General Session Speakers
We have exciting general session speakers lined up for next year! These speakers
will motivate, inspire and encourage you.
Sunday, March 30 3:15pm
Sekou Andrews is inspiring the business world one poem at a time
with The Sekou Effect. As the world’s leading Poetic Voice, Sekou creates personalized poetic
presentations that give voice to the messages and missions of organizations and help them tell their most
powerful stories. He is creator of this cutting-edge category of speaking that combines strategic storytelling,
inspirational speaking, spoken word poetry, and the power of theater and comedy to make events into
experiences, and transform audiences of informed receivers into enrolled responders.
An elementary schoolteacher turned actor, musician, national poetry slam champion, entrepreneur, and now award-winning Poetic Voice, any given day may now find Sekou
presenting a customized talk for international executives, giving the keynote at a business
conference, and performing poems for Barack Obama in Oprah Winfrey’s backyard and Hillary Clinton in Quincy
Jones’ living room. His work has been featured on such diverse national media outlets as ABC World News,
MSNBC, HBO, Good Morning America, Showtime, MTV and BET, and he has performed privately for such prominent individuals as Maya Angelou, Larry King, Norman Lear, Sean “P-Diddy” Combs, and
Coretta Scott King and family.
Companies and organizations that have experienced “The Sekou Effect” include Kraft, Nike, Time Warner, Global Green, Banana Republic, eBay, Microsoft, Google, LinkedIn,
Express, Paypal, General Mills, TEDx, Wieden+Kennedy, NBA, NCAA, Chopra Center, Experient, Singularity University and the Million Dollar Roundtable to name but a few. Sekou has also emerged as an engaging voice for healthcare, routinely evoking tears, cheers, and standing ovations at various cutting edge conferences/clients, including Johnson & Johnson, Mayo Clinic, Kaiser Permanente, TEDMED, Roche, IHI Forum, Medco, Health Media, SCHA Patient Safety Symposium, Sharp Healthcare, Big Task Weekend,
Medco, and Health 2.0.
Beyond the business world, Sekou, along with creative partner Steve Connell, has inspired audiences from the HBO US Comedy Arts Festival to The Pasadena Pops Orchestra. He is also a successful voiceover artist and actor with several national commercials and 3 feature films on his resume; not to mention his two-man spoken word play “The Word Begins”, with Connell, which
received critical acclaim and garnered 3 Helen Hayes award nominations during its premiere run in Washington DC. As a recording artist and producer, Sekou’s latest album, “Poetic License,” has made him the most awarded artist in the nation’s largest independent music organization. With all of the innovation and inspiration that is Poetic Voice,
Sekou Andrews gives voice to our most powerful stories and shows us the best version of ourselves, so we can live into it.
Monday, March 31 8:00am
World Champion Adventure Racer, San Diego City Firefighter, Founder of
World Class Teams, Flashover Seminars and Project Athena Foundation,
Robyn accepts full blame for inspiring people to do insane things like climb Mount Kilimanjaro, run their first triathlon, start their own adventure racing teams, or start their own businesses. This is, after all, who she is and what she does: Robyn Benincasa inspires people to do amazing things.
Benincasa has made an art form of extreme performance by competing and winning at the highest levels of sport and business. Revered as one of “California’s Fittest Women”, she spent her youth competing at the state and national level in gymnastics, diving, cross country, and judo in which she became a national champion. Soon after earning a Marketing degree from Arizona State University, Robyn ‘started at the top’ Fortune 500 pharmaceutical company where she earned the prestigious “Rookie of the Year” award.
Dr. Peter J. Pronovost
Tuesday, April 1 5:30pm
Internationally acclaimed thought leader in patient safety and patient safety change leadership.
Practicing intensive care physician, researcher and teacher who is
dramatically improving patient safety by applying science to the delivery of
therapies. His checklist for reducing hospital-acquired infections, in
particular, has already saved countless lives. MacArthur Fellowship “genius
grant” recipient; named to the Time 100
Director, Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality, Johns
Hopkins. Coauthor, Safe Patients, Smart Hospitals. Professor, Johns
Hopkins University in four schools and departments.
Wednesday, April 2 4 pm
What would happen if everyone in your organization saw the positives, not the problems, in current changes? What would it look like if people broke out of their molds, pushed their boundaries, and developed a new set of skills? Research indicates that 69% of the workplace is not fully engaged. How much time and money does this group cost an organization? How much time and energy would be saved if everyone learned a common language to identify and contain resistance? How much time and money would be saved if everyone became rekindled in their passion, became fully engaged, and took daily and consistent action toward their own goals and the goals of the organization?
Experience this high-energy, high-humor program and learn how to guide yourself and others through ambiguity and uncertainty in a positive and productive way. Learn to keep morale high to retain the best and encourage the rest. Develop the courage to face new obstacles and challenges with a strong forward momentum. Leave with a positive mindset open to change and opportunity to become more likely to take more personal responsibility and accountability for change to move yourself and your teams faster into the future. Learn to help others see the future more clearly and have the confidence that they can get there. Return to work with a renewed enthusiasm and spread it to those around you. “Change is a force to be feared, or an opportunity to be seized. The choice is ours.”