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Chairman of the Board, Browning Real Estate Partners
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Visit Indy + Tourism Tomorrow Indy
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EVP, Corporate Communications, Community Engagement, and Facility Operations, Pacers Sports & Entertainment
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President, Somerset CPAs and Advisors
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Executive Director, Investigations & Right Environment, Cummins Inc.
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President & CEO, Indiana Historical Society
Indianapolis Office Managing Partner, Ernst & Young
Associate Vice President, Social Impact and President Lilly Foundation, Eli Lilly & Company
Interim President & CEO, Indy Chamber**
President and CEO, General Hotels Corporation
Chancellor, Ivy Tech Community College Indianapolis
Executive Director, Cushman & Wakefield
President, Central Indiana, Key Bank
Vice-Chair of Tourism Tomorrow Indy** and
CEO & Principal, Schmidt Associates
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Vice President of Marketing, West & Midwest Regions, Simon
Executive Director, Indiana State Fairgrounds & Event Center**
President, Huse Culinary, Inc.
Vice Chair/Owner, Indianapolis Colts
Deputy Chief of Staff, Office of Governor Eric Holcomb**
Chief Administrative Officer, Telamon Corporation
Executive Vice President, Human Resources, Corporate Communications & Administration, Elanco Animal Health
Executive Vice President of Global Investments, Indiana Economic Development Corporation
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President and CEO, USA Gymnastics
Executive Director, Indiana Convention Center & Lucas Oil Stadium and Capital Improvement Board**
President & Chief Operator Officer, Kite Realty
General Manager, Hilton Indianapolis Hotel & Suites and Greater Indianapolis Hotel & Lodging Association Chapter of the Indiana Restaurant & Lodging Association
Indianapolis City-County Council, Minority Leader**
Vice Chairman, Pacers Sports & Entertainment
Chief of Staff, Office of Mayor Joe Hogsetts
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Of Counsel, Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP, and President of Capital Improvement Board**
President & CEO, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis**
Indianapolis City-County Council**
Executive Director, Indianapolis Airport Authority**
President & CEO, Downtown Indy**
Past Chair*, Chairman Emeritus, American United Mutual Insurance Holding Company
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President, Indianapolis Zoo
Regional Vice President, White Lodging
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Director, Corporate & Public Affairs, Citizens Energy Group
President, Madam Walker Legacy Center
President, Indiana Sports Corporation**
Senior Vice President & General Manager, Partners
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Executive Director, Indiana Civil Rights Commission
Chairman of the Board, Browning Real Estate Partners
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CEO & Principal, Schmidt Associates
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Tourism Tomorrow Indy
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Senior Director of Client Development & Relationships, Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Director of Government Affairs, IU Health
President & CEO, Indiana Humanities
Deputy Mayor of Economic Development, Office of Mayor Joe Hogsett**
President, Crystal Catering
Secretary & CEO, Indiana Destination Development Corporation**
President & CEO, Newfields
President & CEO, Arts Council of Indianapolis
Senior Advisor to the Chancellor of IUPUI***
Senior Consultant, Resultant
Executive Director, White River State Park Development Commission**
Senior Vice President & Chief of Staff, Keystone Corporation
President & CEO, Central Indiana Community Foundation and The Indianapolis Foundation**
Executive Vice President, Indiana Economic Development Corporation**
Of Counsel, Barnes & Thornburg***
Diversity & Inclusion Consultant, Community Health Network
Senior Director of Commercial Enterprise, Indianapolis Airport Authority**
Assistant Vice President, Capital Planning, Indiana University
*Executive Committee Member
**Ex-Officio Board Position
Mr. Browning is Chairman of the Board of Browning Investments, LLC, an Indianapolis based real estate development company. Browning Investments currently has a joint venture with Duke Realty (DRE; NYSE) for a new distribution park of 1,100 acres also in Plainfield, Indiana and 660 acres in Whitestown, Indiana and whose customers include Wal-Mart, Amazon, Regal Beloit, Prime Distribution, Ingram Micro, Temper-Pedic, Medco, GNC, ASI Limited and CEVA Logistics, I.U. Health and Kohl's as well as a joint venture with ProLogis (PLD; NYSE) at AirTech Park, an industrial distribution park in Plainfield, Indiana with over 7,000,000 square feet in place or under development and whose customers include Hartz, Amazon, J.C. Penney, Electrolux, Belkin, and Ozburn Hessey Logistics (OHL). Other developments include Mayflower Park; a 600,000 square foot distribution center for Adidas, a 750,000 square foot distribution center for Enerdel, Atkins Distribution and Spectra in Mt. Comfort; and a 500,000 square foot distribution facility for Subaru in Whitestown, Indiana. Browning is the largest developer of modern bulk industrial distribution facilities in Central Indiana, including AirTech Park, AllPoints Midwest and AllPoints Anson are the largest most dynamic, flexible, Parks available. Other developments include several downtown office buildings totaling over 2,000,000 square feet, including Capital Center, 300 North Meridian, Gateway Plaza, Landmark Center and Pan Am Plaza. Browning pioneered the development of the North Meridian Corridor with projects totaling over 5,000,000 square feet of office space including Fidelity Plaza, Thomson Consumer Electronics Headquarters', Meridian Mark Plaza, Penn Mark Plaza, the Meridian Technology Center, the Bankers Life Headquarters' Complex, development and construction of the 450,000 square feet Headquarters and Hall of Champions for the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA); Office Works, Siemens Building Technologies, Inc., Hologic, Bluefish Wireless, Inc. and MacMillan Computer Publishing, Inc. The Company recently developed and built the new $38,000,000 Marian University College of Medicine, the $40,000,000 Purdue Research Foundation's Computer Electrical Science Building, the $30,000,000 Dow Agro Sciences Research Laboratories, and the Headquarters and Research Facility for Elanco in Greenfield, Indiana. Browning has served as the Indiana Bioscience Research Institute's real estate consultant since 2013. Browning is currently working with Citizens Energy Group, American Structurepoint, the City of Indianapolis and others in designing and constructing the required infrastructure necessary to activate 16 Tech as an innovation district. The Company has also developed Plum Creek, a 500-acre home and golf course development in Carmel, Indiana, along with several thousand acres of residential lot development in the central Indiana region. Browning recently entered into a Master Developer Agreement in connection with the development in excess of 400 acres on the Purdue Campus in West Lafayette, currently called the "Purdue Innovation District." Browning will be the exclusive master developer for well over one hundred acres of dense mixed-use projects at the west end of the campus. Additionally, Browning will serve as the master developer for Aerospace Park which is a Certified Technology Park hundreds of acres in size located adjacent to the Purdue airport.
Mr. Browning is very involved in community activities and has played an active role in the Indianapolis "public-private" partnership. He is the Chairman of Visit Indy, serves on the Advisory Board of St. Vincent Hospital and Health Care Center and serves on the Crossroads Council of Boy Scouts of America. Additionally, he serves on the Advisory Council for Athletes at the University of Notre Dame.
Mr. Browning has been honored as the Entrepreneur of the Year by Ernst and Young and Inc. Magazine, Notre Dame Man of the Year and recipient of the Sagamore of the Wabash from Governors Bayh and Kernan. He has an Honorary Doctorate Degree from Marian University and Martin University. Mr. Browning was honored with the Charles S. Whistler Award in 2010, and inducted into the Junior Achievement Hall of Fame as well as The Indiana Academy in 2011.
Mr. Browning has been actively involved in the emergence of Indianapolis as the Amateur Sports capital of the world. He is a member of the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of the Indiana Sports Corporation. He was an organizing member of the 1982 National Sports Festival, a member of the executive committee of the Pan American Games Organizing Committee, served as Chairman of the Board of Directors at the Indiana Sports Corporation from 1989 until February 1993, and is the founder and now past Chairman of the organizing committee for Youthlinks of Indiana. In addition to his involvement in amateur sports, Mr. Browning was the General Chairman of the 1991 PGA National Championships which was held at Crooked Stick Golf Club where he also served as President for three years. He led the negotiations which resulted in the relocation of the NCAA Headquarters to Indianapolis. Additionally, he was Chairman of the Indiana Sports Corporation's Solheim Cup Venture and led the negotiations for the 2012 BMW Championship as part of the PGA Tour's Fed Ex Cup. He was a member of the 2012 Super Bowl Board of Directors and the 2018 Super Bowl Bid Committee.
Mr. Browning was a pioneer in the shared tenant telecommunication business. In 1984, he formed Office Networks, Inc. which quickly became the third largest telephone company in the State.
Mr. Browning also serves as a Board Member and Lead Director of Duke Energy Corp. (DUK; NYSE) and the Indianapolis Indians. Previously, he served on the Board of Directors of Conseco, Inc., Emmis Broadcasting, Inc., the Seattle Mariners Baseball Club, MC Equities, Inc., NBD Indiana, Inc., Standard Management Corp., and the Indiana National Bank. He also was the Chairman of the Board and President of the Fidelity Bank of Indiana.
Mr. Browning holds a bachelor of science degree from the University of Notre Dame. He served two years in the United States Army in Washington, D.C., and the Republic of South Viet Nam.
Leonard Hoops is President & CEO of Visit Indy, the official destination management organization of Indianapolis. He joined Visit Indy in 2011 and leads a team of 58 industry professionals who are charged with growing Central Indiana’s nearly $6 billion convention, tourism, and event business.
Under Hoops’ leadership, Visit Indy has shattered all-time records for convention and tourism sales, been named the #1 convention city in America by USA Today, and ranked as a top visitor destination by The New York Times, Conde Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, and Time. Visit Indy has also been recognized as a “Best Place to Work in Indiana” for seven consecutive years. Hoops also leads Tourism Tomorrow Indy which oversees Indy’s Destination Vision.
Prior to joining Visit Indy, Hoops was EVP & Chief Customer Officer of San Francisco Travel for five years, where he led teams that produced all-time convention sales records and managed international tourism development offices in 13 countries. In Hoops’ 35+ years of destination and corporate marketing experience, he has also served as SVP & Chief Marketing Officer of the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau, SVP of Marketing of the San Jose Convention & Visitors Bureau, and managed corporate communications for a $1 billion global division of FMC Corp. (then a Fortune 120 company).
Hoops has been named one of the 250 most influential business leaders in Indiana (the “Indiana 250”) by the Indianapolis Business Journal, an “Indiana Living Legend” by the Indiana Historical Society, one of the “25 Most Influential People in the Meetings Industry” by Successful Meetings, and one of the “Top 25 Most Extraordinary Minds in Hospitality & Travel Sales & Marketing” by HSMAI. He has received the Sloan-Kettering Award for Business from Delta Upsilon Fraternity, a Kinetic Catalyst Award from Smart Meetings, and the Vonnegut Humor Award from the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library.
Hoops earned a BA in Journalism from San Jose State University and an MBA from Santa Clara University, both with honors.
He serves as the chair-elect of PCMA and on the boards of the U.S. Travel Association, the Marion County Capital Improvement Board, the Indy Chamber, Downtown Indy, the Indiana Sports Corp., the Immigrant Welcome Center, the Conner Prairie Museum (executive committee), the Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee, and the 2024 NBA All-Star Game. He is also a Governor’s appointee to the Indiana Protection and Advocacy Services (IPAS) Commission. He has previously served on the boards of Destinations International, Super Bowl XLVI (2012), the 2022 College Football Playoff Championship, and several NCAA Final Fours.
Hoops and his family (wife, Dorene; children, Cannon & Avalon) live in downtown Indianapolis.
Tavonna Harris Askew was recently appointed Executive Director of Investigations & Right Environment for Cummins. In this role, Tavonna leads global Ethics Investigations, Equal Employment and Affirmative Action compliance, and Right Environment. Tavonna oversees the work of this cohesive team to ensure that all Cummins employees feel free to express their thoughts, ideas and feelings in a clean, accessible and healthy work environment.
Prior to joining Cummins, Tavonna worked as a healthcare executive. For more than 15 years, she served as Chief of Staff and General Counsel for the Health and Hospital Corporation of Marion County. As Chief of Staff, Tavonna acted as a point of contact between the Board of Trustees, top management, employees, and other stakeholders. She provided oversight and guidance to projects of high importance, directed the workflow of other individuals within the organization and provided fiscal oversight of the corporation by providing direction to the Grants Department leadership. As General Counsel, Tavonna served as Health & Hospital Corporation’s chief legal officer. As such, she managed a team of attorneys and was responsible for protecting the corporation's legal and regulatory interests.
Tavonna’s civic activities include serving as chair of the Women’s Fund of Central Indiana Advisory Board, chair of the Cancer Support Community of Central Indiana Board, the Visit Indy Board, and the Indiana Conference for Women Board. She is a member of various bar associations, The Links, Incorporated, and a Diamond Life member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Tavonna was named as one of the 2022 Becker’s Hospital Review “75 Black Healthcare Leaders to Know”, one of the international 2020 Tiffany & Co. “Hometown Heroes”, a 2020 Indiana Minority Business Magazine Champion of Diversity honoree and received a national Neal-Marshall Exemplar Award from Indiana University in 2019. She is a 2017 National Association of Women Business Owners Trailblazer, one of the 2017 Indiana Minority Business Magazine’s Golden Laurel Awardees for Women Excelling in Business, one of the 2016 Indianapolis Business Journal’s Women of Influence and a graduate of Stanley K. Lacy Executive Leadership Series, Class XXXIV. She received the Junior Achievement of Central Indiana’s Best and Brightest Award in the field of law in 2015, received the Marion County Bar Association Community Service Award in 2015, and is a member of the Indianapolis Business Journal’s 2014 Class of Forty Under 40. In addition to being an accomplished leader in the legal and business communities, Mrs. Askew has been a public speaker for more than 20 years presenting at many workshops and conferences. She also worked as an Adjunct Faculty Member at Indiana Wesleyan University for several years.
Tavonna earned her Bachelor of Arts from Indiana University and her law degree from the Maurer School of Law at Indiana University. She is married to Charles R. Askew and is the proud mother of four children.
A lifelong resident of Indianapolis, Pat Early joined Whipple & Company in 1979 and became President in 1989. Upon Whipple's merger with The Somerset Group, he was named president of the new organization. Mr. Early continues as president of Somerset CPAs, a full-service accounting, tax, consulting and wealth management firm with over 170 employees.
In addition to being a CPA, Mr. Early also has the Certified Financial Planner designation. He works with owners of privately-held businesses regarding tax, estate planning, financial planning and wealth accumulation issues. Mr. Early also has successfully negotiated business sales and purchases. He has expertise in tax, estate planning, financial planning and wealth accumulation, mediations, business succession and mergers and acquisitions.
Mr. Early graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Management/Accounting. Hs is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Indiana CPA Society.
He has been very involved in the community, serving on numerous boards and commissions of Visit Indy, The Hundred Club of Indianapolis (past president), Indianapolis Zoo and Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee.
He is past president of the Capital Improvement Board of Marion County, The Penrod Society, Girls, Inc. and the Wishard Hospital Foundation. Mr. Early also is chairman of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources Advisory Council and a member of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources Commission.
Mr. Early has received numerous awards including the Charles L. Whistler Award, Sagamore of the Wabash Award, Purdue School of Management Accounting Alumnus of the Year Award, Indiana CPA Society Public Service Award and the Indiana CPA Society Estate Planning and Trust Super CPA Award. He was a member of the Stanley K. Lacy Leadership Series Class X and was named to the Indianapolis Business Journal's "40 Under Forty" and "Who's Who in Hospitality" and Indianapolis Monthly's "2009, 2011 & 2012 Five Star Wealth Managers." Mr. Early is an avid sportsman and has traveled the world in search of adventure.
Sarah Hempstead is the CEO of Schmidt Associates, a 115-person architectural and engineering firm with offices in Indianapolis and Louisville. She built her career based on the belief that combining inspiration and perspiration alongside building owners will help deliver signature solutions with a purpose. Notable projects have included the Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine, Ivy Tech Illinois Fall Creek Center Renovation, Regenstrief Institutes Headquarters, Children’s Bureau Glick Family Support Center, and numerous projects along Mass Ave where the firm is headquartered.
Sarah was in the ENR Midwest magazine top 20 professionals under 40 working in the construction industry and was Indy’s Best and Brightest person in the real estate development and construction category in 2011. She serves on four non-profit organizations in Indianapolis: Visit Indy, Arts Council of Indianapolis, president of the Junior Achievement Board and chairs the TIE Committee for the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce.
Ann Lathrop is the chief marketing officer (CMO) for Crowe LLP, and the office managing partner in Indianapolis, Ind. As the CMO, Ann leads the market development and sales (MDS) group in its mission to be the firm's market development specialists. Ann is responsible for the areas of market development strategy and execution including promotion and brand strategy for the firm and any subsidiaries. Her responsibilities include:
She is also the brand compliance officer for Crowe International and is the chair of the Crowe Global Marketing Strategy Committee. Ann has more than 25 years of experience in both the private and public sector including serving as the controller for the city of Indianapolis-Marion County for two years.
Dan Parker currently serves as the Chief of Staff and the Chief Deputy Mayor of the Hogsett administration. In these roles, he collaborates with the Mayor’s executive team to determine and prioritize municipal strategies and program management, while assisting with initiative implementation. He also oversees the Department of Public Works. He began his tenure with the City in February of 2016 when Mayor Hogsett appointed Dan as the President of the Metropolitan Development Commission. In June 2017 Mayor Hogsett appointed Dan to be the Director of the Department of Public Works. As Director, he had quadrupled the level of annual infrastructure spending without a tax increase; renewed investments in staff and equipment; introduced the Indianapolis Neighborhood Infrastructure Partnership to collaborate with neighborhoods on needed improvements; and more.
Mel Raines is EVP, Corporate Communications, Community Engagement, and Facility Operations for Pacers Sports & Entertainment. She was one of the principal architects of Indianapolis’ highly acclaimed 2012 Super Bowl and also previously served as Chief of Staff to Indiana Congresswoman Susan Brooks. Mel, a native of South Bend and an Indiana University honors graduate, played key roles in the organization and staging of five Republican National Conventions and also served on the staff of former Vice President Dick Cheney in his second term.
Jerry Semler, CLU, is Chairman Emeritus of American United Mutual Insurance Holding Company, parent of OneAmerica Financial Partners, Inc. He has served American United Life Insurance Company (AUL) and its parent, OneAmerica, for 50 years. Mr. Semler was elected chairman emeritus in February of 2007. Under Mr. Semler's leadership at AUL, the company grew from $1.4 billion to more than $14 billion in total assets. Mr. Semler's ability to lead a multi-billion dollar company consistently ranked him as one of the top CEOs in Indianapolis.
Mr. Semler's accomplishments extend beyond the scope of OneAmerica. He is active in many business and civic organizations, as well as insurance industry professional organizations. He has represented OneAmerica by holding many national association posts, including past chairman and director of the Life Office Management Association (LOMA) and LIMRA International. In 1998, he was appointed to the Lt. Governor's Indiana Insurance Industry Working Group to strengthen the state's insurance industry.
Mr. Semler graduated from Purdue University in 1958 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Economics. He is a graduate of the Stanford University Business Executive Program (1984). Mr. Semler holds an Honorary Doctorate of Humanities Degree from Marian College (1998) and an Honorary Doctorate of Management Degree from Purdue University (2002).
He serves on many civic boards including the Center for Leadership Development (past chair), Central Indiana Corporate Partnership, Downtown Indy (past chair), Hoosier Salon Patrons Association, Indiana Chamber of Commerce (past chair), Indiana Historical Society (past chair), Indy Chamber, Visit Indy (past chair), United Way of Central Indiana and the 500 Festival Associates (past president). Mr. Semler serves on the boards of advisors for the Peyback Foundation Resource Council, Boy Scouts of America-Crossroads of America Council (past chair), The Indianapolis Foundation/Central Indiana Community Foundation and Purdue University Krannert School of Management Dean's Advisory Council.
Mr. Semler is on the board of trustees for Alpha Tau Omega Foundation, the Indianapolis Zoological Society, Marian University and the Sagamore Institute for Policy Research (past chair).
He is a member of the Purdue University President's Council (past chair).
Mr. Semler is a member of the American College of Life Underwriters, General Agents & Managers, Indiana Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors Foundation Board (honorary chair), LOMA (past chair) & LIMRA International (past chair), Million Dollar Round Table (life member), MDRT Foundation (director emeritus), National Association of Insurance & Financial Advisors and the Society of Financial Service Professionals-Indianapolis Chapter.
Mr. Semler has received numerous honors including the St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Award, National Catholic Educational Association (2009), S. Henry Bundles Award, Center for Leadership Development (2008), Sagamore of the Wabash (1987, 1991, 2004, and 2007), Indiana Pathfinder Award, Youthlinks Indiana (2005), Business Leader of the Year, Indiana Chamber of Commerce (2004), Order of the Griffin, Purdue University (2004), Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser, Association of Fundraising Professionals (2004), Hope Award, National Multiple Sclerosis Society (2004), Michael A. Carroll Award, Indianapolis Business Journal (2003), Charles L. Whistler Award, Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee (2001), Business Leadership Award – Purdue University Krannert School of Management (2001), Junior Achievement of Central Indiana Business Hall of Fame (2001), Award of Merit – NCAA/Citizenship through Sports Alliance and the America-Israel Friendship League, Whitney Young Award (1992 and 2000), Million Dollar Round Table 2000 Circle of Life Award, Legatus 2000 Ambassador of the Year, Noble of Indiana 1999 Noble Wings Award, 1999 Lifetime Achievement Award (Indiana Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors), Indiana Achievement in Communication Award (1997), Horatio Alger Award – Boys & Girls Club of Indianapolis (1995), Million Dollar Round Table Unsung Hero Award (1994), Distinguished Eagle Scout Award (1987) and Jaycee Keyman Award (1968).
Dave Sibley joined White Lodging in 2000 and currently is Regional Vice President. He previously served as Chief Operating Officer of the Full Service Division, responsible for the operations of the company’s full service portfolio, and also spent nearly 10 years as the company's president and CEO. Mr. Sibley started with the company as the opening general manager of the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown and also has served as regional vice president of operations and senior vice president of operations/eastern division. Prior to joining White Lodging, he spent more than 17 years with Marriott International.
Mr. Sibley received his business degree from Gettysburg College and is active in community engagement, currently serving as a member of the executive committee of Visit Indy. He also serves on Residence Inn by Marriott's Advisory Board and is on the National Board of Directors for Back on My Feet.
Marla Thompson is Senior Vice President at Salesforce. She is responsible for driving strategy and growth across all Salesforce Clouds and also serves as site leader for the Salesforce Indianapolis office. Joining Salesforce in 2019, she served as the General Manager for Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud business (formerly ExactTarget), more than doubling the business in three years.
Thompson has a track record of leading companies to accelerated growth by developing new products and creating innovative strategies in highly dynamic industries. Working primarily with Fortune 100 companies, Thompson’s experience ranges from tech and big data to traditional packaged goods, where she started her career with Procter & Gamble and The Campbell Soup Company.
In addition to serving as a member of the executive committee for Visit Indy, she also serves on the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership board and is a Trustee for Sycamore School in Indianapolis. Previously, she completed seven years on the national board of directors for the Network of Executive Women (now “NextUp”), a non-profit organization focused on advancing women in the Consumer Packaged Goods industry. Serving as Regional Chair for four years, Thompson was responsible for the 20 regional groups and 1,000+ volunteers for the 10,000 member organization. Thompson also served for seven years on the board of directors for the Harvard Business School Club of Chicago.
She received her Bachelor of Science degree in industrial engineering from Purdue University and her MBA degree from Harvard Business School.
A native and multi-generational Hoosier, Thompson resides in Indianapolis with her husband and three children.