World Class Speakers
|Attendee Job Title|
Thomas is one of the most respected executives in football due to his passion and vision for the Falcons, his dynamic drafting and philosophical approach to building a team – and since he joined in 2008, the team has experienced a level of consistency that is unmatched in the team’s 46-year history. After his first season with the Falcons, he was named ‘Executive of the Year’ and again went on to be honoured in 2010. He then helped guide the Falcons to their third consecutive playoff appearance for the first time in franchise history in 2012. Prior to his tenure at the Falcons he was with the New England Patriots between 2002-2007.
Chief of Sport Performance
Alan Ashley was named chief of sport performance for the United States Olympic Committee on Sept. 1, 2010, after previously serving as managing director of sport performance since January 2010. In his current role, Ashley oversees the USOC divisions tasked with providing targeted resources and support to the National Governing Bodies, athletes and coaches in pursuit of sustained competitive excellence. These areas include coaching and sport science, sports medicine, international games and sport partnerships. Sport performance is also responsible for the preparation and execution of all Team USA activities related to the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Ashley joined the USOC after spending 16 years with the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association, where he was a key contributor to the rise of the U.S. ski and snowboard teams, having most recently served as the vice president of athletics. At USSA, Ashley helped manage the coaching, training and organizational structure for six Olympic (alpine, cross-country, nordic combined and freestyle skiing; ski jumping; and snowboarding) and two Paralympic (alpine and cross-country skiing) sports involving 170 elite athletes, 125 elite coaches and administrative staff, 320 USSA clubs, 3,000 club coaches and 16,000 USSA member athletes.
Morten is an award winning management professor, researcher, bestselling author and one of the Top 50 management thinkers on the planet, according to Thinkers50. He teaches future leaders of Apple at their University, and also continues to teach at the University of California, Berkeley, as well as INSEAD which was voted the best business school in the world by the Financial Times – he was also formerly a professor of Harvard and holds a PhD from Stanford.
After starting the 2015 season as the offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach, Clay Helton was named USC’s permanent head coach on Nov. 30, dropping the interim head coach title he had held since Oct. 12 (for USC’s final 7 regular season games). He signed a 5-year contract.
The 44-year-old Helton, who has been at USC since 2010, is 6-4 as the Trojan head coach (5-4 in 2015, with wins over a pair of Top 25 teams), including 0-2 as the permanent head coach. He guided the 2015 Trojans to 5 wins in the last 6 regular-season games (including victories over No. 3 Utah and No. 22 UCLA), the co-championship of the challenging Pac-12 South Division, a berth in the Pac-12 Championship Game and a trip to the Holiday Bowl. He was named the 2015 Los Angeles Sports Council Coach of the Year.
Faculty and Associate Director of Dance
Risa Steinberg, both faculty and Associate Director of Dance at The Juilliard School, has been an active member of the dance community for more than 35 years as a performer, teacher, re-constructor of the works of José Limón, and mentor to young choreographers. She has had the good fortune to travel the world performing and teaching extensively. Former principal dancer with the José Limón Dance Company, Bill Cratty Dance Theater, Annabel Gamson, Anna Sokolow’s Player’s Project, Colin Connor, and American Repertory Dance Company of Los Angeles, Ms. Steinberg has also been a guest artist with choreographers including Wally Cardona, Sean Curran, and DanzaHoy of Caracas, Venezuela. Her solo concert, A Celebration of Dance, featured repertory from Isadora Duncan and Doris Humphrey as well as contemporary choreographers. As a re-constructor of the works of Mr. Limón, Ms. Steinberg has worked with companies and dancers around the world including Nureyev and Friends, Frank Augustyn, Karen Kain, and the Pennsylvania Ballet. She was a dance panelist for the New York State Council on the Arts; presently sits on the Artists Advisory board for Danspace Project at St. Mark’s Church and is on the selection committee of The Bessies. Ms. Steinberg is currently the Choreographic Advisor and Rehearsal Coach for Brian Brooks Moving Company.
Alex Van Pelt enters his fifth season with the Packers and returns to coaching quarterbacks, a group he led in 2014, following his role of quarterbacks/wide receivers coach in 2015. He was the team’s running backs coach in his first two years with the club (2012-13). He is entering his 20th NFL season and his 11th as an NFL assistant coach.
Van Pelt joined the Packers on February 13, 2012, as running backs coach after spending the previous two seasons (2010-11) as quarterbacks coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and was named quarterbacks coach by Green Bay on Feb. 7, 2014. Prior to his appointment with the Buccaneers, Van Pelt spent four seasons (2006-09) on the offensive coaching staff of the Buffalo Bills.
Meg is a screenwriter and producer, and is currently nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for co-writing the script for Pixar’s Inside Out. She also co-wrote the script for The Good Dinosaur and is currently writing the script for the live-action Captain Marvel movie. Story telling is an interesting subject for performance professionals to look at because it gives the opportunity to influence and connect with people, and can prove to be incredibly insightful when identifying how people work and develop. Part of this development relates to the story of emotion, and Meg has the ability to ‘find heroes’ which could relate back to sport where you’re looking to inspire and influence your team or organisation, and get emotional responses from your players or personnel. This can also relate to athletes themselves, a story can make them understand the obstacles and personal development tasks that they must overcome to become successful.
Michael is the reigning World Rugby Coach of the Year after leading Australia to the 2015 Rugby World Cup Final and winning the 2015 Rugby Championship. He has had a standout coaching career as he’s led Leinster to the 2009 Heineken Cup trophy, the NSW Waratahs to the 2014 Super Rugby title and Stade Francais to the 2011 Challenge Cup Final – this makes him the only ever coach to win a major rugby club competition in each hemisphere. He took over the Wallabies when the team were in somewhat of a crisis, and within a year identified and rectified the weaknesses in the teams play, overhauled the coaching and playing staff and created a new environment and philosophy for the team to buy in to – hence the success at RWC2015 and him becoming the first Australian to win the games top coaching accolade since 2001.
Global Head of Culture
Maxine has been a Googler for 10 years now, and now the leads the whole companies strategy for their world renowned culture and environment. Google is led by the values and missions of its employees, and when they hire people it is integral that they fit to the principles that the company set – it’s not just about what you achieve, it’s how you achieve it. She not only looks outward to decide on what the type of person the company should recruit, but also looks inward to scrutinise whether the people who work and lead the company are abiding by the beliefs they have set. All this is really relatable to sport, and the responsibilities will mirror that of a lot of General Managers, Head Coaches and CEO’s – asides from this, Google set the standard when it comes to corporate culture and everyone will be intrigued just how the company, and Maxine in particular, creates it. I intend to put her on a panel discussing talent, and exploring how they draw people into the culture and more importantly what engages them to it, a topical and interesting discussion when it comes to talent acquisition and management.
Chief Creative Officer
Brandon Oldenburg is an award-winning illustrator, designer, sculptor and film director. After co-founding Moonbot Studios he won an Academy Award® for The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, an animated short film about the curative powers of story. He also received an Emmy Award for his directorial work on film and game experience The Scarecrow. As well as winning a Webby Award for his work on The Numberlys picture book app, Brandon co-hosted TCM Movie Camp. His forthcoming projects include a brand new company, Flight School, and a new animated short world premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival in April.
Adviser to Prime Ministers and Government Ministers
Sir Michael Barber is a British educationist and Chief Education Advisor to Pearson and the Managing Partner of Delivery Associates. He is a world-leading expert on the effectiveness of government, and author of widely acclaimed book How to Run a Government so that Citizens Benefit and Taxpayers Don’t go Crazy. The book draws on his experience as the Chief Advisor to Prime Minister Tony Blair. In 2001, he founded and headed up the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit, which he ran until 2005, and in this role was responsible for ensuring delivery of the government’s domestic policy priorities across health, education, crime reduction, criminal justice, transport and immigration.
Sir Michael Barber was appointed as non-executive board member at the Ministry of Justice in November 2015. Sir Michael previously served the UK government as Chief Adviser to the Secretary of State for Education on School Standards and as Head of the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit. In this role was responsible for ensuring delivery of the government’s domestic policy priorities across health, education, crime reduction, criminal justice, transport and immigration. The Delivery Unit he created in Downing Street has since been emulated in many other countries. After leaving government, Sir Michael became Partner at McKinsey & Company where he played a leading role in establishing its public sector practice. Sir Michael joined Pearson in September 2011 as Chief Education Advisor, leading their worldwide programme of efficacy and research. He is Chairman of the Pearson Affordable Learning Fund.
Iain heads up Team GB’s most dominant and successful Olympic programme from Rio 2016. He has been involved with the British Cycling set up for the last four games (Athens, Beijing, London and Rio), so is in the perfect person to discuss not only the success of this year, but also how the programme has progressed since the year 2000. He was previously the sprint coach, and was instrumental in the progression that saw riders such as Sir Chris Hoy, Victoria Pendleton, Jason Kenny and Laura Trott become champions, with the results improving from 4 medals in Sydney 2000, to 12 medals in Rio 2016. In the last couple of years, Iain stepped up to the role of head coach where he developed the vision, structure and environment which would prove hugely successful in maximising the potential of the athletes and their coaches.
Learn from the most senior and knowledgeable global performance practitioners and gain valuable intelligence that is applicable
Engage in discussions around peak performance, showcasing ideas and uncovering hidden opportunities
Hear innovative new ideas and strategies to enhance your results on the field of play
Meet with 150 of sports most elite coaches, managers, sporting directors, technical directors and performance directors
Each attendee is vetted to ensure they are the right level, with the right knowledge and relevant to each other
Network with relevant professionals who you might not cross paths with otherwise
Technology has always been deeply woven into the world of sports. What’s different today is the ability to make technology more personal and intelligent, so it provides athletes and coaches with customized and real-time data to help teams improve training and performance. Intel is leading this next generation of computing by creating reference designs and complete end-to-end solutions from software to security to hardware that allow customers and partners to develop meaningful & impactful solutions.
Keiser. Because…’Good Enough’ Isn’t.
BETTER SCIENCE Keiser brings together the science of the human body with the principles of engineering to create human-centered machines that elevate performance for all who use them.
BETTER RESULTS From elite athletes to active seniors, Keiser fitness equipment delivers superior results for any person desiring to improve their performance, whether on the field of play, on the job, or in everyday life.
BETTER BUILT Keiser engineers industrial-strength cardio, strength and functional training equipment around the human body. They are built for hard use, delivering long-term functionality for both users and owners.
Nolan Partners is the world’s leading and largest retained executive search firm with a dedicated focus on sports and entertainment. The firm has placed over 500 executives across 6 continents.
Nolan Partners has represented Manchester United, PGA Tour, Mercedes F1, NFL, Chicago Cubs, San Jose Earthquakes, International Tennis Federation, Breeders’ Cup, USTA, Toronto Blue Jays, City Football Group, Arsenal, and others.
In performance, Nolan Partners works with world famous clubs, governing bodies and professional leagues to identify top performance talent including Sporting Directors, General Managers, Technical Directors, Talent Acquisition Specialists, Medics and Sports Scientists, from a global pool, representing clients in the UK, Europe, North America, the Middle East and Asia.
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