Day One

text of Charles Duhigg's name
Power of Habit

In this keynote lecture, Charles Duhigg begins by exploring the science of habit formation, illustrating why we do what we do and how we can change it. Duhigg explains why the most powerful habits have emotional cores, and how tweaking even one habit can have staggering effects. Duhigg draws from a number of current case studies, customizing them to his specific audience.

About Charles Duhigg

Image of Charles Duhigg

In 2013 Charles Duhigg was awarded the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in Explanatory Reporting as a member of The New York Times staff for the series “The iEconomy,” which examined Apple’s manufacturing practices overseas and what they can tell us about the American economy. Duhigg is also the winner of the National Academies of Sciences, National Journalism, and George Polk awards, and a frequent contributor to television and radio, including the FrontlineNewshour with Jim LehrerDr. Oz, This American Life and various programs on CNBC and NPR. He is a graduate of the Harvard Business School and Yale College.

Charles Duhigg’s The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business spent over a year on the New York Times bestseller list. The book contains specific strategies that can transform lives and workplaces. It details scientific studies on boosting willpower, replacing bad habits, and revolutionizing companies’ productivity.

Duhigg’s journalistic accomplishments as an investigative reporter for The New York Times, have made him an in-demand speaker for organizations such as the UCLA School of Management, M.I.T., The Johnson Foundation and the Pasadena Art and Science Festival. Full of compelling narratives, Duhigg’s lectures draw on insights from the likes of Howard Schultz (Starbucks CEO), Tony Dungy (Super Bowl-winning football coach), and Bob Bowman (coach of Olympic legend Michael Phelps).

Lionel LarocheBridging Cultural Diversity for Competitive Advantage

What is the journey of an international student, staff, or faculty member? What is the adaptation process for these individuals and how can we best assist that process? Drawing on his extensive experience of working with multicultural and multinational organizations, Lionel Laroche provides in-depth analysis of the cross-cultural dynamics in these business situations and practical suggestions at both the individual and organization level.

About Lionel Laroche

Picture of Lionel Laroche

Lionel Laroche received his education in France and the United States and started his career in Canada as an engineer. He worked with technical professionals from all over the world and in Germany and Italy on expatriate assignments. The cultural adaptation process, after immigrating to Canada and working on international assignments for multinational companies, taught him so much that he decided to use the knowledge to help professionals from all over the world to achieve career success and organizations benefit from the opportunities brought by a diverse workforce and the global market.

Over the past fifteen years, Lionel has provided cross-cultural training, coaching and consulting services to over 20,000 people through a wide range of business, government, academic, professional and non-profit organizations in fourteen countries (Canada, the U.S., Bermuda, Mexico, Peru, Belgium, Switzerland, France, the UK, Turkey, UAE, Hong Kong, China and Korea).

Lionel is a thought provoking and educational speaker / facilitator who presented at over 200 conferences and venues across Canada and the United States. He is the author of two books examining the impact of cultural differences on business at the organizational and individual level entitled:

  • Managing Cultural Diversity in Technical Professions

  • Recruiting, Retaining and Promoting Culturally Diverse Employees

Lionel holds a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology, USA and a "Diplôme d'ingénieur polytechnicien" from the École Polytechnique de Paris, France.

Day Two

Text of David Usher's name
Core Creativity: How to Bring Creativity, Innovation and Inspiration to the Work that You Do 

The Internet has changed everything we know about business and art…and it continues to do so. You can no longer get by because you’re the best in your town, province, or even country. Location means nothing. Everything now has a global audience and products and services need to do more than simply perform — they need to sing.

Nobody understands this better than David Usher. The multi-platinum artist has sold over 1.4 million albums as a solo artist and frontman for the rock band Moist, won countless awards and sold-out venues all over the world, and works tirelessly to improve his creative process. Along with being a famed musician, David is active in many business ventures, from technology and the environment to creative and social endeavors. He believes that creativity is a learnable skill and he’s bringing his formula to your event.

David demonstrates his fascinating formula to stimulating creativity at work through a mix of music, video, and experimentation, and brings to life the core elements needed to build a more dynamic, fulfilling, and innovative creative process.

​About David Usher

Juno Award Winning Musician & Creativity Expert

Image of David Usher

David Usher is a creative tour de force. As the front man of the internationally acclaimed rock band Moist, and as a solo artist, David has sold more than 1.4 million albums, won countless awards, and performed at sold-out venues around the world. Believing that creativity and creative success is a learnable skill that anyone can master, his unique and dynamic presentations employ music and video to show audiences the steps they can take to stimulate the creative process at home and at work.

When David is not making music, he is equally passionate about using technology to build new and interesting businesses. He has helped to create real-time social media aggregation software currently used by the Vancouver Canucks and the Calgary Flames, and his company, Cloudid Creativity Labs, brings together artists, programmers, and designers to collaborate and develop new projects.

David sits on the advisory board of McGill University’s Institute for the Public Life of Art and Ideas and is co-founder of the Connexion Creativity Conference. When time permits, he also writes a column on innovation for the Huffington Post.

David has a degree in political science from Simon Fraser University and has lived and traveled all over the world. When he’s not on the road he can be found in front of a computer dreaming up something new to create. His latest album Songs From The Last Day On Earth was released in October, 2012.


Porter GaleThe Power of Social Capital and the Four Degree Advantage

Technology has reduced the degree of separation between our contacts from six to four. In this popular presentation, Gale explores topics from her upcoming book, "Your Network is Your Net Worth"—showing why, more than ever, it’s important to invest in our social capital, connections and relationships as a means to enhance our lives. With a bit of “how to” and a dose of storytelling, citing years of market experience, Gale conveys both how and why strategically building a network improves happiness, productivity and return—whether on a business or personal level. Gale details the value of authenticity and passion as the core groundwork for networking efforts, sharing stories that demonstrate how collaboration, co-creation and innovation are the keys to success along the way.  

​About Porter Gale

Image of Porter Gale

Porter Gale is a social media expert, an entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience in marketing, advertising, and independent filmmaking, and an in-demand public speaker. She has been a keynote speaker at numerous events, including The Economist Forum, Ad Age Digital Forum, TEDx La Jolla, TEDx Presidio, American Express Luxury Summit, Real Estate Connect, The THINK Conference, and more.

From 2007 to 2011, Porter led Virgin America's marketing and advertising efforts as Vice President of Marketing with a focus on digital media opportunities, and before that, she acted as a consultant for a diverse array of clients. She held the post of General Manager at Kirshenbaum Bond + Partners where she worked with clients like, Coach, and Snapple Natural Beverages (to name a few). Porter and her work have been profiled in numerous press outlets, and she was awarded the Changing the Game Award by Advertising Women of New York (AWNY), along with a spot on AdAge's Digital Hotlist in 2011.

Porter has a BS in Business Administration from Boston University and a Masters in Documentary Film and Video from Stanford University. She is on the advisory boards for the following companies: WePay, Zuberance, Rocket Fuel, Jamah and Fuse Corps. 

Porter has been quoted or interviewed in over 100 online, print and broadcast press outlets including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Adweek, AdAge, CNN, The Huffington Post, San Francisco Business Journal,, Mashable, TechCrunchPRWeek and more.

Staff Conference 2014

April 7 & 8

2014 Staff Conf Agenda

Keynote Books

Retail Services provides sales of keynotes books on the days of the staff conference.
Charles Duhigg, Lionel Laroche, and Porter Gale will be signing copies of their books after their respective keynotes.
Please stop by the book sales table and the keynote signing area to purchase your signed copies.
Books for sale at the event include:

 The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
  Danger & Opportunity by Lionel Laroche

 Your Network is your Networth by Porter Gale

Know Before You Go

  • All Keynotes take place in the Theatre of the Humanities, Hagey Hall. 
  • Food is not permitted in the theatre
  • Water is allowed in a sealed container, such a water bottles.
  • Other beverages, (coffee, tea, soft drinks) are not permitted.
  • Debit, credit, and cash are accepted for the book sales. 



The venues have accessible options available. An Elevator is located in the main section of Hagey Hall.

For assistance, please contact OHD in advance to discuss arrangements or if you have questions.


A Note about Scents

Please note that other attendees or your facilitator could be sensitive to scents. As such, please do not wear perfume, cologne, or heavy-scented products while attending conference events.