Stay Illuminated

The Best and Brightest National Summit – Illuminate 2019 is a gathering of premier companies across the nation collaborating to build their employee enrichment and enhance their culture. Illuminate 2019 will explore leadership, creativity and innovation to encourage: Better Business. Richer Lives and Stronger Communities. Therefore creating a community of places people want to work.

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Featured Keynote Speaker

Meet our most valued speakers

Patrick Lencioni

Featured Illuminate 2019 Keynote Speaker

The author of eleven best-selling books with over five million copies sold, including "The Age of HR Has (Finally) Arrived". After sixteen years in print, his classic book, "The Five Dysfunctions of a Team", remains a weekly fixture on national best-seller lists.

    A Message from Our Illuminate 2019 Keynote Speaker

    Featured Speakers

    Meet a few of our session speakers

    Paula Allen

    Speaker

    Vice President of Research, Analytics and Innovation at Morneau Shepell

      Denise Barreto

      Radiate Track Speaker

      Managing Partner at Relationships Matter Now

        Denise Navarro

        Ignite Track Speaker

        President and CEO at Logical Innovations, Inc.

          Tom Coffey

          Radiate Track Speaker

          Managing Director, Total Rewards & People Analytics at Vista Consulting Group

            John O’Leary

            Radiate Keynote Speaker

            National #1 bestselling author and speaker

            Dr. Gustavo Grodnitzky

            Ignite Keynote Speaker

            Author of "Culture Trumps Everything: The Unexpected Truth about the Ways Environment Changes Biology, Psychology, and Behavior"

              Mike Novakoski

              Ignite Track Speaker

              CEO of Elzinga & Volkers Construction

                Dorie Ellzey Blesoff

                Radiate Track Speaker

                Chief People Officer at Relativity

                  Joe Slawek

                  Ignite Track Speaker

                  Chairman and CEO at FONA International

                    Laurette Rondenet

                    Ignite Track Speaker

                    President & CEO at Edlong

                      Cheryl Johnson

                      Radiate Track Speaker

                      Chief HR Officer, Paylocity

                        Ted Gaty

                        Radiate Track Speaker

                        Senior VP of Product & Technology, Paylocity

                          Amy Bastuga

                          Ignite Track Speaker

                          Chief People Officer at Radio Flyer

                            Eric Coryell

                            Ignite Track Speaker

                            Core Connections

                              Schedule

                              You won’t want to miss this

                              Location: 2nd Floor Explore

                              Just as you celebrate your Best and Brightest Employees, we want to celebrate you – rub elbows, relax, enjoy food and drinks and let us entertain.

                              6:00 AM
                              Wellness Morning Activity – Yoga
                              Location: 3rd Floor Looking Glass Ballroom
                              Location: 2nd Floor, Top of the Escalator

                              For those attendees that weren’t able to pick up their packets on Sunday.

                              Location: 2nd Floor Grand Ballroom

                              Be prepared to be invigorated and engaged to take on the day and get the most out of the Illuminate 2019 experience!

                              Location: 2nd Floor Grand Ballroom

                              A Deep Dive into the Best Practices of the Best and Brightest Companies To Work For

                              This distinguished national panel of multi-year winners from across the country will share their best practices and strategies for continued success. The Best and Brightest program will share areas of concern and focus for the coming year and interesting facts and data that can help provide insight on your Human Resource strategic planning.

                              Dr. Gustavo Grodnitzky – Culture Trumps Everything

                              Location: 2nd Floor Grand Ballroom
                              Location: 3rd Floor Cloud Gate Ballroom
                              Eric Coryell Best and Brightests-Summit Speaker

                              How to Drive Culture and Organizational Buy-In Through C-Suite Collaboration
                              Cheryl Johnson – Chief HR Officer, Paylocity

                              Eric Coryell Best and Brightests-Summit Speaker

                              Ted Gaty – Senior VP of Product & Technology, Paylocity

                              Collaboration between Leadership and Human Resources is essential to an organizations growth in helping to build and maintain a company’s culture of engaged employees. When HR has a seat at the table, it ensures they have a full understanding of leadership vision. This session will include insight into the successful workings of the CEO and lead HR executive and how they’ve built a relationship of trust and respect when handling their greatest asset…their people.

                              Location: 3rd Floor Looking Glass Ballroom

                              Eric Coryell Best and Brightests-Summit Speaker

                              Creating and Leading Accountable Teams
                              Eric Coryell – Core Connections

                              Eric will command the discussion around his non-traditional approach to leading teams. Building a team of trust and accountability creates a healthy team that feels confident to make statements and speak on their own behalf. When they do that, real data
                              is brought to the table, real issues are addressed, and most importantly, judgment is eliminated.

                              11:30 AM - 11:45 AM
                              Snack Break
                              Location: 3rd Floor Cloud Gate Ballroom

                              War for Talent – Overcoming the Talent Shortage and Tapping the Untapped
                              Tom Coffey – Managing Director, Total Rewards & People Analytics, Vista Consulting Group

                              Across the nation we are seeing the talent gap continue to increase to widespread proportions in some regions, the low supply in skilled trades climbing and tech firms continuing to struggle to fill vacancies. Tom will address the current skill gap and share new ways to address this gap such as engaging untapped talent and helping leadership manage talent with mismatched skill sets.

                              Location: 3rd Floor Looking Glass Ballroom
                              Mike-Novakoski Summit Speaker Ignite Track

                              A Guided Conversation with the C-Suite Mike Novakoski – Chief Executive Officer at Elzinga & Volkers Construction

                              No two companies operate the same way and neither should their styles of leadership. Unfortunately, many corporations use the same leadership methodologies and are afraid of deviating from the status quo. Mike will examine how business leaders can tap into their “right-brained leadership” to foster a creative and employee-centric culture.

                              Mike-Novakoski Summit Speaker Ignite Track

                              Edlong’s Secrets to Success
                              Laurette Rondenet – President & CEO at Edlong

                              Edlong sets itself apart as a century old family owned flavor company. Laurette began her journey in the family business in 1993, through a customer service and sales positions followed by leadership roles that expanded her experience across the multiple functions within the company until she became CEO in 2008. Under Laurette’s leadership, Edlong has experienced unprecedented growth in the highly competitive flavors category. She leads the organization with a commitment to nurturing long-term, integrated relationships with both customers and employees, and in bringing value to the customer with innovative products and attentive service that truly differentiates Edlong.

                              Location: 2nd Floor Grand Ballroom
                              Location: 3rd Floor Cloud Gate Ballroom
                              Speaker Photo

                              Diversity + Inclusion = Engaged, Productive Workplace
                              Denise Barreto – Managing Partner at Relationships Matter Now

                              The Best and Brightest workplaces often have two important elements, a diverse workforce, and an inclusive work environment. Easy to say, but tough to build and maintain both a diverse workforce and an inclusive work environment. This session will give you practical advice and actions to support your company wherever you are in your journey to a more diverse talent pool and greater inclusive work ambient.

                              Location: 3rd Floor Looking Glass Ballroom
                              Speaker Photo

                              A Guided Conversation with the C-Suite
                              Joe Slawek – Chairman and CEO at FONA International

                              Speaker Photo

                              Denise Navarro – President and CEO at Logical Innovations, Inc

                              2:45 PM - 3:00 PM
                              Networking Break
                              Location: 3rd Floor Cloud Gate Ballroom
                              Summit Speaker

                              Leading Through Disruption: Anxiety to Adaptability
                              Dorie Ellzey Blesoff – Chief People Officer at Relativity

                              No matter the industry or sector, organizations face challenges of constant transformation, disruption from all angles, and different expectations from four different generations in the workforce, to name a few. Dorie will discuss how to identify what can be done to increase organizational agility and the role of HR in helping to do so in addition to identifying what are the tools form making institutional and individual change happen.

                              Location: 3rd Floor Looking Glass Ballroom

                              Amy Bastuga Best and Brightest Summit Speaker

                              Building a Great Culture “On Purpose”, While maintaining your Roots
                              Amy Bastuga – Chief People Officer of Radio Flyer

                              Amy joined Radio Flyer, home of the iconic little red wagon, tricycles and other ride-on toys, in 2007. As Chief People Officer, she brings her HR expertise to a growing organization whose vision is to create an innovative environment where every employee says “I love my job.” She’ll share practical “how to’s” on building and sustaining a high-performance culture and company.

                              4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
                              Break Prior to Evening Activities

                              Activity to be selected by attendees from the below options. Options will be distributed post-registration.

                              • Craft Brews & City Views
                              • Experience Chicago Food Like a Local
                              • Architectural River Cruise
                              • Chicago Art and Architectural Walking Adventure

                              *Dinner on your own

                              6:00 AM – 7:00 AM
                              Wellness Morning Activity – Zumba
                              Location: 3rd Floor Looking Glass Ballroom
                              6:30 AM - 9:00 AM
                              Registration for Day 3 Only Attendees
                              Location: 2nd Floor Grand Ballroom
                              Location: 2nd Floor Grand Ballroom

                              John O’Leary – National #1 bestselling author and speaker

                              Expected to die. Now teaching others how to truly live. National #1 bestselling author and speaker, John takes his experience from a childhood injury and miraculous recovery to teach others to Ignite a Radically Inspired Life.

                              10:00 AM - 10:30 AM
                              Networking Break

                              Patrick Lencioni

                              The author of eleven best-selling books with over five million copies sold. After sixteen years in print, his classic book, “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team“, remains a weekly fixture on national best-seller lists.

                              11:45 AM - 12:15 PM
                              Networking Break
                              Location: 2nd Floor Grand Ballroom
                              Best and Brightests Summit Speaker

                              Workplace Mental Health
                              Paula Allen – Vice President of Research, Analytics and Innovation, Morneau Shepell

                              Paula will discuss how health and well-being is at the core of business success and share insight on decreasing stigma around mental health in the workplace while stress in general is on the rise.

                              Location: 2nd Floor Grand Ballroom

                              Exclusive celebration for our National Winners during the inaugural Best and Brightest National Summit. We will announce the 13 Elite National Winners including the “Best of the Best.”

                              The Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) logo
                              SHRM Recertification Provider logo
                              HR Certification Institute Provider logo

                              Event Registration

                              Registration Deadline: Friday, September 6

                              General Admission
                              $1,480
                              • Illuminate Keynote Address by Patrick Lencioni
                              • Ignite Keynote Address by Dr. Gustavo Grodnitzky
                              • Radiate Keynote Address by John O'Leary
                              • National Awards Gala
                              • Chicago Awards Gala
                              • All Illuminate Breakout Sessions
                              • 3 Days of Extensive Networking
                              • Opening Night Social Reception
                              • Monday's Social Evening Activities
                              • Earn 8 Continuing Education Credits
                              Tuesday Pass
                              $880
                              • Tuesday Only
                              • National Awards Gala
                              • Illuminate Keynote Address by Patrick Lencioni
                              • Radiate Keynote Address by John O'Leary
                              • Networking Opportunities
                              • Tuesday's Illuminate Breakout Sessions
                              • Earn 2 Continuing Education Credits
                              • Ignite Keynote Address by Dr. Gustavo Grodnitzky
                              • Opening Night Social Reception
                              • Extensive Networking Opportunities
                              • Monday's Social Evening Activities
                              Chicago Special
                              $270
                              • Monday Morning Only
                              • Chicago Awards Gala
                              • Ignite Keynote Address by Dr. Gustavo Grodnitzky
                              • Networking Opportunities
                              • Earn 1.45 Continuing Education Credits
                              • Illuminate Keynote Address by Patrick Lencioni
                              • Radiate Keynote Address by John O’Leary
                              • Opening Social Reception
                              • Extensive Networking Opportunities
                              • Illuminate Breakout Sessions
                              Learn More

                              Registration is closed.

                              Location and Accommodations

                              Summit Location and Accommodations

                              Renaissance Chicago Downtown Hotel

                              Renaissance Chicago Downtown Hotel: Best and Brightest National Summit Location
                              1 W Wacker Drive
                              Chicago, IL 60601
                              Get Directions

                              A dedicated website has been created to create and manage Renaissance Chicago Downtown Hotel reservations online for the National Best and Brightest Summit.

                              Make a reservation

                              Make a reservation at: book.passkey.com/e/49791795

                              Additional Accommodations

                              Club Quarters Hotel, Wacker at Michigan

                              75 E Wacker Dr
                              Chicago, IL 60601
                              Get Directions
                              Featuring a fantastic Chicago riverfront location – just one block south of The Magnificent Mile – this Club Quarters location mixes modern accommodations within a historic setting. Situated in the Neo-Gothic Mather Tower, the most slender high-rise in the city, guests love being just steps from Grant Park, theaters, the Museum of Contemporary Art, and Willis Tower
                              Reservations Via Phone
                              203-905-2100
                              Identify yourself as a member with the National Association for Business Resources
                              Reservations Via Web
                              Web Password: NABR
                              Web URL: clubquartershotels.com/national-association-business-resources

                              Get Connected

                              866-321-1822

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