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Erin Brockovich to keynote Executive Leaders Forum

Monday, April 23, 2012  
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Famed legal consultant and environmental activist Erin Brockovich will share her true life story as the closing keynote speaker at the Network of Executive Women Executive Leaders Forum, July 2-Aug. 31, 2012 at the Terranea Resort, outside Los Angeles. More than 200 senior-level leaders from the consumer products and retail industry are expected to attend the three-day, by-invitation event, which is themed "Creating -- and Living -- Your Legacy.”

In 1993, despite a lack of legal education, Brockovich was instrumental in building a case against Pacific Gas & Electric, which resulted in a $333 million settlement to 600 residents of the town of Hinkley, Calif. The 1996 settlement was the largest ever paid in a direct-action lawsuit in U.S. history. Now president of Brockovich Research and Consulting, she is involved in numerous environmental projects worldwide.

She was portrayed by Julia Roberts in the 2000 film "Erin Brockovich,” which Brockovich has called "98 percent accurate.” Roberts won an Academy Award for the role. Since that time, Brockovich has used her celebrity status to encourage others to stand up and make a difference.

"Our perception of things become our reality,” Brockovich has said. "It is how you choose to see yourself, your character, that can actually determine your fate.”

During the three-day NEW Executive Leaders Forum, senior executives from across the industry will learn how to "break through daily demands to make a lasting mark on their organizations, create a life plan to accomplish cherished goals and help develop women leaders to build a living legacy.”

LIF Group CEO Blythe McGarvie, the former CFO of BIC and author of Shaking the Globe: Courageous Decision-Makers in a Changing World, will be the Forum’s opening keynote speaker. She will share her experiences as a leader in the Fortune 500 and discuss how women can "top playing it safe and lead change around the world.”

How to leave a legacy

Gisele Ruiz, executive vice president and COO of Walmart U.S., will explore what it means to be a pioneer and role model for other women as the Forum's featured keynote speaker. The program also includes a special address by Janice Madden, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania and author of five books. Madden will examine the cultural, social and economic changes needed to advance women.

The event also features a panel of senior industry leaders who will offer their experiences as advocates for women. Lynn Marmer of The Kroger Co., Nancy Croitoru of Food & Consumer Products of Canada, David Williams of Deloitte Financial Advisory Services LLP and Kelly Semrau of SC Johnson will share the strategies they’ve employed for retaining and promoting female leaders.Featured speaker Laree Renda, Safeway Inc.’s executive vice president and president of the Safeway Health Company, will offer advice for staying on task and how to blaze a trail for others.

The NEW Executive Leaders Forum also will feature three 90-minute workshops on influence, sustainability and diversity. During "Influence: Expand Your Influence, Create Your Legacy,” industry veterans Angela Joyner of ConAgra Foods, Donna Giordano of the Kroger Co.’s Ralphs division and Roz Hudnell of Intel Corp. will lead exercises designed to help leaders align their strengths with their aspirations.

"Sustainability: Building a Lasting Legacy at Your Organization” will feature Kellie McElhaney of UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, Christy Consler of Safeway Inc. and Bruce Karas of Coca-Cola Refreshments. The panel of sustainability experts will look at what it takes to be a responsible steward for your company and community.

During "Diversity: Becoming a Powerful Champion for Other Women,” Robin Ely of Harvard Business School, Jenna Dudevoir of Kalypso, Sandra Finley of the League of Black Women and Lisbeth McNabb of w2w
link will address ways women can support other women in the workplace.

Networking opportunities will include peer learning, two dinners and receptions, a Forum luncheon and breakfasts and breaks. For the second consecutive year, the Forum will be held at the 102-acre Terranea Resort on the Palo Verdes peninsula, 16 miles south of Los Angeles International Airport.

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