Creating Impact: A Preview of Keynote Talks at Simmons Leadership Conference

By Kristen Palson
February 6, 2024
Keynote Speaker Preview for Simmons Leadership Conference 2024


Get ready to challenge the status quo and redefine leadership at Simmons Leadership Conference (SLC45). Immerse yourself in an experience where impact takes center stage and change isn’t just discussed but ignited.


Change as an Opportunity: A Glimpse into SLC45

Change is the catalyst for progress. At SLC45, we embrace it as an opportunity to grow and shape a better future.

At our April 3rd women’s leadership conference, we’re bringing you an extraordinary lineup of keynote speakers who embody impactful leadership with a focus on humanity, gender diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Read on for a sneak peek into the powerful talks awaiting you at SLC45, where inspiration converges with resilience, and purpose converges with impact.

Get Inspired to Lead With Impact: Meet Our Inclusive Leadership Conference Speakers

We’ve shared what you can expect from our closing keynotes – Trevor Noah and Gloria Steinem – with our aim for their conversation is to create meaning for all around Allyship – and especially the phenomenally important strides we need to make in fostering a new era of Allyship for women.  Read more about the closing keynote: Allyship Amplified: Uniting for Change with Trevor Noah and Gloria Steinem

Headshots of Gloria Steinem, Feminist Activist and Trevor Noah Comedian & Ally

In addition to Trevor and Gloria, the exceptional mainstage speakers this year bring a unique blend of experience, expertise, and a passion for making a difference. 

Taste the Nation & Impact the World

Culinary Maven, Advocate, and Global Icon

Padma Lakshmi

Padma Lakshmi headshot

Padma Lakshmi, an Emmy-nominated food expert, television host, and bestselling author, stands at the intersection of culinary excellence and advocacy. Join Padma in a fireside chat with Simmons University President, Dr. Lynn Perry Wooten, as they delve into the profound impact of 'Taste the Nation' in shaping a more inclusive world.

In this exclusive session, Padma will share not only her culinary insights but also her journey as a fierce philanthropic advocate. From her role as an ACLU Artist Ambassador for immigrants' rights and women's rights to being appointed a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Padma's story is one of multifaceted impact and advocacy. Don't miss the opportunity to hear how she’s used her platform to make a positive impact around the globe!

Uncover Your Inner Change Enthusiast

Igniting Change Enthusiasm Worldwide

Cassandra Worthy

Cassandra Worthy headshot

Cassandra Worthy, the world's leading expert on Change Enthusiasm®, offers a fresh perspective on not just managing but growing through change. With a career spanning executive roles at Procter & Gamble and Berkshire Hathaway, Cassandra founded Change Enthusiasm Global to inspire individuals and organizations to embrace change as a catalyst for growth.

In her compelling keynote, Cassandra will share her strategy for becoming a Change Enthusiast and maximizing your impact through resilience and innovation. Join her as she provides a roadmap for transforming challenging times into personal and professional growth opportunities!

How to Have a Big Career AND a Big Life

Revolutionizing Fashion, Empowering Women

Jennifer Hyman

Jennifer Hyman headshot

Jennifer Hyman, Co-founder and CEO of Rent the Runway, has reshaped the fashion industry through her visionary approach to shared designer closets. Join her as she shares insights on balancing a successful career and a fulfilling life.

As a founder of a high-growth company, the CEO of a public company, board member of three public companies, wife, and mother of two, she’s no stranger to the delicate dance between personal and professional pursuits. Don't miss this chance to gain insights into the art of balancing a thriving career and a fulfilling life!

Think Like a CEO

From Homelessness to CEO, a Journey of Triumph

Magie Cook

Magie Cook headshot

Magie Cook, CEO of Maggie’s All-Natural Fresh Salsas and Dips, embodies the transformative power of mindset and resilience. From homelessness to a $231M business sale, her story is one of triumph over impossible odds.

In her keynote, "Think Like a CEO," Magie will share her inspiring journey and the mindset strategies that fueled her success, empowering leaders to unleash their full potential. Join her as she shares her incredible story and discover how to create a shift in mentality that allows you to achieve yours!

Signature Sessions

We’re also offering a selection of concurrent Signature Sessions at SLC45 to choose from. Dive deeper into key topics guided by renowned experts and women business leaders. These sessions are crafted to provide you with actionable insights and inspiration, empowering you to navigate challenges, foster inclusive environments, and drive meaningful change as a leader.

Simmons Leadership Conference Breakout Speaker headshots

SLC45 Signature Sessions:

  1. Dare to Educate: Impact that Inspires led by Shabana Basij-Rasikh, Co-Founder & President of the School of Leadership, Afghanistan (SOLA)
  2. Thriving with Impact: Creating a Best Self Team Culture led by Susan MacKenty Brady, CEO of Simmons University Institute for Inclusive Leadership
  3. Are You Ready? What It Takes To Make an Impact led by Audra Bohannon, Founder, Bohannon Advisory
  4. Break Free of Good Girl Brainwashing & Embrace Your Power to Lead led by Lisa Carmen Wang, Founder and Host of Bad Bitch Empire
  5. Create Impact through the Art of Active Listening led by Heather R. Younger, Founder and CEO of Employee Fanatix
  6. Inclusive Leadership In Action™ led by Dr. Gary Bailey, Assistant Dean for Community Engagement & Social Justice, College of Social Sciences, Policy & Practice, Simmons University and Elisa van Dam, Vice President, Allyship & Inclusion, Simmons University Institute for Inclusive Leadership


A Day of Inspiration Awaits You at SLC45

Join 8,500+ changemakers for a day of inspiration and high-impact learning designed to empower your leadership journey. Leave with practical tools and actionable strategies to advance your career, strengthen teams, and drive collective success in your workplace. Learn More About the Simmons Leadership Conference.

Seize the opportunity to:

  • – Gain insights from Padma Lakshmi’s multifaceted journey of global impact.
  • – Unlock the secrets to thriving through change with Cassandra Worthy.
  • – Hear Jennifer Hyman’s perspective on balancing career and life.
  • – Experience the transformative power of mindset with Magie Cook.
  • – Amplify your impact with the practical tips from any of our Signature Breakout speakers.

How to Register:

  1. Click here.
  2. Fill in the necessary details.
  3. Choose your access level.
  4. Complete the payment process and mark your calendar!

Register Now!

Be inspired and empowered to lead with impact – join us at SLC45 on April 3!