Global Leadership Series


Virtual conversations with business leaders around the world

Our online series features 30-minute interviews, conducted by our Global Experiences team, of leaders and subject matter experts from a variety of markets and industries around the world, accessible to you and your students from the comfort of your own homes.

Sessions will showcase one of our global partners to discuss the current state of business, how their industry is adapting, and their advice on leadership in a new landscape.

Since 2012, our Global Experiences team has planned and executed more than 7,000 engagements with business executives and industry leaders around the world. We are excited to be able to tap into our global network and offer this content as a complimentary resource to our dedicated partners. We encourage you to share this interview series with your students in hopes of sparking conversations around the ever-evolving global context.

Whether your students are just beginning their undergraduate business coursework, are seasoned professionals working on their MBA, or somewhere in between, we hope our speaker series provides valuable business content to help you and your students navigate the uncertain future ahead.

Due to the potential sensitive nature of these conversations, video recordings will be password protected. To receive the video link and password, please complete the form on this page.

Future Seasons

Additional information on the potential return of our Global Leadership Series will be posted here as it becomes available. To stay in the loop, please subscribe by completing the form on this page. A WorldStrides team member will contact you for access to previous seasons in the meantime.


Season 2 - Fall 2020

Click to view previous speakers

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Overcoming Turbulent Times

See how innovation, culture, and a strong commitment to customer health & safety is leading Air Canada to smoother flight experiences

Timothy Liu

Managing, Director, Sales Planning & Effectiveness
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In his current role, Timothy Liu is responsible for developing global sales strategies, instituting best practices, and leading a centralized “center of excellence” organization to create industry-leading sales products and programs. Timothy joined Air Canada in 2016 as Senior Director – Commercial Strategy where he spearheaded the company's international sales organization across forty markets on six continents and was also responsible for launching and ensuring the commercial success of Air Canada's new foreign markets.

Prior to joining Air Canada, Timothy Liu served as the Senior Director – International Sales / Asia and the Director of Network Strategy at Hawaiian Airlines, where he led the company's rapid network expansion and hub development. Previously he was a management consultant with Bain & Company, and a customer loyalty strategy consultant at Brierley & Partners. Mr. Liu has also held revenue management positions at United Airlines and Northwest Airlines.

He holds a bachelor's degree in Political Science and a Master of Business Administration in Finance and Strategic Management from The University of Chicago.


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Leading with Heart

A patient- and people-centric approach to medical innovations for cardiovascular disease in Singapore

Rainer Wolf

Vice President & General Manager, Manufacturing Operations Singapore
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Rainer leads Edwards Lifesciences largest Heart-Valve Manufacturing Operation globally, which contributed more than 50% of Edwards’ corporate revenue in 2016. Having worked with U.S. corporations in Germany, Malaysia, Thailand and now Singapore for more than 30 years, in global Executive responsibilities, Rainer brings a wealth of experience and insight related to global and regional economic trend, labor legislation challenges and developments in various government policies. Rainer holds a Bachelor of Science in Plastics Technology Engineering, a Master of International Business Administration, and a PhD in Leadership & Executive Management. Rainer has experience in various industries, countries, and cultures, and is an active member of AmCham, supporting the chamber’s mission to create value for U.S. corporations through local and regional business insights, provide thorough advocacy to guide future investment activities in Singapore, and to foster new connections and business associations.


Oscar Leon

Providing Academic Value

Understanding the educational landscape in Panama and how Quality Leadership University is paving the way

Oscar León

Founder and President

Quality Leadership University
Oscar León is the Founder and President of Quality Leadership University (QLU) in Panama City, Panama. QLU offers undergraduate and graduate programs in dual degree academic cooperation with University of Louisville, Illinois State University, University of Chile and Polytechnic University of Madrid.

Oscar is the President of the Panamanian Private Council for Educational Assistance, Ex-President and Treasurer of the Association of Private Universities of Panama, member of the board of the American Chamber of Commerce in Panama, member of the Lions Club International and ah Honorary Fulbright Association Alumni.

He earned a BS in Business Administration and a Masters in Higher Education Administration from the University of Louisville. He has been a leadership development consultant and corporate trainer for multinational in Latin America.


António Soares Franco

Generations in the Making 

Combining traditional methods with innovative technology in Portugal's wine industry

António Soares Franco

Vice President

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António Soares Franco is Vice President and a Board Member of José Maria da Fonseca Wine House in Portugal. António grew up surrounded by this family business, and after completing his MBA at Columbia Business School started working at the winery. The experience he acquired in the marketing and sales departments upon joining the family business led to his current role, where one of his many tasks is to oversee the company’s P&L. António has a strong passion for the wine business and looks forward to continuing to grow José Maria da Fonseca’s business.


Brian Dunhill

The Intricacies of Advising Expats

Gaining insights on the impact of Brexit and COVID-19 on the financial landscape and how these events are reshaping advising strategies

Brian Dunhill

International Financial Advisor

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Brian is a Financial Planner with a core emphasis on concentrated positions and retirement planning for predominantly American Expatriates.

Past positions have led him to work in many capacities for prestigious firms on Wall Street including UBS, Lehman Brothers, and A.G. Edwards. Working as an analyst, in compliance and as a Financial Advisor has given him the full perspective on the operations of a financial firm.

Brian received his Bachelor of Science in Finance with an International Business Background at the University of Central Florida and his Master in Business Administration from the Masagung School at the University of San Francisco. He has also received the Accredited Asset Management Certification from the College for Financial Planning and has sat for the Series 7,9,10,66 and insurance licenses in California and Florida.

Brian is the former President of the American Club of Brussels, sits on the board of the Sharkey Foundation and on the Advisory Committee of the ACA. He speaks English and French.


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Kicking it with the Red Bulls 

Learn how the sports club is reimagining the fan experience and player interactions, and what changes are here to stay post-COVID

Drew Steedman

Manager, Premium Partnerships

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Drew grew up between North Carolina, Maine, and Massachusetts, which is where is his passion for soccer and the sports industry began. He attended Ithaca College where he majored in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing, as well as played both varsity and club soccer. Once graduated, Drew began his career at Fenway Sports Management, where he worked on projects for their properties including the Boston Red Sox and Liverpool FC. In 2014, he moved to Madison Square Garden where he sold a full menu of ticketing products for the NY Rangers, NY Knicks, and NY Liberty. He now works for the NY Red Bulls in premium hospitality, a position he’s held since 2016, where he is tasked with selling luxury suites for all RBNY and Red Bull Arena events. Drew, his wife (Chelsey), and their dog (Brewster) split time between NYC and Rhode Island, and escape to go skiing in Vermont whenever they get the chance!


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Driving Innovation in the Czech Republic

Europe’s largest independent, used car reseller shares how they implement the latest technologies to perfect the customer journey

Stanislav Galik

Vice President, Strategy & Innovations

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Stanislav Galik is a VP for Strategy and Innovations at Aures Holdings, the largest independent used-car reseller in Europe, and GM at Aures Laboratories, European Leading Centre for Innovations in the automotive industry. He helps with business innovations to major OEMs and car traders. For the last decade, Stan has lectured at several universities in the Czech Republic. His main fields of interests are business strategies and innovation management and he has a doctorate in Psychology. Stan is an author of two best-selling books and, to no surprise, a huge car enthusiast. Stan was also featured in Forbes Czech Republic’s "30 under 30" in 2015.


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Fueling Morocco's Economy with Renewables 

How fundamental solar energy developments are contributing to Morocco’s recognition as a global leader in the industry

Adel Benazzouz

Co-founder & CEO

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Adel Benazzouz is a results-driven astute strategist and problem solver highly motivated to help people around him succeed. He was born and raised in Morocco and received his initial education in Casablanca, his Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics BS degrees from Drexel University, Philadelphia, US and his MBA from HEC, Paris, France.

During his fifteen plus years of progressive international experience, he has led several multi million-dollar projects and business units with a proven successful track record. A quick-learner with professional proficiency in Arabic, English and French languages, he has operated in more than 25 countries and gained a deep insight into the global markets.

In his current role, he co-founded a boutique engineering firm focused on Green Tech: renewable energy, SCADA, smart grids and mobility. The venture has been doubling its revenue since then and well poised for a hyper growth phase with the launch of its global exchange platform for location based services and efficient living. A true disruptive model in the sharing economy.


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Investing in People  

Leadership strategies to leverage change and help your team feel engaged and fulfilled 

Dan Griffin

Consultant & Executive Coach

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Over his 30-year professional career, Dan Griffin has focused his attention and energy on delivering this mission: Influence People to Impact Results. Dan leads organizations into successful change and development initiatives as a keynote speaker, seminar presenter, and executive coach. Blending research-based principles and with real-life experiences, Dan leads executives into the discovery and implementation of transformational actions that breathe life into their organizations. Dan received his MBA from University of South Carolina and a MS in Leadership and Organizational Development from the University of Texas, Dallas. 


A Peek Behind the Hospitality Curtain  

Get an inside look at a career in the tourism industry, top-level service, and delivering authentic experiences abroad in this panel discussion. 

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Pablo González Vázquez

Hotel Analyst

Melia Hotels International
Pablo has extensive experience in the hospitality industry, including in operations as Assistant F&B Manager and Manger on Duty. Pablo graduated in Hotel Management by Hotel Business School of Galicia. He has completed 4 years of internships at the different departments of the hotel in Brussels (Belgium), Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca and hi is a candidate in the first edition of the Melia Hotel International Executive Graduate Program for future Hotel General Managers. 

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Michelle McRaney

Resident Director, Peru

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Michelle graduated from Baylor University with a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration and a focus on International Management. She studied International Business in Caen, France and Spanish and International Management in Monterrey, Mexico. Michelle joined the ISA team in 1998. Michelle has led programs in Guanajuato, Mexico; Salamanca, Spain; Granada, Spain; Santander, Spain; Sydney, Australia; and Santiago, Dominican Republic. She also accompanied several ISA site visits in Chile and Argentina and conducted new program research and staff training in Mexico and Brazil. In 2006, Michelle moved to Lima, Peru, where she set-up ISA's first program in Peru, which expanded to include Cusco. Michelle is excited about sharing the Peruvian culture and cuisine with all ISA participants and helping to adjust to life in Lima. 


Season 1 - Summer 2020

Click to view previous speakers


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Episode 1: Exploring the New Normal for Chinese International Business

Release Date: April 23, 2020

Meet Tibor Baranski Jr., a Canadian, American, and Hungarian citizen, permanent resident of Japan, and counsel at JunHe Law Offices in Beijing, China. He splits his time between Tokyo and Beijing specializing in Sino-Japanese business relations and has more than 30 years of experience in this role.

JunHe Law Offices is widely recognized as a leading full-service law firm in China, uniquely positioned to provide superior legal services in commercial transactions and disput es. As the oldest independent law firm in China, JunHe is recognized as an innovator in the re-establishment and development of the legal profession in contemporary China.


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Episode 2: Understanding the Marketing Shift in Slovenia

Release Date: April 30, 2020

Meet Melanja Korošec: she grew up a stone's throw away from the World Cup slope of Maribor in Slovenia. With Maribor as her home hill, she was inspired at age 6 to race, which over the years lead her be an athlete and ambassador for Elan. Years ago, she switched her focus from skiing and traveling towards developing products and marketing. Starting at Elan as a junior brand manager for the women's line, Melanja was an essential member of the W Studio. Today she runs the global design & product marketing team, responsible for the overall strategy, product line management, directing Elan's innovation roadmap and product marketing related initiatives.


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Episode 3: Examining Strategies for Next Steps in South Africa

Release Date: May 7, 2020

Meet Dr. Doug Mattheus, an independent business consultant and part-time lecturer/facilitator at USB-Ed, with 30 years business expertise in marketing, leadership, culture, strategy and organisational performance. His career started at Firestone in 1989. Since then, he has worked at Radiospoor, Nashua, Nashua Mobile, Ster-Kinekor and, until recently, was executive head of marketing at Cell C. Doug has four degrees: BComm, BComm Hons, MBA from Wits Business School (with a thesis on sport sponsorship), and a DBA from the University of Phoenix in Arizona, US (with a dissertation on organisational culture)


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Episode 4: Navigating International Markets & Current Business Climate

Release Date: May 14, 2020

Meet Jonathan Vargas Machuca Vera, a lawyer from the University of Valencia, Spain who specializes in civil associations and cooperatives. He is the Founder and CEO of the company VERA BIOTRADE SAC, and has 10 years of experience in the fields of sustainable international trade in native foods, association of agricultural cooperatives, negotiation and conflict resolution with native communities. He is also a consultant for the Regional Government of Cusco on issues of international food trade and market trends in non-traditional exports.


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Episode 5: Everis' Strategic Vision Post COVID-19

Release Date: May 21, 2020

Meet Diego Tovar, partner and CEO at everis Colombia, a company dedicated to consulting and outsourcing across all sectors. Diego has more than 30 years of experience in Professional Services, Management Consulting, IT and Banking in Latin America.

In his current role as CEO, he has contributed to the exponential growth in incomes and profitability by developing a human group of more than 1,600 professionals who ensure quality in the services delivered to their clients in consulting, IT professional services and digital operations.


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Episode 6: Insights on the New Future of Business

Release Date: May 28, 2020

Meet Marcus Heinz, Resident Representative of the World Bank for Poland and the Baltic States. In his current role he oversees the Bank's program in these countries, including investment projects and technical assistance work. Prior to joining the World Bank in 2011, Marcus worked as director of International Financial Institutions in the Austrian Ministry of Finance. In this function he managed the interests of the Republic of Austria in multilateral development banks including performing the role of deputy for replenishments of IDA, the African Development Fund and the Asian Development Fund. He also led the team to create the Development Bank of Austria.

Marcus holds a doctorate of law from the University of Vienna and a master in public policy from Princeton University. At the very beginning of his career, he taught criminal law at the University of Vienna, focusing on criminal procedural law.


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Episode 7: The Race to Adapt to COVID-19

Release Date: June 4, 2020

Meet David Holmes, Country Manager for footwear in China, North Vietnam, Turkey, and India for New Balance Inc. In this role, Dave manages and leads the New Balance team, factories, and supply chain in all aspects of footwear manufacturing including quality, delivery, productivity, corporate & social compliance, costing, development, and innovation. What started as managing factories in China has quickly expanded to cover new sourcing countries, such as India and Turkey. In these markets Dave's focus is on developing manufacturing to support the local market needs with products that capture incremental sales and build the brand image. This successful strategy is also being carried over to China to help further leverage the large domestic supply chain, develop product on accelerated timelines, and satisfy the rapidly changing consumer demands.


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Episode 8: Connecting People Door-to-Door

Release Date: June 11, 2020

Meet Jennifer Walker, Director of Merchant Services at DoorDash, a last-mile logistics organization specializing in restaurant deliveries. Prior to joining DoorDash, Jennifer was the Chief People Officer and Co-founder at Longboard Asset Management, an alternative investment mutual fund.

Jennifer is an experienced people and process strategist who loves the energy generated in fast growth startups. Her purpose is to help channel that energy into lasting, positive momentum in the performance, leadership toolkit, and resilience of employees while successfully scaling companies. She effectively fosters alignment, accountability, and trust to achieve business goals, preserve culture, and create sustainable processes. Jennifer graduated from The University of Arizona and Harvard Business School's General Management Program.


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Episode 9: From Fashion to Face Masks

Release Date: June 18, 2020

Meet Marine Braquet, Co-Founder of Nomasei and Senior Consultant at SIXHANDS. She has over 10 years of experience in the fashion industry. Prior to co-founding Nomasei, Marine worked for top luxury fashion brands including Christian Dior Couture, Louis Vuitton, and Chloé. Marine and her Co-Founder, Paule, share a passion for creating high-quality, ethical, and sustainable products.

Going against the frenetic pace that fashion dictates today, Nomasei is a luxury brand that embraces a commitment to crafting timeless and genuine products. Marine and Paule want sharing and transparency to become the pillars of a new kind of luxury brand. As such, Nomasei is committed to creating timeless fashion that is sustainable and respectful of the environment, all at an approachable price.


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Episode 10: Advancing Healthcare Initiatives Beyond COVID-19

Release Date: June 25, 2020

Meet Chris Hardesty, Director of the KPMG Singapore Healthcare and Life Sciences Practice, overseeing the practice across key clients with emphasis on growth, safety, and operational excellence programs. He relocated from the UK to Singapore in order to focus on developments in the APAC region.

As a member of KPMG's Global Health & Life Sciences Centre of Excellence, Chris supports clients in 50+ markets on topics ranging from commercial strategy, R&D, supply chain, efficiencies, workforce, technology, merger and acquisitions, compliance, audit and tax. Prior to KPMG, he had accumulated extensive industry experiences across a variety of markets and project types and had postings in Brazil and the US. He is particularly passionate about public-private collaborations to drive safe, innovative, and economically viable initiatives in the healthcare sector.


A note about confidentiality: This page contains proprietary content of WorldStrides and is presented in good faith. The views and comments of each speaker are his/hers alone and do not reflect the views of their employer or WorldStrides. WorldStrides is happy to use our network to support your academic needs, but please be mindful when sharing with others. We look forward to arranging in-person sessions for you and your students once travel is safe again.

Subscribe below to stay informed on the return of our Global Leadership Series. A WorldStrides team member will contact you for access to previous seasons as well.