We are pleased to announce the keynote & breakout speakers for the 2020 World Affairs Seminar!


Dr. Kelly Ottman

Professor, Milwaukee School of Engineering, Rader School of Business (Milwaukee)

Introductory Workshop
Monday, June 22nd at 10:00 A.M. CDT.

The intersections of Dr. Kelly Ottman’s professional accomplishments, educational history, service experience, and personal mission position her to make a positive difference to the health and success of a corporation. As an executive, she successfully led complex organizations. For the past 25 years, her focus has been on developing leaders, often executive teams. Her multi-disciplinary academic leadership training includes a two-year executive development fellowship. An understanding of board functions emerges from her serving on various professional, educational and not-for-profit boards, as well as reporting to and consulting for boards. Dr. Ottman’s knowledge, skills and experiences center on the growth of individuals, teams and organizations. Key areas of expertise and impact include leadership and team development, mission and value, strategic planning, organizational culture, diversity and inclusion, employee engagement, and global mindsets.

As an independent consultant, Dr. Ottman works with local, national and international executive leaders, management groups and boards of directors from an array of industries and professions. These range from executive steel workers to executive nuns. She has conducted on-site consultation and education with Asia-Pacific leaders and teams, and facilitated strategic planning for businesses and professional organizations. As an Executive Coach, she assists individuals in the areas of leadership and career development.

She has a passion for exploring different cultures through travel and believes in diversity and inclusion from multiple perspectives. Aligned with Servant Leadership, she has been transformed through coordinating/engaging in local and international service projects. Locations have included China, Mexico and Vietnam. For over 25 years she has coordinated a Christmas Eve program for the homeless in Milwaukee, WI.

Neal Patel

Principal Product Manager, Amazon Headquarters (Seattle)

Keynote #1
Monday, June 22nd, 2020 at 1:00PM CDT.

Neal Patel is Principal Product Manager for Amazon’s Seattle headquarters. Prior to arriving at Amazon, Patel was Head of Human/Social Dynamics at Google, where he led a team of software engineers and data scientists charting the terrain of human emotion: how, why, and what we feel. He is also a computational sociologist. His approach to product management applies advanced empiricalmethods and frameworks for understanding motivation, social structure, and people to connect products with users. Patel founded and was Technical Project Lead with Google’s Advanced Technology & Projects (ATAP), developing three hardware and software R&D efforts advancing scientific and business application of emotional processing. He has also authored many research projects including Project Oxygen—a Wiley Award-winning study quantifying the impact of effective management—featured in The New York Times and Harvard Business Review. Patel holds a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.

Sherri Tussler

Executive Director, Hunger Task Force (Milwaukee)

Keynote #2
Tuesday, June 23rd, 2020 at 1:00PM CDT

Sherrie has been the executive director of Hunger Task Force since 1997—the organization’s chief leader. She is a decision maker, lobbyist and fund raiser, as well as Hunger Task Force’s primary spokesperson. Tussler has extensive experience working with Milwaukee’s homeless, survivors of sexual assault, and adults with mental illness.  Sherrie received her BS in Management from Cardinal Stritch University.

Eilish Zembilci

Program Coordinator & Research Assistant for the Global Food Security Program, Center for Strategic and International Studies (Washington, D.C.)

Keynote #3
Wednesday, June 24th, 2020 at 1:00PM CDT

Eilish Zembilci is the program coordinator and research assistant for the CSIS Global Food Security Program, where she facilitates event planning and outreach efforts while also supporting the program’s research agenda. Prior to working with the Global Food Security Program, she was an intern with the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry. She has research experience in biodiversity for food and agriculture, heritage agriculture systems, and global food system policy. Ms. Zembilci holds a bachelor’s degree in international affairs with a concentration in global public health and a minor in sustainability from the George Washington University.

Jon Rubin

Graduate Director and Associate Professor, Carnegie Mellon University, School of Art (Pittsburgh)

Keynote #4
Thursday, June 25th, 2020 at 1:00PM CDT

Jon Rubin is an interdisciplinary artist who creates interventions into public life that reimagine individual, group, and institutional behavior. Projects include Conflict Kitchen (2010-17), The Last Billboard (2010-18), The Royal Danish Protesters (2011), and The Independent School of Art (2004-06). He has exhibited at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Mercosul Biennial, Brazil; the Shanghai Biennial; the Carnegie International, The Lyon Biennale; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver; the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College, New York; Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City; Rooseum, Malmö, Sweden; Sazmanab Center for Contemporary Art, Tehran; as well as in backyards, in living rooms, and on street corners. Rubin has received awards from the Art Matters Foundation, the Creative Work Fund, Americans for the Arts, the Creative Capital Award and was a finalist for the International Award for Participatory Art. He recently collaborated with artist Lenka Clayton on projects for the Solomon Guggenheim Museum in New York and the 15th edition of The Lyon Biennale. He is currently collaborating with Iranian-based artist Sohrab Kashani on a project situated in both Tehran and Pittsburgh titled The Other Apartment.

Breakout Speakers

Tuesday, June 23rd at 2:30 PM CDT

Héctor Colón

Lutheran Social Services
(Milwaukee, Wis.)

Rayna Andrews

Feeding America
(Milwaukee, Wis.)

Meg Kilkenny

University of Wisconsin-Extension
(Milwaukee, Wis.)

Caitlin Cullen

The Tandem
(Milwaukee, Wis.)

Wednesday, June 24th at 2:30 PM CDT

Paul Charter

Agribusiness Leader

Sara Davis

Synergy Farms
(Nashville, Tenn.)

Rebekah Walker

Medical College of Wisconsin
(Milwaukee, Wis.)

Tatiana Maida

Sixteenth Street Community Health Centers
(Milwaukee, Wis.)

Thursday, June 25th at 2:30 PM CDT

Sr. MacCanon Brown

MacCanon Brown Homeless Sanctuary
(Milwaukee, Wis.)

Dave Boucher

Amaranth Bakery & Cafe
(Milwaukee, Wis.)

Chris Corkery

Planet to Plate, Inc.
(Milwaukee, Wis.)

Tom & Joan Oberhaus

Cozy Nook Farm
(Waukesha, Wis.)

Rotary District 6270 with Rotary Wheel

A Rotary District 6270 Initiative

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