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Emerging Leaders Conference

January 23-24, 2024

Las Vegas, Nevada



To encourage networking during the conference, there will be assigned seating for each session.  Seating assignments are printed on your conference nametag.


Breakfast will be provided in the Silk Road Room from 7:00am to 8:00am both mornings. Lunch is also available on the first day from 12:00noon to 1:00pm.

If you have special dietary needs, please contact one of the Upstream Team and we’ll do our best to accommodate you.


Use wifi network MGMResorts-Wifi. You’ll be asked to enter your last name and room number.


The conference qualifies for 13 hours of CPE. To apply, complete the online CPE request survey. Participants will receive a link to the survey on the last day of the conference.

This survey is also our evaluation form; even if you don’t need CPE, please fill this out so we can see how we’re doing. We can’t improve without feedback!


Day 1

7:00 – 8:00am

Breakfast in the Silk Road Room

8:00 – 8:20am


Seating 1

Opening Session – Welcome and Discussion

By inviting you to participate in this event, your firm has confirmed you have a bright future there.  But your inclusion in the ELA program requires an equal investment from you.  Firm management has placed enormous faith in your leadership potential.  Are you ready to take the same leap of faith?  Let’s discuss how to take charge of both your personal development and the creation of a stellar career.

8:20 – 10:00am


Seating 1

Effectively Making Challenging Business Decisions

As you step into more responsibility and leadership at your firm, you’ll be asked to handle increasingly complex, unique and challenging issues. So how do you balance the pros and cons to make effective business decisions that guard the best interests of your team, your firm and your clients? Let’s tackle some case studies and then discuss some best practices for effectively handling issues your firm may face now or in the future.

Presentation PDF

10:00 – 10:20am


10:20 – 12:00pm


Seating 1

Improving Employee Engagement

You know what disengaged workers look like – unhappy, unhelpful and unwilling to step beyond “the job.”  You see it more often (and more blatantly) in fast food than in firms, but any level of disengagement shouldn’t be taken lightly.  According to one study, engaged employees perform 20% better and are 87% less likely to leave.  Let’s explore what engagement means and how you can harness its power with specific, actionable steps.

Presentation PDF

12:00 – 1:00pm


1:00 – 2:40pm


Seating 2

If You’re Looking for a Great Ride, Get in the Driver’s Seat

Most of us learned long ago that we’re in charge of our own life, but surprisingly many people are willing to take whatever comes their way when advancing their careers.  Are you proactively managing your career or just reacting to circumstances? Let’s talk about how to get your hands on the steering wheel of your career and in the process, increase not only your value to the firm, but also your enjoyment.

Presentation PDF

2:40 – 3:00pm


3:00 – 5:00pm

Check your nametag for assignment

Breakout Sessions

Always one of the most popular features of the conference, our afternoon discussion forum provides a wonderful opportunity to share your greatest challenges and learn how other firm leaders have successfully dealt with the same difficulties.  Bring your thorniest problems – along with your most innovative solutions to firm challenges – and we’ll share insights, best practices and hints and tips for the challenges facing firms and firm leaders. 

5:15 – 6:15pm



Enjoy an indoor reception in the Vinoly Ballroom Foyer. Beer, wine and appetizers will be served, along with great opportunities to network with conference participants. Your spouse or other adult guest is welcome to join us for the reception.



Day 2

7:00 – 8:00am

Breakfast in the Silk Road Room

8:00 – 9:40am


Seating 3

Being a Leader in Everyday Situations

Planning and executing big moments – passing the CPA exam, leading engagements, spearheading firm projects – provides a chance for you to shine as a leader.  But leadership is more than shining in the spotlight.  Every interaction with your team, firm leaders, clients or the community is an opportunity to demonstrate leadership.  Let’s talk about leading in everyday activities.  We’ll discuss creating an intentional leadership mindset and then discuss how to apply this mindset to a variety of real-firm situations.

Presentation PDF

9:40 – 10:00am


10:00 – 11:30am


Seating 3

Helping Those You Lead Envision a Great, Long-Term Career at the Firm

The accounting profession is demanding and time-intensive.  Yet many young professionals lured away from public practice by industry or government regret losing those things they took for granted as a professional service provider – and never ever get to experience the benefits of what can be a rewarding, diverse career at the firm.  Let’s discuss how we can proactively ensure our top talent understands (and is willing to work for) the many benefits gained from a long-term career at the firm.

Presentation PDF

11:30 – 12:00pm


Seating 3

From Ideas to Plans:  Wrapping Up

It’s easy to leave an event feeling inspired, invigorated and full of ideas, but without concrete plans.  Let’s take a few minutes to ask any questions that have been unanswered, jot down take-aways and develop personal goals before you return home.