General Sessions & Keynotes

Sunday General Session & Keynote
Monday General Session & Keynote
Tuesday General Session & Special Guests

General Session Luncheon & Keynote Address

Forging Purposeful Change

Sunday, March 25, 2018
12:15 PM

In the age of WIOA, with its emphasis on increased collaboration, regional alignment, and maximizing impacts and outcomes, workforce leaders are called to think more inclusively about the people they serve, to understand how the workplace is evolving, and continuously improve ways of communicating and connecting with business and industry.

Jennifer Brown, the keynote speaker for Sunday’s General Session Luncheon, is a diversity and inclusion expert whose work in these areas speaks directly to how workforce development can achieve this call and fuel talent in their communities. Increasing our understanding of demographics, inclusivity for specific communities of identity, generational dynamics, and the role of traditional leadership in change efforts empowers workforce development to meet the needs of job seekers, business & industry, and our communities.

Jennifer Brown

Keynote Speaker
Jennifer Brown
Founder & CEO, Jennifer Brown Consulting
Author of Inclusion: Diversity, the New Workplace & the Will to Change

Jennifer Brown is an award-winning entrepreneur, dynamic speaker and diversity and inclusion expert. She is the founder, president and CEO of Jennifer Brown Consulting (JBC), a strategic leadership and diversity consulting firm that coaches business leaders worldwide on critical issues of talent and workplace strategy. Brown is a passionate advocate for social equality who delves into the “business case for diversity” as she helps businesses foster healthier, more productive workplace cultures.

Learn more about Jennifer Brown and her work.

ChangeMaker Panel Discussion

NAWB has partnered with leading national organizations that recognize and understand the leadership role of the workforce boards and that are engaged in the issues that connect workers to employers to economic growth. Prior to the ChangeMaker Assemblies, scheduled for Sunday afternoon at 2:45 PM, senior leaders of these four national organizations will join NAWB and our keynote speaker on stage for a robust and thought-provoking discussion around the factors that are creating the need to think differently; innovative strategies workforce leaders should consider in telling their stories; strategies for building more effective partnerships; how to connect with industries undergoing significant change; and utilizing ever-changing technology to connect, communicate and train.  The panel's discussion will unpack the issues that serve as both barriers and opportunities to workforce leaders as they strive to address and become the economic engine for their community and state. 

Jennifer Brown, Founder & CEO, Jennifer Brown Consulting

Jamai Blivin, CEO, Innovate+Educate
Maria Flynn, CEO, Jobs for the Future (JFF)
Ron Painter, President & CEO, National Association of Workforce Boards
Roger Tadajewski, Executive Director, National Coalition of Certification Centers (NC3)
Rachel Unruh, Chief of Staff, National Skills Coalition

General Session & Keynote Address

Monday, March 26, 2018
8:00 AM - 10:00 AM

How can the workforce system assimilate and apply the data, statistics, and constant flow of labor market information into a story that helps us forge change in our own regional labor markets? From the profile data of 146 million U.S. workers, 3 million monthly job openings, 20,000 businesses, and 50,000 skills that can be showcased on the platform, LinkedIn has unique and valuable insight into U.S. workforce trends.

Many attendees of The Forum 2018 may have used LinkedIn professionally, or may have encouraged job seeker customers to build their profiles and networks on the platform, but have never seen LinkedIn in this way: as a resource for deep insights into hiring, skills gaps, and migration trends across the country. 

The National Association of Workforce Boards is excited to announce that Allen Blue, Co-founder of LinkedIn, will present a keynote address on Monday morning, March 26th, at The Forum 2018. Allen will provide a perspective of how business and skills needs are changing, how immediate hiring requirements can demonstrate skills gaps or economic growth, and what these trends mean for workforce organizations who are fueling talent in their communities and regions.

Blue’s keynote will set the tone for Monday’s Industry Insights sessions and main-stage panel discussions around the workforce needs of business and industry. 

Allen Blue

Keynote Speaker
Allen Blue
Vice President of Product Management & Co-founder, LinkedIn

Allen Blue is Vice President of Product Management and Co-founder of LinkedIn, the online professional network. At LinkedIn, he is responsible for LinkedIn’s overall Product Strategy. He also sponsors LinkedIn’s Work and Education products within the Economic Graph team, including the products and platforms supporting (a joint effort to close the middle skills gap in the US between LinkedIn and the Markle Foundation) and TechHire.

Learn more about Allen Blue.

Fueling Talent for the Future

How are companies adapting to a landscape where business models and systems do not yield the same bottom line results they did even just two years ago? Can business & industry make the shifts required to accommodate changes in recruiting, training, and hiring practices and maximize employee performance? What roles do technology, generational factors, and global economic issues play in supporting business growth or contributing to further evolution? This exciting panel of leaders from a cross-section of industries will discuss the key issues impacting their industry and share how they are fueling talent to prepare for the next wave of change.

Nicole Isaac, Head of U.S. Policy, LinkedIn, Washington, D.C.

Michael Bellaman, CEO, Associated Builders & Contractors
Mark Carrier, CHA, Chair, American Hotel & Lodging Association
Ellen Davis, Executive Director, National Retail Federation Foundation
Rob Gifford, Executive VP, National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation
Bill Hanvey, President & CEO, Auto Care Association
Todd Thibodeaux, CEO, CompTIA 

General Session & Special Guest Speakers

Tuesday, March 27, 2018
9:15 AM - 11:00 AM

John Hickenlooper

Special Guest Speaker
The Honorable John W. Hickenlooper
Governor of Colorado

John Hickenlooper is a lifetime entrepreneur who ran as a "dark horse" to become Mayor of Denver in 2003. When he was inaugurated Governor of Colorado in 2011, having run on his history of collaboration for community good, he became the first Denver mayor to be elected governor in 150 years. He also became the first geologist to become a governor in the history of the nation, and the first brewer since Sam Adams in 1792. He recently added “author” to his resume with the publication of his forthcoming memoir, The Opposite of Woe: My Life in Beer and Politics.

Learn more about John Hickenlooper.

Legislative Panel Discussion

Lead congressional staff from the House Committee on Education and the Workforce and the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee who are working on key workforce issues join NAWB CEO Ron Painter to share the latest news from Capitol Hill and the outlook for the remainder of the 2018 congressional session.

Ron Painter, CEO, National Association of Workforce Boards

Eunice Ikene, Workforce Policy Advisor, U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce
Allie Kimmel, Sr. Policy Advisor, U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions
Tommy Nguyen, Staff Director, U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, Subcommittee on Employment and Workplace Safety
James Redstone, Professional Staff Member, U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce

Register Now for
The Forum 2018