"Change" is Not a Four-Letter Word, 5/14 at 1:00 PM

AOL was one of the coolest tech companies around – in 1996. But in the early 2000s, losing dial-up customers to DSL and cable, it tried to entice customers to stay by creating more ‘exclusive’ content that could only be accessed with the AOL software. By 2006, however, nearly all AOL content was on the open web and employees were publicly talking about open source and web standards. What happened?

Kimberly Blessing, a long-time web professional and “one web” evangelist, was part of AOL during this time and experienced the organization’s counter-productive fear of change. To counteract it, she appointed herself as change agent and led initiatives to adopt web standards, performance, and accessibility best practices, and to build new publishing tools based on these tenets, which helped the company emerge from its walled garden.

Throughout her career, Kimberly has taken up the change agent mantle and learned valuable lessons about what makes a change initiative succeed or fail. In this keynote, she will empower you to embrace your inner change agent as she shares stories about some of the change efforts she’s been a part of, both successful and unsuccessful.


Mabee Ballroom (Ragsdale Hall)






5-14-2013 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM (1.00 hr)