Envisioning the Future

The Al Miller Center brings together distinguished visionary leaders from the business, public, philanthropic and nonprofit sectors to address an issue of national and global importance affecting society, the economy, and the delivery of health, education and human services. The Center seeks to stimulate discussion to foster innovative solutions, promote new public/private partnerships, and create opportunities through technology, innovation and new social ventures.

The Center recognizes the visionary leadership of Al Miller who served as CEO of F·E·G·S for 31 years and chairs the Center’s first symposium.

Ms. Gardner joined the New York State Department of Labor in March 2007 as Associate Commissioner for Labor Affairs. She has worked to strengthen worker protection, labor standards, apprenticeship, and workforce development programs including initiatives to help injured workers return to work in New York State. She has also worked extensively with employers and business organizations throughout the State on programs that help retain and train workers so that business can remain competitive in this challenging economic climate.

Prior to joining the Labor Department, Ms. Gardner worked for 23 years for the New York State AFL-CIO as the Director of Organizing and Community Services. She began her career as a business agent for Service Employees International Union Local 32BJ, representing organized immigrant building service workers in midtown Manhattan. Ms. Gardner is a graduate from Cornell University.

Ms. Gardner has served on a number of boards including the New York State Commission on National and Community Service, the Schuyler Center for Analysis and Advocacy, the Advisory Council of the New York State School of Industrial and Labor Relations, the SUNY Cobleskill College Council, and the Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Central New York.

Daniel Gross is one of the most widely read financial and economic writers working today and is currently the economics editor and columnist for Yahoo Finance. Formerly, he was senior editor for Newsweek, where he wrote the "Contrary Indicator" column and Slate's "Moneybox" column.

Prior to Newsweek, Gross wrote the "Economic View" column in the New York Times, was a contributing writer to New York, and contributed regularly to magazines such as Fortune and Wired. He also served as editor of STERN Business, a semi-annual academic magazine on economics and management published by the New York University Stern School of Business.

Gross graduated from Cornell University with degrees in government and history and holds
an A.M. in American history from Harvard University. He worked as a reporter at The New Republic and Bloomberg News, and has contributed hundreds of features, news articles, book reviews and opinion pieces to over 60 magazines and newspapers. Areas of expertise include: economic and tax policy, the links between business and politics, the rise of the investor class, the culture of Wall Street, and business history. He is the author of four books: "Forbes Greatest Business Stories of All Time", which was a New York Times Business bestseller and a finalist for the Financial Times "Lex" award.

Gross appears frequently in the media. A regular guest on CNBC, MSNBC, and National Public Radio, he has also appeared on CNN, Fox News Channel, The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, Bloomberg Television, C-SPAN, BBC, and others.

Jeffrey A. Joerres is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Manpower Inc. Having joined Manpower in 1993, Joerres served as Vice President of Marketing, and later, as Senior Vice President of European Operations and Global Account Management, in 1999 President and CEO, and in 2001 was named Chairman of the Board.

Joerres has led a transformation of Manpower's business strategy, adding new business lines that have expanded the company's ability to assist clients and candidates in navigating the changing world of work. He leads Manpower's provision of innovative workforce solutions to companies of all sizes worldwide, allowing them to meet the challenges of today's changing business environment. Joerres is a true thought leader within his industry, and a pioneer in emerging markets. He advises domestic and foreign government officials about how to transform their labor markets to compete in the global economy. In 2010, Joerres testified at a hearing of the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee focused on policies to foster economic growth, where he recommended programs and solutions to drive job creation.

Under Joerres' tenure, Manpower has experienced rapid growth, expanding the footprint of the organization to 4,000 offices across 82 countries and territories. His achievements for the company have seen Manpower share value more than triple, and the company has climbed the ranks of the Fortune 500 American companies list. In 2010, Fortune magazine named Manpower as one of the most admired companies in the staffing industry for the eighth year in a row. In 2009, Joerres was named to Institutional Investor magazine's annual list of the best CEOs in America for the sixth time, ranking #1 in the Business & Professional Services category.

Joerres has a bachelor's degree from Marquette University's College of Business Administration and serves on the boards of Artisan Funds, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Johnson Controls and the U.S. Council for International Business.

Ilene H. Lang is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Catalyst, the leading research
and advisory organization working with businesses and the professions to build inclusive workplaces and expand opportunities for women and business.

Her expertise on the advancement of women in corporations and professional firms, corporate boards and governance, workforce demographic trends, the business case for women’s career development, innovative strategies for retaining and advancing women, and work-life effectiveness is often called upon by the media, member companies and firms, and other organizations.

Ms. Lang is broadly recognized as a pioneering female high-tech/Internet executive. She was the founding CEO of AltaVista Internet Software Inc., a subsidiary of Digital Equipment Corporation. Prior to that work, Ms. Lang was Senior Vice President of the Desktop Business Group at Lotus Development Corporation, responsible for a $500 million business.

Ms. Lang was named to the Global Agenda Council on the gender gap at the World Economic Forum, and she is a member of the National Board Development Committee of the Girl Scouts of the USA. She has served on numerous other corporate, private, and nonprofit boards.

Ms. Lang earned an A.B. degree in history and literature from Radcliffe College and an M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School.

James S. Tisch is President and Chief Executive Officer of Loews Corporation. He has been with Loews since 1977. Prior to that he was with CNA Financial Corporation.

Mr. Tisch is Chairman of the Board of Directors of Diamond Offshore Drilling, Inc., and a member of the Board of Directors of CNA Financial Corporation and of Loews Corporation.
He also serves as a director on the board of the General Electric Company.

Mr. Tisch is Chairman of the Board of WNET.ORG, parent of WNET Channel 13 and WLIW Channel 21, and is also a member of the Board of Directors of The New York Public Library. He is a director on the board of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a Trustee of the Mount Sinai Medical Center. Mr. Tisch serves on the Executive Committee of the Partnership for New York City, and is President
and Chairman Emeritus of Federation Employment and Guidance Service (F·E·G·S). He is
past Chairman of the Board of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, past Chairman of the Board of United Jewish Communities, and past
President of UJA-Federation of New York.

Mr. Tisch is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Cornell University where he majored in economics. He holds an MBA with Distinction from the Wharton Graduate School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Alexis Christoforous is a CBS News Anchor and Correspondent, covering business and consumer news for the CBS Television Network. She can be seen on CBS' "The Early Show", "CBS Evening News Weekend", WCBS-TV in New York and over 200 CBS affiliate stations internationally. She is also a contributing business reporter for CBS Radio Network and NewsRadio 880 in New York.

Prior to her position at CBS, Christoforous was the Anchor for the nationally syndicated program "MarketWatch Weekend", which aired exclusively on CBS television stations.

Christoforous began her "business news" career at Bloomberg Television and Radio in
1994 where she anchored the national PBS program "Bloomberg Morning News" and was Bloomberg's first reporter to report live from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Christoforous has covered the major business stories of the past 15 years including the
stock market bull run of the early 1990s and the subsequent internet bubble burst of 2000.
She reported on the economic impact of the September 11th attacks, the resignation of former New York Stock Exchange CEO Richard Grasso and the wave of Wall Street scandals, including Enron, Worldcom and Martha Stewart. Most recently, she has done a series of reports on the credit crisis and the housing recession.

A native New Yorker, Alexis is a cum laude graduate of New York University with a degree in English and Journalism.

Al Miller has defined the art of leadership at F·E·G·S, to the not-for-profit sector, and to the broader community. As Chief Executive Officer, he fostered a sense of shared purpose, ethics, integrity, and business acumen that helped build F·E·G·S into one of the most prominent and respected human services organizations in the United States.

Al joined F·E·G·S in 1963, after having served in the armed forces, completing his graduate work in Area Studies (International Relations and Economics), working for the New York State Department of Labor (Rehabilitation Counselor), and Wall Street. The agency’s budget at that time was $300,000. He became the agency’s Assistant Executive Director in 1968 and assumed the position of Chief Executive Officer in 1976. When he retired in 2007, F·E·G·S had an annual budget of over $240 million, and now serves more than 100,000 individuals and families each year through a system of ten affiliates and subsidiaries in more than 350 locations throughout New York City and Long Island.

He brought together the disciplines of good management, mutual respect, and community building, combining them with a steadfast commitment to “always do what's right” for our clients and our society.

Al is considered one of the country’s foremost leaders in the field of human services. He has chaired and been appointed to many governmental, philanthropic, and voluntary boards, commissions, and advisory councils; lectured at colleges and universities; and provided technical assistance to the business, government, and not-for-profit sectors in the United States, Israel, Argentina, South Africa, Puerto Rico, and Hungary.

2010 Distinguished Leadership Panelists 

Colleen Gardner

Honorable Colleen C. Gardner

NYS Commissioner of Labor
Daniel Gross

Daniel Gross

Economics Editor and Columnist,
Yahoo Finance
Jeffrey A. Joerres

Jeffrey A. Joerres

Chairman and CEO, Manpower, Inc.
Ilene Lang

Ilene H. Lang

President and Chief Executive Officer, Catalyst
James S. Tisch

James S. Tisch

President and Chief Executive Officer, Loews Corporation
Alexis Christoforous

Alexis Christoforous
Symposium Moderator

CBS News Business Correspondent


2010 Inaugural Chair

Al Miller

Al Miller

Executive Consultant, F·E·G·S