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CEO Summit on Strategic Thinking
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GPSEG’s CEO Summit on Strategic Thinking  


Radnor Valley Country Club, Villanova, PA  

June 4, 2015

7:30AM to 11:30AM

Better strategy execution requires a strategic thinker

who can discover novel, imaginative strategies which

can re-write the rules of the competitive game; and set in motion

the chain of events that will shape and define the future.


 – Excerpted from Wikipedia



Where does strategic THINKING fit in your current set of business activities?  Not planning.  Thinking.  The mental meanderings that evolve into the ideas and strategies that propel your business forward. 


Whether you’re running a company, a business unit within a company, a non-profit or your own consulting boutique, it goes without saying that strategic thinking is a core competency critical to your success. If you could sit down with a group of CEOs who had clearly demonstrated that competency through their proven track records, what would you want to ask them?  Most likely, you would want to know how they made critical choices, how they set themselves apart from the competition, how they addressed risk, fear of failure and, finally, what mistakes had they made that they would avoid if they had it to do all over again.


GPSEG invites you to the first event in our Executive Leadership series where you will be able to sit in on a conversation with a panel of successful CEOs willing to candidly share how they charted unique business courses and how they strategically resolved critical issues such as:

n  How did you open a BIG DOOR?  (i.e. identify and seize a big opportunity)

n  Do you ride trends or make them?

n  When identifying a niche to occupy, do you jump in or test first?

n  How much risk is too much?

n  Is strategic thinking a solo activity for you?  Or do you think out loud with someone?  Who?


Think about it – When will you get such a chance to step back and think about what you could do to become a better strategic thinker?


Following a facilitated panel discussion, our moderator will lead a Q & A session for attendees.  Then, after a quick break, you as attendees will participate in a workshop where you will work with other people to analyze and answer the strategic challenges facing a fictitious company.  You’ll have the opportunity to practice some of the ideas presented in the first half of the program and to interact with attendees in a brain-engaging way.



Our panelists will include:



Panel Moderator: Thomas Kaney, Managing Partner, McKnight Kaney LLC

Tom's career spans 35 years of Leadership in Healthcare, Management Consulting, Pharmaceuticals, Biotech and Automotive industries.  Tom was a Principal with The Hay Group and a practice leader in Performance Management and Merger integration.  As SVP HR and Organization Development for GlaxoSmithKline Tom led several highly successful global and N. America merger integrations. He is currently Managing Partner for McKnight Kaney LLC, a Philadelphia based consulting firm specializing in Strategy Execution, Organization Design and Executive Coaching.  He is co-author of the book Leading Strategy Execution and is a coach in the University of Pennsylvania Wharton MBA Executive Coaching program.


           Kelly Davenport: CEO/CAO, The Freire Charter School: Kelly has led Freire Charter School since its inception 16 years ago, and has built it into the one of the most respected and successful charter schools in Philadelphia.  As Freire prepares to open its third and fourth campuses in Wilmington and Philadelphia, Kelly is stepping into the role of CEO of Build the Future, the charter services organization that will serve all four Freire schools.  Kelly has a doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania.  Her career is supported by nine years of classroom teaching at the secondary and college levels.  Kelly also serves as a trainer for the Pennsylvania Inspired Leadership Program run by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. There, she trains principals across the state of Pennsylvania to become effective instructional leaders. 

James G. Murphy, CPA  Chief Financial Officer, VenatoRX Pharmaceuticals

Jim has over 25 years’ experience as a senior financial executive in public and privately held companies in the life sciences and the media and technology industries. He has served as the Chief Financial Officer for three publicly held firms as well as a member of the Board of Directors of Biomimetic Therapeutics where he was the Chair of the Audit Committee. Jim has substantial fund raising experience and has helped to raise over $1.5 billion in financing for the companies he has served. Jim also has extensive merger and acquisition experience having led or participated in the purchase and sale of over 20 companies including both public and privately-held companies. Jim has worked with a number of venture capital firms including Canaan Partners, TL Ventures and Burrill and Company. Jim holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting with Honors from Villanova University and is a Certified Public Accountant


Linda Schellenger, President Telerx – Linda serves as President and a member of the Board of Directors of Telerx a Merck subsidiary. Linda oversees all functional areas of Telerx. In addition to a hands-on approach to managing all aspects of the company, Linda’s primary responsibilities include strategic development, business planning, and client program consultation. Prior to joining the Telerx Leadership Team in 2006, Linda served as Chief Marketing Officer for TCIM Services, Inc. She has more than 20 years of experience in sales management, operations, marketing, client services, and human resources.  Her experience working across diverse verticals enables her to bring best practices and industry insights to Telerx and our clients. Linda holds a Bachelors degree in organizational dynamics from Immaculata College.

           Perry Walraven: CEO and President of Performance Controls, Inc. a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi Medical Corporation, which is headquartered in Tokyo.  Perry received an Aerospace Engineering degree from Georgia Tech and MBA from Southern Illinois University.  His career includes experience as an air force officer and pilot, and engineer at General Motors.  He worked in sales, marketing, field service, and division management for a capital goods supplier with worldwide scope.  His career has taken him to over forty countries.  He led the team selling Performance Controls to Hitachi in 2003.


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