Pat Williams is a basketball Hall-of-Famer, currently serving as co-founder and senior vice president of the NBA's Orlando Magic. As one of America's top motivational speakers, he has addressed thousands of executives in organizations ranging from Fortune 500 companies and national associations to universities and nonprofits. Clients include AllState, American Express, Cisco, Coca-Cola, Disney, Honeywell, IBM, ING, Lockheed Martin, Nike, PriceWaterhouseCoopers and Tyson Foods to name a few. Pat is also the author of over 85 books, his most recent title chronicling his successful battle with cancer, The Mission is Remission.
Since 1968, Pat has been in the NBA as general manager for teams in Chicago, Atlanta, Philadelphia - including the 1983 World Champion 76ers - and now the Orlando Magic, which he co-founded in 1987 and helped lead to the NBA finals in 1995 and 2009. In 1996, Pat was named as one of the 50 most influential people in NBA history by Beckett's, a national publication. In 2012, Pat received the John W. Bunn Lifetime Achievement Award from the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
Pat has been an integral part of NBA history, including bringing the NBA to Orlando. He has traded Pete Maravich as well as traded for Julius Erving, Moses Malone, and Penny Hardaway. He has won four NBA draft lotteries, including back-to-back winners in 1992 and 1993. He also drafted Charles Barkley, Shaquille O'Neal, Maurice Cheeks, Andrew Toney and Darryl Dawkins. He signed Billy Cunningham, Chuck Daly, and Matt Guokas to their first professional coaching contracts. Nineteen of his former players have become NBA head coaches, nine have become college head coaches while seven have become assistant NBA coaches.
Additionally, Pat served for seven years in the United States Army, spent seven years in the Philadelphia Phillies organization - two as a minor league catcher and five in the front office - and has also spent three years in the Minnesota Twins organization.
Pat and his wife, Ruth, are the parents of 19 children, including 14 adopted from four nations, ranging in age from 26 to 40. For one year, 16 of his children were all teenagers at the same time. Currently, Pat has 12 grandchildren and counting, with twins due in July. Pat and his family have been featured in Sports Illustrated, Readers Digest, Good Housekeeping, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and Focus on the Family as well as all of the major network and cable television news channels.
Pat was diagnosed in February of 2011 with Multiple Myeloma. After several rounds of chemo treatments, Pat received a bone marrow transplant where the doctors injected him with almost 5 million of his own stem cells. Pat's recovery from the stem cell transplant has been remarkable and the doctors are extremely pleased. While Multiple Myeloma is incurable the goal is to get the cancer into remission (Pat's personal slogan has been
The Mission is Remission); Pat's doctors have told him that they are unable to detect any myeloma in his body. Pat has accepted positions on several boards for different cancer groups, including an appointment on the Board of Directors for the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation. Pat spends many hours each week responding to emails and phone calls of others affected by cancer, offering hope and words of encouragement.
Pat teaches an adult Sunday school class at First Baptist Church of Orlando and hosts three weekly radio shows. In the last 15 years, he has completed 58 marathons; most recently, the 2011 Walt Disney World Marathon, and also climbed Mt. Rainier. He is a weightlifter, Civil War buff and serious baseball fan. Every winter he plays in Major League Fantasy Camps and has caught Hall of Famers Bob Feller, Bob Gibson, Fergie Jenkins, Rollie Fingers, Gaylord Perry, Phil Niekro, Tom Seaver and Goose Gossage.
Pat was raised in Wilmington, Delaware, earned his bachelor's degree at Wake Forest University, and his master's degree at Indiana University. He is a member of the Wake Forest Sports Hall of Fame after catching for the Deacon baseball team, including the 1962 Atlantic Coast Conference Championship team. He is also a member of six other hall of fames around the country.
Desi Williamson shows people that they can do extraordinary things if they have the proper perspective. With 25 years on the front line in sales, management, marketing and building multi-million dollar businesses, Desi is an expert at helping organizations increase productivity through empowered people and his accomplishments are many.
Williamson has successfully developed the potential in people for powerhouse corporations such as Johnson & Johnson, PepsiCo, Rain Bird Sprinkler Manufacturing, Johnson Wax Company and Cadbury Schweppes. A seasoned corporate executive and entrepreneur, he led an organization through major restructuring, developed and executed major marketing and diversity initiatives, and has built successful businesses including a real estate investment company.
Desi teaches organizations how to raise their standard of performance, develop better leaders, and become masters of change rather than victims of circumstance. From someone who has been in the trenches, he presents concrete ideas and solutions to the challenges you face, inspiring people with the knowledge and tools to stretch beyond their comfort zone and discover new opportunities. He is the author of a best selling video learning system for personal development, three audiocassette programs and a book titled Get Off Your Assets! How to Unleash the Power in You.
Dr. Julie Williamson is a Vice President of Strategy and Research for Karrikins Group, where she has worked with some of the world's largest companies, helping them set and execute on strategy and transformation. She is a leading voice in how organizations link together communication, design, strategy, sales, marketing and service to deliver sustainable growth. She uses both traditional and forward looking resources in her strategy and transformation work, leveraging design thinking to help client arrive at solutions that are informed by data and inspired by creativity.
Her work with Peter Sheahan on the recently released book MATTER: Create more value, move beyond the competition, and become the obvious choice highlights Julie’s commitment to working with clients to find and deliver on opportunities for growth and development.
Julie is an educator and a professional, teaching undergraduate and graduate level courses on organizational strategy, behavior, and change, and helping students connect the theoretical concepts to real-world applications. Her work with knowledge management and leadership development has been put to the test with Fortune 100 companies and stands well outside of the classroom.
Dr. Brynn Winegard is a business expert with a specialization in marketing, retail, and life sciences (neuromarketing, neuromanagement). Brynn is a professor, speaker, entrepreneur, author, business commentator. She completed her MBA and PhD at the Schulich School of Business in the areas of marketing and strategy and an undergraduate in life science (neuroscience and psychology) at McMaster University. Brynn spent over a decade in corporate marketing working for such companies as Pfizer Inc., Nestle Inc., Bank of Montreal, ScotiaBank, CIBC and Johnson & Johnson Inc. Brynn has an impressive list of clients for whom she has done training, facilitation, and consulting, now in the hundreds, including Coca-Cola, Toyota, Novartis, USAA, Enbridge, Kruger, Kraft, Pepsico, Georgia Pacific, Bristol Myers Squibb, IEEE, among many others. Brynn is Faculty at the Schulich Executive Education Centre, Ryerson University, the University of Guelph, and is the principal of Winegard & Company, an independently run management consultancy and research incubator.
Leadership speaker, author of Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter.
Liz Wiseman is the President of The Wiseman Group, a leadership research and development firm headquartered in Silicon Valley. At The Wiseman Group, she advises senior executives and is a keynote speaker on leadership and business strategy for executive teams worldwide. Her recent clients include: Apple, Salesforce.com, GAP, Inc., Symantec, SAP and Microsoft.
She has conducted significant research in the field of leadership and collective intelligence and is the author of the WSJ bestselling book Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter and published Bringing out the Best in Your People in the May 2010 edition of Harvard Business Review and numerous other articles.
A former executive at Oracle Corporation, Liz worked in various executive roles in the Education and HR organizations during her 17 years there. Most recently, she worked as the Vice President of Global Products and Services for Oracle's $400 million education business, where she led product management, marketing, pricing, eLearning, and internal training globally. Prior to this, she worked as Vice President of Oracle's Human Resource Development organization, working closely with Oracle's top management team to build the corporate strategic intent and to develop leadership at all levels of the organization. Liz was the Director of Oracle University, starting and leading Oracle University from a small new-hire training department to a full corporate university with global scope.
She has led significant globalization initiatives and has worked and taught extensively internationally. Liz holds a Bachelors degree in Business Management and a Masters of Organizational Behavior from Brigham Young University.
Ken Wong is a faculty member and the Commerce '77 Fellow in Marketing at Queen's School of Business, where he has held both teaching and administrative positions. He was the principal architect of the first full-time degree program in Canada to operate completely outside of government subsidy: a distinction that earned him the cover of Canadian Business in April 1994. Ken is also the Vice President of Knowledge Development for Level 5, a marketing consulting firm focused on brand strategy and execution.
As a teacher, Ken has received numerous awards for his courses in strategic planning, marketing and business strategy. Most recently, he was named a 2006 Inductee into Canadian Marketing Hall of Legends: the youngest inductee to date. In 1998, Ken won the Financial Post's Leaders in Management Education award, a lifetime achievement award for his work in undergraduate, MBA, and Executive Development programs. Beyond Queen's, he has also taught in degree programs at Cornell, Carleton University, Radcliffe College and Harvard's Continuing Education Program and in executive programs at York University, University of Toronto, Dalhousie University and the University of Alberta.
Ken is a frequent speaker and facilitator in conferences and executive development programs around the world. American Express, Manulife, Bell Canada and TD Canada Trust are among the groups he has spoken to.
As a researcher, Ken has worked with the Strategic Planning Institute (Cambridge, MA) and the Conference Board of Canada. He has served as a columnist for Strategy magazine, Marketing magazine and the National Post. He has also written for the Financial Times, Globe and Mail and the Conference Board Review. His current research focuses on enhancing
marketing productivity and brand profitability.
Private corporations which have used Ken as a marketing and strategic planning consultant include: Armstrong Partnership; Equifax; Baxter Corporation; Bell Canada; Hoffman-LaRoche; Rohm & Haas; Tremco Products; Acklands Grainger; Sprint Canada; Xerox; General Electric (U.S.); Southmedic; QL Systems; Rx Plus and Sherritt-Gordon. He has also served as a Strategic Advisor to the Ontario Ministry of Education and Training; on various local, provincial and federal government task forces; and on the Community Editorial Board of the Kingston Whig-Standard. He often assists on judging panels, most recently for the 2009 Canadian
Best 50 competition (excellence in management) and the Canadian Entrepreneur of the Year.
John Wood is the founder of Room to Read®, an organization that believes World Change Starts with Educated Children. From its humble origins as a cash strapped and unknown organization, Room to Read has now reached over 10 million children in developing countries with a focus on literacy and gender equality in education.
At age 35, John left an executive career track at Microsoft to follow his passion that “no child should ever again be told they were born in the wrong place at the wrong time and therefore will not get educated.” The business acumen honed in the fast paced world of technology, combined with his passion to change the world, makes John a unique and inspiring speaker with broad appeal.
John’s award-winning memoir, Leaving Microsoft to Change the World tells how he raised over $400 million from a “standing start” to develop one of the fastest growing nonprofits in history. The book was described by Publishers’ Weekly as “an infectiously inspiring read.” Translated into 23 languages, it is popular with entrepreneurs, philanthropists and educators. Amazon named it one of the Top Ten Business Narratives of 2006 and Hudson Booksellers voted it to their Top Ten Nonfiction list. John’s author interview on The Oprah Winfrey Show raised over $3 million from viewers.
John’s latest book is entitled Creating Room to Read: A Story of Hope in the Battle for Global Literacy. Kirkus Reviews called it “an absorbing personal account of a remarkable achievement”. It was endorsed by Bill Clinton, Melinda Gates and Sheryl Sandberg.
John is a five time winner of Fast Company Magazine’s Social Capitalist Award and is one of Goldman Sachs’ 25 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs. He was named an Asian Hero by Time Magazine, selected as in the inaugural class of Young Global Leaders by the World Economic Forum and is a Henry Crown Fellow at the Aspen Institute. Bill and Melinda Gates presented him with the first ever Microsoft Alumnus of the Year medal. Barron’s twice named John to their list of the 25 Best Givers. In 2014, John was awarded by Queen Silvia of Sweden with the World’s Children’s Prize. The WCP is often called the Children’s Nobel Prize, and in the same year Malala Yousafzai was a fellow honoree. He has also won the Asia Society’s “Service to Society” award and was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Tribeca Film Festival.
Room to Read has been voted by the Young Presidents Association as their Social Enterprise of the Year, was awarded the UNESCO Confucius Prize for Literacy, and was chosen as the inaugural winner of the Library of Congress David Rubenstein International Literacy Prize.
John holds a MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University, a bachelor’s degree magna cum laude in finance from the University of Colorado, and honorary doctorates from McGill University, Westminster College, Wofford College and the University of San Francisco. At the invitation of former President Bill Clinton, he served three years on the Advisory Board of the Clinton Global Initiative. John is a frequent lecturer at Harvard Business School, the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and at NYU’s Wagner School of Public Policy. He is a former Board member of the College Advising Corps, Net Impact and the One Acre Fund, and serves on the Advisory Boards of Global Citizen Year, Possible Health, and the “Getting to Carnegie” competition.
Sharon Wood has never considered herself a hero. But in 1986, she became the first woman in North America to climb Mount Everest, the world's highest peak. It was an astonishing personal and team accomplishment under conditions of extreme physical and mental duress. It was an example of ordinary people achieving extraordinary results.
Sharon's climb of Everest was only one facet of more than twenty years experience as a professional and elite mountaineer, with numerous ascents of summits over 20,000 feet to her credit.
In the last decade, Sharon has shared her story of achievement with hundreds of organizations throughout North America. She skillfully connects the powerful metaphor of Mount Everest to the challenges faced by individuals and teams striving for excellence in their own endeavors.
Sharon Wood has been to the top of the world and back. For anyone wanting to be more effective in their life, her story is a powerful inspiration.
Marc Woods competed internationally as a swimmer for 17 years; winning 12 Paralympic medals from 5 Games and a further 21 from either World or European Championships. In the past he has held world records for 200m, 400m, 1500m Freestyle and as well as being part of the team that held the world record for 4 x 100m Freestyle. At the London 2012 Paralympic Games worked for the BBC as a commentator and presenter, as well as performing in the opening ceremony.
Marc now spends his time presenting at business conference around the world. His speech takes you on an inspirational journey - giving insights into personal responsibility, leadership, teamwork and motivation. It is a journey that took him from cancer patient to multiple Gold medallist. Along with some of the personnel now working with British Cycling he was a pioneer of the notion of marginal gains.
Marc has written three books. Most notably Personal Best, a combination of his inspirational life story and personal development advice, and more recently Beyond the Call, which supported by research from New York University, looks at how to create conditions within an organisation that make discretionary effort more likely.
Amongst other things he is an ambassador of Teenage Cancer Trust, a director of the Youth Sport Trust and ambassador for CANSA (South Africa's Cancer Charity) and patron for Bone Cancer Research Trust.
His clients come from all business sectors and include IBM, Pfizer, Sainsbury, O2 and Santander.
Legendary Two-Time Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist & Author, Associate Editor of The Washington Post
Former CIA director and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates wished he’d recruited Woodward into the CIA, “His ability to get people to talk about stuff they shouldn’t be talking about is just extraordinary and may be unique.”
Therein lays the genius of Bob Woodward – a journalistic icon who gained international attention when he and Carl Bernstein broke the deeply disturbing news of the Watergate scandal. The book they wrote - All the Presidents Men - won a Pulitzer Prize.
Watergate’s theme of secret government is a common thread throughout Woodward’s career that spawned 18 books – all went on to become national bestsellers – 12 of them #1 - more than any other contemporary nonfiction author. In the process Woodward became the ultimate inside man. No one else in political investigative journalism has the clout, respect, and reputation of Woodward. He has a way of getting insiders to open up - both on the record and off the record – in ways that reveal an intimate yet sweeping portrayal of Washington and the budget wrangling, political infighting, how we fight wars, the price of politics, how presidents lead, the homeland security efforts, and so much more. His work is meticulous and draws on internal memos, classified documents, meeting notes and hundreds of hours of interviews with most of the key players, including the president.
As a speaker, Woodward pulls the curtain back on Washington and its leaders to captivate audiences with stories that are sometimes surprising, at times shocking, and always fascinating. He blends stories that are both up to the minute and from the past (to provide historical context). Woodward speaks as he writes - crisp and concise – and helps people get behind the spin to understand what’s really going on in the halls of power in an age of 24-hour news, social media, and snarky politics.
Professionally, Bob Woodward is currently associate editor for The Washington Post where he’s worked since 1971. He has won nearly every American journalism award, and the Post won the 1973 Pulitzer Prize for his work with Carl Bernstein on the Watergate scandal. In addition, Woodward was the main reporter for the Post’s articles on the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks that won the National Affairs Pulitzer Prize in 2002. Woodward won the Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on the Presidency in 2003.
The Weekly Standard called Woodward “the best pure reporter of his generation, perhaps ever.” In 2003, Albert Hunt of The Wall Street Journal called Woodward “the most celebrated journalist of our age.” In listing the all-time 100 best non-fiction books, Time magazine has called All the President’s Men, by Bernstein and Woodward, “Perhaps the most influential piece of journalism in history.”
Woodward has co-authored or authored twelve #1 national best-selling non-fiction books. They are: All the President’s Men (1974) and The Final Days (1976), both Watergate books, co-authored with Bernstein. The Brethren: Inside the Supreme Court (1979) co-authored with Scott Armstrong, Wired: The Short Life and Fast Times of John Belushi (1984), Veil: The Secret Wars of the CIA 1981-87 (1987), The Commanders (1991), The Agenda: Inside the Clinton White House (1994), Shadow: Five Presidents and the Legacy of Watergate (1999), Bush at War (2002), Plan of Attack (2004), State of Denial: Bush at War Part III (2006), and Obama’s Wars (2010).
Woodward’s other national bestselling books: The Secret Man: The Story of Watergate’s Deep Throat (2005), The Choice (1996), Maestro: Greenspan’s Fed and the American Boom (2000), The War Within: A Secret White House History 2006-2008 (2008), The Price of Politics (2012) and The Last of the President’s Men (2015). Newsweek magazine has excerpted six of Woodward’s books in headline-making cover stories; “60 Minutes” has done pieces on seven of his books; three of his books have been made into feature films.
Woodward was born March 26, 1943 in Illinois. He graduated from Yale University in 1965 and served five years as a communications officer in the U.S. Navy before beginning his journalism career at the Montgomery County (Maryland) Sentinel, where he was a reporter for one year before joining the Post.
Futurist, speaker on innovation, author of Who Owns the Future.
Leading forecaster and futurist Richard Worzel is a Chartered Financial Analyst and best-selling author of Who Owns Tomorrow?. Richard is also a frequent media commentator on business and economic trends.
Richard challenges organizations to examine the future and plan for the dizzying changes to come. In his compelling presentations, seminars and workshops, Richard equips groups with the ability to understand the changes they will face in the years ahead, and with the tools to leverage those changes.
His highly customized Inventing the Future presentations help groups to identify the major forces that will affect their business as well as their personal lives. In order to help your group learn to leverage upcoming transformations, Richard identifies factors that will have dramatic implications for your industry in the near future, working through possible scenarios, contingencies, and the development of effective plans and strategies.
Richard Worzel is known for his professionalism and enthusiasm in preparing and presenting to a great variety of audiences. He works closely with conference planners to develop a customized presentation that is useful, thought-provoking, and entertaining.
Recent clients include: IBM, Standard Life, Investors Group, MacLean Hunter Publishing, Xerox, Merrill Lynch, 3Com, Mackenzie Financial, AIM Funds, among others.
"The Woz" - Co-Founder of Apple Computer, Inc., Chief Scientist at Primary Data
A Silicon Valley icon and philanthropist for more than thirty years, Steve Wozniak has helped shape the computing industry with his design of Apple’s first line of products the Apple I and II and influenced the popular Macintosh. In 1976, Wozniak and Steve Jobs founded Apple Computer Inc. with Wozniak’s Apple I personal computer. The following year, he introduced his Apple II personal computer, featuring a central processing unit, a keyboard, color graphics, and a floppy disk drive. The Apple II was integral in launching the personal computer industry.
In 1981, he went back to UC Berkeley and finished his degree in electrical engineering/computer science. For his achievements at Apple, Wozniak was awarded the National Medal of Technology by the President of the United States in 1985, the highest honor bestowed on America’s leading innovators.
In 2000, he was inducted into the Inventors Hall of Fame and was awarded the prestigious Heinz Award for Technology, The Economy and Employment for single-handedly designing the first personal computer and for then redirecting his lifelong passion for mathematics and electronics toward lighting the fires of excitement for education in grade school students and their teachers.
Through the years, Wozniak has been involved in various business and philanthropic ventures, focusing primarily on computer capabilities in schools and stressing hands-on learning and encouraging creativity for students. Making significant investments of both his time and resources in education, he adopted the Los Gatos School District, providing students and teachers with hands-on teaching and donations of state-of-the-art technology equipment. He founded the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and was the founding sponsor of the Tech Museum, Silicon Valley Ballet and Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose.
Wozniak is Chief Scientist at Primary Data and is a published author with the release of his New York Times best selling autobiography, iWoz: From Computer Geek to Cult Icon by Norton Publishing. His television appearances include reality shows Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List, ABC’s Dancing with the Stars and The Big Bang Theory. In 2014, he was awarded the Hoover Medal, a prestigious honor given for “outstanding extra-career services by engineers to humanity,” and was inducted into the IndustryWeek Manufacturing Hall of Fame.
Tim Wright, MBA, shows businesses hands-on ways to improve performance with Employee Engagement. His work demonstrates that "engaged employees invest their time, energy, skills, knowledge and creativity in quality performance of their job, for their teams, and to impact their company." His presentations show you how to make that happen.
Tim has varied experiences as a corporate executive, a front-line employee, a middle manager, a business owner, a prayer chaplain and an older brother. These drive his ability as a content expert who delivers ideas and applications with energy and entertainment.
Since 2002, Tim has worked with some 300 clients across industries, from healthcare to government, from advertising to construction.
Tim knows an organization derives defined benefits when it bases its culture on employee engagement. He shows organizations how to start at the top and work down through the chain of employees to build a Culture of Engagement.
Off the speaker's platform, Tim writes a powerful Employee Engagement Blog and has authored Batteries Included: How to Charge and Recharge Your Creative Cells, and KAPOW! 64 Blasts to Blow the Lid Off Your Job Performance. He strives continually to learn more and use what he learns. Kindle makes it easy for him to read three books every week. Tim meditates daily. He runs and swims and plays improving golf. He runs and swims and plays golf that has to get better.
Garrison Wynn helps people make the jump from being great at what they do to developing the qualities it takes to be consistently chosen for the job. He gets them to understand why their products, services, or leadership styles - or those of their competitors - are selected. As he says,
If the world agreed on what's best, everybody would choose the best and nothing else would be considered. Decision making doesn't work that way. His presentations help people become more influential regardless of circumstances.
Garrison has presented to some of the world's most effective leaders and business developers, from multibillion-dollar manufacturers and national associations to top New York Stock Exchange wire houses. He has a background in manufacturing, telecomm, and financial services and toured as a professional stand-up comedian. In his teens, Garrison worked with Magnavox and baseball legend Hank Aaron to promote the world's first video gaming system, and by age 27 he became the youngest department head in a Fortune 500 company's history. He researched and designed processes for 38 locations nationwide and developed and marketed products still being sold in 30 countries.
He is the author of the Amazon.com bestseller The REAL Truth About Success, has contributed weekly to The Washington Post, and has coauthored with Stephen Covey. His award-winning success tools receive high praise, but his greatest strength is a magnetic live performance that keeps him in high demand, with more than 600 inquiries and 100 speaking dates per year.
Leading authority and Speaker on Building Exceptional Brands
Blending a fresh perspective, twenty-five years of experience, and a talent for inspiring audiences, Denise Lee Yohn is a leading authority and sought-after speaker on building and positioning exceptional brands. World-class brands including Sony, Frito-Lay, Burger King, and Oakley have called on Denise, author of the bestselling book What Great Brands Do.
Denise initially cultivated her brand-building approaches through several high-level positions in advertising and client-side marketing. She served as lead strategist at advertising agencies for Burger King and Land Rover and as the marketing leader and analyst for Jack in the Box restaurants and Spiegel catalogs. Denise went on to head Sony Electronic Inc.’s first ever brand office, where she was the vice president/general manager of brand and strategy and garnered major corporate awards. She has run her own firm as an independent consulting partner since 2004.
An influential writer and brand expert, Denise wrote the bestselling book What Great Brands Do: The Seven Brand-Building Principles that Separate the Best from the Rest and the new book Extraordinary Experiences: What Great Retail and Restaurant Brands Do. She enjoys challenging readers to think differently about brand-building. She has been a regular contributor to the Harvard Business Review blog, Forbes, Seeking Alpha, and the monthly column Brand New Perspectives to QSR Magazine. Denise regularly appears on Fox Business TV and other international news media as a commentator on breaking business news. In 2008 she launched her blog, brand-as-business bites™, which the Marketing Executives Networking Group (MENG) named as one of the top 20 marketing blogs.
Benjamin Zander is the conductor of The Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and a guest conductor around the world. With London's famed Philharmonia Orchestra, he is recording the complete cycle of Mahler symphonies for Telarc, recordings which have been received with extraordinary critical acclaim and several awards. Their latest recording of Bruckner's 5th Symphony was nominated for a 2010 Grammy, and has received critical acclaim both for the performance and Zander's now famous full-length disc explaining the music for the lay listener. They recorded their next release, Mahler's 2nd Symphony, in January 2012.
In 1967, Mr. Zander joined the faculty at New England Conservatory, where he taught an interpretation class, conducted the Youth Philharmonic Orchestra, and conducted the conservatory orchestras. For the past 28 years, he was the Artistic Director of the joint program between New England Conservatory's Preparatory School and The Walnut Hill School for the Performing Arts in Natick, Massachusetts.
Benjamin Zander has an extensive speaking career, traveling the world lecturing to organizations on leadership. He has appeared four times as a keynote speaker at the World Economic Forum in Davos, where he was presented with the Crystal award for 'outstanding contributions in the Arts and international relations.'
A true renaissance man, Benjamin is also co-author of The Art of Possibility, and holds a degree in English Literature from University College in London. As world-renowned leadership coach and highly in-demand keynote speaker, his presentations are interactive and innovative, and most of all - fun.
Zander was awarded the 2002 'Caring Citizen of the Humanities' Award by the International Council for Caring Communities at the United Nations.
Mark Zandi is a speaker on international finance and economics. He is the chief economist of Moody's Analytics, where he directs research and consulting. Moody's Analytics, a subsidiary of Moody's Corporation, is a leading provider of economic research, data and analytical tools.
Mark's research interests include macroeconomics, financial markets and public policy. His recent research has focused on the determinants of mortgage foreclosure and personal bankruptcy, analyzed the economic impact of various tax and government spending policies, and assessed the appropriate policy response to bubbles in asset markets. Mark also conducts regular briefings on the economy. He is often quoted in national and global publications and interviewed by major news media outlets and is the author of Financial Shock, an exposé of the financial crisis. His forthcoming book, Paying the Price, provides a roadmap for meeting the nation's daunting fiscal challenges.
A trusted adviser to policymakers and an influential source of economic analysis for businesses, journalists and the public, Mark has frequently testified before Congress on topics including the economic outlook, the merits of fiscal stimulus, financial regulatory reform, and foreclosure mitigation.
Dr. Zandi received his PhD at the University of Pennsylvania, where he did his research with Gerard Adams and Nobel laureate Lawrence Klein, and received his B.S. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Humorist, Author, and Dynamic Speaker on Teamwork, Change, and Leadership
Joel Zeff creates energy. He is a dynamic speaker, improvisational humorist and author. His interactive performances invite members of the audience to participate in hilarious improvisational exercises that illustrate Joel's central message: That organizations and individuals should CELEBRATE every day successes to increase collaboration, productivity, passion and innovation.
Since 1997, Joel has inspired audiences from Wells Fargo to Samsung to KPMG and even the IRS. Yes, the IRS. Joel is a masterful public speaker and a nationally renowned motivator, lifelong humorist and improvisational actor.
His career is a search for fun and passion. He quickly realized the importance of both at his first jobs delivering the hometown newspaper and cleaning up trash at a suburban movie theater.
He started his professional career as a newspaper journalist and public relations executive. In 1994, Joel went out on his own as corporate communications specialist. He helped clients with their employee communications, media relations, strategy and customer marketing. Throughout the consulting process, Joel realized his clients – many of them high-level technology and telecommunications firms – needed more than marketing and public relations strategy. Many of his clients’ employees were starving for fun, passion and new perspective on finding success.
At the time, Joel was having fun on the weekends as a comedian. Through friends, he discovered improvisational comedy. One of his clients (a large technology company) knew Joel performed comedy on the weekend. The client asked him to play some improvisational games before dinner for a group of high level executives. He brought a fellow comedian and a corporate speaking career was born.
He connects to his audience with humor that has them laughing so uncontrollably that their mascara runs, their cheeks hurt, and their bellies ache. And he doesn't do it alone. Volunteers from the audience join him on stage and play an integral role in an improvisation game in front of hundreds or thousands of people—something the audience members have never done. He expects nothing less than their success. He expects the volunteers to focus and work together as a team; communicate effectively; positively support each other; and take responsibility.
Joel makes his audience laugh so hard that they forget about the corporate nonsense of conference calls, "strategic deliverables," PowerPoint presentations with upside-down triangles, or "paradigm shifts in a cross-functional organization." Make the Right Choice is conversational, funny, and very informative. Yes, Joel will make you laugh, but he'll also make you think. This presentation delivers a combination of inspiration, essential business knowledge, and significant ideas to help audience members reconnect with their own passion and success.
As discussed in his book, Make the Right Choice, Joel believes that we all encounter choices in our careers. We always have the opportunity to make the right choice to live a more creative, passionate, and productive life. How do you “make the right choice”? You can choose to provide opportunity. You can choose to provide positive support. And along the way, you can choose to have fun. It’s really that simple. Joel teaches us just how easy it is to make these choices.
When he is not speaking, Joel expresses his creativity as an actor, writer and comedian. He started performing professionally in 1992. In Dallas, he was co-host of The Movie Zone on UPN 21. He has appeared in dozens of commercials for numerous clients, including the Dallas Cowboys, Harrah's Casino, Mydiscountbroker.com, Time Warner Cable, Pizza Hut, McDonald's, Eagle Country Markets, and Extraco Bank. He has appeared in hundreds of corporate videos and has appeared on shows from CNBC’s The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch to the Fox Network’s Fox and Friends Weekend. His articles have been featured in The Dallas Morning News, The Houston Chronicle, The Kansas City Star, among many other mainstream media outlets.
Geopolitical Strategist and Global Energy, Demographic, and Security Expert
Zeihan’s worldview marries the realities of geography and populations to a deep understanding of how global politics impact markets and economic trends, helping industry leaders navigate today’s complex mix of geopolitical risks and opportunities. With a keen eye toward what will drive tomorrow’s headlines, his irreverent approach transforms topics that are normally dense and heavy into accessible, relevant takeaways for audiences of all types.
In his career, Zeihan has ranged from working for the US State Department in Australia, to the DC think tank community, to helping develop the analytical models for Stratfor, one of the world’s premier private intelligence companies. Mr. Zeihan founded his own firm -- Zeihan on Geopolitics -- in 2012 in order to provide a select group of clients with direct, custom analytical products. Today those clients represent a vast array of sectors including energy majors, financial institutions, business associations, agricultural interests, universities and the U.S. military.
His freshman book, The Accidental Superpower, debuted in 2014. His sophomore project, Shale New World, will be released later this year.
Speaker, Writer, and Market Researcher on Generational Differences in the Workplace
With 12 years of public speaking experience, Scott Zimmer has developed a uniquely personable style and uses insight, humor, and data to foster an environment where every generation feels valued and understood.
As one of BridgeWorks’ generational experts and resident Gen Xer, Scott’s keynotes clearly illustrate the stress points between these generations and provide clear solutions to help relieve tension and encourage better understanding and collaboration across generational divides. A child of the 80s and 90s, Scott has insider knowledge into what makes his generation tick. Sandwiched between the idealistic Boomers and innovative Millennials, his Xer lens allows him to hone in on the key challenges facing each generation.
BridgeWorks has been dedicated solely to the study of generational differences since its inception in 1998 and is the company who wrote the best-selling business books When Generations Collide: Who They Are. Why They Clash. How to Solve the Generational Puzzle at Work (HarperCollins) and The M-Factor (HarperBusiness). BridgeWorks has worked with clients varying from the AARP to MTV and over 30 Fortune 100 companies in between.
Scott grew up on a dairy farm in Central Minnesota and has mastered the art of milking cows. He graduated from St. John’s University in 2000 with a BA in Communications. When he’s not researching or presenting, he enjoys his other role as a self-proclaimed movie-buff.
Speaker who transforms organizations through motivation and leadership.
Curtis Zimmerman has impacted over one million people throughout the nation with his life-changing messages and award winning programs. Audiences connect with Curtis through his interactive style and approachable manner. He incorporates the skills he gained from over twenty-five years in the entertainment industry into his powerful leadership and motivational programs, cleverly balancing the connection between education and entertainment. Curtis is an expert at transforming organizations by inspiring individuals to live their life at a higher level of performance.
His deeply profound insight and perspective coupled with his high energy presentations have made him a highly sought after speaker among such notable companies as Walt Disney Entertainment, Swiss Army Brands, Luxottica Retail and Procter and Gamble.
Curtis is the author of I Believe...What do you Believe?, Keys to Success in College and Life, and the new bestseller Life at Performance Level. He was honored to share his message with more than 14,000 Airmen for the United States Air Force and received the prestigious National Leadership Award for outstanding service from United States Congressman Tom Reynolds. He is a member of the National Speakers Association and has achieved the highest earned international recognition for professional speakers, the Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) designation.
Political economist, best-selling author, and former Middle East correspondent for ABC News.
At Chicago Booth, Marvin Zonis taught courses on the International Political Economy, Political Risk, and Business Leadership. He was the first professor at the Business School to teach a course on the effects of digital technologies on global business. In June, 2013, he was honored with the Norman Maclean Award for outstanding contributions to teaching and to the student experience of life on campus.
He also consults to corporations and professional asset management firms throughout the world, helping them to identify, assess, and manage their political risks in the changing global environment. He is a member of the Board of Advisers for the Comptroller General of the United States at the GAO, the Board of Directors of CNA Financial, a Fellow of PWC Advisory Services, and also a member of the Board of Directors of the Fondation Etats Unis.
Zonis has written extensively on globalization, digital technologies, emerging markets, Middle Eastern politics, the oil industry, Russia, and U.S. foreign policy. He is a leading authority on the Middle East and has spent the last 50 years studying Islam and the Middle East. He is the former director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Chicago and former president of the American Institute of Iranian Studies. He has lived in Iran, hitchhiked in Afghanistan in and Pakistan 1963, studied Islam in Iraq beginning in 1964, and has traveled extensively throughout other parts of the region, as well.
His writings have been published in numerous journals. His books include Risk Rules: How Local Politics Threaten the Global Economy (May 2011) ; The Kimchi Matters: Global Business and Local Politics in a Crisis Driven World ; The Eastern European Opportunity; Majestic Failure: The Fall of the Shah; Khomeini and the Islamic Republic of Iran; and The Political Elite of Iran.
He was educated at Yale University, the Harvard Business School, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he received a Ph.D. in Political Science, and the Institute for Psychoanalysis, Chicago, where he received psychoanalytic training.
Jason Zweig became a personal finance columnist for The Wall Street Journal in 2008. He was a senior writer for Money magazine
and a guest columnist for Time magazine and cnn.com. He is the author of Your Money and Your Brain (2007), one of the first books to explore the neuroscience of investing. Zweig is also the editor of the revised edition of Benjamin Graham's The Intelligent
Investor (2003), the classic text that Warren Buffett has described as
by far the best book about investing ever written.
Before joining Money in 1995, Zweig was the mutual funds editor at Forbes. Earlier, he had been a reporter-researcher for the Economy & Business section of Time and an editorial assistant at Africa Report, a bimonthly journal. Zweig has a B.A. from Columbia College, where he was awarded a John Jay National Scholarship. He also spent a year studying Middle Eastern history and culture at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel.
A frequent commentator on television and radio, Zweig is also a popular public speaker who has addressed the American Association of Individual Investors, the Aspen Institute, the CFA Institute, the Morningstar Investment Conference, and university audiences at Harvard, Stanford, and Oxford.
Zweig was for many years a trustee of the Museum of American Finance, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. He serves on the editorial boards of Financial History magazine and The Journal of Behavioral Finance. Jason Zweig is not related to money manager Martin E. Zweig.