Cisco’s Blair Christie to Open IABC’s 2009 World Conference

Press Release

Early registration deadline ends tomorrow

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SAN FRANCISCO, CA – 28 May 2009 –Blair Christie, senior vice president of corporate communications at Cisco Systems, will set the tone for the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC)’s 2009 World Conference to be held 7–10 June 2009 in San Francisco. In the opening general session on 7 June, Christie will discuss how we can harness communication in a rapidly changing environment where today’s realities will drive tomorrow’s opportunities.

IABC’s World Conference was built on the foundation that people have knowledge to share and a desire to learn. Bringing together more than 1,500 business communication professionals from over 50 countries, attendees will learn the latest developments and best practices in communication. The conference also offers a lively exhibit hall and networking events to connect attendees with peers from around the world. More than 80 learning sessions have been organized into seven educational tracks to maximize the learning experience: change management, communication leadership, public relations, strategy and counsel, marketing and brand, skills development and employee communication.

IABC has partnered with the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and Mo’MAGIC to offer two community service projects. Attendees are invited to join volunteers and IABC staff to participate in projects such as beach cleanup and literacy promotion. The community projects will take place on Saturday, 6 June from 9a.m. – 1p.m. Attendees can register online at

Keynote and luncheon session highlights at this year’s conference include:

2009 EXCEL Award Winner

The IABC Excellence in Communication Leadership (EXCEL) Award recognizes contributions to business communication by an organizational leader who is not an IABC member. This year’s EXCEL Award winner is Brian Dunn, president and chief operating officer of Best Buy Co. In the general session on Monday, 8 June, attendees will learn from Dunn’s experience and rare ability to connect and inspire people. Dunn will share how his internal culture of communication and values ensured clarity of both his vision and the journey towards the success of the global retail giant.

Leading in a storm: Generating positive energy in tough times
During the lunch and learning session on Monday, 8 June, Tony Schwartz, president and founder of The Energy Project, will lay out an approach to generate positive energy in tough and trying times. His talk is grounded in four highly practical strategies designed to help leaders shift from depleted to energized, anxious to realistically optimistic, distracted to focused and expedient to purposeful.

Sustainable leadership
Robert Swan, OBE, a polar explorer, environmental leader and special envoy to the director of UNESCO, will be leading the general session on Tuesday, 9 June. As one of the world’s most renowned explorers, Swan is an expert on responsible leadership. He will share tales of exploration to the North and South Poles, insights into our environment and what it takes to achieve success. Swan knows that to overcome seemingly dire circumstances takes the right combination of trust, guidance and collaboration.

Raising our game: The 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games—a catalyst for engagement and sustainable legacies
Learn how the organizers of this massive sporting event are utilizing communications to achieve sustainability goals and create lasting legacies during the IABC Research Foundation lunchtime seminar on Tuesday, 9 June. Hear how the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) is approaching accountability, environmental stewardship, social inclusion and economic benefits associated with the Games as a case study in sustainability.

Closing general session: Finding your passion changes everything
World-renowned innovator and best-selling author Sir Ken Robinson will take conference attendees on a compelling journey to find out what can happen in your personal and professional lives when passion and talent meet. Robinson argues that it is a delicate interplay of talent, passion, attitude and opportunity that inspires people to achieve their highest levels of success and lead lives of meaning and purpose. This closing general session on Wednesday 10 June is based on Robinson’s best-selling book The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything.

For more details on conference sessions and to register online, visit

About IABC
The International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) is a global network of communication professionals committed to improving organizational effectiveness through strategic communication. Established in 1970, IABC serves more than 16,000 members in 80 countries and 100 chapters. For more information, visit