post-COVID world, to fostering diverse and equitable organizations, to transformative leadership. For select clients, she hosts private workshops with top executives on closing the gender gap.
As a journalist, Emmy Award-winner Maria Menounos holds the distinct honor of having conducted the only interview with the entire Obama family - an interview touted by ABC News as the top defining moments leading to Obama’s victory. Maria’s achievements have thus far set numerous industry milestones. Her groundbreaking conversational style of reporting led her, at the age of 22, to become the youngest person ever to host Entertainment Tonight. She would go on to do the same for TODAY Show and Nightly News. Maria is the first person in the history of Hollywood to report for network news and star in a wide-release feature film. Maria is also a part time WWE professional wrestler and personality, with a record of 4-0. Maria also created the ABC special, Dance Battle America, with Julianne Hough. Her production company has several other projects in production.
Maria is also the two-time New York Times bestselling author of The Every Girl's Guide To… book series. She was also the longest running international spokesperson and face of Pantene hair care products.
Along with being a champion of talent and helping women and human beings in general, Maria is particularly passionate about animals and is avid in pet rescue. A girl who did not speak English until the first grade and one who worked as a janitor cleaning Boston nightclubs throughout her adolescence, Maria is proof that you can come from humble beginnings and succeed. Most importantly, she is proof that you can remain true to yourself and humble and still care deeply for others.
Emmy-nominated Netflix stars and New York Times–bestselling authors Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, known to their audience as The Minimalists, help millions of people live meaningful lives with less. They have been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Time magazine, and GQ, and they have spoken at Harvard, Apple, and Google. With more than 100 million downloads, The Minimalists Podcast is one of the most popular shows on Apple Podcasts. Both raised in Dayton, Ohio, they currently live in Los Angeles.
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.
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.
Korean American singer-songwriter, TV host, and entrepreneur Eric Nam is one of the most popular and recognizable celebrities in Asia, whose music and advocacy is having a global impact. In an interview for GQ, Nam was describe as having “amassed one of the most varied and entrepreneurial legacies to come out of the K-Pop scene.” After growing up in Atlanta, Georgia, and deferring a job offer from Deloitte Consulting, Nam was invited to audition for Korea’s version of American Idol, which launched his meteoric rise as a TV host and pop icon. He was named one of GQ Korea’s “Men of the Year,” one of Forbes’ “30 Under 30 Asia,” and YouTube’s Global Trending “Artist On the Rise,” eventually co-founding and serving as Creative Director for DIVE Studios (DS) – a K-pop focused media company with multiple award-winning podcasts. With the help of his brothers, Nam launched Mindset, a mental health and wellness platform with a library of authentic and intimate video and audio collections from world-renowned celebrities. Passionate about social impact, diverse representation, and mental health advocacy, Nam has been sought-after to speak for groups like Milken Institute, Cornell University, Johns Hopkins University, The Korea Society, NYU, and Colby College, among others.
Nam has been featured in Forbes, Vulture, NPR’s Bullseye with Jesse Thorn, TIME, and many more, and was awarded the Embrace Unity Award by the Council of Korean Americans. He wrote a powerful op-ed for TIME, raising awareness about anti-Asian violence and inspiring change. Nam hosted the DS podcasts Daebak Show & I Think You’re Dope, celebrating spectacular music, media, and people. Eric's first independent album There And Back Again, which debuted at #3 and #7 on the US and UK Spotify Charts and peaked at #22 Album Sold on Billboard Charts, is inspiring the next generation of change-makers. This year, Eric has played over 47 sold out shows in 44 cities in Europe and North America and will resume his tour in Hawaii, New Zealand and Australia in September followed by an Asia tour in November. With authenticity and insight, Nam sparks thought-provoking conversations on important contemporary issues that make an impact with audiences of all kinds.
Tyler Oakley is an independent creator on YouTube, one of the largest digital platforms to date. With over 7.5M+ subscribers on YouTube and over 23M+ across his social media platforms, he has been established as one of the most influential LGBTQ+ vloggers and is an A-Lister in the digital age. Tyler’s videos are hilarious, engaging, and unapologetically personal. With an undying love for all things pop culture, his quick wit, and an innate sassiness, Tyler is immediately lovable and undeniably viral. Tyler and his best friend Korey Kuhl launched Psychobabble, a weekly podcast discussing "unfiltered gossip" and untold stories and it has gone to number one in the iTunes podcast chart, while the duo also placed 3rd on season 28 of The Amazing Race. He also completed 30 stops of his international Slumber Party themed tour, was on the New York Times Bestseller List for 11 consecutive weeks for his book Binge, and released his much anticipated documentary, SNERVOUS.
Among his many accomplishments, Tyler has been a consultant for both the President and the First Lady of the United States on using digital platforms to connect with youth, raised over $1M for The Trevor Project, has been nominated and won Teen Choice Awards, Streamy Awards, Shorty Awards, and a Webby! With extensive experience hosting red carpets (i.e., Grammy Awards, the Vanity Fair Oscar Party, Kids Choice Awards, mtvU Fandom Awards), and hosting award shows (The Streamy Awards), he's got plenty of behind-the-scenes Hollywood stories to share. Tyler was also named one of Time Magazine’s 30 Most Influential People on the Internet, was considered one of Time Magazine's Next Generation Leaders, and was included in The Hollywood Reporter’s Top 25 Digital Stars list two years in a row and on this year’s Forbes 30 Under 30 list & OUT Magazine's Power 50 list.
Dean Obeidallah is a lawyer turned writer, national radio host, award-winning comedian and activist countering bigotry and misconceptions about Muslims and race in America. Obeidallah uses comedy, personal anecdotes, and myth-busting to share his experience of growing up as a ‘white person’, with all the benefits of white privilege, until 9/11 – when he lost his privilege and became an activist against Islamophobia. He is the co-creator of the annual New York Arab American Comedy Festival, as well as Stand Up for Peace, an event that brings Jews and Muslims together to laugh. Obeidallah also co-directed and co-produced the comedy documentary The Muslims are Coming! to combat anti-Muslim bigotry. He hosts the national radio program ‘The Dean Obeidallah Show’ for SiriusXM, and is a weekly contributor to MSNBC.com, CNN.com, and The Daily Beast, as well as the host of Salon.com’s Salon Talks, an interview show highlighting his unique perspective on politics and pop culture.
Obeidallah has appeared on MSNBC’s The Reid Out, as well as other MSNBC programs, ABC’s Good Morning America and The View, and numerous programs on CNN. His funny and informative standup has been featured on Comedy Central’s Axis of Evil, Comics Unleashed, and The Nightly Show. Obeidallah is both funny and informative, revealing our biases by being the living manifestation of the concept that in America, “race is a social construct.
Enuma Okoro is a Nigerian-American writer, lecturer, and speaker, who believes that the stories we believe, and tell ourselves become the stories we live. Using the arts, cultural identity, contemplative spirituality and psychology, Okoro explores the power of story and narratives in our individual and collective identities. She examines the stories we live, where they originate, how they are used, and how unquestioned stories and inherited narratives affect our public and private lives. To this end, her work covers a broad but intersecting range of topics: the arts as a lens for understanding human experience, meaning and identity-making, transcultural literacy and how cultural collisions have an impact on human development and social narratives, women’s empowerment, and intentional living with integrity and self-honor.
Born in Manhattan to Nigerian parents, Okoro was raised in five countries on three continents, and has spent her life living and working as a global citizen. Her educational and professional background is in Psychology and Communications, Family Systems Therapy, Creative and Academic Writing, and Theology. She is a certified spiritual director in the Ignatian tradition. Okoro has written and edited four non-fiction books, her poetry is published in anthologies, she is a weekend columnist for the Financial Times, and her work has been featured in The New York Times, ABC’s Good Morning America, The Washington Post, The Atlantic Monthly, The Guardian, Harpers’ Bazaar, Vogue, CNN, Essence, Artsy, Cultured, The Cut, Aeon, Catapult, and other media outlets.
As an international speaker, Okoro has spoken at over 100 engagements including universities, corporate institutions, organization and conferences. Her speaking invitations have come from four continents and have included Oxford University, Princeton University, The Atlantic Dialogues, The EurAfrican Forum, The Ford Foundation, The MEDays International Forum, Bloomberg Media Conference, Harvard Business School, The Abu Dhabi Culture Summit, and more. She had the honor of being the first woman of African descent to deliver a talk from the historic 200-year-old platform of The American Church in Paris, France, where the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was the first man of African descent to speak from the same platform in October 1965. Okoro gave a TEDx talk in London focused on global perceptions of women, identity, and cultural collisions.
One of basketball’s most talented, versatile and successful players, Scottie Pippen’s improbable journey to the NBA landed him in Chicago, where he and Michael Jordan teamed up to lead of one of the game’s greatest dynasties. Scottie was born in Arkansas, the youngest of 12 children, and he didn’t receive a single Division I scholarship offer. He walked on at an NAIA school, Central Arkansas, and was drafted fifth overall in the 1987 NBA Draft. He quickly established himself as one of the league’s best two-way players and in only his fourth season, claimed the first of six NBA world championships in eight years. Scottie was beloved by his teammates and when you listen to him speak, you’ll understand why—his candidness, charisma, humor and wit provide audiences with memories they’ll never forget.
Today’s unprecedented speed of change is forcing companies to pivot like never before and leverage their most innovative assets -- their PEOPLE. For centuries, our workforce has been focused on specific roles and siloed divisions, but now the path to growth will come by inspiring every employee (from leader to individual contributor) with a new path to bring different, untapped sides of themselves to work, and ultimately become more curious, creative and action-oriented. This process of creating a more holistic person and organization is what Abigail Posner refers to as expansiveness. Tapping into her Harvard background in social anthropology, as well as her practical application in business through her work at Google, where she pioneers a focus around Humanizing Digital, Abigail provides an inspirational narrative and a roadmap for how people and organizations can embrace a new WHOLE-istic approach to business innovation and growth.
Posner is a member of ENDI Corp’s Board of Directors and sits on the advisory boards of the 890 Fifth Ave, SwiftArc Ventures, Global Leadership Diversity Exchange, Realm, TheSocialArchitects & the Conference Board’s Marketing & Communications Team; and has been featured in a host of publications including: NYTimes, Business Insider, Forbes, Adweek, Huffington Post, La Presse, CNBC, Mumbrella, AdNews, B&T & Globes Israel.
If you are looking to guide people in your organization to embrace more than a siloed vision of their roles, as well as become more vested in using their unique perspectives and skills to be more creative and innovative, then Abigail is the perfect guide to spark novel thinking and lead your people to action. Beyond her role at Google, she is a world-renowned speaker, podcaster, writer, beauty blogger, and lifestyle influencer. From appearances before packed audiences at Lincoln Center and SXSW, to speaking in over 10 countries, Abigail has shared her insights on culture, technology and leadership to audiences of thousands and proves that her own expansive approach to life has infused her work with a creative and innovative edge.
Award-winning science journalist, speaker, and author Catherine Price has been hailed in The New York Times as “the Marie Kondo of brains.” Price is the author of numerous books including How to Break Up With Your Phone: The 30-Day Plan to Take Back Your Life, which has been published in more than 35 countries and was featured in a New York Times piece that went viral, receiving 2M+ hits in less than a week. Her newest book, The Power of Fun: How to Feel Alive Again has received international media coverage and, in addition to serving as the inspiration for her popular TED talk, was named the overall best self-care book of the year by The Independent. As the creator and founder of ScreenLifeBalance.com, Price is dedicated to helping people scroll less, live more, and have more fun.
Price’s work has been featured in outlets including The Best American Science Writing, NPR, The New York Times, Popular Science, The Los Angeles Times, TIME Magazine, Wired, Vox, Refinery29, BBC World News Service, Good Morning America, The Today Show, CBS This Morning, and The Guardian among many others.
Having spoken in front of audiences and clients including TED, Leadercast, SXSW, Intel, Cigna, Hyatt, T. Rowe Price, Warburg Pincus, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Yale University, and more, Price is an in-demand speaker, consultant, and workshop leader who offers lively and uniquely tailored programs full of what she called “science-backed self-help” that are compelling and actionable for audiences of all kinds.
She is comfortable and experienced in both in-person and virtual formats, and particularly enjoys moderated Q&As and fireside chats.
John Rich is an American dream chaser. Armed with confidence, ambition and determination, John Rich is a multi-platinum hit generator, lifestyle-brand entrepreneur, and host of The Pursuit! with John Rich on Fox Business Network. John speaks with authority on entrepreneurism, the music industry, politics, current events, and the importance of family and God.
Whether through a raucous party anthem or a sober reflection on hard times in the heartland, Rich’s ability to capture the American zeitgeist in song has made him one of the most successful and prolific entertainers in the music business today. John is a 3 time consecutive ASCAP Songwriter of the Year winner and has penned over 2,000 songs in his career. In 2011, Rich impressed Donald Trump and American TV audiences with his business acumen and leadership skills, winning NBC’s The Celebrity Apprentice and raising $1.5 million for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
Rich is the founder of a national lifestyle brand called "Redneck Riviera" which celebrates 'Work hard, play hard' Americans. The brand boasts a successful national whiskey, Redneck Riviera Whiskey, a beef jerky line and a full-blown honky-tonk on the famed Lower Broadway in Nashville, Tennessee, with several more set to open across the US. The Redneck Riviera brand supports Folds of Honor and has now funded over 100 college scholarships for kids who have lost a parent in combat.
In addition to hosting his own show, Rich makes regular appearances on such top-rated shows such as the Today Show, Good Morning America, Fox News Channel’s The Five, Hannity, Fox and Friends and many more.
JUAN MANUEL SANTOS
Juan Manuel Santos is the two-term President of Colombia (2010-2014 / 2014-2018). Recognized as one of the most influential leaders in the world, President Santos ushered in a new era of prosperity, peace, equity, and education throughout Colombia during his tenure.
Due to his tenacity and determination to achieve peace and reconciliation in Colombia, in 2016 the Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded President Santos the Nobel Peace Prize "for his resolute efforts to bring the country's more than 50-year-long civil war to an end." Santos has also been twice-named to TIME’s "100 Most Influential People" and was honored with the World Economic Forum’s Global Statesman Award.
During his administration, Colombia became the region´s leader in economic growth, job creation, reduction of poverty and extreme poverty, sustainable development and the enhancement of Information and Communications Technology. In addition, his administration reduced the housing deficit by half and launched the most ambitious infrastructure plan in Colombia's history. He also published several books, including The Third Way, which he wrote with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, and Jaque al Terror (Checkmate to Terror), in which he describes how he successfully fought the FARC.
Sought-out to speak everywhere from Harvard University to the World Economic Forum, in his compelling keynotes Santos shares his reflections on the challenges of leadership, revealing what allowed him to change Colombia's history and make the impossible, possible. He delivers a message of unity and humanity that is inspiring, refreshing and necessary amid these turbulent political times. Santos also offers shrewd insights and analysis on issues such as the global economic outlook, global security, and foreign affairs.
One of the most beloved figures in science and technology, Adam Savage has spent most of his life gathering skills that allow him to take ideas and make them real.
In his book, Every Tool’s a Hammer: Life Is What You Make It, Adam shares his golden rules of creativity, problem solving, and much more. This inspiring read not only explores the MythBusters star’s journey through 40-plus years as a maker and creator, but offers readers profound advice on how to pursue what truly inspires them.
In speaking to audiences around the world, Adam challenges and inspires people to turn their curiosities into creations. From finding what inspires you to following through on making an idea a reality, Adam encourages you to push the boundaries of what's possible, and provides a toolbox of techniques to achieve personal and professional success.
SYMONE D. SANDERS
Seasoned political strategist, former CNN political commentator, and author Symone D. Sanders is a gifted communicator with a passion for problem solving, social justice, and in-depth analysis of today’s most important issues. Sanders previously served as the national press secretary for U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign, the youngest person to ever hold that title. She served as a senior advisor for President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign and was appointed as a senior member of the Biden-Harris administration, and will now bring her nuanced and critical insight to MSNBC as the host of SYMONE, as well as serving as an anchor and hosting a show on The Choice, MSNBC’s digital streaming arm. In her book No, You Shut Up: Speaking Truth to Power and Reclaiming America, Sanders shares her take-no-prisoners approach to life, politics, and career success, advocating for a new generation to be powerful in their own right. A rousing call to leadership, Congresswoman Maxine Waters raved, “Symone’s honest and profound reflection on standing up and speaking out is sure to inspire young people across the country to become the change agents the world needs.”
Sanders is a highly sought-after commentator and speaker, from her TED Talk Stop asking permission!, to an invigorating conversation at SXSW, Politico’s 2019 Women Rule Summit, the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity, and many more. She served as the National Chair of the Coalition of Juvenile Justice Emerging Leaders Committee, a member of the Federal Advisory Committee on Juvenile Justice, and in her role as principal of the 360 Group, Sanders worked on leading-edge solutions to tough political and social problems. Sanders shares her expertise in communication and political strategy, in-depth analysis of key political issues, and the challenges and possibilities for radical change with authenticity, humor, and insight.
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.
Behind Christian Siriano's prestigious fashion label is a groundbreaking, ambitious and fearless businessman. As a pioneer in body positivity and diversity in the fashion industry, Siriano's outspoken defense of inclusivity has forever changed the business of fashion.
Kevin Smith spent nearly twenty years making filthy movies like Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back, and most recently Red State. He also spent nearly twenty years eating lots of processed foods while living a sedentary lifestyle.
When not working in movies, Smith can be found podcasting every waking moment of his life over at his online empire, SModcast.com. If he's not hosting shows like Hollywood Babble-On, Jay & Silent Bob Get Old or Fat Man on Batman, Smith can be found on a stage, answering for his crimes in lotsa different Q&A DVD’s: An Evening with Kevin Smith, An Evening with Kevin Smith 2: Evening Harder, A Threevening with Kevin Smith, Too Fat for Forty, Kevin Smith Burn in Hell, and Jay & Silent Bob Get Old: Teabagging in the U.K. He's also the happy host of several shows at his YouTube channel as well as the front man and creator of Spoilers, a movie "revue" show on Hulu.
When not getting bounced from planes, Fatty McNoFly has also written no less than three New York Times best selling books: Tough Shit: Life Advice From a Fat, Lazy Slob Who Did Good , My Boring-Ass Life, and Batman: Cacophony - the latter of which was improved dramatically by Comic Book Man Walter Flanagan’s artwork. These books sit beside Smith's other published works, which include Silent Bob Speaks, Shootin’ the Shit with Kevin Smith, and Batman: The Widening Gyre (also with Flanagan).
A comic book man ever since he was a plump little boy, Smith has written Green Arrow for DC Comics and Daredevil for Marvel Comics, as well as adapted his un-produced screenplays for The Green Hornet and The Bionic Man into comics series for Dynamite. He’s also written several comic books based on his movies, including Clerks, and The Adventures of Bluntman and Chronic, starring Jay and Silent Bob.
But the greatest trick he ever pulled was convincing a girl to marry him nearly 14 years ago. On June 26th, 1999, his wife Jennifer Schwalbach gave birth to their only begotten daughter. Ever the comic book nerd, Smith named her after the Joker’s sidekick, Harley Quinn.
Ryan Tannehill is a current Pro-Bowl NFL Quarterback for the Tennessee Titans.
Following an exceptional high school career in Big Spring, TX, Tannehill committed to Texas A&M. Tannehill’s collegiate career began in earnest as a record-setting wide receiver in 2008, before ultimately making the switch back to his natural position of quarterback in 2010. He shattered the program single-game passing record in his first start against Texas Tech and made his mark with victories against Oklahoma, Nebraska and Texas. Tannehill concluded his Texas A&M career with a total of 5,450 passing yards and 42 touchdown passes in nearly two full seasons as quarterback.
In the 2012 NFL Draft, the Miami Dolphins selected Tannehill with the 8th overall pick, becoming the first quarterback selected by the Dolphins in the first round since Dan Marino in 1983. In his rookie season, Tannehill set franchise rookie records for passing yards, attempts, and completions. Following seven years in Miami, Ryan was traded to the Tennessee Titans prior to the 2020 season.
During his first season in Tennessee, Ryan took over at the helm after six games and reinvigorated the Titans franchise, leading the team to a 7-3 record and a wild card berth in the 2019-20 NFL playoffs. Tannehill went on to lead the Titans to the AFC Championship after impressive victories over defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots and the top seeded Baltimore Ravens. Ryan accumulated a NFL-best 117.5 passer rating, a 70.3 percent completion percentage, an NFL-high 9.6 yards per attempt. To cap off the monumental season, Ryan was named to the Pro Bowl and awarded the 2019 NFL Comeback Player of the Year.
Tim Tebow is a two-time national champion, Heisman Trophy winner, First-Round NFL Draft Pick, and a former professional baseball player. Tebow currently serves as a speaker, college football analyst with ESPN and the SEC Network, and is the author of four New York Times Bestsellers. But, most importantly, he is the founder and leader of the Tim Tebow Foundation (TTF) whose mission is to bring faith, hope, and love to those needing a brighter day in their darkest hour of need. TTF is currently fighting for people who can’t fight for themselves in over 60 countries and counting.
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.
Wallace Peeples, Better known as WALLO267, is an American orator, entrepreneur, social influencer, activist, and marketer.
Wallo rose to cultural phenom status in two short years after serving a 20 year prison sentence by catching lightning in a bottle: crafting powerful viral content inspiring people across the world to step into their greatness and discover their purpose.
With over 20 million+ social media impressions weekly, Wallo’s online followers have become evangelists, sharing his high-energy videos of inspiration, humor, and hard-earned lessons delivered with his signature unflinching honesty and humor.
Abby Wambach is a two-time Olympic gold medalist, FIFA World Cup Champion, and six-time winner of the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year award. She was the United States’ leading scorer in the 2007 and 2011 Women’s World Cup tournaments and the 2004 and 2012 Olympics.
An activist for equality and inclusion, Abby is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller WOLFPACK: How to Come Together, Unleash Our Power, and Change the Game, based on her inspiring, viral commencement speech to Barnard College. She authored the instant NYT bestselling adaptation for young audiences, WOLFPACK for the next generation. Abby is a highly sought-after speaker for events with groups like Paypal, Dell Technologies, Equinix, Inc., Northwestern Mutual, and many more, offering motivating insights on leadership, social change, the champion’s mindset, and how to build a strong team.
Abby is the host of ABBY’S PLACES on ESPN+, in which she showcases what makes her beloved sport of soccer a worldwide sensation. She also co-hosts WE CAN DO HARD THINGS with Glennon Doyle, which debuted at #1 in May, 2021 and was named the #1 New Podcast of 2021 on Apple Podcasts.
Abby sits on the Board of Directors for the all-women-led nonprofit organization Together Rising, and is a co-founder and part-owner of Angel City FC, the first majority-female-owned soccer team in history. She consistently receives rave reviews for events, such as: “She was OUTSTANDING! The team felt so inspired and energized after her conversation. I think we could have listened to her for 5 hours.” (Momentive Inc.)
Grammy-winning composer and conductor Eric Whitacre is unlike any keynote speaker you've seen before. His secret power lies in his one-of-a-kind fusion of music and interactive multi-media, with lessons that radically transform the way your organization feels and thinks. He injects new life into organizations that may feel stuck, uninspired, or overwhelmed by the pace of change; provides insight on transformative innovation and disruptive leadership; and opens audiences' eyes to new ways of creating and collaborating.
Working at the vanguard of art and technology. Whitacre has brought his unforgettable combination of speaking and music to the TED conference-- where his talk went viral-- and at events for Google, UNICEF and the United Nations. As audiences rave: "Probably the most emotionally impactful speaker we have ever had — people were mouth opened, crying, not leaving their seats."
Journalist, author, podcaster, and cultural figure Jenna Wortham is a thought leader at the intersection of tech, culture, and identity, offering engaging and incisive analysis to spellbound audiences across mediums. She co-edited the critically acclaimed visual anthology Black Futures, and is currently a staff writer for the New York Times Magazine, whom editor Jack Silverstein called “one of the most savvy and intelligent voices anywhere covering digital business and culture.” Jenna is also the co-host of the highly popular New York Times podcast Still Processing, which won a Webby Award and has appeared on year-end ‘Best of’ lists for The Atlantic, The Huffington Post, and Indiewire.
Jenna’s writing has appeared in Vogue, WIRED, The Economic Times, and more, and they have received numerous honors, including the prestigious MacDowell Fellowship. Jenna is uniquely positioned to speak to the challenges and possibilities of globalization of culture via the internet, and how we can continue to build our collective future in ever-changing digital spaces.
Renowned comedian, actress, writer, and disability advocate Maysoon Zayid jokes that if there were an ‘Oppression Olympics’, she would win gold: “I’m Palestinian, I’m Muslim, I’m a woman of color, I’m divorced, disabled, and I live in New Jersey.” Zayid has performed around the world, headlining the Arabs Gone Wild Comedy Tour and The Muslims Are Coming Tour, in which comedians toured the U.S. in an effort to counter Islamophobia. She is the co-founder and co-executive producer of the New York Arab American Comedy Festival and The Muslim Funny Fest. In her New York Times bestselling memoir Find Another Dream, Zayid shares her hilarious and poignant journey of failures, successes, and insights about what it takes to make your dream a reality. Known for her famed TED Talk I got 99 problems… palsy is just one, which has over 11M views, Zayid is a highly sought-after speaker for events with groups like the Ralph Lauren Foundation, Fidelity, Veeam, the Asia Society, Salesforce, and many more.
Zayid served as a full-time on-air contributor for Countdown with Keith Olberman, and has been featured on The Nick Cannon Show, including Cannon’s Comedy Club, Let’s Kiki with Miz Cracker, CNN, The Wall Street Journal’s Secrets of Wealthy Women podcast, in The New York Times, and Glamour, which hailed her as “the most fearless comic alive.” Her writing has been featured in Refinery29, The Daily Beast, among many others, and Zayid is currently working on her second book and first middle grade graphic novel, Shiny Misfits, which is slated to be published in 2023. A current Princeton University Arts Fellow, she teaches in-demand courses on comedy, brand messaging, and collaboration. Hilarious, disarming, and sharing a message of inclusion that matters, Zayid’s comedy and commentary resonate with audiences of all kinds.
Andrew Zimmern is an Emmy-winning and four-time James Beard Award-winning TV personality, chef, writer, teacher and social justice advocate. As the creator, executive producer and host of Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods franchise, Andrew Zimmern’s Driven by Food and the Emmy-winning The Zimmern List, he has devoted his life to exploring and promoting cultural acceptance, tolerance and understanding through food. In 2020, Andrew premiered his MSNBC series What's Eating America. His latest series, Family Dinner, is currently streaming on Discovery+ and airs on Chip & Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Network. Both shows were produced by Intuitive Content, the full-service television, commercial and digital production company that Andrew heads as both founder and CEO. Intuitive Content has been named one of the top 100 production companies in the world by Realscreen. Andrew is also the founder and CEO of Passport Hospitality, a restaurant and food service development company. He is passionate about his philanthropic endeavors and sits on the board of directors of Services for the UnderServed, EXPLR Media and Soigne Hospitality. He serves on City Harvest’s Food Council and is the International Rescue Committee’s Voice for Nutrition. As a United Nations World Food Programme Goodwill Ambassador, Zimmern uses his platform to fight against global hunger and food waste. Andrew is a founding member of the Independent Restaurant Coalition, fighting to save restaurants affected by Covid-19 and a newly named advisor to the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project.
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.
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 eighteen 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. He is expanding his portfolio with 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, to tell the story of Brady’s iconic NFL career. 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 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.
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.
Alex Rodriguez is a businessman and the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of A-Rod Corp, a broad-based investment firm that bets on world-class startups and partners with leading global companies across the real estate, health and wellness, technology, and sports & entertainment industries. While best known as one of the world’s greatest athletes (a 14x MLB All-Star and a 2009 World Series Champion with the New York Yankees), for more than 25 years, Alex leads a team of experts building high-growth businesses and enhancing the value of more than 30 companies in the A-Rod Corp portfolio.
Alex founded A-Rod Corp in 1995, purchasing a duplex apartment on the theory that investing his MLB earnings wisely would protect him from the kinds of financial struggles that afflict too many professional athletes. While he racked up extraordinary stats on the field (696 home runs and more grand slams than any other MLB player in history), Alex simultaneously assembled an impressive team at A-Rod Corp, bought apartment units across the southeastern U.S., and built a fully integrated real estate and development company. In 2020, Alex joined CGI Merchant Group's hotel investment fund to acquire and develop properties across North America and the Caribbean.
Following his success in real estate, Alex has invested in a variety of sectors where he has expertise. He looks for long-term opportunities to provide financial capital, work alongside founders and leadership, and amplify the growth of each company.
In addition to leading A-Rod Corp, Alex is CEO of Slam Corp, a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) with Antara Capital Chairman Himanshu Gulati as equal partner. Slam Corp is seeking to acquire a leader in the consumer tech, media, entertainment, and health and wellness sectors.
In 2021, Alex joined the NBA’s Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx ownership group. In the same year, Alex formed A-Rod Media, a strategic pillar within the organization to house all media activity. A-Rod Media offers scalable, multimedia capabilities, including original content creation, compelling narrative storytelling, and audience engagement across all marketing platforms.
Alex is an Emmy Award-winning MLB analyst for Fox Sports and ESPN. He has been a judge and investor on ABC’s Shark Tank, mentored financially distressed ex-athletes on CNBC’s Back in the Game, and currently co-hosts the podcast The Corp with Barstool Sports’ Dan Katz, interviewing CEOs, entrepreneurs, and sports legends. Committed to creating opportunities for young people to succeed, Alex serves on the Board of Directors of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade where he is an Alumni Hall of Fame Honoree, the Boards of Trustees of the University of Miami, and The Paley Center for Media.
Actor, comedian, producer, and writer Ryan Reynolds is a Hollywood icon and entrepreneur. Known for roles in Sabrina the Teenage Witch, The Proposal, and Deadpool, Reynolds has appeared in numerous films and TV series across genres, receiving nominations for Golden Globe Awards and Critics’ Choice Movie Awards. He launched the Maximum Effort production company and its marketing division, which was acquired by MNTN Software and has produced several high-octane brands. Expanding his entrepreneurial portfolio, Reynolds acquired a stake in Aviation American Gin with plans to expand his active role in the business, overseeing creative direction with his industry-tested marketing expertise. His additional business ventures include an ownership stake in Mint Mobile, serving on the board of Match Group, and the Wrexham Supporters Trust partnership takeover of the Welsh football club Wrexham AFC. Reynolds is an in-demand speaker for engaging, insightful conversations about his storied career in Hollywood and significant business endeavors.
Kevin Hart is Hollywood’s box office powerhouse, opening ten films as the number one movie opening weekend. He was recently named the highest grossing comedian for the second straight year by Forbes who described him as a “built-in marketing machine.” Per Entrepreneur magazine, “Kevin Hart is building a brand and an empire that will outlive his fame.”
Hart launched his digital network, the Laugh Out Loud Network, which serves as a platform for emerging comedians. He has started and runs his own production company, Hartbeat Productions, and has several successful brand partnerships with companies like Fabletics Men, Chase J.P Morgan, Hydrow, Brüush, Tommy John and Therabody. Hart is the Founder and CEO of HartBeat Ventures. HBV is Kevin’s VC, and its mission is to invest in disruptive companies, specifically companies that can help elevate underserved communities by providing a platform for everybody to thrive.
Kevin’s memoir, I Can’t Make This Up, debuted at number one on The New York Times Best Seller list and remained on the Top 10 Print Hardcover Bestsellers List for ten weeks straight. His new book, Markus Makes a Movie (Random House) is his first book for his younger audience, debuted at number 6 on the coveted list and remained on the list for three weeks. Hart’s first Audible original, The Decision, was nominated for an Audie award for “Best Original Audiobook in 2021.”
Hart is currently in production filming Sony’s action-comedy, The Man From Toronto, which he is starring in alongside Woody Harrelson and Kaley Cuoco. Hart can currently be seen starring in the feature film Fatherhood, he also produced through Hartbeat Productions. Based on the best-selling book, Two Kisses for Maddy, Fatherhood tells the story of a single dad navigating parenthood after his wife unexpectedly dies a day after giving birth. The movie has been watched by more than 61 million accounts globally making it one of the most successful original dramatic movies on Netflix.
In remarks that are empowering, inspiring, and downright hilarious, Hart discusses his life and career, and the lessons on resiliency, overcoming adversity, and success, he's learned along the way.
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.
Dan Schulman is a cutting edge leader and inspiring example of what a CEO can be, blending profit with purpose to lead PayPal as a tech CEO focused on improving the financial health of people, families, and businesses around the world. Dan has frequently been recognized by Fortune as one of the "Top 20 Businesspersons of the Year" and in 2021, named to Fortune's 50 World's Greatest Leaders list. He has also been named one of the "Top 100 Most Creative People" by Fast Company and, in 2019 he was named one of Glassdoor's "Top 50 CEOs." In addition, he has been recognized as one of the "Top 10 Most Innovative CEOs in Banking,” and is frequently presented with awards recognizing his commitment and influence in the space of equality and human rights. Schulman speaks about the future of money, values-driven business, and is most in-demand for his talks about leadership and innovation. He encourages audiences to embrace stakeholder capitalism, inclusion, equality, and more – while also prioritizing responsible and world class business practices.
With extensive experience in payments, e-commerce and mobile technology, Dan is leading PayPal to empower people in their financial lives and reimagine how merchants can continually strengthen their businesses. Under Dan’s leadership, PayPal has been named as one of the top companies on JUST Capital and Forbes’ JUST 100 list, featuring “companies doing right by America.” PayPal has also been recognized as a Fortune Change the World company for its work to tackle the biggest challenges facing society today and named to Morning Consult's "Most Trusted Brands" list.
Dan has consistently delivered successful results over the course of his career, demonstrating his effectiveness as a leader and difference maker. Prior to his role as the CEO of PayPal, Dan served as Group President at American Express. Previously, Dan was President of the Prepaid Group at Sprint Nextel Corporation following its acquisition of Virgin Mobile USA, Inc., where he led the company as its founding CEO for eight years. Earlier in his career, Dan was President and CEO of Priceline Group, Inc., where he led the company through a period of rapid growth and expansion.
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."
Hollywood legend Brian Grazer is an Academy, Golden Globe, Emmy, and Grammy award-winning producer and New York Times bestselling author. Behind iconic films and shows including A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13, Splash, 24, and Arrested Development (just to name a few), Grazer's work has been nominated for 43 Oscars and 195 Emmys.
Named to TIME’s “100 Most Influential People in the World,” Grazer co-founded Imagine Entertainment along with his longtime friend and business partner Ron Howard in the 1980s, quickly growing it to become one of Hollywood's most prolific and successful production companies. Heralded as a creative visionary and entertainment powerhouse, and described by Russel Crowe in TIME as "a modern-age hunter-gatherer of information," Grazer is renowned for his uncanny prescience, curiosity, and innovative insight.
Coming from modest means and growing up with dyslexia, Grazer's rise to a mogul in the pantheon of Hollywood is an empowering story of resilience and ingenuity. The secret to Grazer's success and distinct outlook are chronicled in his #1 New York Times bestselling book, A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life, which reveals why curiosity is our superpower and how all of us can channel it to lead bigger and more rewarding lives. Grazer's second book, Face to Face: The Art of Human Connection, reveals yet another key to happiness and success: eye-contact. Filled with personal, life-changing stories and insightful advice, Face to Face highlights the transformative power of genuine human connection, even as technology takes on a bigger and bigger role in our lives.
Sought-out to speak everywhere from Google to Goldman Sachs, SXSW to the Aspen Institute, Grazer has helped everyone from parents to CEOs to artists to young graduates hone the mindset, philosophy, and skills needed to thrive in turbulent times. With a unique flair for telling fascinating stories, and decades of experience as a Hollywood icon to draw upon, Grazer offers insight into themes such as leading through times of disruption, unleashing curiosity and creativity, innovating in a fast changing world, and the future media landscape.
Golden Globe-winning actor Idris Elba showcases his creative versatility both on-screen in television and film as well as behind the camera as a producer and director. He continues to captivate audiences and secure his position as the one to watch in Hollywood, with a string of well-received performances in high-profile films as well as and multiple critically acclaimed television series.
Few stars have used their platform and celebrity more effectively for good than Charlize Theron. Be it her work to advance women's rights domestically and abroad, to combat gender-based violence around the world, or to advance global health efforts, Charlize demonstrates masterfully how to use one’s platform for good. Theron is not only an United Nations Messenger of Peace, she is also the founder of the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project, an organization that invests in the health, communities and education of African youth and their ability to keep themselves safe from HIV/ AIDS. Since its founding in 2007, CTAOP-supported programs have reached over 250,000 young people in Southern Africa with critical health services. In addition, her foundation created the CTAOP Youth Leaders Scholarship Program, which cultivates and strengthens young community leaders in South Africa by providing comprehensive scholarships for tertiary education.
South African born and Oscar-winning actress Charlize Theron is one of the most celebrated actresses of our time, captivating audiences with her ability to embody a range of characters. Over the years, Charlize has appeared in numerous films including The Devil’s Advocate, The Cider House Rules, the critically acclaimed Monster for which she earned an Academy Award, a Golden Globe, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and an Independent Spirit Award, North Country for which she was nominated for an Academy Award, a Golden Globe, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and a Critics Choice Award, Hancock, Young Adult for which she garnered a Golden Globe nomination, HBO’s The Life and Death of Peter Sellers for which she received a Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild, and Emmy nominations, Snow White and the Huntsman, A Million Ways to Die in the West, Mad Max: Fury Road, Dark Places, Kubo and the Two Strings and The Fate of The Furious.
Heralded for bringing her remarkable life experiences and passionate activism to life at each and every engagement, be it virtually or in-person, Theron shares insights on issues ranging from women's health and safety, to humanitarianism, global health, racial equity, social justice, and global citizenship. At a recent event, SAP called Charlize's moderated discussion “powerful,” making all other events seem “tame.” Charlize is a passionate and authentic speaker and truly a uniquely talented actor, producer, businesswoman and philanthropist.
With 7 Grand Slam titles, 5 Wimbledon championships and 4 Olympic gold medals, tennis champion Venus Williams is arguably one of the most accomplished and inspiring women in the history of sports.
Beginning her rise to the top at the age of 14, Williams quickly took the world of tennis by storm rising to the top-ranked position, breaking countless records, and winning numerous championships.
Encouraged by her mother at an early age to explore her creative side, Williams enrolled in fashion school where she was instantly drawn into the world of fashion and interior design. True to her bold spirit, Williams parlayed her fine-tuned business acumen with her healthy competitive spirit into two successful design ventures.
In 2002, after obtaining an Interior Decorator certification, Williams founded V Starr, a full-service commercial and residential design firm. Continuing with her love for design, Williams obtained an Associate of Science in Fashion Design and in 2012 she launched the fashion-forward activewear brand, EleVen by Venus Williams. In May 2020, Venus partnered with Credo Beauty to debut an award-winning line of clean, mineral-based SPF products under the EleVen by Venus umbrella. Her entrepreneurship in the health, wellness and beauty space also includes her role as Chief Brand Officer to Asutra and in December 2020, Williams launched her plant-based protein company, Happy Viking.
Sticking to her entrepreneurial spirit, in 2009 Williams along with her sister, Serena became the first female African Americans to have a stake in an NFL franchise after joining the ownership group of the Miami Dolphins. The following year, Venus published her motivational book, Come to Win which reached No. 5 on the New York Times Best Sellers list.
Most recently, Venus served as Executive Producer on the Academy Award-winning Warner Brothers biopic King Richard, which detailed the influence her father and coach, Richard Williams, had on her childhood and careers as she became a tennis icon and changed the sport for generations to come.
Satirist, comedian, actor, and best-selling author Sarah Cooper skyrocketed to fame with her brilliant lip-sync impressions of the former president. Cooper is the author of the bestsellers How to Be Successful Without Hurting Men’s Feelings and 100 Tricks to Appear Smart in Meetings, both of which have been optioned for TV series development. Her Netflix comedy special Sarah Cooper: Everything’s Fine received rave reviews, and she was named one of Variety’s “10 Comics to Watch” and Vulture’s “The Comedians You Should and Will Know in 2020.” Sought after for events with Box, Inc., Slack, OneLogin, Columbia University, among others, and consistently receives rave reviews like: “Our entire team was so impressed with the conversation and it definitely kicked off our morning on a great note. Sarah's story is so fascinating and we loved having her" (Conde Nast).
Cooper has been featured in The Washington Post, Forbes, The New York Times, Fast Company, Harvard Business Review, and countless other publications. She has appeared on CBS Sunday Morning, The Ellen Show, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, as the guest host of Jimmy Kimmel Live, and more. Her first feature film, Summering, premiered at Sundance Film Festival. Cooper is a Co-Writer and Executive Producer for the CBS series inspired by her book How to Be Successful…, and has released an Audible original self-help comedy memoir take on Dale Carnegie’s business classic, Let’s Catch Up Soon: How I Won Friends and Influenced People Against My Will.
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.
Steve Martin is one of the most well-known and pervasive talents in entertainment. His work has earned him an Academy Award®, five Grammy® awards, an Emmy®, the Mark Twain Award, and the Kennedy Center Honor.
Martin began his career on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour (1967-1969), for which he earned his first Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing Achievement in Comedy, Variety or Music in 1969. In the mid-1970s, Martin shone as a stand-up on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and NBC’s Saturday Night Live. Martin’s films are widely popular successes and are the kind of movies that are viewed again and again: The Jerk (1979), Planes, Trains & Automobiles (1987), Roxanne (1987), Parenthood (1989), L.A. Story (1991), Father of the Bride (1991), and Bowfinger (1999).
As an author, Martin’s work includes the novel An Object of Beauty, the play Picasso at the Lapin Agile, a collection of comic pieces, Pure Drivel, a bestselling novella, Shopgirl, and his memoir Born Standing Up. His writing often appears in The New Yorker.
Steve Martin is also an accomplished Grammy Award-winning, boundary-pushing bluegrass banjoist and composer. In 2013, Steve Martin released his third full-length album called Love Has Come For You, a unique collaboration with songwriter Edie Brickell. Love Has Come For You, won a Grammy ® for “Best American Roots Song” for the title track and inspired their new musical Bright Star, which was first staged at San Diego's Old Globe Theater in 2014 and opened at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. on December 17, 2015, followed by a Broadway premiere in 2016.
Martin and Brickell’s second album together So Familiar was released on Rounder Records in October. The album features 12 remarkable new songs that bring the acclaimed duo’s musical collaboration into fresh creative territory.
Whoopi Goldberg is one of a very elite group of artists who have won the Grammy, the Academy Award, the Golden Globe, the Emmy, and the Tony. She is equally well-known for her humanitarian efforts on behalf of children, the homeless, human rights, education, substance abuse, and the battle against AIDS. Among her many charitable activities, Whoopi is a Goodwill Ambassador to the United Nations.
Beyond her remarkable film, theater, and television career, Whoopi is the author of several children’s books, as well as a New York Times bestseller.
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.
World-renowned trumpeter, bandleader and composer Wynton Marsalis is a leading advocate of American culture. At the age of 17, Marsalis left New Orleans to attend the Juilliard School in New York City. He quickly found himself in an ideal place to learn what was required to be a jazz musician and bandleader, when he hit the road with Art Blakey and the Jazz Masters. Wynton assembled his first band in 1981 and promptly began touring, performing over 120 concerts annually for 15 consecutive years. With the power of his musicianship, the compelling sound of his swinging bands and a far-reaching series of performances and music workshops, Marsalis rekindled interest and excitement in jazz worldwide and attracted a new generation of fine young talent to the genre. As the Co-founder, Managing and Artistic Director of Jazz at Lincoln Center, as well as the Director of Juilliard Jazz, Marsalis has elevated jazz music to the forefront of America’s leading arts and educational institutions. Wynton has recorded over 100 jazz and classical recordings, which have garnered nine GRAMMY Awards® and sold over 7 million copies worldwide. In 1997, Marsalis became the first jazz artist to be awarded the prestigious Pulitzer Prize in Music for his oratorio Blood on the Fields. Marsalis' vision for a brighter American future resonates deeply with companies and organizations across a multitude of fields. With Wynton, audiences are treated to a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take a front row seat as he speaks about a lifetime of innovation, soul, and music.
STEVEN VAN ZANDT
Musician, Performer, Songwriter, Arranger, Music Producer, Music Supervisor, TV Producer, Actor, Director, Broadway Producer, TV and Film Composer, and Live Event Producer, International DJ, Activist, Historian, Teacher, member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and recognized internationally as one of the world’s foremost authorities on both Contemporary and Traditional Rock and Roll.
“He’s not the only one, nor the oldest, nor the richest. But Little Stevie Van Zandt might currently be the planet’s most charismatic, dedicated and visible crusader scrapping to preserve the dirty purity of Rock ‘n Roll.” - BruceSpringsteen.net
“I know it sounds a bit silly but I do believe Rock and Roll can change the world. It’s about bands, and that for me suggests brotherhood, family, friendship, and community” - Stevie Van Zandt
The creator and co-host of MSNBC's Morning Joe and a former Florida Congressman, Joe Scarborough ignites early morning audiences with his no-holds barred political commentary. Pulling from his experience as an influential player in Republican politics, Scarborough leads candid discussions about the important issues facing America each day. He is a member of the Cable News Hall of Fame, and has been named to the prestigious "TIME 100" list.
A Washington Post contributor and New York Times bestselling author, Joe's books take a close look at Republican politics, offering both historical analysis and prescient insight into the nature of conservatism in the United States.
As popular on stage as he is on TV, Joe brings the same energy to his speeches as he does his morning show. With his signature off-the-cuff commentary, he offers a dynamic and fast-paced perspective on the current political and media landscape and the headlines of the day.
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.
JIM YONG KIM
12th President of the World Bank Group Jim Yong Kim is a global visionary devoted to improving the lives of people in developing countries and championing the cause of global health. Renowned for his pioneering approaches to tackling global health issues, education, and economic development, at the World Bank, Kim re-defined the institution's work to amplify the voices of the world's poor, vowing to end extreme poverty by 2030.
Before his time at the World Bank, Kim served as President of Dartmouth College-- becoming the first Asian-American president of an Ivy League institution-- and as Executive Director and co-founder of the internationally renowned non-profit medical organization Partners In Health (PIH). At PIH, Kim helped launch a movement that changed global health forever, tackling some of the world's most difficult health problems, and proving experts wrong in what medical treatments and results are possible in communities of extreme poverty. Kim's work at PIH has now been replicated in more than 40 countries, and is chronicled in the award-winning documentary Bending the Arc, and bestselling book Mountains Beyond Mountains. Kim also served as Chief of the Department of Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School and director of the World Health Organization's HIV/AIDS department. At WHO Kim led the groundbreaking "3 by 5" initiative, the first-ever global goal for AIDS treatment.
Sought-out to speak everywhere from TED to the World Economic Forum, Kim's ideas and efforts have changed the way the world thinks about global development. A physician and anthropologist, he is the recipient of a MacArthur "Genius" Fellowship, and has been recognized as one of America's "25 Best Leaders" by U.S. News & World Report, named to TIME's "100 Most Influential People in the World," and listed to Forbes' "World's Most Powerful People." Kim inspires people to change the world, and provides eye-opening and empowering insights on just how we can do it.
Ursula Burns made history as the first Black woman to lead a Fortune 500 company when she became CEO of Xerox in 2009. Her journey from the lower east side projects, to earning two engineering degrees, and landing an internship at a company she would one day run, is a story that will inspire many. Burns is the author of Where You Are Is Not Who You Are: A Memoir, which received a rave review by the New York Times.
When Ursula took the helm at Xerox in 2009, she was tasked with turning around a company that was quickly becoming obsolete. Pushing for diversification and development of new products and services, and spearheading the largest acquisition in Xerox history, Ursula oversaw a monumental transformation and massive growth.
Ursula regularly appears on Fortune’s and Forbes’ list of the world’s most powerful women. She helped lead the White House national program on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) from 2009-2016, currently sits as the Chairwoman of the Board at Teneo Holdings LLC and is on the board of Exxon Mobil, Endeavor, and Uber, and was previously on the board at Nestlé. She's also on the Board Diversity Action Alliance, leading an effort to support diversity on corporate boards.
An absolute force and American icon, Ursula shares her executive insights on leadership in a time of disruption, and instructs leaders how to answer the call to create more inclusive and diverse organizations. Her powerful and important conversations challenge and inspire audiences.
Julián Castro has distinguished himself as a strong leader and successful public servant for nearly two decades. A former Democratic candidate for President, Castro served as the 16th Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Barack Obama from 2014 to 2017, and as mayor of San Antonio from 2009 to 2014. Today, Castro serves on the board of directors of the LBJ Foundation and is a political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC.
As mayor, Castro brought a strong focus to expanding educational achievement and making America’s seventh largest city a leader in the 21st century global economy. Under Castro’s leadership, San Antonio implemented Pre-K4SA, a high quality early childhood learning initiative that has earned praise as one of America’s strongest public pre-kindergarten programs. During his tenure, San Antonio ranked first on the Milken Institute’s Best Performing Cities List, received an A+ grade for doing business by Forbes, and was the only Top 10 city at the time to achieve a Triple A bond rating with each of the three major ratings agencies. A native Texan, Castro made history in 2012 when he became the first Latino to deliver the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention.
His memoir, An Unlikely Journey: Waking Up from My American Dream, is a candid account of race and poverty in America. Born to unmarried parents in a poverty-stricken neighborhood of a struggling city, Castro details his unlikely journey to becoming an emerging national icon.
From education to technology to safe and affordable housing, Castro has been at the forefront of some of the most innovative partnerships, programs and achievements in the public sector. In sharing lessons learned from the struggles and successes of his political journey, he gives audiences insight into how any group can make a significant change when it comes to America's most pressing issues. He empowers groups to engage and take action, even when things seem at their most bleak. Castro’s own personal story is proof that the American Dream still lives, and in his inspiring talks, he shares actionable items people can accomplish in their day-to-day lives to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to fulfill their potential.
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."
Scott Galloway is Professor of Marketing at NYU’s Stern School of Business and a serial entrepreneur. In 2012, he was named one of the world’s best business professors by Poets & Quants. Scott has founded nine companies, including Prophet, Red Envelope, L2, and Section4. He is the New York Times bestselling author of The Four, The Algebra of Happiness, and Post Corona. Scott has served on the boards of directors of The New York Times Company, Urban Outfitters, Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, Panera Bread, and Ledger. Across his Prof G and Pivot podcasts, Webby Award–winning No Mercy / No Malice newsletter, and his YouTube channel, Scott reaches millions. Pivot has won multiple Best Business Podcast awards.
BOZOMA SAINT JOHN
Over the course of her career, former Netflix Global Chief Marketing Officer Bozoma “Boz” Saint John has earned a formidable reputation as a trailblazing brand and marketing executive and genuine change-agent in the space. Few people have the depth and breadth of experience that Boz has. Couple that with her remarkable success at 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.
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, as well as the Hall of Achievement for the American Advertising Federation. 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 Magazine’s “Disruptors, Innovators & Stars 40 Under 40,” Fast Company’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.
KIZZMEKIA S. CORBETT
Dr. Kizzmekia Corbett was the scientific lead of the Vaccine Research Center’s coronavirus team at the U.S. National Institutes of Health where she studied coronavirus biology and vaccine development. Those 6 years of research led to the groundbreaking discovery that a stabilized version of a spike protein, which is found on the surface of all coronaviruses, would be a key target for vaccines, treatments, and diagnostics. At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, she and her colleagues were central to the development of the Moderna mRNA vaccine and the Eli Lilly therapeutic monoclonal antibody, both of which were first to enter clinical trials in the world. As a result, her work is having a substantial impact on ending the worst respiratory-disease pandemic in more than 100 years. Dr. Corbett is now an assistant professor in the Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Her work now extends beyond the rapid development of COVID-19 vaccines to the outlook of this pandemic and future viral pandemics.
Perhaps just as important as her scientific accomplishments, Dr. Corbett has burst onto the public stage as the face of a diverse and rising generation of talented scientists who will transform the world. She is a stellar science communicator, explaining the vaccine and the virus in highly accessible ways to media outlets, two U.S. presidents, and audiences around the globe.
Scooter Braun is one of the entertainment industry’s biggest entrepreneurs and innovators and the founder of SB Projects, a diversified entertainment and media company with ventures at the intersection of music, film, television, technology, brands, culture, and social good. Today, Braun has a roster of the top pop culture icons under his management, record label, and publishing companies that include Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, Zac Brown Band, and Karlie Kloss, to name a few.
Braun has broken more new artists than any other music executive in the last decade and now has expanded his reach by establishing a fund which invests in some of the largest management, media, and rights companies in the industry. SB Projects houses a film and television production division which led to Braun making waves in the industry with his first documentary film, Never Say Never, and also continues to impact new verticals under its tech incubator, Silent Labs, which holds investments in Uber, Spotify, Songza, Casper, Waze, and Pinterest. In 2018, Braun announced new ventures including Mythos Studios, which will develop franchise films, and Good Story Entertainment, which will build out unscripted, live event, and documentary spaces.
As Braun continues to expand SB Projects, he remains committed to the company’s founding philosophy of giving back and designs a philanthropic element for each new initiative. Braun serves as Chair of the Advisory Board of Pencils of Promise, a non-profit organization that builds schools in developing countries. He is also on the board of Fuck Cancer, an organization focused on prevention and early detection of cancer, which his wife Yael Braun co-founded. Braun, his clients, and his companies have – together – granted more wishes for Make-A-Wish than any other organization in the history of the foundation. In 2017, Braun proved to be the music industry’s ‘first-responder’ when he organized the One Love Manchester benefit concert and Hand in Hand: A Benefit for Hurricane Relief telethon, within just months of one another.
Braun lives in Los Angeles with his wife and three children.
Charles Duhigg’s The Power of Habit has spent three years on the New York Times Bestseller list. His latest bestselling book, Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business (2016) is a fascinating exploration of the science of productivity, and why, in today’s world, managing how you think—rather than what you think—can transform your life. Duhigg's journalistic accomplishments have made him an in-demand speaker for organizations from the UCLA School of Management to Fortune 500 companies and The Johnson Foundation to the National Association of Science Teachers. His presentations are both descriptive and prescriptive, and speak to a wide range of groups from the fields of business, science, medicine, and education. He is a Pulitzer prize-winning investigative reporter and writes for The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, and other publications. Duhigg hosts the "How To!" podcast for Slate Magazine and is a 2020-2021 Business News Visionary Award recipient.
Mahershala Ali is quickly becoming one of the freshest and most in-demand faces in Hollywood with his extraordinarily diverse skill set and wide-ranging background in film, television, and theater.
He is the first black actor to win two Academy Awards in the same category for his performances as Juan in Moonlight and Don Shirley in Green Book. Mahershala is also known for portraying House of Cards fan favorite Remy Danton, Cornell 'Cottonmouth' Stokes in Marvel's Luke Cage, and Wayne Hays in HBO's True Detective. Most recently, he's starred alongside Ramy Youssef in Hulu's comedy-drama series Ramy.
Ben Affleck is an Academy Award winner who has been widely recognized for his work as a director, actor, writer and producer. During his impressive and long-running career, he has appeared in iconic projects spanning all genres including Argo, Gone Girl, and Good Will Hunting, and he has played Batman in several films within the comic franchise. Affleck has been honored with some of the entertainment industry's highest awards, including the Oscar, BAFTA, Golden Globe and Screen Actor's Guild awards for the span of his work both in front of and behind the camera.
Lilly Singh is an actress, performer, comedian, New York Times bestselling author, and entrepreneur. As the former host of NBC’s A Little Late With Lilly Singh, she is the only female to host a late-night show on one of the big four networks. She now has a first-look producing deal with NBCUniversal's Universal Television Alternative studio and is developing and starring in a comedy series at Netflix.
Named one of TIME’s "30 Most Influential People on the Internet," Forbes’ "30 Under 30," and Fast Company's "Most Creative People," Lilly has developed a massive, engaged fan base thanks to her hilarious sketch videos on YouTube, collaborations with brands including Smashbox, Bobbi Brown, Dell and Coca-Cola, and her inspiring New York Times bestselling book How to Be a Bawse: A Guide to Conquering Life and her latest book, Be a Triangle.
Heralded for her candor and comedy, Lilly offers hilarious, empowering, and informative conversations about her career, diversity, activism, pop culture and more.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt is an actor, filmmaker, and entrepreneur. His acting career spans three decades, and ranges from television (3rd Rock from The Sun) to arthouse (Mysterious Skin, Brick) to multiplex (Inception, 500 Days of Summer, Snowden). He made his feature screenwriting and directorial debut with Don Jon (Independent Spirit Award nomination, Best First Screenplay). Joseph Gordon-Levitt is also the founder and acting CEO of the online creative platform, HITRECORD.
HITRECORD is an online creative platform with a growing worldwide community of over 850,000 people. The platform empowers artists around the world to start their own creative projects, and to invite others to collaborate with them. Over the years, HITRECORD’s “community-sourced” production company has published a number of books, produced award-winning campaigns for brands ranging from the ACLU to LG, toured live shows and screened short films at festivals such as Sundance, BFI, TIFF, and SXSW. Their first television show, HITRECORD On TV, won an EMMY in the category of Outstanding Achievement in Interactive Media.
Through HITRECORD, Gordon-Levitt also hosts original live events that invite people - both online and in the room - to collaborate on creative projects together using the HITRECORD platform and mobile app. Most recently, he hosted HITRECORD Live Labs, a unique interactive experience which debuted over the course of two nights at Sundance 2020.
In recent years, Gordon-Levitt has become a thought leader in exploring the relationship between technology and creativity. In his latest talks, Gordon-Levitt examines the unintended side effects of social media culture on our creative and mental wellbeing.
Drawing from his own unique perspective as an artist, entrepreneur, and his years of experience in the spotlight of Hollywood, Gordon-Levitt delivers dynamic talks and presentations that shed light on internet culture, collaboration, and creativity. He’s been sought out to speak everywhere from TED to TechCrunch and AT&T. His 2019 TED talk has nearly four million views.
Daniel Levy is an Emmy® Award-winning showrunner, writer, actor, director, and producer, best known for his work on one of the most beloved shows on television, Schitt’s Creek, which he co-created with his father Eugene Levy. For its sixth and final season, the series received nine Emmy wins, becoming the most awarded comedy series in a single year. The show also broke major records for being the first comedy or drama series to sweep all four acting categories and received the most wins for a comedy series in its final season. Levy and his father were also the first father-son pair to win Emmys in the same year, while Levy personally tied the record for most wins by an individual in a single season with four total wins.
Schitt’s Creek garnered countless awards and nominations over the years, most notably sweeping the 2020 Emmys by winning Best Comedy Series, Best Comedy Actor, Best Comedy Actress, Best Comedy Supporting Actor, Best Comedy Supporting Actress, Best Comedy Writing, Best Comedy Directing, Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series and Outstanding Contemporary Costumes. Additionally for its final season which aired in 2020, the show was nominated for five Golden Globe Award nominations, winning two for Best Musical or Comedy Television Series and Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy Television Series, earned five Critics Choice Award nominations and secured two wins for Best Supporting Actor and Best Actress in a Comedy Series, five SAG Award nominations and two wins for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble and Actress in a Comedy Series, two GLAAD Media Award wins for Best Comedy Series, two TCA Awards including Outstanding Achievement in Comedy, a Costume Design Guild Award for Excellence in Contemporary Television, among many others.
Most recently, Levy appeared in the romantic comedy Happiest Season for Hulu and made his hosting debut on Saturday Night Live.
Robin DiAngelo is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard For White People To Talk About Racism, which has been on the NYT bestseller list since June 2018 and translated into multiple languages. White Fragility is widely considered an essential guide for white people seeking to understand and challenge racism. Her newest book, Nice Racism: How Progressive White People Perpetuate Racial Harm picks up where White Fragility left off and dives deeper into the conversation. Her research has been the subject of conversations taking place in business and organizations worldwide and has influenced the international dialogue on race. In her talks, Dr. DiAngelo, an academic, author, and facilitator, explains systemic racism with clarity and accessibility. She has the exceptional ability to speak directly about what has traditionally been a deeply challenging and taboo conversation in a way that opens and engages her audience. In so doing, she provides the questions and perspectives needed to develop more racially-just practices.
MIKA BRZEZINSKI & JOE SCARBOROUGH
Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski are morning television’s hottest political duo and the co-hosts of MSNBC's Morning Joe, one of the most popular and influential shows on politics because of who watches it – namely, every member of the Washington political ecosystem, from journalists and legislators to staffers and consultants.
An entertaining pair, they are as popular on stage as they are on TV. Tailoring their remarks to every audience, they can speak about the current political environment, current events, the current media landscape, and leadership and business news.
Award-winning journalist, renowned TV host, and philanthropist Tamron Hall takes on the most captivating and thought-provoking issues facing the world every day. As the host of The Tamron Hall Show, Hall has received two Daytime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Informative Talk Show Host, in addition to two prestigious Gracie Awards from the Alliance for Women in Media Foundation. The Variety “Power of Women” honoree is also the host of the Court TV series Someone They Knew, her second true crime series following Deadline: Crime with Tamron Hall, and recently released her debut novel As the Wicked Watch, an instant Editor’s Pick on Amazon. In demand for events with groups like Microsoft, Google, Accenture, YWCA, the American Heart Association, and more, Hall inspires audiences with conversations about overcoming obstacles, creating connection, and thriving in the ‘now’.
Hall and her expansive cultural impact have been featured in Forbes, Vogue, The Washington Post, and many more, and she made history as the first African American female co-host of NBC’s TODAY, and served as the anchor for MSNBC’s Live with Tamron Hall. Audiences have turned to Hall – regardless of the network or medium – for her courageous curiosity, her warmth, and her devotion to issues like the prevention of domestic abuse through her work with Safe Horizon. Hall empowers and inspires audiences with conversations about overcoming obstacles in the workplace and at home; domestic violence, homelessness, and literacy; her storied career; journalism and the media; and much more.
Award-winning political analyst, New York Times bestselling author, and MSNBC national correspondent Joy Reid is the renowned Host of MSNBC’s The ReidOut. Reid made history with her namesake show as the first Black woman to host a primetime cable news program. Prior to The ReidOut, she hosted the hit weekend morning news show AM Joy. Reid is the author of Fracture: Barack Obama, the Clintons, and the Racial Divide, We Are the Change We Seek: The Speeches of Barack Obama, which she co-edited, and the New York Times bestseller The Man Who Sold America: Trump and the Unraveling of the American Story. She also hosts two podcasts Reid This, Reid That, with Emmy-winning journalist Jacque Reid, and a books podcast What to Reid. MSNBC’s new special, The Culture Is, features Reid as co-host, moderator, and executive producer for the first episode, The Culture Is: Black Women. A sought-after keynote speaker, Reid is celebrated for her no-nonsense commentary and insights, taking audiences beyond the headlines in impactful engagements.
Reid has been featured in Washington Post, Forbes, The New York Times, Vogue, Black Enterprise, Fast Company, Ms., among many others, and her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, The Miami Herald, New York Magazine, and The Daily Beast. She was a 2022 NAACP Image Award winner for The ReidOut, 2003 Knight Center for Advanced Journalism fellow, and has received awards from the Women’s Media Center, the National Action Network, the National Association of Black Journalists, and been nominated for an Emmy, a GLAAD Media Award, and two prior NAACP Image Awards. Reid has taught at Syracuse University and is a Hearst Visiting Professor at Howard University, teaching a course on the impact of race and gender on political coverage. Drawing on her decades-long experience in politics and passion for addressing the intersections of race, justice, and culture, Reid offers in-demand analysis on today’s most important issues.
TIFFANY D. CROSS
Tiffany D. Cross is the former host of The Cross Connection on MSNBC, the bestselling author of Say It Louder: Black Voters, White Narratives, and Saving Our Democracy (Amistad/HarperCollins) and a 2020 Resident Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics. She is a longtime cable news veteran having previously served as the D.C. Bureau Chief for BET Networks, an Associate Producer for CNN, and a freelance Field Producer. Tiffany also spent time on the campaign trail having both covered and worked on numerous local, state, and federal campaigns.
She moved from the control room to the greenroom when she co-founded The Beat DC, a national platform that intersected politics, policy, business, media, and people of color that was widely read by elected officials, CEOs and C-Suite executives, opinion leaders, and media influencers.
Tiffany's broad experience across media, politics, and policy includes more than two decades of navigating newsrooms and campaigns while engaging different constituencies on the ground. Known for her unique ability to engage audiences with digestible dialogue about some of today’s most complicated issues, she is a sought after effervescent voice in the progressive discourse.
W. KAMAU BELL
Sociopolitical comedian, Emmy-winning producer, and New York Times bestselling author W. Kamau Bell is a revered cultural commentator, using hilarity and profound insight to illuminate today’s biggest issues – and where we can go from here. He is the host and executive producer of the Emmy Award-winning CNN docuseries United Shades of America with W. Kamau Bell, in which he explores communities across America to understand the unique challenges they face. Kamau is known for his Netflix stand-up comedy special Private School Negro, his one-man show The W. Kamau Bell Curve: Ending Racism in About an Hour, and his FX & FXX comedy series Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell. His first book, The Awkward Thoughts of W. Kamau Bell: Tales of a 6' 4", African American, Heterosexual, Cisgender, Left-Leaning, Asthmatic, Black and Proud Blerd, Mama's Boy, Dad, and Stand-Up Comedian, is a humorous, well-informed take on the world today from “the most promising new talent in political comedy in many years” (The New York Times). Kamau is the co-author of the New York Times bestseller Do the Work!: An Anti-Racist Activity Book, with Kate Schatz. In sought-after talks, Kamau leverages humor as a tool for transformative conversations.
Kamau serves on the advisory boards of Right To Be (formerly Hollaback!), Donors Choose, and is the ACLU Celebrity Ambassador for Racial Justice. He’s been nominated for multiple NAACP Image Awards, a GLAAD award, and has been featured on Conde Nast’s “Daring 25” list. He has hosted three critically acclaimed podcasts: Kamau Right Now!, Politically Re-Active, and Denzel Washington is The Greatest Actor of All Time Period. Kamau is the director of the critically acclaimed documentary Cultureshock: Chris Rock’s Bring the Pain, and is the director and producer of the four-time Emmy-nominated docuseries We Need to Talk About Cosby. Kamau tackles some of the nation's most longstanding complex issues in accessible and empowering talks for audiences of all kinds.
Lori started with one idea and turned it into a multi-million dollar international brand. She is well known as a self-made inventor, entrepreneur who created and marketed over 1,000 products, holds 120 US and international patents and has a 90% success rate for new items launched. She is recognized as one of the most prolific inventors of retail products of our time.
She’s a leading Shark on ABC’s 4x Emmy Award-winning entrepreneurial business show, Shark Tank, where she invests in companies and helps turn people’s dreams into a reality. Several of her investments are the highest success stories on Shark Tank to date, having the top 10 out of the top 20.
She’s well known for her impeccable negotiating skills and uncanny ability to know, identify and launch emerging brands.
At the heart of Lori’s own success is a combination of talent, hard work and perseverance. She is a strong role model for women of all ages and was honored with the Sherry Lansing 'Woman of the Year' Award and by the Paley Center as an Important Woman in Television.
Lori's international bestseller Invent It, Sell It, Bank It! is a step-by-step guide on how to turn an idea into a million-dollar reality.
Managing Director of JPMorgan Chase & Co., 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. Now the head of Consumer Banking at Chase for the NE Division, Kaalund oversees 1,000 branches with over 10,000 employees and over $350B in deposits and investments, equivalent to the 4th largest bank in the U.S. 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.
Design expert, Emmy-nominated TV host, and founder Bobby Berk illustrates the critical connections between design and life. Bobby is perhaps best known as the resident design expert and member of the Fab Five on Netflix’s Emmy-winning series Queer Eye, bringing change to peoples’ lives by teaching them that a happy home means a happy life. In addition to his Emmy-nominated work as a host on Queer Eye, Bobby served as the host of Netflix’s Blown Away: Christmas and was a semi-finalist on the sixth season of FOX’s The Masked Singer. With a ”superpower for transforming lives and living spaces” (Los Angeles Times), Bobby offers a memorable program for groups looking to empower their teams, uplift creativity, and build a welcoming company culture.
Bobby leads his eponymous multi-faceted brand, including comprehensive lifestyle destination BobbyBerk.com. His design firm has quickly become a leader in the home building industry, and in 2020, Architectural Digest crowned Bobby as one of the “most famous interior designers working today.” He brings a unique viewpoint to the design experience, with substantial experience across many facets of the trade. Bobby grew up quickly at a young age and faced many challenges before settling in New York in his 20s, where he worked his way up in companies like Bed Bath & Beyond and Restoration Hardware. His determination, specific creative eye, and love for people soon earned him leadership titles and led to him opening his own design practice. With his extensive background, Bobby has spoken across the globe on topics including retail, manufacturing, interior design and licensing, branding, and more.
Author, Activist, Founder of Together Rising, and Host of the We Can Do Hard Things Podcast
Glennon Doyle is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller UNTAMED, a Reese’s Book Club selection, which has sold over two million copies. She is also the author of GET UNTAMED: The Journal; the #1 New York Times bestseller LOVE WARRIOR, an Oprah’s Book Club selection; and CARRY ON, WARRIOR.
Glennon hosts the WE CAN DO HARD THINGS Podcast, which debuted at #1 in May 2021 and was named the #1 New Podcast of 2021 on Apple Podcasts.
An activist and “patron saint of female empowerment” (People), Glennon is the founder and president of Together Rising, an all-women-led nonprofit organization that has revolutionized grassroots philanthropy – raising over $40 million for women, families, and children in crisis.
BAFTA and MOBO award-winning hip-hop artist, bestselling author, and social entrepreneur Akala is the co-founder of The Hip-hop Shakespeare Company. Akala is the author of the Sunday Times bestseller, Natives: Race & Class in the Ruins of Empire, which was shortlisted for the James Tait Black Prize, The Jhalak Prize, The Bread and Roses Award, and long-listed for the Orwell Prize for Political Writing, which has sold over 450K copies worldwide. Immovable Limited, a creative publishing hub co-founded by Akala and his manager Chanelle Newman, produced The Ruins of Empires for BBC Two and Akala’s Odyssey for BBC Four. Akala has gained a reputation as one of the most dynamic and articulate talents in the UK and internationally.
With an extensive global touring history, Akala has appeared at numerous festivals both in the UK and internationally, and has led innovative projects in the arts, education and music across South East Asia, Africa, India, Australia and New Zealand. Akala has also appeared on NPR, PBS, MTV, BET, Channel 4, ITV, Sky Arts, and the BBC promoting his music, poetry and speaking on wide-ranging subjects from music, race, youth engagement, British/African-Caribbean culture and the arts. His writing has been featured in The Guardian, Huffington Post, GQ, and The Independent, to name a few. Akala has been awarded honorary Doctorates by Oxford Brookes University, the University of Brighton, and Brunel University and has been consistently included on the annual Powerlist of the 100 most influential Black British people in the UK. Akala has been sought-after for keynotes at Oxford Union, Google Zeitgest, Spotify, and a TEDx Talk, which has garnered over 1.6M views.
Amy Schumer is an Emmy-winning and Golden Globe-nominated standup comedian, actress, writer, producer and director. She is the creator, star, writer and executive producer of the award winning Inside Amy Schumer, the popular Comedy Central television series, which premiered in April 2013 to the network’s highest season premiere ratings of that year. Inside Amy Schumer won numerous awards including a Writers Guild Award for Best Comedy/Variety Sketch series, the first-ever Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Sketch Variety Series, and the prestigious Peabody Award. In 2019, she was nominated for an Emmy in the Outstanding Writing For A Variety Special category for her comedy special Amy Schumer Growing. Schumer’s latest one-hour Comedy special titled The Leather Special is currently streaming on Netflix.
Schumer’s first book, the #1 New York Times bestseller The Girl with The Lower Back Tattoo, is a refreshingly candid and uproariously funny collection of personal and observational essays.
Schumer is also known for her work in films, including Universal Pictures film Trainwreck, the mother-daughter comedy Snatched, which she also produced, and the drama Thank You For Your Service. In 2018, Schumer starred and produced the STX comedy, I Feel Pretty.
Often touring theaters and arenas all over the world, Schumer is the only female comic to headline Madison Square Garden. She is a proud founding member of Time’s Up. Her podcast, Amy Schumer Presents: 3 Girls, 1 Keith premiered its fifth season on Spotify this past March.
In July 2020, Schumer’s three-part documentary series, Expecting Amy premiered on HBO Max. The docuseries takes viewers behind-the-scenes as Amy battles through an extraordinarily difficult pregnancy, while documenting the formation of her latest comedy special. She also premiered the second season of her cooking show, Amy Schumer Learns to Cook, with her husband Chris Fischer who is an award-winning chef on the Food Network this past August. Up next: Life and Beth, a comedy series via Hulu which Schumer will star in, write, direct and executive produce, and Stephen Karam’s The Humans that Schumer will star in.
Tyler Perry is an established American actor, director, screenwriter, producer, playwright, and author. Born into poverty and raised in a household scarred by abuse, Tyler fought from a young age to find the strength, faith and perseverance that would later form the foundations of his work.
Tyler started his career writing plays, many of which later became the inspiration for his film projects and included the introduction of the now-legendary Madea character, played by Tyler himself. Tyler’s first feature film, Diary of a Mad Black Woman, debuted at number one nationwide. His ensuing films include Madea's Family Reunion, Daddy's Little Girls, Why Did I Get Married?, Meet The Browns, The Family That Preys, I Can Do Bad All by Myself, Why Did I Get Married Too?, For Colored Girls, Madea's Big, Happy Family, Good Deeds, Madea's Witness Protection, The Single Mom’s Club, Boo! and Boo! 2: A Madea Halloween, A Madea Family Funeral, Gone Girl, Vice and more.
With the historical official opening of Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Perry is the first African American man to ever be at the helm of a major studio.
In conversation, Perry touches upon all of his experiences, ranging from his work in film and television to his activism on behalf of others and the journey it took for him to get where he is today.
Academy Award-Winning Actor Matthew McConaughey's impressive career has spanned 40 feature films that have grossed over $1 billion dollars. A Texas native heralded for his constant career reinvention, McConaughey is a dedicated philanthropist whose just keep livin' Foundation empowers high school students to lead active lives and make healthy choices for a better future.
A force of nature both onscreen and in business, McConaughey serves as creative director for Wild Turkey, has co-created his own bourbon called Longbranch, is part owner of Austin FC, and serves as the Minister of Culture/M.O.C for the University of Texas sports arena and Austin FC MLS Soccer Club.
In his New York Times #1 bestselling book, Greenlights, McConaughey writes what he calls a love letter to life. Greenlights takes readers on a journey of lessons he grappled with throughout his life reminding us to connect with grace, truth, and the beauty of being alive.
In engagements that are equal parts empowering and entertaining, McConaughey shares lessons from his life and career, the impact of his philanthropic efforts, and the importance of chasing your passion.
Academy Award-nominated writer and critically acclaimed actor and comedian Kumail Nanjiani is an incredible storyteller, prolific creative, and inspiring speaker. Notable film roles for the Hollywood powerhouse include the Disney+ Star Wars prequel Obi-Wan, Marvel’s The Eternals, The Lovebirds, and The Independent, among many others. Nanjiani is also known for his television work on the Emmy Award-winning Silicon Valley, Portlandia, Veep, and CBS All Access’ remake of The Twilight Zone, for which he received an Emmy nomination. He will serve as Executive Producer and play Chippendales Founder Somen “Steve” Banerjee in a limited series for Hulu called The Immigrant. Nanjiani and his wife Emily V. Gordon currently serve as executive producers on the Apple TV+ series Little America, which received nominations at the Independent Spirit Awards and BAFTA TV Awards. It was recently announced that he will star in and produce FX’s Homeland Elegies, based on the book by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Ayad Akhtar. In engaging moderated conversations, Nanjiani shares humorous and empowering insights about his experiences in Hollywood, the creative process, and more, making an impact with audiences of all kinds.
Nanjiani was named one of TIME’s “100 Most Influential People” in 2018, and for his profile Judd Apatow wrote: “Kumail is one of our most hilarious, unique stand-up comedians (…) We’re lucky to have Kumail. We need a thousand more.” Alongside his wife, he co-hosted the widely acclaimed podcast Staying In with Emily and Kumail, which GQ described as “consistently endearing, actually useful, and often hilarious,” and which ranked among several Top 10 Podcasts lists and received a People’s Choice Award nomination. Nanjiani starred in and co-wrote The Big Sick with his wife Emily Gordon, which received an Academy Award nomination, and won the Critic’s Choice Award for Best Comedy, and an Independent Spirit Award, among numerous other accolades. The Big Sick was chosen as one of AFI’s “Top Ten Films of the Year.” Next, Nanjiani and Gorden are set to write the feature adaptation of The Doubtful Guest, a 1957 illustrated short story by Edward Gorey. Nanjiani is a gifted speaker who brings levity and insight to moderated conversations that make a memorable impact on audiences of all kinds.
Sunny Hostin is a three-time Emmy Award-winning legal journalist, former federal prosecutor, New York Times bestselling author, and co-host of The View. In May 2021, Hostin released her debut novel, Summer on the Bluffs (William Morrow), which skyrocketed to #11 on The New York Times Bestseller List. The first book in her Summer trilogy is being adapted into a series as the first major project for Sunny Hostin Productions. In the fall of 2020, Hostin released her memoir, I Am These Truths: A Memoir of Identity, Justice, and Living Between Worlds, with HarperOne.
Hostin has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes Woman, Essence, Newsweek, The New York Post, Latina, and Ebony. A sought-after public speaker, she has delivered a TEDxTalk called “A Possibility Model” and spoken at and moderated panels for the U.C. Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, Corporate Counsel Women of Color, and the National Bar Association, and served as a witness at the Federal Judiciary’s Congressional Hearing for the Public’s Right of Access to the Courts. Hostin lives with her husband and two children in New York.
Lisa is the Executive Producer and host of This is Life on CNN, now its eighth season. For the show, Lisa has embedded with a notorious biker club and explored the medicinal use of psychedelics in psychotherapy. She is also the Executive Producer and Host of Take Out on HBOMax.
For five seasons prior, Lisa EP’d and hosted Our America on OWN. She was also a field correspondent for The Oprah Winfrey Show and contributor to ABC News' Nightline. For these shows she reported from dozens of countries; covering stories about gang rape in the Congo, bride burning in India and the Lord's Resistance Army in Uganda, among other issues that are too often ignored.
Lisa was the first female host of National Geographic’s flagship show Explorer which sent her to cover the phenomenon of female suicide bombing, the spread of the MS-13 gang—considered the world’s most dangerous gang, and the humanitarian crisis inside North Korea.
She got her start in journalism as a correspondent for Channel One News where she covered the civil war in Afghanistan at 21 years of age. She later went to become a co-host of ABC Daytime's hit show The View, which won its first daytime Emmy during her time at the show.
Lisa is the co-author of Mother, Sister, Daughter, Bride: Rituals of Womanhood, and Somewhere Inside: One Sister’s Captivity in North Korea and The Other’s Fight to Bring Her Home, which she penned with her sister Laura.
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.
Nick Kroll has established himself as one of today’s most sought-after creators, writers, producers, and actors in film and television. Nick co-created, writes, produces, and performs over 30 voices on the Emmy-Nominated Netflix animated series Big Mouth, which is based on his childhood. Nick's voice can also be heard on Human Resources which he co-created, writes and executive produces with the Big Mouth team. Nick’s newest project, History of the World Part II, the sequel to Mel Brooks classic 1981 film, that he stars in, produces and wrote will be on Hulu at the top of 2023.
Some of Nick’s most recent work is in New Line’s Don't Worry Darling, opposite Harry Styles and Florence Pugh for critically acclaimed director Olivia Wilde as well as his Netflix comedy special Little Big Boy now streaming on Netflix.
Nick recently wrapped up his stand-up comedy tour, Nick Kroll: Middle-Aged Boy, which played to sold-out theaters across the US, the UK, and Australia.
In 2017, Nick made his Broadway debut in Oh, Hello on Broadway which ran for 138 performances and received rave reviews. He starred as “Gil Faizon” opposite John Mulaney as “George St. Geegland,” the story of two elderly men from the Upper West Side of Manhattan. The show was filmed for a Netflix Original Comedy Special which is currently available for streaming. Kroll and Mulaney released the first season of their podcast, Oh, Hello: The P’dcast, in Spring 2020.
Kroll’s previous credits include Jeff Nichol’s critically acclaimed Loving, Operation Finale, Uncle Drew, Olympic Dreams alongside real-life Olympian, Alexi Pappa, Ross Katz’ Adult Beginners, for which Nick also served as a producer, Sophie Goodhart’s My Blind Brother, John Hamburg’s I Love You, Man, Shawn Levy’s Date Night, Nicholas Stollers’ Get Him to the Greek, Jay Roach’s Dinner With Schmucks, and Terrence Malick’s Knight of Cups. Some of Nick’s animated performance work includes Seth Rogen’s Sausage Party, MGM’s The Addams Family (“Uncle Fester” in 1 and 2), Illumination’s Sing (“Gunter”) and Secret Lives of Pets.
Nick was the creative Executive Producer on his sketch show, the Kroll Show, which ran for three seasons on Comedy Central. Kroll also starred as “Ruxin” in the hit FX show The League for a total of seven seasons.
Kate McKinnon won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series in 2016 and 2017 and has been nominated every year from 2014 to 2020 for her work on Saturday Night Live. In addition, she earned a Critics’ Choice Award for Best Actress in a Comedy Series in 2016.
McKinnon’s recent roles include Jay Roach’s Bombshell opposite Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Margot Robbie, Danny Boyle’s Beatles inspired romcom Yesterday, starring opposite Mila Kunis in the Lionsgate action-comedy The Spy Who Dumped Me, Paul Feig’s reboot of Ghostbusters, Rough Night opposite Scarlett Johansson, and Office Christmas Party with Jason Bateman and Jennifer Aniston. In addition, she has voiced roles in several animated projects, including Oscar-nominated Ferdinand, Angry Birds and Pixar’s Finding Dory. She has also voiced several TV series, including The Magic School Bus Rides Again for Netflix, The Simpsons and Family Guy. She was nominated for a 2017 Daytime Emmy for her work on the PBS animated series Nature Cat and can be heard as ‘Queen Mortuana’ in the Audible medieval fantasy-comedy series, Heads Will Roll, which she co-created.
Upcoming projects include the Fox Searchlight/Hulu limited series The Dropout, where she’ll be portraying Theranos founder, Elizabeth Holmes and playing Carole Baskin in the UCP limited series, Joe Exotic, based on the Wondery podcast and characters made popular on Netflix’s doc series, Tiger King for Comcast/Peacock.
John Mulaney is a two-time Emmy and WGA award-winning writer, actor, and comedian.
In 2018, he traveled the United States with sold out Kid Gorgeous tour, which was later released as a Netflix stand-up special and won the Emmy for Outstanding Writing in a Variety Special; In 2015, he released The Comeback Kid, also a Netflix original, which The AV Club called the “best hour of his career;” In 2012, his Comedy Central special New In Town had Ken Tucker of Entertainment Weekly hailing him as “one of the best stand-up comics alive.” Starting March 2022, he’ll be touring with his newest hour John Mulaney: From Scratch.
Solidifying himself as a fan favorite, John Mulaney has been invited to host Saturday Night Live five times. He began writing for SNL in 2008 and created memorable characters such as ‘Stefon’ with Bill Hader and appeared as a “Weekend Update” correspondent. He has written for IFC’s Documentary Now! and Netflix’s Big Mouth, on which he voices the character of Andrew. John will star in the new reboot of Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers on Disney Plus this Spring opposite Andy Samberg.
He’s also starred on Broadway in the runaway hit written and performed alongside Nick Kroll in Oh, Hello On Broadway. The duo have since release a Netflix special of the same name, as well as Oh, Hello: The P’dcast, based off their characters Gil Faizon and George St. Geegland.
In December 2019, the critically acclaimed and Emmy nominated musical variety special John Mulaney & The Sack Lunch Bunch debuted on Netflix. It was recently announced that festivities will continue with a pair of holiday themed Sack Lunch Bunch specials coming to Comedy Central in the near future.
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.
Robin Sharma is one of the world's premier speakers on Leadership and Personal Mastery, named one of the World's Top Leadership Gurus. As a presenter, Sharma has the rare ability to electrify an audience yet deliver uncommonly original and useful insights that lead to individuals doing their best work, teams providing superb results and organizations becoming unbeatable.
For nearly 20 years, many of the most well-known organizations on the planet, ranging from Nike, GE, Microsoft, FedEx, PwC, HP and Oracle to NASA, Yale University and YPO have chosen Robin Sharma for their most important events, when nothing less than a world-class speaker will do.
Sharma's books such as The Leader Who Had No Title have topped bestseller lists internationally and his social media posts reach over six hundred million people a year, making him a true global phenomenon for helping people do brilliant work, thrive amid change and realize their highest leadership capacities within the organization so that personal responsibility, productivity, ingenuity and mastery soars.
Sharma has been ranked as one of the Top 5 Leadership Gurus in the World in an independent survey of over 22,000 businesspeople and appears on platforms with other luminaries such as Richard Branson, Bill Clinton, Jack Welch and Shaquille O'Neill.
The first woman and openly gay coach to coach in a Super Bowl, former San Francisco 49ers Offensive Assistant Coach Katie Sowers paves the way for equality in the workplace. Coach Sowers is Defensive Coordinator and Director of Operations of the Ottawa University women’s flag football program and Ottawa’s Director of Athletic Strategic Initiatives. She is the Offensive and Defensive Scheme Advisor for the Ottawa Braves, coaching them to a national championship. She also coached a year with the Kansas City Chiefs under the Bill Walsh Diversity Fellowship.
Through hard work and dedication, Katie has found success in a male-dominated industry and is creating an environment that welcomes all types of people, no matter their race, gender or sexual orientation.
In her authentic talks, Katie encourages audiences to find their “why” and become an irreplaceable asset to their team. An inspiration to anyone afraid to pursue their passions, she shows how it’s possible to break down barriers and make dreams come true.
Renowned actress, humanitarian, and political activist Ashley Judd is heralded for her unforgettable performances and tireless advocacy work. From starring roles in box office hits and award-winning independent films, Judd’s films tell very personal stories that tap into larger issues, and she brings this gift for storytelling to all her speaking engagements. A voice for the often voiceless, she shines an illuminating light on the vulnerable and the at-risk. Judd has traveled the world with her international public health work, from maternal health to child survival, human rights to disease prevention and treatment. She has been working with NGO’s, grass roots organizations, governments, and supranational bodies since 2004, and detailed her experience in her New York Times bestselling book, All That Is Bitter and Sweet. For her sought-after speaking engagements, Judd regularly receives glowing praise such as: “Ashley Judd walked onto the Ford Hall Forum stage and hit it straight out of the park from her first word to her last. She is not only incredibly intelligent and a top-notch presenter, but also thoroughly knowledgeable and committed... It was clear that the audience found Judd completely captivating and a true inspiration.” (Ford Hall)
Judd was named one TIME’s “Persons of the Year” for her role as a silence-breaker and change-maker of the #MeToo movement, shifting the culture and conversation around sexual abuse and harassment. She 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, and is a widely-published op-ed author. 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)
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.
GUILLERMO DEL TORO
Guillermo del Toro is among the most creative and visionary artists of his generation, whose distinctive style is showcased through his work as a filmmaker, screenwriter, producer, and author.
Born in Guadalajara, Mexico, del Toro first gained worldwide recognition for the 1993 Mexican-American co-production, Cronos, a supernatural horror film, which he directed from his own screenplay, after beginning his career working as a special effects makeup artist.
His subsequent films include Mimic, The Devil’s Backbone, Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy II: The Golden Army, Pacific Rim, and Crimson Peak. He earned international acclaim as the director, writer, and producer of the 2006 aforementioned fantasy drama, Pan’s Labyrith. He was honored with an Oscar nomination for his original screenplay for the film, which won Academy Awards for Art Direction, Cinematography, and Makeup. In all, the film garnered more than 40 international awards and appeared on more than 35 critics’ lists of the year’s best films.
Guillermo wrote and directed The Shape of Water, which was nominated for 13 Academy Awards, and won 4, including Best Director and Best Picture. He also won a Golden Globe for Best Director and was nominated for Best Screenplay and Best Motion Picture-Drama for The Shape of Water. He also won a DGA, a Critics' Choice Movie Award, a BAFTA for Best Director, and a PGA for the film. Most recently del Toro signed a multi-year motion picture, television, and animation deal with Netflix after his incredible success with Trollhunters, 3below, and Wizards were released to critical acclaim.
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.
ALEXA VON TOBEL
Renowned serial entrepreneur, CEO and founder, New York Times bestselling author, and podcast host Alexa von Tobel, CFP leads conversations that resonate with the full entrepreneur experience – everything from nuts-and-bolts operations to the craft of company-building. Alexa is the Founder and Managing Partner of Inspired Capital – a $500M+ venture firm focused on the entrepreneurs of the future. Prior to Inspired Capital, she founded LearnVest with the goal of helping people make progress on their money. After raising nearly $75M in venture capital, LearnVest was acquired by Northwestern Mutual in one of the biggest fintech acquisitions of the decade. Following the acquisition, Alexa joined the management team of Northwestern Mutual as the company’s first-ever Chief Digital Officer, and later assumed the role of Chief Innovation Officer, through which she oversaw the venture arm. She is the New York Times bestselling author of Financially Fearless and Financially Forward, and hosts the weekly podcast Inc. Founders Project with Alexa von Tobel, which features conversations with the best founders across the country. In sought-after talks, Alexa shares accessible and actionable insights about personal finance, entrepreneurial strategy, leading-edge industries, and more.
Alexa has appeared on the cover of Forbes, been interviewed on NPR’s How I Built This, and has been featured in a wide variety of publications from The New York Times to Vogue. She is a member of the 2016 Class of Henry Crown Fellows and served as an inaugural member of President Obama’s Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship. Alexa has been honored with numerous recognitions including: Fortune’s "40 Under 40", Fortune's "Most Powerful Women," Forbes’ "30 Under 30", Inc. Magazine's "30 Under 30,” and was named World Economic Forum's Young Global Leader. From her expertise in navigating a recession while staying connected to customers, to leveraging investor strategy in the fintech and Web3 arenas, Alexa’s high-impact talks will resonate with audiences of all kinds.
Jonathan Neman is Co-Founder & Co-CEO of sweetgreen, the destination for simple, seasonal, healthy food. Jonathan and his co-founders, Nathaniel Ru and Nicolas Jammet, started sweetgreen in 2007, opening their first location in Georgetown, DC – just three months out of college. The brand’s strong food ethos, embrace of passion and purpose, and investment in local communities has enabled sweetgreen to grow into a national brand with more than 70 locations across the East Coast, Midwest and California.
Jonathan has been recognized as a key innovator in food and business, named to Fast Company’s “Most Creative People in Business,” Inc’s “30 Under 30,” Forbes’ “30 Under 30” and Food & Wine’s “40 Big Food Thinkers 40 and Under.” In 2016, sweetgreen was named one of Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Companies.”
Born and raised in Los Angeles, CA, Jonathan graduated from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, where he met Nathaniel and Nicolas.
Sophia Amoruso is a serial entrepreneur and New York Times Bestselling Author who has forged an unprecedented path in building iconic brands. Sophia has evolved from one of the most prominent figures in fashion to a cultural thought leader, inspiring a new generation of founders, professionals, freelancers, and creatives.
In 2017, Sophia founded Girlboss, a community for ambitious women. In 2019, at the 5th Girlboss Rally, which hosted 1800 attendees, she unveiled the new Girlboss.com, a digital professional network that Fast Company dubbed “The LinkedIn for Women.” Sophia also hosted Girlboss Radio, which garnered over 20 million downloads. In December 2019, it was announced that Girlboss had been acquired by Attention Capital.
Her 2014 New York Times Bestseller #GIRLBOSS, which chronicled her early life as well as her experience as the founder of fashion empire Nasty Gal, was adapted into a scripted TV series that premiered on Netflix in 2017 and was produced by Charlize Theron. Sophia has also authored two other books: Nasty Galaxy and the Girlboss Workbook. Her ebook, The Side Hustle Bible, is a guide to navigating the tricky world of professionalizing your side business.
Sophia made her mark when she founded Nasty Gal and bootstrapped it to $30 million on profitably, raising $60 million in venture capital and scaling the business to over $100 million in revenue. Sophia became a member of the CFDA in 2016.
Sophia has been featured on the cover of Forbes magazine and featured in the Fortune 40 under 40, Forbes 30 under 30, Inc. 30 under 30, Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business lists, named one of Forbes’ Richest Self-Made Women, and her podcast, Girlboss Radio with Sophia Amoruso, was named to Forbes' 21 Podcasts To Listen To in 2021 list.
Most recently Ricky Strauss served as President of Programming for Hulu and Disney + where he was responsible for all programmatic strategy for both platforms. Prior to that assignment, he was the President of Content & Marketing for Disney +. As Disney’s first president of Content & Marketing for Disney +, Ricky led the strategic content vision for the service, overseeing development of the service’s original programming slate, production partnerships and content acquisitions.
Working in collaboration with external production entities as well as content groups across The Walt Disney Company that developed and produced original content exclusively for the service (including The Walt Disney Studios, Walt Disney Television, Disney Digital Media, Pixar Animation, Marvel Entertainment, and Lucasfilm), Strauss had creative oversight and execution of the service’s portfolio of high-quality feature films, episodic series and short-form content. Additionally, Strauss was responsible for all facets of content marketing for the service.
Strauss previously served as president of marketing for The Walt Disney Studios, overseeing the Studios' global marketing strategy encompassing creative, media, digital, promotions, publicity, research and synergy across all distribution channels for motion pictures released under the Disney, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm banners. Blockbuster films that Disney delivered under Strauss' tenure include Star Wars: The Force Awakens, for which Strauss was named Marketer of the Year by Advertising Age; Rogue One: A Star Wars Story; Marvel's The Avengers, Captain America: Civil War, and Guardians of the Galaxy; Disney's The Jungle Book, Cinderella, Maleficent, and Beauty and the Beast; Walt Disney Animation Studios' Frozen, Zootopia, and Moana; and Disney•Pixar's Incredibles 2, Finding Dory and Inside Out.
A 30-year entertainment industry veteran, Strauss joined Disney in January 2012 after seven years as president of Participant Media, where he oversaw the company’s marketing, production, and acquisition for a broad range of socially relevant and commercially viable films, television programming and publishing efforts. Among the acclaimed films that Participant produced under Strauss’ tenure are the 2011 Academy Award®-winning blockbuster The Help, Contagion, Good Night and Good Luck, Syriana, The Kite Runner, The Visitor, the Academy Award®-winning documentaries An Inconvenient Truth, The Cove, Waiting for Superman, and PAGE ONE: Inside the New York Times.
Strauss now lends his considerable talents and experience to the board of directors of Binj.
Alli Webb is an N.Y. Times Bestselling Author, Canopy President and Co-Founder of Drybar, Squeeze and Becket + Quill.
After spending 15 years as a professional hair stylist, Webb left the hair industry in 2005 to start a family, but after being a stay-at-home mom for 5 years, Webb decided to find a way to continue pursuing the creative side of hairstyling at a new-mom pace. She began offering affordable in-home blowout services to her mommy friends, which quickly expanded into a mobile operation by 2009. In 2010, Webb opened the first Drybar in Brentwood, CA. 10 years later and over 150+ locations across the U.S., Webb’s Drybar has exploded into a nationally recognized and highly sought-after brand.
Webb diversified the Drybar brand, creating a line of products and tools sold at popular retailers such as Nordstrom, Sephora, and Ulta, recently selling this product division to Helen of Troy for $255 million. Webb has been on the cover of Inc Magazine’s “How I Did This” issue, named the “100 Most Creative People in Business” by Fast Company, featured on Fortune magazine’s “40 Under 40” list, Marie Claire’s “Most Fascinating Women” and recently Inc. magazine recognized her as one of “The 100 Women Building America’s Most Innovative and Ambitious Businesses.” Webb appeared on season 10 of ABC’s Emmy nominated hit show “Shark Tank” as a guest shark in 2019.
Staying true to her signature approach to beauty and self-care, Squeeze, follows suit in the affordable luxury space as innovative massage concept that lets you book and pay online - the latest extension of her expanding empire where she operates as an active angel investor, advisor and co-founder. Squeeze’s first location is in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Studio City with several other locations across the country set to open in the next year.
Most recently Webb joined the Canopy team as President. Canopy’s best in class humidifiers are making big waves in the beauty industry and building innovative beauty devices. Canopy's first product is the reimagined humidifier to focus on providing functional benefits for healthy skin, hair and scalp. In addition to being anti-mold, easy maintenance and design-led, Canopy has an innovative aroma diffuser built in, with a new aroma kit dropping every few months. Canopy will continue to bring new products to the beauty & wellness category that will elevate people's skincare routines.
Webb also joined forces with LA based jewelry designer Meredith Quill to build yet another new brand, now known as Becket + Quill. Both ladies share a passion for beautiful, affordable luxuries that don’t break the bank. By using precious metals where it matters most and complementing them with alternative materials that look gorgeous and maintain quality, Becket + Quill makes it easy to indulge and give a gift that lasts. It’s high end, not high spend.
In her informative, actionable and inspiring remarks, Webb shares insights into business innovation and tapping into the entrepreneurial spirit, creating a company culture and brand that lasts, and the challenges and opportunities in being a female entrepreneur.
Two-time New York Times bestselling author of Shut Up And Run and Strong Mama, Robin Arzón discovered her passion for athletics after healing from a traumatic experience through movement. She fearlessly left behind a successful law career to embark on new adventures in the health and wellness space, and has since reinvented herself into an avid ultra-marathoner and renowned fitness coach.
As Vice President of Fitness Programming and Head Instructor at Peloton, she believes that sweat transforms lives, and her story is living proof. She successfully partners with major lifestyle and fitness brands, using her powerful influence to connect directly with consumers through social media. In 2020, she was named one of the most influential people on Fortune Magazine’s "40 Under 40" list. Her life’s mission is to redefine, reform, and rethink possibility through movement.
Political analyst, Senior National Correspondent for CBS, and New York Times bestselling author John Dickerson is a veteran journalist and trusted voice to interpret current events. He is the host of CBS Primetime with John Dickerson. Previously, Dickerson was a correspondent for 60 Minutes, co-anchored CBS This Morning, anchored Face The Nation, and served as Chief Washington Correspondent for CBS News. He is currently the Chief Political Analyst for CBS News, a Senior National Correspondent, and a CBS Sunday Morning contributor. Dickerson started his career at TIME, covering economics, Congress, and the presidency, worked as Slate’s chief political correspondent, and is a contributing writer to The Atlantic. An expert and thoughtful interviewer, he co-hosts Slate’s Political Gabfest podcast and hosts the Whistlestop podcast. Dickerson is the author of On Her Trail, about his mother’s trailblazing work as CBS News’ first female correspondent, as well as the New York Times bestsellers Whistlestop: My Favorite Stories from Presidential Campaign History and The Hardest Job in the World: The American Presidency. Dickerson is an in-demand speaker for his insider insights about politics, the role of journalism in an increasingly partisan culture, and finding meaning through adversity.
Dickerson has moderated presidential debates, covered the last seven presidential campaigns, and delves into the skills needed to be a successful leader. He is the recipient of the Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on the Presidency and the David Broder Award for political reporting. Dickerson is highly sought after for keynotes and moderated Q&A sessions, covering a range of topics from Washington’s inner workings to practical takeaways for cultivating the attributes of impactful leadership.
Multiple award-winning national and international CNN senior correspondent Sara Sidner is renowned for exposing injustices and uncovering truth in the most extreme environments. In 2016, Sidner took on a beat which focused on social, racial, and political conflict across the U.S. and in 2020, she helped lead CNN’s coverage in Minneapolis, Minnesota after the police killing of George Floyd. She has shaped the national dialogue with her work covering the first known coronavirus outbreak, the Charlottesville White Nationalist Rally as well as the trial of the Neo-Nazi who killed anti-racism protestor Heather Heyer, and the protests in Ferguson, Missouri following the police murder of the unarmed Black teenager Michael Brown. Previously, Sidner worked for CNN as an international correspondent based in India, then Jerusalem, and later Abu Dhabi. She hosts The Big Picture for CNN+, an in-depth look at the most important and interesting story of the day. Sidner has received rave reviews as a keynote speaker and moderator from groups such as the Alliance of Women Philanthropists, NAACP, the 92nd Street Y, the Arnolt Center for Investigative Journalism, and many others.
Sidner has received numerous honors including a regional Emmy, an Edward R. Murrow Award, and multiple Gracie Awards from the Women in Media Foundation. She has reported from over twenty countries around the world, from the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks to the fall of Tripoli. She was part of the team that won a Peabody Award for CNN’s coverage of the Arab Spring, and shared the Achievement of the Year Award from SKY Women in Film & Television in the U.K. for her work. As an insightful moderator, inspiring keynote speaker, and renowned investigative journalist, Sidner offers her compelling and candid perspective as a journalist, woman, and citizen on the most intense and important news stories of our time.
Lara Spencer is an Emmy-winning anchor and reporter for Good Morning America, and has been a journalist with ABC news since 2000. She is also the creator, host and Executive Producer of HGTV’s Emmy® Award-winning “Flea Market Flip” as well as “Everything But the House."
Spencer has written two New York Times Bestselling books: I Brake for Yard Sales, and Flea Market Fabulous. In addition to her career, Spencer is the mother of two children and very active at her Alma Mater Penn State University where she was an All-American platform diver. She is also a dedicated advocate for pet adoption and has 3 rescue dogs of her own.
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)
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.
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.
Peggy Noonan is a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for the Wall Street Journal and bestselling author of nine books on American politics, history and culture. Her Wall Street Journal column, Declarations, has run each week since 2000, garnering millions of readers. In 2017 when she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for distinguished commentary, the prize committee cited her, "For rising to the moment with beautifully rendered columns that connected readers to the shared virtues of Americans during one of the nation's most divisive political campaigns." Forbes Magazine has also hailed her column as “principled, perceptive, persuasive, and patriotic.”
A current political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, Noonan also served as a Special Assistant and speechwriter to President Ronald Reagan. In the Reagan White House, she worked alongside the President on speeches that span the 40th anniversary of D-Day, the Challenger disaster, and his Farewell Address.
Peggy Noonan provides unique and thoughtful analysis of our nation and its leaders. Her speeches are filled with humorous anecdotes and political insight, making them as entertaining as they are thought-provoking.
Olympic gold medalist and the most successful female skier of all time Lindsey Vonn also a New York Times bestselling author, sports broadcaster, and mental health advocate. Following a stellar career as an alpine skier, Vonn pivoted to lend her knowledge of the sport to NBC’s coverage of the Beijing Olympics, appearing on the Today Show, in the studio, and as an alpine analyst sharing her many insights. She is the New York Times bestselling author of several books, including Strong is the New Beautiful and her memoir, Rise: My Story. An elite athlete, Vonn is a clear example of how leadership and determination lead to winning results. She is the Founder of the Lindsey Vonn Foundation, an organization established to empower young girls, and launched "Lindsey Vonn's Virtual Career Day" which brings together young scholarship winners from the Lindsey Vonn Foundation with an expert in their intended field. Vonn speaks authentically about her career and her challenges, sharing insights and takeaways about resilience, risk-taking, and overcoming adversity that empower audiences of all kinds.
Troy Aikman is one of the most recognizable and accomplished personalities in sports and beyond, as a Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback, Emmy nominated broadcaster, philanthropist, and serial entrepreneur. Aikman is the new voice of ESPN's Monday Night Football alongside Joe Buck. Together with Buck, Aikman is part of the second-longest broadcast tandem in NFL history — his voice has become synonymous with the game. Aikman harnesses his tenacity, drive, and likeability from the field and brings it to every project and partnership off the field.
An empowering and insightful speaker, Aikman engages audiences with conversations about how to identify (and maximize) the individual assets of members on any team, how to use unexpected change and setbacks to grow, what he learned from the struggles and triumphs of his football career, and more.
Pro Football Hall of Famer, Deion “Prime Time" Sanders is now officially “Coach Prime”, Head Coach of Jackson State University Tiger's Football program. An eight-time Pro Bowler, and two-time Super Bowl champion, Sanders played 14 NFL seasons for the Atlanta Falcons, San Francisco 49ers, Dallas Cowboys, Washington Redskins and Baltimore Ravens. During the Fall 2021 football season Coach Prime was named SWAC Coach of the Year, the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year, and lead the JSU Tigers to a SWAC Championship all in just his first year serving as Head Coach. Sanders was named one of the "25 Most Intriguing College Football Coaches of 2022" by Sports Illustrated, and was featured in a profile titled "How Deion Sanders is Fueling the Rise of HBCU Football." He is the only person in professional sports history to play in the World Series and the Super Bowl.
Since retiring from professional sports, Sanders became an analyst for CBS Sports, and NFL Network, and has produced and/or appeared in a variety of television shows, including Tiny House Nation, Grandfathered, Moesha, Running Wild with Bear Grylls, Lip Sync Battle, The League, 30 For 30: Deion's Double Play, Deion's Family Playbook, and Coach Prime - a docuseries which follows Deion and the JSU Football program.
Mikey Day recently completed his sixth season as a cast member on Saturday Night Live after joining the show as a writer for the 2013-14 season.
During his first season as a cast member, Day gained recognition for his wildly popular “Haunted Elevator (ft. David S. Pumpkins)” sketch with Tom Hanks as well as his Donald Trump Jr. impression.
Day is the host of Netflix’s hit baking contest series Is It Cake?, which will return for a second season.
Day was a member of the Groundlings comedy troupe in Los Angeles and a cast member on Nick Cannon’s MTV comedy series Wild ‘N Out for seven seasons. He was also a head writer on Cartoon Network’s Incredible Crew, co-head writer and cast member on NBC’s Maya & Marty and co-writer for the 2016 comedy Brother Nature. Alongside SNL writer Streeter Seidell, Day wrote Home Sweet Home Alone. The duo is currently writing the Disney reboots of Inspector Gadget and Space Camp, as well as The Rugrats Movie for Nickelodeon/Paramount.
Day's film credits include Brittany Runs a Marathon, the Will Packer-produced comedy Little, opposite Issa Rae, the Adam Sandler film Hubie Halloween, and most recently Black Adam starring The Rock. He is currently filming the Jerry Seinfeld film Unfrosted for Netflix.
Comedian, actor, and musician Melissa Villaseñor makes a major impact on audiences with her uncanny impressions, personal stories, and hilarious insights. Best known for her groundbreaking work as the first-ever Latina cast member on Saturday Night Live, she got her start blowing audiences away with her expertise in comedic impressions as a semifinalist on America’s Got Talent. Villaseñor has since appeared on Comedians in Cars Drinking Coffee, Barry, and Crashing, and voiced characters for Toy Story 4 and Wreck It Ralph 2. She tours nationally, headlining clubs and theaters, and recently appeared on Netflix’s The Standups. The star is an exemplary storyteller, and she uses her comedic gifts to imitate celebrities and create characters, captivating crowds and leaving them doubled over with laughter in keynotes tailored to each audience.
Villaseñor has appeared on NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, the PBS series Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates Jr., and hosts the podcast Laughing with Myself, on which she “discusses silly things and maybe sings and definitely does all the voices to make herself laugh alone.” She released her pop album Dreamer in 2019, and her upcoming workbook Whoops I’m Awesome, filled with personal stories, activities, prompts, and original art to help you embrace your most awesome self, is being published by Chronicle Books Fall of 2022. With her multifaceted talents and immense charisma, Villasenor is sure to make your next event a memorable one.
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.
Actress, producer, and director Cheryl Hines is a two-time Emmy nominee for her role as Cheryl David on HBO's Golden Globe Award-winning series Curb Your Enthusiasm.
Heralded for her humorous and passionate delivery in speaking engagements, Hines inspires audiences with conversations about finding success in a career that mainly consists of rejection, upholding “dangerous optimism” throughout her life, and shares how to reframe the mindset to take life’s twists and turns and view them as learning and turning points in order to achieve your wildest dreams. Additionally, she gives actionable insights into attacking the problems we face head on in order to move forward and how to let go of the things that don’t contribute to your happiness.
Actor, author, and podcaster Jenna Fischer is best known for playing Pam Beesly on the acclaimed TV series The Office, for which she received an Emmy nomination for Best Supporting Actress and two SAG Awards for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble Comedy. Fischer and The Office cast-mate and real-life best friend, Angela Kinsley, host the wildly popular podcast Office Ladies, which won iHeart Radio’s Podcast of the Year award in 2021. The pair co-authored the instant #1 New York Times bestseller Office BFFs: Tales from The Office From Two People Who Were There. In memorable and highly engaging moderated conversations, Fischer shares her journey to becoming part of one of the most beloved television shows, behind-the-scenes memories from the set of The Office, and inspiration for audiences of all kinds.
After wrapping The Office, Fischer went on to star in the Off-Broadway play Reasons to Be Happy, as well as the world premiere of Steve Martin's newest play Meteor Shower for a record-breaking run at the Old Globe Theatre. Her film credits include Brad's Status (opposite Ben Stiller), Clint Eastwood’s The 15:17 to Paris (with Michael Dougals), The Giant Mechanical Man (which she also produced), the Farrelly Brothers’ Hall Pass; Solitary Man, Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story from producer Judd Apatow, The Promotion, Are You Here; and Blades of Glory opposite Will Ferrell. Other TV credits include starring in ABC’s Splitting Up Together, FOX’s The Grinder, and Comedy Central’s Drunk History, among others. Fischer’s first book, The Actor’s Life, was published in 2018. She received the Screen Actors Guild Emerging Actor Award at the St. Louis Film Festival in 2004. With her characteristic warmth and humor, Jenna offers an authentic perspective on creativity, grit, and following your dreams that resonates across industries.
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.
Famed actor, comedian, musician, and Hollywood producer Craig Robinson is known for fan-favorite roles on some of the most beloved TV comedies. Before he decided to pursue a career in comedy full-time, Robinson was a K-8 teacher in the Chicago Public School System. While earning his master’s in education from St. Xavier University, Craig fell in love with acting and comedy, and joined the prestigious Second City Theatre. He is best known for his portrayal of Darryl Philbin on The Office, Doug “The Pontiac Bandit” Judy on Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and for starring in his very own sitcom, Mr. Robinson on NBC. Robinson hosted the reality show The Masked Dancer from 2020-21, and currently is the star and Executive Producer of the Peacock series Killing It. With his unlimited wit and sense of comedy, Robinson engages audiences with programs including a live musical show, moderated conversation, and can also host unforgettable events.
Robinson first made his mark in the comedy circuit at the 1998 Montreal “Just For Laughs” Festival, and now headlines venues and festivals across the country. He does both solo acts as well as full-band sets with his band, The Nasty Delicious, bringing musical hilarity to every event. He has starred in such movies as Knocked Up, This Is The End, Hot Tub Time Machine, Dolemite Is My Name!, Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon, and voicing characters in Shrek Forever After and The Bad Guys, among many others, and earned a nomination for an Independent Spirit Award for his performance in Morris from America.
The first Miss USA to be crowned while serving in the U.S. military, human rights advocate Dr. Deshauna Barber is an award-winning international speaker with a bold approach to inspiring and encouraging her audience. Deshauna is a STEM graduate who worked as an IT Analyst for the U.S. Government and was a logistics commander in the U.S. Army Reserve. She is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Service Women's Action Network, the nation's leading nonprofit organization advocating on behalf of all servicewomen and women veterans in the country. Deshauna is a sought-after motivational keynote speaker for many groups including Fortune 500 companies like Google, Verizon Media, and Coca-Cola, among others, offering impactful lessons on diversity and inclusion, women and youth empowerment, mental health awareness, and more.
As Miss USA, Dr. Barber advocated for our men and women in uniform by encouraging our government to provide additional support for soldiers who have Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). During her Army Reserve commitment, Captain Barber served her country for over 11 years and worked as a cadet instructor at Howard University's Bison Battalion. She has a Diversity and Inclusion Certification from Cornell University, and holds a Doctorate in Organizational Leadership from Norwich University. Deshauna has appeared on The Steve Harvey Show, The Rachael Ray Show, Fox, and Friends, The Chelsea Show, Good Morning Washington, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Daily Show, Live with Kelly, Good Morning America and in Glamour and Diversity Magazine, among many others.
Dr. Barber has made it her life goal to encourage, inspire and strengthen the people around her, and her engagements regularly receive rave reviews such as: "Deshauna is phenomenal!... She is moving, inspiring and powerful. She is also very approachable and personable..." (NAJA); and "We are all still flying high from today’s keynote. I couldn’t be more impressed! I’ve seen thousands of keynotes and that was one of the best ever!" (National Association for the Education of Young Children)
Two-Time Olympic Gold Medalist and Two-Time World Cup Champion Carli Lloyd is a former soccer legend who played for the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team for 17 years (2005-2021). Carli was awarded the most prestigious and highest award in soccer: FIFA World Player of the Year (2015 and 2016); only one other American player has received the award twice.
She was best known for her clutch performances in the biggest moments, but it was Lloyd’s consistent production over the course of her career, her extreme dedication to the game and her relentless pursuit of self-improvement that perhaps best exemplifies her contribution to U.S. and world soccer history.
Carli is a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist (2008 and 2012) and a Bronze Medalist (2020). She holds the unique distinction of scoring in every Olympic medal match, including the 2008 gold medal match against Brazil, a brace in the 2012 gold medal game against Japan, and a brace in the 2020 Bronze medal game against Australia. Carli holds the record for All-time leading scorer in USWNT Olympic history with 10 goals. She is the only American player to score in four different Olympics (2008, 2012, 2016, 2020).
She also competed in four Women’s World Cup tournaments (2007, 2011, 2015, and 2019), and is a two-time World Cup Champion (2015 and 2019). She became the first player in FIFA Women’s World Cup to Score a Hat Trick in a World Cup Final (2015). She was awarded the Golden Ball (MVP) and Silver boot at the 2015 World Cup. Carli played in more World Cup (25) and Olympic matches (22) than any other USWNT player. She scored 134 goals, in 316 Caps (games played), which ranks 3rd All-time on the international stage for men and women.
Carli is a role model who empowers and inspires others to be Better Every Day and to never give up on achieving their goals. Carli also runs her own CL10 Soccer Clinics for ages 8-18 years of age for both boys and girls. The bestselling author of When Nobody Was Watching, Carli empowers audiences to find their own success with lessons from both in and beyond the world of sports.
BILLIE JEAN KING
As one of the 20th century's most respected and influential people, Billie Jean King has long been a champion for social justice and equality. She has created new inroads for both genders in and out of sports during her legendary career and she continues to make her mark today, primarily through the Billie Jean King Leadership Initiative, which is dedicated to promoting equality and inclusion in the workplace.
King, who won an astounding 39 Grand Slam tennis titles during her career, blazed trails for women everywhere in 1970 when she became one of nine players to break away from the tennis establishment and accept a one dollar contract to compete in the newly created Virginia Slims Series. The revolt led to the birth of women's pro tennis and the formation of the Women's Tennis Association. King went on to star in one of the greatest moments in sports history when she defeated Bobby Riggs in the famous match dubbed “The Battle of the Sexes,” which was immortalized on the silver screen in the film of the same name. Her memoir, ALL IN: An Autobiography, published by Knopf in August 2021, is garnering rave reviews.
Named one of the "100 Most Important Americans of the 20th Century" by Life, King is a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award, and France's Légion d'honneur. King moves audiences with empowering lessons on leadership, inclusivity, equality, and finding your purpose.
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.
Award-winning All-Star NHL Defenseman, philanthropist, and entrepreneur P.K. Subban is a dynamic athlete whose impact extends far beyond the sport. As a hockey star, Subban has received the coveted James Norris Memorial Trophy, was named to the NHL All-Star team in 2013 and 2015, and won a gold medal representing Canada at the 2014 Sochi Olympics. Beyond the rink, Subban continues to enhance his roster of projects, founding his media company PeeK Productions and teaming up with NBC Sports to produce P.K. Subban’s All-Star Special and an original docuseries, The P.K. Project. He is a gifted host and moderator, bringing levity and insights to all his various projects, including NHL Hat Trick Trivia, NHL's video game matchup, as well as his YouTube channel. Subban is executive producing the docuseries Black Life: A Canadian History, which will explore 400 years of the Black experience in Canada. Subban is a powerful voice in conversations about social justice, equity, and inclusion, entrepreneurship, and how to make a difference in work and life.
Subban has been profiled by Sports Illustrated in a piece titled 'P.K. Subban Wants to Grow the Game of Hockey. Here's How He Plans to Do It.' and featured in The Daily Beast, Forbes, on NPR’s Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me!, and more. He founded the P.K. Subban Foundation, which aims to create positive change by building community in support of children and families affected by illness. Through this charitable initiative, he pledged $10M to the Montreal Children’s Hospital, to date the largest donation made by any Canadian athlete. In his keynote for the dedication, Subban shared: “In life, I believe you are not defined by what you accomplish, but by what you do for others.” He also launched his Blueline Buddies program, which connects communities, builds bridges and fosters conversations, and won the NHL's King Clancy Trophy for his off-ice charitable and community efforts. Subban is an in-demand speaker and his insights, star power, and valued-driven vision make an impact at events with audiences of all kinds.
Yale University historian of Nazism and communism Timothy Snyder was described by the New York Times as a "public intellectual unafraid to make bold connections between the past and present." His book On Tyranny was #1 on the New York Times Bestseller List more than two years after its publication, thanks to Snyder’s unique ability to distill practical guidance for action from the darkest chapters of history. It has been used around the world in defense of democracy.
His newest book Our Malady is a short, urgent examination of healthcare as a human right which begins from Snyder's recent and nearly fatal illness. From his hospital bed, he rethinks the connections between the health we lack and the freedom we need. In a time of authoritarianism and pandemic, the timeliness of this book cannot be overstated. Both a cri de coeur and a data-driven argument, it shows the way towards an America that is both healthy and free.
Snyder is also well known internationally for the prize-winning Bloodlands, which explains the most murderous events of the time of Hitler and Stalin in Europe. In his book Black Earth, Snyder explains the Jewish Holocaust in ways that help us to better understand the basic predicaments of our own time. In The Road to Unfreedom, Snyder charts the path from democracy to tyranny (and back). All five of these books were or are New York Times bestsellers.
A masterful presenter, Snyder is sought out by groups around the world to understand the direct line between big ideas of the past and our lives today.
Columnist, New York Times bestselling author, and CNN commentator Charles Blow fearlessly tackles today’s most pressing issues with depth, nuance, and tremendous insight. Now an Op-Ed columnist at The New York Times, Blow previously served as the paper’s Graphics Director, leading The Times to significant awards. He has also worked as the Art Director of National Geographic Magazine and for The Detroit News. Blow is the New York Times bestselling author of Fire Shut Up in My Bones, which won a Lambda Literary Award, the Sperber Prize, and appeared on numerous “best of” lists. A memoir, the book was called “searing and unforgettable” by People Magazine and was adapted into a critically-acclaimed opera with a groundbreaking run at The Metropolitan Opera – the first performance of an opera there by a Black composer. His second book, The Devil You Know: A Black Power Manifesto, draws on both his personal experience and observations of society to call for an end to systemic racism. Blow is a prolific and insightful commentator on politics, public opinion, and social justice, often challenging those in power with clarity and candor.
Heralded for his forward-thinking coverage of American politics and society, as well as his skill in graphic design to create powerful narratives with compelling visuals, Blow is also an in-demand speaker and gifted moderator. He has appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, SalonTV, CBS News, and regularly as a commentator on CNN, and has been featured in The Washington Post, The Ringer, Oprah Daily, and more about his highly acclaimed work. An advocate for social justice and racial equity, Blow speaks about income inequality, xenophobia, and mental health, generating impactful conversations that resonate with audiences of all kinds.
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.
Elizabeth Nyamayaro is an award-winning humanitarian and United Nations Special Advisor for the World Food Programme. Born in Zimbabwe, Elizabeth has worked at the forefront of global development for over two decades, improving the lives of underserved populations, and has been instrumental in fighting global inequalities, advancing social justice, and challenging the status quo to accelerate women’s rights around the world – through her leadership roles at the World Bank, World Health Organization, UNAIDS, and UN Women. Elizabeth is the mastermind behind HeForShe, a United Nations global solidarity movement for gender equality that took the world by storm, generating more than 1.2B conversations on social media and galvanizing men in every single country in the world in just five days. With her TED Talk garnering more than 1M views in its first weeks alone, Elizabeth is a prominent thought-leader and has engaged at global forums such as World Economic Forum in Davos, Cannes Film Festival, Skoll World Forum, Harvard, Oxford, the British Parliament, among others.
Named by Female Lead in 2021 as one of "67 Women Changing the World," and 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. She wrote a memoir about her life and experiences in, I Am A Girl From Africa.
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.
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.
Renowned communications expert, political strategist, and writer Jennifer Palmieri has been on the frontlines of national politics for more than two decades. Author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Dear Madam President and She Proclaims: Our Declaration of Independence from a Man’s World, Palmieri served as White House Communications Director for President Obama and head of Communications for the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign. With her unparalleled level of knowledge and experience in the West Wing, she is sought-after for her shrewd insights about crisis management, voter mindset, and the media environment impacting current events.
One of the most accomplished communications advisors in politics today, Palmieri is the co-host of Showtime’s Emmy-nominated political docu-series The Circus, pulling back the curtain with insightful analysis and a unique perspective on the role gender plays in electoral politics and the media. She is a contributing editor to Vanity Fair and hosted the podcast Just Something About Her. After losing her sister to early-onset Alzheimer’s in 2017, she has written and spoken about her family’s experience in an effort to aid other families facing the same disease. In moderated conversations and engaging point-counterpoint debates, Palmieri has been in demand for events with groups like Starbucks, Google Zeitgeist in London, the Center for American Progress, the Bloomberg MAKERS Women’s History Month event, and more.
Renowned speechwriter and messaging expert Cody Keenan rose from a campaign intern in Chicago to become Chief Speechwriter at the White House and Barack Obama’s post-presidential collaborator. Together, Keenan and Obama's efforts resulted in some of the most unforgettable addresses of our time. From commencement addresses to Selma to Obama’s Farewell Address, they redefined the essence of the American creed and charted an inspiring, optimistic course for a new generation’s active citizenship. Their collaborations have been compared to the works of Abraham Lincoln, described by CNN as “the ‘I Have a Dream’ speech for the 21st century,” and categorized even by prominent Republicans as “speeches every child should read in school.” Keenan continues to serve as Obama’s collaborator and post-presidential speechwriter. He is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir Grace: President Obama and Ten Days in the Battle for America.
A sought-after expert on politics and current affairs, Keenan is now a partner at the leading speechwriting firm Fenway Strategies, and teaches a popular course on political speechwriting to undergraduates at his alma mater Northwestern University. He was described by NBC News as the ‘Springsteen’ of Obama’s White House, and included on British GQ’s list of the “35 Coolest Men Under 38 (And a Half).” He’s appeared in the History Channel’s nine-part special The Obama Years, on Showtime’s The Circus, in the Smithsonian Channel’s The Obama Years: The Power of Words, and elsewhere. Keenan’s commencement address at New York University’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service was highlighted by both The New York Times and The Washington Post as one of the year’s best, and he continues to be a sought-after motivational speaker for events with audiences of all kinds. With his humor and unparalleled insights, Kennan regularly receives rave reviews for speaking engagements, such as: “Cody stole the show at our global corporate affairs gathering. He brought his warmth, richness of experience, and incredible sense of humor together to give us the guidance we needed to cultivate authentic storytelling at Hilton. I was not surprised to see that he rated the top speaker in our program.” (Hilton)
Ben Rhodes is the author of the New York Times bestsellers After the Fall: Being American in the World We've Made and The World As It Is; a contributor for NBC News, MSNBC and Crooked Media; the co-chair of National Security Action; and an advisor to former President Barack Obama. From 2009-2017, Rhodes served as a Deputy National Security Advisor to President Obama. In that capacity, he participated in nearly all of President Obama’s key decisions, and oversaw the President’s national security communications, speechwriting, public diplomacy and global engagement programming. He also led the secret negotiations with the Cuban government which resulted in the effort to normalize relations between the United States and Cuba, and supported the negotiations to conclude the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Iran. Prior to joining the Administration, he was a Senior Speechwriter and foreign policy advisor to the Obama campaign. From 2002-2007, he worked for former Congressman Lee Hamilton, supporting his work on the 9/11 Commission and Iraq Study Group.
A Sleep Scientist at Google, Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology at UC Berkeley, founder and director of the school's Center for Human Sleep Science, and now bringing his science directly to the public as host of The Matt Walker Podcast, Dr. Matthew Walker is a celebrated sleep expert. The author of the New York Times bestseller Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams, hailed as an "important and fascinating book" by Bill Gates, Dr. Walker explains how we can harness sleep to dramatic effects including: to improve learning, mood and energy levels; regulate hormones; prevent cancer, Alzheimer’s, obesity, and diabetes; slow the effects of aging; increase longevity; enhance the education and lifespan of our children; and boost the efficiency, success, and productivity of our businesses. Previously, Dr. Walker was a Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and served as Chief Scientist and scientific counsel for numerous technology companies, including Hello and Fitbit.
Dedicated to the communication of science, Dr. Walker has shed light on his groundbreaking research everywhere from Google to TED, where his talk "Sleep is your superpower" has over 3 million views. He discusses the impact of sleep on human health and disease in a way that is digestible for any audience and provides tangible takeaways on wellness and peak performance. Dr. Walker translates his work for any industry and audience, and also offers workshops of various kinds to business leaders, technology firms, and medical and healthcare professionals.
David Kessler is the world’s foremost expert on grief and loss. His experience with thousands of people on the edge of life and death has taught him the secrets to living a happy and fulfilled life, even after life’s tragedies. He is the author of six books, including the new bestselling book, Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief. His books and work have received praise by so many, including Saint (Mother) Teresa.
David’s personal experience as a child witnessing a mass shooting while his mother was dying in a hospital helped him begin his journey. For most of his life, David has taught physicians, nurses, counselors, police, and first responders about the end of life, trauma, and grief. He facilitates talks, workshops and retreats for those experiencing grief. However, despite his vast knowledge on grief, his life was turned upside down by the sudden death of his twenty-one-year-old son. It inspired him to write his newest book, Finding Meaning
David’s volunteer work includes being an LAPD Specialist Reserve for traumatic events as well as having served on the Red Cross’s disaster services team. He is the founder of www.grief.com which has over five million visits yearly from 167 countries.
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 twenty-nine 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)
Tom Colicchio spent his childhood immersed in food, cooking with his mother and grandmother. It was his father, however, who suggested that he make a career of it. Tom taught himself to cook with the help of Jacques Pépin’s legendary illustrated manuals on French cooking, La Technique and La Méthode. At age 17, Tom made his kitchen debut in his native town of Elizabeth, New Jersey, at Evelyn’s Seafood Restaurant.
Colicchio then cooked at prominent New York restaurants including The Quilted Giraffe, Gotham Bar & Grill, Rakel, and Mondrian. During his tenure as executive chef of Mondrian, Food & Wine magazine selected him as one of the top 10 “Best New Chefs” in the U.S. and The New York Times awarded the restaurant three stars.
In July 1994, Tom and his business partner Danny Meyer opened Gramercy Tavern in Manhattan’s Gramercy Park neighborhood. Tom’s cooking at Gramercy Tavern won consistent recognition, garnering three stars from Ruth Reichl of The New York Times and earning him The James Beard Foundation’s 2000 “Best Chef-New York” Award.
In 2001, Tom opened Craft one block south of Gramercy Tavern. Soon after, The New York Times awarded Craft with three stars, deeming the restaurant “a vision of food heaven.” Craft was awarded The James Beard Foundation Award for “Best New Restaurant” in 2002. That same year, Tom received The Bon Appétit American Food and Entertaining Award for “Chef of the Year.” The New York Times revisited Craft in September 2011, ten years after its debut, upholding its three stars and stating that the restaurant is “as magical and delicious as it was when it opened.”
Crafted Hospitality, currently includes New York’s Craft, Riverpark, and Temple Court; Craft Los Angeles; Las Vegas’ Heritage Steak and Craftsteak; and Small Batch in Garden City, NY.
Tom has published three cookbooks to date. The first, Think Like a Chef (Clarkson Potter/Publishers, 2000), won The James Beard Foundation “KitchenAid” Cookbook Award in May 2001. Tom’s second cookbook, Craft of Cooking, was released by Clarkson Potter/Publishers in 2003. A sandwich book inspired by ‘wichcraft, was released by Clarkson Potter/Publishers in March 2009.
Since 2006, Tom has been applying his experience and expertise to cable television as the head judge on Bravo’s hit reality cooking series Top Chef. The Emmy-winning show is currently in its 18th season.
In May of 2010, Colicchio was awarded The James Beard Foundation’s coveted “Outstanding Chef” award, the culmination of his 30 years of hard work in the restaurant industry.
Tom appears in and served as Executive Producer on A Place at the Table, Participant Media’s documentary about food and security in America. It was produced and directed by Kristi Jacobson and Colicchio’s wife Lori Silverbush and premiered at the 2012 Sundace Film Film Festival. Magnolia Pictures released the film on March 1, 2013.
Tom and his restaurants give back to the community by supporting charities including Children of Bellevue, City Harvest, Alex’s Lemonade Foundation, United Way of New York, and Food Bank for New York City. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife, Lori Silverbush, and three sons.
Emmy-nominated Padma Lakshmi is internationally known as a food expert, model, actress and bestselling author, and activist. Lakshmi serves as host and an executive producer of Bravo’s Emmy award-winning Top Chef, which is currently in its 16th season. She is also the host and producer of the acclaimed Hulu show Taste the Nation, winner of the 2021 Critics Choice Award, and which explores the rich and diverse food culture of various immigrant groups- ultimately revealing stories that challenge notions of identity, belonging, and what it means to be American.
Lakshmi established herself as a food expert early in her career, having hosted two successful cooking shows and writing the bestselling Easy Exotic. Lakshmi followed this success with the publication of her second cookbook, Tangy, Tart, Hot & Sweet, and her food memoir, the New York Times bestselling Love, Loss and What We Ate.
In addition to her work as a TV host and producer and writer, Lakshmi is a savvy businesswoman, having had multiple companies of her own, including her home décor line, The Padma Collection, and Padma’s Easy Exotic, a collection of frozen rices, lentils and other culinary products.
An ambassador for the ACLU, focusing on women’s reproductive health and immigration issues, Lakshmi is also co-founder of the Endometriosis Foundation of America.
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.
Two-time Emmy Award-winning host, actor, author, producer, and social activist Mario Lopez is a consummate entertainer across mediums, using his platform to promote social equality, health for the whole family, and inclusivity in Hollywood. As the beloved host of NBC’s Access Hollywood, Lopez has won two Daytime Emmy Awards, and he also hosts iHeartRadio’s nationwide radio show “Countdown with Mario Lopez”, as well as the iHeartMedia podcasts On with Mario Lopez and The 3 Knockout Rule. Lopez has written bestselling books on fitness and inspiration, a memoir Just Between Us and several children’s books, engaging audiences with personal anecdotes, inspirational values of health and perseverance, and devotion to family. His easy humor, captivating storytelling, and winning congeniality make him an outstanding choice as host or emcee for any event.
A dedicated partner of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Lopez was recently named the Alumni Ambassador of Fitness for the organization’s BE GREAT campaign. Through philanthropy and as a producer, he advocates for today’s young people and for inclusive positive images, particularly for Latinx communities. He co-created and executive produced the Netflix series The Expanding Universe of Ashley Garcia, and appeared in and produced the Saved by the Bell reboot for NBC’s Peacock, reprising the role that made him a household name in the hit 90’s teen series. He hosts Triller TV’s Fight Club, and has also appeared NBC’s This is Us, Jane the Virgin on The CW, and Disney’s Elena of Avalor with his daughter Gia, to name a few. Lopez has starred in numerous Lifetime holiday films including the upcoming Holiday in Santa Fe.
A New York Times bestselling author, peace activist, and former CIA Clandestine Service Officer Amaryllis Fox has stopped at nothing to improve the world we live in.
From interviewing Suu Kyi for the BBC while working with the Burmese democracy movement – which briefly landed her in prison – to spending time in Dili, East Timor, working to settle IDPs in the world’s newest country, Fox has spent years doing hands-on work to drastically enhance global communities. As a political and terrorism analyst for South East Asia, and then a Clandestine Service officer overseas, Fox was deployed as a spy under non-official cover--the most difficult and coveted job in the field. Her intensive training included everything from how to get out of flexicuffs while locked in the trunk of a car, to how to withstand torture, to the best ways to commit suicide in case of captivity. Her remarkable experiences spending a decade hunting the world’s most dangerous terrorists in sixteen counties-- all while getting married and giving birth to her daughter-- are chronicled in her New York Times bestselling memoir Life Undercover: Coming of Age in the CIA.
The book has been translated into 23 languages and was chosen by Time Magazine, the Washington Post, the New York Times and People Magazine as a notable book of the year. It is being adapted into a television series by Apple, featuring Brie Larson. She is the host of Netflix's hit documentary series The Business of Drugs, which ranked #1 in the United States on Netflix the week of its release. Her viral video about listening to our enemies has been viewed over 130 million times worldwide. Previously, she hosted History Channel’s American Ripper and starred in Freak Power, a feature film about Hunter S. Thompson's campaign for Sheriff of Aspen in 1970. Amaryllis has offered guest commentary on global events everywhere from FOX News to BBC.
Sought-out to speak at TED, Fox's remarks are equal parts informative and inspiring. She brings the conflict resolution, communication, and teambuilding techniques and strategies she learned during a career in counterterrorism to audiences worldwide, and shares invaluable insights on human nature and how to apply these findings to daily life, vastly enriching our relationships and unlocking the power to communicate, collaborate, and together achieve common goals.
GIADA DE LAURENTIIS
Multiple Emmy Award-winning television personality, restaurateur, New York Times bestselling author, and globally revered celebrity chef Giada De Laurentis is a culinary powerhouse celebrated for her unique, personable charm.
De Laurentis is renowned for her multiple shows on the Food Network, including Everyday Italian, Giada at Home, Giada’s Weekend Getaways, Giada In Paradise, and Giada In Italy, and as a judge on Winner Cake All. She is also a NBC Today Show contributor, and behind top restaurants such as GIADA and Pronto by Giada in Las Vegas, and GDL Italian in Baltimore.
The author of nine New York Times bestselling cookbooks and a children's book series, Giada launched the lifestyle and e-commerce platform, Giadzy.com, which showcases new recipes, entertaining and travel tips, and videos, along with a range of kitchen products.
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)
David Chang is the chef and founder of Momofuku. Called one of “the most influential people of the 21st century” by Esquire, David has appeared on numerous television shows, and was the first chef to be featured on the Emmy-award winning PBS television show, The Mind of a Chef. His cookbook Momofuku and memoir Eat A Peach are New York Times bestsellers. Along with Academy Award-winning Director Morgan Neville, David is a creative force behind Ugly Delicious, an eight-part Netflix original documentary series about foods we love and the stories that shape them. He is also the creator and host of Hulu's docu-series The Next Thing You Eat, and The Dave Chang Show podcast featuring conversations with thought-provoking guests.
The youngest U.S. Olympian to compete in track and field since 1972, Sydney McLaughlin set a junior world record in the 400m hurdles at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials. She also won the silver medal at the 2019 World Championships in the 400m hurdles, and is the current NCAA record-holder in the 400m hurdles. She broke her own World Record in the women's 400 meter hurdles to win the gold in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. Named the Gatorade National Girls Athlete of the Year, two years in a row, McLaughlin gave a moving—and headline-making—speech about how she overcame obstacles to become one of the top young track and field athletes in America.
Having left the University of Kentucky to pursue a professional career, McLaughlin is also a face of New Balance.
Known for one of her personal mottos, "the only limit is myself," McLaughlin offers empowering and inspiring remarks on overcoming every obstacle, perseverance, learning and evolving from your mistakes, staying open to new experiences, and the pursuit of success.
Victor Cruz is a Super Bowl champion. As an undrafted free agent, Cruz impressively played his way onto the Giants’ 53-man regular season roster. He finished his first season with a single-season franchise record for receiving yards and was named second-team All-Pro by the Associated Press.
Cruz co-hosts E!’s morning news show, Pop of the Morning, a mix of celebrity news, interviews and discussions around pop culture moments.
An active philanthropist, Cruz established the Victor Cruz Foundation to promote positive change in the lives of youth by providing innovative educational programs that equip students with skill sets to prepare them for a successful future. The foundation is especially committed to continued research and partnerships with STEM programs. In partnership with the Boys & Girls Club of America, his foundation launched and implemented the “Science in Sports” program. This curriculum provides students with a hands approach to STEM curriculum while simultaneously teaching them the science behind football as it relates to the NFL.
In engaging conversations, Cruz discusses how motivation and perseverance drove his career; the impact and goals of his foundation; the importance of exposing youth to STEM programs; and more.
STEPHEN A. SMITH
Legendary sportscaster, veteran journalist, actor, author, and podcaster Stephen A. Smith offers powerful and humorous lessons from the world of sports – and beyond – on overcoming adversity, leadership, building a personal brand, and ethics. After getting his start in journalism working for the New York Daily News and the Philadelphia Inquirer, Smith transitioned to TV and landed at ESPN in 2003. Known for his memorable catchphrases and thought-provoking analysis, Smith is a host on ESPN’s First Take, an NBA analyst and insider on SportsCenter, and hosts his own weekly NBA show, SportsCenter with Stephen A. Smith. Smith will release his highly anticipated 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)
Buddy Valastro is the Cake Boss, a bestselling author and the celebrity baker of several hit tv shows. Known for his affability and family-first message, Buddy is an audience favorite for inspiring messages and light-hearted baking demos. He loves to connect with audiences and is always willing to customize his demos, leaving audiences with a personalized and memorable experience.
It's safe to say that baking is in Buddy Valastro's blood. He learned the ins and outs of his family's bakery while growing up there and working alongside his father, Buddy Sr., at Carlo's Bakery. He's grown that business, part of the fabric of Hoboken, into a national phenomenon specializing in authentic Italian pastries as well as over-the-top cakes you've got to see to believe. The cakes are showcased on Buddy's many shows, including Cake Boss, the tv show that introduced Buddy to the world. Despite his international success, Buddy remains committed to his father’s handed down teachings. “I found my dream job and passion when I was 11 and I still have it. I love what I do and I am good at it, which makes me incredibly lucky and blessed.” So, how does a man who’s already achieved so much continue to find inspiration? Simple. “I can see cakes in anything. I just open my eyes.”
Robert Irvine is the host of Restaurant: Impossible on Food Network, which is now filming its 16th season. He is the author of four cookbooks including his most recent, Family Table By Robert Irvine.
A veteran of the British Royal Navy, Robert learned to cook for a huge number of people under intense pressure, an experience that served him well when he moved to United States to run restaurants and later take Food Network by storm on his first show, Dinner: Impossible.
In addition to being a world-class chef, business leader, and fitness authority, he is also a philanthropist focusing on veterans’ issues. He created the Robert Irvine Foundation to support wounded servicemen and their families and he frequently tours with the USO, visiting our troops around the globe. For his efforts, he has been named an Honorary Chief Petty Officer of the US Navy.
Michael Symon cooks with soul, having grown up in a Greek and Sicilian family. The Cleveland native shares his exuberant, approachable cooking style and infectious laugh with viewers as an Iron Chef on Food Network and as a co-host on ABC’s The Chew.
Michael is the chef and owner of more than 18 restaurants, including Lola and Mabel’s BBQ in downtown Cleveland, locals of B-Spot Burgers throughout the Midwest, and Angeline at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City. He is also the author of five cookbooks, including the New York Times bestseller Fix it with Food, a guide to managing inflammation and pain with 125+ recipes proving that you don’t need to sacrifice delicious food to eat healthfully and be pain free.
Dolly Parton is the most honored female country performer of all-time and, according to Nielsen, is country music’s #1 most marketable, recognizable and beloved artist in the world. Additionally, Parton’s coveted Q Score ranking—which measures public appeal and branding affinity—lists the superstar among the highest-ranked celebrities across the entire entertainment industry.
An international icon, Parton has made countless contributions to the music industry. Achieving 25 RIAA certified gold, platinum and multi-platinum awards, she has had 25 songs reach number 1 on the Billboard Country charts, a record for a female artist. She has 41 career top 10 country albums and 110 career charted singles. She has won 7 Grammy Awards, 10 Country Music Association Awards, 5 Academy of Country Music Awards, 3 American Music Awards and is one of only five female artists to win the Country Music Association’s Entertainer of the Year Award.
In 1999, Parton was inducted as a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, and in 2001 she was inducted into the National Academy of Popular Music Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2001. Broadcast Music, Inc. honored Dolly with their Icon Award in 2003, and in 2004, the U.S. Library of Congress presented her with their Living Legend Award for her contribution to the cultural heritage of the United States. This was followed in 2005 with the National Medal of Arts, the highest honor given by the U.S. government for excellence in the arts. In 2006 Dolly was honored by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for her lifetime of contributions to the arts. In 2007, Dolly was named the recipient of the prestigious Johnny Mercer Award from the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame. She has her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Parton opened her own theme park, Dollywood, in 1986. Dollywood would go on to become the state’s number one tourist attraction. In 1988, Dolly founded a group of dinner attractions called Dolly Parton’s Stampede. In 2001, she built Dollywood’s Splash Country, which is Tennessee’s largest water park.
Dolly Parton’s entertainment businesses attract 4.5 million visitors annually and employ more than 3,000 people. In 1988, she began the Dollywood Foundation. Currently the foundation funds the Dolly Parton Imagination Library which gives every preschool child a book each month from the time he or she is born until the child reaches kindergarten. With the help of local sponsors, this program has expanded to over 800 communities in 41 states. In 2016, Parton announced her My People Fund, to help victims of the wildfires in Sevier County, Tennessee. In 2017, she created the Mountain Tough organization to provide continued support to fire victims, and pledged over $3 million to this cause.
Multi-media entertainment mogul Reba McEntire has become a household name through a successful career that spans across music, television, film, theater and retail. The Country Music Hall of Fame and Hollywood Bowl member has won 16 ACM Awards, 15 American Music Awards, 9 People’s Choice Awards, 6 CMA Awards, 3 GRAMMY® Awards and a GMA Dove Award. The Grand Ole Opry member has also received the Andrea Bocelli Foundation Humanitarian Award, Leadership Music Dale Franklin Award, the Music Biz Chairman’s Award, the National Artistic Achievement Award from the U.S. Congress and membership into the Horatio Alger Association, in addition to other philanthropic and leadership honors. In 2018, the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame presented Reba with the inaugural Career Maker Award for her significant influence on the songwriting careers of Nashville songwriters. She also joined an elite group of creators as one of the 2018 Kennedy Center Honors recipients for her lifetime artistic achievements alongside Cher, Philip Glass, Wayne Shorter and the creators of Hamilton – writer and actor Lin-Manuel Miranda, director Thomas Kail, choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler and music director Alex Lacamoire.
In 2017, she marked her thirteenth summit as SING IT NOW: SONGS OF FAITH & HOPE topped both the Billboard Country and Christian/Gospel charts, bolstering Reba’s successful record of 35 No. 1 singles and over 56 million albums sold worldwide. The double-disc collection earned Reba her first GMA Dove Award for Bluegrass/Country/Roots Album of the Year and third GRAMMY® Award for Best Roots Gospel Album. On April 5, 2019, she released her new album STRONGER THAN THE TRUTH on Big Machine Records. Reba co-produced the 12-track project with Buddy Cannon in Nashville.
The Oklahoma native is an acclaimed actress with 11 movie credits to her name, a lead role on Broadway in Irving Berlin’s Annie Get Your Gun and starred in the six-season television sitcom Reba. In 2005, she partnered with Dillard’s to launch her own lifestyle brand, and most recently launched the REBA by Justin™ western footwear collection at select retailers nationwide. She was named the first female and musician to portray KFC’s iconic founder Colonel Harland Sanders in the brand’s celebrity colonel campaign. Throughout 2019, she will bring that same bubbly energy and penchant for excellence to Las Vegas as part of the longest-running Country residency in The Colosseum’s history alongside her superstar pals for REBA, BROOKS & DUNN: Together In Vegas at Caesars.
A multi-Grammy Award-winning, platinum selling artist, Lecrae has evolved into a New York Times best-selling author, entrepreneur, speaker, thought leader, philanthropist, and Co-Owner/President of Reach Records. Referring to himself as a ‘social anthropologist,’ Lecrae seeks social change through authentic connections and calls for redemption through positive change. This year, he’ll also release his second book, I Am Restored: How I Lost My Religion, But Found My Faith, a follow-up to his New York Times best-seller, Unashamed.
A catalyst for restoration in faith, music, and popular culture, Lecrae's viral TED Talk helped the public see beyond his music and focus on his message: what we say and do in hip-hop - and in the world - matters, so we should be thoughtful, careful, generous and respectful. In countless interviews, in his music and in his writings, Lecrae continues the message in hopes of restoring faith. “We can change the narrative, empower the disenfranchised, and close wealth gaps and can restore the dignity stripped from us, but we can’t do that by separating ourselves. We need to connect with each other and lean on God to restore our sense of purpose and worth,” shares Lecrae.
To date, he has sold more than 3 million copies and been nominated for 5 Grammy Awards including a win for Best Gospel Album, 15 Dove Awards, one Billboard Music Award, and received both a Soul Train Music Award and BET Hip-Hop Nomination. From his 2017 album, All Things Work Together, his single “I’ll Find You” ft. Tori Kelly, is now certified platinum by the RIAA (sold over 1 million copies) and “Blessings” ft Ty Dolla $ign is now Gold (sold over 500k).
YouTube star, digital creator, filmmaker sensation, and multi-media leader Casey Neistat has redefined brand content on the internet, setting a new standard for the way brands interact with digital creators. He has worked with major brands including J. Crew, Mercedes-Benz, Samsung, and Nike, and pioneered the ‘daily vlog’ format in the early days of YouTube. Neistat, who got his start working as a dishwasher, is a self-taught filmmaker who attained commercial success with HBO’s The Neistat Brothers and the indie film Daddy Long Legs. Boasting over 14M subscribers, he has parlayed his success as a digital creator into advertising, tech, and startup ventures. He created a video-sharing app called Beme, which was acquired by CNN for $25M, and pivoted to launch 368, a collaboration workspace. Heralded for his motto, “Do What You Can’t,” Neistat empowers audiences to think outside the box and redefine their creative potential.
Neistat was named one of Fortunes’ “Creator 25,” a list honoring those charting unique territory in the world of social media, and was a Fellow of the prestigious New Frontier Artist Residency program at MIT. He has launched a filmmaking masterclass with online course platform Monthly, and his documentary Under the Influence premiered at SXSW to critical acclaim. Neistat is an investor in Angel City FC as well as the bitcoin-rewards startup Lolli, and is an advisor for Ponto, which provides financial infrastructure for Web3. In keynotes that are as engaging and humorous as they are informative, Neistat shares actionable lessons on innovation and creativity, as well as cutting-edge insight into how to level-up your organization’s brand and content strategy.
With award-winning cartoons covering a gamut of topics from global politics, to pop culture, to gender equality, New Yorker cartoonist Liza Donnelly proves that pen and ink are a powerful catalyst for engaging conversation about political and social issues. Donnelly's TEDTalk on how humor and art can empower has racked up over 1,200,000 views, and her work appears in The New York Times, Forbes, Medium, Politico, Huffington Post, Daily Beast, Salon, CNN, The Nation, National Lampoon, Glamour, Good Housekeeping, and most recently as Contributing Cartoonist on CBS This Morning. Donnelly's "Live Drawing"—where equipped with nothing more than an iPad and her quick hand she is able to bring high-profile moments to life—has allowed audiences to engage with major events including the Women's March on Washington, The Olympics, The Oscars, the 2017 Presidential Inauguration, and more.
Donnelly is also a Cultural Envoy for the US State Department and a member of the United Nations initiative "Cartooning for Peace," which has brought her to the global stage to speak about freedom of speech, world peace, women's rights and other world issues. She is the author of 15 books, numerous essays and her spot-on ability to observe the world with a thought-provoking and humorous lens is resonating with audiences around the world!
World renowned chef and restaurateur, notable TV personality, podcaster, and bestselling author Geoffrey Zakarian has been sharing his sophisticated taste and signature style for three decades. An accomplished chef, host, and culinary consultant, Zakarian has presided over some of the country’s top kitchens, traveling the world for new inspiration to marry with his classical training and techniques in a lifelong effort to deliver paramount hospitality experiences. Outside of the kitchen, he is known as a fan-favorite judge on Food Network’s Chopped, a winner of The Next Iron Chef: Super Chefs, and host of the Emmy-nominated talk show The Kitchen, Top 5 Restaurants, Cooks vs. Cons, and his new show Big Restaurant Bet. Whether it’s an inspiring moderated conversation, a world-class cooking demo, or skilled moderating, Zakarian makes a memorable impact with audiences of all kinds.
Zakarian has been featured in The New York Times, Entrepreneur, and many more, and has appeared on ABC’s The Chew and The Rachael Ray Show, CBS’s The Dish, and NBC’s Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, TODAY, and Late Night with Seth Meyers. He is the author of My Perfect Pantry, Geoffrey Zakarian's Town/Country, among others, and he hosts the acclaimed Four Courses with Geoffrey Zakarian podcast. Zakarian is a dedicated philanthropist, and serves as the Chairman of the City Harvest Food Council, a food rescue organization dedicated to fighting hunger in New York City.
Gail Simmons is a trained culinary expert, food writer, and dynamic television personality. Since the show’s inception in 2006, she has lent her expertise as a permanent judge on BRAVO’s Emmy and James Beard Award-winning series Top Chef, now in its 18th successful season. She is also the host of its newest spin-off, Top Chef Amateurs, set to premiere in 2021, as well as the host of Iron Chef Canada. She was previously head critic on Top Chef Masters and host of Top Chef Just Desserts, Bravo’s pastry-focused spinoff of the Top Chef franchise. From 2004 to 2019, Gail served as special projects director at FOOD & WINE.
In February 2012, she published her first book, Talking With My Mouth Full: My Life as a Professional Eater. Her first cookbook, Bringing It Home: Favorite Recipes from a Life of Adventurous Eating, was released in October 2017. Nominated for an IACP award for best general cookbook, it features recipes inspired by Gail’s world travels—all made with accessible ingredients and with smart, simple techniques for successful family meals and easy entertaining.
Gail is a weekly contributor to Dr. Oz’s "The Dish on Oz" and frequently appears on daytime television shows such as TODAY on NBC, Rachael Ray and The Talk, and was named the #1 Reality TV Judge in America by The New York Post. Gail is an Entrepreneur in Residence at Babson College and co-founder of Bumble Pie Productions.
Iron Chef Alex Guarnaschelli is a world-renowned chef and one of Food Network’s top stars. Guarnaschelli first appeared on the network in 2006 and has since been part of hundreds of episodes of programming on the network, including as a judge on Chopped, co-host of The Kitchen, host of Supermarket Stakeout, and star of Alex vs America. As a competitor, she beat nine rival chefs to win The Next Iron Chef: Redemption, joining the ranks of Kitchen Stadium Iron Chefs. She also hosts the award-winning digital series, Fix Me a Plate, and is the author of the cookbooks Old-School Comfort Food: The Way I Learned to Cook (2013), The Home Cook: Recipes to Know by Heart (2017), and most recently Cook with Me: 150 Recipes for the Home Cook (2020).
Guarnaschelli attended La Varenne Culinary School in Burgundy, France and began her international culinary journey training in Paris and New York with some of the world’s most acclaimed chefs including Guy Savoy and Daniel Boulud. In 2003, Guarnaschelli was given the opportunity to expand her repertoire and become the executive chef at Butter in New York City, where she has since created her own eclectic American and green-market inspired menu. In sought-after keynotes and live demonstrations, Guarnaschelli provides lessons from a life steeped in culinary education and adventure, her own travels, and experiences as a mother and in world-renowned kitchens.
Guarnaschelli is regularty a guest on national television shows such as Today, Good Morning America and Live with Kelly & Ryan and has also been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and Food & Wine. A popular mainstay on social media and Head of Twitter’s Food Council, Guarnaschelli also premiered her one-woman live comedy show Busting My Chops at Caroline’s on Broadway. A passionate and dynamic speaker, Guarnaschelli enjoys serving as an emcee and provides engaging cooking demonstrations to the delight of audiences.
Chef, restaurateur, and Emmy Award-winning television host Guy Fieri is one of the world’s most recognizable and influential culinary stars. With a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, he is best known as the Mayor of Flavortown and the face of Food Network favorites Diners, Drive Ins & Dives, Guy’s Grocery Games, and Tournament of Champions. His thriving business empire has grown to include over 80 restaurants worldwide and a 175-location food delivery service, Flavortown Kitchen, Hunt & Ryde vineyard, Santo tequila, and an upcoming cigar brand.
Guy began his culinary career selling soft pretzels from a three-wheeled bicycle at the age of 10 and washing dishes in local restaurants in his early teens. By 16, he’d earned enough money to spend a year in France as part of a high school exchange program. It was there that he found a deep appreciation for international cuisine. After graduating from the University of Nevada Las Vegas, he gained industry experience as a restaurant manager before pursuing his entrepreneurial dream of opening his own restaurant. In 2006, Guy won the television competition Next Food Network Star and has been a nonstop presence on the network ever since.
Guy’s enthusiasm for food is matched only by his passion for helping others. In 2011, he started the Guy Fieri Foundation which supports culinary education for middle school and high school students, provides financial resources to aspiring chefs and feeds frontline workers, first responders and military personnel in the field. In 2021, the foundation awarded $20,000 in scholarships and served over 21,000 meals. In a true example of leadership, Guy partnered with the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation during the pandemic and helped raise more than $21.5 million in aid for over 43,000 unemployed restaurant workers.
He currently lives in Northern California with his wife and two sons.
Comedian, actor, and author Colin Quinn is one of the most beloved voices in comedy, offering commentary on society as a whole and how to communicate across divisions. Quinn is known for MTV’s Remote Control, his tenure as a cast member on Saturday Night Live, and hosting Comedy Central’s late-night panel show Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn. He has been lauded for his comedic one-man shows, including Irish Wake, Unconstitutional, and Colin Quinn: Long Story Short, which garnered a Drama Desk Award nomination, and Red State Blue State, which played to rave reviews and was aired on CNN as the network’s first comedy special. Quinn’s solo performances have been filmed as comedy specials for HBO and Netflix, exploring his life growing up in New York City and contemporary politics from both sides of the political spectrum. His latest book Overstated: A Coast-to-Coast Roast of the 50 States questions the state of the union with a blend of practicality and optimism. Quinn shares his nuanced point of view on the chronic tendencies and imperfections of human behaviors, society, and cultures with comedic precision that both the high and low brow can relate to.
CAROLINE RANDALL WILLIAMS
Award-winning poet, author, performance artist, and scholar Caroline Randall Williams is a change-maker and a catalyst. She rose to the international stage with her powerful New York Times piece You Want a Confederate Monument? My Body Is a Confederate Monument, a reckoning in the movement to dismantle systemic racism. A multi-genre writer, Caroline co-authored the NAACP Image Award-winning cookbook Soul Food Love with her mother, as well as The Diary of B.B. Bright, Possible Prince, which won the Harlem Book Fair’s Phyllis Wheatley Prize. Her debut collection of poetry, Lucy Negro, Redux, has been turned into a critically-acclaimed ballet by the Nashville Ballet, and she is currently working on her first non-fiction book, under the working title Body Politik, which will examine the stories written on and by the body, through the lens of her lived experience. Caroline will host Disney+’s Hungry for Answers, a new docuseries and revelatory cooking show focused on Black food history in America produced by Viola Davis. A highly sought-after speaker, Caroline speaks to the places where art, business, and scholarship intersect, moving people closer to their best lives and corporations closer to their ideal identities.
Caroline has been recognized by Southern Living as “One of 50 People Changing the South,” and she was named to The Root’s list of “The Most Influential African Americans in 2020.” She is the Writer in Residence in Vanderbilt University’s Medicine, Health, and Society Department, where she has been a Cave Canem Fellow and a Global Voices Fellow. Caroline has appeared on MSNBC’s Morning Joe and The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell, Dr. Oz, among many others, and her writing has been featured in The Iowa Review, The Massachusetts Review, Essence, The New York Times, and more. Her recipes can also be found in the feature cookbook for Cherry Bombe, as well as Southern Living Magazine. Caroline regularly receives rave reviews of her speaking engagements, such as: “After you hear Caroline your life will never be the same! And if it is the same… you weren’t listening!” (Tennessee Film, Entertainment and Music Commission)
Mayim Bialik starred on the hit CBS comedy, The Big Bang Theory as Amy Farrah Fowler, for which she received two Critics Choice Awards, four Emmy Award nominations, and a SAG Award nomination. From playing the young version of Bette Midler’s character in Beaches to her turn as Blossom Russo in the iconic 90’s sitcom Blossom, Bialik has appeared in numerous beloved roles throughout her dynamic acting career. She currently stars as the lead in the Fox comedy show Call Me Kat, and is a co-executive producer on the show.
Bialik puts her Neuroscience degree to use in her podcast, Mayim Bialik's Breakdown, where she breaks down the topic of mental health, especially to bust myths and misunderstandings. After a successful guest hosting turn at Jeopardy!, Bialik hosts Jeopardy! spinoff series for broadcast, cable, and streaming platforms.
An acclaimed author, Bialik has written two #1 New York Times best sellers, Girling Up: How to Be Strong, Smart and Spectacular, and the recently released Boying Up: How to Be Brave, Bold and Brilliant. She has also written a parenting book, Beyond the Sling, and a cookbook, Mayim’s Vegan Table. Bialik has recently dedicated her skills as a writer, actress, neuroscientist and mother to driving the lifestyle website GrokNation.com, which she started in 2015.
Following the end of Blossom, Bialik left acting for twelve years to earn a BS in Neuroscience from UCLA in 2000 with a minor in Hebrew & Jewish Studies. She went on to complete her PhD in Neuroscience, also at UCLA, and then completed her doctorate in the fall of 2007, which examined the role of oxytocin and vasopressin in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder in adolescents with Prader-Willi syndrome. While at UCLA, Bialik was a dedicated student leader in UCLA Hillel, including conducting and writing music for UCLA’s Jewish acapella group.
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.
A World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and one of the “50 Leading Female Futurists” in the world, April Rinne is equal parts global authority, advocate, ally and adventurer. She sees trends early, understands their potential, and helps others do the same. Focus areas include the digital economy, sharing economy, future of work, travel and tourism, and public policy.
April helps individuals and organizations navigate a world in flux. Even before 2020, the pace of change was mind-boggling. Then a pandemic hit and accelerated many shifts already underway, ushering in a "new-now-next-never normal" that humanity has yet to fully grasp. Yet the future does not see a return to stability or certainty. Quite the opposite: around every corner, there is more change. So how do we move forward?
In her keynotes, presentations and book Flux: 8 Superpowers for Thriving in Constant Change, April guides the way. April has been weaving a story about how to thrive amid flux for as long as she can remember, drawing on her history as a futurist, advisor, global development executive, microfinance lawyer, investor, mental health advocate, certified yoga teacher, globetrotter (100+ countries) and insatiable handstander. She brings global perspective and extraordinary cross-cultural understanding to how we see, think about, struggle with and ultimately forge positive relationships with change.
April also harnesses her very personal experiences with flux, including the death of both of her parents in a car accident when she was 20. She shares how she learned to let go of her own future, buck convention, create a "portfolio career" and find meaning – and how you can do so, too.
Adam Devine is best known for his role as “Adam DeMamp” on Comedy Central’s hit comedy Workaholics. Already a growing success, the show ended its summer season with an average of 2 million viewers per show, establishing itself as the highest rated series in its timeslot among Men 18-24 and Men 18-34. His sketch-comedy group, Mail Order Comedy, has headlined sold-out comedy shows all over the nation. Devine acts, writes and produces all of Mail Order Comedy’s material, including Workaholics.
Devine starred in the hit Universal comedy, Pitch Perfect , which follows the competitive world of collegiate a cappella and also stars Anna Kendrick, Brittany Snow and Rebel Wilson. Devine also performed in the New Faces show at the Montreal Comedy Festival, shortly after which, he was cast opposite Jon Heder and Diane Keaton in the Warner Bros. movie Mamma’s Boy. He appeared on Comedy Central’s Live at Gotham and on TBS’ Frank TV and ABC’s Better Off Ted. Additionally, Devine was a recurring guest-star on ABC’s Samantha Who? He can currently be seen on the hit ABC series Modern Family.
Schwartz can be seen alongside Thomas Middleditch in their Netflix specials, Middleditch & Schwartz. The specials are based on their completely improvised two person show that they took on tour through early 2020. During this tour, the two played Carnegie Hall, Chicago Theatre and sold out theaters all across the country.
Additionally, Schwartz will be seen starring in Netflix’s Space Force, the comedy series that follows the people tasked with creating Space Force, a new branch of the U.S. military. He also stars in the Disney+ original film Flora and Ulysses and lends his voice to the Paramount Animation and WWE-produced animated film, RUMBLE starring Will Arnett, Terry Crews and Tony Danza set to release in 2021.
Most recently, Schwartz voiced the title character in Jeff Fowler’s highly successful live action/animation hybrid film Sonic The Hedgehog, based on the classic Sega video game. Paramount released the film on February 14, 2020 and it has since become the highest domestic grossing video game adaptation of all-time with $146 million and a worldwide gross of $306.7 million.
On the TV side, Schwartz starred opposite Don Cheadle and Kristen Bell in Showtime's House Of Lies and notably guest starred as “Jean-Ralphio” on NBC's Parks and Recreation opposite Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman. He also played series regular “Bill Hoyt” on J.J. Abrams' one-hour NBC spy drama Undercovers. In the animated world, Schwartz voices "Dewey" in Disney Channel's Ducktales reboot, returning for Season 3, "Leonardo" in Rise Of The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and voiced the lead role of “Randy Cunningham” on Disney XD's Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja.
ROY WOOD JR.
Roy Wood Jr.’s comedy has entertained millions across stage, television and radio. In addition to stand-up comedy, producing and acting, Roy is currently a correspondent on Comedy Central's Emmy & NAACP Award winning The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. During his tenure, he has used The Daily Show’s brand of satire to shed a light on serious issues like Chicago gun violence, police reform, LGBTQ+ discrimination, ICE deportations and PTSD in the Black community. His recent credits include guest starring roles in Netflix’s comedy series Space Force, AMC’s Better Call Saul, and The Last O.G on TBS.
Roy expanded his already large role on Comedy Central with a comprehensive “first look” deal and is developing his comedy pilot ‘Jefferson County: Probation.’ He also wrote and starred in the Comedy Central web series The Night Pigeon, the story of a black superhero with minimal powers fighting the biggest baddest gang in his community, The Gentrifiers. Additionally, Comedy Central is committed to produce and air Roy’s third one-hour standup special. His second special, Roy Wood Jr.: No One Loves You premiered as part of Comedy Central’s Stand-Up Month in January 2019, the network’s highest rated original stand-up premiere since his February 2017 one-hour, Roy Wood Jr.: Father Figure. In 2017, he was also named the new host of Comedy Central’s storytelling series, This is Not Happening. He hosts two podcasts, The Daily Show - Behind The Scenes and Roy's Job Fair.
Roy is a graduate of the Florida A&M University with a B.S. in Broadcast Journalism. True to his roots, he is a strong and outspoken advocate for reshaping the image of Alabama and the American South as a whole. In 2018, he penned a New York Times piece on the subject. He is actively working with the Birmingham City Council and the Film Commission to bring more entertainment jobs to the state. During the pandemic, Roy has spent time raising money for the staff of his hometown comedy clubs in Alabama through tipyourwaitstaff.com and Laugh Aid. In October 2006, he made his network television debut on the Late Show with David Letterman. In 2008, he appeared on HBO’s historic Def Comedy Jam and in 2010 was selected by America as one of the top three finalists on NBC’s Last Comic Standing. He has appeared on The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson, Conan, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Late Night with Seth Meyers and The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. He has also performed for the troops on numerous USO tours in the Middle East and the Pacific Islands. Prior to The Daily Show, Wood co-starred for three seasons on the TBS sitcom Sullivan & Son. Angeles. Keep up with Roy on Twitter and Instagram @roywoodjr.
Serial entrepreneur, author, investor, and podcaster Jaclyn Johnson is a powerhouse innovator rewriting the rules for women in business. Johnson is the Founder and CEO of Create & Cultivate, a high-impact media company uniting female entrepreneurs and CEOs through education and community, hosting over 100 events with celebrity speakers and panelists sponsored by top Fortune 500 companies. With two million-dollar exits behind her, Johnson understands first-hand what it takes to create your own space in the market, and recently launched New Money Ventures – a venture capital firm and brand incubator seeking to fund and mentor the next generation of female-led brands. In electrifying keynote speeches and conversations, Johnson shares practical takeaways for cultivating determination, finding your innovative niche, and elevating workplace equality that impact individuals and organizations alike.
Johnson has been profiled in Forbes, Ad Week, The Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, The Los Angeles Times, Entrepreneur, and more, and was recognized as an Ad Week Disruptor and named to Forbes’ “30 Under 30,” among other accolades. She is the author of WorkParty: How to Create & Cultivate the Career of Your Dreams, a rallying cry for women in the workplace, which Bustle called “one of the most informative and practical advice books for millennial women.” The book’s accompanying podcast, WorkParty, features compelling guests and was named to Forbes’ “21 Podcasts to Listen to in 2021” list. A gifted speaker as well as an insightful moderator, Johnson is a leader in conversations about women in the workplaces, building companies from the ground up, and creating community as a values-driven leader.
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Helene Cooper is a Pentagon correspondent with The New York Times and a New York Times bestselling author. Working previously at the Wall Street Journal, Cooper was the foreign correspondent, reporter, and editor in the London, Washington, D.C., and Atlanta bureaus. For The New York Times, she covered the White House and was the diplomatic correspondent, reporting from 86 countries. Her autobiography, The House at Sugar Beach: In Search of a Lost African Childhood, is a New York Times bestseller and National Book Critics Circle finalist. Cooper also wrote Madame President: The Extraordinary Journey of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, bringing her unparalleled journalistic skills to this biography of the leader of the women’s movement in Liberia. Cooper’s high-level analysis of today’s most important issues, thoughtful insights, and unwavering pursuit of the truth makes for indelible conversations that will have an enduring impact.
Cooper has received numerous accolades for her work, including the Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting, an Overseas Press Club Award for International Reporting, and a George Polk Award for Health Reporting for her coverage of the Ebola crisis, as well as the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award for International Journalism. She has appeared on Meet the Press, Washington Week, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, Morning Joe, and This Week, and her stories appear in The New York Times.
Elaine Weiss is a journalist and author whose feature writing has been recognized with prizes from the Society of Professional Journalists, and her by-line has appeared in many national publications.
A MacDowell Colony Fellow and Pushcart Prize “Editor’s Choice” honoree, she is the author of the highly-acclaimed narrative history The Woman’s Hour: The Great Fight to Win the Vote (Viking/Penguin) hailed as a “riveting, nail-biting political thriller” with powerful parallels to today’s political environment. The Woman’s Hour was a GoodReads Readers’ Choice Award winner, short-listed for the 2019 Chautauqua Prize, and received the American Bar Association’s highest honor, the 2019 Silver Gavel Award.
Weiss is a popular public speaker and frequent media commentator on the themes of women’s political organization and modern voting rights, with recent op-eds published in The New York Times and interviews on NPR’s All Things Considered, CBS Sunday Morning, and PBS American Experience.
Steven Speilberg’s Amblin production company is adapting The Woman’s Hour for the screen, with Hillary Rodham Clinton serving as Executive Producer.
Dr. Boockvar is one of the main characters on the hit Netflix docuseries called Lenox Hill (2020). This 8 episode docuseries chronicles the lives of four doctors while they manage the daily stresses of medicine with their personal lives. The show has achieved widespread critical acclaim. Dr. Boockvar is also featured on the special 9th episode called "Pandemic" which details the extraordinary response of the health care heroes of Lenox Hill hospital to the Covid-19 crisis.
Dr. Boockvar is an internationally known brain surgeon who has been repeatedly named to the lists of New York Magazine's Top Docs, New York SuperDoctors , America's Top Surgeons, and America's Best Doctors. His research has been widely published and he has received numerous national awards.
Dr. Boockvar has been featured many times on TV and in print. Of note, he was featured on the Dr. Oz Show, ABC's Nightline, TMZ, CNN, Good Morning America, and the Today Show among others. Dr. Boockvar's work has been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Newsday, New York Post, and many others. Dr. Boockvar is also an honorary surgeon of the NYPD and the New York State Troopers.
In his speeches, Dr. Boockvar shares timeless principles related to “how to be a hero” in the time of crisis; how to handle extreme stress during adversity; how to achieve work-life balance; and easy tips for basic stress management. Dr. Boockvar’s presentations also include how to utilize grit, flow and mindfulness to optimize peak performance.
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.
Conceptual artist, activist, and crypto advocate Nadya Tolokonnikova is the member of Pussy Riot, a global feminist protest art movement. Today, hundreds of people identify as part of the Pussy Riot community, which stands for gender fluidity, inclusivity, matriarchy, love, laughter, decentralization, anarchy, and anti-authoritarianism. In 2012, Nadya was sentenced to two years in prison following an anti-Putin performance. While imprisoned, she underwent a hunger strike protesting prison conditions and was sent to a Siberian penal colony – throughout this experience she persevered in maintaining her artistic activity. With her prison punk band, she toured around Siberian labor camps, and she also published a book, Read and Riot: Pussy Riot’s Guide to Activism. She is also a co-Founder of the independent news service and media outlet, Mediazona. Nadya is a tireless advocate for human rights, sharing her inspirational true story and a unique perspective on the battles for equality being waged throughout the world.
Nadya was named one of TIME's Women of the Year in 2012 along with PussyRiot, who were featured on the cover, and is a recipient of the Hanna Arendt Prize for Political Thought (2014). She received an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from RISD in 2019. Nadya has spoken before the U.S. Congress, British Parliament, European Parliament, and appeared as herself on the third season of the hit TV series House of Cards. Pussy Riot has performed at and collaborated with Bansky on his Dismaland exhibition, has been endorsed by artists Marina Abramovic and Ai Weiwei, and created an immersive experience for London’s Saatchi Gallery. Pussy Riot’s Punk-prayer was named among the best art pieces of the 21st century by The Guardian, which described it as “feminist, explicitly anti-Putin, protesting the banning of gay pride and the Orthodox church’s support of the president.” Pussy Riot joined the NFT community in early 2021 and co-founded UnicornDAO to get more women and non-binary people invested and managing Web3 and NFT projects. Nadya was instrumental in raising over $7M for Ukraine with UkraineDAO, is a PleasrDAO member, and supports stronger female representation in the NFT space. Speaking at the intersection of art and advocacy, Nadya remains a beacon of disruptive innovation and shares her journey and wisdom with audiences of all kinds.
Lena Waithe is an award-winning writer, creator, producer, actor and CEO establishing herself as a Hollywood powerhouse, who expertly taps into emerging cultural sensibilities with a sharp wit and unique perspective, challenging audiences to think outside conventional norms. Lena became the first Black woman to win the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series for her work on the critically acclaimed Netflix series Master of None. She continues to grow her body of work with diversity, charisma, and comedy.
Beyond the screen, Lena’s production company Hillman Grad Productions has partnered with Indeed to launch Rising Voices, a $1.35M investment in BIPOC filmmakers to fight against the status quo by giving marginalized storytellers the opportunity to access the industry and tell their stories. A tireless advocate for representation, Lena was honored at the 2020 Essence Black Women in Hollywood event, took home a Gracie Award for her Showtime series The Chi, and was featured on the 2018 TIME 100 list in a tribute written by Vice President Kamala Harris. Lena is a sought-after leader in the entertainment industry, speaking to the endless possibilities of intentional collaboration that centers under-represented voices.
Producer, director and screenwriter Ryan Coogler is behind history and headline-making films including Fruitvale Station, Creed, and The Black Panther, the last of which shattered box office records and became the highest-grossing film of all time by a black director. Named to TIME's "30 People Under 30 Who Are Changing the Word," Coogler's work is not just critically and commercially successful, but has been hailed for celebrating often overlooked cultures and characters and bringing unprecedented diversity to the silver screen.
Having always harbored a talent for storytelling, Coogler discovered his own passion for filmmaking as a college freshman, and began shooting shorts with his teammates and friends. From winning the Dana and Albert Broccoli Award for Filmmaking Excellence at the Tribeca Film Festival for his short Locks, to the U.S. Grand Jury Prize for dramatic film at Sundance for Fruitvale Station, to three Oscars as director and co-writer for Black Panther, Coogler's work resonates with and empowers audiences worldwide.
As a speaker, Coogler offers eye- and mind-opening insights on the power of storytelling, racial equality, and innovative approaches to changing the world.
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.
Tony, Grammy, and Lucille Lortel Award-winning actor, writer, rapper and producer, Daveed Diggs is widely known for originating the dual roles of ‘Thomas Jefferson’ and ‘Marquis de Lafayette’ in the Broadway sensation Hamilton. His independent film Blindspotting, which he co-wrote, produced and starred in, debuted at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and was released by Lionsgate. Variety called it, “The most exciting cinematic take on contemporary race relations since Do the Right Thing nearly 30 years ago,” and Eric Kohn of IndieWire wrote, “Daveed Diggs is an instant movie star.” His performance earned him an Independent Spirit Award nomination for “Best Lead Role.”
Diggs was seen in the thriller Velvet Buzzsaw, which premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival and starred alongside Jake Gyllenhaal. Diggs was in the hit film Wonder opposite Julia Roberts and Jacob Tremblay, in a performance heralded as “irresistibly charming” and “deeply sympathetic.” He can also be heard as the voice of ‘Dos’ in Fox’s animated film Ferdinand opposite Kate McKinnon and John Cena and seen in Netflix’s The Starling.
On television, Diggs can be seen in TNT’s series Snowpiercer opposite Jennifer Connelly and Netflix’s rotoscope series Undone by Raphael Bob-Waksberg. He has also lent his voice the live-action film adaptation of Disney’s The Little Mermaid, Fox’s Bob’s Burgers, Netflix’s Bojack Horseman, Disney's Soul, and Josh Gad’s Central Park. He was seen on ABC’s Emmy-nominated series Blackish, and Netflix’s hit comedy Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. He also starred in HBO’s Tour de Pharmacy alongside Andy Samberg and Orlando Bloom. Previous television credits include NBC’s Law & Order: SVU and Netflix’s The Get Down created by visionary director Baz Luhrmann. Diggs executive produced ABC’s The Mayor and is currently creating original content for ESPN and the banking app ZELLE.
Diggs is also a member of the West Coast-based experimental hip-hop trio, “clipping.” Diggs has toured nationally and internationally, both as a solo artist and with “clipping,” playing venues including Sonar Festival in Barcelona; Off Festival in Krakow; ATP Iceland in Keflavic; and Brooklyn's AfroPunk Fest. Special engagement bookings include the Red Bull Music Academy and Moog Electronics. The group was also nominated for a Hugo Award for their sophomore album Splendor & Misery.
David Dobrik is a digital star and TV personality known for making viral content on YouTube. With over 24.5 million subscribers across two YouTube channels and 12.3 million followers on Instagram, Dobrik has mastered the art of quick-cut content. Dobrik has appeared on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, the Today Show, Live with Kelly & Ryan, Good Morning America, GQ, Wall Street Journal and many others. With his widely popular social media presence and podcast, "Views," Dobrik has elevated himself into international stardom.
Dobrik starred alongside co-judges Ciara and Debbie Gibson, in Nickelodeon's series, America's Most Musical Family in 2019, hosted the Teen Choice Awards and presented at the American Music Awards. David has won Shorty Awards for Vlogger of the Year, Breakout Creator, YouTube Ensemble and Podcast, he's a multi-Streamy Award winner and in 2019, he took home the Kids Choice Award for "Social Star" and the Teen Choice Award for "Choice Web Star: Male."
With his signature candor and entertaining delivery, Dobrik shares how his inimitable work ethic drove him to success, the challenges that come with being a content creator and how to overcome those in any industry, how his DACA status influences his daily life and the content he creates, and details of his journey from struggling content creator to internet star.
Veteran broadcast journalist, sports anchor, and multimedia game-changer Cari Champion has revolutionized and pioneered the sports media industry for women today. For nearly a decade, she served as anchor and host at ESPN – her roles included co-hosting SportCenter’s Coast to Coast, hosting SportsNation, and moderating ESPN’s popular debate talk show, First Take. She currently hosts TNT’s The Arena, creating a thought-provoking forum for provocative topics from the most popular voices in sports. Most recently, she served as co-anchor of NBC’s primetime studio show, Tokyo Tonight on NBC’s Peacock Channel during the 2020 Summer Olympic Games, as well as co-host of NBC’s reality competition series The Titan Games. Champion made history with her move to Vice TV, working alongside Jemele Hill as the first Black women to host a late-night cable show, Cari & Jemele: Stick to Sports. Champion shares her unparalleled insights about creating her own path to working at the top of her field, the intersections of race, ethnicity, and gender in sports and media, and how to cultivate leadership, teamwork, and perseverance at work and in life.
Champion has been profiled in Sports Illustrated, Vogue, Bustle, The Grio, Essence, and more, and she was honored by Essence at its inaugural Black Women in Sports event. She is the Founder of Brown Girls Dream, a powerful mentorship network supporting high potential women of color, inspired by the mentorship she received early in her career. Champion’s influence resonates across mediums, and she is the host of the podcast Naked with Cari Champion, showcasing her authentic interview style that brings refreshing and nuanced conversations to the forefront from thought-leaders and culture-shifters within the entertainment industry. She also writes a bulletin for META, ‘I Said What I Said’, debunking harmful stereotypes and unpacking provocative stories. Champion is a gifted keynote speaker and moderator, getting to the heart and soul of today’s biggest issues, and making a lasting impact on audiences of all kinds.
Alan Yang is and Emmy Award-winning writer, director and producer.
Shortly after college, where he wrote for Harvard's comedic magazine The Lampoon, he moved to LA to pursue a career as a writer and some of his earliest jobs were writing on the late night show Last Call with Carson Daly and the television series South Park. Those jobs eventually led to a position as staff writer on the hit series Parks and Recreation where he met his Master of None co-creator, Aziz Ansari. Now a seasoned writer and producer who is responsible for series like Amazon Prime's Forever and Apple TV's Little America and produced Netflix's Free Food for Millionaires, Alan is also the writer and director of his feature film, Tigertail, loosely based on his family's immigration story from Taiwan.
Today, Yang uses the tools of his trade to advocate for Asian Americans and immigrant communities. Yang is a powerful storyteller, usually finding the funniest way possible to connect to the heart of the character, and he created some of the most beloved shows of recent years. Yang sees his works as a way to build empathy during a time when America is divided, and helps us understand the humanity that exists outside of our own inner-circles. Awards Daily calls his work "a necessary viewing experience": He "succeeds brilliantly— telling rich, complex, heartfelt stories."
Audiences describe Yang as open and funny, honest and sincere, and upbeat. Although he already has an Emmy award, Yang is just getting started, and we have a lot more to hear, see...and feel...from this young, ambitious, and inspiring writer and director.
Award-winning journalist, editor, and author Phillip Picardi is known for his role in revolutionizing Teen Vogue, Allure, and Out Magazines. Under Picardi’s leadership, the digital audience of Teen Vogue grew from just 2M unique visitors per month to over 12M, making the Condé Nast title the fastest-growing women's magazine in America for two years running. He was then appointed by Anna Wintour to oversee the digital operations of Allure, where he concepted “The End of Anti-Aging,” an industry call to action for brands to eradicate the shame and stigma around getting older. Dubbed “the prince of Condé Nast” by The New York Times, Picardi went on to launch a community-driven platform for LGBTQ+ youth called them. From building empowered and diverse teams to generating disruptive and out-of-the-box ideas, Picardi’s speaking engagements offer an abundance of insights.
Picardi went on to rebrand and relaunch Out Magazine, the largest and most influential publication for the queer and trans community. An expert in building empowered teams, he assembled and led the most diverse staff in the brand’s history. During Picardi’s career, he has been a sought-after consultant for clients like Levi's, Ralph Lauren, Lego, Burberry, and Nike. He is also the recipient of multiple awards, including Fast Company's 100 Most Creative People, the Forbes 30 Under 30, the AdWeek Hot List, a GLAAD Award, and more. Picardi recently graduated from Harvard Divinity School, where he was one of eleven students selected for the inaugural Masters of Religion and Public Life program. His studies inspired a podcast about religion and spirituality from Crooked Media called Unholier Than Thou, and his Substack newsletter Religiously Blonde. He is currently working on his forthcoming memoir based on his thesis, “Is Jesus Kinda Hot?” In motivational events, Picardi shares his expertise that resonates with corporate leaders as well as college audiences, and moderates powerful conversations with cultural luminaries.
Legendary NFL wide receiver, entrepreneur, Emmy-nominated TV personality, and philanthropist Brandon Marshall is a dedicated mental health advocate who continues to lead conversations promoting awareness, ending stigma, and sharing inspiration. After 12 years shattering records and collecting countless awards and accolades, Marshall is now a two-time Emmy-nominated sportscaster with Showtime’s Inside the NFL and FS1’s First Things First. Amassing over 30M views and 500K YouTube subscribers, he is also the creator and host of I AM ATHLETE podcast, moderating authentic conversations that make an undeniable impact. After winning his own battle with mental illness, Marshall has become the face of mental health awareness, sharing his personal experiences and struggles, and offering a message of resilience and hope that enables audiences of all kinds to unleash their full potential.
As the Founder and CEO of House of Athlete, a lifestyle wellness brand, Marshall leverages his years as a peak athlete and champion for mental fitness to support athletes at every level. As Executive Chairman and Co-Founder of PROJECT 375, a non-profit dedicated to unlocking human potential through conversation, education, and inspiration, Marshall embodies his commitment to the mental health community. He has appeared on The View, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, and more, and has been featured in The New York Times, People, Forbes, and many others. Marshall has participated in hundreds of speaking engagements, speaking to Fortune500 organizations, the Forbes Healthcare Summit, The Kennedy Forum, before the U.S. Senate, the Vatican, to NFL Owners & Coaches, and school kids, among others. In addition to championing conversations in the mental health space, Marshall is an in-demand speaker for his insights on teamwork, cultivating resilience, and developing values-based leadership within organizations and as individuals.
Award-winning actress, New York Times bestselling author, podcaster, and digital creator Felicia Day shares an empowering message about finding your community and being unapologetically yourself. As an actress, Day is known for her fan-favorite roles on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Supernatural, and Mystery Science Theater 3000. She is the creator of The Guild, a hit web series about gamers, which won numerous awards and was adapted into a hit comic book series of the same name. Day, whom the New York Times referred to as “queen of the geeks,” is the founder of Geek & Sundry, a self-proclaimed geek hub and digital production studio which was acquired by Legendary Entertainment, and has hosts panels and events for Netflix’s Geeked.
Day is the author of the instant New York Times bestsellers You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost), which Forbes called “relentlessly funny and surprisingly inspirational,” and Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity. She is the host of several podcasts, including Felicitations!, Undressing with Felicia Day and Tom Lenk, and 'The Official The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Podcast'. Day launched a series on Twitch called WomenR, which highlights diversity among creators in a broad spectrum of entertainment fields and ensures women and girls can see people like them being successful in the creative tech world. In sought-after talks that make an impact with audiences of all kinds, Day shares her personal stories and hard-won wisdom about embracing yourself and making your dreams come true.
Best known for his role in setting up – and then taking down – his former employer, the cyberwarfare firm Cambridge Analytica, Christopher 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 witnessed firsthand how culture, information and algorithms were being weaponized by militaries, governments and companies to undermine elections around the world. His testimonies before the United States Congress and British
Parliament served as a wake-up call and have led to new legislative proposals in both countries.
In powerful, eye-opening conversations, Wylie shares his groundbreaking story, discusses the future of technology, details the power of weaponized algorithms and information warfare, and makes AI understandable, disturbing, and yet somehow compelling.
Historian Alexis Coe is the author of the narrative history book Alice+Freda Forever as well as her latest book, You Never Forget Your First, a New York Times bestselling biography of George Washington that combines Coe’s rigorous research with her signature lively, humorous storytelling. You Never Forget Your First cracked open the scholarship around George Washington and was just named as one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Books To Read.
Coe is a consulting producer on Doris Kearns Goodwin's three part George Washington series on the History Channel and the host of No Man's Land from Pineapple. Additionally, Coe co-hosts Presidents Are People Too! from Audible, a podcast that recasts each of the American Presidents as real-life people, complete with flaws, quirks, triumphs, scandals and bodily ailments.
Coe has contributed to the New Yorker, the New York Times' opinion section, the New York Times Magazine, the New Republic, the Paris Review, Elle, and many others. She has appeared on CNN, the History Channel, C-SPAN, and CBS, and lectured at Columbia, West Point, Georgetown, Sarah Lawrence, NYU, the New School, the University of San Francisco, and many others. She has given talks sponsored by Hulu, Chanel, and Madewell.
Heralded for her engaging, informative and charismatic delivery in speaking engagements, Coe makes political history digestible and entertaining for any audience.
Daniel Markovits is Guido Calabresi Professor of Law at Yale Law School and Founding Director of the Center for the Study of Private Law.
His latest book, The Meritocracy Trap (Penguin Press, 2019), develops a sustained attack on American meritocracy. The meritocratic ideal—that people should get ahead based on their own accomplishments rather than their parents’ social class—has become our age’s literal common sense. Both Democrats and Republicans, even as they agree on almost nothing else, insist that meritocracy gives everyone fair shot at success and place it at the heart of the American Dream.
Markovits argues, however, that both up and down the social ladder, meritocracy is a sham. Today, meritocracy has become exactly what it was invented to defeat—a new aristocracy, only now based on schooling rather than breeding. Upward mobility has become a fantasy, and the embattled middle class is more likely to sink into the working poor than to rise into the professional elite. At the same time, meritocracy ensnares even those who manage to claw their way to the top, trapping rich adults in a pitiless competition, which requires them to work with crushing intensity, exploiting their expensive educations in order to extract a return.
People commonly say that we suffer so much inequality because we have too little meritocracy—because elites cheat to get and stay ahead. But in fact, Markovits argues, it’s because we have too much. Meritocracy has created a competition that (even when everyone plays by the rules) only the rich can win and that, at the same time, exploits and degrades even the supposed victors.
An illuminating speaker, Markovits explores themes of inequality, opportunity, and democracy for audiences worldwide.
Kelly Rippon is an teacher, author and single parent of six children, including her oldest son, Olympic medalist, Adam. She transformed her skills as an experienced college philosophy educator into a career as a motivational and professional development speaker. She started her own consulting company, Authentic Change Inc, with the mission of “Changing the world one conversation at a time.”
As a humorous and empathetic storyteller, her presentations, tailored to meet each organization's specific needs, leave participants with heightened awareness and tools that widen perspectives on the subjects of Parenting, Optimism, Wellness, Women's Empowerment, Education, Leadership, Motivation, Communication, Diversity, Student Retention, Conflict Resolution, and Customer Service.
A dynamic keynote speaker and breakout presenter for parenting and education conferences, healthcare groups, customer service teams, leadership training, and women’s conferences, among others, Rippon inspires audiences to ignite their influential power, think bigger, and heighten their own purpose and worth.
Poet, philosopher, and spiritual teacher Mark Nepo has made a significant impact for over forty years as “one of the finest spiritual guides of our time,” “a consummate storyteller,” and “an eloquent spiritual teacher.” With over a million copies sold, Mark has moved and inspired readers and seekers all over the world with his #1 New York Times bestseller, The Book of Awakening. Renowned for his widely accessible work, he has published twenty-three books – which have been translated into more than twenty languages – and recorded sisteen audio projects. Recent work includes Surviving Storms (2022) and The Book of Soul, named by Spirituality & Practice as one of the Best Spiritual Books of 2020, and the Nautilus Book Award Winners Drinking from the River of Light and Things That Join the Sea and the Sky. Mark devotes his writing and teaching to the journey of inner transformation and the life of relationship, and has been highly sought after as an inspirational speaker for events with groups like the Chautauqua Institution, the Omega Institute, Sun Valley Wellness Festival, Mile-Hi Church, among many others.
In his 30s Mark was diagnosed with a rare form of lymphoma, a struggle which helped to form his philosophy of experiencing life fully while staying in relationship to an unknowable future. Mark has received numerous awards for his work, including AgeNation’s Life-Achievement Award, and has been named one of the 100 Most Spiritually Influential Living People by Watkins: Mind Body Spirit. He was chosen as one of OWN’s SuperSoul 100, a group of inspired leaders using their gifts and voices to elevate humanity, and has appeared several times on Oprah’s SuperSoul Sunday on OWN TV. Mark is a regular columnist for Spirituality & Health Magazine, and has been interviewed by Robin Roberts on Good Morning America, among many other media appearances. Audiences leave his talks feeling uplifted, more connected to what it means to be human, and with a fresh perspective on what it means to overcome adversity: "Mark was beyond wonderful! People fell in love with him and were truly and deeply moved by his teaching. I could not be more grateful!" (Chautauqua Institution)
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.
Landyn Hutchinson isn’t really a lifestyle blogger. She is a high-energy, hardworking mom who is raising two kids and perpetually trying to navigate the perfect work / life balance.
Refreshingly endearing, Landyn is not only relatable – she’s downright loveable. A natural motivator and extrovert, Landyn genuinely loves sharing her life with her community. She’s creative, she’s witty, and sometimes she drops her kids off at school without a bra on because, well, it’s early.
Since Landyn launched her lifestyle website, Living with Landyn, she has cultivated a highly engaged audience of women (and men!) that she affectionately refers to as her Tribe. Whether it’s sharing styling tips, recipes, workout recommendations, or the perfect shade of nail polish (which, by the way, is OPI Funny Bunny), each day Landyn strives to support and encourage each and every member of her tribe.
A dynamic and beloved speaker, Landyn's live show allows her to connect with her audience directly, quickly transforming followers into friends. From marriage and parenting to health and beauty to interior design and style – there is no topic that Landyn doesn’t cover with her laid back, honest conversation. And through various on-stage segments and giveaways, Landyn makes sure that everyone in the audience is engaged and having fun from the time they arrive until the time they leave. As Landyn always says, “If you’re not excited then you’re not invited!”
Known for going above and beyond and always being the “hostess with the mostest” Landyn throws a party like no other. Audiences leave feeling refreshed, inspired and ready to make positive choices in their lives. Most importantly, she’s there to remind them that even though life may look really pretty in photos, it isn’t always picture perfect: It’s Authentic. It’s Exciting. It’s ALL. THE. THINGS.
Curt Menefee is a well-established and respected sports anchor and reporter. During the NFL season, he serves as co-host of FOX NFL Sunday along with Terry Bradshaw, Howie Long, Jimmy Johnson and Michael Strahan. The program has been the #1 pregame show for 21 consecutive years – with Menefee on board for 10 seasons. Menefee also provides prefight coverage during UFC main events, and hosts the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) Champions League final pregame show. In 2015, he will be part of the PGA U.S. Open commentary team.
Menefee’s career includes sideline-reporting for FOX Sports, calling plays in the game booth for NFL and NFL Europe League, broadcasting sporting events from Madison Square Garden with WNYW-TV, and working as the sports director and weeknight sports anchor for KTVT-TV in Dallas. He also hosted a daily two-hour show on The Ticket sports radio in Dallas, anchored sports for WTLV-TV (NBC) in Jacksonville, hosted a live two-hour daily sportscast on Sports News Network, and served as sports anchor and reporter at WISC-TV (CBS) in Madison, Wisconsin and WOI-TV (ABC) in Des Moines, Iowa.
In 1996, Menefee received The Associated Press Award for ‘Best Sports Reporter in New York.’ And in 1993, 1994 and 1995, he won four Katie Awards (the Texas equivalent of an Emmy) – two were for ‘Best Sportscast’ and the other two were for ‘Best Sports Special.’
He co-hosts A&E Network’s Canine Competition Series America’s Top Dog, which showcases working dogs, K9s, and underdogs, facing off on huge obstacle courses to test their speed, agility, and more. He is also hosting the new series An Animal Saved My Life, which shows heroic acts made by animals, with stories from people who have been saved by these heroes.
Menefee earned a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies, with minors in History and Physical Education, from Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He currently serves on the school’s Board of Trustees, and dedicates as much time as possible to community work.
Pamela Druckerman is an American journalist and author of the international bestseller Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting (known in the U.K. as French Children Don’t Throw Food). It’s an unconventional parenting guide that mixes anthropology, journalism, and memoir, with dashes of history and humor. The book has been (or is being) translated into 21 languages.
Pamela is also a Contributing Opinion Writer for the International New York Times. Her op-eds and articles have appeared in the Washington Post, The Guardian, the Financial Times, New York Magazine, Marie Claire, Vanity Fair France, and elsewhere. Her work has been featured on Good Morning America, The TODAY Show, National Public Radio, BBC Women’s Hour, and Oprah.com, among many other news outlets. From 1997 to 2002 she was a staff reporter at The Wall Street Journal, based in Buenos Aires, São Paulo, and New York.
Pamela speaks regularly to audiences in Europe and the United States. She holds a B.A. in philosophy from Colgate University, a Master of International Affairs from Columbia Univeristy, and has trained in improvisational comedy at the Upright Citizens Brigade. She lives in Paris.
Eliza Griswold is a writer who reports on issues of social justice, religion, politics and the environment abroad and at home in America. A contributing writer for The New Yorker since 2003, she has also written and translated five books of nonfiction and poetry.
Griswold was awarded the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for general nonfiction for her book Amity and Prosperity: One Family and the Fracturing of America.
She was recently awarded a PEN prize for her 2014 book, I Am The Beggar of the World which traces the secret life of women and poetry in Afghanistan. Her 2011 non-fiction book, The Tenth Parallel, a New York Times Bestseller, was awarded the Lukas Prize.
A graduate of Princeton, she has held fellowships at Harvard University, New America, and the Guggenheim Foundation, and was awarded the Rome Prize by the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2010. Her poems and reportage have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, Atlantic, among many others.
Renowned investigative journalist Katherine Eban is a Vanity Fair contributor and Andrew Carnegie fellow. Her articles on pharmaceutical counterfeiting, gun trafficking, and coercive interrogations by the CIA, have won international attention and numerous awards.
The New York Times bestselling author of two books, Bottle of Lies: the Inside Story of the Generic Drug Boom and Dangerous Doses: a True Story of Cops, Counterfeiters and the Contamination of America’s Drug Supply, are both explosive investigative works into the dark side of the pharmaceutical industry. In Bottle of Lies, Eban exposes the deceit behind generic-drug manufacturing—and the attendant risks for global health. Based on a decade of reporting, Eban reveals endemic fraud and dire conditions in an industry where companies routinely falsify data and circumvent safe manufacturing practices to minimize cost and maximize profit. In Dangerous Doses, she exposes the dark side of America's pharmaceutical trade, and how stolen, compromised, and counterfeit medicine increasingly makes its way into a poorly regulated distribution system.
In her talks Eban addresses pharmaceutical integrity, the production and distribution of generic drugs, and how globalization -- as well as COVID-19 -- impact our supply chain of essential goods.
Media personality, philanthropist, and disability advocate Will Reeve offers a message of courage, perseverance, hope, and the power of giving back. Reeve is a passionate advocate for the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, an organization dedicated to curing spinal cord injury, honoring the legacy of his late parents. He is an ABC News Correspondent, appearing on all platforms and shows including Good Morning America, World News Tonight, and Nightline, after previously serving as a commentator with ESPN. With humor, authenticity, and gifted storytelling, Reeve leaves audiences of all kinds feeling inspired and empowered to overcome obstacles and make a difference.
Reeve serves on the Board of Directors for the Reeve Foundation and acts as the captain of Team Reeve – the Foundation’s athletic events-related fundraising arm – recruiting individuals around the country to join and support the Foundation’s community. His father – famed actor Christopher Reeve – experienced spinal cord injury, which gives him unique insight into the challenges face by the 5.4M Americans living with paralysis and empowers his work on the Foundation’s dual mission: Today’s care. Tomorrow’s cure. Reeve is also the recipient of the Experience Camps Champion for Children Award for his work in creating a more "grief-smart" culture for bereaved children. Reeve offers candid and inspiring remarks, garnering praise such as: "Our event with Will Reeve was wonderful! Will was so great and the crowd responded to him so well. He brings such humor and honesty and he was just the perfect keynote this year.” (Bo's Place)
Sarah M. Broom is the author of the 2019 National Book Award Winner and instant New York Times bestseller The Yellow House, a brilliant, haunting and unforgettable memoir about the inexorable pull of home and family, set in a shotgun house in New Orleans East. Heralded as “one of the year’s best memoirs…an urgent meditation on the American dream” (Entertainment Weekly), “a remarkable journey” (Robin Roberts, Good Morning America), and “an instantly essential text, examining the past, present and possible future of the city of New Orleans, and of America writ large” (cover review of the New York Times Book Review), Sarah’s debut has been dubbed a must-read book in over 15 publications including the LA Times, the Washington Post, Vanity Fair, NPR, and TIME.
Sarah’s previous work has appeared in the New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, The Oxford American, and O, The Oprah Magazine among others. A native New Orleanian, she received her Masters in Journalism from the University of California, Berkeley in 2004. She was awarded a Whiting Foundation Creative Nonfiction Grant in 2016 and was a finalist for the New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Creative Nonfiction in 2011. She has also been awarded fellowships at Djerassi Resident Artists Program and The MacDowell Colony. She lives in New York state.
Dr. Lucy Kalanithi, MD, FACP, is the widow of the late Dr. Paul Kalanithi, author of the #1 New York Times bestselling memoir, When Breath Becomes Air, for which she wrote the epilogue. At the cross-section of her career as a medical professional and her personal experience standing alongside her husband during his life, diagnosis, treatment, and death, Dr. Kalanithi has special interests in healthcare value, meaning in medicine, patient-centered care and, end-of-life care. She explores these issues in her Gravity podcast, and has appeared on PBS NewsHour, NPR Morning Edition, and Yahoo News with Katie Couric, and been interviewed for People, NPR, and The New York Times.
An internal medicine physician and faculty member at the Stanford School of Medicine in Palo Alto, CA, she completed her medical degree at Yale, where she was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha national medical honor society. She completed her residency at the University of California-San Francisco, and a postdoctoral fellowship training in healthcare delivery innovation at Stanford’s Clinical Excellence Research Center.
DANIEL JAMES BROWN
Daniel James Brown is the author of #1 New York Times bestseller The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. A story that captures the world's attention and quickly skyrocketed to the top of bestseller lists, The Boys in the Boat is about American Olympic triumph in Nazi Germany and served as the inspiration for the PBS documentary “The Boys of ‘36'." It is an irresistible story about beating the odds and finding hope in the most desperate of times, and an improbable, intimate account of how nine working-class boys from the American West showed the world what true grit really meant, and is now being made into a movie directed by George Clooney and Grant Heslov.
Brown's other books include Under a Flaming Sky: The Great Hinckley Firestorm of 1894, which traces the personal stories and social, economic, and environmental causes of the Great Hinkley Fire, The Indifferent Stars Above: The Harrowing Saga of a Donner Party Bride, which follows the footsteps of Sarah Graves, a young bride who left her home in Illinois in the spring of 1846, only to become one of a handful of the ill-fated Donner Party members who attempted to hike out of the Sierra Nevada to save herself and her family, and his second New York Times bestseller, Facing the Mountain: A True Story of Japanese American Heroes in World War ll, a gripping World War II saga of patriotism, highlighting the contributions and sacrifices that Japanese immigrants and their American-born children made for the sake of the nation.
In his captivating presentations, Brown shares the remarkable stories covered in his work, bringing history to life to leave audiences inspired.
Secretary of the Treasury Jack Lew (2013- 2017) has served as the most senior economic official in the U.S. government, helping to shape policies that drove the longest economic recovery in American history. At Treasury, he oversaw all aspects of international and domestic fiscal policy, including issues related to financial regulation, global sanctions regimes, tax policy, debt management, and trade. As a speaker, he brings the freshest insights and an insider's knowledge of the individual people and policies affecting the direction of the global economy. Secretary Lew addresses these issues both from an historical perspective -- given his over 30 years of government experience -- and by looking forward to how the new Administration and Congress may tackle the many challenges they face. With his unique perspective, Secretary Lew presents an engaging view of how complex financial and geopolitical forces are shaping our economy, both domestically and overseas.
Joseph Lubin is a Co-Founder of Ethereum—the most superior advanced blockchain platform by size, functionality and application—and founder of ConsenSys, one of the largest and fastest-growing blockchain companies in the world.
Named to CoinDesk’s “Most Influential in Blockchain,” Joseph co-founded the Ethereum Project and founded ConsenSys as a venture production studio focused on building developer tools and decentralized applications on the Ethereum platform. Prior to working on Ethereum, Lubin’s career focused on the intersection of cryptography, engineering, and finance, including his role as VP of Technology in Private Wealth Management at Goldman Sachs.
Sought-out to speak at events ranging from The World Economic Forum to SXSW, in his compelling keynotes Joseph reveals the transformative power of blockchain technology and his vision for a decentralized future. Equal parts informative and inspiring, he sheds light on how new technologies have the power to transform industries, and how organizations can reap the benefits.
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.
Penny Pritzker is an entrepreneur, civic leader and philanthropist with more than 30 years of experience in numerous industries. Named by Forbes as one of the 100 most powerful women in the world, Pritzker is the founder and Chairman of PSP Capital Partners and Pritzker Realty Group, a global private investment firm that takes a long-term, fundamental approach to investing in and building market-leading businesses in sectors such as professional services, real estate, technology, agriculture, industrial services and consumer products.
From June 2013 through January 2017, Pritzker served as U.S. Secretary of Commerce in the Obama Administration. Pritzker was a core member of President Obama’s economic team and served as the country’s chief commercial advocate, leading the Administration’s trade and investment promotion efforts. During her tenure, she launched SelectUSA, the first federal initiative aimed at attracting foreign direct investment to the United States, which facilitated $23 billion in investment to date and created or retained tens of thousands of good paying American jobs. Pritzker also developed the agency’s first comprehensive digital and data agenda, chaired the Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship (PAGE) program and served as the Administration’s point person on manufacturing.
Appointed by President Barack Obama, Daniel Shapiro served as the United States Ambassador to Israel from July 2011 until the end of the Obama Administration. As Ambassador, Shapiro won praise from leaders of both countries for his deft management of the U.S.-Israel relationship during Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, the Iran nuclear agreement, regional instability, and periods of significant bilateral tension and disagreement. Among Shapiro's major contributions were negotiating the $38 billion Memorandum of Understanding for U.S. military aid to Israel, unprecedented public outreach in fluent Hebrew to Israel’s diverse communities, and 40 percent growth in U.S.-Israel trade.
Shapiro's time as the Ambassador to Israel followed a diverse career of over 20 years in senior foreign policy and national security positions in the United States government, including as the Senior Director for the Middle East and North Africa at the National Security Council.
Currently, Shapiro is the Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Tel Aviv University’s Institute of National Security Studies. His remarkable breadth of insights have been featured across the major media networks, and his writing has appeared in Foreign Policy, The Atlantic, Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC, Israeli Channel 2, and more.
Margaret Trudeau is celebrated for her role as a respected mental-health issues advocate and proponent of living a vibrant, joyful life especially as we age. From becoming the Canadian prime minister’s wife at a young age, to the loss of both her son and her former husband, to living with bi-polar disorder, Margaret shares her personal stories to remind others of the importance of nurturing the body, mind, and spirit.
Ertharin Cousin possesses more than thirty years of national and international non-profit, government, and corporate leadership experience focusing on food, hunger, humanitarian operations, political organizing, community development and resilience strategies.
From 2009 until 2017 Cousin led the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) as the twelfth Executive Director (ED). As WFP ED Cousin guided the world’s largest humanitarian organization with 14,000 staff serving 80 million beneficiaries in 75 countries meeting urgent food needs; while, championing and serving as a global advocate for longer-term solutions to food insecurity and hunger.
Cousin has been listed numerous times on the Forbes "100 Most Powerful Women" list, as the Fortune "Most Powerful Woman in Food and Drink", on Time’s "100 Most Influential People" list, and as one of the "500 Most Powerful People on the Planet" by Foreign Policy magazine.
Cousin has an international reputation as a leader, with an emphasis on visionary thinking, practical problem solving, and the capacity to articulate clearly an important perspective on the global political and social situation.
Bart Banfield is the author of the book Virtual Leadership. He is also the superintendent of EPIC Charter Schools, the largest public school in the state of Oklahoma, and one of the largest virtual schools in the United States. Since becoming Oklahoma’s youngest public school superintendent at the age of twenty-seven, Bart has been a pioneer, innovator, and leader in the virtual learning-work environment. He is an advocate for Educational Reform of America’s public schools. Bart has been a public school educator for over twenty years and holds a Master’s Degree in Education Administration from East Central University.
Philippe Reines is one of Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton's longest serving communications advisors. He has worked with Secretary Clinton in the State Department, on her first presidential campaign, and in the U.S. Senate. Reines stood beside Secretary Clinton during some of the most important national security and policy decisions of the last decade and a half, and is an expert in strategic communications and public relations. Reines also serves as a Founder and Managing Director of Beacon Global Strategies LLC, a strategic advisory firm specializing in International Policy, Defense, Cyber, Intelligence and Homeland Security.
Brian Hook is a veteran diplomat who worked for President George H.W. Bush, President George W. Bush, and President Donald Trump. He was the lead State Department official who negotiated peace agreements between UAE-Israel, Bahrain-Israel, Sudan-Israel, and Morocco, known collectively as the Abraham Peace Accords. He conducted secret negotiations with Iran in 2019 and 2020 that won the release of two American hostages, and in 2018 he flew to North Korea to bring home three Americans held hostage by Kim Jong-Un. From 2016-2020, he led the campaign to counter the Iranian regime’s deadly terrorism and pursuit of a nuclear weapon.
Mr. Hook held a number of senior positions in the Bush Administration, including Assistant Secretary of State for International Organizations; Senior Advisor to the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations; Special Assistant to the President for Policy at the White House, and Counsel in the Office of Legal Policy at the Justice Department. He was a corporate lawyer at Hogan & Hartson in Washington from 1999-2003. His many foreign policy articles have been published by The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal and he has been featured by major media outlets around the world for his commentary on international affairs.
Fred P. Hochberg is the longest-serving chairman in the history of the Export-Import Bank of the United States and was one of the highest-ranking business leaders in the Obama Administration. Throughout nearly eight years of his leadership, EXIM Bank supported more than 1.4 million American jobs and financed exports with a value exceeding $240 billion. The Bank also generated $3.8 billion in surplus revenue for U.S. taxpayers during that time and Hochberg reduced internal costs by nearly 30 percent. Hochberg increased the Bank's focus on its customers, cutting transaction times and introducing new products. He also put America’s small business exporters at the top of the Bank's agenda and, as a result, nearly 90 percent of EXIM Bank authorizations directly supported small businesses on his watch.
Writer, cultural critic, and entrepreneur Aminatou Sow is renowned as co-host of the hit podcast Call Your Girlfriend, which tackles the intricacies of feminism, pop culture and the latest in politics.
A member of the Sundance Institute Director's Advisory Group, and previous head of Social Impact Marketing at Google, Aminatou has been named one of Forbes "30 Under 30 in Tech." She is also the co-founder of Tech LadyMafia, an organization created to increase the visibility of women working in and around Technology. Her book, a TIME's 100 Must-Read Book of 2020, Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close (June 2020), makes the bold and compelling argument that a close friendship is the most influential and important relationship a human life can contain—helping you improve as a person and in your relationships with others.
A passionate public speaker, Aminatou has been sought-out for events like SXSW, Chicago Ideas Week, and the Sydney Writers Festival. She convenes and facilitates conversations about the most important cultural issues of our time, and has interviewed everyone from Hillary Clinton to Roxane Gay, Kirsten Gillibrand, Ali Raisman, and so many more impressive women. At engagements, Aminatou shares candid insights into female ambition, money and power.
Nina Teicholz is an investigative science journalist, New York Times bestselling author, and Founder and Executive Director of The Nutrition Coalition, which is dedicated to evidence-based nutrition policy. Her New York Times bestselling book The Big Fat Surprise upended the conventional wisdom on dietary fat, and was named a 2014 “Best Book” by The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, Mother Jones, and Forbes, among others. Emerging as a thought leader in the field of evidence-based nutrition policy, Teicholz was invited to testify before the Canadian Senate and the U.S. Department of Agriculture about the need to base guidelines on sound science. She offers a remarkable analysis of the many factors at play in nutrition science, and shares with rapt audiences her investigative approach to today’s biggest topics in diet and nutrition. Teicholz’s writing has been published in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, The Independent, The New Yorker, The Los Angeles Times, and more.
Janet M. Stovall has flourished in the highly competitive corporate FORTUNE 500 world. A long history of driving change and building culture in large, complex organizations has given her deep expertise around DEI practices and principles, especially in the area of communications. In fact, she broke barriers as one of the few Black C-level speechwriters in the Fortune 100.
A self-described diversity pragmatist, Stovall is best known for her TED talk challenging business to get serious about inclusion. Collectively, Stovall’s three TED presentations have nearly 3 million views.
Stovall is Global Head of DEI at the NeuroLeadership Institute, a global think tank, consultancy, and research organization that uses neuroscience to improve business performance. A firm believer in action over aspiration, intent over impact and objectivity over subjectivity, Janet works with organizations and leaders that truly value diversity as an asset. Her consultancy, Pragmatic Diversity, helps them unlock that value through accountable inclusion and equity. Through direct consultation with leaders, teams and individuals, as well as keynote speeches and workshops, she helps business get real about DEI and dismantling systemic inequity.
On stage, her approach tackles workplace inequity head-on with a straightforward formula for creating an inclusive workplace that unlocks the power of diversity. Her superpowers? Applying objective solutions to solve subjective DEI challenges, building actionable DEI frameworks and strategies, and brokering honest DEI conversations among top leaders.
Co-author of The Conscious Communicator: The Fine Art of Not Saying Stupid Sh*t, Stovall also speaks to challenges of communicating authentically about DEI and social justice. Her groundbreaking book introduces a framework and practical tool to help leaders shape DEI and social justice and visions and messages aligned with organizational mission, vision, and values – consistently, proactively, and in ways that are powerful rather than performative.
Award-winning musician, academic, and sustainability advocate Adam Met is a thought leader at the intersections of entertainment, policy, and tech. Adam rose to international prominence as the bassist for the band AJR, which has over 5B streams, touring internationally on sold out tours and earning numerous platinum certifications. Beyond his global impact as a musician, Adam is passionate about finding actionable and collaborative solutions for climate change. He is the Founder and Executive director of Planet Reimagined, and consults with politicians, organizations, and industries to innovate wide-reaching and meaningful solutions.
Adam serves as an advocate for the United Nations Development Programme, drawing on his PhD in international human rights law to foster awareness of sustainability solutions. His writing has been featured in Fortune, Billboard Magazine, Rolling Stone, and more, and hosts his podcast Planet Reimagined. Adam has shared his uplifting and interdisciplinary insights at events with groups like Project Everyone, the United Nations, the Concordia Annual Summit, Columbia University, the Adcraft Conference, and more, and he moderates nuanced conversations with global experts, making complex and difficult topics relatable and actionable.
One of the most prolific coaches in football history, Urban Meyer’s accomplishments have cemented his legacy in college football history. With one of the highest winning percentages of all time, Meyer boasts an incredible 187-32 overall record and three national championship wins. He has brought his expertise to his role as an analyst for both ESPN and most recently FOX Sports, appearing weekly on their Big Noon Kickoff pre-game show, and went on to coach in the NFL as Head Coach for the Jacksonville Jaguars. A New York Times bestselling author of Above the Line: Lessons in Leadership and Life from a Championship Program, Meyer engages audiences across industries with profound insights on leadership skills, team building, the keys to empowering people to achieve things they never thought possible, and turning setbacks into victories.
Meyer has become one of the most decorated college football coaches in history, receiving such honors as “Coach of the Decade,” and several “Coach of the Year” awards, among others. Faith and philanthropy are key tenets in Meyer’s life and have contributed to his successes on and off the field. Joining the fight against cancer, Meyer and his wife, Shelley, founded the Urban and Shelley Meyer Fund for Cancer Research in 2012, a support fund dedicated to advancing research for all cancers. Their fund helps recruit experts in the field to Ohio State University’s Comprehensive Cancer Center. Meyer is an expert at empowering people to achieve things they might never have thought possible, and inspires audiences to create clear goals and a winning strategy to execute them. Audiences consistently share positive feedback about his motivational keynotes, like his address at Grambling State University: “Anytime you get someone of his caliber to spend an evening, an entire day with you, it’s an honor and truly amazing” and ”Anybody that can make you better in a matter of minutes is someone that you want to be around.”
Van Jones’ honest and poignant social commentary has made him one of the most compelling and powerful public voices in America. A U.S. media personality, New York Times bestselling author, social entrepreneur, and world-class change maker, his reach transcends age, race, geography and political ideology.
A CNN political contributor, Jones is the host of The Van Jones Show, in which he offers his unique take on the future political landscape, and The Redemption Project, which is focused on criminal justice reform. A go-to voice of reason, heralded for his bipartisan, solutions-oriented approach, Jones burst into the American consciousness during the 2016 presidential campaign with an unscripted, truth-telling style and an already established history of bridge-building across party lines.
A longtime progressive activist with deep roots in the conservative South, he has made it his mission to challenge voters and viewers to stand in one another’s shoes and disagree constructively. He pushes people on both the left and the right to be better with experience working with the last four consecutive presidents to sign legislation on issues like prison reform, the green jobs act, and opioid recovery, Jones is a true Washington insider. He is also the author of three New York Times bestselling books, Beyond the Messy Truth, Rebuild the Dream, and The Green Collar Economy, and the host of the Webby Award-nominated podcast Uncommon Ground, where he is on a journey to find unifying solutions to our country’s biggest problems. A dynamic speaker sought-out to speak at financial institutions and college campuses alike, he offers unvarnished and future-looking analysis on politics, policy, climate change, and being a change-maker in a complicated world.
Daniel Hoffman is a former Senior Executive Clandestine Service Officer with the Central Intelligence Agency. His combined 30 years of distinguished government service included high-level positions not only within the CIA, but also with the U.S. military, U.S. Department of State, and U.S. Department of Commerce. Assignments included tours of duty in the former Soviet Union, Europe, and war zones in both the Middle East and South Asia. During this time, Mr. Hoffman developed extensive, substantive expertise on geopolitical and transnational issues related to the Middle East, South Asia, Russia, counterterrorism, and cyber and counter-intelligence. Now in the private sector, Mr. Hoffman remains highly regarded for his policy experience and his work with foreign officials in the regions where he served. He has been a Fox News contributor since April 2018, and serves on the advisory board of the Federal Enforcement Homeland Security Foundation.
Tina Tchen shares hope, ideas and strategies that inspire others to recognize the power of diverse teams and keep equality on the forefront of the global agenda.
A high-powered lawyer, Tina’s career accomplishments have established her as a powerful advocate for gender equality. As the former President and CEO of TIME’S UP Now and the TIME’S UP Foundation, Tina oversaw the organizations’ efforts to change culture, companies, and laws in order to make work safe, fair, and dignified for women of all kinds. In 2017, Tina co-founded the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund, which has connected more than 3,600 people to legal or PR support for sexual harassment across dozens of different industries. Tina currently serves as the Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy and Policy Officer for the Obama Foundation.
During her eight years at the White House, Tina served as chief of staff to First Lady Michelle Obama, special assistant to President Barack Obama, and the executive director of the Council on Women and Girls, leading the first-ever White House Summit on Working Families and the first-ever United State of Women Summit.
A passionate champion for women’s and children’s issues, including women in positions of leadership, Tina shares her unique perspective and insights on workforce diversity and inclusion, breaking through male-dominated industries, and ending campus assault. Energetic, authentic and engaging on stage, she empowers the next generation to raise their voices and take action now to secure a better tomorrow for women and minorities across the country and world.
Golf Major Champion, Olympian and Ryder Cup Captain Padraig Harrington has a career total of more than 30 victories around the world, and has achieved great distinction in the sport, not only for his titles, but also for his work ethic, affability, and dogged determination. As the Irish Times said, "Harrington’s discipline, earning him the reputation as the hardest working player on tour, almost always the last to leave the practice range, stood him well." The New York Times points out that Harrington "Chooses to Believe" and credits his hard work, tenacity and attititude in achieving such high ranks in the sport.
Padraig’s professional career began in 1995, when he secured his European Tour card, shortly before gaining his maiden tour victory at the 1996 Spanish Open after only 10 events as a professional. In 1999 he fulfilled one of his career ambitions, qualifying for the European Ryder Cup team, thus beginning an association with the famous trophy that continues to the present day. Three Major victories in the space of 13 months helped him to reach a career high of third in the World Rankings and earned him the European Tour, PGA Tour and PGA of America Player of the Year awards. In addition, he won the Golf Writers’ trophies on both sides of the Atlantic and the European Tour Shot of the Year. Padraig represented Ireland at the 2016 Olympics.
Padraig is actively involved in many charities including the Special Olympics and cancer awareness. Padraig's father died from oesophageal cancer and now helps to raise awareness about cancer signs and treatments, saying: "When you get a symptom, don't ignore it. Do something about it."
Clune Construction sums up hosts' reaction to an event with Padraig: “We have had the pleasure of engaging Padraig for a number of our corporate events and while his golf was the draw, the highlight on each occasion ended up being his speech presentation and interaction with our clients “
Award-winning screenwriter and director, New York Times bestselling author, and U.S. Navy veteran Antwone Fisher is a renowned poet, storyteller, and advocate for children. Following eleven years of service in the U.S. Navy and an honorable discharge, Fisher began a decades-long career in Hollywood as an award-winning screenwriter, producer, and director. His autobiographical Antwone Fisher won numerous awards including AFI’s Movie of the Year, the renowned Humanitas Prize, and an NAACP Image Award. Fisher is the author of New York Times bestseller Finding Fish: A Memoir, Who Will Cry for the Little Boy?: Poems, and A Boy Should Know How to Tie a Tie: And Other Lessons for Succeeding in Life, which won an NAACP Award for Outstanding Literary Work. After his own time in the foster care system, which included being placed with an abusive foster family, Fisher became a passionate advocate for children, raising awareness about the adoption and foster care systems, and sharing his personal journey cultivating resilience, self-worth, and overcoming obstacles to lay a foundation for success.
Fisher was named one of Variety’s “Fifty People to Watch,” one of Fade In’s “100 People in Hollywood You Need to Know,” and received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters Degree from Cleveland State University. In 2013, he testified before the Senate Finance committee, at a hearing titled: “The Antwone Fisher Story as a Case Study for Child Welfare.” Fisher is a gifted keynote speaker, receiving rave reviews like: ”Antwone did an amazing job at our Hope Through Housing Gala. His speech was exactly what we envisioned. His contribution was invaluable to our success.” (Hope Through Housing Foundation)
Nate Boyer is what many would deem a renaissance man. The Army Green Beret – who deployed to both Iraq & Afghanistan over his 10-year military career - is also a philanthropist, humanitarian, and former football player for the University of Texas Longhorns despite never playing a down of organized football prior to his time in the Special Forces. In 2015 he became the oldest rookie in NFL history at the age of 34 while playing for the Seattle Seahawks. Being a member of both the military veteran and athlete community, he saw an opportunity to team up both populations to tackle their transition struggles together through Merging Vets & Players (MVP), a charity he co-founded with Jay Glazer. Nate currently works in Film and TV as a producer, director, writer, actor, and host. After from being cast in several movies and shows, in 2018 he co-created, executive produced, and hosted the NFL Network series Indivisible with Nate Boyer, which featured NFL cities, players, and community leaders across America, discussing issues relevant to their communities and how football unites us all to solve these problems. Aside from directing his first feature film in 2020, MVP, Nate is currently hosting the new Discovery Channel series, Life Raft which premieres worldwide next spring
Award-winning community organizer, political strategist, and jazz singer LaTosha Brown is a trusted expert and resource in political strategy, rural development, and special programming for philanthropies. Brown is the co-Founder of Black Voters Matter Fund – a power-building southern-based civic engagement organization – leveraging over two decades of experience as a revered institution-builder in non-profit and philanthropy sectors. A renowned philanthropic consultant, she has served as an advisor for groups such as the Ford Foundation, Friends of New Orleans, and the Clinton Global Initiative for over 25 years, and is the principle owner of TruthSpeaks Consulting, Inc. Brown is the Visionary, Founder, and Co-Anchor of the Southern Black Girls & Women’s Consortium, a $100M, 10-year initiative to invest in organizations that serve Black women and girls. She has launched and served countless organizations with her nationally recognized expertise in issues related to social justice, economic and leadership development, wealth creation, and civil rights.
Brown has served as an American Democracy Fellow with the Charles Warren Center at Harvard University, and is a Senior Practice Fellow in American Democracy at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at Harvard’s Kennedy School. She serves on the board of the National Coalition on Black Civic Engagement (NCBCP), the Southern Documentary Fund, and is an active member of several national and international organizations. She and her work have received numerous awards, including the Redbook Magazine Spirit and Strength Award, NCBCP’s Spirit of Democracy Award, the White House Champion of Change Award, the Philanthropy Women Breakthrough Award for Thought and Strategy Leadership, and many more. Sought after for her uplifting keynote speeches, Brown shares message of hope and shared humanity, inviting audiences to envision a future and a democracy we deserve.
Comedian, writer, and producer Cristela Alonzo made history as the first Latina woman to create, write, and star in a network TV show, Cristela. She developed a comedy special for Netflix Lower Classy and served as a fan-favorite guest host on ABC’s The View. Alonzo uses humor to shine a light on bigger issues, and makes us laugh while she opens our eyes. Her comedic point of view was honed through her experiences growing up as a first-generation Mexican-American, and she is a masterful storyteller, as evidenced in her bestselling memoir full of humor and heart, Music to My Years: A Mixtape-Memoir of Growing Up and Standing Up. Alonzo mixes sketch comedy and social commentary in her podcast To Be Continued, and her stories range from the ridiculous to the sobering and have also been shared in interviews on NPR , the Chicago Tribune and It's Been A Minute With Sam Sanders. Cristela is a dedicated advocate for a variety of philanthropies focused on immigration, citizenship, economic opportunity. As she says: “I am a first-generation American born to an undocumented mother that taught me to love this country. I believe it is my duty to give back and fight so that everyone can get the same thing my family got: a chance.”
Award-winning restaurateur and celebrity chef Jeremy Fall is an innovator across mediums and industries who is redefining what it means to be a “cultural icon.” The only child of a French Afro-Caribbean mother and a Tunisian Jewish father, he grew up in the restaurant business and opened five successful eateries by the time he was twenty-seven years old, including Nighthawk Breakfast Bar, Nighthawk AM, Easy’s, Tinfoil Liquor & Grocery, and Paperboy. By age twenty-nine, he was on Forbes’ “30 Under 30 List” and had sold his successful restaurant group. Credited as the first chef and restaurateur to sign with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation, Fall recently coproduced and costarred in the Facebook Watch show Beats for Breakfast with singer-songwriter Miguel. Bringing together leading edge thinking from multiple industries, Fall’s insights have been sought after by groups including ZipRecruiter, Cameo, Apple, W3BX, NFTNYC, UCSB, Facebook, and more.
In addition, Fall is the creator of media company Probably Nothing, an online NFT education platform that aims to bridge the gap between metaverse-savvy early adopters and the masses. His project ‘golden egg club’ is at its core – an art collection featuring hand-drawn elements by Fall, which celebrates his career milestones and may expand to reflect future accomplishments. The collection will act as a private membership, providing a space for Fall to cook exclusive meals for the group, inspire creative collaborations, brand partnerships, and more. Fall and Probably Nothing have partnered with Warner Records on the launch of a Web3 record label, expanding Fall’s impact. When it comes to the Web3 space, Fall continues to act as a conduit for the dynamic conversations about how food, technology, and culture intersect now and in the next iteration of the future.
CINDY PARLOW CONE
Three-time Olympian and first female President of U.S. Soccer Cindy Parlow Cone made history as the first female President of U.S. Soccer. She is also first person to hold the position who also played for a senior U.S. National Team. As a player, Cone is a National Soccer Hall of Fame inductee, and a three-time Olympian with two gold and one silver medal. The star striker has overseen major shifts in the Federation’s priorities, focusing on taking meaningful action in the diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging space and putting an emphasis on team building throughout the organization. She has overseen multiple major commercial agreements, was instrumental in resolving the Women’s National Team landmark lawsuit for equal pay, and helped U.S. Soccer reach a historic collective bargaining agreement that guarantees equal pay – including World Cup prize money – the first country to do so.
Cone has won both the Hermann Trophy and the M.A.C. Player of the Year awards, and is the youngest player ever to win both an Olympic gold medal and a Women’s World Cup title. Cone serves as the Girls’ Director for NCFC Youth, and sits on the board for Goals for Girls, a non-profit that uses soccer to teach leadership skills to young women. She has previously served on the Athlete’s Council as well as numerous committees at FIFA and at U.S. Soccer, including the FIFA Steering Committee. Cone offers impactful insights from her incredible career on and off the field, as well as lessons in adversity and leadership that inspire audiences to rise to any challenge.
Former NFL linebacker and President of Sky Limit Crane & Rigging Sam Barrington has pivoted from a notable career as a professional athlete to developing a business portfolio that is grabbing headlines. Sam was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 2014, where he made a major impact on and off the field. He was named the NFL Players Association Community MVP for his commitment to giving back to his community. He also played for the Kansas City Chiefs, the New Orleans Saints, and the Buffalo Bills. After a career-ending injury, Sam pivoted to business, and has amassed a growing portfolio that includes Sky Limit Crane & Rigging which specializes in heavy machinery, specifically mobile cranes, as reported by Forbes. As Sam told Forbes, he strives to create a business culture where people can thrive and control their own destiny.
Barrington recently joined the University of South Florida Foundation Board of Directors, his alma mater. He brings a unique perspective, having played college football at USF, and returning as a business and community leader. In addition to serving on the board, Sam also leverages his professional football experience as an analyst for the Vinik Sports Group, providing color commentary for USF. Barrington was the Packers nominee for the 2015 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award, and has received the President’s Volunteer Service Award, Pop Warner’s annual humanitarian award, as well as the USF Alumni Association Outstanding Young Alumni Award in 2021. He was also named the 2022 Onyx Magazine Man of the Year. In compelling and motivational speaking engagements, Sam shares his commitment to continuously seeking growth opportunities, his leadership insights, and takeaways for creating a positive workplace culture.
Mike Birbiglia is a comedian, storyteller, director and actor who has performed for audiences worldwide, from the Sydney Opera House to Broadway. His most recent shows, The New One, Thank God for Jokes, and My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend can be found on Netflix. Additionally, Birbiglia is a filmmaker who wrote, directed, and starred in the films Sleepwalk With Me and Don’t Think Twice. Currently he is the host of the weekly podcast, Mike Birbiglia's Working It Out.
His first book, Sleepwalk With Me and Other Painfully True Stories, was a New York Times bestseller, and he is the author of the new book, The New One: Painfully True Stories from a Reluctant Dad, with poems by J. Hope Stein. As an actor Birbiglia has appeared on Inside Amy Schumer, Girls, and Broad City, and in the films Trainwreck, The Fault in Our Stars, and Popstar. He plays Danny Pearson on Orange Is the New Black and Oscar Langstraat on Showtime’s Billions. Birbiglia is currently on Broadway with the new show Old Man and the Pool.
Winner of three Tony Awards and the Pulitzer Prize, James Lapine is a writer, director, and Broadway legend. Known for genre-defining powerhouse collaborations with Stephen Sondheim, he was the writer and director for Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, Passion, the multi-media review Sondheim on Sondheim, and co-produced and directed the revelatory HBO documentary Six by Sondheim for which he garnered an Emmy nomination and a Peabody Award. A prolific creator, he wrote and directed the Tony Award-winning Falsettos, the film Custody, and wrote the film adaptation for Into the Woods, as well as numerous Broadway and off-Broadway productions. Lapine is a beloved and eloquent titan of the theater, sharing star-studded stories and creative insights with enraptured audiences.
An instantaneous New York Times bestseller, Lapine’s book Putting it Together: How Stephen Sondheim and I Created Sunday in the Park with George chronicles the nuances of a powerful collaboration and the creative process that produced the Pulitzer Prize-winning Drama. A consummate artist, Lapine was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 2011, and in 2015 received the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers awards for a lifetime of exceptional achievement in the theatre. Lapine is a devoted student of humanity, enriching conversations with insatiable curiosity, humor, and poignant observations on art and life.
Stephanie Shepherd is an environmental advocate and social entrepreneur. Formerly the Chief Operating Officer of Kardashian West Brands, she has since established her own platform. With close to 2 million followers, Stephanie's expertise is leveraging her social influence to inspire global activism.
In addition to co-founding Future Earth, Shepherd is an ambassador for “Days For Girls International,” “The Environmental Working Group,” and a board member of Former Vice President Al Gore’s “The Climate Reality Project.” She also recently joined "World War Zero," a climate change initiative led by Former Secretary of State, John Kerry. Through her advocacy, Shepherd has generated millions of dollars and thousands of volunteer hours for organizations who, like her, relentlessly pursue human flourishing and environmental preservation.
Renowned head basketball coach, philanthropist, and activist LeVelle Moton is a community-focused leader and expert in developing values-based missions, strategies for meaningful teamwork, and finding your purpose. Moton graduated from North Carolina Central University as the school’s third all-time leading scorer, having earned the nickname ‘Poetry ‘n Moton’. He returned as Assistant Coach, eventually becoming the school’s Head Coach, and lead his team to 8 championship titles. He has received 11 different “Coach of the Year” awards and numerous nominations, and is highly sought-after for his insights about leadership, inspiring your team, and making a difference in your community.
Moton is the CEO and Founder of the Velle Cares Foundation, whose mission is to serve and assist community-based organizations that promote health, education, and life skills for children and family in at-risk situations. He hosts notable annual events such as the ‘Back to School Community Day Event’ and the ‘Single Mother Salute’, among others, to enrich and give back to his community. Moton presents awards of Courage, Strength, Perseverance, and a “Single Mother of the Year” award named after his mother Hattie McDougald. Moton is an in-demand speaker who shares personal stories, humor, and takeaways that make an impact on audiences of all kinds.
Award-winning performer, recording artist, and entrepreneur Julianne Hough is an energetic force who shares her message of self-acceptance, creativity, and wellness in empowering engagements. A true triple threat, Hough is known worldwide for her dancing, acting, and music, and became a household name as a two-time professional champion on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars. After multiple wins, she went on to judge the series, and won an Emmy for her original choreography. She is the founder of KINRGY, an accessible and fun movement experience based in her belief that movement creates energetic health. Hough and KINRGY were a vital part of Oprah’s 2020 Vision Tour. She is fulfilling a childhood dream with her Broadway debut in the critically acclaimed POTUS. With each of her endeavors, Hough expands her portfolio and her impact with audiences of all kinds.
A serial entrepreneur, Hough has collaborated on a shoe line with Vince Camuto, a capsule collection with MPG Activewear, released a series of dance-based fitness DVDs, and is the Co-Founder of Fresh Vine Wine. She is known for films including Safe Haven, Paradise, Rock of Ages, the remake of Footloose, and more, and starred as Sandy in FOX’s Grease Live! Her self-titled debut album hit #1 on the Billboard Country charts and earned her two Academy of Music Country Awards for “Top New Female Vocalist” and “Top New Artist.” Hough has also released the powerful self-love anthem “Transform” and The Julianne Hough Holiday Collection. From holistic movement and healing, to achieving next-level dreams, to engaging with compassion, Hough shares her warmth and uplifting insights in memorable events.
Stephanie Izard, James Beard “Best Chef: Great Lakes” recipient 2013, and 2011 Food & Wine “Best New Chef,” is the Executive Chef and Owner of five Chicago restaurants: Girl & the Goat, Little Goat, Duck Duck Goat, Cabra, as well as bakery Sugargoat, and two Los Angeles restaurants - Girl & the Goat LA and Cabra LA. Izard also won the coveted title of “Iron Chef” in 2017 and was the 4th winner of Bravo’s Top Chef in 2008.
A 2011 James Beard “Best New Restaurant” nominee, Girl & the Goat has been praised by high-profile publications such as Saveur, New York Times, Food & Wine, and Better Homes and Gardens. Little Goat, Stephanie’s highly successful follow-up to Girl & the Goat, features classic, Americana cuisine in a diner setting. In March 2016, Stephanie opened her third restaurant, a Chinese-inspired concept called Duck Duck Goat in Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood. In 2019, Stephanie’s Peruvian-inspired eatery, Cabra, opened on the rooftop of The Hoxton, Chicago and in 2020 Izard opened Sugargoat, an imaginative sweets shop and bakery. Most recently, Izard opened her first two restaurants outside of Chicago: Girl & the Goat and Cabra, both in downtown Los Angeles.
Izard also created a retail product line called “This Little Goat,” consisting of globally inspired cooking sauces, spice mixes, and crunches for home cooks and currently ships her sweets from Sugargoat nationwide in partnership with Goldbelly. Izard’s first book, Girl in the Kitchen, was released in 2011 and her second book Gather & Graze was released in April 2018.
More information on Stephanie Izard can be found at www.stephanieizard.com or follow her on Instagram at @stephanieizard.
Philanthropist Daniel Germain, CM CQ MSM, is a true social entrepreneurship visionary who has dedicated his life to helping underprivileged children. Germain is the Founder of the Breakfast Club of Canada, a charity that promotes and assists the establishment and maintenance of school breakfast programs in Canada. After growing up in a disadvantaged neighborhood, he went on humanitarian trips abroad and returned to Canada with the dream of breaking the circle of poverty. With the goal of helping children who were deprived of a vital element for their academic and social success – a nutritious breakfast – he founded the Quebec Breakfast Club. In 2005, the Quebec Breakfast Club was recognized by the United Nations as one of the best school meal programs in the world. Germain then founded Breakfast Clubs of Canada, launched an international co-operation project for young people in Quebec, and established the Montreal Millennium Summit – an international forum that puts forward ideas and projects related to the well-being of children in the world.
A true social visionary, Daniel has received numerous awards for his body of work, including the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and the Quebec YMCA Peace Medal for his commitment to youth. He is a Member of the Order of Canada and a Knight of the Ordre national du Québec. Daniel is the founder of the Children’s Hour World Campaign launching on November 20, 2023. Children’s Hour is a world-wide movement to address global child poverty, climate change and food insecurity, the plight of young girls and women, and Indigenous people. He has been in-demand with groups like McDonalds, Walmart, Staples, Cirque De Soleil, Coca Cola, and more to share his vision.
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," and 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.
A successful entrepreneur and venture capitalist, Nataly found that after reaching the highest levels of corporate America, she still wasn’t happy. Nataly came to the United States as a refugee from Russia when she was 13 and overcame significant obstacles on her way to achieving career success. But while her achievements left her proud, she was unfulfilled, so she became inspired to figure out how to live a truly meaningful, happier life. In the process, she found the answers each person and organization needs to unlock their maximum potential, making them not just more productive and innovative, but helping them to find more joy in everyday moments and get through challenging ones with resilience.
The CEO and Founder of Happier—an award-winning global technology and learning platform—Nataly is a leading expert on how people and organizations can transform their individual and team culture so that they can thrive. Having helped more than a million people and employees dramatically improve their emotional health and resilience by cultivating her Five Core Happier Skills, Nataly demonstrates that happiness is not just a feeling, but a skill that can be learned and improved through practice, and that in turn boosts creativity, productivity and profits.
Nataly’s received standing ovations from groups such as Million Dollar Roundtable, Fortune's Tech Brainstorm, SXSW, Harvard Women's Leadership Conference, Gillette, Pendulum Leadership Summit, Atrium Innocations, TEDx Boston, and many more, thanks to her instantly implementable takeaways that transform the way people work and live. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Fortune, New York Magazine, Time Magazine and more, and her new book Happier Now: How to Stop Striving For Perfection and Embrace Everyday Moments (Even the Difficult Ones) provides a roadmap for how to cultivate genuine, lasting happiness in every facet of our lives.
BRANDON KYLE GOODMAN
Actor, writer, and social justice advocate Brandon Kyle Goodman has emerged in the entertainment industry as a powerful force with a voice to be reckoned with. As an actor, Goodman is known for Netflix’s Feel the Beat, Amazon’s Modern Love and People Just Do Nothing, Alive in Denver, The Blackout, The Relationtrip, Hulu’s Plus One, and Blue Fox’s Papi Chulo, among others. As a writer, Goodman’s work is showcased in the acclaimed Netflix animated series Big Mouth and its spin-off series Human Resources. Goodman is also the creator, writer, and star of their solo show The Latrell Show, performed virtually in partnership with the IAMA Theatre Company. Goodman is proud to be a nonbinary, queer Black leader and a staunch advocate for Black lives, and is a sought after voice in the vital conversations shaping our world today.
Goodman continues conversations and meaningful action on behalf of Black lives through their podcasts: Black Folx, which features Black personalities of various identities, and Do the Work, discussing all things race and personal relationships. They will also co-host the upcoming podcast series accompanying HBO’s In Treatment, discussing mental health representation in communities of color. This fall Goodman will release their first book You Gotta Be You, which explores the intersections of their race, sexuality, and gender. In their writing as well as in memorable keynote speeches, Goodman shares insights on nuanced topics with humor and authenticity that will resonate with audiences of all kinds.
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)
Internationally renowned poet, New York Times bestselling author of 36 books, educator, and publisher Kwame Alexander was the Founding Editor of VERSIFY – a publishing imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt whose mission is to “change the world one word at a time.” His next book, The Door of No Return, is planned as the first of trilogy. Kwame has led cultural exchange delegations to Brazil, Italy, Singapore, and Ghana, where he opened the Barbara E. Alexander Memorial Library and Health Clinic in Ghana, as a part of LEAP for Ghana – now LEAP Global – an international literacy program he co-founded. He is the Writer and Executive Producer of the Disney+ series The Crossover, based on his bestselling novel of the same name, is the founder of Big Sea Entertainment, and is the Executive Producer and Host of the groundbreaking reality TV series America’s Next Great Author. In sought-after engagements, Kwame offers inspiring insights and his powerful storytelling resonates with audiences of all kinds.
Twice long-listed for the National Book Award, Kwame is the recipient of numerous awards and honors including The Newbery Award, The Coretta Scott King Author Honor, three NAACP Image Award Nominations, the Inaugural Pat Conroy Legacy Award, The Dominion Energy Strong Men and Women of Virginia, and the Penn State Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award. A regular contributor to NPR’s Morning Edition and NPR’s Poet in Residence, he has appeared in or on: The Today Show, Comedy Central, BET, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Parade Magazine, and ESPN’s TheUndefeated.com. Kwame has delivered hundreds of riveting keynote speeches for corporations, educational institutions, commencements, and annual organization conferences such as Hallmark, Qualtrics, Kidscreen, Teachers College Columbia University, OpenText, and The International Literacy Association.
Award-winning chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and media personality Bobby Flay offers high-energy, dynamic insights on business success, perseverance, food and lifestyle, and balancing the many flavors in our work and lives.
The first chef to ever receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Bobby Flay is behind famed restaurants in New York City, Las Vegas and beyond, such as Gato, Amalfi, Bobby Flay Steak, and Bar Americain. He also several outposts of his fast-casual concept, Bobby’s Burgers, across the United States. He's the author of 16 best-selling cookbooks, an Emmy award-winning star of countless Food Network programs, and both a James Beard and Rising Star of the Year Award-winner.
A powerhouse in the kitchen, on-screen, and at events, Bobby has been sought-out to speak (and do cooking presentations) everywhere from Google to The New York Times. He leaves audiences energized and empowered to improve the way they live and work.
Public servant and New York Times bestselling author Huma Abedin began her career in national politics as an intern in First Lady Hillary Clinton’s office in 1996, later serving as a Senior Advisor to Senator Clinton and Traveling Chief of Staff for Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign. She was appointed Deputy Chief of Staff at the U.S. Department of State, served as Vice Chair of Hillary for America in 2016, and currently serves as Hillary Clinton’s Chief of Staff. Abedin is the New York Times bestselling author of BOTH/AND: A Life in Many Worlds, a stunning memoir grappling with family, legacy, identity, faith, and more through her profound believe that in an either/or world, she can be both/and.
Abedin has been featured in Vogue, The Washington Post, The Cut, Puck, The New York Times, and more, and appeared on Bloomberg, CBS Sunday Morning, The Today Show, Morning Joe, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Late Night with Seth Meyers, The Lead with Jake Tapper, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, Drew Barrymore, BBC, The Guardian, Snap Chat Good Luck America, Twitter Spaces, among many others. She has been sought-after for events with groups like 92Y, Forbes 30/50 Women’s Summit, The Asia Society Texas, and many others. Abedin shares her journey through opportunities and obstacles, as well as insider insight into the political landscape and today’s most pressing issues, with compassion, courage, resilience, and grace.
CNBC correspondent and author Julia Boorstin delivers insightful analysis with a focus on the intersection of media and technology. Boorstin serves as CNBC’s Senior Media & Tech Correspondent, playing a central role on the network’s bicoastal tech-focused program TechCheck. Before joining CNBC as an on-air reporter in 2006, she served as a reporter for Fortune magazine, and was an intern for Vice President Gore’s domestic policy office. Boorstin released her debut book When Women Lead: What They Achieve, Why They Succeed, and How We Can Learn from Them in October 2022, which features lessons from the leadership approaches of women running the world’s most innovative and successful companies.
Boorstin has contributed to CNN and CNN Headline News, among others. She is the creator of the CNBC “Disruptor 50,” an annual list she curates highlighting private companies transforming the economy and challenging companies in established industries. She also helped launch the network’s ‘Closing the Gap’ initiative, which covers people and companies closing gender and diversity gaps. In her writing, reporting, and speaking, Boorstin is a sought-after expert exploring groundbreaking leadership and business innovations that resonate across industries.
Celebrated chef, author, and beloved TV personality Kardea Brown is a contemporary Southern cook who shares mouthwatering recipes and insights about cooking, culture, and coming together. She is the host of Food Network’s Delicious Miss Brown, her eponymous show, as well as Cupcake Championship and The Great Soul Food Cook-Off. Brown is of Gullah/Geechee descent, a term used to describe a distinct group of African Americans living in the coastal areas of South Carolina and Georgia who have managed to preserve much of their West African language, culture, and cuisine. Brown is the creator of the pop-up restaurant and social destination New Gullah Supper Club, where the menu pays homage to the dishes her grandmother and mother passed down to her.
Brown has appeared on Beat Bobby Flay, Chopped Junior, Cooks vs. Cons, Family Food Showdown, and Farmhouse Rules. She has released her first cookbook, The Way Home: A Celebration of Sea Islands Food and Family with over 100 Recipes, which is already the #1 New Release in Amazon’s ‘African Cooking, Food and Wine’ category and #1 in the ‘Soul Food Cooking, Food and Wine’ category. Brown’s engaging and interactive events are sought-after for memorable programming for audiences of all kinds.
Award-winning design veteran, podcaster, and author Mauro Porcini is PepsiCo’s first ever Chief Design Officer. Since joining the food & beverage corporation in 2012, Procini has infused design thinking into PepsiCo’s culture and is leading a new approach to innovation by design that impacts the company’s product platforms and brands. Leading international teams, his focus extends from physical to virtual expressions of the brands – including fashion and art collaborations, retail activation, digital media, and beyond. He is the author of The Human Side of Innovation: The Power of People in Love with People, which focuses on innovation, design and leadership and was named a Gold Winner of the Better Future New York Design Award. Porcini offers insights from his journey across startups and multinational corporations for building high-impact brand and design efforts that put people first.
Prior to joining PepsiCo, Mauro served as the first ever Chief Design Officer at 3M, where his mission was to build and nurture a design sensitive culture in a technology driven global corporation. He is also the author of L’età dell’eccellenze: Come innovazione e creatività possono costruire un mondo migliore, which is in its fifth reprint, and hosts the successful video podcast In Your Shoes - with Mauro Porcini, where he interviews inspiring personalities from the creative community worldwide. Mauro has been a presenter and judge on CBS’ New York by Design and Amazon’s America by Design. He has been on the board of directors for several organizations, and currently serves as the President of the Politecnico of Milan Foundation in the United States (Fellows of Politecnico), sits on the board of directors of the Design Management Institute, and on the advisory council of other design, art, innovation, and business institutions.
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. Next fall Apple TV will release 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."
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. 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 forthcoming 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 America, Today, The Chew, The Talk, Shine On With Reese Witherspoon, and Nightline. She has also been featured in Inc., O Magazine, Vanity Fair, Bon Appetit, Food and Wine, The 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.
Gold Medal Olympic figure skater Nathan Chen is setting records and redefining men’s figure skating, one extraordinary win at a time. With his inspiring performances at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Chen cemented his position as ‘Quad King’ – landing multiple quadruple jumps in both his programs and setting Olympic records. Starting on the ice at age 3, he built an impressive competitive resume, and in 2017 he became the youngest man to win the U.S. Championship in more than five decades. Chen has earned numerous titles, winning three World Championships, six Grand Prix events, two Grand Prix Finals, and six U.S. titles, with flawless technique, fearless programs, and exuberant performances. With his second trip to the Olympics, Chen is the first Asian American man to win an Olympic title, and the first Asian American male skater to win U.S., World, and Olympic titles. An expert on developing a winning mindset, Chen offers insights about cultivating focus, harnessing the power of positive self-talk, and enjoying the moment, that have a major impact on audiences of all kinds.
Chen has been featured in GQ, Vox, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Teen Vogue, Forbes, and many more. Following his historic win, Chen thanked figure skating legend Michelle Kwan for being a role model and dedicated his gold medal to his mother for “her never-ending support.” In addition to accolades on the podium, he was named the 2019 Team USA Male Olympic Athlete of the Year, and was included on Forbes’ 2019 “30 Under 30: Sports” list. In captivating conversations, Chen shares his strategies for overcoming obstacles and his triumphant journey to winning Olympic gold.
STEVEN T. MNUCHIN
Steven Terner Mnuchin was sworn in as the 77th Secretary of the Treasury on February 13, 2017.
As Secretary, Mr. Mnuchin was responsible for the U.S. Treasury, whose mission is to maintain a strong economy, foster economic growth, and create job opportunities by promoting the conditions that enable prosperity at home and abroad. He was also responsible for strengthening national security by combating economic threats and protecting our financial system, as well as managing the U.S. Government’s finances.
Secretary Mnuchin played a pivotal role in advancing the Administration’s economic agenda, including the passage and implementation of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and the bipartisan CARES ACTs . He also led the Treasury Department’s regulatory reform efforts. Secretary Mnuchin chaired the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) and was a member of the National Security Council. He was responsible for using economic tools to combat terrorist financing and other threats to the United States and our allies.
Prior to his confirmation he also served as Founder, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer of Dune Capital Management. He founded OneWest Bank Group LLC and served as its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer until its sale to CIT Group Inc. Earlier in his career, Secretary Mnuchin worked at The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. where he was a Partner and served as Chief Information Officer. He was recently named as non-executive Board Chair of Satellogic, a satellite imagery provider to government and commercial sectors. He has extensive experience in global financial markets and investments.
JOHN DELLA VOLPE
Youth expert, pollster, strategist, and bestselling author John Della Volpe is the Director of Polling at the Harvard Kennedy School Institute of Politics, where he leads polling initiatives on understanding American youth. Della Volpe was referred to by the Washington Post as one of the world’s leading authorities on global sentiment, opinion, and influence, and is the Founder of SocialSphere, a public opinion and analytics company. His new book, an Amazon Editor’s Pick for “Best Nonfiction,” Fight: How Gen Z is Channeling Their Fear and Passion to Save America, is an impeccable investigation into how Generation Z – those born in the 1990s and early 2000s – are rising to the unprecedented challenges of their time to take control of their country and our future. The recipient of an Eisenhower Fellowship, his research focus is data-based as well as qualitative, and he has advised heads of state, military generals, and blue-chip brands around the world, unlocking the secrets to winning the hearts, minds, and loyalty of Gen Z.
Della Volpe was appointed to the U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission on Media in 2011, and serves as senior advisor and pollster to President Joe Biden. His work has been featured in The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, TIME, and more, and he is a political contributor on MSNBC offering his insights and strategies for engaging the Millennial generation.
Award-winning actor, serial entrepreneur, and New York Times bestselling author Eva Longoria is paving the way for future women and minority producers, directors, and industry leaders in Hollywood and beyond. Since her rise to fame in ABC’s Desperate Housewives, Longoria has established herself as an in-demand director for television and a media trailblazer through her UnbeliEVAble Entertainment production company, which focuses on purposeful projects that accurately represent stories of the Latinx and other underrepresented communities. Longoria is also a partner in The MACRO Episodic Lab Powered by The Black List, which seeks to discover, support, and empower storytellers of color who typically do not have access to the traditional Hollywood system.
A dedicated philanthropist and activist, Longoria was named one of People Magazine’s “Women Changing the World.” She lends her voice to issues from immigration to reproductive rights, co-founded the nonprofit Eva’s Heroes, and established the Eva Longoria Foundation to help Latinas build better futures through educational programs, scholarships, mentorship, and entrepreneurship. Longoria is a co-founder of the Latino Victory Fund, a movement building political power in the Latinx community, and She Se Puede, a digital lifestyle community and media platform. Her cookbook Eva’s Kitchen is a New York Times bestseller. Longoria empowers audiences of all kinds with stories of her personal journey and insights about fearless, values-driven leadership.
Tom Perez is a nationally recognized civil rights lawyer, public policy leader, and Obama administration cabinet Secretary who has spent his entire career in public service at the federal, state and local level. He has held senior leadership positions in a host of key government agencies and nonprofits, focusing on civil rights, labor issues, and immigrant rights. He recently completed a successful four-year tenure as Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC). Perez took over a DNC in disarray, and overhauled its critical infrastructure, broke fundraising records, and rebuilt voter trust and party unity. His transformation of the DNC enabled Democrats to win key victories across the country, beginning in 2017, and culminating with the historic election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris in 2020, following a primary process that featured the largest field in party history.
Author, Emmy-winning journalist, and Latinx advocate Paola Ramos is sought after for her informative, relatable, and engaging programs. Ramos uses multi-media platforms – in both English and Spanish – to uplift the voices of marginalized communities, break down stereotypes, and mobilize people toward civic engagement. She was the former Deputy Director of Hispanic Media for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 Presidential Campaign, a political appointee during the Obama Administration, and also served in President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign. Ramos is a host for VICE News, as well as a contributor for MSNBC and Telemundo News. An in-demand voice for making sense of the latest headlines as well as meaningful shifts in culture and politics, Ramos has been an impactful speaker for groups such as Comcast, Planned Parenthood, UTA, Athena Health, Syracuse University, Orrick, and more.
Ramos is the author of Finding Latinx: In Search of the Voices Redefining Latino Identity, an empowering cross-country travelogue for which she embarked on a journey to find the communities of people defining the controversial term, “Latinx.” Ramos and her work have been featured in Forbes, Washington Post, The Cut, Hola!, among many others. Ramos is a Hauser Leader in the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard Kennedy School, where she received her Masters in Public Policy, and recently joined her alma mater Barnard College’s Board of Trustees. With every speaking engagement, Ramos receives rave reviews, such as: “We had an incredible fireside chat with Paola Ramos. She was informative, relatable, and engaging. Our audience learned about different Latinx communities and shared their own experiences during the event.” (Athena Health)
Phil Keoghan is the host and an executive producer of CBS’ multi-Emmy Award-winning reality series The Amazing Race and host of National Geographic Explorer… arguably the most traveled host on the planet.
He is currently the creator, show runner and host of Tough as Nails on CBS, the #1 New Unscripted Series on U.S. Broadcast during the Summer of 2020.
Born in New Zealand, Keoghan has experienced a life full of travel and adventure. After he started traveling around the world at the age of 2, he has been globetrotting ever since.
Surviving a near-death experience at the age of 19, Keoghan wrote a list of things to do before he died and created a BUCKiT Tick-it Before You Kick-it! philosophy which he turned into a best selling book called No Opportunity Wasted. He is now a regular motivational speaker at colleges and Fortune 500 companies around the world.
Visiting more than 100 countries, Phil has been sharing his stories in front of a TV camera for over 30 years. His adventures include riding his bicycle from LA to New York; having a five-star meal on top of an erupting volcano of Stromboli; breaking an unofficial world record bungy jump; putting a golf ball across Scotland; changing a light bulb on top of the Verrazano Bridge; diving the world’s longest underwater caves and swimming from Asia to Europe across the Bosporus.
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 Show, CBS This Morning, Good 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.
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.
Groundbreaking aviator, author, and retired Colonel Merryl Tengesdal made history as the first and only African American woman USAF U-2 Pilot. For over two decades, Tengesdal served as a Naval Aviator and Air Force Combat Pilot, deploying worldwide in support of combat and military operations and piloting the “Dragon Lady” high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft. She has extensive command and senior leadership experience, most recently serving as the Director of Inspections for the Air Force Inspector General overseeing a program for 860K Airmen, and was the first woman selected to be Commander of Warner Robins Air Logistics Center, Detachment 2, overseeing a multi-billion-dollar testing program. Tengesdal’s remarkable journey is chronicled in her memoir, Shatter the Sky: What going to the stratosphere taught me about self-worth, sacrifice, and discipline, and her riveting storytelling leaves audiences feeling motivated, inspired, and ready to reach new heights.
Tengesdal starred on CBS’ Tough as Nails, promoting increased minority involvement in the Trades. She has also appeared as a commentator on PBS’ UNLADYLIKE2020: The Bessie Coleman Story, as a technical consultant on Bridge of Spies, and as a featured contributor for Smithsonian Channel’s Air Warrior. Tengesdal was inducted into the 2019 Gathering of Eagles Foundation as an aviation pioneer and is a dedicated advocate for increasing women and children of color in STEM. In sought-after events with groups like Lockheed Martin, Women Impacting Storebrand Excellence, the Transportation Leadership Forum, and more, Tengesdal shares her experiences and insights on leadership as a woman and person of color in spaces where women and people of color are underrepresented, maximizing physical and mental health, and applying military leadership to business enterprises and everyday life.
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.
Keltie Knight is an Emmy Award winning television personality and Entertainment Tonight host. She has co-anchored CBS’s broadcasting of national events such as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and the Grammy Awards Red Carpet.
Knight was able to combine her entertainment and entrepreneurial expertise into a podcast she co-created and co-hosts, The LadyGang. Since its inception in 2015, the popular podcast has boasted almost 100 million downloads, making it one of the most popular podcasts for women in the world. The show has been nominated for a Webby award, a People’s Choice award and in 2016 was named 'Podcast of the Year'. LadyGang has been featured on the Today Show, Good Morning America, Entertainment Tonight, The New York Times, The Hollywood Reporter, People magazine and on Entertainment Weekly’s coveted "must list.”
The LadyGang's first book Act Like a Lady became a New York Times instant bestseller, a USA Today bestseller, an Amazon best pick of the month, and a Toronto Star bestseller in Canada. Knight recently collaborated on their first fashion collection nationwide with Express, and in 2018 E! aired 16 episodes of the TV version of the podcast with Knight serving as star and executive producer.
What began as a movement to help women feel less alone, by offering content that was unapologetic, unfiltered, and very real, has grown in the millions and become a powerhouse media brand that has also partnered with major brands including Disney, Netflix, Anheuser-Busch, Vogue, and Chanel.
Knight is frequently seen contributing on The Talk, CNN, HLN, and and as a moderator for Vanity Fair. With best dressed mentions in Vogue, Elle, Glamour, Us Weekly, People Stylewatch and The New York Times, it’s no surprise Project Runway invited her to be a guest presenter.
As passionate as she is about media, she is just as dedicated to service. Knight has a long history in philanthropy, working with groups like the Humane Society and the Beagle Freedom Project. She helped raise over $300,000 for the National MS Society as a part of the team, BeatMS, and nearly 1 million dollars throughout her years hosting the Circle of Hope/ Dancers Against Cancer Charity Gala.
Known for her quick wit and fearless personality, she’s interviewed the biggest stars in the world including Oprah, Meryl Streep, Taylor Swift, Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts and Jennifer Lawrence. Harry Styles kissed her twice. Pharrell Williams deemed her “…a spirited journalist and a star.”
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, is Co-Director of the Paul F. Glenn Center at Harvard Medical School, co-founded the scientific journal Aging, as well as Full Aligned LLC, which works to democratize access to knowledge and tools to enhance mind and body wellbeing.
Award-winning journalist, media executive, and author Isha Sesay has been covering global events and major breaking news for over a decade, with a focus on stories of social injustice and their impact on women and girls. Sesay is the CEO of OkayMedia, a media company dedicated to Black culture and uplifting Black voices, and serves on the board of directors. Previously, the celebrated journalist spent more than a decade with CNN International as an anchor and correspondent. Sesay led the CNN team that covered the kidnapping of more than 200 Nigerian girls from their school in Chibok in 2014. CNN’s in-depth reporting was recognized with a Peabody Award, and Sesay received a Gracie Award for her coverage. Her painstakingly detailed account, Beneath the Tamarind Tree: A Story of Courage, Family, and the Lost Schoolgirls of Boko Haram, is both heartbreaking and hopeful. Whether offering insights about the intersections of race and gender in the media, global events, or her significant advocacy work, Sesay’s perspective makes an impact with audiences of all kinds.
Sesay is the Founder and President of W.E. (Women Everywhere) Can Lead, a non-profit organization working in her native country of Sierra Leone to nurture and empower teen girls to become Africa’s next generation of dynamic female leaders. She serves as a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the UN’s reproductive health and rights agency. As the host of the podcast The Accidental Activist, Sesay moderates riveting conversations with cultural icons who are united by their motivation to make a difference in the world. In addition, she has moderated and hosted events with groups such as the Gates Foundation, Coca Cola, The Obama White House, The World Bank, MasterCard Foundation, Women Deliver, and Brilliant Minds. She has been sought-after for talks with groups like Untitled Future, The Brookings Institution, the Global Citizen Festival, among many others.
Emmy Award-nominated sports journalist Taylor Rooks is an acclaimed interviewer whose probing questions give rise to some of today’s most pressing discussions beyond the game. Rooks is the Host and Executive Producer of Take It There With Taylor Rooks, her interview show for Bleacher Report, among other duties for Turner Sports. Previously, she worked as a host, reporter, and correspondent for the Big Ten Network and as a sideline reporter for CBS Sports Network. Rooks has recently been tapped to join Amazon's Thursday Night Football as a Feature Reporter. She is known for asking daring questions that lead to revelatory conversations with some of sports’ biggest stars.
Praised in a profile by the New York Times: “Taylor Rooks gets the interviews that go viral.” She shares meaningful insights about succeeding in her industry by focusing on making connections and honoring the humanity of the players, as well as understanding the larger context behind the game. With her incomparable coverage of the NBA season during the pandemic, Rooks was tapped as featured writer for GQ’s “Men of the Year” issue. She offers unparalleled analysis based on her expertise in media as a keynote speaker, host, or interviewer to amplify meaningful events for audiences.
Kay Adams hosts the NFL Network’s Emmy-nominated morning show, Good Morning Football. Prior to her role with NFL Network, Kay had several on-air hosting roles including NBC Sports Network's Fantasy Football Live, and DirecTV’s Fantasy Zone.
This upcoming fall, Kay will continue as host of Amazon's flagship football show, NFL Now. In addition to her responsibilities in the football world, Kay is also the host of the syndicated daily program People, an extension of the prestigious magazine.
Kay has also hosted various events including the red carpet at the NFL Honors Ceremony, Nickelodeon's Superstar Slime Showdown, TruTV's Impractical Jokers Live Special, and has served as a special correspondent for EXTRA & Entertainment Tonight. This past year, she also served as host of the mobile app version of Who Wants to be a Millionaire for SONY.
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.
Scholar-activist, cultural critic, award-winning author, and consultant Dr. Yaba Blay centers her scholarship, work, and practice on the lived experiences of Black women and girls, with a particular focus on identity/body politics and beauty practices. Widely respected as one of the foremost thought leaders on Black racial identity, colorism, and beauty politics, Dr. Blay is a globally sought-after speaker and consultant with an extensive client list of over two dozen academic institutions including Harvard University, Duke University, Spelman College, New York University, to name a few; and such corporate entities as Netflix, Revlon, International, SheaMoisture, Estee Lauder Companies, Procter & Gamble’s ‘My Black is Beautiful’, and the #meToo. Movement. Her commentary is featured in A Changing America: 1968 and Beyond, a permanent installation exhibited in the National Museum of African American History and Culture, and she is the author of the award-winning book, One Drop: Shifting the Lens on Race. In riveting keynotes and conversations, Dr. Blay inspires both critical thinking and grounded, meaningful action, offering incomparable insights from her personal experience, research, and creative work that make an impact with audiences of all kinds.
Dr. Blay served as a producer on CNN’s television documentary, Who is Black in America? and has since been named one of today’s leading Black voices by “The Root 100” and Essence Magazine’s “Woke 100.” She has appeared on CNN, BET, MSNBC, BBC, and NPR, and her work has been featured in The New York Times, EBONY, Essence, Fast Company, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Colorlines, and The Root, to name a few. Lauded by O Magazine for her social media activism, she has launched several viral campaigns including Locs of Love, #PrettyPeriod, and #ProfessionalBlackGirl, her multi-platform digital community. Dr. Yaba has been sought after for events with groups including Shondaland, National Anti-Racist Book Festival, Courageous Conversation, and more.
Two-time WNBA Champion, sports analyst, and ground-breaking entrepreneur Renee Montgomery made her mark as a player and is continuing to make history. During her eleven-year career as a professional basketball player, Montgomery led her team to two WNBA Championship wins, was named an All-Star, and the 6th Woman of the Year. As Montgomery turned her focus to social justice reform, she retired from the league and pivoted to team ownership, becoming the first WNBA player to become an owner and executive of a WNBA team. She is known for her TED Talk How to Turn Moments into Momentum, sharing her journey taking a leap of faith to stand up for what is right. Montgomery is sought-after for her insights about leadership, entrepreneurship, and diversity and social justice, making an impact on audiences of all kinds.
Montgomery is also an acclaimed sports analyst, working as a studio analyst for the NBA/WNBA with Turner/NBA TV and most recently covering the 2022 NCAA Final Four with CBS. Montgomery is host of her own podcast on the LeBatard & Friends network titled Montgomery & Co. In addition to her role as Co-Owner and Vice President of the Atlanta Dream, she is also a part-owner of the FCF Beasts indoor football team, and General Partner of Valor VC. A committed philanthropist, her Renee Montgomery Foundation strives to promote positivity, teamwork, and make dreams come true along the way.
TRESSIE MCMILLAN COTTOM
Award-winning writer, sociologist, and cultural critic Tressie McMillan Cottom is celebrated for her profound yet personal ideas and the dynamic accessibility of her analysis. Dr. Cottom’s first book, Lower Ed: The Troubling Rise of For-Profit Colleges in the New Economy, led to appearances on The Daily Show, NPR’s Marketplace and Fresh Air, and has been name-checked by Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren and activists like The Debt Strike Collective. Since the release of her second book, Thick: And Other Essays, Tressie’s career has skyrocketed. Thick became a Finalist for the 2019 National Book Award, and the following year Tressie received a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship – known as the ‘genius grant’. Her work is prolific – beyond her books and celebrated New York Times opinion column, she has written a Substack newsletter “Essaying,” co-hosted the Black feminist podcast Hear to Slay with Roxane Gay, and has sat in as a guest host for The Ezra Klein Show. Her books have become modern classics, and her commentary is in demand on a wide range of topics like inclusive marketing, creating policy narratives, technology, the future of democracy, and the cultural zeitgeist.
Tressie is a public academic whose work is as impactful on Twitter as it is in groundbreaking research, and continually reimagines how our society might function better on behalf of the most marginalized. She has a devoted fanbase for her essays (Tressays, as her fans call them), which defy the form – she explores the intersections of race, class, and gender, in the same breath a