The opening plenary will feature a keynote address from Michael MacAfee, the President & CEO of PolicyLink, on the importance of addressing racial disparities in workforce development and employment. CEO Fred Dedrick will also make a presentation on the National Fund’s Five-Year Strategic Plan.
Fred Dedrick, President and CEO, National Fund for Workforce Solutions
Whitney Smith, Executive Director- Midwest, Global Philanthropy, JPMorgan Chase
Jennie Sparandara, Executive Director of Global Philanthropy, JPMorgan Chase
Michael McAfee, President and CEO, PolicyLink
The Journey of Change: Making Jobs Better for Frontline Workers
1:30 PM – 2:30 PM – Wednesday, June 26
Employers committed to making jobs better for their frontline employees are each on a unique journey. Central to their organizational change process is figuring out how to invest in a way that is good for workers and good for the company. While the journey can be marked by resistance and limited resources, achieving success is sweet when employees are thriving, and companies are more competitive. During this plenary, three leaders will share their organization’s journey and the strategies they used to make jobs better for their frontline workers. They will discuss their strategies to overcoming resistance to change and the critical partners who made success possible.
Kelly Aiken, Vice President and CareerSTAT Director, National Fund
Marnese Elder, Senior Vice President and Associate Chief Talent Officer, Parkland Health and Hospital System
Debbie LaPinska, Senior Vice President, Human Resources, PGT Innovations
Alejandro Mendoza, Director, Optimax Systems
Uplifting Worker Voice
4:30 PM – 5:15 PM – Wednesday, June 26
As the National Fund shifts focus to uplifting worker voice in the National Fund’s Strategic Plan, we’ve chosen to highlight stories of worker voice by inviting participants attending this year’s conference to share inspirational vignettes of times when their voice as a worker was heard. The goal of this plenary is to inspire our work moving forward leaving no doubt about the need to support this agenda in our future work. The time is now.
Michelle Wilson, Director of Evaluation and Impact Assessment, National Fund
Sailu Timbo, Director of Diversity, Hy-vee
Denise Cherenfant, Director, Nursing Education, 1199SEIU League Training and Upgrading Fund
Pao Velez, Apprentice, Central Piedmont Community College
Next Generation of Workforce Development
8:45 AM – 10:15 AM – Thursday, June 27
Since the National Fund was created in 2007, we have weathered the Great Recession and are now in the midst of an economic recovery and a record low labor-force participation rate of prime-age workers. We have moved from focusing primarily on reskilling laid-off workers to help them get back to work and now, we are working with employers to improve the quality of their jobs. What might be next in the continuing evolution of our field? During this session, you will hear about the work in Boston on Project Catapult and how that is informing the next generation of workforce organizations. You will also have time at your tables to work on what that might mean in your communities.
Janice Urbanik, Senior Director for Innovation and Strategy, National Fund for Workforce Solutions
Kaitlyn Bean, Program Officer, SkillWorks
Keith Mahoney, Vice President of Public Affairs and Communications, The Boston Foundation
Jerry Rubin, President and CEO, JVS-Boston
Unleashing the Power of the Network
1:00 PM – 2:30 PM – Thursday, June 27
Unleashing the Power of the Network is the final plenary of the convening. Participants will listen to 12 collaboratives from across the National Fund’s nationwide network share their vision for the future. The collaboratives will answer the question, “What are you most excited to do in your community over the next few years to help create an economy that works for everyone?” You’ll walk away from this plenary energized, inspired, and unleashed!