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International Executive Roundtable Series

International Executive Roundtable
IER Lecture with Congresswoman Diana DeGette


The International Executive Roundtable Series, an initiative begun by the Institute for International Business in 1989, is a forum where international executives and government officials meet with university faculty to discuss the international components of the speakers' fields. Through these discussions, we broaden and educate faculty about international business practices and experiences of executives in the global marketplace. Faculty can then pass on real work expertise to their students and also gain valuable research insights. Since its inception, International Executive Roundtables have been expanded to include faculty from Colorado Christian University, Metropolitan State College of Denver, Colorado School of Mines, University of Denver and Community College of Denver.


Schedule of Events

The International Executive Roundtable series will resume in October 2018.

Please contact Melanie Ellison, Program Manager, for more information


Past International Executive Roundtable s


April 25, 2018
Deiadra Swartz, Compliance Officer of Trade Policy, Sanctions & International Affairs, at Jeppesen, speaking on "Trade Challenges in a Changing World"
  • China-U.S. Trade Relations – tough talk, retaliatory tariffs, and its impact on international business
  • Russia, Ukraine, and Cri-me-a River: making sense of the Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act
  • Cuba, A Long Way to Go: close in geography but worlds apart when it comes to trade relations
  • Iran Deal in a World of Uncertainty: post-Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action with an eye toward the future
  • NAFTA Renegotiations: direct and indirect impact on international business

Deiadra Swartz is an enthusiastic compliance officer, world traveler, and recovering attorney. In her current role, Deiadra leads trade policy, sanctions, and international affairs at Jeppesen, a digital aviation and analytics company with offices in 14 countries and global headquarters in Englewood, Colorado. For compliance, Deiadra tracks US and United Nations sanctions, embargoes, and trade restrictions while supporting Jeppesen’s commercial transactions in 229 countries. For trade strategy, Deiadra monitors US foreign policy and trade agreements, maintains trade revenue reports and provides guidance, while focusing on US-China trade relations. In addition to her day-job at Jeppesen, a subsidiary of the Boeing Company, Deiadra shares her passion for global trade with audiences worldwide, teaches at the Rocky Mountain World Trade Center Institute, and serves on the Board of Directors for World Trade Center, and the Ved Nanda Center for International and Comparative Law. As a result of Deiadra’s achievements in these areas, Jeppesen has been nominated for the US President’s E-Award in Export.


April 4, 2018

Colonel David Francavilla, U.S. Army, Retired, speaking on “Political and Cultural Developments in Saudi Arabia: Implications for Business”.

With over 12 tours to Saudi Arabia on behalf of the U.S. government, Colonel Francavilla has navigated the nuances of Saudi Arabia. A discussion on the emerging political and cultural trends that affect doing business in Saudi Arabia, including implications from history and the role of culture and religion. Other topics include trade and economic indicators, US market share, the expat workforce, the “Saudization” of the economy, trade corruption, the Qatar embargo, ISIS implications, and women in the workforce. 

David Francavilla is a retired Army Colonel who has served in Iraq, Afghanistan, and twelve tours in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Korea, and Kosovo. He has served at all levels of command from Rifle Platoon Leader, Company Executive Officer, Division Operating Staff, Company Commander, Battalion Commander, Brigade Commander, and Division Chief of Staff. Colonel Francavilla is currently a Field Consultant for the Department of Veterans Affairs working with local VA Benefits Administration (VBA), National Cemetery Administration, Veterans Health Administration (VHA), and other veteran services organizations. He holds dual master degrees in business administration and strategic studies and a BA in zoology and chemistry. His military education includes the Infantry Officers Advanced Course, US Army Command and General Staff College, and U.S. Army War College.


February 15, 2018

Dr. Kevin MacGabhann, Associate Professor and Associate Dean of International Relations at the University of Strasbourg, addressed “Managing and Leading in a Globally Diverse Environment”.

This International Executive Roundtable is the third in a series of lectures focusing on Global Human Resource Management issues. Last year Devin Fidler, ReThinkery Labs, examined the future of work, and Dr. David Collings, Dublin City University, addressed global talent acquisition. 

Dr. MacGabhann’s lecture emphasized cross-cultural interactions. Dr. Kevin MacGabhann is the Associate Dean of International Relations at EM Strasbourg Business School at the University of Strasbourg, France and Associate Professor in International Management. His research interests include intercultural management, cross cultural training, diversity management, and international education. In addition to his academic interests, Dr. MacGabhann consults in the areas of cross-cultural executive training and intercultural management to multinational companies such as Merck-Milipore, Steelcase, Pierre Lannier, and others. He holds a PhD in management sciences from the University of Strasbourg.


February 8, 2018

Mr. Gundavelli, Founder and CEO of Solix Technologies, Inc., addressed the data driven enterprise and “How A (Analytics), B (Big Data), C (Cloud), and D (Data) will Transform Companies and the Opportunities it Presents”.

Under Mr. Gundavelli’s leadership, Solix Technologies pioneered the concept of Enterprise Data Management, providing the first worldwide infrastructure platform to manage data across all segments of Enterprise Data.  Prior to founding Solix Technologies, Inc., Mr. Gundavelli spearheaded several strategic initiatives in enterprise application areas at CISCO Systems and Arix Corporation. He holds a master’s in mechanical engineering from the University of Oklahoma and a bachelor’s from Osmania University. Mr. Gundavelli is an advisory board member of the Institute for International Business.


January 30, 2018

Mr. Joe Assell, President and CEO of GOLFTEC, addressed “GOLFTEC: A Behind the Scenes Look at the Journey from Start-Up to World Leader”.

As co-founder of GOLFTEC, Mr. Assell has led the company to become the world’s leading provider of golf instruction. GOLFTECH is a fact-based golf instruction system that combines the skills of certified golf coaches with a patented blend of video, motion analysis, impact analysis, and biofeedback technology aimed at helping golfers improve their golf skills. Since its founding in 1995, GOLFTEC has expanded its operations to over 200 GOLFTEC Improvement Centers in almost all major U.S. cities, as well as in Canada, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Korea, and employs more than 700 individuals globally. Mr. Assell shared the challenges that he experienced as this Denver-based company expanded its operations into international markets.

Joe Assell is responsible for overseeing strategy and leads a ten-person senior management team in executing the strategic development and growth of GOLFTEC. For the past 20 years, he has been recognized with numerous awards to include Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year (2008), Colorado PGA Golf Professional of the Year (2015), Golfweek Magazine’s Top 40 under 40, amongst other awards. Mr. Assell earned a BBA in marketing from the Professional Golf Management Program at Mississippi State University. He was awarded the school’s Young Alumni of the Year in 2002 and was recently named one of the Top 100 Graduates in 100 Years from Mississippi State University College of Business.


December 5, 2017

Dr. David Collings, Professor of Human Resource Management and Associate Dean for Research at Dublin City University, addressed “Meeting Talent Needs in Multinational Enterprises: Integrating Global Mobility and Global Talent Management”.


November 7, 2017

Devin Fidler, Principal, of Rethinkery Labs, spoke on the topic of "Rethinking Work."

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