The Art of Leadership for Women Vancouver 2016 speaker list

Dec 19 2017, 8:19 pm

Five world-renowned women, from Academy Award-winning actresses to legendary athletes, arrive in Vancouver Friday, April 1 for The Art of Leadership for Women.

Sharing their experiences, their successes, and their wisdom, these influential speakers will help provide today’s women with the tools they need to make their dreams come true in life, and in business.

Take a look below for a rundown on the amazing women who will be speaking at the event.

Geena Davis

Academy Award-winning actress. 

The Art of Leadership for Women

The Art of Leadership for Women

As one of Hollywood’s most respected actors, Academy Award-winner Geena Davis has starred in films and shows that have gone on to become cultural touchstones, including her role as the first female President of the United States in ABC’s hit TV show Commander in Chief.

In 1989, Davis received the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as dog trainer Muriel Pritchett in Lawrence Kasdan’s The Accidental Tourist, and was nominated for an Academy Award and Golden Globe for her performance as Thelma in Ridley Scott’s legendary film Thelma and Louise, in which she co-starred with Susan Sarandon. She was again nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Actress as Dotie Hinsin in A League of Their Own.

Not only is Davis an Oscar and Golden Globe winning actor, she is also a world-class archer (at one time ranked 13th in the world), a member of the genius society Mensa, and an advocate of women and girls. She is the founder of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, and well as See Jane, which engage film and television creators to dramatically increase the percentages of female characters and reduce gender stereotyping.

Davis holds honorary degrees from Boston University, Bates College and New England College. She currently resides in Los Angeles.

What you’ll learn:

  • Her mission to work within the entertainment industry to dramatically alter how girls and women are reflected in media.
  • Why and how being cast in Thelma & Louise changed Geena’s life – and spurred her into creating a women’s empowerment non-profit and becoming a lifelong advocate for women.
  • How her Institute on Gender in Media is at the forefront of changing female portrayals and gender stereotypes, through research, education, strategic guidance and advocacy programs.

Amy Cuddy

New York Times bestselling author, Associate Professor at Harvard and 2nd most viewed TED Talk with over 30 million views.

The Art of Leadership for Women

The Art of Leadership for Women

Researching social judgements, emotions, nonverbal behaviours, and hormones, Amy Cuddy takes audiences through the roles these variables have in shaping us as people. Her work on power posing – brief, nonverbal expressions of competence and power – has garnered worldwide praise in her TED talk, “Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are.” Posted in October of 2012, the talk has been streamed over 30 million times and is the second-most viewed video on the TED site.

In her New York Times bestseller Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges, Cuddy reveals how to use your self-assurance to build confidence in high-pressure moments.

Cuddy holds a PhD in Psychology from Princeton University and BA in Psychology from the University of Colorado. At Harvard, Amy teaches MBA, executive education, and doctoral courses on influence & persuasion, leadership, and decision making. She is also a classically trained (and still practicing) ballet dancer, which informs her research on nonverbal communication.

What you’ll learn:

  • Lessons from her TED talk about “power poses” on the science underlying these and many other fascinating body-mind effects and how to use this science to become self-assured in high-pressure moments.
  • How powerfully our body language influences not only other people’s opinions of us but our own feelings of confidence and authority.
  • How to adjust your self-presentation for big boosts in self-confidence and effectiveness.

Diana Nyad

Record-breaking endurance athlete and bestselling author of Find A Way.

The Art of Leadership for Women

The Art of Leadership for Women

At 64-years-old, in her fifth and final attempt, Diana Nyad successfully completed the 110-mile swim from Cuba to Florida on September 2, 2013. Upon finishing her 53 hour journey, Nyad told the world, “I have three messages. One is we should never ever give up. Two is you are never too old to chase your dreams. And three is it looks like a solitary sport, but it takes a team.” In July of 2010, at the age of 60, she began her “Xtreme Dream” swim from Cuba to Florida, a task she had failed to finish thirty years before. When asked why, Nyad said, “Because I’d like to prove to the other 60-year-olds that it is never too late to start your dreams.” Nyad tried and failed three times, before succeeding in 2013.

In the 1970’s, Nyad was the best long-distance swimmer in the world. Her world records, including circling Manhattan Island and crossing the 102.5 miles between the Bahamas and Florida, have led to inductions to many Halls of Fame, such as the International Women’s Sports Hall of Fame.

Her book Find a Way: One Wild and Precious Life, was published in Fall 2015. She recently debuted the one-woman show, Onward! The Diana Nyad Story in Los Angeles and Key West. Directed and adapted by Joshua Ravetch, who helped shape Carrie Fisher’s show Wishful Drinking, Onward! has received praise among the theatre community.

What you’ll learn:

  • Hear a unique, passionate story of this heroic adventure and the extraordinary life experiences that have served to carve her unwavering spirit.
  • How Nyad achieved the “Xtreme Dream,” at age 64, 30 years after she had failed to finish the same route.
  • Why you should never give up and why you are never too old to chase your dreams.
  • How to overcome obstacles, persevere and achieve goals that seem impossible.

Danielle Laporte

Bestselling author of The Firestarter Sessions and creator of The Desire Map: A Guide To Creating Goals With Soul.

The Art of Leadership for Women

The Art of Leadership for Women

Danielle LaPorte is the author of The Desire Map: A Guide To Creating Goals With Soul. What started as simply a book has become a wildly popular a day planner system, a top iTunes app, and an international workshop program. Author of The Fire Starter Sessions and the wildly popular #Truthbomb series, Danielle is also the co-creator of Your Big Beautiful Book Plan and co-host of the Beautiful Writer’s Group podcast. Entrepreneur Magazine calls her “equal parts poet and entrepreneurial badass…edgy, contrarian…loving and inspired.”

A speaker, poet, former business strategist and Washington-DC think tank exec, she writes weekly at, where over four million visitors go for her advice.

What you’ll learn:

  • Learn about desire, creativity, and stepping into your full power.
  • Gain a better understanding of how you want to feel for better clarity when setting goals.
  • How to deal with burn out, life balance, being a leader, keeping it sexy, integrity, being heard, being in charge and being in love with life.

Dr. Seonaid Charlesworth

Vice President, Executive Assessment & Succession, Lee Hecht Harrison Knightsbridge.


The Art of Leadership for Women

Dr. Seonaid Charlesworth works with C-suite and executive successors to understand what they’re capable of and what could derail their success. She has assessed over 400 executives in Canada, US, UK and South America.

Charlesworth combines her expertise in Industrial and Organizational Psychology with experience assessing leaders to help organizations make smarter decisions about people. As Vice President of Executive Assessment and Succession at Lee Hecht Harrison Knightsbridge, she is sought out by Boards and CEOs at some of North America’s leading organizations.

Charlesworth challenges conventional thinking, by showing the common traps we fall into when making decisions about people. Drawing on stories from some of the world’s fastest growing organizations, she shows how leaders can avoid these traps and make smarter decisions about people.

Charlesworth holds a Ph.D. in Industrial / Organizational Psychology from the University of British Columbia and a B.A. with honors from Queen’s University.

What you’ll learn:

  • Discover the five most important decisions you will make about people, and how they will impact your success as a leader.
  • Learn the hidden biases that blind leaders from seeing potential and risks in others.
  • How to avoid the hidden traps that lead us to make wrong calls about people, and strengthen our talent management decisions.
  • Strategies for making more accurate decisions about who to hire, whether to trust someone, and when it’s time to give up on someone.

The Art of Leadership for Women 2016

When: Friday, April 1, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: Vancouver Convention Centre – 1055 Canada Place, Vancouver

Price: $499, $699, $849


Vancity Buzz is a proud sponsor of The Art of Leadership for Women