Kim Wee – Webmaster and Digital Accessibility Coordinator – Minnesota IT Services partnering with Education
Kim is the Accessibility Coordinator and Webmaster for Minnesota IT Services partnering with Education and is a Certified Professional in Web Accessibility (CPWA). She has over 20 years of web experience in design, development, and administration with a focus on web accessibility.
Julie Baker – IT Strategic Analyst – Hennepin County
Julie Baker is an IT Strategic Analyst as a member of the IT Strategic Planning team. Julie joined Hennepin County in 2014 as a business analyst, in 2017 she assumed the role of IT Consulting Specialist, and in 2020 became an IT Strategic Analyst.
Julie is currently responsible for IT Strategic planning working alongside her peers who support strategic messaging, strategic measures, and business architecture as well as county IT leadership and many others across the organization.
Julie was responsible and provided oversight of the 2019-2020 IT strategic plan as well as the current 2021 IT Strategic Plan. She stays actively engaged with the strategies, strategy teams, and sponsors associated with the strategic plan.
Julie embraces continuous improvement and besides overseeing the current strategic plan is already beginning to formulate the next planning cycle and further maturing IT strategic planning for the county.
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Hennepin County was already laying a digital experience foundation across three areas: 1) aligning digital experience work with county core values and priorities, 2) prioritizing digital accessibility, and 3) shifting to Agile and User Experience principles. The pandemic accelerated how quickly the county need to respond to serve residents in an entirely new way without infrastructure to support it. The Office of Digital Experience was created to coordinate work across the organization to address residents’ digital needs with the goal to provide a consistently positive, accessible, and equitable digital service experience. The Office of Digital Experience accelerates the digital transformation of resident experiences by standardizing, prioritizing, and streamlining the rapid release of in-demand applications, websites, and tools, while centering the user every step of the way.
This model joins key partners in the business, the IT community, and communication and engagement together to deliver coordinated digital service that provide residents a consistently positive, accessible, and equitable experience. There are approximately 15-20 newly created positions to research, design, and implement new ways of coordinating digital work with an eye on equity and centering the resident voice. Hennepin County leverages its existing workforce by creating opportunities for temporary assignments, for up to 24 months, for current employees who have an interest in helping shape the future of creating an accessible and consistently positive Digital Experience for residents. Partner teams in the model operate within three separate departments, jointly collaborating in service of all business lines.
This structure enables appropriately resourced teams to focus on the core functions of digital experience, user experience, website communications, and web infrastructure to maintain and expand what the county’s digital service portfolio can provide to residents. The investment in the county’s digital services for all community members complements the Office of Broadband and Digital Inclusion’s work to eliminate the digital divide, too. Together these efforts create more opportunity for digital equity and engagement for Hennepin County residents.
At the beginning of the pandemic, The Resident Real Estate Services division of Hennepin County quickly implemented a chat service off the Hennepin.us website as service centers closed. As in-person county services began to re-open, chat service continued to remain popular averaging over 500 chats a month. According to survey feedback, residents really like the ability to gain quick answers to their questions without having to come in person or wait on hold over the phone. Unfortunately, the quick vendor solution didn’t offer the capabilities and scalability that was needed to continue with the service. Additionally, many questions asked in chat had answers readily available on the Hennepin County website. The project established goals to both respond to simple resident questions through a chat bot allowing more time for Service Center agents to respond to more complex needs of residents. By keeping the scope of the project narrow, the chat service could be developed quickly and then adapted for use across other business areas while continuing to grow the volume of responses available from the chat bot.
To address usability, the project started by analyzing the previous years’ worth of transcripts, over 10,000 chats, to identify the topics and questions most asked by residents. From there, the field of responses were narrowed down to the fourteen most needed by residents and clear enough to be provided by a chat bot. The responses were then reviewed for plain language and readability by the User Experience team. A UX Designer from the team recognized that there were no standards for chat UI, so they created a guide to help developers in their initial design. Developers quickly built a prototype to put before stakeholders. Business owners were able to use resident questions from chat transcripts to validate and train the AI responses from the chat bot. A UX review refined the final product to create a chat flow that clearly indicated when the resident was chatting with a bot and when the chat was with a live person.
The early availability of the prototype allowed for an accessibility review, something the Enterprise IT developers had never experienced. This identified many barriers for use by screen reader and allowed time to repair before moving the chat service to production. This early action kept Hennepin County in regulatory compliance and trained developers on accessibility needs to incorporate in future work. Finally, the project incorporated an equity review throughout the project. First, a field was added to the current chat service for residents to voluntarily provide a zip code. Then, the zip code data was mapped to the Social Vulnerability Index (SVI), identifying the needs of most vulnerable communities based on their chat requests. Finally, zip code and SVI were integrated into the chat service to prioritize those community needs and mitigate unintended impacts. The new chat service is designed to scale across the organization, meet the growing needs of Hennepin County residents, and prioritize the most vulnerable populations in the community.
The Minnesota Department of Veteran Affairs Claims and Field Operations, assists Minnesota Veterans, their dependents, and survivors with State and Federal benefits and services. Prior to the start of this project, our division was operating on four separate systems. MDVA’s Deputy Commissioner sought out to change that and envisioned creating a system where MDVA’s multiple divisions had one shared system for application submittals, case management, application processing, award grants, information sharing, data collection and reporting of our Veteran’s benefits and services. This project comprised of cross functional teams from multiple Agencies and Divisions within MDVA. Some of these included Minnesota IT services (MNIT), MDVA Higher Education Veterans Programs and MDVA Programs and Services.
The business manager ensured that all stories met the scope of the project and prioritized accordingly. The business analyst and scrum master ensured the developers were aware of the requirements. We had daily scheduled “stand ups” to verify tasks were being completed, resolve blockers, and clarify any requirements. The process was smooth, effective, and provided the business with a product that met all expectations and functions properly. Starting with the staff planning sessions in October 2019 and through the projected final release in November 2022 the process was completed in an agile, two-week SCRUM environment. The two-week process is called a sprint which consisted of, bi-weekly planning sessions, weekly backlog reviews, daily updates, and reviews.
Shortly after the beginning of this project, the need for this system increased dramatically with the United States Department of Veteran Affairs (USDVA) initiative to go paperless and the effects of the Covid-19 Pandemic. These two events took away the ability for Veterans, County Workers and MDVA employees to meet in person and to physically submit applications/documents to each other and to the USDVA, during a time when MN Veterans needed assistance the most. As a result of the VATS Claims Project MN Veterans, MDVA’s Field Operations and Minnesota’s 87 County Veteran Service Offices can securely upload applications to MDVA’s Claims Offices and MDVA’s Benefits Division. MDVA Claims staff were able to continue their mission remotely, throughout the pandemic without interrupting the services they provide to our MN Veterans and stakeholders. MDVA claims staff were able to change their workflow to a paperless operation. The VATS Claims project now allows MDVA Claims to be on one shared system remotely which includes functionality such as: secured claims processing, form generation, case management, data sharing, reporting, and API’s which allow secure direct submittal of applications/documents to the USDVA and status updates from the USDVA. VATS Claims also has an enhanced County Upload Portal in beta testing currently with an expected release to all MN counties in November 2022. The VATS Claims Portal allows County Veteran Service Offices to securely submit applications/documents to MDVA’s Claims offices and State Soldiers Assistance Program. The portal also allows MDVA to share data, case management information, and upload statuses for MDVA & USDVA to the County Users.
Lisa Meredith has been the Executive Director for Minnesota County Computer Cooperative (MnCCC) for 20 years. MnCCC is a joint powers organization, working with counties and other local government entities to provide software solutions. Lisa has the leadership ability that makes the people around her thrive. She has a special skill of being able to understand the strengths of individuals and assist them in using those strengths for the betterment of the whole organization or project.
Lisa works tirelessly and through her actions she has propelled MnCCC to new heights. She is the driving force in finding innovative, cost-effective software and technology solutions. Her efforts have transformed the landscape of public services. For example, recently Lisa was instrumental in two new software contracts that saved counties across Minnesota tens of thousands of dollars. In one project it was her initiative to get election software contracts in place for election equipment. In another project she assembled a group dedicated to Human Resources. With Lisa’s leadership this group went out for bid for payroll software, which is already saving counties on significant fees. Eventually that solution be offered to a wider local government audience.
Under Lisa’s leadership, MnCCC has grown to 13 user groups and continues to grow and meet county and other local government needs. Lisa balances an incredible workload. Along with hundreds of meetings with all levels of county leadership, she still makes the workplace a fun environment that encourages staff to achieve a very high level of work output. Lisa has a strong commitment to bringing people and agencies together to work collaboratively. She truly believes and has proven a lot more can be done together rather than apart. Her work doesn’t stop there. Lisa’s motto is “to embrace the audacious acts that incite positive change” and it is evident in her work using ToP Facilitation to help other organizations solve problems. As a true champion of innovation and collaboration to improve service, Lisa Meredith is so deserving of the Golden GOVIT Award.
Megan Evans Seeds is the Chief Digital Officer for Hennepin County. She is a true public servant at heart and is passionate about the user experience of residents who engage with the county online.
Megan has been an influential leader in the digital services space for years, beginning by effectively managing county websites to most recently creating the Digital Experience model at the county. This model is a collaboration between multiple teams from multiple departments including IT, Communications, and the newly formed Office of Digital Experience (ODX), the core of the model, which she leads with an impressive balance of wisdom and curiosity. With Megan’s leadership, the Office of Digital Experience has launched or is set to launch new digital products, services, and resources:
• Hennepin County Resident Services Chatbot
• Hennepin County Web Standards
• Hennepin County Climate Action website
• The Hennepin County Digital Accessibility Policy
• The Hennepin County User Experience Community of Practice
These are just a recent sampling of the outcomes from Megan’s vision, strategy, and leadership. Megan has unquestionably been instrumental in the advancement of Hennepin County’s service to residents. She has been a force for change and dedicated to improving digital services for residents throughout her career. She continues to inspire and motivate her team and organization and is worthy of recognition with the GovIT Individual Leadership Award for 2022.
As we have seen nationwide, the pandemic brought many new challenges for workforces, including how employees work and collaborate in a hybrid environment. This was no different for Hennepin County’s employees and it quickly became apparent that spaces needed to be created to offer accommodations for these new work scenarios. Michelle Heisler, who serves as the Enterprise Strategic Solutions Manager within the IT department at Hennepin County, led the effort to develop and implement a strategic IT solution, in response to the new hybrid workforce. At the very beginning of the pandemic Michelle’s preparation and work with Microsoft on setting up Teams enabled all county employees to seamlessly transition from an in-office work environment to literally overnight having Teams rolled out to all county employees. The next challenge then became what will things look like in the physical space of our buildings as employees started to prepare to return to the office. The focus of this project was to create an energetic feature rich environment that embodies the Hennepin County culture of innovation and to leverage the Microsoft Teams Rooms technologies along with providing a modern upbeat environment. Hennepin County’s Core Values include: Continuous Improvement, Customer Service, Diversity and Inclusion, Employee Engagement, and Workforce Development, all of which were vital frameworks to consider for the Collaborative Work Center project to be successful. Michelle’s leadership style truly and wholly exemplifies Hennepin County’s Core Values in every sense and are at the center everything she sets out to accomplish. To best portray Michelle’s leadership competency and further support why she is so deserving of this award, here are some thoughts and contributions from some of the project team members…
• Michelle collaborated effectively and respectfully across all county departments to achieve shared goals.
• She connects with organizations and contacts outside of the county and has even brought other organizations’ best practices to our conversations, so that we could decide what could be replicated or adapted to improve our spaces.
• Michelle focused on direction from county leaders and considered employee’s past experiences to inform strategic service planning and was creative and persistent in solving what were often challenging problems
• Michelle’s willingness to openly share and to listen to other’s ideas were very much appreciated.
As the project sponsor, Michelle provided support and guidance to help the project team overcome new and challenging hurdles. Supply chain issues, provisioning new equipment, and figuring out how to support these new devices all fell under Michelle’s leadership and relied on her expertise to get us where we are today. Michelle championed the concept of collaborative workspaces in challenging times and her commitment to making things better in a more innovative environment has enabled Hennepin County to set ourselves as true leaders in this space. It is truly an honor to have Michelle as part of our organization, leading the path for our future!
Washington County is located on the western edge of Portland, Oregon. It covers over 700 square miles of land and has a 600,000 service population who live across urban, suburban, and rural areas. With unique online needs increasing for each area, the County knew it was time to replace its public website with a digital gateway to a variety of services and information. The IT team and the Office of Equity, Inclusion & Community Engagement partnered with an outside consultant (Interpersonal Frequency) to help them understand the issues on their website, invest in community engagement, and translate that knowledge into a new user experience. They took a holistic look at what their communities were intending to do on the site and the obstacles in their way. Washington County and Interpersonal Frequency gathered quantitative and qualitative data about how citizens used the site, their pain points, etc.
Focus groups were completed with live translation services in their native languages for four key community groups: the Housing and Supportive Service Network, the Western Regional Emergency Task Force, the Vision Action Network, and the Latino Professionals in Government. Some fascinating feedback included how needed information was usually on the site, but it was challenging or overwhelming to locate, even through search. In situations like a mental health crisis, there was no time to attempt to dig through departments for contact information or locations for vital services. Additionally, touchpoints were too small for mobile and tablet users, especially in the navigation menus. The lack of accessibility features made groups wonder who the prioritized population was on the site. It was also very difficult to find Spanish versions of the content — it was clear that Spanish users wanted to engage, but had no tools to do so.
Washington County and its consultant took that data and began designing a user experience that listened to these users. First, they created streamlined navigation and wayfinding with a simplified structure. This included clearly prioritized updates and hierarchy to guide users to key tasks and timely information. Then they created task-based and action-focused items like a prominent “How-Do-I” style menu on the homepage to speed up access to key items across the site. The user experience also broke down departmental silos so users didn’t need to understand the County’s structure to find services. The new design adhered to brand standards, but reflected a clean and organized new look with broad appeal. This design also accounted for a variety of screen sizes for a seamless new mobile experience that is easier to use, while aiming for improved performance and accessibility overall. It provides options for translation and multi-language support, with some content manually translated for accuracy. Throughout the process, the teams returned to these community groups and completed usability testing. Doing so kept the community engaged and helped them feel invested in the results. As advocates for the new website, they interact with it more often and actively share it with their colleagues.
Imagine being a single parent who was recently laid off from your 10+ year job due to downsizing. Your skills are outdated, and you’ve had difficulty obtaining employment that will pay the rent and feed your family. You apply for the Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP) and are eligible to receive the maximum of $1,305 in cash and food benefits each month. While rent, utilities, and two growing children cost significantly more, you’ll be able to avoid eviction for at least two months.
You begin working with an MFIP Employment Services (ES) Counselor, who explains that they can help with a resume, interviewing skills, funding for training, and help with your job search. After taking a short class to get a certificate and updating your resume, you finally land a job offer that will allow you to support your family without public assistance. Before you start the new job, you need funding for childcare until you can get a couple of paychecks and catch up on rent. Your ES Counselor explains that you need to sign an update to your Employment Plan so you can get childcare benefits approved. Before eSignature in WF1, there were few options to sign the document – all of which cost precious time and money.
Where you live in Greater MN, public transportation is not available. If you don’t have a car, you need to wait for the paperwork to be mailed to you, sign it, then mail it back to your counselor, which could take upwards of a month of more. You fear that your future employer will not be able to accommodate delaying your start date if it takes that long to get childcare. If you have a car, another option would be to drive to the Counselor’s office 45 minutes away, but that would cost $20 in gas. If you have internet and a printer, the document could be sent from your counselor via encrypted email, printed out (if you can afford ink at $30/cartridge), then faxed or scanned back to the counselor.
With the implementation of eSignature functionality in October 2022, your Counselor can send you the document for signature via email. You can open the document on your smartphone, tablet, or computer, sign and submit it within minutes. You can proceed with childcare arrangements and confirm your job start date with your new employer. It’s that simple. While eSignature functionality in WF1 has been a long-term plan, the pandemic expedited its development. The WF1 Team consulted with subject matter experts (SMEs) to gather requirements, verified security and validity of signed documents, and worked with a vendor. Gathering requirements from providers and program administrators allowed the WF1 Team to customize functionality so that it is available for over 2,000 staff and 100,000 customers. This enhancement is already changing the service delivery method to a more human-centered and accessible design, removing barriers for Minnesotans who are most in need.
In 2020, County Administrator David Hough asked 6,000 of the county’s staff to work remotely to prevent the spread of Covid-19. To continue county services, staff had to reimagine service delivery. One of the highest priorities for IT was to imagine new ways to support a hybrid workforce. County Administration created three worker profiles for staff: onsite, hybrid, or remote. Onsite workers were asked to work primarily or entirely at county facilities. Hybrid workers were asked to divide their time between remote and onsite work. Remote workers were asked to work primarily or entirely offsite.
Pre-pandemic, county buildings were divided into cubical or office spaces for departments – generally by floor or area. With new worker profiles, facilities would need to be transformed into places that hybrid or remote workers could temporarily use. IT partnered with the Facility Services Department to create new collaborative work centers. IT volunteered their 18 floor at the Hennepin County Government Center in downtown Minneapolis as a pilot.
After significant planning, the team decided to create four different types of work zones. The first type is focus zones, which had technology staff would find in a cubicle pre-pandemic. The next type is a collaboration zone, which include conference rooms for both in-person and hybrid meetings. Next are community zones, which are informal places where staff can talk between meetings. Lastly, resource zones that include general office supplies and printers. Most of these spaces are equipped with Microsoft Teams Room technology. For meeting rooms, this includes a door scheduling panel to tell which rooms are booked, or the option to book in the moment. They also include equipment for hybrid meetings. Community zones include Teams phones and A/V equipment for impromptu meetings.
When the pilot was complete, the project team worked with communications teams to announce the new space. This campaign included newsletter stories about topics including information about the types of work zones, guidance on shared space work etiquette, instructions on booking rooms, and reminders on items required for entry. Shortly after the opening of the 18 floor collaborative work center, Hennepin County opened a second space at the Ridgedale Regional Service Center – about 20 minutes away from the government center downtown. More collaborative work centers continue to be built and/or technology supplied in facilities around the county.
Today, staff can choose between six locations for temporary work. IT and facilities will continue to work together on future collaborative work centers. The partnership between Facility Services and IT to create collaborative work centers for Hennepin County staff has been very successful. The collaborative work centers are an innovative way to integrate technology – like Microsoft Teams Rooms – into workspaces for staff. Other groups in Minnesota are asking Hennepin County for tours of these spaces to replicate the experience for this staff, including the Minnesota Department of Education, the Minnesota court systems, the state’s IT department, and the City of Minneapolis’s CIO.
The Post-9/11 Service Bonus project was developed using Agile principles to enable the team to meet project objectives in the extremely short application release target of nine weeks. MNIT and MDVA project team members, began project initiation immediately after the Omnibus Veterans and Military Affairs bill was signed in early May 2022. Key stakeholders included, Veterans, County partners, and agency clients. Business requirements were captured and prioritized by the MDVA Product Owner in partnership with the project team. The project team’s requirement gathering efforts resulted in objectives that included the ability for Veterans or their families to easily submit an online application and supporting documentation, ability for Veterans to view the status of their application, ability for MDVA staff to review and process applications, integration, and automation of Veteran payments with the State’s financial system, and delivery of monitoring analytics and reports for management control. State of Minnesota IT security best practices were an integral part of all phases of the project to mitigate and reduce application security risk and vulnerabilities.
The project team also captured project risks and corresponding mitigation plans during the project planning phase. A key risk identified during project initiation was the need for additional QA resources to meet the application testing requirements. The risk mitigation task involved a re-prioritization of MDVA work that resulted in additional QA resources being assigned to the project.
Application development was executed in two-week sprints where each story was developed to meet a specific acceptance criteria. Each story was also functionally tested within the sprint and defects were fixed immediately to ensure quality. Each two-week sprint included a sprint review with stakeholders to allow application features and functionality input to be provided or confirmed. User acceptance testing (UAT) was coordinated within the project once the key application functionality was developed. UAT spanned approximately half of the project development timeframe to allow business partners a hands-on opportunity to use the application, test features and provide feedback and input. The Post 9/11 Service Bonus application was successfully released on July 7, 2022.
The resulting application has provided Veterans, MDVA and county partners with one of the nation’s first service bonus applications. The solution provides a secure application for Veterans to apply for, and MDVA to administrate the Post 9/11 Service Bonus program which is sustainable and paperless through the payment process. As of October 28, 16,800 applications have been approved and $17.7M in payments have been dispersed to Veterans or their beneficiaries through the Post 9/11 Service Bonus application. A key component of the success of the project was the high level of partnership and collaboration between the MDVA and MNIT project team members. Despite the challenges of the project’s short timeframe and high importance, the project team members met their shared objectives through dedication, hard work and open and clear communication. The resulting project success is a significant benefit to the Veterans of the State of Minnesota.
Jon Eichten serves as MNIT’s Deputy Commissioner. In his role, Jon oversees MNIT’s state agency-based Chief Business Technology Officers as well as MNIT’s business operations functions, ensuring executive branch agency technology needs are met in alignment with MNIT’s mission, vision, and strategic priorities. Jon previously served as MNIT’s Government Relations Director, where he oversaw MNIT policy and budget proposal development, and inter-agency and legislative affairs. Before joining MNIT, Eichten worked for the Minnesota Senate.
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Mary Frantz is the founder, CEO and Managing Partner of Enterprise Knowledge Partners, LLC (EKP) based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Mary has nearly 30 years of experience in technology and security. Fifteen years were spent in executive leadership roles in Fortune 150 corporations. She has accumulated extensive international experience and has managed the technical design and build of many global systems. She is a hands-on industry and court-vetted expert in cybersecurity, data breach, cloud-based service models, enterprise architecture, breach remediation and cyber forensics.
She has led advanced ethical hacking (red teams), security assessments and has managed multiple cyber incident response investigations across the globe. Mary is also plaintiff’s technical expert in the Equifax, Yahoo, Facebook, and many other breaches and cyber incidents.
Mary graduated from Northern Illinois University with a quadruple major: a B.A. in Math / Statistics, a B.A. in Foreign Language (Spanish, French), a B.S. in International Relations and a B.S. in Information Systems/Operations Management. She received an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago with an emphasis in International Business and Finance, and a Masters’ in Computer Science Engineering from Georgia Tech. She holds various active and non-active certifications in systems auditing, ethical hacking, penetration testing, forensics, engineering and architecture.
Mary is a keynote speaker, author and industry expert. She is a passionate advocate for women entrepreneurs in STEM. She is a mentor and volunteer for women and minorities in business and technology, a Board Officer for the Minnesota Academy of Science, and a board member on the Minneapolis Cyber Summit. Mary is currently serving as an elected School Board Director for District 719.
Kevin Ford started as the CISO of North Dakota in November of 2019. His previous role was CISO of CyberGRX in Denver, CO, one of the top cybersecurity start-ups in the nation, where he was responsible for expanding cybersecurity, privacy and risk management capabilities to protect the security information of over fifty thousand organizations, including Fortune 100 clients, from growing, global online threats. He previously served in senior consulting roles for Deloitte where he advised the U.S. Congress, the U.S. Indian Health Service, local governments, and multiple private sector customers on cyber-risk management initiatives and digital privacy. Kevin also served as a member of the NIST Cybersecurity Framework development team and served as a cyber-risk manager for NASA.
Stacy has amassed more than two decades of technology experience working for Minnesota, its’ counties, and private companies. She spent more than eight years leading and improving technology for local Minnesota government before taking on a leadership role within the state’s judicial branch. Stacy currently manages the State of Minnesota’s Security Operations Center (SOC) overseeing the state’s efforts to improve Cybersecurity monitoring, and incident management.
Brian Johnson is the president of 7 Minute Security, which specializes in security assessments, penetration testing and training. He is especially passionate about teaching others about security and hosts a weekly blog/podcast to help consumers and businesses strengthen their security posture. When he isn’t camped out behind a keyboard, he enjoys outdoor activities with his family, as well as singing and playing guitar in an acoustic duo.
Jason has 20+ years of IT, Engineering, Support, and Testing experience. By asking difficult questions, he looks to find solutions to complex problems for customers.
Dr. Bryan Behrenshausen is a community architect in the Open-Source Program Office at Red Hat, where he develops learning and enablement materials that teach others about the power and potential of open-source. He also is a lead architect of the Open Organization project and community.
Dr. Verna Cornelia Price is an internationally known human potential expert who specializes in personal power, cross-cultural communications, facilitating racism conversations. employee engagement, leadership and managing change.
As the CEO of The Power of People Consulting Group™, a leadership and management consulting firm, Dr. Verna consults with diverse audiences spanning from corporations, government agencies, not-for profits, K-16 educators and universities with clients in the United States, Europe, The Caribbean, Central American, Africa and China. Dr. Verna has founded multiple organizations in the USA including an Undergraduate Leadership Academic Minor at the University of Minnesota, The Power of People Leadership Institute, Girls in Action™(renamed Girls Taking Action) and Boys of Hope™.
In 2020, Dr. Verna created and hosted a radio talk show in partnership WCCO Radio called In the Room Where it Happened: Racism Conversations that Matter to ALL of Us. In 2020, Dr. Verna was named one of the Top 100 People to Know in 2021 by Twin Cities Business Magazine. In 2017, Dr. Verna received the Founders Award from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities for her role in cofounding the Undergraduate Leadership Academic Minor, now the largest of its kind in the world. In 2013, Dr. Verna was named an Everyday Hero by EBONY Magazine and received the MN LINKS Emerald Award. In 2010, Dr. Verna was named Entrepreneur of the Year by the Black MBAs and Pioneer of the Year by Women Venture.
Dr. Verna is a best selling author of three books, The Power of People: Four Kinds of People Who Can Change Your Life ( also published in Spanish), The Silent Cry: Dealing with Subtracters in Work and Life , and Change Your Life in 30 Days. Dr. Verna received her Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota.
Nancy, CEO and co-founder of Clockwork, is an outspoken advocate for making work better. More inclusive, flexible, and adaptable. No one does great work if they’re worried or if they can’t bring their whole self to work. And she learned this the hard way: by having terrible jobs and not fitting in. Things many of us can relate to. But how do we create workspaces like that?
It’s on us: leaders, employees, teams. People. We all have to take responsibility for creating cultures and spaces that actually work for humans, with all their complexities, nuances, and intricacies. And in doing so, we will make better products, better experiences, and have better work lives.
Are you ready for a work revolution? She is.
Her first book was Interactive Project Management: Pixels, People, and Process, a human-centered approach to producing digital products. Her current book, Work Like a Boss: A kick-in-the-pants Guide to Finding (and Using) your Power at Work, is the little book everyone needs to remember the actions, attitudes, and attributes that will make work better, for individuals and everyone around them.
Justin Femrite Headshot
About Justin Femrite, Public Works Director & Chief Engineer
Justin Femrite is the Public Works Director and Chief Engineer for the City of Elk River. In this role he is responsible for the administrative and professional work planning activities of the City’s engineering, wastewater, stormwater and maintenance divisions. He provides the direction for long term planning, design, construction, inspection and maintenance of public drainage, sanitary sewer, park, trail and roadway systems in the City. He further helps develop the department’s long term vision and participates at all levels of government to assure the department’s ability to be run efficiently and effectively.
About Avish Parashar, Author & Speaker
Avish grew up in “exotic” Poughkeepsie, NY and now makes his home in Philadelphia, PA. Though he performed all through high-school, he decided to stop performing when he went to college to “focus on his studies” (his parents were very proud of this decision).
That resolve lasted only a few months, as the first time he saw an improv comedy show he fell in love (his parents were slightly less proud). One week later he auditioned for the campus improv group, got in, and the rest is history. After graduating, he started Polywumpus Improv Comedy, which performed regularly in and around Philadelphia for seven years. Avish closed up Polywumpus to focus on the speaking and training side of the business – using improv comedy as a tool to teach valuable business skills such as creativity, innovation, and adaptability.
Weaving together humorous stories, jokes, audience interaction, and improv comedy games, Avish keeps the audience engaged while imparting a key lesson: Planning is Important, but Improvising is Essential! No matter how well you plan, things will go wrong, surprises will arise, and the Universe will throw you a curveball. Your success and sanity are directly related to how you respond these challenges. By the end of one of Avish’s presentations you will have key tools to flow with all that life throws at you. Avish has spoken to the very creative (actors and directors), the very un-creative (accountants), the very casual (college students), and the very business-like (sales professionals). The end result is always the same – smiles, laughs, and a new way of looking at life and business.
Avish is the author of “Improvise to Success!” and the Amazon best-selling, “Say ‘Yes, And!'” (And yes, his parents are once again very proud.)
Tim Walz is Minnesota’s 41st Governor. His career has been defined by public service, from serving our country in the military to serving our students as a high-school teacher and football coach to serving our state in Congress.
Born in a small town in rural Nebraska, Tim’s parents instilled in him the values that guide his commitment to common good and selfless service. Soon after his high school graduation, Tim enlisted in the Army National Guard. Tim attended Chadron State College, where he graduated with a social science degree in 1989. Harvard University offered Tim an opportunity to gain a new perspective on global education by teaching in the People’s Republic of China from 1989-90, where he joined of one of the first government-approved groups of American teachers to work in Chinese high schools. Upon his return from China to Nebraska, Tim served full time in the Army National Guard, and accepted a teaching and coaching position. More importantly, he met his wife, Gwen Whipple, who was teaching at the same school.
Tim and Gwen Walz moved to Mankato in 1996, where they began working at Mankato West High School. In addition to teaching social studies, Tim helped coach the Mankato West football team that won the school’s first state championship. After 24 years in the Army National Guard, Command Sergeant Major Walz retired from the 1-125th Field Artillery Battalion in 2005.
Tim won his first election to the United States House of Representatives in 2006, and was re-elected for another 5 terms serving Minnesota’s First Congressional District. In addition to his work on the Farm Bill, the Lewis & Clark Regional Water System, Minnesota Highway 14, and the Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery in Preston (MN), Tim introduced the STOCK Act, a bill that sought to limit congressional insider trading. On March 22, 2012, the STOCK Act passed with overwhelming bipartisan support in both the House and the Senate.
After years of living in Mankato, Tim and Gwen moved to St. Paul with their two children, Hope and Gus, and their rescue pets, Scout and Afton.
Tarek Tomes serves as the Commissioner of Minnesota IT Services (MNIT) and the State of Minnesota’s Chief Information Officer (CIO), leading state efforts to provide the best possible IT solutions and customer service to the people of Minnesota and our business partners.
As a recognized industry leader, Tomes brings over 25 years of experience in managing technology innovation across diverse industries, both in national, international, and public and private sector operations. Throughout his career, he has facilitated data-driven decision making, implemented many critical enterprise projects, and improved workforce diversity and inclusion.
Before becoming Commissioner, Tomes served as the Chief Innovation Officer and former Chief Information Officer at the City of St. Paul, where he was responsible for managing ongoing process improvements, supporting human-centered design, and increasing the overall effectiveness of city services and resources. While in St. Paul, Tomes facilitated a digital transformation at the city level, pioneering the use of mobile applications to improve resident opportunities. This work allowed the city to leverage deep data insights while promoting and supporting equitable service delivery. During his time as St. Paul’s Chief Information Officer, Tomes oversaw the launch of St. Paul’s Open Information Portal, which serves to promote and encourage innovative uses of data and transparency in government services.
Tomes’ prior work experience also includes six years as an Assistant Commissioner of Minnesota IT Services, where he created several nation-leading Information Technology sourcing agreements for 33,000+ user utility services statewide – including the first cloud-based public sector statewide service offering in the nation. While Tomes was serving in this role, Minnesota became the first state in the country to manage all Information Technology through service level agreements, a model that was recognized with a national award. Before joining state service, Tomes spent 13 years working for British Telecom.
About Dr. Archelle Georgiou, Chief Health Officer, Starkey Hearing Technologies
Dr. Archelle Georgiou is the Chief Health Officer for Starkey Hearing Technologies, a global hearing technology company headquartered in Eden Prairie, Minnesota. She is responsible for the company’s commitment to improve individuals’ overall wellness and quality of life through products that deliver better hearing. She develops and maintains strategic relationships within the medical community, oversees the Healthable features embedded in the company’s hearing aids, and brings hearing health to the forefront of overall health.
Dr. Georgiou’s extensive healthcare background includes experience as a physician, business executive, advisor, author and speaker. She was Chief Medical Officer of United Healthcare between 1996 and 2007 where she eliminated unproductive policies within the healthcare system and designed systems to coordinate care delivery. From 2008 to 2010, Dr. Georgiou served as a senior fellow in the Center for Health Transformation, a bipartisan think-tank established by former Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich. Since 2008, Dr. Georgiou has been a strategic advisor to a diverse group of companies who are dedicated to cultivating cross-industry collaboration and patient-centric care. She serves as an adjunct faculty member and Executive in Residence at the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management.
Archelle serves on the Board of Directors and is Chair-Elect at Children’s Hospital and Clinics of Minnesota; she is also on the Board for CaringBridge. For all the above and more, Dr. Georgiou received the Champion Award among Minnesota Business Healthcare Leaders in 2014 and was recognized “an individual who has focused their efforts to elevate the profile/status of the state’s health care industry.”
One of Dr. Georgiou’s greatest passions is using the media to educate consumers. As a medical expert, she has covered over 1,500 medical topics during her weekly segments on KSTP-TV. As an innovator on consumerism and health reform, she has been asked to speak at the White House, the World Bank and the Surgeon Generals of the Army, Navy and Air Force. She has also appeared on FOX Business Network, CNN, Good Morning America, and Katie’s Take with Katie Couric. In 2009, she was the medical correspondent for a Blue Zones international expedition to Ikaria, Greece, where she worked with National Geographic researcher Dan Buettner to explore the underlying explanations for the island population’s longevity.
Based on her interactions with viewers, Dr. Georgiou developed the CARES Model, a five-step approach that consumers can use to make healthcare decisions, and in February 2017, published her first book, Health Care Choices: 5 Steps to Getting the Medical Care You Want and Need (Rowman & Littlefield).
Dr. Georgiou graduated from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and was board-certified in Internal Medicine. She lives in Wayzata, Minnesota and enjoys spending her time with her husband, three girls and diva-like dog, Isabella.
About Dennis Zuzek, Sr. Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, HealthPartners
Dennis Zuzek is Sr. Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for HealthPartners in Minneapolis, Minnesota. HealthPartners, the largest consumer-governed nonprofit health care organization in the nation, delivers care and provides health insurance coverage across the upper Midwest.
Dennis is the leader of Information Services & Technology, which provides infrastructure, applications and data management services to support HealthPartners health plan serving 1.8M members, a care delivery system serving 1.2M patients and a workforce of 28,000 colleagues.
The department collaborates closely with business partners across the organization to:
Dennis has served as a technology leader at HealthPartners for six years. In January 2021 he was appointed to his new role as CTO. During his tenure, he oversaw the growth of health plan technology, including web & mobile and numerous applications. Previously, he held several vice president and director positions in network management, clinical analytics, clinical systems development and data management at UnitedHealth Group and Allina Health.
Dennis has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota and a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
About Meyrick Vaz, Vice President – Strategic Market Partnerships, UnitedHealthcare
Meyrick Vaz leads strategic market partnerships within the UnitedHealthcare (UHC) Office of the CIO. In this role, he closely tracks emerging trends and developments in healthcare, while scouting for innovation that aligns with UHC’s business agenda. He is responsible for identifying, evaluating, piloting, scaling up, and rolling out new, untested ideas and approaches that could improve patient experience and increase provider satisfaction. He is currently focused on the application of blockchain in healthcare including UHC’s work with the Synaptic Health Alliance. Meyrick has more than 28 years of business technology leadership experience in industries like healthcare, financial services, retail, information services, and consulting.
About Scott Feinberg, MPH, Senior Client Executive – Healthcare, Amazon
Scott Feinberg has over 20 years’ experience working in healthcare technology and has a deep understanding of the entire healthcare ecosystem. As a leader, Scott has spent time working on some of the most up-and-coming Telehealth solutions, cloud technologies, and digital transformation. while not losing sight of the importance of direct patient care.
Today, Scott currently works at Amazon, supporting some of the largest non-profit healthcare providers in the country. Before Amazon, Scott held leadership roles at UnitedHealth Group, Cisco, Infor, and Dell.
As a Minnesota HIMSS board member, Mr. Feinberg also holds a CPHIMS Certified Professional in Healthcare Information and Management Systems from HIMSS. Scott is a featured speaker and podcaster on technology. Scott graduated from the University of Minnesota and later earned a mini masters in eCommerce from St. Thomas.
ABOUT TRESSA SPRINGMANN
Tressa Springmann has been Chief Information Officer for LifeBridge Health since 2012. Further she has had responsibility as Senior Vice President over Performance Improvement including the organization’s Lean transformation work (prior) and currently over the systems HIM function. LifeBridge Health, a $2B in revenue not for profit system, consists of Sinai Hospital, Northwest Hospital, Carroll Hospital, Levindale Hebrew Geriatric Center and Hospital, and its subsidiaries and affiliated units, with nearly 10,000 employees and a vast physician network, LifeBridge Health provides patients with a continuum of care as a partner for lifelong health. As one of the largest and most comprehensive providers of health-related services to the people of Maryland, LifeBridge Health has the technology, skills and expertise of an academic system with the warmth and personal attention of a community continuum of care.
Tressa is chairman of the technology committee for CRISP, Maryland’s State Health Information Exchange (HIE), and a member of the Premier Member Technology Committee (MTIC).
She is also currently on The Healthcare Management Program Advisory Board for Towson University and is an adjunct professor at Mount St Mary’s University previously teaching Healthcare Information Technology as part of their Masters in Healthcare Administration (MHA) program.
She is the Past President of Maryland HIMSS (MDHIMSS), is a certified professional in Health Information Systems Management (CPHIMSS) and has attained her certification as a Healthcare CIO. (CHCIO). Tressa has served multiple years on the AHA ‘Most Wired’ Selection Committee, was a question writer for both the CPHIMSS and CHCIO exams. She has been on the program planning committee for multiple CHIME forums and is currently active on the CHIME membership committee and recent CHIME Foundation feedback sessions. She has regularly attended CHIME Forums and various educational events including participation in many vendor focus group sessions. She holds her Masters from The Johns Hopkins University and her BA in Biology from St. Mary’s College of Maryland.
Prior to joining LifeBridge Health, Tressa Springmann served as Vice President and Chief Information Officer (CIO) for Greater Baltimore Medical Center (GBMC) of Towson, Maryland, which includes a 300 bed acute hospital, an employed and community physician organization and the region’s largest hospice provider. Ms. Springmann has also held information technology positions at Integrated Health Services (IHS), Georgetown University Hospital, Dimensions Healthcare System, CMC Occupational Health, Pharmacia Diagnostics, Electronic Data Systems (EDS) and The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.
Tressa recently received her Wine Production Certificate from Penn State.
ABOUT CYNTHIA PERAZZO
Cynthia is a solutions-oriented healthcare strategist and innovator. She leads AVIA’s Center for Consumerism which is focused on identifying and building strategies to improve access, experience and consumer relationships that can result in growth and consumer loyalty. As the leader of AVIA’s team in the West, Cynthia assures that AVIA member health systems are achieving the greatest value from adoption of digital solutions. She and her team work with members to deeply understand their strategy and market dynamics and identify and implement innovative technologies to address critical organizational needs. Cynthia believes collaboration is the key to success for any organization seeking to successfully implement significant change.
Before joining AVIA, Cynthia served as the Senior Vice President of Strategy & Business Development at Hoag Health, a regional health system in Newport Beach, California. Cynthia lead organizational strategic planning and business development in support of Hoag’s mission to provide the highest quality health care services to the communities of Orange County and beyond. Before joining, Hoag she served as Vice President of Corporate Development for Premier, Inc., a national alliance of health systems. Cynthia led Premier’s strategic growth into the United Kingdom and developed the business plan and first contract with the National Health Service for a hospital pay for performance program based on Premier’s CMS Hospital Quality Improvement Demonstration project.
Entrepreneurial in nature, Cynthia co-founded and served as VP of Business Development for nTrusted, Inc., a consumer focused, health-related software company in San Diego. Cynthia also worked with a new venture developing innovative, point-of-care clinical information systems, leading business development, sales and marketing.
Cynthia holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the Harvard Business School and a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration in Finance from the University of Texas at Austin.
ABOUT EDWARD W. MARX
Ed has served as the CIO for University Hospitals Health Systems, Texas Health Resources, NYC Health + Hospitals and the Cleveland Clinic. At every organization, Ed helped lead mobile strategies, analytics, and digital transformation to drive superior clinical and business outcomes.
Author of ‘Voices of Innovation: Fulfilling the Promise of Information Technology in Healthcare’ (2019), ‘Extraordinary Tales from a Rather Ordinary Guy’ (2014), and ‘Scenes From an Early Morning Run’ (2019), Ed’s latest release, ‘Healthcare Digital Transformation: How Consumerism, Technology, and Pandemic are Accelerating the Future” is the #1 Amazon Best Seller in the Healthcare Innovation category. An avid athlete, Ed is a heart attack survivor, cancer survivor, and member of TeamUSA Duathlon.
ABOUT CRIS ROSS
Christopher Ross is currently the Chief Information Officer of Mayo Clinic. Prior to that, he was Executive Vice President and General Manager of the Clinical Interoperability business for Surescripts. He has 28 years of diverse experience in healthcare, information technology and government. He serves on the Health and Human Services Health IT Standards Committee, the Markle Foundation Connecting for Health Steering Committee, and previously served on the Patient Centered Primary Care Collaborative and the CDC’s National Biosurveillance Advisory Subcommittee. Before Surescripts, Cris most recently was Executive Vice President for Product and Information Services and Chief Information Officer for CVS/MinuteClinic, the pioneer and leader in retail-based healthcare. Cris holds a BS degree in Economics from the University of Minnesota and an MBA from the Yale School of Management. He serves on the Boards of Directors of the Walk-In Counseling Center and Central Presbyterian Church.
About Jennifer Lundblad, Ph.D., M.B.A., President & CEO, Stratis Health
Jennifer P. Lundblad, PhD, MBA is President and CEO of Stratis Health, an independent non-profit organization that leads collaboration and innovation to improve health. Dr. Lundblad has an extensive background in leadership, organization development, and program management in both non-profit and education settings. She has a BA in speech communication and economics from Macalester College, an MBA in public and non-profit management from Boston University, and a PhD in education with a focus on training and organization development from the University of Minnesota. Her dissertation research was “Teamwork and Safety Climates in Small Rural Hospitals,” and she has published articles in peer reviewed journals on topics related to health quality and organizational change. Dr. Lundblad is a member of the national RUPRI (Rural Policy Research Institute) Health Panel and serves on various other national and local boards and in committee leadership positions. She has an adjunct assistant professor appointment at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health.
About Jan Malcolm, Commissioner, Minnesota Department of Health
Commissioner Malcolm was appointed in January 2018 as commissioner for the Minnesota Department of Health. Ms. Malcolm is responsible for directing the work of the Minnesota Department of Health. MDH is the state’s lead public health agency, responsible for protecting, maintaining and improving the health of all Minnesotans. The department has approximately 1,400 employees in the Twin Cities area and seven offices in Greater Minnesota. Professional Background: Prior to being appointed commissioner, Jan Malcolm was an adjunct faculty member at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, where she co-directed a national research and leadership development program funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Earlier she also helped develop initiatives to strengthen the nation’s public health system as a senior program officer at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Commissioner Malcolm previously served as CEO of the Courage Center and as President of the Courage Kenny Foundation following the merger of Courage Center and the Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute. She has also worked as Vice President of Public Affairs and Philanthropy at Allina Health. From 1999 to 2003, Ms. Malcolm served as Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Health. Throughout her career, she has been active in state and national health care, public health associations, and government commissions on health care access and quality. Educational Background Jan Malcolm is a graduate of Dartmouth College. Honorary Doctor of Laws from U of M School of Public Health
Malcolm previously served as CEO of the Courage Center and as President of the Courage Kenny Foundation following the merger of Courage Center and the Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute. She has also worked as Vice President of Public Affairs and Philanthropy at Allina Health. From 1999 to 2003, Malcolm served as Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Health. Throughout her career, Malcolm has been active in state and national health care, public health associations, and government commissions on health care access and quality.
About Bobbie McAdam, Vice President, Enterprise Program Services, Medica
Bobbie McAdam has held positions in direct patient care settings, technology companies and health plans throughout her career in the health care industry. Her experience includes managing healthcare EDI initiatives related to provider outreach and education, application/portal development, IT infrastructure services, health care data standards and data integration, translation and exchange. She currently holds accountability for a multi-disciplinary team focused on vendor and contract management, finance and enterprise strategic project investment governance. Bobbie possesses a Bachelor of Science degree in Medical Record Administration from Bowling Green State University.
About Renee Frauendienst, RN, PHN, BSN, Retired Public Health Director, Stearns County; current Vice-Chair, St. Cloud Hospital Board
Renee Frauendienst is recently retired from Stearns County as the Public Health Director. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing from the College of St. Benedict and has a Certification in Performance Improvement from the University of Minnesota, School of Public Health. During her 33 years as a leader in Public Health, she was known for her expertise in innovation, policy development, performance improvement, emergency preparedness and community engagement, which earned her several awards including the Jim Parker Leadership Award and the Barbara O’Grady Award. In her retirement, she has started her own consulting business where she focuses on assisting governmental entities with performance improvement projects with a particular focus on public health and human services. She has a particular interest in the role of nurses in impacting health equity and building a culture of health in their community. She currently serves as the vice-chair for Stratis Health Board, the vice-chair for the St. Cloud Hospital Board and is the current president for the Minnesota Center for Nursing.
About Deepti Pandita, MD, Chief Health Information Officer, Hennepin Healthcare
Deepti Pandita MD is the chief Health Information officer at Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis, MN, a safety net academic medical center and also a Level one Adult and Pediatric Trauma center. Dr. Pandita is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and in Clinical Informatics. She is also Program Director of the Clinical Informatics Fellowship at Hennepin Healthcare. She received her Medical Degree from Christian Medical College, Vellore, India and did her residency training at university of North Dakota
Dr. Pandita is active with the American Medical Informatics Association and American college of Physicians leading several state and National committees. She is also on the board for Minnesota doctors for Health Equity and Board member of the Healthcare Executive Forum. Deepti has a passion for using innovation and technology to improve care delivery for the underserved and marginalized populations. She started a telemedicine program that delivers substance abuse treatment to incarcerated patients at the Hennepin county jail and is working to create health equity in the space of Telemedicine for all underserved populations during the Pandemic and beyond.
About Jennifer Fritz, MPH, Director, Center for Health Information Policy and Transformation, Minnesota Department of Health
Jennifer Fritz is the Director of the Office of Health Information Technology at the Minnesota Department of Health. She is responsible for the direction of Minnesota e-Health programs, including the Minnesota e-Health Initiative, Administrative Uniformity, Minnesota’s Health Information Exchange Oversight Program, and activities related to privacy and security, health informatics and data standards. Prior to this role, Jennifer served as Deputy Director of the Office of Health Information Technology and various other roles at the Minnesota Department of Health. Jennifer has received a Bachelor of Science and Master of Public Health degrees from the University of Minnesota.
About Rahshana Price-Isuk, MD, Director of Clinical Services, Northpoint Health & Wellness Center
Medical Degree: MD, University of Maryland, Baltimore
Residency Training: University Of MN Family Medicine Redisency-North Memorial/Broadway Family Medicine Clinic.
Philosophy of Care: As a Minneapolis native, Dr. Price-Isuk is passionate about service to the Minneapolis community. She grew up in both North and Northeast Minneapolis, attending Northeast Junior High School and graduating from North Community High School. After finishing medical school Dr. Isuk returned to her community and attended Family Medicine residency training at the University of Minnesota Broadway Clinic and North Memorial Medical Center. Dr. Isuk has a passion for health education. She desires to teach patients how to take ownership of their wellness. Her goal is to empower people and communities to take control of their health and well-being in addition to teaching providers how to provide culturally competent, equitable healthcare services. Dr. Isuk looks at each visit as an opportunity for learning for both provider and patient. Clinical
Interests and Experience: Dr. Isuk enjoys her specialty of Ambulatory Family Medicine and has been Board Certified for 15 years. She provides comprehensive care for persons starting at birth through end of life care. She takes particular interest in the adolescent population and loves assisting them in addressing their health and social needs and leading them toward finding life’s purpose.
Other Interests: Public Speaking, Mentoring, Cooking, Singing, Cycling/Power Walking, Playing with my kids! Favorite TV show is “The Voice.”
About Pleasant Radford Jr. MBA, Health Equity Officer, UCare
Mr. Radford is a multidisciplinary health care professional who uses his experience in health care business management, public health, and community engagement to help build an equitable, affordable, culturally competent health care system for all. Formerly, Radford was Principal Evaluator at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, where he directed the evaluation of healthy eating, physical activity and commercial tobacco prevention projects across the state of Minnesota, and worked with key community and corporate stakeholders in public policy, population health and consumer experience to improve health outcomes for members experiencing health inequities. Prior to his position at Blue Cross, Radford was a consultant at UnitedHealth Group. He also worked at Mayo Clinic, University of Chicago, Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health and served in the Peace Corps. As Health Equity Officer at UCare, Radford will work across the organization to align clinical, community and provider health equity initiatives. UCare Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, Julia Joseph-Di Caprio, M.D. said, “Pleasant brings enormous depth of experience and passion to this new role at UCare. We are excited to have him lead this important work creating opportunities for all of our members to have equitable access to health care and a good quality of life, which is difficult for so many UCare members because of their race or economic circumstance.” Radford serves on the Board of the Guthrie Corporate Council and previously was a Board member of Nice Ride Minnesota. He holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of St. Thomas (Minneapolis, MN) and a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Psychology and Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Spanish from the University of Illinois (Champaign, IL). Radford and his wife, Toni, live in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
About Paul Kleeberg, MD, FAAFP, FHIMSS, Retired family physician and former Regional Medical Director, Aledade
Dr. Kleeberg is a retired family physician and experienced in assisting physicians and clinic leadership to achieve their goals in value-based care. His most recent accomplishment has been Regional Medical director with Aledade where all his ACOs reduced the cost and increased the quality of care while more than half had achieved shared saving checks.
Among his other accomplishments have been serving as the Chief Medical Informatics Officer for Stratis Health, Medical Director for Clinical Decision Support at HealthEast Care System and for Allina Health. He has been Board Chair for HIMSS (The Health Information Management Systems Society), led the meaningful use committee for the Office of National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, and clinical lead for the team implementing the Epic Ambulatory System at Alina. He started his medical practice providing the full spectrum of family medicine in a small independent practice St Peter Minnesota and later he worked in a suburban ambulatory practice in Ramsey MN, part of the Allina Health system, using the ambulatory EHR he had helped design.
Dr. Kleeberg comes with vast experience in value-based care and the implementation of technologies, including telehealth, to improve provider workflows, care quality, cost savings and the patient experience of care.
ABOUT MICKY TRIPATHI
Micky Tripathi is the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, where he leads the formulation of the federal health IT strategy and coordinates federal health IT policies, standards, programs, and investments.
Mr. Tripathi has over 20 years of experience across the health IT landscape. He most recently served as Chief Alliance Officer for Arcadia, a health care data and software company focused on population health management and value-based care, the project manager of the Argonaut Project, an industry collaboration to accelerate the adoption of FHIR, and a board member of HL7, the Sequoia Project, the CommonWell Health Alliance, and the CARIN Alliance.
Mr. Tripathi served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative (MAeHC), a non-profit health IT advisory and clinical data analytics company. He was also the founding President and CEO of the Indiana Health Information Exchange, a statewide HIE partnered with the Regenstrief Institute, an Executive Advisor to investment firm LRVHealth, and a Fellow at the Berkman-Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University.
He holds a PhD in political science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Master of Public Policy from Harvard University, and an AB in political science from Vassar College. Prior to receiving his PhD, he was a Presidential Management Fellow and a senior operations research analyst in the Office of the Secretary of Defense in Washington, DC, for which he received the Secretary of Defense Meritorious Civilian Service Medal.
Jim Hall is an innovative, high-achieving Senior IT Leader with over twenty years’ experience in IT Leadership. Jim believes in developing the next generation of IT Leadership, to help IT organizations better respond to the changing technology landscape.
After serving more than eight years as Chief Information Officer in government and higher education, Jim founded Hallmentum to empower IT Leaders to drive meaningful change through hands-on training, workshops, and coaching.
Jim is a featured speaker on IT Leadership and Technology Innovation at conferences including Government IT Symposium, SINC Midwest IT Forum, International Institute of Business Analysis, Premier CIO Forum, Minnesota e-Learning Summit, CIC CIO TechForum, and UBTech.
Jim is a published author on IT Leadership, and is the author of Coaching Buttons, a collection of essays about leadership and vision in information technology: how to be a leader, how to lead through change, how to do strategic planning. Jim has also contributed chapters to several other books on IT Leadership, including The Open Organization Leaders Manual (2nd Edition), The Open Organization Workbook, and Cultivating Change in the Academy.
Jim contributes feature articles about IT Leadership and Technology Innovation in magazines and journals including Government CIO Outlook, CIO Review, University Business, OpenSource, Linux Journal, and The Open Organization book series. Jim has also been interviewed and cited as an expert on IT Leadership and Technology Innovation for publications including The Forecast by Nutanix, Government CIO Outlook, University Business Magazine, and MinnPost.
ABOUT DEAN BOORMAN
Account Manager of Strategic Accounts with H.B. Fuller, Owner of Minnesota Management Consulting, LLC and CFO of No Rush Hour Productions, LLC. 30 years in Project Program and Portfolio Management, MBA, PMP®, LSSGB, ITIL, and CSM®.
ABOUT LISA BROWN
Director Program Management at Surescripts with 30+ years of project, program, portfolio and PMO management across multiple industries and organizational sizes. A proven professional with a consistent track record of implementing solutions to address business, technical and strategic challenges within complex organizations.
ABOUT RICK RIETOW
Associate Partner at Project Consulting Group. 30+ years in Project, Program, Portfolio Management and leading PMOs. Built, matured, or scaled PMO’s in 10+ companies from mid-size to fortune 100. MBA, PMP®, Lean Six Sigma MBB.
ABOUT JOE PERZEL
Sr. Portfolio Manager with Surescripts, owner of JPerzel Inc & CEO of No Rush Hour Productions, LLC. 40+ years in Project Program and Portfolio Management, PMP®.
ABOUT GEORGE S. HAWKINS, ESQ.
George Hawkins launched his innovation-focused enterprises Moonshot Missions after stepping down as CEO of DC Water, where he served for eleven years. George helps agencies identify and adopt strategies to deliver better service and lower cost.
George transformed DC Water into an innovative enterprise while tripling its investment in clean water. DC Water’s innovations ranged from Green Infrastructure to a $500 million investment in clean energy. DC Water issued the first century bond, first environmental impact bond, and spearheaded programs to support low-income customers and provide for local workforce development.
George serves on the National Infrastructure Advisory Council, which advises the White House. George is an advisor to Xylem, Inc. and serves on the Board of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation. George has served as a Senior Lecturer at Princeton University and an Executive in Residence for American University.
Mr. Hawkins also served as Director of the DC Department of the Environment and served as Director of non-profit organizations and held positions with the USEPA and the firm Ropes & Gray.
George is a popular speaker on water and environmental issues. He has been the recipient of many awards, including the AWWA’s Fuller Award, Governing Magazine’s Public Official of the Year in 2015, WEF Public Official of the Year in 2016, and the Water Leader of the Year Prize in 2017. DC Water was awarded the US Water Prize in 2016.
He graduated from Princeton University (Summa Cum Laude) and from Harvard Law School (Cum Laude).
ABOUT DR. UMAIR SHAH
Umair Shah, MD, MPH, was appointed Secretary of Health by Governor Jay Inslee on December 21, 2020. Prior to this, Dr. Shah served as Executive Director and Local Health Authority for Harris County Public Health (HCPH) – the nationally accredited county public health agency for the nation’s third largest county with 4.7 million people.
Dr. Shah earned his BA (philosophy) from Vanderbilt University; his MD from the University of Toledo Health Science Center; and completed an Internal Medicine Residency, Primary Care/General Medicine Fellowship, and MPH (management), at the University of Texas Health Science Center. He also completed an international health policy internship at World Health Organization headquarters in Switzerland.
Upon completing training, Dr. Shah began a distinguished career as an emergency department physician at Houston’s Michael DeBakey VA Medical Center. He started his formal public health journey as Chief Medical Officer at Galveston County’s Health District before joining HCPH to oversee its clinical health system and infectious disease portfolio. Under his leadership, HCPH has won numerous national awards including recognition as Local Health Department of the Year from the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) in 2016.
Dr. Shah currently holds numerous leadership positions with respected entities like the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Trust for America’s Health; Network for Public Health Law; and Texas Medical Association. He previously served as president of NACCHO (and its Texas affiliate) representing the nation’s nearly 3,000 local health departments.
Over his career, Dr. Shah has been a clinician, an innovator, an educator, and a leader in health.
Maurice Ashley made history in 1999 when he became the first African-American chess grandmaster. He is a three-time national championship coach, author of Chess for Success: Using an Old Game to Build New Strengths in Children and Teens, Chess commentator, iPhone app designer, puzzle inventor, and motivational speaker.
Maurice is well known for providing dynamic live tournament coverage of world-class chess competitions and matches. His high-energy, unapologetic, and irreverent commentary combines Brooklyn street smarts with professional ESPN-style sports analysis. He has covered every class of elite event, including the World Chess Championships, the US Chess Championships, the Grand Chess Tour, and the legendary “man vs. machine” matches between Garry Kasparov and IBM’s Deep Blue.
Traveling the world as an ardent spokesperson for the many character-building effects of chess, Maurice shares how chess principles and strategies can be applied to improve business practices and assist with personal growth. Maurice also acts as a master of ceremonies and inspirational speaker at business conferences and high-class chess events.
Maurice has received multiple community service awards from city governments, universities, and community groups for his work. In recognition of his immense contribution to the game, he was inducted into the US Chess Hall of Fame in 2016 and the Brooklyn Technical High School Hall of Fame in 2018.
Dr. Janel Anderson is the founder of Working Conversations, LLC and holds a PhD in organizational communication from Purdue University where she wrote her dissertation on virtual teams 20 years ago. Part professor, part coach, part comedian, she offers practical strategies that can be implemented immediately.
Hayley Cohen is an Executive Security Advisor and Threat Gamification Engineer for IBM Security Command, and is based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She leads companies, intelligence agencies and governments through simulated cyber-attacks, and builds one-of-a-kind scenarios for custom client experiences.
Aside from sharing best practices from a business perspective, Hayley also demonstrates hacking techniques and tools to provide insight into how threat actors conduct attacks.
Prior to joining IBM Security Command, Hayley was a software engineer for various IBM Security teams, where she worked with leading technologists to develop world class security products. Hayley holds a B.S. in Computer Science from the Tufts University School of Engineering and a Credential of Readiness from Harvard Business School Online.
Hayley is currently pursuing an M.S in Cybersecurity Policy and Governance from Boston College.
Hayley has run simulations and demonstrations for business and technical leaders around the world. Her recent engagements include FS-ISAC Americas Virtual Summit, IBM Security Master Skills Munich, Massachusetts Digital Government Summit and Minnesota Government IT Symposium.
John Nerge is the GIS Coordinator for the City of Brooklyn Park. John works will all city departments, empowering their business decisions with spatial and data analysis, cartography, and storytelling. To achieve this, he uses human centered decision to fit the app to the audience, not the other way around.
Thomas Fisher is professor, director of the Minnesota Design Center, and Dayton Hudson Chair in Urban Design in the College of Design at the University of Minnesota.
Fisher served for 19 years as a dean at the University of Minnesota and became the director of the Minnesota Design Center in 2015. His research has focused on sustainable architecture, design ethics, and community-based service design.
Recognized in 2005 as the fifth most published writer about architecture in the United States, Fisher has written 9 books, over 50 book chapters or introductions, and over 400 articles in professional journals and major publications. Named a top-25 design educator four times by Design Intelligence, he has lectured at 36 universities and over 150 professional and public meetings. He has written extensively about architectural design, practice, and ethics. His latest book, Designing our Way to a Better World (Minnesota) came out in 2016.
Mandy Froehlich passionately encourages educators to create innovative change in their classrooms. A former Director of Innovation and Technology, technology integrator, and teacher, she has experience at many levels of the organizational structure. Her interest lies in reinvigorating and re-engaging teachers back into their profession, as well as what’s needed to support teachers in their pursuit of innovative and divergent thinking and teaching. She consults internationally with school districts and post-secondary institutions in the effective use of technology to support great teaching, mental health support for educators, and how to create organizational change. Her first book, The Fire Within: Lessons from Defeat that have ignited a passion for learning, discusses mental health awareness for teachers. Her second book, Divergent EDU, is based on an organizational structure she developed to support teachers in innovative and divergent thinking. Her third book, Reignite the Flames, is based on educator engagement and mental health. And check out here newly released book, The Educator’s Matchbook, a weekly guide for educators looking to reignite their love of teaching.
Mark Lanterman is the Chief Technology Officer of Computer Forensic Services. Before entering the private sector, Mark was a member of the U.S. Secret Service Electronic Crimes Taskforce.
Mark has 28 years of security and forensic experience and has testified in over 2000 cases.
Mark is faculty for the Federal Judicial Center in Washington, D.C., the National Judicial College in Reno, Nevada, the University of Minnesota and the Mitchell Hamline Law School. Mark is a professor in the cybersecurity program at the St. Thomas School of Law in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Mark has provided training in digital evidence, computer forensics and cyber security to the United States Supreme Court. He has also presented to the 8th and 11th Circuit Federal Judicial Conferences as well as numerous State and Federal Judicial Conferences across the United States.
Mark completed his postgrad studies in cybersecurity at Harvard University and is certified as a Seized Computer Evidence Recovery Specialist (SCERS) by the Department of Homeland Security.
Mark is a member of the Minnesota Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board and serves as Chairman of its Opinions Committee.
In her role as Partner, Angela oversees work in 3 states and leads the leadership development practices team for TNTP. In her role, she works with state departments, philanthropic organizations and foundations, CMOs and districts on a range of work that includes leadership development, talent diversification, access to high quality academics and implementation, and authentic community engagement. In her work at TNTP Angela has led principal preparation programs in Philadelphia and Kansas City and supported districts in designing comprehensive talent management and human capital strategies.
Prior to her work at TNTP, she supported district staff and principals in Prince George’s County with the implementation of a new teacher evaluation system. Prior to her work there, she joined education as a Teach For America corps member in Philadelphia, where she taught middle school English in the district, leading her students to significant gains on city wide tests. During this time, she was featured on NBC’s Education Nation as an exemplary model of teaching. Following her teaching experience, Angela joined Teach For America staff as a Manager of Teacher Leadership Development, coaching first and second year teachers throughout Philadelphia, reaching more than 2000 students via the teachers she coached. In 2015, Angela was named to Forbes 30 Under 30 list of influential educators. Angela completed her Bachelor of Science in Finance at Penn State University and holds a Masters from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education.
Brian Johnson is the president of 7 Minute Security, which specializes in security assessments, penetration testing and training. He is especially passionate about teaching others about security and hosts a weekly podcast to help consumers and businesses strengthen their security posture. When he isn’t camped out behind a keyboard, he enjoys outdoor activities with his family, as well as singing and playing guitar in an acoustic duo.
Lynette Crane, corporate trainer, coach, international speaker, and author, has had 40 years of experience in helping people address stress under many different challenging circumstances, including economic chaos and natural disasters as well as personal crises.
She was a pioneer in 1978 when she created the first college course on The Psychology of Stress, then went on to do organizational training for such institutions as Pacific Bell Telephone Company (during their divestiture from AT&T), San Francisco Veterans’ Affairs, San Francisco Airport, and more. Her training has additionally impacted companies such as Hewlett Packard, Target, and a hot of others over her 40 years of experience.
Recognizing the old stress management techniques were not delivering what was needed in the modern era, she turned to latest in neuroscience and quantum physics to create a unique scientifically-validated program in which participants can gain the tools to deal successfully with the losses and disruptions of our pandemic by learning, easily and quickly, how to prepare for, recover from and adapt in the face of adversity.
Seen on The Ellen Show and NBC Nightly News, educator, speaker, and author Michael Bonner is an energizing voice in education. Michael has presented to more than 200 education conferences, school district meetings and leadership development audiences across the U.S. & Canada to share his “lessons learned” from teaching in a Title I school with children that experience high levels of trauma and adverse situations.
Mr. Bonner’s candid, enthusiastic seminars challenge listeners to create diverse, inclusive education plans “where students can see themselves within the lessons and assessments” as a means to increase student success rates. He empowers his audiences to build genuine relationships with their students because “you can’t demand a withdrawal from someone you have never invested in.”
Administrators and educators alike leave Mr. Bonner’s presence ready to make an impact that affects eternity. He is consistently seen as a visionary leader who strives to create a positive mindset among all of his students. His students come to class each day with diverse backgrounds, strengths, needs, and challenges. Therefore, he identifies strategies to ensure their growth socially, emotionally, academically, and psychologically. Due to his educational approach, students leave more hopeful, challenged, inspired, and forever a part of Bonnerville.
Today, Mr. Bonner lives in Atlanta, Ga. where he is beginning a new educational journey as a fourth and sixth grade English teacher at the famed Ron Clark Academy!
Glen has been in education for over 20 years and he currently works as an instructional coach in Sauk Rapids, Minnesota. Glen was previously a Spanish teacher. Glen is well known by the Schoology community as a Gamification expert, Schoology Ambassador, and he was the 2016-2017 Schoology Educator of the Year. He is the co-host of OnEducation Podcast whose goal is to have honest conversations about teachers, teaching and everything in between.
Co-convener Stratis Health is proud to provide continuing medical education credit for physicians and advanced practice professionals for the MN HIMSS and Minnesota e-Health Initiative Conference, through their CME accreditation by the Minnesota Medical Association.
Physician Continuing Medical Education (CME) AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™
This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Minnesota Medical Association (MMA) through the joint sponsorship of Stratis Health and the MN HIMSS and Minnesota e-Health Initiative Conference. Stratis Health is accredited by the MMA to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
Stratis Health designates this activity for 7 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
CME certificates will be emailed after completion of these steps:
Speaker and Planning Committee Disclosure: To comply with MMA Standards for Commercial Support, Stratis Health requires presenters to disclose the existence of any significant financial interest or other relationships with companies whose products or services are related to the subject matter of the presentation. Each presenter will submit a signed disclosure form prior to the conference. No presenter or planning committee member involved with the MN HIMSS and Minnesota e-Health Initiative Conference will have a financial relationship that could be perceived as a real or apparent conflict of interest in the context of their presentation; nor will any speaker discuss research or unlabeled uses of commercial products.
Continuing Education and Contact Hours for Nurses
The University of Minnesota School of Nursing, Office of Practice, Partnerships and Professional Development, is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation. The MN HIMSS and Minnesota e-Health Initiative Conference is designed to meet the Minnesota Board of Nursing requirements for continuing education. It is the responsibility of the individual nurse to determine if the course fulfills that requirement.
Continuing Education Credits and Contact Hours for Other Health Professionals
The MN HIMSS and Minnesota e-Health Initiative Conference may meet continuing education requirements for your focus. Attendees will receive a certificate of attendance following completion of a post-conference online evaluation survey. It is the responsibility of the individual to determine if the course fulfills that requirement.
Amanda VanDerHeyden, Ph.D., is a private consultant and researcher who has directed and evaluated numerous school-wide intervention and reform efforts. Amanda is founder of Spring Math (www.springmath.com), a web-based comprehensive mathematics RtI system covering numeracy to algebra, which is widely used in the U.S. and has shown strong gains in math achievement. Her work has been featured on “Education News Parents Can Use” on PBS and The Learning Channel.
Dr. VanDerHeyden has held faculty positions at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center and University of California at Santa Barbara. She is President of Education Research & Consulting, Inc. in Fairhope. Dr. VanDerHeyden serves as scientific advisor to TIES and the Center on Innovations in Learning. She has served as a guest or standing panel member for NIH, IES at the U.S. Department of Education and on numerous boards including the RTI Advisory Board for the National Center for Learning Disabilities and SEDL, one of 10 regional laboratories funded by the U.S. Department of Education since merged with the American Institutes for Research). Dr. VanDerHeyden has published more than 100 scholarly articles and chapters, 7 books, and has given keynote addresses to state school psychology associations and state departments of education in 32 states and Singapore. She is co- author of the Evidence-Based Mathematics Innovation Configuration for the National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality at Vanderbilt University and now the Collaboration for Effective Education Development, Accountability, and Reform at University of Florida. Her most recent book (Kovaleski, VanDerHeyden, & Shapiro—The RTI Approach to Evaluating Learning Disabilities) was featured at a forum for policymakers hosted by the National Center for Learning Disabilities as a best-practice guide for identifying and serving children with Learning Disabilities in October of 2013 in New York, NY. She actively conducts research focused on improving learning outcomes for students and her scholarly work has been recognized in the form of article of the year awards in 2007 from Journal of School Psychology and 2016 from Journal of Learning Disabilities Research & Practice, the Lightner Witmer Early Career Contributions Award from Division 16 (School Psychology) of the American Psychological Association, and her 2012 induction into the 150-member Society for the Study of School Psychology. Amanda believes that most academic failure is preventable and that all children can learn when provided with the right instruction.
Ruth Lynfield is State Epidemiologist and Medical Director at Minnesota Dept of Health. She joined MDH as a medical epidemiologist in 1997. She has investigated and responded to outbreaks, developed surveillance systems, and conducted public health research, evaluation and planning. She has served on a number of federal advisory committees including the National Vaccine Advisory Committee, the FDA Vaccine and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee and chairs the CDC Board of Scientific Counselors for the Deputy Director for Infectious Diseases. She is an Adjunct Professor of Medicine and of Epidemiology and Community Health at the University of Minnesota.
Elissa Hansen, President & CEC at Northspan
Elissa Hansen invests her time creatively advancing others’ capabilities. Recently, she has facilitated strategic planning processes for numerous public, private, and nonprofit organizations in the Upper Midwest. She also spearheaded the creation of the Minnesota Opportunity Collaborative and has worked to expand and enhance Northspan’s programs. She leads Northspan with over 20 years of experience in business and economic development across Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Karl Schuettler, Research Director & Consultant at Northspan
Karl Schuettler manages the Northland Connection program, provides support services to local communities, and researches and analyzes economic trends. In the past year, Karl’s work has included numerous economic analyses, reports on business visit programs, and staffing support for several regional partnerships. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and a master’s degree in urban and regional planning from the University of Minnesota.
Terri Thao is passionate about building power with community. She is currently a program director at Nexus Community Partners, a non-profit community building intermediary where she runs the Boards and Commissions Leadership Institute (BCLI). Terri has spent most of her professional career in the fields of community economic development, community building, leadership development, and philanthropy. She also teaches classes on leadership and advocacy at Metropolitan State University. She serves on the boards of the F.R. Bigelow Foundation, Minnesota Housing and Voices for Racial Justice. She obtained her Bachelors’ and Masters’ degrees from the University of Minnesota. She lives with her family on the East Side of St. Paul and loves to read in her spare time.
Dannielle Lewis is a senior manager in the tax practice, focused on serving clients in the construction and real estate industry. She leads Wipfli’s team of Qualified Opportunity Zone specialists and is a frequent speaker on this topic. She also advises clients on complex tax transactions involving partnership interest exchanges or business sales. Dannielle stays up to date on the ever-changing tax laws and recognizes opportunities for new and potential clients to help save and structure their funds. She leverages her proactive planning and advising to ensure clients reach their goals and are successful.
Jacob seeks to strengthen communities’ resilience by promoting the use of data and careful analysis. At Wilder, he generates and curates content for the Minnesota Compass website and manages a portfolio of related research projects. He brings experience in research, geospatial analysis, writing, and outreach from previous positions at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs, and the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, among others.
He holds a master’s degree in urban and regional planning from the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota and a bachelor’s degree in English from James Madison University in Virginia.
Outside of work, he enjoys bicycling around the Twin Cities and getting lost in the woods as he forages for mushrooms. In his opinion, a perfect day would somehow combine the two.
Kathlene Campbell is the Dean of Education at the University of St. Thomas where she oversees the departments of educational leadership, special education, and teacher education as well as the charter school authorizing unit. Dr. Campbell’s multifaceted experience as a classroom teacher, community college and state college professor, state college interim dean, university instructor and supervisor, and non-profit consultant have shaped all of her strategic and scholarly pursuits. She holds a B.A. in Elementary Education and M.Ed. in Early Childhood Intervention and Family Studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from The University of Texas at Austin.
Michael Baran, PhD is a Senior Partner and Digital Solutions Lead at inQUEST Consulting. He has been working with organizations for almost 20 years, helping support their diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts. By training, he has a doctorate in cultural anthropology and cognitive psychology, studying questions like: how do we all develop unconscious biases? And what are the subtle ways that cultures include some people and exclude others?
Michael has taught courses at Harvard University and the University of Michigan. He has lead projects aiming to reduce racial disparities in education, health, housing, and criminal justice at the FrameWorks Institute and at the American Institutes of Research.
He is also the coauthor of the recently launched book Subtle Acts of Exclusion: How to Understand, Identify, and Stop Microaggressions, cited in Forbes as one of the “11 Books To Read If You Want To Be A More Inclusive Leader.”
Andy Zimney is a Principal Advisor and Team Performance Coach at Employe Strategies, Inc.—a boutique firm in Minneapolis that partners with leaders to create highly effective work cultures. He has two decades of experience in the conference room as an organizational executive and on the stage as a profession improviser. Andy has lead learning seminars and coached teams from a wide variety of industries across the country to help them adapt to change and support more innovative cultures. Andy spends the rest of his time with his wife and 3 fantastic children in St. Paul, MN.
Jessica O. Matthews is the Founder & CEO of Uncharted Power, an award-winning, full-service power and data infrastructure company. The Company’s proprietary suite of technologies enables it to build, own and operate decentralized power infrastructure for communities with various applications for edge colocation, power, and sensing. Developing technologies in energy generation, transmission and storage, the Company also has mastered harnessing kinetic energy, enabling it to engineer consumer products for Fortune 500 companies in the U.S. and various international governments. The Company was founded by Jessica when she was only 22 years old.
Jessica was invited by President Barack Obama to the White House to represent small companies for the signing of the America Invents Act in 2012. In 2016, she raised the second-largest Series A ever raised by a black female founder in history and was selected to ring the NASDAQ opening ceremony bell, representing all Forbes 30 Under 30 alumna.
Jessica’s research and career centers around the intersection of disruptive technology, renewable energy, human behavior, and the psychology of self-actualization. A dual citizen of Nigeria & the U.S., Jessica has a degree in Psychology and Economics from Harvard University, an MBA from Harvard Business School, and is listed on over 10 patents and patents pending—including her first invention of the SOCCKET, an energy generating soccer ball, at the age of 19. Her list of accolades includes Fortune’s Most Promising Women Entrepreneurs, Forbes 30 under 30 list, Inc Magazine 30 under 30, and Harvard University Scientist of the Year.
Susan Brower is the Minnesota State Demographer and directs the MN State Demographic Center. Susan became the State Demographer in February 2012. In that capacity, she travels the state talking with Minnesotans about the new social and economic realities that are brought about by recent demographic shifts. Susan’s work applies an understanding of demographic trends to changes in a range of areas including the state’s economy and workforce, education, health, immigration and rural population changes.
Susan joined the State Demographic Center after working as a researcher on the Minnesota Compass project at Wilder Research in St. Paul. Prior to that, she worked at the Population Studies Center at the University of Michigan.
Susan earned her Ph.D. in sociology at the University of Michigan, specializing in demography and family sociology. She also holds a master’s degree in public policy from Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota.
For media or other inquiries, please contact Susan at email@example.com (preferred) or 651-201-2472. Download a high resolution photo of Susan. Note: If you would like Susan to present at an event, please email her with your request.
Kori Land, Attorney at LeVander, Gillen & Miller, P.A.
Korine Land is a shareholder at LeVander, Gillen & Miller, located in South St. Paul, Minnesota. She is the City Attorney for the cities of West St. Paul, Stillwater, Cottage Grove, Randolph and Hampton. Ms. Land is the Chair of her Firm’s Municipal Practice Group, a past president of the Minnesota City Attorneys’ Association and a frequent speaker for the League of Minnesota Cities on various municipal matters. She graduated from Augustana University and Mitchell-Hamline College of Law.
Molly Just, Senior Planner at WSB
Molly has nearly 20 years of experience in local and regional government, as well as in the private sector. While her experience includes long-range planning and current planning, Molly finds planning nirvana when helping to solve problems. She finds that the answers are often hiding in plain sight – in the zoning ordinance or comprehensive plan. Molly’s planning career started in the Washington, DC area, then moved to Maine, and finally to Minnesota in 2015; attracted by the evident quality of life. Molly lives in Minneapolis with her husband, son, and pets. In her free time, Molly is always trying to carve out time to walk the lakes with her dog or strengthen her yoga practice.
Erin Perdu, Director of Community Planning & Economic Development at WSB
Erin Perdu, AICP, is the Community Planning and Economic Development Director for WSB in Minneapolis. She has been a practicing planner for over 20 years, working primarily in the upper-Midwest and Texas. Her career spans both the public and private sectors, including a 12-year stint at the helm of the consulting firm she founded, ENP & Associates. Erin’s passions include long-range planning, community engagement, and bringing national best practices to communities of all sizes. She holds a Bachelor of Science from Stanford University (Earth Systems) and Master of Science (Natural Resources) and Master of Urban Planning degrees from the University of Michigan.
Mike Couri, Attorney at Couri & Ruppe, P.L.L.P.
Michael C. Couri is a partner with Couri & Ruppe. Mr. Couri received his Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Illinois State University in 1985. He then received his Certified Public Accountant certificate and Juris Doctorate from the University of Illinois in 1988. He was admitted to the Illinois Bar in 1988 and the Minnesota Bar in 1991. Mr. Couri has been continuously engaged in the practice of Municipal Law in Minnesota since 1991. He has been the City Attorney for the City of Albertville since 1992, the City of St. Augusta since 2000, and the City of Rockford since 2002. He has also represented a number of Townships since his entry into the practice of Municipal Law in 1991. Mr. Couri has attended City and Township sponsored continuing legal education seminars annually since 1991 and has periodically spoken on Municipal issues before City and Township organizations.
Phil Carlson, Associate at Stantec
Phil Carlson has practiced as a planning consultant in the region for more than forty years, assisting dozens of cities with comprehensive plans, neighborhood studies, urban design guidelines, zoning codes, and planning advice. He has designed residential, commercial, industrial, and mixed use developments, and wrote one of the first form-based codes in Minnesota. He has taught planning and zoning to city staff and leaders for over thirty years and is frequently called as an expert witness in land use and zoning cases.
Megan Dayton is a Senior Demographer at Minnesota’s State Demographic Center. Since 2012, she has been responsible for preparing demographic projections for the State of Minnesota, 13 Economic Development Regions, and 87 counties. Serving in this role, Megan is Minnesota’s state representative to the Federal-State Cooperative Program for Population Projections (FSCPP) with the U.S. Census Bureau. Megan’s work involves the creation of school district estimates upon request for intercensal levy cycle funding and providing data analysis for state agencies, councils, and legislators.
Megan’s research interests include improving upon existing data modeling techniques used for state and sub-state areas, as well as social stratification and more general demographic trends related to fertility, mortality, and migration patterns. Megan has hands-on knowledge of social and economic realities brought about by recent demographic shifts. Her work engages an attentive approach to relating current demographic trends with the resulting likelihoods.
Megan holds a master’s degree in applied demography from the Center for Demography and Population Health at the Florida State University.
Contact Megan at firstname.lastname@example.org (preferred) or 651-201-2461. Download a high resolution photo of Megan. Note: If you would like Megan to present at an event, please email her with your request.
COVID-19 and the Transforming Learning Summit
The Transforming Learning Summit is proceeding with safety as a top priority. Our planning committee closely follows the CDC guidelines, local and state public health authorities and US State Department/Federal Government rules related to the COVID-19 virus. We recognize the situation is fluid and changing daily. We’ve instituted the following policy that only applies to COVID-19 related cancellations:
» 100% of attendee and sponsor/exhibitor registration fees will be refunded if a company has instituted travel restrictions for its employees that is effective during the dates of the Summit, and an attendee or sponsor/exhibitor cannot attend the event. Cancellation must be communicated by email to email@example.com accompanied by the company proof of policy. Refunds will not be issued for cancellations before July 15, 2020.
» 100% of registration fees will be refunded if cancellation of the event is mandated by local health authorities
GTS Educational Events is actively exploring Digital Conferencing tools and the potential benefits that sponsors and exhibitors would receive, in the event that the in-person event is canceled. We will ensure sponsors and exhibitors receive comparable or even enhanced benefits associated with a captive digital audience. We welcome your ideas and input.
COVID-19 and the Government IT Symposium
The Government IT Symposium is proceeding with safety as a top priority. Our planning closely follows the CDC guidelines, local and state public health authorities and US State Department/Federal Government rules related to the COVID-19 virus. We recognize the situation is fluid and changing daily. We’ve instituted the following policy that only applies to COVID-19 related cancellations:
» 100% of attendee and sponsor/exhibitor registration fees will be refunded if a company has instituted travel restrictions for its employees that is effective during the dates of the Conference, and an attendee or sponsor/exhibitor cannot attend the event. Cancellation must be communicated by email to firstname.lastname@example.org after November 16, 2020, accompanied by the company proof of policy. Refunds will not be issued for cancellations before November 16, 2020.
Darin Richardson is the Claims Manager of the League of Minnesota Cities Insurance Trust (LMCIT), working in this capacity since January 2014. Darin currently oversees both the property casualty and the workers’ compensation claims staff at the LMCIT. Prior to becoming the Claims Manager, Darin spent twenty-three years as a property casualty claims professional dedicated to the LMCIT while working for Berkley Risk Administrators and GAB.
B. J. is the Risk and Homeland Security Manager for Dakota County. B.J. is responsible for the oversite of several programs at the County including: health and safety, insurance and claims, continuity of operations planning, emergency management and implementation of enterprise risk management. Dakota County began actively pursuing cyber insurance coverage in 2018. The County has leveraged its relationship with AIG insurance to help develop a comprehensive framework to mitigate, respond and recover from cyber security events.
Ryan Donovan has been in the insurance industry for 15+ years as a commercial P&C, Group Health, and Life insurance producer. In his current role, Ryan serves as the Manager of the Insurance and Risk Management department for Sourcewell.
Annie is a broker in Aon’s Professional Risk Solutions Team located in Chicago, and has been with Aon since 2012. She works with organizations across all industries and sizes in assessing Errors & Omissions, Network Security and Privacy, and Media Risks.
Sean Sweeney is Senior Director & Chief Security Advisor, Americas, in Microsoft’s Cybersecurity Solutions Group. In this role, he is primarily responsible for aligning and mobilizing his team of Cybersecurity Advisors and Architects across the U.S., Canada, and Latin America to deliver thought leadership and deep customer engagement. He is also responsible for regularly engaging with the security industry through public speaking, standards development, and advanced research, as well as providing strategic direction on products and services, and advising customer CxOs on security and compliance issues.
Prior to joining Microsoft, Sean served as a Chief Information Security Officer of the University of Pittsburgh, principal and co-founder of a Pittsburgh-based eDiscovery startup, Chief Information Officer for a national law firm based in Pittsburgh, and Litigation Support Applications Manager for the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.
A frequent author and speaker on security and compliance, Sean is also a steadfast champion of cybersecurity workforce development. Originally from Northern Virginia, and an avid boater; Sean has resided in Pittsburgh, PA for the last 13 years.
John Israel currently manages the State of Minnesota’s Security Operations Center (SOC) and Enterprise Forensics teams overseeing the state’s efforts to improve cybersecurity monitoring, incident detection, and incident investigations. This role includes building and maintaining key cyber resources related to security monitoring and cybersecurity analysis for Minnesota government – including direct roles partnering with the Minnesota Secretary of State, Minnesota Fusion Center, and Minnesota county IT teams.
Robert Biestman is the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Cyber Mission Center Sector Outreach Lead. His role is to build customer relationships with critical infrastructure cyber leaders with the goal of securing the nation’s critical infrastructure by furthering DHS’ understanding of cyber activity targeting U.S. critical infrastructure and delivering valuable intelligence back to sectors so they can better defend against cyber threats facing the Homeland. Mr. Biestman provides cyber leaders a direct contact into the intelligence community and facilitates information sharing, joint analysis partnerships, and in-depth cyber threat briefings.
Prior to his role as Sector Outreach Lead, he worked as a financial sector technical cyber threat analyst for the DHS Cyber Mission Center, and in addition has worked as a homeland security legislative advisor for the U.S. House of Representatives. Mr. Biestman graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a degree in Business Economics and received his Master’s Degree in Cyber Leadership from National Defense University’s College of Information and Cyberspace.
David Maeda is the Director of Elections for the Minnesota Secretary of State’s Office. David’s team interfaces directly with election officials in every Minnesota county.
Terry is a Senior Engineer with Collier IT where he works to ensure clients are successful with database, big data, and cloud initiatives. Terry has 30 years of software development and implementation experience as a developer, architect, support, and sales team member. He brings extensive experience in enterprise software design, development, consulting, training, and sales with both government and commercial clients. Prior to joining Collier IT, Terry was a Solution Architect at Cloudera and a Principal Systems Engineer at Oracle.
Scott is a Director of Product Management for GraalVM at Oracle. He has over 25 years experience in the industry as a developer and product manager. Scott joined Oracle in 2003 as a developer and was one of the architects of SecureFiles in the Oracle Database. In 2011, Scott joined the Oracle Solaris Kernel team as an engineering manager and took over product management for Oracle Solaris in 2013. Scott has been working with the GraalVM team for the last 2+ years.
Brian is the Chief Technology Officer at Collier IT. He has over 36 years in the Information Technology field starting in the US Navy in 1981. Although proficient in many technologies his passion has been in the Operating Environment, Engineered Systems, Data Center grade servers, Big Data/Hadoop, and storage, and now Cloud Computing and the associated MSP aspects. He has been teaching for Sun Microsystems / Oracle since 2000. Brian actively writes a blog and provides formal presentations on various Oracle and related technology topics. @Snatchbrain Brian presents at a number of technology gatherings and is currently focused in Cloud connectivity, Docker in the Cloud, Hadoop, and Data Analytics in the Cloud. Brian is an Oracle Ace Director for Engineered Systems / Solaris and was recently awarded the 2018 Oracle Excellence Award: Leadership in Infrastructure Transformation.
Jason Moldan is a Solutions Architect with Amazon Web Services where he works to ensure customers are successful on their cloud journey. Jason has over 20 years if IT experience and prior to joining Amazon, he was the Technical Architect for the University of St. Thomas where he developed and led the universities cloud initiative.
Tomes received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland and attended Graduate School for Business Management at Boston University.
Jacob seeks to improve community vitality by promoting the use of data and community indicators to better understand trends in different quality-of-life measures. At Wilder, he generates and curates content for the Minnesota Compass website and manages a portfolio of related research projects. He brings experience in research, geospatial analysis, writing, and outreach from previous positions at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs, and the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, among others.
Jacob is also a contributor to the Minnesota Compass blog:
Ellen serves as a research scientist for Minnesota Compass where she tracks indicators for the project which provides community-level trends for Minnesota residents. Ellen analyzes community-level data trends by working collaboratively with Minnesota organizations to identify data indicators that are relevant to their everyday work.
Before joining Wilder Research, Ellen worked for the University of Iowa’s Center for Evaluation and Assessment and University of Minnesota’s Office of Community Engagement for Health conducting research and evaluation related to education, health, and social services. She has worked with community-based organizations, state and local government, and higher education institutions for the past 15 years to develop indicators that support informed decision-making.
Ellen holds dual master’s degrees in public health and public policy from the University of Washington and a bachelor’s degree in English from Grinnell College.
Ellen enjoys cooking for her family, visiting the mountains in her native home of Montana, and reading a good book.
Joseph Pugh is an Operations and Development Systems Supervisor with MNIT partnering with Minnesota Department of Health. He has over 25 years of IT experience in development and his career includes mainframe, client server, fat client servlets and now “the cloud”. His perspective and experience aligns with a significant number of development and operational government staff that will be tasked with this important transition.
Joseph has a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Statistics from Miami University in Oxford Ohio.
Corey Blommel has 20 years of IT experience that stretches across several fields. Currently, Corey is a security instructor at Anoka Ramsey Community College, and manages the Cybersecurity, Computer Networking and Computer Science academic programs. Corey is also a community faculty member at Metropolitan State University, and an instructor at the MNCyber Cyber Range.
Corey holds a Bachelors degree in IT management from Concordia University and Masters degrees in MIS from Metropolitan State University. When not teaching, Corey continues to work as an IT consultant.
Stephanie is a Technology of Participation (ToP®) Certified Facilitator and Mentor Trainer. She has a baccalaureate degree in Psychology and Social Work from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma Washington and a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Hamline University in St. Paul Minnesota.
Kristy Dalton is the CEO of Government Social Media LLC and executive director of the Government Social Media Organization. She has been called on as an industry influencer and her unique background includes serving as a delegate at a NATO social media summit in Sarajevo, advising government agencies on digital strategy and delivering keynotes on social media and tech innovation all across the United States. Kristy has authored several social media courses for the LinkedIn Learning platform and pens a regular social media column in Government Technology Magazine. She founded the nation’s first social media conference for U.S. city, county and state agencies, the Government Social Media Conference.
Chris Dancy is touted as “the Most Connected Man on Earth,” and the world is watching those connections carefully. For 25 years, Dancy has served in leadership within the technology and healthcare industries, specializing in the intersection of the two. Chris entered the public dialog concerning digital health as the media started to focus on wearable technology. He earned his moniker by utilizing up to 700 sensors, devices, applications, and services to track, analyze, and optimize his life–from his calorie intake to his spiritual well-being. This quantification enables him to see the connections of otherwise invisible data, resulting in dramatic upgrades to his health, productivity, and quality of life.
A noted keynote speaker and executive workshop retreat facilitator, Chris guides organizations and audiences on a journey–a disruptive, breathtaking journey–into the future of computing, when behavior becomes the ultimate interface. As a author his digital wellness journey will transform how we look at the technology of our lives.
Prior to its acquisition by ConvergeOne, Craig worked for AOS for 10 years as a Design Architect and Systems Consultant in Omaha, NE. As a Design Architect, Craig meets with clients to understand the business needs for technology (such as SD-WAN, Security, etc), create topology designs, PowerPoint proposals, and Statements of Work for professional services teams to implement the solution. He supports multiple accounts throughout Nebraska, Iowa, and the Dakotas and covers technology solutions including Route/Switch, Security, Wireless, Data Center, and Unified Communications.
Ryan Cloutier is a seasoned IT Security professional with over 15 years of experience and is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional CISSP® he has held a variety of IT roles during his career including multiple architect and security roles, Ryan has worked on cloud security, Dev-Ops / Sec-Ops methodology, policy, process, audit and compliance, network and application security architecture for several fortune 500’s in the health care, financial, and agriculture sectors and has been working with K-12 and SLED for the last 2 years.
RCLLG Meeting and Educational Program Dates
Learn about what the Minnesota e-Health HIE Task Force has accomplished in the past year. The HIE Task Force, a twelve member group appointed by the Commissioner of Health in 2018, has provided input and expertise on moving to a connected networks approach in Minnesota.
By the end of 2019, it is expected that large health systems and providers participating with a health information organization (HIO) will be able to exchange care summary documents using the national eHealth Exchange network. The HIE Task Force recommended this important step and developed an implementation plan for this which is being rolled out now.
The task force also provided input for governance, authority and financing to help achieve foundational, robust and optimal HIE across the state. A facilitated panel of task force and advisory committee members will provide comments on the task force work and audience members will have an opportunity to ask questions as well.