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Keynote Speakers

This year’s theme is “IMPROVEMENT: At the Core + For the Corps.”
Featured keynote speakers include Dr. Maria Sirois and Ms. DeDe Halfhill.

Dr. Maria SiroisWhat Respect Requires Respect for self and for others emerges from internal and external environments that cultivate appreciation for difference, curiosity, care for oneself and others, and a willingness to honor oneself and the contributions of others. In this keynote, Dr. Maria Sirois explores how inner respect is built, how we reduce habits of unconscious bias, perfectionism and social comparison, and how we might choose to become our better selves with others, irrespective of difference. We will highlight research on the value of difference in cultivating successful group-based performance, and on the importance of seeing through a lens of appreciation and wholeness.

Ms. DeDe HalfhillIn today’s rapidly evolving world, leaders face an array of multifaceted challenges, demanding constant adaptability. From economic uncertainty and societal inequalities to technological disruptions and remote team management, effective leadership has become more vital than ever. Amidst these complexities, one constant emerges: the critical importance of human connection. Join Col DeDe Halfhill, USAF Retired, featured in Brené Brown’s book ‘Dare to Lead,’ and on 60 Minutes, for a thought-provoking conversation on how the ability to build deep meaningful connection not only fosters trust and inspires loyalty but also provides a crucial foundation for understanding diverse perspectives, driving innovation, and navigating turbulent times with resilience. As leaders strive to make a positive impact and create meaningful change, the power of connection emerges as an indispensable force that can transform challenges into opportunities for growth and collective success.

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