Will Whitehorn – Former Virgin Galactic President and Keynote Speaker
Whitehorn's early career was as a crewman on North Sea helicopters and also with the Thomas Cook travel agency. In 1987, Whitehorn joined the Virgin Group after being talent spotted by Sir Richard Branson. He had suggested a number of ideas to Virgin the previous year, in 1986, whereupon the company recruited him formally. He rose to become the head of Virgin's public affairs department. In that role, where he was effectively the official spokesperson for the company, he was sometimes characterized as Richard Branson's "right-hand man".
As Virgin Group’s Brand Development and Corporate Affairs Director it was his job to steer the entertainment, media and travel giant through times of turbulence and calm. Will was President of Virgin Galactic – Virgin’s rapidly developing commercial space travel division – and possibly a natural development from train and air travel which is poised to make commercial space flight an everyday event.
As a speaker, Will Whitehorn will tell the story so far of the most exciting technology story of the 21st century; he’ll take a look into the future influence space will have on our lives including digital communications, and will recount how the online industry and innovation across all business functions within Virgin has impacted on consumers and brands.