We are excited to bring together a variety of thought leaders including renowned Stanford GSB faculty, fellow LEADers, key industry leaders, researchers, authors, and much more! Presentations may include, but are not limited to talks, panel discussions, workshops, interactive sessions, etc.

An agenda outline will be provided in mid-January and the full, detailed agenda in February which will allow you to select sessions. 

Stayed tuned as we continue to build the agenda and please visit this page often to see updates to the list of presenters.

Peter DeMarzo

The Staehelin Family Professor of Finance, Stanford Graduate School of Business

Director, Stanford LEAD: Corporate Innovation and Personal Leadership

LinkedIn, Stanford GSB Profile

Sarah Soule

The Morgridge Professor of Organizational Behavior and Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Stanford Graduate School of Business

Director, Stanford LEAD: Personal Leadership

LinkedIn, Stanford GSB Profile

Jennifer Aaker

The General Atlantic Professor of Marketing, Stanford Graduate School of Business

Dr. Jennifer Aaker is a behavioral psychologist, author, and General Atlantic Professor at the Stanford Graduate School of Business who studies how meaning and purpose shape the choices individuals make, how time can be used to create meaning in unconventional ways, and how technology can be applied to break down barriers not easily broken head on. Dr. Aaker is widely published in the leading scholarly journals and her work has been featured in The New York Times, The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, NPR, and Science. She co-authored the award-winning book, The Dragonfly Effect, and is the recipient of the Distinguished Scientific Achievement Award, Stanford Distinguished Teaching Award, Citibank Best Teacher Award, George Robbins Best Teacher Award and Robert Jaedicke Silver Apple Award at Stanford, and the MBA Professor of the Year Award.

LinkedIn, Stanford GSB Profile

Dr. Mary C. Murphy

Herman B. Wells Endowed Professor and Associate Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion, Indiana University

Dr. Mary Murphy will draw on research and stories to help us understand what the growth and fixed mindset is—and how to avoid the “false growth mindset.” We will learn to identify the triggers that shift us into the fixed or growth mindset at work. We will learn how the mindset beliefs of organizations and teams are communicated and how they influence collaboration, creativity, innovation, integrity/ethics, and performance. Finally, we will learn how growth mindset organizations have implications for diversity and inclusion. This interactive presentation will include opportunities to reflect and apply these ideas to our own lives so that we can embody the growth mindset more often and create growth mindset cultures in the teams and organizations we lead.

Serge Grudzinski

Founder, Humour Consulting Group

After he graduated from Ecole Polytechnique in France and Stanford University (MSME), Serge started his career as an engineer in the glass industry and then became Strategy Consultant. In parallel, he became a comedy author and performer since he could not resist to unleash his talent. Passionate about the complexity of Corporate Change and the human factor he founded Humour Consulting Group. For over twenty years he intervenes in corporations all over the world, as well with Executive Committees as with entire companies. All along his 1,400 specific assignments, Serge aka «Manager Max» has discovered an extreme laughter, “Irresistible Unanimous Laughter”, which solves resistance to change and motivation losses in an incredibly powerful and fast way.

LinkedIn, Manager Max

Paritosh Desai

Chief Data and Analytics Officer, Target

Paritosh oversees the work of the Data Sciences team, which is focused on creating value from Target’s data assets across all enterprise functions. Paritosh and his team are also responsible for Target’s data management strategy and data governance. Paritosh joined Target in 2013, with a background in designing and delivering data science systems using advanced data science algorithms and web-scale technologies. Under his leadership, Target has brought in a world-class team of data scientists, engineers, and analysts who have created tools and data products that drive decision making across the company. Paritosh previously served as Senior Director of Data Science at Gap Inc., where his focus was on applying predictive models for analyzing and affecting customer behavior, inventory planning decisions, and personalization. Before this, he held senior roles at the IBM-owned retail analytics firm, DemandTec. Paritosh holds a PhD in Operations Research from Stanford University.


Jenny Flores

Head of Small Business Growth Philanthropy, Wells Fargo Foundation

Jenny is Head of Small Business Growth Philanthropy for the Wells Fargo Foundation, one of the largest corporate foundations in the U.S. In 2018, the Wells Fargo Foundation donated $444 million to accelerate economic opportunity and success in underserved communities with a strategic focus on housing affordability, small business growth, and financial health. With more than two decades of experience in philanthropy, employee engagement, and corporate citizenship, Jenny is responsible for combining financial resources with business expertise to help underserved and diverse entrepreneurs expand their impact on the economy and ability to provide jobs. Most recently, she served as Head of Community Affairs and Corporate Social Responsibility at Bank of the West, where she led the company’s strategy for small business engagement and impact, including the creation of a new $30 million investment fund with community development financial institutions. She received a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of California–Berkeley and an MBA from the FW Olin Graduate School of Business at Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts. 


Alina Adams

CEO, Artveoli, Inc.

Alina is a serial entrepreneur working on high tech companies in the hardware and software spaces. She is a faculty member at Northeastern University teaching business and a mentor at Global Social Benefit Institute working with Social Entrepreneurs around the globe on scaling their impact.

LinkedIn, LEAD eXponents Cohort, Artveoli, Inc.

Thomas Kauer

Online Learning Manager, Stanford Graduate School of Business

Thomas was in the education field for 7 years (from Tunisia to Tucson) before transitioning to instructional technology. He attended the Harvard Graduate School of Education where he received his Ed.M. in Technology, Innovation, and Education with a specialty in VR for training and learning. In addition to being an Online Learning Manager for the Stanford LEAD program, he speaks at Stanford, around the Bay, and beyond, and has most recently been working with Tesla to explore the opportunities to innovate their factory floor training program.


Michael Wenderoth

Executive Coach; Executive Course Facilitator, Stanford Graduate School of Business

Michael is an Executive Coach who challenges leaders to rethink their assumptions about power, politics and authenticity to become more effective at work. He lectures on leadership at IE Business School (Madrid, Spain), serves as Coach and Facilitator in the Stanford GSB LEAD Executive Ed Program, and has published in Harvard Business Review, HBR Ascend and Forbes. He holds an MBA from the Stanford GSB and a BA from Carleton College.


Wangui (Carolyn) Njoroge

Commercial and Channel Manager, English Speaking Africa, Veritas Technologies LLC

With over 10yrs experience working in and managing the African market in various capacities, Wangui is an experienced Information Technology professional in information management, strategic channel partnerships and alliances management. She is a travelling storyteller, a strategy enthusiast, an aspiring philanthropist and lifelong student. Wangui is part of the Venturer cohort and credits LEAD with opening her up to the possibilities of what she can be.

LinkedIn, LEAD Venturers Cohort

Saul Jaeger

Police Captain, Mountain View Police Department

Saul is an 18 year veteran of the Mountain View Police Department, serving in a multitude capacities throughout his career. As a Police Captain he currently commands the Field Operations Division, comprised of 24/7 uniformed patrol operations, SWAT and Hostage Negotiations, K9 Team, Traffic Unit, Community Services Officers and the Neighborhood and Events Services Unit. Saul is a proud alum of the LEAD Program.

LinkedIn, LEAD Wayfarers Cohort, The Silicon Valley Beat Podcast

Christopher P. Kriesen

Founder and Principal, The Kalon Law Firm and Cyrano Story, LLC

Christopher is a Catalyst. He helps people find and share their narratives through public speaking and writing with his consultancy Cyrano Story. He is also the founder and principal of the Kalon Law Firm

LinkedIn, LEAD Catalysts Cohort

Shibani Sona Joshi

Host, Lecturer, Author

Shibani is a host, lecturer, and author. She uses storytelling and strategic frameworks to weave her professional experiences in business and communications with ideas of personal change. 


Ritu Goyal

Engineering Manager, Content Platform Engineering, Netflix

Ritu is an engineering leader and serial problem solver who excels in building new teams and taking products from inception to launch. Ritu identifies herself as a technologist and a girl geek! She is a strong proponent of Women in Tech and an aspiring storyteller. In her current role at Netflix, Ritu is helping to democratize storytelling around the world and building products to power the largest global content platform. She has a Masters in Computer Science from CU Boulder, and a Bachelors in Computer Science from Pune University.

LinkedIn, LEAD Catalysts Cohort

Sameer Shah

Director – Content Platform Engineering, Netflix

Sameer is an engineering leader at Netflix. Sameer has over 20 years of experience in building software for both enterprise and consumer products. Sameer and his team build and enhance the Content Platform at Netflix which is leveraged to acquire, curate and distribute amazing stories from around the world to Netflix members globally. He has Bachelors and Masters in Computer Engineering from Santa Clara University. Sameer believes in the idea that technology should not be the goal, technology is the means and the goal is to empower people to do their best work.


Remi Beaudouin

Chief Strategy Officer, ATEME

Remi is Chief Strategy Officer at ATEME, a leading global provider of video delivery solutions. In his role, Remi leads corporate’s global strategic and marketing initiatives. He assists ATEME in keeping the pace in solutions and engagement model innovations. Leveraging the company recognized core expertise in video compression, he develops key strategic partnerships, expands the portfolio of video delivery solutions and keeps disrupting video delivery market with new concepts based on hybrid on premises and cloud technologies. Remi holds a MS degree in signal processing from ENSEIRB Bordeaux.

LinkedIn, LEAD

Hosni Zaouali

Co-founder, Tech-AdaptiKa and Voilà Learning; Founder, VC-Bootcamp; Executive Course Facilitator, Stanford Graduate School of Business

Hosni (Hoss) is the co-founder of Tech-AdaptiKa and Voilà Learning, 2 tech companies that became undisputed providers of educational solutions for thousands of schools and students using virtual reality, apps, and gamification in Canada, France, Ghana, Haiti, and Somalia. This grassroots community leader is also the original founder of Me2We. This African, European, and Canadian citizen focuses today on building bridges between innovation ecosystems around the world. 

LinkedIn, LEAD Pioneers Cohort, VC-Bootcamp

Liz Kupillas

Change and Transformation Director, PepsiCo; Director, VC-Bootcamp

LinkedIn, LEAD Pioneers Cohort, VC-Bootcamp

Saskia Verraes

Co-founder & CE, Match4Action

Saskia is a devoted fighter for a better world. One that is socially just, economically inclusive, and environmentally restorative. She has years of experience leading collaborative social efforts with vision and engagement and a real focus on action. She works as the executive in charge of future-proofing a large global tourism operator and is also a social entrepreneur, CE and co-founder of the virtual social enterprise Match4Action, the first to come out of the wonderful LEAD community. 

LinkedIn, LEAD Pioneers Cohort, Match4Action

Singari Seshadri

Head of Venture Studio, Stanford Graduate School of Business

As the Head of Stanford Venture Studio, an entrepreneurship hub for graduate student entrepreneurs, Singari supports and advises over 100 early stage startups every year. She also leads diversity initiatives for Stanford GSB’s Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, to empower women and other underrepresented founders. She is active in the Silicon Valley ecosystem as an angel investor and advisor to various startups. Her previous work experience includes over a decade of venture capital investing along with founding roles at three startups. Originally from Bangalore, India, Singari now lives in Menlo Park (after Madison, Milwaukee, Chicago and New York) with her husband, 15-year old son, and 1-year old chocolate lab.

LinkedIn, LEAD Catalysts Cohort, Designing Your Life

Markus Lochner

Senior IT Executive, Speaker, Investor, Agile Advisor

Markus is a Senior IT Executive with 20+ years of experience in building organizations that deliver. As an Agile enthusiast he recently delivered various digital products for a bank in CEE with a wonderful team of 170 co-located agile, cross functional people focused on building and running digital solutions. Markus is a curious, people centric leader with full customer focus and a believer in a value driven, strong, agile team culture. He speaks at conferences, is a startup investor, a Customer Centricity and Design process lover, a Cloud evangelist, and a Smart Home enthusiast.

LinkedIn, LEAD Catalysts Cohort

Liz Habgood

Chief Operating Officer and Co-Founder, Featur Labs

Liz has extensive experience working in Customer Experience and Product Management across hardware and software for some of Europe’s largest corporates. Recently she returned to her pre-corporate roots by co-founding Featur Labs, a global company that helps companies develop and improve their product strategy and delivery.

LinkedIn, LEAD Catalysts Cohort

Mallika Paulraj

CEO, Four Minute Investing; Author

Mallika is the author of “How the Best Invest – Make Confident Decisions Like the Investing Superstars”. Her own painful past in learning to manage investments led her to create an investment education platform. Educated at Stanford University and the London School of Economics, she has worked in Silicon Valley, Wall Street, and the City in London. 

LinkedIn, How the Best Invest

Michael Dooijes

Startup Liaison, Consulate General of the Netherlands (San Francisco)


Jacco Kort

Customer Journey Expert/Central Product Owner Cards, ING

Jacco is the central Product Owner for Commercial Cards at ING. Prior to this, he was the Head of Product for Commercial Cards. Jacco has over 18 years experience in banking with extensive background in retail and wholesale payments, product management, marketing, issuing and acquiring. He is a key member of the European Commercial Payments International Advisory Board. Jacco holds degrees in business economics and IT auditing, and earned a Stanford LEAD certificate in Corporate Innovation.

LinkedIn, LEAD Vanguards Cohort

Ralph Morales

Head of Innovation, SmartOrg

Ralph was a Finance Director for 10 years before switching from the dark side to new business creation and innovation. As HP’s Director of Innovation, he pioneered a mash-up of Lean & Real Options Finance to drive adult, er… Executive discussions on funding and managing high uncertainty projects with VC lime returns. He holds a 3rd Degree Black belt in Tang Soo Do, chooses the path with a better story on every occasion, and stands for solutions that help kids on the Autism spectrum.

LinkedIn, LEAD Wayfarers Cohort

Jean S. Bozman

Vice President and Principal Analyst, Hurwitz & Associates

Jean is Vice President and Principal Analyst at Hurwitz & Associates, where she focuses on cloud infrastructure. She was Research Vice President in IDC’s Worldwide Server Group (2002-2014), speaking at conferences around the world. Jean has a master’s from Stanford University (MLA) and a BS from SUNY/Stony Brook. 

LinkedIn, LEAD eXponents Cohort

Anoop Menon

Manager, Display-Touch-Optics Tech Development, Amazon Lab126

Anoop is a technology developer for Amazon and creates iconic products like Kindle Paperwhite. He has worked on 3 continents and understands how to take an innovative idea to the consumer. He has a PhD in Materials Science from the University of Delaware and Bachelor of Technology from the Indian Institute of Technology. Anoop lives in Capitola, California, with his wife and two kids. In his spare time, Anoop loves playing tennis and enjoys outdoor activities in Santa Cruz, California, and the Big Island of Hawaii.

LinkedIn, LEAD Synergists Cohort

Lisa Sibilia

CEO, YOUTOPIAN; Art Specialist (K-5), Wayne Township Public School District

Lisa reverse-engineered her life to accelerate learning speed and scope. She is the Co-Chair of the LEAD Mentor Network, initiated the NYC Global LEAD event, and is a decade long educator. Lisa is also an artist, former Disney cast member, and visionary with purpose to connect the world and make the ‘impossible’ happen.

LinkedIn, LEAD Vanguards Cohort

BeiBei Song

Founder, Essinova; Executive Course Facilitator and Coach, Stanford Graduate School of Business; Guest Lecturer, Wharton ExecEd; Executive Coach

BeiBei is the Founder of Essinova, a forward-thinking interdisciplinary academy applying art-thinking, neuroscience, creative leadership and New Renaissance learning to human development, leadership and innovation. She teaches in executive education programs at Stanford GSB and the Wharton School, with 20+ years of prior corporate and entrepreneurial experience in technology, healthcare, sustainability, financial services, media and higher education, in the U.S., China and Europe. She is a popular speaker on creativity and innovation, a guest editor of MDPI multidisciplinary scholarly journal, and an executive coach utilizing neuroleadership methodologies to help leaders achieve their fullest potential.

LinkedIn, Essinova, Essinova Journal

Shriharsha Dhavale

Senior IT Project Manager – Infrastructure, Stanford Health Center

Shri has 30+ years of extensive work in the global market, providing state-of-the-art inter-networking heterogenous solutions from requirement gathering, implementation, optimization, and transformation to provide ever-increasing, critical, and time sensitive data. He also focuses on scalability, resiliency, and high availability for Fortune 500 global clients including healthcare, education, manufacturing, process automation, utility, services, government, and SMB market segments. Shri has engineering and management background with a problem solving, design thinking, and human-centered approach for providing disruptive innovations to create positive impact for the global LEADers…!

LinkedIn, LEAD Groundbreakers Cohort

Gene Columbus

Gene spent four decades as part of the Disney Organization and an additional ten years in non-profit arts management. He is recognized as an engaging storyteller and beloved by his many college students. He continues to be successful making others successful. 


Joe Tankersley

Joe is a futurist, author, and former Walt Disney Imagineer. He combines more than two decades of storytelling experience with his knowledge of strategic foresight to help others Imagineer their Best Tomorrows.

LinkedIn, Unique Visions

Dee Byrnes

Dee is a “culture” technician! She has worked for decades in Disney Operations and Human Resources Organization. Dee runs her own Human Resource company where she focuses on Culture, Service, Leadership, and Care throughout organizations from entry-level to executive ranks.


Molly Piveral

Molly is a driving force! She has had extensive work in the vertical markets of entertainment, hospitality, healthcare, and guest experience. She has a vast knowledge of understanding people and connecting them to their full potential.


Nikolaos (Nik) Aravanis

Nik is the Business & Operations Leader of MoRo. He has experience from the Automotive & Shipping industries, working in product, pricing & engineering divisions. He holds a degree in marine & mechanical engineering and he is a LEAD graduate (Vanguard cohort).


Marios Papanikolopoulos 

Marios is co-founder and Managing Director of Mobito. Marios is a repeat entrepreneur having successfully exited a mobile app development business and having established MoRo, a technology innovation factory building and backing mobility solutions. He has completed executive studies at MIT & IMD.


Georgios Cambanis 

George is a co-founder and head of business at Mobito. George has a finance focus gained by working at EU leading fintech start ups, scale ups and multinational listed corporations. He holds degrees from the University of Chicago and HEC Paris.


Nikki Ahmadi

Nikki is a cloud and software product Director who works with a global team of talented engineers and architects in designing and implementing innovative solutions from product inception to production. After spending over a decade working in product engineering and management for multimillion dollar technology and start-up companies, Nikki believes what truly drives innovation is not only a commitment to technological breakthroughs but also people’s passion in improving everyday lives by building products that leave a lasting impact, disrupt the industry, and are vehicles of change, while providing the best user experience. When Nikki isn’t working on her next big product release or entrepreneurial endeavors she is spending much needed time with friends and family discussing the latest politics, or simply the meaning of life. She’s an adventurous traveler who also enjoys capturing moments through photography. Nikki also holds a B.S. in Computer Engineering , M.S. in Electrical Engineering and has a corporate innovation certificate as part of the LEAD program.


Tej Singh

CEO and Founder, Fist Assist Devices, LLC; Director and Chief of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Palo Alto Medical Foundation, Sutter Health

Emilio Goldenhersch

Chief Science Officer (CSO) and Co-Founder, MindCotine

Emilio is a mind-body psychologist and a passionate entrepreneur. His transformational journey introduced him to meditation and to a systemic perspective of life. Currently he is working in R&D in digital therapeutics, specifically merging virtual reality and psychological therapies to help people overcome their addictions. 


Cecilia Hultén 

Co-founder & CFO @ Cbio A/S, Board member, Angel Investor; Executive Course Facilitator, Stanford Graduate School of Business; Co-founder of Me2We 2016

Cecilia spent the first two decades of her career in the financial industry, where she rose to the position of Executive Manager. With inspiration from the LEAD program at Stanford Business School and by working with innovative start-ups, she left the stability of the corporate world to work with transformative new businesses as an entrepreneur, advisor and investor. Cecilia views business as a lever of change and way to create value – and as a tool to improve society. Her passion and energy are focused on building sustainable companies, solving problems and meeting real needs using technology as an enabler. 


Willard Ahdritz 

Founder & CEO, Kobalt

Kobalt is a music and technology company created for artists, songwriters, publishers, and labels as an alternative to the traditional music business model. Kobalt’s commitment to technology, transparency, and creators’ rights has driven tremendous growth year-over-year for the company and its clients. Today, Kobalt’s Music Publishing, Neighbouring Rights, Recordings/AWAL divisions, and society AMRA serve over 25,000 songwriters, 600 publishers, and 20,000 independent artists. Leading up to the founding of Kobalt, Ahdritz had a series of experiences that inspired him to build the music company of the future. The first was his time in the Swedish army, where he was a coder for digital mobile phones and quickly learned the power of technology. Shortly thereafter, he started Telegram Records & Publishing and saw that most artists were stuck in bad deals and that it took them years to be paid with no real transparency. Lastly, after he completed both a BSc degree in Engineering and in a Master’s in Finance and Accounting from the Stockholm School of Economics and NYU, he was a consultant at LEK and worked with major companies on how to handle enormous and complex volumes of data with sophisticated databases.

Rob Neivert

Venture Partner, 500 Startups

Robert is a veteran of nine companies. Twice as CEO, and multiple times as CFO, COO, and heads of sales and marketing organizations. He holds a BS, MS in Engineering from Stanford as well as BA & MBA degrees. Robert also teaches martial arts at Stanford.

Carl Fritjofsson

Partner, Creandum

Carl is a battle-scarred entrepreneur turned investor. He’s built both bootstrapped as well as VC-funded technology companies across Europe and the US, and these days heads up Creandum’s San Francisco office where he looks for companies with global potential within fintech, consumer internet and SaaS. Creandum is one of Europe’s leading venture firms and early backers of Spotify, iZettle, Klarna, Bolt, and many more. 

Maj-Britt Kjær Sørensen

Founder, Nordkjær

Maj-Britt is an entrepreneur at heart. With a solid background in marketing and innovation she has founded and co-founded three companies. Currently she focuses on the ‘Gender Data Gap’ and on the commercial opportunity in researching data and utilizing the insights for growth and change. 

LinkedIn, LEAD Mavericks Cohort

Aline Fróes

Co-Founder and Executive Director, 1STi

Aline is a serial social and tech entrepreneur with the mission to close the gap between technology and real human needs. She is one of Brazil’s leading social and tech entrepreneurs who helps organisations to generate positive impact, spread human values and implement projects and initiatives of lasting value. She believes that the Global Goals will only truly be achieved through the collective efforts of communities around the world and the harnessing of talented people who may not necessarily have conventional academic backgrounds. Aline has been recognised both Brazil and internationally for the socially conscious technological movements she has founded, supporting major businesses to implement authentic social programmes, and is one of the creators of the Deep Tech Talks, an international initiative designed to help organisations solve today’s deep challenges through the implementation of deep technology.

LinkedIn, LEAD Groundbreakers Cohort

Ron Lerman

Founder, LEAD Gig Economy Global Network

Ron builds high performing sales teams along with go-to-market strategies resulting in exponential growth and profitability. He is experienced in developing new services, products, and markets. Ron is a recognized leader, public speaker, and subject matter expert in sales, negotiation, product service innovation and strategy. He is the founder of the LEAD Gig Economy Global Network, comprised of seasoned GSB executives offering management consulting to the SMB marketplace. Ron is on a mission to help leaders bring feet to their dreams. With over 20 years of experience and education, he brings positive change with street level strategies that win.


Randy Beiner

Founder, No Life Regrets

Randy is an experienced sales executive, and when not selling AI technology, is always looking for ways to inspire others. He recently founded No Life Regrets, a program designed to help people predict, manage and avoid life regrets. Randy is also a self-proclaimed “bucket list guru” and has been fulfilling his own dreams, as well as helping others with theirs, for the past 25 years. He was born, raised, and educated in Switzerland and resides in Silicon Valley. 


Todor Mikov

Market Access Head, Norvartis

Todor (Wayfarer) is Master of Science of Pharmacy with 20 years of experience in large multinational pharmaceutical companies. He has held various commercial country and above country roles, leading teams and networks of different shapes and sizes. Most recently, he’s heading the Market Access Department of Novartis Bulgaria and is responsible for driving a culture of innovation in the region. In 2003, Todor launched the very first large scale digital Pharma program in his country. Over his career, Todor gained extensive experience in new product launches and led a number of change projects focused on value adding activities, organizational design and culture. In 2018, he graduated from Stanford GSB LEAD program.


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