Morning Keynote Speaker


Speaker and author Claudia Williams spent more than a decade as an attorney where she coached leaders of organizations of all sizes through challenging situations.

Founder of The Human Zone, Claudia developed the Frientorship® program. It’s an individual and team development model encompassing the key principles of friendship, mentorship, and leadership to bring out the best in leaders and build fully-engaged organizations.

Prior to starting The Human Zone, Claudia served as Associate General Counsel, Global HR & Litigation for The Hershey Company. She received the PBA 2015 Special Achievement Award in recognition of her pro-bono commitment to veterans and first responders. She was named as one ofthe Central Penn Business Journal’s 25 Women of Influence and was named as one of Philadelphia Magazine’s Super Lawyers multiple times.
Claudia serves as a member ofthe Advisory Board for the Salvation Army Greater Harrisburg, where she co-chairs the Shoe Strut Thanks to the Shoe Strut, over 1,500 local children in need Inspiring Leaders & Employees to Create Thriving Workplace Cultures have new shoes! The Shoe Strut has raised tens of thousands of dollars to support TSA programs and services.

Claudia lives in Central PA with her husband, Steve, and two spirited daughters, building family memories and legacies to last a lifetime. /

9:15 – 10:15AM | Speakers for Breakout Session I

Session Description:

Selling has to change because buying has changed. In this session you will learn the art and science of sales and how to close the deal


Anne Carnathan, CEO
Universal Media/Analytics, Inc.

Anne Carnathan has experienced a 30+ commission-only sales career, primarily in media and advertising.  After 25 years of an exceptional track record managing sales teams, Anne joined Universal Media/Analytics, Inc in early 2011. She has amassed a significant body of work creating acquisition strategies and workflow process. She currently acts as COO for UMI and works with local, regional and national partners, in addition to guiding the company through the data-centric information age. Anne resides in West Hanover Township with her husband, son and three dogs.

Session Description:
  1. How to create an active board
  2. Risk Management and crisis
  3. Quality of Volunteers

Chad Barger
Nonprofit Fundraising Coach & Board Trainer

Chad Barger is a nonprofit fundraising and board coach.  Chad teaches charities how to raise more dollars by working smarter, not harder.  He is Principal of the firm Productive Fundraising which specializes in training nonprofit boards of directors and bringing new growth to stagnant fundraising operations. Chad is a self-proclaimed “productivity geek” and “systems guy.”  He works with his clients to implement simple processes and procedures that produce big results, when done consistently.  He has leveraged this to establish a national reputation as a fundraising productivity expert and maintains a thriving coaching practice.  He publishes a popular weekly email newsletter, The Productive Fundraising Weekly Journey, which provides video fundraising tips, resources, and five great fundraising articles from around the web.  Chad frequently speaks at major nonprofit conferences.  He is a Master Trainer for the Association of Fundraising Professionals and is a contributor to their industry-leading magazine, Advancing Philanthropy. He is also a passionate arts advocate and raises vital support for the arts in his community through the Cultural Enrichment Fund (Harrisburg, PA).  He splits his time between serving as a fundraising practitioner and a fundraising consultant.  This allows him to bring fresh, real world, tested recommendations to his consulting clients.

Chad has spent his entire career as a fundraiser. He has worked in large shops and small in a variety of sectors (higher education, social services & the arts). He has built fundraising programs from the ground up, rebuilt fundraising programs back to their former glory and taken stagnant organizations to the next level. The campaigns that he has worked on have raised in excess of $30 million dollars for the charities that he’s had the honor of serving. Chad is an active member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), and is immediate past president of the Central Pennsylvania Chapter.  He also serves on the Center for Fundraising Innovation Lab Committee for AFP International. He earned his Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) credential, the first globally-recognized credential for fundraising professionals, in 2007.

He is a graduate of Slippery Rock University where he got his fundraising start as a student phone-a-thon caller.  At SRU, Chad served as an AmeriCorps member leading fellow students on community service trips across the country, which shifted his career focus to the charitable sector.  He currently serves on SRU’s Philanthropy and Nonprofit Program Advisory Council. When not teaching charities how to fundraise more efficiently or raising dollars for the arts in Harrisburg, Chad is typically spending quality time with his family, serving as quartermaster for Cub Scout Pack 279, duffing his way around the golf course, searching for the world’s greatest IPA, cheering the Steelers on to their seventh ring, or playing trombone with No Last Call, Harrisburg’s hit-and-run street band.


David LaTorre
Principal, La Torre Communications Principal, La Torre Communications

La Torre Communications founder David La Torre is a well-regarded public affairs and communications strategist who has served as a spokesperson for high-profile clients and crises. For over a decade, David has successfully handled communications for a number of events that captured the world’s attention, including the Jerry Sandusky issue at Penn State University and the dramatic Quecreek Mine Rescue outside of Pittsburgh.

He has worked with and appeared in media outlets across the country and world, including The New York Times, BBC, ABC, NBC, CBS, ESPN, Fox News, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, Bloomberg, Chicago Tribune, Reuters, Philadelphia Inquirer, Los Angeles Times, and Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
David began a career in public service under Gov. Tom Ridge, serving in the communications office as a spokesman and chief speechwriter and was later named press secretary to Gov. Mark S. Schweiker.
An experienced public speaker, David has spoken to a number of organizations, including the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors, Pennsylvania Fraternal Order of Police and Corrections USA. He previously served as the keynote speaker at an international public affairs conference in Budapest, Hungary.

A former journalist, David won several awards covering government and politics for Pennsylvania newspapers, including The (Allentown) Morning Call and York Dispatch/York Sunday News.
David holds a bachelor’s degree from St. Francis University and a master’s from Ball State University.

Session Description:

This session will provide introduction and best practices for maintaining inclusive and affirming workplaces. Some of us may not feel versed in language and/or in our own level of understanding and do not know where to go to learn more. By examining these issues through critical and global lenses, participants will learn strategies for recognizing and affirming individuals of all identities, backgrounds, and expressions. This session provides a brave space where friends may together come to learn, grow in their knowledge and practice, and gain a deeper understanding of issues facing our communities.


Todd Snovel
Lebanon Valley College

Todd Snovel serves as Assistant Dean for Inclusion and Engagement at Lebanon Valley College, where he leads a team responsible for educating and engaging students in the co-curricular experience. He also serves as a lecturer in the department of sociology, teaching courses focused in the studies of genders and sexualities. Todd also serves as a co-chair for the College’s Committee on Intercultural and Inclusive Learning and implemented LVC’s annual Symposium on Inclusive Excellence.

Todd remains active in his community assisting organizations that promote equality through education, the arts, and healthcare. He is the past chair of the Lebanon County Commission for Women and currently serves on the board of Lebanon Family Health Services, the Lebanon Community Theatre and The Central PA Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.

Todd was presented with the Wheeler Freedom Award in 2015, recognizing outstanding support to people who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender in Lebanon County. He was also presented with the Athena Award in 2014 by the Lebanon Valley Chamber of Commerce for his efforts to inspire women to achieve their full potentials.

Session Description:

In this session you will take a closer look at you own network and learn how to:

  • Maximizing the networks you have
  • Promote your personal brand
  • Speak to your friends and colleagues to help your professional development
  • Vet a mentor and find the right one that will bring you to the next level of success.

Brad Garfinkel
Vice President of Retail Services for Members 1st Federal Credit Union

Brad is a graduate of Shippensburg University and Harrisburg Area Community College and is currently working on completing his Masters of Strategic Leadership (MSL) at Elizabethtown College.

Brad began serving on the Girls on the Run Board of Directors in 2014 after three years as a founding coach of the Girls on the Run team at Fishing Creek Elementary School in the West Shore School District. Brad is currently the board chairman of Capital Area Girls on the Run. Brad has also participated as a volunteer fundraiser for Girls on the Run while being part of the Solemates team.

Brad’s community commitment is widespread. A 2014 graduate of the Leadership Harrisburg Area Community Leadership Series, Brad serves on the alumni committee. Brad is an active volunteer with the United Way of the Capital Region, participating in the annual funds allocation process and also with the Bridges Society. He is a board member with the Harrisburg Area Road Runners Club where he has served on the board of directors for five years, as well as the YMCA Harrisburg Marathon race committee coordinator in charge of the on-course hydration and aid stations. Brad is a former member of the board of directors for the Harrisburg Riverboat Society and is a past recipient of Central Pennsylvania Business Journal’s Forty Under 40 Award.

Brad, his wife Cindy and their 13 year old daughter, Julia, reside in Fairview Township. They are frequent travelers with their favorite destination being the Walt Disney World Resort. In his spare time, Brad is an avid runner and part of the local River Runners running club. To date, Brad has completed 30 marathons and over 50 half-marathons.

10:30 – 11:30AM | Speakers for Breakout Session II

Session Description:

You rely on your family and friends to love and support your endeavors, but sometimes you need people in your life who are your greatest champion, mentor and confidante, and who will shoot you straight, tell you the truth and hold you accountable. Learn how to identify those people and formalize a process that has the greatest impact on you.


Amy Beamer Murray, COO
Pavone Marketing Group, Inc.

Amy (Beamer) Murray is chief operating officer and partner at Pavone Marketing Group, a Harrisburg-based advertising agency. Pavone was founded in 1992 and Amy was the company’s first employee. Over the years, she worked at Pavone in a variety of roles, including project management, accounting, account service, media planning and public relations. She also serves as COO to Pavone’s two sister agencies: Varsity, which is focused on the mature market aged 55+, and quench, which specializes in food and beverage marketing. She also serves as COO to Pavone’s sister companies, Leap Research and Innovation, and a data and analytics lab that was created in partnership with Harrisburg University called WildFig Data.

She is a 1986 graduate of Newport (Pa.) High School and a 1990 graduate of Elizabethtown College, having earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration.

Amy serves the community in a variety of ways: as a member of the board of the Caitlin’s Smiles; a member of the marketing committee of the Central PA Food Bank; as a seminar volunteer for Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY); as a member of the Harrisburg Regional Council of and a classroom volunteer for Junior Achievement of South Central Pennsylvania; as a member of the board of directors for the Dixon University Center; and as a guest speaker at numerous high schools, colleges and universities, and community groups.

She has been named one of the Central Penn Business Journal’s Forty under 40, as one of the Top 50 Business Women in Pennsylvania by the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, and as Rising Star by the Elizabethtown College Business Alumni. She has also been named as one of the Top 25 Women of Influence in Central Pennsylvania.

Session Description:

Are you faced with the task of finding sponsors in support of your event, program, cause? This interactive session will provide insight about:

  • The benefits of sponsorship from a corporate sponsor and identify best practices for attracting sponsors
  • Learn ways on how sponsorship is used for enhancing customer relations, lead generation, brand awareness and community goodwill
  • Learn best practices for finding sponsors including identifying your assets, prospecting, connecting with the decision makers, proposal writing and recaps will be discussed.

Representatives from Waste Management and Hershey Entertainment & Resorts are teaming up to share their perspectives on how their companies capitalize on sponsorship.


Deb Ellenburg
Hershey Entertainment & Resorts

With 14 years in sponsorship, Deb Ellenberg has been actively involved in all aspects of sponsorship – from prospecting, creative development, negotiations of new and renewal partnerships and preparation of recap reports. Managing more than $1.4 M in annual sponsorship revenue for Hershey Entertainment & Resorts, Deb works with companies of all sizes to develop their sponsorship package. While an avid rock climber, biker, hiker and fitness instructor with the love of big dogs; Deb uses any opportunity as an opportunity to network. When it comes to sponsorship, the success lies in the foundation of the relationship. The next person she meets could be a future corporate partner!


Autumn Anavitarte
Waste Management

Happy Wife – Blessed Mom – Winepreneur – Victorious Victor Who Loves Jesus – Kindness Changes The World

Autumn lives life outside the box, which has been demonstrated in her sales efforts over her 21-year career. For the past 10 years, Autumn’s J-O-B is managing major accounts for Waste Management in Central PA, but her PASSION lies in encouraging others through multiple outlets. She does not see life in the black and white, but rather prefers to live in the creative power and potential of the grays! Autumn’s perspective and imagination live out in her approach towards life and career. Overcoming many obstacles and hardships in life, her current goal is to write a book starting with the sudden death of her father when she was 11 years old. In her mind, life is all about perspective and when you focus on the light within the darkness, all adversities can hold moments of great treasure. Mine for the gem!

Born and raised in Central PA, Autumn and her family’s goal is to have a home in Scottsdale, AZ. Autumn and her family have a heart of giving back to the community and to others, tagged under the #GGProject in remembrance of her Grandma “Gonk’s” giving nature. One of her family’s favorite non-profit organizations is the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank. Her actions revolve back to her WHY (her hubs and daughter) and she is passionate in her intention to live life!

Session Description:

Having a great culture in your company is no longer an option. Today’s potential employees consider culture in a company as much as they are considering their salary and benefits. While the culture that works for one company may not work for another, you can learn a lot from the companies who are doing it right. In this session you will hear from a few dynamic leaders who created culture in their companies and you will learn:

  • How culture affects the public’s perception of your brand
  • Your company’s purpose has to be more than words
  • How to create culture by identifying your core values
  • The value of Corporate Culture
  • How Culture spills over to client engagement and client attributes

Leslie A. Meck
SVP, Chief Retail Officer
Centric Bank

Ms. Meck has served as Senior Vice President and Chief Retail Officer since September 2011. She has over 27 years’ experience, most recently with Graystone Bank, leading the Retail Strategy of the institution for over five years. Prior to that, Ms. Meck was part of the Senior Leadership Team for Metro Bank in the roles of Chief Retail Officer and the Chief Culture Officer for more than 10 years.


Heather Thomas
Happiness Manager, Webpage FX

Session Description:

Various shades of leadership that reflect all aspects of life including your business, personal and social. Join our young leaders and learn about their journey of success from their backpacks to the boardroom.


Casey Khuri
Director of Operations at NAI/CIR

Casey Khuri is Director of Operations at NAI CIR, overseeing and managing forty real estate professionals in the family-owned commercial real estate business. As a licensed realtor, her role also includes creating and managing strategic and business development initiatives for brokerage teams.

Prior to joining NAI CIR, Casey was Assistant Vice President of Commercial Real Estate Lending at Metro Bank, her first job after graduating college. She began her banking career as a Credit Analyst and was promoted to Commercial Lender in 2010, where she grew her loan portfolio to over $50MM in five years.

Casey is passionate about being engaged with the local community. She serves on the Board of the following organizations: Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region, Whitaker Center for Science and The Arts, Capital Region Economic Development Corporation and Harrisburg Young Professionals (Past President, 2015). She is also a trustee and member of The Hill Society.
Casey graduated from Temple University with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, majoring in Finance and Real Estate. During her four-year collegiate career, Casey played for Temple’s Division 1 Women’s Soccer team.

Casey lives in Mechanicsburg with her husband, Zack, and their two dogs, Huey and Chloe.

1:45PM – 2:45PM | Speakers for Breakout Session III

Topic: The Blueprint of Marketing and PR Success: Tips, Tricks, Tools, and Tales

Meet the Experts, hear their advice, and ask your questions. It’s an insider’s look to storytelling, branding, marketing, publicity, social media, and your digital tattoo by a powerhouse panel.

Lucy Gnazzo


Lucy Gnazzo
Gnazzo Promotions

Biography coming soon

Anne Deeter Gallaher


Anne Deeter Gallaher
Anne Deeter Gallaher Group

Anne Deeter Gallaher is Owner/CEO of Deeter Gallaher Group LLC, a marketing, public relations, and digital media firm with offices in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania and Nashville, Tennessee.

Driven by measurable performance, Anne and her team create award-winning results for clients in financial services, food and retail, engineering, banking, commercial real estate development, construction, health care, and music entertainment.

Serving as Vice Chair of The Salvation Army Harrisburg Capital Region advisory board, Anne is also a member of Urban Land Institute, the Nashville Chamber of Commerce, and The Wall Street Journal’s Women in the Economy Task Force. She is a member of the Harrisburg Regional Chamber, a past board member of CREDC, and the founder of Harrisburg Social Media Club.

Anne is the co-author with Amy D. Howell of Students in High Gear: A Guide for Students and Aspiring Game Changers in Transition from College to Career (2015) and Women in High Gear: A Guide for Entrepreneurs, On-Rampers, and Aspiring Executives (2013). Published in The Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post, PA Banker, Pennlive, Pennsylvania Business Central, Central Penn Business Journal, Strategy + Business, The Patriot-News, Ragan Communications, and a contributor to several blogs, Anne holds dual bachelor degrees in English and Communications/Journalism.

Honored as one of Pennsylvania’s Best 50 Women in Business, she is a frequent speaker and writer on entrepreneurship, women in business, social media, PR, leadership, and higher education.

Connect with Anne on Twitter at @AnneDGallaher.

Nell Abom


Nell Abom
Tierney Communications

Nell McCormack Abom has built a career telling stories and starting conversations with some of Pennsylvania’s most compelling people. From governors to death-row inmates, Nell delves deeply into the personalities and motivations of Pennsylvania’s newsmakers — always seeking the context of events that shape our communities.

She runs her own award-winning communications practice and consults for Tierney Communications and the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, as well as the High companies, Pennsylvania Family Support Alliance, and the law firm of Abom & Kutulakis LLP. Among the clients to whom she has provided PR, media training, and/or moderating, producing, and writing expertise are Red Land Little League and the 2015 U.S. Little League World Series Champions, Select Medical, the Pennsylvania Bar Association, Ursinus College, Rodgers and Associates, Tri County Community Action, PA State Association of Township Supervisors, PA Dairymen’s Association, Mushroom Farmers of PA, PennAg Industries Association, PA Soybean Board, Deloitte, Cotter Brobson Communications, Final Focus Productions, and the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.

Her work for Red Land with partner Lucy Gnazzo, president of LM Gnazzo Promotion Strategies, earned a national PR Daily ‘PR on a Shoestring Award’ and a 2016 Public Relations Society of America-Central PA award for best overall PR campaign. She and Gnazzo helped the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank and PA Dairymen’s Association earn a 2016 CPBJ Nonprofit Innovation Award for Brand Identity/Unique Marketing Campaign and a national dairy community partnership Honorable Mention for the Fill a Glass with Hope™ charitable fresh milk initiative. The U.S. Army War College selected Nell as a 2016 National Security Seminar participant in which she interacted with global defense strategists, government, NGO, humanitarian, and business leaders.

For 12 years, Nell hosted witf-TV’s Smart Talk, Central Pennsylvania’s prime-time, award-winning public affairs program. The Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences honored Nell with an Emmy as Outstanding Program Host/Moderator, and Smart Talk was the recipient of numerous Emmy nominations and Pennsylvania Associated Press Broadcasters’ Association awards during her tenure. She now uses the skills honed in her journalism career to conduct executive media training and live and taped video productions.

Prior to joining witf, Nell was a senior advisor and helped direct media relations for Pennsylvania Governors Tom Ridge and Bob Casey. Under Ridge, Governing magazine described it as “Pennsylvania’s masterful P.R. machine.” Nell directed and produced Pennsylvania’s first-ever, multi-live-shot state budget address; wrote and co-produced the national award-winning live broadcast and webcast of the historic Pennsylvania Safe Schools Summit; and collaborated on the Emmy-winning documentary, Fighting Back: Pennsylvania’s Special Session on Crime.

She is a summa cum laude graduate of the Roy H. Park School of Communications at Ithaca College. When she’s not in a TV studio or running a public event, you’ll find Nell in the stands cheering for her three children, or arguing over politics and public policy with her attorney-husband. Either way, she couldn’t be happier.

Megan Madsen


Megan Madsen
Managing Director, Bravo Group

Megan brings more than two decades of national advertising, communications and business development experience to the firm. From health care to consumer packaged goods to energy, higher education and extensive experience in retail marketing, she has a track record of successful marketing and communication strategies across a broad range of industry sectors.

She most recently served as executive vice president for integrated services at Laughlin Constable, one of the country’s top 25 independent advertising agencies.

During her tenure at the firm in Chicago, New York and Milwaukee, Megan led multiple teams to national awards and oversaw client service, content development and channel integration for national clients in the health care, financial and major retail sectors. Previously, as the firm’s senior vice president of integrated services, she oversaw extensive agency growth.

A pro at seeing the big picture and “connecting the dots” for clients, the central Pennsylvania native has a sharp eye for finding growth opportunities for Bravo Group and for providing clients with targeted strategies to score wins with our campaign-style advocacy and communications.

Before joining Laughlin Constable, Megan held various executive positions at Neiman Group — now Allen & Gerritsen — in Philadelphia and Harrisburg. She ended her tenure there as senior vice president, directing multiple regional and national accounts.

Early in her career, Megan was communications director for the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development and for the state Department of Health. She was marketing manager for the American Medical Association. She is a Bloomsburg University graduate.

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2017 will take The Women’s Conference to the next level by combining a fusion of education, motivation, recognition, and ambition together with ideas that Empower women to BE Extraordinary.