Executive Roundtable

Executive RoundtableThe Department of Economics holds an annual Executive Roundtable on issues of regional, national, and global interest. Participants are leading practitioners in business and related fields, often Allegheny alumni.  The Roundtables bring students together with distinguished business leaders whose perspectives and experiences create educational and career-related value.  

The Executive Roundtable is supported by the Earl W. Adams, Jr. Endowment, established by Allegheny College Trustee William H. Brown, Jr., Allegheny Class of 1980, in honor of Professor Earl William Adams, Jr.  –  teacher, mentor and friend.

20th Annual Executive Roundtable

20th Annual Executive Roundtable

Monday, April 3,  4:00 pm, Quigley Auditorium

The next generation’s values and priorities are challenging traditional business models, reshaping the future of the workplace, and affecting the current economy. Businesses are rethinking the concept of corporate responsibility as they balance their financial goals with their commitment to social responsibility and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) principles. The Bruce R. Thompson Center for Business and Economics will host the 20th Annual Executive Roundtable, as a three-part event. Participants will discuss the current economic outlook as well as strategies for creating sustainable business models, including the integration of ESG principles, and the ways in which companies can attract and retain top talent from the next generation of workers.

How Have Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Initiatives Affected the Business Landscape?

Panelists in this session will offer their perspectives on the rise of ESG initiatives and the ways in which they have influences business decisions. Topics may include the importance of sustainability reporting, the impact of climate change on business, and the benefits of corporate social responsibility.

Global Economic Outlook: Soft or Hard Landing?

This event will bring together experts in finance, economics, and business to have a timely discussion of the latest trends and predictions for the global economy. Panelists will provide their unique perspectives on the risks, challenges, and opportunities present in their fields and the broader economy. Discussion will center on the factors that would lead to a soft or hard landing in the economy over the near term.

How Has Generation Z Changed the Workplace?

Generation Z is the newest generation entering the workforce. The skills, values, and preferences of this
generation in relation to the workplace are dissimilar from previous generations. Those attending this
event will hear a lively discussion regarding how exactly Generation Z differs and what challenges and
opportunities it brings to employers and employees.

19th Annual Executive Roundtable

Covid-19: From Policy to Practice

Monday, April 4, 2022 – 4:00-5:30 pm – Ford Memorial Chapel – Allegheny College

Covid-19 has been at the forefront of public health concern since the first confirmed U.S. case in January 2020. Since then, the U.S. has experienced more than 79 million cases and 1 million deaths due to the virus. The pandemic and subsequent shutdown contributed to a short recession in early 2020, although the economic recovery has been volatile, and uncertainty persists. The Bruce R. Thompson Center for Business and Economics is hosting the 19th Annual Executive Roundtable to publicly discuss the slew of national and regional guidelines and policies related to the pandemic. The expert panel will discuss the implications of such for public health and the economy.


Dr. Becky Dawson ’00, Associate Professor of Biology and Global Health Studies, Allegheny College
Robert Smith ’73, Executive Chairman of Acutec Precision Aerospace Inc.
Cory Jackson, Controller, Meadville Medical Center
Moderator: Dr. Nicholas Moellman, Assistant Professor of Economics, Winthrop University

Click here to view the 2022 Event on YouTube

18th Annual Executive Roundtable

Business Culture and the #MeToo Movement

Monday, April 8, 2019  – 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm – Ford Memorial Chapel – Allegheny College

2019 Executive RoundtableWhat started as a simple phrase of support for survivors of sexual assault in 2006 has evolved into the viral #MeToo movement that has shone a spotlight on the culture of sexual harassment in some American workplaces. Sexist comments, unwanted sexual advances, and demands for sexual favors have contributed to a culture in which both women and men report lost work opportunities, reductions in income, demotions, and other forms of career impairment. In this roundtable, a group of experts will discuss the #MeToo movement and its impacts on the future of business, jobs, and careers.

Welcome:  Emma Black ’20, CBE Fellow
Introductions:  Jim Mullen, Allegheny College President
Moderator: Jennifer Daurora ’99 , former Director of Operations, McGinnis Sisters Special Food Stores, Allegheny College Trustee

2019  Panel

  • Sarah (Webster) Quinn, Attorney, Steptoe-Johnson
  • Mark Hanson ’83, Senior Vice President, Freddie Mac’s Securitization Division
  • Karen Ubelhart ’77,  Senior Analyst at Bloomberg, Allegheny College Trustee

17th Annual Executive Roundtable

The Opioid Crisis, Business, and the Economy

Monday, April 9, 2018 – 4:00-5:30 p.m. – Ford Chapel – Allegheny College

Welcome:  Samantha Bretz, CBE Fellow
Introductions:  James H. Mullen, Jr., Allegheny College President
Moderator:   Zachary Callen, Assistant Professor of Political Science

2018 Distinguished Panel

  • Dionissi Aliprantis, Ph.D., Senior Research Economist, Federal Reserve of Cleveland
  • Denise Johnson MD, Chief Medical Officer, Meadville Medical Center
  • The Honorable Mike Kelly, U.S. Representative, Pennsylvania 3rd District
  • Elisabeth Smith, President and CEO, Acutec Precision Aerospace

16th Annual Executive Roundtable

The Trump Presidency:  Economic Policy Opportunities and Challenges

Monday, April 3rd, 2017 – 4:00-5:30 p.m. – Ford Chapel – Allegheny College


  • Karen Ubelhart ’77, senior industrials analyst for Bloomberg and a member of Allegheny’s Board of Trustees
  • Martin Pfinsgraff ’77, retired senior deputy comptroller for Large Bank Supervision, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, U. S. Department of the Treasury, and a member of Allegheny’s Board of Trustees
  • Norman Robertson, economic advisor for Smithfield Trust Company and former chief economist for Mellon Bank
  • Jason MacDonald, Associate Professor, Political Science, West Virginia University.

Moderator: Tomas Nonnenmacher, Professor, Dept. of Economics

15th Annual Executive Roundtable

Immigration Policy and Regional Development in Western Pennsylvania

April 4, 2016 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. Ford Chapel on the Allegheny College Campus

Exec Roundtable FlyerThe Center for Business and Economics hosts the Executive Roundtable to address an important issue in business and economics. Few public policy issues in the United States have been as politically contentious and polarizing as the ongoing immigration debate. Americans across the political spectrum and socio-economic strata are sharply divided over what should be done about the 11 million unauthorized immigrants in the country and how, more generally, to redesign our outdated national immigration policy.

Panelists explored questions that are idiosyncratic to local communities and regions across the country. For example: To what extent, for instance, are immigration issues salient for Western Pennsylvania? What is the region’s immigration profile, and how is it different from other regions? Are there unique attributes of Western Pennsylvania that call for a more nuanced approach to immigration? How might restrictive immigration policies affect Western Pennsylvania? Would a more expansive approach to immigration boost or undermine the region’s economy and social cohesion? Is there any role for local/regional public-policy makers, the organized business sector and economic development agencies in the immigration debate?

View 15th Annual Executive Roundtable video.

14th Annual Executive Roundtable

Higher Education and the Future of the American Dream

April 13, 2015

For decades, higher education has been the cornerstone of the modern American dream, as millions of Americans – rich and poor – have achieved a better life through the power of a college degree.  Educational opportunity has been weakened in recent years, however, as state and federal funding have been slashed, tuition costs continue to rise, public K-12 schools fail and working-class incomes have stagnated.  All of these factors have made it difficult – if not impossible – for many students to successfully complete a four-year degree.  How we collectively deal with these issues will be vital in shaping the future economic prosperity of our country.

Moderator: Russ Ormiston, Assistant Professor of Economics at Allegheny College


Molly Broad, President, American Council on Education
Andre Perry ’93, Founding Dean of Urban Education, Davenport University
Felice Nudelman ’80, Chancellor, Antioch University
Jose Luis Santos, Vice President of Higher Education Policy and Practice, The Education Trust

View 14th Annual Executive Roundtable video.

13th Annual Executive Roundtable

The State of Work: The Future of Good Jobs in Western Pennsylvania

March 31, 2014

In the midst of a national “wageless recovery,” the Roundtable focused on a number of key questions: With recent gains by local manufacturers, what can be done to return the region to its status as a manufacturing powerhouse?  With state legislators debating the potential implementation of a state right-to-work law, what is the role of labor unions in creating and protecting “good” jobs?  As local firms grapple with skill shortages in critical positions, what can be done to train and develop the area’s workforce to meet the needs of employers?  How will national regulatory – and local hospital and insurance – changes affect  employment in the region’s health care industry and the economy generally?  What is the potential wage and employment impact of the natural gas reserves in the Marcellus Shale?

Moderator: Russ Ormiston, Assistant Professor of Economics at Allegheny College


Bill Adams ’89, Senior Counsel, Labor, Employment and Benefits, PPG Industries, Inc.
Stephen Herzenberg, Ph.D., Executive Director, Keystone Research Center
Silas Russell ’07, Government Affairs and Legislative Director, SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania
Joy Sherry ’78, Director of Human Resources, Ainsworth Pet Nutrition

View 13th Annual Executive Roundtable video.

12th Annual Executive Roundtable

The Debt Alarm: Does America Face A fiscal Crisis?

April 8, 2013

Few public policy issues have generated as much controversy as the burgeoning U.S. deficits and debt as dramatized by the recent “fiscal cliff” debate.  Opinions on the related issue differ among economists, policy makers and politicians across the ideological spectrum.  Some have argued that Federal debt and deficits pose long-term socio-economic and political dilemmas for the U.S: that current levels are unsustainable, take up resources that would have been invested in America’s future, crowd out resources that are needed for investments in the economy, and reduce the ability of the U.S. to act decisively on global issues.  Others have claimed that debt and deficits arising from the economic crisis and a sluggish recovery can actually expand the country’s future well-being by increasing current employment, investment and resource utilization.

Moderator: Don Goldstein, Professor of Economics at Allegheny College


Gus Faucher, Senior Economist, The PNC Financial Services Group
David J. Malone ’76, President and CEO, Gateway Financial
Susan Offut ’76, Chief Economist, Government Accountability Office (GAO)
Sean Snaith ’89, Professor of Economics and Director, Institute for Economic Competitiveness, University of Central Florida

11th Annual Executive Roundtable

Pennsylvania’s Shale Gas: Economic Boon or Environmental Disaster?

April 2, 2012

The Roundtable focused on the Pennsylvania boom in exploiting the Marcellus Shale as a source of natural gas, along with prospective development of other deep natural gas shales.  While some perceive the Marcellus and similar formations as solutions for the region’s energy and economic challenges, others express concern about the long-term effects of fracking on aquifers, ecosystems and community life.

Key questions included: What is the magnitude of the Marcellus Shale as a source of energy?  What are some of the basic scientific and technical issues associated with exploration and processing of natural gas from the shale?  What are the potential economic benefits and risks?  What are the implications for the environment and local communities?  To what extent might regulation reconcile the economic benefits and environmental costs, and what sort of regulatory framework would be needed? The video may be viewed here.

Moderator: Rachel O’Brien, Chair, Department of Geology at Allegheny College


Abrahm Lustgarten, Journalist, ProPublica
Arthur Stewart ’80, Managing Member, D&I Silica, LLC
John Walliser, Vice President, Legal and Governmental Affairs, Pennsylvania Environmental Council
Roger Willis ’80, President, Universal Well Services

10th Annual Executive Roundtable

Profits and Progress:  Can Business Heal the World

April 2, 2011

The Roundtable explored the role of American corporations and financial institutions as global citizens, with its starting point the challenge posed by the United Nations through its “Millennium Development Goals,” . . . that institutions and decision-makers in developed countries make great strides toward ending world hunger and poverty and promoting health, education and environmental sustainability.” With a focus on corporate social responsibility and social impact investing, the Roundtable addressed possibilities and constraints for private sector participation in the Millennium Development Goals. The video may be viewed here.

Moderator: Chris Allison ’83, Allegheny Trustee, Entrepreneur in Residence and Board of Visitors Member, CEO, Tollgrade (ret.)


Scott Budde, Head of Global Social & Community Investing, TIAA-CREF
Jennifer Daurora ’99, Allegheny Trustee, Board of Visitors Member, Business Development Director, McGinnis Sisters
Gary Elliott ’72, Vice President for Corporate Marketing, Hewlett-Packard
Sam Moss, Managing Director (ret.), Gray Ghost Ventures, LLC

9th Annual Executive Roundtable

The Current State of Entrepreneurship in America

April 12, 2010

Featured topics during this Roundtable included: what defines an entrepreneur; personal entrepreneurial journeys’ sources of innovation and ideas; the growing difficulty in raising start-up capital; how to prosper in tough economic times; and the impact of rising health care costs.

Moderator: Chris Allison ’83, Allegheny Trustee, Entrepreneur in Residence and Board of Visitors Member, CEO, Tollgrade (ret.)


Lisa Frankovitch, Director of Corporate Partner Strategy, Adams Capital Management
Kyle Gillman ’82, Creator of start-up First Person Vision, in partnership with Carnegie Mellon University’s robotic vision professors
Mark Hanaway, Vice President and Director of Sales and Marketing, Tech Molded Plastics, Inc.
Mike Rumrill ’83, Co-founder and President, Leader
Eddie Taylor ’87, President and CEO, Beverage Dispensing Solutions

8th Annual Executive Roundtable

“Managing Financial Meltdowns in the U.S. Economy: Lessons from the Past”
March 30, 2009

A the time of this Roundtable, America’s economy was experiencing one of the most traumatic financial crises in history.  The worst financial crisis since the Great Depression has led to unprecedented levels of home foreclosures, the collapse of major financial institutions, a drastic fall in asset prices, a loss of confidence in the financial markets and uncertainty about the future of the U.S. financial sector.

Roundtable panelists considered question such as: Is the economic crisis a manifestation of the imperfection of U.S. financial markets?  Is it a result of the ineffectiveness of the country’s regulatory agencies?  If so, is the establishment of new regulatory schemes warranted?  Does the global economy need a new financial architecture to head off future crises?  How should the relevant players in the financial markets respond to future crises?  Is “Bailout economics” good economics, both for market stability and “Main Street?”  What should be the financial priorities of the new administration?

Moderator: Chris Allison ’83, Allegheny Trustee, Entrepreneur in Residence and Board of Visitors Member, CEO, Tollgrade (ret.)


Mark D. Hanson ’83, Vice President of Mortgage Funding, Freddie Mac
H. Sean Mathis ’65, Managing Director, Miller Mathis and Company
Greg J. Sorce, Managing Principal, HBK Sorce Financial
Loren Zadecky ’00, Consultant, First Annapolis Consulting

7th Annual Executive Roundtable

“Healthcare Costs: American Business Crisis”
March 31, 2008


David Lagnese ’85, Principal, Towers Perrin
Marcia Metcalfe, Senior Technical Advisor, Freedom From Hunger’s microfinance and Health Project
Rob Smith ’73, President and Owner, Acutec Precision Machining
Stephen Weirich ’81, Medical Director, Free Medical Clinic of Greater Cleveland

6th Annual Executive Roundtable

“Energy Crisis Redux: Implications for American Business”
April 2, 2007

Moderator: Noelwah Netusil, Ph.D. ’86, Professor of Economics, Reed College


Dan Desmond, Deputy Secretary, Office of Energy and Technology Deployment, PA DEP
Calvin Ernst, Founder and General Partner, Ernst Conservation Seeds
Michael Hennessey ‘77, Vice President Great Lakes, CONSOL Energy
Dr. James Mahoney ’67, President, DPL Energy, LLC
John Stilley, President, Amerikohl Mining, Inc.

5th Annual Executive Roundtable

“Privacy and Information Security in the Law and in the Market”
April 3, 2006

Moderator: Tomas Nonnenmacher ’90, Associate Professor and the Andrew Wells Robertson Chair of Economics, Allegheny College


Kathryn Kohler ’79, Assistant General Counsel, Bank of America
Susan Hileman Malone ’74, Chief Deputy Attorney General, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Office of the Attorney General
Jason New ’91, Partner, GSO Capital Partners
Russell Schetroma, Director, Culbertson, Weiss, Schetroma, and Schug, P.C.

4th Annual Executive Roundtable

“Manufacturing in the Heartland: Can We Compete?”
April 4, 2005

Moderator: Earl Adams, Andrew Wells Robertson Professor of Economics, Allegheny College


Gregory Antoun ’73, President, ChipBLASTER, INC.
Kevin Baird ”84, President and CEO, Qualitor, Inc.
Daniel Jepson, President, Jepson Precision Tool, Inc.
Jerome Nelson ’83, Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing, International Steel Group

3rd Annual Executive Roundtable

“The Asia Factor: Trade and Investment with China & Other Asian Competitors”
March 29, 2004

Moderator: Earl Adams, Andrew Wells Robertson Professor of Economics, Allegheny College


Michael S. Bruno, Jr. ’77. Managing General Partner, Stonebridge Partners
Larry G. Sippy, President, Sipco Molding Technologies, Chair, National Tooling and Machining Association
Richard S. Welesko ’78, General Manager, PPG
Karen A. Ubelhart ’77, Equity Analyst, Government of Singapore Investment Corp.

2nd Annual Executive Roundtable

“Crisis of Confidence? Corporate Accountability and the Stock Market”
March 31, 2003

Moderator: Don Goldstein, Associate Professor of Economics, Allegheny College


Thomas Sung Chen ’89, Managing Director Head Diversified Financial Services, Banc America Securities LLC
Barrie G. Christman ’74, President and Chief Executive Officer, Principal Bank
Kimberly Tillotson Fleming, President, Hefren-Tillotson, Inc.
Robert A. Marchman ’80, Vice President, New York Stock Exchange, Division of Enforcement

1st Annual Executive Roundtable

“Recession and Terror: A New Business Climate?”
April 22, 2002

Moderator: Stephen Onyeiwu, Assistant Professor of Economics, Allegheny College


Dr. Carol Alonso ’63, Assistant Associate Director of National Security, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
William S. Demchak ’84, Vice-Chairman and CFO, PNC, Inc.
Martin Pfinsgraff ’77, Chief Operating Officer, iJET Travel Intelligence, Inc.
Dr. Roger W. Tufts ’76, Senior Economic Advisor, Department of the Treasury