The 2018 GCEC Conference

The 2018 GCEC conference program will be composed of practitioner and academic presentations, panel discussions, and facilitator-led working lunches.
Practitioner and Academic Presentations
Practitioner and academic presentations feature individual speakers covering a topic in depth. See speaker bios below. 
Day Time Speaker Location
Friday, October 19 9:30 a.m. Genevieve Thiers Hermann Hall
Friday, October 19 3:40 p.m. David Kalt Hermann Hall
Saturday, October 20 9:00 a.m. Howard A. Tullman Hermann Hall
Saturday, October 20 9:30 a.m. Katlin Smith Hermann Hall
Saturday, October 20 3:40 p.m. Julia Pimsleur Hermann Hall
Panel Discussions
Panel discussions feature strategic groupings of faculty and practitioners covering a topic with breadth.
Facilitated Working Lunches
Facilitated working lunches invite selected faculty and practitioners to lead roundtable discussions.

Keynote Speaker Bios

Genevieve Thiers
Disruptor, Entrepreneur, Speaker, Investor
Genevieve Thiers is a disruptor, entrepreneur, speaker, and investor that lives in the Chicago area. Her first company,, is America’s first company to take caregiving services online. now has millions of users and new locations in the UK and Canada.
Julia Pimsleur
Founder and Chief Empowerista
Million Dollar Women
Julia Pimsleur is the Founder and Chief Empowerista at Million Dollar Women (MDW). MDW runs an online business school, Million Dollar Women Masterclass, and an annual Million Dollar Women Summit in New York City for high growth women entrepreneurs.
David Kalt
Founder and CEO
David Kalt is founder and CEO at, the leading online marketplace dedicated to buying and selling music gear. David has grown into the most popular music gear website in the world. David started shortly after purchasing musical instrument shop, Chicago Music Exchange, and growing frustrated with the process of buying and selling guitars online.
Katlin Smith
Founder and CEO
Simple Mills
Katlin Smith is the founder and CEO of Simple Mills, a Chicago-based company at the forefront of a clean food movement that is shaping the next generation of natural foods. Named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 Class of 2017, Smith launched Simple Mills in 2013 to provide a cleaner alternative to the natural baking mixes then on the market.
Howard Tullman
Executive Director for the Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship at Illinois Tech
Howard A. Tullman is the former CEO of 1871 and serves as the General Managing Partner for G2T3V, LLC and for the Chicago High Tech Investors, LLC; he is a Director of SnapSheet, Keeper Security, Dibit and VEHCON. He is a Board Advisor to Hightower Advisors and many other start-ups in Chicago. He was previously a Trustee of WTTW in Chicago and the New York Academy of Art in New York. He serves as the Chairman of the Endowment Committee of Anshe Emet Synagogue in Chicago, and an Adjunct Professor at Northwestern’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management in Evanston and at the Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago.