Breakfast Session Speakers

Please join us for breakfast on Monday and Tuesday mornings in the Marina Ballroom and hear from outstanding speakers.

Alec Ross, New York Times Best-Selling Author & Former Senior Advisor for Innovation, State Department

Monday, October 18 | 7:15 am – 8:45 am

Alec Ross Headshot

Alec Ross is the author of the New York Times best-seller The Industries of the Future, which explores the technological and economic trends and developments that will shape the next ten years, including robotics and artificial intelligence, advanced life sciences, cybersecurity, big data and the code-ification of money, markets, and trust. Alec started his career as a sixth-grade teacher through Teach for America in inner-city Baltimore. In 2000, he and three colleagues co-founded One Economy, a technology-focused social enterprise that serves millions of low-income people across four continents. He also served as the Convener for the Technology & Media Policy Committee on Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign and on the Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Team. He was Senior Advisor for Innovation to the Secretary of State, a position which tasked Alec with modernizing the practice of diplomacy and bringing innovative solutions to advance America’s foreign policy interests.

Currently, Alec is a board partner at Amplo, a global venture capital firm, and sits on the board of directors for companies in the fields of technology, finance, education, human capital, and cybersecurity. Continuing a commitment to education, he is a visiting professor at King’s College London and has served as a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Johns Hopkins University and as a Senior Fellow at the Columbia University School of International & Public Affairs. He was recently named as one of the “Top 100 Global Thinkers” by Foreign Policy magazine and has received the U.S. Department of State “Distinguished Honor” Award, the Oxford University “Internet & Society” Award, and the TriBeCa Film Festival “Book of the Year” Award. Alec’s writing has appeared in The Wall Street Journal and Foreign Policy. His academic writing has appeared as the journal cover articles of the SAIS Review of International Affairs and the NATO Review. Alec lives in Baltimore, MD with his wife and their three children.

Thank you to our Monday Breakfast Session Sponsor:


Ken Jennings, Greatest Jeopardy! Player of All Time


Ken Jennings became the stuff of legends when he beat fellow champs “Jeopardy James” Holzhauer and Brad Rutter to win $1 million and be named the Greatest Jeopardy Player of All Time (GOAT). Jennings holds records for the longest winning streak (74 consecutive games), highest regular-season winnings ($2,520,700) and highest average correct responses (35.9) records in Jeopardy! history. As a former software engineer turned best-selling author and speaker, Ken appears at college and corporate events nationwide, covering topics ranging from the importance of education to artificial intelligence (specifically his encounter with IBM’s Watson) to his love of geography (the subject of his New York Times best-selling book), always sharing his insider stories from behind the scenes at Jeopardy!

After his long reign on Jeopardy!, Ken used his winnings to live the life of his dreams and become a best-selling author. His 12 books include the New York Times best-seller Maphead: Charting the Wide, Weird World of Geography. He is the co-host of Omnibus, a twice-weekly podcast that compiles strange-but-true stories for inclusion in a time capsule for future generations. He also serves as a resident expert on the Game Show Network’s Best Ever Trivia Show. He has made numerous television appearances, from The Tonight Show and Sesame Street to being interviewed as one of Barbara Walter’s most fascinating people of the year.

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