IRi Growth Summit IRi Growth Summit


At The IRI Growth Summit, you will hear from top professionals with a proven track record of innovation and success.
Andrew Appel
President and Chief Executive Officer, IRI

Andrew Appel is president and chief executive officer of IRI. Appel joined IRI in June 2012.

Appel has held a number of senior leadership positions for Chicago-based professional service firms. As chief operating officer at Aon, Appel developed and implemented a successful revenue growth plan for the company. He also led the team responsible for the $5 billion acquisition of Hewitt, solidifying Aon's leading position in human resource consulting and outsourcing. Prior to this, Appel was chief executive officer of two of the firm's three global divisions: Aon Consulting, a leading benefits and human resources consulting firm, and Aon Benfield, the world's largest reinsurance broker. Under his leadership, the divisions achieved operational excellence and improved financial results.

Prior to joining Aon, Appel was a senior partner at McKinsey and Company, where during a 15-year career, he advised leading global financial institutions on a wide array of operational, strategic and organizational issues. Appel joined IRI from Accretive Health, where he was senior vice president of Revenue Operations.

Appel holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of California, Los Angeles and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago, where he was the Henry Ford II scholar. He is a board member of World Business Chicago, Insureon, and the Advertising Research Foundation (ARF), and has served on two task forces related to resolving the pension shortfalls of the state of Illinois and the City of Chicago. He and his family reside in the Chicagoland area.

Albert P. Carey
Chief Executive Officer, PepsiCo North America
Albert (Al) Carey is chief executive officer of PepsiCo North America. He was promoted to his current role in March, 2016. A 35-year PepsiCo veteran with experience across snacks and beverages, he is responsible for leading North America Beverages (NAB), Frito-Lay North America (FLNA) and Quaker Foods North America (QFNA).

Prior to this role, he was chief executive officer of NAB, where he was responsible for overseeing all aspects of PepsiCo’s beverage business across North America.

Al joined PepsiCo in 1981, after working at Procter and Gamble, and has served in a variety of positions across snacks and beverages at PepsiCo, including CEO of Frito-Lay North America.

Al is well known for his passion for customers and frontline associates, and has practiced servant leadership throughout his career.

He is a member of the Board of Directors of The Home Depot, Inc. and The Grocery Manufacturers Association. In addition, he is a Board of Trustees member at the University of Maryland, and a Dean's Advisory Council member at the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland.

He holds a Bachelor of Science in Government and Politics from the University of Maryland, College Park, Md. He and his wife, Vickie, have four children and reside in Connecticut.
Mick Ebeling
Chief Executive Officer & Founder, Not Impossible Labs

A recipient of the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian of the Year Award and listed as one of the most influential creative people by The Creativity 50’s, Mick Ebeling has sparked a movement of pragmatic, inspirational innovation. As a career producer and filmmaker and now founder and CEO of Not Impossible, Ebeling harvests the power of technology and story to change the world.

Ebeling founded Not Impossible, a multiple award-winning social innovation lab and production company, on the premise that nothing is impossible. His mantra of "commit, then figure it out" allows him to convene a disparate team of hackers, doers, makers and thinkers to create devices that better the world by bringing accessibility for all. This unconventional approach brought to life highly acclaimed initiatives-the EyeWriter, Project Daniel, Don’s Voice and most recently Music Not Impossible--that brought the ability to draw back to a paraplegic street artist, 3D-printed arms to Sudanese amputees and "voice" to an ALS patient who hadn’t spoken in 15 years.

Working with a wide array of Fortune 500 companies, Ebeling not only pushes the bar on innovation, he also shares the emotionally resonating story of doing so. These narratives of overcoming seemingly impossible odds have inspired people across the world to do the same.

Named one of Wired’s “Agents of Change,” a two-time SXSW innovation of the year award winner, and recipient of every major creative and advertising award, Ebeling is on a mission to provide “Technology for the Sake of Humanity.” By tapping into a community of passionate and talented engineers, makers, idea generators and storytellers, Ebeling is making the inconceivable, the unbelievable and the impossible Not Impossible.


Christina Hennington
SVP, Merchandising Transformation and Operations, Target Corporation
Christina Hennington is Target’s Senior Vice President of Merchandising Transformation and Operations. In this role, Hennington is responsible for leading the operations teams within merchandising across the US and India. Additionally, she is driving a holistic merchandising transformation effort across 2000+ team members’ roles, processes, technologies, and operating model embedding new capabilities in localization, negotiations, visual merchandising, and advanced analytical insights.

Hennington joined Target in 2003. Since that time, she held various Merchandising positions including Senior Vice President of the $13B Health and Beauty business at Target. This role included the oversight of the pharmacy, clinics, managed care, technology and mobile platforms, field and HQ operations, compliance, and guest experience strategies.

Before joining Target, Hennington spent several years as a consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers in Boston, and served as a product manager for two Boston dotcom start-up businesses.

Hennington serves on the Board of Directors for Second Harvest Heartland, the 2nd largest food bank in the US, and has previously served on the Board of Governors for Cosmetic Executive Women (CEW), and the Board of She completed a two year fellowship (Henry Crown Fellowship) for top 20 US intra and entrepreneurs through the Aspen Institute in 2015.

Hennington received her bachelors from Cornell University and her MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. 
Brian Monahan
Head of Vertical Strategy, Pinterest
Brian Monahan has played roles at the cutting edge of the digital marketing industry since it began. Literally working from a garage, he helped start one of the first digital ad agencies in San Francisco.  He then went on to various executive roles inside the IPG agency holding company including running digital for the global Microsoft account, launching IPG's programmatic trading desk, managing the IPG Media Lab, and leading a division of MAGNA GLOBAL -- IPG's strategic forecasting and upfront media buying unit.  Brian went client-side to lead marketing at where he grew monthly uniques from 55 to 85 million and grew annual sales 51% in three years. Brian is a co-Founder of NewCo, a media and events company for mission-driven business innovators.  Brian has been recognized by American Advertising Federation's Hall of Achievement, Ad Age Media Maven, Ad-Tech Industry Innovator, and the Bay Area Innovation Group's Hall of Fame. Outside of work, he coaches youth basketball, helps with "quality control" at his wife's restaurant (Half Day Cafe), and mountain bikes the hills of Marin County.
Shaquille O'Neal
NBA All Star, Media Personality, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist
Shaquille Rashaun O'Neal (born March 6, 1972), nicknamed "Shaq", is a retired American professional basketball player, rapper, actor, businessman, reserve police officer, doctorate recipient and TNT NBA Analyst. He is widely perceived as one of the most dominant players in the history of the NBA. Standing 7’1”, he is one of the largest players to ever play in the NBA. Throughout his 19 year career, O'Neal has used his size, strength and skill to overpower opponents.

Following a standout career at Louisiana State University, O'Neal was drafted by the Orlando Magic with the first overall pick in the 1992 NBA Draft. He quickly became one of the top centers in the league, winning Rookie of the year in 1992-93 and later leading his team to the 1995 NBA Finals. After four years with the Magic, O'Neal signed as a free agent with the Los Angeles Lakers. He won three consecutive championships, playing alongside Kobe Bryant, in 2000, 2001 and 2002. In 2004, Shaq was traded to the Miami Heat. He won his fourth NBA championship in 2006, but was traded midway through the season just a year later to the Phoenix Suns. After a season-and-a-half with the Suns, O'Neal was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he played alongside LeBron James in the 2009–10 season. After one year with the Cavaliers, the Celtics signed O’Neal and he played his final season alongside Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett in Boston.

O'Neal's individual accolades include the 1999-00 MVP award, the 1992–93 NBA Rookie of the Year award, 15 All-Star game selections, three All-Star Game MVPs, three Finals MVPs, two scoring titles, 14 All-NBA team selections and three NBA All-Defensive Team selections.  He currently ranks fifth all-time in points scored, sixth in field goals, 15th in rebounds and seventh in blocks.

In addition to his basketball career, O'Neal has released four rap albums, with his first, Shaq Diesel, going platinum. He has also appeared in numerous films and has starred in his own reality shows, ''Shaq's Big Challenge and Shaq Vs.
Diane Shelton
Senior Vice President, Insights and Applied Analytics, Southeastern Grocers
Diane is currently Senior Vice President, Insights and Applied Analytics with Southeastern Grocers.  Her career to date has been in Marketing Strategy and Customer consulting working on both client and agency side.  It has spanned Services, FMCG and Retail industries and markets in Australia, China and now the USA, but in all cases the focus has been on the customer.  In particular, how customer knowledge can be leveraged to build business outcomes.

A key contribution that Diane has made in the area of Customer Insights has been to pioneer the integration of all forms of customer data - primary research, secondary data sources, customer transaction data - across key areas in the business - marketing, sales and service. 

Diane received her BA (Hons) and her MBA from the University of Western Australia.  Prior to going into Marketing she was an academic at The Melbourne Business School at the University of Melbourne specialising in Organisational Psychology.
Felipe Szpigel
President, The High-End Business Unit, Anheuser-Busch InBev
Felipe Szpigel knows that today is the best day in the beer business – ever. As president of The High End, he leads the charge to make tomorrow even better, to create an even more promising future for the beers our consumers love. With a winning portfolio that includes craft and import beer brands like Stella Artois, Shock Top, Goose Island, Golden Road, Blue Point, 10 Barrel, Elysian, Four Peaks, Breckenridge Brewery, Virtue Cider, Devils Backbone and SpikedSeltzer, it’s clear that High End beers are respected as innovative, complex and sophisticated.
Szpigel’s appreciation for great beer and amazing experiences led him to Anheuser-Busch InBev 16 years ago in Brazil as a global management trainee, and he never looked back, rising through the company’s sales organizations, including region sales vice president in Brazil and global vice president of trade marketing, based in the US.
Today, he’s focused on finding new ways to make beer the most sophisticated beverage, and to advance the category as a whole. You can often find him at one of our craft partner breweries, meeting with the passionate brewers who craft the innovative flavors our consumers love. He’s committed to bringing expertise, quality assurance, and entrepreneurial energy to the table, so our partners can act faster and bring even more dynamic and flavorful options to beer lovers everywhere.
A lifelong learner and explorer, Szpigel currently resides in New York City with his wife Paula and daughter Stella, and his interests include sports (as a triathlete), music (as a former drummer), great food and (of course) drinking great beers. Szpigel holds a master’s degree in business administration from Brazil’s IBMEC and a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Escola Politécnica da Universidade de São Paulo.