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Key Takeaways: Poole College’s Executive Leadership Series Presenters

The NC State Poole College of Management has lined up two speakers for this fall’s Executive Leadership Series: George Kurian, chief executive officer of NetApp, and Matt Hong, an NC State Poole College alumnus  (’94) and chief operating officer of Turner Sports, a division of Turner and Time Warner. Registration is now open for these two events at our Executive Leadership Series webpage.

Following are key takeaways from our 2016-17 Executive Leadership Series presentations. Podcasts of our prior presentations are available through our Poole College Executive Leadership Series Podcast page on iTunes.


Bill Toler (Class of ’81)

President and CEO, Hostess

Presentation Date: October 26, 2016


  • Leadership is simpler than most think: It’s about inspiring others. We’re all born with some of it in us; it’s how we develop it that determines where we go, what we do.
  • Most important decisions: talent recruitment and development, resource allocation and setting priorities.
  • Be true to who you are.


Mark Costa

Chairman and CEO, Eastman Chemical Company

Presentation Date: September 21, 2016


  • Create a culture of collaboration that engages people to help the company win; combine responsible execution with technical excellence.
  • Be straight and transparent with employees; they will see the value of what they’re doing and that drives innovation.
  • Being Focused. Discover what you’re great at doing and do that; provide the resources needed.


John Replogle

Seventh Generation, President and CEO

Presentation Date: February 15, 2017



  • Choose opportunities that involve people who want to invest in you.
  • Work on your personal mission statement, aligning it with what you value.
  • Have a greater impact in mind. Don’t just think in the short-term.



Brian Hamilton

Sageworks, Chairman and Co-founder

Presentation Date: March 22, 2017



  • Find something that you really like to do … follow your dreams and don’t give up on them.
  • Give yourself some latitude to make mistakes, to fail. I take that to heart.
  • In leadership, you have to grow, prove who you are in the battle field, determine the right business model to impose on a structure at the right time, what data to look at, how to run the company.