Our Mission:

To cultivate a network of thought leaders with a global context across community, education, non-profit, civic and private sectors – to share and learn best practices for navigating the challenges of an ever-learning, constantly-changing and always-connected 3.0 world.

Thought Leader Exchange – Speakers for 2018

Walt Ritscher

Walt Ritscher

Senior Staff Instructor at LinkedIn Learning and Lynda.com

Kevin Weiss

Kevin Weiss

VP of Growth & Strategy at Amplio Digital

Chris Castro

Chris Castro

Director of Sustainability and Co-chair of the Smart Cities initiative for
the City of Orlando

Glenn Palmiere

Glenn Palmiere

VP Business Development for MediVu

Carl Callahan

Carl Callahan

City Administrator and Director of Economic Development, City of Bradenton, FL

Dominie Garcia

Dominie Garcia

Smart Cities Program Lead at Battelle

John Osborne

John Osborne

Planning Official and Interim Deputy County Administrator for Manatee County Government, FL

Thought Leader Exchange – Past Speakers

Kaushal Chokshi

Kaushal Chokshi

President Scaale Group and Founder Cross Border Angels

Celena Aponte

Celena Aponte

Director of Strategic Initiatives, Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center

Will Rees

Dr. Will Rees

Award Winning Scientist, Engineer, Leader in National Security

Raymmar Tirado

Raymmar Tirado

Chief Disruption Officer

Ashwin Sanzgiri

Ashwin Sanzgiri

VP Scaale Group Global Operations: Capital, Sales & Advisory

Carlos Garcia

Carlos Garcia

The Godfather of Traffic – Scale.College, Scale.Fund, ScaleXPO.com

Professor Gordon Sanson

Professor Gordon Sanson

Emeritus Professor Monash University, Melbourne, Australia & Associate Learning Innovation, Saint Leo University

Patrick Gannon

Patrick Gannon

Managing Director of SaraBay Advisors

David Houle

David Houle

Futurist, Speaker & Thinker

Stan Schultes

Stan Schultes

Innovation Architect, Co-Founder Spark Growth

Jeff Johnson

Jeff Johnson

AARP, Florida State Director

Diana Shoemaker

Diana Shoemaker

Executive Director of Manatee County Habitat for Humanity

Don Hall

Don Hall

Founder and Executive Director, Transition Sarasota

Dave Gustafson

Dave Gustafson

Executive Director, Downtown Development Authority, City of Bradenton

Esther Dassanou

Esther Dassanou

Global Specialist Women’s Access to Finance at the International Finance Corporation, World Bank Group

Brad Patrick

Brad Patrick

Formerly interim Executive Director and the first General Counsel for the Wikimedia Foundation

Mike Potts

Mike Potts

CEO + Co-founder at Docio

Doug Wagner

Doug Wagner

Executive Director of Adult, Career and Technical Education, School District of Manatee County

Kunal Jain

Kunal Jain

Healthcare Technology Innovator and Entrepreneur

John Gamba

John Gamba

Serial Entrepreneur and President, MassiveU

Liz Nilsen

Liz Nilsen

Sr. Program Officer, VentureWell

Mark Sharpe

Mark Sharpe

Commissioner Mark Sharpe, Chair Hillsborough BOCC

Amy Rettig

Amy Rettig

SVP, Nielsen External Affairs Regional Community Alliances Florida Site Leadership

Mireya Eavey

Mireya Eavey

CEO, CareerEdge Funders Collaborative

Tom Phillips

Tom Phillips

Executive Director, Lakeland Area Mass Transit District (The Citrus Connection) and Polk Transit

Bob Clifford

Bob Clifford

Executive Director of the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority (TBARTA)

Ed Morrison

Ed Morrison

Strategic Doer and Staff Member at the Center for Regional Development at Purdue University

Rob Brady

Rob Brady

Founder, ROBRADY Design

Ava Parker

Ava Parker

COO, Florida Polytechnical University

Lou Oberndorf

Lou Oberndorf

Founder, Medical Education Technologies, Inc (METI)

Jane Muir

Jane Muir

Director of UF Tech Connect and Director of the Florida Innovation Hub at UF

Jeremy Vaughn

Jeremy Vaughn

Principal Consultant at feature[23]

Michael O'Donnell

Michael O'Donnell

Founder and CEO of StartupLeaves.com, and Director of the Founder Institute local chapter

Tim Cartwright

Tim Cartwright

Partner at Fifth Avenue Advisors and Managing Director of the Compass Advisory Group

David Ricketts

David S. Ricketts

Innovator, Scholar, Harvard Innovation Fellow

Heather Holst-Knudson

Heather Holst-Knudsen

CEO & Founder, HatchPad – Chairman of the Board & Founder, KidBacker Foundation for Entrepreneurship

Kevin Burgoyne

Kevin Burgoyne

President Florida Venture Forum

Ron Klein

Ron Klein

THE GRANDFATHER OF POSSIBILITIES TM, Strategic Advisor – Mentor  – Entrepreneur – Inventor – Speaker

Saru Seshadri

Saru Seshadri

COO FIBA (Florida-Israeli Business Accelerator)

Simone Peterson

Simone Peterson

MPA MBA DTM, Manatee County Neighborhood Services Specialist, Knight Cities Challenge Finalist

Glenn Wintrich

Glenn Wintrich

Innovation Leader at Dell

Neil Beckingham

Neil Beckingham

Director Sustainability The Mosaic Corporation

Tony Collins

Tony Collins

President and CEO at Blake Collins Group

Sara Hand

Sara Hand

Visionary Leader, Founder of Spark Growth and the Thought Leader Exchange

Manatee Millennial Movement

Manatee Millennial Movement

Ogden Clark, Simone Peterson, Anisley Mena

Betsy Benac

Betsy Benac

Manatee County Commissioner

Noreen Kinney

Noreen Kinney

Culinary Impresario and Celebrity Master Chef

Wayne Poston

Wayne Poston

Mayor, City of Bradenton, FL

Peter Kageyama

Peter Kageyama

Community Development Consultant and Grassroots Engagement Strategist

Dr. Surya Raghu

Dr. Surya Raghu

Founder & President – ETCube International/Advanced Fluidics

Andi Watson

Andi Watson

Development Director at Just for Girls

Penny Parks

Penny Parks

President at Links Financial

Virginia Orenstein

Virginia Orenstein

Owner and CFO at Suncoast Digital Press

Rich Arter

Rich Arter

Former Manufacturing Investor Relations, Marketing and Business Development

Janyce Fadden

Janyce Fadden

Executive-in-Residence, College of Business at the University of North Alabama

Mike Magill

Mike Magill

National Sales Director, Ekso Bionics

Howard Rutherford

Howard Rutherford

Director of Development at University of South Florida Foundation and College of Marine Science

Kathryn Starkey

Kathryn Starkey

County Commissioner, Pasco County, FL

Michael van Butsel

Michael van Butsel

Project Executive of DPR Construction and Business Co-chair of the Tampa Bay Chapter, BioFlorida

Tammie Nemecek

Tammie Nemecek

Executive Director, GrowFL

Jesse Biter

Jesse Biter

President/CEO of Biter Enterprises, LLC and Board of Directors Enterprise Florida

Stuart Rogel

Stuart Rogel

President and CEO, Tampa Bay Partnership

Anand Pallegar

Anand Pallegar

Founder of atLarge, Inc.

Valerie McDevitt

Valerie McDevitt

Assistant Vice President at the University of South Florida Division of Patents and Licensing

Marvin Scaff

Marvin Scaff

Software Entrepreneur and Former Founder, CEO, CTO and EIR for a venture capital fund

Laurence Liebson

Laurence Liebson

Investor and Seasoned Technology CEO

Brian Caswell

Brian Caswell

Founder and President of the Economic Development Investment Fund (EDIF)

Frank Dalton

Frank Dalton

Founder of Fulcrum Equity Partners

Jorge Varela

Jorge Varela

Entrepreneur, Investor, Economic Development Advisor

Gail Gillian-Bain

Gail Gillian-Bain

President, Food Business Incubation International (FBII)

Peter Righi

Peter Righi

Global Director – Center for Entrepreneurship & Executive Development (CEED)

Bonny Moellenbrock

Bonny Moellenbrock

Executive Director Investors’ Circle

Davis Graham

Davis Graham

Educational Technology Consultant Scheller Teacher Education Program (Prof. Eric Klopfer, Director) MIT

Lupe Garcia

Lupe Garcia

Founder: ScaleXpo.com, Sexxysuccess.com

Jeff Borden

Jeff Borden

Vice President St. Leo University Learning Innovation Lab

Vic Ahmed

Vic Ahmed

Founder and CEO Innovation Pavilion

Jonathan Fleece

Jonathan Fleece

Health Care Attorney, Adviser, Professional Speaker

Bob Harrigan

Bob Harrigan

Chief Meteorologist WWSB ABC 7

Dave Herbert

Dave Herbert

Chief Engineer, Sun Hydraulics Corp.

Nan Summers

Nan Summers

Grants Coordinator at Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources

Bryan Kamm

Bryan Kamm

Executive Director of Industry Certification Training Centers (ICTC)

Allan H. Weis

Allan H. Weis

Internet Pioneer, Author, Inventor, Engineer and Philanthropist

John Annis

John Annis

Senior Vice President of Community Investment at the Community Foundation of Sarasota County

Jim Stikeleather

Jim Stikeleather

Chief Innovation Officer and Executive Strategist for Dell Services

Tom O'Neal

Tom O'Neal

Associate VP at University of Central Florida

Sally Dionne

Sally Dionne

District Director at Congressman Vern Buchanan

Matthew Falls

Matthew Falls

Director of National Outreach, BusinessUSA, US Department of Commerce

Daniel James Scott

Daniel James Scott

Executive Director at Tampa Bay Tech

Rena Cotsones

Rena Cotsones

Associate Vice President of Engagement and Innovation Partnerships, Northern Illinois University

Bevan Gray-Rogel

Bevan Gray-Rogel

President and founder of Encore Tampa Bay

Melodie Hillier

Melodie Hillier

Event and Program Manager, TechStart Tampa Bay

Jamie Humphrey

Jamie Humphrey

Former COO of Roskamp Institute – Science Chair Bio Florida

Patrick Wright

Patrick Wright

President, The Payton Wright Foundation

Tracy Ingram

Tracy Ingram

CEO, Intention Technology

Christine Meeker-Lange

Christine Meeker-Lange

Special Assistant to the President at Ringling College of Art and Design

Johnette Isham

Johnette Isham

Executive Director, Realize Bradenton

Wes Roberts

Wes Roberts

Executive Publisher and Vice President of SRQ Media Group

Chris Morton

Chris Morton

Co-founder and CEO of NanoPhotonica

Wilfredo Fernandez

Wilfredo Fernandez

CEO/Co-Founder of The LAB Miami

Ron Hollis

Ron Hollis

Founder and Former President & CEO of Quickparts.com

Robert Faber

Robert Faber

Associate, Ballast Point Ventures

John Clark

John Clark

New World Angels