An ongoing portion of our conference planning involves inviting and securing the right speakers to address the modules within this year's theme "Disruption: Challenging Leadership at Every Turn."
Speakers are nationally-renowned experts in their fields. [Photo below: 2018 Keynote speaker and H.B. Johnson, Jr. '26 Distinguished Speaker Bill Bennett.]
2019 Leadership Conference Speakers
General Joseph L. Votel is a retired U.S. Army Four-Star officer and most recently the Commander of the U.S. Central Command – responsible for U.S. and coalition military operations in the Middle East, Levant and Central and South Asia. During his 39 years in the military he commanded special operations and conventional military forces at every level. His career included combat in Panama, Afghanistan and Iraq. Notably he led a 79-member coalition that successfully liberated Iraq and Syria from the Islamic State Caliphate. He preceded his assignment at CENTCOM with service as the Commander of U.S. Special Operations Command and the Joint Special Operations Command.
Votel was recognized with the Distinguished Military Leadership Award from the Atlantic Council; the U.S. – Arab Defense Leadership Award from the National Council on U.S. - Arab Relations; the Distinguished Service Award from the National Medal of Honor Society; the SGT James T. Regan Lifetime Achievement Award from the “Lead the Way” Foundation; and the Freedom Award from the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum.
In July of 2019 Votel was announced as the prospective President / CEO of Business Executives for National Security. He is a Strategic Advisor for Sierra Nevada Corporation as well as a non-resident Distinguished Fellow at the Middle East Institute in Washington, D.C. and the Belfer Center at the John F. Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, MA; and an advisor to the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point, NY. He is a member of the Board of Directors for Service to School – a non-profit organization that helps military veterans transition and win admission to the Nation’s best graduate and undergraduate schools. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Votel is a 1980 graduate of the United States Military Academy and earned Master’s Degrees from the U.S. Army Command and Staff College and the Army War College. He is married to Michele and they have two grown sons; a daughter-in-law and a granddaughter. The Votels reside in Lake Elmo, Minnesota.
Jonah Goldberg holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute and is a Fellow at the National Review Institute. He was previously a senior editor at National Review, where he had worked for two decades. A best-selling author, his nationally syndicated column appears regularly in over a hundred newspapers across the United States. He is also a weekly columnist for the Los Angeles Times, a Fox News contributor, and a regular member of the “Fox News All-Stars” on “Special Report with Bret Baier.” He was the founding editor of National Review Online. The Atlantic magazine has identified Goldberg as one of the top 50 political commentators in America. Among his awards, in 2011 he was named the Robert J. Novak Journalist of the Year at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). He has written on politics, media, and culture for a wide variety of leading publications and has appeared on numerous television and radio programs. He is the author of the recently-released New York Times bestseller “Suicide of the West” (Crown Forum, 2018), as well as two previous New York Times bestsellers: “The Tyranny of Clichés” (Sentinel HC, 2012) and “Liberal Fascism” (Doubleday, 2008).
Poppy Crum works to bridge the gap between technology and insightful, effective human interaction. As a multi-dimensional advocate of empathetic technology, she builds technologies that best leverage human physiology to enhance our experiences and how we interact with the world.
Poppy serves as the chief scientist at Dolby Laboratories and as an adjunct professor at Stanford University in the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics and Program in Symbolic Systems.
Poppy is dedicated to the development of immersive technologies that leverage human physiology and perceptual realities to enhance our experiences and interactions in the world. She has advanced a mission to democratize the way people of all abilities benefit from sensory technologies – and how effectively technology communicates back to each of us. She believes the power of intelligent technologies is only realized with dynamic optimization and learning of as much of our personal and contextual data as possible.
At Dolby, Poppy directs the growth of internal science. She is responsible for integrating neuroscience and sensory data science into algorithm design, technological development, and technology strategy. At Stanford, her work focuses on the impact and feedback potential of new technologies including gaming and immersive environments such as augmented and virtual reality on neuroplasticity and learning.
Poppy is a U.S. representative and vice-chair to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and a member of the Stanford Research Institute Technical Council. Prior to joining Dolby Laboratories, Poppy was a research faculty member in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine where her neurophysiological research focused on understanding the neural correlates of how we hear in a complex acoustic environment and the functional circuitry of the auditory cortex.
Poppy is a Fellow of the Audio Engineering Society. She is a 2018 recipient of the Advanced Imaging Society’s Distinguished Leadership Award, a 2017 recipient of the Consumer Technology Association’s Technology and Standards Achievement Award for work towards the introduction of over-the-counter hearing-aid devices, and has been named to Billboard Magazine’s 100 most influential female executives in the music industry. Prior to academic study as a neuroscientist and work in industry, Poppy was a performing violinist.
She is a frequent speaker on topics related to the intersection of human experience, artificial intelligence, sensory data-science, and immersive technologies.
Bob Johansen is a distinguished fellow with the Institute for the Future in Silicon Valley. For more than 30 years, Bob has helped organizations around the world prepare for and shape the future, including corporations such as P&G, Walmart, United Rentals, and GlaxoSmithKline, as well as a range of major universities and nonprofits.
The author or co-author of twelve books, including the best-selling Get There Early: Sensing the Future to Compete in the Present, Leaders Make the Future, and The New Leadership Literacies: Thriving in a Future of Extreme Disruption and Distributed Everything. He is currently writing a new book that will be out in early 2020 called Full-Spectrum Thinking: Escaping the Boxes in a Post-Categorical Future. Bob’s books are used widely in corporations, universities, nonprofits, and at the Army War College.
Bob holds a B.S. from the University of Illinois, which he attended on a basketball scholarship, and a Ph.D. from Northwestern University—as well as a master’s degree that focused on world religions.
Michele Gelfand is Distinguished University Professor in Psychology and the RH Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, College Park. Gelfand uses field, experimental, computational and neuroscience methods to understand the evolution of culture and its multilevel consequences for human groups. Her work has been cited 20,000 times (H Index = 60) and has been featured in the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Boston Globe, National Public Radio, Voice of America, Fox News, NBC News, ABC News, Morning Joe, The Economist, The Atlantic, Time Magazine, CNN.com, the Financial Times, Harvard Business Review, De Standard, among other outlets. Gelfand has published in many scientific outlets such as Science, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Psychological Science, Nature Scientific Reports, PLOS 1, the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Research in Organizational Behavior, Journal of Applied Psychology, Annual Review of Psychology, American Psychologist, Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, among others. She is the author of Rule Makers, Rule Breakers: How Tight and Loose Cultures Wire the World (Scribner, 2018), co-editor of Values, Political Action, and Change in the Middle East and the Arab Spring (Oxford University Press, 2017), The Psychology of Conflict and Conflict Management in Organizations (Taylor & Francis, 2013), and The Handbook of Negotiation and Culture (Stanford University Press, 2004), and is the founding co-editor of the Advances in Culture and Psychology Annual Series and the Frontiers of Culture and Psychology series (Oxford University Press).
She is the Past President of the International Association for Conflict Management, Past Division Chair of the Conflict Division of the Academy of Management, and Past Treasurer of the International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology. She received the 2019 Outstanding Cultural Psychologist Award from the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, the 2109 Science-Practitioner award from SIOP, the 2017 Outstanding International Psychologist Award from the American Psychological Association, the 2016 Diener award from the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, and the Annaliese Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, and was elected to be an Honorary Fellow of the International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology. She was invited to serve on the board of the National Academy of Sciences and was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2019. Website: www.michelegelfand.com; Wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michele_J._Gelfand