2024 Women's Health Conference logo

2024 Speakers

Find out more about this year's Sharp Women's Health Conference speakers.

Headshot of Nora McInerny
Nora McInerny

Keynote speaker

Nora McInerny is an author, TED speaker and podcast host who is known for making space for emotional honesty and difficult conversations with her trademark disarming wit and earnest candor. The author of bestsellers “It’s Okay To Laugh, (Crying Is Cool Too)” and “No Happy Endings,” as well as "The Hot Young Widows Club" and essay collection “Bad Vibes Only,” Nora’s personal story about living through grief, loss, and new beginnings connects with audiences on a deeply personal and universally human level. From her books to her speaking engagements and pieces in The New York Times, TIME magazine and The Washington Post, she inspires audiences to face and conquer any obstacle — with a redefined, more accessible version of resilience and the strength that comes from knowing that we are not alone.

Headshot of Marisa Franco
Marisa G. Franco, PhD

Keynote speaker

Dr. Marisa G. Franco is a psychologist, TED Speaker and professor at the University of Maryland. Author of The New York Times bestseller “Platonic: How the Science of Attachment Can Help You Make — and Keep — Friends," her work takes a data-driven look at community and connection, and speaks to private companies, universities, and non-profit organizations all over the country about finding and keeping new friends as adults, making friends in a digital-only world and overcoming loneliness. In addition to authoring the Platonic Love blog for Psychology Today, Dr. Franco has been a featured expert in a number of national publications including The New York Times, Huffington Post, The Telegraph, Scientific American and Women’s Day, and is a frequent guest on "Good Morning America" and on popular podcasts, including "We Can Do Hard Things" with Glennon Doyle, "Therapy for Black Girls," and NPR’s "Here & Now."

Headshot of Billy Blanks Jr.
Billy Blanks Jr.

Special Guest

Billy Blanks Jr. is the creator of the worldwide dance fitness program Dance It Out (as seen on ABC’s “Shark Tank”) and the senior on-air host and creative director at Talent Recap, a viral YouTube channel with 10 million subscribers. He is also the president of Kibu, an online wellness and life skills platform for people with disabilities and special needs. From director and choreographer to starring in Broadway performances, television shows and music videos, Billy has worked with Tom Hanks, the cast of “Will & Grace,” Paula Abdul, Britney Spears and Celine Dion, among others. A certified instructor for both the American Council on Exercise® and the Athletics and Fitness Association of America™, he has been featured on “Good Morning America,” “EXTRA,” “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” “Dr. Oz,” “So You Think You Can Dance” and more. Billy’s moving talk show, “Dance It Out!,” currently airs on Lifetime and he has a new daytime talk show that is in the early production stages to launch in 2024.

Headshot of Pat Brown
Pat Brown


Pat Brown is a familiar face in San Diego, having served as chief weather anchor at ABC 10News and as main weather anchor at NBC 7. The recipient of five Emmy Awards, she was also a morning DJ on KyXy radio and co-host of Channel 8’s “PM Magazine,” where she reported from around the globe, including the Australian rainforests and Austrian Alps. Now, Pat is exploring new horizons leading motor coach excursions around California for DayTripper Tours. A credentialed teacher, she has served on the boards of the Multiple Sclerosis Society, Alzheimer’s San Diego and the Burn Institute. With a passion for helping animals, Pat volunteers at the San Diego Humane Society and shares her photos of cats up for adoption on her social media (facebook.com/PatBrownSmiles).