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More about our Speakers

In alphabetical order below. Please tune in to our podcast as well to hear additional insights about the programming. For the month of September leading up to the conference, we'll be publishing ongoing podcast productions featuring guests and speakers for the event. 

Curt Archambault

Title: Take the conflict out of conflict: Strategies to go from Destructive to PRODUCTIVE!

Curt Archambault has spent over 30 years in the training and hospitality industry where his career started in operations. He has fulfilled every role from entry-level employee (cleaning restrooms) to corporate training and development manager playing a key role in developing and implementing performance-improvement projects. Curt’s experience includes having been responsible for a team of consultants charged with improving operational performance at the company and franchised locations. In addition, he has been a speaker on both the local and national level specializing in topics such as Return on Investment, Leading a Strategic Training function, and Executing First Class Guest Service.

Kelly Chiang

Title: Fast-Burst Learning Sessions, Virtually

 Having led multiple consulting and training development projects, I am able to strategize and come up with creative training solutions to meet both short term needs and long term goals. I provide holistic yet pragmatic blended trainings that are engaging and make a difference for learners. My strong sense of alignment with organizational and business priorities together with my technical know-how position me uniquely to make improvements that yield measurable results. My prior experience delivering training to adults at the college level provides the underlying teaching principles that are embedded in the training programs I develop

Shian Chuan

Title: Finding your innovative genius: mindset strategies that awaken creativity and enable workplace success

Shian Chuan takes your career aspirations and makes them a reality. Being a Success Coach means that she gets to live out her greatest passion: helping individuals, teams, and organizations zero in on their differentiating spark—the starting point of the path that leads to peak success.

The road to your best life is paved with your heart and soul, and she will make you dig deep to discover what it is that you want, and what qualities will help you get there. She helps leaders stretch, reflect and grow to capitalize on what they truly are capable of achieving. Her training in NeuroLinguistic Programming (neuroscience) and Positive Psychology allows her to quickly connect with her clients, tap into their authentic strengths, remove roadblocks and clarify their destination and initiate action.

Cynthia Clay

Title: Achieving Maximum Retention: Brain-based Learning Principles for the Virtual Classroom

NetSpeed Learning Solutions provides licensed instructor-led virtual programs that help employees, supervisors, and managers communicate effectively, resolve conflict, provide strong customer service, and lead individuals and teams in the virtual workplace. They also work with clients who want to transition from the the face-to-face classroom to interactive, blended virtual learning. The company’s clients include Navy Federal Credit Union, Marriott International, Grainger, Novartis, and Genentech.

With over 25 years' experience in talent development, Cynthia is a passionate advocate of brain-based learning and works with instructional designers and virtual facilitators to apply stellar practices in the virtual classroom.

Geoffrey Colon - Afternoon Keynote

Geoffrey Colon, Head of Brand Studio at Microsoft Advertising

Geoffrey Colon is a compelling voice at the intersection of marketing, tech, media and popular culture. Data punk, DJ, podcaster, streampunk and author, Geoffrey is a senior communications designer at Microsoft, where he evangelizes the company’s products for customers. He has written for The Futurist, Advertising Age, and Fast Company, and been quoted in Forbes, Billboard Magazine, The Huffington Post, The Guardian and The Los Angeles Times. He has also appeared on Marketplace on NPR, NASDAQ Live, WABC-AM and Cheddar TV.

Colon is author of the book Disruptive Marketing: What Growth Hackers, Data Punks, and Other Hybrid Thinkers Can Teach Us About Navigating the New Normal (HarperCollins) available on Kindle, Audio and Hardcover in English and Mandarin Chinese.

Prior to joining Microsoft in 2013, Geoffrey was vice president of digital strategy at Ogilvy & Mather in New York City.

Colon has done work with several influential brands including Spotify, Netflix, American Express, Coca-Cola, IBM, The Economist, USA Network, WWE, History and Red Bull.

He is a graduate of Lehigh University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication.

Colon initially got his start in the music industry working for Sony Music and later Richard Branson’s startup V2 Music.

Geoffrey is host of the weekly business and culture podcast Disruptive FM, daily Amazon Echo skill Disruptive FM Daily, producer and host of the LinkedIn video series Culture Jamming and regularly writes on Branding Strategy Insider, LinkedIn and the Microsoft blog. He is an avid speaker on the global marketing conference circuit and has keynoted events in New York City, Bangkok, San Francisco, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Sao Paolo, Berlin, Denver, Seattle and London.

Bruce Cronquist

Title: Personalize learning using an AI-driven knowledge cloud, a case study. Real or gimmick?

Bruce Cronquist has over forty years of experience helping people become proficient at testing computer software, training dogs, snowboarding, starting a new career, and more. The last four of his twenty-four years at Microsoft Corporation were on the Engineering Excellence team where he trained testers and developers. He presently manages the training of over 1200 engineers in the Unstructured Storage Division of Dell Technologies. He enjoys experimenting and measuring creative solutions leveraging technologies such as flipping the classroom, MOOCs, and eLearning; as well as traditional classroom teaching. In all cases, learning via application is the solution no matter the modality.

Bill Hefferman

Title: Thriving through change and chaos: science-based mind-body resilience hacks for being and doing your best

For over 18 years, Bill has taught and consulted on change resilience and adaptability. With a background in organizational development, change leadership, and human performance, Bill has led resilience initiatives across a range of companies, countries, and cultures. He regards resilience and adaptability through change as largely untapped disciplines that offer promise for change leaders and all others impacted by organizational change. With his depth of knowledge in neuroscience, positive psychology, human performance, and mindfulness, Bill leads engaging experiences that leave participants with application-ready strategies for flourishing through adversity, while helping others to do the same.

Nolan Hout

Title: How L&D Leaders Can Increase Learning Engagement and Drive Business Results by Thinking Like a Marketer

I have led multiple break-out sessions at learning events, including the CLO Symposium and SITE. In addition, as a leader in the organization, I am routinely asked to speak in front of hundreds of our employees. On the lighter side, I also officiate weddings, ranging from 30 people to 80 people.

Scott Melanson

Title: L&D Podcast and Vodcast Production

Scott has been an instructional designer for over 11 years, working for a number of companies representing a variety of industries. Throughout his career in learning and development, Scott has utilized his skills in multimedia-based storytelling to maximize learner engagement and empowerment. Podcasting in particular has been his focus in instructional design practice and research.

Brian Nelson

Title: Values in Action: You at Your Best

Brian Nelson has spent over two decades in military, managed a petroleum company, co-founded an animal rescue, and founded and directs a race. With experience in government, private enterprise, corporate America, and numerous non-profit positions, Brian understands that every organization is built upon people. An innovative leader, Brian developed numerous training programs from a foreign language immersion program to a “Fit & Resilient” both programs designed to improve performance. He is a natural communicator, and translator between groups. He builds, leads, and influences people. Brian is co-founder of Grit360, a consulting firm for mental skills, character, and leadership development.

Craig Plain

Title: Easy as SPC: Using Statistical Process Control to Improve Your Training Program

As a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt, Craig Plain has often combined training with Process Improvement. After earning a PhD in Adult Education, he’s seeing more and more opportunities to bring Process Improvement tools into training and education. Craig has worked in both training and improvement fields at the US Air Force, the US Navy, General Electric Healthcare, and currently at Amazon. With his doctorate finished, he has time for writing, speaking, and has begun performing magic again. Craig has presented original research at conferences for Academy of Human Research Development and American Association for Adult and Continuing Education.

Logan reed

Title: The Neuroscience of Innovation: The Science and Art of Unlocking Creativity

Logan Reed founded her private practice in 2011, leaving a successful 15-year career in Human Resources in order to devote herself fully to her passion: supporting others in bringing the full expression of themselves to their personal and professional lives. She has had the privilege of coaching leaders ranging from the United Nations World Population Fund to entrepreneurial start-ups – all of whom share the common goal of becoming more effective leaders. As an organizational coach and speaker, Logan creates powerful partnerships that produce breakthrough results.

Almira Roldan

Title: Chatbots for Learning

Myra is an award-winning Instructional Designer & author. She has an MBA, MSEd and a Bachelors of Computer Science. With over 20 years of active experience in the L&D field, Myra has helped organizations integrate new technologies like interactive video, augmented reality, virtual reality, and conversational AIs into the learning ecosystem. Her goal is to help learning practitioners develop the knowledge and skills required to design and develop engaging learning experiences that align with an organization's business goals.

Summer Salomonsen - Morning Keynote

Title: Microlearning: A Modern Strategy for the Modern Workplace

Some work hard to overcome anxiety speaking in front of crowds, others are afraid of heights - me? I'm only afraid of spiders. I am a teacher at heart. And after a varied career of teaching, facilitating, presenting, and leading - I am still ultimately motivated by helping people learn something new. In the past year, I have upped my public speaking game, presenting at Cornerstone's Convergence in San Diego, Namely's HR Redefined in New York, and hosting multiple (Micro)Learn & Network events in key markets across the states. Let's do this!

Aaron Schmookler

Title: INNOVATE OR DIE: How to Cultivate an Innovation Culture

Aaron Schmookler had his first article on creativity and innovation published at the age of eleven when the editor of a parenting magazine noticed his innovative mindset and asked him to write about taking inspiration for play wherever you can find it. The inspired mindset that got him noticed as a child still motivates and excites him — so much so that he’s made a career of sharing it with others. It’s contagious. So is the passion for finding the intersection between play and innovation, and helping people live and work there. Inspiration is everywhere.

A love of collaboration and of excellence in communication has driven Aaron to build teams and nurture creativity. After graduating Summa Cum Laude from Oberlin College, Aaron began work in the corporate world, gaining appreciation for his ability to communicate, to innovate, and to find the opportunity for constructive change in every crisis.

Businesses and organizations large and small, public and private have used Aaron’s support to improve communication, increase innovation, and manage conflict on both coasts, even while he earned his MFA in Theater from UMASS. Once, he thought his business work and his theater work were separate, but he’s learned since that they are one and the same.

“Every team has genius at work. Only the best encourage and inspire the genius to emerge.”

Julian Schrenzel

Title: Your Improv Culture - Hiring and Retaining A-Players

Julian Schrenzel is an artist, teacher and a business leader with a passion for helping teams with impossible goals become teams with impossible accomplishments. Having spent the first 10 years of his career as a professional actor and singer, and the past 10 years of his career as an IT trainer-turned-manager-turned business executive, Julian brings tools and skills from the world of the creative arts to the self-proclaimed "non-artists" of the corporate world. Julian currently is founder and Chief Spontaneity Officer of Improv Alive, Associate with New Legends Now, and President & CEO of DyNexus Group, Inc.

Katie Stroud

Title: The Maker's Hunt: Building Community with the Nonsense of Lewis Carroll

Katie Stroud is the Master Story Crafter at Incremental Success. Her 15 years of experience in instructional design, technical writing, and consulting led her to develop a story-based approach to address the unspoken culture that lingers in every corporate initiative. The story process is based on scientific studies and experience that explain why people do what they do. It helps professionals like you to find what inspires people to change behaviors in support of corporate initiatives. Katie has a passion for making friends, riding her bike, and relating everyday work to a bigger purpose in life.

Adam Utley

Co-facilitating with Aaron Schmookler: Adam Utley

Adam Utley, as a co-founder of The Yes Works, has directed his 16 years of Improvisation experience towards helping businesses, large and small, solve the problems they think can’t be solved. Since graduating from Pacific Lutheran University in 2004, Adam has found that no matter what the setting, a regular practice of Improvisation habit gives people the confidence to synthesize their own ideas with the ideas of others. Together, in that way, they attain a height greater than they imagined. Having the audacity to value your own brilliance with the genius of the people around you is in your best interest. Regardless of age or profession, the intention is the same; to nurture creative connections that engage self-education–connections grounded in empathy and a sense of one’s self. When these things come together, a company culture forms that’s conducive to great work ethic, employee retention, and stellar work product.



ATD Puget Sound Chapter
P.O. Box 46368
Seattle, WA 98146


Email:  contact.us@atdpugetsound.org

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