Moderators & Facilitators
Confirmed moderators, in alphabetical order:
Journalist at NBC Seattle, USA
Amity Addrisi is an Emmy Award-winning journalist who has been in a TV studio since she learned to walk. Authenticity has been the trademark of her career as a journalist and now the host of one of the highest-rated lifestyle shows on the West Coast. Trading celebrities for politics and government, Amity spent many years covering wildfires, national news stories and eventually became the Chief Medical Health Reporter for NBC Seattle. Amity studied Literature as well as Geology at UCLA and worked for the Dr. Phil Show and Access Hollywood.
President of RILA, France
As a public affairs and association professional with more than 12 years’ experience in the retail industry, Brian Dodge became RILA President in January 2020. In this role, Brian is responsible for identifying industry challenges and opportunities, guiding strategy for the Association, and coordinating activities among partners to achieve shared goals. He previously served as Chief Operating Officer for RILA, overseeing the organization's public affairs, legal and compliance, human resources and administration, membership, and financial operations. He also helped guide the development and execution of the Association's public affairs strategy. Prior to joining RILA, Brian worked as the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Republican Party. Earlier in his career, he was a senior associate with the DC-based government affairs firm Cassidy & Associates.
Partner and Retail Sector Lead at McCarthy Tétrault, Canada
Donovan Plomp is a Partner and the Retail Sector Lead of the National Retail & Consumer Markets Group at McCarthy Tétrault. He has significant experience working with retailers and other consumer-facing businesses and is recognized for his practical, business-minded approach and ability to anticipate client needs. With a focus on employment and labour law, Donovan has a reputation for using his broad-based industry expertise to provide innovative, value-added advice for clients’ complex matters. He is a prolific publisher, regularly presents at industry events and is recognized as a leading lawyer in his practice.
Matthew R. Shay
President & CEO of National Retail Federation, USA
In his position, Matthew Shay serves as chief advocate and spokesman for the nation’s largest private-sector industry employer, responsible for supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 52 million working Americans – and generating $3.9 trillion in annual GDP. Since his arrival in 2010, Shay has transformed NRF into Washington’s most powerful voice supporting the retail industry. Under his tenure, membership and revenue have more than doubled and the organisation’s influence has grown significantly inside Washington, across the United States and globally. He has led the organisation to new levels of effectiveness on policy issues, increasing awareness of the industry’s economic impact and expanding political engagement. Shay has held leadership positions in the retail, consumer and services sector for more than 20 years. Before NRF, he served as President and CEO of the International Franchise Association, which represents more than 1,400 franchise companies in retail and other industries around the world. He is a graduate of Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio, and The Ohio State University College of Law, and holds a master’s degree in business administration from the Georgetown University McDonough School of Business.
Honorary President of Woolworths Holdings, South Africa
Having held a number of top executive positions in the group before becoming Chief Executive in 2000, Simon Susman became Non-Executive Chairman in 2010. Woolworths is a $6bn group operating in Southern Africa and in Australia where it owns both the Country Road Group and now David Jones. The businesses are bywords for quality and sustainability. Within Woolworths, Simon instigated and drove a comprehensive programme entitled the “Good business journey”. Through this programme, the Group continually strives to do business in a way that is deeply sustainable both socially and environmentally. He also architected and built the unique Woolies’ Food business. During his 10-year period as CEO, the share price rose from R2.60 to over R26.00, strongly reinforcing his view that a business, deeply rooted in values and passionately delivering on sustainability, can bring real value to all stakeholders. Simon is now retired from the Chair and Board of Woolworths but has been asked by the Board to retain a close relationship as Honorary President of the company. He also chairs the London based Virgin Active fitness business; and the Dubai based Al Tayer Retail Board.