NACD Board Leadership Conference NACD Chapter System
Print This Page

Feb 13, 2018 | Kansas City: NACD 2017 Global Board Leaders' Summit in a Snapshot

February 13, 2018
Kansas City, MO

Member Price: $35
Non-Member Price: $45



This program featured NACD Chief programing Erin Essenmacher, and local NACD members who attended the Global Board Leaders' Summit (GOBS) in National Harbor, MD, in October. 

GOBS is NACD's annual 3-day conference that offers the newest thinking and practices in good governance and board effectiveness, updates from industry and regulatory experts, compelling presentations from economic, political, and game-changing thought leaders, and dozens of networking and idea exchange opportunities. Attendance advances your NACD  Fellowship® maintenance requirements and raises your awareness on what is new and important for your boards to know.

Our panelists included Erin Essenmacher, NACD's chief programming officer, Jeannine Strandjord, corporate and nonprofit board director, Lori Kelleher, chief human resources officer and board compensation committee advisor, Black & Veatch and Peter Brown, chairman and founder, Grassmere PartnersKathy Walker, managing director, OpenAir Equity Partners moderated the program. The panelist shared what they found interesting, concerning and actionable in the boardroom from Summit and other recent NACD educational events.

Having also just attended the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Erin shared the potential strategic impact of the newest innovative and global technologies.  As technology, artificial intelligence, and the internet of things advance at the speed of life, our responsibilities as board members expand exponentially.  Those that attended heard how to further develop informed business models and what may soon affect your current cyber and information security strategies.  Also, if you were unable to register for the NACD CES Experience in Las Vegas January 9-12, visit the NACD CES Experience blog for key takeaways. 

Also, visit the NACD Summit Blog for key takeaways and insights from the 2017Summit.

(+ Read More)

Location and Time


Kansas City, MO

February 13, 2018

The Kauffman Foundation Conference Center

4801 Rockhill Road

Kansas City, MO 64110

7:00 a.m. - 7:30 a.m.: Registration and Networking

7:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.: Formal Program

7:00 a.m.: Breakfast Available

Speaker Spotlight


Peter Brown

Chairman, Grassmere Partners, LLC

Peter C. Brown is Chairman of Grassmere Partners, LLC, a private investment firm, which he founded in 2009. Prior to founding Grassmere Partners, Mr. Brown served as Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer and President of AMC Entertainment Inc. (“AMC"), one of the world’s leading theatrical exhibition companies, from July 1999 until his retirement in February 2009. He joined AMC in 1990 and served as AMC’s President from January 1997 to July 1999 and Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer from 1991 to 1997. Mr. Brown currently serves on the boards of CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL), the second largest U.S. communications provider to global enterprise customers; EPR Properties (NYSE: EPR), a specialty real estate investment trust (REIT), and Cinedigm (NASDAQ: CIDM) an independent provider of custom content solutions to the world’s largest retail, media and technology companies. Past additional public company boards include: National CineMedia, Inc., Midway Games, Inc., LabOne, Inc., and Protection One, Inc. In addition to his public company board work, Mr. Brown has served on number of private and non-profit boards.

Erin Essenmacher

Chief Programming Officer, National Association of Corporate Directors

Erin Essenmacher serves as the chief programming officer for the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD), responsible for content curation, oversight and execution of more than 60 virtual and brick and mortar education programs and events a year. Essenmacher is also an award-winning writer, director, and producer with nearly 20 years of experience in broadcast and non-broadcast production. She has written, directed, and produced films for PBS, The Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, the History Channel, and Court TV, and produced and co-wrote the critically acclaimed independent documentary MINE. She is the former chair of the board of Women in Film and Video and is serves on the board of Gandhi Brigade.

Lori Kelleher

Division President, Black & Veatch

Lori Kelleher is a highly accomplished Division President with a proven track record in global businesses ranging in size from $350M to $3.9B with project locations in over 100 countries. She has earned the reputation as a business leader with a career record of providing the business insight, transformational leadership, and strategic vision needed for organizations to strengthen productivity, operational performance, and shareholder value. As a member of the executive leadership team and reporting to the CEO of Black & Veatch, a $3.9B global employee-owned construction and engineering company, Ms. Kelleher currently serves in a dual role as Division President and Chief Human Resources Officer. She has responsibility for key components of the business including $45M in construction equipment and fleet services, $46M in real estate leases and facilities, $2B in retirement plan assets, plus all components of global human resources. Ms. Kelleher has demonstrated thought leadership by improving company profitability through over $15M in reduced overhead costs and increased efficiencies resulting in improved market competitiveness and client capture rates.

Earlier, during her tenure at global medical device manufacturer Hollister, Inc., Ms. Kelleher developed the long range global strategy for device reimbursement, which was instrumental in the company regaining #1 market share in the core line of business. At Hollister, Ms. Kelleher was part of the executive leadership team that significantly changed the global portfolio from 30% to 70% of revenue, which was key for future growth.

Ms. Kelleher understands the demands of a dynamic, global, and emerging market on an organization. Her expertise spans five industries – Retail, Telecommunications, Professional Services (Accounting and Management Consulting), Medical Device Manufacturing, and Engineering & Construction. She has extensive experience setting strategy, guiding thinking, and influencing change in challenging and complex environments. Ms. Kelleher is known for her ability to be respectful and challenge at the same time, her strong sense of responsibility and accountability, and the ability to think beyond today. Having worked in employee-owned companies for 18 years, Ms. Kelleher brings deep knowledge of working in both ESOP and ESOT structures. Ms. Kelleher has over fifteen years’ experience serving as an advisor to the Compensation & Development Committee and six years advising the Governance & Nominating Committee.

Ms. Kelleher earned her undergraduate degree at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, with a major in Retail Marketing. In addition, she pursued professional development at the Kellogg Graduate School of Management’s Women’s Director Development Program and is a Governance Fellow through the NACD Director Development Program.

Jeannine Strandjord

Corporate and Nonprofit Board Director

Jeannine Strandjord retired from Sprint Corporation at the end of 2005 where she was the Chief Integration Officer. In this position she managed the successful transformation of Sprint from a product-centric to a customer-centric operating model assuring economic value creation through fully aligned organizational development and process redesign. She helped to set up and monitored programs around revenue increases, brand renewal, improvements in customer service and significant cost reductions.

Prior to this she held several senior positions in Finance including CFO for Global Markets Group (a $9B Division), head of Financial Services, Treasurer and Controller for the Corporation. Prior to joining Sprint, she held senior financial positions with a division of RH Macy’s and Kansas City Power & Light Company after starting on the Audit Staff of Ernst & Whinney.

Today she works with several Corporate as well as non-profit boards. She is on the Board of American Century Mutual Funds chairing Nominating and Governance; Euronet Worldwide, where she was past Lead Director and chairs the Audit Committee; and MGP Ingredients where she chairs the Audit Committee. She is also on the Private Company Board of JE Dunn Construction Company chairing Nominating and Governance. She spent four years on the Charming Shoppes, Inc. Board and 16 years on the DST Systems, Inc. Board.

Her non-profit boards include The Kauffman Foundation, the Truman Library, the National World War I Museum, and the KU Advancement Board. Past non-profit boards include the Heartland Chapter of the National Assn. of Corporate Directors (NACD), the Kansas City Community Foundation, and Rockhurst University.

Other activities include multiple years as a Judge for Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award and The Kansas City Business Journal’s CFO of the Year Award. She speaks on Governance and Risk Management issues at national seminars each year.

She graduated from the University of Kansas and is a CPA.

Kathy Walker

Managing Director, OpenAir Equity Partners

Kathy Walker is Managing Director at OpenAir Equity Partners, a venture capital firm in Kansas City, MO that is focused on transformational innovation & invention in IoT, mobility and data analytics. The firm invests in early stage companies at the intersection of people, machines and data insights. Prior to this role, Walker was the Chief Network and Information Officer at Sprint Nextel, where she was employed for more than 24 years. In this position, she was responsible for the planning, design and operation of all information technology and network organizations within the company. Ms Walker is on the board of directors of Adtran, Zubie and SmartHome Ventures as well as the Heartland Chapter of NACD. In addition, Walker serves on the Board of Trustees for Missouri S&T and is vice president of that board. She is also a member of the Council of Trustees at South Dakota State University. Walker and her husband reside in Olathe, KS.



Question about this Event?

Contact Heartland Chapter C/O Sharon Allison, 7033 N. Campbell, Gladstone, MO, 64118 phone: 816-210-3308 email: