Ken Chenault

Ken Chenault
Ken Chenault
Chairman and Managing Director
General Catalyst
Ken Chenault is the Chairman and a Managing Director of the venture capital firm, General Catalyst. Prior to joining General Catalyst, Ken was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of American Express, a position he held from 2001 - 2018. Upon Ken’s retirement from American Express, Warren Buffett, the company’s largest shareholder stated, “Ken's been the gold standard for corporate leadership and the benchmark that I measure others against.”

At General Catalyst, Ken focuses on investing in fast-growing companies that have the potential to become large, fundamental institutions. He also provides invaluable guidance to portfolio companies, particularly to those with an eye towards global markets and responsible innovation, as they scale their teams and products.

Ken is recognized as one of the business world’s experts on brands and brand management. He has been honored by multiple publications including Fortune Magazine, which named him as one of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders in its inaugural list in 2014 and, most recently, in 2021. TIME celebrated Ken together with Ken Frazier in the TIME100 Most Influential People of 2021 list for their corporate and social activism; specifically, for mobilizing hundreds of corporate leaders to advocate for equitable voting rights in the U.S., and for co-founding OneTen, a coalition of leading executives coming together to upskill, hire and advance one million Black Americans over the next 10 years into family-sustaining jobs with opportunities for advancement.

Ken serves on the boards of Airbnb, Berkshire Hathaway, Chief, Guild Education, and the Harvard Corporation. He also serves on the boards of numerous nonprofit organizations, including the Smithsonian Institution’s Advisory Council for the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Speaking in:

January 17
8:30 am9:15 am
Javits North, Level 5, SAP Theatre
Contributing a projected $4.1 trillion to U.S. GDP, the American retail industry is responsible for one in four jobs in the U.S. workforce. As an industry, retail has real power to lead and enact change for good to help fight financial instability, particularly for the underrepresented communities and people it serves. Hear from renowned business leader and current chairman and managing director… Read more