Program Highlights

SB’17 Detroit sparks and enables transformational leadership at the personal, organizational and economic systems level to support reflection, ideation and action. By creating and curating an optimal environment for the discovery of tools, methodologies and partners to create new kinds of shared value, we bring the full system into the room. Through a connected program of learning and co-creation, SB’17 Detroit equips attendees to drive business success and positive impact through powerful plenaries, breakouts, deep-dive workshops, the dynamic Activation Hub, the Innovation Open competition, and numerous community networking events that foster sustainability-led innovation.



Thought leader insights providing the fast-track to understanding the latest trends and drivers.

Featured Plenaries Include:

Pashon Murray

Pashon Murray, Co-founder of Detroit Dirt, will demonstrate the opportunity for brands to contribute to the rejuvenation of cities in decline. Pashon’s vision for…

a more resilient Detroit and her inspiring unifying spirit are showing the potential brands have to offer win-win solutions to communities and cities around the country

Sam Polk

Sam Polk, CEO of Everytable, will share how his remarkable journey from a hedge fund manager to a social entrepreneur is delivering shared value…

to multiple stakeholders. With access and quality as guiding principles, Everytable has an easily scalable new model of providing healthy foods to low-income communities in food deserts around the country.

Kate Brandt

Kate Brandt, Sustainability Lead at Google, will unpack Google’s leadership in equipping the whole world with equal and easy access to reliable…

applicable sustainability information. Through its growing portfolio of tracking and visualization tools, Google is aiming to help brands speed up collective progress both globally and within the company itself.

Virginie Helias

Virginie Helias, Vice President of Global Sustainability at Procter & Gamble, will share brand new insight into how Procter & Gamble is looking to enable positive…

consumption in pursuit of the good life. Eschewing outdated values such as “more is always better”, Virginie will provide a roadmap for 21st century brand leadership toward sustainable consumption norms.


Subject matter explorations to understand and solve topical business challenges.

Featured Breakouts Include:

Ryan Williams

Ryan Williams, Good Cop at Method, will reveal the challenges and rewards of opening the company’s South Side Soapbox facility, and how Method…

is pushing toward a new template for sustainable manufacturing through deliberate localization. Expect valuable real-time lessons for any business looking to create shared value by relocalizing manufacturing.

Daniel Vennard

Daniel Vennard, Director of the Better Buying Lab at World Resources Institute (WRI), will unveil a new guide on transforming behavior around…

food choices and how brands can benefit by helping shift consumption patterns. Years of investigating this topic have yielded WRI’s world-class research on what really works in trying to get consumers to buy and consume more sustainable foods.

Paul Dillinger

Paul Dillinger, Head of Global Product Innovation at Levi Strauss & Co, will present the brand’s latest initiative to mentor rising stars in the apparel…

industry. Mentor Levi’s and mentee Outerknown will both be featured in a candid discussion exploring how the next generation of brands is forming its values and how established multinationals can leave amplified lasting legacies through new partnerships.

Jennifer Lindenauer

Jennifer Lindenauer, Vice President of Marketing at Upworthy, will share Upworthy’s secret sauce on getting brands to supercharge their…


marketing with purpose-driven campaigns that go viral across a range of media. Learn from the gold standard in viral content on what makes consumers tick, how to make your content sticky and what will make your message be heard around the world.


Half day, deep dive studios to help you turn ideas into action.

Featured Workshops Include:

Virginie Helias

Leith Sharp, Director of Executive Education for Sustainability Leadership at Harvard University, will offer a powerful new model for enabling continuous…

transformational leadership into today’s organizations hindered by 20th century operating models. This session will teach how to unleash an organization’s potential to integrate sustainability into the core of its business as an essential driver of cultural relevance, innovation, competitive advantage.

John Marshall Roberts

John Marshall Roberts, Author of The Voice Code, will share his latest breakthroughs on how personal evolution acts as an enabler of the good life…

John’s approach centers on a core belief: without a firmly rooted “inner game,” even our most admirable attempts to influence others can be reduced to manipulation. Find out how this new theory of “inner game” translates to brands that want to be genuinely influential leaders sparking trust and collaboration along the entire value chain.

Elisabeth Laville

Elisabeth Laville, Chief Entrepreneur at Utopies, will lead a session on the power of the Positive Brands® approach whereby executives can find a brand…


strategy that is not only in line with the brand mission, history and values, but also inspires effortless integration of new social and environmental operating principles. Elisabeth will share why traditional sustainability strategies are a dead end and how to lay the foundations for a firm yet flexible Positive Brand enabling a flourishing future.

Ricardo Caceres

Ricardo Caceres, Global Marketing Director for Sustainability at Coca-Cola, will host a workshop on embedding purpose and sustainability priorities…

within marketing and brand innovation teams. Ricardo’s team has analyzed the relationship between sustainability attributes and brand equity, thus effectively serving as a ‘bridge’ between sustainability and marketing teams within one of the few most influential global brands.


Experience this dynamic, action-driven and collaborative environment where brands find the conversations, connections, tools, solutions and partners to co-create new forms of value and impact.

Shaping the Future of Commerce Worldwide

The SB’17 Detroit Activation Hub encourages collaboration and celebrates purposeful innovation. This action-centered environment is more than just another solutions exhibit; it is a platform to engage directly with business and brand professionals who are looking for unique and targeted ways to add value to their business. The atmosphere creates a fresh connection between people, organizations and companies with innovative business solutions, and brand professionals looking to activate their sustainability goals into tangible reality.

The collaborative environment of the Activation Hub facilitates deeper learning, conversation and networking, allowing everyone to engage on a more personal level through innovation labs, lounges, networking events and more.

The Activation Hub features focused Pavilions to inform and empower attendees to find the trusted business solutions to support the activation of their goals. Pavilion exhibits and content highlight leadership around:
and much more!


The brightest social and environmental entrepreneurs challenging the status quo of business.

Startup Competition

The SB Innovation Open will be launching it’s 6th year, in effort to help catalyze the progress and impact of the next generation of better brands featuring the startups who, if given the right support and exposure, can contribute to an economically, socially and environmentally flourishing future.

This year the competition is being split into different categories, where the 3 winning semi-finalists of each category will be invited to attend SB’17 Detroit to benefit from a week of introductions to influential brands, minds, experts and designers. The finalists, winners of each product category, will take the main stage to present their pitches to the entire SB community in attendance and globally via livestream, in efforts to become the overall + People’s Choice SBIO winners.

Entry Deadline: March 31th, 2017.

The Prizes

  • An All Event conference pass + Activation Hub Staff pass to SB’17 Detroit
  • Activation Hub exhibition space for 4 days in the Activation Hub
  • SB Golden Ticket to all SB events for 3 years
  • More to come!


Networking, learning and celebratory events to connect our community and deepen relationships.

Network with Brand Innovators

This is where the connections are truly made. Relax and enjoy as you catch up with old friends and acquaintances. Connect with peers around a topic of shared interest while you sit down for an engaging conversation at one of the many ‘Birds of a Feather’ dinners. From the moment you arrive in Detroit, to the minute you leave; take advantage of the non-stop line up of networking opportunities. Come ready to connect while having some fun!


  • Opening Night Plenary
  • Welcome Reception
  • Activation Hub Pavillions & Lounges
  • Activation Hub Happy Hours
  • Morning Yoga
  • Eastern Market Party
  • and much more TBA…


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