North American Leadership Conference

Industry leaders came together at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, beginning Sunday, for educational sessions, keynote speakers and the opportunity to connect with each other face-to-face.


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Event Agenda

Monday, August 15, 2022

9 - 10 AM MT

Moving at the Speed of Innovation: How to navigate change and drive innovation in a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world

Today's marketplace demands razor-edge thinking and nimble responses to change. Strategies change frequently, businesses rise and fall overnight and those adept at thinking on their feet are best positioned to leverage change. Yesterday’s leadership playbook will no longer suffice to deal with the new pressures, challenges and urgency facing leaders today. Today, your team and your organization needs a leader that knows how to help them navigate uncharted waters, pivot fast to meet new demands and inspire them to bring their best effort and focus, despite the disruptions and distractions. In this high-energy, high-value session, Tamara will show leaders how to be the confident innovator and strong leader their teams and organizations need to move forward. Through her pioneering work in human-centered innovation, Tamara will show leaders how to have the confidence and the tools to step up and meet the demands of today’s “next normal.”

Speaker: Tamara Ghandour

Rocky Mountain Ballroom AB

10 - 11 AM MT

Limitless Organizational Design Using Principles of Flow

A decentralized company that is globally and intelligently connected, one whose employees can work from anywhere, whose customers and partners can succeed from everywhere, and whose definition of success includes all its stakeholders, is a limitless company. The limitless company is the logical evolution of the connected company for the digital-first, decentralized-everything world. In this new world, successful companies need to continuously scale their capabilities and reach in multiple dimensions in order to stay relevant and grow. The path to becoming boundless is through adoption of design thinking principles of flow. 

Speaker: Vala Afshar, SalesForce 

Rocky Mountain Ballroom AB

11:30 - Noon MT

Cybersecurity For The C-suite

Explore nascent cybersecurity topics from an Executive point of view.  C-suite leaders are not only high-value targets, but they are ultimately responsible for their organizations' approach to proper cybersecurity practices.  This session explores both vantage points with pragmatic action-based takeaways for busy C-suite leaders.

Speaker: Mike Pfeiffer, ASB

Rocky Mountain Ballroom AB

1 - 1:10 PM MT

Promo Snack: Mentors And Sponsors: What Is The Difference And Why It Matters

1:10 - 2:10 PM MT

Digital Transformation Breakout: Deeper Dive Into Implementing Limitless Organizational

Dale and Vala will continue exploring the concept of limitless companies and a digital mindset and how to apply design thinking and the principles of flow to transform promotional products companies.
Dale Denham, MAS+, PPAI and Vala Afshar, SalesForce.


2:10 - 2:20 PM MT

Promo Snack: Creating A Digital Organization

Speaker: Jeff Kroeker, Oracle

2:45 - 3:45 PM MT

Navigating The "Year of the Employee" - Transforming The Way You Hire and Inspire Your Teams

Historically low unemployment rates vexing you? The Great Resignation got you down? Demands for hybrid work creating frustrations? Gen Z and Millennials forcing you to reevaluate how you attract and engage employees? Welcome to 2022 - The Year of the Employee! Claudia will explore the many factors making finding and keeping top talent a challenge and will provide you with strategies for transforming the way you hire and retain top talent!

Speaker: Claudia St. John, Affinity HR Group

3:45 - 4:15 PM MT

Fireside Chat With The New PPAI CEO

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

8:30 - 9:45 AM MT

Diversity, Inclusion And Bias: Measuring Progress, Improving Performance And Increasing Productivity

Does your organization need to be able to measure its success with diversity, inclusion and unconscious bias efforts? James Pogue’s model will help you do just that. James will share the latest research around bias and its impact in the workplace and clarity the connection between diversity, inclusion, bias and organizational success. James will identify practical steps to move forward, recognizing that the first step is often the most difficult.
Speaker: James Pogue, PhD

10: - 10:45 AM MT

Breakout Sessions

Breakout 1: Unconscious Bias: What It Is (Not) And Its Power In The Workplace
Hear the latest research around unconscious bias and its impact in the workplace and beyond, identify the biases that are most likely to influence your organization and clarify the connection between unconscious bias and organizational performance.

Speaker: James Pogue, PhD

Rocky Mountain Ballroom C

Breakout 2: AI and Data-Driven Decisions
Business success depends upon full access to data and quick action. Business leaders must tear down silos while simultaneously working with data where it resides. This session will address reducing friction within the organization, replacing assumptions with data, and aligning your approach to data with your overall business strategy.

Speakers: Eric Shonebarger and Raj Mukherjee, Hit Promotional Products

Rocky Mountain Ballroom AB

11 - Noon MT

The Devil Works Hard, Your Cash Should Work Harder: Private Equity Lessons Applicable For Every Business

Companies don’t have to be owned by private equity to maximize returns like private equity. Chris will share the private equity playbook that will empower you to address the four key strategies that will transform your business.

Speaker: Chris Anderson, HPG

1 - 1:50 PM MT

Corporate Social Responsibility: The Time Is Now

This panel discussion, moderated by Denise Taschereau, will examine trends, expectations and the reality of corporate social responsibility. Increasingly buyers are committed to aligning their businesses with products that elevate their social and sustainable priorities. This session will outline practical steps you can implement in your business regardless of whether you are at the beginning of your journey or far down the path.

Speaker: Denise Taschereau, Louisa McGuirk and Megan Spire

1:50 - 2 PM MT

Promo Snack: Innovation and PPEF

2:30 - 3:30 PM MT

Prospering Through The Changes In 2023

2022 is winding down as we prepare for the challenges and ongoing uncertainties of 2023. The decelerating rate of rise that characterized many industries and businesses in 2022 will linger into the first half of 2023 for many. Patrick will present business strategies and tactics that address the projected changes in the economic landscape. He will also assess the business demand for 2023 and 2024, present a clear picture of inflation and interest rates and address the potential impact of a shift in government arising from the midterm elections.

Speaker: Connor Lokar

3:30 - 4:30 PM MT

Leadership Unchained: Defy Conventional Wisdom For Breakthrough Performances

As the very nature of business rapidly changes, effective leaders must also disrupt the way they see, think and lead. Leadership author, Sara Canaday, challenges seasoned and emerging leaders to adopt signature habits that will catapult conventional thinking into high-impact, modern leadership. Sara will reveal the daily practices that separate innovative leaders from their counterparts. With a dynamic combination of case studies, experience, and storytelling, she will deliver a clear roadmap for enhancing excellence by defying conventional wisdom.

Speaker: Sara Canaday

Rocky Mountain Ballroom AB

Featured Speakers

 Sara Canaday 


 Sara Canaday & Associates 

 James Pogue, PhD 


 James Pogue Enterprises 

 Tamara Ghandour 

 Everyday Innovator, Business Owner and Change Leader 


 Vala Afshar 

 Chief Digital Evangelist 


 Chris Anderson 



 Tyler Carter (TC) 

 Two-Time Paralympian  


 Dale Denham, MAS+  

 President & CEO 


 Nigel Harris 

 Co-founder & CEO 

 Connor Lokar 


 ITR Economics 

 Jeff Kroeker 

 Corporate Account Exec 

 Oracle Netsuite 

 Louisa McGuirk 

 Senior Manager, Sustainable Procurement 


 Raj Mukherjee 


 Hit Promotional Products 

 Dawn Olds, MAS 

 Senior Vice President 


 Mike Pfeiffer 

 Vice President Of Technology  

  American Solutions For Business 

 Eric Shonebarger 


 Hit Promotional Products 

 Claudia St. John, SHRM-SCP, SPHR 

 Founder & President 

 Affinity HR Group, Inc. 

 Megan Spire 

 Vice President of Sales 


 Anne Stone, CAE 

 Director, Member Engagement  


 Denise Taschereau 



 Kevin Walsh, CAS 


 Showdown Displays