Cheryl Pounder speaker

Cheryl Pounder

Olympic hockey gold medalist. Speaker on teamwork and motivation.

 About

Cheryl Pounder was born in Montreal into a family of hockey enthusiasts: A grandfather, who was GM of the Montreal Junior Canadiens, and her hockey-playing older brothers. The rink in the family's backyard also helped to set her on the path to excel at Canada's national sport. Upon moving to Mississauga, Ontario, she achieved the status of athlete of the year at both her high school and Wilfrid Laurier University, where she earned an honours degree in Kinesiology.

She has played on Canada's 1994, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2004, 2005 (All-Star Defenseman) and 2007 World Championship Hockey teams. Cheryl was voted the top defenceman at the 2002, 2004, 2007 and MVP at the 2005 Canadian Women's Hockey National Championship.

Without a doubt, Pounder's greatest career accomplishments are represented by her 2 Olympic Gold Medals in Salt Lake City and Torino.

Cheryl has recently worked for TSN as an in-studio analyst and now a colour commentary broadcaster.

Considering Pounder's pursuit of both educational and physical excellence, it's no surprise that her impressive sports achievements are complemented by her abilities as a motivational speaker.

William Powers speaker

William Powers

Speaker and Bestselling Author of Hamlet's Blackberry: Building a Good Life in the Digital Age

 About

William Powers is an international commentator on how to live and work well in the digital age. He is also best-selling author and a research scientist at MIT.

A former staff writer for The Washington Post, Bill is the author of the New York Times best-seller, Hamlet’s BlackBerry: Building a Good Life in the Digital Age (2011). The book is widely praised for challenging the idea that digital technologies are intrinsically good for productivity, innovation and creativity. Rather, Bill persuasively argues that a balanced use of technology is the path to organisational success and personal happiness. Hamlet’s BlackBerry has been published worldwide in numerous languages including Chinese, Japanese, Korean, German and Russian. 

In 2012 Bill created and directed The Crowdwire, a data project sponsored by Bluefin Labs that analysed the use and effect of social media during the US presidential race. In 2014, he joined the Laboratory for Social Machines, a new research group at the MIT Media Lab. The group was founded in the belief that while the social media revolution has dramatically disrupted old business and social structures, it has not yet been successful at building new structures that solve problems for organisations and society at large. As a research scientist, Bill is working on a number of projects aimed at doing just that.

He has spoken at South by Southwest, the Aspen Festival of Ideas and other high-profile conferences. In addition to The Washington Post, his writing has appeared in The Atlantic, The New York Times and many other major publications. His work has been covered by The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, USA Today, Wired and The Guardian, among others. Bill is also a two-time winner of the National Press Club’s “Rowse Award” for best American media commentary. 

Lewis Pugh speaker

Lewis Pugh

Ocean Advocate, Pioneer Swimmer, and Keynote Speaker

 About

Lewis Pugh goes to extremes. He’s been to the world’s most inaccessible places. He’s put his body through unimaginably difficult conditions. He’s learned how to harness the energy that comes from overcoming extraordinary odds. And he knows how to inspire audiences to rise to their own internal challenges. His talks make a difference, to individuals, and to organisations.

His dream is that they will make a difference to the world.

Over 5 million people have viewed Lewis’s TED talks, and countless others have followed him on BBC, Good Morning America, CNN, Jon Stewart, National Geographic, Sky News, Al Jazeera, Jay Leno and more. His 2 books “Achieving the Impossible” and “21 Yaks and a Speedo” were both bestsellers.

Lewis has received a number of awards including France and South Africa’s highest honours, as well as the Freedom of the City of London. In 2010, the World Economic Forum named him a Young Global Leader for his “potential to contribute to shaping the future of the world through inspiring leadership” and in 2013 the United Nations Environment Program appointed him “Patron of the Oceans.”

Howard D. Putnam speaker

Howard D. Putnam

Former CEO of Southwest Airlines. Inspirational leadership speaker.

 About

Howard Putnam led the visioning process at Southwest as well as further developing the fun culture and excellent customer service that Southwest is still known for today. Southwest has been profitable every year for over thirty years, a record unsurpassed by any other airline.

Howard was raised on an Iowa farm and learned to fly out of a pasture in his Father's J-3 Piper Cub. He entered the airline business as a baggage handler at Midway Airport in Chicago for Capital Airlines at age 17. Capital was soon merged into United and Howard held thirteen different positions in sales, services and staff assignments in several cities, before being named Group Vice President of Marketing for United Airlines, the world's largest airline, in 1976.

In 1978 he was recruited to become President and CEO of fledgling Southwest Airlines in Dallas, TX. While at Southwest Howard and his team tripled the revenues and tripled profitability in three years. They also successfully guided Southwest through airline deregulation and Southwest was the first air carrier to order the Boeing 737-300, which later became the largest selling aircraft ever for Boeing.

In 1981, Howard was recruited by the board of directors of Braniff International to come aboard as CEO and save and/or restructure the financially failing airline. He was the first airline CEO to successfully take a major carrier into, through and out of chapter 11. Braniff flew again in 1984.

He is the author of The Winds of Turbulence on leadership and ethics. Harvard University wrote a case study on his experiences at Braniff, The Ethics of Bankruptcy as a model as to how to handle stakeholders in crisis.

Erik Qualman speaker

Erik Qualman

Author of Socialnomics and Speaker on Digital Leadership

 About

Called a Digital Dale Carnegie and the Tony Robbins of Tech, Erik Qualman is the author of Socialnomics. Socialnomics made Amazon's #1 Best Selling List for the US, Japan, UK, Canada, Portugal, Italy, China, Korea and Germany. His book Digital Leader helped him be voted the 2nd “Most Likeable Author in the World” behind Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling. What Happens in Vegas Stays on YouTube is being adopted by the top universities and global brands and is nominated for the 2015 Pulitzer Prize!

He is no stranger to the executive suite, having served as the Head of Marketing at Travelzoo (TZOO). Yet, he may be best known for writing and producing the world’s most watched social media video. His work has been highlighted on 60 Minutes,The New York Times, WSJ, USA Today, ABC News, Financial Times, Forbes, CBS News, and The Huffington Post. He also helped achieve the Guinness Book of World Record for the longest continuous podcast. Socialnomics was a finalist for the ”Book of the Year.” Fast Company lists Professor Qualman as a Top 100 Digital Influencer.  He made Forbes Top 50 Power Influencer list. Qualman was Academic All-Big Ten in basketball at Michigan State University and been honored as the Michigan State University Alum of the Year. Qualman has an MBA from the McCombs School of Business. A proud husband and father, he lives with his wife and two daughters in Austin.
Nido Qubein speaker

Nido Qubein

Business entrepreneur, change and communication speaker.

 About

Nido Qubein is a proven business leader who's also an effective speaker - not a speaker who knows something about business! He serves on several boards, including a Fortune 500 company with $100 billion in assets.

Nido Qubein stands clearly above the crowd as a dynamic business resource, for corporations and associations. He combines the superb communication skills that have propelled him to the forefront of America's speakers with the solid business acumen that has made him a trusted source of management expertise. He not only shows people what to do; but also, more importantly, teaches them how to think.

His life is an amazing success story: Refugee comes to America with no English, no income, and no connections. Goes on to become successful, wealthy, and widely acclaimed for his many achievements including Ellis Island Medal of Honor and Doctorate of Laws.

Nido Qubein is president of High Point University, an accredited undergraduate and graduate institution with 3,000 students from 50 countries and 44 states. He has written numerous books and recorded scores of audio and video learning programs including a bestseller How to Communicate Like A Pro. He is an active speaker and consultant addressing more than 100 business and professional groups around the world each year.

Dr. Srikumar Rao speaker

Dr. Srikumar Rao

Best-selling Author and Business Speaker on Happiness at Work

 About

Dr. Srikumar Rao has helped thousands of executives and entrepreneurs all over the world discover deep meaning. His methods have enabled them to achieve quantum leaps in effectiveness. Graduates of his workshops have become more creative and more inspiring leaders. Above all they have developed an inner serenity, born of the knowledge that they will be able to appropriately handle whatever comes their way be it a small wave or a tsunami. They become resilient and bounce back nonchalantly from reverses that would floor most peers. 

Dr. Rao received his Ph.D. in Marketing from the Graduate School of Business, Columbia University. He has a degree in Physics from St. Stephen's College, Delhi University and an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.

Dr. Rao is the author of Are You Ready to Succeed: Unconventional Strategies for Achieving Personal Mastery in Business and Life. The book is an international bestseller and has been translated into many languages and distributed in all continents. His latest book Happiness at Work: Be Resilient, Motivated and Successful - No Matter What, is also a business bestseller and has been translated into more than a dozen languages. He is also the creator and narrator of The Personal Mastery Program audio course.

Dr. Rao conceived the innovative course Creativity and Personal Mastery. Students found it so overwhelmingly powerful that it remains the only business school course in the world to have its own alumni association. 

Dr. Rao’s work has been extensively covered in the media including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the London Times, the Independent, Time, the Financial Times, Fortune, the Guardian, Forbes, Business Week and dozens of other publications.

He is a powerful speaker and his talks are hosted on many sites including INC.com,TED.com and Thinkers 50 Interview. He has conducted workshops for and spoken before executives of Microsoft, Google, Merrill Lynch, McDonald’s, Chubb, IBM, United Airlines, Allstate, Johnson & Johnson and dozens of other companies.

Michelle Ray speaker

Michelle Ray

Sought-after keynote speaker on change, communication and leadership.

 About

Born in Australia and now residing in Vancouver, Canada, leadership expert, Michelle Ray is an award-winning speaker and founder of the Lead Yourself First Institute. Michelle began her career in the media industry with one of Australia’s leading broadcasting networks. She worked her way up the management ladder and was responsible for the sales revenues of 25 radio and television affiliate stations. She was subsequently hired by one of the world’s largest cinema advertising contractors to lead the company’s sales team and was also responsible for successfully generating record–breaking revenues during a severely depressed economic climate.

In addition to her corporate background, Michelle broadened her leadership experience during her tenure as a program director with Junior Achievement, an internationally renowned non-profit organization committed to educating future generations about business. She secured financial commitments and volunteer support from an array of corporations, facilitating enduring partnerships between youth, entrepreneurs and educators.

As an in-demand business conference speaker for the past twenty years, Michelle has delivered her powerful messages on leadership, accountability and engaged workplaces to the “C-Suites” of global corporations, academia, diverse associations, government groups, as well as front-line staff. Her client list includes notable brands such as Proctor and Gamble, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Shell, Xerox, PayPal, Qantas Airways, Price Waterhouse Coopers, Playboy Enterprises and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Having addressed thousands of audiences across five continents, Michelle’s combination of wit, masterful humor, practical content and an engaging, interactive style resonates with a diverse clientele seeking to inspire, educate and captivate the imagination of their leaders and teams.

Michelle is the author of Lead Yourself First! Indispensable Lessons in Business and in Life. She has appeared as a guest on numerous news and current affairs programs including CBC Radio, CTV, Global TV and was featured in esteemed publications such as Investor’s Business Daily, The National Post, Huffington Post, BC Business and Inc Magazine. Michelle is a regular contributor for the Globe and Mail’s Leadership Lab Column.

Why Michelle Ray can add value to your conference:

  • Proven track record as a seasoned presenter at corporate and association meetings throughout North America as well as internationally since 1995
  • Renowned business motivational speaker for numerous annual conferences and professional development day events
  • Qualified as a “Certified Speaking Professional”, the National Speakers Association’s highest – earned designation held by less than 10% of members
  • From thousands of entries received, Michelle Ray reached the Top Ten Finals of “North America’s Next Greatest Speaker” Contest.
  • Undertakes due diligence with in-depth research prior to every engagement
  • Consistently engages audiences with humor, passion and a powerful message
  • Delivers a return on investment with solid content; tailored for each client

Mike Rayburn speaker

Mike Rayburn

Guitar virtuoso, inspirational, comedic and entertaining performer.

 About

As a Hall of Fame international keynote speaker, author, comedian, and world-class guitarist, Mike Rayburn is an inspirational thought leader and one of the most indemand and un-conventional keynote artists in the world. Drawing from his success as an entrepreneur as well as a Carnegie Hall headliner, Mike is a master at increasing profitability and impact by inspiring your team to become possibility thinkers and virtuoso performers… all by daring you to ask the question, “What if…?”

The “What If…?” Experience is Mike’s transformational, hilarious keynote presentation. In it Mike uses his amazing guitar work and hilarious comedy as a metaphor, to illustrate three tools designed to turn your team into an army of innovators with the peak performance skills to transcend the status quo to stop managing change, and lead by creating change. Oh… and they’ll laugh so hard it hurts!

The measure of any speaker is the results they produce. Mike is consistently cited as “the hit of the conference,” and “what we needed and didn’t even know it.” More importantly, businesses regularly attribute significant, sometimes exponential increases in sales, impact and morale to the application of Mike’s keynote tools and breakout session content.

Also, in the same way a great song gets stuck in your head, Mike’s “What if…?” message gets repeated over and over, imprinting his most powerful tool in their memories and affecting immediate results and permanent improvement.

Always on the cutting edge, international keynote speaker Mike Rayburn is a Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), Hall of Fame speaker (CPAE), two-time TEDx presenter, has performed more than 4,000 presentations and his comedy remains in heavy rotation on Sirius/XM radio. Mike has been featured in USA Today, Newsweek, Billboard, American Entertainment, Gig, and Successful Meetings magazines.

Frederick Reichheld speaker

Frederick Reichheld

Business management and customer loyalty speaker.

 About

Fred Reichheld is a Bain Fellow and founder of Bain & Company's Loyalty Practice, which helps companies achieve results through customer and employee loyalty. He is the creator of the Net Promoter system of management.

His work in the area of customer and employee retention has quantified the link between loyalty and profits. Fred's books, The Loyalty Effect: The Hidden Force Behind Growth, Profits, and Lasting Value (HBSP 1996); Loyalty Rules! How Today's Leaders Build Lasting Relationships (HBSP 2001), and The Ultimate Question: Driving Good Profits and True Growth (HBSP, 2006) have each become best sellers.

In his latest book, The Ultimate Question 2.0: How Net Promoter Companies Thrive in a Customer Driven World (HBR Press-Sept. 2011), Fred reveals how NPS practitioners including Apple Retail, Philips, Schwab, Allianz, American Express, and Intuit, have utilized the Net Promoter System (NPS) to generate extraordinary results. He explains how NPS helps companies become truly customer-centric, unleashing profitable growth through systematically converting more customers into promoters and fewer into detractors.

Fred is a frequent speaker at major business forums and his work on loyalty has been widely covered in The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Financial Times, Fortune, Business Week and The Economist. He is the author of eight Harvard Business Review articles on the subject of loyalty.

Consulting Magazine chose Fred as one of the "25 Most Influential Consultants" in its 2003 annual survey. According to The New York Times, "[He] put loyalty economics on the map."The Economist refers to him as the "high priest" of loyalty.

Reichheld graduated with Honors both from Harvard College (B.A., 1974) and Harvard Business School (M.B.A., 1978).

Brendan Reid speaker

Brendan Reid

Executive, Author, and Keynote Speaker on Corporate Culture

 About

Brendan Reid is an accomplished executive, career management expert and author of Stealing the Corner Office. He is the Vice President of Marketing at Desire2Learn (D2L), an innovative company that builds technologies to help people learn more effectively and develop the skills to better prepare them for success in the workplace. He has built his career by breaking with corporate convention and questioning long held management truisms. For nearly 20 years he has studied the too-often-ignored human side of corporate dynamics that create the imperfect world we work in.

Unlike most business authors and experts who focus on the conventional side of business and career management, Brendan delves into the unconventional tactics people use to get ahead and stay ahead. In his speaking engagements and in his book, Brendan draws on his experiences as a struggling middle manager and the startling revelations about success that became the foundation for the career strategy that took him into the executive ranks. 

Brendan lives in Toronto, Canada with his partner Aya and their three dogs.

Don Reynolds speaker

Don Reynolds

Speaker on international economy and finance, former chairman of the Investment Advisory Board.

 About

Don Reynolds is not just a great economist, he is a gifted storyteller capable of explaining real world trends and how they impact corporations, individuals and associations. He has given over 1000 speeches, won numerous speaking awards, and been described as 'passionate, motivational, charismatic and mesmerizing.'

Having served eleven years as Chairman of the Investment Advisory Board of a $22 Billion trust fund, his success resulted in his being appointed by George W. Bush as Pension Board Chairman with oversight of $120 Billion in Pension & Trust Funds. He understands how important personal accountability and bottom line performance is, and the need for decision makers to have a clear vision of future trends and events in order to make successful long term strategic decisions.

Don Reynolds has developed a track record of success and is constantly being invited back by clients for updates on specific economic and industry trends. Clients and media have described him as 'near clairvoyant, uncannily precise and brilliant.' He has lived 14 years overseas, visited over 50 countries, has lectured on Free Market Systems at the University of Moscow, spoken about the Global Economy for the Saudi Arabian Central Bank, keynoted the Australian IT Summit, advised the Heavy Equipment Industry in Rome, Keynoted for international correspondents in Indonesia and spoken on the impact of global warming in Santiago.

Don developed the nation's first graduate business course on the 21st Century. He has a Masters Degree in Public Administration/Planning, a Doctoral background in Economics, and is a graduate of the Securities Industry Institute of the Wharton School. He has an honorary degree from the University of Moscow and was the first American member of the Moscow Center for Consulting Scientists.

Peter Ricchiuti speaker

Peter Ricchiuti

Investment expert, professor of finance and keynote speaker.

 About

Peter Ricchiuti (Ri-Shooty) is the business school professor you wish you had back in college! He teaches at Tulane University's Freeman School of Business where his insight and humor have twice made him the school's top professor.

Peter started his career with the investment firm of Kidder Peabody and later managed over three billion dollars as the assistant treasurer for the state of Louisiana. In 1993 he founded Tulane's highly acclaimed BURKENROAD REPORTS student stock research program. Peter also hosts a popular weekly business show on National Public Radio in New Orleans called Out To Lunch and recently published his first book Stocks Under Rocks.

He has been featured on CNN and CNBC as well as in The New York Times, Barron's, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal. Over the past twenty years Peter has addressed more than 1,000 groups in 47 states and several countries. He has presented to a wide variety of audiences including workshops for the New Orleans Saints.

Robert Richman speaker

Robert Richman

Culture Strategist, Speaker, Co-creator of Zappos Insights

 About

Robert Richman is a culture strategist and was the co-creator of Zappos Insights, an innovative program focused on educating companies on the secrets behind Zappos’ amazing employee culture.

Robert built Zappos Insights from a small website to a thriving multi-million dollar business teaching over 25,000 students per year. Through his work, Robert has been helpful for improving the employee culture at hundreds of companies like Google, Toyota, Eli Lilly, and Inuit.

As one of the world’s authorities on employee culture, Robert is a sought after keynote speaker at conferences around the world and has been hired to teach culture in person at companies like Google, Toyota, and Eli Lilly. He has pioneered a number of innovative techniques to build culture, such as bringing improv comedy to the workplace.

His new book, The Culture Blueprint, is a systematic guide to how a workplace can help people grow, inspire amazing service, and ultimately drive revenue through amazing culture.

Robert graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in film, as well as from Georgetown University’s Leadership Coaching Program. He is a member of the Transformational Leadership Council, and he is the chair of the business program at American Jewish University.

Sam Richter speaker

Sam Richter

Author and speaker on sales, marketing and innovative technology.

 About

Sam Richter is an internationally recognized expert and speaker on sales, marketing and technology. His award-winning experience includes building innovative technology, sales and marketing programs for start-up companies and some of the world's most famous brands.

Sam has been featured in thousands of television and radio programs, national and online publications, and he presents his customized Know More! keynote and training programs to audiences around the globe. He is the author of the top-selling and award-winning book, Take the Cold Out of Cold Calling, considered the preeminent publication on finding information online and using it for sales success.

Sam is founder and CEO of SBR Worldwide/Know More! and SVP/Chief Marketing Officer at ActiFi, a software and solutions firm serving the financial services industry. For more than six years, Sam was president of the James J. Hill Reference Library in St. Paul, Minnesota, where he led the transformation of an eighty-five-year-old private, non-profit business research organization into a nationally renowned institution serving entrepreneurs and small businesses via cutting edge online resources.

Prior to joining the Hill Library, Sam spent more than eighteen years in the advertising, public relations, and e-commerce/e-marketing industry. Sam has created programs for clients including Microsoft, Coca-Cola, Major League Baseball, Northwest Airlines, Kraft/Nabisco, Polaris Industries, National Geographic, 3M, Brunswick, and other large and small firms. He has won numerous regional, national and international marketing awards including Best of Show and Gold Awards, Webby Awards, and a Gold Award at the International Film Festival. He's also won a Retail Vision Award and a Codie Award - the Oscars of the software industry - for Best E-commerce Software.

Sam received his B.A. from the University of Minnesota School of Journalism and Mass Communication and was twice named Scholastic All-American while also a four-year player and a letter winner on the University of Minnesota varsity football team. Sam is a member of the Business Journal's Forty Under 40 list honoring the top Minnesota business leaders under the age of forty. He also was a finalist for Inc. Magazine's Entrepreneur of the Year and he's one of the more highly recommended persons on LinkedIn.

Sam lives in Minnetonka, Minnesota with his wife and two children, serves on the board of a number of for-profit companies, and volunteers his time to numerous non-profit organizations.

Jeremy Rifkin speaker

Jeremy Rifkin

Prolific futurist, best-selling author and speaker on economic changes and trends.

 About

Jeremy Rifkin is an American economic and social theorist, writer, public speaker, political advisor, and activist. Rifkin is the author of 20 bestselling books about the impact of scientific and technological changes on the economy, the workforce, society, and the environment. The books have been translated into more than 35 languages. His most recent books include the international bestsellers, The Zero Marginal Cost Society (2014), The Third Industrial Revolution (2011), The Empathic Civilization (2010), The European Dream (2004), The Hydrogen Economy (2002), The Age of Access (2000), The Biotech Century (1998), and The End of Work (1995).

Jeremy Rifkin has been an advisor to the leadership of the European Union since 2000. He has advised three presidents of the European Commission - Romano Prodi, Jose Manuel Barroso, and the current President, Jean-Claude Juncker - as well as the European Parliament, and numerous EU heads of state, including Germany's Angela Merkel, on the ushering in of a smart green Third Industrial Revolution economy.

Mr. Rifkin’s New York Times bestselling book, The Third Industrial Revolution, provided the blueprint for the economic transition to a post-carbon ecological society across the European Union. According to The European Energy Review, "perhaps no other author or thinker has had more influence on the EU's ambitious climate and energy policy than the famous American 'visionary' Jeremy Rifkin." In the words of Vice Chancellor and Economy Minister of Germany, Sigmar Gabriel, Jeremy Rifkin "is the economic and ecological worldwide ambassador of the energy transition… Rifkin presents a grand scenario for the future: a visionary approach unlike anyone has dared to put forward in the last fifty years that will boost our thinking and help with our orientation.”

Mr. Rifkin is also advising the leadership of the Peoples Republic of China on the build out and scale up of the Internet Plus Third Industrial Revolution infrastructure to usher in a sustainable low-carbon economy. The Huffington Post reported from Beijing on October 29th 2015 that "Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has not only read Jeremy Rifkin's book, The Third Industrial Revolution, and taken it to heart. He and his colleagues have also made it the core of the country's thirteenth Five-Year Plan..." The Huffington Post goes on to say that "this blueprint for China's future signals the most momentous shift in direction since the death of Mao and the advent of Deng Xiaoping's reform and opening up in 1978."

According to EurActiv, "Jeremy Rifkin is an American economist and author whose best-selling Third Industrial Revolution arguably provided the blueprint for Germany's transition to a low-carbon economy, and China's strategic acceptance of climate policy."

Mr. Rifkin is a principal architect of the European Union’s long term Third Industrial Revolution economic vision and development plan to usher in an Internet of Things digital infrastructure across the European Union and its partnership regions to create a smart post-carbon economy, ecological society, and the world’s largest single integrated economic marketplace. The plan is called "Smart Europe."


On January 31st 2017, the European Union launched the digital Third Industrial Revolution Smart Europe economic modernization plan with a conference hosted by Mario Draghi, President of the European Central Bank, called “Into the Future: Europe’s Digital Integrated Market.” Mr. Rifkin delivered a keynote address on transforming the European Union into a smart Third Industrial Revolution paradigm.


The Third Industrial Revolution Smart Europe long-term economic development plan was formally announced by Maros Sefcovic, Vice President of the European Commission, Markku Markkula, President of the Committee of the Regions, and Jeremy Rifkin on February 7th 2017. Mr. Rifkin is currently advising the European Commission on the deployment of the Smart Europe initiative and will be working with the 350 formal regions of the EU in the creation of road maps to deploy the new economic narrative and vision across Europe.


Mr. Rifkin is the President of the TIR Consulting Group, LLC comprising many of the leading renewable energy companies, electricity transmission companies, engineering companies, construction companies, architectural firms, ICT and electronics companies, transport and logistics companies, advanced manufacturing companies, and economic modelers. His global economic development team is working with cities, regions, and national governments to develop the Internet of Things (IoT) infrastructure for a Collaborative Commons and a Third Industrial Revolution. The TIR Consulting Group LLC is currently working with the regions of Hauts-de-France, the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam and The Hague, and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg in the conceptualization, build out, and scale up of a smart Third Industrial Revolution infrastructure to transform their economies.


Mr. Rifkin is ranked 123 in the WorldPost / HuffingtonPost 2015 global survey of "The World's Most Influential Voices." Mr. Rifkin is also listed among the top 10 most influential economic thinkers in the survey. The survey was prepared at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and used collective intelligence to correlate the rankings.


Since 1995, Rifkin has lectured at the Wharton School’s Executive Education Program at the University of Pennsylvania where he instructs CEOs and senior management on transitioning their business operations into sustainable economies.

Steve Rizzo speaker

Steve Rizzo

Corporate comedian, motivational speaker, author and entertainer.

 About

Steve Rizzo is a speaker who will wake your group up with his straightforward New York attitude, motivate them with his life-changing personal growth strategies and of course, regale them with laughter. In addition to providing hands-on tools to help audiences achieve individual and team success in the face of change, Steve showcases why he was so successful as a national headline comedian with opening acts such as Drew Carey, Rosie O'Donnell, and Dennis Miller.

After being told by a guidance counselor that he didn't have the intelligence for college, and having been saddled with the dubious high school honor of Least Likely to Succeed, Steve Rizzo didn't give himself much of a chance to emerge as anything special, much less a world-class comedian or motivational speaker. Years of negativity had led Steve to believe that dreams were the luxury of only a fortunate few.

After high school Steve would go on to surprise everyone, including himself, by excelling with honors at the university and post-graduate levels. Eventually Steve even taught at his old high school, proving once and for all that guidance counselors are not fortune-tellers.

Perhaps the most unexpected aspect of Steve's career was the stellar degree of success he achieved as a performer, sharing the stage with Jerry Seinfeld, Rodney Dangerfield, Eddie Murphy, and Ellen DeGeneres.

Of course, the surprises don't stop there. What is the next step for a comedian in the prime of his career? For Steve, it was to trade the two drink minimums and standing ovations for maximum fulfillment and well, more standing ovations. After walking away from a promising career as a headline comedian to become a professional speaker, Steve offers a unique and insightful perspective on the journey that brought him to where he stands today.

Steve's quest to remove the boundaries that were keeping him from the life he truly desired has brought his work full circle and he now understands that all of his past experiences were necessary to prepare him for his true calling: To help people learn to be happy and successful no matter what their current circumstances are.

Steve spent much of his own life learning how to pursue and achieve his own definition of success. Luckily for audiences worldwide, that definition has evolved to include showing others his blueprint for realizing their dreams and achieving personal excellence and professional satisfaction.

As a professional keynote speaker and motivational speaker, Steve Rizzo has made appearances across the United States and Canada. You may have seen Steve in venues such as: New York, Austin, Dallas, Texas, Las Vegas, Nevada, San Diego, California, Phoenix, Tucson, Arizona, Atlanta, Georgia, Chicago, Illinois, Nashville, San Antonio, Denver, Colorado, Canada, Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal.

James Robbins speaker

James Robbins

Adventurer and Management Consultant, Speaks on Leadership and Motivational Strategies

 About

James Robbins is a rare mix of management consultant, adventurer and motivational speaker. He has been teaching leadership and peak performance for the last 17 years. James is also the author of Nine Minutes on Monday; The Quick and Easy Way to Go From Manager to Leader, which gives managers a simple solution to motivate and engage their staff even when things are crazy and hectic.

James also created the web show Help Me Lead to help managers find creative ways to lead their staff. He is always creating video content on the topic of leadership and often use them in his presentations.

James first career was in ministry before founding the The Robbins Group to help organizations increase their productivity and lower their employee turn over. He has given over 1,000 presentations in the last 10 years and has been teaching, training and coaching leaders since 1995.

James combines stories of his adventures with practical truths that help audiences make simple changes that stick. He is a thought leader in the field of human motivation and its role in leadership, the workplace, and our personal lives. James has a way of inspiring people to raise their game, persevere in the face of difficulty, and bring their best on a daily basis.

Mel Robbins speaker

Mel Robbins

Award-Winning CNN Commentator, Co-Founder of Inspire52, and Motivational Speaker

 About

Mel Robbins is a powerful motivational speaker who is trusted by global brands to design and deliver multi-media, interactive keynotes that inspire change, challenge thinking and accelerate personal and business growth. Mel is best known for creating “The 5 Second Rule” and Her TEDx Talk on "How To Stop Screwing Yourself Over" which has over 3 million views, Her book on the brain and productivity, Stop Saying You’re Fine, is a business bestseller that has been translated into four languages. 

She started her career as a criminal defense attorney and went on to launch and sell a retail and internet technology company. Mel has led multi-year coaching programs at: Johnson&Johnson, AG Edwards, Bear Stearns and Partners Healthcare. The media has tapped Mel to host award-winning shows for FOX, A&E, Cox Media Group and now CNN. Mel is currently one of CNN’s most popular on-air commentators and opinion writers; her articles on human behavior drive tens of millions of page views for CNN.com. Mel has an extensive television résumé as an expert on human behavior and motivation for Good Morning America, Dr. Phil, Dr. Oz, Oprah, The Today Show and Fox News. She was named America's Outstanding News Talkshow Host at the 2014 Gracie Awards. 

Mel is a speaker, TV personality and coach with the credibility and experience to deliver the goods for audiences of all shapes and sizes: men and women; small to massive; technical sales training to innovation summits. She will work with you to design an unforgettable, high energy and motivating event that reinforces brand and sponsor objectives, delivers fresh, actionable content and engages and entertains your attendees with music, original videos and interactive leadership exercises. 

Mel is a Dartmouth College and Boston College Law School graduate and a serial entrepreneur that’s on a mission to help us all thrive at work and in life.   She and her husband of twenty years have three young kids and live outside of Boston.

Mike Robbins speaker

Mike Robbins

Former Baseball Player & Speaker on Teamwork and Leadership.

 About

As an expert in teamwork, leadership, and emotional intelligence, Mike Robbins delivers keynotes and seminars that empower people, teams, and organizations to work together effectively and be more successful. He has inspired tens of thousands of people around the world to reach new levels of awareness and productivity, both personally and professionally. Through his speeches, seminars, and writing, Mike teaches people important techniques that allow them to be more grateful, appreciative, and authentic with others and themselves.

Mike Robbins is the author of three books, Focus on the Good Stuff, Be Yourself Everyone Else is Already Taken, and Nothing Changes Until You Do, which have been translated into fourteen different languages.

His clients include some of the top organizations and institutions in the world, such as: Google, Wells Fargo, Microsoft, Charles Schwab, Twitter, and many others. 

He has been featured on ABC News, the Oprah radio network, in Forbes, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, and many others. Since 2008 he has been a regular contributor to the Huffington Post. Mike is the host of his own radio show, “Nothing Changes Until You Do,” on Hay House Radio.

Prior to his speaking, writing, and consulting career, Mike was drafted by the New York Yankees out of high school. He turned the Yankees down and instead chose to play baseball at Stanford University, where he pitched in the College World Series. He was drafted by the Kansas City Royals out of Stanford and played three seasons of professional baseball with the Royals organization before arm injuries ended his playing career while still in the minor leagues.

After his athletic career was cut short by injuries, Mike worked in sales and business development for two Internet start-ups. When the dot-com bubble burst in 2000 and he was laid off, it allowed him to follow a deeper passion – empowering and inspiring people – and opened the door for him to start working full time as a speaker, author, and coach.

In addition to earning a degree from Stanford in American Studies with a specialization in race and ethnicity, Mike has continued to educate himself. He has extensively studied many disciplines of both personal and professional development, and received training from the Coaches Training Institute.

David Rock speaker

David Rock

Neuroleadership and performance speaker.

 About

David Rock is a keynote speaker and the founder and CEO of Results Coaching Systems (RCS), which has operations in 15 countries across the globe. In his capacity as CEO, David works with Fortune 500 clients specializing in embedding internal coaching capacity within organizations to develop leadership, retain talent, turn managers into coaches, improve performance, and change culture.

David is one of the thought leaders in the global coaching profession. The integrated coaching system he developed in the mid-90's has been taught to over 10,000 professionals in more than fifteen countries.

He is the author of Personal Best, Quiet Leadership and Coaching with the Brain in Mind and Your Brain at Work released in October 2009.

In 2004, David founded the brain-based approach to coaching, which has gathered momentum as a theory base for coaching ever since. In collaboration with several leading neuroscientists, David is working to explain the neural basis of issues like self-awareness, reflection, insight and accountability.

In 2006 he co-authored a feature article in strategy business magazine with neuroscientist Dr Jeffrey Schwartz, called 'The Neuroscience of Leadership', the most downloaded article of the year at the magazine. In September 2006 CIO magazine ran a cover story featuring David and Jeff's work called 'The new science of change'. His paper 'Managing with the Brain in Mind' was the most downloaded of 2009 at Strategy & Business.

In late 2006, David founded the NeuroLeadership Institute and Summit, a global initiative bringing neuroscientists and leadership experts together to build a new science of leadership development. The Institute is now a worldwide network of researchers and practitioners building a new body of knowledge.

David is on the advisory board at CIMBA business school, and a guest lecturer at universities in 5 countries including at Oxford University Said Business School.

Dr. Howard Rocket speaker

Dr. Howard Rocket

Inspiring speaker with remarkable story of overcoming adversity. Author of A Stroke of Luck.

 About

In the last 2 years Dr. Howard Rocket has started four new businesses. That is an amazing accomplishment in itself but even more amazing when you realize that a few years ago a stroke nearly killed him. For Dr. Rocket passionately believes that your attitude is everything especially in these challenging times. Howard was a successful dentist-turned-entrepreneur when he suffered a massive stroke on the morning of October 27, 1995. By that evening Howard was a dying man, a blood clot lodged deep in his brain, his body barely responding to medical intervention. There had been warning signs for days prior, but he did not understand their cause, nor the crisis that they foreshadowed.

With valiant medical attention and good fortune Howard survived and made a stunning recovery, but the experience changed his life forever both in body and in attitude. He has since co-authored A Stroke of Luck, his personal story of how recovery from a stroke changed his life and his outlook. A powerful speaker, Dr. Rocket helps people understand that they can overcome any obstacle.

Jim Rogers speaker

Jim Rogers

Oxford scholar and expert financial investment advisor.

 About

Always keeping an eye out for untapped profits, Jim Rogers, who was once described as the Indiana Jones of finance, used a trip to seek out new opportunities and make bold conclusions about the global economy and investment strategy.

On New Year's Day 1999 in an Icelandic blizzard, Jim Rogers and his fiancé started out on their epic journey - a journey that would take them 152,000 miles through 116 countries in three years. After driving through war zones, deserts, jungles, epidemics and blizzards, narrowly escaping some very dangerous situations and camping with nomads and camels under starlit skies, Jim began to see the real world through his own eyes - economically, politically and socially. A roller coaster ride, Jim's story takes audiences on a journey where they feel exhilarated, surprised to still be alive, wondering where to go next, and still wanting to hear more...

After completing his bachelor's degree at Yale University, Jim Rogers won a scholarship to Oxford University in England. Following his stint there, which included his coxing the world-famous Oxford rowing crew, Jim spent some time in the Army and then headed straight for Wall Street. Once there, he co-founded The Quantum Fund, a global investment partnership. After 10 profitable years when the portfolio gained 4,000% while the S&P rose less than 50%, he decided to retire, at the age of 37. But he would not remain idle.

Michael Rogers speaker

Michael Rogers

Author, journalist and futurist on future trends and the economy.

 About

Michael Rogers is a different kind of futurist - one who combines real business experience with technology skills. Add to that the keen eye of an award-winning investigative journalist and the storytelling skill of a novelist, and you have The Practical Futurist.

Michael Rogers is a technology pioneer, author and journalist whose consultancy, Practical Futurist, helps businesses worldwide think about the future. In recent years he has worked with companies ranging from FedEx, Boeing and NBC Universal to Prudential, Dow Corning, American Express and Genentech.

He recently completed two years as a futurist-in-residence for The New York Times Company and also writes the Practical Futurist column for MSNBC. For ten years he was vice president of The Washington Post Company's new media division, guiding both the newspaper and Newsweek into the new century. He is a regular guest on radio and television including Good Morning America, The Today Show, PBS, CNN and The History Channel.

Michael studied physics and creative writing at Stanford University, with training in finance and management at Stanford Business Schools's Executive Program. he began his career as a writer for Rolling Stone and went on to co-found Outside magazine. He then launched Newsweek's technology column, winning numerous journalism awards. In 1993 he produced the world's first CD-ROM newsmagazine for Newsweek, later becoming editor and general manager of Newsweek.com. In 1999 he received a patent for a multimedia storytelling technique, and in 2007 was named to both Who's Who in Science and Engineering and the Magazine Industry Digital Hall of Fame.

Michael is a dynamic speaker who delivers an entertaining and common-sense vision of change for business and individuals, blending technology, economics, demographics, culture and human nature.

Jeffrey Alan Rosensweig speaker

Jeffrey Alan Rosensweig

Economist and speaker on international business and finance.

 About

Jeffrey Rosensweig is the Director of the Global Perspectives Program at Goizueta Business School of Emory University. Previously, he served for six years as an Associate Dean. An international business and finance professor, he focuses on global investing and business in the global economy. He also specializes in financial, macroeconomic, and business forecasting. A frequent keynote speaker on topics related to global economic and financial trends and forecasts, he is selected annually as the global-investing keynoter at the Security Industry Association's Annual Institute. In 2000, Dr. Rosensweig was elected to the Council on Foreign Relations.

Professor Rosensweig is often quoted in the national business press, including Forbes, Fortune and Businessweek. He has appeared nationally on ABC World News Tonight and Good Morning America, the NBC Today Show, NBC National Nightly News, Nightline, and Bloomberg TV. He is a frequent economic commentator for CNN, has published numerous papers in academic and business journals and has written three books, including the critically-acclaimed Winning the Global Game: A Strategy for Linking People and Profits.

Active in executive education, Dr. Rosensweig was recently selected by the Wall Street Journal as one of the 12 favorite professors in all Executive MBA Programs worldwide. Dr. Rosensweig received his M.A. and B.A. in economics (summa cum laude) from Yale University and a Ph.D. in economics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Further, he received a master's degree in philosophy, politics, and economics as a result of two years of study at Oxford University as a Marshall Scholar. The British Government has selected him to serve on the Marshall Scholarship Selection Committee for 15 years, and during the past three years has appointed him Chairman for the Southeast.

Before Emory, Dr. Rosensweig served as senior global economist in the Research Department of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. Other previous experience includes serving as an economic consultant to the Government of Jamaica and teaching international finance at Yale's School of Management. Elected by the faculty in 1996, Professor Rosensweig served for 12 years as Chairman of Emory University's Center for Ethics. He has also been the Pack Leader for a multicultural group of over 100 Cub Scouts.

Marci Rossell speaker

Marci Rossell

CNBC Chief Economist and keynote speaker on finance.

 About

Marci Rossell electrifies audiences nationwide, speaking on the nexus of economics, politics, culture and the media. Her animated style was honed when she served as the popular, lively Chief Economist for CNBC in the months immediately following September 11th. She takes complex economic issues, often dull in the button-down business press, and makes them relevant to people's lives, families and careers.

Prior to her career in broadcast journalism, Marci served as Corporate Economist and Investment Spokesperson for OppenheimerFunds, one of the nation's largest mutual fund companies. Before moving to Wall Street, she was an expert witness for Deloitte and Touche in court cases involving economic issues. Marci began her career as an economist with the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. She currently serves as a senior economic advisor to Delphin Investments, an investment firm based in Stamford, CT.

Marci earned a PhD in Economics from Southern Methodist University. She brings a world of experience-from Main Street to Wall Street-when discussing the U.S. economy, international events and movements in capital markets.

Jeff Rubin speaker

Jeff Rubin

Economist, keynote speaker on oil and energy, author of Why Your World is About To Get a Whole Lot Smaller.

 About

Keynote speaker Jeff Rubin is an award winning international author and economist. After almost twenty years as Chief Economist and Managing Director of CIBC World Markets, Jeff Rubin resigned at the end of March 2009 to publish his international bestseller, Why Your World Is About To Get A Whole Lot Smaller: Oil and the End of Globalization. Simultaneously published by Random House in the US and Canada and by Virgin Books in the United Kingdom, his path-breaking book has now been published in over 15 countries and in seven different languages.

NEWSWEEK wrote, "Rubin's argument is powerful", while the Financial Times of London called the book, "One of the year's best." A number-one, non-fiction bestseller in Canada, the book recently won the country's National Business Book Award, and was also a runner-up for the Financial Times Business Book of the Year Award.

In The End of Growth, Rubin argues that the end of cheap oil means the end of growth. What it will be like to live in a world where growth is over? 

In  his new book, The Carbon Bubble, Rubin argues that Canada's economic reliance on its oil reserves is misplaced. He argues that there is a lifeline to a better future. The very climate change that will leave much of the country's carbon unburnable could at the same time make some of Canada's other resource assets more valuable: its water and land. In tomorrow's economy, Canada won't be an energy superpower, but it has the makings of one of the world's great breadbaskets. And in the global climate that the world's carbon emissions are inexorably creating, food will soon be a lot more valuable than oil.

Over the course of his career in financial markets, Mr. Rubin's calls on interest rates and foreign exchange markets won him a number-one ranking in economics in the Brendan Wood International survey of institutional investors in Canada on no less than ten separate occasions.

Rebecca Ryan speaker

Rebecca Ryan

Futurist and an Economist

 About

Rebecca Ryan is a human sparkplug. Part futurist, part economist, and always engaging, Rebecca is one of America’s most influential thought leaders, helping cities and companies think around the corner to what’s next.

Rebecca Ryan is the author of ReGENERATION: A Manifesto for America’s Future Leaders (2013) and Live First, Work Second: Getting Inside the Head of the Next Generation (2007). As founder of Next Generation Consulting, Ryan leads the team that best-selling author Richard Florida calls, “One of the most reliable sources for leaders who want to attract and retain the next generation of creative workers."

Ryan is the Resident Futurist at the Alliance for Innovation and a Senior Fellow at CEOs for Cities. She serves on the board of the World Academy for Entrepreneurship & Enterprise (WAE2) and has also been named: Top 100 Most Influential People by Accounting Today and Entrepreneur of the Year by U.S. Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

Jeff Salz speaker

Jeff Salz

Inspirational speaker, renowned explorer, anthropologist, author and TV personality.

 About

Dr. Jeff Salz has translated over 30 years of personal exploration and expedition leadership into lively, inspirational keynotes and seminars that instill audience members with fresh strategies and enthusiasm for life and career. With a Ph.D. in cultural anthropology and a Masters in experiential education Jeff spent 10 years as a university professor. For the last 15 years, he has been safely guiding organizations through the turbulent seas of change and facilitating enhanced teamwork in organizations by helping them build cultures of authenticity. Jeff's best selling book, The Way of Adventure: Transforming Your Life and Work with Spirit and Vision, is a manual that assists organizations to keep the flame of adventure alive every day.

On stage, Jeff's humorous style combined with solid content and proven professionalism guarantee your organization an outstanding event every time. Jeff creates the foundation for adventurous thinking in any organization by presenting a unique perspective on taking risks. It's not the adventure that only occurs at rarefied air that he talks about it's the adventure that occurs everywhere, everyday. Jeff shows audiences that our life must consist of adventure for a truly meaningful life. He gives audiences clear instructions that enable them to put the passion and commitment of adventure to work in their organizations and daily life.

Mark Sanborn speaker

Mark Sanborn

Speaker and Author of 8 books on leadership development and team building.

 About

Mark Sanborn is the president of Sanborn & Associates, Inc., an idea lab for leadership development. Leadershipgurus.net lists Mark as one of the top 30 leadership experts in the world.

In addition to his experience leading at a local and national level, he has written or co-authored eight books and is the author of more than two dozen videos and audio training programs on leadership, change, teamwork, and customer service. He has presented over 2400 speeches and seminars in every state and a dozen countries.

Mark is a member of the prestigious Speakers Roundtable, 20 of the top speakers in the world today. Mark holds the Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) from the National Speakers Association and is a member of the Speaker Hall of Fame (CPAE).

Mark's book, The Fred Factor: How Passion in Your Work and Life Can Turn the Ordinary Into the Extraordinary is an international bestseller and was on the New York Times, Business Week and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists. His latest books include You Don't Need a Title to be a Leader: How Anyone, Anywhere Can Make a Positive Difference, The Encore Effect: How to Achieve Remarkable Performance in Anything You Do, and Up, Down or Sideways: How to Succeed When Times are Good, Bad or In Between. Mark's newest book is a sequel to The Fred Factor called Fred 2.0: New Ideas on How to Keep Delivering Extraordinary Results. In Fred 2.0, Mark Sanborn brings new stories, illustrations and insights that you and your organization can use to create more customer loyalty, innovative products, services and experiences, and to deliver the kind of profitable results that are so elusive to many.

Mark is a past president of the National Speakers Association and winner of The Cavett, the highest honor bestowed by that organization. In 2007, Mark was awarded The Ambassador of Free Enterprise Award by Sales & Marketing Executives International.