Catherine Clark is a nationally respected broadcaster, public speaker, emcee and writer, and the President of Catherine Clark Communications Inc.

Through her work in television and radio, Catherine has interviewed Canada’s most influential people to reveal the personal, human side of public life. She also served as the host and co-producer of The Residences, a television documentary series offering an unprecedented look behind the scenes at the homes of Canada’s leaders at Rideau Hall and 24 Sussex Drive.

Catherine is the Giving Back columnist for Ottawa at Home Magazine, has written for the Toronto Star and The Ottawa Citizen, and been published in The Globe and Mail, Canadian Living and Magazine FORCES.

Catherine is a member of the national board of CARE Canada and of the organizing committee of the Politics and the Pen Gala benefitting The Writers’ Trust.

Keynote Speakers

Keynote speakers and moderators include some of the region’s most influential decision makers.

Edward Stones is Global Business Director, Energy and Climate Change for Dow. He is responsible for delivering Energy Business profitability and power production at the 15 Company-operated power facilities, as well as steam, utilities and energy service to more than 300 manufacturing facilities globally. He leads Dow’s energy conservation and greenhouse gas reduction efforts, and actively participates in the Company’s global advocacy efforts for energy sustainability and climate change.

Stones joined Union Carbide Corporation in 1997, now a subsidiary of Dow, as a manufacturing engineer at the St. Charles, Louisiana site. After a number of manufacturing, finance and commercial roles in Hydrocarbons, Specialty Chemicals and Plastics, he was named Director, Energy Risk in 2007. He relocated to Horgen, Switzerland and was named Director, Hydrocarbons Business Development and EMEA Plastics Strategic Development in 2010. In 2012, he was appointed Director, Global Hydrocarbons Business Development and Hydrocarbons Risk Management. In 2014, Stones relocated to Midland and was appointed Senior Director for Investor Relations. He has presented to Dow investors, as well as governmental, NGO and industry stakeholders throughout the world.

Stones served as Chair of the Industrial Efficiency sub-committee in the writing of the National Petroleum Council "Hard Truths" report and has provided testimony to the US Senate Energy Committee on the role of natural gas in climate change. He has served on the European Petrochemical Association Young Executive Think Tank. Stones led the negotiation of Sadara feedstocks agreements with Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco). Sadara is a joint venture between Dow and Saudi Aramco, comprising one of the world’s largest integrated chemical facilities and the largest ever built in a single phase.

Stones holds a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering and a Master’s degree in Environmental Engineering from Stanford University, and an MBA from Louisiana State University.

As Vice-Chairman at Edelman, Stephen Schmidt is a strategic counselor to chief executive officers and senior decision makers at global corporations, professional sports franchises, non-profit organizations and academic institutions. Recognized as one of the top public affairs and political strategists in the country, he has provided counsel on a wide range of issues, including telecommunications, technology, financial services, energy, health care, entertainment and gaming. He has been described by national media as a “damage control master.” Earlier in his career, Steve served as a top strategist to President George W. Bush's 2004 re-election campaign. As a member of the senior planning group that led the campaign, he was responsible for directing and implementing the campaign's communications operations, including serving as chief spokesperson.

Following the President’s successful re-election, Steve joined the Administration as Deputy Assistant to the President and Counselor to the Vice President. As a member of the senior staff, he worked on a wide range of issues at the intersection of communications, policy development, legislative advocacy and political strategy. During his tenure at the White House, Steve played a leading role in the confirmations of Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito to the United States Supreme Court. In 2005, at the behest of the U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, Steve traveled to Iraq to assess and improve communications in the war zone.

In January 2006, Steve departed the White House to lead the re-election of California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Schwarzenegger's landslide victory was described by The New York Times as "particularly remarkable given that the Governor appeared to be all but finished just six months ago." The Los Angeles Times commended Steve as having "ran a nearly flawless campaign" and overseen a re-election that "ran against a political tide that swamped other Republicans across the nation.” This victory earned Steve “GOP Campaign Manager of the Year” from the American Association of Political Consultants.

In 2007, Steve served as a senior advisor to John McCain’s presidential bid helping him re-build his campaign and secure the Republican nomination for President of the United States. In the General election, Steve was vested with day-to-day control of operations, which, according to The Washington Post, brought “new life” to the campaign. The New York Times reported that under Steve’s leadership the McCain organization became “a campaign transformed: an elbows-out, risk-taking, disciplined machine.” Steve and his family now reside in Park City, Utah, where they continue to enjoy all mountain sports and activities.

Douglas Porter has over 30 years of experience analyzing global economies and financial markets. As Chief Economist at BMO Financial Group, he oversees the macroeconomic and financial market forecasts and co-authors the firm’s weekly flagship publication, Focus. Mr. Porter manages the team that has won numerous awards including Best Forecaster for Canada by Focus Economics in 2016, top Canadian forecaster by Bloomberg and the prestigious Lawrence Klein award for forecast accuracy of the U.S. economy.

As a respected commentator on economic and financial trends, he is regularly quoted in the national press and often interviewed on radio and television.

Before joining BMO, Mr. Porter held the positions of Economist and Country Risk Analyst with other Canadian financial institutions, and began his career at the Bank of Canada.

Mr. Porter has been a member of C.D. Howe’s Monetary Policy Council since 2008 and serves on the Investment Management Committees of the Bank of Montreal’s Canada Pension Plan and Western’s Endowment Fund. He also sits on the Board of Directors of the Toronto Financial Services Alliance.

Mr. Porter, CFA, earned a Master’s degree in Economics from the University of Western Ontario.


Dr. Anne Snowdon is a Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship, Academic Chair of the World Health Innovation Network (WIN), and Scientific Director and CEO of SCAN Health, a Networks of Centres of Excellence International Knowledge Translation Platform, at the University of Windsor, Odette School of Business. SCAN Health is a global network of partners from industry, academia, health systems, and government focused on advancing supply chain infrastructure in health systems to strengthen quality, safety, and system performance. Dr. Snowdon is also leading over 15 innovation research initiatives across seven Canadian provinces that collaborate with government, health professionals, private industry, foundations, and families. She is a member of the Ontario Health Innovation Council, is Vice Chair of the Board of the Directors for Alberta Innovates, a board member of the Ontario Centres of Excellence, and is an Expert Advisor to the Canadian Space Agency focused on Space Health and Innovation: Emerging challenges, new opportunities and benefits to society. Dr. Snowdon holds patents, and has commercialized a highly successful booster seat product for children traveling in vehicles. She holds a PhD in Nursing from the University of Michigan, an MSc from McGill University, and BScN from Western University. She is a Fulbright Scholar, is a Fellow of the American Academy of Nurses, and received the CIHR Partnership Award for her partnership with the automotive industry focused on injury prevention for children.

Wayne is the founding Chair of the International Inter-Tribal Trade and Investment Organization. He is also Senior Lawyer and Principal Director of Garwill Law Professional Corp. that offers litigation, ADR and corporate commercial services with a particular interest in Aboriginal law, Customs, Excise and International Trade law. Wayne enjoys resolving challenging civil litigation and corporate commercial law problems that have a mix of Aboriginal law and Trade Law concepts. Providing corporate law services to young and growing start-up companies and First Nation business ventures is a passion for Wayne.

Wayne was born on the Moosomin First Nation, Treaty 6 territory in Saskatchewan. He received his Bachelor of Arts at the University of Windsor and his Bachelor of Laws at Queen’s University. He was called to the bar in the Law Society of Upper Canada in 1992 and to the Law Society of British Columbia in 1994. For nine years he was a lawyer practicing in the Litigation Section, Department of Justice, Ottawa and Vancouver Regional Office. As a lawyer Wayne gained litigation and ADR experience in most federal boards and tribunals, the Federal Court and Federal Court of Appeal as well as the Superior and Appeal Courts of Ontario and British Columbia. In 1999 he accepted the position of Senior Litigation Counsel, Sierra Legal Defence Fund, Eagle Project (Environmental and Aboriginal Guardianship through Law and Education) in Vancouver which litigates aboriginal title/ environmental issues on behalf of First Nations in British Columbia and Alberta. In 2001 Wayne obtained his Certificate in Advanced Alternative Dispute Resolution from the University of Windsor. In the fall of 2008 he received his Masters of specializing in Judicial Administration Management theory and practice at Dalhousie University.

From 2008 to 2011 Wayne was the President of the National Council for Aboriginal Federal Employees (NCAFE). Wayne is currently an active member in the Indigenous Bar Association, the Canadian Bar Association (Aboriginal Law, Corporate Law, Civil Litigation and Administrative Law chapters), the Carleton County Law Association, the Advocates’ Society and the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business.

Wayne held various federal executive legal positions, including: Registrar of the Federal Court of Canada; Director of Service Coordination, Courts Administration Service and Director for Resolutions, Indian Residential Schools Resolution Canada and closing out his public-sector career as Deputy Head and Registrar of the Specific Claims Tribunal of Canada. In December 2012, Wayne was appointed Tribunal Chair of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations Appeal Tribunal. He and will have completed his Masters of Indigenous Legal Studies in 2018.

Panel Speakers

Dani Peters is President of Magnet Strategy Group, a consulting firm that manages public affairs strategies in Canada and the United States. Dani serves as a Principal Advisor to the Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies in Canada.

Prior to founding Magnet Strategy Group, Dani held senior roles in public affairs firms in the U.S. and Canada, concentrating on fields that include innovation, health and life sciences. Over the past decade, Dani has worked with groups in the health sector to develop and manage government, public policy, funding, advocacy and stakeholder strategies.

Dani is co-founder of the Cross-Border Health Foundation, an organization that fosters dialogue between Canada and the United States around common health priorities. In addition to operating Magnet Strategy Group, Dani serves on the Industry Advisory Board for Bloom Burton & Co., a healthcare investment advisory firm in Toronto. She is also a Health Leader-in-Residence for the World Health Innovation Network (WIN), within the University of Windsor’s Odette School of Business.

Dani earned her undergraduate degree from McGill University and a Master of Arts in International Trade Policy from the Middlebury Institute for International Studies at Monterey. She lives in Toronto with her husband and three children.

Abram Benedict a life time resident of Kawehno:ke (Cornwall Island) and is now serving his first term as Grand Chief. His goals for his first term as Grand Chief include providing greater accountability and transparency mechanisms, greater engagement with community through social media to encourage instant community member feedback, meaningful job creation, increased economic development, and relationship building. In position of Grand Chief Abram would like to ensure our youth have a prosperous future, such as his fifteen year-old daughter Havana.

He had previously served three terms as District Chief of Kawehno:ke. Within that capacity, he served as Portfolio Chairman for social services and housing, and was Portfolio Co-Chair for education.

Prior to Grand Chief Abram’s terms on Council, his work experience was in the private business sector and attended Algonquin College. Abram also sit as a Director for the Ontario Association Children’s Aid Societies and a Governor for St. Lawrence College.

Sharon Broude Geva is Director of Advanced Research Computing (ARC) at the University of Michigan (U-M). ARC is a unit of the U-M Office of Research created to inspire and support the growing range of research across disciplines requiring advanced computing capabilities. ARC enables computational research at the university through support of programmatic initiatives, multidisciplinary collaboration, instruction, and research computing resources and services. ARC computing services include a 27,000-core shared HPC cluster, research storage, and a network of training, consultation, and support for the research community provided by the ARC- Technology Services unit (ARC-TS). ARC is also home to a consulting and training unit, Consulting for Statistics, Computing, and Analytics Research (CSCAR), and to two affiliated programmatic institutes: the Michigan Institute for Computational Discovery and Engineering (MICDE), and the Michigan Institute for Data Science (MIDAS).

Sharon serves as Vice-Chair of the Coalition for Academic Scientific Computation (CASC), co-chairs the Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA)‘s Research Computing Group Peer Group, and is on the Executive Committee of the Great Lakes Consortium for Petascale Computation (GLCPC), as well as other U-M and external committees and task forces.

She received her PhD in Computational Physical Chemistry and her BSc in Computer Science and in Chemistry from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Utah.

Terry Harvill is Vice President of International and Merchant Development for ITC Holdings Corp. In this role, Dr. Harvill is responsible for driving the company’s growth and expansion internationally and domestically through merchant and other commercial development opportunities. Previously, he served as Vice President, Grid Development where he was responsible for all transmission development opportunities at ITC, including new projects, strategic business alliances and acquisition opportunities. Dr. Harvill was also responsible for identifying, developing and implementing company positions and strategies on key energy policy issues that impact ITC and its customers as its Vice President of Energy Policy. Prior to joining ITC, Dr. Harvill was Vice President of Energy Policy for Constellation Energy Resources, Inc. where he was responsible for Constellation's regulatory and government affairs in North America. Previously, Dr. Harvill was Director of Regulatory Policy and Operations for DTE Energy Company. He also served as a Commissioner of the Illinois Commerce Commission, the State of Illinois' Public Utility Commission; Illinois Governor Jim Edgar's Assistant for Business and Economic Development; and Senior Policy Advisor to the Chairman and Senior Economist in the Public Utilities Division of the Illinois Commerce Commission.

Dr. Harvill received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Illinois at Chicago and his Master of Science Degree and Bachelor of Science Degree in Economics from the Illinois State University. Dr. Harvill was recognized with the Crain’s Chicago Business 40-Under-40 Award in 1998, and in 2000, he was selected as one of twenty U.S. participants in the European Union Visitors Program, the International Leader Program of the European Union. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Detroit Zoological Society, the Board of Advisors of the Department of Economics at Illinois State University, the Harvard Electricity Policy Group, and the Renewable Energy Advisory Board at Illinois State University.

Ryan Eickmeier is the Vice President, Government Relations & Public Policy with the Canadian Franchise Association (CFA) and is responsible for advocating for favourable public policy to support the franchise business model in Canada.

Before CFA, Ryan was the Senior Director, Public Affairs at GS1 Canada, the world's leading supply chain standards organization. Prior to joining GS1 Canada, Ryan was the Director, Government Relations & Policy at the Real Property Association of Canada (REALpac), where he helped lead the commercial real estate sector through proactive and reactive advocacy campaigns. Ryan was also an Associate at the Washington, DC based consulting firm Greener and Hook, LLC where he worked on both the political and corporate side of the company on messaging, strategy, research, and social media communications.

In the fall of 2007, Ryan accepted a key staff position within United States Senator Fred Thompson's Presidential Campaign. As an advance and field representative for the State of New Hampshire, Ryan was responsible for the planning and execution of campaign events, grassroots advocacy efforts, and ensuring maximum visibility for the candidate at all times.

Academically, Ryan has earned a Bachelor of Arts (B.A) in political science from New England College, a Master of Public Policy (M.P.P.) from The American University School of Public Affairs, a Master of Law (LL.M) at York University’s Osgoode Hall Law School, and an Executive Master of Business Administration (e.M.B.A) at the University of Fredericton’s Sandermoen School of Business.

Ryan can be reached at

Jeff Thomson is the acting manager of the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre. He is a senior intelligence analyst with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and has worked at the CAFC since 2000. Jeff has extensive experience in the area of cross border fraud and has travelled the world to represent Canada at several national and international meetings. The work carried out by the CAFC supports crime prevention and disruption on many fronts including, cybercrime, payment card fraud, mass marketing fraud, identity fraud and the deceptive marketing of counterfeit goods.

Nelson Switzer joined Nestlé Waters North America (NWNA) in December 2015 as Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer. In this role, Nelson is responsible for the company’s approach to water stewardship, responsible packaging, community relations and investment and stakeholder engagement. He reports to the company’s Chief Executive Officer and is a member of the Executive Team. Nelson brings nearly 20 years of experience working in the public and private sectors at both the local and international level, specializing in sustainable development, stakeholder engagement and business management.

In his current position at NWNA, Nelson focuses primarily on identifying issues and developing solutions to complex environmental, social and governance challenges by facilitating constructive engagement and fostering innovation. His technical and business expertise coupled with his approach to relationship management supports one of the company’s most important areas of focus – securing and maintaining social license to grow. Before joining NWNA, Nelson was Director and Leader of Sustainable Business Solutions at PwC where he designed and led a premium sustainability and stakeholder engagement management advisory practice.

Prior to that, Nelson was an officer at the consulting firm asherleaf where he designed and managed sustainability programs across a wide range of industries. Nelson also has served as Head of Corporate Responsibility at Centrica plc NA, Senior Manager of Environmental Affairs at the Royal Bank of Canada and has held adjunct positions and executive in residence status at leading universities including the University of Waterloo and Ivey School of Business.

Nelson holds a Master of Engineering from the University of Toronto, and a Bachelor of Science from the University of New Brunswick.

Florence Hudson is an inspirational business, technical and not-for-profit senior executive and board member with leadership skills in innovation, strategic planning, marketing, channels, partnerships, business development, sales, diversity, industry, research and academia.

Florence is on the Editorial Board of the journal Blockchain in Healthcare Today. She is also Special Advisor to the Northeast Big Data Innovation Hub for Next Generation Internet (NGI) at Columbia University, enabling United States / European Union collaboration. She serves on engineering and technology advisory councils at Princeton University, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, and Union County College. She is sought after as a keynote speaker for the Internet of Things, digitization of smart cities and communities, Blockchain, connected healthcare, information & communications technology trends, innovation, diversity, inclusion, and Women in STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. She has presented in many venues worldwide, from Dubai to Japan, including a TED talk focused on sustainability on a smarter planet. She has been published in books on Cognitive Computing, the Internet of Things, and Smarter Cities.

Florence was trained as a mechanical and aerospace engineer, starting her career at Grumman Aerospace Corporation and NASA Jet Propulsion Lab, working on solar power satellites, the space shuttle program, and future missions around Jupiter. She then entered the Information Technology field, first at Hewlett Packard, then at IBM where she had a 33-year career, rising to IBM Vice President in strategy and marketing, growing multi-billion dollar businesses. She was a leader of many growth strategies at IBM, including the Internet of Things, smart buildings, smart water management, Watson cognitive computing, healthcare and life sciences, cloud, hardware, software, financing and services. She played a pivotal role in the development of the Emerging Business Opportunities strategy at IBM as is chronicled in a Harvard Case Study. She was an executive on loan to the Society of Women Engineers, creating their growth strategies.

After IBM, she was Senior Vice President and Chief Innovation Officer at Internet2, a not-for-profit consortium of 500 research and education organizations in academia, industry and government. She developed a Collaborative Innovation Community of over 400 participants from 170 organizations around the world, focusing on innovations in the Internet of Things, IoT ethics, cybersecurity, distributed big data & analytics, healthcare & life sciences, smart campuses, advanced networking, trust & identity, cloud computing, and researcher engagement. She was an NSF PI on cybersecurity grants including an end to end trust and security for IoT workshop, and cybersecurity research transition to practice (TTP) acceleration.

Ms. Hudson graduated from Princeton University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and has attended executive education at Harvard Business School and Columbia University.

Marta Bralic is vice president of business development at Flatiron Health, where her team is responsible for developing strategic partnerships and leading special projects that accelerate Flatiron’s growth, enhance the company’s product offerings, and support new product line development.

Marta joined Flatiron from McKinsey & Company, where she advised payers, providers, and life sciences companies across a wide range of strategy and operational challenges. Her experience is primarily in helping state governments and health systems adapt to healthcare reform, and helping pharmaceutical and biotech clients develop commercial strategies.

Marta graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University with a Bachelor of Arts in government and computer science. She was also a member of Phi Beta Kappa and a Computer Science Teaching Fellow for the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Harvard.

I was born in Gander, Newfoundland, and have been privileged to live in many regions of Canada. My career started as an Officer with the Department of National Defense, moved on to senior management in operations with Bank of Montreal, Principal with KPMG and then President of two start-up companies, one in B2B marketing and the other in sports technology.

Since moving to Midland in 2001 I have been involved in the community in many capacities: - Director, Out of the Cold – Chair, Martyrs’ Shrine Board of Trustees - Chair, Huronia Foundation for the Arts – Founder, Zero Waste Simcoe - Chair, St. Margarets Cemetery Board - Founder, Economic Development Association of North Simcoe. My political career started as a municipal Councillor in 2006 and then successive terms as Mayor in 2010 and 2014.

My wife Cathy and I have been married for 43 years and have two adult children. When time permits I pursue personal interests in cosmology, virtual reality development and gardening.

Alexandra Prodromos - Alexandra Prodromos received her Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in Political Science from Pepperdine University. She also holds a certificate in conflict management from Pepperdine Law School’s number 1 ranked Straus Institute of Dispute Resolution. She is currently a Master of Science in Information Systems candidate at Northwestern University.

She was one of the primary initiators of the Illinois Blockchain Initiative, a state of Illinois consortium dedicated to furthering blockchain development in Illinois, and worked as the only non-government affiliated member of the Illinois Department of Innovation and Technology's Blockchain Working Group. In 2016, she joined Bloq, Inc a leading enterprise grade blockchain software and services provider, as a Research and Marketing Strategist.

She was recently appointed as the Executive Director of the new Chicago Blockchain Center, a public-private non-profit partnership that serves as a leading educational resource and startup incubator of blockchain focused companies in the Chicago/Illinois tech ecosystem. She is a regularly invited speaker in Chicago and nationally on the subject of Blockchain and Distributed Ledger technology.

Hassan Jaferi is a commercialization professional who helps researchers and scientists develop their products for commercial markets – through patents, licenses and entrepreneurial ventures. His work is where science and business come together. As CEO of Bitnobi, Inc., Hassan manages all day to day business activities and oversees product development for the privacy-protected, data sharing platform.

William D. Friedman became president and CEO of the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority in June, 2010. Under Mr. Friedman’s leadership, the Port of Cleveland has experienced a resurgence in maritime trade and long-sought diversification of cargo types. In 2014, the Port launched the Cleveland-Europe Express service, revitalizing shipping via the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Seaway system and solidifying Cleveland’s position as its leading international hub.

Mr. Friedman has more than 25 years experience in port management, real estate development, the international supply chain and multimodal distribution. He served as vice president, ports and logistics for Duke Realty Corp. from 2004 to 2009, helping the company expand to key port and inland logistics hubs including the Port of Savannah and the Rickenbacker Global Logistics Park in Columbus, Ohio. Before joining Duke Realty, Mr. Friedman was CEO of the Ports of Indiana from 2000 to 2004, where he improved financial results, increased cargo volumes, and secured more private investment, resulting in a record $1.5 billion annual economic impact statewide.

Prior to that, Mr. Friedman spent 10 years with the Port of Seattle serving in a variety of management roles including director of seaport strategic planning, general manager of cargo piers and industrial properties, and senior harbor development planner. Mr. Friedman’s work in Seattle enabled a $600 million expansion of one of the nation’s primary container ports.

Mr. Friedman is President of the American Great Lakes Ports Association and serves on numerous industry and civic boards including the Executive Committee of the American Association of Port Authorities, Green Marine, the Northeast Ohio Development Fund, the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency, and the Cuyahoga County Economic Development Commission.

Mr. Friedman holds two degrees from Indiana University -- a bachelor’s degree in history, and a master’s degree in public administration with a concentration in urban and regional planning.

CARA CLAIRMAN is President and CEO of Plug’n Drive, a non-profit that is accelerating the deployment of electric vehicles (EVs) to maximize their environmental and economic benefits.

In just over six years, Cara has taken Plug’n Drive from an idea to a thriving non-profit, recognized as a leader in the EV space.

Cara has more than 20 years of experience working in the environmental and sustainability fields, including 12 years working at Ontario Power Generation, initially as OPG’s environmental lawyer and later in the role Vice President of Sustainable Development. Prior to joining OPG, Cara spent five years practicing environmental law with the Torys law firm.

She holds a Bachelor of Laws from Osgoode Hall and a Masters in Environmental Studies from York University, as well as an Honours Bachelor of Science degree from Queen’s University.

Cara is the 2017 recipient of the Women in Renewable Energy’s ‘Woman of the Year’ award. She is currently @CaraClairman driving the 100% electric Chevy Bolt!

Bruce Nierenberg brings 50 years’ experience in travel and tourism industry in the areas of cruise line management, airlines, hotels and resorts, destination management, product development, and over-night ferry operations.

As a senior executive or owner of cruise lines and ferry operations since 1974, he has been responsible for some of the most significant new product development in the cruise industry. He has consulted for governments and tourism development throughout the Caribbean islands. He established the first cruise operations in the Ports of Canaveral, Florida, and Houston, Texas.  He developed year -round operations for ultra-successful ports of call such as Cozumel, Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman and the Out Islands of the Bahamas. From their first regular, scheduled service in the mid-1970’s to their position today as among the most successful ports operations in the cruise industry, Cozumel in particular has become the #1 port stop in the world in terms of arriving passengers.

The Western Caribbean 7-day cruise route, he created and implemented in 1975 is still the most popular Caribbean itinerary 40+ years after it was initiated.

Bruce Nierenberg began his career in tourism as an airport ticket and operations agent at Eastern Airlines while in college at the University of Miami.  While at Eastern Airlines, he worked as a Senior Passenger and Cargo Sales Representative.  In his first year, he was named salesman of the year for the company.

His first position in the cruise industry was with Norwegian Cruise Lines (NCL) in 1973 as Regional Sales Director in Chicago. In his first year with NCL he used his airline background to create the first national program of air-sea packages that brought packaged cruise and air vacations nationally for the first time.

While with NCL in 1970’s, he was responsible for the acquisition and conversion of the S.S. France into the S.S. Norway, the largest passenger ship in the word at the time and first “mega” cruise ship to carry over 2000 passengers.  This was the first cruise product that marketed the ship as the destination and proved consumer acceptance of the concept now used successfully on all of today’s mega cruise liners.

In 1977, he started the first cruises to the Out Islands of the Bahamas. These trips featured the first “Private Island Experiences” which have become a mainstream product for all Caribbean operators and the main reason for the growth of cruising in the Bahamas.

In 1982 and as CEO of Scandinavian World Cruises, he helped conceive, design and implement the first “super ferry” to operate in U.S. waters, the M.S. Scandinavia, which ran from New York to the Bahamas.
He started the One Day cruise market from Florida, the “Seascape”, which operated successfully for the next 25 years from several ports in the state. This product brought many passengers to their first cruise in the 1980’s

Beginning in 1983 through 1991, he was a founder and managing partner of Premier Cruise Lines (“The Big Red Boats”), which had its first cruise in March 1983 from Port Canaveral, Florida.

He is credited for bringing American families traveling with children into the cruise market. Premier Cruise Lines (PCL) introduced the first onboard children’s programming including a full staff dedicated to youth activities. PCL also instituted the first full service children’s dining program, the first daily onboard babysitting service and the first children’s onboard recreation centers divided by specific age groups. All These products have become staples of the cruise industry today and the foundation for Disney building their own ships and starting Disney Cruise Lines in themed 1990’s.

While Managing Partner at Premier Cruise Lines he developed the first all out- island cruises to the Abaco Islands of the Bahamas. This required completed development of the destination including channel dredging, and building the port and harbor facilities.

By the mid 1980’s, Premier had become the most successful cruise line in the 3/4 -day cruise market, and the Official Cruise Line of Walt Disney World.

He is responsible for getting the Disney Company into the cruise business.

Using the Disney contract relationship, Premier’s Cruise and Disney Week Package became

  • The most successful tour operation in Florida,
  • The largest individual seller of Disney admissions outside of Disney themselves,
  • The largest individual renter of cars in Florida, and
  • The largest contractor of Central Florida hotel rooms

After selling his interest in Premier Cruise Lines to the Dial Corp in 1991 he became President and CEO of Costa Cruise Lines, prior to the sale of the company to Carnival Corp., where he implemented several new profitable itineraries and introduced two new vessels for the company. In 1996 rejoined NCL and implemented the first- year-round cruises from Houston, Texas to the Western Caribbean.

In 2003, he became President and CEO of the Delta Queen Steamboat Company (DQSC), at that time the only American flag steamboat operation on the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers. In cooperation with the parent company Delaware North he took DQSC, from an annual $15 million-dollar loss, to a positive result before it was sold in 2006 after Hurricane Katrina caused a cease in operation in late 2005. He successfully arranged for a post hurricane deployment of the steamboats of DQSC via contracts with major oil companies in Texas and Louisiana to use the vessels as accommodation ships for the workers who were rebuilding the refineries destroyed by Hurricane’s Katrina and Rita.
He has served on the Florida Tourism Commission including 2 years as Chairman, Vice Chairman of the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the Brevard Community College Foundation’s Board of Governors, and the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association Board.

During the last 5 years Nierenberg has worked to implement the first system of Super Cruise- Ferry service in the Caribbean Basin. This service will connect major shipping gateways in the US Gulf Coast such as Miami, Tampa, and Houston with The Yucatan peninsula in Mexico and eventually Havana Cuba.

On May 5, 2015 Nierenberg secured the first license form the US Government to operate passenger ships to Cuba.

In winter 2016, he became President and CEO of Victory Cruise Lines, a Miami based deluxe small ship, all-inclusive cruise product to sail to the Great Lakes in the summer. The first cruise onboard Victory I for Victory Cruise Lines took place in July 2016. A second ship, Victory II, will join the fleet on the Great Lakes in July 2018. Victory Cruise Lines will sail to Cuba and Yucatan Mexico from Miami Florida beginning in the winter 2018/2019.
He was appointed Chairman of the Board of Victory Cruise Lines in January 2018.

Todd leads client service delivery for Quantified Ventures, which structures outcomes-based financing transactions across the health, education and environmental sectors. Currently, he’s leading several Environmental Impact Bond projects, working with governments, private companies, and nonprofit organizations to deploy green infrastructure and other resilience investments, improve energy efficiency, address water quality issues through on-farm management practices, and promote sustainable urban wood economies.

Todd joined Quantified Ventures from IBM, where he was a leader in the IBM Smarter Cities Initiative, structuring projects to improve delivery of government programs and infrastructure through predictive data analytics. He led strategy and business development for IBM's entry into the intelligent transportation market, and led a global deal structuring team, providing expertise in development of public-private partnership contracts with government departments in the U.S. and Europe.

Prior to IBM, Todd was a Strategic Change consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers, working with Executives of multiple government organizations in design and implementation of performance improvement and organizational restructuring initiatives. He started his career as a Program Evaluator with the Government Accountability Office, completing reviews for Congress recommending improved coordination and targeting of foreign aid programs and strengthening of nuclear-related export controls.

Todd has a Masters in International Development from Columbia University's School of Public and International Affairs and a B.A. in Political Science from UC-Berkeley. He is based in Boulder, Colorado.