Sheena S. Iyengar

S.T. Lee Professor of Business, Columbia Business School


Sheena S. Iyengar

Presentation Topic: In Search Of Authentic Self

Sheena S. Iyengar is the inaugural S.T. Lee Professor of Business in the Columbia Business School. She has taught on a wide variety of topics, including leadership, decision making, creativity, innovation, and globalization.

Considered one of the world's leading experts on choice, Dr. Iyengar’s core research focuses on the psychology of choice and decision-making, addressing how humans face challenges in a world where they are inundated with options. Her research regularly appears in premier academic journals and her book, “The Art of Choosing,” received one of the six Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Books of the Year 2010 awards, and was ranked #3 on the Amazon.com Best Business and Investing Books of 2010. Dr. Iyengar received the Presidential Early Career Award in 2002, and has been voted among the Top 50 most influential business thinkers by Thinkers50 and rated one of the world's best B-School Professors by Poets and Quants. Her research is regularly cited in the popular media, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, the Economist, and BBC. Dr. Iyengar has also appeared on television programs like the Today Show, the Daily Show, and Fareed Zakaria’s GPS on CNN. Her TED Talks have collectively received over five million views and her research continues to inform markets, businesses, and people all over the world.

Dr. Iyengar graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. in Economics and a B.A. in Psychology and received her Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Stanford University.

Erin Meyer

Erin Meyer

Author of The Culture Map,
Insead Professor


Erin Meyer

Presentation Topic: The Global Culture Map


In today’s business world, where teams are spread across the planet and most of our communication takes place virtually, how do we work effectively in the face of cross-cultural complexity? Erin Meyer, author of The Culture Map, INSEAD professor, winner of the 2015 Thinkers50 Radar Award, and named one of the top 30 HR influencers in the world by HR Magazine, explains how to dramatically increase business success by understanding—and making the best possible use of—cultural differences.


Erin Meyer is the author of The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business and is a professor at INSEAD, one of the world’s leading international business schools. Her work focuses on how the world’s most successful global leaders navigate the complexities of cultural differences in a multi-cultural environment. Working in Africa, Europe, and the United States prompted Meyer’s study of the communication patterns and business systems of different parts of the world. Her framework allows international executives to pin-point their leadership preferences, and compare their methods to the management styles of other cultures. Meyer has taught thousands of executives from five continents to decode how cultural differences are impacting their work, and strategies for improving their international collaboration.

Erin publishes frequently in Harvard Business Review. Her December 2015 HBR article “Getting to Si, Ja, Oui, Hai, and Da was the most popular HBR article of 2015. She has also published in the New York Times Sunday paper, Forbes.com, and The Times of India. She has been interviewed on CNN, Bloomberg TV, the BBC, and NPR.

Most recently Erin won the 2015 Thinkers50 “On the Radar” award, an award given to the up-and-coming thinker most likely to shape the future of business and business thinking and was selected by HR magazine as one of the top 30 HR influencers of 2016.


The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business
As today’s business world becomes ever-more global and virtual, executives and managers are expected to work harmoniously together with counterparts from a broad array of cultures and backgrounds, often without leaving their desks. But when you throw people together who come from starkly different backgrounds and cultures, the result can be interesting, even sometimes funny, but can also lead to misunderstanding and confusion. In this talk, Erin Meyer offers a highly practical and timely perspective on one of today’s most pressing business issues: how do different cultures influence the way to do business when working globally? Even those who are culturally informed, travel extensively, and have lived abroad often have few strategies for dealing with the cross-cultural complexity that affects their team’s day-to-day effectiveness. Meyer provides a new way forward with vital insights for working effectively and sensitively with one’s counterparts in the new global marketplace. This talk will help you build a more cohesive and successful team: one that will work together to bridge gaps, transform differences into assets, and ultimately grow your business.

David speaks globally on digital marketing and e-commerce for clients including Alibaba, Google, Haier, Nike, and Ralph Lauren. David is an early investor in leading digital economy companies including Bonobos (acquired by Walmart for $310m), Diapers.com (acquired by Amazon for $545m), Harry’s, Jet.com (acquired by Walmart for $3.3b), and Warby Parker. He is also a Partner at Idea Farm Ventures, a new New York City based permanent capital fund focused on seeding and incubating digital first consumer lifestyle brands. David holds a PhD from the Graduate School of Business and an MS in Statistics, both from Stanford University.

David Bell

David Bell

Professor of Marketing at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania


David Richard Bell

Presentation Topic: Hyper-Focused Retail

David is the Xinmei Zhang and Yongge Dai Professor at The Wharton School, where he developed Wharton’s first course on digital marketing and e-commerce. David is an award-winning teacher and researcher, and his articles have been published in all the premier academic marketing journals. He is also author of Location is (Still) Everything: The Surprising Influence of the Real World on How We Search, Shop, and Sell in the Virtual One (published in Portuguese and Mandarin for the Brazil and China markets, respectively), an authoritative book on how to win in the digital economy.

David speaks globally on digital marketing and e-commerce for clients including Alibaba, Google, Haier, Nike, and Ralph Lauren. David is an early investor in leading digital economy companies including Bonobos (acquired by Walmart for $310m), Diapers.com (acquired by Amazon for $545m), Harry’s, Jet.com (acquired by Walmart for $3.3b), and Warby Parker. He is also a Partner at Idea Farm Ventures, a new New York City based permanent capital fund focused on seeding and incubating digital first consumer lifestyle brands. David holds a PhD from the Graduate School of Business and an MS in Statistics, both from Stanford University.

PJ Oleksak

PJ Oleksak

SVP, Business Expansion FreshDirect


PJ Oleksak

Presentation Topic: Think Session

PJ Oleksak is the SVP, Business Expansion for FreshDirect. She joined the Company in 2012. In this role,she is responsible for the FoodKick and FreshDirect at the Office businesses within FreshDirect, as well as evaluating and building out new business extensions in partnership with the senior management team.

FoodKick is an on-demand grocery delivery business that curates unique food offerings daily and delivers them to customers’ doors in as little as an hour. FreshDirect at the Office delivers high-quality food with expanded product offerings and services for corporate clients.

Prior to FreshDirect, PJ spent five years working in private equity at PineBridge Investments, investing in both mezzanine and equity investments in the consumer products and logistics industries. Previously, she was an Investment Banking Analyst at Harris Williams, working on sell-side M&A transactions.

PJ has a BS in Finance and Accounting from the University of Richmond, Summa cum Laude.


Jeff Booth

President & CEO, Co-Founder, BuildDirect


Jeff Booth

Presentation Topic: What Happens When You Turn The Data Light On

With Jeff at the helm, BuildDirect stands at the forefront of innovation in the home improvement industry. Jeff applies his deep knowledge of both technology and trends to invent new ways for people to explore, purchase and ultimately interact and connect in the home improvement space.

Drawing on his background as a builder, Jeff Booth co-founded BuildDirect in 1999 from his first-hand experience with the inefficiencies and high costs inherent with the home improvement and building supplies industry. Booth utilized best-in-class technology to help create a simpler and more trusted home improvement industry, ultimately opening a world of possibilities for homeowners, suppliers and those in trades and shipping.

Today, Booth is recognized as a thought leader on entrepreneurship, the future of e-commerce and how digital media is changing the world. He has been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, Inc.com, The Globe and Mail, BNN, Bloomberg News and The Wall Street Journal. He is also a regular contributor to Fast Company and Entrepreneur Magazine.

Booth has been a member of the Young Presidents Organization since 2005, sits on the board of Vancouver-based company Spud.ca, is a G7 founding member of the Creative Destruction Lab, member of the Canadian Business Council, and advises others. In 2015, he was awarded the BC Technology ‘Person of the Year’ Award by the BC Technology Industry Association, and in 2016 he was honored by Goldman Sachs as one of the 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs of 2016.

Tim Reis

Tim Reis

Director, Performance Agencies


Tim Reis

Presentation Topic: Remove Friction to Drive Business Success

As Director of Google Marketing Services’ Performance Agencies, Tim leads a team dedicated to providing strategic and technical support to advertising agencies working to grow advertisers’ business through digital media. He is a veteran of 10 years at Google and more than 30 years in media sales serving in roles that have spanned print, television and online.

Prior to his current assignment, Tim held a variety of roles at Google, most recently as Director of Performance Solutions Activation for North America, leading the implementation of performance products (search, performance display and remarketing products on desktop, tablet and mobile) strategy for the region.

In previous roles at Google, Tim has led the Americas Mobile Solutions team, the Mobile Display advertising team for multiple industry verticals, Google’s Consumer Packaged Goods practice in the eastern region and one of Google’s financial services advertising teams.

Tim came to Google from Plum TV where he was Director of Network Sales. Prior to Plum, Tim was President of Forbes Custom Media, Forbes’ Vice President of Sales Development, founder & president of an independent media sales firm in Atlanta and Southeast Manager for Fortune magazine.

Tim is a frequent speaker at industry events including SXSW, IAB/MIXX, OMMA, Business Insider, SMX and others. He is a former member of the North American Boards of Directors of the Mobile Marketing Association and the Promotion Marketing Association and a current member of the Direct Marketing Association’s Mobile­Digital Community Leadership Committee.

Jon Harding

Jon Harding

Global Chief Information Officer, Conair/Cuisinart Corporation


Jon Harding

Presentation Topic: Digital Transformation In The CPG World

Jon Harding is the Global CIO of Conair Corporation, a multi-billion dollar consumer product company focused on personal care products, counter-top kitchen appliances and health and beauty products used by professionals and consumers. Jon has worldwide responsibility for the company's IT in support of both day-to-day business operations and future business growth.

During his tenure, the Conair IT team has completed: global rollout of a centralized ERP system; global business integration via a standardized IT network; seamless integration of 8 acquired businesses; supported opening of 7 new businesses; and implemented eCommerce and social media analytics platforms to help realize digital marketing advantages through more direct consumer engagement. The company has doubled revenue and increased global reach multiple times during this period.

Before joining Conair, Harding was Divisional CIO for the U.S. Snacks Division of Kellogg Company (formerly the Keebler Company) that Kellogg’s acquired in 2001. Prior to 2001, he held various IT leadership positions within Kellogg’s Europe, including overall leader of a major business process change initiative for Kellogg’s Europe.

A graduate of the University of Sheffield in England, he has 25 years of IT management experience in the consumer products industry. He shares this experience industry-wide through his membership of the Executive Advisory Board of “Consumer Goods Technology” and various eCommerce and CIO strategy events.

Vishal Gaur

Vishal Gaur



Vishal Gaur

Presentation Topic: Managing Growth and Profitability in Retailing

Professor Gaur's research interests lie in retail operations and supply chain management, including topics such as inventory management, product variety, demand forecasting, store execution, and linking operations to financial performance. His research uses different types of data sets and models, such as aggregate publicly available firm-level or industry-level data, proprietary transaction-level data from firms, and online consumer browsing data to assess performance, improve demand forecasting, and optimize decision-making.

Gaur teaches the MBA core course in operations management and an MBA elective course in retail operations. He has received numerous awards for his research and teaching: the Johnson Faculty Research Award in 2012-13, the Clifford H. Whitcomb Faculty Fellowship in 2010-11, the Johnson Core Faculty Award three times, by the graduating classes of 2015, 2012 and 2008, the Wickham Skinner Early Career Research Accomplishments Award by Production and Operations Management Society (POMS) in 2006, and honorable mention in the George B. Dantzig Dissertation Award Competition in 2001. His co-authored paper “Hedging Inventory Risk Through Market Instruments”, published in the journal Manufacturing and Service Operations Management, received the 2008 Manufacturing and Service Operations Management Best Paper Award. He serves as a department editor for Management Science journal and an associate editor for Manufacturing and Service Operations Management, Operations Research, and Production and Operations Management. Prof. Gaur received his Ph.D. from Wharton, University of Pennsylvania, in 2001, his MBA from the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad in 1995, and his BTech from the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi in 1993. Before joining Johnson, he was an assistant professor at NYU Stern School of Business during 2001-07 and a visiting associate professor at Harvard Business School during 2007-08.

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    Balsam Brands

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    Positive Promotions

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    World Kitchen

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    Ulla popken

Nestled in the heart of central New Jersey lies Grounds For Sculpture, a magical place where art and nature are always at play. At its core are more than 270 sculptures by renowned and emerging contemporary artists.

Rat's Restaurant, named for the gregarious character in sculptor and creator Seward Johnson's favorite childhood story book, the Wind in the Willows, is designed to make guests feel like they have stepped back in time to Claude Monet's beloved town of Giverny.