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CEO Speaks Transcript 5.14.22

Happy Saturday, and welcome to CEO Speaks for Saturday, May 14, 2022.

These last two weeks speak to momentum, a collective spirit of connectivity, and our future.

This past week Austin, Texas, was host to three different yet equally empowering and defining TMA events.

The week started with an in-person TMA Global Executive Board meeting where members of the TMA Global Executive Board gathered both in-person and virtually to share the progress of TMA at this near mid-year point and then to share in an important team building exercise that set the stage for our strategic planning session later in the week.

From reports on record retention numbers and the highest numbers of North American members TMA has boasted since 2018 to the season of conferences that lies ahead, there was a lot to celebrate and be proud of. 

The meeting capped off with TMA Global President Janey Mitnick introducing a team-building exercise where senior team members of TMA Global facilitated small group breakouts aimed at creating a dialogue on the partnership between TMA Global and our leaders.

Feedback from exercises like this shows our collective spirit of cooperation and partnership central to the success of our leaders and the committees they oversee. 

As the week progressed, next up was our 2022 Network of Women Conference, where 120 women, 50 percent of whom were attending this conference for the first time, came together in a day of thought leadership, frank discussion, learning, connecting, and networking in impactful and important ways.

Led by TMA NOW Co-chairs Anne O’Donnell and Ebba Gebisa, the day did not disappoint. 

The conference experience kicked off with a panel led by Hon. (RET) Judith Fitzgerald, leading panelists Natalie Ramsey, Amanda Rush, Laureen Ryan, and Cullen Speckhart discussed the complexities of mass tort liabilities, a topic equally as timely as it was interesting.

But with variety being the spice of life, and certainly this conference, from the depths of legally challenging thought leadership, the conference moved in a new and unique direction, using the keynote luncheon to feature a discussion with four very different women of our industry, who are all trailblazers in their own right, sharing their career journeys through restructuring and of course TMA.

TMA Global VP of Conferences Rachael Smiley (moderator), Sharon Kopman, Janine Krattiger, and Diana Peterson all shared their journeys and the challenges they overcame and still face as successful women in the restructuring industry. 

This real and relevant hour shed light on how far the women of our industry have come and how far there still is to go. 

As the day progressed, the program that really challenged thought and provoked much enlightenment and discussion focused on workforce and compensation issues affecting women and the impacts of the year of the great resignation.

Moderated by TMA NOW Committee member Pauline Chow, the room was captivated by the presentations of Hannah Robb, Associate Partner at Eastwood Partners, who spoke about how women can leverage data to their advantage for compensation, competition, and recruiting, and Grace Reyes, CEO, and Founder of the Investment Diversity Exchange, dedicated to connecting and engaging diversity and inclusion in the investment industry.

When the education ended, the team-building did not stop, and the women of TMA, and one or two men, including myself and Global Chair Matthew English, CTP, took off to a team-building event extraordinaire at the Lone Star ranch.

From horse whispering to ax-throwing and archery too, along with just good ol’ connecting and continuing the momentum of the day, energy emulated in the air, and it reminded me that each and every one of these women represent the pioneers who have gotten us to where we are today, those who continue to raise the bar on so many important issues of fairness and equality, and those who will shape the future not just for women, but for all who fight for justice, equality, and a voice that can and will change the way we work, think, act and support each other. 

The culmination of this actionable week was an all-hands-on-deck strategic planning workshop, many months in the planning.

We at TMA are so very fortunate to have assembled this select group of TMA members to participate in this critically important and intense exercise, led by TMA Global Secretary Jonathan Reimche and facilitated by Aaron Woloweic, CEO of consulting firm Event Garde.

This eclectic group of TMA members who were brought together for this critically important strategic planning session represents the diversity of who we are as people and professionals.

With representation from many Noth American chapters, those new to TMA, tried and true members of TMA, and international members from Brazil and Europe, this interactive workshop helped shape the vision of TMA Tomorrow while identifying the challenges we will overcome as we build the next iteration of our defining organization.

The future of TMA is bright because of the vision and passion of these women and men who took on this charge with seriousness and honesty. 

Janey Mitnick, Matthew English, CTP,  Michael W Cunningham, Alex Dybsky, CTA, Marius Dobren, Rashmi Dube, Jonathan Evans, Scott Gautier, Michael Goodman, Maria Pombo, Anne O’Donnell, Sari Placona, Jennifer Meyerowitz, Rachael L Smiley, Eduardo Takemi Kataoka

Know their names, for they are the leaders and members that are our future. They are the personification of what it means to be better together and TMA proud.

As always, thanks for taking the time to listen today. In this year of Innovation through Disruption, your input is critical, your contributions paramount, and your engagement the foundation that will create a better TMA for all of our members.

Until next time, I’m Scott Stuart. Be safe, resilient, and TMA Proud.

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