General Sessions



Robin Crow

Robin Crow, Innovative Guitarist and Owner of Dark Horse Recording
Robin Crow certainly experienced his share of challenges and successes on his journey from struggling musician to lucrative entrepreneur. After a 20-year career as a solo guitarist and national recording artist, Crow found himself turning 40 with an empty bank account and a family to support, as he was dropped from RCA Records. But within a few years, he had completely turned around his financial life by creating Dark Horse Recording, a studio complex that he built from the ground up on his farm outside Nashville. This studio has set the gold standard for excellence in the recording industry and is home to the likes of Neil Diamond, The Judds, Faith Hill and Taylor Swift. With his entertaining stories and relaxed style, Crow will inspire you to break free of self-imposed barriers to achieve your personal goals and enrich your life.



Jeannette Walls

Jeannette Walls, Best-Selling Author
Jeannette Walls is the author of The Glass Castle, a powerful memoir that has been on The New York Times best-seller list for over two years, with movie rights being optioned by Paramount. The book details her life growing up in extreme poverty and describes the unimaginable obstacles she faced. From the desert of the Southwest to the mountains of West Virginia to her parent’s homelessness in New York City, Walls’ account of an impoverished life is a compelling and moving first-person testament to surviving poverty. Walls will share anecdotes from her life with an inspiring message about confronting your past and facing your fears. After hearing her story of triumph, you will walk away with a positive attitude toward the challenges you face in your own life.



Erik Wahl

Erik Wahl, Synthesizer of Art and Business
Erik Wahl is a recognized artist and speaker who has inspired businesses all over the world to transcend mediocrity by tapping into creativity. He founded The Wahl Group, a consulting firm specializing in helping organizations identify and implement breakthrough thinking to achieve extraordinary results. Wahl’s special blend of warmth, humor, and experience helps audiences identify their unchallenged road blocks to success. Discover how you can sharpen your own creative skills and identify a personal style for inspiring yourself, and others, to rethink vision and purpose. Wahl will conclude his inspiring presentation with a live, dynamically choreographed painting that will leave you in awe.



Blake Mycoskie

Blake Mycoskie, Founder of TOMS: Shoes for a Better Tomorrow
Even at an early age, Blake Mycoskie showed an uncanny ability to change need into opportunity, and by age 30, he had started five successful businesses. He also competed on the CBS’ hit globe-trekking reality show, “The Amazing Race,” coming within four minutes of the $1 million prize. But it was during his later travels through South America that his life was forever changed. Inspired by the design of an Argentine shoe—and the children living in poverty throughout the country—Mycoskie founded TOMS: Shoes for a Better Tomorrow on a simple premise: for every pair purchased, TOMS will give an additional pair of shoes to a child in need. Since the first Shoe Drop, TOMS has given over 70,000 pairs of shoes to children in need around the world and plans to give over 300,000 pairs in the next 12 months. In honor of his ANC speaking engagement, Mycoskie will donate 1,000 pairs of shoes in SNA’s name.

ANC 2009 Sponsors*
Top Sponsors
  • Barilla Pasta
  • ConAgra Foodservice
  • Fruit 66
  • General Mills Bakeries & Foodservice
  • Gossner Foods
  • Horizon Software International
  • IZZE Beverage
  • J.T.M. Food Group
  • J & J Snack Foods
  • Kraft Foods
  • Kellogg’s Food Away From Home
  • Land O’Lakes
  • Mrs.T’s Pierogies
  • PepsiCo Foodservice
  • Pierre Foods
  • Schwan’s Food Service
  • SFSPac Food Service Sanitation Systems
  • Simplot
  • SoBe Lifewater
  • Solae
  • The Switch Beverage Company
  • Vulcan and Wolf

GEM Club Contributors - Ruby Club
GEM Club Contributors - Pearl Club

*As of May 4, 2009