2017 Leadership & Executive Communications Conference

2017 Leadership & Executive Communications Conference

Sept. 18-19, 2017: Washington, D.C.
Price: $995
Member Price: $845

Pre-conference workshops: Monday, Sept. 18 | Main agenda: Tuesday, Sept. 19

  • Run your executive communications strategy like a news desk to respond to the 24/7 nature of communications today
  • Craft speeches that convey your speaker's authentic voice and move audiences to action
  • Repurpose your executive communication content for different platforms—from a speech to a blog post, LinkedIn article, op-ed or tweet
  • Keep leadership communications relevant in a world of shrinking attention spans and information overload

Twitter hashtag: #RaganExecComms

Can't attend in person? Sign up for our live webcast!

Presented by: Sponsored by:  
Ragan Communications, Inc.  
Product Code: Y17CS0DC2


Lauren Antonoff Liz Coffey is manager, executive communications/global internal communications for McDonald's Corp. As one of the world's most recognizable brands turns around its global business, Liz plays an integral role in shaping leadership messaging for business financial communications, managing external speaking engagements and handling a variety of internal channels spanning a complex organization. Liz brings a track record of broad-based communications experience to her current role, having previously led diverse efforts ranging from reactive crisis communications to proactive media pitching and grassroots organizing at a public affairs agency where she worked with clients across a variety of spaces including healthcare, education and transportation. Trained as a journalist, Liz is a strong writer and storyteller. She's also media savvy, having spent the early part of her career working in local, network and cable TV newsrooms.
Monica Bailey Rob Friedman is senior director of executive communications (retired) for Eli Lilly & Co. Rob Friedman spent more than 20 years writing for Eli Lilly and Co., his last nine as senior director of executive communications. During his tenure Rob wrote for three CEOs and other senior executives and managed a team of writers. He retired from Lilly in 2015. Before Lilly, he also worked as a speechwriter for Ameritech and the American Medical Association. Rob got his start at Ragan Communications, editing Speechwriter's Newsletter and the Ragan Report and teaching workshops. He's taught at Ragan's annual Speechwriter's Conference for 25 years and has instructed thousands of professionals in speechwriting and communications.
Kim Clark Lisa Gibson is executive communications lead and senior business manager for Microsoft Canada. As head of communications for Microsoft Canada, Lisa is responsible for overseeing a team of professionals responsible for the development and execution of communication strategies to drive brand affinity and safeguard Microsoft Canada's reputation. Prior to joining Microsoft, Lisa led public relations, sponsorship and social media at Tangerine Bank and spent more than sixteen years in communications working for prominent retail brands including Target, Shoppers Drug Mart and Canadian Tire. Lisa is passionate about the role of strategic executive communications, social media and B2C2B influencer marketing in driving business results and ultimately changing minds. In addition, Lisa credits some of her greatest professional successes to her ability to influence positive change through corporate social responsibility platforms that affect both business and the community at large. @Gibsonpr
Amanda Gerding Mary Gibson is currently director, executive and employee communications, for Honeywell's Home and Business Technologies business. Her responsibilities include writing for the CEO and for the leadership team in addition to guiding internal communications activities for this global business. Mary has provided executive communications counsel to senior leaders at Cox Automotive, GE Energy and MCI WorldCom during her communications career. Her experience includes leadership roles in marketing, business and employee communications, with a heavy emphasis on supporting change in large organizations. Her career has spanned public and private organizations, along with startups and organizations more than 100 years old. @mtgnorcross
Sarah Hurwitz Sarah Hurwitz was a White House speechwriter from 2009-2017, serving as a senior speechwriter for President Barack Obama and then as chief speechwriter for first lady Michelle Obama. Sarah worked with Mrs. Obama to craft widely-acclaimed addresses, including her 2016 Democratic National Convention speech and her political speeches during the 2016 campaign cycle, and traveled with the first lady across America and to five continents. Sarah was previously a senior speechwriter on the Obama campaign; chief speechwriter for Hillary Clinton during her 2008 presidential campaign; deputy chief speechwriter on the presidential campaigns of General Wesley Clark and Senator John Kerry; and a speechwriter for Senator Tom Harkin. Prior to working on the Clinton and Obama campaigns, Sarah was an attorney at the Washington, D.C. office of WilmerHale. Sarah is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School.
Vinca LaFleur Vinca LaFleur is a partner at West Wing Writers. As a White House speechwriter and special assistant for national security affairs, Vinca LaFleur accompanied President Bill Clinton to Asia, Australia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East. From 1998-2008 she ran her own speechwriting consultancy, serving clients across the public, private and nonprofit sectors. Today, as a partner at West Wing Writers, Vinca helps prominent public figures shape ideas and drive conversations in fields from global development to public health, women's empowerment, financial services and many more. Vinca has an M.A. from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. @vincalafleur
Vern Oakley Vern Oakley is the founder, CEO and creative director of Tribe Pictures, a New York-based film production company. Tribe has been among the early adopters of virtual reality technology, still in its infancy. Vern's session will include insights into how this new technology can be used for powerful leadership communication. @vernoakley
Joel Schwartzberg Joel Schwartzberg is senior director of strategic and executive communications for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). He also teaches public presentation classes for clients including American Express, Comedy Central, the Brennan Center for Justice, and the American Jewish Committee. Joel won the 1990 U.S. Championship in After-Dinner Speaking, the 1990 Massachusetts Championship in Persuasive Speaking and was ranked among the top ten public speakers in America. After coaching public speaking teams at colleges, including the University of Pennsylvania and Seton Hall University, Joel was inducted into the National Forensic Association Hall of Fame in 2002. His new book, “Get to the Point!” will be published by Berrett-Koehler in October 2017. @thejoeltruth
Cappy Surette Cappy Surette leads the teams responsible for executive communications for 73,000 Cast Members at four theme parks and 27 resort hotels all located at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florid—the world's premier vacation destination. He has more than 20 years of experience in corporate communications, media relations, crisis communications, social media, speechwriting and internal communication. Experienced in working on high-visibility issues, Surette has worked with all major national and international media outlets including CNN, Fox News, NPR, Washington Post and more. Prior to joining The Walt Disney Company, Surette served in the U.S. military and retired at the rank of U.S. Navy Captain. A highly decorated military veteran, Surette served in locations around the world in both operational and communication roles during many times of international crisis.
Oscar Suris As Wells Fargo's head of corporate communications since 2009, Oscar Suris is public relations counsel to management and the company's 90+ businesses. He directs the company's media relations, executive communications, and internal communications, overseeing a team of over 400. Prior to Wells Fargo he was a director of Corporate Communications for Ford Motor Company. He also held executive roles at AutoNation, Inc., and The Miami Herald Publishing Company. Oscar has 11 years of journalism experience, including five years at The Wall Street Journal. A native of Cuba, he has a B.A. in finance from the University of Florida. He is a past Chair of the Board of Trustees for the Institute for Public Relations, and a past member of the Corporate Board of Advisors for the National Council of La Raza (now "UnidosUS"). He also currently serves on the Public Relations Advisory Board for the University of Southern California Center. @OscarSurisWF