Richelle Parham, General Partner at Camden Partners
Keynote Speaker

Richelle Parham is a seasoned senior-level executive, who possess more than 20 years of global strategy and marketing experience for prolific corporations such as eBay, Visa, Digitas and Citibank. She has a proven track record of leading high-performing business and marketing teams, utilizing strategic and analytical decision-making expertise to successfully drive key business performance. In 2016, Ms. Parham joined Camden Partners, a leading private equity firm, as a General Partner. Her focus is investing in growth stage global consumer companies. Prior to Camden Partners, Ms. Parham served 4.5 years as VP Chief Marketing Officer of eBay where she leveraged her background in consumer and digital marketing to develop strategies and execute all marketing activities to reach 180+ million active eBay users. Ms. Parham was responsible, globally, for eBay brand strategy and brand marketing, Internet marketing and CRM. She was also responsible for all areas of eBay North American marketing, including customer product marketing, loyalty and relationship marketing, seller marketing and social. Prior to joining eBay, Ms. Parham served as head of Global Marketing Innovation and Initiatives, and head of Global Marketing Services at Visa Inc. Her experience also includes 13 years at Digitas, Inc., a world leading marketing agency, where she held a variety of senior leadership roles, including Senior Vice President and General Manager of the agency's Chicago office. Throughout her career, Ms. Parham has received many awards and honors, which include being named to Savoy 2016 “Power 300, Most Influential Black Corporate Directors”, Forbes 2014 “50 Most Influential CMOs in the World” ranked #12, and Fast Company “Most Creative People in Business 1000”. Additionally, she received the Women of Influence award by the Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, while being inducted into the World Association for Cooperative Education Co-op Hall of Fame. A strong advocate of empowering female leaders through STEM programs, Ms. Parham is on the advisory board for Girls Who Code. She has also served on the board of directors for Scripps Network Interactive Inc. (NYSE:SNI) since 2012 and LabCorp (NYSE:LH) since 2016. Ms. Parham holds double Bachelor of Science degrees in Business Administration and Design Arts from Drexel University. She became a member of the Drexel University Board of Trustees in 2014.

Michelle Buck, Clinical Professor of Leadership

Michelle Buck is Clinical Professor of Leadership at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.  She has previously served as the School’s first Director of Leadership Initiatives, designing and coordinating opportunities for personal leadership development to complement the School’s academic curriculum.  She has also served as academic director of numerous Kellogg executive programs, including partnership programs with Fundacao dom Cabral in Brazil, and programs for Latin American executives with Seminarium.

Professor Buck’s graduate and executive courses focus on the ways that leaders maximize their own performance and unleash the potential of others by addressing 1) how self-reflection, identity, values and purpose serve as foundations of effective leadership; and 2) how leaders engage and inspire others and set them up for success.   Professor Buck also taught Negotiations for 15 years, focusing on how people creatively transform differences into opportunities.  In 2014, she co-led an international MBA course and trip to East Africa, including a private meeting for MBA students with Rwandan President Paul Kagame.  She has worked with private, public, family business, and nonprofit organizations including Banco de Mexico, CDW, Chicago Public Schools, Ernst & Young, the FBI, HP, Mitsui, The Coca Cola Company, Whirlpool Corporation, YPO Latin America, and Zurich Insurance.

Professor Buck previously taught at Washington University in St. Louis and at McGill University in Montreal, where she won “Professor of the Year” awards at both schools.  She has a PhD in Social Psychology from Princeton University, and a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Michigan.

Professor Buck’s commitment in all of her work is to inspire and empower others to unleash new possibilities for themselves, for others and the communities in which they find themselves.  Her work focuses on designing innovative, inspiring, and important learning experiences that transform lives by providing purpose, passion, and possibility.  In addition to her professional activities, Michelle enjoys dance, music, photography, and travel, with strong interests in Latin America and Africa.

Julie Hennessy, Clinical Professor of Marketing

Julie Hennessy is a Clinical Professor of Marketing at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Professor Hennessy's MBA and Executive teaching focuses on the development of Marketing Strategies to enhance long-term competitive advantage and profitability. She works frequently with research and technology-driven firms that desire to become more customer-centric, in both new product/services and mature product/services categories.

At Kellogg, she teaches three courses:   Introduction to Marketing, Advanced Marketing Strategy, and the Marketing Consulting Course: Generating Profitable growth.  In addition to MBA courses, she teaches extensively at the Executive level. Recent Executive teaching assignments have included work with Facebook, Hyatt, SC Johnson, Abbvie, Novartis, Nestle, McDonalds, Microsoft, ABInBev, and Textron.

Professor Hennessy has been a regular recipient of teaching awards at the Kellogg School. In 2007, she received the Lawrence G. Lavengood Outstanding Professor of the Year Award, Kellogg's top award for teaching quality and impact, as voted by the Kellogg graduating class. She had been a finalist (top 5 faculty members) in consideration for the Lavengood Award in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2013, 2014 and 2015. Professor Hennessy has also been recognized by her academic department, winning the Marketing Department's Core Course Teaching award.  She has also received special student impact awards in 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2013.

Professor Hennessy's writing concentrates on cases for classroom use. Recent cases written include studies of Teach for India, Northwestern Memorial Hospital Hispanic Organ Transplant Program, Synthroid, TiVo, Apple iPod, Invisalign Orthodontics, and Biaxin and Zithromax in the antibiotics market.

Joseph Patton, Associate Director of Career Advising & Education

Joseph Patton ’09 is an Associate Director of Career Advising & Education at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. In this role, he coaches Full-Time students to accomplish successful career outcomes. Joseph is also a speaker, executive coach and self-published author, who has instructed at the undergraduate, graduate and executive education levels. He leverages his insightful expertise in Career Advancement, Personal Engagement and Sales, to create and deliver impactful content to a multitude of organizations. Prior to joining Kellogg in November 2013, Joseph was a Vice President at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in New York, where he served as an Investment Strategist. In this role he provided strategic investment guidance and implementation advice across Equities, ETF’s, Closed-End Funds, and Mutual Funds. He received his MBA in Analytical Finance from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University (2009) and his Bachelors of Science in Finance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2001).

Harry M. Kraemer, Clinical Professor of Strategy

Harry M. Jansen Kraemer, Jr. is an executive partner with Madison Dearborn Partners, a private equity firm based in Chicago, Illinois and a Clinical Professor of Strategy at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. He was named the 2008 Kellogg School Professor of the Year. Harry is the author of two bestselling leadership books: "From Values to Action: The Four Principles of Values-Based Leadership" and "Becoming The Best: Build a World-Class Organization Through Values-Based Leadership".

He is the former chairman and chief executive officer of Baxter International Inc., a $12 billion global healthcare company. He became Baxter's chief executive officer in January 1999, and assumed the additional responsibility of chairman of Baxter's board of directors in January 2000.

Mr. Kraemer joined Baxter in 1982 as director of corporate development. His twenty three year career at Baxter included senior positions in both domestic and international operations. In 1993, he was named senior vice president and chief financial officer, responsible for financial operations, business development, global communications, and European operations. Over the next several years, he assumed additional responsibility for Baxter's Renal and Medication Delivery businesses. He was elected to Baxter's board of directors in 1995, and was named president of Baxter International Inc. in 1997.

Before joining Baxter, Mr. Kraemer worked for Bank of America in corporate banking and for Northwest Industries in planning and business development.

Mr. Kraemer is active in business, education and civic affairs. He serves on the board of directors of Leidos Corporation, Sirona Dental Systems , VWR International, Sage Products Inc., and Catamaran Corporation and on the board of trustees of Northwestern University, The Conference Board, NorthShore University Healthsystem and the Archdiocese of Chicago Finance Committee and School Board.

He is a member of the Dean's Global Advisory Board of Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. He is a member of the Commercial Club of Chicago, the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, and the Economics Club of Chicago. He is a past member of the Business Roundtable, the Business Council, and the Healthcare Leadership Council.

Mr. Kraemer graduated summa cum laude from Lawrence University of Wisconsin in 1977 with a bachelor's degree in mathematics and economics. He received an MBA degree in finance and accounting from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management in 1979 and is a certified public accountant. For his outstanding leadership and service, he received the 1996 Schaffner Award from the Kellogg School of Management. Harry enjoys jogging, tennis, skiing and reading, especially world civilization. Harry, his wife Julie, and their five children live in Wilmette, Illinois. More info on Harry at

Nicholas A. Pearce, Clinical Associate Professor of Management & Organizations

Dr. Nicholas Pearce serves as an award-winning Clinical Associate Professor of Management & Organizations at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management and as the founder and chief executive officer of The Vocati Group, a global executive advisory services firm. He is a leading scholar, lecturer, and trusted strategic adviser on values-driven leadership, collaboration, and change in organizations. He has served leaders of corporations, social impact organizations, governments, and communities of faith on six continents, including Advocate Health Care, Allstate Foundation, Aon Hewitt, Archdiocese of Chicago, Boston Scientific, BP, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago United, Chicago Urban League, Council of State Governments, Cristo Rey Schools, DiversityInc, The Episcopal Church, FMC, Google, Hearst, Jones Lang LaSalle, JPMorgan Chase & Co., KIPP Foundation, McDonald's, Monsanto, NASA, Nike, Northwestern Medicine, Novartis, Pentecostal Assemblies of the World, Perkins Coie, Philanthropy Club of Chicago, The PrivateBank, Ronald McDonald House Charities, Sicredi, Surge Institute, Unitarian Universalist Association, United States Olympic Committee, USG, WomenHeart, Women's Foodservice Forum, and Young Presidents' Organization.

Dr. Pearce also serves as Assistant Pastor of Chicago's historic Apostolic Church of God, where he is responsible for overseeing the spiritual education and discipleship of Apostolic's 15,000-member congregation. He is emerging as one of his generation's most trusted and influential voices, with a ministry that has already impacted tens of thousands of lives across cultural, generational, and denominational boundaries. He is also deeply committed to civic engagement and philanthropy, serving on the boards of the Chicago Community Trust's African American Legacy Fund and ACCESS Community Health Network.

Dr. Pearce has been a Fellow of Leadership Greater Chicago since 2015 and has alsobeen named one of Chicago's 40 Game Changers (under 40) by WVON/Ariel Investments, a Galbraith Scholar by Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, a Public Voices Faculty Fellow by The OpEd Project, and Kellogg's MSMS Professor of the Year (2015). He has also been honored for excellence by the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation, Mustard Seed Foundation, Wentcher Foundation, National Black MBA Association, and Union League Club of Chicago. He and his award-winning work have been featured in global media outlets including The Atlantic, Bloomberg Businessweek, The Chicago Tribune, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, Crain's Chicago Business, Fast Company, Forbes, Fortune, The Huffington Post, The Los Angeles Times, Marketplace, MSNBC, The New York Times, Newsweek, Time,, and The Washington Post.

Dr. Pearce holds the Ph.D. in Management & Organizations from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management and the S.B. in Chemical Engineering & Management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, with a concentration in Religious Studies earned in conjunction with Harvard Divinity School.