Over 200 Seminarians and guests gathered in Charlotte, North Carolina to gain insights on major issues and trends around the world. A highlight of the session was a visit to the NASCAR Hall of Fame, above.

The Seminar Annual Forum

June 1-4, 2014
The Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge
Charlotte, North Carolina


Distinguished speakers, diverse perspectives from panelists, and a field trip offering unique experiences were among the benefits Seminarians found in attending The Seminar
in 2014.
Leon E. Panetta reminded Seminarians of the need for continued diligence around global security and U.S. involvement abroad. Above, he receives a gift of a NASCAR jacket.        
Seminarians chatted with Panetta after the session. He was director of the Central Intelligence Agency from 2009-2011 and Secretary of Defense from 2011-2013.        
Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus, second from right, spoke on microfinancing.        
Many Thanks  - Gerard Meuchner, right, presented Betty Hudson with the 2014 Seminar Chair Bell.        

Thought-Provoking Presentations and Energizing Conversations Mark 2014 Seminar

A STELLAR AND ELECTIC PROGRAM EXCEEDED SEMINARIANS’ EXPECTATIONS, with speakers focusing on major issues and trends impacting Seminarians’ organizations and Seminarians themselves. Thought leaders from the public, private and nonprofit sectors from around the world broadened perspectives and engaged Seminarians on a myriad of hot topics for the three-day session.


DAY 1 BROUGHT TOGETHER LEADERS from diverse backgrounds. The stage was set by Dr. Cathy Davidson on Learning at the Pace of Change, followed by speakers on big data, conspiracy theory, and the environment. Seminarians took a deep dive with ocean explorer Robert D. Ballard, Ph.D., learned about scaling an authentic brand from Honest Tea Co-Founder Seth Goldman, and gained new understanding of change from the top with Washington, DC Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy Lanier.

SEMINARIANS WRAPPED UP a day of stimulating experiences with a down-home-delicious North Carolina barbeque, complete with entertainment from the Crooked Pine Band.


NOBEL PEACE PRIZE, INTEL SCIENCE AWARDS AND GLOBAL SECURITY were the focus on Day 2, which began with Nobel Peace Prize Winner Muhammad Yunus in conversation with Seminarians about microfinancing, which has changed the financial future of families across the world. Author and tech guru David Pogue gave a crash course in disruptive technologies, followed by his interview of three brilliant and innovative Intel Science Award recipients, ages 16-20. They calmed any concerns Seminarians may have had about the next generation. Global security and America’s future was addressed by U.S. statesman Leon E. Panetta.

SEMINARIANS SPED through the remainder of their day at the NASCAR Hall of Fame with a panel on the convergence of sports and technology, touring the Hall of Fame and testing their skills at the race track simulator and Pit Stop timed activity. The visit was made complete with NASCAR champion Jeff Gordon sharing his racing experiences and charitable engagement activities with Seminarians.


Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan opened the day with his views and perspectives of leading an organization back from crisis, immediately followed by Bill Adair with interesting observations on the “truth-o-meter” in journalism today. The Seminar closed with an outstanding panel of corporate and nonprofit leaders responding to the question, Can the World Feed 9 Billion People?


  • The Seminar welcomed thirty-one First-Time Seminarians from a wide variety of industries in 2014, adding new voices and expanding fellowship throughout the annual gathering.
  • Joan Wainright received The Seminar Distinguished Service Award. Joan is a past chair of The Seminar and serves as President, Channel & Customer Experience at TE Connectivity.



Seminarians Visit the NASCAR Hall of Fame

Beat the Clock - Seminarians and guests took turns against a timer on Pit Row, a mock NASCAR pit stop.   Walking through NASCAR History - Guests stroll along the NASCAR Hall of Fame's Glory Road, where cars show how technology advancements were applied through the decades.
Technology and Sports Converge - A panel convened at the NASCAR Hall of Fame on the convergence of technology and sports. Tech innovations are changing the face of sports in unprecedented ways.   Talking with the Champ - Brett Jewkes, left, VP and CCO, NASCAR, interviews Jeff Gordon on the life of a  racing champion. Gordon, a four-time Sprint Cup champion, has won the Daytona 500 three times and is third on the all-time Cup wins list, with 89 career wins, the most in NASCAR's modern era.
Tech Advancements - Guests viewed a video demonstration of new sports technologies
applied on the racetrack and in other sports
  Lucky It's Only a Simulation - Seminarians get ready for a NASCAR race.
Pedal to the Metal - Seminarians gathered at Charlotte Speedway to test-drive real NASCAR cars.   Geared Up - Gerard Meuchner, left, and Charles Kliment suited up for the driving experience in flame-resistant uniforms.