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About this event

Recession is defined as two consecutive quarters of negative gross domestic product; by this definition the US officially entered a recession in 2022. The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), whose definition is “a significant decline in economic activity that is spread across the economy and lasts more than a few months”, says we shouldn’t panic yet. Tim Holland, Chief Investments Officer at Orion Advisor Solutions concurs, “We have a hard time believing the economy is in a recession today, given a strong labor market and corporate earnings growth.”

There seems to be a disconnect between the federal agencies that determine whether or not we are in a recession. Regardless of the definition, the day-to-day issues consumers are facing are higher costs of living across the board fueled by the increasing costs to do business.

These challenging topics are high on the risk heat maps nationwide, and, as a result, this topic is getting quite a bit of air time in the board room:

  • High cost of labor; unprecedented turnover, particularly at the entry level;
  • High costs of energy, fueled by geopolitical issues
  • Supply chain constraints
  • General cost increases across the board

 Meet our panel of three highly experienced directors who have been with companies on both sides of the board tables tackling these very issues.  Join us to learn from their experiences from proactive oversight to intentional pivots to reinventing themselves in light of these challenges.


Kim Newton Founder | Author | Director

Kim Newton is an executive turned advisor, author, entrepreneur and fine artist. During her two decades at Hallmark she ran a $1B business and led global corporate strategy and transformation across a $4B diversified portfolio of top brands. She has been recognized multiple times as a top African American in corporate America. Passionate about leadership and innovation, Kim is an exceptional developer of people and has advised hundreds of leaders personally and professionally. She loves helping people and companies meet their full potential.

Kim has always left space for creation of her own art, a modern approach to quilting. Kim’s quilts have been called “unique and inspiring contemporary fiber art that tells a story and ignites the spirit.” In 2019, after leaving Corporate America, Kim sold her first piece that now hangs on the wall of Oprah Winfrey – she has sold several since.

As the founder of Alexis Enterprises, LLC, Kim brings to life all of her passions. An art studio focused on her one-of-a-kind art quilts. The Intentional Pause™ Project, a media, product and experience platform helping women to embrace pausing as a powerful way forward to achieve their dreams. And Alexis Quilts, a produced line of specialty gift quilts positioned as extraordinary keepsakes for self or others. Kim is also an advisor to a couple female founded tech startups, a leadership program facilitator at Netflix and sits on the board of Big Lots, Inc.

Kim was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay area, received her BA in Accounting from Fisk University and her MBA from Vanderbilt University. She is a proud member of the Executive Leadership Council, Alpha Kappa Alpha, Jack and Jill of America, The Links, Incorporated and the 2017 Class of Henry Crown Fellows within the Aspen Global Leadership Network at the Aspen Institute. Kim lives in Kansas City with her husband, Nikki, and their daughter Piper.

Diane Dewbrey Board of Director

Diane Dewbrey serves on the board of MBIA, Inc. (NYSE: MBI) (Audit, Finance, Compensation), and on Barrett Business Services, Inc. (NASDAQ: BBSI) (Risk and Nominating/Governance) where she is the Chair of the Nom/Gov Committee. Additionally, she is the Board Advisor to Organic Valley Co-op where she assists the board with governance, audit, and compensation. Dewbrey previously was the Chair and director of Envent is (NASDAQ: ENVE) until its merger with Consolidated Communications. Dewbrey earned her bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from Xavier University.
Dewbrey was CEO of Foundation Bank (Bellevue, WA) after an extensive career with Fifth Third Bank (NASDAQ: FITB) (Cincinnati, OH). She has received numerous accolades for her community service work and currently is the Investment Chair for the YMCA of the USA.

Yvonne Wassenaar CEO

For over 30 years, Yvonne Wassenaar has advised leaders on scaling, diversifying and transforming their businesses globally through all types of economic environments. Most recently Yvonne was CEO of Puppet, an infrastructure automation company. Her past executive roles include CEO of Airware, CIO at New Relic, Office of the CXO at VMware and 17 year at Accenture where she served as Partner in the High Tech practice. Yvonne currently is on the boards of Arista Networks, Forrester Research, Rubrik (a pre-IPO zero trust data management company) and Harvey Mudd College. Previously she was on the boards of Anaplan, Mulesoft, Bitium and the Athena Alliance.


Carol Coughlin CEO/Founder

Carol Coughlin is an experienced public and PEG company board leader, board and audit committee chair, and is highly skilled in corporate governance, including board refreshment, strategic alternatives and M&A for growth and highly regulated companies. She is a Board Leadership Fellow (NACD) and sits on the boards of the University of MD Medical Center, Hopebridge, GoodCap Pharmaceuticals and Trusty Care. Following an IPO and after nomination to board chair of a public community bank, she led the board through acquisitions that doubled the size of the company, followed by a merger with a larger company. A qualified “financial expert”, she is an accomplished healthcare CFO with a track record of achieving profitability through growth, highly successful turnarounds and M&A. She is known as an energetic, collaborative leader and a quick learner in both organizational and board settings. In 2006, Carol launched BottomLine Growth Strategies, Inc., a growth advisory firm helping CEOs of privately held companies to transform enterprise value through best practice financial and operations strategies. Carol is a graduate of Loyola University in MD (MBA) and Towson University (BS Business), is a Board Leadership Fellow (NACD), and a Certified Public Accountant.

Key Details

Governing Through an Economic Downturn

Wed, Nov 16 @ 9:00am PT (1 hr)

Virtual (RSVP for link)


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