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The Practical Innovator

Chicago Innovation Awards

Friday, September 27, 2013 from 8:00 AM to 5:15 PM (CDT)

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Practical Innovator ticket Ended $2,500.00 $0.00

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We invite you to join us on Friday, September 27th for The Practical Innovator, a day-long executive education program hosted by Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management, one of the world's foremost centers for executive education. The Practical Innovator will feature senior Kellogg faculty members who teach the practical skills of innovation, along with a few special guests.  Agenda includes:

8:00am-8:30am: Registration and breakfast 
8:30am-10:00am:  "Innovation Best Practices" with Tom Kuczmarski
10:15am-11:45am: "Strategy and the Practical Innovator" with Mohan Sawhney 
11:45am-1:00pm: Lunch break
1:00pm-2:30pm:  "IP Management for SME's" with James Conley 
2:45pm-4:00pm:   "The Innovators Panel" featuring innovation thought leaders 
4:15pm-5:15pm:  "It All Started with a Mouse" with Carol Nicolau of Disney Institute 

Speakers include:

Mohan Sawhney, named by Bloomberg Businessweek as one of the 25 Most Influential People in e-Business, is a globally recognized thought leader in strategic marketing and the digital world. He has authored five books, published research in leading international journals, and won multiple prestigious awards for teaching and research.  He advises and speaks to Global 2000 firms and governments worldwide.

Thomas D. Kuczmarski, president of Kuczmarski Innovation, is a nationally recognized expert in the innovation of new products and services. Over the course of his career he has helped hundreds of clients, ranging from small businesses to Fortune 100 corporations, learn to systematically unlock the value of innovation. The author of five books and many articles, he has also taught product and service innovation at the Kellogg Graduate School of Management for over 30 years.
James Conley serves on the faculty of both the Kellogg School of Management and the McCormick School of Engineering at Northwestern University. He is a faculty contributor in the Kellogg Center for Research in Technology & Innovation and serves as a Faculty Fellow at the Segal Design Institute. His research investigates the strategic use of intangible assets and intellectual properties to build and sustain competitive advantage.

Carol Nicolau, Custom Solutions Manager at Disney Institute, teaches Disney's best practices to senior executives from around the world.  She began her career with Disney in 1997 marketing Disney ABC Television International, Latin America. In 1999, she was promoted to Director of Marketing for the launch of Disney Channel Latin America & Brazil. In 2001, Carol became Director of Communications for The Walt Disney Company.  In 2006, she moved to London as Executive Director, Studio Communications, Walt Disney Studios. In 2008, she moved to Burbank as Vice-President, Animation Marketing, Walt Disney Animation Studios.

Nancy Ruscheinski is the Vice Chair of Client Engagement at Edelman, the largest public relations agency in the world.  Prior to this role, Nancy was the Chief Innovation Officer, responsible for driving innovation for the firm and its clients on a global basis, and fostering a culture of innovation within the firm.  Prior to Nancy's appointment to Chief Innovation Officer, she spent three years as President and Chief Operating Officer for Edelman in the U.S.  During this time Nancy played a leading role in the oversight of Edelman's largest region, with more than 2,000 employees, a robust portfolio of blue chip clients and more than a dozen practice areas.

Nick Davis is Senior Manager of External Innovation at PricewaterhouseCoopers. In this role, Nick leads the external innovation projects across the US, and works with clients, universities, and third parties to foster open innovation, co-creation, and promotes the PwC brand as an innovative leader in the marketplace.  He sits on the board of StartupUCLA the first student incubator program at UCLA, is on the Executive Committee of The Conference Board's Innovation Council, and is on the Steering Committee for the LA Mayor's Council on Innovation and Industry.

Mike Cherry is the founder and managing partner of Myron M. Cherry and Associates and has over 40 years of legal experience.  In the early 1970's, Mr. Cherry became nationally known for his work in drafting and implementing federal and state environmental legislation. Since then, Mr. Cherry has tried a wide variety of business and commercial cases throughout the United States in federal (including the Supreme Court) and state courts, involving securities, antitrust and complex financial matters.  Mr. Cherry has been the subject of numerous profiles, including a front-page profile in The Wall Street Journal

Jai Shekhawat is the CEO and Co-founder of Fieldglass, which makes the world's most widely used Cloud platform for the procurement of contract labor and services. Under his leadership, the Fieldglass platform has grown globally with users in 70+ countries, multiple languages and currencies and over $25 billion in annual spend. He was Ernst & Young's 2012 Midwest "Entrepreneur of the Year."  In 2010, Madison Dearborn Partners made a significant investment in Fieldglass, valuing the firm in excess of $220M. He is also a founding member of the Firestarter Fund, which mentors and invests in Chicago start-ups.
Michael C. Krauss is a veteran strategic marketer, business advisor, organizational coach, board member and investor with over 35 years of professional experience. He brings proven skills in strategic business planning, buyer insight analysis, change management and executive coaching.  Michael speaks and writes frequently on business issues and is the @ C- Level columnist for Marketing News, the publication of the American Marketing Association. He served as co-chair of Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley's Council of Technology Advisors, and has taught on the faculty of the New Products Lab at The Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago.

As an attendee, your classmates will be Chicago's leading innovators who will come together to learn and discuss innovation best practices and strategies.

The Practical Innovator will be held:

Friday, September 27th

8:00am - 5:15pm
Wieboldt Hall, Room 150
Kellogg School of Management
340 East Superior St.
Chicago, IL 60611

This day-long executive education course at the Kellogg School of Management costs $2,500 to attend.  The Top 100 Nominees of the Chicago Innovation Awards each receive a free scholarship to attend.  Everyone else in the Chicago Innovation Awards community can receive a 70% off scholarship by entering the promotional code ChicagoInnovator when registering above.  We only have 10 scholarships remaining, so please register as soon as possible if you or someone from your company would like to attend.  The deadline to register is Monday, Sept. 23rd.

We hope to see you at The Practical Innovator!



Gold Sponsors




Silver Sponsors


  vedder brinksWintrust logo Edelman Silver 2013SmithBucklin - Silver 2013 


Bronze Sponsors
Career Builder - bronze 2013   Hyatt Bronze Sponsor Logo  Google Bronze sponsor for website Savo Grant Thornton PWC bronze 2013TandemHR  


Lead Media Partners
bnc logo small  WBBM Crain's Media Partner 2013 Tribune Media 2013
Supporting Media Partners


Chicago Magazine Media 2013 redeye Media 2013 Hoy media 2013
Corporate Angel VIP Members



Major Contributing Sponsors

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When & Where

Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management
340 East Superior Street
Chicago, IL 60611

Friday, September 27, 2013 from 8:00 AM to 5:15 PM (CDT)

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