Insight & Analysis

Press release: Virtual Town Hall Summit convenes global business leaders to discuss solutions for returning to work amid COVID-19 pandemic

Published: May 2020

5th May 2020 – Panelists to Share Advice on Organizational Leadership and Entrepreneurial Growth and Innovation During and After Pandemic

Newspaper press release

As states in the U.S, and cities around the world begin to reopen and corporations are rushing to redefine operations, a group of global business leaders in industries ranging from finance to law to tech will gather for a virtual town hall in mid-May to discuss a path forward.

The keys to sustaining corporate revenue in the age of Covid-19 will lie in employers’ ability to be agile, forward-looking and people-focused – all while maintaining the sound operational discipline that is required for survival and sustainability. Determining where and how staff will be working in the new normal is one of the biggest challenge’s businesses face, and something they’ll have to resolve amid employee concerns, widespread confusion and an onslaught of new and often pivotal information each day.

On Wednesday, May 13 and Thursday, May 14, 2020, India Gary-Martin, longtime global executive turned leadership expert and c-suite coach will convene a virtual global town hall summit with 16 leaders from three continents. Martin similarly hosted and produced the Centenary Summit ( in South Africa in 2018. Like the previous summit, The Town Hall Summit creates a space for global leaders to engage in dialogue about the multitude of environmental factors that challenge operations during uncertain times. In four one-hour sessions over two days, participants will discuss the impact of the first 60 days of the pandemic and how to address the future. The sessions will include Leading in the New Normal, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Being a Founder During Crisis, and Purpose Driven Leadership. The content for the sessions will be shaped in part by insights and analysis gleaned from the latest published research and Corporate Social Responsibility report of Moody’s Corporation, global communications firm Edelman’s Trust Barometer and by Treasury Today, a leading source of cash and liquidity research.

“Now is the time for corporations to step up and for leadership to emerge in new and exciting ways. It’s much easier to lead when we are operating in business-as-usual environments, but disruptions like the Covid-19 pandemic pose a test that separates the wheat from the chaff.” Gary-Martin says.

The Town Hall Summit is free to participants on a first-come first-served basis and will also be broadcast on YouTube Live. Register at

Leading in the New Normal – Wednesday, May 13, 2020 at 10:00AM EST

Business leaders discuss the challenge and opportunities around running significant business while transitioning to the new normal and shed light on the difficult decisions that leaders are having to make.

  • Kimberly A. Blackwell, CEO, PMM Agency (USA)
  • Colin Coleman, Former CEO, Goldman Sachs Sub Saharan Africa, Lecturer and Fellow, Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, Yale University (South Africa)
  • Betsy Miller, Partner and Co-Chair Public Client Practice Group, Cohen, Milstein, Sellers & Toll (USA) Shàka Rasheed, Managing Director and General Manager, Microsoft Capital Markets (USA)

“Leading through uncertainty forces us to dance on the edge of what is expected of us and change those expectations. It is an adaptive challenge, which demands more of leaders – we must build organizational capacity not only to react, but to evolve.” Said Betsy Miller, Co-Chair of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll’s Public Client practice.

Innovation and Entrepreneurship – Wednesday, May 13, 2020 at 11:15AM EST

Industry leading experts will explore what the current environment means for entrepreneurs and the gaps they need to fill that weren’t as visible during normal operating times.

  • Colin Iles, Founder, Innovation Catalysts (South Africa)
  • Grace Mellis, Chair, Hyrecar and Advisor, Techstars (USA)
  • Sneha Shah, Managing Director, Refinitiv Business Accelerator (USA)

“There is no going back to the norms of work or school. We can only go forward. In that forward lies the amazing opportunity to reimagine business, the way we live and work, and solutions for global challenges.” said, Sneha Shah, Managing Director of Refinitiv’s recently launched Business Accelerator.

Being a Founder CEO During Crisis – Thursday, May 14, 2020 at 10:00AM EST

Founder CEOs discuss the experience of rapidly shifting teams to remote work, what they would have done to prepare if they could turn back the clock and strategies for survival and growth in the current environment.

  • Lisa Coker, CEO Infinite Management Solutions (USA)
  • Farida Gibbs, CEO Gibbs Hybrid (UK),
  • Mike O’Brien, CEO Opencast Software (UK)
  • Reggie Stevens, CEO Iris Solutions (USA)

“I see a huge amount of opportunity. Many businesses haven’t faced up to the hard thinking about digitally transforming their organizations and services. Now there’s no avoiding it. I have a lot of work in Government in the UK and see it now working at light speed to make decisions and deploy services. A massive sea change for sure.” Said Mike O’Brien, CEO and Founder of OpenCast Software in Newcastle, England.

Purpose Driven Leadership – Thursday, May 14, 2020 at 10:00AM EST

Leaders discuss the importance of purpose driven leadership during crisis and the importance of doubling down on corporate social responsibility, diversity, equity, inclusion and a continued focus on learning and development as transformational strategies in uncertain business operating environments.

  • Pamela Hutchinson, Global Head of Diversity and Inclusion, Bloomberg (UK)
  • Arlene Isaacs-Lowe, Global Head of Corporate Social Responsibility, Moody’s Corporation and President, Moody’s Foundation (USA)
  • Jude Kelly CBE, Founder and Director, The WOW Foundation (UK)
  • Steven D’Souza, Global Head of Executive Education, Philip Morris International (UK)

Arlene Isaacs-Lowe the Global Head of Corporate Social Responsibility and President of Moody’s Foundation in New York said, “CSR and social investing are a part of the fabric of our company and integral to our corporate strategy. It’s our contribution to a shared future.”


  • India Gary-Martin featuring 16 global leaders from 3 continents.
  • A conversation with global leaders about the key decisions facing corporations and businesses in the US and countries around the world reopen.
  • May 13 and May 14, 2020 at 10:00AM EST and 11:15AM EST each day.
  • Hosted via Zoom with simultaneous broadcast on YouTube live. Moderated Q&A; via zoom text and pre-submitted questions by email.
  • Attendees will receive a summary of the key points and takeaways after the event via email.
  • Social media and hashtags:

All our content is free, just register below

As we move to a new and improved digital platform all users need to create a new account. This is very simple and should only take a moment.

Already have an account? Sign In

Already a member? Sign In

This website uses cookies and asks for your personal data to enhance your browsing experience. We are committed to protecting your privacy and ensuring your data is handled in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).