Leadership Conference: June 18, 2024

Leading through Conflict

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2024 Speakers

Please check back as we continue to update speaker bios for the 2024 Conference.

Nir Bar Dea
CEO, Bridgewater


Nir Bar Dea is Bridgewater’s Chief Executive Officer, responsible for setting and driving the strategic goals of the company and overseeing the day-to-day management of the firm. He is also a Partner, a member of the Operating Board of Directors, chairs the Executive Committee, and is a member of the Operating Committee.

Nir received his MBA from Wharton and his bachelor’s degree in Finance from the Interdisciplinary Center at IDC Herzliya, where he graduated first in his class. In 2020, Nir was named one of Fortune’s “40 Under 40” in Finance and he currently sits on the global board of Global Citizen, whose mission is to defeat poverty, demand equity, and defend the planet.

Frank Blake
Former Chairman and CEO, Home Depot


Frank Blake served as Chairman and CEO of The Home Depot from January 2007 through November 2014, and then as chairman through January 2015. Frank joined The Home Depot in 2002 as executive vice president, business development and corporate operations. 

 The Boston native previously served as deputy secretary for the U.S. Department of Energy and in a variety of executive roles at General Electric, including senior vice president, Corporate Business Development. 

Blake’s public sector experience also includes having served as general counsel for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, deputy counsel to Vice President George Bush and law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. 

Blake serves on the board of directors for the Georgia Aquarium, Proctor & Gamble, Macy’s, and is currently serving as Chairman of the Delta Air Lines board. Additionally, he sits on the Board of Trustees at Agnes Scott College.  He holds a bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and a jurisprudence degree from Columbia University School of Law. 

Sabrina Ellis
Chief People Officer, NBA


As Chief People Officer of the NBA, Sabrina Ellis oversees all aspects of the league’s global human resources strategy – including compensation and benefits, talent acquisition, and learning and leadership development – across its offices in 15 markets around the world.  With a focus on global best practices and inclusion, she will also build, implement and drive engagement initiatives that address workforce culture and attract a globally diverse group of employees.  

Prior to joining the NBA in January 2023, Ellis previously worked at New York University (NYU) where she served as Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer since 2016.  While at NYU, Ellis led core HR services across all business and academic functions for a global employee population of 26,000 in 13 countries spanning the United States, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia, including degree-granting campuses in New York, Abu Dhabi and Shanghai.  Focusing on inclusive leadership, Ellis collaborated across all NYU schools and units in the development and execution of numerous groundbreaking programs to recruit and retain a world-class workforce.  Under her leadership, NYU launched several firsts, including its Youth Program Compliance Office, Employee Engagement Unit and university-wide Onboarding Center.

 Ellis previously served as Vice President of Human Resources at George Washington University, where she led HR strategy and operations from 2012 to 2016. Earlier in her career, she was the Assistant Vice President of HR at the City College of New York (CUNY) and served as Human Resources Officer for University Relations and Public Affairs at NYU. Ellis earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from NYU. 

Raj Gupta
Former CEO, Rohm & Haas
Former director of DowDuPont, Hewlett-Packard, and Vanguard Group



Raj L. Gupta, Chairman of APTIV PLC since March 2015 (formerly Delphi Automotive PLC). From 1999 – 2009, Mr. Gupta was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Rohm and Haas. Mr. Gupta held a variety of posts at the company beginning in 1971. He was elected a vice president of the company and was named director for the Pacific Region in 1993. Early in 1996, Mr. Gupta became one of six members of the Chairman’s Committee and was given oversight responsibility for the company’s Electronic Materials business group. In December 1998, Mr. Gupta was elected to the Board of Directors and named Vice Chairman in January 1999. He became Chairman and Chief Executive Officer on October 1, 1999. Mr. Gupta assumed the additional title of President in early 2005 and held that title until May 2008. 

Mr. Gupta holds a BS degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (1967), a M.S. degree in Operations Research from Cornell University (1969) and a M.B.A. in Finance from Drexel University (1972). Mr. Gupta is a past Chairman of the American Chemistry Council and the Society of Chemical Industry, America Section. He is a member of the boards of Arconic Inc., the Dupont Advisory Board and is Chairman of Avantor Inc. He has also served on the boards of HP, IRI, The Vanguard Group and Tyco International, amongst other companies.

Jessica Spence
President of North America, Beam Suntory


As Beam Suntory’s President of North America, Jessica Spence is responsible for leading the company’s commercial operations in Canada and the United States, Beam Suntory’s largest and most profitable market. Jessica joined Beam Suntory in 2019 as President of Brands, where she was responsible for the full P&L of Beam Suntory’s global brands, driving the global expansion and premiumization of the company’s portfolio.

Before joining Carlsberg in 2012, Jessica held marketing roles of increasing responsibility for SABMiller in Russia, Slovakia and Poland, as well as in business development based in London. She has prior experience with global advertising agencies Leo Burnett and J Walter Thompson. Jessica is a graduate of Cambridge University, the London School of Economics & Political Science, and holds an MBA from INSEAD.

Raj Subramaniam
President and CEO, FedEx


Raj Subramaniam is President and CEO and a member of the Board of Directors of FedEx Corporation, one of the world’s largest transportation companies. Subramaniam succeeded the company’s founder in June 2022 as the second CEO in FedEx history. He previously served as President and Chief Operating Officer of FedEx Corporation and has held various leadership roles in operations and marketing across the FedEx enterprise. 

With more than 30 years of industry experience at FedEx, Subramaniam’s international leadership experience, keen business insights, and focus on globalization have contributed to the success of FedEx and provide a blueprint as the company revolutionizes the transportation and logistics industry. Subramaniam is responsible for spearheading the current global transformation of FedEx, which includes revitalizing the company’s operating strategy, profitably growing the e-commerce business, and harnessing the power of global supply chain data to drive the company’s digital agenda. 

Outside of FedEx, Subramaniam serves on the board of directors of the Procter & Gamble Company. 

Subramaniam is also a proud 2023 recipient of the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award, the highest civilian award presented by the President of India to the Indian diaspora in recognition of outstanding achievements in India and abroad. 

Originally from Trivandrum, India, Subramaniam lives in Memphis, Tennessee – where the company’s global headquarters are located. He earned a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), a master’s degree in chemical engineering from Syracuse University, and a master’s degree in business administration from The University of Texas at Austin. 

Peter Cappelli Leadership

Peter Cappelli
George W. Taylor Professor of Management
Director, Wharton Center
for Human Resources


Peter Cappelliis the George W. Taylor Professor of Management at The Wharton School and Director of Wharton’s Center for Human Resources. He is also a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, MA, served as Senior Advisor to the Kingdom of Bahrain for Employment Policy from 2003-2005, was a Distinguished Scholar of the Ministry of Manpower for Singapore, and was Co-Director of the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center on the Educational Quality of the Workforce from 1990-1998. He was recently named by HR Magazine as one of the top 5 most influential management thinkers, by NPR as one of the 50 influencers in the field of aging, and was elected a fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources.

He received the 2009 PRO award from the International Association of Corporate and Professional Recruiters for contributions to human resources and an honorary Doctorate degree from the University of Liege in Belgium. He is a regular contributor to The Wall Street Journal and writes a monthly column for HR Executive magazine. His recent work on performance management, agile systems, and hiring practices, and other workplace topics appears in the Harvard Business Review

Mike Useem Leadership

Mike Useem
Faculty Director, Wharton
McNulty Leadership Program


Michael Useem is Professor of Management and Faculty Director of the Center for Leadership and Change Management and McNulty Leadership Program at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. His university teaching includes MBA and executive-MBA courses on management and leadership, and he offers programs on leadership and governance for managers in the United States, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. He works on leadership development with many companies and organizations in the private, public and non-profit sectors.

He is the author of The Leader’s Checklist,The Leadership Moment, Executive Defense, Investor Capitalism, Leading Up, and The Go Point. He is also co-author and co-editor of Learning from Catastrophes; co-author of The India Way, Leadership Dispatches, Boards That Lead, and The Strategic Leader’s Roadmap; and co-author of Fortune Makers: The Leaders Creating China’s Great Global Companies (2017), Go Long: Why Long-Term Thinking Is Your Best Short-Term Strategy (2018), and Mastering Catastrophic Risk: How Companies Are Coping with Disruption (2018). Mike is co-anchor for a weekly program “Leadership in Action” on SiriusXM Radio Channel 132, Business Radio Powered by the Wharton School,