Speakers 2021

Keynote Speakers

Luvvie Ajayi Jones

Professional Troublemaker: The Fear-Fighter Manual

Luvvie Ajayi Jones doesn’t seem like the kind of person who’s afraid of anything. In fact, the New York Times bestselling author of I’m Judging You, creator of the wildly popular blog AwesomelyLuvvie, and internationally renowned public speaker seems like fear’s worst nightmare. But that same bestselling author was once a confused pre-med student, afraid of calling herself a writer.

The same woman whose TED talk has over 5 million views almost turned the opportunity down, and even wrote the first draft in an hour-long cab ride in the hopes that the organizers would reject it. Nobody is truly fearless, not even Luvvie—but we can learn how to charge forward anyway, and commit to not doing less because of fear. In her new book, PROFESSIONAL TROUBLEMAKER: The Fear-Fighter Manual, Luvvie shows you how she’s done it, and how you can, too.

Tiffany Aliche

Get Good With Money

Tiffany Aliche was a successful pre-school teacher with a solid nest egg when a recession and advice from a shady advisor put her out of a job and in a big financial hole. Existing financial advice didn't resonate with her—she didn't want to be a millionaire tomorrow; she simply wanted to get her financial house in order! As she began to devise her own financial rescue plan, she discovered that she could help others avoid the same pitfalls. Through her company, The Budgetnista, Tiffany has taken these principles and created a financial movement, helping more than one million women worldwide save and pay off millions in debt, so they can begin planning for a richer life.

Revealing this practical ten-step process for the first time in its entirety, GET GOOD WITH MONEY: 10 Simple Steps to Becoming Financially Whole introduces the powerful concept of building wealth through financial wholeness: a realistic, achievable, and energizing alternative to get-rich-quick and over-complicated money management systems.

Shellye Archambeau

Unapologetically Ambitious: Take Risks, Break Barriers, and Create Success on Your Own Terms

One of Silicon Valley's first female African American CEOs, Shellye Archambeau will share how she overcame the challenges she faced as a young black woman, wife, and mother, managing her personal and professional responsibilities while climbing the ranks at IBM and subsequently in her roles as CEO. Through the busts and booms of Silicon Valley in the early 2000s, this bold and inspiring talk will share the risks she took and the strategies she engaged to steer her family, her career, and her company MetricStream toward success.

Through her journey, Shellye discovered that ambition alone is not enough to achieve success.

Andrew Bolwell

Thinking Like a Futurist

The art of thinking like a futurist is a necessary skill in today’s world. Thinking like a futurist shouldn’t be reserved for a select group of people, but instead a basic skill set that anyone can learn. The more people that can anticipate, plan for and create the future they want, the better off we’ll be.

An understanding of the economic, social, demographic, and technologic shifts shaping our world, offers a blueprint to smarter decision making and business transformation. In a world where change is the norm, every day is an opportunity for reinvention.

In this talk, Andrew provides actionable insights to help the audience move forward and create the future they want and learn how to adopt long-term, futuristic thinking.

Barbara Bry

Relentless Pursuit Will Take You Further Than Good Grades

Barbara Bry joined Proflowers.com in April 1998 as vice president of marketing when the company was just an idea with four employees and no website.  The company’s plan, to upset the flower cart by shipping flowers directly from the grower to the consumer instead of using retail stores, faced enormous logistical and marketing challenges.

Barbara will talk about the ups and downs of the company’s early history using the People, Opportunity, Context and Risk and Reward framework as well as weave in her own entrepreneurial journey.  Proflowers.com, which became Provide Commerce, went public in 1993, and was sold to Liberty Media for $477 million in 2008.

Barbara and her husband Neil Senturia have launched a podcast focused on innovation and entrepreneurship.

Sally Helgesen

How Women Rise

Overcome the twelve habits holding you back and take your career to new heights with this wise and approachable guide from two business leadership experts.

Ready to take the next step in your career . . . but not sure what’s holding you back? Leadership expert Sally Helgesen will identify the twelve habits that hold women back as they seek to advance, showing them why what worked for them in the past might actually be sabotaging their future success. Building on Marshall’s classic bestseller What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, How Women Rise is essential reading for any woman who is ready to advance to the next level.

Caroline Johnson

Mentorship: The Best Class of Ship

Caroline Johnson will share her experiences as a woman in the military, and how she is helping to empower the next generation. Caroline was one of two female aviators in her 230-person unit, and one of the only 1.7% women flying fighter jets in the Navy. She deployed in 2014 aboard the USS George HW Bush and saw combat action in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria and was the first woman to employ weapons on ISIS in Iraq from her F/A-18.

Join Caroline Johnson on her adventures flying F/A-18 fighter jets in the US Navy. You’ll experience: the precision of landing on an aircraft carrier, the courage of going behind enemy lines in combat, and the strength to succeed as a woman in a male-dominated profession.

Karyn Schoenbart

Essential Business Advice from One Generation to the Next

Passionate about coaching others to greater levels of achievement, Karyn wrote Mom.B.A: Essential Business Advice from One Generation to the Next as a practical guide on everything from effective first impressions and workplace politics to relationship development, work/life balance, skill-building, and overcoming the Impostor Syndrome. The book is based on the real-life business lessons Karyn amassed during her career.

Tammie Jo Shults

Nerves of Steel

Tammie Jo Shults possessed an early interest in flying, but she faced various obstacles on her path to becoming a military pilot. Applying her lifelong trait of perseverance, she eventually became one of the first female F/A-18 Hornet pilots in the United States Navy.

After concluding her Navy career, she became a pilot for Southwest Airlines. Tammie Jo's incredible history and talent received wide acclaim on April 17, 2018, when she successfully landed a Southwest Boeing 737 after an engine exploded at high altitude, causing multiple system failures and a rapid depressurization. The successful landing of Flight 1380 in Philadelphia saved 148 total lives including passengers and crew, as detailed in her captivating novel, Nerves of Steel.

Alessandra Wall

The Woman Holding You Back

Dr. Wall will show you how to take a closer look at critics, naysayers, and the people setting impossible standards and holding glass ceilings over women's heads. You'll be surprised to find out that sometimes the people holding you back are the ones you least expected to.

On her journey supporting women's leadership and equality, she discovered that there's more that holds women back than we sometimes realize.

Dr. Alessandra Wall went from counseling individuals on how to manage anxiety and depression to coaching women and mentoring leaders to bridge the gap and build a world where women reaching the highest levels of success and power is so commonplace it doesn't need to be mentioned.


Strategies for Building Your Visibility and Presence

Part of growing your career and building a strong brand includes driving your own visibility within your organization, industry or network. Today’s panel will discuss strategies for raising your professional visibility without talking about yourself all of the time and being too self-aggrandizing. As women, we are often sensitive to shameless self-promotion and know that this does not serve us well in the long run.

Liz Goodgold
Branding Expert, Speaker & Coach
RedFire Branding

Shireen Matthews
Jones Day

Susan Miller
Sr. Director, Global Product Security

District Attorney Summer Stephan
District Attorney
County of San Diego

Finding your “WHY” and Pursuing It

Simon Sinek says “It is only when you understand your “WHY” that you’ll be more capable of pursuing the things that give you fulfillment. It will serve as your point of reference for all your actions and decisions from this moment on, allowing you to measure your progress and know when you have met your goals. This panel will share strategies on finding your “WHY” and how to pursue it.

Erica Hatch
Vice President Human Resources
Newland Real Estate Group

Sarah McSpadden, RN, MSN, MHA
President & CEO
The Elizabeth Hospice

Debra Rosen
President & CEO
N. San Diego Business Chamber

Christine Van Loo

Mike Fasulo
President & COO
Sony Electronics, Inc.

Using Emotional Intelligence in Leadership and Business

The technical skills that helped you to secure your first promotion may not guarantee the next. Leaders today have a different skillset called emotional intelligence and having this skill helps to successfully coach teams, manage stress and collaborate with others. Today’s panel will share strategies on understanding and managing our own emotions and recognize and influence the emotions of others around us and why it matters.

Myra Pelowski
Group Vice President, NA Applications, Alliances & Channels

Stacy Rungaitis
Executive Director
Palomar College Foundation

Jana Vargas
Director of Procurement & Contract Services
SD County Regional Airport Authority

Glen Hopkins
Chief Technology Officer
HP, Inc.

Trends and Strategies for Women’s Financial Security

Do you feel the pressure or weight of managing your finances or concerned about having enough money to take care of yourself and/or your family? Are you too busy and haven’t gotten around to thinking about the “big picture” of your finances? Women today are taking more control of their financial health and todays panel will share strategies for getting on top of your financial picture and owning your financial destiny.

Sarah Bilyeu
SVP, Business Development & Community Relations
San Diego County Credit Union (SDCCU)

Chelsey Frate
Financial Advisor
Torrey Pines Wealth Management

Guen Garrido
Paid Off $68,000 of debt in 3 years

Rachel Rainbolt
Coach, Writer, Advocate
Sage Family

Elsa Valay-Paz
Director of Supply Management
San Diego Gas & Electric

Women’s Health Disruptors during COVID and Stressful Times

These past 11 months have wreaked havoc on our lives and it’s time to get “unstuck” and back on track. The psychological impact on everyone is undeniable. Do you find yourself in a negative mindset with this being out of character for you? How about exercise? Do you get out and walk or shuffle to the refrigerator for snacks all day? Do you binge watch television for hours at a time?  These are just a few of the ways we have been trapped during this horrible time and our panel today will share with us how to get “unstuck” and back into a healthy 2021.

Tanya Brown
Author, Speaker, Life Coach

Dr. Kathlyn Ignacio
Internal Medicine
Sharp Rees-Stealy Sorrento Mesa

Dr. Dara Schwartz
Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital

Jennifer Sipple
VP, US Region Marketing
BD, Medication Management Solutions

Navigating Bias and Embracing Inclusivity

Diversity and inclusion expert, Verna Myers said it best, “Diversity is being invited to the party and inclusion is being asked to dance.”  We all hear about the importance and benefits of increasing diversity and inclusion in everything we do both personally and professionally. In spite of all the efforts and campaigns around this topic, many people still hold unconscious or implicit biases against others. Today, our panel will share with us their experiences personally and professionally and how we can change the dialog and actions around this topic.

Sarah Hassaine
Global Director of Diversity

Crystal Page
Chief of Staff
San Diego County Supervisor Terra Lawson-Remer

Mishell Taylor
Office Managing Shareholder

Michael Spinella
Director, Partner Experience