Speaker Bios

Jay Acunzo

Keynote: Be The Exception

Jay Acunzo is an award-winning podcaster, dynamic keynote speaker, and a guy bothered by conventional thinking. Working as a digital media strategist at Google convinced him that the tried-and-true often leads to stale work. As head of content at HubSpot, he developed a passion to see marketing as a craft-driven profession. Now, as the host of the audio documentary series Unthinkable, Jay spends each week telling the stories of people and companies who break from the convention to do exceptional things.

Over the past decade, he’s built content strategies from scratch for startups, produced attention-grabbing series for publishers and challenger brands, and even scaled a venture capital firm through narrative podcasting. His work has been cited in courses at Harvard Business School, by writers at the Washington Post, Fast Company, and Forbes, and by investors on TV’s Shark Tank.

Today, Jay hosts shows and works with teams who aspire to be the exceptions to all the noise in their niche.

David Bell

Keynote: Don’t Sell Your Location Just Yet

A graduate of Stanford University and marketing professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, David is an award-winning teacher and researcher. His studies focus on how we use the Internet and related technologies to search, shop and sell – a subject he delves deep into in his bestselling book – “Location is (Still) Everything” (New Harvest, July 2014), which was translated and published in Brazil (2016) and China (2017).

David developed Wharton’s first MBA course on digital marketing and e-commerce, and is Founding Academic Director for Digital Marketing Strategies for the Digital Economy at Wharton Executive Education. He is an investor in several new economy companies including Bonobos (acquired by Walmart), Diapers.com (acquired by Amazon), Harry’s, Jet.com (acquired by Walmart), and Warby Parker, among many others.

His academic articles are published in all major marketing journals – Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Marketing, Marketing Science, Management Science – and his research has been recognized with the Frank M. Bass Outstanding Dissertation Award, three John D.C. Little Best Paper Finalist awards, two INFORMS Marketing Science Long-Term Impact Finalist Awards, and First Place Award in the 2014 Production and Operations Management Society Applied Research Challenge.

A New Zealand citizen, David received his PhD from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business.

Heidi Grant

Keynote: The Get Better Mindset

Motivational psychologist Dr. Heidi Grant has a goal: to help people and organizations achieve theirs. And with simple strategies rooted in scientific research, that’s exactly what she does, empowering organizational leaders with proven tools for maximizing commitment, resisting distraction, devising effective strategic plans, seizing opportunities to act, and persisting in the face of setbacks or challenges.

A provocative speaker and master motivator, Dr. Grant offers practical and immediately actionable strategies that actually increase the chances of successfully meeting business and personal goals. By emphasizing things successful people do consistently and effectively, Grant shows organizations and their employees a clear path to accomplishing whatever they set out to do.

Heidi Grant is currently Associate Director of the Motivation Science Center at the Columbia Business School. Heidi is also an expert blogger for the Harvard Business Review, 99u, Fast Company, WSJ.com, Forbes, Huffington Post, and Psychology Today. Her HBR webinars, articles, and blog posts on management and personal effectiveness are consistently among their most popular.