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As the ROMBA Conference turns twenty it will begin its multi-year transformation into an association for all LGBTQ MBAs - students and professionals alike.

This will first be experienced at the ROMBA Conference, which going forward, while continuing to have a student focus, will now also have content specifically designed for professional/alumni attendees. 

The inaugural LGBTQ MBA Professional Day, a new track of programming designed for professionals who have obtained their MBAs that we hope will serve as a first step toward making Reaching Out truly a career-long association for our community. 

What can you expect at the Professional Day?  


9:30 AM - 11:00 PM


Welcome & Opening Plenary Panel: Our Role in CEO Action

Numerous forces, including demographic, political, and social change; evolving ethnic cultures; economic and business opportunities; and globalization, are motivating CEOs and senior executives to challenge decades-old conventional thinking, sharpen the rationale governing corporate Inclusion and Diversity programs, rethink how these programs are implemented, how they relate to business objectives and how they are evaluated. The panelists will speak to their own experiences leading Inclusion and Diversity change inside their companies. They will also “look around the corner” and identify one or two open questions, emerging challenges or possible unforeseen opportunities (for example, those offered by the rapid advance of information technology) that they anticipate focusing substantial amounts their time during the coming years. Attendees can contribute, regardless of seniority or function and how LGBTQ MBA alums, regardless of function, responsibility or seniority can contribute. The panel will then turn its focus to a new, collaborative initiative of 175 leading companies, the CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion (CEO Action).

In Partnership with


9:30 AM - 11:00 PM


The Importance of Role Models and Role-Modeling (Presentation Format)

Despite much global progress around LGBT+ inclusion, significant obstacles still remain for LGBT+ professionals in the workplace. For example, 75 countries still criminalise homosexuality and, even in more liberal societies, there are still some people who do not feel comfortable to be out in their personal and/or professional lives. This should not still be the case in 2017.

Role models are key to challenging the assumption that you cannot be out and successful in business. OUTstanding highlights Role models who are inspiring the next generation of business leaders and encourage companies to use their far-reaching voices for good. We also support future leaders to find their voices and step into the role model positions because we know that by recognising and celebrating the impact of those who are leading the charge we will continue to inspire both businesses and individuals to drive LGBT+ inclusion forward.

In this session we will delve deeper into why LGBT+ role models are crucially important for individuals and for businesses and will provide attendees with key takeaways on what they can do to become role models of the future.

In Partnership with

Living an Extraordinary Life (Workshop Format)

Don’t settle! An extraordinary life requires a different mindset and skill set: Extraordinary Career, Extraordinary Mind and Cognitive Skills, Extraordinary Entrepreneurship, & Extraordinary Productivity. Stever Robbins will take alumni & professional participants through a workshop focusing on these areas using his TED Talk as a model.

Facilitated by Stever Robbins


12:45 PM - 1:45 PM


Whether you feel tied to the city you were born in, the state where you went to school, or where you currently live, regional connections are important. Our networking lunch in the lobby is set aside for you to learn more about who's in your area and to build stronger networks amongst members in Reaching Out's regional chapters.


2:00 PM - 3:00 PM


Both the student & professional attendees at the ROMBA Conference come from all walks of life and bring with them a myriad of experiences. This plenary session, which is designed to bring together both Professional Day & traditional ROMBA Conference attendees, will be delivered in short-form TED-style talks from alumni will illuminate some extraordinary life lessons that you may benefit from hearing. Following these talks, the ROMBA Conference Competitions and Friendfactor Competition winners will be awarded a "big" check.

Sponsored by


3:15 PM -4:30 PM


Making Work-Life Balance Work for Us (Panel Format)

With all of the buzz about making the workplace more family friendly and advocating for equal pay, how do we make sure LGBTQ professionals don't get left behind in that conversation? What are the realities of balancing work and family for LGBTQ professionals and how are they different? Join this session to brainstorm how to make work-life balance and family leave work for all of us.

TBA Session

We're finalizing the details of this fourth breakout session with one of our community partners and will announce the details in the coming weeks.


5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


This time block is dedicated for schools/clubs to host their own events for their LGBTQ MBA alumni and students joining us for the 20th ROMBA Conference and the evening 20th ROMBA Gala Celebration.  If your school would like to host an event on site or would like your event listed in the official program, please contact Jordan Summers.


7:00 PM - 8:00 PM


The 20th ROMBA Gala starts now! Kick off the celebration with a libation at the open-bar reception, sponsored by The Danaher Corporation exclusively for Gala ticket holders.

Sponsored by


8:00 PM - 10:00 PM


Join us as we acknowledge the past, appreciate the present, and look to the future of ROMBA at the closing of our 20th Conference! This ticketed dinner event, sponsored by The Boston Consulting Group, will recognize the alumni, schools, and companies who have played a critical role in shaping what the ROMBA Conference and the Reaching Out organization are today. Afterwards, sit back and enjoy as we go 360°with our keynote speaker, Anderson Cooper!

Sponsored by