A high-impact, day-long program designed especially for CEOs of hot middle market companies and focusing on building the best teams imaginable. Expect unparalleled networking, key actionable takeaways ... and some fun too!


8:30 - 9:30

Registration and Continental Breakfast

9:30 - 10:30

Welcome Address by Michael Hopkins / Who’s Who? With Rob Hyman

Sponsored by Comcast
Test your powers of deduction and observation as you connect with others in The Build Network in this fast-paced game that inspires the sharing of team knowledge among the leaders around your table as they attempt to discover who-said-what, and why. Who’s Who? provides a springboard into the rich pool of team knowledge among your peers, helping you envision and move toward creating better teams in your company. Custom designed questions and barrier-breaking game rules unleash relevant business stories and an exchange of views that crush the usual social networking activity.

Facilitators: Michael Hopkins, Managing director and Editor-in-chief, Build; Rob Hyman, Chief experience officer, Interplay Experience Design

10:30 - 10:45

Group Break

10:45 - 12:30

Tools for a Winning Team

To achieve success, your team must be two things: smart and healthy. Your competitive advantage lives with the second – organizational health. But what are the most effective ways to maximize health?

Patrick Lencioni’s Table Group has spent years working with businesses to improve organizational health. In this interactive session, John Rodriguez and Glenn Lyday, principal consultants from The Table Group, will bring leaders through a couple of the most effective models to improve team health, enhance productivity, and be a cure for bad meetings (which can save immeasurable time).

Speakers: Pat Richie and Pam Bilbrey, Principal Consultants, The Table Group


12:30 - 1:30

Group Lunch

1:30 - 2:00

10 Years of 10 Best, Sponsored by the Principal Financial Group®

Sponsored by The Principal Financial Group
Jerry Ripperger of the Principal Financial Group® discusses a new study from Harvard Business Review Analytic Services focused on winners of The Principal 10 Best Companies for Employee Financial Security from the past decade. According to the study, these companies demonstrate an unwavering commitment to employees’ long-term financial well-being leading to a competitive advantage. Companies studied show increased employee engagement, stronger customer relationships and deeper organizational expertise. Jerry will talk specifically about the way benefits pay dividends for these very diverse companies, with a focus on the importance of employee engagement.

Speaker: Jerry Ripperger, Director of Consulting for Retirement and Investor Services, The Principal Financial Group®
Moderator: Michael Hopkins, editor in chief & managing director, the Build Network

2:00 - 3:00

Team Case Study: The Fresh Diet

Each day the at-home meal delivery program, The Fresh Diet, hand-delivers three, freshly-prepared, meals and two snacks to clients’ doorstep. The Surfside, Florida-based company is one of the top ranked privately-owned food and beverage companies in the nation. What’s The Fresh Diet’s unique recipe for success? Learn from key members of the company’s executive management team what it takes to handle the challenge to continuously seek innovation, drive accountability and manage change in a fast-pace environment.

Speakers: Zalmi Duchman, co-founder and chief executive officer, The Fresh Diet; Richard Silverman, chief financial officer, The Fresh Diet; Ray Willig, chief technology officer, The Fresh Diet; Yosef Schwartz, CCO (Chief Culinary Officer), The Fresh Diet

3:00 - 3:15


3:15 - 3:45

Everything You’ve Been Taught About Growth Is Wrong

The Build Network’s Economist-in-Residence, Dr. Gary Kunkle, has drawn some very provocative conclusions about exactly which businesses will prosper in the next five years—and why. Find out where your organization stands as Kunkle shares the highlights of his groundbreaking research on sustainable company performance.

Speaker: Dr. Gary Kunkle, Advising Economist, The Build Network; Economist and research fellow at the Edward Lowe Foundation’s Institute for Exceptional Growth Companies

3:45 - 5:00

CEO Perspective: A View from the Top

As the founder of the ESPN network, Bill Rasmussen set out to achieve what most thought at the time to be the unimaginable—deliver sports television programming 24-hours a day, 7-days a week. Not only did he succeed, but in the process, changed the face of television, cable broadcasting, and sports. Nearly 35 years later, ESPN is now the leading multinational, multimedia sports entertainment company in the world. In this session, the life-long entrepreneur and sports fan shares his inspiring journey. From successes and mistakes made to lessons learned along the way, Rasmussen explains how he built, led, and eventually walked away from a thriving television empire. Learn from this visionary entrepreneur the type of leadership, strategy, and resolve necessary to change an industry.

Speaker: Bill Rasmussen, founder and former President and CEO, ESPN

5:00 - 5:30

What’s Next with Michael Hopkins

5:30 - 7:00


Pat Richie
Principal Consultant, The Table Group

Pat Richie began his career in professional sports working as an advisor to the San Francisco 49′ers and San Francisco Giants. He was awarded multiple Super Bowl Rings for his contributions to the 49′ers five world championships. Today Pat spends his time speaking and consulting with senior executives representing companies across various industries, including energy, healthcare, financial services and defense.

Zalmi Duchman
co-founder and CEO, The Fresh Diet

Zalmi Duchman is CEO and the Founder of YS Catering dba, The Fresh Diet. He began operations on January 1, 2006, with three clients. Today, Zalmi has grown his business to become the largest US food producer in the fresh cooked, daily delivered category – which is now delivering meal plans to thousands of clients nationwide. The Fresh Diet currently employs 225 full time employees and 112 drivers.
Born in Brooklyn, NY, Zalmi has lived in New York, Miami, Los Angeles and Israel. He attended a Yeshiva boarding school in Los Angeles where he met his roommate, Yosef Schwartz, with whom he started The Fresh Diet. Zalmi is a board member of the PSF Friendship Circle, a special needs children charity.

Judah Schlass
COO, The Fresh Diet

Having previously worked as a private chef, Judah Schlass is well versed in the operations and systems required to run of a successful kitchen. As Chief Operating Officer, Judah is responsible for managing kitchen operations nationwide, each delivery department and all logistics surrounding new facilities, menus and meals.

Judah has been with The Fresh Diet since opening and is still as excited about the product, concept and culture of the business as he was on the very first day. Judah is particularly proud of the unconventional ways The Fresh Diet has been known to face challenges and the creativity that is ingrained in the entire culture of TFD.

Yosef Schwartz
CCO (Chief Culinary Officer), The Fresh Diet

Yos Schwartz and CEO Zalmi Duchman founded The Fresh Diet over five years ago. Having graduated from the world-renowned Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Institute with an AA in culinary arts, Yos is the creative genius behind each and every dish served by the fresh diet. Chef Yos is also responsible for overseeing all kitchens and has the final word on quality control and consistency throughout each of the six kitchens.

Yos is always looking for new avenues to explore and new ways to improve his most successful recipe to date – The Fresh Diet. Yos comes from a family of twelve children and has a beautiful daughter of his own. When he is not creating magic in the kitchen, he can be found listening to Bob Dylan, traveling the world and of course, exploring new restaurants.

Ray Willig
CTO, The Fresh Diet

Ray Willig has been with the Fresh Diet since the day it opened its doors. Ray has a bachelor’s degree in engineering from the University of South Florida and can boast two years of experience as a Geographic Information Systems consultant for the United Nations development program in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. 

Ray loves his job because it involves creativity, problem solving and the most fantastic team of people. As CTO, Ray is the driving force behind The Fresh Diet’s earned reputation as a company that makes optimal use of technology to provide the most efficient and time saving systems procedures for their clients. Ray is responsible for the overall technology strategy, which includes the development of all in-house software. In his capacity as EVP, Ray is responsible for the sales, marketing and branding of The Fresh Diet. If that’s not enough, Ray also plays the harmonica, is passionate about languages and loves learning history.

Rob Hyman
Chief Experience Officer, Interplay Experience Design

Rob is the chief experience officer of Interplay Experience Design, an Experiential Learning Agency that translates complex business objectives into targeted audience action. He leads a team of creative minds who leverage their diverse talents to increase both team-to-team communications and individual understanding of complex and often intangible business intelligence. Since 2003 Interplay has worked with the leading minds at T-Mobile, Microsoft, Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts, and a variety of smaller profit and non-profit organizations.

Pam Bilbrey
Principal Consultant, The Table Group

As a management consultant, coach and professional speaker, Pam Bilbrey assists individuals and organizations in achieving excellence. She has facilitated hundreds of workshops across North America and Europe and is a prolific writer with over 50 published articles on organizational effectiveness, leadership development, and employee engagement. Her most recent book is Ordinary Greatness: It’s Where You Least Expect It…Everywhere.

Jerry Ripperger
Director of Consulting for Retirement and Investor Services, Principal Financial Group

Jerry Ripperger is Director of Consulting for Retirement and Investor Services at the Principal Financial Group the largest segment of the company. For more than 24 years, he has been involved in developing and implementing employee benefit programs for owners and employees of growing businesses. He has extensive experience as a spokesperson and author. His articles have been published in HR Magazine, HR.com, Employee Benefit News, Broker World, and Best’s Review and his media experience includes the Associated Press, New York Times, BusinessWeek, Forbes, CNN/Money, Dow Jones, and the Wall Street Journal.

Bill Rasmussen
founder ESPN

It is safe to say that ESPN Founder Bill Rasmussen changed the face of sports and television. His brainstorm for a 24-hour cable sports television station, born out of adversity, has become the Worldwide Leader in Sports, ESPN.
A life-long entrepreneur and sports fan, Rasmussen’s innovations in advertising, sports and broadcasting are numerous, including the creation of ESPN and the concept for “Sports Center.” A gifted public speaker, he has delivered numerous addresses at college campuses and corporate events over the past two years. Additionally, Rasmussen is the author of the best-selling book, “Sports Junkies Rejoice! The Birth of ESPN.”

Michael S. Hopkins
Managing Director & Editor-in-Chief, The Build Network

Before cofounding Build with its core launch team as Build’s managing director and editor-in-chief, Michael Hopkins was editor-in-chief of the MIT Sloan Management Review. There, he led an award-winning turnaround of the journal and website by reinventing its business model and refocusing its mission to make it the premier source of thought leadership about managing innovation and about the business forces changing how innovation is managed. Hopkins’s early career in media included positions at Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal, and Inc. Magazine, where he was Executive Editor from 1991 to 2003. From 2003 to 2007 he led a collaboration between The Monitor Group strategy consultancy and The Financial Times to create a wisdom-of-crowds experiment called FutureMonitor.com—a website and self-organizing online community of thought leaders aimed at identifying “what business will need to know next.” Hopkins has written widely, and his feature work on management has been anthologized in the book series, The Best Business Stories of the Year (Vintage).

Gary Kunkle
Advising Economist, The Build Network

Dr. Gary Kunkle studies, writes, and consults on the topic of sustained firm growth. Kunkle is a research fellow at the Institute of Exceptional Growth Companies, an Advising Economist with Inc. magazine and Build, and president of Outlier, LLC, a consultancy that provides contract research to private equity. Previously, Kunkle was managing director of the State of Maryland’s European Office, located in the Netherlands. He holds a PhD in Public Policy and Regional Economy from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte; an MBA and an MA in International Management from the University of Texas at Dallas; and a BA in Political Science from Texas A&M University.