Creating Global Connections

Six influential industry leaders experienced in multinational business ventures will share their perspectives on international business at the College of Business’s 41st annual Business Day. This one-day event will include three one-hour keynotes, one panel with three outstanding panelists and a networking section to conclude the day. Below is an overview of our schedule, keynote speakers and panelists.

Presentation Schedule

8:45 – 9:00 a.m.   Opening Remarks | Dean Beth Walker
Lory Student Center Theatre

9:00 – 10:00 a.m.   Keynote Speaker | Horst Meima, President and CEO – VW Credit, Inc.
Lory Student Center Theatre

10:15 – 11:15 a.m.   Keynote Speaker | Nancy Chisholm, Former President – Tyco Retail Solutions
Lory Student Center Theatre

12:25 – 1:15 p.m.   Local to Global Business Panel
Lory Student Center Room 386

1:30 – 2:30 p.m.   Keynote Speaker | Mike Fries, CEO and Vice Chairman – Liberty Global
Lory Student Center Theatre

2:45 – 3:45 p.m.   Meet and Greet Networking Session
Lory Student Center Theatre

Keynote Speakers

Horst Meima – President and CEO, VW Credit, Inc. | 9:00 a.m.

Horst Meima

Horst Meima is the President and CEO for VW Credit, Inc. (VCI), which is a $31 billion financial services company serving the financing needs of Audi, Volkswagen, and Ducati customers. He also serves as the Chairman of the Board for VW Credit Canada, Inc., headquartered in Quebec, Canada. With over 25 years of experience in the financial services industry, Meima has held numerous leadership positions in retail banking, indirect consumer financing, and commercial lending. He most recently served as Executive Vice President and CEO of VCI. Prior to that, Meima served as President and CEO of VW Credit Canada, Inc., President and CEO of Volkswagen Bank USA, and Vice President of Sales and Marketing for VCI.

In 2002, Meima was one of 30 executives selected worldwide to participate in an international executive development program for Volkswagen AG. The program successfully culminated with a presentation to the Volkswagen Board of Directors regarding the optimal production and product strategy for Volkswagen South Africa.

Meima currently serves on the Board of Directors for the American Financial Services Association and the Board of Directors for Junior Achievement of Greater Washington and is a member of the Global Leadership Council for the College of Business at Colorado State University.

Meima is a Colorado State University alumnus, having earned a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1990. He also holds an M.B.A. degree from the University of California, Los Angeles Anderson School of Management.

Nancy Chisholm - Former President, Tyco Retail Solutions | 10:15 a.m.

Nancy Chisholm

Nancy Chisholm is a senior global business leader with over 20 years of experience as an executive with public companies. Her roles have encompassed general management as well as senior functional and operational leadership roles. She has led large businesses and functional organizations both domestically and internationally. Her career highlights include driving profitable growth, transforming businesses, talent development, organizational effectiveness, executing strategic M&A, and innovation management.

Chisholm spent 20 years with Tyco International (acquired by Johnson Controls), most recently as President of Tyco Retail Solutions based in Zurich, Switzerland. Tyco Retail is a $1 billion global business focused on solutions that help retailers operate their stores more safely and efficiently and is the world leader in electronic article surveillance (EAS), RFID inventory visibility, video, and intrusion systems. Chisholm was the senior executive leading this global business, with over 4,500 employees in 70 countries providing solutions for 80% of the world's top 200 retailers. She led the full business enterprise, including direct and indirect sales, marketing, product development/management, manufacturing, and operations support globally across North America, EMEA, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America.

Prior to this, Chisholm served as Vice President, Human Resources for Tyco’s $9 billion ADT Security Solutions global business unit. Preceding this she led ADT’s Western Region in North America as Vice President & General Manager with P&L responsibility for $1.5 billion in revenue across 20 states. Her earlier career roles were operationally intensive and included leading ADT’s North America customer call center operations during a period of significant technology change and rapid acquisition growth.

Chisholm was recognized as a Tyco Chairman’s Award winner and named by Diversity magazine as one of “50 Women Worth Watching.” She was a founding member of Tyco’s Women’s Growth Network, creating an inclusive environment to support the attraction, development, and retention of women as a competitive advantage. She was recently reappointed by former Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and the Colorado State Board of Education to serve on the Board of Trustees for Western Colorado University. Chisholm also serves on the Global Leadership Council for Colorado State University’s College of Business.

Chisholm earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration from Western Colorado University and completed Duke University’s Fuqua School of Management’s Executive Leadership Program.

Mike Fries - CEO and Vice Chairman, Liberty Global | 1:30 p.m.

Mike Fries

Mike Fries is CEO and Vice Chairman of Liberty Global, the largest international TV and broadband company in the world, with operations in 10 European countries and 51 million broadband, video, voice, and mobile subscribers. Liberty Global is recognized as a global leader in entertainment, media, and communications, spearheading gigabit broadband speeds, actively integrating traditional video and OTT platforms, and converging fixed and wireless services with quad play bundles. Annualized full company revenue is $16 billion. The company also owns 50% of VodafoneZiggo, a Dutch joint venture that has 10 million fixed line subscribers and 5 million mobile subscribers.

Fries was a founding member of the management team that launched the company’s international expansion 28 years ago and has served in various strategic and operating capacities since that time. He was appointed CEO of the company in 2005 and serves as a member of its two-person Executive Committee along with Chairman Dr. John C. Malone.

Fries is also Executive Chairman of Liberty Latin America (LLA), a leading broadband and mobile operator in Chile, Puerto Rico, the Caribbean, and parts of Latin America. LLA serves 9 million broadband, video, voice, and mobile subscribers across 20 countries and generates $3.7 billion of annualized revenue. LLA was split off from Liberty Global to focus purely on organic and strategic growth in the region. Fries also serves on the corporate boards of Grupo Televisa and Lionsgate Entertainment.

Fries is an engaged industry and community leader. He serves as trustee for Cable Labs and The Paley Center for Media, and he chairs the board for the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver and the Biennial of the Americas. He is a Digital Communications Governor and Steering Committee Member of the World Economic Forum and a member of Young Presidents’ Organization.

Recognition for his achievements includes EY Entrepreneur of the Year in Media, Entertainment and Communications, Industry Leader of the Year by Digital TV Europe, and inductions into the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame and the Cable Hall of Fame, which recognizes pioneers and leaders in the cable industry.

Fries holds a B.A. from Wesleyan University, where he serves on the Board of Trustees, and an M.B.A. from Columbia University, where he is a member of the Board of Overseers for the Business School.


Ron Bills – Cofounder, Chairman, and CEO, Envirofit

Ron Bills

Envirofit Cofounder, Chairman, and CEO Ron Bills is an innovative thought leader, passionate about using enterprise solutions to solve global social challenges. Building Envirofit’s business since 2005, Bills’s global foresight grew the company from a small startup to a thriving global social enterprise that has brought clean cooking to 10 million people in India, East Africa, West Africa, and Latin America, generating $100 million in revenue.

Bills has led a global team to design, manufacture, and bring 50+ products, accessories, and services for BOP markets to commercial scale. His drive to deliver high-quality products to emerging market consumers at the lowest possible cost has helped to transform the clean cooking industry, earning him recognition as a 2016 Schwab Social Entrepreneur of the Year. Bills has led the evolution of Envirofit’s new SmartGas program, which is revolutionizing access to affordable clean fuel through LPG smart meter technology that allows families to pay as they cook using mobile money.

Before coming to Envirofit, Bills led publicly traded and private sector global business units for multinational companies including Polaris Industries, Yamaha Motor Corporation, and Bombardier and was CEO of Segway.

Patricia Hinnen – Founding CEO, Capital Sisters International

Patricia Hinnen

Patricia Hinnen is the Founding CEO of Capital Sisters International, a nonprofit organization that raises business capital for impoverished women in developing countries by selling zero interest bonds to the general public. Each $1,000 bond finances 10 women’s microloans before the capital is returned to the investors (or reinvested in more loans).

Hinnen has worked in international development for three decades with the U.S. Congress, State Department, and the microfinance industry. Since 1998, she has helped establish seven domestic and international microfinance organizations under the Capital Sisters umbrella, raised $10 million for tens of thousands of microloans in 25 countries, and served as a Microfinance Advisor to the State Department, where she represented the U.S. in the 21-nation Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum for a decade as head of the Women Leaders Network.

In recognition of her longstanding work to promote economic empowerment for women, Hinnen has received a number of prestigious acknowledgements:

  • Global Purpose Prize for Financial Inclusion by AARP/Encore and MetLife Foundation
  • “One of 15 Inspiring Female CEOs that Impacted the World” by Cause Artists
  • Outstanding Women Entrepreneur by World Denver
  • Global Service Award by the Alliance of Professional Women
  • “Who’s Who in Impact Investing” in the Denver Business Journal’s inaugural list
  • Official Delegate to the UN Women’s Conference
  • Impact Investing Leader by the Impact Finance Center

Within the U.S., Hinnen was the Cofounder of Colorado Microcredit, the Micro Business Development Center, and the Colorado Microfinance Alliance. She developed a passion for international development during two tours in the U.S. Peace Corps in west and southern Africa, an overseas post with Congress (Government Accountability Office) where she managed the East European and Soviet portfolio after the fall of the Berlin Wall, and travel to more than 60 countries.

Manoj Sinha - Cofounder and CEO, Husk Power Systems

Manoj Sinha

Manoj Sinha is the Cofounder and CEO of Husk Power Systems, a pioneering rural utility that provides decentralized renewable energy to off-grid and underserved communities. Founded in 2008, Husk Power Systems designs, installs, and operates 25-250kW mini power plants that convert agricultural waste and solar energy into affordable electricity for people in rural India and East Africa. Sinha leads a global team of 250 employees and by 2022, he aims to provide affordable, renewable, and reliable power to over 1 million people in rural areas of India and Africa. Sinha has raised $50 million in equity and debt capital from investors around the world.

Previously, Sinha worked as a Senior Director at S&P Global (formerly McGraw-Hill Financial) in New York City. He led a team of financial analysts to develop and launch risk management analytics for financial institution professionals. Prior to this, he worked as a Senior Design Engineer at Intel Corp in Austin, Texas, where he designed next-generation microprocessors for mobile devices. He holds seven U.S. patents in semiconductor industry for circuit design.

Sinha completed his M.B.A. from Darden School of Business at University of Virginia, his M.S. in electrical and computer engineering from University of Massachusetts Amherst, and his B.Tech from IIT Varanasi.


Lory Student Center Theater