General Session Speakers
Steve Pemberton’s triumphant journey, now a major motion picture, is about defying the seemingly insurmountable odds of the path of the unchosen. A Chance in the World, drawn from his critically acclaimed memoir of the same title, recounts how Mr. Pemberton was orphaned into foster care, then abandoned and betrayed by the very individuals entrusted with his care. Yet these challenges only fueled his desire to become a man of resilience, determination, and vision. Mr. Pemberton went on to find success as a trail-blazing corporate executive, enlightened people leader, visionary youth advocate, and acclaimed speaker devoted to inspiring and helping others.
Mr. Pemberton currently serves as chief human resources officer for Globoforce, a leading provider of social recognition and continuous performance development solutions. Prior to that, he served as vice president, diversity and inclusion and global chief diversity officer at Walgreens Boots Alliance, the first global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise in the world. He was the first person in Walgreen’s 100-plus year history to hold the position of chief diversity officer. Under his leadership, the company reached record levels of performance in areas of representation, retention, employee engagement, and supplier diversity.
Erin A. Hennessy
As higher education comes under continuing scrutiny from policy makers, elected officials, and the general public, it's more important than ever that we advocate on behalf of our industry. Engaging with the media is one of the most effective ways of telling our story, and those who have the skills necessary to be confident and comfortable with the press will set themselves apart as professionals. In this session, you will learn what reporters are looking for, how to effectively share your messages, and how to avoid common pitfalls in interview settings.
Erin A. Hennessy is vice president at TVP Communications, a national public relations agency focused on higher education. Previously, she served as assistant vice president for public affairs and publishing at the American Council on Education (ACE), crafting strategic communications plans to promote and position ACE in the public sphere. Prior to joining ACE, Ms. Hennessy served as press secretary for U.S. Representative Rodney P. Frelinghuysen and spent more than five years as deputy chief of staff to two presidents of Drew University.