NCA Convention 2019 Speakers
NCA speakers are selected for their ability to entertain, inform, and inspire.
See an overview of the NCA 2019 Educational Programming, or skip to one of the following categories:
Big names with big stories.
Featured during the morning General Sessions, these individuals were selected for their ability to inspire, connect, and entertain.
This year's speakers highlight the need for resiliency in the face of challenges (or crossroads) — an essential trait of leadership today.
Shannon Huffman Polson
Author, “The Grit Project,” and one of the first U.S. Army Women Apache Helicopter Captains and Pilots
Leading from Any Seat: Stories from the Cockpit & Lessons from the Grit Project
From the cockpit to the boardroom, Shannon Huffman Polson shares stories of grit and leadership to help others overcome fear, break through uncertainty, and reach their full potential.
Shannon is a woman of many firsts. Among those high points: She is one of the first women to fly Apache combat helicopters in the U.S. Armed Forces, where she served on three continents and led two flight platoons and a line company.
Drawing on a distinguished military and corporate career, she reveals her lessons learned and leadership strategies to help you harness your own inner strength, move beyond resistance, and attain your goals. With an emphasis on grit –which she describes as “a dogged determination in the face of difficult circumstances” –she demonstrates how to tap into that passion and resolve so you can face your limitations, own your sense of purpose, and become a leader of greatness.
Nature Photographer and National Geographic Magazine Contributor
Grizzlies, Piranhas and Flesh-Eating Pigs
Joel Sartore is a photographer, speaker, author, teacher, conservationist, National Geographic Fellow, and a regular contributor to National Geographic Magazine. His hallmarksare a sense of humor and a Midwestern work ethic.
Joel specializes in documenting endangered species and landscapes in order to show a world worth saving. He is the founder of The Photo Ark, a multi-year documentary project to save species and habitat.
In his words, “It is folly to think that we can destroy one species and ecosystem after another and not affect humanity. When we save species, we’re actually saving ourselves.”
Joel's most recent book, Let’s Be Reasonable is now available wherever books are sold. In addition to the work he has done for National Geographic, Joel has contributed to numerous other publications and book projects. Joel and his work are the subjects of several national broadcasts, and he is also a regular contributor on the CBS Sunday Morning Show with Charles Osgood.
Joel is always happy to return to home base from his travels around the world. He lives in Lincoln, Nebraska with his wife Kathy and their three children.
Former Sr. Vice President, Brand, Under Armor, Inc.
Building Your Brand, Telling Your Story, Protecting Your House.
From sports business category underdog to athletic apparel disruptor, CLIO award-winning branding expert Steve Battista reflects on lessons learned from Under Armour’s storied growth and helping launch other start-ups to offer actionable insights on growing your brand, constantly innovating and successfully connecting with consumers in the digital age.
Since he joined the former startup as its 19th employee in 2000 as director of corporate communications, Steve helped the Under Armour brand grow from selling four products into a $4.8 billion global business selling 40,000+ products. With many titles during his 17-year tenure, Steve’s primary focus was directing the company’s strong branding and positioning, which inspired athletes of all ages globally through brilliant campaigns that exuded the company’s passionate culture and dedication to authenticity.
Steve’s gritty and compelling marketing, such as his award-winning “PROTECT THIS HOUSE,” “CLICK CLACK,” and “I WILL” campaigns, helped propel Under Armour’s rise to become “the sports brand of this generation and the next,” a distinction further substantiated through the company’s partnerships with some of the world’s most accomplished athletes, including Stephen Curry, Jordan Spieth, Michael Phelps, Misty Copeland and Tom Brady.
A talented writer and master storyteller, Steve takes audiences behind the scenes of his work atUnder Armour and other brands he has helped launch and/or reposition, to provide insights on fostering attitudes focused on disruption and innovation, and strategies for ensuring distinct branding in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
Coffee Industry General Sessions
Get a first look into the latest market research, with expert analysis into what's ahead. Open to all attendees.
Scott Clemons, Chief Investment Strategist
Brown Brothers Harriman
Coffee Economy: The Big Picture
G. Scott Clemons is the Chief Investment Strategist of Brown Brothers Harriman’s Private Banking business, a role he assumed after an earlier career managing portfolios for the firm in New York and London.
Today he is the firm’s primary voice on the economy and markets, and appears frequently in print and broadcast media. Outside of his professional obligations, Scott serves as the president of the Grolier Club of New York City, and on advisory boards at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Morgan Library and Museum.
He is also on the board of directors of the Research Corporation for Science Advancement and the Journal of the History of Ideas.
National Coffee Data Trends 2019, What it Means to the Industry
Get an exclusive, first-hand look into the 2019 NCA National Coffee Data Trends report. Get expert analysis on the historical context and emerging trends shaping the fourth-wave future. Featuring:
- Mark DiDomenico, Datassential
- Kyle Newkirk, S&D Coffee & Tea, Inc.
- Andi Trindle Mersch, Philz Coffee
- Jonathan White, White Coffee
Specialty Coffee Cupping
Whether you are a seasoned Q-grader or have never tried slurping coffee from a spoon before, Convention attendees are invited to join local Atlanta coffee roasters Blue Donkey Coffee for a special selection of excellent coffee on Friday, March 8. Featuring:
- Ed Lane, Blue Donkey Coffee
- David Lane, Blue Donkey Coffee
NCA Scientific Leadership Council
The NCA Scientific Leadership Council (SLC) leads the industry in understanding the latest research on coffee, caffeine, and health. Sponsored by NCA member companies, all SLC delegates have demonstrated remarkable achievements both in their field professionally and as outstanding members of the coffee community.
This year, the SLC will host their first-ever NCA Science Fair on Friday, March 8. Convention attendees are warmly invited to stop by during this extended session to understand why this work is critical to the future of the coffee industry, ask questions, and meet the experts. (Visit the NCA 2019 Educational Programming page to learn more)
- Scott Hawks, Tata Global Beverages, Inc. —Food Safety & FSMA
- Sindhu Pillai, S&D Coffee & Tea, Inc. — Food Safety & FSMA
- Sylvester Mosley, Coca Cola Company — Food Safety & FSMA
- CJ Sinko, Lavazza Professional — Coffee & Health
- George Dowdie, Starbucks Coffee Company — Coffee & Health
- Khaled Abou-Zeid, QUSAC Decaf, Inc.— Caffeine & Decaffeination
- Alberto Azeredo, Keurig Dr Pepper, Inc. — Caffeine & Decaffeination
- Dora Jaramillo, Farmer Brothers Company — Caffeine & Decaffeination
- Dagan Allardyce, Keurig Dr Pepper, Inc. — Diacetyl & Worker Safety
- Tyler Youngquist, J.M. Smucker Company — Diacetyl & Worker Safety
- Daud Khan, Mother Parkers Tea & Coffee, Inc. — Cold Brew
- Nalini Kamireddy, Farmer Brothers Company — Cold Brew
- Alan Leviton, Boston Children's Hospital/Harvard University — Meet our Experts
- Candace Doepker, ToxStrategies, Inc. — Meet our Experts
- Brian Schaneberg, Starbucks Coffee Company — Meet our Experts
Educational Breakout Sessions
Rob Bouvier, Bouvier Insurance
Insurance Basics for Coffee Roasters
Alex Costakis , Hitwise
How to Use Audience Data to Find & Attract Coffee Lovers
Lindsey Irvin, Bouvier Insurance
Insurance Basics for Coffee Roasters
Andrew Sargent, Catholic Relief Services
Labor Concerns at Origin
Miguel Zamora, Rainforest Alliance
Labor Concerns at Origin
The IWCA Networking Reception
All NCA Convention attendees are invited to register for this ticketed event to benefit the International Women's Coffee Alliance (IWCA) on Saturday, March 9.
Meet colleagues from across the industry, enjoy lunch, and join the conversation on a critical industry issue. Panel speakers will share insights and updates on the IWCA's important work empowering women in coffee communities at origin. Featuring:
- Victoria Zimmerman, McDonald's
- Nathalie Gabbay, RGC Coffee
- Matthew Daks, NDCP, LLC
- Emanuele Kellem, IWCA Global Board of Directors