HWA New Speakers

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.

News about our New Speakers

<p><strong>Journalist Laura Barrón-López moderates conversations that help us find common ground</strong></p>

Journalist Laura Barrón-López moderates conversations that help us find common ground

LAURA BARRÓN-LÓPEZ jumps into the most complex conversations of U.S. politics today. Leveraging her background reporting from Capitol Hill as a White House Correspondent, Barrón-López discusses today’s political issues with a depth of understanding only possible at her high level of journalistic rigor. In her work with PBS NewsHour, Barrón-López engages experts in critical conversations on topics such as the role and nature of the Executive Branch today and how U.S. religious leaders are combatting political radicalization. Proving herself a stellar moderator, Barrón-López’s ability to focus the conversation productively reflected her thoughtful coverage of hotly contested political issues.

Watch Laura Barrón-López on PBS NewsHour >>

<p><strong>BMX athlete Nigel Sylvester gives back to underserved communities</strong></p>

BMX athlete Nigel Sylvester gives back to underserved communities

Professional BMX athlete NIGEL SYLVESTER is using his success to engage communities with an eye for long-term change. Growing up in Queens, NY, Sylvester faced adversity in many forms, including a lack of obvious opportunities within his own sport. Nigel Sylvester founded the Nigel Sylvester Foundation, which supports initiatives such as building after-school programs, bike donations, and fundraising community bike rides. Sylvester himself even teamed up with JPMorgan Chase to teach kids in Harlem personal finance lessons. Sylvester’s drive to uplift communities has a measurable impact, inspiring fans worldwide.

Watch Nigel Sylvester & Red Bull >>

<p><strong>Edward Enninful’s memoir, ‘A Visible Man,’ provides insight into creative genius</strong></p>

Edward Enninful’s memoir, ‘A Visible Man,’ provides insight into creative genius

As one of our culture’s most important changemakers, EDWARD ENNINFUL’s memoir, A Visible Man, is a poignant account of breaking barriers. Whether he’s putting first responders, octogenarians, or civil rights activists on the cover of Vogue, championing designers and photographers of color, or creating accessible braille issues, Enninful shows the beauty of diversity across his creative endeavors. Written with style, grace, and heart, A Visible Man shines a spotlight on the career of one of the greatest creative minds of our times. Enninful’s career holds the story of a visionary who changed not only an industry, but how we understand beauty.

Watch Edward Enninful at Oxford Union >>

<p><strong>The iconic sculptures of artist Jeff Koons are endlessly relevant</strong></p>

The iconic sculptures of artist Jeff Koons are endlessly relevant

The iconic sculptures of an evocative contemporary artist like JEFF KOONS often create a world all their own. Koons’s pieces – which have pushed the boundaries of the art world for four decades – populate the world’s galleries and a multitude of pop culture universes, including the spider-verse. Spider-Man: Across the Spider-verse features a visually stunning fight scene that deploys several of Koons’s sculptures – Lobster, Dolphin, and of course – Balloon Dog. The scene also features some of his earlier and less exposed works – String of Puppies, Louis XIV, and several of his 1980s vacuum cleaner assemblages. The first Spider-Verse film was deeply inspired by Koons’s post-modern oeuvre – the screenwriters visited the celebrated retrospective of his work at the Whitney, which “crystallized their thinking” according to a New York Times profile.

Watch Jeff Koons on 60 Minutes >>

Watch Jeff Koons in conversation at TimesTalks >>

<p><strong>The science behind Dan Harris's “soft skills”</strong></p>

The science behind Dan Harris's “soft skills”

NPR’s TED Radio Hour remarked, “Dan is now known for his expertise in mindfulness, but when he was first introduced to the centuries-old practice of loving-kindness meditation, it seemed to be utterly at odds with his personality.”

Staying sane in a chaotic workplace can be difficult, but DAN HARRIS sheds light on the delicate dance between professional ambition and mental health by highlighting the impact we can have on others. Reflecting on his infamous personal 360 review, Harris draws on science to prove that happiness isn’t luck, but rather a skill we can build up over time.

Watch Dan Harris's TED Talk >>

Watch Dan Harris on Good Morning America >>

<p><strong>Jimmy Kimmel’s ‘Serious Goose’ heals hearts (figuratively & literally)</strong></p>

Jimmy Kimmel’s ‘Serious Goose’ heals hearts (figuratively & literally)

Late-night icon JIMMY KIMMEL released an interactive picture book, Serious Goose, to challenge young readers to be silly in a serious way. The book was written, illustrated, and hand-lettered by Kimmel himself. Proceeds from the sales of Serious Goose are donated to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and other children’s hospitals around the country. Kimmel’s family experienced a scare when their son, Billy, was born with a heart defect requiring lifesaving open-heart surgery just days after birth. Today, Kimmel is a vocal advocate for children’s healthcare, and Serious Goose is just one part of his greater efforts to improve access for children with preexisting medical conditions.

Watch Jimmy Kimmel speak on Billy's heart disease >>

Watch Jimmy Kimmel's Oscars Monologue >>

Our New Speakers

HWA NEW

RICH KLEIMAN

  • CEO & Co-Founder of Boardroom
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Entrepreneur and media architect Rich Kleiman is the co-Founder and CEO of Boardroom – a sports and entertainment company that includes the flagship media network, Boardroom.TV. Founded in 2019 by Kleiman and Kevin Durant, Boardroom covers the business of sports, music, and entertainment, with a special focus on the ways that athletes, executives, musicians, and creators are moving the business world forward. Other projects under the Boardroom umbrella include the critically acclaimed scripted series SWAGGER in partnership with Imagine Entertainment and Apple TV+, the Academy-Award-winning short film Two Distant Strangers (Netflix), and Emmy-nominated documentary NYC Point Gods (Showtime). Most recently, Kleiman announced the launch of Boardroom Advisory, an offering for talent and brands to help them navigate business strategy, content creation, sports ownership opportunities, and venture & private equity investing.

Kleiman has been Kevin Durant’s manager since 2013, and brokered KD's lifetime deal with Nike. He is co-Founder of 35V, which houses over 100 early-stage investments across sports, technology, finance, media, and more. The 35V portfolio includes digital sports network Overtime, Coinbase, Acorns, Postmates, and NBA Top Shot by Dapper Labs. Kleiman serves as the Executive Director of the Durant Family Foundation (fka Kevin Durant Charity Foundation), helping underserved and low-income families and youth across the globe. He also sits on the Board of Directors at New Heights Youth, Inc., a non-profit dedicated to sports-based youth development and education in New York City.  As both a speaker and a moderator, Kleiman generates high-impact conversations on building robust and lasting business portfolios, maintaining mental wellness as an elite performer, and learning from your mistakes to build an industry-transforming business.

HWA NEW

KEVIN MCCARTHY

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

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

HWA NEW

GENERAL MARK MILLEY

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

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

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

HWA NEW

ROCHELLE WALENSKY, MD, MPH

  • Former Director of the Center for Disease Control (2021-2023)
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Former Director of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Dr. Rochelle Walensky is a renowned expert exploring the challenges and gifts of what it means for leaders, organizations, and the world to protect public health. Dr. Walensky was the chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital and served as the 19th director of the CDC and the ninth administrator of the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. Having received an M.D from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, she also trained in internal medicine and earned an MPH in clinical effectiveness from the Harvard School of Public Health in 2001. In the earliest part of the pandemic, Dr. Walensky served on the front lines, taking care of patients, serving on the Massachusetts General Hospital incident management team, and conducting research on vaccine deliver and strategies to reach underserved communities. Dr. Walensky’s tenure at the CDC began on January 20th, 2021, when she led the nation - and the world - through unprecedented times, facing the largest density of infectious threats likely ever seen in this country.

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

HWA NEW

AMBASSADOR TERRY BRANSTAD

  • Former U.S. Ambassador to China (2017-2020)
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Former U.S. Ambassador to China Terry Branstad is the president of the World Food Prize Foundation, and the longest serving governor in the history of the United States. In addition to his role as president of Des Moines University Medical School, his public service includes election to the office of Lt. Governor and three-terms in the Iowa House of Representatives. He is a founding partner of the Branstad Churchill Group, a strategic consulting firm that provides advice, guidance and solutions to organizations, corporate leaders and investors seeking to navigate the complexities associated with conducting business in China and the United States.  

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

HWA NEW

SANNA MARIN

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

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

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

HWA NEW

MATT MEDVED

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

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

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

HWA NEW

DAVID PLOUFFE

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

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

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

HWA NEW

KJ ROSE

  • Author of 'The Rose Effect: Eight Steps to Delivering the Performance of Your Life'
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Artist Development & Performance Director Keanna "KJ Rose" Henson, author of The Rose Effect: Eight Steps to Delivering The Performance of Your Life, is a powerful change agent with real world experience. KJ delivers real world results. KJ worked with Clive Davis at J Records and coached Lil Nas X, the Lumineers, 24k Goldn, The Kid Laroi, Rubi Rose, Justine Skye, Polo G., and others. She also performed with P. Diddy, Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears, and Janet Jackson. KJ directed talent on national campaigns such as Doritos (Lil Nas X, Billy Ray Cyrus, Sam Elliot) Uber Eats (Lil Nas X & Elton John), Taco Bell (Lil Nas X) & Roblox (Lil Nas X)

KJ Rose has shared her expertise on WGN America, NBC's News Now, Bloomberg News, and NBC's California Live. Additionally, KJ contributed by coaching talent on shows that include Saturday Night Live, The Voice, The Grammy Awards, MTV Music Video Awards, BET Awards, Amazon Music Holiday Plays, American Music Awards, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show. KJ currently works as an actress on TriDestined Studios & BET+ The Family Business. KJ's dedication to excellence catapulted her to influencer status and creative innovator for initiatives led by TikTok, Janie and Jack, Harlem Fashion Row, REVOLT, and BET.com.

KJ's compelling creative destiny and infectious energy lead brands such as Adidas, L'Oreal, Google, Pandora Media, Omnicom, Nickelodeon, Sony Music, Columbia Records, TriDestined Studios and Disney to deem her to be the "ultimate solution" to motivate and encourage their pool of talented employees.

HWA NEW

JANE COASTON

  • Acclaimed Journalist
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Jane Coaston is a contributing opinion writer at The New York Times, on-air reporter at CNN with a special interest in American conservatism, and former senior politics reporter at VOX,. She hosted the popular New York Times podcast, The Argument, which offered context, analysis, and good-faith engagement on current political debates. Jane was a Senior Politics Reporter at Vox, covering current events spanning from the Republican Party to the Black Lives Matter Movement. Her work has appeared on MSNBC, CNN, ABC News, NPR, The Ringer, Buzzfeed, and The Washington Post, and she has written for publications ranging from ESPN Magazine to The National Review. Coaston’s compelling perspectives and commentary challenge conventional thinking, offering fresh insights into today’s most important debates.

As a foremost expert on the American Conservative movement, Coaston is highly sought-out among top political institutions for her thought leadership. She is a current resident at the USC Center for the Political Future former resident fellow at the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics. Coaston has spoken to the Texas Tribune Festival, SXSW, Hauenstein Center for Presidential Studies, Stony Brook University, University of Virginia, University of Southern California, University of Michigan.

HWA NEW

LAURA BARRÓN-LÓPEZ

  • White House Correspondent, PBS ‘Newshour’
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White House Correspondent and political analyst Laura Barrón-López is an expert on current U.S. politics. She is the White House Correspondent for the PBS NewsHour, where she covers the Biden administration for the nightly news broadcast. She is also a political analyst on CNN. Her expertise in U.S. government affairs reflects over a decade of covering breaking news in politics. Previously, Barrón-López was a White House reporter for POLITICO, where she covered the national Presidential election. She has led the Washington Examiner’s coverage of the Democratic Party, coverage of Congress for HuffPost, and coverage of environmental policy for The Hill. Barrón-López’s sharp analysis, compelling storytelling, and engaging presentation style captivate audiences globally.

Barrón-López is an expert on the hottest political issues on voters’ minds today. Her voice has been sought by UVA’s Miller Center, the Texas Tribune Festival, the Atlantic Festival, the Professional Women in Advocacy Conference, and more. Pairing personal stories from her time as a reporter with her in-depth knowledge of current events, Barrón-López leaves audiences feeling inspired and informed.

HWA NEW

JERMAINE STONE

  • President and CEO of Cru Luv Wines
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Cru Luv Wine's President and CEO Jermaine Stone was raised worlds away from wine country with plans to become a rapper. By 19, he had the attention of prominent figures in music including Chris Lighty and LL Cool J, but a temporary job packing boxes at Zachys Wine Auctions persuaded him to make a career in fine wine. Jermaine began an accomplished 9-year career, rising to the position of Logistics Manager, overseeing the inbound and outbound transport of $60M worth of fine wine annually. Jermaine became one of the founding Directors of Wally’s Auctions, where he co-created and implemented a full client experience. In addition to major operational roles, he provided strategic advice to Wally’s President and VP, and served as an auctioneer and public speaker at commercial and charity auctions.

Jermaine is the Founder and CEO of Cru Luv Selections, a New York-based wine branding and marketing firm dedicated to blending the best elements of wine and hip-hop culture. He is also the Founder of The Original Wine & Hip Hop Festival, which hosts events, diverse tastings, and master classes. Jermaine is the host of the critically acclaimed podcast, Wine and Hip-Hop and the Street Somm series with Tastemade+In signature events that are both educational and elevated, Jermaine brings his expertise to bespoke themed events pairing hip-hop music and wine.

HWA NEW

EDWARD ENNINFUL

  • Trailblazing Fashion Icon
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Regarded as one of the most influential voices in fashion, Edward Enninful OBE has helped bring widespread distinction to the British and global fashion industry. Enninful has spent over three decades promoting minority and ethnically diverse talent, striving to eliminate ethnic exclusion in the industry by uplifting and giving regular exposure to underrepresented topics, talent, and models. Enninful was the youngest-ever fashion director for an international publication, i-D, at age eighteen. By 1998, he became a contributing fixture at Vogue Italia, catapulting him into world recognition as a leading stylist and cultural contributor. Here, as an advocate for diverse voices, Enninful spearheaded the landmark, transformative publication of “The Black Issue.” From Vogue Italia, Enninful continued to use his voice to make a positive impact in the industry with roles at American Vogue, W Magazine, and most recently British Vogue. Enninful is the only Black person in the history of Vogue globally to serve as Editor-in-Chief. Upon his appointment, the CEO of Condé Nast International called Enninful “an influential figure in the communities of fashion, Hollywood and music which shape the cultural zeitgeist.”

In addition to his editorial work, Enninful has helped shape some of the most influential international fashion houses as a stylist, through his creative input coordinating fashion shoots for magazines, catwalk shows, reinventing brands, and high-profile advertising campaigns. Enninful’s dedication to diversity in the fashion industry was honored with a presentation of an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. Enninful has also received the Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator and the Trailblazer Award at the British Fashion Awards. The Powerlist 2024 named him the U.K.’s “Most Powerful Black Person.” His experiences are compiled in his memoir, A Visible Man and a SHOWstudio film, The Seven Deadly Sins of Edward Enninful. Enninful’s decades of driving culture provide a unique perspective on culture, creativity, and diversity, insights vital to any individual or organization.

HWA NEW

GREG CREED

  • Former CEO & COO of Taco Bell & Yum! Brands
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Unconventional brand leader and former CEO of Yum! Brands and Taco Bell Greg Creed is known for his skill in building transformative, courageous workplace cultures. His landmark campaigns lifted Taco Bell into a period of profound growth. He was awarded Restaurant Business’s Restaurant Leader of the Year and named an “Industry Titan” by the Women’s Foodservice Forum. Creed’s book, R.E.D. Marketing: The Three Ingredients of Leading Brands (R.E.D. stands for relevance, ease, and distinctiveness), distills his hard-earned wisdom into actionable practices for any brand. As one of the most respected voices in his industry, Creed’s perspective is a unique window into how culture, branding, and innovation can thrive in harmony. Qu Beyond’s podcast said, “Greg is relatable, down-to-earth, humble, self-deprecating, and brilliant."

Creed is currently Founder and CEO of the unconventional consultancy firm UnCo, helping companies with brand building, franchising, culture, and leadership. He serves on the boards of Whirlpool Corporation, Aramark Corporation, and Delta Airlines. He also currently serves as advisor to the CEO and Board of Directors of Thanx Inc and is Chairman of Quid. He has spoken at industry-leading venues such as the Global Restaurant Leadership Conference, National Restaurant Association, Restaurant Leadership Conference, KBP Foods, and more. Creed’s engagements provide a rich repository of cases, learnings, and laughs that leave audiences feeling energized and motivated.

HWA NEW

MALLIKA CHOPRA

  • CEO of Chopra Global
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Media entrepreneur, mom, and bestselling author Mallika Chopra has spoken to thousands of people around the world, using storytelling, inspiration, and meditation to incorporate balance and purpose into everyday life. Mallika is the CEO of Chopra Global and was the founder of Intent and co-founder of The Chopra Well with her brother, Gotham Chopra, and her father, Deepak Chopra. She is the author of the Just Be Series - Just BreatheJust Feel, and Just Be You - a trilogy of books for children (and the adults in their lives) to understand emotional knowing, resilience, and mindfulness. Mallika is the bestselling author of Living With Intent: My Somewhat Messy Journey to Purpose, Peace and Joy and Buddha and the Rose. In Living With Intent, Mallika shares insights from her journey as a mom and entrepreneur seeking meaning and balance.

Mallika has taught meditation to thousands of people and is currently a mindfulness consultant for the animated series Stillwater on Apple TV+. She is featured in TIME’s Special Issue on Mindfulness, and has appeared on Good Morning America, TODAY, CNN, and many other national outlets. She enjoys speaking to audiences around the world about intention, balance, and living a life of purpose, and has shared her passion at TedXSan Diego and TedXBerkeley, Ideacity, Business Innovation Factory, Wisdom 2.0, and the Parliament of World Religions. Mallika has shared ideas on balance and creativity at companies such as Aflac, Nike, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Disney, LinkedIn, and Google.

HWA NEW

KAI BIRD

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

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

HWA NEW

WENDY K. SMITH

  • Organizational Psychologist & Leading Expert on the Power of Paradox
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Management thought leader and award-winning organizational psychologist Wendy K. Smith is on a mission to help individuals and organizations turn our problems into possibilities. Smith currently holds the prestigious title of Dana J. Johnson Professor of Management and serves as the faculty director of the Women's Leadership Initiative at the Lerner College of Business and Economics, University of Delaware. Wendy is also one of the youngest people named as an Academy of Management Fellow. As an organizational psychologist, she is a leading expert on the power of paradox - applying both/and thinking to help us innovate, change and generate more creative, sustainable solutions to our toughest challenges. In her talks, Wendy brings science-based research to life with real world stories to both captivate and motivate her audiences.

Smith is the author of Both/And Thinking: Embracing Creative Tensions to Solve Your Toughest Problems, named a Top 10 Management Book by Thinkers50, a finalist for the Next Big Idea Award, and a #1 Amazon New Release. Smith and co-author Marianne Lewis were awarded the Thinkers50 Breakthrough Idea Award for these groundbreaking ideas. Wendy is also an award-winning scholar. She has been named the Web of Science Highly Cited Researchers for being among the top 1% most-cited researchers for 5 years in a row. She has published her research in influential journals such as the Academy of Management Journal, Administrative Science Quarterly, Organization Science, and Management Science, while also reaching beyond academia to publish in Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Fast Company, Newsweek, and others. As a compelling and engaging teacher, she won the MBA Excellence in Teaching Award 5 times.

Beyond accolades and awards, Wendy's passion lies in helping leaders worldwide tackle the complex challenges of interpersonal dynamics, team performance, organizational change, and innovation to transform their organizations and the world. Approachable, insightful, and globally revered, she continues to shape the future of management thinking.

HWA NEW

MATT ABRAHAMS

  • Professor, Organizational Behavior at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business
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As a Lecturer in Organizational Behavior at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, Matt Abrahams teaches popular classes in strategic communication and effective virtual presenting. Abrahams hosts the popular, Webby award-winning podcast Think Fast, Talk Smart: The Podcast, which is the #1 Careers podcast in 95 countries including the US, UK, India, China, Mexico, and Brazil.

His new book Think Faster, Talk Smarter: How to Speak Successfully When You’re Put on the Spot provides tangible, actionable skills to help even the most anxious of speakers succeed when speaking spontaneously, such as navigating Q&A sessions, shining in job interviews, providing effective feedback, making small talk, fixing faux pas, persuading others. His previous book Speaking Up without Freaking Out: 50 Techniques for Confident and Compelling Presenting has helped thousands of people manage speaking anxiety and present more confidently and authentically. 

Abrahams is a compelling speaker for any organization due to his expertise in communication, engaging delivery style, and ability to provide practical strategies for improving interpersonal and professional interactions. His talks garner millions of views online with one talk at over 37M views to date.

Outside of the classroom, Abrahams is a sought-after keynote speaker and communication consultant. He has helped countless presenters improve and hone their communication, including some who have delivered IPO road shows as well as Nobel Prize, TED, and World Economic Forum presentations. He also consults for the United Nations’ Secretary General’s Strategic Planning and Communication Office and many fortune 100 companies. He has spoken to many companies big and small, including GoogleAccentureAppleMcKinseyToastmasters, several NGOs (e.g., the United Nations), the FBI, and more.

HWA NEW

KIM SCOTT

  • NYT & WSJ Bestselling Author, 'Radical Candor' & 'Just Work' (To be re-released as 'Radical Respect' in May 2024)
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Leadership & culture expert Kim Scott is the author of the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller Radical Candor: Be a Kickass Boss without Losing your Humanity, which launched a global management revolution. Kim is the co-Founder of Radical Candor®, LLC – a company dedicated to helping organizations and teams move from a culture of command and control to one of collaboration. Previously, Kim led AdSense, YouTube, and Doubleclick Online Sales and Operations at Google, and then joined Apple to develop and teach a leadership seminar. She has been a CEO coach at Dropbox, Qualtrics, Twitter, and several other tech companies.

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

HWA NEW

ABBY PHILLIP

  • CNN Senior Political Correspondent
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CNN Senior Political Correspondent Abby Phillip anchors CNN’s NewsNight with Abby Phillip and Inside Politics Sunday. She joined the network in to cover the Trump Administration and served as White House Correspondent before transitioning to the campaign trail. In January 2020, she moderated CNN's Democratic Presidential Debate in Iowa. She also anchored special coverage of Election Night in America surrounding the 2020 election and hosted the CNN Special Report: Kamala Harris: Making History about the Vice President's barrier-breaking career. Prior to CNN, Phillip worked at The Washington Post as a national political reporter and ABC News as a digital reporter for politics. She also covered the Obama White House for POLITICO as well as campaign finance and lobbying. With her engaging presence and incisive commentary, Phillip illuminates key issues and sparks meaningful dialogue on the forces shaping our democracy.

Phillip has been honored with the National Urban League’s Women of Power Award and named to the TIME “100 Next” list. She serves on the board of the News Literary Project and is committed to advancing democracy at every opportunity. Phillip has spoken to Kean University, the National Press Foundation, the University of Rhode Island, and many more.

HWA NEW

SHARON MALONE

  • Board Certified Obstetrician & Gynecologist
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Women’s health expert Dr. Sharon Malone has been active in advocating for reproductive rights, reducing teen pregnancy, and eliminating health care disparities. She is the Chief Medical Advisor at Alloy Women’s Health, a telehealth company focusing on women over 40. Before joining Alloy, Dr. Malone was a partner at one of the oldest and most successful OB/GYN medical practices in Washington, D.C. She is board-certified by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and certified by the North American Menopause Society as a Certified National Menopause Practitioner. She is the author of the New York Times bestseller Grown Woman Talk, called a “must-read” by Michelle Obama. Dr. Malone’s speeches are informed by her extensive clinical experience, advocacy work, and commitment to improving health outcomes for all women.

Dr. Malone believes that all women should be able to make decisions regarding their health and quality of life based on facts – not fear. Dr. Malone serves on the D.C. Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy Board and the regional panel for the White House Fellows Program selection. She was appointed to the selection committee for the Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction awarded by the University of Alabama School of Law. In addition, Dr. Malone has consistently been voted one of Washingtonian Magazine’s “Best Doctors.” Dr. Malone’s compassionate approach to patient education and care allows her to make any audience feel welcome, comfortable, and informed.

HWA NEW

JOHN R. MILES

  • Expert on Intentional Behavior Change, Leadership, and Personal Mastery
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Former U.S. Navy officer, Fortune 50 senior executive, entrepreneur, author, and award-winning podcast host John R. Miles is a recognized expert on intentional behavior change, leadership, personal mastery, and the transformative power of "mattering." Founder & CEO of Passion Struck®, his globally renowned podcast, Passion Struck with John R. Miles, has garnered tens of millions of downloads and consistently holds the title of the #1 alternative health podcast worldwide, securing its place among the top 100 on Apple Podcasts. His syndicated national radio show, "Passion Struck with John R. Miles," is heard by millions weekly. John has interviewed David Rubenstein, Seth Godin, Susan Cain, Gretchen Rubin, Robin Sharma, Daniel Pink, Rachel Hollis, Jim Kwik, Arthur Brooks, & countless others. In a world where success is often measured by influence and impact, Miles has earned his place among the world's foremost thought leaders, leaving an indelible mark as a beacon of inspiration and change.

With over 25 years of leadership experience, Miles is frequently sought after as an advisor by many of the world's top companies and their executives. His leadership has been credited with generating billions of dollars in sales and advising two unicorn startups. However, his true passion lies in coaching and mentoring individuals to live a passion-struck life in every area. The story of his journey as a U.S. Naval Academy graduate exemplifying the principles of leadership and personal growth are a part of his debut book, Passion Struck: Twelve Powerful Principles to Unlock Your Purpose and Ignite Your Most Intentional Life (due out in early 2024). Passion Struck was chosen as one of February 2024's "Must-Read Books" by the Next Big Idea Club.

For more information, visit www.passionstruck.com or www.johnrmiles.com.

HWA NEW

STEPHANIE RUHLE

  • Anchor & Host of MSNBC’s 'The 11th Hour with Stephanie Ruhle'
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Esteemed journalist Stephanie Ruhle is the host of MSNBC’s The 11th Hour with Stephanie Ruhle and a correspondent for NBC News. Ruhle also appears across all NBC News and MSNBC platforms as NBC News’ Senior Business Correspondent, including NBC Nightly News with Lester HoltTODAY, and more. Ruhle previously hosted the podcast, Modern Ruhles: Compelling Conversations During Culturally Complicated Times, and currently hosts MSNBC’s podcast The 11th Hour with Stephanie Ruhle – an early look at the stories that will drive tomorrow’s conversation. Ruhle has interviewed titans in politics, business, entertainment, and sports. As a Wall Street veteran, she is known for bringing her business acumen and hard-hitting style to high profile interviews, for her original reporting, and bringing humanity into her news coverage.

Prior to Bloomberg, Ruhle worked at Deutsche Bank, serving as a Managing Director in Global Markets Senior Relationship Management. Ruhle plays an active role in women’s leadership development, having founded the Corporate Investment Bank Women’s Network and co-chaired Women on Wall Street. Ruhle is a member of the board of trustees for Girls Inc. NYC and in 2016 was honored as one of their Women of the Year. Through her incisive commentary and effortless moderation, Ruhle elevates conversations about politics, business, and culture for maximum impact with every audience.

HWA NEW

DR. ELISA HALLERMAN, PHD, JD

  • Founder and CEO of First-Ever Recovery Management Agency
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Founder, author, and soul-centered wellness innovator Dr. Elisa Hallerman, PhD, JD is the CEO of the first-ever Recovery Management Agency (RMA). After graduating from New York Law School and passing the bar, Elisa entered the entertainment business. Over the next decade she went from the talent agency mailroom to becoming partner and head of the talent department at United Talent Agency, later becoming a partner at William Morris Endeavor. Sober from drugs and alcohol for years, Elisa's interest in the recovery field drew her to take classes in drug and alcohol counseling at the University of California, Los Angeles. She uses her knowledge of depth psychology and her personal experience as a recovering addict to help audiences reconnect with soul, find meaning, and live with purpose.

Elisa is the Founder of Recovery Management Agency – the world’s first agency devoted to helping addicts heal their addictions by reawakening their souls. She holds a doctorate in Depth Psychology and Somatic Studies from Pacifica Graduate Institute, with a focus on neuroscience and trauma. She is the author of Soulbriety: A Plan to Heal Your Trauma, Overcome Addiction, and Reconnect with Your Soul, which was released to critical and popular acclaim. Elisa is a member of The Institute for Functional Medicine and was a visiting professor at Chapman University for film and media arts. Leveraging her expertise in crisis management, resilience, and personal transformation, Elisa shares her message of ‘Soulbriety’ with audiences looking to lead a meaningful and purposeful life.

"In this vividly written, page-turner of a memoir, Dr. Elisa Hallerman depicts how neither drugs nor glittering Hollywood glamour could satisfy her spirit’s longing for true freedom. With unsparing honesty, she chronicles her own soul’s journey home to itself from the depths of trauma and addiction, now enabling her to guide many others on their own path to liberation." Gabor Maté MD, author of The Myth of Normal: Trauma, Illness and Healing in a Toxic Culture

“Dr. Hallerman’s book is unflinching raw storytelling and experience, strength and hope honed by her deep seeing and learning. What I have learned and been helped by Dr. Elisa Hallerman to learn, is that in the end, it's about our Soul... Hallerman is a crucial voice for these unprecedented times,” Actor and Author, Jamie Lee Curtis 

HWA NEW

NIMESH PATEL

  • Emmy-Nominated Comedian & Writer
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Emmy-nominated late-night writer and Netflix featured comedian Nimesh Patel has risen the ranks to some of comedy’s biggest stages due to his unassailable joke writing, prolific output, and innovative marketing. He has self-produced three specials, amassing millions of views on YouTube alone: Lucky Lefty, Thank You China, and Jokes to Get You Through Quarantine. Named as one of Variety’s prestigious “10 Comics to Watch” of 2023 and hailed by Vulture as “a Comedian You Should and Will Know,” Patel has charted a path from sold-out comedy clubs to major theaters with the business acumen imbued by his degree from the NYU Stern School of Business. A fast-rising star who can create a bespoke set tailored to audiences in a variety of industries from FinTech to Healthcare to charity, Patel infuses his events with a perfect blend of laughter and thought-provoking conversation, fostering engagement and leaving a lasting impression on attendees.

Patel’s first writing job came after Chris Rock saw him perform standup and hired him directly to write for The Academy Awards as well as tour with him. Since then, Patel has written for Saturday Night Live with Vanity Fair hailing him as the show’s “most intriguing new hire,” A Little Late with Lilly Singh, The White House Correspondents Dinner, and was a producer for Full Frontal with Samantha Bee. He is a favorite on the late-night circuit with multiple appearances on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon and Late Night with Seth Meyers. Patel brings his charm, wit, and expertise to events of any size, tuning his talking points to each audience.

HWA NEW

DYLAN BYERS

  • Founding Partner & Senior Correspondent, Puck
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Veteran journalist Dylan Byers is a founding partner and senior correspondent at Puck, a news media startup and C-suite must-read covering Hollywood, Silicon Valley, Wall Street, and Washington. Before Puck, Dylan served as the senior media reporter at NBC News, where he authored the “Byers Market” newsletter and hosted the Byers Market podcast. He has also worked at CNN, where he served as the senior media reporter and authored the Pacific newsletter, and Politico, where he authored the "On Media" blog. As a speaker, Byers draws from his extensive experience covering technology, media, and business to offer a unique blend of industry analysis, journalistic rigor, and engaging storytelling to captivate audiences and spark thought-provoking discussions.

Byers will ensure your event receives timely, relevant, and impactful perspectives on the pressing issues shaping our digital world. Byers has brought unparalleled expertise and insights to the stage for SXSW, Cannes Lions, Collision, the Global Financial Leadership Conference, and many more.

HWA NEW

VIVIAN TU

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

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

HWA NEW

GOTHAM CHOPRA

  • Award-Winning Documentary Filmmaker and Producer
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Award-winning filmmaker, media founder, and author Gotham Chopra is at the forefront of the convergence of sports, science, and spirituality. As the creator and co-founder of Religion of Sports (ROS), an Emmy-winning media company based in Los Angeles, CA, Gotham has worked with some of the most elite athletes in the world including Tom Brady (Tom v Time), Kobe Bryant (Kobe Bryant’s Muse), Lebron James (Shut Up and Dribble), Stephen Curry (Stephen v The Game), Simone Biles (Simone v Herself), and many more to produce content that pushes the boundaries of non-fiction cinema and brings the mythos of sports to a broad audience outside of those that simply follow the games.

Gotham’s brand of sports storytelling leans into the essence of human potential, the dramatic peaks and valleys of competition and athletic achievement, and the heroic narratives that accompany both triumph and failure. He co-authored Walking Wisdom with his father, renowned spiritualist Deepak Chopra, and is the author of The Religion of Sports: Navigating the Trials of Life Through the Games We Love – a memoir-meets-manifesto about the overwhelming power of sports and how they provide meaning and purpose in peoples’ lives.

HWA NEW

ABIGAIL WEN

  • AI Expert & Intel's Former Senior Director of Emerging AI Tech
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"With a knack for trying and succeeding at new things," according to Forbes, Abigail has been described by Pop Culturist as “one of the voices of her generation.” 

Abigail is a New York Times bestselling author, a filmmaker and a woman-in-tech leader specializing in artificial intelligence, as well as a wife and mother of two. Abigail is a frequent speaker on topics of leadership, equity, representation, ethics and creative careers, including Talks at Google, the California Commonwealth Club (with Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland and Deb Liu, CEO Ancestry), META, Facebook AI, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Target, Twitch, The League of California Cities, Munger Tolle, the Barnes & Noble podcast, a virtual talk with Lea Salonga, as well as Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, Dartmouth and Berkeley among other venues.

Abigail penned the New York Times bestselling novel, Loveboat, Taipei and companion novels Loveboat Reunion and Loveboat Forever. She serves as executive producer for the film adaptation Love in Taipei, a top 10 comedy on Paramount+. She and her work have been profiled in print and tv, including Entertainment Weekly, Bloomberg TV, Forbes, Fortune, Cosmopolitan, The Hollywood Reporter, Seventeen, NBCNews, NBC Bay Area, ABC7, and the World Journal.

Abigail holds a BA from Harvard, where she took coursework in film, ethnic studies, and government. She also holds a JD from Columbia and MFA in writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. In her career in tech, she has negotiated multibillion-dollar deals on Wall Street and in Silicon Valley, worked in venture capital, and hosted Intel’s Artificial Intelligence podcast featuring leading industry experts including Andrew Ng, Facebook's Chief AI Scientist Yann LeCun, and US Congresswoman Robin Kelly. She also served with the Partnership on AI. Forbes describes her as, “One of the most respected voices in fairness and AI.”

HWA NEW

ROHINI KOSOGLU

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

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

HWA NEW

DE KAI

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

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

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

HWA NEW

RAHUL JANDIAL

  • Dream Specialist, Neuroscientist & Brain Surgeon
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Dual-trained brain surgeon and neuroscientist Rahul Jandial, MD, PhD, is a Sunday Times bestselling author with books translated into over ten languages. Jandial undertakes complex cancer operations and oversees groundbreaking science at the Jandial Lab in Los Angeles. He is also the Founder of International Neurosurgical Children's Association, where he leads teams to teach and perform pediatric brain surgery in charity hospitals throughout Central and South America, and Eastern Europe. Jandial’s first book, Life Lessons from a Brain Surgeon, became a Sunday Times Bestseller. His next book, This Is Why You Dream, will be published in 25 countries and in 20 translations. 

Jandial is a long-term contributor at KTLA-TV in Los Angeles and for the TODAY Show in Australia. He hosted Brain Surgery Live on Nat Geo with Bryant Gumbel for international broadcast and was on FOX’s primetime non-scripted Superhuman as a panelist. Jandial has been called "world's most dashing neurosurgeon" (Variety), “the real Dr. McDreamy” (ABC News), and VICE refers to him as the 100 percent emoji-human version. He has been featured in The Times of LondonThe TelegraphCosmopolitanMr. Porter, and GQ, and is an expert for Guardian Masterclasses. Jandial is a compelling speaker who combines masterful storytelling and relatable neuroscience on topics including trauma, resilience, brain training for peak performance, awe, creativity, and more.

HWA NEW

STEVEN LIM

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

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

HWA NEW

STEVE AOKI

  • Two-Time Grammy-Nominated, Internationally Renowned DJ and Producer
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Grammy-nominated music producer, artist, fashion designer, entrepreneur, and NFT visionary Steve Aoki brings a sense of community to all his work – offering shared space and connection. His new album, HiROQUEST: Genesis, is an epic, multi-genre collection of songs with a world-building story that extends beyond the music itself to a new collectible trading card game Aoki co-created with MetaZoo Games in 2021. Aoki boasts 17.2M monthly listeners on Spotify, with a 77M average monthly reach across all his platforms. In sought-after talks and moderated conversations, Aoki shares his insights about entrepreneurship, music, and technology – inspiring his audiences to embrace new frontiers and invest in community.

In 2022, Aoki launched A0K1VERSE, an NFT metaverse membership community, powered by the Passport, that welcomes his fans to both virtual and real-world experiences. For Aoki, it’s essential to remain forward-thinking as he continues to grow his brand. Steve is the subject of the Netflix documentary I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead, which focuses on the driving force behind his career: his ambitious father, Benihana founder and perennial daredevil Rocky Aoki. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed memoir BLUE: The Color of Noise and the founder of THE AOKI FOUNDATION, which supports organizations in the brain science and research areas with a focus on regenerative medicine and brain preservation. In every space he enters, Aoki offers a community for those who need it most.

HWA NEW

MIKAELA SHIFFRIN

  • Winningest Alpine Skier of All Time
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All-time winningest alpine skier Mikaela Shiffrin holds the most World Cup wins (93) of any male or female alpine skier in history. She is a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist; five-time overall World Cup Champion; four-time world champion in slalom; and a seven-time winner of the World Cup discipline title in that event. She was also the youngest slalom champion in Olympic alpine skiing history. Shiffrin’s determination, grit, and competitive spirit motivate any audience.

Not only a dominant and global force on the mountain, Shiffrin was also named one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World for her dominance in her sport, her philanthropic work with organizations such as Protect Our Winters, and her authentic connection with her audience on the topics of mental health, family, and what it takes to be at the top of one’s craft. Shiffrin has been featured on ESPN, NBC Sports, FIS Alpine, and more.

HWA NEW

LES SNEAD

  • General Manager of NFL's Los Angeles Rams
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As the general manager of the Los Angeles Rams, Les Snead has risen to prominence for his strategic, aggressive moves in creating a strong core nucleus of talent and improved depth throughout the roster. Prior to joining the Rams, Snead spent 13 seasons with the Atlanta Falcons, serving as the club’s director of player personnel. With a career spanning over 20 years, he’s had a significant impact in the NFL and beyond. Snead provides actionable strategies for peak performance, innovation, and a winning mindset.

Les Snead's captivating talks transcend football, providing audiences with valuable lessons on teamwork, effective communication, and strategic planning that are universally applicable in business and leadership contexts. Snead also sits on the advisory board of GAMEBREAKER, which is a soft-shelled headgear powered by D3O Impact Technology. Snead has been requested to speak to organizations including The Jonathan Club, EconTalk, The Knowledge Project, and many more.

HWA NEW

ALONZO MOURNING

  • Founder of the Mourning Family Foundation
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Former NBA player turned philanthropist Alonzo Mourning focuses his energy on empowering others through advocacy, education, and enrichment. Mourning founded the Mourning Family Foundation, which has raised more than $25M for various programs that aid in the development of children and their families. He further contributes to family wellness as a member of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition. He continues his involvement with basketball as Vice President of Player Programs and Development with the Miami Heat and Chair of the McDonald’s All-American Game Advisory Committee. A seven-time NBA All-Star and two-time Defensive Player of the Year, Mourning has been inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Shortly after winning an Olympic gold medal, Mourning was diagnosed with Focal Glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), a rare genetic kidney disease and underwent a successful kidney transplant. In addition to his philanthropy, Mourning is a highly respected business leader and has numerous business development projects in the Miami area. A leader in all his pursuits, Mourning’s inspiring story encourages audiences to dream big.

Consistently recognized for his charitable efforts, Mourning has received numerous awards, including the NBA’s Community Assist Award, National Urban League’s Outstanding Community Service Award, Silver Medallion Community Service Award by the National Conference for Community and Justice, and NBA’s J. Walter Kennedy Sportsmanship Award, The Children’s Trust Excellence Award for Public Policy, and more. Mourning has been sought after as an orator to inspire audiences ranging from sales teams to nephrologists.

HWA NEW

NIGEL SYLVESTER

  • Professional BMX Athlete
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Professional BMX athlete, creative, entrepreneur, and philanthropist Nigel Sylvester is one of the most culturally relevant cyclists today. Sylvester was catapulted to the forefront of the sports world due to his progressive riding style, innovative content creation, and one-of-a-kind artistic expression and style. He has been a Jordan Brand signed athlete, featured in countless global and digital campaigns. Sylvester created ‘GO Ride,’ hosting a first-of-its-kind transatlantic 30-mile bike ride in London and New York City in honor of World Bicycle Day. His drive to give back led him to start the Nigel Sylvester Foundation, dedicated to transforming the lives of underserved youth, uniting diverse communities, and more. Today, Sylvester is one of the most widely recognized athletes in the world.

Sylvester is known for his outspoken advocacy, grit, and innovative creativity. Sylvester was featured in ESPN’s ‘Body Issue’ and included in Forbes Magazine’s “30 Under 30” list. Sylvester has spoken to Nike, Samsung, Chase, UNLOQ, Fashion Tech Forum, eBay, StockX, Complex, Gillette, Oakley about his many achievements across sports, business, and media.

HWA NEW

SHAUN TOMSON

  • World Champion Surfer
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Team member disengagement is a fundamental problem across the world. (Gallup 2022) World champion surfer, bestselling author, and leadership expert Shaun Tomson lectures widely on the Code Method – a high-impact and transformational self-development program that activates the power of purpose to ignite engagement.

A former World Surfing Champion, Shaun has been described as one of the 10 greatest surfers of all time and one of the most influential surfers of the century. During his professional career he won 19 major pro events and is recognized as one of the world’s most innovative surfers. Shaun is the author of the bestsellers Surfer’s CodeThe Code: The Power of “I Will”, and the recent #1 Amazon bestseller The Surfer and the Sage. Shaun has lectured around the world and inspired corporations like General Motors, CiscoPricewaterhouseCoopers, Google, Disney, and The Gap.

As an entrepreneur, Shaun founded two market leading, international clothing brands – Instinct in the 80’s and Solitude, which he co-founded with his wife Carla, in the 90’s. He produced and co-wrote the award-winning documentary film Bustin’ down the Door, and is an inductee in the US, Jewish, and South African Sports Halls of Fame. Shaun’s powerful mission is to help individuals activate their own personal Code to deeply engage with others to live a better and more purposeful life.

HWA NEW

ALIYAH BOSTON

  • #1 Overall Pick in the 2023 WNBA Draft
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Rising WNBA star Aliyah Boston is a trailblazer in the new generation of athletes. From an early age, Aliyah has courageously pursued her dream of a future in basketball. At the age of 12, Aliyah and her sister Alexis moved to Massachusetts from their hometown St. Thomas, USVI to live with their aunt and pursue more basketball opportunities. Aliyah joined USA’s national basketball team, was a McDonald’s All-American in high school, and led the University of South Carolina’s program to their 2nd national championship – winning both the SEC Player of the Year and the SEC Defensive Player of the Year as the most decorated player in program history.

Aliyah was the #1 overall draft pick in the 2023 WNBA season, joining the Indiana Fever as the team’s centerpiece. A celebratory New York Times profile declared that Boston “has already become the face of the WNBA just months into her professional career.” She is the only player ranked in the top 20 in both offensive and defensive win shares, demonstrating her dominance on both ends of the court. And Boston is the youngest player and only the eighth rookie ever to start a WNBA All-Star game. Aliyah showcases her heart and passion on and off the court, consistently giving back to her community. Sought-after for her motivational story, Aliyah speaks about staying true to yourself, focusing on faith and family, and how to apply teamwork on and off the court.

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SEAN FOLEY

  • Famed Golf Instructor
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One of the biggest names in golf instruction, Sean Foley has coached three professional players to the number one ranking in the sport. Foley’s clients include three-time PGA TOUR winner Cameron Champ, Lydia Ko, and arguably the greatest player of all time Tiger Woods. Foley’s players have won a total of 56 professional events spanning many worldwide professional golf tours. His core teaching philosophy is driven by a passion to help golfers evolve into the best players and people they can be. Sean shares these takeaways for peak performance and success with audiences including MetLife, Grant Thornton, Home Depot, Zendesk, MIT Sloan Analytics, Dell, and more.

Sean has been the host of some of the most widely viewed content on NBC’s GolfPass. Having written countless instruction articles, Sean was the youngest coach ever to be included on the masthead at Golf Digest. He has been ranked in the top five greatest coaches for over a decade in Golf Digest’s annual rankings and was ranked the best instructor by PGA TOUR players twice. Sean has also been featured on the front cover of Golf Digest twice. Foley has coached countless celebrities, titans of industry, and world leaders from around the globe.

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JUDIT POLGÁR

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

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

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KATY BOHINC

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

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

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ALAN MURRAY

  • CEO, Fortune Media
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CEO of Fortune Media Alan Murray is an inspirational speaker and experienced reporter on the changing nature of CEO leadership. At Fortune, Murray led the reinvention of the storied century-old brand. He created the magazine’s “Change the World” list, and writes a closely read daily newsletter, the Fortune CEO Daily, and hosts the Leadership Next podcast. Prior to joining Fortune, Murray led the rapid expansion of the Pew Research Center’s digital footprint as president of that organization.  Before that, Murray was at the Wall Street Journal for many years, serving as Deputy Managing Editor, Executive Editor Online, and Washington Bureau Chief. He has written five books on contemporary leadership and business, including Tomorrow’s Capitalist, Revolt in the Board Room, Showdown at Gucci Gulch, and more. Murray's perspective on executive leadership has had a profound impact on corporations changing our world. 

Murray hosts dozens of Fortune events each year and speaks at numerous events including the World Economic Forum in Davos, CES in Las Vegas, and Dreamforce in San Francisco, and has spoken at private events for numerous top companies, including McKinsey, BCG, Salesforce, Workday, Deloitte, C3.ai, Slalom, Google, Raytheon, WWT, and many others.  Murray is recognized as one of the nation’s most knowledgeable and skilled interviewers of CEOs and moderator of executive panels and roundtables.

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ASAF KOCHAN

  • Co-Founder and President of Sentra
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Visionary leader in digital security Brig.-Gen. (Res.) Asaf Kochan spearheads strategic initiatives leaving an indelible mark on the landscape of cybersecurity. Kochan is a distinguished former IDF Commander of Unit 8200 and held a senior position in the Israeli Prime Minister’s office. Beyond his prominent military career, Kochan’s visionary leadership extends into the private sector. In 2021, Asaf co-founded Sentra, a groundbreaking cybersecurity company headquartered in Israel. As the President of Sentra, he leverages his extensive experience to spearhead a transformative mission at the intersection of data-centric security and cloud-first innovation. As a seasoned practitioner of state-level cybersecurity, Kochan possesses an unparalleled grasp of the complex dynamics of contemporary digital environments and excels in providing innovative solutions.

Kochan’s contributions to both policy and technology have not only shaped the trajectory of cybersecurity but have also paved the way for cloud-first enterprises to thrive securely in an era in which big data reigns supreme. He has been invited by Calcalist, Cyber Week, CyberTechNYC, Maschmeyer Group, Hapag Lloyd AG, and more to share his perspective on cybersecurity and industry. Kochan breaks down complex security topics into digestible action items aimed at educating individuals or organizations on the nuances of cyber security today.

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QUANNAH CHASINGHORSE

  • Fashion Model & Actor
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Fashion model and Indigenous Land Protector Quannah Chasinghorse is the face of a new generation of models and a powerful advocate and activist for Indigenous rights, sovereignty, and representation. Chasinghorse is from the Han Gwich’in from Eagle Village, Alaska and Sicangu/Oglala Lakota tribes from the Rosebud Reservation, South Dakota. She grew up learning Indigenous ways of life and values and continues to uphold them. She is a fourth-generation land protector for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, growing up in the movement to protect those sacred lands from oil development, fighting for climate justice. With each new opportunity, Chasinghorse educates people about her culture and her journey.

Chasinghorse has walked the runway for Gucci and Chloé and starred in campaigns for Calvin Klein and Chanel, among other high-end brands. She has appeared on the covers of Vogue, Elle, Allure, and National Geographic, and was honored on Teen Vogue’s 2020 list of “Top 21 Under 21.” Quannah and her mother were recently featured on an episode of Hillary and Chelsea Clinton’s Apple+ TV series Gutsy, which celebrated environmental activists, and was the subject of the documentary Walking Two Worlds. Beyond her advocacy as a land protector, she champions Indigenous rights and sovereignty, and justice for the movement MMIWG2S, which stands for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and Two-Spirit People. In all she does, Quannah celebrates indigenous practices and fashion and works to increase representation and break the trail for those following in her footsteps.

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ANTONIA HYLTON

  • Correspondent, NBC News & MSNBC
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Peabody and two-time Emmy-winning correspondent, producer, and author Antonia Hylton reports at the intersection of politics, civil rights, and immigration. She is currently a correspondent for NBC News and MSNBC. From 2016 to 2020, Antonia was a Correspondent and Producer for Vice Media and HBO’s nightly news and documentary show, Vice News Tonight. Since 2019, she has served as an annual judge for the American Mosaic Journalism Prize. She is the co-host of the hit podcasts Southlake and Grapevine, and author of the book Madness: Race and Insanity in a Jim Crow Asylum. Hylton reports on the hardest-hitting stories of today, shaping the conversations beyond the headlines with her sharp critical analysis.

Hylton is one of the most respected journalists of her generation, winning a Peabody, two Emmy Awards, two Gracie Awards, a NAMIC Vision Award, and two Front Page Awards for special reporting and breaking news. She was named to Forbes’ “30 Under 30 - Media.” Beyond the professional sphere, she has conquered a rare form of colon cancer and is an outspoken advocate for preventative care and screenings. Hylton’s will to change the world and dedication to storytelling are consistent across her award-winning journalism, public health advocacy, and live engagements.

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RYAN BERGARA

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

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

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LAURIE SEGALL

  • Former Senior Tech Correspondent, CNN; Reporter, '60 Minutes'
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Silicon Valley technology reporter Laurie Segall first gained notoriety by identifying and interviewing founders of disruptive tech companies and bringing their stories to light. As the former senior tech correspondent for CNN and a reporter for 60 Minutes, Segall has engaged in conversations with the world's most influential tech leaders, including Mark Zuckerberg, Tim Cook, and OpenAI’s Sam Altman. Her memoir, Special Characters: My Adventures with Tech’s Titans and Misfits, chronicles her experiences as a young reporter during the late 00s tech boom, providing a unique vantage point into the industry's most transformative moments and figures. She is the founder of Mostly Human, an entertainment company that produces docs, films and digital content focused on the intersection of technology and humanity. With over a decade of tracking the human impact of technology, Segall has positioned herself as one of the most credible and sought-after voices in Silicon Valley.

Segall has received numerous awards for her work championing women, including multiple Gracie awards. Segall has been featured in multiple publications, including Forbes, Business Insider, NY Mag's The Cut, CBS This Morning, and SF Chronicle. She is a sought-after speaker at industry conferences, including Web Summit, Center for Humane Technology, Founders Forum, SXSW, etc.

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JAMES KAKALIOS

  • Physics Professor of Superhero Science
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In addition to being a mild-mannered physics professor, Dr. James Kakalios is an award-winning, internationally recognized expert on Superhero Science. Dr. Kakalios is the Taylor Distinguished Professor in the University of Minnesota’s School of Physics and Astronomy and the author of three popular science books: The Physics of Superheroes, The Amazing Story of Quantum Mechanics, and The Physics of Everyday Things. He has given hundreds of fun and engaging public presentations to audiences whose age ranges from eight to eighty. Using humor and wit, he explains real science using superhero comic books as examples – focusing on those cases where the heroes get their science right!

Dr. Kakalios’ science communication efforts have been recognized by national awards from the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Institute of Physics, and the American Association of Physics Teachers (previous winners of these awards include Neil deGrasse Tyson, Stephen Hawking, Carl Sagan, and more). He served as the science consultant for the Warner Bros. superhero film Watchmen (his short video, “The Science of Watchmen,” won a Regional Emmy award) and the Sony film The Amazing Spider-Man. His YouTube videos, discussing the physics in superhero movies, have garnered millions of views.

Dr. Kakalios has been invited to inspire audiences at schools, commencement ceremonies, and STEM-related private industry meetings as the keynote or after-banquet speaker, including the 92nd Street Y, Library of Congress, ComicCon International, and more. His talks are not just entertaining, but also educational! He has been reading comic books longer than he has been studying physics.

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DR. JONATHAN LEARY

  • Founder and CEO of Remedy Place
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Dr. Jonathan Leary is the visionary Founder and CEO of Remedy Place, a revolutionary Social Wellness Club. At the intersection of design, holistic self-care, and human connection, Dr. Leary and Remedy Place are architecting a profound shift in the landscape of the $10+ trillion healthcare industry. Responding to a surge in demand from a market poised for exponential growth, Remedy Place has launched a global events division and introduced a collection of holistic technologies, ushering in a dynamic new era of self-care. Dr. Leary continues to innovate and inspire with an unwavering commitment to transforming lives and shaping industries

Beyond his leadership at Remedy Place, Dr. Leary is a sought-after speaker in the health and wellness arena. His practice and expertise have been featured in top media outlets from Vogue to The New York Times, alongside a range of corporate advisories and appearances including Delta Airlines, Cannes Film Festival, and The Global Wellness Summit.

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KAITLAN COLLINS

  • CNN Anchor
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CNN anchor Kaitlan Collins is a journalist who covers the most important domestic and global news stories. On her primetime program, The Source with Kaitlan Collins, she has interviewed major global figures like Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Ukranian President Volodymr Zelensky, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, Trump Employee 5, Alabama Senator Tommy Tuberville, Bill Barr, Mitt Romney, Bernie Sanders, former Attorney General William Barr, GOP presidential candidates, and more. Previously, Collins was the co-anchor and chief correspondent of CNN This Morning. Prior to the launch of the morning show, she served as CNN's Chief White House Correspondent based in Washington, D.C. Collins is lauded as a balanced and incisive voice in political conversations.

In recognition of her journalistic work, Collins has been included in Mediaite's annual list of the “Most Influential People in News Media.” She was named to Crain's NewsPro's “12 to Watch in TV News,” as well as one of Forbes’ “30 Under 30: Media.” In 2023, she was named to Variety’s “New Power of New York” list and The Hill’s “Changemakers” list. Also in 2023, she received an Emmy Award for her part in CNN's coverage of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Collins provides perspectives on U.S. government, politics, and foreign affairs in addition to lending her on-air interviewing experience to hosting and moderation.

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DAN HARRIS

  • Murrow & Emmy Award-Winning Journalist
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Dan Harris is a fidgety, skeptical journalist who had a panic attack on live national television, which led him towards an investigative interest in mindful ambition and wellness. He went on to write the #1 New York Times bestseller, 10% Happier, followed by a chart-topping podcast, Ten Percent Happier, which ranks in the top 100. Harris, a seasoned reporter with over two decades of experience as an anchor and in the field, seamlessly weaves meditation into his narrative, highlighting its profound effects on stress reduction and clarity of thought, making it an integral part of his mission to promote well-being in the modern world. Renowned for his candid exploration of the interior, journalist Dan Harris inspires others with his personal journey, emphasizing the transformative impact of a mentally resilient approach to ambitious professional endeavors. His guests have included everyone from His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Brené Brown to Karamo from Queer Eye. Dan's approach is seemingly modest, but secretly radical: happiness is a skill you can train.

Sharing poignant examples from his own life, Harris lays out the (often winding) road to personal resilience. For his work, Harris has earned an Edward R. Murrow Award and four News & Documentary Emmy Awards. His TED Talk went viral, launching a new movement in mindfulness. He has spoken at Google and shared his mindfulness practice nationally on ABC News, NPR, Good Morning America, and more.

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JEMELE HILL

  • Emmy Award-Winning Journalist
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Emmy Award-winning journalist Jemele Hill is known for bringing a unique perspective to her analysis of sports and social issues. Hill’s 20-plus year journalism career has included stops at the biggest sports media network and several reputable newspapers. She is currently a contributing writer for The Atlantic, after rising to prominence through ESPN, where she provided undeniably fresh takes on sports content as a host of SportsCenter, First Take, Around the Horn, The Sports Reporters, and Outside the Lines. Her independent commentary took off with a weekly, late-night show on Vice Network called Cari & Jemele: Won’t Stick to Sports, co-hosted with Hill’s longtime friend, former ESPN anchor Cari Champion. As fans flocked to her personal brand, Hill’s podcast career launched with the two-time Webby award-winning podcast Jemele Hill is Unbothered, featuring in-depth, thought-provoking conversation with some of the biggest newsmakers across entertainment, culture, music, and politics. Previous guests include Vice President Kamala Harris, Ice Cube, Spike Lee, Chelsea Clinton, Stephen Colbert, Issa Rae, and more A-listers. Her memoir, UPHILL, one of Oprah Daily’s Best Nonfiction Books, reveals her tumultuous childhood, complicated family dynamics, and her life-saving journey into journalism. Hill explores topical and controversial issues with humorous, candid commentary.

Hill’s career emphasizes the power of dialogue and conversation in bridging divides, fostering understanding, and driving positive change within society. Hill founded a podcast network, Unbothered, and co-founded Lodge Freeway Media to empower other women of color in sports media production. She is a highly lauded journalist, honored with two NAACP Awards and the National Association of Black Journalists’ Journalist of the Year Award. Hill has been invited to speak at Harvard University, Stanford University, Google, and many more.

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JIMMY KIMMEL

  • Host & Executive Producer, ABC’s "Jimmy Kimmel Live"
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American television host, comedian, writer, and producer Jimmy Kimmel is best known as an iconic late-night host. As the host and executive producer of ABC’s longest-running late-night talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Kimmel has hosted some of the biggest events and moments in pop culture. Kimmel began working in radio during high school, then pivoted to on-screen hosting. Previously, Kimmel hosted and produced several comedy series, including Comedy Central’s The Man Show and Win Ben Stein’s Money, for which he won an Emmy award for Best Game Show Host. Kimmel has hosted three Primetime Emmy Awards and four Academy Awards. Through his work as a moderator and host, Kimmel has undeniably become a household name.

Kimmel has been named one of Time’s “The World’s 100 Most Influential People” for his work in the media and entertainment industry. He teamed up with four other superstar comedians to create the chart-topping Strike Force Five to support television writers nationally. Known for his clean, honest humor, Kimmel can make any audience laugh.

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ZIWE

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

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

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RAYMOND BRAUN

  • Acclaimed Media Personality, Journalist, Social Influencer, and Entrepreneur
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Three years ago, Raymond Braun had never run more than three miles and was struggling with debilitating Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. In February 2023, Raymond set two World Records by completing 7 Olympic Distance triathlons on all 7 continents in 7 consecutive days. This endeavor was part of his mental health recovery program and aimed to destigmatize conversations about therapy and grief, while honoring his late friend, Maya Amoils, a mental health advocate.

As an award-winning multimedia journalist, producer, and advocate, Raymond now facilitates open conversations on the connection between mental and physical health through documentary storytelling, public speaking, endurance events, and peer-to-peer counseling. He has spoken at prestigious events ranging from the White House to the Forbes CMO Summit, and been featured in numerous media outlets including the New York Times, CNN, and many more.

Raymond struggled with OCD-related challenges throughout his life, masking them behind professional achievements and accolades. He graduated as valedictorian for both his B.A. and M.A. degrees from Stanford University. He went on to hold leadership positions at YouTube and Bumble, founded a creative consultancy with prestigious clients like CHANEL and Google, and achieved recognition as a GLAAD Award-winning documentary host.

Raymond ultimately found solace and transformation through endurance sports and exposure therapy. He now focuses on mental health awareness, inclusivity in fitness, and sharing inspiring stories of mental and physical transformation to empower others. Raymond's ultimate mission is to prove that individuals possess far greater potential than their self-limiting thoughts, stereotypes, and societal pressures suggest.

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SHARON MCMAHON

  • "America's Government Teacher"
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Former high school government and law teacher Sharon McMahon is on a mission to curate facts, fun, and inspiration by educating Americans on democracy, politics, and history. After years of serving as a high school government and law teacher, Sharon took her passion for education to Instagram with a mission to combat political misinformation with non-partisan facts. Sharon has earned a reputation as “America’s Government Teacher'' and quickly amassed over a million social media followers, affectionately known as “Governerds.” Sharon is also the host of the award-winning podcast, Here’s Where It Gets Interesting, where, each week, she provides entertaining yet factual accounts of America’s most fascinating moments and people.

In a time where flashy headlines and false information often take the spotlight, Sharon is a reliable source for truth and logic. She has shared her knowledge with CNNThe Daily Show with Trevor Noah, Good Morning America, and has been featured in The Atlantic. She has received PRWeek’s Communicator of the Year Award as well as the noteworthy Jefferson Award.

In all that she does, Sharon encourages others to be world-changing humans. She has led her community in various philanthropic initiatives that have raised more than $7M for teachers, domestic violence survivors, terminally ill children, medical debt forgiveness programs, Ukrainian refugees, and more.

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JEFF KOONS

  • Renowned Contemporary Artist & Sculptor
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Iconic contemporary artist and sculptor Jeff Koons is one of the most prominent artists working today. Koons is known for challenging limitations while engaging viewers in a dialogue about the present moment and our historical past. For four decades, Koons has created works that explore themes of self-acceptance and transcendence. He is widely known for his bold paintings and sculptures, including Rabbit, Michael Jackson and Bubbles, Puppy, and Balloon Dog. Koons was the first artist to place a sculpture on the moon. The smooth, mirror-finished surfaces of his iconic stainless-steel sculptures reflect and affirm viewers and their environments. Since his first solo exhibition in 1980, Koons’s work has been shown in galleries, museums, and cultural institutions throughout the world.

Koons has received numerous awards and honors in recognition of his cultural achievements. He has been a board member of The International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children (ICMEC) since 2002 and co-founded the Koons Family International Law and Policy Institute with ICMEC for the purpose of combating global issues of child abduction and exploitation and to protect the world’s children.

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MARK HYMAN, MD

  • 15-Time New York Times Bestselling Author
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Practicing family physician and many-time bestselling author Mark Hyman, MD is an internationally recognized leader, speaker, educator, and advocate in the field of Functional Medicine. Dr. Hyman is the founder and director of The UltraWellness Center, founder and Senior Advisor for the Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine, and Board President for Clinical Affairs for The Institute for Functional Medicine. He is a fifteen-time New York Times bestselling author of The Pegan Diet, Food Fix, and most recently Young Forever – an instant #1 NYT bestseller. Through his writing and in his sought-after talks, Dr. Hyman offers a revolutionary, practical guide to creating and sustaining health – for life.

Dr. Hyman is the co-founder and Chief Medical Officer of Function Health and the founder and chairman of the Food Fix Campaign – dedicated to transforming our food and agriculture system through policy. He is the host of one of the leading health podcasts, The Doctor’s Farmacy, which has over 200M+ downloads. Dr. Hyman is a regular medical contributor to CBS This MorningToday, Fox, CNN, Good Morning AmericaThe View, and CNN.

Through his work to change policy for the betterment of public health, Dr. Hyman has testified before the Senate Working Group on Health Care Reform on Functional Medicine. He has consulted with the surgeon general on diabetes prevention and participated in the 2009 White House Forum on Prevention and Wellness. Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa nominated Dr. Hyman for the President’s Advisory Group on Prevention, Health Promotion, and Integrative and Public Health. With topics ranging from food as medicine, to disruption in the healthcare system, to how technological advancements like AI will impact our approach to health, Dr. Hyman is an informed, engaging advocate who motivates his audiences toward lasting change.

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SEAN EVANS

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

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

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PITBULL

  • Grammy Award-Winning Artist
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Grammy Award-winning independent international superstar, education advocate, and entrepreneur Armando Christian Pérez Pitbull is a sought-after motivational speaker who invites disruption on a global scale. With billions of audio streams and videos views, plus hundreds of gold and platinum certifications, Pitbull has one of the most impressive careers in music history. Pitbull returned to the road in 2022 with the sold out North American Can’t Stop Us Now Tour along with his SiriusXM Globalization DJs packing amphitheaters and arenas coast-to-coast. From his danceable hit songs to his philanthropic actions, Armando shares a message of hope, hard work, and positivity that resonates worldwide.

Beyond music, Armando has leveraged his business acumen through a diverse portfolio of investments and partnerships. He is co-owner of the NASCAR racing team Trackhouse and has successfully developed other ventures including his own record label Mr. 305, Inc. and Voli 305 Vodka. Armando successfully established Sports Leadership Arts and Management (SLAM!) – tuition-free public charter schools across the country, recognized as one of the top school networks in the world. His next long-awaited Spanglish album, Trackhouse, releases Fall 2023 and Pitbull will join Enrique Iglesias and Ricky Martin on The Trilogy Tour. He has performed for millions worldwide, and even joined forces with the #1 life and business strategist, Tony Robbins, for a global motivational speaking tour. Sharing his uplifting journey to success, Pitbull emphasizes the power of learning from your mistakes – “must-takes,” as he calls them – and embracing a growth mindset to achieve your dreams.

Pitbull melds practical knowledge with personal experiences, ensuring that his talks are not just informative but also deeply resonant and inspirational. His multifaceted career and endeavors reflect a man who is not just an artist, but a leader, entrepreneur, educator, and philanthropist, making him an enriching speaker for a multitude of audiences and events.

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AMANDA KNOX

  • Exoneree & Innocence Network Advocate
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Exoneree, journalist, and New York Times bestselling author Amanda Knox spent four years in an Italian prison and eight years on trial for a murder she didn’t commit. The scandal made headlines for nearly a decade, as Amanda – dubbed “Foxy Knoxy” – was exploited by the media and judged by the masses on a global scale. Though she was exonerated by Italy’s highest court, she was sentenced to life by the court of public opinion, forever branded as a killer despite her innocence. Since her exoneration, Amanda has fought to reclaim her identity and to find meaning in those stolen years and unjust incarceration, all while advocating for a more just legal system and a more ethical media.

Thoughtful, passionate, and revelatory, Amanda Knox has captivated audiences across the country and abroad, sharing the wisdom she learned the hard way about how to find resilience in the face of tremendous adversity. She is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir Waiting to Be Heard, and co-host – with her husband Christopher Robinson – of the podcast Labyrinths, which delves into stories of getting lost and found again through compassionate interviews, philosophical rants, and playful debate with fascinating people. Amanda sits on the board of the Frederick Douglass Project for Justice, serves as an Innocence Network Ambassador, and is an advocate for criminal justice reform and media ethics.

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ERIK LOGAN

  • Former CEO of World Surf League
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Transformational leader Erik Logan has a diverse portfolio that spans talent management startups, technology, cable networks, and sports league management, most notably as the CEO of the World Surf League (WSL) and President of the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN). At WSL, Logan redefined the sport by introducing game-changing formats and partnerships with platforms like ABC, HBO, and Apple TV+, achieving record audiences and revenues. His previous role at OWN was marked by a turnaround that led the network to unprecedented ratings and revenues, reinforcing his reputation for innovation and growth.

Throughout his career, including tenures at XM Satellite Radio, Citadel Broadcasting, and CBS/Infinity, Logan has excelled in nurturing new talent and fostering innovative environments. His leadership style is characterized by a commitment to executive growth, a passion for business excellence, and an aptitude for recognizing industry trends, making him a catalyst for change and success in diverse sectors.

Whether leading a sports league to its best performance in over 40 years or driving a media network to become #1 in its key target demographics, Logan consistently demonstrates an uncanny ability to revolutionize how audiences interact with content. As an avid supporter of the growth mindset, Logan inspires a culture of continuous learning, innovation, and adaptability through his leadership and motivational speaking engagements.

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DYLAN ALCOTT

  • 4x Gold Medal Paralympian & Golden Slam Champion
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Paralympian, disability advocate, author, and philanthropist Dylan Alcott AO is one of Australia’s most successful and well-recognized Paralympians. A multisport Olympian, Alcott was the youngest member of the gold-medal winning team at the Beijing 2008 Paralympics, competing in wheelchair basketball. After winning silver at London in 2012, Dylan returned to wheelchair tennis, winning 15 Grand Slam tournaments as well as double Paralympic gold in Rio. In 2021, Dylan became the only male in any form of tennis to win the ‘Golden Slam’ – winning the Australian, French, Wimbledon, and US Open Championships. Dylan has been in high demand as a speaker, with powerhouse talks for TEDx, Johnson & Johnson, Oracle, Salesforce, McDonalds, Meta, LinkedIn, Deloitte, and more.

Alcott was named Australian of the Year in 2022, and GQ Australia called him “a champion for the ages.” In 2017, Dylan launched the Dylan Alcott Foundation with a mission to help young Australians with a disability achieve their goals in the workplace, on the sporting field, or at university. Alcott is also the Founder of Get Skilled Access – a consulting firm committed to making inclusion a reality for organizations of any size. Dylan was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in 2022 for distinguished service to Paralympic sport, particularly to tennis, and as a role model for people with disability, and to the community through a range of organizations.

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MICHAEL SPENCE

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

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

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DR. MYRON ROLLE

  • Neurosurgeon and Inventor of Rolle Scoring System - A public health rating scale to prevent traumatic brain injury
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Neurosurgeon, bestselling author, philanthropist, and former NFL player Dr. Myron Rolle is a medical pioneer in preventing traumatic brain injury and has made profound improvements to neurosurgical care in the Caribbean. Dr. Rolle is a Rhodes Scholar and a chief neurosurgery resident and Global Neurosurgery Fellow at Harvard-Massachusetts General Hospital. He developed and published the Rolle Scoring System, a public health rating scale used to determine a developing country’s governance around helmet safety to prevent traumatic brain injury. Dr. Rolle has been recognized by the Congress of Neurological Surgeons for demonstrating the best operative technique in the reconstruction of upper extremity motor function using intercostal nerve transfers after a traumatic brachial plexus injury. Dr. Rolle is the bestselling author of The 2% Way: How a Philosophy of Small Improvements Took Me to Oxford, the NFL, and Neurosurgery, and he shares his remarkable story and life-changing philosophy in motivational events.

Dr. Rolle is the chairman of the Caribbean Neurosurgery Foundation – a not-for-profit which houses capacity-building and health system-strengthening initiatives for improved neurosurgical care in the Caribbean. His foundation has impacted over 3.5M people in the Caribbean through the upscaling of policy, service delivery, infrastructure, and workforce development. Dr. Rolle also serves as the youngest ever board director at Abiomed – a leading provider of groundbreaking medical technology that provides circulatory and oxygenation support for the most at-risk cardiac patients. Following a successful event, host Citadel raved: “Never have I received so many messages and pings about a session from such a diverse audience. Each and every one… appreciated your candor, perspective, humility and storytelling. A privilege to share a stage with you and hope we are able to partner in the future.”

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CHRISTOPHER WORSHAM

  • Critical Care Physician
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Critical care physician, pulmonologist, and health policy researcher Dr. Christopher Worsham is co-author of Random Acts of Medicine: The Hidden Forces That Sway Doctors, Impact Patients, and Shape Our Health. A health policy researcher at Harvard, Dr. Worsham’s work sits at the intersection of behavioral economics and medicine – using big data in clever ways to study what motivates doctors and patients to behave the way they do – and how we can use that knowledge to make healthcare better. From his vantage point caring for the hospital’s sickest patients as a practicing critical care specialist at Massachusetts General Hospital, Dr. Worsham draws from his own research and others to glean valuable insights from the fascinating stories hiding in our health data in a way that is entertaining and approachable.

Dr. Worsham’s work, which focuses on finding creative ways to improve public health, has been published in top medical journals such as The New England Journal of Medicine and major media outlets including The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal. He is passionate about finding opportunities to create more equitable health care for everyone. Dr. Worsham has spoken for groups including the American Thoracic Society, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Ogilvy Health, the St. Louis County Library, Harvard University, and more.

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ARTHUR SMITH

  • Chairman & CEO, A. Smith & Co Productions Known for 'Hell's Kitchen', 'American Ninja Warrior', and More
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Pioneer in nonfiction television Arthur Smith has been a hands-on, trendsetting producer in the unscripted television space, creating innovative, larger-than-life formats for two decades and counting. Since founding A. Smith & Co. in 2000, Smith has created some of the longest-running, culture-shaping unscripted series in television history. With more than 200 shows for over 50 networks, under Smith’s leadership, A. Smith & Co. essentially forged the modern food competition reality genre in the United States with the launch of FOX’s longest-running reality show Hell’s Kitchen. His flagship summer primetime show, American Ninja Warrior, now in its 15th season on NBC has garnered seven Emmy nominations. Smith is the author of REACH: Hard Lessons and Learned Truths from a Lifetime in Television, which Forbes called “an immediate must-read.” In his motivational keynotes, Smith illustrates just how far you can go when you work hard, take risks, and reach for your dreams.

Smith embarked on his career as a television producer as a 22-two-year-old wunderkind, talking his way into sports production at CBC in his native Canada. He quickly distinguished himself as a rising star at the network, where he produced three Olympic Games among countless other high-profile events. He has been honored as one of Variety’s “Titans of Unscripted TV” in 2022, inducted into the Realscreen Awards Hall of Fame in 2021, awarded Broadcasting & Cable’s “Producer of the Year” in 2020, and is the recipient of dozens of industry awards. An engaging and energizing speaker, Smith has been in-demand with groups including the U.S. Olympic Academy, Vulcan Media, Beverly Hills Rotary Club, Ryerson University, UCLA, NYU, and many others.

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JODY AVIRGAN

  • Host of TED's 'Good Sport' Podcast, ESPN's '30 for 30' Podcasts, and More
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Podcaster and lifelong competitive athlete Jody Avirgan offers memorable lessons in creating team culture - drawing on what he's learned from playing with and covering top athletes - to help you achieve success as an individual, and by working together. Jody is the host of the show Good Sport from the TED Audio Collective, the Radiotopia show This Day In Esoteric Political History, and serves as story editor and executive producer for a number of projects. Previously, he ran and hosted 30 for 30 Podcasts, part of ESPN Films and was a producer at WNYC radio, working with shows including On the Media, Freakonomics, and more. Jody is the founder of Roulette Productions and developed FiveThirtyEight Podcasts, which covered politics, pop culture, and how data affects our lives.

Jody’s shows and series consistently reach large audiences, finding their way to the top of the iTunes charts and receiving critical acclaim. He is also organizer of the Pro-Democracy Podcast Coalition, a network of podcasts who have committed to sharing messages about protecting our democracy and reducing political corruption. Jody has spoken for groups including IAB Upfronts, Tedx, Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard, and more.

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MARTA KAUFFMAN

  • Television Creator, Writer and Producer
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Famed TV writer and producer Marta Kauffman is known for creating the hit 10-season sitcom Friends and Grace and Frankie. Marta created NBC’s long-running hit Friends with David Crane, and the iconic series earned 63 Emmy nominations, winning Outstanding Comedy Series in 2002. They were awarded the 2016 Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for lifetime achievement in television writing by the WGA West, and reruns continue to delight with Friends: The Reunion being a ratings juggernaut. Marta recently finished the Netflix comedy Grace and Frankie starring Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin and has spoken about creating a hit show that features octogenarian actors and combatting ageism across industries.

Marta’s other credits include Georgia, Five, Veronica's Closet, The Powers That Be, Call Me Crazy: A Five Film, and the documentary Seeing Allred. She has served on several Boards of Trustees including CalArts, Oakwood School, The Lung Cancer Foundation of America, Big Sunday, and IKAR. Marta earned the 2016 Outstanding Television Writer award at the 23rd annual Austin Film Festival & Screenwriters Conference as well as the Kieser Humanitas Award. She recently received an Honorary Doctorate from Brandeis University. Marta has spoken for groups including The New Jewish Home, BANFF, and motivational commencement keynotes for Wesleyan University and Brandeis University.

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DAVID NIHILL

  • Award-Winning Comedian
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Born and raised in Dublin, Ireland, David Nihill is the author of the bestselling book Do You Talk Funny? and the Founder of FunnyBizz Conference. His work has been featured in Inc.LifehackerThe Huffington PostFast CompanyEntrepreneurForbes, NPR, The Wall Street JournalThe Irish Times, Amazon Prime Video, Dry Bar Comedy, TED, and the Irish Independent. A sought-after international business speaker, David also performs standup comedy where his videos have received over 300M views and amassed a social following of over 1.5M people.

“One of the best speaking coaches out there” according to Forbes, David’s program with over 34,000 students has also been featured by Prezi as one of the best training courses for presenters. His book remains one of the highest rated in the world on the (usually not so wildly exciting) topic of public speaking, and his content has been read by over one million people. David was the winner of the prestigious San Francisco International Comedy Competition and runner up in NPR’s the Moth’s largest US story telling competition. As a lecturer, he has taught at Stanford Graduate Business School, University of Oxford, UC Berkeley, and University College Dublin.

Generali Worldwide raved, “For impact, content and valuable takeaways David’s presentation to our Sales team was exceptional – a highly energized, engaging and yes funny (very, very funny) session. In fact, feedback from the team was that his presentation was the best they have had in thirteen years of the conference.”

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ROBIN THEDE

  • Multi-Talented Comedian, Writer, Actor and Producer
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Multi-talented comedian, writer, actor, and producer Robin Thede is a powerhouse Hollywood creative and acclaimed storyteller who uses comedy to change the world. A five-time Emmy-nominee, Thede is the Creator, Showrunner, Executive Producer, Writer, and Star of HBO’s Emmy-winning sketch comedy series, A Black Lady Sketch Show. Previously, she was the Creator, Executive Producer, Writer, and Host of The Rundown with Robin Thede on BET – where she made her mark as one of the only Black women to ever host a late-night television talk show. In profound and hilarious talks, Thede speaks to creativity and comedy, diversity and inclusion, and creating a path for your vision in any industry.

Thede holds the title to many firsts. She served as head writer and correspondent on Comedy Central’s The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore, becoming the first Black woman to earn the title of Head Writer in late-night television. She was also the first Black woman to be head writer for the White House Correspondents Dinner. Thede has received numerous awards and accolades, including being honored with the Innovator of the Year Award by the Culture Creators in 2022. She was named to the Variety 2022 Comedy Impact Report as well as to The Hollywood Reporter’s 2022 "Most Influential People in Comedy" list. She won a Black Reel Award in the category “Outstanding Actress, Comedy Series.” Thede currently develops projects for TV and film under her For Better or Words, Inc. banner, which has an overall deal at HBO/Max/Warner Brothers, and will star alongside Eddie Murphy and Tracee Ellis Ross in the upcoming Amazon Studios feature, Candy Cane Lane.

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JEN HATMAKER

  • New York Times Bestselling Author of 14 Books
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New York Times bestselling author, award-winning podcaster, and community creator Jen Hatmaker inspires audiences to show up genuinely for their own lives – and believes this will change the world. Jen is the author of 14 books including the NYT bestsellers For the Love, Of Mess and Moxie, and Fierce, Free, and Full of Fire. Her latest book, Feed These People: Slam Dunk Recipes for Your Crew, is jam-packed with easy recipes, big flavors, and Southern wit. Jen is the founder and delighted curator of the Jen Hatmaker Book Club, host of the award-winning For the Love podcast, and she leads a tightly knit online community where she reaches millions of people each week.

Jen is a co-founder of Legacy Collective, a giving organization that grants millions of dollars towards sustainable projects around the world. A highly sought-after motivational speaker, Jen shares uplifting messages about leadership, well-being, authenticity, and finding yourself that resonate with an audience of millions

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KENDALL TOOLE

  • Top Peloton Fitness Instructor - "Never Knocked Out"
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Athlete, community builder, and mental health advocate Kendall Toole is a lightning rod of energy and natural-born fighter who knows how to harness the collective attention in any room. A top Peloton fitness instructor, Kendall is also a content creator and lifestyle entrepreneur on a purpose-driven mission to empower others. Kendall is passionate about destigmatizing mental health and is an ambassador for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and considers her own mental health journey a part of what makes her powerful.

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

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DR. LISA DAMOUR

  • New York Times Bestselling Author of 'Untangled', 'Under Pressure', and 'The Emotional Lives of Teenagers'
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Three-time New York Times bestselling author, podcaster, and thought leader Dr. Lisa Damour is known for her critically acclaimed books UntangledUnder Pressure, and The Emotional Lives of Teenagers, which have been translated into twenty-three languages. She co-hosts the Ask Lisa podcast, works in collaboration with UNICEF, and is recognized as a thought leader by the American Psychological Association. Dr. Damour is a regular contributor to The New York Times and CBS News and the creator of Untangling 10to20, a digital library of premium content to support teens and those who care for them. Dr. Damour’s compassionate and actionable talks on adult mental health, managing anxiety and chronic stress, cultivating well-being, family life, and more have positively impacted audiences worldwide.

Dr. Damour serves as a Senior Advisor to the Schubert Center for Child Studies at Case Western Reserve University and has written numerous academic papers, chapters, and books related to education and child development. She maintains a clinical practice and also speaks to schools, professional organizations, and corporate groups around the world on the topics of child and adolescent development, family mental health, and adult well-being.

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SARAH POLLEY

  • Oscar-Winning Filmmaker Known for 'Women Talking'
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Oscar-winning filmmaker, actor, and author Sarah Polley is a storyteller focused on personal stories with powerful cultural resonance. Polley’s film Women Talking received a Best Picture nomination and won the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, reverberating with critics and audiences alike as a “powerful act of non-violent protest” (Variety). Polley's previous films include Away From Her - which was nominated for two Academy Awards, Take This Waltz, and her documentary film Stories We Tell, which won Best Documentary Film awards from the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, National Board of Review, and the New York Film Critics Circle, as well as a Writer’s Guild of America award for its screenplay. Polley executive produced and wrote the acclaimed Netflix limited series Alias, Grace, adapted from Margaret Atwood’s novel. In memorable events, Polley speaks on the creative process, the value of storytelling, confronting fear, and what it means to be the author of one’s own life.

Polley starred in a wide variety of films including The Sweet Hereafter (Best Supporting Actress award from the Boston Society of Film Critics), Go (Independent Spirit Award nomination), Dawn of the Dead, Mr. Nobody, and The Weight of Water, to name a few. Polley is the author of the New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice Run Towards the Danger: Confrontations with a Body of Memory, a well-received collection of essays detailing her relationship with her body and how her memory of past and present experiences has contributed to her evolving understanding of self. In profound and ultimately uplifting conversations, Polley inspires her audiences to harness the power of storytelling to live a fuller life.

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EDEN GRINSHPAN

  • Chef and Host of 'Top Chef Canada'
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Chef, funny mom, and Host of Top Chef Canada Eden Grinshpan is the author of Eating Out Loud: Bold Middle Eastern Flavors for All Day Every Day. With her relatable, sincere, and humorous personality, Eden is loved for her approachable cooking and entertaining videos. While pregnant with her daughter, Eden created a viral social media trend by posing with outrageous food stacked on her baby belly. She became an advocate for women, mothers, and breastfeeding, posting multiple videos of dancing while pumping breast milk. Eden has built a strong connection with her dedicated followers through her positive, inclusive, and high-energy approach, spreading joy and laughter while showcasing delicious food and fun lifestyle content.

Eden has been featured on the Forbes' "30 Under 30" List, and has been highlighted by various media outlets, including ElleCosmopolitanCherry Bombe, parents.com, GlamourThe Daily Mail, and many others. She has cooked in restaurants across Europe, India, Southeast Asia, and Israel, and co-founded DEZ – a Middle Eastern fast-casual restaurant in the heart of NYC, inspired by her Israeli heritage. Her debut cookbook, Eating Out Loud, is an Editor’s Pick on Amazon and was named one of the best cookbooks of the year by Delish and Library Journal. Eden is currently working on her second cookbook, set to release in the Spring of 2025.

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KEECHANT SEWELL

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

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

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DAVE FISHWICK

  • Star of Massive Netflix #1 Hit Movie 'Bank of Dave'
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Founder, Sunday Times bestselling author, and many-time entrepreneur Dave Fishwick is building the first new high street bank in over 120 years in Britain - Burnley Savings and Loans Ltd, also called The Bank of Dave. A many-time entrepreneur of six multi-million-pound businesses in the UK and America, Dave is the largest supplier of minibuses in the UK and an experienced pilot of planes and helicopters who hosts the fastest-growing aviation TikTok channel in the world, with over 55M combined views. He is a champion of grit, ingenuity, and taking on seemingly impossible challenges. Dave’s journey taking on the banks in a ‘Dave and Goliath’ style struggle became the subject of his Sunday Times bestselling book, Bank of Dave: How I Took On the Banks, and many subsequent documentaries.

The movie Bank of Dave hit #1 on Netflix, won Best Feature at the National Film Awards, and took Dave on a massive global speaking tour. Netflix is at work on the Bank of Dave sequel – the fastest commissioned move sequel in Netflix history.

Dave has been the star and subject of many TV shows, including Bank of Dave, Bank of Dave: Fighting the Fat Cats, Secret Millions, and the award-winning Loan Ranger series – looking at how payday loan companies exploit the poor, vulnerable, and desperate. Dave has won multiple BAFTA Awards and the prestigious Royal Television Society Award. He is a regular contributor as The Business and Money Expert on ITV with GMB and This Morning, and has been featured on CNBC, BBC, CNN, and more, and he writes for Mail Online, Daily Mail, and The Mail On Sunday.

Dave left school with no qualifications, and started off in life as a builder’s laborer. Now, he’s opened the first new high street bank in Britain in over 120 years - and then Hollywood turned up and made a movie about his life, which has been a global hit.

Dave is an expert on entrepreneurship, business, and finance, and he shares the story behind taking on seemingly impossible challenges, offering valuable lessons for businesses big and small

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DAVID POLLACK

  • Former NFL Linebacker for the Cincinnati Bengals
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College football analyst and former NFL linebacker David Pollack is an empowering speaker on the importance of faith, family, and community in building a successful career and life. Pollack played college football for the University of Georgia, where he was a three-time All-American, and was recognized as the top college defensive player in the nation. Pollack had 36 sacks during his collegiate career, third most in NCAA history. He was a first-round pick in the 2005 NFL Draft and played professionally for the Cincinnati Bengals. After suffering a career-ending neck injury in his second season with the Bengals, Pollack transitioned to a new path as a college football analyst for ESPN. For over a decade, he has connected with sports fans through his engaging presence and passion for what he does.

Pollack launched the Pollack Family Foundation to positively impact communities by empowering families in Athens and the Greater Atlanta area. The Foundation provides not only for basic needs but also creates opportunities for the community to flourish through unique fundraising experiences and intentional acts of community service. The organization’s work reflects Pollack’s personal values, which he shares in uplifting and motivating talks: Love, Integrity, Family, and Excellence (LIFE).

 

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GABRIELLA KAREFA-JOHNSON

  • Global Contributing Fashion Editor at Large for Vogue
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Global Fashion Editor, Fashion Director, and Stylist Gabriella Karefa-Johnson is known for her stylistic vision and ability to tell stories through an inclusive gaze. A New York-based stylist and editor of Caribbean and West African descent, Karefa-Johnson has a keen eye for up-and-coming designers and a narrative-led approached aimed at diversifying representation in fashion. She worked as an associate fashion editor under fashion director Tonne Goodman at Vogue, and later became Vogue’s Global Contributing Fashion Editor at Large. Karefa-Johnson made history as the first Black woman to style a Vogue cover and has styled more than a dozen international covers of Vogue featuring Serena Williams, Paloma Elsesser, Vice President Kamala Harris, and Amanda Gorman, among many others.

Gabriella is known for her fierce propagation of inclusion in the industry, breaking barriers and disrupting the status quo to tell a more expansive story about the world – one that is full of possibilities. In 2017, she was named Fashion Director of biannual fine art and high fashion publication GARAGE Magazine, where she harnessed her expertise in contemporary American Art, and has served as a guest judge for Netflix’s Next in Fashion. Karefa-Johnson has shared her vision for a more inclusive fashion landscape with groups including Fashion Scholarship Fund, LVMH Prize, Woolmark Prize, Vogue Forces of Fashion, and Barnard’s Class of 2023 Commencement.

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ALLEN HUGHES

  • Emmy Nominated & Peabody Award-Winning Filmmaker
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Award-winning filmmaker Allen Hughes is an accomplished storyteller, whose work explores the American Dream through the lens of pop culture, its intersection with politics, and the global impact of the hip-hop artform. At twenty, Hughes and his twin brother catapulted into the entertainment industry as the creators & directors of Menace II Society. Hughes and his brother are behind the films Dead PresidentsFrom HellThe Book of Eli, and the documentary American Pimp. Hughes is the creative architect behind the critically acclaimed four-part HBO documentary series The Defiant Ones, the stories of Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre. The series was nominated for five Emmys, a Peabody Award, and won the Grammy Award for Best Music Film, the IDA Documentary Award for Best Limited Series, and the NAACP Image Award.

Hughes is the director and executive producer of FX’s Emmy-nominated Dear Mama, the first definitive, comprehensive five-part documentary series on the late hip hop icon Tupac Shakur. The series encompasses his relationship with his mother, Afeni Shakur – a celebrated activist – and was produced with the full cooperation of Shakur’s estate, including access to all his music and poetry. Hughes is also the executive producer of Netflix’s Arnold, the three-part documentary series which chronicles Arnold Schwarzenegger’s journey from the countryside of Austria to the highest echelons of the American dream. The series is produced by Hughes’ production company Defiant Ones Media Group. A documentarian with his attention on the movements and cultural moments that have shaped history, Hughes shares his insights in captivating moderated conversations about the intersection of creativity, art, politics, and culture.

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KEVIN JAMES

  • Beloved Emmy-Nominated Stand-up Comedian
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Beloved comedian and actor Kevin James began his career as a stand-up on the Long Island comedy scene. After being discovered at the 1996 Montreal Comedy Festival, he signed a network development deal to create his own sitcom, The King of Queens. The King of Queens ran for nine seasons on CBS with James starring and executive producing, garnering an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series. James made his feature film debut in Columbia Pictures’ Hitch starring opposite Will Smith, and starred alongside Adam Sandler in Pixels, Grown Ups I & II, and I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry. James has since produced, co-written, and starred in hit comedies Paul Blart: Mall Cop I & II, Zookeeper, and Here Comes the Boom. He starred in and produced Netflix’s Home Team as well as the HBO Sports Special Making the Cut: The Road to Pebble Beach; a documentary about the Pebble Beach Pro Am Golf Tournament nominated for a Sports Emmy.

James’ comedy specials, Sweat the Small Stuff, Never Don’t Give Up, and Irregardless, continue to delight fans globally. Sweat the Small Stuff landed James on Comedy Central’s list of the “100 Greatest Standup Comedians.” He has been honored with nominations for three Teen Choice Award nominations, a Primetime Emmy Award, and a People’s Choice Award.

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REV RUN

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

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

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JENNA ELFMAN

  • Famed Golden Globe-Winning Actress
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Famed Golden Globe-winning actress, podcaster, and philanthropist Jenna Elfman is perhaps best known for her roles on Fear the Walking Dead and Dharma & Greg. Elfman also starred in ABC’s Imaginary Mary and made critically-acclaimed guest appearances on Shameless and Damages. Her film credits include Barry, Friends with Benefits, Keeping the Faith, and the cult classic Can’t Hardly Wait, among others. Elfman brings Hollywood star power to events with groups such as Habitat for Humanity, Association for Better Living and Education, the United Nations, and numerous panels focused on women breaking barriers, career longevity as a woman, inspiration, and more.

Jenna, who is a mother of two, co-hosts a hit comedy podcast with her husband Bodhi, Kicking and Screaming. Jenna and Bodhi discuss marriage, life, and annoyance (not necessarily in that order) and offer an authentic and entertaining glimpse into their lives and work. With her signature and beloved humor, insight, and compassion, Elfman shares her one-of-a-kind perspective in events that resonate with audiences of all kinds.

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JEFF DAVIS

  • Showrunner, Writer, and Director
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Showrunner, writer, and director Jeff Davis is best known for creating CBS’s Criminal Minds and MTV’s Teen Wolf. Shortly after graduating from USC’s Graduate Film School, Davis had his first feature script optioned. He pitched and developed with numerous producers and production companies and turned his attention toward television. Davis had an idea for a crime procedural series about FBI profilers, which became Criminal Minds – which is in its 17th season with another in production. Davis is committed to including diverse perspectives and representation in his work, including centering LGBTQ+ characters and storylines – which has earned him praise and recognition in the film and TV world and beyond.

From there, Davis pitched and sold projects to ABC, SyFY Channel, TNT, and FOX. He was approached by MTV to develop a series based on the cult classic Michael J. Fox movie Teen Wolf – which ran for six seasons and 100 episodes and led to a follow-up movie for Paramount Plus. Davis’ newest series Wolf Pack stars Sarah Michelle Gellar and has received critical and popular acclaim. In engaging events, Davis shares his journey in Hollywood, the importance of being able to tell your authentic story, and the value of creativity for any industry.