Alliance Annual Meeting

2018 Family Business Alliance Annual Meeting

The Family Business Alliance was formed in 2003 to bring together directors of university-based family business programs. There are approximately 50 centers throughout the United States and Canada who are affiliated with the Family Business Alliance. Each year, the Alliance hosts an annual 2-day meeting at one of the locations of our participating members. This year will be our 16th annual meeting. Attendees include directors, program managers, university officials and key stakeholders. The goal of the meeting is to bring together the very best family business programs and centers in North America and draw the best from research, expertise, networking, and practice for the benefit of family businesses. While in each region, we also have the opportunity to visit with local family businesses and leaders.


2018 Family Business Alliance – 16th Annual Meeting
June 20-22, 2018

Wednesday, June 20

Family Business Roundtable, Pre-conference

9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Breazzano Center, room 321 Collegetown

Cornell Family Business Scholars Roundtable

A Roundtable of lively discussion and debate regarding the “Future of Family Business”

Cornell Family Business Scholars and Alliance members invited

For the full schedule, click here

6:00 – 9:00 pm

Johnson Art Museum

Welcome dinner and reception – Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art

Special activity – Cornell Chimes Concert (registration required)

  • From 6:00 – 6:15, climbing 161 steps is required.

Thursday, June 21

2018 Family Business Alliance meeting – Day 1

7:00 – 8:00 am Wakeup with Yoga – Arts Quad Walking Tour – Guided Campus Walk

 8:00 – 9:00 am

Sage Hall Atrium


 9:00 – 10:30 am

Sage Hall, room B06

Welcome message:

Mark W. Nelson, PhD, Anne and Elmer Lindseth Dean, Professor of Accounting

Dann Van Der Vliet, Smith Family Business Initiative:

Family Business – Where Have We Been, Where Might We Go?

 10:45 – 11:50 am

Sage Hall, room B06

 Succession Planning and Center Preparedness

12:00 – 1:15 pm

Sage Hall Atrium


After lunch: The story of Vassilaros and Sons Coffee, shared by Stefanie Kasselakis Kyles, CEO. Vassilaros & Sons Coffee serves over 5 million cups of coffee a week and is celebrating its 100th year in business in 2018.

1:30 – 2:45 pm

Senior staff / Directors

Center Financial Models –

How do we define success (and make money)?

Program assistants/coordinators

Roundtable –

Best Practices, Shared Challenges

3:00 – 4:00 pm

Sage Hall, room B06

The Best of Programs, Speakers, and New Offerings

5:00 – 9:00 pm

Dinner and off-site activity: Family Business Winery Tour at Buttonwood Grove Winery, Romulus, NY

Board bus at 5:00 in front of Statler Hotel 

Friday, June 22

2018 Family Business Alliance meeting – Day 2

7:00 – 8:00 am Wakeup with Yoga – Arts Quad Walking Tour – Cascadilla Gorge Trail

 8:00 – 9:00 am

Breazzano Center, room 103


9:00 – 10:00 am

Breazzano Center, room 223

Family Business Hacks: Quick Tips and Tools of the Trade – Sourcing Wisdom from our Crowd

10:15 – 11:15 am

Members Only

Tools for Awareness, Engagement & Education

If Members Aren’t Your Thing…

Student, Alumni & Parent Engagement

 11:30 – 12:15 pm

Breazzano Center, room 223

 Burning Questions, Unfinished Business

 12:15 – 1:00 pm

Breazzano Center, room 103


 1:00 – 2:00 pm

Breazzano Center, room 223

 Awards, Galas, and Celebrations, Oh My!

2:00 – 2:30 pm

Breazzano Center, room 223

Kick off to 2019 hosted by … the Family Business Alliance, Grand Rapids, MI,

3:00 – 9:00 pm Conference concludes – free time for activity or departure

Saturday, June 23

Post Conference Trips – optional

11:00am – 9:00pm

Watkins Glen, NY

Please inquire with Babatunde

Cooperstown, NY

Please inquire with Dann



We have special rates for those staying in Ithaca during the Annual Meeting at the Hotel Ithaca and The Statler Hotel. When registering, please indicate that you are with the “Family Business Alliance Conference” block to receive special pricing. **Please make your reservations by May 18, 2018 in order to be included in the  room block and to receive the special rate.**

Room in The Hotel Ithaca

The Hotel Ithaca

Address: 222 S. Cayuga St,
Ithaca, NY 14850
Phone: (607) 272-1000 ext 3195

The Hotel Ithaca is located near the Ithaca Commons and will require a bus ride to campus.

Room in Statler Hotel

Statler Hotel

Address: 130 Statler Drive,
Ithaca, NY 14853
Phone: (607) 254-2500

The Statler Hotel is located in the heart of campus, within walking distance to all meetings and activities.


Cornell University Campus Map

Need to find your way to the next activity? Go to Cornell Maps to help you find your way around campus.

If you have any questions about the conference, please do not hesitate to contact our office.

Babatunde Ayanfodun, Institute Coordinator

607-255-1369 |