Past Speakers

Past Speakers

2019
June 28

Gail K. Boudreaux, Mary N. Dillon, & Christine A. Leahy

The Chicago Network’s 30th annual Women in The Forefront Luncheon featured three speakers who gave aspiring women leaders and accomplished women leaders alike advice and insight in a conversational, unmoderated format.

Gail K. Boudreaux—President and Chief Executive Officer, Anthem, Inc.:

Since joining Anthem in 2017, Gail Boudreaux has been focused on improving lives, simplifying health care and being the most innovative, valuable and inclusive health care partner. Named #12 on Forbes World’s Most Powerful Women 2018 list, Gail has been a member of The Chicago Network since 2004.

Mary N. Dillon—Chief Executive Officer, Ulta Beauty:

As CEO of Ulta Beauty since 2013, Mary Dillon and her team have doubled the company’s revenues and vaulted Ulta Beauty to the Fortune 500. She leads through the lens of culture and brings her passion for leveraging consumer insights and the perspectives of her diverse team to build brand engagement. In 2018, Mary was named Fortune’s #9 Business Person of the Year. She has been a member of The Chicago Network since 2010.

Christine A. Leahy—Chief Executive Officer, CDW:

Chris is a 17-year veteran of CDW, a Fortune 200 company, and assumed the CEO role in January 2019. CDW advises, deploys, and manages IT solutions to help organizations achieve their goals and accelerate success through technology. CDW benefits from strong female leadership across its executive team (40% female) and board of directors (30% female). Chris has been a member of The Chicago Network since 2008.

2018
April 20

Jane Pauley

Jane Pauley

The Chicago Network featured Jane Pauley as the keynote speaker at the 29th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on April 20, 2018. Jane was in conversation with her former colleague, Carol Marin, Political Editor, NBC5 Chicago and Director, DePaul University Center for Journalism Integrity and Excellence, College of Communication.

2017
March 31

Valerie Jarrett

Valerie Jarrett

At the 28th annual luncheon held on March 31, 2017, Valerie Jarrett, former Senior Advisor to President Barack Obama, spoke in conversation with Susan Sher, Senior Advisor to the President of the University of Chicago.

2016
April 15

Mellody Hobson

Mellody Hobson

On April 15, 2016, Ariel Investments President Mellody Hobson spoke with Kellogg School of Management Dean Sally Blount. The theme of taking control – of your career path, your financial future, and diversity in the workplace – was central to a wide-ranging conversation between the two members of The Chicago Network.

2015
April 13

Maurice Lévy

On April 13, 2015, The Chicago Network featured Maurice Lévy, Chairman & CEO of media powerhouse Publicis Groupe in conversation with Dana Anderson, Chief Marketing Officer of Mondelēz International. They discussed leading by example – the number of women in leadership positions will not materially change without commitment from management at the top, who are often men.

2014
April 28

Arianna Huffington

On Monday, April 28th, Arianna Huffington urged the crowd that it was time to redefine the meaning of success – a metric that was “designed by men.” How to define success was the central theme of the luncheon.

2013
April 19

Ilene Gordon

Ilene Gordon, Chairman, President and CEO of Ingredion Incorporated (formerly Corn Products International) speaks to The Chicago Network and guests at the Women in the Forefront Luncheon on April 19, 2013.

2012
April 27

Irene Rosenfeld

Chairman and CEO of Kraft Foods, Inc. Irene Rosenfeld speaks to guests of The Chicago Network’s 23rd WIFL event on work-life harmony and her tips to the top on April 27, 2012.

2011
April 7

Diane Sawyer

ABC World News Anchor Diane Sawyer in conversation with ABC-7 Chicago co-anchor Kathy Brock at The Chicago Network’s WIFL event on April 7, 2011.

2010
April 16

Ann Moore

Ann Moore

Ann S. Moore, Chairman and CEO of Time Inc., gives the keynote speech at The Chicago Network’s 21st Women in the Forefront Luncheon on April 16, 2010.

2009
April 21

Padmasree Warrior

Padmasree Warrior

Chief Technology Officer of Cisco Systems, Padmasree Warrior, is the keynote speaker at The Chicago Network’s 20th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on April 21, 2009.

2008
April 10

Edie Weiner

Edie Weiner

Edie Weiner, President of Weiner, Edrich, Browin, Inc., is the keynote speaker at The Chicago Network’s 19th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on April 10, 2008.

2007
April 11

Brenda C. Barnes

Brenda C. Barnes

Sara Lee Corporation Chairman and CEO Brenda Barnes gives the keynote address at The Chicago Network’s 18th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on April 11, 2007.

2006
April 20

Sheli Z. Rosenberg

Sheli Z. Rosenberg

The Chicago Network Founder, Sheli Rosenberg, headlines the 17th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on April 20, 2006.

2005
April 8

Sherry Lansing

Sherry Lansing

Sherry Lansing, Chairman of the Motion Picture Group of Paramount Pictures, in conversation with Chicago journalist Carol Marin, headlines The Chicago Network’s 16th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on April 8, 2005.

2004
May 11

Ann Marie Lipinski

Ann Marie Lipinski

Senior Vice President and Editor for the Chicago Tribune, Ann Marie Lipinski, speaks to guests at The Chicago Network’s 15th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on May 11, 2004.

2003
April 30

Indra Nooyi

Indra Nooyi

President and CFO of PepsiCo., Indra Nooyi, headlines The Chicago Network’s 14th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on April 30, 2003.

2002
May 7

Betsy Holden

Betsy Holden

Betsy Holden, Co-CEO of Kraft Foods Inc. and President & CEO of Kraft Foods North America, is the keynote speaker at The Chicago Network’s 13th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on May 7, 2002.

2001
June 6

The Minow Sisters

The Minow Sisters

Martha Minow, Professor at Harvard Law School, Mary Minow, attorney and adjunct professor at San Jose University Library of Information Science, and Nell Minow, editor of thecorporatelibrary.com sit on a panel moderated by Linda Wertheimer, Senior Host for WBEZ’s show, All Things Considered, for The Chicago Network’s 12th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on June 6, 2001.

2000
May 5

Marjorie Scardino

Marjorie Scardino

Pearson plc. Chief Executive Marjorie Scardino gives the keynote speech at The Chicago Network’s 11th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on May 5, 2000.

1999
June 10

Dee Dee Myers

Dee Dee Myers

Former White House Press Secretary, Dee Dee Myers, speaks at The Chicago Network’s 10th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on June 10, 1999.

1998
June 18

Ann Fudge

Ann Fudge

Ann Fudge, Executive Vice President Kraft Foods, Inc. and President of Maxwell House and Post Division, is the keynote speaker for the 9th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on June 18, 1998.

1997
May 1

Kathleen Brown

Kathleen Brown

Former California State Treasurer and Executive Vice President of Bank of America, Kathleen Brown, gives the keynote speech for the 8th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on May 1, 1997.

1996
February 28

Adele Smith Simmons

Adele Smith Simmons

Adele Smith Simmons, President of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, addresses The Chicago Network and guests at the 7th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on February 28, 1996.

1995
May 23

Charlotte Beers

Charlotte Beers

Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide CEO, Charlotte Beers, headlines The Chicago Network’s 6th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on May 23, 1995.

1994
March 16

Kathy Kolbe

Kathy Kolbe

Kathy Kolbe, author of The Conative Connection and Pure Instinct: Business’ Untapped Resource, headlines The Chicago Network’s 5th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on March 16, 1994.

1992
October 13

Patricia Aburdene and John Naisbitt

Authors and futurists, Patricia Aburdene and John Naisbitt, addressed The Chicago Network members and guests at the 4th Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on October 13, 1992.

1991
October 2

Gloria Steinem

Gloria Steinem

Renowned feminist activist Gloria Steinem was the keynote speaker at The Chicago Network’s 3rd Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on October 2, 1991.

1990
June 25

Dr. June Reinisch

Dr. June Reinisch

Dr. June Reinisch, Director of The Kinsey Institute for Research on Sex, Gender and Reproduction, addressed The Chicago Network at the 2nd Annual Women in the Forefront Luncheon on June 25, 1990.

1989
February 22

Rosabeth Moss Kanter

Rosabeth Moss Kanter

Rosabeth Moss Kanter, Professor of Harvard Business School gives the first keynote address to The Chicago Network in 1989 in what would become the start of many Women in the Forefront Luncheons.

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