Takeo Nishitani has been acknowledged as one of Japan’s most articulate communications “bridges” and has served as a link between foreign companies and government agencies in Japan for more than forty years. Nishitani served as Chairman of Weber Shandwick Japan from 2011-2022. He provides strategic counsel to major clients in utilities, healthcare, manufacturing, financial and consumer/entertainment organizations, and public institutions. His broad experience includes consulting to multinational companies on their international strategies, on partnerships with Japanese companies, media relations, industrial relations, international trade issues and government affairs, and crisis management planning and execution. He is the author of Public Affairs Strategy, published by Toyo Keizai and the co-author of Future Managers by the Japan Productivity Center. He supervised the Japanese edition of Corporate Reputation published by Ittousha.
Michael helps enterprises solve complex problems through expert geopolitical risk analysis; counter-disinformation, strategic, contingency, and crisis communications campaigns; and team leadership in high-stakes, high-visibility environments. One of the very few former U.S. officials with recent, senior-level service inside China, Michael led the State Department’s largest overseas communications shop in Beijing. With over two decades of international experience as a diplomat and naval officer, Michael helps clients navigate ever-changing global conditions, including the interplay of the interagency, Capitol Hill, civil society, and the media. He is a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council and the author of two children’s books.
Coalition for Rainforest Nations Executive Director Kevin Conrad served as Papa New Guinea’s Special Envoy for Environment and Climate Change from 2005 to 2014. A leader of global efforts to quantify the value of tropical forests, he spearheaded the United Nations’ REDD (“Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in developing countries”) initiative and the establishment of the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility at the World Bank.
Duke University Global Health Institute Founding Director Dr. Michael Merson is the former director of the World Health Organization (WHO) programs on diarrheal diseases and acute respiratory infections, the WHO’s Global Program on AIDS and Yale University’s Center for Interdisciplinary Research on AIDS.
Former senior White House policy advisor, ex-New Jersey State Investment Council Chair and current Boston Provident Managing Partner Orin Kramer has led and served on numerous state commissions and non-profit boards, published widely on the financial services industry and taught at Columbia Law School.
S&P Global Market Intelligence Research, Advisory and Specialty Solutions Head Sarah Cottle oversees a suite of content and capabilities that leverage proprietary data and insights to conduct rigorous analysis and risk management of global sectors and trends across sustainability, supply chain and financial services.
Paul is the co-founded and Chief Creative Officer at The Conduit, a community committed to harnessing creativity and entrepreneurship to drive social change. His extensive career spans a number of significant leadership roles — he formerly stood as Executive Secretary of South Africa’s post-apartheid Truth & Reconciliation Commission as well as co-founding the International Center for Transitional Justice.
Michael consults with organizations leveraging digital technologies to enhance their communications, marketing, efficiency and profitability. As founder for Mindful Ventures, he also advises IAB Tech Lab, a non-profit consortium developing technology and standards to enable growth and trust in the digital media ecosystem.
Claire brings us a wealth of valuable experience as a globally renowned expert on misinformation, verification and “malinformation” — meaning genuine information shared with the intent to cause harm. She’s the co-founder and co-director of the Information Futures Lab and professor of the practice at Brown University’s School of Public Health.
Don has an impressive track record of recruiting and placing CCOs at major organizations and global brands. Former Korn Ferry International EVP for Corporate Affairs, he now consults with clients to optimize organizational structure, identify and develop talent, and implement best practices for communications.