William D. Gasser Lecture Series is an annual speaker series aimed at providing thought-provoking and engaging content for students. Typically hosted in the fall, the Gasser Lecture Series invites disruptive entrepreneurs and industry-leading businessmen and women to share their insights on business trends and opportunities.

Upcoming Gasser Lecture Events

Past Gasser Lecture Events

November 11, 2021 - Featuring Bestselling Author and Entrepreneur Suneel Gupta

On November 11, 2021, bestselling author and entrepreneur Suneel Gupta, spoke as the 2021 Gasser Lecture Series speaker and was featured as the RIT Entrepreneurship Conference keynote. Saunders College of Business was proud to be hosting our eighth annual Gasser Lecture Series on November 11, 2021, in Ingle Auditorium at Rochester Institute of Technology. The topic of the keynote speech was "Thinking Like an Entrepreneur: What Entrepreneurs Can Teach Intrapreneurs," and it concluded with a book and poster signing reception in the Fireside Lounge.

November 7, 2019 - Featuring Uber's Meena Harris

Visit our 2019 Gasser Lecture Series page for event details and to register (free but tickets required.)
Meet Meena Harris

On November 7, Saunders College welcomes Meena Harris, Head of Strategy and Leadership of Uber and Founder and CEO of Phenomenal, for the seventh annual Gasser Lecture Series, keynote speaker for RIT's 2019 Entrepreneurs Conference. Meena is also a Commissioner on the San Francisco Commission on the Status of Women, and at Uber, she oversees transformation initiatives across business units to positively impact brand, customer loyalty, and employee engagement. Previously she was a data privacy and cybersecurity attorney at a major global law firm. Last year, Meena launched the Phenomenal Woman Action Campaign, which is a women-powered civic engagement platform.

Check out the photo gallery to view pictures from her presentation and her meet-and-greet. 

October 19, 2018 - Featuring Rent-the-Runway's Jenny Fleiss

Gasser Lecture Series-Jenny Fleiss

On October 19, Saunders College welcomed Jenny Fleiss, CEO and Co-Founder of Jetblack and Co-Founder of Rent the Runway for the sixth annual Gasser Lecture Series, as part of RIT's Brick City Homecoming and Family Weekend. Jetblack is the first portfolio company within Walmart's startup incubator. As CEO and Co-Founder of Jetblack, Jenny leads a team focused on developing highly-personalized, one-to-one shopping experiences. In addition, Jenny co-founded Rent the Runway, a business that has transformed the retail industry by making designer clothing rentals a convenient and accessible luxury experience for millions of women. Jenny has been honored with numerous recognitions including: Inc. Magazine’s “30 Under 30”; Fortune Magazine’s “40 Under 40” and “Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs”; and Fast Company’s “Most Influential Women in Technology”. 

Check out the photo gallery to view pictures from her presentation and her meet-and-greet. 

October 13, 2017 - Featuring NFL's Dawn Hudson

Saunders College of Business proudly hosted the fifth annual Gasser Lecture Series, featuring Dawn Hudson, Chief Marketing Officer at the National Football League (NFL), on October 13. Dawn helped revolutionize marketing and tie-ins with sports organizations. During her 11 years there, Pepsi's sponsorships included NFL and Major League Baseball deals, along with Mountain Dew's support of action sports. From the Joy of Cola to the return of the Pepsi Challenge, her impact on advertising and communications within the beverage industry is legendary. Under her leadership, Pepsi also maintained its status among the most purchased brands in the country. She has had an enormous impact on our lives as consumers, television viewers, and beverage drinkers.

Check out the photo gallery to view pictures from her presentation and her meet-and-greet. 

October 14, 2016 - Featuring Reddit's Alexis Ohanian

Alexis Ohanian

Saunders College of Business welcomed Alexis Ohanian, best-recognized as the co-founder of reddit.com, on October 14, 2016. During his talk in Ingle Auditorium, Alexis encouraged students, faculty, staff and family members to "Think Like a Startup" and to not let your first round of failure bring you down. 

His talk was followed by a book signing of his bestselling book, Without Their Permission, at Saunders College of Business. Alexis graciously answered student's questions about their own startup business and posed for photos with attendees.

View the photo gallery to see pictures from Alex Ohanian's presentation and book-signing reception. 

October 16, 2015 - Featuring Zuckerberg Media's Randi Zuckerberg

Click to view galleryRandi Zuckerberg

Saunders College of Business hosted the third annual, Gasser Lecture Series featuring Randi Zuckerberg, Founder & CEO of Zuckerberg Media. Following her position as Director of Marketing at Facebook, Randi started her own media company and has authored two books. As an entrepreneur who has been on the front lines of social media, she understands the impact of technology has made in our lives and every sector of the business world.

The tech-savvy marketer provided some unexpected advice during her presentation: Zuckerberg makes it her mission to help others balance the use of digital media and devices in our technology-driven lives. View the event photo gallery to see snapshots from her presentation and her book-signing reception.

October 17, 2014 - Featuring Ben & Jerry's Jerry Greenfield

Click to view galleryClick to view video

The second annual Gasser Lecture Series featured Jerry Greenfield, co-founder of Ben & Jerry's Homemade Inc. His visit emphasized the importance of entrepreneurial spirit, social responsibility and a radical business philosophy. Make sure to check out the photo gallery and the video of Jerry's presentation.

October 11, 2013 - Featuring Shark Tank's Daymond John

Daymond JohnClick to view video

Saunders College of Business proudly hosted Daymond John, founder of FUBU and a Shark on ABC's Shark Tank, as the first Gasser Lecture Series speaker.