Thanks for a great 10th Anniversary Forum, “FRED in the Fire: Igniting Leadership!”




Video Highlights from the Forum:


About the Forum

The FRED Leadership Forum gathers established and emergent leaders from across sectors and generations. Through immersing participants in leading-edge thinking and transformational experiences, the Forum explores the “why” as well as the “how” of leaders’ work and serves as a nexus, catalyst and incubator for re-imagined leadership. The Forum’s most distinctive feature, a focus on moral imperatives for enriching the world, replenishes the soul as well as the intellect and the operational toolkit.

2018 Forum Highlights

Spotlight Speaker: Mindy Grossman, President & Chief Executive Officer, Weight Watchers International, Inc. 

Mindy Grossman has served as a director and President and CEO of Weight Watchers since July 2017. Grossman has more than 38 years of experience in building and transforming consumer brands. Immediately prior to joining Weight Watchers, she served as Chief Executive Officer of HSN, Inc. and a member of its Board of Directors since August 2008. She is credited with transforming HSN into a lifestyle network offering an exciting array of products, personalities and experiences designed to engage, inform and entertain. She also served as Chief Executive Officer of IAC Retailing, a business segment of HSN’s former parent company, IAC/InterActiveCorp, a media and internet company, from April 2006 to August 2008, and Global Vice President of Nike, Inc.’s apparel business from October 2000 to March 2006. Earlier in her career, Grossman held various other executive positions in the retail industry, including President and CEO of Polo Jeans Company, Vice President of New Business Development at Polo Ralph Lauren Corporation, President of Chaps Ralph Lauren, and Senior Vice President of Menswear for Warnaco, Inc. Grossman is a director of Bloomin’ Brands, Inc. and Fanatics, Inc., and is Vice Chairman for UNICEF USA.

 Spotlight Speaker: Dr. Srini Pillay, MD, a physician and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. He completed 17 years of nationally funded brain imaging research, and is currently a member of the “Group for Advancement of Psychiatry”, an American professional organization of psychiatrists dedicated to shaping psychiatric thinking, public programs and clinical practice in mental health. In addition to his work in psychiatry and brain imaging research, Srini is CEO of NeuroBusiness Group – voted one of the top 20 movers and shakers in leadership development in the world, (Training Industry, 2013). Srini has also consulted regularly for the past 10 years to companies that invest in biotechnology to assess medications in various illnesses including cancer, heart disease, and stroke.

He is the award-winning author of: Life Unlocked: 7 Revolutionary Ways to Overcome Fear and Your Brain and Business: The Neuroscience of Great Leaders. His new book is “Tinker, Dabble, Doodle, Try: Unlock the Power of the Unfocused Mind” (Ballantine Books, 2017). Srini has also presented a TEDxTalk – “WIRED FOR SUCCESS:The Science of Possibility.”

 Spotlight Speaker: Jacqueline Novogratz, who began her work in 1986 when she quit her job on Wall Street to help open Rwanda’s first microfinance institution, Duterimbere—an experience that inspired her to start Acumen. Seventeen years later, under Jacqueline’s leadership, Acumen has invested $113 million to build 108 social enterprises in 14 countries, bringing basic services such as affordable education, health care, clean water, energy and sanitation to more than 232 million people. In 2017, Forbes listed Jacqueline as one of the World’s 100 Greatest Living Business Minds.

Prior to Acumen, Jacqueline founded and directed The Philanthropy Workshop and The Next Generation Leadership programs at the Rockefeller Foundation. She serves on the Aspen Institute Board of Trustees and the board of, and sits on the Advisory Councils of the Harvard Business School’s Social Enterprise Initiative, the Oxford Said Global Leadership Council and the Pakistan Business Council’s Centre of Excellence in Responsible Business (CERB). Her best-selling memoir The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap Between Rich and Poor in an Interconnected World chronicles her quest to understand poverty and challenges readers to grant dignity to the poor and to rethink their engagement with the world.

 Spotlight Speaker: Lindsay Levin, is dedicated to cultivating wise, compassionate leaders who are capable of leading amidst competing priorities and rapid change. In 2001, she founded Leaders’ Quest, a social enterprise with a clear mission: to contribute to a more sustainable, equitable world by bridging the gaps that keep us apart, whether they’re differences in resources or in perspectives. To date, Leaders’ Quest has delivered 300+ transformational programs for more than 8,000 senior leaders.  Core to the work are two ideas: some of the most powerful learning in life comes from hands-on experience; and if we want to transform the world around us we must be prepared to transform ourselves.

Her latest initiative, Future Stewards, is a coalition to help leaders from business, civil society and governments make breakthroughs on climate change by 2020. Lindsay also advises other mission-led organisations. In 2004 she founded the Leaders’ Quest Foundation to nurture talented grassroots leaders in financially poor communities. She serves on the board of Hartford Care, a nursing home group in the UK, and Unitus Capital, an India-based investment firm focused on small businesses that benefit people with limited resources. From 2008 to 2012 she was Chair of the International Steering Committee of OneVoice, which works with Israelis and Palestinians committed to peaceful coexistence.

Spotlight Speaker: Dr. Bob Johansen, a distinguished fellow with the Institute for the Future in Silicon Valley. For more than 30 years, Bob has helped organizations around the world prepare for and shape the future, including corporations such as P&G, Walmart, McKinsey, United Rentals, and Syngenta, as well as major universities and nonprofits.

The author or co-author of ten books, Bob is a frequent keynote speaker. His best-selling book Get There Early: Sensing the Future to Compete in the Present was selected as one of the top business books of 2007. His latest book is The New Leadership Literacies. Bob holds a B.S. from the University of Illinois and a Ph.D. from Northwestern University—as well as a master’s degree that focused on world religions.

Gabe Cervantes is a spectrum diversity futurist exploring the nuances of identity on space and place. His forecasting is focused on racial, ethnic, gender, age, and thought diversity and how it will come to shape future workforces and executive leadership.

Gabe holds a Bachelor of Arts from Williams College majoring in American Studies with a dual focus on Latino/a and Africana studies. Researching the notion of space and place, his ethnographic research has lead him to study diasporic communities and how members reclaim their identities in newfound homes. Gabe’s interests lie in leadership development and how spectral diversity will play a key role in the future of organizations.

At the Institute Gabe works closely with Distinguished Fellow, Bob Johansen, supporting his work on his books, speaking engagements, and custom forecasts.

Outside of work, Gabe supports teens and young adults gain access to higher education and professional development, working with career shadow and summer internships for underserved students at large corporations.

Thank you to FRED’s 2018 Sponsors!

Organizational Members