2019 Keynote Speakers

Eduardo GarciaEduardo Garcia

Eduardo Garcia is a chef, outdoorsman, athlete and motivational speaker & the co-founder of a national food brand, Montana Mex. As a professional Eduardo spent over a decade cooking for royalty, the rich and the famous and for people from all over the world and from all walks of life as a Chef in the luxury Yachting industry. The creativity and diversity of Eduardo’s cooking is a product of the seasonal and wild pantry of his upbringing and roots mixed with the luxury experiences and tastes that years of yacht traveling offered.  He has become known for offering unique eating experiences around the world.


During a Montana backcountry hike in October 2011, Eduardo was electrocuted by a buried high voltage power source, where he suffered extensive, life-threatening injuries and had to have his arm amputated.  Today five years after, Eduardo is the subject of the award winning feature length documentary “Charged”, and worked on a number of media projects including “A Hungry Life” a tv concept which follows him into the wild places of the world as he creates exceptional food over a campfire and is on a personal mission to help those who are dealing with trauma.  He is a spokesperson and athlete for the Challenged Athletes Foundation, a NGO that provides support to people with physical disabilities so they can pursue active lifestyles and is on a personal mission to help those who are dealing with trauma. To unwind Eduardo spends his time at home in Montana, tending to his garden, collecting fresh eggs from his chickens and connecting with Mother Nature by hiking the hills with his family.

Todd DewettTodd Dewett

As a consultant, Todd held positions at Andersen Consulting and Ernst & Young.  His consulting experience provided a vital career-changing insight:  most professionals are not fully engaged and do not feel their work matters.  In response, Todd decided to rededicate his life to the study of leadership and success in life in an effort to help people better experience happiness and a genuine sense of purpose.

The next step was the PhD program in Management at the Mays Business School, Department of Management, at Texas A&M University where Todd quickly earned awards for both research and teaching.  His hard work resulted in scholarly publications, a prestigious Post Doctoral Fellowship, and, finally, a PhD and a tenure track appointment to the business school at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio.

As a professor at Wright State, Todd’s teaching focused solely on leadership-related courses in Wright State’s nationally ranked MBA program.  In three years he received tenure.  In six years he became a Full Professor.  In year seven, he was appointed the Assistant Dean for MBA and Executive Programs.

During his ten years as a professor, Todd received many teaching awards including the prestigious designation as the Robert J.  Kegerreis Distinguished Professor of Teaching.  It was in the classroom that he ultimately discovered the power of stories, and his next calling in life:  professional speaking.

As an entrepreneur today, Todd wears many hats: speaker, author, advisor, not to mention  being  the  go- to leadership and life  expert for millions of members at Lynda.com, the world’s leader in online learning. Nonetheless,  his top love  remains  professional speaking. Todd possesses  a  rare  combination of traits for a speaker: world-class expertise, a rugged authentic  style, and an ability to use emotion and humor in a way that changes people. At every event, people laugh, learn, and cry.

His insights have resulted in quotes in the New York Times, Forbes, BusinessWeek, CNN, Investors Business Daily, MSNBC,  Chicago Tribune, Christian Science Monitor, US News and World Report, and hundreds of additional outlets including foreign  press and award winning blogs. His electric performance as a speaker has secured recent clients including Ernst & Young, Booz Allen Hamilton, State Farm, JM Smucker, Medtronic, TGI Fridays, Standard Register, Cox Media, NCR, Sogeti, Emerson, and scores of additional corporations, conferences, and nonprofits.

Shannon AllenShannon Allen

Shannon Allen is the creator of grown™, the first ever 100% USDA organic certified fast food restaurant with a drive thru on the East Coast. Shannon lives in Miami with her husband, Ray Allen (two-time NBA champion) and their five children. Shannon created grown™ after searching unsuccessfully for an organic, nutrient dense meal on-the-go for her children, including middle son Walker who lives with Type 1 Diabetes. The Allen’s are passionate advocates for research for a cure for Type 1 Diabetes in honor of Walker and the millions of children and adults that are living with this potentially life threatening medical condition. The grown™ concept evolved, in part, from her television show, The Pre-Game Meal which was inspired by 18 years of preparing optimal game day meals for her husband Ray. The show featured professional athletes and chefs preparing healthier versions of tailgate food in hopes of inspiring soccer moms, student athletes and sports fans alike to embrace a healthier diet & exercise.

After opening the doors to their flagship grown™ location two years ago on a busy stretch of highway in South Florida, the concept has grown to include six units, including one at Wesleyan University, three non-traditional locations in sports arenas, and a location inside of a Walmart Supercenter in Orlando. grown™ is widely recognized as a market disrupter for providing convenience without compromise and for stretching the perceptions associated with traditional fast food options. Providing busy people everywhere with delicious, freshly prepared, nutrient dense breakfast, lunch and dinner from a scratch kitchen using strictly 100% USDA organic certified ingredients and delivered with the optimal conveniences we’ve all grown accustomed to is grown’s passionate mission. Shannon, Ray and the grownteam are committed to sharing the vision, powering the mission and are in the process of completing franchise disclosure documents with the intent of potentially awarding grown™ franchises in 2018.