Keynote Speakers

Friday Opening Keynote: Jessica Pettitt & Patrick Henry


Jessica Pettitt, MEd, pulls together her stand-up comedy years with 15+ years of diversity training's in a wide range of organizations to serve groups to move from abstract fears to actionable habits that lead to teams that want to work together.  Her social justice and diversity curricula is used nationwide to educate employers on building welcoming, productive and innovative teams.  She believes that with a sense of belonging and understanding, colleagues take more risks with their idealization, conserve precious resources through collaboration and maintain real connections with clients over time.


Patrick Henry is an author, songwriter and performance keynote speaker who partners with meeting planners to make meetings memorable.  As a former Nashville songwriter and humorist on the SiriusXM Radio Family Comedy Channels, Patrick brings a unique blend of humor, music and message to his audiences to create an event that is full of energy and actionable ideas.  His book, The Pancake Principle: Seventeen Sticky Ways to Make Your Customers Flip for You, was released in 2013 and he will soon be featured on a comedy album alongside Jeff Foxworthy, Steve Martin, Larry the Cable Guy and Jeanne Robertson. One of Patrick’s audience members best described him as “what happens when, keynotes, comedy, and concerts…collide.”  When not on the road serving clients, Patrick can be found at home in North Carolina with his wife and three children.  He is an avid Auburn football fan and is doing his best to get his golf handicap under 20.  He is a firm believer that “If you do what you love to do for a living, you’ll never work a day in your life.”

Watch a day in the life of a professional speaker.

Saturday Lunch Keynote: Sylvie di Giusto


“People Packaging is what I do…” says Sylvie di Giusto who helps individuals and organizations to explore how people make up their minds very quickly about them, their leadership potential, or their company, and either open the door or slam it shut. Twenty years of corporate experience and her ability to empower people to influence the success of their own career has led to her launching Executive Image Consulting, based in New York City. It’s where she uses her extensive corporate expertise as a professional speaker, corporate trainer and image consultant for professionals, politicians and companies who place great importance in themselves and their reputation. She is also one of the most active and influential online marketers within the image consulting industry, and encourages other consultants to use modern tools, techniques and strategies to obtain their business success. In November 2014 Sylvie became the co-owner of the Studio for Image Professionals.

Hear from Sylvie what her keynote is all about.

Sunday Closing Keynote: Ben Nemtin


Ben Nemtin is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of What Do You Want To Do Before You Die?, the star of the MTV show The Buried Life, and an internationally renowned keynote speaker. As the co-founder of The Buried Life movement, Ben’s message of radical possibility has been featured in major media including The Today Show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, CNN, FOX, ABC, CBS, NBC News, and more. Oprah Winfrey called Ben’s life work “truly inspiring.” In a pit of depression, Ben and his three best friends decided to create the world’s greatest bucket list to make them feel alive. They bought a rickety old bus and cris-crossed North America, achieving the unthinkable. And most importantly, every time they accomplished a dream, they helped a complete stranger cross something off their bucket list. From playing basketball with President Obama to streaking a soccer field, from raising over $400,000 for charity to placing a record-breaking $250,000 bet on roulette—Ben’s bucket list quest has inspired millions to chase their dreams.

Hear from Ben what he'll be talking about at CMP Conclave.

Conclave Emcee

Glenn Thayer, Professional Conference Moderator, The Voice Of Meetings & Events

Known as The Voice of Meetings and Events, Glenn Thayer is a professional conference moderator and master of ceremonies. He has more than 15 years of experience facilitating corporate and association conferences. His clients span varied industries ranging from technology, healthcare, and financial services. 

Specializing in creating dynamic general sessions, Glenn works with his clients to enhance the audience experience through the use of technology, compelling content, and open, interactive dialogue and interviews. 

When not involved with a meeting or conference, he uses his communication skills and as a corporate spokesperson and voiceover talent for television and radio. He can be seen regularly on PBS and donates his time to Fins Attached, a shark conservation and marine research organization. 

Glenn is a contributing author to the meeting and event design section of the Convention Industry Council’s CMP manual.

Hear from Glenn about CMP Conclave.