Speakers

Karen Hough
Founder & CEO, ImprovEdge
Keynote: Go With It: Embrace the Unexpected to Drive Change
Breakout: Managing Tough Conversations: Positive, Proactive Solutions
Karen Hough is the Founder & CEO of ImprovEdge, a #1 Amazon bestselling author, contributor to the Huffington Post and recipient of the Silver Stevie International Award for Most Innovative Company of the Year 2012 as well as the Athena PowerLink Award for outstanding woman-owned business and the Outstanding Women award from the WNBA’s Indiana Fever. Karen’s second award-winning book, “Be the Best Bad Presenter Ever” was published by Berrett-Koehler in 2014. Her new book on improvisation in change management and innovation, “Go with It: Embrace the Unexpected to Drive Change,” will be published in October 2017 by the Association for Talent Development.
A graduate of Yale University, Karen’s first life was as a professional improviser and actor. She trained with Chicago’s Second City, did over 100 theatrical productions, and was featured in radio, TV and film. She lived a second life as a successful executive in network engineering. Finally, she became an entrepreneur. She is a Certified Speaking Professional and has presented to audiences of thousands in the US and internationally.
ImprovEdge is a government certified Women’s Business Enterprise and helps companies transform behavior through interactive training. Their client list includes NBCUniversal, ESPN, JPMorgan Chase, Coach, Cardinal Health, Becton Dickinson and AstraZeneca to name a few.

Dolores Kruchten
President, Eastman Business Park
Negotiation Skills Training
Dolores Kruchten is President, Eastman Business Park Division (EBPD) and Corporate Real Estate. EBPD is 1200 acre Manufacturing Park, with over 100 operating companies and over 6500 people. She is responsible for developing the park as a leading innovation manufacturing hub of the country. Dolores previously worked for Kodak Alaris, LLC as founding board member and President of the Information Management business. The business enabled companies to get the right information to the right place and people to maximize the value of the information.
In addition to her business responsibilities, Dolores is engaged in local non-profit organizations as a Director of United Way of Rochester and the Monroe Community College Foundation.
Dolores is a graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology, Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering and received the Distinguished Alumni from RIT in 2015 along with several other industry awards for business management.

Jeanette Batiste-Harrison
Co-Founder & Partner, Batiste Leadership
From Buddy to Boss
Jeanette is a co-founder and partner at Batiste Leadership. She is passionate about helping individuals and organizations reach their full potential. She incorporates coaching with world-class research and practical leadership principles to assist clients in making lasting change.
Jeanette completed her Master’s Degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science in Environment and Development. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a B.S. in Environmental Science and a B.A. in Political Science. She proudly completed her Leadership Coaching Certification in 2017 and her 500-hour Yoga Teacher Trainer Certification in 2015.
She held varying management and leadership roles at Foodlink over 6 years, and ultimately served as the Co-Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer. In this capacity, she oversaw the sourcing and distribution of over 18 million pounds of food per year to over 500 partner organization across 10 counties in upstate NY. She left her role at Foodlink in 2015 to join her dad in launching Batiste.

Donna Shultz
President & CEO, Mirror Show Management
Panelist, Building an Inspiring Culture
When Donna started Mirror Show Management (MSM) 24 years ago, she was determined to “give exhibit managers the best experience they’ve ever had working with a tradeshow company.”
And she believed that the only way to accomplish this would be to assemble a team of people who cared passionately about clients and were more interested in giving than taking.
So she built her company squarely upon key core values, hiring people as much for their character as their skills.
MSM has gone on to become one of the fastest-growing privately held companies in upstate New York, fueled by a host of Fortune 500 clients that includes Cisco, PepsiCo, Johnson & Johnson and Capital One.
But Donna’s proudest achievement is the fact that MSM has received a Top Work Places designation four years in a row—which means that employees love working at MSM as much as she does.

Fran Weisberg
CEO, United Way of Greater Rochester
Fran Weisberg joined United Way of Greater Rochester as President & CEO in May 2015. Under her leadership the organization has millions of dollars to support its mission of uniting the good will and resources of the Greater Rochester community so that everyone can thrive.
Fran previously served as Executive Director of Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency from 2006 to 2013. Along with her extensive leadership duties professionally, she has made a point to stay active in the community by participating in numerous volunteer efforts including the Monroe County Medical Society Foundation Board and other community projects and initiatives. Fran graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Rochester.

Sandra Doorley
District Attorney, Monroe County
Elected in 2011, Sandra Doorley is the first female District Attorney in Monroe County history. In 2015, Doorley was re-elected to her second four year term. Prior to assuming office, Doorley served the District Attorney’s Office with distinction for nearly twenty years, successfully prosecuting thousands of high profile criminal cases and compiling an impressive record of victories. After joining the office in 1992, Sandra Doorley served under two consecutive administrations in the following capacities:

  • Chief of the Felony DWI Bureau (2004-2005)
  • Deputy Chief of the Major Felony Bureau (2005-2008)
  • Second Assistant District Attorney (2008)
  • First Assistant District Attorney (2008-2011)
  • Homicide Bureau Chief (2008-2011)

In January 2011, Sandra Doorley was honored by the New York State District Attorney’s Association with the Robert M. Morgenthau Award in recognition for her “professional accomplishments, honesty, integrity and commitment to the fair and ethical administration of justice. In July of 2015, at the District Attorney’s Association of the State of New York Summer Conference, The New York State Prosecutor’s Training Institute awarded Sandra Doorley the Prosecutor of the Year Award. At the same conference, Sandra Doorley was sworn in as 3rd Vice-President of DAASNY, placing her in line to be President in July of 2018. Sandra Doorley is a graduate of the Syracuse University School of Law and performed her undergraduate studies at the University at Albany. 

Lauren Dixon
CEO, Dixon Schwabl
As chief executive officer of Dixon Schwabl (DS), Lauren oversees a full-service marketing communications firm with 125 employees and billings in excess of $78 million. She has full responsibility for agency performance, including bottom-line factors, such as long-range strategic planning and company vision and culture. Lauren builds and provides day-to-day general and strategic oversight of a growing roster of more than 200 clients.
The agency’s culture and leadership have been recognized with national awards, including being named one of the Best Small Companies to Work for in America for 15 consecutive years, including ranking No. 1 twice. In addition, Dixon Schwabl was ranked the No. 1 Marketing Firm to Work for in America by the consulting firm Great Place to Work® and Fortune magazine in 2016.
Inc. Magazine and Winning Workplaces honored Dixon Schwabl with the 2010 Top Small Company Workplace Award, and that same year PR News named Dixon Schwabl one of the Top Places to Work in PR — a national award the agency won again in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2016.
In 2013, Lauren and her husband, Mike Schwabl, were inducted into the Rochester Business Hall of Fame. In 2001, Lauren was named Rochester’s Small Business Person of the Year.

Naomi Silver
CEO, Rochester Red Wings
Naomi has been involved with the Red Wings her entire life. The Silver family has been devoted to Rochester Community Baseball for over half a century and Naomi has taken an active role for over three decades, working her way up the corporate ladder.  She is the daughter of Morrie and Anna Silver.  Morrie saved baseball in Rochester, and it is because of the Silver’s devotion to the community that Rochester’s franchise is among the most revered, respected and the longest continuously operating franchise in all of baseball.  Naomi honed her business skills, assuming more responsibility and taking over different aspects of the business, becoming the country’s first and only female at the helm of a professional Minor League baseball franchise.  As president and CEO of the organization, she has overseen the Red Wings most successful period in its history.
A busy mother to Morrie (named for his Grandfather) and Desiree, Naomi also believes strongly in giving back to her community, serving many local not for profits; she is deeply involved with the Boys and Girls Club, United Way, Monroe Community College, Hillel Community Day School, and Chaired the NYS Special Olympics Summer Games in addition to other philanthropic causes in the Rochester area. Naomi also serves on the First Niagara Advisory Council and the Mayor’s Advisory Council. Her national and community awards and recognition’s received are vast and telling of her devotion to her profession and her community.