2021 Super Regional Virtual Conference
Session Descriptions

Friday, January 15, 2021
Opening Session & Keynote Presentation | 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm ET

Join us for this powerful keynote presentation by entrepreneur owner, Monique Greenwood. Her dynamic story and entrepreneurial journey is a great kickoff for our 2021 Super Regional Virtual Conference experience. 

The National Society of Minorities in Hospitality is truly honored to welcome its Keynote Presenter, Monique Greenwood, to kick-off its very first Super Regional Virtual Conference. This is a must-attend session! Come hear and learn from her powerful story.


A master multi-tasker on a mission, Monique Greenwood is the former Essence magazine editor-in-chief, who took the hospitality industry by storm. Launched in 1995, Akwaaba Bed & Breakfast Inns is her impressive collection of five historic B&Bs in Brooklyn, New York; Cape May, NJ; Washington, DC; Philadelphia, PA; and the Mansion at Noble Lane, a boutique resort on a 22-acre former Woolworth estate in Pennsylvania’s Poconos Mountains. All ranked “five stars” on Trip Advisor and selected the winner of The Travel Channel’s Hotel Showdown, Akwaaba’s inns attract guests from all over the world who get spoiled by the company’s old-fashioned graciousness and modern-day amenities. Yes, you’ll find wireless internet and smart TVs, but there are also candlelit bubble baths with rose petals. When guests checkout, Monique’s goal is that they leave pampered and poised to live their best lives.


That mission has been evident in every aspect of Monique’s professional career, from leading the nation’s largest lifestyle magazine for Black women to authoring the best-selling book Having What Matters: The Black Woman’s Guide to Creating the Life You Really Want (Harper Collins), to purchasing a block with her husband in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, and developing an upscale retail strip featuring eateries and shops owned and operated by neighborhood people of color.


A first-generation college graduate, Monique earned her Bachelor of Arts degree, magna cum laude, from Howard University’s School of Communications in her hometown of Washington, D.C. The community builder and avid advocate for small businesses recently served as the inaugural John H. Johnson Endowed Chair of Entrepreneurship at Howard. Married to Glenn Pogue for 31 years, the two have a 29-year-old daughter, Glynn, whom they consider to be their best work. The family, along with their award-winning Akwaaba hospitality company, where the world got to see the wonder of Monique weekly in the privacy of their homes.


Workshop Session A | 1:00 pm - 1:45 pm ET

Breakout I: You're on Mute: Finding Your "Normal" in a Virtual World

As virtual becomes the new normal, it’s more important than ever to ensure your at-home work habits keep you productive and feeling balanced.  During this session, we’ll discuss how to best plan your day, arrange your space, and continue to build community while connecting virtually. 

Breakout II: "Boss Up": Taking Ownership of Your Personal Brand

The most important brand you will ever market is your own. Become your own ambassador by learning what makes you unique in the marketplace and positioning yourself for the jobs you truly want. This session will cover both in-person and online personal branding; so, you’ll be ready to network with confidence.


Breakout III: Mental Health is a Flex

According to a recent study, 92% of millennials shared that the coronavirus pandemic has had a negative impact on their mental health.  The stress of prolonged isolation, changes in routine, internships and job offers on pause is compounded by the uncertainty of what’s to come.  Our mental health expert is here to take your questions and offer strategies on how you can set reasonable expectations and prioritize your mental and physical health.

Phill Hampton is a well-respected Behavioral Health Care Professional, practicing Psychotherapist, and Motivational Speaker. Throughout his 19-year career in the behavioral health field, he has worked relentlessly to help those suffering from clinical, life-debilitating conditions specifically related to anxiety, depression, anger management, and post-traumatic stress disorder. He has also been a staunch advocate for increasing public awareness surrounding behavioral health issues and advancing public policies that positively impact those affected by illnesses and disorders.

Phill is the Owner of Hampton Wellness Center, PLLC based in Arlington, Texas, and contributes as a Psychotherapist where he assists a diverse range of clients seeking treatment options through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Solution-Focused Brief Therapy, Christian-based counseling, and Motivational Interviewing modalities.

Phill holds his Master of Social Work (MSW) from Grambling State University, is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Certified Case Manager, Substance Abuse Professional, and Life Coach. He is also currently pursuing a certification from the Beck Institute in Anxiety, Depression, and Personality Disorders.


Breakout IV: Overcoming a Crisis: The Lessons 

The class of 2008 had the unfortunate distinction of entering the workforce during the aftermath of a financial crisis. This experience forced them to adapt to change and build resiliency.  Our panel of industry professionals and NSMH alumni will offer the lessons they learned and how the experience has helped them endure the current industry disruption.


Regional Spirit Break | 4:35 pm - 4:50 pm ET

Regions, we want to hear from you. Come and give us a shout out at the Regional Spirit Break session.


Workshop Session B | 2:05 pm - 3:05 pm ET

Breakout I: Platinum Industry Partner Workshop: Hilton

Join Hilton representatives for a talk regarding being able to adapt to changing environments, taking on new challenges, and being flexible in making adjustments. We will share tips on how to highlight adaptability skills on a resume and interview, and how to improve these skills. Additionally, we will discuss the opportunities in being flexible to expanding your skillset to industries outside of your current scope. 


Breakout II: Platinum Industry Partner Workshop: Hyatt

At Hyatt, diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) are at the core of our purpose, to care for people so they can be their best.  As a purpose driven company, the social reckoning around race that began this summer within the United States was a call to action for us to do more. Join us as we discuss our response to the murder of George Floyd, our commitment to driving meaningful change, and how you can demonstrate ally behaviors within your workplace.   


Breakout III: Industry Partner Workshop: Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts 

What exactly are the Hotel's looking for? How have we had to pivot? How have recruitment strategies changed? And what can I look forward to?
As the industry re-imagines service, safety, and security, one this still remains; the people. Join us as we discuss ways to stay motivated, how to get your foot in the door, and what types of pivot moves propel you into the career, in the industry, we have all grown to love.


Breakout IV: Industry Partner Workshop: Aramark

Speaker: Allan Fernandes, VP, Global Risk Control

Check out our Industry Partner, Aramark, in their hosted session. “Knitting the Globe–One Stitch at a time” is a personal vision that Allan Fernandes has been inspiring across the globe over the past 14 years.  Allan is currently Vice President, Global Risk Control, and he oversees the safety/risk control operations across the globe. Plan to attend this important session with Aramark.


Mid-Day Check-In | 3:05 pm - 3:20 pm ET

Don't miss out on key announcements and important NSMH information. Be sure to join us to connect and for key updates.


Lunch (On Your Own) / Networking | 3:20 pm - 3:50 pm ET

Workshop Session C: Industries Reimagined | 3:50 pm - 4:35 pm ET

Breakout I: Meetings Modified: The Future of the Events Industry

The prediction is that meetings and events will look and feel different in a post-COVID world. What are the changes we should expect and how can emerging leaders prepare for them?  From virtual events to hybrid events and everything in between, we will focus our discussion on how the events industry is evolving and preparing for recovery. 


Breakout II: Finding the Balance Between Service and Safety

Throughout the pandemic, hospitality professionals have faced the task of delivering on service expectations while ensuring public safety.  Our panel of operations leaders will share the creative solutions they’ve implemented and how they continue to adapt to ongoing restrictions and social distancing.


Regional Spirit Break | 4:35 pm - 4:50 pm ET

Come for laughter and competition as our Regions compete for bragging rights!


Workshop Session D: Rising Where You Are | 4:50 pm - 5:35 pm ET

Breakout I: Capitalizing on the Local Community

Join us for a discussion with our featured entrepreneur, Charisse McGill, founder of Lokal Artisan Foods. An alum of Temple University, Charisse resigned from her day job two years ago and opened her French Toast Bites stand in the middle of Philadelphia. Since that time, she has opened three semi-perm seasonal retail locations, brought her signature trademarked spice blend to market, and has participated in over 180 days of events. On July 17, 2020, Charisse became the first Black woman to own and operate a food establishment in Spruce Street Harbor Park.  In November 2020, she became the first Black woman in the state of Pennsylvania to have her own craft beer through a collaboration with Doylestown Brewing Co.

Breakout II: Is Hospitality Still Worth It? (Yes, Of Course!)

Entering the hospitality industry now can seem like a daunting decision, but adversity also creates opportunity. Learn what makes our industry so resilient and what your future can look like within it. Opportunities are closer than you might think!

Breakout III: I is for Inclusion

Inclusion means more than adding people to a group or being picked for a team.  Within the workplace, inclusion is a sense of belonging, honoring diversity, and responding to individual needs.  Our group of diversity professionals will explain their company’s strategies and your role in supporting inclusion within our industry.


End of Day Remarks | 5:40 pm - 5:55 pm ET

NSMH Networking & Stand Up Comedy Show | 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm ET

Be sure to be present as we wrap up the first day with great laughs! NSMH is pleased to present comedian, Jessica It's All Good.

Jessica It's All Good is a comedian who has a zest for entertaining. Jessica has performed all over the country and on the sea as well. She has produced several one-hour comedy specials in Georgia and produced a special in Hollywood as well. Her college comedy shows have been as far North as New York and as far South as the Carolinas as well as reaching the Midwest.

Be sure to attend our very first stand-up comedy hour!



Saturday, January 16, 2021
General Session & Featured Speaker | 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm ET

Join us for Day Two Opening Remarks and another phenomenal plenary session with industry leader, Ash Hanson, of Aramark.

As Chief Diversity & Sustainability Officer, Hanson leads all diversity, equity and inclusion efforts and the strategy and governance of Aramark’s 2025 sustainability plan, which is focused on positively impacting people and the planet for generations to come. Hanson, who joined Aramark in 2002, was named one of the Top 15 Diversity Champions in 2019 by Diversity Global and was recognized as a diversity leader to watch by Black Enterprise in 2016.

She has served in a variety of leadership roles in diversity and inclusion, talent management, organizational development and human resources. A native of India, Hanson worked in the Information Technology and professional service industries in India and Malaysia. She earned her undergraduate degree from University of Madras in Tamil Nadu and a professional coaching certification from Columbia University in New York.

Career Fair & Virtual Interviews | 1:15 pm - 5:00 pm ET

NSMH 101 | 1:15 pm - 2:00 pm ET

The A-Z of NSMH is the focus of this session! Learn the history, mission and vision of the organization. Explore the benefits of NSMH including scholarships, Chapter Awards, Chapter Rewards, candidacy and much more. We’ll take a journey through a year of NSMH and discuss all the things the National Board has planned so far.

NSMH National Board Opportunities | 2:00 pm - 2:45 pm ET

As a student-run organization, the success of NSMH is in your hands. A panel of NSMH National Board alumni will discuss the value of delegates, running for National Office, and how you can personally impact the future of NSMH.


To register for the 2021 Super Regional Virtual Conference & Career Fair, click HERE.