Voices of Leadership, Oskin Leadership Institute
Dawn Zier on Leadership Lessons from Mentors
"Don't let the tail wag the dog. Don't let the process get in the way of innovation. If something can't be done... don't let that block you. You have to push innovation through."
Vernon W. Hill on the Importance of Staying Positive
"When Commerce went into Manhattan, they beat me to death. How can this little bank compete against Chase and Citi? You just have to believe in your model and you put your head down and you fight your way through it."
H.F. "Gerry" Lenfest on Advice for Young Leaders
"You have to have respect for the people that work for you because they deserve your respect day-to-day. You have to have integrity and you have to believe in you."
Ellen Kullman on Lifting Others to Be Their Best.
"Understand what gives (someone) pride and a sense of worth... The easiest thing you can do to lift somebody up is to just listen."
The Oskin Leadership Institute gathers business and civic leaders across Greater Philadelphia for its annual Voices of Leadership dinner.
Every year, a Widener Bugle Awardee is selected to have a one-on-one conversation with leaders united in the mission to inspire students to become strategic leaders and responsible citizens.
Conversations cover a wide range of topics including the ways in which courage and character has informed and shaped the leader's career.
2017 - Dawn Zier
President and CEO of Nutrisystem, Inc.
Since joining Nutrisystem in 2012, Ms. Zier has championed a strategic vision that centers on building a multi-brand and multi-channel approach to capture a more significant share of the weight loss market and to expand into the broader health and wellness space.
Ms. Zier leads several philanthropic and community health initiatives, including serving
as Chair of the American Heart Association’s 2017 Go Red for Women initiative in Philadelphia.
Read the press release.
- From Readers Digest to Nutrisystem
- Leadership Lessons from Mentors
- Building a FACTS-based Culture
- Advice to Students
2016 - Vernon W. Hill
Former Chairman and President of Commerce Bank, Current Chairman and Founder of Metro Bank, London
Vernon W. Hill is often credited with reinventing American banking, having founded Commerce Bank in 1973 with only nine staff members. He grew the bank into 500 branches with 15,000 employees, a market capitalization of $8.5 billion and a 30+ year compound shareholder return of 23%. Mr. Hill founded Metro Bank, Britain’s first new High Street bank in 100 years. His new book, “Fans Not Customers” is based on the theme “Creating a Growth Company in a No Growth World.” Read the press release.
2015 - H.F. "Gerry" Lenfest
Sole owner and publisher of The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News, and Philly.com
H.F. "Gerry" Lenfest has greatly influenced Philadelphia media over the span of his career. In 1974, he formed Lenfest Communications which became one of the top 12 cable companies in the United States, which was eventually sold to Comcast in 2000. He is the sole owner and publisher of The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News, and Philly.com.
He is a retired Captain of the United States Navy and is also recognized for being a generous philanthropist in support of the Philadelphia community and is often referred to as a contemporary founding father of the city having bolstered its education, art, and music scenes with generous donations. Today, he continues to play an active role in the community as the Chairman of the Museum of the American Revolution, and is a Board member of the Bok Foundation and Temple University. Read the press release.
2014 - Ellen Kullman
Former Chairman & CEO of DuPont
Ellen Kullman is the Former Chairman & CEO of DuPont and has been featured among the
list of Forbes' 100 Most Powerful Women. She was named CEO of DuPont just days before
the start of the global financial crisis and has led the company in one of its most
significant strategic transformations in the more than 200 years since DuPont began
operations. Under her leadership, DuPont's stock price has more than tripled since
Kullman took the top job in 2009. She is a member of the board of directors for United
Technologies Corp., a $56 billion aerospace company based in Farmington, Connecticut.
Read the press release.