Keynote Speaker Biographies



Danica Patrick

Danica Patrick

Retired Racecar Driver, Entrepreneur & Author

As a racecar driver, Danica Patrick broke barriers and set records with her on-track performance. With her racing career behind her, Danica looks to her next chapter as she focuses on her passions: good food, great wine, fitness and helping others achieve their goals.

Danica joined the mainstream ranks by succeeding in the male-dominated world of professional motorsports. Danica was named to TIME’s “100 Most Influential People” list, has graced the cover of many prestigious publications and was featured in pictorials in the 2008 and 2009 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. She has appeared in a record-setting 14 Super Bowl commercials, 13 of which were for longtime partner, GoDaddy!

At just 10 years old, Danica’s racing career began after her parents bought her a go-kart. After winning numerous regional and national go-kart titles, Danica left the Midwest at 16 years old to compete in the cutthroat world of European road racing.

In 2005, Danica stunned the world by leading 19 laps and finishing fourth in her first Indianapolis 500. She became the first woman to lead laps and score a top-five finish in the historic race. In 2008, Danica made history again becoming the first woman to win a major-league open-wheel race in a North American series with her victory in the IndyCar Series Indy Japan 300 race.

In 2013, as Danica transitioned to the NASCAR Cup Series, she made headlines around the world with her record-setting performance in the 55th Daytona 500 race. She became the first woman to win a NASCAR Cup Series pole when she set the fastest time in qualifying 500 and then finished in eighth place, the highest finishing position ever for a woman in the “Great American Race.”

In 2018, Danica closed out her time in racing with the “Danica Double” and competed in two marquee events that were cornerstones of her career: the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500. In 2018, she shattered another glass ceiling when she became the first female host of the ESPY’s – ESPNs Sports Award show, that aired live on ABC.

Moving into her next chapter, retired from racing, Danica’s focus has shifted to her role as an entrepreneur and business owner. Danica has launched the clothing line – Warrior by Danica Patrick, authored a book Pretty Intense, and is the sole proprietor of Somnium, a vineyard in Napa Valley, California. In addition to these passion projects, Danica also continues to do inspirational speaking engagements and she plans to build upon these initiatives in the coming years.

Eric Hutcherson

Eric Hutcherson

Executive Vice President, Chief Human Resources Officer, National Basketball Association

Eric Hutcherson leads the NBA’s Human Resources department, managing a team that drives the NBA’s global workforce strategy built on a commitment to attracting, retaining, developing and engaging top talent for the NBA, WNBA, NBA G League and NBA 2K League. With a focus on people, culture and innovation, Hutcherson is responsible for leading global projects, processes and analytics that address business needs. He partners with the leagues’ senior leadership to enable, empower and develop employees in 13 U.S. and international offices guided by the league’s strategic direction.

Prior to joining the NBA in July 2014, Hutcherson was Managing Director and Chief HR Officer for the U.S. and Canada Division of Marsh, a leading global insurance brokerage firm. Before that, he held several leadership positions at Mercer, a financial services and human resource consulting firm, including Chief Human Resources Officer - Americas, and Global Leader for Mercer’s Outsourcing and Global Operations and Shared Services businesses.

Earlier in his career, he worked for Foot Locker and served as Assistant Director of Public Relations for the Boston Celtics.

Outside of the NBA, Hutcherson is a motivational speaker and created a career development training program, “Say Yes to Success”. He serves on the Board of Councilors for the USC Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism, the Senior Advisory Council for the National Association of African Americans in HR, and the Executive Board for Covenant House.

Hutcherson earned a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from New York University and a master’s degree in Sports Management and Administration from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. He resides in NYC with his wife Linda and their two sons, Austin and Myles.

Brooke Shields

Brooke Shields

Actress, Model, Author and Advocate

Brooke Shields began her modeling career at 11 months old in an Ivory Soap commercial. As a 14- year old model, Brooke was the youngest fashion model ever to appear on the cover of Vogue magazine. That same year, she appeared in the now-famous, controversial Calvin Klein jeans ad. By 16, she had become one of the most recognizable faces in the world. At age nine, she appeared in her first film, Alice Sweet Alice, and rapidly gained fame after staring in Louis Malle's Pretty Baby and the coming-of-age tales Blue Lagoon and Endless Love.

As a model, Brooke has graced the covers of hundreds of magazines, most notably as Time Magazine's "Face of the Eighties." Today, Shields continues her prolific career on screen and stage, as a best-selling author and an advocate for women and the arts.

In addition to her film achievements, Shields has maintained a successful and acclaimed television career. Her work on “Suddenly Susan” garnered her a Golden Globe nomination and five People's Choice Awards. She currently can be seen on “Law & Order: SVU” in a major recurring role and is featured in the indie drama Daisy Winters, released fall of 2017. Brooke also had a Sirius XM show, "Brooke Shields Now," which covered topics such as parenting, relationships and style.

In 2006, Brooke wrote her best-selling memoir, Down Came the Rain, detailing her struggles with post-partum depression, its impact on her family and friends, and her use of therapy & medication. The book created a watershed moment in public awareness of the disease. In 2014, Shields released her memoir There Was a Little Girl, a candid look at her relationship with her mother, who was both her manager and an alcoholic. The memoir is a raw and unguarded look at the damage alcohol causes in intimate relationships.

Incorporating decades of experience working in the fashion world, Brooke created an apparel and accessories line exclusively for QVC called Brooke Shields Timeless which officially launched in March 2018 on QVC.

While attending Princeton University, Brooke pursued her love of theatre as a member of the Princeton Triangle Club. Shortly after graduating with an honors degree in French literature, she made her Broadway debut as Rizzo in the hit musical Grease, for which she earned the Theatre World Award in 1994 for "Outstanding Debut on Broadway." Shields also starred in Chicago, Wonderful Town, Cabaret and The Addams Family.

Brooke serves on the board of WIN, an organization dedicated to providing housing, services and programs to homeless women and children in NYC.

In her personal life, Brooke continues to be a strong advocate for women’s issues and keeping the arts alive in schools. She is the happily married mother of two beautiful daughters.

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