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2017 Spring Policy Conference

CED's 2017 Spring Policy Conference took place on April 19-20 at the Willard InterContinental Hotel in Washington D.C. In conjunction with the Governance Center at The Conference Board, the two-day event convened national thought leaders from the business, policy, and academic sectors. Attendees heard insights on issues at the forefront of U.S. economic, educational, and corporate governance priorities.


Registration Opens


Politics of a New Administration & Congress

Both Congress and the Executive Branch are controlled by a single party for the first time since 2010. A bipartisan panel will discuss how the new Administration and Congress plans to tackle major issues facing our nation, and the prospects for bipartisan cooperation in our nation’s interest following the recent divisive election.

Program Speakers Thus Far:

Michelle Cottle, Contributing Editor, The Atlantic (Moderator)

Ylan Mui, Reporter, CNBC

Lisa Nelson, CEO, American Legislative Exchange Council

Bob Walker, Executive Chairman, Wexler | Walker


Luncheon -- First 100 Days: Taking Stock

On the campaign trail in 2016, President Trump and Congressional candidates vowed rapid change and common-sense policy proposals that could be immediately implemented during the first 100 days. As we approach this all-important benchmark, which promises have been kept, which have been broken, and which are “in progress”?

Program Speakers Thus Far:

David Wessel, Senior Fellow of Economic Studies, Brookings Institution (Moderator)

Peter Goettler, President & CEO, Cato Institute

William Hoagland, Senior Fellow, Bipartisan Policy Center

Ruth Marcus, Columnist, The Washington Post

Sabrina Schaeffer, Executive Director, Independent Women’s Forum


Taxation: What Reform is Coming?

If Americans vote with their pocketbooks, then no issue looms larger than taxation. Tax cuts, especially at the corporate level, are seen by some as engines for job creation and economic growth. Others argue that the wealthiest among us need to pay more to reduce the budget deficit. What plans are on the table and how will they affect individuals, households, businesses, and the economy as a whole?

Program Speakers Thus Far:

Jeanne Sahadi, Senior Writer, CNN Money (Moderator)

Michael Archbold, Former CEO, GNC Holdings

Patricia McKay, Partner, Templeton & Company

Scott Wieler, Chairman, Signal Hill


Health Care Reform: Where Should We Be Headed?

Following years of promises to “repeal and replace,” a changed health care system looks to be a real possibility now that Republicans control the White House and both chambers of Congress. But Democrats are unlikely to abandon President Obama’s signature legislation without a fight. Hear what parts of the Affordable Care Act may remain, which are likely to change, and whether any of this can actually happen after years of argument and conflict.

Program Speakers Thus Far:

Sean Glass, CEO, Advantia Health (Moderator)

Angela Braly, President & Founder, The Braly Group

John Castellani, Former President & CEO, Pharmaceutical Research & Manufacturers Association


Infrastructure: Our Priorities and How to Pay for Them

A big boost in infrastructure investment has garnered support from both sides of the aisle. The American Society of Civil Engineers estimates that through the year 2025, the United States has funded only about 56 percent of its needed infrastructure spending, a shortfall that not only weighs on jobs and GDP, but also could put American lives in danger. Will events such as the Flint water crisis serve as a wakeup call, and if so, how will Washington react?

Program Speakers Thus Far:

Robyn Boerstling, Vice President, Innovation, Infrastructure & Human Resources Policy, National Association of Manufacturers (Moderator)

Tom Armstrong, CEO, Duer/Carolina Coil

Richard Geddes, Professor & Director of the Cornell Program in Infrastructure Policy, Cornell University

Robert Puentes, President & CEO, Eno Center for Transportation


Immigration: Beyond the Wall

President Trump’s immigration solution of a wall on the Mexican border was debated rigorously during 2016. From who will pay for it to how it will get built, many voters saw this as a deciding issue when casting their ballots. Beyond the wall, however, many important questions remain, such as, how immigration can be reformed to maintain America’s reputation as a melting pot, and better support our economy, while still assuring working-class citizens that their jobs are safe.

Program Speakers Thus Far:

Diane Lim, Principal Economist, The Conference Board (Moderator)

Michael Fix, President, Migration Policy Institute

Allen Morrison, CEO & Director General, Thunderbird School of Global Management

Dilawar Syed, President, Freshdesk




Leadership in the Nation’s Interest Award Dinner

Please note the dinner is reserved seating only.


The Honorable Barbara M. Barrett, Chairman, The Aerospace Corporation


The Honorable Ann McLaughlin Korologos, Former U.S. Secretary of Labor




Opening Remarks


The State of Governance in the New Administration: What’s Next?

Along the campaign trail, then-candidate Trump spoke often about the Dodd-Frank Act, SEC regulations, executive compensation and other national policy matters that impact the governance of U.S. public companies. Three former SEC Commissioners will share their insights on what the new administration’s first 90 days may tell us about how corporate governance could be shaped over President Trump’s first two years in office.

Program Speakers Thus Far:

Paul Dudek, Counsel, Latham & Watkins; Former Chief, Office of International Corporate Finance, U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission (Moderator)

The Honorable Annette L. Nazareth, Partner, Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP; Former Commissioner, U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission

The Honorable Elisse B. Walter, Director, Occidental Petroleum Corporation; Director, SASB; Director, National Women’s Law Center; Governor, FINRA; Former Chairman & Commissioner, U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission


Post-Election Views on Corporate Political Contributions

In 2016, we witnessed an election that destroyed conventional wisdom about how political campaigns are financed and won. Our panel of experts will discuss trends they saw in the area of corporate political spending and what the landscape will look like as we look ahead to the mid-term elections and 2020.

Program Speakers Thus Far:

Robert J. (Bob) Kueppers, Vice Chairman & Deputy CEO, Deloitte LLP (Ret.) (Moderator)

Wesley Bizzell, Assistant General Counsel & Director of Political Law and Ethics Programs, Altria

Bruce Freed, President & Founder, Center for Political Accountability

Robert J. Jackson, Jr., Professor of Law & Director, Program on Corporate Law and Policy, Columbia Law School


The Role of the Board: The Job of the Corporate Director – Perspective of Directors

The Governance Center is undertaking a year-long examination of the range of expectations of public company directors. Examining this from the perspectives of key stakeholders in the marketplace, we hope to develop a construct for how we think about the job of a director and analyze what that job entails in different situations. In this session, we will examine the role and expectations of directors from the perspectives of a number of sitting directors of prominent companies.

Program Speakers Thus Far:

Sandra Flow, Partner, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Moderator)

Henrietta Fore, Chairman & CEO, Holsman International; Director, ExxonMobil; Director, General Mills

Debra Perry, Director, Genworth Financial; Director, Korn/Ferry International; Former Senior Managing Director, Moody’s

Myron E. Ullman III, Lead Director, Starbucks; Lead Director, Taubman; Chairman, Mercy Ships International; Retired Chairman, J.C. Penney Company


Cybersecurity Oversight: Are Boards Ready for Cyberattacks?

Boards today are expected to be on top of all of their company’s major risks, and no risk has received more attention recently than cybersecurity. Are boards actually equipped to meet the heightened expectation of investors, regulators, and the general public? Experts with unparalleled experience in corporate governance and cybersecurity weigh in.

Program Speakers Thus Far:

Doug Chia, Executive Director of The Governance Center, The Conference Board (Moderator)

Rajesh De, Partner, Mayer Brown; Former General Counsel, U.S. National Security Agency

William Houston, Executive Recruitment Consultant, Egon Zehnder; Former Head, Strategic Partner Development, Google Inc.


Closing Remarks

Thank You to Our Conference Partners!

Willard InterContinental Hotel -- Washington, D.C.

Event Start Time
April 19, 2017, 11:00 AM

Event End Time
April 20, 2017, 1:00 PM

Learn more about CED's Spring 2017 Leadership in the Nation's Interest Award Honoree, Barbara Barrett, here.

Learn more about Ann McLaughlin Korologos, who introduced Barbara Barrett, here.


@CEDUpdate Where Does the US Government Get Its Money? Part 4 of our Debt 101 series answers this exact question! Read it now: