Foremost Forums

What's happening in leadership events taking place in December—and conference planners looking for speakers.

By Terry Catchpole, Executive Chairman of the Catchpole Corporation executive visibility strategy consultancy. Visit

December is here and that can only mean one thing—happy holidays from everyone at Catchpole!

Foremost forums upcoming

Wall Street Journal CEO Council Annual Meeting (December 1 – 2; Washington, DC). Event is an exclusive gathering of chief executives of global businesses personally invited by WSJ editors to join the body and meet annually in Washington, DC with a goal to "develop a tangible, ranked list of priorities in the areas that are most important to the strength of business and the economy." In addition to participation in the Annual Meeting, membership includes participation in private events hosted throughout the year in different US cities.

CEO2CEO Leadership Summit (December 4; New York). Event examines the challenges faced by CEOs, specifically in relation to globalization, the changing role of the CEO, and transforming culture for uncertainty ahead. Event is considered a top executive networking event for chairs and CEOs of US companies, primarily those with $500 million or more in annual revenues. Program examines topics such as global competitiveness; business-to-business models; technological agility; and alliances and partnerships.

Financial Times Innovate America (December 9; New York). Event "will examine the macro issue of innovating in a global digital-centric world, as well as deep diving inside the company to understand how to structure a company in a way that allows for both innovation and for failure." Representative topics include: Planning ahead for disruptions rather than reacting to them; how to get a board to invest in innovation; restructuring for innovation; and using data to drive innovations forward.

Responsible Investor (RI) Americas (December 9 – 10; New York). Event brings together asset managers and owners, and investment advisors for "targeted, practical debate on pertinent themes of sustainable and responsible investment specific to the United States." Representative topics include: The intersection of sustainability reporting and corporate governance initiatives; reducing carbon in investment portfolios; and opportunities in green technology, water, and renewables.

Noteworthy conferences beginning agenda planning this month

MIT will begin agenda development for its Energy Conference being held February 27 – 28, 2015 in Boston. Event brings together "current and future leaders in energy technology, policy and business" to "deliver critical knowledge and independent analysis on emerging trends in energy technologies, policies, and markets." Representative topics include: Energy in emerging markets; managing the shale gas revolution; water limitations in low-carbon electricity generation; and grid-scale energy storage – overcoming barriers to widespread adoption. 2014 theme: "Defining Challenges and Advancing Solutions."

International Economic Forum of the Americas will begin developing the agenda for its Conference of Montreal scheduled for June 8 – 11, 2015 in Montreal. Event is self-described as being "committed to heightening knowledge and awareness of the major issues concerning economic globalization, with a particular emphasis on the relations between the Americas and other continents." Representative topics include: Challenges facing the government and the private sector in longevity risk management; global competitiveness – the role of innovation and productivity; and international mobility – diversity as an engine of innovation and productivity. 2015 theme: "Building a Balanced Economy."

Conference Board will begin solidifying the agenda for its Women's Leadership Conference taking place June 10 – 11, 2015 in New York. Event focuses on the role of decision makers in promoting opportunities for the advancement of women in the workplace, and how the implementation of successful programs can enhance employee motivation and result in better business performance. Program addresses topics such as strategies for retaining women holding senior positions; the impact of mentoring programs on women's advancement within organizations; and the barriers facing women in the IT industry. 2014 theme: "Creating the Future by Re-Creating the Workplace."

Tech Connect will begin agenda development for its Cleantech Conference being held June 14 – 17, 2015 in National Harbor, MD. Event is self-described as "a multi-disciplinary and multi-sector conference addressing advancements in traditional technologies, emerging technologies and clean business practices applied towards a more sustainable future," with a mission to "bring together the entire Clean Technology ecosystem with the goal of accelerating the flow of technologies from development to implementation." Representative topics include: Understanding bacteria growth in restaurant beverage handling; emerging alternative carbon sequestration technologies; and fabrication and testing of a miniaturised water quality monitoring pH and conductivity sensors.

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