General Sessions & Special Events


Besides the wealth of undergraduate and professional tracks offered throughout the event, the Lead365 Conference also hosts conference-wide talks, receptions, and networking events.


Scroll down to see what makes us different!


General Session & Special Event Highlights

November 1 - 3, 2018


Opening Session featuring James Robilotta

What does it mean to “explore, engage and evolve?”  You will feel the unique energy of Lead365 while being introduced to the powerful conference theme and a national treasure house of practitioners, researchers and professional speakers called “The Faculty.”  

More about this opening session will be added in the weeks ahead.



Opening Reception/Dinner

Sunshine, smiles and conversation awaits you at the Opening Reception/Dinner. Don’t worry about dinner, this heavy reception gets the job done while allowing you to continue getting to know other conference goers and faculty members.  This is a wonderful opportunity to network, exchange contact information and enjoy the beautiful Orlando sunshine. 



“The Lead365Talks are genius!”
— First Time Professional Staff Member - Nov 2017


In a creative presentation format broken into two sessions, The Lead365Talks present professional speakers offering up in 9 minutes or less, a condensed speech intended to offer a “snap shot” of who they are as a speaker while sharing a significant leadership message.   

Talk Topics ROUND ONE:  The Truth is The Truth

  • How deceiving yourself holds you back
  • Why doing right is right
  • Letting go of false beliefs about the meaning of happiness, life and leadership
  • When YOU and others fail to be honest and authentic
  • Understanding "it is what it is" and "reality is often too real"

Round One Featured Speakers: Peter Bielagus, Josie Ahlquist, Jermaine Davis, Tamara McMillan & Jamie Washington

Talk Topics ROUND TWO:  When One Door Closes

  • Persistence
  • The power of passion
  • When you have faith you can't have fear
  • Knowing when to turn around
  • Believing in your dreams

Round Two Featured Speakers:  Hoan Do, Sara Lowery, Michael Miller, Maura Cullen & Curtis Hill

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Leadership After Dark

Leadership After Dark:  As the sun goes down, so will the lights in the ballroom as students will be challenged to take their leadership to a whole new level. Developed by SwiftKick and facilitated by the dynamic Melissa Ruiz, "Leadership After Dark" is an opportunity to engage in a variety of personal networking and team building activities to push you beyond the limits you may believe you currently possess. Be ready. Be Prepared. It's Leadership After Dark!


What’s the connection between learning leadership and your ability to get the job you want?  How can mastering specific leadership competencies facilitate your productivity in the workplace?  National experts offer 7 programs specifically geared towards enhancing your success in the workplace and new professional. Found in the same time slots with the more typical style workshop, these sessions are more experiential.

Student Workshop Showcase 

Let’s Talk: Humble Inquiry in Leadership  

Leaders don’t have all the answers—and they don’t have to!  Learn how to ask more questions and have more intentional conversations in your organizations. Presented by participants of the James and Sybil Stockdale Fellows Program at Monmouth College.

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Relationship Building Lunches

Not a fan of keynote speakers over lunch while you are trying to relax? Neither are we!  The conference offers one hour breaks for casual conversations, movement, sunshine (or not) and the opportunity to meet people or take a “mental break.”  

Boxed lunches (technically they are fancy bags with handles) are available for all conference participants to take out to the patio tables or venture poolside - as long as you return!  Enjoy the sunshine. If you want to take advantage of the “Questions of Leadership” in the lunches to generate conversation, use them! If not, feel welcome to simply “chill.”

Engaging Conversations

What a shame it would be to not maximize on the talents and interests of like minded individuals.  Engaging Conversations are facilitated conversations by The Faculty based upon desirable interests.  Select whichever topic appeals to you and go to that designated room listed on your schedule.  Small group discussions can be as intimate or general as you desire. 

Topical areas and the fabulous facilitator are listed below. Which topic intrigues you?

Dr. Josie Ahlquist - Social Media

Peter Bielagus - Becoming an Entrepreneur

Kelvin Harris and Dr. Bruce Jackson - Creating Non-Profits & Foundations

Leslie Menichini - New Professionalism

Amma Marfo - Introverted Leadership

Student Leaders - Advanced Leadership

Melissa Ruiz - Self-Care & Work Life Balance

Dr. Corey Seemiller - Tweaking Current Programs & Sharing Innovative Programs

Dr. Jamie Washington - Social Justice


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An Evening with Marlon Smith

Taking the stage for an engaging performance is the one and only Marlon Christopher Smith.  Featured in ESSENCE Magazine as one of the top inspirational speakers, Marlon brings laughter, tears and remarkable insight all at once. In the past 26 years, Marlon has impacted millions of people. He is a certified Wealth Mastery presenter, Amazon #1 Best-Selling author and Business Executive coach. Marlon has an international reputation for excellence at the podium and is excited to be sharing his new program about Success, Leadership and Money (SLAM) with Lead365!

Learn more about Marlon.

Universal Studio's City Walk 

You're in Orlando... time to have some fun!  As a courtesy, transportation is provided to University Studio's City Walk right down the road - 4 miles away - or you can "Uber" it.  The shuttle runs continuously starting at 7:00 PM from the transportation dock at the hotel to a designated drop off/pick up location.  The last bus departs City Walk at 11:00 PM.  Conference attendees are responsible for your own transportation and the shuttle bus is provided only as a courtesy.


Student Lead365Talks & Closing Session

Oh that's right.  Students can apply to give a 7 minute talk with the same format as the professional speakers use in their Lead365Talks!  Four students will be selected in advance.  Interested?  Don't just sit there... EMAIL THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR AND SAY YOU'RE INTERESTED.

That's only part of this dynamic closing session.  A Think Back video highlights the previous three days of transformation and good times.  The Lead365 National Award (with a $500 cash prize) is presented to an outstanding professional or undergraduate.  Sponsors are thanked (of course) and a Good Bye video from The Faculty closes out the program.  Distribution of Certificates of Completion (suitable for framing) and an appropriate send off concludes what promises to have been an amazing growth and learning experience for undergraduates, graduate students, leadership educators and new professionals.