Meet our Speakers

We are excited to host a dynamic range of speakers at Convention. Learn more about each of these inspiring women below, listed in order of appearance. Learn more about the Convention schedule here.

Bonny Shade

UNC Charlotte associate director of fraternity and sorority life, speaker, ZTA alumna

Bonny Shade believes that action rooted in education can change the world. With a bachelor’s degree in biology and education from Florida Gulf Coast University and a master's degree in college student development from Bowling Green State University, Bonny believes in this work! She has over 10 years of higher education experience with a deep focus on fraternity and sorority life, risk management, and accountability.

She currently lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, where she serves as the associate director for fraternity and sorority life at UNC Charlotte. Bonny has been a keynote speaker and educator since 2016 and makes presentations to over 10,000 individuals annually.

A member of Zeta Tau Alpha, she serves as a Harm Reduction Mentor, Alcohol Skills Training Program facilitator and committee member.

In her free time, you can catch her dancing to some of her favorite songs and being a self-proclaimed foodie! You can learn more about Bonny and connect with her by visiting her website or social media accounts, @BonnyShadeBB.

Nataly Kogan

Co-founder and CEO of Happier

A leading expert on emotional fitness, Nataly Kogan is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, and keynote speaker on a mission to help millions of people embrace their Awesome Human, struggle less and thrive more in work and life!

Nataly immigrated to the US as a refugee from the former Soviet Union when she was 13 years old. Starting her American life in the projects and on welfare, she learned English by watching “Who’s the Boss?” on repeat.

She went on to reach the highest levels of success at McKinsey and Microsoft, as a Managing Director at a venture capital fund, and as founder or executive at five startups and tech companies.

But after years of chasing a non-existent state of nirvana, Nataly suffered a debilitating burnout that led her to find a new way to live and work.

Today, she helps Awesome Humans break free from daily burnout, unleash their full human potential, and experience more joy and meaning by sharing her unboring science-backed Happier Method™ – and her signature positive energy! Nataly is a sought-after international keynote speaker and has appeared in hundreds of media outlets, including The Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, The New York Times, TEDx Boston and SXSW.

She is the founder of Happier, Inc. and has worked with hundreds of top companies, teams, and leaders through her Happier @ Work and leadership programs. Nataly is the author of HAPPIER NOW, GRATITUDE DAILY and THE AWESOME HUMAN PROJECT and hosts The Awesome Human Podcast that people call their “best-self hour.”

Nataly began painting when she turned 40 and is a self-taught abstract artist. She loves bright colors, overuses the word “awesome”, and is the funniest person in her family. (Just ask her husband and daughter, her favorite Awesome Humans.) For more, visit

Alex Hudgens

Emmy-nominated journalist and producer, TV host, coach, writer, actor, ZTA alumna

Alex is an Emmy-nominated journalist and producer, known for her work on Access Hollywood, COMPLEX, and QVC.

After leaving full-time TV, Alex founded HybridHouse Productions and Spurr, where she houses her motivational speaking platform, life coaching practice, and community/marketing consulting for a variety of industries including tech, publishing and fashion.

After almost a decade in Los Angeles, she now lives in NYC with her partner, Joe, and their pug, Busy. Alex is originally from St. Louis, Missouri, and served as the first Vice President II/New Member Coordinator of Lambda Iota Chapter (Vanderbilt University).

Alex is an Enneagram 3, XNFJ and a Slytherin, if you're into that sort of thing.

Laura Rutledge

Host and Reporter for ESPN/SEC Network, ZTA alumna

Laura Rutledge is the host of ESPN’s year-round weekday NFL news and information show “NFL Live” and SEC Network’s “SEC Nation.” Before joining “NFL Live,” Laura was a contributor on “Get Up.” She has also anchored “SportsCenter” and hosted red carpet coverage at The Home Depot College Football Awards, the ESPYs and the NFL Draft. Additionally, she was a mainstay in ESPN’s extensive championship coverage surrounding the College Football Playoff, NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championships, and both the Women’s College World Series and College World Series.

Prior to joining ESPN, Rutledge was a sports anchor for CNN’sNew Day” and "Early Start.” She also worked on HLN’s “Morning Express with Robin Meade,” as well as Fox Sports.
Laura has a broadcasting journalism degree from the University of Florida, where she also won the 2011 Red Barber Award for Excellence in Broadcasting at UF. Rutledge is an Ambassador for the Miracle League, an organization that builds baseball fields for children with disabilities. Rutledge and her husband, Josh, a retired MLB infielder and former Alabama baseball player, reside in Connecticut. They welcomed a daughter, Reese, in October 2019.