New Orleans Speakers

"The general sessions were all extremely good. Each of the sessions that I attended were
 also amazing and are items that I can use in my career."
—Previous Attendee


Sardek Love

Sardek Love

President and Founder, Infinity Consulting and Training Solutions Inc.

Sardek Love is the president and founder of Infinity Consulting and Training Solutions (ICTS), a global performance consulting and training organization. Sardek has worked in 32 countries inspiring, developing, and educating leaders and training professionals in Fortune 100 companies; high-tech organizations; local, state, and federal government agencies; nonprofits; and global brands on how to maximize employee engagement and performance in the workplace.

Prior to establishing ICTS, Sardek was a program manager for Booz Allen Hamilton and a field underwriting manager for MetLife Insurance Company. His expertise in training, leadership, and performance consulting have made him a globally sought-after keynote speaker. He is a regular contributor to a variety of ATD publications, and is teaming up with Anne Bruce to co-author the updated version of her book, Speak for a Living, which will be published by ATD in 2018.

When he is not traveling the world equipping leaders and trainers, Sardek can be found spending time with his family and cheering on his beloved Virginia Tech Hokies.

Great by Choice: 3 Simple Secrets the World’s Top Trainers Use to Create Raving Fans

Studies consistently show that getting and maintaining high levels of participant engagement is one of the top challenges trainers encounter. But there’s good news: Overcoming this pervasive problem is quite easy if you know how. Compared with most trainers, the world's top trainers get 10x greater levels of participant engagement by using three simple techniques. In this session, international keynote speaker and ATD Master Trainer Sardek Love will equip you with the tools that will make great facilitation nearly automatic. By attending this session, you will be able to:

  • Apply three memory-anchoring techniques that guarantee your training sticks long after it is completed.
  • Use a fast-action activity to transform boring training into an unforgettable, mind-blowing learning experience.
  • Get instant, next-day success by implementing the secrets into your existing training courses.

Doug Stevenson

Doug Stevenson

Doug Stevenson is a gifted storyteller. But it’s his ability to help others be gifted storytellers that sets him apart. The author of Doug Stevenson’s Story Theater Method, Doug has delivered storytelling programs for leadership, sales, marketing, and HR teams, as well as train-the-trainer programs. His storytelling technology for business communication helps you choose, craft, and deliver stories that make a point, teach a lesson, or sell a product or service. This innovative training program includes acting skills, storytelling form and structure, and message-branding skills. Doug conducts workshops for emerging leaders, train-the-trainer programs, and story-selling workshops. He also delivers customized webinars and e-learning programs. Doug works with executives, salespeople, entrepreneurs, and organizations to write, brand, and deliver customized speeches and training. He has presented keynotes and training programs in 16 countries, and is a sought-after coach for leaders who need to be as powerful when they speak as they are in the boardroom.

The Power to Persuade: The Magic of Story

Are you ready to be amazing? Is it time for you to step up your game? Do you want to unleash your storytelling potential? Logic explains, but stories persuade. If you want to change hearts and minds, and engage your learners’ attention at a deeper level, you must become a more engaging storyteller.

If you’re ready to learn a new way to deliver content by telling stories, this keynote will show you the way. Stories communicate ideas and information as no other medium can. They are visually and emotionally stimulating and appeal to people of all learning styles. Doug Stevenson’s Story Theater Method combines storytelling form and structure, acting skills, and message branding. The result is stories that are more entertaining, effective, and experiential.

In this keynote, you will learn how to be a more compelling trainer by utilizing acting techniques that make an emotional connection with the listener, thereby enhancing knowledge retention. You’ll also learn how to identify moments and events from everyday life that can be crafted into powerful stories.

By attending this session, you will be able to:

  • Discover a simple process for identifying compelling stories.
  • Improve your ability to tell a story by incorporating theater techniques.
  • Add a “Phrase That Pays” to each story to make the lesson memorable and actionable.

Barbara McAfee

Barbara McAfee

Barbara is a voice coach, singer-songwriter, keynoter, and author who merges lessons from 12 years in organization development with the transformative power of sound. Her book, Full Voice: The Art & Practice of Vocal Presence, is based on her 25 years as a voice coach, supporting people from many professions in learning how to access the full power and expression of their voice in service of their work and relationships.

Barbara’s musical keynotes blend practical content, sophisticated humor, and thought-provoking questions on topics including voice, leadership, and engagement. She was “the band” for Margaret Wheatley’s Women’s Leadership Revival Tour, which visited 15 North American cities. She also appears with author Peter Block. Barbara has produced seven CDs of mostly original music, and is founder of the Morning Star Singers, a volunteer hospice choir in the Twin Cities. Barbara lives across the street from the Mississippi River in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Who You Gonna Be While You Do What You Do? 5 Simple and Powerful Ways to Sustain Humanity and Energy

In the headlong rush of daily living, it’s easy to lose track of what matters most at work, at home, and in our communities. We get lost in our long lists of things to do and forget about the gifts of being. Using smart songs, hilarious wit, illuminating questions, and lessons from her years as an organizational consultant, Barbara will introduce five practical ideas for sustaining energy and commitment in doing our best work. In this keynote, you will:

  • Learn ways to tame your “brain rats”—the persistent yapping of negative thoughts.
  • Choose touchstones that help you remember why you do what you do.
  • Reconnect with your personal and professional lineage.
  • Explore the power of kindness to strengthen all aspects of your work.
  • Make powerful choices about leaving behind things large and small that no longer serve you.

"The speakers were real, engaging and informative. They helped me think about how to
 immediately apply the concepts to improve my work."
—Previous Attendee


Cammy Bean

Cammy Bean is a solutions consultant with Kineo, a global organization provider of learning solutions. She has been designing e-learning programs for a wide variety of clients since the mid-1990s. The author of The Accidental Instructional Designer: Learning Design for the Digital Age, Cammy also writes the popular blog Learning Visions at


Jacque Burandt

Jacque Burandt MEd, President, Award-winning Results, LLC in San Antonio, Texas, is passionate about transforming organizations through people development, creating top performers and leaders at all levels of the organization and enhancing organizational and individual visibility, prestige and pride through achieving awards and recognition for her clients' great work. A proven expert in creating an award-winning culture, Jacque led the team at University Health System (UHS), San Antonio, Texas, to win seven ATD BEST Awards and ATD's first Innovation in Talent Development Award. UHS has won more BEST Awards than any other nonprofit organization in the world. A strong advocate for workforce development throughout her career, Jacque recently submitted University Health System's winning application for CareerSTAT's 2017 Frontline Worker Champion Award. She served as chairperson of ATD's Public Policy Committee, wrote four case studies for ATD's Skills Gap Series, and co-chaired the Strategic Planning Committee for Workforce Solutions Alamo. Jacque and her team also won four Chief Learning Officer Learning Elite Awards, including Editor's Choice for Best Midsize Company in 2016 and five Chief Learning Officer Learning in Practice Awards. Jacque designs and delivers highly interactive workshops to build crucial skills. Audiences consistently find her motivating, energizing, and entertaining. Her dynamic presentations are custom tailored to each audience, giving attendees the insights, skills and strategies to take their performance to the next level.

Elaine Biech

Elaine Biech is president of ebb associates inc, a strategic implementation, leadership development, and experiential learning consulting firm. She has been in the field for 30 years, helping organizations work through large-scale change. She has presented at numerous national and international conferences and has been featured in dozens of publications, including the Wall Street Journal, Harvard Management Update, and Fortune. She is the author and editor of more than 70 books, including the ASTD Handbook, Training and Development for Dummies, and 101 Ways to Make Learning Active Beyond the Classroom. Elaine is the recipient of numerous awards, including ATD’s Bliss Award, Torch Award, and Staff Partnership Award. She served on ATD’s board of directors. She is currently a member of the Center for Creative Leadership Board of Governors and is Berrett-Koehler's curator for Advances in Leadership and Management. She was the 1995 Wisconsin Women Entrepreneur’s Mentor Award recipient and, in 2012, the inaugural CPLP Fellow Honoree from ATD's Certification Institute.

JD Dillion

JD Dillon has spent 15 years designing and implementing learning and performance strategies for respected global organizations, including the Walt Disney Company, Kaplan, Brambles, and AMC Theatres. With his practical approach and unique ability to integrate science, technology, storytelling, and pure common sense, JD delivers modern solutions that enable employees, improve organizational performance, and drive business results. In his current role with Axonify, JD works with an award-winning team to boost employee knowledge and performance for leading organizations through the application of modern learning practices and cutting-edge technology. JD is a popular conference speaker who is known for his high-energy, humor-filled delivery style as well as his relatable stories and practical examples. He also shares ongoing insights on his Just Curious Learning + Performance blog. You can find JD on Twitter @JD_Dillon or online at


Nick Floro

Nick Floro is the president of Sealworks Interactive Studios. Nick has more than 20 years of experience developing e-learning solutions, applications, and web platforms. He has worked with numerous Fortune 500 companies to help them understand the technology and develop innovative solutions to help their teams and customer base. Nick has won several awards from Apple and Fortune 500 organizations for productions and services. Nick is passionate about how design and technology can enhance learning, and loves to share his knowledge and experience to teach, inspire, and motivate participants.


Jonathan Halls

Jonathan Halls is an author, trainer, and coach. A former BBC learning executive, Jonathan now runs workshops in media, communication, leadership, and creativity. He has worked with some of the world’s leading media organizations and today teaches digital content to nonmedia professionals, and leadership and change to the media profession. He teaches at George Washington University and facilitates ATD’s Master Trainer Program and Rapid Video for Learning Professionals Certificate Program. Jonathan has been training, speaking, and coaching for 25 years in more than 20 countries. He describes his work as “at the intersection of media, communication, learning, leadership, and innovation.” He has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in adult learning. Jonathan’s publications include Rapid Video Development for Trainers, Video Script Writing, the Infoline “Memory and Cognition in Learning,” and numerous articles for TD magazine and ATD blogs. He was also a contributing author to Speak More and the ASTD Handbook: The Definitive Reference for Training & Development, 2nd edition.

Kassy LaBorie

Kassy LaBorie is a master virtual facilitator, with more than 20 years of live online training experience. She’s the co-author of Interact and Engage! 50+ Activities for Virtual Training, Meetings, and Webinars. She helps organizations and training professionals move to the virtual classroom. In her previous role at Dale Carnegie, she was the director of virtual training services, a consultancy that partners with organizations to help them develop successful online training strategies. Kassy also served as the product design architect responsible for developing the company’s live online training product and experience. Prior to this, she was a master trainer for InSync Training, a Microsoft software trainer at ExecuTrain, and a senior trainer at WebEx, where she helped build and the deliver training at the WebEx University. She has been a frequent speaker at industry conferences and events for more than 10 years and served on the 2016 and 2017 Program Advisory Committee for ATD’s International Conference & Exposition. You can find Kassy on Twitter (@Kassy_L) or through her website,

Zsolt Olah

Zsolt Olah is an author, high-energy speaker, and strong believer of building impact, not courses. Zsolt has 20 years of experience in the learning and development space, mostly focusing on the synergy of technology and human-centered design, including game thinking. His passion to combine innovative learning technology with human-centered design goes back to his thesis project, where he built an artificial neural network (a system capable of machine learning). Zsolt is a frequent speaker at learning conferences on the topic of game thinking (gamification and game-based learning), and author of the book Engage the WORL&D! He’s also a certified boredom resuscitator, often leaving participants of his sessions with a renewed energy of engagement and motivation to learn more.

Jack Phillips

Jack J. Phillips is chairman of ROI Institute and is a world-renowned expert on accountability, measurement, and evaluation. He provides consulting services for Fortune 500 companies and major global organizations. The author or editor of more than 100 books, he conducts workshops and presents at conferences all over the world. Jack has received several awards for his books and work. Jack’s expertise in measurement and evaluation is based on more than 27 years of corporate experience in the aerospace, textile, metals, construction materials, and banking industries. He regularly consults with clients in manufacturing, service, and government organizations in more than 65 countries in North and South America, Europe, Africa, Australia, and Asia. Jack has undergraduate degrees in electrical engineering, physics, and mathematics; a master’s degree in decision sciences from Georgia State University; and a doctorate in human resource management from the University of Alabama. He has served on the boards of several private businesses, including two NASDAQ companies, and several nonprofits and associations, including the Association for Talent Development and the National Management Association.

Ken Phillips

Ken Phillips is founder and CEO of Phillips Associates, a consulting and publishing company with expertise in measurement and evaluation of learning and performance management. He has more than 30 years’ experience designing learning instruments and assessments and has authored more than a dozen published learning instruments. He regularly speaks to professional associations, university classes and corporate learning and development groups. In addition, since 2008, he has spoken at the annual Association for Talent Development (ATD) International Conference & Exposition on topics related to the measurement and evaluation of learning. Prior to pursuing a PhD in the combined fields of organization behavior and educational administration at Northwestern University, Ken held management positions with two colleges and two national corporations. In addition, he has written articles that have appeared in TD magazine and Training Today and on and is a contributing author to four books in the learning and development field. Ken earned the Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP) credential from ATD in 2006 as a pilot pioneer and was recertified in 2009, 2012, and again in 2015.

Tim Slade

Tim Slade is a speaker, author, and award-winning e-learning designer. Tim has spent the past several years working to help others elevate their e-learning and visual communications content. Tim has been recognized and awarded within the e-learning industry multiple times for his creative and innovative design aesthetics. Tim also speaks regularly at national e-learning conferences, is a recognized Articulate Super Hero, and is co-author of the popular E-Learning Uncovered book series.


Megan Torrance

Megan Torrance is the chief energy officer of TorranceLearning, an e-learning design and development firm outside of Ann Arbor, Michigan. She has spent more than two decades knee-deep in projects involving change management, instructional design, consulting, and systems deployment. Megan thrives on design excellence and elegant project management. And coffee. She and the TorranceLearning team have developed the LLAMA project management approach, blending Agile with excellent instructional design techniques. TorranceLearning projects have won IELA and Brandon Hall awards, and the 2014 xAPI Hyperdrive contest at DevLearn.

Sharon Wingron

Sharon Wingron measures success by your PEOPLE: personal excellence, organizational performance, and leadership effectiveness. As president of Wings of Success, Sharon has been helping clients achieve success by providing assessment-based solutions that develop their PEOPLE since 2002. She is a dynamic, authentic professional who delivers engaging presentations, skillful facilitation, insightful coaching, and relevant resources. Sharon has demonstrated leadership in the talent development profession as a CPLP Pilot Pioneer, and was the first member of the ATD Board of Directors to achieve the Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP) designation. She is a facilitator of the ATD Master Trainer Program, a leading Wiley Everything DiSC Authorized Partner, and a Certified DiSC Solutions Provider. Sharon's success is built on continuous learning and contributing through multiple roles in diverse industries while traveling the world.