Innovation 2020: Full Agenda


Thursday, July 23, 2020

1:00 p.m.


Introduction by: Ann Barlow, Watermark Board Chair; Hillary Weingast, Vice President of Inclusion and Diversity, Juniper Networks

1:15 p.m.

Live Panel: Designing the Future of Work

From the pandemic-induced shift to remote work and the economic crisis that has hit service industries especially hard, to the calls for corporate social justice in support of the Black community, companies and organizations globally are experiencing profound changes. What should we take away from this period? In this panel of leaders, change-makers and researchers, Airbnb's Head of Global Diversity and Belonging Melissa Thomas-Hunt, diversity and inclusion consultant Lily Zheng, and MIT Sloan School of Business professor and researcher Erin Kelly join Workday Chief Diversity Officer Carin Taylor for a far-reaching discussion of what they've learned, and challenge participants to redesign workplaces that support everyone's humanity

Speaker(s): Melissa C. Thomas-Hunt; Erin L. Kelly; Lily Zheng | Moderator: Carin Taylor

Introduction by: Peggy Northrop, Watermark CEO

2:00 p.m.

Workshop Track: Designing the Future of Work

Continue the discussion on Designing the Future of Work with participants from a variety of industries and roles. These intimate breakouts are facilitated by Watermark coaches, team, Board Members, facilitators and professionals.

Facilitators: Elizabeth Bachman | Petra Chequer | Eva Cordon-Wells | Katherine Fordon | Bindu Garapaty | Kerrie Halmi | Barbara Mark | Amita Mehta | Joie Seldon | Kim Steppe | Leigh Wasson | Cheryl Williams

2:30 p.m.

INTERACTIVE KEYNOTE: Re-designing the Workplace through The Medici Effect

Learn to build speed, performance, and innovative thinking into your teams with Medici Renaissance™, a powerful, first-of-its-kind change management approach.

There is a revolution happening in the world of management that is being driven by an era of constant change and the rising importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Most organizations recognize that the world outside them is changing faster than they are, yet only a few realize that the key to this critical challenge is building high-performing, diverse and inclusive teams. In this talk, Frans Johansson will share how his firm, The Medici Group, has codified its powerful approach into a revolutionary service called Renaissance. Participants will learn the principles that enable Renaissance to drive newfound levels of success for teams and how they can create The Medici Effect within their own teams. Lastly, Frans will share powerful case studies showcasing the need for a team-based approach to organizational strategy along with insights on what drives of team performance and why DEI is an essential component of the team journey.

Speaker: Frans Johansson

3:30 p.m.

Daily Inspirational Moment with Leslé Honoré

Following a recap of the day's takeaways with Watermark CEO Peggy Northrop, an artist who will focus on helping everyone find their voices to create change in our world

Speakers: Leslé Honoré; Peggy Northrop

Friday, July 24, 2020

12:00 p.m.


Introduction by: Mary Ann Bianco, Board Co-Chair, Watermark

12:05 p.m.

INTERACTIVE KEYNOTE: Visual Leadership, Picturing Clarity in a Time of Uncertainty

We are navigating in a complex environment, with a distributed workforce that places us in a time of continual innovation and disruption. Leaders can tap into the innate power of visual to clarify communication, guide consensus, and maintain focus. In this hands-on workshop, Founding CEO of ImageThink, Nora Herting, will guide you in creating a visual strategy that will align your team under one purpose, one vision. This tool will help chart a clear path to action as we communicate, collaborate and lead during this time of remote working.

*Please note: When attending this session, please have a pen and paper, or other writing implements on hand, as Nora will be leading you through drawing exercises.

Speaker: Nora Herting

1:05 p.m.


Fireside Keynote with Shannon Watts and Julius Thibodeaux, in conversation with Jessica Aguirre

One moment. One experience. One reaction. A definition of movement is "an act of changing position." For many in our society, there is opportunity at this very moment to leverage innovation to assume leadership, (re)build infrastructures, and create systemic change. This intimate keynote conversation with Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action and author of Fight Like a Mother,  and Julius Thibodeaux, violence disrupter and Strategy Program Manager for Advance Peace Sacramento, moderated by Emmy-award winning news anchor Jessica Aguirre, encourages us to not be a bystander — at work or in society  and let the moments we are experiencing become our own movement of innovation.

Speakers: Shannon Watts; Julius Thibodeaux | Moderator: Jessica Aguirre

2:00 p.m.

Memorial Tribute to Leila Janah

In 2018, Watermark's Innovation Conference featured innovator, entrepreneur and humanitarian Leila Janah. Sadly, she passed away at the beginning of 2020, after a brave battle with epithelioid sarcoma, a rare form of cancer. She was 37 years old. Leila spearheaded a global impact sourcing movement and was a champion for environmental sustainability and ending global poverty. After encountering Nilotica, an heirloom shea varietal, in Northern Uganda, Leila founded LXMI and built an innovative and empowering approach to creating fair-wage jobs and restoring the planet at the same time. She was also the founder and CEO of two other organizations that shared the mission to “Give Work”: Samasource, a global technology leader in training data annotation and machine learning validation; and Samaschool, a U.S. based non-profit focused on reskilling for the new economy. She was recognized as a thought leader in tech + social impact, wrote a best-selling book, Give Work, about her journey, and was passionate about conserving the world’s remaining rare plants. Throughout her well-lived life, she helped to lift over 50,000 people out of poverty in India and East Africa through her Give Work model. Leila’s vision and revolutionary approach to building business with a soul lives on through her family, teams, businesses, and communities.

Speaker: Anna-Maja Björkenvall

2:30 p.m

Daily Inspirational Moment with Robert Moses' Kin

Watermark's CEO Peggy Northrop will share takeaways from speakers and presenters and introduce an artist whose work aligns with redesigning the future to be more inclusive and hopeful.

Speaker: Robert Moses; Peggy Northrop

3:00 p.m.

Networking Mixer

Watermark's Networking Mixer is an hour of opportunity to make real connections and where the most valuable ideas from the conference arise. Meet other attendees, share your hopes for the future of the workplace and society, and create your own plan of accountability.

Please note: These breakouts are not recorded and will be capped at 15 attendees per room

Many Thanks to Our Sponsors

Presenting Sponsor

Supporting Sponsors

The health and safety for the members and sponsors of our Watermark community are our priority. With the information provided by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), local counties, and health authorities, we are currently converting our conferences to an online and virtual model. We are actively exploring new ways to bring the important connection experience to you digitally and thank you for your patience and understanding as we all navigate this together. We urge everyone to follow the guidelines and protocols put forth by public health officials.