2023 Wharton Graduation Speakers

Our Graduation speakers bring a diverse range of business acumen and embody the values we strive to uphold each day — innovative thinking, resilient leadership, and global collaboration. 

Wharton Executive MBA Graduation Ceremony – San Francisco

Saturday, May 6, 2023

Wharton 2023 Graduation MBA for Executives Keynote Speaker (West Coast))
Keynote Speaker

Ravi Ahuja, W’92, WG’97
Sony Pictures Television

Ravi Ahuja is Sony Pictures’ Chairman of Global Television Studios and Corporate Development, leading Sony Pictures’ television productions and the studio’s leading India business.  He also oversees Sony Pictures’ Corporate Development and M&A activities.

Sony Pictures Television and its robust global portfolio of studios produce hundreds of award-winning and acclaimed television series around the world, including The Crown, The Boys, Cobra Kai, Better Call Saul, The Last of Us, Outlander, For All Mankind, The Night Agent, The Wheel of Time, Accused, The Blacklist, The Goldbergs, The Good Doctor, Shark Tank, Octonauts, Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy!, Good Morning Football, American Idol, 90-Day Fiancé, and many more.

Since joining Sony Pictures 2 years ago, Ahuja has led several significant M&A transactions for the studio, including the acquisitions of award-winning nonfiction entertainment company Industrial Media, leading UK production company Bad Wolf and VFX company, Pixomondo, the sale of GSN Mobile Games to Scopely, and is currently overseeing the proposed merger between Sony Pictures Networks India and Zee Entertainment Enterprises.

Prior to joining Sony in March 2021, Ahuja was President of Walt Disney Television, which included the ABC Network, ABC News, ABC Owned Stations, Disney Channel, Disney Television Studios, Freeform, FX, Hulu Originals and National Geographic.  He played a central role in merging Disney/ABC Television and Fox Networks following Disney’s acquisition of Fox in early 2019.

Prior to his time at Disney, he served as CFO of the Fox Networks Group, where he oversaw finance, strategy and business development for all its business units: Twentieth Century Fox Television, Fox Broadcasting, Fox Cable Networks, Fox Sports, National Geographic and Fox Networks Europe and Africa, Latin America and Asia.

In his 12 years at Fox, Ahuja formulated and executed on the company’s growth initiatives, including those in streaming and new technology.  He helped to guide the company’s Hulu joint venture for over a decade and spearheaded investments in Roku, Draft Kings and many others. Additionally, Ahuja led the acquisitions of National Geographic Partners, Yankees Entertainment & Sports Network and Sports Time Ohio.  Ahuja is currently on the Board of Directors of Roku, Inc.

Before joining Fox in 2007, Ahuja served as CFO for Virgin Entertainment Group, Inc.  Prior to that, he worked at McKinsey & Company and in investment banking.

Ahuja has undergraduate and MBA degrees from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, W’92, WG’97. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Amrita Sen, W’92, and sons Alec, C’24, and Aiden.

Wharton Executive MBA Graduation Ceremony – Philadelphia

Saturday, May 13, 2023

Wharton 2023 Graduation MBA for Executives Keynote Speaker (East Coast)
Keynote Speaker

Lara Abrash
Chair and CEO, Deloitte & Touche LLP

Lara Abrash is the chief executive officer of the Deloitte US Audit & Assurance (A&A) practice, where she is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the organization, including execution of the quality, innovation, growth, and talent strategies. Recognized as a leader in the public accounting profession’s drive to continuously improve audit quality, Deloitte’s public company audit clients total over 7 trillion USD in market capitalization.

Prior to her current role, Lara served in a number of leadership roles during her career at Deloitte: chief operating officer, national A&A transformation leader, and deputy CEO of the A&A practice. While serving in each of these leadership roles, Lara also maintained significant client responsibilities for the firm’s largest and most complex clients.

As national A&A transformation leader, she was instrumental in pioneering Deloitte’s leading position to transform the audit profession through technology and innovation. Her leadership philosophy is based on her deep understanding of multinational clients in various industries, her leadership roles and experiences, and her passion for advancing innovation and inclusion in the profession. Lara frequently speaks on topics focused on advancing the profession including diversity, equity, and inclusion, the future of work, and tech disruption.

Lara’s leadership extends to her community and other important causes. She is involved with the New Jersey Battered Women’s Service, where she previously served as the treasurer. In addition, Lara’s passions for inclusion and diversity are fueled through her involvement with Girls, Inc., whose mission is to inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold, and the Girls Who Code organization, whose mission is focused on closing the gender gap in technology. Finally, Lara is on the Board of Trustees of the SEC Historical Society and a member of the Financial Accounting Standards Advisory Council, which advises the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) on issues related to projects on its agenda, possible new agenda items, project priorities, procedural matters that may require the attention of the FASB, and other matters as requested by the chairman of the FASB.

Lara is a licensed certified public accountant in New York and New Jersey and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from the University at Albany, State University of New York, and a Master’s of Business Administration from Baruch College.

Wharton Undergraduate Graduation Ceremony

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Wharton 2023 Graduation Undergraduate Keynote Speaker
Keynote Speaker

Brandon Copeland, W‘13
10-Year NFL Veteran, Educator, Public Speaker, RE Developer, and Philanthropist
Copeland Media

Brandon Copeland is a 10-year NFL veteran, financial educator, philanthropist, and real estate developer. Born in Baltimore, MD, he earned a degree in management and entrepreneurship from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, in 2013, while becoming a three-time Ivy League Football champion.

Brandon has played for several teams since entering the NFL, in 2013, building a reputation off the field for this financial advocacy. He is on a mission to democratize access to information, and has shared his message with countless others as a member of CNBC’s Financial Wellness Council, a consultant for Morgan Stanley, a contributing editor for Kiplinger, and has led workshops, webinars, and courses for adults of all ages and his NFL peers.

Brandon has used his production company, Copeland Media, and strategic partnerships to expand the reach of his financial education course to over 90,000 people, while building a nine-figure real estate portfolio. He starred in the top 10 Netflix Series Buy My House.

In 2016, he co-founded Beyond The Basics, Inc., empowering underserved communities to realize their full potential by providing enriching experiences and opportunities aligned with the nonprofit’s three pillars. Copeland’s contributions to the community have been widely recognized, including being awarded the Alan Page Community Service Award and being named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 list. His dedication to financial education, philanthropy, and maximizing his platform and potential to help others achieve their dreams while he chases his own, make him an inspiring role model both on and off the field.

Wharton MBA Graduation Ceremony

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Wharton 2023 Graduation MBA Keynote Speaker
Keynote Speaker

Thasunda Brown Duckett
President and Chief Executive Officer of TIAA

Thasunda Brown Duckett is president and chief executive officer of TIAA, a leading provider of secure retirements and outcome-focused investment solutions for millions of people and thousands of institutions.

She leads a company whose mission is defined by financial inclusion and opportunity – goals and values she has upheld throughout her career. Under her leadership, TIAA is expanding its mission beyond higher education to all Americans saving for retirement.

Before joining TIAA in 2021, she held several key executive roles during a 17-year career at JP Morgan Chase, including CEO of the Consumer Bank and Auto Finance. Earlier in her career, she was a Director of Emerging Markets at Fannie Mae.

Thasunda serves on the boards of NIKE, Inc., Brex Inc., Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, Sesame Workshop, National Medal of Honor Museum, Economic Club of New York, the University of Houston Board of Visitors, and the Dean’s Advisory Board for Baylor University’s Hankamer School of Business. She is also a member of the Executive Leadership Council, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and Jack and Jill of America Inc.

In addition, Thasunda is an appointee to the President’s Board of Advisors on Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), The Business Council Executive Committee, the Business Roundtable and the Committee for Economic Development of The Conference Board.

Thasunda has received a wide array of accolades, including the lists of Most Powerful and Influential Women ranked by Fortune, Forbes, Barron’s, and American Banker, as well as lists of financial influencers published by Money and MarketWatch.

She founded the Otis and Rosie Brown Foundation, in honor of her parents, to recognize and reward people who use everyday means to empower and uplift their community in extraordinary ways.

Thasunda grew up in Texas and lives in Connecticut with her family. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Finance and Marketing from the University of Houston and an MBA from Baylor University.

Past Graduation Speakers


Keynote Speakers

Chike Aguh, WG’12, Chief Innovation Officer at U.S. Department of Labor

Shellye Archambeau, WG’84, Fortune 500 Board Member, Former CEO of MetricStream, Advisor, Author

Alex Gorsky, WG’96, Executive Chairman of Johnson & Johnson

Scott Mills, W’90, CEO and President of BET


Keynote Speakers

Rosalind Brewer, WAM’01, CEO, Walgreens Boots Alliance

Tory Burch, C’88, Executive Chairman and Chief Creative Officer of Tory Burch LLC

Sundar Pichai, WG’02, CEO of Google and Alphabet

Marc Rowan, W’84, CEO of Apollo Global Management, Inc.


In lieu of a traditional, in-person ceremony, the Wharton School saluted the Class of 2020 with 30-minute virtual celebrations.



Jonathan (“Jon”) Gray, C’92, W’92, President and COO, Blackstone

MBA Program for Executives West

Anthony Noto, WG’99, Chief Executive Officer, SoFi

MBA Program for Executives East

David M. Rubenstein, Co-Founder and Co-Executive Chairman of the Carlyle Group


Stacy Brown-Philpot, W’97, Chief Executive Officer, TaskRabbit



Hamdi Ulukaya, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Chobani, LLC

MBA Program for Executives West

Safra Catz, W’83, L’86, Chief Executive Officer of Oracle Corporation

MBA Program for Executives East

F. William McNabb III, WG’83, Chairman of Vanguard


Jeff Weiner, W’92, Chief Executive Officer of LinkedIn



Yuri Milner, Founder of DST Global

MBA Program for Executives West

K. Robert “Bobby” Turner, W’84, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Turner Impact Capital

MBA Program for Executives East

Adam Grant, Saul P. Steinberg Professor of Management at the Wharton School and Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania


Nathaniel “Nat” Snead Turner V, W’08, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Flatiron Health



Ruth Porat, WG’87, Chief Financial Officer of Alphabet

MBA Program for Executives West

Jacqueline Reses, W’92, Capital Lead of Square

MBA Program for Executives East

Anthony Noto, WG’99 (WEMBA 23), Chief Financial Officer of Twitter



Neil Blumenthal, WG’10, and Dave Gilboa, WG’10, Co-Founders and Co-Chief Executive Officers of Warby Parker

MBA Program for Executives West

Josh Kopelman, W’93, Founder of First Round Capital

MBA Program for Executives East

David Pottruck, C’70, WG’72, Chairman of High Tower Advisors



David Rubenstein, Co-Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer of The Carlyle Group

MBA Program for Executives West

Neel Kashkari, WG’02, Former Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury Department

MBA Program for Executives East

Dan Tangherlini, WG’01, Administrator of the U.S. General Services Administration



Andrea Mitchell, Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent for NBC News

MBA Program for Executives West

Inder Sidhu, WG’91, Senior Vice President of Strategy for Worldwide Operations at Cisco Systems

MBA Program for Executives East

Alex Gorsky, WG’96, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Johnson & Johnson



Dr. Mehmet Oz, M’86, WG’86, talk show host and Director of Cardiovascular Institute and Complementary Medicine Program at New York Presbyterian Hospital

MBA Program for Executives

Carol Bartz, Former President and Chief Executive Officer of Yahoo! and Autodesk



Vikram Pandit, Chief Executive Officer of Citigroup

MBA Program for Executives

Laurence M. Baer, President and Chief Operations Officer of San Francisco Giants



Robert Kapito, W’79, Co-Founder and President of BlackRock

MBA Program for Executives

Paul Otellini, President and Chief Executive Officer of Intel Corporation



Muhammad Yunus, Founder of Grameen Bank and 2006 Nobel Peace Prize Winner

MBA Program for Executives

Peter Robertson, WG’71, Chevron Corporation



Jon M. Huntsman, Jr., Governor of Utah

MBA Program for Executives

Art Bilger, Managing Director of Shelter Capital Partners, LLC



Lakshmi N. Mittal, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Arcelor Mittal and Founder of Mittal Steel

MBA Program for Executives

Patrick T. Harker, Dean of The Wharton School



Leonard Lauder, W’54, Chairman of Estee Lauder Companies

MBA Program for Executives

Kenneth Moelis, W’80, WG’81, President and Joint Global Head of Investment Banking for UBS Investment Bank



Alan Greenspan, Chairman of the Board of Governors for the Federal Reserve System

MBA Program for Executives

David Pottruck, C’70, WG’72, President and Chief Executive Officer of Charles Schwab