2023 Conference

Once a year, we bring together nationally recognized speakers and our local community of marketers and business professionals to learn, network, and grow during a full-day conference in the heart of Kalamazoo. Our next conference will be March 9, 2023.


Conference Details


March 9, 2023


The Catalyst Center at The Warner Building

180 East Water Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49007

Registration Details

2023 Presentations

Amber Lewis

Founder + Chief Creative Officer, Social N the City

Today in marketing + advertising professionals are often asked to operate as entire ad agencies within their organization. As an individual or small team, the large task can often feel overwhelming and impossible to achieve. During this session you will see case studies of how I’ve told thoughtful stories and produced various assets for campaigns with small teams and short timelines. Leave the session with insight + inspiration to feel empowerment to develop campaigns with multiple points of customer contact.-------------------- BIO: Amber Lewis is the radiating socialite, digital powerhouse, creative director, and artist whose unparalleled nature and social media prowess has elevated the essence and true narrative of the city of Detroit while living her life out loud as Social N The City. Her ability to transcend the depths of her unconventional advertising acumen and innate gift of conscious human connection across professional and personal platforms has poised her profoundly as Detroit’s Gem — the multifaceted woman and creative whose voice is heard, presence is felt and whose transparent spirit is infectious in every room she enters. Amber aligns herself with partnerships rooted in sound experience, truth telling, and empowerment of black voices. Campaigns and event partnering including Mercedes-Benz, Kay Sada Cosmetics, StockX, and Yoga In the Yard prove Amber’s effortless ability to disrupt status quo and dispel any belief in glass ceilings. Bridging conscious connection between black women within the social media landscape, Amber is founder of #BWDOSOCIAL, a community of exposure and opportunity that affirms black women in their respective roles and reminds the world that Black Women do social media, and do so powerfully around the world.

Bill McKendry

Founder and Chief Creative Officer, HAVEN

Use a better process to generate more compelling and motivating messaging and outcomes. This presentation is built on the backbone process outlined in Bill McKendry’s book DO MORE GOOD. The I.D.E.A.S. process includes many practical methods for achieving greater results by being disciplined to move from (finding) Insights to (developing strategic) Direction to (creating breakthrough brand) Expression to (going to market) Action to (measuring) Success.--------- BIO: Bill founded HAVEN, a creative hub, which he launched after heading Hanon McKendry, being vice chairman and chief creative officer of JDA Worldwide, serving at Tracy-Locke/BBDO | Denver, co-founding Compass College of Film + Media, and winning over 1,200 national and international awards in advertising and marketing. Bill is also founder of the nonprofit organization Do More Good® and author of a best selling book by the same name. He was inducted into the American Advertising Federation’s (AAF) National Hall of Achievement for his cause work and is a frequent public speaker.

Jennifer Darling

Sales and Marketing Speaker, Consultant and Trainer

As leaders in business—as marketing executives, researchers, advertisers, and branding experts—there is no end to what we can achieve when we learn to say yes to creating our own opportunities and harnessing the opportunities that come our way. In this inspirational talk you’ll learn what it takes to develop a Yes! mindset—the kind that empowers you to say yes, make a commitment, and then figure out the details.---------- BIO: Jennifer Darling has a knack for turning ideas into money-making opportunities and helping business professionals expand their professional brands. With over 20 years’ experience in advertising sales and sales management for media giants such as Hearst Television and Comcast representing the brands NBC, CBS, and FOX to name a few, she knows what works to boost sales, build personal brands, manage change, lead teams and create a Yes! Mindset. She is the author of the wildly popular books, Increase Your Leads with LinkedIn: 52 Tips for Sales Success, Discover Your Inspiration, Find Your Leadership Rhythm, and Say Yes! (Then Figure It Out).