Innovation Tracks (Concurrent Sessions)

New this year, FEI's Financial Leadership Summit features thematic content across three Innovation Tracks, designed to allow attendees to customize their learning experience. Attend all of the sessions within one track or choose sessions from multiple tracks to meet your career needs. The Innovation Tracks are:

Technical Skills and Tools; Expertise Expansion;
and Executive Leadership


Monday, April 24


10:30 am – 11:20 am
3 tracks available - choose 1:


Transform Value with Analytics and Digital Strategies
- Technical Skills and Tools
Richard Cline | Advisory Managing Director | Grant Thornton

Is your organization confronted with new tools and technologies on a daily basis? With the ever increasing use of analytics to synthesize and make sense of data, your options are growing daily. However, undertaking a digital transformation requires a sound strategy even more than a technical platform. Listen to two of our firm’s analytic leaders describe how our clients are creating effective digital strategies to transform their organizations.


Making the Leap: Transitioning to CFO - Expertise Expansion
Paul McDonald | Senior Executive Director | Robert Half

Many senior-level finance professionals aspire to join the C-suite. Beyond technical expertise, the move requires a broader business view, expanded influence and heightened visibility.

Paul McDonald will describe what it takes to make the jump to CFO. The discussion will cover what’s different for finance professionals when they reach the CFO ranks, the technical and nontechnical attributes needed to get there, and how current controllers and vice presidents can enhance their professional marketability – and their chances of being tapped for this prestigious position.


Driving Organizational Change - Executive Leadership
David Gillman | Training and Organizational
Effectiveness professional | Kaplan

Change starts at the top. If as an executive leader, you are unable to support organizational change, how can your direct reports and their teams move forward? This session will focus on an executive leader’s responsibility at each stage of transition throughout a change initiative—what they can do to positively influence others’; how they impact the speed of adopting new systems and processes; and how to uphold an agile culture reflective of the company’s values and vision.


11:30 am – 12:20 pm
3 tracks available - choose 1:


Leading Finance Teams in a Digital Era - Technical Skills and Tools
Colby Connor | Partner | PwC Advisory Services

New technologies, including democratized analytics, cloud solutions, and robotic process automation are becoming predominant in critical business areas, including finance. These trends can be a tremendous help in the quest to keep quality high and cost low - but only if they're balanced with the right set of organizational skills and a strong culture of business partnership. Attend this session to gain insight into how new technologies are changing how teams are managed.


Building Key Partnerships/Managing Relationships with Internal and External Resources - Expertise Expansion

Stephen Kasprisin | Chief Financial Officer | MagnaFlow

Peter Firestone | Managing Director | Protiviti
Scharrell Talley Jackson | Partner, COO/CFO | Squar Milner LLP
Brian Ruttencutter | Chief Financial Officer | Cumming
Randy White | Chief Executive Officer | Wheel Pros

A panel of CFOs and CEO’s discuss how to build the networks required to be successful dealing with the issues facing today’s financial executives both internally and externally. Drawing on their own experiences, the panelists will merge insights into action as financial executives who have truly "been there and done that and offer practical strategies for growth and success.


The CFO: Becoming a Strategic Partner - Executive Leadership

Jenna Fisher | Managing Director | Russell Reynolds Associates

George Davis | Chief Financial Officer | Qualcomm
Brian Swartz | Chief Financial Officer | Cornerstone OnDemand Inc.

The value of the CFO continues to expand in today’s business landscape. In addition to driving cost efficiencies and identifying profitable sources of revenue growth, CFOs must be able to provide key input on the direction of the company. Today’s CFO must have a deep understanding of strategy, leadership skills and be an effective communicator with all stakeholders. Attend this panel presentation and gain insight to help elevate you into a more effective business partner.


2:40 pm – 3:30 pm
3 tracks available - choose 1:


Growth of FinTech: Making the Leap to New Technologies
- Technical Skills and Tools
Loren Mahon | VP Finance Systems | CEO Office at Oracle

FinTech (financial technology) has become the latest industry buzzword and can mean anything from a free crowdfunding app or a multi-million dollar corporate accounting system. This session will review some of the new technologies that create operational success and review best practices for making the jump to these new technologies.


Assess and Enhance Your Personal Leadership Style
- Expertise Expansion
David Gillman | Training and Organizational
Effectiveness professional | Kaplan

Good news…there is no perfect leadership style. It is up to you to know and match your strengths, gaps, values, beliefs, personality and tendencies to a style that works for the environment in which you’re expected to lead. You are responsible for growing teams that have individual contributors and leaders too. A company’s talent retention strategy depends on your style and daily decision-making capabilities.


Managing Successful Mergers and Acquisitions - Executive Leadership
Natalie Brader | Managing Consultant, M&A Integration and Divestitures | RGP
Ed Pisarchick | Director, Mergers and Acquisitions | RGP

Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) are exploding in numbers worldwide, and the trend is likely to continue. Unfortunately, many transactions fail to generate expected value or return on investment due to poor due diligence, integration challenges and other unforeseen hurdles. M&A can be an effective growth strategy. Or it can be a hot mess. Gain insights from experienced M&A professionals to maximize strategic value.



Tuesday, April 25


10:30 am – 11:20 am
3 tracks available - choose 1:
Technical Skills and Tools; Expertise Expansion; and Executive Leadership


Accounting Change – How Private Companies can plan for the adoption of the new revenue recognition and lease standards - Technical Skills and Tools
Narayanan Balakrishnan | Partner, Financial Accounting Advisory Services (FAAS) | Ernst & Young LLP
Brian Powell | Executive Director, Financial Accounting Advisory Services | Ernst & Young LLP

Private Company Accounting is facing new challenges and new directions. The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) have released the new revenue recognition standards and lease accounting standards. These new standards and accounting changes will impact activities well beyond financial reporting. Understand how these new requirements will impact your company.


Diversity and Inclusion as a Strategic Priority - Expertise Expansion
Shinder Dhillon | Senior Director – Global Diversity & Inclusion | Microsoft

One of the biggest challenges facing organizations today is the rapid pace at which the workforce is changing. In the midst of these changes, workplace diversity and inclusion has become a corporate imperative as companies strive to develop a more cohesive, collaborative environment as a means to drive growth. Attend this session and gain insight from Microsoft’s Director of Diversity and Inclusion on building an environment that fosters diversity and inclusion.


2017 CFO Outlook – Looking Ahead - Executive Leadership
Dr. Ajit Kambil | EGlobal Research Director | Deloitte

In this session, we will look to the future – 2017 and beyond to explore how CFOs will engage within their organizations. The current state of the finance function and the CFO’s role in driving enterprise performance in the future will be discussed. Attend this session and gain insight into where CFOs will play 5-10 years from now.

Agenda topics and timing subject to change