Founder, Chairman, Equity Group Investments, Author of Am I Being Too Subtle?
Sam Zell is a global, opportunistic, often contrarian, investor. He specializes in identifying market anomalies and emerging trends, and has a long track record in turning around troubled companies and assets, leading industry consolidations, and bringing companies to the public markets. The majority of his investment portfolio is in energy, logistics, transportation, manufacturing, communications and healthcare, but he is often best known for his pioneering role and stewardship in creating the modern commercial real estate industry.
Sam is the Chairman of Equity Group Investments, the private investment firm he founded more than 45 years ago. He also chairs five companies listed on the New York Stock Exchange: Equity Residential, the largest apartment REIT in the country; Equity LifeStyle Properties, a manufactured home community and resort REIT; Equity Commonwealth, an office REIT; Covanta Holding Corporation, an international owner/operator of energy-from-waste and power generation facilities; and Anixter International Inc., a leading global provider of communications, security, and wire and cable products.
Sam also founded and chaired Equity Office Properties Trust, the largest office REIT until its 2007 sale for $39 billion in the largest leveraged buyout at the time. In addition, he introduced the first Brazilian and Mexican real estate companies, respectively, to the New York Stock Exchange through Equity International, a second private investment firm he founded to focus on real estate-related businesses in emerging markets.
Sam is an active philanthropist with a focus on entrepreneurial education. Through the Zell Family Foundation, he has led the sponsorship of several leading entrepreneurship programs, including: the Zell/Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies at University of Michigan's Ross School of Business; the Zell Fellows Program at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management; and the Zell Entrepreneurship Center at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya (IDC). The Zell Global Entrepreneur Network (ZGEN) unites the students and alumni of these programs and actively provides them with connections, opportunities, mentorship and support. Sam also sponsorsthe Samuel Zell/Robert Lurie Real Estate Center at University of Pennsylvania's Wharton Real Estate Center. He holds a JD degree and a BA from the University of Michigan.
President and CEO of The Hammer & Nails Salon Group Award Winning Hollywood Screenwriter
As a former homeless, high school dropout in Philadelphia, then 18-year old Michael Elliot should have been just another statistical failure. But today, through faith, determination and hard work, Michael - now 50 – is the President and CEO of The Hammer & Nails Salon Group, and the founder and owner of the first Hammer & Nails | Grooming Shop for Guys in Los Angeles on iconic Melrose Avenue. He launched Hammer & Nails in 2013 after discovering an unmet need for a business that provided hand and foot grooming in a male-centric environment. He recognized the shift in attitude regarding male hygiene and self-care, and took action.
In 2016, Michael's company sold nearly 200 franchise licenses in their first year of franchising, setting the stage for Hammer & Nails to be the next great national men's grooming brand. New Hammer & Nails | Grooming Shop for Guys franchise locations will open in at least four states this year.
Michael is also an award-winning Hollywood screenwriter. Michael's films, which include the kids movie "Like Mike" (2002), the romantic comedy "Brown Sugar" (2002) and the Queen Latifah - starrer "Just Wright" (2010) have generated over $115 million in box office revenue. In 2011, Michael was presented the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Writing in a Motion Picture. Currently, Michael is writing and executive producing a television series for 20th Century Fox Television, while growing the Hammer & Nails brand.
When not disrupting the men's grooming industry or writing movies, Elliot enjoys marriage, watching HGTV and fatherhood. Michael is the proud of father of a son (Idris, 14) and a daughter (Essence, 28), and he’s the devoted husband of Mecca Elliot.
Media Strategist Author of The Daily Stoic: 366 Meditations on Wisdom, Perseverance, and the Art of Living and The Obstacle Is the Way, Ego Is the Enemy
RYAN HOLIDAY is a strategist and writer. He dropped out of college at nineteen to apprentice under Robert Greene, author of The 48 Laws of Power, and later served as the director of marketing for American Apparel. His company, Brass Check, has advised clients like Google, TASER, and Complex, as well as many prominent bestselling authors. Holiday has written four previous books, most recently The Obstacle Is the Way, which has been translated into seventeen languages and has a cult following among NFL coaches, world-class athletes, TV personalities, political leaders, and others around the world. He lives on a small ranch outside Austin, Texas.
President of Bluepoint Leadership Development Author of THE MASTER COACH: Leading with Character, Building Connections, and Engaging in Extraordinary Conversations
Gregg Thompson is President of Bluepoint Leadership Development, recognized as one of the finest providers of coach training programs in the world. Having coached many of the most senior leaders in Fortune 100 companies and trained thousands of coaches, Thompson is an in-demand speaker and facilitator, and has a broad-reaching background in leadership development. Most recently, he is the author of THE MASTER COACH: Leading with Character, Building Connections, and Engaging in Extraordinary Conversations (SelectBooks, Inc.; 2017). He is also the author of Unleashed! (Select Books, 2006), upon which he has designed several award winning leadership development workshops including The Coaching Essentials, Leader as Coach, Advanced Coaching Skills and Powerful Coaching Conversations.
Founder & CEO Acceleration Partners Author of Performance Partnerships: The Checkered Past, Changing Present and Exciting Future of Affiliate Marketing
Robert Glazer is the founder and Managing Director of Acceleration Partners, and the founder and Chairman of BrandCycle. He is a serial entrepreneur with an exceptional track record and passion for growing revenue and profits for B2C-based companies. In demand by top brands and investment firms, he has extensive experience in the consumer, e-commerce, retail, online marketing, and ad-tech industries — partnering with brands such as adidas, ModCloth, Reebok, Target, Tiny Prints, Gymboree, and Warby Parker.
Glazer is a regular contributor to Entrepreneur, Inc, and Success Magazine, writing about performance marketing, strategy, and culture. He is the recipient of the Boston Business Journal "40 under 40" award, the SmartCEO Boston Future 50 award, and Acceleration Partners has won numerous awards for excellence in culture, including Great Place to Work and Fortune Best Workplace awards in the Flexibility and Advertising & Marketing categories.
Founder and CEO of Sol Marketing Author of Branding is Sex: Get Your Customer Laid and Sell the Hell Out of Anything
Deb Gabor was born to brand. Deb is a brand dominatrix and investor pitch whisperer with legendarily bad travel karma. In her capacity as Sol's strategic and spiritual leader, Deb has led research engagements and brand strategy development for organizations ranging from international household names like Dell, Goldman Sachs, Microsoft and NBC Universal, to digital winners like Allrecipes, Cheezburger and Rentpath, to well-loved Austin icons like Austin Ventures, KUT/KUTX, ZACH Theatre, HomeAway, RetailMeNot, The University of Texas at Austin and St. Edward's University. Deb is author of the bestselling book, Branding is Sex. Get Your Customer Laid and Sell the Hell Out of Anything.
Before starting Sol Marketing in 2003, Deb was Senior Vice President at Citigate Cunningham, a strategic communication firm serving technology digital media and financial brands around the world. Prior to that, Deb was the managing director of brand research and strategy at IntelliQuest. Before crossing the chasm to agency work, Deb worked in house as a brand manager and marketing manager at several high tech companies in the Chicago area. Deb is a proud member of the Austin chapter of the Entrepreneurs Organization and serves on the board as Learning Chair. Additionally, she has served on the board of directors of the Jewish Community Association of Austin and Austin Children’s Theatre, and on the ZACHTheater board's marketing committee.
Author of Writing Without Bullshit: Boost Your Career by Saying What You Mean Co-Author of Groundswell, Empowered, The Mobile Mind Shift Former SVP Forrester Research
Josh Bernoff is the author of Writing Without Bullshit: Boost Your Career by Saying What You Mean, which the Globe and Mail called "a Strunk and White for the modern knowledge worker". His daily blog posts on writing and corporate life at without bullshit.com have attracted 1.5 million views
Josh is the coauthor of three business strategy books including the social media bestseller Groundswell. He was formerly an analyst and SVP at Forrester Research.
Co-Author of Jobs to Be Done Managing Director, New Markets Advisors
Stephen Wunker combines world-class strategy consulting and entrepreneurial skills. He is the author of Capturing New Markets: How Smart Companies Create Opportunities Others Don't, named one of the five Best Business Books of 2011, as well as co-author of Jobs to be Done: A Roadmap for Customer Centered Innovation, which was one of four finalists for Best General Business Book of 2016. Steve has a long track record of creating successful ventures for his own companies and on behalf of clients.
As a consultant, Steve was a long-term colleague of Harvard Business School Professor Clayton Christensen in building up his innovation consulting practice, Innosight. He has co-written two articles with Professor Christensen and helped to put together his book on healthcare The Innovator’s Prescription. He also spent several years consulting at Bain & Company in their Boston and London offices. He has led New Markets Advisors since 2009. In that capacity, he publishes frequently in outlets such as Forbes, Harvard Business Review, and The Financial Times. He has also appeared over the years on Bloomberg and BBC television, and he has been a guest lecturer at institutions such as Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business.
As an entrepreneur and corporate venturer, Steve co-founded Yowzit, one of Africa's leading sites for ratings and reviews. Previously, he was Managing Director of Celpay, a mobile commerce start-up created by the pan-African cellular network Celtel. It was sold to the South African financial services group First Rand. He also served as Celtel's Business Development Director prior to the company being sold to Zain of Kuwait. Additionally, he was CEO of Brainstorm, a developer of mobile software that acquired a start-up he founded, Saverfone. In that capacity he co-founded what is now the global Mobile Marketing Association, which has been a key institution in preventing the spread of SMS-based spam. He also led the team at Britain's Psion PLC which, in conjunction with Motorola and Ericsson, developed one of the world's first smartphones.
Steve has an MBA from Harvard Business School, a Master's of Public Administration from Columbia University, and a BA cum laude from Princeton University. He has lived in the US, UK, Netherlands, Japan, Ecuador, and Zambia.
Author of The Potential Principle President of Sanborn & Associates, Inc.
Mark is the President of Sanborn & Associates, Inc., an idea lab for leadership development.
In addition to his experience leading at a local and national level, he has written or co-authored 8 books and is the author of more than two dozen videos and audio training programs on leadership, change, teamwork and customer service. He has presented over 2400 speeches and seminars in every state and a dozen countries.
Mark is a member of the prestigious Speakers Roundtable, 20 of the top speakers in the world today. Mark holds the Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) from the National Speakers Association and is a member of the Speaker Hall of Fame (CPAE).
Mark's book, The Fred Factor: How Passion in Your Work and Life Can Turn the Ordinary Into the Extraordinary is an international bestseller and was on the New York Times, Business Week and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists. His recent books include You Don’t Need a Title to be a Leader: How Anyone, Anywhere Can Make a Positive Difference, The Encore Effect: How to Achieve Remarkable Performance in Anything You Do, Up, Down or Sideways: How to Succeed When Times are Good, Bad or In Between. And his latest book Fred 2.0: New Ideas on How to Keep Delivering Extraordinary Results.
Mark is a past President of the National Speakers Association and winner of The Cavett, the highest honor bestowed by that organization. In 2007 Mark was awarded The Ambassador of Free Enterprise Award by Sales & Marketing Executives International.
He lives in Highlands Ranch, CO with his wife Darla and sons Hunter and Jackson.
Dr. Robert Cialdini
CEO of Influence at Work Author of Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade
Dr. Robert Cialdini has spent his entire career researching the science of influence earning him an international reputation as an expert in the fields of persuasion, compliance, and negotiation.
His books including, Influence: Science & Practice, are the result of decades of peer-reviewed research on why people comply with requests. Influence has sold over 3 million copies, is a New York Times Bestseller and has been published in over 30 languages.
His new book, Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade, published by Simon & Schuster, quickly became a Wall Street Journal and a New York Times Bestseller.
CEO of Barry-Wehmiller Companies Co-author of Everybody Matters: The Extraordinary Power of Caring for Your People Like Family
Bob Chapman plans to change the world. Chapman is Chairman and CEO of Barry-Wehmiller Companies, a capital equipment and engineering consulting firm with more than 11,000 team members worldwide. After seeing the positive impact of Barry-Wehmiller’s people-centric culture on the lives of his employees, Chapman felt compelled to raise awareness about business enterprise’s opportunity to become the most powerful positive influence on our society.
“As business leaders it is our responsibility to create caring work environments in which people can realize their gifts, develop their talents, and feel a genuine sense of fulfillment for their contributions in pursuit of a shared vision,” Chapman explains. He says the ripple effect of that environment is that “team members feel better about themselves and are therefore better spouses, parents, friends, citizens of their communities. That’s how we can change the world.”
It’s that message that inspired Chapman’s book, Everybody Matters: The Extraordinary Power of Caring For Your People Like Family (Portfolio/ Penguin, 2015) co-written with Raj Sisodia, co-author of Conscious Capitalism and co- founder of the movement that bares its name. Everybody Matters details Chapman’s own personal transformation as a leader and shares lessons learned throughout Barry-Wehmiller’s journey to create a thriving organization where people feel valued and cared for and integral to the organization’s purpose.
Chapman took over the reins of the privately-owned Barry-Wehmiller upon his father’s death in 1975, when it was a struggling bottle washer business. Since then, the single-market company has grown into a corrugating, packaging, and paper converting equipment and consulting firm through strategic acquisition, operational expertise and commitment to, as Chapman likes to say, “the lives within my care.” Today, $2+ billion Barry-Wehmiller is a combination of more than 77 acquired companies spread across 100 locations around the globe. Since 1987, it has continued a pattern of 15 percent compound growth in revenue and share value.
In the early 2000s, Chapman championed the transformation of Barry- Wehmiller’s culture into one focused on bringing out the best in its people through communication, trust, celebration, respect, continuous improvement and responsible freedom. “We don’t define success in the traditional manner of most businesses,” says Chapman. “At Barry-Wehmiller, we measure success by the way we touch the lives of people.” The company’s innovative learning institute, Barry-Wehmiller University, was launched in 2007 to help sustain its people-centric culture. Through it, team members can experience growth—personal and professional–by taking courses in communication, leadership development, Lean principles, customer/client relations and more.
In addition to Everybody Matters, Chapman shares his message about the power of people-centric leadership—called Truly Human Leadership at Barry- Wehmiller—through speaking engagements, his blog (trulyhumanleadership.com), and with anyone he meets. “Barry-Wehmiller is proof that you can pay people fairly, treat them superbly, and compete globally,” says Chapman. “It is our hope that by sharing our message, other companies will take note and follow suit.”
Chapman’s list of speaking engagements includes Conscious Capitalism events, the 2016 US Congressional Retreat, WorldBlu, CEO Global Leaders Forum, International City Managers Association, the AME International Conference, Institute for Healthcare Consumerism Forum, TEDxScottAFB, Shingo Prize for Manufacturing Excellence International Conference, HERO Forum for Employee Health Management, Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership’s International Conference, St. Louis Business Journal’s Salute to the Top 150 Privately Held Companies and to numerous Fortune 500 company leadership teams.
Chapman has a BA from Indiana University and an MBA from Michigan. He spent his early career as an accountant with Price Waterhouse.
Co-Chairman of Conscious Capitalism Inc. Co-author of Everybody Matters: The Extraordinary Power of Caring for Your People Like Family
Raj Sisodia is FW Olin Distinguished Professor of Global Business and Whole Foods Market Research Scholar in Conscious Capitalism at Babson College, and Co-Founder and Co-Chairman of Conscious Capitalism Inc. He has a Ph. D. in Marketing from Columbia University. Raj is co-author of the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business (2013), Wall Street Journal bestseller Everybody Matters (2015) and the seminal Firms of Endearment (2014).
He was named one of “Ten Outstanding Trailblazers of 2010” by Good Business International, and one of the “Top 100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business Behavior” by Trust Across America for 2010 and 2011. Raj received an honorary doctorate from Johnson & Wales University in 2016. He has published ten books and over 100 academic articles. He is on the Board of Directors at The Container Store and a trustee of Conscious Capitalism Inc.
Partner Global Strategy, Bain & Company Co-author of The Founder’s Mentality: How to Overcome the Predictable Crises of Growth
Chris Zook is a partner at Bain & Company. He was Co-Head of the firm’s Global Strategy Practice for 20 years. He specializes in helping companies find new sources of profitable growth and has worked in a range of industries including information, healthcare, technology and venture capital. He splits his time between the firm’s Amsterdam and Boston offices.
Mr. Zook is a best-selling author and is currently working on his sixth book, The Founder's Mentality. He is also the author of Repeatability: Build Enduring Businesses for a World of Constant Change, published by Harvard Business Review (HBR) Press in 2012, which presents an argument for simple, great repeatable models to realize enduring, profitable growth. In 2010, Mr. Zook published Profit from the Core: A Return to Growth in Turbulent Times (HBR Press), an updated edition of his 2001 best-selling business book, Profit from the Core: Growth Strategy in an Era of Turbulence, which offers an approach to assessing and making the most of core business opportunities. The book’s sequel, Beyond the Core: Expand your Market without Abandoning your Roots (Harvard Business School Press, 2004), was voted one of the top 100 business books ever written. It examines how companies that have fully exploited their core businesses can systematically and sucessfully expand into related, or "adjacent," areas. Unstoppable: Finding Hidden Assets to Renew the Core and Fuel Profitable Growth (Harvard Business School Press, 2007) completes the series and examines what to do when your past growth formula begins to approach its limits, demanding that your company change its strategic focus and redefine its core.
These books have received widespread critical support. Beyond the Core was recognized by The Economist as one of the top five business and economic books in 2004. The Financial Times identified Unstoppable as one of the notable business books of the year. Based on his work, Mr. Zook was included by the Times of London in its biannual list of the 50 Most Influential Global Business Thinkers. He was also named “one of the most interesting strategic thinkers working today,” by FT Guide to Strategy.
Mr. Zook has written extensively in the business press, ranging from academic journals to columns in the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, New York Times, Washington Post, Fortune and Forbes. His Harvard Business Review credits include, "How to find your next core business," "Open-market innovation" and "How to think strategically in a recession." He has also been a guest on TV and Radio, including NPR, CNBC, and Bloomberg TV.
He is a frequent speaker at a range of business forums including the Forbes CEO Conference, the Business Week CEO Conference, the Economist Summit, the Harvard Burning Issues Conference, and the Harvard Distinguished Speaker Series. He has been a regular speaker at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
Outside of his consulting role, Mr. Zook has served on Bain’s Board of Directors and its Investment Committee. He was also president of the American Chamber of Commerce in the Netherlands from 2013-2015.
Mr. Zook received a bachelor of arts in mathematics and economics from Williams College, an M.Phil. in economics from Exeter College, Oxford University, and master’s and doctorate degrees from Harvard University.
Partner Future Workplace Co-author of The Future Workplace Experience: 10 Rules For Mastering Disruption in Recruiting and Engaging Employees
Jeanne is Partner, Future Workplace, a HR Executive Network and research firm dedicated to the future of learning and working. The firm operates the Future Workplace Network, a consortium of Fortune 1000 global organizations who use Future Workplace research and insights to future proof their learning and talent strategies.
Jeanne is the receipt of the Distinguished Contribution in Workplace Learning Award, an award given by Association For Talent Development to one executive each year honoring their body of work. She is also a Contributor to Forbes Magazine and her column can be found here.
Jeanne is the co-author of the book, The 2020 Workplace: How Innovative Companies Attract, Develop & Keep Tomorrow’s Employees Today. Jeanne’s newest book, The Future Workplace Experience: 10 Rules For Mastering Disruption in Recruiting and Engaging Employees will be published in November 4, 2016. Glassdoor named Jeanne to the top 50 Influencers in Corporate Human Resources and Recruiting.
Jeanne’s books have been translated into Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese and Estonian. In addition, Jeanne has written articles in such publications as AACSB, Association of Business Schools, Chronicle of Higher Education, CLO Magazine, Financial Times, Fast Company, Harvard Business Review, Harvard Management Update, HR Executive, Journal of Business Strategy, TRAINING, T&D Magazine, Outlook, a publication of Accenture, People & Strategy Journal and Workforce Management.
Jeanne is on the Corporate Advisory Board of Kronos Workforce Institute and edX. Jeanne appears frequently on CNBC Power Lunch, Fox Business, CNN, WPIX, New York, and NPR Market Place sharing best practices on how companies can best prepare for the future of work.
CEO Full Circle Group & The Leadership Circle Co-author of Mastering Leadership: An Integrated Framework for Breakthrough Performance and Extraordinary Business Results
Bill loves people and is passionate about relationships, leadership and business. He is a serial entrepreneur who has started, owned and sold multiple businesses. As one of the founders of Full Circle Group, a premier leadership consulting firm, and the CEO of Full Circle Group, North America and The Leadership Circle, Bill brings thirty years of experience to his clients – the CEOs of major Fortune 500 corporations, non-profits and private equity start-ups. In addition, Bill recently co-authored Mastering Leadership, An Integrated Framework for Breakthrough Performance and Extraordinary Business Results. As a trusted advisor, teacher, consultant and coach, he works with CEOs and top teams in fulfilling the promise of leadership.
Bill is a master at working with clients to manifest their leadership and organizational potential within the context of achieving business results. Paramount to his success is the ability to partner with senior executives to bring about business transformation. From start-ups to mature organizations, Bill teaches and applies time-proven principles that translate into bottom line results, effective organizations and personal fulfillment. He does this with a focus on total participation and creating cultures where people are committed to investing their discretionary energy, while assuming personal responsibility for the results they produce.
During his career, Bill has worked with executives in a wide variety of industries. His clients include: Honda, Pixar, Disney Animation, Deutsch NY, Commonwealth Edison (ComEd), DTE Energy, Unico Properties, Cbeyond Communications, Carlson Companies, Westin Hotels, Marriott International, Kaiser Permanente, American Express, Ameritech, GOJO Industries, Michigan Consolidated Gas Company (MichCon), First Security Inc. (Wells Fargo), American Express Travel-Related Services, 3M Health Information Systems, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida, Tupperware Worldwide, Beneficial Life Insurance, US Express Leasing, EverBank Commercial Finance, Global English World Headquarters, Land O’ Lakes, VF Corporation and Yale University.
With over thirty years of business experience, Bill is a leader, consultant and entrepreneur and has worked in both internal corporate staff and line positions. Bill co-authored the books, The Whole Systems Approach: Involving Everyone in the Company to Transform and Run Your Business and The Quest for Quality: Prescriptions for Achieving Service Excellence. He contributed to two editions of The Change Handbook: Group Methods for Shaping the Future, and to Managing Quality in America’s Most Admired Companies. Bill has also led the joint venture conferences – Self-Organizing Systems: The New Science of Participation TM – with Meg Wheatley.
Bill has a master’s degree in interpersonal and organizational communication from the University of Montana. He is most at home in the outdoors with his wife and partner Cindy, their four children and an increasing number of grandchildren.
Chairman Full Circle Group & The Leadership Circle Co-author of Mastering Leadership: An Integrated Framework for Breakthrough Performance and Extraordinary Business Results
Bob has dedicated his career to exploring the intersections between leadership and personal mastery, and between competence and consciousness. The creator and author of The Leadership Circle Profile, an integrated and innovative leadership assessment tool, Bob is a true pioneer in the field of leadership development and research. As the founder of The Leadership Circle, and co-founder of Full Circle Group, Bob lends his expertise to developing practitioners around the globe to carry on the powerful work derived from the tools and offerings these two companies provide to leaders.
Over the past 35 years, Bob has devoted himself to helping leaders gain deep, personal insight into their creative competencies that promote effective leadership, and their reactive tendencies that can limit effectiveness. Bob’s practical wisdom, humility, creativity, humor, and expertise provide a rare and transformative experience for his clients, who include: Ashland Chemical Company, AT&T, Banc One Corporation, Dana Corporation, First Energy Corporation, Good Samaritan Health Center, Hartford Graduate Center, Hartford Steam Boiler, Health Care Forum, Hoosier Magnetics Corporation, Navistar International, Notre Dame University, Riverside Methodist Hospital, and the United Way.
Bob founded The Leadership Circle (formerly SoulWorks) in 1986. His work initially focused on developing and facilitating intensive leadership retreats and workshops. The programs he developed include: The Authentic Leader, Mastering Leadership, and Pathway to Partnership. The Leadership Circle Profile, the culmination of years of research, and its associated assessment tools are used by thousands of organizations around the world.
Bob has a master’s degree in organizational development and a bachelor’s in economics and business administration. Bob and his wife of 30 years make their home in Toledo, Ohio, and are the proud parents of three successful adult children.
Founder Genius Network Author of The Average Joe’s Marketing Book: The Missing Manual for Marketing & Growing Your Small Business
Joe Polish is the founder of Genius Network®, president of Piranha Marketing Inc., creator of the Genius Network® Interview Series, and co- founder of 10XTalk.com and ILoveMarketing.com, two highly popular free podcasts on iTunes. Joe’s marketing expertise has been utilized to build thousands of businesses and has generated hundreds of millions of dollars for his clients, ranging from large corporations to small family-owned businesses. Known for his entrepreneurial focus on value creation, connection, and contribution, Joe’s leadership is the reason he’s one of the most sought after marketers alive today.
Michael Bungay Stainer
Founder & Senior Partner, Box of Crayons Author of The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever
George Orwell said, "An autobiography is only to be trusted when it reveals something disgraceful." In that vein, Michael was banned from his high school graduation for "the balloon incident", was sued by one of his Law School lecturers for defamation, and managed to give himself a concussion while digging a hole as a labourer...!
Luckily, there's also been some upside. He is the author of a number of books, and the one he is best known for with 90,000 copies sold is Do More Great Work. However, the one he's proudest of is End Malaria, a collection of articles about Great Work from thought leaders that's raised about $400,000 for Malaria No More and reached #2 on Amazon.com.!
Michael also organized the Great Work MBA, a virtual conference featuring 30 world class speakers and which had more than 10,000 registered participants.!
All of this is done as founder and Senior Partner of Box of Crayons, a company that helps organizations do less Good Work and more Great Work. Their focus is on helping time-crunched managers coach in 10 minutes or less, and their Fortune 500 clients include TD Bank, Kraft, Gartner and VMWare.!
Michael is a well-regarded speaker, and as well as speaking to organizations he regularlykeynotes at conferences such as HRPA, SHRM, CSTD, the Evanta HR Leadership series and The Conference Board of Canada. He's known for sessions that are highly engaging, interactive and entertaining. And for his colourful Box of Crayons socks.!
Before Box of Crayons, Michael spent time inventing products and services as part of an innovation agency, and working as a management consultant on large scale change, where amongst other things he wrote the global vision for GlaxoSmithKline. Michael was a Rhodes Scholar and the first Canadian Coach of the Year.!
Author of Millionaire Success Habits: The Gateway To Wealth & Prosperity
Dean Graziosi has been one of the most watched success trainers of our generation. He has touched the lives of millions of people around the world with his powerful inspiration and training. Dean has been a New York Times bestselling author since 2006 when he released his first book Totally Fulfilled. Since then, Dean has gone on to become the #1 author and educator for those seeking success in real estate investing and has completely dominated the market. His blockbuster books include: Be A Real Estate Millionaire, Profit From Real Estate Right Now, and 30 Days To Real Estate Profits.
Dean has produced a wildly successful Weekly Wisdom video blog where each week since 2008 he shares powerful insights and strategies for high performance in all areas of your life. Dean has also been on TV every day for 15 years sharing his books and success training to the world through direct response TV shows.
Dean has traveled the world and spoke on stages with as many as 20,000 people. He has had massive book sales in the tune to millions. And he has cemented his place as one of the top conscious thought leaders in the world. To date Dean has made a massive impact on millions of people's lives, and he has only just begun.
Co-Founder of Rackspace
Graham Weston is one of the founders of Rackspace and has served as CEO (on two occasions) and chairman of the board.
Born and raised in the San Antonio area, Graham from an early age saw entrepreneurial opportunities in everything around him. He launched his first business venture as a seventh grader, marketing organic pork in newspaper ads that read "Go Hog Wild!" In high school, he built another business that took photos at livestock shows and sold them to contestants.
He attended Texas A&M, where—you guessed it—he launched another business. This one was inspired by his successful appeal of the multiple, conflicting property tax bills levied by various government entities upon his father's small ranch, and led him to help other property owners appeal their bills.
Graham went into the real estate business. When prices fell during the Savings and Loan Crisis of the late 1980s, he led his family to buy and develop the Weston Centre, one of the premier office towers in downtown San Antonio. At the same time, he developed a keen interest in the possibilities of the Internet. In 1998, he and a partner provided the original capital for a business idea pitched by three local Trinity University students. They called it "Rackspace.com." Graham joined the enterprise as CEO and remained in that position until 2006, when he became chairman.
In 2005, Graham was honored by the City of San Antonio for converting one of his vacant properties, an abandoned shopping mall, into a temporary shelter for victims of hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Nicknamed the "Hilton of Shelters," by the Denver Post, it housed more than 2,500 refugees. That property has since been extensively repurposed to LEED sustainability standards and serves as Rackspace’s headquarters —a whimsical, open-plan workplace complete with a large playground-style slide between levels and a wall containing the world’s largest word-search puzzle.
Graham was named a "Best Boss" by Fortune Small Business magazine and was recognized as regional Entrepreneur of the Year by Ernst & Young.
Graham is active in the development of new options for urban living, entrepreneurship, and entertainment in downtown San Antonio. He helped launch the mayor’s SA2020 initiative, and created Geekdom, which provides a co-working space downtown, along with mentorship and funding for tech startups. Graham also funds the 80/20 Foundation, which invests in programs to encourage entrepreneurship, technology education, and development in downtown San Antonio.
Co-Founder of BuildGroup Former CEO of Rackspace
Lanham Napier is a Co-Founder of BuildGroup. BuildGroup is an Austin, TX based operating company that builds and funds technology businesses. BuildGroup’s model is based on a long term investment approach that helps companies accelerate their current business while establishing the foundation for significant future growth. BuildGroup was founded in 2015 by an experienced team of operators and investors who believe entrepreneurs need an alternative to the traditional thinking found in private equity and venture capital.
Prior to co-founding BuildGroup, Lanham was the CEO of Rackspace for several years. Under his leadership Rackspace grew sales from $1.5 million to $1.5 billion and expanded into a global leader in the managed hosting industry. Rackspace differentiated itself based on its renowned Fanatical Support which created incredible customer outcomes. Rackspace’s culture was globally recognized as one of the Best 100 Companies to Work For by Fortune and Glassdoor.
During this growth period Lanham was recognized by Forbes as one of America’s Most Powerful CEOs 40 and Under and was named one of the Top 100 Most Influential Executives by CRN. Lanham has also been honored by Ernst & Young as an entrepreneur of the year and is a member of the Young President’s Organization. Lanham’s career focus is to play a part in creating jobs so people can realize their full potential, take care of their families, and build great companies and products.
Outside of his professional endeavors, Lanham has served on several non-profit boards including the board of St. Mary’s Hall School, St Mary’s University Forum of Entrepreneurship and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. The Napier Family Foundation was established by Lanham and his wife to provide financial support for first generation Americans to attend university.
Lanham is a fifth generation Texan who loves to spend time in the field chasing quail and at the house honing his pit master skills. His specialty is a family recipe for mesquite smoked baby back ribs.
Comedian Hypnotist Author of Creating The Life You Desire. Using Hypnosis And The Power Of The Subconscious Mind To Change Your Life And Live Your Dreams
Don Barnhart is the only Las Vegas Headliner that has both a stand up and hypnosis show.
Catch Don performing his stand up nightly at Jokesters Comedy Club at The D Hotel in Las Vegas, NV when he's not on tour. Named “Best Bet” in Vegas, Barnhart headlines cruise ships, comedy clubs, military shows, corporate shows, colleges, high schools, fairs and recovery shows, Barnhart show is setting record attendance numbers making him one of the top headliners working today.
Over the last year, Barnhart’s film career has really been gaining steam as he finishing up production on the cannabis comedy documentary Reefer Rendum and is in preproduction on the new comedy film, The Freeloader both written by and starring Barnhart. Don also plays a rather disgruntled, road weary and carefree comedian in the upcoming comedy film, Tribute To Fluffy and stars in the documentary, Finding The Funny with Brad Garret, Louie Anderson and Wendy Liebman. Barnhart also plays the psychotic killer in the new web series, Max Justice.
Don was one of the featured headliners at the 2014 Laughlin Comedy Festival alongside Larry The Cable Guy, Dana Carvey and Maryellen Hooper. Since his first USO tour back in 1992, Barnhart has been performing and producing comedy shows for the troops around the world bringing both celebrities and the next generation of comedy superstars to the men and women serving in the armed forces. He just finished a tour of the Middle East and is headling out again later this year.
Don is also the author of the new book on stand up, Finding Your Funny as well as Creating The Life You Desire and he is a contributing author on I Killed: True Stories From The Road by America’s Funniest Comedians. He is a graduate of The Second City Conservatory in Los Angeles and is a certified hypnotist performing both a stand up and comedy hypnosis show. In his off time, Don is one of the most sought after comedy coaches in the industry, teaching stand up and improv at his Vegas based studio, The Las Vegas Comedy Institute.
Barnhart’s stand up show consists of well written topical material and is delivered with an animated flair that keeps audiences of all ages howling with laughter and coming back for more. Audiences say that Barnhart has the wit of George Carlin with the delivery of Jim Carey making him funny on so many levels.
Besides being a regular headliner on the Las Vegas strip, Don Barnhart is a favorite performer for many of the top corporate events around the world including The World President’s Organization, AFLAC, AA/NA, DARE and many more. He has been seen on almost every major comedy show and was hand picked for The Ice House's 50th Anniversary All Star TV Special.
In 2014, Barnhart was the Grand Prize Winner in the Talent Call Comedy Contest as well as the Winner of the 2012 Improv/Levity Entertainment’s Talenthouse Comedy Competition. In 2007, Don was the Grand Champion in The American Idol Underground Comedy Contest and has been seen on MTV, Star Search, and Evening At The Improv and has been featured on ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC. Barnhart is a Bob and Tom Show favorite and his comedy CD, I’m Not Just Eye Candy, can be heard frequently on the comedy channels on XM/Sirius Satellite Radio.
Former Senior Executive Officer of Toyota Asia Author of One White Face: How a Remarkable Leap of Faith Launched a Daring Journey in Self-Discovery
Hilary Corna is the former Senior Executive Officer for Toyota in Asia, where she managed a team of people across fourteen different countries as a Change Leader for all of the dealerships in Asia. Since returning to America, Hilary has written and published her book, One White Face, a memoir of her time abroad. Since its release, One White Face has been featured in such media as The New York Times, NBC and ForbesWoman, was reviewed as the “GenY version of Eat, Pray, Love”, and is now being adapted into a screenplay. Her bigger goal though, is to have a little girl so she can dress her in Hello Kitty. Her book will be for sale at the end of the event and a portion of all book sales go to the Coca Cola Scholars Foundation for underprivileged high school student college scholarships, so grab a copy and do some good today!
Hilary has spoken at TED, her organization is partnered with the Holstee Manifesto, and her book tour is sponsored in part by Toyota Motor USA. Hilary studied at Kansai* Gaidai* University in Osaka, Japan and graduated from Elon University in North Carolina. She has been featured in Pearson’s Business Communication college textbook, speaks conversational Japanese and resides in Austin, Texas. You can follow her on Twitter at @HilaryCorna.