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NeoCon 2011 Keynote Speakers Announced

2011 lineup will feature emphasis on green building and sustainability


Matt Petersen (CEO, president of Global Green USA), Amy Wells (esteemed set decorator), Margaret Russell (editor in chief, Architectural Digest), Henrik Fisker (co-founder, CEO and executive design director with Fisker Automotive) and Ed Begley, Jr. (actor, green advocate) will present the keynotes for the 2011 NeoCon trade show, according to organizers.

With the exception of Margaret Russell, who will be presenting in the Merchandise Mart (see below), all presentations will take place in the Sauganash Ballroom in the Holiday Inn Mart Plaza Chicago. Each keynote presentation is $25 and requires registration at the NeoCon website; each presentation will also be worth .1 CEU credit.

Matt Petersen, president and CEO of Global Green USA, will kick off the 2011 lineup on Monday, June 13 at 8 a.m. An expert on energy, green building and sustainability, Petersen is a social entrepreneur who has been a driving force for sustainable design while improving the lives of those in need. Working shoulder to shoulder with Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, Leonardo DiCaprio, and many others, Petersen has helped bring critical attention to environmental causes.

Amy Wells S.D.S.A. was the set decorator on Mad Men for the first three seasons of the acclaimed drama series, and will speak on Tuesday, June 14 at 8 a.m. Wells graduated from the University of Southern California’s School of Cinema/TV and was mentored early on by Academy Award-winning set decorator Gretchen Rau (Memoirs of a Geisha) and Jim Erickson, Academy Award nominee for There Will Be Blood. Wells went on to decorate such features as CluelessThe PhantomAmerican Pie, Sex & The City and the Emmy–nominated HBO Series From the Earth to the Moon, as well as many situational comedies. Her most recent feature is the debut film of designer Tom Ford, A Single Man.

Margaret Russell, editor in chief of Architectural Digest, will speak on Tuesday, June 14 at 1 p.m. in Suite 1520 on the 15th floor of the Merchandise Mart. Prior to joining AD in 2010, Ms. Russell served as editor in chief of ELLE DECOR, a publication that she helped launch in 1989. During her tenure, Ms. Russell also created and produced the best-selling ELLE DECOR book series. She was named a vice president of Hachette Filipacchi Media in 2003. Ms. Russell lectures frequently on interior decoration and has been a guest on numerous television programs to discuss design-related topics; she was also a featured judge on both seasons of Bravo’s reality-competition show Top Design. Ms. Russell is the author of several books, including Designing Women: Interiors by Leading Style Makers; So Chic: Glamorous Lives, Stylish Spaces; and Style & Substance: The Best of ELLE DÉCOR.

Henrik Fisker will present Tuesday’s final keynote at 3 p.m. Fisker is co-founder, CEO and executive design director at Fisker Automotive which will be debuting the Fisker Karma, a  luxury, electric sports sedan in 2011. Fisker is famously known for his automobile design work at Ford Motor Company and DesignworksUSA, BMW’s California-based industrial design subsidiary. While at Ford Motor Company, Fisker served as a member of the Board of Directors and design director at Aston Martin, where he designed the Aston Martin V8 Vantage and was responsible for the production launch design of the DB9, variants of which were James Bond’s preferred vehicles.

Ed Begley, Jr. will present NeoCon’s final keynote on Wednesday, June 15 at 8 a.m. An actor known for his many television, film and theatre projects, Begley is currently best known for his hit TV show, Living with Ed. Begley has been considered an environmental leader in the Hollywood community for many years.

For more information about these presenters, or to register, visit the NeoCon 2011 website.