Former Commander, USS Benfold, Author
Mike Abrashoff was the most-junior officer in the Pacific Fleet when he took command of the near-worst performing ship. Twelve months later, the USS Benfold was the best ship in the entire Navy – using the same crew. The story of that stunning transformation has lessons for every organization: leadership matters – and culture is everything.
CEO of nēdl, Serial Entrepreneur
Ayinde Alakoye is a serial entrepreneur and the co-founder and CEO of nēdl, his third live broadcast radio streaming venture. Ayinde was also the creator of the original iheartradio app served as a Speechwriter, Staffer, and Senior Message Advisor for Presidential Candidate Barack Obama, during both elections.
Founder of Capway and Sheena Allen Apps, Author
Sheena Allen is the founder of Capway, a neobank for those who do not fit into the traditional banking system, and Sheena Allen Apps, a successful media tech company. Born in Terry, Mississippi, Sheena travels the world speaking on the importance of inclusion in tech and entrepreneurship. Sheena has been featured in various publications and most recently was part of the Forbes 30 under 30 for 2019.
Advocate, Award-Winning Journalist, Author
Kimberly Seals Allers is an award-winning journalist, author of five books, international speaker, strategist, and advocate for maternal and infant health. A former senior editor at Essence and writer at Fortune magazine, Kimberly is a leading commentator on birth, breastfeeding and motherhood and the intersection of race, policy, and culture.
Co-founder Tangelo Technologies, Author
Rebecca Altamirano has dedicated her professional life to working within underrepresented communities to open up access to the culture of power. Her professional path has given her deep hands-on experience on working with the underserved and underrepresented. Many of these experiences she has shared as a co-author of “Be The Change: Reinventing Schools for Student Success”
Co-founder of Tangelo Technologies
Antonio pioneered the adoption of early social media platforms at Fortune 500 companies and managed the integration of emerging technologies. Currently, he is co-founder of Tangelo Technologies, a Venture Studio and Innovation Lab in Silicon Valley where he believes that technology can and must contribute to society in positive, ethical, equitable, and scalable ways.
Founder & CEO of Radical Health
Ivelyse Andino is an Afro-Latina health equity innovator born and raised in The Bronx. She is the founder and CEO of Radical Health and a Commissioner on the New York City Commission on Gender Equity. In 2015 she founded the first Latina owned Public Benefit Corp in New York State.
Visionary Entrepreneur, CEO of Black Star Fund
Kwame Anku is the CEO and Chairman of the Black Star Fund, an early-stage innovation fund. Kwame has worked extensively in business development and media marketing for over two decades, entering into the tech industry after being personally recruited by the late legendary rock star Prince to develop his mobile app, overseeing business and development teams on Africa, Asia, and the US.
Columnist, Author, Tech Entrepreneur
A sought after voice of inspiration, Mandy is a columnist, founder, and prolific influencer. Her breadth of work in mind+body connection and unwavering optimism has earned her global attention and positioning alongside elite social leaders and sports figures around the world. Mandy now travels the globe inspiring resilience through her recent and personal triumph in mental and physical wellness.
Strategist, Author, Advisor on Emerging Technologies
Paul Armstrong is an in-demand speaker on emerging technologies, social technologies and strategy, and regularly advises brands like Coca-Cola, Experian, Sony Music, P&G, PwC and several technology start-ups. He writes a column for Forbes and also advises the UK Government on digital strategy.
National Broadcast Journalist, Host of “Banmiller on Business”
Brian Banmiller is a national business journalist and public speaker who has spent more than 40 years in the news industry, covering business, politics and the economy on television, radio and in print. Currently, his “Banmiller on Business” reports and speeches are delivered to an audience of millions nationwide.
Master of Transformation, Author
Chris is a master of transformation. His unique energetic approach challenges businesses to embed a dynamic creative culture within their company ethos. Brands such as Nike, Coca-Cola, Diageo, Unilever, Sony, and WPP come back time and again as his results produce tangible returns on investment.
Co-Founder & CEO of O.school, Author
Andrea Barrica, author of Sex Tech Revolution, is CEO and Co-founder of O.school, a judgment-free multimedia platform to learn about sexuality and pleasure. Previously, Andrea co-founded accounting and tax platform, inDinero.com, where she led sales and operations. She also served as a venture partner and entrepreneur-in-residence at 500 Startups.
Mavericks Champion, Guinness World Record Holder
International Inspirational Speaker; Big Wave Surfing Mavericks Champion; Stand-Up Paddleboarding Guinness World Record Holder; Chris Bertish shifts boundaries, shatters perceptions and achieves what most people perceive impossible.
Founder and CEO of Seed&Spark
Emily Best is the founder and CEO of Seed&Spark, a platform that bridges online and offline experiences to make entertainment more diverse, inclusive, connected and essential. Best’s talks on crowdfunding, pitching, and building equitable startups have been viewed millions of times and is an advocate for diversity and inclusion in companies across the globe.
General Partner, Lightship Capital
Brian Brackeen is a General Partner at Lightship Capital, the Cincinnati-based VC firm dedicated to backing underrepresented entrepreneurs in the Midwest. Brian lectures extensively around the world on entrepreneurship, code, the digital economy, AI and machine learning — and participates in mentorship programs for organizations like Girls Who Code, Black Girls Code and The School District of Miami.
Founder of Thurst
Morgen Bromell is a founder and technologist working to make tech more accessible to people of color through justice-based initiatives and tech activism. Apart from being the founder of Thurst, a dating app for the LGBTQIA+ community, they are also deeply invested in community building and documenting queer histories, particularly how queer and trans people use digital resources and online platforms to navigate our world.
Head of Design at Clutter, Former Director of UX at VICE
Jessica Brown is the head of design at Clutter. Fascinated by the co-evolution of culture and technology, she loves leading teams to find simple design solutions to complex problems. Jessica speaks on executing redesigns at scale and common philosophies and practices guiding creative people of all disciplines. She has established design and research practices that brought users’ stories to the heart of the product.
Founder and CEO of Win-Win, Former Pro-Athlete
Mike Brown, a pro-athlete turned self-taught coder, transitioned from tackling to tech and went on to be the founder and CEO of Win-Win, a platform powered by gaming and giving. Win-Win enables pro athletes and influencers to monetize their fanbase and help brands engage with end consumers.
Futurist Speaker, Business Strategist, Bestselling Author
Daniel Burrus is considered one of the world’s leading technology forecasters and innovation experts helping clients profit from technological, social and business forces that are converging to create enormous, untapped opportunities. The New York Times has referred to him as one of the top three business gurus in the highest demand as a speaker.
Co-CEO of US Market Access & A3 Global Collider
Chris is a serial entrepreneur with global experience. Since 2010, he has focused on bringing the lessons of Silicon Valley to entrepreneurs around the world. He is the co-founder of the US Market Access Center and the A3 Global Collider. Through USMAC, Chris has trained and mentored more than 1,000 startups from 25+ countries.
Millennial Generation Expert and Technology Speaker
Jeff Butler is a speaker, author, and international consultant who helps organizations improve their relationships with millennial employees. Unlike other experts on millennials, Jeff has been in the trenches of what it means to be a millennial and what it takes to retain and keep them engaged. You may have seen him on Forbes, USA Weekly, or on the TED stage.
Leading Expert in SCADA, ICS, and IIoT Security
Eric Byres is an awarding winning expert in the field of SCADA/ICS and IIoT security. Experienced in controls engineering, security research and corporate management, he offers a unique blend of deep technical knowledge and practical business experience.
Cofounder & COO of ShearShare
Courtney Caldwell is the Cofounder & COO of ShearShare, the first on-demand salon and barbershop space rental app. She is also an award-winning entrepreneur and tech founder and has spent two decades building winning teams in tech marketing.
Cofounder & CEO of ShearShare
Dr. Tye Caldwell is the Cofounder & CEO of ShearShare. Recognized as a tech visionary and industry pioneer, Dr. Caldwell’s mission is to help beauty and barbering professionals around the world maximize their earnings potential. He has worked in beauty for 25 years as a master barber-stylist, educator, and small business coach, offering his 20+ years of industry knowledge as a proven roadmap.
COO & Partner at Tangelo
Tara Carter is a highly driven COO/Partner at Tangelo and a Partner at Backstage Capital, providing full circle guidance to startups and larger. She has over 25 years of experience in mentoring, growing and advising startups, investor relations, omni-channel marketing, business strategy, deep technology, and product development, diversity and inclusion, predictive analytics, data visualization, business intelligence, and activism.
Executive Coach, Business Advisor, Transformational Life Coaching
Vish Chatterji is an accomplished business leader turned executive coach with a twenty-year business track record spanning multiple industries. In parallel, he has studied and practiced yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda (mind-body medicine). Vish coaches business leaders enabling more of their greatness to show up at work.
Former NASA Astronaut and International Space Station Commander
Dr. Chiao began his professional career as a chemical engineer, and his passion for space exploration led him to NASA. Following a stellar 15-year astronaut career, he moved on to leadership positions in entrepreneurial startups, applying his space experience to the business world.
Senior Editor-at-Large, Fortune and Bestselling Author
As Fortune magazine’s senior editor-at-large, Geoff Colvin is now in his fourth decade at Fortune. He is one of business journalism’s sharpest and most respected commentators on leadership, management, globalization, government regulation, corporate governance, competition, the economy, the InfoTech revolution, human performance and related issues.
Executive Coach and Strategy Expert, Former Salesforce VP
Heidi Connal is a seasoned technology executive with over twenty years of experience building collaborative, compassionate, and high performing individuals and teams. She works with visionary leaders to identify new opportunities within themselves for growth, learning, and contributions. Her techniques cultivate emotional intelligence, self-awareness, and courageous introspection.
Bestselling Author and Entrepreneur
Mark Coopersmith is a bestselling author, entrepreneur, Fortune 500 executive, and educator. Mark has mentored hundreds of startup teams which have launched groundbreaking new ventures in sectors as varied as web services, consumer electronics, medical devices, internet-of-things, education, cleantech, fintech, and fashion.
Founder of Please Assist Me
Stephanie Cummings is the founder of Please Assist Me, an all-inclusive home management app. She is an experienced entrepreneur, business leader, and philanthropist, priding herself in being a minority tech founder promoting the importance of STEM education.
Award Winning Consultant and Change Specialist
Three-time Top 25 Speaker Award recipient, change-consultant for the NASA Space Shuttle Program and transition-advisor for $50 billion mergers and acquisitions, Mark DeVolder distinguishes himself as a change management specialist and is one of today’s original thinkers on transitions.
Founder & CEO of PopCom
Dawn Dickson is a serial entrepreneur with over 16 years of experience in marketing and business development. She is currently the Founder & CEO of PopCom, an automated retail company that uses facial recognition, A.I, and blockchain technology to help retailers collect valuable customer insights.
Acclaimed Global Futurist, Trendcaster, NY Times Bestselling Author
Acclaimed global futurist, trendcaster, and best-selling author Dr. Shawn DuBravac sits at the nexus between innovation and disruption. DuBravac delivers pragmatic and provocative insights into the trends, technologies, and paradigms transforming business and society along with actionable strategies organizations in every industry can apply.
CEO of Siempo
Andrew Dunn is on a mission to elevate the human condition by intentionally shaping technology to serve as an agent of flourishing individuals, institutions, and societies. As CEO of Siempo, he helps people build healthier relationships with technology through the first smartphone interface designed to support mental health and wellbeing.
Co-Founder & CEO of SHYFT Power Solutions
Ugwem Eneyo is co-founder and CEO of SHYFT Power Solutions, specializing in the use of IoT software and big data to improve access to clean, reliable and affordable energy solutions in markets that struggle with grid resiliency. Ms. Eneyo explores how we use tech to create ‘grids of the future’ but particularly in emerging markets. She’s given talks on the nexus of energy and sustainable development to global thought leaders, including the World Bank.
Founder & CEO of Change Catalyst
Melinda Briana Epler has over 25 years of experience developing business innovation and inclusion strategies for startups, Fortune 500 companies, and global NGOs. As CEO of Change Catalyst, Melinda works with the tech industry to solve diversity and inclusion together. Using her background in storytelling and large-scale culture change, she is a strategic advisor for tech companies, tech hubs, and governments around the world.
Award Winning Author, Managing Partner of QuestMark
Mike has developed a unique perspective from 20+ years working alongside world-renowned thought leaders. He is a leading authority on unleashing personal and organizational accountability. Clients rely upon Mike’s solutions to accelerate change, shape their optimal culture, flawlessly execute key strategies, ignite leadership capacity at all Levels, amplify employee engagement, and cultivate peak performance.
Founder and CEO Ferrazzi Greenlight, Bestselling Author
Keith Ferrazzi, founder and chairman of Ferrazzi Greenlight, has spent over a decade addressing the behaviors that block global organizations from reaching strategic goals and transforming them into new habits that increase shareholder value.
Marketing and Brand Elevation Specialist, DEI Consultant, Founder Encounter Your Potential
Sandra Garcia is a Marketing and Branding strategist and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Consultant. Now the founder of Encounter Your Potential, she develops and executes strategies that use marketing as the pillar for achieving business goals and driving revenue.
Veteran Journalist, Conflict Reporter, Author
Carmen Gentile is a veteran journalist who has covered the US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and numerous bouts of unrest throughout the world. His life was forever changed when he was injured by a Taliban rocket-propelled grenade. In perhaps the most unusual injury in the annals of modern warfare, Carmen was struck in the face by the rocket at close range, an experience he chronicles in his book “Blindsided by the Taliban.” He speaks at length about his experience and how having a sense of humor about his injury and other setbacks helped him maintain his sanity during the worst time of his life.
Educator, Author, Leadership Expert
David is the author of Paid to THINK: A Leader’s Toolkit for Redefining Your Future, a work for which he has earned comparisons to Peter Drucker, the father of modern-day management. Considered by some to be the “Thought Leaders’ Thought Leader”, he is known for replacing common leadership thinking with bold, proven, and sometimes counter-intuitive approaches to address leadership challenges and opportunities.
Co-Creator of Wallbreakers
Andrea Guendelman is a leading force in creating platforms for minority professionals and the tech industry. Through her own experiences as a Harvard-trained corporate lawyer and an entrepreneur, she co-created Wallbreakers – a solution to connect talented students from underrepresented backgrounds with companies hungry for talent and looking to build inclusive teams. Andrea is considered to be a thought leader in the topics of Latinx career building and creating diverse workforces.
Internationally Recognized Speaker, Generational Expert
As an internationally recognized speaker, Phil has shared his wisdom and inspired audiences in 40 different states and four continents to over 100,000 people. He is a firm believer that with the proper motivation, training, and support system, members of any generation can become capable of remarkable accomplishments.
Futurist, AR VR Author, Speaker, and Technology Thought Leader
Cathy Hackl is an Emmy-nominated communicator turned virtual reality & augmented reality global speaker, producer, and futurist. Hackl has been featured in media outlets like Mic, CNN, Silicon Beat, Entrepreneur, CMO.com, Forbes, VentureBeat, and Mashable. She is a global advisor for VR AR Association and a leading voice in the VR AR marketing space.
Founder Backstage Capital, Studio & Accelerator, Author
Arlan Hamilton is a remarkable entrepreneur who built a venture capital fund from the ground up, while homeless. She is the Founder and Managing Partner of Backstage Capital, a VC firm dedicated to minimizing funding disparities in tech by investing in high-potential founders who are people of color, women, and/or LGBT.
Disruptive Innovation Speaker, Bestselling Author
Jim Harris is one of North America’s foremost thought leaders, management consultants, and authors on disruptive innovation. With 20 years experience as a professional speaker and consultant, Jim Harris speaks internationally at more than 40 conferences a year on and is ranked as one of the nation’s top ten speakers by Association magazine.
Engagement Expert, Author
Roger Haskett helps to make meetings, organizations, and individuals be more engaging. In his award winning career as a speaker, actor, emcee and entrepreneur, Roger developed a unique formula for maximizing audience engagement and influencing employees, members, participants, and everyone he meets to be more engaged and authentic individuals.
Franchise Expert, TV Host, Global Business Leader
The entrepreneurial genius, Troy Hazard, has founded and nurtured twelve businesses over two decades, has turned around businesses that were making enormous losses, and has consulted to countless successful companies including Goodyear, Baskin Robbins, Subway, Fisher & Paykel and many more.
Business & Technology Expert, Advisor, Global Speaker
Founder of IPA Equities and a world-renowned expert in business growth, disruptive technology, and innovation, Keith Herman implements story-based leadership to share his experiences on success through communication, attitude, team building, and empowerment.
One of The Top 25 Most Extraordinary Minds in Sales & Marketing
Bruce Himelstein is the Ritz-Carlton executive who transformed customer service for one of the world’s most recognizable luxury brands. He is credited with leading some of the travel and hospitality industry’s most prestigious domestic and global brands during a 30+ year illustrious career setting the global standards in hospitality, marketing, and C-level executive management.
Founder & CEO of Bandwagon
Harold Hughes is the founder & CEO of Bandwagon – an analytics and identity management company that uses Blockchain technology to help teams & entertainers create more personalized fan experiences while eliminating ticket fraud. He has become a leader in the growing startup community in Greenville, South Carolina, speaking with entrepreneurs, youth, and his peers.
Founder & CEO of Healthy Roots Dolls
Yelitsa Jean-Charles founded Healthy Roots after recognizing a need for more diverse toys and representation in children’s publishing. She has been recognized as Essence’s 50 Founders to watch and frequently speaks about entrepreneurship, social justice, and cultural competency.
Author and Award Winning Global Sales Enablement Thought Leader
For over twenty years, Roderick, has built award-winning sales enablement organizations within some of the world’s most successful Fortune 1,000 companies. Roderick has won numerous awards including a Sales Enablement Lifetime Achievement. He was also selected as a 2020 Sales and Marketing Influencer by LinkedIn and the 2015 Sales On-boarding Program of the Year by SiriusDecisions.
The People’s Shark, Founder & CEO, Author
From his wildly successful role on ABC’s smash hit, Shark Tank, to his distinguished status as a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship, Daymond John has become globally recognized for his relentless commitment to promoting and supporting entrepreneurs.
Intersection of Law, Innovation, and Pop Culture
Shontavia Johnson serves as a highly acclaimed writer, speaker, and commentator thriving at the intersection of law, innovation, and pop culture. She is host of The Shontavia Show and creator of the Brand+Business academy, teaching working professionals how to grow and operate businesses and build personal brands. She was the first African-American woman to receive full tenure at Drake University Law School and is the Associate VP for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Clemson University.
CMO of Watty, Self-Made Marketer, Influencer
Maral, also known as, ‘Maral from Twitter’, ‘Powerhouse’, ‘energy pack’ or ‘Curly’ is one of the most familiar faces in the Nordic tech scene. Maral is the CMO at Watty, one of the hottest startups in Europe. She is also the co-founder of Peppy Pals, an active ambassador for diversity in tech. Former StartupGrind chapter director and SUP46 Femtech co-organizer.
Chief Evangelist of Canva, Former Chief Evangelist of Apple, Bestselling Author
Guy Kawasaki is a bestselling author, former chief evangelist of Apple, and a former trustee of the Wikimedia Foundation. Today, he is the chief evangelist of Canva (an online graphic design tool), brand ambassador for Mercedes-Benz, and is also an executive fellow of the Haas School of Business (UC Berkeley).
Lead Anchor, BBC World News America, Bestselling Author
Washington, D.C.-based British news anchor Katty Kay brings a fresh perspective to the reporting of American politics and global affairs. Katty’s insights reflect a global mindset that is a natural offshoot of having grown up in the Middle East and worked as a journalist in Europe, Africa, and Asia before coming to Washington in 1996.
Founder & CEO of Avisare
Sky Kelley is the founder & CEO of Avisare, an enterprise software marketplace simplifying the government RFP process to foster an inclusive ecosystem for small businesses. Sky found a need to help non-technology companies use technology to innovate their products and services. Her focus is on making technology simple and user-friendly with the ability to grow the bottom line.
NY Times Bestselling Author, CEO of Likeable Local
Dave is a serial entrepreneur, New York Times bestselling author, and global keynote speaker. He is the Founder and CEO of Likeable Local, a social media software company serving thousands of small businesses, as well as the chairman and co-founder of Likeable Media, an award-winning social media and word-of-mouth marketing agency for big brands.
CEO & Co-Founder Likeable Media, Host of "All the Social Ladies", Author
Carrie Kerpen an author, columnist, host of the popular podcast “All the Social Ladies”, and the co-founder and CEO of Likeable Media, a digital agency that was named Crain’s sixth Best Place to Work in NYC.
Author and Founder of People-OnTheGo
Pierre Khawand has more than twenty years of experience in the software industry. He has helped leaders develop the awareness and behaviors needed to focus on results and develop people in the midst of the information overload.
Brand Marketer, Venture Investor, Startup Advisor
As a brand marketer, venture investor, and startup advisor, Dave Knox bridges the worlds of the Fortune 500 and entrepreneurship and is widely recognized as an industry thought leader.
NY Times Bestselling Author, Cofounder, Writer & Producer
Jonas Koffler is the New York Times and Los Angeles Times bestselling coauthor of HUSTLE: The Power to Charge Your Life with Money, Meaning, and Momentum (Rodale, Penguin Random House Books), which Fortune called “a must-read.” It has been published in more than 10 countries. Having recovered from a stroke in his 20s, Jonas is a leading voice in enhancing human potential around how we work, live, learn, and play.
Futurist and Bestselling Author
Tom Koulopoulos is acknowledged as one of the industry’s leading futurists. He is the author of ten books and founder of Delphi Group, a 25-year-old Boston-based think tank, which was named one of the fastest growing private companies in the US by Inc. Magazine.
Internationally Acclaimed Inspirational Performing Artist
With over 20 years in the Performing Arts – from Broadway to comedy clubs to high-profile television to commercials including a Super Bowl spot – Victoria Labalme helps people perform at their highest levels by awakening their hidden genius.
Co-founder of Management Lab, Founding Writer of Fast Company, Author
Polly LaBarre arms leaders with a Maverick Manual to hack the status quo and ramp up originality, invention and game-changing disruption. Co-author of Mavericks at Work and founding team member of Fast Company magazine, Polly is co-founder of Management Lab, the think-and-do tank where she consults with top global brands.
CEO of Drop, Creative Technologist
Russell Ladson is a creative technologist whose work sits at the intersection of emerging technologies, purposeful design, and visual art. His work investigates the use of emerging technologies like AR/VR (XR) to heighten the human-to-human experience through experimental concepts around information discovery in a post-smartphone world.
Purpose-driven Experiential Marketer
Max Lenderman is the leading voice at the vanguard of two massive trends in branding and innovation: brand experience and brand purpose. These two modern tenets of brand-building have led his entire career at the world’s largest and most-awarded creative agencies. And he is on a mission to share the keys to unlocking business growth and social impact together.
Employee Experience Pioneer, Globally Minded HR Leader
Mark Levy is a seasoned globally-minded Employee Experience Leader who has chosen to work for big-hearted companies and focus on how he can unleash the talents and passions of a company’s employees. Mark was the pioneer of designing the Employee Experience at Airbnb and most recently at Allbirds, showing organizations what is possible when you empower employees and rethink HR.
Co-Founder of CurlMix
Kimberly Lewis is the co-founder of CurlMix, a clean beauty brand for curly hair. Her innovative take on clean beauty hair products has won her praise from top industry publications. Kimberly now shares her journey into entrepreneurship, balancing motherhood, and how to scale your beauty brand.
National Political Correspondent for NPR & FOX News Contributor
As the national political correspondent for NPR, Mara Liasson’s voice is unmistakable and her words memorable. Her reports can be heard regularly on NPR’s award-winning newsmagazines All Things Considered and Morning Edition.
Hyper-Growth CEO, NY Times Bestselling Author, Venture Capitalist
Josh Linkner, who started his career as a jazz guitarist, has been the founder and CEO of five tech companies, which sold for a combined value of over $200 million. He is also a deeply experienced business leader, venture capitalist, top-rated keynote speaker, and author of four books which include the New York Times bestsellers: Disciplined Dreaming and The Road to Reinvention.
Internationally Recognized Speaker, Author, Corporate Trainer
Jones Loflin equips individuals and organizations with real tools to conquer today’s tsunami of work and life challenges. Jones’ innovative solutions on leadership, change, and time management have attracted the attention of organizations around the world.
High-Performance Leadership, Team Building, Motivational Speaker
Ted Ma is a leadership development expert. As an entrepreneur, he built an international sales team of over 6,000 agents, had been featured in Success From Home magazine and helps organizations develop high-performance leaders and create a collaborative team culture.
First Woman Thunderbird Pilot, Fighter Squadron Commander, Indomitable Spirit
Col. Nicole Malachowski (USAF, Ret.) defies stereotypes. She was a jet fighter pilot, a combat veteran, and the first woman pilot on the Thunderbirds Air Demonstration Squadron. But her distinguished 21-year Air Force career came to an end when a devastating tick-borne illness left her unable to speak or walk for ten months leaving Nicole’s indomitable spirit to fight back against overwhelming odds and prevail.
Performance Expert, Former NFL Linebacker
Matt Mayberry, a former NFL linebacker for the Chicago Bears, is currently one of the most-read columnists for Entrepreneur Magazine, as well as an acclaimed keynote speaker, author, and peak-performance strategist. Using a real-world approach, He specializes in maximizing the performance of organizations, teams, and individuals all over the world.
Communications Expert and Author
Sarita Maybin is an international communication expert, keynote, and motivational speaker whose audiences have fun learning how to stay positive, constructively confront tough communication situations, and work together better.
The Business Sculptor
Scott offers an unusual mix of experience, having worked as a research scientist, HR director, business consultant, rock musical producer, writer, keynote and TEDx speaker. His delivery style, which he has developed across the sectors in over 20 years, is humorous, well-crafted, inspiring and direct.
Dynamic Motivational Speaker, Award-Winning Author
Connie Merritt, BSN, RN, PHN, has more than 25 years experience of speaking nationally with leading companies, organizations, and associations in Business and Healthcare industries.
Motivational Speaker, Certified Speaking Professional
Brad Montgomery teaches people how to use happiness to boost productivity, creativity, innovation, and profits. He specializes in using humor, interactivity, music, and visuals to ignite audiences so that they can use happiness as a tool to improve their lives and their jobs.
Groundbreaking Athlete, Fashion Icon, Actor, TED All-Star
Aimée Mullins has excelled in multiple fields, inspiring people around the world as an athlete, actor, model, and speaker. As the first double amputee in history to compete in Division 1 NCAA track and field and for Team USA in the 1996 Paralympic Games. Over the past decade, she has acted in film and television shows, including the Netflix mega-hit Stranger Things, and has multiple feature films in development as a producer.
Economist, Futurist, Author
Linda Nazareth is an economist, a futurist and a respected authority on the future of work. As a newspaper columnist and an author, she knows how to frame things in ways that both educate and entertain, and as the Senior Fellow for Economics and Population Change at think-tank the Macdonald Laurier Institute she knows what she is talking about.
Founder & CEO of Pilotly
James Norman is a serial entrepreneur who at the age of 16 built his first online company. While previously he may have been known as a visionary in automotive product planning, over the past 10 years in the media and entertainment industry, he has become a thought leader in over-the-top media and consumer video consumption behaviors.
EVP & COO of The Future Hunters
Erica Orange is Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer of The Future Hunters, one of the world’s leading futurist consulting firms. She evaluates emerging social, technological, economic, political, demographic and environmental trends – and identifies the strategic implications of those trends for several of the most influential Fortune 500 companies, trade associations, and public sector clients.
Founder & CEO of EndeavorVR
Amy Peck is the founder & CEO of EndeavorVR, a leading global VR/AR (XR) strategy & consulting firm. Amy is a recognized thought-leader in the space and speaks globally on the future of XR.
CEO and Co-Founder of Revry
Damian Pelliccione is the CEO and Co-Founder of Revry, the world’s first LGBTQ Global Content Streaming Network. With over 15 years of experience in the digital and new media world and as an avid speaker, passionate about supporting the LGBTQ community in both authentic representation and entrepreneurship, Damian has spoken at more than over 250 conferences and film festivals around the world.
The Race Healer
Milagros Phillips designs strategic learning initiatives for clients seeking to enhance their diversity and inclusion programs by adding race literacy to their initiatives. With more than 25 years of experience in learning and development, Milagros has consulted with, designed and delivered customized programs across many industries and services, including financial/insurance, healthcare, higher education, and national and political leaders.
General Partner of Backstage Capital, CEO of Backstage Studio
Christie Pitts is an inventor and early-stage investor at Backstage Capital and co-founder of Backstage Studio, currently leading Backstage’s global Accelerator program. She identified a passion for working with early-stage companies while working as Venture Development Manager at Verizon.
Bestselling Author, Leadership Coach, Professor
Barry Posner has received countless awards and has been ranked among the most recognized and influential Leadership Coaches, Most Influential HR thinkers, and among the top Leadership and Management Experts in the world.
Executive Coach, Consummate Storyteller
Joseph is a thought leader in business agility and uses that expertise to motivate his audience to think of breakthrough ideas in their industries. Integrating startups with legacy corporations, running technology operations for the world’s largest payment processor, building a nationwide franchise organization has given Joseph the breadth and depth required of any executive.
TEDx Speaker, Writer, and Life Coach
TEDx Speaker, writer, and life coach Ranbir Puar helps adults and children break free of their limiting beliefs by providing the tools to tap into their inner strength and silence their inner critics.
Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist, Author, Mentor
Bill Reichert is co-founder and Managing Director of Garage Technology Ventures, a well-known seed and early-stage venture capital firm in Silicon Valley. Bill travels around the world giving presentations and workshops on innovation, entrepreneurship, venture capital, and technology trends.
Founder, Political Activist, Miss Black America
Ryann Richardson made history when she became the 50th Anniversary Miss Black America. The tech marketer-turned-founder and Diversity & Inclusion advocate spent 10 years building brands and culture for companies spanning early-stage startups to billion-dollar “unicorns” to the Fortune500. Her work earned her a spot as the youngest honoree on Savoy Magazine’s list of Most Influential Black Executives in Corporate America, and set her on the path to discovering her unique purpose as a champion for underrepresented voices.
Gender Economist, International Keynote Speaker
Katica Roy is an ambassador for gender equity in the workplace and beyond. She is a gender economist and the CEO and founder of Denver-based Pipeline, an award-winning SaaS platform that leverages artificial intelligence to drive economic gains through closing the gender equity gap.
America’s Leading Expert on Leadership Through Change
Dr. Michelle is the author of three books, a Huffington Post writer, and has been featured on NBC, ABC, CNN, FOX News and many other media outlets discussing change, motivation and how the human mind works to become exceptional in every area of our lives, personally and professionally. She is one of the most sought after change management motivational leadership speakers nationwide as well as internationally.
IBM Master Inventor, AI & Technology Expert, Author
Neil Sahota (萨冠军) is an IBM Master Inventor, United Nations (UN) Advisor, Artificial Intelligence (AI) subject matter expert, Faculty at UC Irvine, and author of Own the A.I. Revolution. With 20+ years of business experience, he works with organizations to create next-generation products/solutions powered by emerging technology.
Technical Founder, CTO of Wallbreakers
Leah La Salla is the CTO of Wallbreakers, an AI-powered platform that enables companies to identify, evaluate, recruit, and retain the next generation of software engineers. As an inventor, she is best known for “hacking NASA” with a toaster (a toaster-sized neuromechanical unmanned aerial vehicle, that is!). La Salla gained a decade of experience in software engineering while teaching herself to program in an additional 9 languages becoming a polyglot software architect.
CEO of Opportunity Hub, Inclusive Startup Ecosystem Builder, Venture Capitalist, Economist
Rodney Sampson, of Opportunity Hub, is heralded as the leading inclusive startup ecosystem builder and is passionate about reducing poverty and wealth gap by advancing the cause of innovation, technology, entrepreneurship and investment as a way of life for all, with an emphasis on socially disadvantaged and under-estimated and sponsored communities in America and beyond.
Founder & Executive Creative Director of Sarofsky
Erin Sarofsky is the Founder and Executive Creative Director of Sarofsky, her own design-driven production studio. Her work with a Who’s Who list of top-level marketing and entertainment industry executives has her collaborating on main titles for the Marvel blockbusters, among others.
Director of Growth and Campus Operations at Course Hero
As an early former employee of Airbnb, Kati Schmidt worked on launching and scaling Airbnb’s operations in Europe, starting Airbnb’s public policy efforts globally and launching Airbnb Experiences. Kati is passionate about female entrepreneurship, immigration, and the transatlantic relationship.
Serial Entrepreneur in Social Innovation & Systems Change
Dr. Astrid J. Scholz is a serial entrepreneur in social innovation and systems change. She is the Founder and Managing Partner of Sphaera, Founding Director and Treasurer of XXcelerate Fund and the Founding Director and Treasurer of Zebras Unite. Astrid’s work focuses on democratizing innovation and capital to solve today’s wicked problems.
Humorous Corporate Entertainer, Author
Greg Schwem is more than just a business humor keynote speaker and sought after corporate emcee, Greg is also an author, nationally syndicated humor columnist for the Chicago Tribune, award-winning greeting card writer and creator of funnydadinc, voted one of the top Dad humor sites of 2016.
Business Growth Strategist, Entrepreneur, VC Strategic Partner, Bestselling Author
David Meerman Scott helps companies and organizations generate attention and grow business in a real-time world. He spotted the online content revolution in its infancy and wrote five books about it including The New Rules of Marketing & PR, the definitive book on the topic, translated into 29 languages. David’s ideas have captured the attention of respected firms and organizations all over the world – having spoken in over 40 countries and on all seven continents.
Author, Change Agent, Defiance Catalyst
Janine Shepherd is an inspirational speaker and writer whose books have become classics in the survivor genre. A champion cross-country skier in training for the 1988 winter Olympics, Janine’s life changed forever when she was hit by a truck during a bicycle training ride in the Blue Mountains of Australia.
Director of Backstage Accelerator LA
Amiah Sheppard is a perpetual learner who currently is the Director of Backstage Accelerator LA. In venture capital, she daily examines the myriad ways founders harness, strategize, and utilize their unique socio-cultural location to get to their desired outcome.
Certified Speaking Professional™ and Author
Marilyn Sherman is dedicated to training people to let go of obstacles and live and work with courage, commitment, and confidence. For the last 22 years, she has motivated audiences all over the country, and internationally with topics about hope, inspiration, and practical tools to implement immediately.
Global Affairs & American Politics Expert
John Sitilides, a Washington D.C. government affairs specialist and diplomacy consultant to the U.S. Department of State, shares his insights into the U.S. and global risk trends, international security flashpoints and geopolitical strategies. He explores the complex geopolitical decisions that impact markets in Asia, Europe, and the Middle East, helping clients better understand and mitigate risk.
Founder of Novoron Bioscience
Dr. Travis Stiles is the founder of Novoron Bioscience, which is developing therapeutics to reverse damage of the brain and spinal cord. A member of the Cherokee Nation, Dr. Stiles is a passionate advocate for diversity, equality, science and informed solutions to the world’s problems and speaks across the spectrum from innovators to policymakers to encourage the ideas and policies that will shape the future.
Managing DIrector of Backstage Accelerator, Co-founder of Bosa
Anastasia Tarpeh-Ellis is the Managing Director for Backstage Los Angeles for the recently announced Backstage Accelerator. She is passionate about empowering others, creating genuine connections, and striving towards financial independence through entrepreneurship. She co-founded bosa, a wellness and productivity app that enables consultants to provide the highest level of service to their clients.
LatinX Allyship, Co-Founder and GP of The Community Fund
Lolita Taub is a woman of color with 13 years in tech, is an investor, micro-influencer, an international keynote speaker, 2x TEDx speaker, who has been recognized for her work in venture capital and tech on Forbes, Inc.com, The Huffington Post and Entrepreneur.com among other publications.
Entrepreneur & Innovator, Co-founder of Fast Company, Bestselling Author
Bill Taylor shows business leaders a path to go from now to next in a world filled with nonstop disruption. As a young entrepreneur, Bill co-founded Fast Company, the bold business magazine that redefined the genre and chronicled the tech-fueled revolution that transformed business and work.
Professional Trend Forecaster, Speaker, Author
A professional trend forecaster, speaker, and author, Michael speaks and writes about cracking the code of the future applying his unique framework of Ubertrends — massive waves that are reshaping global behavior.
Thought Catalyst, Team Builder, Future Proofer
Eric Termuende is a globally-recognized thought leader, author, and keynote speaker on the future of work and building teams that thrive. Eric has surveyed and interviewed thousands of leaders about what it takes to create teams that maximize their full potential.
Founder of Urbangeekz, Award-Winning Journalist
Kunbi Tinuoye is an award-winning British-born journalist and broadcaster based in the United States. She is the founder of UrbanGeekz, a groundbreaking video-centric African-American, Latinx, and multicultural digital news platform focused on technology, science, business, and startups.
California Current Events and Politics Expert, Journalist, Author
Dan Walters has been a journalist for nearly 60 years and has written about California and its politics for a number of publications, including the Sacramento Bee and The Wall Street Journal. Mr. Walters frequently appears on CNN, Fox, and other networks, commenting about political developments in California.
Futurist and Innovation Expert, Bestselling Author
Nicholas Webb is one of the world’s top innovation strategists and futurists. As a professor, successful inventor, bestselling author and world-renowned innovation strategist, Nicholas brings the perfect pedigree and the best research to each and every one of his customized talks on the future, innovation, business, and healthcare.
Leading Futurist, EVP & Chief Strategy Officer of The Future Hunters
Jared is Executive Vice President & Chief Strategy Officer of The Future Hunters, one of the world’s leading futurist consulting firms. His work is industry-agnostic, and covers trend activity in the realms of science & technology, economics, politics, demographics and environmental issues.
Creator, Inventor, Tech Changemaker
Aniyia Williams is a creator, inventor, and tech changemaker. She serves as Executive Director of Black & Brown Founders, co-founder of Zebras Unite, and founded and led the fashion tech company, Tinsel. Aniyia addresses topics of diversity, equity and inclusion in tech, the economic future of creativity, self-awareness and mindfulness, alternatives to venture capital, fashion technology, hardware design, and parenting while building a startup.
Legendary Pulitzer Prize-Winning Investigative Journalist
No one else in political investigative journalism has the clout, respect, and reputation of Bob Woodward. He has a way of getting insiders to open up in ways that reveal an intimate yet sweeping portrayal of Washington and the political infighting, how we fight wars, the price of politics, how presidents lead, the homeland security efforts, and so much more.
“The Woz”, Co-Founder of Apple
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. In 1976, Wozniak and Steve Jobs founded Apple Computer Inc. with Wozniak’s Apple I personal computer. Since then, Wozniak has received countless awards for his technological advancements and philanthropic endeavors and is also a published author and co-founded Woz U.
Go-to Expert on Brand Leadership, Bestselling Author
Denise Lee Yohn is the go-to expert on brand leadership for national media outlets, an in-demand speaker and consultant, and an influential writer, authoring the bestselling book What Great Brands Do: The Seven Brand-Building Principles that Separate the Best from the Rest.
Generational Expert, Gen X Speaker
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.