Simmons.edu

Program Schedule

Monday, April 1

12:00 - 7:30

Early Check-in

5:30 - 7:30

Opening Evening Reception
(Open to registered conference attendees only)

Tuesday, April 2

6:45 - 7:45

Check-in and Continental Breakfast

7:45 - 8:30

Welcoming Remarks

8:35 - 9:25

Headshot photo of Susan O'Malley

Opening Keynote

Seven Lessons for Leadership and Life

Susan O'Malley, Faculty, USC Sports and Entertainment Management Department

A trailblazer in the sports management industry, Susan O’Malley knows what it takes to lead in a tough business environment and to build an organization from the ground up. In this lively and upbeat presentation, she outlines seven seminal “rules” of success that she has gleaned from her early family experiences as well as from her groundbreaking career. With her warm sense of humor, entertaining stories, and sharp insights, O’Malley will leave you armed with practical takeaways for your own life and career.

9:35 - 10:55

Concurrent Morning Sessions

Headshot photo of Kathrine Switzer

1. Signature Session: No Limits: A Fearless Design

Kathrine Switzer, Athlete, Advocate, and Commentator

Kathrine Switzer literally broke new ground when she challenged the all-male rule of the Boston Marathon 50 years ago, becoming the first woman to officially register and run the legendary race. It was a run that changed the world. In her inspiring presentation, Switzer shows how designing success is about stepping off the sidelines and into the race, and running—despite blisters, doubt, and risk—across the finish line, knowing that you have the power and determination to do anything.

Headshot photo of Erica Dhawan

2. New Rules of Language in a Digital Workplace

Erica Dhawan, Business Strategist and Innovation Expert

Whether located on separate floors, buildings, or even countries, team members have to connect online in order to collaborate. But with our digital walls up, we lose subtext and nuance, creating misunderstandings all day, every day. In this informative session, collaboration expert Erica Dhawan helps you discover your own digital communication style and how you may be broadcasting unintended signals. She also provides commonsense rules for not only reducing confusion and frustration, but also fostering real intellectual and emotional connection, no matter the distance.

Headshot photo of Susan David

3. Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life

Susan David, PhD, Harvard Medical School Psychologist

The way we navigate our inner world—our everyday thoughts, feelings, and self-stories—is the single most important determinant of success, whether in careers, relationships, or even personal health. Renowned psychologist Susan David draws on more than 20 years of deep research, expert consulting, and her own experiences to explain how developing greater emotional agility will help you meet life's difficulties with courage and resilience, enabling you to make changes that bring your best self forward.

Headshot photo of Kate Biberdorf

4. Women in STEM

Kate Biberdorf, PhD, Award-Winning Instructor of General Chemistry, The University of Texas at Austin

Kate Biberdorf, aka Kate the Chemist, loves to blow stuff up—especially stereotypes about women in science. In this entertaining and engaging presentation, she describes the many hardships her female role models in STEM faced and the lessons she learned from their often unsung achievements. Throughout the course of her talk, Biberdorf illustrates those principles of mentorship, community leadership, and inclusion by relating her own story and performing some of her famous demonstrations with help from volunteers in the audience.

Headshot photo of Pamela Meyer

5. Finding the Truth and Building Trust that Lasts

Pamela Meyer, Expert on Trust and Deception

Studies show that people lie between 10 and 200 times a day. As the nation's leading expert on the science of deception, Pamela Meyer thinks we all should employ the same lie detection techniques of a CIA operative or law enforcement specialist when it's time to make critical decisions. Using hilarious anecdotes, video of well-known deceivers, and her proven methodology, Meyer details the tricks of spotting lies and rooting out the truth, as well as the steps to building your network of trusted advisors and associates.

Headshot photo of Carmen Rita Wong

6. A Woman's Worth

Carmen Rita Wong, Journalist, Writer, and Commentator

As women, how can we capitalize on our advantages—our ability to build and maintain communities, be efficient, look before leaping, among others—to earn more and feel more successful at what we do? As a national advice columnist for several of the largest women's magazines in the world, Carmen Rita Wong has heard from and spoken to thousands of women about their money. In this information-packed presentation, she presents inspiring, empowering guidance about taking control of your personal finances and redefining your sense of success and worth.

Headshot photo of Stacy Blake-Beard

7. Business Panel: Designing Success

Speakers: TBA
Moderator: Stacy Blake-Beard, Professor, Simmons School of Business

Research clearly demonstrates that diverse and inclusive teams are more innovative, engaged, and creative in their work. But while many companies embrace diversity, making it really count for the bottom line means embedding inclusiveness into all aspects of an organization's operations. Representing a range of major companies that are working hard to address this challenge, the senior executives on this panel share how their hiring, promotion, and compensation initiatives are paying off not only in terms of a more inclusive corporate culture but also in stronger performance metrics.

10:55 - 11:25

Meet the Speakers Book-signing Break

11:25 - 12:15

Morning Keynote

Headshot photo of Laverne Cox

Designing a Successful Life

Laverne Cox, Actor, Award-winning Producer, and Equal Rights Activist

Celebrated actress, documentary film producer, and equal rights advocate, Laverne Cox has an empowering message to send about moving beyond gender expectations to live more authentically. Bullied and harassed as a child growing up in Alabama, she eventually came out as transgender after taking up acting in New York. Now a star in Orange Is the New Black, she has emerged as the public face of the trans movement, using her increasing prominence to advocate for equal rights, particularly for trans women of color.

12:15 - 1:30

Luncheon

1:30 - 2:20

Afternoon Keynote

Headshot photo of Julia Gillard

Women in Professional and Public Life: Challenge, Adversity, and Triumph

Julia Gillard, Former Prime Minister of Australia

As Australia's first woman Prime Minister, Julia Gillard is well acquainted with the highs and lows of public life. Although leading significant advances in education reform, economic development, health care delivery, and other national priorities during her tenure, she also remained the target of vicious sexism and misogyny in both the government and the press. With her wry humor and fresh candor, Gillard reflects on her life in the public eye and the continuing challenges of being a woman leader in contemporary politics.

2:30 - 3:50

Concurrent Afternoon Sessions

Headshot photo of Maria Toorpakai Wazir

8. Signature Session: Fighting for Your Dream

Maria Toorpakai Wazir, Professional Squash Player

To Maria Toorpakai, becoming a world-class professional squash player is not only a dream realized, but also salvation from oppression. In her gripping presentation, she recounts her early years of dressing as a boy so that she could play sports in her native Pakistan, but then being forced into seclusion after coming under threat from the Taliban. Toorpakai’s story of her escape to freedom and her perseverance in the face of overwhelming odds has made her an inspiration to women everywhere.

Headshot photo of Erica Dhawan

9. New Rules of Language in a Digital Workplace

Erica Dhawan, Business Strategist and Innovation Expert

Whether located on separate floors, buildings, or even countries, team members have to connect online in order to collaborate. But with our digital walls up, we lose subtext and nuance, creating misunderstandings all day, every day. In this informative session, collaboration expert Erica Dhawan helps you discover your own digital communication style and how you may be broadcasting unintended signals. She also provides commonsense rules for not only reducing confusion and frustration, but also fostering real intellectual and emotional connection, no matter the distance.

Headshot photo of Susan David

10. Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life

Susan David, PhD, Harvard Medical School Psychologist

The way we navigate our inner world—our everyday thoughts, feelings, and self-stories—is the single most important determinant of success, whether in careers, relationships, or even personal health. Renowned psychologist Susan David draws on more than 20 years of deep research, expert consulting, and her own experiences to explain how developing greater emotional agility will help you meet life’s difficulties with courage and resilience, enabling you to make changes that bring your best self forward.

Headshot photo of Kate Biberdorf

11. Women in STEM

Kate Biberdorf, PhD, Award-Winning Instructor of General Chemistry, The University of Texas at Austin

Kate Biberdorf, aka Kate the Chemist, loves to blow stuff up—especially stereotypes about women in science. In this entertaining and engaging presentation, she describes the many hardships her female role models in STEM faced and the lessons she learned from their often unsung achievements. Throughout the course of her talk, Biberdorf illustrates those principles of mentorship, community leadership, and inclusion by relating her own story and performing some of her famous demonstrations with help from volunteers in the audience.

Headshot photo of Pamela Meyer

12. Finding the Truth and Building Trust that Lasts

Pamela Meyer, Expert on Trust and Deception

Studies show that people lie between 10 and 200 times a day. As the nation’s leading expert on the science of deception, Pamela Meyer thinks we all should employ the same lie detection techniques of a CIA operative or law enforcement specialist when it’s time to make critical decisions. Using hilarious anecdotes, video of well-known deceivers, and her proven methodology, Meyer details the tricks of spotting lies and rooting out the truth, as well as the steps to building your network of trusted advisors and associates.

Headshot photo of Carmen Rita Wong

13. A Woman's Worth

Carmen Rita Wong, Journalist, Writer, and Commentator

As women, how can we capitalize on our advantages—our ability to build and maintain communities, be efficient, look before leaping, among others—to earn more and feel more successful at what we do? As a national advice columnist for several of the largest women’s magazines in the world, Carmen Rita Wong has heard from and spoken to thousands of women about their money. In this information-packed presentation, she presents inspiring, empowering guidance about taking control of your personal finances and redefining your sense of success and worth.

14. Business Panel: Designing Success

Speakers: TBA
Moderator: Javier Barrientos

Research clearly demonstrates that diverse and inclusive teams are more innovative, engaged, and creative in their work. But while many companies embrace diversity, making it really count for the bottom line means embedding inclusiveness into all aspects of an organization's operations. Representing a range of major companies that are working hard to address this challenge, the senior executives on this panel share how their hiring, promotion, and compensation initiatives are paying off not only in terms of a more inclusive corporate culture but also in stronger performance metrics.

3:50 - 4:20

Meet the Speakers Book-signing Break

4:20 - 5:20

Closing Keynote