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   Conference Program
   View the conference Program HERE.

   Meet our keynote speakers

Derrick Ramsey was born and raised in Hastings, Florida. As a standout football player there, he would receive a scholarship to the University of Kentucky where he enjoyed tremendous success.

In 1975, Ramsey would become the first African-American starting quarterback in the University of Kentucky’s history. Two years later, he would not only lead the Wildcats to a 10-1 season at the helm, but also rack up numerous personal accolades including first team All-Southeastern Conference and third-team All-American. After a successful nine-year NFL career including winning a 1981 Super Bowl ring, he would soon become a small business owner managing real estate and personal investment portfolios.

In 2004, he began his first stint in a state government role when he was appointed Deputy Secretary of Commerce in the Governor Ernie Fletcher Administration. Soon after leaving office, Ramsey began serving as the Director of Athletics at Coppin State University in Baltimore in 2008.

In December of last year, newly-elected Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin called on Ramsey’s proven track record on leadership by asking him to once again serve the citizens of the Commonwealth, this time as Secretary of the Kentucky Labor Cabinet.

Shari Harley, Founder and President, Candid Culture
Shari Harley, author of the book How to Say Anything to Anyone, is known globally as an engaging, funny, content-rich business speaker. Her international training firm, Candid Culture, is making it easier to tell the truth at work. Shari is bringing candor back to the workplace. A former HR practitioner and operations leader, Shari’s practical approach has led her to speak and train in Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, India, Dubai and Australia. From ‘Making Meetings Work’ and ‘Delegating Better’ to ‘Managing Your Career’ and ‘Saying Anything to Anyone,’ Shari’s tips are sure to delight and inform in a real, direct and very funny way. 
  Dr. Trish Holliday is Assistant Commissioner and Chief Learning Officer of the State of Tennessee. Commissioner Rebecca Hunter appointed her as the State’s Chief Learning Officer (CLO) in 2012 as a member of her executive team.
Dr. Holliday’s commitment to public service and her passion for helping professionals reach their greatest potential is rooted in her experience as a certified facilitator, adult educator and executive coach, and her early years in full-time ministry as a missionary in Tennessee Appalachia.
The state of Tennessee was the first state in the country to have the executive role of CLO developing and guiding an enterprise wide learning and development strategy.
As the state’s CLO, she creates and leads learning efforts focused on the mission and goals of a customer focused government, building a common culture through a rigorous and consistent set of business and leadership skills.
She provides state appointing authorities with executive coaching in workforce planning and leadership development. Trish drives the overall curriculum focus and development of all statewide leadership programs. Her passion and talent for developing successful leaders and purpose-driven individuals are reflected in these nationally recognized programs.
As a successful change agent, facilitator and storyteller, she is often asked by state leaders to undertake complex problem solving opportunities by bringing people together and helping them discover innovative solutions and develop the leaders needed to execute. In recognition of her work in the state wide LEAD Tennessee leadership development program, Trish was selected as a 2016 Winner for the Leadership Excellence Awards in the Top Corporate Leader Award – Over 35 category. She was ranked 6th in the top 30 winner’s circle which were chosen from over three hundred applicants. Trish received the 2016 Edwin L. Swain Award of Excellence, the IPMA-HR Southern Region’s highest award given to an individual who has distinguished her/himself throughout their career in HR. Recently she was asked to facilitate the International Public Management Association – HR (IPMA-HR) 2020 strategic visioning task force, identifying critical leadership competencies needed for the future success of the HR profession. Trish’s influence reaches beyond state government by serving as an executive leadership coach for private sector businesses, impacting leaders from Kingsport to Memphis.
Trish is an active member in the following international, national, state and local organizations: Tennessee Center for Performance Excellence, IPMA-HR, Tennessee Public Management Association, Middle Tennessee Society for Human Resources, Association for Talent Development, Tennessee Society for Human Resources, and the National Association of State Personnel Executives.
She serves on the Board of Visitors for the College of Education at Lipscomb University, Tennessee State University’s College of Public Service and Urban Affairs Advisory Board, Impact Nashville, Habitat for Humanity of Tennessee, president of Toastmaster’s International Tennessee Government Leadership Chapter, Tennessee SHRM state council board member, and past board member of Special Olympics Tennessee. In 2015, Trish earned her Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) with an emphasis in Learning Organizations and Strategic Change from Lipscomb University. Doc Holliday is driven by a passion to help leaders develop strategies to create learning organizations and implement effective change initiatives.
  James Stephens received his bachelor’s degree in Police Administration from EKU in 1995, then entered the law enforcement community. He recently retired after 20 years’ experience in law enforcement, including 10 years of supervision experience with the Kentucky State Police. He also received his Master’s Degree from EKU in Safety, Security and Emergency Management, with his Masters Certificate in Homeland Security Studies. He has various work experiences in the safety field including risk, threat, and vulnerability training and applications, specializing in active shooter prevention and response. James is also active in providing educational training and consulting for school, and healthcare facilities regarding safety and security measures, and has provided services for multiple Fortune 500 Companies. He is also a consultant for the Kentucky Center for School Safety, providing safety and security training for multiple schools in Kentucky.
James is the founder and principal consultant for SafeTsources, LLC, providing a wide array of safety and security training needs.
James has served as an adjunct professor for Eastern KY University, teaching in the safety and security field. He is also the Director of Criminal Justice studies for Ohio University Southern Campus.
Presentation Title: PPT (People, Places, & Things): Situational Awareness for the HR Professional
Training Objectives:
This session will provide insight into becoming more in tune with your surroundings in order to enhance you overall personal safety. This session discusses the basic elements of situational awareness, as well as some awareness enhancement exercises. This session will also provide de-escalation exercises specifically designed for the human resources professional. 

Mary Ellen Wiederwohl joined Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer’s administration in 2012, and in 2014, Fischer tapped her to lead Louisville Forward – the city’s new, integrated approach to economic and community development. 

Louisville Forward combines business attraction, expansion, and retention activities with all of the city’s real estate functions and talent development to present a unified solution for job growth and quality of place.  Louisville Forward has twice (2014 and 2015) been named a Top Ten Economic Development Organization by Site Selection Magazine, the leading trade publication for economic development, with announced projects totaling over $3 billion of investment and more than 12,500 new jobs over the last two years.

She has provided leadership for several of Mayor Fischer’s major initiatives, including his Strategic Plan, the Vision Louisville 25-year advanced plan, the Move Louisville strategic multi-modal transportation plan, the city’s first sustainability plan, the Global Louisville Action Plan and the Vision Russell Initiative, which recently won a HUD Choice Neighborhoods implementation grant.

Before joining the Fischer administration, Mary Ellen worked in public affairs in both the public and private sectors. 

Rebecca Hunter serves on Governor Bill Haslam’s cabinet as Commissioner of the Department of Human Resources. Prior to this appointment, she spent six years as the Director of Human Resources for Hamilton County Government in Chattanooga and held management positions in governmental finance for over 25 years. Rebecca is a Certified Public Accountant and is certified as a Senior Professional in Human Resources.
During her tenure with State government, Rebecca has established the Department of Human Resources as a leader in innovative human resources practices, while shaping the best workforce for state government. She led a successful effort to transform the State’s employment practices with the passage of the T.E.A.M. Act, which is moving the State from a focus on seniority to a focus on performance. As a result, all state employees have a S.M.A.R.T. performance plan which aligns their work with the agency goals and the Governor’s priorities.
Rebecca’s commitment to excellence and performance is demonstrated not only in her leadership of the department, but extends to her leadership on various boards and associations. She serves on the board of the Tennessee Center for Performance Excellence, whose mission is to drive organizational excellence in Tennessee. She is a past president of the National Association of State Personnel Executives and the Tennessee Personnel Management Association.
Rebecca is a 2014 graduate of the inaugural class of Leadership Tennessee. She also serves on the Tennessee State University College Advisory Board, the board of HealthCare 21 Business Coalition, the board of Hixson Utility District and was appointed by Governor Haslam to the Utilities Management Review Board.
Rebecca strongly believes that continuous improvement, life-long learning and performance excellence are keys to success both personally and professionally
  ©2017 IPMA-HR Southern Region