Bush, Bloomberg Highlight Global Financial Leadership Conference

The tenth Global Financial Leadership Conference begins November 13 in Naples, Florida. In the decade since the event started, former Presidents, Prime Ministers, Secretaries of State, Nobel prize winners and countless other leaders have shared their ideas with the financial leaders who attend.

This year promises to be as big as any of the conference’s previous versions, with President George W. Bush and his brother, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush kicking off the conference on Monday. Here’s our look at some of this year’s presenters and the discussions we’re most looking forward to:


Michael Bloomberg

The former New York City mayor is focused these days on climate change and limiting its impact on the planet. In fact, he’ll be coming to GFLC from an appearance at COP23, the United Nations’ annual climate conference, held this year in Bonn, Germany. Bloomberg will be hosting an event there with California Governor Jerry Brown to make an announcement about their America’s Pledge initiative, which focuses on what U.S. businesses, cities and states can do to limit climate change. At GFLC, Bloomberg will be the closing keynote in a conversation with CME Group Chairman and CEO Terry Duffy.

Michael Bloomberg on Trump, Brexit and Climate Change (Fortune)

Ban Ki Moon

Ban made climate change a central issue to his two terms as U.N. Secretary General. Those efforts culminated in the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change, which will be pressed further ahead at this week’s COP23 in Germany. In addition to climate change, Ban worked as Secretary General to bring awareness and aid to global poverty issues, and rising pressures to global food supply. After his term ended in 2016, Ban discussed running for President in his native South Korea, but ultimately decided against it. Most recently he’s been speaking on climate change and other global issues, including geopolitical tensions stemming from North Korea.

North Korea “worst security situation since end of Korean war,” says Ban Ki Moon (CNBC)

Richard Branson

In September, Branson was among those that endured the devastation of Hurricane Irma. He has a home on a private island in the British Virgin Islands (BVI). Since the storm, he has been mobilizing and funding relief efforts, partly through his airline, Virgin Atlantic, which is flying supplies to the BVI in coordination with local governments. Like Bloomberg and Ban, he has advocated for policies to curb climate change, which he blamed for the intensity of storms like Irma. He’s also written a new autobiography, Finding My Virginity, about his career. At GFLC, he’ll discuss pushing boundaries in business and life.

Richard Branson calls Irma a “Category 7” (CNBC)

Joe Scarborough, Brite Hume, Jill Abramson and Craig Silverman

“Fake News” has already been named the Word of the Year for 2017 by at least one dictionary.  These four influential newspeople will discuss the rise of an environment where fake news exists and truth doesn’t always seem to matter. It’s sure to be one of the liveliest and most fun discussions of the conference. Scarborough brings his experience having been a politician a media personality and someone who’s had public disagreements with President Trump over news coverage. Hume, managing editor at Fox News; Abramson, the former editor-in-chief of The New York Times and Silverman, the media editor at BuzzFeed News, all bring a different perspective to the discussion about what to make about the death of truth.

Scarborough: Voters sent a message to Trump (The Hill)

Brit Hume on Trump’s efforts to sell tax reform (Fox News)

Jeff Immelt

Jeff Immelt stepped down from his role as Chairman at GE last month after 16 years on the job. In that time, he transformed the company from what he calls a “classic conglomerate” to a major digital industrial company focused on the internet of things.  At GFLC, he’ll discuss the transformation, and how he did it through volatile times.

Inside GE’s transformation (Harvard Business Review)

Ian Bremmer and JD Vance

From President Trump’s visit to China to Syria signing the Paris Climate Agreement, Ian Bremmer touches on just about any geopolitical topic of import as an author, commentator, President of Eurasia Group and now host of a new podcast and Facebook show called G-Zero World. At GFLC, he’ll be joined by J.D. Vance, author of the bestselling Hillbilly Elegy. Vance has served as a go-to commentator for media outlets as an explainer of the wave of populism in America, and how it helped propel Donald Trump to the Presidency. Bremmer and Vance will discuss the growth of populism and the gap between geographic, economic and political backgrounds in the U.S.

J.D. Vance Going Home (NBC – Megyn Kelly)

Bremmer: Trump’s Presidency is a big win for China (CNBC)

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