A complete guide to the 2018 CultureCon Speaker Lineup!

Image

KEYNOTE: Dr. Darin Eich

Innovation Learning LLC

"Enact Your Innovative Mindset to Grow a Culture of Innovation!"

Image

KEYNOTE: Scott Lesnick

Successful Business Solutions

"Innovation at Work: Removing Barriers to Increase Workplace Productivity"

Image

KEYNOTE: Samantha Slade

Percolab

"Your First Steps Towards Horizontal Organizational Culture"

Image

Duo KEYNOTE: Renee Moe

United Way of Dane County

"United Way – The Intersection of Engagement"

Image

Duo KEYNOTE: Christian Rosenstock

TASC

"How to Succeed at the Intersection of Innovation and Philanthropy" (with Renee Moe)

Image

Jeff Dieffenbach

MIT Integrated Learning Initiative

"Advancing a Culture of Learning: Applying Findings of the Science of Learning to Prototype Effective Learning Experiences”

Image

Patty Glines-Kotecki, PhD, SPHR, CPT

Spectrum Brands

"Building A Change-Adept Culture"

Image

Greg St. Fort

100 State

Coworking Culture Panelist

Image

Joe Pleshek

Terso Solutions

"Fostering a Dynamic Company Culture – Terso Solution’s Journey from Startup to Sustainable Growth"

Image

Khalida Ali

Zendesk

"The Art of Inclusivity in The Workplace"

Image

Caleb Campbell

Bluetree Network

"Small Leaks Sink Ships"

Image

Eugenia Podestá

Vital Voices Global Partnership Synergy Coworking

Coworking Culture Panelist

Image

Laura Gmeinder

Laura Gmeinder Coaching & Consulting

"Creating a Coaching Culture"

Image

Paul Herr

Paul Herr Consulting

" How to Turn On the 'Hive Switch'"

Image

Anne Hunnex, MS, PMP

Farwell

"Oh the Humanity: Understanding Humans to Lead"

Image

Jennifer Pulvermacher

Mind Groove LLC

"Creating a Culture of Mindfulness"

Image

Suzanne Qualia

Qualia Inc

"Are You Really Listening?"

Image

Dan Golden

Be Found Online

"The Ownership Culture: How to Build a Culture of Employee Engagement and Empowerment"

Image

Sarah Graf

Understory

Remote Workforce Panelist

Image

Dave Will

PropFuel

"Marrying Feedback from your Employees and Customers to Strengthen Company Culture and Grow Your Business"

Image

Bruce Holoubek

Contracted Leadership

"Mind Your Gap, Address the Void: Supporting a Culture of Promoting from Within"

Image

D.P. Knudten

COLLABORATOR Creative

"Communicating Culture—Are you by Action, or Accident?"

Image

Jonathan Reynolds

Titus Talent Strategies

"Creating a Purpose Driven, Values-Based Culture for Today’s Mobile Workforce"

Image

Jeff Kortes

Human Asset Management LLC

"Creating a Culture of C.R.A.P… How Culture Will Drive Results in the New Workplace"

Image

Moses Altsech, Ph. D.

Altsech Consulting

"Measure What You Value: Data-Driven Action Applied to Culture"

Image

Charlie Judy

WorkXO

"'Great Places to Work' are a Commodity. Managed Cultures are an Experience"

Image

Steve Lipton

Wipfli LLP

"Leading and Communication Change"

Image

Andrea Cooper

Flourish Consulting

"Solving the Culture Puzzle: Unlocking a Powerful Process to Transform Culture"

Image

Stephen Utech

illumyx

"Meaning Makers: Driving Retention, Productivity and Growth"

Image

Todd Hoskins

Thirdspace

"Culture Hacking"

Image

Rachel Breitbach

Farwell

Remote Workforce Panel

Image

Scott Kohl

Thirdspace

"Solving the Culture Puzzle: Unlocking a Powerful Process to Transform Culture"

Image

Kathy Blumenfeld

TASC

Remote Workforce Panel

Image

Marivic Valencia

ValenciaPR

Remote Workforce Panel

Image

Leah Roe

HealthFinch

Remote Workforce Panel

Image

Chandra Miller Fienen

StartingBlock Madison

Coworking Culture Panelist

Image

Brian Samson

Madworks Coworking

Coworking Culture Panelist

Image

Neil Heinen

WISC-TV/Madison Magazine

'Culture :The Madison Way' Panelist

Image

Mathew Gonnering

Widen Enterprises, Inc.

'Culture :The Madison Way' Panelist

Image

Linda Nedelcoff

CUNA Mutual Group

'Culture :The Madison Way' Panelist

Image

Deb Archer

Greater Madison Convention & Visitors Bureau

'Culture :The Madison Way' Panelist

Image

Jan Kittoe

American Family Insurance

'Culture :The Madison Way' Panelist

Image

Rich Tennessen

Eppstein Uhen Architects

'Culture :The Madison Way' Panelist

BIOS

Image

Darin Eich

Dr. Darin Eich is a keynote innovation speaker and the author of Innovation Step-by-Step and Root Down & Branch Out: Best Practices for Leadership Development Programs. He is the president and co-founder of InnovationLearning.org and BrainReactions, an innovation consulting company founded by UW students, where he led idea development and innovation projects for organizations like P&G, the United Nations, & U.S. Council on Competitiveness. Darin earned his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis from the University of Wisconsin. He has been a graduate student and developer of programs at the University of Maryland & William and Mary. Darin’s passion involves helping people to become themselves, find and live their strengths, and become more creative, innovative & successful leaders.

Scott Lesnick

Scott Lesnick is a high content international keynote speaker who is motivational, instructional and educational in style and tone. He presents powerful keynotes and interactive breakout sessions and is a consultant and author. Also, Scott is a professional member of the National Speakers Association as well as the Dean of the Academy for Professional Speakers. He received its “Rising Star” award! He is a graduate of The University of Miami, Florida. His memoir, “Kidjacked – A Father’s Story” was recently published to critical acclaim. In addition, Scott has 28 award-winning sales and management years at Shaw Industries a Berkshire Hathaway Fortune 500 company.

Image
Image

Renee Moe

After 18 years working her way up through the Resource Development department, Renee Moe has served as the President and CEO of United Way of Dane County since 2016. A national leader among United Way’s and non-profits, United Way of Dane County’s mission is to unite the community to create measurable results and change lives.

Christian Rosenstock

Christian leads product strategy and management, new product development, diversification activities, joint ventures, and helps support strategic initiatives and programs across TASC. He has 20 years of professional experience in insurance and financial services industries and executive roles leading product development and management, strategic planning, team leadership, project management, business operations, technology, and mergers/acquisitions. Christian has previously held upper management positions at CUNA Mutual Group, RSM McGladrey, AQS Inc., Bank of New York, and EDS.

Joined TASC: 2010

Fun Fact: Christian enjoys spending time with his wife and three children at their cabin and riding his Harley-Davidson motorcycle. He has won three world championships in taekwondo.

Image
Image

Jeff Dieffenbach

Jeff Dieffenbach is Associate Director of the MIT Integrated Learning Initiative (MITili), which funds, connects, and shares research investigating learning effectiveness across pK-12, higher education, and workplace learning.

Previously, Jeff has served in senior product management, business development, sales, and marketing roles across a range of education companies: online teacher professional development provider Medallion Learning; education consulting firm Consulting Services for Education; workplace learning/software company Global Project Design: large publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; mid-sized publisher Cambium Learning, and reading software publisher Lexia Learning.

In parallel with his professional work, Jeff served for ten years as an elected school board member in a suburban town west of Boston and for six years the advisory board of HILL for Literacy, which develops and deploys sustainable literacy programs in K-12 school districts. Prior to entering the field of education, he led business development for a boutique management consulting firm. Jeff has master's degrees in Technology and Policy and in materials engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Patty Glines-Kotecki

Patty Glines-Kotecki is the Organizational Effectiveness Leader for Spectrum Brands, a global consumer goods company. She works with business leaders to identify, design, and translate human capital strategies into practical solutions that engage employees and achieve business results.

In parallel with her professional work, Patty is a life-long learner and an award-winning scholar and athlete. Her PhD dissertation won an international award for its focus on improving the effectiveness of global Human Performance practices. An avid kayaker and cyclist, she is a ride leader for the national Bell Joy women’s mountain biking program and is a CrossFit Level 1 Trainer.

Image
Image

Greg St. Fort

Born in Brooklyn and raised in Queens, NY, Gregory St. Fort has a passion for community building, marketing, and event production. He believes we can fight for social justice, impact disparities in racial equity and education through entrepreneurship. He founded LetsKeepBuilding Inc, also known as LKB, in 2013. LKB is an entrepreneur lifestyle brand and connects entrepreneurs by creating events, technology and community initiatives. In June 2015 Greg became the Executive Director of 100state. 100state is Wisconsin’s largest coworking community. He works with all of 100state partners, sponsors, staff and board. He creates and pushes 100state’s vision. Greg is also on the board of directors.

Eugenia Podestá

Eugenia holds a B.A. in Spanish and Latin American, Caribbean and Iberian Studies, M.A. in Latin American Studies, and J.D. from UW-Madison.

A master of straddling different spheres, Eugenia channels over 15 years of nonprofit, international development and tourism experience into her role as co-founder of Synergy Coworking. She is passionate about each professional hat she wears—a female entrepreneur; a Senior Director of economic empowerment and entrepreneurship at Vital Voices Global Partnership (an international NGO based in Washington DC); and a local business mentor. “I love seeing people succeed and excel. I am a problem solver and am passionate about sharing information, knowledge and skills, and connecting people to others that can contribute to their growth.”

Image

Khalida Ali

Khalida Ali is Senior Manager, Diversity & Inclusion at Zendesk. In this role she’s responsible for working across the organization to foster a spirit of community that gives individuals the chance to thrive. Prior to Zendesk, Khalida was a Vice President at Bank of America where she served as the Chief of Staff to the Global Head of Campus Recruiting and Junior Talent Management. She has also worked at NBCUniversal and Morgan Stanley in Corporate Diversity.

Image
Image

Caleb Campbell

Raised overseas by parents devoted to traveling the world for non-profit work, Caleb Campbell has had a passion for engaging and motivating people from all walks of life for as long as he can remember. He has spent the past two decades leading positive change for non-profit, academic, healthcare, and IT organizations, and is currently Chief of Staff and culture guardian at Bluetree Network. Bluetree exists to help healthcare organizations around the country better care for their populations, and is equally dedicated to giving back to its own community here in Madison. Caleb moonlights as a motivational speaker and has spoken in over half of our states as well as around the world.

Laura Gmeinder

Laura S. Gmeinder is a passion igniter. She’s the Leading Lady at Laura Gmeinder Coaching & Consulting. Those in-the- know would tell you she’s a top rated coach, business consultant and motivational speaker.

Laura holds a degree in adult education (University of Wisconsin- Madison) and has studied through the Coach Training Institute. Laura loves a good question. She coaches both individuals and teams; in addition to providing training and ongoing support for her clients to create a coaching culture. She is the founder of Coach Collective, a 2018 featured contributor for the International Coach Federation (ICF) Coach World and served as a coach for the Emerging Women Live conference (deemed a “Top Women’s Conference” by Forbes). Laura is a proud graduate of Leadership Greater Madison and the Vice President of Disrupt Madison and Disrupt Milwaukee . Her expertise has been shared in the media for outlets like Huffington Post, US News & World Report and Wall Street Journal MarketWatch (talking about Taylor Swift no doubt). She strives to live an interesting life; the above was accomplished in the spirit of “Do one thing every day that scares you."

Image
Image

Anne Hunnex

Anne has spent her career building Project Management teams and PMOs in major financial, insurance, and manufacturing organizations. She managed teams of 40 project managers, project portfolios of $250M and led executives through strategic portfolio planning. Having lived through multiple organizational change initiatives and mergers, Anne gains energy from working with leaders who have the vision and fortitude to make change happen. Her passion is to incorporate the human aspects of work into a future focused leadership and culture model.

Anne grew up in Minnesota but spent most of her career in New York City and New Jersey. In 2010, she returned to the Midwest to settle in Madison. In retirement Anne transitioned to part-time consulting and enjoys the extra time to read, think, and write.”

Joe Pleshek

Joe Pleshek is the President and CEO of Terso Solutions. Since joining Terso in 2007 he has overseen rapid growth for the company providing overall strategic direction and financial management for the business as well as managing day-to-day operations. He has worked closely with Terso’s clients in the Healthcare and Life Science markets to drive business value through Terso’s RFID enabled inventory management solutions.

Image
Image

Bruce Holoubek

Bruce Holoubek is the President and Co-Founder of Contracted Leadership. Bruce has served as a leader at various levels and in various organizations in an interim or contracted leader standing. These have included roles ranging from Director of HR to Director of Operations. Bruce holds a bachelors degree with emphases in Business, Psychology, Chemistry, and Biology in addition to an MBA with an emphasis in strategy. He is an accomplished professional speaker and has presented at such events as the Disrupt Series, was the keynote speaker for the Wisconsin Women's Health Foundation Annual Gala, and many others.

Jennifer Pulvermacher

Jennifer Pulvermacher is President and Founder of Mind Groove.

An experienced business leader and management consultant, Jennifer specializes in strategy, mindfulness and change management. She has worked with Fortune 500 and midmarket companies across a wide range of industries, leading diverse groups through organizational change and transformation.

Jennifer is passionate about working with leaders to develop environments that create organizational effectiveness and overall well-being. In 2014, she launched Mind Groove to bring mindful leadership, awareness and compassion to the workplace. Mind Groove offers executive coaching and experiential learning that taps into the mind/body connection and emphasizes real-life application of mindfulness practices.

Image
Image

Suzanne Qualia

Suzanne Qualia, ACC, MBA, CIRM, empowers individuals, teams, and organizations to achieve their full potential. She spent 25 years as an executive with Fortune 500 firms and intimately understands challenges leaders face in achieving alignment between intent and impact. Suzanne launched her own business, Qualia Inc., to achieve this goal in 2012.

She continues to hone her skills through formal training with the Coaches Training Institute (CTI), the Center for Executive Coaching, and NeuroChangeSolutions, which utilizes a proprietary neuroscience model. Suzanne recently co-launched People Partners Progress, a company that helps businesses bring strategy to bottom line results through people.

Dan Golden

Dan Golden is a veteran digital marketing executive, entrepreneur and business innovator. As President of digital ad agency Chicago-based BFO, he has built a business model on employee empowerment and giving back to the community. These strategies earned BFO recognition as Ad Age’s #1 Best Place to Work 2016, a 6th straight year as one of Inc. 5,000’s Fastest Growing Companies and continued agency success as a finalist for three US Search Awards.

As a member of the Small Giants Community and a Chicago BBB Board Member, Dan believes business should contribute to the good of all stakeholders.

Image
Image

Dave Will

While working for a multi-billion dollar software company 20 years ago, Dave Will was advised to "walk faster and smile less, because perception is reality". Dave took this to heart and started a business on the antithesis of this advice.

In 2015, Dave successfully sold his company. Since then, he's been working on the key to success in that business - a system to drive thriving employees and happy customers. His new venture, PropFuel, is the first SaaS platform to marry employee feedback with customer feedback to help businesses see their world in a whole new light.

D.P. Knudten

D.P. has worked on some of the biggest—and smallest—brands in the business including Coca-Cola®, The Athlete’s Foot®, ClosetMaid® and Georgia-Pacific®. His résumé includes tenures at DDB Needham (Chicago), McCann Erickson (Atlanta) and creative shops in Denver, CO; Sarasota, FL; and Madison, WI. A writer by trade, he enjoys playing in the intersection between the visual and the verbal, and using his NonFiction Branding™ approach to move people, and product, for companies throughout the United States.

Image
Image

Paul Herr

Paul Herr is an engineer who also earned an MBA from the University of Chicago’s famed Booth Graduate School of Business. Herr has worked for 40 years to crack the motivational code and create a user manual, of sorts, for human beings. Herr’s research is summarized in his critically-acclaimed book, “Primal Management: Unraveling the Secrets of Human Nature to Drive High Performance”, that was published by the American Management Association in 2009.

Jonathan Reynolds

As CEO of Titus Talent Strategies, Jonathan's a visionary, entrepreneur & a game-changer. He's energized by inspiring leaders & equipping them with unique approaches to better understand their people, and creating high-performing teams. Originally from the UK, & living in the US since 1998, Jonathan has almost 20 years of experience in the recruiting industry. He started Titus Talent after experiencing firsthand that the traditional recruiting models were broken. Jonathan currently leads a unique, fast-growing 100% mobile team of talent consultants who are located across the US. He's a creative problem solver and loves consulting companies on their people strategy.

Image
Image

Jeff Kortes

Jeff has more than 25 years experience in human resources. He has worked at companies that specialize in manufacturing, construction, and software development. During his career he has worked to recruit, retain and develop employees, at companies including ConAgra Foods, SPX, Midas International and American Crystal Sugar.

Jeff is the founder of Human Asset Management LLC, which helps organizations to recruit, engage, develop and retain talent. He is a member of the National Speakers Association (NSA) and a frequent speaker on the topic of loyalty, employee retention, recruitment and culture building. He is an avid high school wrestling fan, CrossFit participant and US Army veteran. Jeff is the author of Give Your Employees C.R.A.P ...and 7 Other Secrets to Employee Retention and Welcome to Dodge…Tales from the Frontiers of Business.

For more information visit http://www.jeffkortes.com and follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffkortes

Moses Altech

Born in a 2,400-year-old city on the northern coast of the Aegean Sea, Moses Altsech has traveled to several dozen countries in six continents, studying history and cultures, building connections with people, and always learning new things. He has developed a passion for mentoring, social justice, and finding new ways to improve the customer and workplace experience. Moses has been living in the U.S. for thirty years; he is a dual citizen of the United States and the European Union, whether they like it or not.

Having earned a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing and International Business at the University of Cincinnati, Moses went on to earn a Ph.D. in Marketing at Penn State University. He moved to Madison in 2000 because he heard of the great weather and wanted to experience it first-hand. He serves on the faculty of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, teaching undergraduate and MBA courses in the Department of Marketing at the Wisconsin School of Business and the Consumer Science Department at the School of Human Ecology.

Dr. Moses Altsech is the President of Altsech Consulting, a business consulting, marketing research and training company with clients in more than two dozen industries across the United States and overseas. An award-winning professor, consultant, trainer and keynote speaker, Dr. Altsech has helped organizations ranging from Fortune 500 to local companies train staff, improve marketing and strategic planning, conduct cutting-edge customer satisfaction, brand assessment and employee engagement research, serve their clients better, manage change, and aggressively explore new opportunities for growth. He believes that understanding, measuring, shaping and communicating a company’s culture is critical to attracting top-notch talent and connecting with customers. For more details about his credentials and expertise and to connect with Moses, go to www.linkedin.com/in/callmoses or www.callmoses.com.

Image
Image

Charlie Judy

Charlie Judy built a successful career as an HR executive over 25 years with some of the world’s most prominent professional services firms. He has traversed the global economy while on several long-term assignments, including several globally. He’s a regular speaker, prolific writer, and well-known future-of-work pundit. Charlie is the Founder and CEO of WorkXO, a workforce technology company.

Growth-oriented organizations use the Workplace Genome®, their cloud-based culture management platform, to measure and analyze their organization's culture, to uncover the distinct priorities for heightening their success, and to guide their teams to meaningful action on them. He’s a graduate of Tulane University, a CPA, an SPHR, and a SHRM-SCP.

Image

Todd Hoskins

Todd Hoskins is the Chief Culture Officer at ThirdSpace, a technology company dedicated to helping organizations build trust, energy, and engagement among its employees. After a dozen years of working in the technology space for corporate and startup companies, Todd recognized that the effectiveness of organizational strategy was always trumped by its ability to be in mutually beneficial relationships with its employees, stakeholders, and constituents. Combining his graduate work in psychology, interest in network science and ecology, and experience applying these insights with small and large organizations going through major transformations, Todd launched Canopy Gap in 2009, a consulting firm that leads and supports organizations through major transformations.

Scott Kohl

Scott Kohl is is Co-Founder/CEO of ThirdSpace. He has over 20 years steeped in software development, gamification, higher education, business development and entrepreneurship . Kohl is a triple threat with a technical background in IT, business and Design Thinking as well as Lean Innovation training by former leaders at Intuit. In 2012 Kohl left the safety of the corporate world to launch Ronin Studios, a game-based learning company. From only a few thousand dollars he brought in over $1.2 million in revenue in 2.5 years. Scott is highly regarded in the startup community and often asked to assist with coaching, mentoring and even judging business plans for other early stage companies. Recently Scott has been a Lean Innovation coach for a major Fortune 500 company.

Image
Image

Steve Lipton

Steve Lipton serves in several leadership roles, helping Wipfli LLP’s clients achieve their mission and improve their outcomes. His roles include leading the firm’s nonprofit and government practice, a diverse group of accounting and consulting professionals deeply focused on the needs of nonprofit organizations and units of government; serving as Wipfli’s growth and innovation leader, helping to foster the firm’s development of leading-edge services and delivery methods; and leading the delivery of organization development and governance consulting services to the markets Wipfli serves. In addition, he serves as vice chair of Wipfli’s board of directors. In his spare time, Steve enjoys amateur photography, especially photographing events.

Samantha Slade

Co-founder of Ecto, a co-working in her home city Montreal, Canada and Percolab, an international co-creation and co-design firm, Samantha is driven by the transition to the future of work. With a background in anthropology and education Samantha pioneers novel organizational models and practices. Governments, businesses, professional associations and foundations hire Samantha to help tackle their complex challenges. Recently, she co-created a new competency guide to take the HR profession into its future. Engaged in social innovation movements, Samantha is currently writing a book - Going Horizontal – Creating a Non-hierarchical Organization, One Practice at a Time (to be released in October 2018 by Berrett-Koehler Publishers). Samantha believes that organizations can be a microcosm of the world we want to live in.

Image
Image

Stephen Utech

Steve Utech is the founder and CEO of illumyx. His background in both the hard sciences and the art of family dynamics inspired him to combine data and people as he entered the field of leadership, team and culture development 10 years ago. An entrepreneur at heart, Steve can’t help but create. He has been spending the past 5 years developing illumyx, finally giving companies a way to objectively measure and improve their workplace culture. Illumyx was a finalist in Steve Case’s Rise of the Rest pitch competition in 2017.

Andrea Cooper

Andrea Cooper is an executive with 20+ years of leadership experience, including HR Leader for Shopbop (an Amazon.com company) and multiple leadership roles with Walmart Inc. At Walmart she was head of HR for Health and Wellness, Dir of Org Dev for Global Procurement (working in 15 countries), and Sr. Dir of Global Diversity and Inclusion. She operates strategically, and influences change that aligns with business objectives. She has a proven ability to diagnose opportunities, develop strategic plans, deploy resources and drive for results. As the founder of Flourish, she is a catalyst for organizational transformation; improving people practices & processes, and facilitating improvements through diagnosis, insights, & action planning.

Image
Image

Rachel Breitbach

Rachel has over 25 years of experience leading and delivering complex global transformation initiatives. She has expertise in multiple disciplines - change management, project management, human resources, strategic planning, operations and business transformation – and has worked in numerous industries – financial services/insurance, e-Commerce and engineering/science. Most of her roles have involved coaching leaders to improve employee engagement and help them increase their ability to adopt change. She has a passion for leadership and project management and has led numerous sessions on those topics. She enjoys watching her daughters play sports, volunteering, playing tennis and eating chocolate whenever possible!

Marivic Valencia

Marivic has served as a Gubernatorial Appointee with the State of Wisconsin, and held management positions across broadcast, technology and finance sectors. Past-President, Urban League of Greater Madison Young Professionals, Madison Social Media Club, Founder of Madison Social Media Breakfast, PAMANA (Philippine Association of Madison and Neighboring Areas) and former Urban League Greater Madison board member. Brands represented include, impact Services, Swiss Colony/Colony Brands (Midnight Velvet, Monroe and Main, M. Vie), Cool Music Network, THECOOLTV, Melt Studio, ReMax Preferred Realtors, Advance Planning Services, and others.

Marivic’s five daughters and two grandsons are all in Madison. Marivic also owns and manages Cyberaoke Karaoke, a Madison, WI – based Karaoke/DJ company that does double duty in providing unfettered access to pool tables.

Image
Image

Kathy Blumenfeld

Kathy is a business leader with extensive experience in diverse areas of the financial services industry, business, and government. She leads our operations and contract management for a large Federal contract with the Office of Personnel Management.

Before joining TASC, Kathy worked at CUNA Mutual Group for 25 years, most recently as Vice President of Lending & Payment Security. In this capacity, she steered lending insurance products and services, strategy development, and product management for multi-line insurance portfolios, managing an $830 million Profit & Loss statement. She’s served as a Certified Public Accountant at two large firms, and has worked for Wisconsin State and Federal Government. In 2017, Kathy earned two prestigious Gold-level awards: the Golden Bridge Award for “Best Product or Program Director—Woman” and the One Planet Award for “Female Product or Program Professional of the Year.” Kathy is also a frequent speaker on women’s leadership topics, and also the cofounder of 4everMoxi, LLC.

Fun Facts: An author of three books and many journal articles, Kathy is passionate about community service, leadership, travel, tennis, and University of Wisconsin Badger basketball. Kathy and her husband live in Madison and have three children.

Chandra Miller Fienen

Chandra Miller Fienen is Director of Operations and Programs for StartingBlock Madison and has been part of the StartingBlock Founding Team since 2013. An attorney-turned entrepreneur, Chandra is passionate about collaborations that cultivate entrepreneurs, accelerate startup growth, drive innovation, and help entrepreneurs give back to their communities. In addition to StartingBlock, Chandra is a founder and director of FoodWorks Madison and The Madison Institute. Prior to joining StartingBlock, she was a co-founder of a Boston-based biotechnology startup (now Bioarray Genetics, Inc.); Senior Advisor to the Governor; in executive leadership at the Wisconsin Department of Commerce; and an associate at a San Francisco litigation firm (now Arnold & Porter). She holds a J.D. from UC-Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall) and a B.A. from Macalester College. Passions include cooking and eating with friends, biking, borrowing other people’s kids, and window shopping for a puppy.

Image
Image

Brian Samson

Brian founded Ten Forward Consulting, a custom web and mobile software development firm, in 2012 after a long career of writing software for Fortune 500s, local governments, and Silicon Valley startups.

Brian is also the head of Madworks Coworking , a unique space for local entrepreneurs, freelancer, and remote workers located at the University Research Park on Madison's near-west side.

In 2014, Brian joined Mobile Doorman as CTO. Mobile Doorman makes a mobile app for apartment buildings that residents use to manage every aspect of their experience.

Sarah Graf

Sarah leads Operations and HR efforts at Understory, Inc., a global weather infrastructure and analytics organization headquartered in Madison, Wisconsin.

While Sarah has worked within a variety of industries and worn many hats, her love of solving novel, challenging problems and her desire to drive efficiency and effectiveness within an organization has lead to her specializing in business operations, project management, strategic planning, and human resource management.

Also, if you get chatting with her, you’ll quickly learn that she is perpetually excited about her volunteer work with Olbrich Gardens, traveling and hiking, and the newest book she just started.

Image
Image

Neil Heinen

Neil Heinen is the Editorial Director for WISC TV and Madison Magazine. He has been Editorial Director for WISC, the CBS affiliate in Madison, WI, since 1992. He started with the station as News Assignment Manager in 1987. Prior to that he worked as a reporter, anchor and assistant News Director for WIBA AM and FM in Madison. He is also Editorial Director for Madison Magazine, a position he has held since 2004. He was the senior political writer for the magazine for three years. He authors a column titled “For The Record, (also the title of his weekly public affairs program on WISC TV,) that appears monthly in the magazine.

Heinen has served on the Board of Directors of the Association of Opinion Journalists (formerly the National Conference of Editorial Writers) including serving as president in 2007, and is a past president of the AOJ Foundation. He received the organization’s highest honor of Life Membership in 2013. He is a member of the clinical faculty of the Kettering Foundation, and a member of the adjunct faculty of Edgewood College.

He has won numerous professional and community awards including the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., Humanitarian Award, Robert H. Wills Freedom of Information Award, the Urban League of Greater Madison Community Champion President’s Award, The Charles Hamilton Houston Institute Difference Maker Award, and the National Association for Community Leadership Distinguished Leadership Award. He was born in Milwaukee in 1951, is the oldest of eleven children, and is a graduate of Marquette University High School in Milwaukee and the University of Wisconsin. He lives in Madison with his wife Nancy, and their dog Macaroon. He loves music, and plays the guitar (poorly.) He and Nancy enjoy travel, hiking, good food and wine, and Badger basketball.

Matthew Gonnering

Matthew Gonnering has the honor of leading highly-intelligent & playfully-engaged teams who focus on solving digital content challenges. He works for Widen, a freedom-centered software company founded in 1948 with headquarters in Madison and London. Together, they help the most influential brands in the world organize their digital mess. Matthew started at Widen in 2000 with a background in printing and earned the CEO role in 2009. Matthew is active in the Catholic faith, loves his wife, plays with his five kids, started Brazilian Jiu Jitsu this year as part of his fitness regimen, is still trying to figure out organizational culture, enjoys the intersection of marketing and technology, is a forever learner, advocates for employing people with developmental disabilities, and enjoys hunting and fishing. He earned a B.B.A. from St. Norbert College and an M.B.A. from UW-Madison. Living the eudaimonious life and encouraging others to do the same.

Image

Jan Kittoe

Jan Kittoe is the Vice President (VP) of American Family’s Ignite area – the team that is driving a culture of innovation at the company. Her team empowers employees to solve problems for customers using evidence-based decision making.

Before this role, Jan was the Talent Development VP. Heading up the training area’s leadership team, she took into consideration the employees’ needs, the company’s future direction and aligned the division’s strategy and goals to the company’s long term strategic goal. Jan believes in lifelong learning, no matter what role you’re in.

Jan joined American Family in 2004 as an Organization Effectiveness Consultant. She later became manager, and then director of Organization Effectiveness, Executive Development and Talent Development. In 2016, Jan was promoted to Vice President of Talent Development.

Before joining American Family, Jan had more than eight years of management experience in customer operations, finance and information management at U.S. Cellular. This is where Jan gained a solid foundation of leadership. It also helped her understand that those who are in contact with customers, and truly hear what they say, are critical to the success of any company.

Jan has a bachelor’s degree with a major in psychology and a minor in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse – a true foundation for her people-focused career.

of work, Jan enjoys Crossfit (if anyone can enjoy Crossfit!) and is an enthusiastic sports fan. She’s currently a regular at Waunakee High School lacrosse games, cheering on her 15-year-old son, John. She also often has her head in a book and is a big fan of Simon Sinek’s writing.

Image

Event Sponsors

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image