- Tess VigelandMarketplace Money, CEO, Tess Vigeland Productions
Tess Vigeland is a well-known voice to millions of American radio listeners. She is the CEO of Tess Vigeland Productions, a Los Angeles-based multi-media company. Tess is currently working on her first book, about career transition, due out from Random House in August 2015.
When she’s not locked away writing, Tess can be heard as a backup anchor for NPR’s All Things Considered, as well as KCRW’s To The Point and KPCC’s Take Two. She also serves as a professional emcee, speaker, panel moderator, and interviewer for conferences and other events. She has also written for The New York Times and The Guardian.
Until November 2012, Tess was the host of Marketplace Money, a nationally broadcast, weekly personal finance program. She and her guests took calls from listeners to answer their most vexing money management questions, and helped explain the latest business and financial news. Tess traveled the country for live stage shows of Marketplace and Marketplace Money. She was the recipient of the inaugural Excellence in Personal Finance Reporting Award from the Radio Television Digital News Association and the National Endowment for Financial Education.
Tess joined Marketplace in September 2001, as a host of the overnight series of newscasts called the Marketplace Morning Report. She began hosting Marketplace Money in 2006, and also served as the primary back-up host for Marketplace.
Prior to joining the team at Marketplace, Tess reported and anchored for Oregon Public Broadcasting in Portland, where she received a Corporation for Public Broadcasting Silver Award for her coverage of the political scandal involving Senator Bob Packwood (R-Ore.). She co-hosted the weekly public affairs program Seven Days on OPB television. Tess next served as a reporter and backup anchor at WBUR radio in Boston, where she also spent two years as a sports reporter for NPR’s Only a Game.
For her outstanding achievements in journalism, Vigeland has earned numerous awards from the Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists. She has a bachelor’s degree from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. She also served as the voice of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses digital program guide for the 125th Rose Parade®.
Tess is an avid gardener, classical pianist, and world traveler, and is currently attempting to learn photography. She is a native of the Pacific Northwest, and now resides in Los Angeles.
- Laurel MyersThe Honest Company, Senior Director of Product & Innovation
Laurel is responsible for cultivating and growing a unique line of effective, safe, and beautiful baby care, personal care, home cleaning, health and wellness, and lifestyle products optimized for both e-commerce and offline retail platforms.
In her role, she is responsible for identifying innovative opportunities and key consumer insights, as well as overseeing product conceptualization, positioning, development, production, and introduction into the marketplace.
Prior to joining The Honest Company in 2012, Laurel was in editorial and web product development at Participant Media, focusing on environmental, cultural, and social entrepreneurship coverage. She graduated from Princeton University.
- Nir EyalContributing Writer and Bestselling Author, Forbes
Nir Eyal writes, consults, and teaches about the intersection of psychology, technology, and business. He is the author of the Wall Street Journal bestseller Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products. The book was also recently named “one of the best business books of the year” by Goodreads. Nir has founded two tech companies since 2003 and has taught at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design at Stanford.
Nir is also an advisor to several Bay Area start-ups, as well as venture capitalists, and incubators. In addition to blogging at NirAndFar.com, Nir is a contributing writer for Forbes, TechCrunch and Psychology Today.
Nir attended The Stanford Graduate School of Business and Emory University.
- Lisa GanskyFounder and Chief Instigator, Mesh Labs
Lisa is an entrepreneur, international speaker, author of the bestselling book, The Mesh: Why the Future of Business is Sharing and the Founder and Chief Instigator of Mesh Labs. Mesh Labs is dedicated to working at the intersection of urban and business innovation and the sharing economy, and maintains the global sharing-economy directory www.meshing.it. Lisa and her team work in the design of new products, policies, services, partnerships and models, with an emphasis on urban settings. Lisa invests, advises, speaks and writes on the topics of innovation, collaboration and the Share Economy including: cities as platforms, new kinds of partnerships, power of peers, shareable business models, bottom-up policies, the hidden value in waste, and the growing global rise of entrepreneurship.
Currently, Lisa is Chief Instigator of Mesh Labs and an advisor and investor in these ventures: Breather, Elihuu, Feastly, Greenbiz, Honest Buildings, Instructables (sold to Autodesk), Makani Power (sold to Google), OpenRov, Other Machine Company, RelayRides, Ridepal, Sidecar, Science Exchange, Scoot Networks, Solar Mosaic, Squidoo, Sunfolding, TaskRabbit, Vayable and Yerdle.
Prior to her work on the Mesh, she was CEO, co-founder and chairman of Ofoto. Drawing on her entrepreneurial spirit and experience developing global web services, Lisa and her team worked to develop Ofoto into a world-class consumer services offering, which she left when it surpassed 56M customers as Kodak Gallery in 2005. In addition to her roles at Ofoto and Eastman Kodak, she was a co-founder and CEO of GNN, the first commercial website, acquired by AOL in 1995, where she directed Internet products and services for AOL through 1997. Lisa has been an investor and board member of more than forty companies.
- Sara CritchfieldFounding and Editorial Director, Upworthy
Sara Critchfield is the Founding Editorial Director of Upworthy—“the fastest-growing media company of all time” (Fast Company). She believes that stories focusing on social good can be just as viral as any cat video—as long as you market them correctly, using data and emotion to direct your decisions. Often funny and always practical, she speaks on digital marketing and the power of human algorithms.
Upworthy is a website that curates highly sharable, social-issue driven content that flows organically into our online lives. Upworthy’s mission is to draw attention to important social issues (like racial profiling, body image, and child poverty) by making the content just as shareable as cat videos. Under Critchfield’s guidance, the editorial direction of Upworthy proved that people are just as hungry to consume content about meaningful issues as they are about celebrity gossip—as long as you market the content correctly and use data to direct your decisions. Critchfield has developed several contrarian theories that have completely shifted the way companies think about reaching users in an entirely “new paradigm.” Critchfield’s innovative approach to marketing, big data, and human algorithms—as well as her steps to making content go viral—made Upworthy an enormous hit.
Previously, Critchfield worked at MoveOn.org and co-founded an intellectual property firm. She has been a long-time advocate, organizer, and communicator for anti-poverty efforts in Washington DC and Central America. She has spoken at the White House National Conference on Mental Health, Personal Democracy Forum, SXSW, News Foo, and Netroots Nation, and has been featured on PBS, Fast Company, Business Insider, The Bleacher Report, and the Nieman Journalism Lab. She was recently named one of 2013’s Most Intriguing People in Media by min.
- J.B. StraubelCo-founder and Chief Technical Officer, Tesla Motors, Inc
As one of the co-founders and the Chief Technical Officer of Tesla Motors (TSLA), JB is today responsible for all software, electronics and propulsion across Tesla’s portfolio, with direct operational responsibility for roughly a quarter of the company. This includes all aspects of powertrain R&D, engineering and production. The propulsion performance of Tesla’s Model S has been the determining factor in winning many awards, including the prestigious 2012 Motor Trend car of the year by unanimous vote. JB is also the point executive driving OEM partner relationships at Tesla with Toyota, Daimler, Panasonic and others. From these partnerships have come vehicles such as the new electric Toyota RAV4, the Smart EV from Daimler and the A-class EV from Mercedes-Benz. In addition, JB is managing the creation and construction of the Tesla Supercharge network of fast, free DC chargers making EV travel from coast to coast possible with no loss of convenience. Tesla has grown to become the leading electric vehicle company in the world and remains committed to making long-range, fun electric cars increasingly affordable to accelerate the world’s transition away from oil.
JB’s passion for electric vehicles began at a young age. After starting by rebuilding electric golf carts at the age of 14, he converted a Porsche 944, which held a world electric vehicle racing record. He continues to push the boundaries for electric vehicle advancements and enjoys exploring new innovations for renewable energy systems and energy-storage solutions.
Prior to Tesla, JB was the Chief Technical Officer and co-founder of the aerospace firm Volacom, which designed a specialized high-altitude electric aircraft platform. At Volacom, he invented and patented a new long-endurance electric propulsion concept that was later licensed to Boeing. Before Volacom, JB worked at Rosen Motors and Pentadyne as a propulsion engineer developing electric vehicle drivetrains based on a Capstone micro turbine and a high-speed composite flywheel battery. JB holds a Bachelor of Science in Energy Systems Engineering and a Master of Science in Energy Engineering from Stanford University. He is the holder of 30 U.S. patents and is on 17 pending patent applications for motors, batteries and powertrain components. In addition to his current work at Tesla Motors, JB serves on the Board of Directors of SolarCity (SCTY) and is an accomplished private pilot with multi-engine, instrument and glider ratings.
- Nilofer MerchantCurrent Best Selling Author, Apple
A bestselling author on innovation and collaboration, a TED speaker, and a business leader with 20 years of experience, Nilofer Merchant challenges audiences to do more than just think differently—she asks them to act differently. Merchant has personally launched more than 100 products that, in total, have netted 18 billion dollars. Her leadership and business models encourage innovation and growth, and she collaborates with teams to create this enduring advantage. Offering prescient guidelines for taking the future into your own hands, Merchant brings her world-class pedigree to any stage.
Merchant’s recent book, 11 Rules for Creating Value in the #SocialEra, was named by Fast Company as one of the Best Business Books for 2012. It follows her previous bestselling book on collaborative work, The New How, which has been widely recognized as one of the best; it shows how to close the proverbial “Air Sandwich” gap between strategy and execution.
In 2013, Merchant received the Thinkers50 “Future Thinker Award,” beating out a crowd of seven other internationally notable management thinkers on the shortlist.
Merchant’s experience ranges from working with Steve Jobs at Apple, to defeating Microsoft in an epic industry battle, and advising the C-Suites of GE, IBM, Logitech and more. Corporations such as Symantec, Yahoo, Google, and many others have also turned to her for guidance on the social era, how to design new product strategies, enter new markets, defend against competitors, and optimize revenues.
As a speaker, Merchant has headlined alongside Malcolm Gladwell, Simon Sinek, Arianna Huffington, Margaret Atwood, and other inspirational individuals. She has also delivered for clients such as ICBI Fund Forum, Credit Union Executives Society, Symantec, and AT Kearney.
Her famed TED Talk, titled, “Got A Meeting? Take A Walk” has been seen online by 1.5 million viewers to date. The talk posits that “sitting is the new smoking,” and encourages sedentary office workers to be both healthy and productive by walking, rather than sitting, at meetings.
- Darcy WinslowCurrent CEO/Managing Partner of the Academy for Systemic Change, Nike
Darcy Winslow is the CEO/Managing Partner and co-founder of the Academy for Systemic Change, an organization focused on unlocking the human spirit and building capacity in business, education and marine ecosystems to create systemic change for social, economic and environmental well-being at a scale that matters.
In addition to the Academy, in 2008 Darcy founded DSW Collective, LLC, which focuses on the alignment of organizational values and principles with the development and implementation of practical yet aggressive systemic sustainable design strategies. And in 2012, she co-founded and currently co-leads the Generative Council as part of the Center for Nature and Leadership, focused on supporting the inner and outer work and growth of women leading organizational sustainability.
Before starting her business and the Academy, she worked at Nike, Inc. for 21 years and held several senior management positions within the business and the Nike Foundation, most notably starting the Sustainable Business Strategies in 1999. She also served as Senior Advisor to the Nike Foundation, Global Director for Research Design and Development and General Manager/VP for Nike’s Global Women’s Footwear, Apparel and Equipment division.
Darcy received her BS in Exercise Science, studied Sports Medicine, and received her MS in Exercise Physiology, Kinesiology and Biomechanics, and is a 2003 graduate of the Stanford Executive Program.
She currently serves on the Board of Directors for The Cloud Institute for Sustainability Education, University of Oregon’s School of Sports Management, Center for Nature and Leadership, the Women’s Network for a Sustainable Future and the Board of Advisors for Biomimicry Oregon and the Northwest Earth Institute. She is also an Executive in Residence at the MIT Sloan School of Management.
She is a lifelong athlete and avid traveler, and splits her time between Portland, Oregon and Crestone, Colorado.
- Ido LefflerCo-founder and CEO, Yoobi
Ido Leffler is the co-founder & CEO at Yoobi, a fun, ridiculously awesome school-supplies company that engages kids through bright colors, cool designs, and most importantly, cause.
Yoobi is sold exclusively at Target (USA) stores nationwide. For every Yoobi item purchased, Yoobi distributes an item to a classroom in need in the USA. In 2015, Yoobi aims to impact more than 30,000 classrooms, with the goal of changing the lives of over 750,000 kids.
Ido is also co-founder and “Chief Carrot Lover” of San Francisco- based Yes To Inc. (the makers of Yes To Carrots, Yes To Cucumbers, Yes To Tomatoes, Yes To Blueberries and Yes To Grapefruit). Yes To™ is one of the leading natural beauty brands in the world and the #2 natural beauty brand in the USA, with distribution in over 25,000 stores in over 20 countries (including Target, Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, Kroger, Safeway, Publix, Ahold, Ulta, Whole Foods Market, Boots UK etc).
Ido sits on numerous corporate boards including Telecom New Zealand, Joyus, Ruby Ribbon, and the United Nations Foundation Global Entrepreneur Council, which aims to bring entrepreneurship and innovation to the United Nations.
Ido, co-authored the book Get Big Fast and Do More Good, which was published in November 2013, and has received accolades from TIME, Entrepreneur, Forbes, SUCCESS Magazine, among others. Get Big Fast and Do More Good was named one of the top 5 business books of 2014 by 1800CEOREADS.com
Among other awards, Ido was named by Fast Company as one of the 1000 most creative people in business (USA 2014), by SmartCompany (Australia 2008) in its 30 top entrepreneurs under 30, by Women’s Wear Daily as one of the top 12 beauty industry leaders under 40 (USA 2013) and by Australian Unlimited (an Australian government initiative) as one of the top 50 Achieving Australians outside of Australia (2013).
Ido attended the University of Technology Sydney, where he earned his Bachelor of Business in Marketing & International Business.