Sessions in-Person | In Boston

NIGP Forum 2022

In Person

August 20 - 24, 2022 

NIGP Forum 2022 Session Tracks:

 

Construction
 

Cooperatives
 

Cornerstones
of Procurement

Leadership
 

Technology
& Innovation

Use the filters below to view sessions by the above tracks.  The Level Filter allows you to view those sessions available at the Foundation Level and those for the Advanced Practitioner.


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Sunday, August 21, 2022
 
Time
Session
Speakers
Details
 
8:00 AM - 9:45 AM
Opening Session: “It’s SHOWTIME!”

 Contact Hours: 1.25


It’s not enough to ‘just’ show up, to ‘just’ be an employee, or to ‘just’ stick with the status quo. In the modern workplace, meeting expectations is the equivalent of doing nothing. Organizations need every team member and leader to show up strong and perform at peak levels every day.

Don’t we all want to be appreciated, respected, and recognized for how we surprise and delight our customers? Our team? Or our boss? Of course, we do! However, we struggle with mindsets, the unknown, and the fact that we’re so busy JUST trying to make it through the day.

To solve this, Jon will prove peak performance is simpler than you think; That you can perform at your best when the spotlight suddenly shines on you to create a true SHOWTIME moment to be remembered. By combining the power of NOW, with the power of WOW you will leave this keynote experience and never be “JUST” anything ever again.

Jon Petz - Keynote
 
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Entity Networking Sessions

 Contact Hours: 2.0 


  • Large Counties
  • Small and Medium Cities 
  • Canadian Procurement
  • Corrections
  • Higher Education 
  • K-12 Large Cities 
  • Small and Medium Counties 
  • States 
  • Transportation 
  • Utilties 
  • Housing Authorities 
 
1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Design-Build "It’s the fastest growing and most popular method used to deliver construction projects in America."

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


Design-Build Project Delivery: "It’s the fastest growing and most popular method used to deliver construction projects in America."  What is Design-Build and what do research studies tell us about it compares to other project delivery methods in terms of cost growth, schedule growth, and delivery speed? Presentation will review how Design-Build differs from other project delivery methods (Design-Bid-Build , Construction Management at Risk, Multi-prime) reviewing delivery method structures, procurement characteristics, and contract administration implications for successful project delivery. Discussion will also delve into how risk factor impacts differ when using design-build in a vertical (building) versus a horizontal (transportation) environment. Discussion will present how organizations need to be process adaptive and flexible to manage design-build contracts for best results.

Learning Objectives:

  • Explore a basic understanding of how Design-Build differs from other Project delivery methods.
  • Discover research results showing the benefits of Design-Build in terms of Cost, Schedule, and Delivery speed.
  • Discover the concept of single point of responsibility in design and construction.
  • Understand design and construction project delivery method market share and trends.
  • Evaluate risk factor impact differences when using design-build in a vertical (building) versus a horizontal (transportation) environment.
     
Richard Formella, DBIA, PMP, Brad Cummings
 
1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Outside of the Box With Cooperative Purchasing

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


The cooperative world is changing - do you know the latest that is out there? During this informative session, discover how many of your pinch points can be solved by fully using what is offered through cooperative contracting. While many use cooperative contracts for commodities, there's a whole expanding world of contracts that your team should be familiar with. Construction, repairs, financing, leasing, consulting services - you might be surprised what you can buy. Tammy Rimes will lead a fun trivia game at the end to cement the learning with "Let's Just Cooperate" t-shirts given away. Discover more from other agency success stories and panelist insights.

Learning Objectives:

  • Gain insights into using cooperative contracts when federal dollars are involved 
  • Understand value-added services to attain diversity contracting and sustainability goals 
  • Identify rebates, special features, and consulting services 
  • Learn how to handle supply chain issues and changes in contract to be more comprehensive 
  • Attain “outside of the box” ideas for using a cooperative through other agency success stories 
  • Discover what is on the horizon for the development of new services and products to serve government teams 
Tammy Rimes, MPA, Ronnie Barnes, Pam Pedler, Dr. Kim Abrego, PT, DPT, Duff Erholtz
 
1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Buying the Future: Sourcing solutions that don't exist - Yet!

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


Embrace the future; create solutions, lead your communities into a better and more resilient future.  The problems we face are significant and ever evolving, market changes, climate change, poverty, the need for education, the desire to protect the vulnerable among us, lack of opportunity, and the list goes on.  Current solutions sometimes have limited success, sometimes fail, sometimes, but rarely succeed and change the lives and fortunes of those around us.  This session will focus on how procurement processes can find and develop new solutions, prove them in the real world and then contract to make them a lasting reality.  We will explore the start-up in residence program as a procurement process and a way to redefine our approach to and impact on the future of our communities.

Learning Objectives:

  • Identify baseline needs and important issues for your clients.
  • Embrace the challenge/need/solution-based RFP Model.
  • Energize the start-up community to create community-based solutions.
  • Implement a start-up residency program to develop new solutions to current challenges.
  • Contract for the next generation of software.
Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.
 
1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
How Did I Get Here? Career Paths in Procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Please join us for a panel discussion and Q&A as three procurement professionals at different stages of their careers share the experiences that got them where they are today. The panelists have performed procurement for Municipalities, Municipalities that own their Airport and Utilities, Counties, School Districts, and Higher Education. This session is informative for those who are interested in different career paths in procurement.

Learning Objectives:

  • Become involved in volunteering Join your local chapter. 
  • Explore career plans in annual performance reviews.
  • Create an Action Plan for future success.
Erin D'Vincent, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO, Christine A. Coghill, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB
 
1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
: Sustainability by the Numbers - Using Technology To Help You Hit Your Benchmarks

REUSE, REDUCE, RECYCLE isn't just terminology, it is a tangible part of the Circular Economy that becomes more critical every year as we look to eliminate processes and products that are environmentally wasteful or inefficient.   Every public agency has sustainability initiatives that may include carbon neutrality, reduced waste, reuse and recycling programs, fleet electrification or a host of many other defined goals.   This session will describe and quantify just how much different types of technology solutions can bring you closer to your surpassing your benchmarks.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn specific data that will allow them to sell their leadership the benefits of different types of technology that can assist their agency sustainability initiatives.
  • Learn terminology, allowing them to speak better to certain initiatives (ie. what does it mean to be carbon neutral and how can it be achieved?).
  • Apply this knowledge to be a catalyst for change towards buying goods/services that have a more positive environmental impact.
John Littler, Darin Matthews, NIGP-CPP FNIGP, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.
 
2:30 PM - 6:30 PM
Expo & Reception
 
 
1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Indirect Procurement: How to manage purchases through Supply Chain and Inflationary Pressures

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Learn how to better leverage strategic partnerships with vendors to help mitigate continued supply chain challenges and inflationary pressures. 

Drew Tuller, Krystal Gilbert Schafer
Monday, August 22, 2022
 
Time
Session
Speakers
Details
 
8:00 AM - 9:15 AM
Plenary: “Why Diversity Initiatives Fail”

 Contact Hours: 1.25


After 15 years of direct Diversity Trainings, Jess Pettitt, CSP, has uncovered why change doesn’t stick. In this session, we’ll spend a day in the life of a change crusher. We’ll look at a dozen or so contradictory characters that make up your office staff under the magnifying glass and solve the mystery of what you can do with what you already have to make your diversity initiatives stick.

Jess Pettitt - Keynote
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Delivering Successful Procurements and Infrastructure Projects

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


The success of capital improvement and capital expense projects lies with choosing the appropriate project delivery method, and entities can and must migrate from the standard approach to projects, especially construction.  To successfully implement any project requires project deliver methods to be updated, along with a clear process and a strong functional team biased toward achieving results.  Information on the construction industry, funding mechanisms, and processes available to assist governments are shared in this seminar.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Evaluate, procurement process and documents used in the project solicitation process to streamline.
  • Learn why and how to obtain department objectives.
  • Apply the best alternative project method.
  • Create synergies among departments with project plans.  
  • Improve relationships through communication and meticulous follow-up and follow through.
  • Coordinate and enlist the right functional team members.
Althea Pemsel, MS, CPSM, C.P.M.
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Finance and Procurement: A Relationship that Works

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Participate in this session to learn how a strong finance and procurement relationship can lead to success within your organization. We will share examples of what helps build a successful relationship as well as things which may hinder the relationship. When working in tandem, these two areas can help ensure the success of the organization's financial operations.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explore ways to work with the Finance team.
  • Apply skills learned while collaborating with the Finance team.
  • Discover those things which may not work well when working with Finance.
Andrea Philyaw, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, PMPm, CPPO, BA
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Here Comes the Judge - Procurement in the Courtroom

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Come be a part of the Jury for a Live Courtroom Drama! Our cast of characters will present a dramatization of a real-life procurement case that made it to the courtroom, let you decide who best presented their "case", and provide the actual outcome and its relationship to what we do every day. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the show!

Learning Outcomes:

  • Discover how procurement decisions can affect outcomes should a protest or dispute end up in litigation.
  • Apply lessons learned from the outcome of the presented case to your procurement processes.
  • Use concepts learned from NIGP courses such as Legal Aspects to ensure your procurements don’t end up in litigation.
  • Discover how your procurement files and communications are central to decisions in procurement disputes.
Kristy Varda NIGP-CPP CPPO CPPB, Lynda Allair NIGP-CPP CPPO, Carl Bonitto, CSCMP, Nathan Dawson, Bobbie Tolston, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Mr. Victor A. Leamer, CPPB , Barb Johnson, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Community Impactful Procurement - Ensuring Positive Community Impact, Equity, and Best Value

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


You may have been already asked to consider including Diversity and Community Impact in your procurement activities, however if not yet, expect that this request will be coming shortly.  This session will discuss how to start if you’re not already doing so, as well as, share ideas that can be adapted to meet the new expectations of both your internal customers, while providing a positive economic benefit to your community and your organization.  San Diego County is pleased to share and discuss our first annual Diversity and Engagement Report (FY2020-2021).

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify where to begin with assessing your current procurement spending in the community and how you can improve the impact. 
  • Identify specific examples of what SD County has implemented to both increase community and diverse contractor engagement and drive positive economic impacts from public spending. 
  • Describe how examples can be adapted for each organization's own needs.
Jack Pellegrino, CPPO, CPCM, NIGP-CPP
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Activate My Line of Sight: The Modern Day Hybrid Meeting

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Discover how cutting edge, AI technology, enables both in-person and remote participants to use gesture control and facial recognition to engage authentically in an intuitive experience with customized views to inspire today’s complex hybrid team collaboration needs.

David Wetzel, Aimée Bivins
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Pulling the Right Procurement Levers: Strategies to Manage High Federal Spend Volume

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Join Disaster Recovery Services, LLC, as we explore leveraging procurement strategies to manage the high volume of federally-funded purchase requests flowing through the procurement department.

Dr. Kim Abrego, PT, DPT, Shelley Vineyard, MBA, RTSBA
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Building a New Movement for Procurement Collaboration in the Digital Age

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


If you’ve ever asked a procurement peer “Do you have a contract I can use?”, you know that the spirit of collaboration in public procurement is strong. Cooperative purchasing and piggybacking allows public agencies to share contracts to deliver better, faster public services to the public. But even now, finding the right contract at the right time often feels like a losing game of “Go, Fish!” How can you leverage technology (and the wisdom of your peers) to minimize the time you spend on the logistics of collaboration and maximize its benefits to your agency and the public? Join CoProcure as we connect with leaders pushing the boundaries of procurement collaboration in the digital age. In this session, you’ll connect with individuals and tools that can help you maximize the value of cooperative procurement for your entity and the broader public. You won’t want to miss it!

 
10:30 AM - 2:30 PM
Expo & Lunch
 
 
2:45 PM - 3:45 PM
An Introduction to Cooperative Procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Join us to discuss the foundations of cooperative procurement. This is a great session for a new Procurement Specialist or Contract Administrator as it covers the basics of cooperative procurement. There are no prerequisites needed to attend.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Conduct thorough of price, market and gap analysis.
  • Explore best contracting methods for your organization.
  • Discover and evaluate the best fit of commonly used cooperatives for your organization.
Erin D'Vincent, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Sai Xoomsai Purcell, CPPB
 
2:45 PM - 3:45 PM
Core Values in action : how Social Equity and Sustainability fit into Procurement' Core Values

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


As more and more of our agencies are directed to include social equity and sustainability in our procurements,  It is critical that we execute those requirements consistent with the core values of Accountability, ethics, impartiality, professionalism, service and transparency.  Procurement officers often feel challenged about how to offer vendors with certain characteristics preferences while still preserving competition and this session will explore how social equity ( labor, MWBE, DBE) requirements and sustainability requirements are not only not in conflict with our core values bust essential to them.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Use social equity requirements to increase competition and lower pricing.
  • Discover how incorporating sustainability helps to meet the needs of customers (service).  
  • Learn how social equity and sustainability requirements  meet and exceed the governments form function and utility. 
  • Establish how to keep equity and sustainability requirements from diminishing competition. 
  • Establish equity and sustainability requirements to root out inherent bias and vendor specific terms and conditions.
Sean Carroll
 
2:45 PM - 3:45 PM
Bonding: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, Everything you wanted to know about Surety Bonds, but were afraid to ask

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Can you use a performance bond for something other than construction?  How can a public agency using the low-bid system in awarding public works contracts be sure that the lowest bidder is dependable? How can private sector construction project owners manage the risk of contractor failure? Most public agencies and construction contractors are familiar with the process of obtaining surety bonds, but they may not be aware of the legal relationships that bonds establish. Bonds confirm the relationships among the principal (the contractor), the obligee (usually the owner) and the surety. This session will answer these questions and more. Participants will get a brief overview of bonding and insurance, see an outline for timing, and be able to identify when to use a particular type of bond.Training session is targeted to beginning procurement professionals.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Describe the types of surety bonds.
  • Identify  when to use a particular type of bond, and why one might be better in certain cases.
  • Understand  with examples, of how the surety provides the assurance that a contractor can perform.
Kirk Buffington, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPFIM, MBA
 
2:45 PM - 3:45 PM
Signed, Certified and Delivered. Its your 2022 Contract Template!

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


1. Come and see how the new electronic procurement office can achieve.   2. Check our process to see how contract management is vital to the success of the organization.   3. Explore what methods have been used to solve procurement challenges.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply a pragmatic approach to the key concepts discussed with the use of a contract management guide developed for the "Give back, Make an impact" NIGP Forum 2022 to ensure compliance and fiduciary responsibility to managing public contracts
  • Implement best practices by an NIGP Award winning Procurement Office to implement in their procurement process
  • Apply contract templates and attachments to contract documents and manuals.
Jesus Amezcua, CPA, Kendra Jackson, Edna Johnson
 
2:45 PM - 3:45 PM
All Aboard! – Successful onboarding in a virtual work environment

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


The session is designed to provide organizational leaders of all levels (executive, management, middle management, and contributor) an opportunity to explore actionable techniques for successful integration of new employees into the workforce with the goal of long-term retention.  There are no prerequisites for attendance other than a strong desire to develop meaningful connections and positive experiences.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Pre-boarding: Explore and apply techniques to facilitate a smooth transition into the workplace prior to the employee start date.
  • Partnering:  Develop an actionable plan for creating mentoring partnerships. 
  • Integration:  Establish and apply strategies for promoting integrative practices and systems for bringing new employees up to speed and into the fold.
Arden Clark, NIGP-CPP, MS, MBA, CPPB, VCCO, VCO
 
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Oh My Data! Data analytics in procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Data can be overwhelming; however, analytics help tell a story, create dialogue, save time, and increase productivity. Leveraging data is critical to make smarter decisions for our organizations.  Having the right information helps to increase awareness and transparency of spend. Additionally, it creates opportunities to increase efficiencies, reduce rogue spend, and centralize procurement.  This session shares ways that your procurement team can leverage data to help your organization.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn the types of data analysis and how they can benefit procurement.
  • Identify tools to communicate the importance of data analytics and how they can support your organizational mission.
  • Discover types of reporting and analytics used to help procurement.
Ginger Line, MPA, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Jeremy Schwartz, CPPO, CSSBB
 
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Sustainability, It's Not My Job....or is it?

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


One of the high priority initiatives of many public entities is sustainability. Though it is not a new concept, there is an ever-increasing focus on public entities to ensure they are doing their part to make a difference in this area. Most procurement organizations have a generalized statement of policy or procedure that goes into our solicitations, but where do we go from there? Is there more we can do?  The answer is "yes", there is. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination and creativity.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Gain a clearer picture of what ‘sustainability’ means and the role of procurement.
  • Discover the building blocks of a sustainable purchasing initiative.
  • Explore some of the options and opportunities for procurement professionals to make a difference in this space.
Theresa Webb, M.A. CPPO, CPPB, CPSM, C.P.M.
 
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Yes, a Procurement Professional can become an Employee of the Month!

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Let's face it - you know your job and you do it well but, some of our internal customers only think of procurement as a necessary evil. Let's change that mentality from a negative to a positive in this interactive session and become the customer oriented professionals that will make you and your procurement team shine.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Attain feedback from internal customers before, during and after the solicitation process to learn what makes their job easier which will in-turn make your job easier.
  • Develop SMART goals for department/division to change the culture of procurement going from no we can't to let's see what we can do to help.
  • Highlight different personality types including your own to develop effective strategies on dealing with our internal customers.
Judy Ambrosi, CPP, MBA, Melissa Couture
 
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
The Functionality Matrix - How to create and use THE tool to ensure a successful IT procurement (red pill not required)

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Like it or not, information technology products and services are making up more and more of our entities' spend each year. For the uninitiated, IT-related procurement can seem daunting and overwhelming. But what if I told you there was a tool that can assist you through every step of the procurement cycle - from acquisition planning and market research through specification development, evaluation, demostration, negotiation, and contract administration? That tool is the Functionality Matrix, and in this session you will learn what the Matrix is, how to create one, and how it will help make your IT-related procurements more efficient and effective.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Use the Matrix during market research/acquisition planning to determine whether the solution the entity is looking for exists and/or can be developed.
  • Use the Matrix with end users to focus their “wish list” and determine what functions the entity NEEDS the system to perform, and what functions are merely DESIRABLE.
  • Apply the functions listed in the Matrix to keep the specifications on target without making them too restrictive.
  • Include the Matrix in the solicitation document and instruct Offerors to complete it – those completed Matrices are then evaluated by the panel.
  • Develop a demonstration script using the Functionality Matrix.
  • Use the Offeror’s completed Matrix to develop negotiation points and to assist throughout the negotiation process.
  • Use the answers in the Offeror’s completed Matrix to keep them accountable for the functionality of the implemented system.
  • Revisit the Matrix at the end of the contract term to determine if the entity’s needs have changed.
Nathan Dawson
 
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Risky Conditions: Managing mishaps in your procurement processes

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


Every procurement incurs risk.  Procurement Officers are uniquely positioned to help their entities make strategic decisions about how to manage them. In this interactive session, participants are expected to create their own risky situation and be consider the pros and cons of their decisions with colleagues as we discuss the best way to manage risk for routine procurements.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Articulate the meaning of risk as it pertains to public procurement.
  • Identify risks early in the procurement process.
  • Explore options available through the use of boilerplate language to manage common risks.
  • Develop strategies to manage risks through-out the procurement cycle.
Stacy Gregg, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB
 
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Contract Administration - Beginning With the End in Mind

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


Many procurement folks feel that once they've prepared the solicitation, sent it to the vendors, opened and evaluated the responses and posted the award, their work is done. However, looking at the breadth of the contract management cycle tells us that this is likely to be the least amount of time that will be invested in the contract for they are often put in place for terms of a year or more. That makes it imperative to understand what is necessary for good contract administration and that information needs to be conveyed to the using departments who deal with the contractor everyday. This session will cover the basics of proper contract administration, while keeping in mind what is to be accomplished with the solicitation. There will also be two hands-on exercises in which participants will practice creating a Contract Administration Plan and a Performance Assessment Plan.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply the essential elements of good contract administration to the solicitation document prior to it being released to the vendor community.
  • Formulate a contract administration plan through hands-on practice during the workshop.
  • Develop a performance assessment plan to gauge contractor performance through hands-on practice during the workshop.
David E. Nash, CPPO, CPPB, NIGP-CPP
 
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Mapping Your Procurement Process to Reduce Cycle Times

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


Your procurement processes likely take longer than desired, but it can be difficult to pinpoint which steps most contribute to lengthy cycle times. Join the Harvard Kennedy School Government Performance Lab to learn how to map the procurement process as a first step to improving the process for internal customers and suppliers alike. In this interactive session, participants will practice mapping procurement processes and then learn how to analyze their maps to identify the “value” created by each process step, downtime in the process, unnecessary activities, or steps that could be taken in tandem. From this session, you will be equipped with techniques and tools for running your own process mapping activity.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Develop a procurement process map that outlines average cycle times, which can become a valuable tool to identify quick wins to improve procurement efficiency and engage in further research.
  • Discover which process steps are causing the most burden to stakeholders in an entity and where users frequently experience confusion.
  • Gain buy-in from stakeholders involved in the procurement process, by involving those connected to solutions development.
  • Launch process reforms that cut cycle times, reduce administrative burden, and free up staff time for higher value activities.
  • Explore successful techniques used by entities in implementing process improvements following similar mapping activities.
Lars Benson, MPA, Andrea Barnes, MPP
 
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Don't Just Sit There...LEAD! Making a Powerful Impact In Your Procurement Role

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


Are you a leader?  Do you let your job title determine that answer for you?  Do you realize that you have the potential to LEAD from anywhere in the entity?  Whether you are a brand new contracting officer, a seasoned procurement manager or the Chief Procurement Officer for your entity, you should be LEADing from wherever you are.  Procurement operations do not have the luxury of relying upon a chosen few to lead the operation and move the entity forward....it needs everyone!  So how do you lead?  What can you do from exactly where you are in the entity today and contribute to making to the entity's success?  This session will discuss the roles and responsibilities of many different positions in an entity and how each of those roles are critical to the success of the entity.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Recognize your potential to be a leader in your entity and in your current role.
  • Determine a plan of action to activate change in your entity.
  • Establish clear roles and responsibilities for your entity.
Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPPB, CPM
 
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Open Mic Night on RFP's

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


This “open mic” would be for an arena for any questions related to RFP's .  Many individuals new to the public procurement world often have questions but no forum to ask.  This would be a “safe environment” for any question and open to newbies with their questions and also for the expert who has advice/stories to share.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the definition and purpose of RFP’s.
  • Ability to explain the difference between and RFP and other solicitation methods.
  • Knowing when it's best to use the RFP solicitation method.
  • Learn tips to consider and red flags to be aware of when using the RFP method.
Mr. Victor A. Leamer, CPPB , Mike Thornton, CPPO, Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB
 
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
The Relationship between Contract Administration Problems and Contract Type

 Contact Hours: 1.5 


Using a real life example, as a group participants will identify risks, develop a risk mitigation strategy and create a contract administration plan  Identify types of risks that can occur for any contract.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify risks that are likely to occur for a specific contract, by utilizing risk evaluation methodologies.
  • Develop a risk management plan Incorporate this risk management plan into pre-award and post award activities  and create a contract administration plan.
Bill Davison, NIGP-CPP, CPPO
 
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Plenary: NIGP Business Council Evolution: Bringing Value to the Procurement Profession

 Contact Hours: 1.5


 

 
6:30 PM - 10:30 PM
Social Event
 
Tuesday, August 23, 2022
 
Time
Session
Speakers
Details
 
8:00 AM - 9:15 AM
Plenary - Innovators in Public Procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.25  


Come together for this NEW Main Stage Session of our leading innovators in the Public Procurement field. NIGP has collated procurement innovators and visionaries to share their big ideas and the impact they have (or have had) on the procurement field. These speakers will lead a dynamic, 15 minute Ted-talk style presentation about their big idea in procurement. Listen to how their innovative thinking was taken from an idea to improving and shaping the profession. Join us for this premier gathering of the nation’s top public procurement professionals to learn how to push the limits of what is possible in these changing times.

Zac Christensen, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
It was an honest mistake: Seasoned by the hard lessons (Part II)

 Contact Hours: 1.25 


The adage, “we learn from our mistakes” holds true for even the most seasoned procurement officer.  We’ve all made them in the early days of our careers and we are all better for them.  It’s even better when we learn from the mistakes of others.  Participants in this session will discuss mistakes learned by professionals, who are better at what they do because they experiences lapses in judgement in their past procurement lives.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn case studies of honest mistakes made by newer and sometimes veteran Procurement Officers.
  • Discuss different approaches, which may have prevented the mistake; and also approaches to resolve them.
  • Learn the outcomes that the Procurement Officer took in each instance.
Stacy Gregg, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Improving Vendor Performance Management in Public Procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.25  


Procurement professionals invest so much time energy and capital into developing solicitations and contracts, that little time is left to invest in one of the most important aspects of meeting the needs of our buying customers; vendor management.  In this session we will discuss ways that allow you to leverage tools that simplify the effort, and provide critical data about how well vendors on your contracts are performing for your buying customers, and your organization.  Just think about how fast and easy it is for you to make a decision about a restaurant or a destination on Yelp or Trip Advisor. These are the types of approaches and opportunities that we look forward to sharing with you during our time together.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand how vendor management starts with your planning and the solicitation.
  • Learn about leveraging apps/tools to manage vendor performance without having to do all the work yourself.
  • Learn how a focus on contract management improves results for your buy side customers. 
  • Hear how the Commonwealth of Massachusetts takes a hybrid tool approach to manage our sourcing and vendor management process, using a number of technologies, including Procurated, that gathers data from buying customers and enables us to manage vendor performance.  
  • Learn how to leverage tools and techniques to improve vendor quality for your buying customers within your organization.
Gary Lambert, David Yarkin
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Debrief Best Practice

 Contact Hours: 1.25   Also available On Demand


In this session #RFPDreamTeam will present NIGP's new best practice on debriefs. We will provide some tips and also conduct mock debriefs.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply structure and tips to effectively conduct a Debrief
Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Mike Thornton, CPPO, Mr. Victor A. Leamer, CPPB
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Sourcing for Diversity: How to Listen, Learn from, and Engage with SMB, Minority, and Female-owned Businesses in Your Community

 Contact Hours: 1.25 


Hear directly from SMBs, including minority- and female-owned businesses, the challenges and benefits of working with governments. In this conversation, we will confront common barriers that exclude diverse suppliers, such as $5m annual revenue requirements, excessive/invasive certification requirements, multiple registry navigation across governments, and the perception that governments don’t want to work with small businesses. Come learn with us as we chart a new way forward together.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify and problem-solve the unique challenges facing businesses in your community.
  • Implement immediate wins and long-term strategies for enabling SMBs as well as Minority- and Female-owned businesses to work with your government agency more easily 
  • Utilize templates for setting up and managing a program to increase small company and W/MBE-owned business participation
Ben Vaught, MBA, Steve Tran, Robert Ballou
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Blurring the Lines Between Procurement and Finance

 Contact Hours: 1.25 


While often in separate departments, procurement and finance need to work as one to serve the needs of the organization. In this session, speakers will explore the connections between finance and procurement and show how a better more collaborative relationship between procurement and finance can lead to improved outcomes in budgeting, long-term planning, cash flow analysis, debt management, accounting, contract management and more. Attendees will explore not only what makes for better integration, but how you can get started building more effective relationships with your peers from the finance office.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify simple strategies to align procurement and finance and avoid common mistakes that lead to isolated and fragmented processes 
  • Show how procurement is critical stakeholder for budget monitoring, budget control, and dealing with fiscal stress 
  • Understand how contract management impacts risk 
  • Develop better relationships with your peers in finance 
  • Get a seat at the table to elevate the voice of procurement in the organization
Mike Mucha, Terri Velasquez
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Advancing Equity through Cooperative Procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.25   Also available On Demand


Does it feel like you have to choose between the ease and speed of cooperative procurement and meeting your entity’s goals around supporting local or diverse businesses? What if you could achieve the best of both worlds? In this session, you’ll hear from procurement leaders who are simultaneously leveraging the benefits of cooperative procurement and supporting local and diverse businesses, and leave with actionable tactics for how you can, too.

Learning Outcomes:

  •  Access new tactics for achieving equity and local economic development objectives through cooperative purchasing. 
  • Connect to resources that can help you work with local and/or diverse vendors on cooperative contracts. 
  • Build relationships with like-minded peers interested in collaborative procurement, business diversity and inclusion, and technology.
Becca Blazak, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Maria Agrusa, Michael Wenzel
 
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
What you need to know about Cooperatives and Cooperative Contracts

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Ever wondered how cooperative agencies and cooperative contracts work?  Attend this session and learn how to analyze and develop a cooperative procurement program within your organization. We will cover the importance of compliance with local regulations and how to apply cooperative purchasing as an effective tool in your procurement function.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Analyze and develop a cooperative procurement program within your organization.
  • Examine a cooperative contract for compliance with local regulations.
  • Apply cooperative purchasing as an effective tool in your procurement function.
Claudia Leon, CPPB, Rebecca Seifert
 
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Creating a SWaM Program with Impact

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


Small, Woman and Minority – owned business enterprises, Service-Disabled Veteran owned business enterprises– how does your organization support these businesses?  Learn what and how the City of Virginia Beach has created programs, facilitated conversations and increased participation in City Contracts.  City of Virginia Beach Purchasing Division and SWaM Office discuss the continued growth of our SWaM and SDV program.  We will explore disparity studies, procurement initiatives, educational programs, expos and more.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explore different options for SwaM and SDV programs. 
  • Understand Disparity Studies and the value they provide.
  • Discover tools for enhancing SWaM and SDV participation in procurement programs across your organization.
Rebecca Kee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPO, Lavera Tolentino
 
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Don't mess with the Feds!

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


Come and explore the impact of 2 cfr 200 to your procurement processes.   Understand how Federal funds require special attention to meet compliance requirement and explore ways to make sure that internal controls and processes meet the federal requirements.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Examine the changes to the 2 cfr 200 as issued by the US Office of Management and Budget and implement changes to the procurement cycle.
  • Develop internal controls to meet federal requirements in the 2 CFR 200.
  • Apply the CF 200 law changes and recommend policies and procedures changes.
Jesus Amezcua, CPA
 
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Increase your Influence and Enhance your Leadership

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Learn simple, insightful ways to interact more positively with others and increase your organizational success. If you're a manager, see your team respond with new enthusiasm when you adopt these techniques.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn strategies to increase your influence.
  • Apply these simple strategies in any area of your life
  • Elevate your awareness to discover your untapped leadership potential.
Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO
 
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Procurement Technology Systems - Friend or Foe?

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Procurement departments are positioned to ensure enterprise system purchases meets their needs simply by taking the lead on the sourcing of such systems.  Procurement's organizational knowledge of departments strategically aligns procurement to be the friend in technology purchases and not the foe. Technology has changed supply chain systems in private industry, government, and a myriad of small businesses. All entities must drive down costs and improve operational efficiencies, keep pace with the technology of the business world, and make technology sourcing decisions holistically.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Build an Automation Strategy – Mapping.
  • Master Techniques on Selecting the Right Process and Software.
  • Create Functional Teams for Technology.
  • Institute Project Planning and Implementation.
  • Learn and Apply the Adkar Model.
Althea Pemsel, MS, CPSM, C.P.M.
 
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Think you know everything about Cooperative Purchasing? Think again!

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


This panel of industry peer experts will share tips, "tricks," and strategies for getting the most out of using cooperative purchasing contracts. (expectation to have a city, county, and school district represented to get a broad perspective for attendees)  Jennifer will conduct this panel as an interview with prepared questions and examples from the panelists that will provide the most important tools for attendees to use back home.  You'll hear real examples of successful uses of cooperative contracts in the most unlikely (AKA a global pandemic, supply chain problems, etc) situations.  Want to hear how your peers are navigating the thousands of available cooperative contacts available?  Each panelist will provide real examples from their agencies that will lead attendees to a more effective process to return home to their agencies.  -Discover how to figure out what your best value is. -Learn how to easier find and use contracts. - Want to buy local? No problem! -Need help getting your Ts& Cs met? -How to deal with supplier relationships. -Get answers to your individual agency/buyer questions.  Attendees are encouraged to prepare questions to bring to this session for the panelists and interact with their own examples throughout.  Join us!

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn ways to use cooperative contracts you've never thought of before. 
  • Explore how to more easily find and use contracts.
  • Discover how easy it is to "buy local" or with MBE/WBE partners through contracts.
  • Are you leaving some benefits on the table? Apply these tips and tricks to ensure you're getting best value for your agency.
  • Get answers to individual agency/buyer questions about cooperative purchasing.
Jennifer Sulentic, RuthAnne Hall, CPPO, Charles Mayfield, Jennifer Alford
 
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
The Vital Link in the Supply Chain

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Today's high costs of procurement demand that State, Local Government, and Education practitioners change to a more efficient process that reduces total costs and creates value.  Graybar can assist in mapping your existing processess, then analyze the work functions and recommend changes and improvemets to those processes.  Through a full suite of vendor managed services we keep departments working and your projects on time and on budget.

Jeff Peskuski, Rob Rhoads
 
1:45 PM - 2:45 PM
Leading with Emotional Intelligence - Understanding Each Team Member & How to Adjust Accordingly

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


As we all work to be more inclusive, knowing each of our team members and how they operate is key to effective leadership. Come experience fun, informative personal assessments that help you better understand yourself and others, that you can then take back to the office and use with your employees for awareness and making necessary adjustments for individual satisfaction and team success.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Take personality and communication style assessments then learn what each style means and how to best interact.
  • Connect with others like you to collaborate about what your styles need to be successful.
  • Share with the other styles so they gain awareness of your traits and needs on the job/as part of a team.
  • Listen and learn about the other styles so you understand how to best work with them/others on your team.
  • Take the assessments, information and lessons learned and replicate/apply to your team at work and at home.
Cheral Manke, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPM
 
1:45 PM - 2:45 PM
The Leadership Lab: Harvesting Organic Leadership

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Join us as we explore principles of organic leadership and discuss how to effectively recognize those qualities within your team. This will be an introspective experience where we examine leadership traits, challenges and opportunities. Hack your leadership with a personalized strategic plan! We will introduce relevant tools to promote the establishment of a performance management based organizational culture that involves coaching and conscious attempts at continuous dialogue within work teams to achieve breakthrough improvements in manager-employee relationships and on-the-job results.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply concepts of organic leadership.
  • Interact with tools to develop a personalized leadership strategic plan.
  • Explore your strengths and potential liabilities through introspective exercises.
Zulay Millan, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CPPO, Carrie Mathes, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, APP, CPPB, C.P.M., CFCM, MPA
 
1:45 PM - 2:45 PM
What didn't kill me. Lessons learned from a workplace mass shooting

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Five lessons learned from the mass shooting at the Virginia Beach Municipal Complex will be shared.  These are actions and mindsets that will help you everyday in your career and life.  In addition, to make the best use of these lessons, get ready to be involved, as we issue a call to action for an exciting new endeavor of procurement community support and kindness.  Disclaimer: This session will include media and discussion around the topic of workplace violence. Please be aware that this content may be difficult. I encourage you to consider your well-being before choosing to attend.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Discover why the soft skills are so important in everyday and extreme situations.
  • Apply lessons of customer service to all interactions in the workplace.
  • Explore why professionalism and kindness matters every.
  • Learn how you can actively support your professional network.
Rebecca Kee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPO, Barb Johnson, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Stacy Adams, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB
 
1:45 PM - 2:45 PM
Construction Delivery Methods: Getting the Project You Want

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


We spend more money on construction than anything else.  Do you really understand the different ways to buy construction?  Do you want a diagnostic that can guide you and your clients in selection a construction delivery method?  Come to this session where we will compare and contrast the primary construction delivery methods Design-Bid-Build, Construction Manager at Risk, Design-Build, Job Order Contracting and various IDIQ contracting methods.  We will also work through a process for the development of your own diagnostic tool to support project based decision-making.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify key characteristics of building delivery methodologies.
  • Determine the best construction methodology on a project by project method.
Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.
 
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Introduction to an Electric Vehicle (EV) Pilot Program for Procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


The 2030 electrification deadline is around the corner – where are you on the road to electrification?   The public sector needs to plan and start the groundwork now, not tomorrow.     EV transition can be daunting but it doesn’t have to be.   A comprehensive EV Transition Plan includes the Project Design and Management; EV Fleet Transition Analysis; Charging Infrastructure Plan and Funding Strategies.   Attendees will leave with a template to be customized for their organization.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply a basic understanding of electrification and how it would apply to their organization.
  • Leverage a template for your organization to get started on a pilot program or continue to move forward with your EV goals.
  • Set goals across multi-stakeholders sustainable and operational needs of your fleets.
Jason Kazmar, BS
 
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
RFP Evaluation and Scoring Best Practices

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


This session is an exploration of the approaches professional public agencies use to evaluate RFPs. We will discuss scoring, non-scoring, and hybrid methods along with specific approaches used for technical and price scoring and review examples where many of these methods are used.  The intent is to bring awareness to the different methods, help us understand how our own approaches fit within the range of options, and explore where we might best use certain approaches.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the different scored, non-scored, and hybrid methods approaches to evaluating RFPs and consider how your organization’s approaches compare to others.
  • Explore rubrics, rankings, comparisons, and other technical scoring methodologies and discuss when and how each might be best used.
  • Explore price evaluation and scoring techniques along with their application, advantages, and disadvantages.
  • Review examples of public agencies using these approaches and methods.
Allen Hunsberger, NIGP-CPP, CPSD, C.P.M., MBA, CAPPO
 
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Diversity Study Contract: Start to Finish

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


Where you spend your money is an indication of where you set your priorities.  The Disparity Study is an equity tool for setting spending priorities within the public sector.  Share in on a collaborative effort between Procurement and the Small Minority and Business Resource team in executing a contract to complete a Disparity Study for the City of Austin.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Providing an overview of the procurement method used to select a consultant 
  • Components necessary for developing the Disparity Study scope and evaluation criteria;
  • On-going utilization of the Disparity Study to drive public spending.
Cyrenthia Ellis, MBA, PMP, Tamela Saldana
 
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Procurement Leadership: Lessons from the Boatwrights Shop

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


For thousands of years boatwrights have plied their trade to transform roughhewn materials into elegant, efficient and seaworthy craft.  They have developed principles of design and construction that have withstood the challenges of time.  We will apply the principles of these masters, combined with over 30 years of successful procurement leadership, to the challenges of you face every day.   Come and explore the tools and techniques of the boatwrights shop and learn how these approaches and principles can be applied to the creation and formation of effective teams, helping individuals realize their full potential and shaping a brighter and more resilient future for the communities we serve.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Fostering team identity and commitment
  • Build trust and teamwork
  • Apply the tools of leadership
  • Lead your team through the storms and challenges of project execution
  • Move from team leader to big-picture strategist
Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.
 
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Should I use JOC for this? Best Practices for Project Selection

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Recent research sponsored by NIGP and Gordian concludes that Job Order Contracting (JOC) requires fewer resources and less time than traditional construction procurement methods. But JOC is not a one-size-fits-all solution – procurement offices must strategically apply their available procurement methods to their project list.  Where does Job Order Contracting fit?     Join this session to discover when it is most advantageous to use Job Order Contracting to purchase construction services and how your peers are deploying JOC to overcome common obstacles to efficient construction procurement.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn the basics of Job Order Contracting - what it is, advantages and best practices for implementation and use.
  • Understand information on the types of projects JOC is best suited for, including examples from your peers
  • Understand how JOC helps procurement offices engage with contractors and complete projects on compressed timelines.
John Agostinelli
 
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Professional Judgement - Why It Is Important

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Procurement expertise includes performance of specialized skills, knowledge, and competencies.  Over many years public procurement has transformed from a very traditional process to a transformational process.  The transformation process can introduce more gray area which requires more decision making by the public procurement professional.  This session will explore professional judgment as it applies to public procurement.   The attendee will explore with the presenters what is professional judgment, why is it so important now, and when is it needed.  As well as examples and discussion with the group.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Discover professional procurement judgment.
  • Understand the importance of professional judgment in public procurement.
  • Explore when and how to apply professional judgment.
Mike Thornton, CPPO, Mr. Victor A. Leamer, CPPB , Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB
 
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM
How Do I Cancel a Contract? and Performance Management

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


Are you plagued with the "grey areas" of Contract Cancellation and Performance Management? Well, plague no more!  This interactive workshop will eliminate those grey areas, garner confidence in the contract cancellation process, explore effective performance management tools while exploring the appropriate use of transparent clauses to add your RFPs and contracts!

Learning Outcomes:

  • Gain confidence in the contract cancellation process with clearly defined steps, clarify your role, and apply appropriate timelines. 
  • Apply transparent termination language and PRE clauses that can be included in your RFPs before any contract is signed. You explore appropriate Federal or State Rules that may be added to your RFP. 
  • Reference appropriate terms, conditions, or PRE clauses from your RFP within your contracts. You manage risk by reviewing certain terminology within a vendor's proposed terms and conditions. You have examples of contract language to add to a contract when there are conflicting terms.
  • Learn confidence in basic Performance Management. You will lead the vendor and your client quicker to PRE (Preliminary Resolution Efforts) that are more effective when applying proper communication, documentation, and performance management tools.
  • Discover the utilization of contract signature meetings to establish clear performance expectations, processes, and transparent communication leading to a successfully completed project.
Pauline Alles, BS/BM
 
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM
Building a Foundation of Results Driven Contracting in Procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


Results Driven Contracting aims to transform the procurement process. We will discuss how to build a results-driven RFP to get the outcomes you want and how to automate that data collection to track your outcomes.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Examine and develop a structure for a results-driven RFP.
  • Design and apply performance metrics.
  • Apply various strategies to streamline data reporting.
Toni Cook, MPA, MBA, Casey Hook
 
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM
"Help me Help you" – the art and science of managing up

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


This session will teach Procurement managers how to think about their relationships with managers bosses and leadership, and will focus on communicating to leadership in ways that meet their needs as well as the needs of your teams and specific procurements or stakeholders.   Skill will include understanding leaderships goals, anticipating their needs, setting expectations and then exceeding them.

Learning Outcomes:

  • How to effectively under promise and over deliver.
  • How to tie procurement success to leaderships priority goals. 
  • Evaluate the current state of the relationship with leadership including credibility. 
  • Tactical application of skills to manage up to leadership in macro and micro engagements.
  • How to align over time when intial attempts are unsuccessful
Sean Carroll, JP Behrle
 
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM
Critical Thinking: A Critical Skill

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


We’ve been told that our ability to think is what separates us from the animals. “I think, therefore I am,” proclaimed Rene’ Descartes in the 17th century. Situations, problems and opportunities confront us on a daily basis. How we handle them and move on is fundamental to long-term success in any endeavor. We each have our own experiences and points of view from which we make assumptions. To that we add facts, opinions and observations to try and arrive at a course of action. This requires the skill set of critical thinking, which examines assumptions, 2022-08-23evaluates evidence and assesses conclusions. This workshop will examine many of the facets of critical thinking and provide some useful tools for its proper application. There will be two exercises in small groups. One involves the use of a concept map for problem solving and the other involves a brainstorming session.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Discover the obstacles to overcome in daily interactions for more productive thought and better decision-making. 
  • Find better ways to learn, listen and understand so that more proper actions are taken. 
  • Apply the problem-solving process and learn ways to devise effective, long-lasting solutions.
David E. Nash, CPPO, CPPB, NIGP-CPP
 
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM
When you speak, do others listen?

 Contact Hours: 1.5 


The ability to connect with others is a determining factor in reaching your potential. Learn simple practices that you can apply in your professional and personal life to connect with others. Participate in a fun and impactful game that will challenge you to become a better communicator.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn the practices and apply them with your end-users, colleagues, and everyone in your organization.
  • Practice the techniques with co-workers, friends, and family.
  • Discover simple ways to improve your relationships.
Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO
 
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM
Evaluating SaaS Proposals

 Contact Hours: 1.5  


The acquisition of technology has become a major procurement initiative.  This informative session will assist the procurement professional in constructing evaluation criteria for as-a-Service.  Participants will work collaboratively with facilitators to review as-a-Service solicitations and develop relevant, measurable evaluation criterion.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply procurement best practices to create evaluation criterion that is relevant to as-a-service solicitations.
  • Use real life scenarios to build a checklist of parts of the proposal that should evaluated.
  • Apply knowledge learned from peers to build evaluation criteria of as a service products.
  • Discover what pitfalls others have found and explore how to avoid them.
Kristy Varda NIGP-CPP CPPO CPPB, Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE
Wednesday, August 24, 2022
 
Time
Session
Speakers
Details
 
8:00 AM - 9:15 AM
Plenary: “The Future of Work is Here”

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Get Ready to Laugh…and Learn!  Join us as Crystal Washington helps us identify the significant ways in which technology is changing human beings. We’ll discover the unique ways technology trends will impact our profession in the long-term and uncover tactics for riding the wave of change to positive business results.

Crystal Washington - Keynote
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
FINDING YOUR PASSION: Why Contribute and How?

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Where does your passion lie?  What is important to you and, possibly, your family.  Join your peers and friends to discuss the value of contributing to your community regardless of whether you define that community as local, global, professional, or any combination thereof.  We’ll discuss how to identify what is a good fit for you as well as the potential benefits to you as an individual and your community at large.  Join some colleagues who volunteer, both with NIGP and other organizations, to discuss what convinced them to volunteer, why they do it, and what benefits they have experienced.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify what you are passionate about.
  • Explore the value of contributing to your community.
  • Discover the personal benefits of volunteering.
  • Manage your personal resources to maximize your impact.
  • Identify the professional benefits of community connections.
Lynda Allair NIGP-CPP CPPO, Barb Johnson, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Stacy Adams, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Andrea Mindenhall, CPPO, CPPB - Manager of Strategic Sourcing, Regional Municipality of Halton, ON
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Mentoring: The Power and Impact of Giving Back to Your Profession!

 Contact Hours: 1.0


As many new individuals are entering the public procurement profession, it is important to provide them with the skills to succeed in the profession and in life.  Mentorship is often the professional bridge between being a novice and becoming a leader.  This critical conversation focuses on the power and impact that mentoring has on the public procurement profession, and this discussion will include current thought leaders in the area of mentorship, as well as highlight how the NIGP Mentorship Program will help you and your organization move to the next level as leaders in the profession.  Join us as we have a frank discussion about the value of mentorship for public procurement.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Mentorship provides unique opportunities for the effective transfer of knowledge from seasoned public procurement professionals to new or developing staff.
  • Mentorship provides personalized opportunities for professional growth and development in a personalized setting.
  • Mentorship gives the mentee an opportunity to receive guidance from a senior professional, and provides the mentee with a sounding board for bouncing off ideas.
  • Mentorship provides the mentee with more confidence and knowledge to be able to tackle increasingly more difficult issues in the workplace, while developing and honing their leadership skills
Keith Glatz, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPPB, CPM, Shirley, Webb, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Joshua M. Steinfeld, Ph.D.
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
NIGP-CPP: A Proven Pathway That Invests in Your Long-Term Career Growth

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


The NIGP Certified Procurement Professional (NIGP-CPP) is NIGP's certification for mid to executive level leaders in procurement. The focus of the NIGP-CPP is competency-based - the work that a procurement leader does on the job. The NIGP-CPP is unique in that it is integrated with Pathways for holistic learning and credentialing, and it is refreshed by ongoing research which keeps the NIGP-CPP relevant and meaningful.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explore the NIGP-CPP and how it is a part of the overarching Pathways programs to help you plan career advancement and professional development.
  • Obtain information about the uniqueness and the values that the NIGP-CPP brings to procurement leaders.
  • Explore the exam content covering the competencies, skills, and behaviors required of procurement leaders on the job.
  • Compare your college/university education and fulltime procurement work experiences to eligibility requirements.
  • Discover the many NIGP-CPP study and preparatory resources available from NIGP as you prepare for this certification.
Rick Grimm, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, FCIPS,, Diane Daly
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Purchasing Manual and Policies - Are they still relevant in your Organization, it is time to Review and Update

 Contact Hours: 1.0 


This session focuses on Purchasing Manuals and Policies and the relevancy in your organization. Just a quick thought, when was the last time you actually did a comprehensive review and update of your existing documents?

Learning Outcomes:

  • Evaluate the relevancy of the policy that is currently in your documents. 
  • Engage your stakeholders in the review process of your existing Purchasing Manuals and Policies. 
  • Revise your existing documents, establish timelines for reviews.
Dean Mealy, II, CPPO
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Procurement Trends Beyond COVID

 Contact Hours: 1.0 


We will review how COVID and subsequential emerging technologies has impacted how procurements are created, collaborated, and completed. This session focuses on Workforce development and consistent emerging technology changes and challenges, along with the impact of remote work has challenged the seasoned procurement professional. We will review what we can do to adapt, and what changes we may (will?) see in the foreseeable future.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Enable the attendees to grasp how they can be on the cutting edge of this technological tsunami.
  • The audience will be challenged to discover/reveal current biases on "how it's always been done",
  • Apply the newly acquired knowledge to their organization.
Lisa Mehalko, NIGP-CPP, MBA, CPPO, CPSM
 
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Lessons from Anaheim - Using the Disney Model to Improve Your Customer & Employee Experiences

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


Anaheim reminded us of the incredible success Disney has created at the "Happiest place on earth." We may not manage amusement parks, but there are critical business elements we can take from Walt and apply them to our procurement shops. Come learn about the secret success formula and brainstorm together on changes we can make in our businesses to improve our customer and employee experiences.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn behind the scenes approaches that Disney uses to create happy experiences for customers and staff. See examples of small invisible changes that have huge impacts
  • Brainstorm with other leaders to identify things you can do in your office to make similar adjustments.
  • Take what you learn back home and assess your own procurement business for ease of use and experiences.
  • Work with your team, customers, suppliers to identify and adjust unnecessary pain points.
Cheral Manke, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPM
 
10:45 AM - 11:45 AM
Minimizing Risks of Biases in Evaluations

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


The fundamental principle of a competitive solicitation is that it represents a fair, objective, merit based process and all bidders have the same opportunity to compete and win. If the procurement is impacted by bias – whether it is conscious or unconscious bias – then this fundamental principle is no longer held true. This can result in missed opportunities and contribute to business community distrust, especially when it comes to small and diverse businesses seeking to do business with your organization.  In this session, we will share the tools used by our state agency to assist team members with structuring and conducting evaluations in a way that minimizes the risks of bias.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify potential implicit and explicit bias risks during the competitive solicitation process.
  • Explore lessons learned related to procurement bias risks from other procurement professionals.
  • Apply provided tools to help mitigate procurement bias risks at your organization.
Elena McGrew, MBA
 
10:45 AM - 11:45 AM
Navigating the RFP Process

 Contact Hours: 1.0 


Come join our panel as we discuss the intricacies of the RFP process.  This session will mimic the entire process from issuance of the solicitation through to negotiation of contract with the intended awardee.  The negotiation portion will be a real-life demonstration of how to handle this part of the process.  Be a part of the action by asking questions, offering comments, and making alternative suggestions!

Learning Outcomes:

  • Be thoughtful when crafting the solicitation.
  • Learn how to spot inconsistencies in the document.
  • Discover tried and true options during the negotiation process.
  • Apply new techniques at your agency.
Christine A. Coghill, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB , Erin D'Vincent, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO, Nick Canjar, NIGP-CPP, CPPB
 
10:45 AM - 11:45 AM
New Age Vendor Engagement: Town Hall

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Procurement officials are often focused on compliance-based functions, and ensuring minimum standards are met during the procurement process. Procurement Officials do not often consider vendor engagement until there is problem with not receiving enough responses to a solicitation. It can be very difficult to see the perspective of a vendor since procurement officials have insider knowledge and only see one side of the process. Taking innovative approaches at vendor engagement can lead to greater competition for government procurement methods. The innovative approach of Town Hall – takes an established political strategy and revolutionizes it to a modern forum to collect input, suggestions, and ideas to improve government processes, procedures, and communication methods.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Examine methods to collect data from qualitative vendor engagement events.
  • Analyze how to structure, organize, and deliver a vendor engagement event.
  • Examine strategies to utilize to discuss vendor engagement within your organization.
Vitesh Patel, Grace Enlow, Toni Cook, MPA, MBA
 
10:45 AM - 11:45 AM
Achieving Massive Operational Efficiency with Collaborative Procurement Automation

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


We hear this a lot: "We moved from paper to electronic procurement, but we didn't gain the efficiency we had hoped to achieve". The move from paper to PDF documents solved the "physical paper" issue, but many agencies have discovered that a virtual mound of PDF-based solicitations and scanned documents as responses isn't much better, and in most cases, creates additional operational drag.   By connecting the talent that exists within your government together, streamlining the necessary regulations and processes into guided workflows, and eliminating word processors and spreadsheets as your primary productivity tools - you can make streamlined strategic procurement a part of the core culture for your agency going forward.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Discover how to make workflows more seamless and integrated with strategic procurement automation.
Thao Hill, SVP , Jennifer L Olzinger, CPPB
 
10:45 AM - 11:45 AM
How to Use the Federal Certification Programs to Supplement My Supplier Network

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Reaching Suppliers in Underserved Markets.  As we seek to expand our pool of suppliers, we often have a difficult time identifying suppliers that are located in our underserved communities.  This session will introduce attendees to tools that will assist in identifying and reaching those hard-to-find vendors.   This session will also present an overview of the various small business certifications used by the federal government and how they can assist local procurement officials in meeting their goals.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand How tools used by the federal government can assist local procurement officials in expanding their supplier network 
  • Learn how to use new tools to identify and research vendors from underserved markets (MBE, Women Owned Businesses, Veteran Owned Business) 
  • Understand federal certifications and identifying how these certified businesses can expand your supplier pool 
  • Understanding how the federal government classifies small businesses
John D. Veal, Jr.
 
10:45 AM - 11:45 AM
Let's Talk about Small Business!

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Small businesses are a vital part of the federal, state and local economy. This session will discuss the Small Business Administration's analysis on the current state of small businesses; highlight feedback from multiple small business owners and supporters; and, share suggestions on how your agency can better engage the small businesses in your community.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply the suggestions made in this presentation
  • Review your agency's bidding policies and requirements
  • Create a more welcoming environment for small business participation
  • Collaborate with neighboring government agencies, local trade associations and other supporters of the small business community.
  • Set specific small business engagement goals 6) Measure, share and celebrate small business successes
Stefanie Taylor, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPCM, CPPB
 
1:15 PM - 2:15 PM
GDOT Politicians impacting the Procurement Process - Case Study

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


In 2016, The Georgia Dept of Transportation Procurement Department found itself in the news, and not in a good way!  This fun and interactive session will highlight the pitfalls and challenges faced by procurement professionals when, inevitably, a politician (any non-procurement individual) tries to influence the selection and awarding process. This session will focus on what was done, how procurement can preserve the process, and what to do if (when) an elected official decides the outcome of a solicitation. Maintaining the integrity, credibility, and effectiveness of the process will be discussed.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explore how and why elected officials will attempt to influence the procurement process. 
  • Describe how to react to this influence and discover the many tools procurement professionals have in limiting the political influence in their sourcing events.
Lisa Mehalko, NIGP-CPP, MBA, CPPO, CPSM
 
1:15 PM - 2:15 PM
Blazing a Trail to Transformation: Making a Powerful Impact on Your Entity (Case Study of Orange County CA)

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


We all serve in different roles over the life of our careers.  Some will rise to the top levels of leadership, some will be strong informal leaders and many will work diligently in various roles supporting their customers and their entity in front line positions.  No matter where you sit in an organization, you have the ability to help transform your procurement function.  Transformation is a word that is tossed around alot, but do you really understand what it means to transform service function in government?  This session will share the case study of Orange County Procurement, and their partners at NIGP Consulting, as they embarked on their own journey of procurement transformation.  Hear about how focusing on your greatest asset, your human capital, can redefine your entire organization .  So join us as we share how Orange County CA is Blazing a Trail into their new future of procurement!

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand what procurement transformation is and how it applies to your entity.
  • Gain a true understanding of your organiza’ion's current state through the eyes of all stakeholders.
  • Listen. Recognize areas where change is needed within your entity and communicate this transformation vision.
  • Engage your stakeholders in developing strategic goals to achieve this vision.
  • Create initiatives to support each goal soliciting and welcoming participation from all levels of the organization.
  • Showcase all small wins during the transformation, celebrating each success of the procurement organization as a whole, rewarding trailblazing behavior. Use these wins to increase credibility and confidence promoting further change, attracting and developing talent that are committed to the vision.
  • Identify and articulate the specific connections between these trailblazing behaviors and the overall procurement culture transformation.
Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPPB, CPM, Maria Pirona, CPPO, MBA
 
1:15 PM - 2:15 PM
A Bit of History - Great Moments in Procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.0 


How did we get to where we are in government procurement? And what does Oliver Cromwell have to do with the FAR? People often think that procurement is simply process with no context, so let's explore some of the more interesting procurement events that got us to where we are today.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn how to calm down a newly-hired department head who is impatient and frustrated and can’t understand why we weren’t able to acquire something that he requested last week, especially since a provider is next door.
  • Discover the origin and purpose of RFPs and what you would use them for.
  • Discover why certain clauses are included in almost all public sector procurement, and the cases that they are based on.
Greg Tatar, J.D., MBA
 
1:15 PM - 2:15 PM
Does it really say that: A Look at legal cases affecting procurement

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


The intent of this workshop is to introduce the participants to the importance of case law and court cases which have had an impact upon the decisions made by procurement professionals. there will be an introduction discussing why case law and precedent are so important in our legal system.  We will look at cases from other jurisdictions including US Supreme Court decisions, so that participants can see how others interpret laws and regulations impacting procurement. The presenter will introduce pertinent facts of a particular case, and then asks questions to drive the participants toward what they believe was the court decision in the case.  Rarely will all participants agree, which allows for a spirited discussion amongst the participants and the presenter.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Discover the importance of common/case law and how each case pertains to their daily job. 
  • Learn the importance of  case law why it is critical to our legal system. 
  • Discover how acceptance of a contract may occur in different ways, other than "I accept".
  • Recognize the difference between mandatory case law, and persuasive case law.
Kirk Buffington, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPFIM, MBA
 
1:15 PM - 2:15 PM
From Slow to Pro: The Ins and Outs of IFB's

 Contact Hours: 1.0   Also available On Demand


Going through the solicitation process for the first time can be a bit of a daunting task—every entity does it differently and knowing where to start can be a challenge. When should you use the Invitation for Bid process? What is the difference between specifications and scope of work? How do we know we haven't missed anything? Explore the basics of the IFB process and specification writing, consider how checklists can be a great guide to get you through your process, and discuss other tips to help make your IFBs a success in this discussion-focused, lecture-style session.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explore the basics of the IFB process and specification writing.
  • Discover the difference between specifications and scope of work.
  • Utilize checklists to assist in the IFB process.
Amy Flack, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, PMP, CPPO, BA
 
1:15 PM - 2:15 PM
The Price is Right....now what?

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Your name has been called so… ”Come on Down” …..you are the next contestant to test you skills at getting the right price. We as procurement professionals have spent years crafting our skills to get the right price.  It’s one of the first things we learn in government procurement, award goes to the responsive, responsible supplier with the lowest price.  We've got that strategy down, so, what else is out there? Is there more we can do to get value beyond price that has a positive impact for our entities and demonstrates procurement’s strategic value? (HINT: You might even get a chance to “Come on Down” and test your skills at getting the right price).

Learning Outcomes:

  • Discover more about the concept of value beyond price.
  • Explore techniques that can deliver value.
  • Learn ways to apply this concept  to today's priorities.
Theresa Webb, M.A. CPPO, CPPB, CPSM, C.P.M.
 
1:15 PM - 2:15 PM
Cybersecurity - If the adage "data is currency" is true, how do we make sure our entity's "money" is safe?

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Our entity's data is becoming more and more valuable, yet we are moving away from on-premises software solutions and opting to entrust the safeguarding of our most valuable asset to contractors and third-parties. Cyber attacks are becoming increasingly prevalent, and making headlines daily. How do we determine whether our data will be safe, and what steps can we take to address the consequences of a cyber attack on our data?  This session will discuss two aspects of cybersecurity:  1. Assessing whether a potential Contractor meets our security standards. We will discuss different methods of assessment, including questionnaires, surveys, and using third-party solutions.  2. Cyberliability insurance. We will examine what it is, the current state of the market, and how to determine when we need it and how much we need.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply a data classification tool to differentiate the types of data we have.
  • Determine what our levels of security need to be for different classifications of data.
  • Explore the different assessment options available to determine whether a potential Contractor can provide a level of security with which we are comfortable.
  • Discuss what sorts of questions to ask of the Contractor in order to properly evaluate their security measures and procedures.
  • Examine the cyberliability insurance market, especially given the current explosion in the number of instances of cyber-attacks.
  • Analyze how we determine when we need cyberliability insurance.
  • Explore the cost of cyberliability insurance, and the level of coverage we need in any given situation.
  • Determine whether our entity's risk assessment measures address all relevant factors, and our ability to adapt and stay current when these factors change.
Nathan Dawson, Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE
 
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Creating a Police Department: Procuring ammunition to vehicles in a time of Covid and supply chain challenges.

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


Join us for an exciting "Ride-A-Long" as we show you how Procurement became an integral part of the transition team that launched a Police Department.  How important flexibility in your procurement rules are and ways you can modify them to meet challenging and difficult times.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Discover why developing a relationship with your team is important: Who, what, where, when, how. 
  • Identify process changes to meet challenging times in Procurement. Is there room for change?
  • Learn to become an “expert”, teach and mentor through research, collaboration and good communication.
Myrna Quihuis, CPPB, Melissa Bauer
 
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Raising Minority Spend without a Disparity Study

 Contact Hours: 1.0  


MWBE’s ( Minority Women Business Enterprises) can struggle with contracting with the government for a various number of reasons. These reasons can vary from an overburdensome procurement process, to discrimination, to access to capital. Most governments have realized that the need to increase contracts with MWBE’s. This session will dive into strategies that cities can use to help raise their minority spend when they do not have a disparity study to give preference to MWBE’s.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Apply innovative strategies to raise minority spend when preference cannot be given.
  • Examine opportunities each procurement department can provide to smaller/MWBE’s businesses without access to additional capital.
  • Analyze methods to streamline or simplify procurement processes.
Toni Cook, Vitesh Patel
 
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Leading with Confidence

 Contact Hours: 1.0 


Whether you are a procurement practitioner or executive, you are leading. Confidence greatly impacts the outcome of effectively leading and ultimately reaching desired levels of success. It can also define and guide individual and team performance, decision making, problem resolution, process application, vendor and customer relationship, professional development, and more.   Leading with Confidence is an interactive workshop which explores strategic concepts relative to transitioning from individual confidence to shared confidence for procurement professionals and its relationship to effective leadership. Attendees will gain a new perspective on how their confidence impacts their success as a procurement professional and realistic tools and resources to help develop, execute, and manage effective confidence.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand and capitalize on individual confidence.
  • Identify and combat barriers to high confidence.
  • Understand the relationship between confidence and leadership.
  • Understand and support team dynamics through shared confidence.
Christin Webb, NIGP-CPP, MBA
 
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Using Technology to Improve Vehicle Purchasing through the NYS Vehicle Marketplace

 Contact Hours: 1.0 


The Vehicle Marketplace is a one-stop, online eProcurement platform created by New York State for State and local governments to purchase vehicles in classes 1 – 8.  This presentation will give an overview of the innovative use of technology that led to streamlined work processes and improved services for users Statewide. Those attending will learn about the history and features of the Vehicle Marketplace which include faster purchases, more competitive pricing,  additional purchasing options for buyers, and simplified business procedures.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explore the history behind the Vehicle Marketplace. 
  • Discover how the Vehicle Marketplace works. 
  • Identify how technology can be used to improve work flow processes.
Carol Neelis, Heidi Langley
 
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
JOC Best Practices: Top 12 Secrets to Success

Fast-track your understanding of the Top 12 List of Best Practices in job order contracting from the industry's designated non-profit resource center and credentialing body of experts. You'll get "the list" and learn what makes a great program. It's the secret sauce to creating your government's Key Performance Indicators for JOC. Do you have questions about job order contracting? It's your chance to ask the experts from the Center for JOC Excellence so attend the session, learn, collaborate, and succeed!

Learning Outcomes:

  • Learn where to start in the front-end planning for a program - who the stakeholders are and who to engage in the planning and implementation processes.
  • Learn the top 12 best practices for job order enabling them to implement improvements on behalf of their constituents.
  • Gain a better understanding of the difference between the various structures of internally run JOC programs and programs run by consultants enabling better decision making for their government needs.
  • Gain ideas they can implement to improve their programs while creating better outcomes
Rhonna Endres, FMP, CME, CIP, Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.
 
3:45 PM - 5:00 PM
Closing Session: “FEAR(LESS) MINDSET”

 Contact Hours: 1.25 


Our brains believe the stories we tell them. Without conscious effort, they are negativity seeking missiles, but we have the power to change that. Science demonstrates that more positive people enjoy better relationships, higher quality of life, improved health and longevity, and they far outperform less optimistic peers at work with increased sales, promotions, and engagement. Optimism is a lucrative investment for every organization. Rewire your brain to optimize the power of positivity!

 

Rebecca Heiss - Keynote

Jon Petz - Keynote

Jon Petz is a two-time, best-sellers list author, motivational keynote speaker on performance and the power of human connections. He brings this passion and energy for performance, purpose and impact to events of all types, as well as to those he professionally coaches to strengthen their performance mindset and success in life, business and careers.

Jon is a former sales & marketing executive in big corporate as well as a tech entrepreneur. As a remarkable addition - Jon is a professional magician and has performed around the globe for audiences of all types. This one-of-a-kind combination brings relevancy, experience and understanding to the real-world challenges and opportunities we face in our professional pursuits. It also produces a masterful storytelling, engagement and entertainment factor that is uniquely and unequivocally the Jon Petz Experience. Far more than “JUST” a keynote, it is the perfected trifecta of strategy & mindset, personal inspiration and incredible entertainment.

USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, CNBC, ABC News, Success Magazine and many other media outlets have covered the success of Jon Petz and his quest to help people engage deeper, perform better and fuel growth personally and professionally. His second book, Boring Meetings Suck, was named by Inc. Magazine as a top ten and must-read business book.

Jon’s third book, “Significance In Simple Moments”, has gone through six printings and focuses on human connections to help you achieve significance. Profits from this book are donated in support of the Miracles & Magic Foundation a show which was founded by Jon and his family. Miracles & Magic is a Las Vegas style, grand illusion and comedy magic show that provides children with life-threatening illnesses a chance to forget about the treatments, shots and hospital, and instead shares the wonder and joy of comedy, magic and illusion.

Richard Formella, DBIA, PMP

Design-Build Construction Consultant, Design Build Strategic Solutions, LLC


Richard (Rich) Formella, PMP, DBIA  Director, Owner Support & Resources  Design-Build Institute of America Waxahachie, TX. Mr. Fomella is the President of Design-Build Strategic Solutions, LLC, a design & construction procurement process and contract administration consulting firm, and Director, Owner Support & Resources for the Design-Build Institute of America. He retired from federal service as Chief of the Bio-Containment Procurement Branch for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), after serving as Chief of Procurement for the Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (DHS) since 2006. Prior to joining DHS, Rich served the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) for over 20 years and concluded his service at BOP as the Chief of Construction Contracting where he led and administered the $2.5 billion-dollar new federal prison construction contracting program. At the DHS he led the team providing design and construction contracting support for the DHS Science and Technology Directorate for major laboratory renovations and new construction an overall $1.5 billion program, including the $1.3 billion National Bio & Agro Defense Facility. He has over 35 years of federal acquisition/contracting experience, beginning as a warranted contracting officer in 1986. Mr. Fomella holds a BS in Forest Management from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point; and a MS in Management – Leadership and Organizational Effectiveness from Troy University. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP), and a designated Design-Build Professional (DBIA). He is a former DBIA National Board member; DBIA Federal Committee member, and is a seasoned DBIA and NIGP instructor.

Brad Cummings

Vice President, Procurement, Dallas Area Rapid Transit Authority


Brad J. Cummings joined DART in April 2021. Prior to DART, Mr. Cummings successfully served as Director or Chief Procurement Officer at three agencies, including Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) in Jacksonville, Florida, Valley Metro in Phoenix, Arizona, and the Utah State Board of Education.  DART's Procurement Department oversees the award and management of DART construction, services, and commodity contracts. With responsibility for three divisions: Supply Chain Management; Operations and Policy; and Construction and Professional Services. Cummings not only oversees the contract award process, but also ensures all contracts and purchases are conducted and administered in accordance with DART's procurement regulations and in compliance with all applicable statutes.  He’s also served as Experience Director of Contracts, Procurement and Materials Management, Jacksonville Transportation Authority Chief Procurement Officer, Valley Metro Director of Contracts and Procurement, Utah State Board of Education State Contract Analyst, Division of Purchasing, State of Utah Legal Consultant, Price Law Group  Awards and Professional Affiliations Law, Science and Innovation Certificate from Arizona State University, Sandra Day O’Conner College of Law Member, NASPO, NIGP, Professional/Civic Co-founder and Vice President, UNICEF Red Advisor, The More Project  Education Bachelor of Science (BS), Political Science, University of Utah, Salt Lake City Juris Doctorate (JD), Arizona State University, Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law.

Tammy Rimes, MPA

Executive Director, National Cooperative Procurement Partners (NCPP)


Tammy Rimes is the Executive Director of the National Cooperative Procurement Partners (NCPP), the premier Association for educational content, legislative advocacy and support for cooperative procurement.  She also formally served as Purchasing Agent for the City of San Diego, the 9th largest city in the nation and Emergency Logistics Chief during the 2007 Witch Creek Fires that raged for 17 days and destroyed over 2000 homes. Under her leadership, the City consolidated its warehouse operations, centralized all purchasing and contracting operations, and moved to a more customer focused approach. With past sales and marking experience in the airline, retail, electrical utilities, and wine industry, she has the unique perspective of working in three different worlds – corporate, government and entrepreneurial.

Ronnie Barnes

Director for Public Services. Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC)


Ronnie has more than 30 years’ experience in public purchasing and worked previously for the City of Houston prior to coming to H-GAC. As Director, he is responsible for all aspects of the Public Services Department which encompasses H-GAC Public Safety Programs, SBA and EDA Loan Programs (H-GALDC) and HGACBuy Cooperative Purchasing Program. He is a native Houstonian and studied at the University of Houston. Ronnie also serves as Chair for the National Cooperative Procurement Partners, North America’s premier Association for cooperative procurement.

Pam Pedler

Omnia Partners


As Group Vice President, East for OMNIA Partners, Public Sector, Ms. Pedler is responsible for the sales and operations within the East Region which is comprised of over 20 states. She supports a talented Regional Management team to develop and maintain relationships with key participating public agencies within the municipal, K-12, and non-profit markets. Ms. Pedler has over 20 years’ experience selling into public sector agencies and has held both sales and sales management positions. In her most recent position with OMNIA Partners, she was the Director of State Business in the Northeast and was responsible for managing eleven states. Prior to that role she managed both Higher Ed and Local/K12 members for OMNIA Partners. Prior to joining OMNIA Partners, she was with Office Depot in various sales and management positions.

Dr. Kim Abrego, PT, DPT

COO and President, Disaster Recovery Services


As COO of Disaster Recovery Services, Kim has over 20 years of experience helping public entities prepare for and recover from complex disaster events. Kim and her team have recovered billions of dollars for public entities across the nation through FEMA’s Public Assistance program and other federal and state funding programs, including CARES and ARPA. With funding claw backs often tied to procurement, Kim has a keen interest in educating and supporting public procurement professionals in the area of disaster recovery as it relates to federal grant programs. Kim is Vice Chair of NIGP’s National Business Council and has earned her NIGP Public Procurement Supplier Masters Designation.

Duff Erholtz

Client Services Adminstration, Sourcewell


Duff Erholtz is completing his 15th year in Membership Services for Sourcewell – formerly the National Joint Powers Alliance / NJPA. His primary responsibility is communicating with and supporting the procurement needs of the over 100,000 Sourcewell Members throughout the country. Duff volunteers as the Educational Working Group Chair for NCPP and helps create educational tools to assist procurement as they consider and utilize Cooperative agreements.

Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.

Chief Procurement Officer, City of Norfolk, VA


Michael Bevis is an internationally recognized thought leader in the public procurement profession. He is currently Chief Procurement Officer for the City of Norfolk, Virginia, where he is charged with integrating business, technology, operations and budgeting goals to further the City’s commitment to grow Norfolk’s economy and adopt programs that build a solid foundation for partnering with the business community. He currently serves the Chair of the Center for Job Order Contracting Excellence and in the immediate past Chair of the Governing Board of NIGP the Institute for Public Procurement; he also represents the International Federation of Purchasing and Supply Management on the Global Standards Board. Michael’s professionalism has been recognized by NIGP (Agency Advancement Award, Distinguished Service Award, Pareto Award of Excellence, Manager of the Year, Outstanding Agency Accreditation and Innovation awards), IFPSM (the Lewis Spangler Award), National Purchasing Institute (Achievement of Excellence in Procurement – awarded to his jurisdictions 18 times).  Mr. Bevis’s teaching experiences include 23 years as an Instructor for NIGP, independent curriculum and training development for various agencies. Mr. Bevis is a graduate of Georgetown University Law School (JD), Lincoln Memorial University (BA magna cum laude) and has completed post graduate studies at North Central College (Leadership Studies) and Northern Illinois University (Public Administration).  He holds the NIGP-CPP, a CPPO from the UPPCC and the CPSM and lifetime CPM from the Institute for Supply Management.

Erin D'Vincent, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Procurement Manager, City of Austin


Erin D’Vincent is a Procurement Manager for the City of Austin specializing in end to end procurement and contracting.  Ms. D’Vincent has a degree from Texas State University, is a member of NIGP, graduate of Leaders Edge, has her CPPB, and NIGP-CPP. Erin leads all procurement activities for the City’s Industrial, Facilities, Water, and Waste Team and Mobility, Health, and Safety Team. She supervisors a staff of ten that manage a portfolio of over 585 contracts valued at more than $1.3 billion.

Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO

Owner, M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC


Maria de Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO - is the owner of M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC; the author of "Procurement Methods: Effective Techniques;" an Independent Executive Director and a certified member of the John Maxwell Team. She is a Professional Speaker, Executive Coach, and Trainer. She is a DISC Personality and an Emotional Intelligence EQ i-2.0/EQ 360 Consultant. Ms. Coss is a Licensed Brain Trainer and a Certified Neuro-encoding Specialist. Ms. Coss is also an instructor for NIGP and the American Management Association, and a senior consultant for NIGP Consulting.  As a transformational leader and former Chief Procurement Officer, Ms. Coss invested two decades of her 27-year career successfully leading procurement transformations at some of the US's largest agencies such as the City of Houston, Cook County, University of Illinois, the Public Building Commission of Chicago, and the City of Chicago. She now leverages her experience and expertise to help individuals and organizations transform their performance to reach new heights within the continental US and its terrirories. She shares her expertise by providing training, consulting, and coaching. Ms. Coss continues to add value to the profession through her educational procurement transformation blog and podcast.  Ms. Coss graduated magna cum laude from the University of Puerto Rico and received her MPA from Florida State University. She has served on several boards, including the NIGP Board. She is the recipient of the 2016 Spirit of NIGP Award and the 2018 NIGP Integrity Award. Ms. Coss was recognized by Thinkers360 as one of the top 100 Women Thought Leaders to Follow and one of the Top 50 Global Influencers and Thought Leaders in Procurement. Ms. Coss is the Chair of the NIGP Talent Council Leadership Committee and a member of the John Maxwell Team President's Advisory Council.

Christine A. Coghill, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Procurement Director, City of Groveland, FL


Chris Coghill, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB is a seasoned procurement professional with a servant heart. She has been blessed to have experienced a variety of procurement offices which has led to a better understanding of how to manage a procurement department. She graduated Leaders Edge in 2020 and is the Vice President of the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP as well as a member of NIGP’s Leadership Development Committee.  Ms. Coghill has a passion for giving back to the profession through various means.  She has led study groups for the CPPO and CPPB certifications for the past few years and finds tremendous joy in hearing all the success stories.  Ms. Coghill supports her City as a one-woman show through various technology platforms.

John Littler

Sr. Manager, Business Development – West and Canda, GovDeals, Inc.


For more than a decade John has been working with Procurement leaders just like yourself to discuss how the utilization of technology in the surplus process plays a pivotal part in an agency's initiatives of compliance, transparency and sustainability.  He follows local procurement trends closely, and is a regular fixture at many of the chapter events in the western region including CAPPO, OPPA, IPPA, having worked and resided in the Pacific NW prior to moving to his company's headquarters in Montgomery, AL.  He continues to lead his customers to first consider the three Rs (Reuse, Recycling and Reallocation) before taking assets to the landfill and believes that what is best for government agencies is to do it's best to be a huge part in the circular economy.    John is originally from Southern California and graduated with a BA from UC Irvine in Political Science before attending Whittier Law School.

Darin Matthews, NIGP-CPP FNIGP, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.

Procurement and Supply Chain Leader, California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly)


Darin currently serves as Chief Procurement Officer for Cal Poly University. He has over thirty years of procurement and supply chain management experience in state and local government, higher education, and private industry.   Darin speaks throughout the world on a variety of procurement topics, and his writings have been featured in Inside Supply Management, Government Procurement, Inside Supply Management, The Public Manager and The Journal of Public Procurement. He has served on the faculty at numerous universities including University of Illinois, Florida Atlantic University, Portland State University, and University of California.   He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business/Political Science, as well as Master degrees in Acquisition Management and Instructional Design/Technology. Darin is a certified instructor for NIGP and served as their President in 2007. He has also served as a board member of the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council and the Public Procurement Research Center at Florida Atlantic University. In 2020 and 2021, he served as host of the podcast, The Evolution of Procurement.

Drew Tuller

Public Sector Program Manager, Office Depot


Drew Tuller serves as a National Public Sector Program Manager at Office Depot.Drew is responsible for the Region 4 series of cooperative contracts and provides guidance to the Office Depot sales teams in the areas of local, state, and education. Based in Saratoga Springs, NY Drew has over 20 years of experience in the indirect space including office supplies, furniture, technology, facilities, and MRO. Drew has held severalleadership positions over his 25 year career and has been involved with public sector for over 10 years.

Krystal Gilbert Schafer

Office Depot, Program Manager – Public Sector Cooperatives


Responsible for Office Depot’s Cooperative Contracts City of Tamarac, America Saves and Florida State University System. Additional focus on serving internal resources for state, local government, and education customers. 

Krystal is a 13-year veteran with Office Depot and is based in Fayetteville, AR. Starting her Office Depot career as a Territory Development Manager in Arkansas, Krystal has held a variety of sales roles with Office Depot. Since 2009, Krystal has focused exclusively on our public sector business and has been a leader in managing strategic partnerships with State and Local Governments, K-12 and Higher Education.  

Krystal’s knowledge and experience with Public Sector make her a valued asset and resource within Office Depot.  

Jess Pettitt - Keynote

Jess isn’t a chef by any stretch of the imagination, but similar in that a true chef has a secret ingredient that they often leave out of a recipe on purpose and add a dash when no one is looking that pulls from past experiences and is exactly what is needed to really elevate a dish. By pulling from a variety of consulting clients, direct crisis management experiences, multitudes of different jobs along the way, and experience on stage as a stand-up comic, trainer, and now keynote speaker, Jess can elevate conversations.

It is through Jessica’s work in Student Affairs, as a college administrator, in South Carolina, Oregon, New York, and Arizona that she realized her love for the conversations across difference. As a Social Justice Training Institute Alumna, Returned Peace Corps Volunteer, and a Certified Speaking Professional, Jessica has taken the typical diversity talks to the next level of social justice conversations examining privilege, oppression, entitlement, and our collective responsibility to make change while connecting difficult topics with employee retention, crisis management, and increasing innovation and profits.

Jessica blends politics, humor, identity, and local flair with big city passion and energy through direct, individualized, and interactive conversations. Her workshops, seminars, and keynotes don’t just leave participants invigorated but inspired and motivated to follow through with action to create change. Having traveled and lived in a variety of communities and environments all over the world, while also engaging with education as student, teacher, administrator, and active community member, Jessica uses her take on life to lead participants through a safe but confrontational process of examination, self-reflection, and open dialog that is as challenging as it is rewarding.

Responses to Jessica’s programs are overwhelmingly positive and include comments ranging from, “This was awful – I never had to think so hard while laughing!” to “I can’t believe my boss brought her – thanks for actually treating us like adults,” to “She answered all of my questions knowledgeably and without making me feel dumb for asking.”

With her attention now turning to larger associations and corporate leadership, Jessica is pulling from the past 15 years of direct experience to lead teams to try instead of avoiding a stretch. It is in this trying that clients uncover a deeper sense of belonging, resourceful collaboration opportunities, and reignite their creativity and innovative ideation. Learning, feeling, and being Good Enough Now allows for teams to do the best they can with what they have and persist long into the future no matter the crisis, topic, or challenge.

Graduating from the University of South Carolina with an M.Ed., in Higher Education Administration with an emphasis in Crisis Management, Jessica pulls together lessons from teaching History and English in the classroom as well as those from the stand-up comedy stages of New York City to bring real and actionable results to meeting rooms and board tables. She is well published, including multiple online training courses, curriculum guides, and a book that makes the abstract actionable.

Althea Pemsel, MS, CPSM, C.P.M.

Assistant Overseer, Procurement Department, City of Coconut Creek, FL


Althea Pemsel is Assistant Overseer of Procurement Department for the City of Coconut Creek and worked in director and managerial roles in procurement and previously ran the procurement construction division for the City of Fort Lauderdale as the Assistant Chief Procurement Officer with millions of dollars in capital improvement and various Projects. As the Procurement Officer in West Palm Beach, Ms. Pemsel was instrumental procuring major engineering services for capital projects for the city and the East Central Regional (ECR) Wastewater Treatment Facilities Operations. In 2000 Ms. Pemsel worked for the City of Orlando for almost a decade. Althea has been instrumental in advancing public procurement and the supply chain professional to be regarded as high performing, lean, and strategic alliance focused departments. She has written white papers and given many presentations on topics like, Stakeholder and Change Management, Tactical to Strategic Procurement, Leading Lean Operations, and Adding Value. As an international speaker, her most recent presentation on the topic of Intergenerational Workforce was given in Hangzhou, China. Her career began in Germany in the late 80s and she has worked in public, private, and non-profit organizations instituting cost containment measures, lean operations, and process improvements. At the Cannes Film Festival 2019 in France, she served as an Intern for the film industry gaining additional negotiation tactics and skills in entertainment contract law, supply chain, and movie and film distribution sales and contracts. Although her educational background is a combination of business leadership, theology, and psychology, her doctorate studies focused on philosophy.

Andrea Philyaw, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, PMPm, CPPO, BA

Director, Procurement/Risk Management, Loudoun County Public Schools


Andrea Philyaw has 30 years’ public sector experience and currently serves as the Director of Procurement/Risk Management for LCPS. Her experience includes a variety of Finance and Procurement positions, NIGP Instructor and recently selected as VAGP Secretary.  Ms. Philyaw has  a BA of Business Administration, CPPB, PMP, CPPO and NIGP-CPP. She has enjoyed the opportunities offered by the procurement profession and instructing individuals new to the profession. Ms. Philyawgrew up on a farm in Iowa and love time with her husband, children & grandchildren.

Kristy Varda NIGP-CPP CPPO CPPB

Capital Contracting Officer, Loudoun County, Virginia


Kristy Varda is currently a Capital Contracting Officer for Loudoun County Government. Her previous employers include Fairfax County and Frederick County Public Schools, Virginia. All leading to over 10 years in public procurement. She is a NIGP Instructor and member of the cast of Radio NIGP. She frequently presents NIGP webinars, Forum sessions, and builds NIGP course content.

Lynda Allair NIGP-CPP CPPO

Project Lead (Retired), Ministry of Finance


Lynda Allair currently serves the NIGP membership as an instructor and on many task forces, committees, and course development groups. She often provides input on International Procurement content. She is a former Director for the Canadian Public Procurement Council and a Past President of the Ontario Public Buyers. Ms. Allair’s provided procurement leadership for almost thirty years within a variety of public entities; federal, provincial, hospital, and library.

Carl Bonitto, CSCMP

Manager of Purchasing and Risk Management Services,  Northumberland County, Ontario Province, Canad


Carl Bonitto is the current Manager of Purchasing and Risk Management Services, Northumberland County, Ontario Province, Canada. He has served the NIGP membership as a Chapter Ambassador. As of July 1, 2021 Mr. Bonitto is the Chair of the NIGP Certification Commission

Nathan Dawson

Procurement Manager II, South Carolina Fiscal Accountability Authority


Nathan Dawson serves as the Procurement Manger of the Sourcing Team for the Division of Procurement Services in South Carolina. His job is to assist State Agencies purchase goods and services whose value exceeds those Agencies’ certification levels. In other words, he buys stuff. The majority of that “stuff” is now IT-related – Mr. Dawson has purchased hardware and software solutions, ranging from electronic poll books for the presidential elections to grants management systems, as well as software maintenance and application development services. He is an active member of his local NIGP Chapter, as well as one of NIGP's instructors, teaching primarily the two Technology Procurement classes. He has presented at past NIGP and chapter Forums around the country. Originally from Australia, Mr. Dawson worked for both Federal and State Governments in Australia and England before moving to South Carolina 15 years ago and discovering his true calling as a procurement professional.  And no, he does not know Chris Hemsworth.

Bobbie Tolston, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Supervisor of Purchasing, Harford County Public Schools, MD


Bobbie Tolston has over 20 years of management experience in public procurement and is currently the Supervisor of Procurement for Harford County Public Schools, MD. She is an NIGP Instructor and one of the Founding members of Radio NIGP. 

Mr. Victor A. Leamer, CPPB

Senior Buyer, Spokane County


Victor Leamer has 35 years of public procurement experience at the county, state department, and state-wide levels. Victor teaches Sourcing in the Public Sector and the Core Certificate: Foundations in Strategy and Policy for NIGP (virtual), the 10-part Learning Lab RFP series, and has presented NIGP webinars on protests, evaluating responsiveness in bids, virtual leadership, and contract price adjustments. He was appointed to the NIGP Talent Council in 2021, serves on NIGP's Content Management Committee (formerly Knowledge Management Committee) since 2015, produces the monthly Radio NIGP show, and is a founding member/former Vice President of the Alaska/Hawaii Governmental Procurement Association NIGP Chapter.

Barb Johnson, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Agency Procurement Officer (Retired) State of Ohio Dept. of Rehabilitation and Correction

Barbara R. Johnson served for 38 years as a State, City and Airport Authority Procurement Leader. She serves the Institute members on many committees, task forces, and as a frequent Forum speaker and moderator. Barb instructs public procurement courses for the Institute (NIGP), the Ohio State University, and others upon request, as well as providing consulting services through NIGP's Consulting program.

Jack Pellegrino, CPPO, CPCM, NIGP-CPP

Director of Purchasing and Contracting, County of San Diego


Jack Pellegrino, CPPO, NIGP-CPP, NCMA CPCM and Fellow is Director Purchasing & Contacting at County of San Diego with four decades of government procurement experience in public and private sectors. He serves as CAPPO President, a member NIGP Certification Commission. Mr. Pellegrino is an instructor at SDSU Contracts Program and CSAC Institute for Excellence in County Government. He was awarded the Inaugural 2015 Walt Ekard Integrity in Action Award, 2016 CAO Excellence in Leadership Award; 2020 CSAC Procurement Executive of the Year.

David Wetzel

Strategic Accounts Government & Education, Canon Solutions America


Dave leads Western U.S. government and education sales for Canon Solutions America, Canon's U.S.-based manufacturer-direct division.  

He brings experience and expertise from working with public sector procurement officials over a 25-year career, with leadership roles at Canon, Office Depot, and Costco Wholesale. 

Dave has held an active position on NIGP's National Business Council since 2010 and co-authored several of NIGP's White Papers - focused on the intricacies of buying and selling in the public arena.  Dave's roles have included Vice-Chair of NIGP's Business Council and history of working with leadership at NAEP, ASBO, NIGP, NASPO and NPI.

While advocating for advancement in public procurement, Dave has developed a deep engagement with cooperative contracting and best value procurement, an extensive knowledge of environmental sustainability, and a progressive vision of supplier evaluation and management.

Dave holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from California State University, East Bay and MBA in Management Sciences from the University of Portland. 

Aimée Bivins

Senior Marketing Specialist, K-12 Education, Higher Education and Government, Canon Solutions America


Prior to joining Canon Solutions America, Aimée worked as a Senior Manager, Creative Development for America Online (AOL) leading the launch of AOL On, the first digital video sharing platform tasked with creating premium original branded programs long before Netflix.  She has also worked as a Digital Marketing Manager at Disney ABC Family where she launched the digital platform ABCFamily.com. She has a BS in Corporate Communications with a Minor in Theater Arts from Bernard M. Baruch, CUNY College in New York, NY. She is the founder of the Positive Evolution for the Nations New Youth (PENNY), a scholarship program designed to raise funds and mentor inner city college-bound youths. In her spare time, she loves to travel the world and have had the privilege of visiting 15 countries and counting.

Dr. Kim Abrego, PT, DPT

COO and President, Disaster Recovery Services


As COO of Disaster Recovery Services, Kim has over 20 years of experience helping public entities prepare for and recover from complex disaster events. Kim and her team have recovered billions of dollars for public entities across the nation through FEMA’s Public Assistance program and other federal and state funding programs, including CARES and ARPA. With funding claw backs often tied to procurement, Kim has a keen interest in educating and supporting public procurement professionals in the area of disaster recovery as it relates to federal grant programs. Kim is Vice Chair of NIGP’s National Business Council and has earned her NIGP Public Procurement Supplier Masters Designation.

Shelley Vineyard, MBA, RTSBA

Procurement Practice Leader, Disaster Recovery Services

As Business Development and Marketing Coordinator of Disaster Recovery Services, Shelley focuses on public entity risk management and procurement strategies in the facilitation of complex disaster recovery projects.

Shelley spent thirteen years as the procurement and contracting officer for a large public entity and continues her work in this space as a federal procurement subject matter expert for DRS.  Shelley works closely with vendors, cooperative purchasing groups, and client purchasing departments to provide procurement guidance, training, and assistance, helping develop comprehensive procurement strategies to help clients PREPARE, RESPOND, and RECOVER.

Erin D'Vincent, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Procurement Manager, City of Austin


Erin D’Vincent is a Procurement Manager for the City of Austin specializing in end to end procurement and contracting.  Ms. D’Vincent has a degree from Texas State University, is a member of NIGP, graduate of Leaders Edge, has her CPPB, and NIGP-CPP. Erin leads all procurement activities for the City’s Industrial, Facilities, Water, and Waste Team and Mobility, Health, and Safety Team. She supervisors a staff of ten that manage a portfolio of over 585 contracts valued at more than $1.3 billion.

Sai Xoomsai Purcell, CPPB

Procurement Manager, City of Austin Financial Services - Purchasing


Sai Xoomsai Purcell graduated from the University of Texas at San Antonio and has 20+ years in public/private procurement, has been with the City of Austin for over 11 years, and prior to that was a Senior Buyer for a retail clothing company. Sai Xoomsai Purcell received her Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) in 2013 and manages staff of nine Information Technology procurement professionals with contracts valued at $1.3 billion

Sean Carroll

Chief Procurement Officer, New York State Office of General Services


In August 2016, Sean Carroll was appointed Chief Procurement Officer for NYS's Office of General Services. Mr. Carroll  manages more than 1,500 contracts with a value exceeding $29 billion and is responsible for statewide contracts for commodities, services, and information technology for authorized users.  He previously served as the Director of Onondaga County’s Division of Purchase from 2010 to 2016. In the private sector, he managed his own consulting firm for nearly 10 years.

Kirk Buffington, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPFIM, MBA

Retired


Kirk Buffington retired in June 2019, from the City of Fort Lauderdale, where he spent the last five years as Director of Finance.  Prior to serving in that capacity he served the City as Deputy Director of Finance, Director of Procurement Services, and Deputy Director of Administrative Services.  Before coming to the City of Fort Lauderdale, Kirk was the Purchasing Agent for Osceola County. In addition, Mr. Buffington has purchasing experience with the Orange County School Board, and as a Grocery Buyer with the Wal-Mart Corporation, and as a Receiving Supervisor with the Walt Disney World Co.  He has a B.S. in Business Administration from Florida State University, and an MBA, with a concentration in Procurement and Acquisitions Management, from Webster University, St. Louis, MO.  Mr. Buffington served as President of the Florida Association of Public Purchasing Officers and was elected to the NIGP Board of Directors in July 2003, and served as President of NIGP in 2008-2009.  In addition to his activities with NIGP, Mr. Buffington has also served the National Purchasing Institute, NPI, on their Selection and Evaluation Committee for the Achievement of Excellence in Procurement Award.  Mr. Buffington co-authored the NIGP text “The Legal Aspects of Public Purchasing” now in its third edition and has published  various articles concerning Procurement Case Law both in local news blogs, and in nationally peer reviewed academic journals.  In January, 2022, Mr. Buffington was admitted to the Masters of Legal Studies Program at the University of Cincinnati School of Law.

Jesus Amezcua, CPA

Assistant Superintendent for Business/CFO, Harris County Department of Education


Jesus Amezcua has been the Department’s Assistant Superintendent for Business Services since 2008 and he oversees the financial management, investment management, debt management, procurement, compliance, tax collections, accounts receivable, accounts payable and payroll departments in the Business Services Division. He is a member of the Professional Standards Committee for the Texas Society of CPAs. He is a member of the best practices committee from GFOA and ASBO. He coordinated a $51 million Capital Improvement Program to include a bond rating upgrade by Moody's Investor Service in 2020. Previous to HCDE, Dr. Amezcua worked for Laredo Independent School District as the Chief Finance Officer for 12 years where he was responsible for the management of the business operations of the district including Accounting, Investments, Accounts Payable, Payroll, Budget, Purchasing, Tax Office, Risk, Compliance, Debt, Transportation, Food Services, and Construction and Facilities. He coordinated the analysis, presentation, and implementation of the largest Bond Election ($144 million) for the school district, the Public Facility Corporation for a bond issue of $68 Million, and the Bond Elections of $60 Million and $57 Million bond series.  Prior to Laredo ISD, Dr. Amezcua worked for the City of Laredo where he was responsible for overseeing 6 divisions in the Finance Department including Accounting, Accounts Payable, Ambulance, Budget, Technology–Data Processing & Purchasing. He managed a $120+ million investment portfolio, legal debt and assets of the city. During his tenure with the city, he also served as Revenue Manager, Internal Auditor, and Staff Accountant.

Kendra Jackson

Procurement Director, Harris County Department of Education


Kendra Jackson is the Director of Purchasing. Kendra has served in the Purchasing Division since 2009. Before being named the Director, she served in many roles, including the Assistant Director. Ms. Jackson is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day activities of the Purchasing Division. Prior to coming to the HCDE, she worked for Humble ISD in the Purchasing Division and The University of Texas Health Science Center. Ms. Jackson holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston-Downtown.

Edna Johnson

Assistant Director of Procurement, Harris County Department of Education


Dr. Edna E. Johnson is the assistant director of the Purchasing Division of Harris County Department of Education (HCDE). Dr. Johnson has served HCDE since July 2021 and is responsible for conducting numerous procurement activities which include contract mananagement.

Arden Clark, NIGP-CPP, MS, MBA, CPPB, VCCO, VCO

Procurement Manager - Administrative Services Division, Virginia Department of Transportation


Arden Clark began her career as a linguist working for the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. From there she continued living and working in Japan as a translator, interpreter, educator and procurement professional for various Japanese corporations including Murakami Ongaku Jimusho and Canon Corporation. She currently serves as Procurement Manager in the Administrative Services Division of the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT). In each of her roles, Ms. Clark has worked to bring about positive and impactful innovations for the organization and it's people. Ms. Clark holds a bachelor’s degree in Linguistics and Japanese from Boston University, a Master of Science in Environmental Management and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Maryland, but her first love is music. Outside of work, Arden is heavily involved in local music organizations ranging from old-time Americana and bluegrass to Classical and Baroque.

Ginger Line, MPA, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Client Development Administrator, Sourcewell


Ginger Line, MPA, NIGP-CPP, CPPB is a Client Development Administrator at Sourcewell, where she helps government agencies walk through the cooperative purchase process through contracts. She previously worked for 8.5 years in Procurement.  Ms. Line has a B.A. in Political Science; in 2019, and her Master’s in Public Administration from Villanova University.  She is the past President of the Minnesota chapter, is an area 6 Chapter Ambassador, and is serving on the BOE for the CPPB exam.

Jeremy Schwartz, CPPO, CSSBB

Chief Procurement Officer, Sourcewell


Jeremy Schwartz, CPPO, CSSBB is the Chief Procurement Officer for Sourcewell. Mr. Schwartz has been a public procurement practicioner since January 2012, and has been serving as the Sourcewell CPO since 2018. He has a B.S. from Bemidji State University, is a Certified Six Sigma Black Belt through the American Society for Quality (ASQ), and is a Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO) through the Universal Public Purchasing Certification Council (UPPCC). Mr. Schwartz also serves on the Board of Directors for the National Cooperative Procurement Partners (NCPP)

Theresa Webb, M.A. CPPO, CPPB, CPSM, C.P.M.

Retired


Theresa Webb, M.A., NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M. has over 30 years of experience in procurement. In her leadership roles Ms. Webb oversaw the procurement of goods, services, technology, construction, concessions and capital improvement. She has Bachelor and Masters degrees in Business. Since retiring Ms. Webb has continued serving the profession as an NIGP Instructor, on NIGP coursework creation teams, as Chair of the NIGP Accreditation Committee and her role as consultant for Civic Initiatives.

Judy Ambrosi, CPP, MBA

Director, Central Services, Kissimmee Utility Authority


Judy Ambrosi currently serves as the Director of Central Services for Kissimmee Utility Authority.  As Director, she oversees procurement, materials management, fleet and facilities. She has 21 years of experience in the electric utility and up until three years ago has largely served as an internal customer of the procurement function through my management of facilities. Ms. Ambrosi has a strong background in local government and over 25 years of administrative experience.  She holds degrees from Springfield College in Illinois and an MBA through the University of Phoenix. She also has a Certified Professional Manager Certification through Florida State University.  After moving to Florida from Springfield, Illinois over 30 years ago, she was employed by Osceola County government as a community center coordinator. 

Melissa Couture

Buyer, Kissimmee Utility Authority


Melissa Couture is a Buyer for Kissimmee Utility Authority. As a Buyer she have learned Procurement is a whole new world. She has 20 years of experience in the electric utility and up until three years ago she largely served as an internal customer of the procurement function through her position as an Administrative Assistant. It's that experience that she continued to channel as much as possible, as I never want to forget what it's like to be on the other side of the table. She has taken several NIGP training courses, and plan to sit for the CPPB certification in the fall of this year or May of next year. She is currently a fulltime student and will graduate with my BS degree in Management from the University of Phoenix this summer. She has her Professional Manager Certification through Florida State University and continues to hold a Certified Administrative Professional's certification credential from IAAP.

Nathan Dawson

Procurement Manager II, South Carolina Fiscal Accountability Authority


Nathan Dawson serves as the Procurement Manger of the Sourcing Team for the Division of Procurement Services in South Carolina. His job is to assist State Agencies purchase goods and services whose value exceeds those Agencies’ certification levels. In other words, he buys stuff. The majority of that “stuff” is now IT-related – Mr. Dawson has purchased hardware and software solutions, ranging from electronic poll books for the presidential elections to grants management systems, as well as software maintenance and application development services. He is an active member of his local NIGP Chapter, as well as one of NIGP's instructors, teaching primarily the two Technology Procurement classes. He has presented at past NIGP and chapter Forums around the country. Originally from Australia, Mr. Dawson worked for both Federal and State Governments in Australia and England before moving to South Carolina 15 years ago and discovering his true calling as a procurement professional.  And no, he does not know Chris Hemsworth.

Stacy Gregg, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Director of Procurement, South Carolina State University


Stacy Gregg is the Director of Procurement at SC State University. She is an Online Instructor for NIGP and volunteers with The Institute on the Member Council and Certification Commission. Ms. Gregg is an active member o the SC Association of Governmental Purchasing Officials (SCAGPO).  She has an Associate’s Degree in Public Service (Paralegal) and B.A. Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies (Concentrating in English & Management). She holds the NIGP-CPP, CPPO, and  CPPB designations.

David E. Nash, CPPO, CPPB, NIGP-CPP

Retired; Formerly City of Fort Lauderdale, FL


David Nash retired as a Chief Warrant Officer Three from the United States Army in 1988 after 20 years of service in inventory management. In 2007, he retired from the City of Fort Lauderdale after 18 years of service in warehousing and procurement. Mr. Nash holds Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Business Administration. He was the last President of the Governmental Purchasing Association of Southeast Florida, having successfully led a merger with the SE Florida Chapter of NIGP in 2001. He was also the President of the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials in 2006-2007  David was presented with FAPPO’s George H. Wolf Distinguished Service Award in 2010. In 2014, he was presented with FAPPO’s Educator of the Year Award. In 2019, he was presented with his second George H. Wolf Distinguished Service Award for his overall contributions to FAPPO during 25 years of membership. Mr. Nash is a certified instructor for NIGP and from 2010 to 2013 he served on the Evaluation Committee for the National Procurement Institute’s Achievement of Excellence in Procurement Award. Since creating the online “Question of the Day” in 2007, he has helped thousands of procurement professionals prepare for their CPPB, CPPO and NIGP-CPP exams. For his overall contributions to the procurement profession, he was presented with NIGP’s Distinguished Service Award at the 2018 Forum in Nashville, TN. In August 2020 he was part of the inaugural group to receive the new NIGP-CPP certification.Mr. Nash currently serves on the Mentorship Committee for NIGP, as well as Radio NIGP.

Lars Benson, MPA

Government Innovation Fellow, Harvard Kennedy School Government Performance Lab

Lars Benson is a Project Leader for the Government Performance Lab's Procurement Excellence Cohort, where he works with US, Canadian, and Latin American cities to streamline procurement systems, develop new tools, trainings and resources, and build staff capacity. Previously, Lars was embedded with the Connecticut Office of Policy and Management (CT OPM) for two years. With CT OPM, he reformed social service procurement processes to improve effectiveness, strengthen evaluation, and help agencies and nonprofits secure equitable results for Connecticut communities. Prior to joining the Government Performance Lab, Lars earned his Master of Public Administration from the London School of Economics.

Andrea Barnes, MPP

Government Innovation Fellow, Harvard Kennedy School's Government Performance Lab (GPL)


Andrea Barnes is a Government Innovation Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School's Government Performance Lab (GPL). In her role, she supports the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's Department of Labor and Industry in strengthening procurement practices to improve workforce and ultimately quality of life outcomes for residents. Throughout her career, Andrea has led community-centric projects through an equity-based lens by bridging direct service experience with a policy, research, and data-oriented skillset. Her professional background spans roles in nonprofit organizations, state and local governments, and private companies. Further, she has engaged deeply in issues related to justice reform, child welfare, education quality and access, small businesses and lending, racial and health equity research, cultural preservation, and community development, specifically in the DMV and North Carolina.

Andrea holds an MPP from Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy. She also holds a BA in Public Policy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she co-founded Project uPGrade, a conference for young women in Prince George's County, Maryland.

Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPPB, CPM

President of NIGP Code & Consulting, Periscope/NIGP Code & Consulting


Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, CPPO, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, C.P.M., CPM, is a dynamic international speaker, professional consultant and trainer. For over 30 years, Ms. Gillespie has served as an experienced thought-leader, advocate and volunteer leader in the procurement profession. As the former Chief Procurement Officer at the City of Tucson, she led one of country’s most highly acclaimed procurement organizations.  Retired from government service, Marcheta now serves as President of NIGP Code & Consulting, working with public and private industry to transform their procurement operations. Ms. Gillespie is the 2019 Albert H Hall recipient and 2017 Distinguished Service Award recipient, the highest honors bestowed upon individuals by NIGP.  Marcheta is a former Chair of the UPPCC Governing Board, Former President of NIGP and served on the NIGP Board of Directors for 10 years. She now serves on the NIGP Business Council and Chairs the NIGP Mentorship Committee. Ms. Gillespie has spoken at hundreds of international, national and regional events and authored numerous published works in the profession.

Mr. Victor A. Leamer, CPPB

Senior Buyer, Spokane County


Victor Leamer has 35 years of public procurement experience at the county, state department, and state-wide levels. Victor teaches Sourcing in the Public Sector and the Core Certificate: Foundations in Strategy and Policy for NIGP (virtual), the 10-part Learning Lab RFP series, and has presented NIGP webinars on protests, evaluating responsiveness in bids, virtual leadership, and contract price adjustments. He was appointed to the NIGP Talent Council in 2021, serves on NIGP's Content Management Committee (formerly Knowledge Management Committee) since 2015, produces the monthly Radio NIGP show, and is a founding member/former Vice President of the Alaska/Hawaii Governmental Procurement Association NIGP Chapter.

Mike Thornton, CPPO

Manager, City of Leesburg, FL


Mike Thornton is the Purchasing Manager for the City of Leesburg, Florida. He has been at Leesburg for over 15 years and has over 20 years experience in public procurement.  The City of Leesburg is a smaller municipality that operates 5 utilities. This allows Mr. Thornton to facilitate all types of solicitations to acquire the commodities required by his entity. He is a regular contributor to Nsite discussion and presents at NIGP forum annually. Mike  takes a specific interest in promoting and encouraging innovation in public procurement through the use of technology. He is active in the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP and is the past vice-president. Mr. Thornton has volunteered for several opportunities at NIGP including co-author for Global Best Practices.

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence, Government of Manitoba


Stéphanie Dion is the Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence, Government of Manitoba.  She was previously employed by Manitoba Hydro, The City of Red Deer and the Government of Yukon. Stephanie practiced extensively in both the contract A and non-contract A paradigms. She is also the co-founder of the #RFPDreamTeam who provides advisory services and training on executing RFPs. Stephanie graduated university with a teaching degree and is involved with professional development at various local, national, and international events. She has been an active volunteer and advisor with professional associations since 2012 starting with the Cooperative Accreditation taskforce and now serves as the Chair of the Content Management Committee for the National Institute of Government Purchasing (NIGP). Stéphanie recently contributed a few articles to procurement magazines. She is the recipient of NIGP’s 2021 Buyer of the Year award.

 

Bill Davison, NIGP-CPP, CPPO

Instructor, NIGP/Norwich University


Bill Davison was a Senior Sourcing Specialist for Santa Clara County and the Director of Purchasing for Stearns County. He has a Masters in Acquisition and Contract Administration. He is a master instructor for NIGP and co authored the  the 2004 Contract Administration text.  He is a CPPO and CPP. Mr. Davison is an adjunct professor for Norwich University and teaches Government procurement and Government Finance. Mr. Davison has had several research papers on contract administration accepted for publication.

Zac Christensen, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Director of Purchasing and Contracts, Utah State Board of Education

Zachary Christensen is currently the Director of Purchasing and Contracts with the Utah State Board of Education, supervising the distribution and expenditure of education funds at the state level. He is passionate about furthering public procurement as a profession and providing professional development to help ensure that those practitioners can move forward in this exciting profession. Zac also teaches procurement courses for NIGP: The Institute for Public Procurement, and has served on local and national professional organizations. Prior to working at USBE, Zac served as a contract analyst for state purchasing, was a practicing lawyer, and worked for Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company in legal and subcontract management.  

Stacy Gregg, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Director of Procurement, South Carolina State University


Stacy Gregg is the Director of Procurement at SC State University. She is an Online Instructor for NIGP and volunteers with The Institute on the Member Council and Certification Commission. Ms. Gregg is an active member o the SC Association of Governmental Purchasing Officials (SCAGPO).  She has an Associate’s Degree in Public Service (Paralegal) and B.A. Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies (Concentrating in English & Management). She holds the NIGP-CPP, CPPO, and  CPPB designations.

Gary Lambert

Assistant Secretary, Commonwealth of Massachusetts


Gary Lambert, Assistant Secretary for Operational Services, Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Having 30+ years of highly leveraged executive experience in both public and private sector procurement, Mr. Lambert is nationally recognized as an expert in management, strategic sourcing, procurement, acquisitions, and financing. In the private sector, Mr. Lambert managed a portfolio of projects whose annual revenue was $20 million. He has developed sourcing strategies that have saved clients over $200 million.

David Yarkin

CEO, Procurated


David Yarkin is a recognized expert on innovation in public sector procurement. As Pennsylvania’s chief procurement officer, Mr. Yarkin led what has been called “the most sweeping transformation of state procurement in decades.” During his tenure, the Commonwealth saved $140 million annually through strategic sourcing and quadrupled its small, minority and women owned business participation rate. During his time in state procurement, David experienced firsthand a seminal challenge faced by his peers nationally - the mediocre job that the traditional reference process does in informing purchasers about a supplier’s past performance. He founded Procurated to solve this problem for the public procurement community.  Mr. Yarkin graduated cum laude from Harvard University and resides in Washington, DC.

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence, Government of Manitoba


Stéphanie Dion is the Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence, Government of Manitoba.  She was previously employed by Manitoba Hydro, The City of Red Deer and the Government of Yukon. Stephanie practiced extensively in both the contract A and non-contract A paradigms. She is also the co-founder of the #RFPDreamTeam who provides advisory services and training on executing RFPs. Stephanie graduated university with a teaching degree and is involved with professional development at various local, national, and international events. She has been an active volunteer and advisor with professional associations since 2012 starting with the Cooperative Accreditation taskforce and now serves as the Chair of the Content Management Committee for the National Institute of Government Purchasing (NIGP). Stéphanie recently contributed a few articles to procurement magazines. She is the recipient of NIGP’s 2021 Buyer of the Year award.

 

Mike Thornton, CPPO

Manager, City of Leesburg, FL


Mike Thornton is the Purchasing Manager for the City of Leesburg, Florida. He has been at Leesburg for over 15 years and has over 20 years experience in public procurement.  The City of Leesburg is a smaller municipality that operates 5 utilities. This allows Mr. Thornton to facilitate all types of solicitations to acquire the commodities required by his entity. He is a regular contributor to Nsite discussion and presents at NIGP forum annually. Mike  takes a specific interest in promoting and encouraging innovation in public procurement through the use of technology. He is active in the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP and is the past vice-president. Mr. Thornton has volunteered for several opportunities at NIGP including co-author for Global Best Practices.

Mr. Victor A. Leamer, CPPB

Senior Buyer, Spokane County


Victor Leamer has 35 years of public procurement experience at the county, state department, and state-wide levels. Victor teaches Sourcing in the Public Sector and the Core Certificate: Foundations in Strategy and Policy for NIGP (virtual), the 10-part Learning Lab RFP series, and has presented NIGP webinars on protests, evaluating responsiveness in bids, virtual leadership, and contract price adjustments. He was appointed to the NIGP Talent Council in 2021, serves on NIGP's Content Management Committee (formerly Knowledge Management Committee) since 2015, produces the monthly Radio NIGP show, and is a founding member/former Vice President of the Alaska/Hawaii Governmental Procurement Association NIGP Chapter.

Ben Vaught, MBA

CEO, DemandStar


Ben Vaught is the CEO of DemandStar. Ben founded DemandStar as an independent company committed to creating a high-quality network of government buyers and suppliers that interact directly. The DemandStar procurement platform serves over 900+ government agencies and over a hundred thousand suppliers. Previously, he was director of government initiatives at Onvia, a public sector business intelligence firm. Mr. Vaught led multiple innovation and strategy efforts as senior advisor to the Washington state chief information officer and spent six years at Microsoft, where he incubated Microsoft Hololens®. He holds an MBA from the University of Washington Foster School of Business and dual bachelor’s degrees in English and government from Georgetown University.

Steve Tran

VP of Sales, DemandStar


Steve Tran is the Vice President of Growth for DemandStar where he connects government agencies across America to hundreds of thousands of high-quality suppliers. Previously, he spent over a decade enabling public sector users at Onvia, a public sector business intelligence firm.   Mr. Tran is passionate about tackling issues that face government agencies today. Throughout the pandemic, he's hosted sessions on the Infrastructure Bill, FEMA Funding for Natural Disasters, and upcoming in February, Diversity and Inclusion for supplier procurement.

Robert Ballou

Mike Mucha

Deputy Executive Director, Government Finance Officers Association

Mike Mucha is GFOA's Deputy Executive Director and the Director of the Research and Consulting Center. In this role, Mike oversees GFOA consulting projects, research activities, the Government Finance Review, planning for GFOA training and conference, the GFOA website, and other strategic initiatives for GFOA. Mike also leads GFOA’s consulting practice and focuses on providing guidance to local governments on how to use technology more effectively, improve business processes and administrative practices, and implement best practices in financial management. In this role, he has led over 100 projects for local governments procuring enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. Mike has managed projects for both
large and small governments, regularly speaks at GFOA training events, and has written numerous articles on public sector enterprise technology applications, budgeting, performance management, and strategic planning. Mike also currently serves on the NIGP Governing Board as a Thought Leader. Mike holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Iowa and a Master of Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University.

Terri Velasquez

Finance Director, City of Aurora, CO


Terri Velasquez is the finance director for the City of Aurora, CO and is president-elect for GFOA.  Terri is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Colorado GFOA, Society of CPAs, and ICMA.  Terri also has served on several boards and commissions including the Colorado Public Plan Coalition Committee (January 2018 to present), ICMA-RC Public Employee Memorial Scholarship Fund (June 2016 to present).

Becca Blazak, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Partnerships & Community, CoProcure


Becca Blazak manages partnerships and community engagement at CoProcure, a free cooperative contract search tool for public procurement professionals. Ms. Blazak has spent her career working at the intersection of government and tech. She's supported technical teams embedded in local government agencies across the country and partnered with state-level government in Australia to improve legal aid technology and embrace new methods for sourcing and developing tech tools. She is excited to use her experience to build collaboration tools for the public procurement community.

Maria Agrusa

Michael Wenzel

Director of ARPA Procurements with the State of Maine


Mike started his career with the US Coast Guard where he served at both the US Public Health Clinic in Hawaii and the US Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut. His career with the State of Maine started with Social Security Disability Determination Services directing a disability claims team and providing technology services. He then spent several years directing the Maine CDC’s Statewide Immunization Program. His first foray into public procurement was working as a Contract Officer for the Department of Health and Human Services. After several years with the DHHS, Mike had the honor of serving the citizens of Maine as their Chief Procurement Official. He then served as a regional Outreach and Education Director with NASPO ValuePoint a cooperative purchasing organization. Mike has been able to continue his passion for public procurement running a modest consulting business assisting public procurement entities and suppliers and continues to support the State of Maine as Director of ARPA Procurements.  

Claudia Leon, CPPB

Director of Procurement, 1Goverment Procurement Alliance (1GPA)


Claudia Leon has 27 years of procurement experience in the public sector. Prior to joining 1GPA in 2021, Ms. Leon served as the Director of Purchasing for the Paradise Valley Unified School District for 7 years, Purchasing Manager for the Tempe Elementary School District for 8 years and Senior Buyer for the Kyrene School District for 18 years.  She received her Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix in 2000 and has held a CPPB certification from the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council since 2001.  Ms. Leon strives to provide a transparent and compliant procurement process that supports all stakeholders and best serves the public good.

Rebecca Seifert

Procurement Specialist, 1Government Procurement Alliance (1GPA)


Rebecca Siefert has over 20 years of purchasing experience in both the private and public sectors.  An honors graduate from the University of Phoenix with a BS in Business/Accounting, her background includes manufacturing as well school district procurement. Ms. Seifert joined Tempe Elementary School District’s purchasing department in 2006.  She is passionate about building a community of trust and support through fiscal responsibility, transparency, and procurement education.  She joined 1GPA Cooperative in 2019 and has been instrumental in bridging the gap between cooperative contracts and public agencies.

Rebecca Kee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPO

Purchasing Agent, City of Virginia Beach


Rebecca Kee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB Rebecca has over 17 years’ experience in the public procurement field and has worked extensively to develop, create, and support educational programs and opportunities for the profession. Ms. Kee currently serves as the Chief Procurement Officer and Purchasing Agent for the City of Virginia Beach, VA. She has served as Professional Development Chair and President for her local NIGP Chapters and is proud to be a Charter member of NIGP’s newest Chapter the Chesapeake Bay Procurement Association.  Ms. Kee has also served on the NIGP Awards Committee, as Chair for the Content Management Committee and as a Chapter Ambassador for Region 2.  Ms. Kee currently serves on the NIGP Talent Council. Ms. Kee has served as adjunct faculty teaching procurement classes at Arkansas State University as well as an instructor for NIGP.

Lavera Tolentino

SWaM Procurement Administrator, City of Virginia Beach, VA


Lavera Tolentino has over 25 years of local government experience in Finance and Procurement. In her current position as the SWaM Procurement Administrator for the City of Virginia Beach, she supports the growth of small, woman, minority (SWaM) and veteran owned businesses through outreach, mentoring, coaching and education. She is an advocate for the SWaM business community and has been instrumental in implementing several programs to increase procurement opportunities and the utilization of small businesses who desire to do business with the City of Virginia Beach.

Jesus Amezcua, CPA

Assistant Superintendent for Business/CFO, Harris County Department of Education


Jesus Amezcua has been the Department’s Assistant Superintendent for Business Services since 2008 and he oversees the financial management, investment management, debt management, procurement, compliance, tax collections, accounts receivable, accounts payable and payroll departments in the Business Services Division. He is a member of the Professional Standards Committee for the Texas Society of CPAs. He is a member of the best practices committee from GFOA and ASBO. He coordinated a $51 million Capital Improvement Program to include a bond rating upgrade by Moody's Investor Service in 2020. Previous to HCDE, Dr. Amezcua worked for Laredo Independent School District as the Chief Finance Officer for 12 years where he was responsible for the management of the business operations of the district including Accounting, Investments, Accounts Payable, Payroll, Budget, Purchasing, Tax Office, Risk, Compliance, Debt, Transportation, Food Services, and Construction and Facilities. He coordinated the analysis, presentation, and implementation of the largest Bond Election ($144 million) for the school district, the Public Facility Corporation for a bond issue of $68 Million, and the Bond Elections of $60 Million and $57 Million bond series.  Prior to Laredo ISD, Dr. Amezcua worked for the City of Laredo where he was responsible for overseeing 6 divisions in the Finance Department including Accounting, Accounts Payable, Ambulance, Budget, Technology–Data Processing & Purchasing. He managed a $120+ million investment portfolio, legal debt and assets of the city. During his tenure with the city, he also served as Revenue Manager, Internal Auditor, and Staff Accountant.

Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO

Owner, M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC


Maria de Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO - is the owner of M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC; the author of "Procurement Methods: Effective Techniques;" an Independent Executive Director and a certified member of the John Maxwell Team. She is a Professional Speaker, Executive Coach, and Trainer. She is a DISC Personality and an Emotional Intelligence EQ i-2.0/EQ 360 Consultant. Ms. Coss is a Licensed Brain Trainer and a Certified Neuro-encoding Specialist. Ms. Coss is also an instructor for NIGP and the American Management Association, and a senior consultant for NIGP Consulting.  As a transformational leader and former Chief Procurement Officer, Ms. Coss invested two decades of her 27-year career successfully leading procurement transformations at some of the US's largest agencies such as the City of Houston, Cook County, University of Illinois, the Public Building Commission of Chicago, and the City of Chicago. She now leverages her experience and expertise to help individuals and organizations transform their performance to reach new heights within the continental US and its terrirories. She shares her expertise by providing training, consulting, and coaching. Ms. Coss continues to add value to the profession through her educational procurement transformation blog and podcast.  Ms. Coss graduated magna cum laude from the University of Puerto Rico and received her MPA from Florida State University. She has served on several boards, including the NIGP Board. She is the recipient of the 2016 Spirit of NIGP Award and the 2018 NIGP Integrity Award. Ms. Coss was recognized by Thinkers360 as one of the top 100 Women Thought Leaders to Follow and one of the Top 50 Global Influencers and Thought Leaders in Procurement. Ms. Coss is the Chair of the NIGP Talent Council Leadership Committee and a member of the John Maxwell Team President's Advisory Council.

Althea Pemsel, MS, CPSM, C.P.M.

Assistant Overseer, Procurement Department, City of Coconut Creek, FL


Althea Pemsel is Assistant Overseer of Procurement Department for the City of Coconut Creek and worked in director and managerial roles in procurement and previously ran the procurement construction division for the City of Fort Lauderdale as the Assistant Chief Procurement Officer with millions of dollars in capital improvement and various Projects. As the Procurement Officer in West Palm Beach, Ms. Pemsel was instrumental procuring major engineering services for capital projects for the city and the East Central Regional (ECR) Wastewater Treatment Facilities Operations. In 2000 Ms. Pemsel worked for the City of Orlando for almost a decade. Althea has been instrumental in advancing public procurement and the supply chain professional to be regarded as high performing, lean, and strategic alliance focused departments. She has written white papers and given many presentations on topics like, Stakeholder and Change Management, Tactical to Strategic Procurement, Leading Lean Operations, and Adding Value. As an international speaker, her most recent presentation on the topic of Intergenerational Workforce was given in Hangzhou, China. Her career began in Germany in the late 80s and she has worked in public, private, and non-profit organizations instituting cost containment measures, lean operations, and process improvements. At the Cannes Film Festival 2019 in France, she served as an Intern for the film industry gaining additional negotiation tactics and skills in entertainment contract law, supply chain, and movie and film distribution sales and contracts. Although her educational background is a combination of business leadership, theology, and psychology, her doctorate studies focused on philosophy.

Jennifer Sulentic

Chief Procurement Ally, CompareCoOps


Jennifer Sulentic: Jennifer leads CompareCoOps at its Chief Procurement Ally, making cooperative purchasing easier to use and more transparent for agencies across the country. With over 10 years of experience working as an advocate and resource for public agencies and suppliers alike, she is well known and widely respected in the world of public procurement cooperative contracting. During her time at ProcureSource Jennifer brought the first of its kind cooperative purchasing directory to our industry.  Before that, Jennifer’s consultative efforts with U.S. Communities brought efficiencies to public sector purchasing and better communication between suppliers and buyers. Her expertise in public procurement cooperative contracting led to millions of dollars of savings for public agencies nationwide. Jennifer also led the central division for furniture manufacturing giant, Knoll, driving growth and strategy.  This role gave her a keen understanding of the supplier side of government contracting. Jennifer grew up on a dairy farm in Iowa. Yep twice a day every day. She’s happy procurement smells a LOT better.

RuthAnne Hall, CPPO

Purchasing Manager at Lake County, IL

RuthAnne K. Hall, CPPO has worked in municipal and county government for over 19 years and is currently serving as the Purchasing Manager for Lake County since 2011. In her role as the Purchasing Manager, RuthAnne oversees a staff of purchasing officers that procures over $250 million annually on various goods, contracted services, construction and professional services for 26 county departments. She currently serves as the President of the Midwest Association of Public Procurement (MAPP), has served as a Board Member for the Illinois Association of Public Procurement Officials (IAPPO) and is an active member the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP) and has participated as a member of the Standard Setting Panel for the NIGP-CPP. RuthAnne also serves as a member of the Illinois Government Finance Officer Association Professional Education Committee to provide purchasing training to finance professionals. RuthAnne is a graduate of Augustana College in Illinois and holds a MS degree from Columbia University in New York.

Charles Mayfield

Interim Chief Procurement Officer, Chicago Public Schools


 

Jennifer Alford

Jeff Peskuski

Strategic Contract Manager - Omnia Partners Public - Central Region

Responsible for Graybar’s Omnia Partners Public Sector program and internal resource for the state, local government and education business segment. Jeff is a 30-year veteran with Graybar and based in the Chicago metro area. Starting his career in Graybar’s Chicago warehouse and working his way up through the company's customer service, inside and outside sales teams, Jeff was promoted to Regional Government Manager in 2002 responsible for federal, state, local government and education sales in the Chicago and Pittsburgh districts. In October 2005, Jeff was promoted to Strategic Account Manager, overseeing Graybar’s involvement in the U.S. Communities, now Omnia Partners Public Sector program. Jeff is uniquely qualified to handle the role based on his experience with Graybar, the public agency customers, knowledge of contracts and associations supporting the agency customer. Jeff has used his experience and relationships over the past twenty years to continue Graybar’s local government initiatives and cooperative program growth. Jeff has also been a member of the NIGP business council for the past 9 years. NIGP’s Business Council is comprised of two representatives from each of the 12 companies participating in the Institute’s Enterprise Sponsor Program. (Graybar’s two representatives for the Business Council are Rob Rhoads and Jeff Peskuski). Enterprise Sponsors are leaders in their respective industries and have demonstrated a shared commitment to NIGP’s values: Accountability, Ethics, Impartiality, Professionalism, Service, and Transparency. The mission of the Business Council is to Serve the NIGP membership and procurement profession through the sharing of resources and business expertise in support of NIGP’s educational, research and advocacy mission. In essence, the Business Council connects the supplier’s perspective with the public procurement community and is dedicated to improving the buyer/supplier relationship.

Rob Rhoads

Strategic Contract Manager - Omnia Partners, Public Sector - Eastern United States

Cheral Manke, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPM

Procurement Innovation Manager, State of Washington


Cheral Manke currently serves as the Procurement Innovation Manager for the State of WA. Prior to her appointment, she was the Former State Procurement Manager/ Marketing & Relationship Manager, State of WA. Ms. Manke was deemed “Face of moving to a Human-centered Organization.” Ms. Manke believes in leading Procurement community thru key directives-environmental, diversity, equity & inclusion, One WA ERP. She has 17 years public procurement & contracting and 20 years private sector contract management. She currently serves as a NIGP Governing Board Member and is a past NIGP Member Council Chair. She holds a NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB and Certified Purchasing Management (CPM) from the University of Texas, Arlington. Ms. Manke holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Legal Studies-Contracts/Executive JD fromCal State University-Lexington University.

Zulay Millan, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CPPO

Assistant Manager, Procurement Division, Orange County Government


Zulay Millan is currently Assistant Manager for the Procurement Division at Orange County Government in Florida. Ms. Millan began her public sector career in 2001. For the past two decades, her career focus has been in Procurement and process engineering/ improvement. Ms. Millan holds a Graduate Certificate in Public Procurement, a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and has her NIGP-CPP, CPPO and CPPB certifications. She is currently representing Young Professionals on NIGP’s Member Council and serves as a Commissioner on the NIGP Certification Commission. Ms. Millan is a Past President of the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP. In addition, she has served on the Board of Directors and as Chair of various committees for the National Procurement Institute and the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials. In 2020 Ms. Millan was awarded the Inspiration Award for Procurement Professionals in Central Florida. In 2018 Ms. Millan was designated as both the 2018 Procurement Manager of the Year in Central Florida and the NIGP Young Professional of the Year.

Carrie Mathes, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, APP, CPPB, C.P.M., CFCM, MPA

Procurement Manager, Orange County, FL


Carrie Mathes has over 25 years of procurement experience in both the private and public sectors.  She currently serves as the Manager for the Orange County Procurement Division.  Ms. Mathes has obtained several professional certifications including CFCM, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M., and A.P.P.  Ms. Mathes currently serves as Chair-Elect of the NIGP Governing Board.  She is Past President of the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials (FAPPO), and the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP, and has previously served on NIGP’s Talent Council, and the Board of Examiners for the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council.  Ms. Mathes received the Anne Deatherage Meritorious Service Award from NIGP in 2014, and was named the Professional Manager of the Year by NIGP in 2012.  Ms. Mathes holds both Master degree in Public Administration from the University of Central Florida and a Graduate Certificate in Emergency Management from the University of Central Florida.

Rebecca Kee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPO

Purchasing Agent, City of Virginia Beach


Rebecca Kee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB Rebecca has over 17 years’ experience in the public procurement field and has worked extensively to develop, create, and support educational programs and opportunities for the profession. Ms. Kee currently serves as the Chief Procurement Officer and Purchasing Agent for the City of Virginia Beach, VA. She has served as Professional Development Chair and President for her local NIGP Chapters and is proud to be a Charter member of NIGP’s newest Chapter the Chesapeake Bay Procurement Association.  Ms. Kee has also served on the NIGP Awards Committee, as Chair for the Content Management Committee and as a Chapter Ambassador for Region 2.  Ms. Kee currently serves on the NIGP Talent Council. Ms. Kee has served as adjunct faculty teaching procurement classes at Arkansas State University as well as an instructor for NIGP.

Barb Johnson, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Agency Procurement Officer (Retired) State of Ohio Dept. of Rehabilitation and Correction

Barbara R. Johnson served for 38 years as a State, City and Airport Authority Procurement Leader. She serves the Institute members on many committees, task forces, and as a frequent Forum speaker and moderator. Barb instructs public procurement courses for the Institute (NIGP), the Ohio State University, and others upon request, as well as providing consulting services through NIGP's Consulting program.

Stacy Adams, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Director of Statewide Sourcing, State of South Carolina, Division of Procurement Services


Stacy Adams, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, is the Director of Statewide Sourcing for the State of South Carolina, Division of Procurement Services managing the State Term Contracting Teams. With almost 20 years of experience her skills represent governmental purchasing at the county, state agency and state-wide levels. 

Stacy is a leader who has been actively involved in content builds for The Institute for Public Procurement (NIGP) Pathways program. She also instructs courses nationally as a NIGP Certified Instructor.   

Stacy’s desire to “give back” to the profession she so dearly loves continues in her service to NIGP and its local Chapter, the South Carolina Association of Governmental Purchasing Officials (SCAGPO). As an active member of both, she has served in many capacities including SCAGPO President. She was awarded SCAGPO’s Buyer of the Year for 2014 and was honored as the recipient of the B.D. Bland Distinguished Service Award in 2018 for her contributions to the Procurement Profession and the entity she serves.  Stacy currently serves on SCAGPO’s Past President Council and NIGP’s Talent Council as Chair Elect. 

Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.

Chief Procurement Officer, City of Norfolk, VA


Michael Bevis is an internationally recognized thought leader in the public procurement profession. He is currently Chief Procurement Officer for the City of Norfolk, Virginia, where he is charged with integrating business, technology, operations and budgeting goals to further the City’s commitment to grow Norfolk’s economy and adopt programs that build a solid foundation for partnering with the business community. He currently serves the Chair of the Center for Job Order Contracting Excellence and in the immediate past Chair of the Governing Board of NIGP the Institute for Public Procurement; he also represents the International Federation of Purchasing and Supply Management on the Global Standards Board. Michael’s professionalism has been recognized by NIGP (Agency Advancement Award, Distinguished Service Award, Pareto Award of Excellence, Manager of the Year, Outstanding Agency Accreditation and Innovation awards), IFPSM (the Lewis Spangler Award), National Purchasing Institute (Achievement of Excellence in Procurement – awarded to his jurisdictions 18 times).  Mr. Bevis’s teaching experiences include 23 years as an Instructor for NIGP, independent curriculum and training development for various agencies. Mr. Bevis is a graduate of Georgetown University Law School (JD), Lincoln Memorial University (BA magna cum laude) and has completed post graduate studies at North Central College (Leadership Studies) and Northern Illinois University (Public Administration).  He holds the NIGP-CPP, a CPPO from the UPPCC and the CPSM and lifetime CPM from the Institute for Supply Management.

Jason Kazmar, BS

Director of Electric Vehicle and Sustainability Strategy, Element Fleet Management


Jason Kazmar has more than 13 years of experience in the electric utility industry working in a number of engineering, consulting, program management, and strategy roles. Specific areas include emerging technology evaluation, electric vehicle infrastructure program design, renewable energy grid integration, corporate strategy, and cyber security program design. At Element, Mr. Kazmer is responsible for the development of electrification services including long-term EV strategy/planning, EV feasibility analysis, and EV program implementation. Jason’s client base covers a wide range of electrification use-cases including both centralized (pool/depot fleets) and decentralised (home-based fleets) as well as a multitude of vehicle cases (light-duty passenger fleets, service truck fleets, etc.). Jason received a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Purdue University and an MBA from Kellogg School of Management.

Allen Hunsberger, NIGP-CPP, CPSD, C.P.M., MBA, CAPPO

Assistant Director, Purchasing and Contracting, County of San Diego


Allen Hunsberger is the Assistant Director, Purchasing and Contracting for the County of San Diego. He helps lead a Customer focused procurement department that supports the County’s operations.  Mr. Hunsberger joined the County in 1996, working in progressively responsible procurement and technology positions prior to his current role. He also recently retired from a career as an intelligence officer in the Untied States Navy Reserve. Mr. Hunsberger has a Physics degree from the University of California at San Diego, an MBA from San Diego State University, and holds NIGP-CPP, CPSD, and C.P.M certifications. Mr. Hunsberger is currently on the Leadership Development Committee for NIGP and is currently the Secretary/Treasurer of the California Association of Public Procurement Officials (CAPPO) and has served as a Chapter chair for CAPPO San Diego, as well as on many conference committees and workgroups. Most of all, Allen enjoys learning about public sector procurement and sharing that knowledge with his peers. He speaks regularly at conferences and teaches at the San Diego State University World Campus.

Cyrenthia Ellis, MBA, PMP

Procurement Manager, City of Austin


Cyrenthia Ellis is currently a Procurement Manager within the Financial Services Department for the City of Austin. Ms. Ellis currently oversees a team of  Procurement Professionals responsible for the procurement of General Services, General Goods, and Administration. Ms. Ellis has been with the City of Austin for 14 years and offers over 20 years practical knowledge and expertise, within the public and private sector, in department leadership, purchasing and contract management, category management, project management, and IT development. Ms. Ellis has earned an MBA degree in Industrial Management from the University of Dallas, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Loyola University at Chicago. She has her Project Manager Professional certification and is also a Certified Texas Purchasing Manager.

Tamela Saldana

Small and Minority Business Resources Assistant Director, City of Austin


Tamela Saldana works for the City of Austin’s Small and Minority Business Resources Department where she serves as the Assistant Director. Ms. Saldana has close to twenty-five years of federal, state and local government experience having worked as the Director of the federal Disadvantaged and Small Business Program for the Texas Department of Transportation. Ms. Saldana has been a graduate professor at Texas State University in the Masters of Public Administration Program for over ten years. Ms. Saldanahas earned her Doctorates degree from University of Texas in Anthropology of the African and African American Diaspora with an emphasis in racial and cultural studies.   Dr. Saldana has earned two master’s degrees, a M.P.A in Public Administration from Texas State University and a M.A. in Anthropology from the University of Texas at Austin. Ms. Saldana is a graduate of the City of Austin’s Executive Academy, Leadership Texas graduate, a previous recipient of the Outstanding Women in Texas Government Community Involvement Award and has received numerous awards recognizing her efforts and support of small and minority businesses.

Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.

Chief Procurement Officer, City of Norfolk, VA


Michael Bevis is an internationally recognized thought leader in the public procurement profession. He is currently Chief Procurement Officer for the City of Norfolk, Virginia, where he is charged with integrating business, technology, operations and budgeting goals to further the City’s commitment to grow Norfolk’s economy and adopt programs that build a solid foundation for partnering with the business community. He currently serves the Chair of the Center for Job Order Contracting Excellence and in the immediate past Chair of the Governing Board of NIGP the Institute for Public Procurement; he also represents the International Federation of Purchasing and Supply Management on the Global Standards Board. Michael’s professionalism has been recognized by NIGP (Agency Advancement Award, Distinguished Service Award, Pareto Award of Excellence, Manager of the Year, Outstanding Agency Accreditation and Innovation awards), IFPSM (the Lewis Spangler Award), National Purchasing Institute (Achievement of Excellence in Procurement – awarded to his jurisdictions 18 times).  Mr. Bevis’s teaching experiences include 23 years as an Instructor for NIGP, independent curriculum and training development for various agencies. Mr. Bevis is a graduate of Georgetown University Law School (JD), Lincoln Memorial University (BA magna cum laude) and has completed post graduate studies at North Central College (Leadership Studies) and Northern Illinois University (Public Administration).  He holds the NIGP-CPP, a CPPO from the UPPCC and the CPSM and lifetime CPM from the Institute for Supply Management.

John Agostinelli

Regional Director, Northeast Operations Gordian


As the Regional Director, Mr. Agostinelli is responsible for the overall development, implementation and continued support of Job Order Contracting programs for various organizations, including NYC Department of Design and Construction, NYC Department of Education, NYC Housing Authority, NYC Heath and Hospitals Corporation and Columba University. He has a B.S. in Construction Engineering and M. S. in Transportation Engineering from the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

Mike Thornton, CPPO

Manager, City of Leesburg, FL


Mike Thornton is the Purchasing Manager for the City of Leesburg, Florida. He has been at Leesburg for over 15 years and has over 20 years experience in public procurement.  The City of Leesburg is a smaller municipality that operates 5 utilities. This allows Mr. Thornton to facilitate all types of solicitations to acquire the commodities required by his entity. He is a regular contributor to Nsite discussion and presents at NIGP forum annually. Mike  takes a specific interest in promoting and encouraging innovation in public procurement through the use of technology. He is active in the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP and is the past vice-president. Mr. Thornton has volunteered for several opportunities at NIGP including co-author for Global Best Practices.

Mr. Victor A. Leamer, CPPB

Senior Buyer, Spokane County


Victor Leamer has 35 years of public procurement experience at the county, state department, and state-wide levels. Victor teaches Sourcing in the Public Sector and the Core Certificate: Foundations in Strategy and Policy for NIGP (virtual), the 10-part Learning Lab RFP series, and has presented NIGP webinars on protests, evaluating responsiveness in bids, virtual leadership, and contract price adjustments. He was appointed to the NIGP Talent Council in 2021, serves on NIGP's Content Management Committee (formerly Knowledge Management Committee) since 2015, produces the monthly Radio NIGP show, and is a founding member/former Vice President of the Alaska/Hawaii Governmental Procurement Association NIGP Chapter.

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence, Government of Manitoba


Stéphanie Dion is the Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence, Government of Manitoba.  She was previously employed by Manitoba Hydro, The City of Red Deer and the Government of Yukon. Stephanie practiced extensively in both the contract A and non-contract A paradigms. She is also the co-founder of the #RFPDreamTeam who provides advisory services and training on executing RFPs. Stephanie graduated university with a teaching degree and is involved with professional development at various local, national, and international events. She has been an active volunteer and advisor with professional associations since 2012 starting with the Cooperative Accreditation taskforce and now serves as the Chair of the Content Management Committee for the National Institute of Government Purchasing (NIGP). Stéphanie recently contributed a few articles to procurement magazines. She is the recipient of NIGP’s 2021 Buyer of the Year award.

 

Pauline Alles, BS/BM

Contract Administrator, University of Utah PDC


Pauline Alles is a Contract Administrator/Senior Buyer in the U-Facilities Planning, Design & Construction Department at the University of Utah.   She was a former NIGP Chapter 3-year Board of Director, Vice President, and past President. She is a member of the NCMA, National Contract Management Association, and a member of the NBMBAA.  She recently attained her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from Western Governors University and plans to achieve her Masters in Management and Leadership in June 2023. Ms. Alles attributes her career success to her work experiences, life experiences, friends, mentors, and peers, who are the most valued part of her education!    he is a published author in the UK IN Procurement Magazine and contributing author in the US Government Procurement Magazine.   She started her career in Supply Chain within the Retail Industry back in 1986, having 36 total years of the supply chain, management, and coaching experience. The retail company where she started her career, Woolworth-US/Woolco-Canada, and her US Northern Reflections Stores, played an integral part in helping to finalize the 1994 NAFTA Agreement between the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Polly believes that even when the half-full glass gets empty, we should take a moment to reflect, be grateful for when it was full, and focus on how to re-fill the glass with new possibilities!

Toni Cook, MPA, MBA

Assistant Procurement Manager, City of Little Rock


Toni Cook has a passion for process improvement, advocating for equity for women, traveling, and soft-shell tacos. She grew up in Central Arkansas and loves extreme sports, virtual reality, and skydiving. Ms. Cook is an avid lifelong learner, as she is a graduate of Arkansas Tech University, Kentucky State University, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and the Arkansas Coding Academy. She holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration and one in Business Administration. As a procurement official with more than eight years of experience, she’s worked in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors, and specializes in ERP’s and technology procurement. Ms. Cookcurrently holds the title of Assistant Procurement Manager for the City of Little Rock. Outside of work, you will find Ms. Cook volunteering as a CASA or cheering on the Little Rock Rangers Semi- Pro Soccer Team.

Casey Hook

Senior Buyer, City of Little Rock


Casey Hook is a Senior Buyer at the City of Little Rock. He has a background in both private and public procurement and specializes in writing bid solicitations. Mr. Hook has a love for technical writing, system management, and hobby farming. Mr. Cook is a life long learner and currently learning how to write code out of work.

Sean Carroll

Chief Procurement Officer, New York State Office of General Services


In August 2016, Sean Carroll was appointed Chief Procurement Officer for NYS's Office of General Services. Mr. Carroll  manages more than 1,500 contracts with a value exceeding $29 billion and is responsible for statewide contracts for commodities, services, and information technology for authorized users.  He previously served as the Director of Onondaga County’s Division of Purchase from 2010 to 2016. In the private sector, he managed his own consulting firm for nearly 10 years.

JP Behrle

Deputy Chief Procurement Officer, NYS Office of General Services


JP Behrle joined NYS OGS in September 2021 as the Deputy Chief CPO.  Mr. Behrle is responsible for overseeing contracts for commodities, services, and information technology utilized by state agencies, state campuses, and other authorized users, valued at over 29 billion dollars. Previously, Mr. Behrle served as the Assistant Director for the DOCCS Division of Correctional Industries  where he oversaw the financial, procurement, and administrative functions for the division statewide.

David E. Nash, CPPO, CPPB, NIGP-CPP

Retired; Formerly City of Fort Lauderdale, FL


David Nash retired as a Chief Warrant Officer Three from the United States Army in 1988 after 20 years of service in inventory management. In 2007, he retired from the City of Fort Lauderdale after 18 years of service in warehousing and procurement. Mr. Nash holds Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Business Administration. He was the last President of the Governmental Purchasing Association of Southeast Florida, having successfully led a merger with the SE Florida Chapter of NIGP in 2001. He was also the President of the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials in 2006-2007  David was presented with FAPPO’s George H. Wolf Distinguished Service Award in 2010. In 2014, he was presented with FAPPO’s Educator of the Year Award. In 2019, he was presented with his second George H. Wolf Distinguished Service Award for his overall contributions to FAPPO during 25 years of membership. Mr. Nash is a certified instructor for NIGP and from 2010 to 2013 he served on the Evaluation Committee for the National Procurement Institute’s Achievement of Excellence in Procurement Award. Since creating the online “Question of the Day” in 2007, he has helped thousands of procurement professionals prepare for their CPPB, CPPO and NIGP-CPP exams. For his overall contributions to the procurement profession, he was presented with NIGP’s Distinguished Service Award at the 2018 Forum in Nashville, TN. In August 2020 he was part of the inaugural group to receive the new NIGP-CPP certification.Mr. Nash currently serves on the Mentorship Committee for NIGP, as well as Radio NIGP.

Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO

Owner, M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC


Maria de Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO - is the owner of M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC; the author of "Procurement Methods: Effective Techniques;" an Independent Executive Director and a certified member of the John Maxwell Team. She is a Professional Speaker, Executive Coach, and Trainer. She is a DISC Personality and an Emotional Intelligence EQ i-2.0/EQ 360 Consultant. Ms. Coss is a Licensed Brain Trainer and a Certified Neuro-encoding Specialist. Ms. Coss is also an instructor for NIGP and the American Management Association, and a senior consultant for NIGP Consulting.  As a transformational leader and former Chief Procurement Officer, Ms. Coss invested two decades of her 27-year career successfully leading procurement transformations at some of the US's largest agencies such as the City of Houston, Cook County, University of Illinois, the Public Building Commission of Chicago, and the City of Chicago. She now leverages her experience and expertise to help individuals and organizations transform their performance to reach new heights within the continental US and its terrirories. She shares her expertise by providing training, consulting, and coaching. Ms. Coss continues to add value to the profession through her educational procurement transformation blog and podcast.  Ms. Coss graduated magna cum laude from the University of Puerto Rico and received her MPA from Florida State University. She has served on several boards, including the NIGP Board. She is the recipient of the 2016 Spirit of NIGP Award and the 2018 NIGP Integrity Award. Ms. Coss was recognized by Thinkers360 as one of the top 100 Women Thought Leaders to Follow and one of the Top 50 Global Influencers and Thought Leaders in Procurement. Ms. Coss is the Chair of the NIGP Talent Council Leadership Committee and a member of the John Maxwell Team President's Advisory Council.

Kristy Varda NIGP-CPP CPPO CPPB

Capital Contracting Officer, Loudoun County, Virginia


Kristy Varda is currently a Capital Contracting Officer for Loudoun County Government. Her previous employers include Fairfax County and Frederick County Public Schools, Virginia. All leading to over 10 years in public procurement. She is a NIGP Instructor and member of the cast of Radio NIGP. She frequently presents NIGP webinars, Forum sessions, and builds NIGP course content.

Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE

Corporate Procurement Program Manager, Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission


Stephanie Akerley is a Corporate Procurement Program Manager with The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission.  In 2017, Stephanie became an instructor for NIGP and shortly thereafter, began to write class content for NIGP technology courses.  In fact, Stephanie has participated in the creation and writing of all of the NIGP technology pathway courses.  Stephanie holds several certifications: NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CPPO and CTPE  and is a Radio NIGP staff member.

Crystal Washington - Keynote

Crystal Washington, CSP works with organizations that want to leverage technology to increase profits and productivity!

As a technology strategist and certified futurist, Crystal takes complex social media, app, and web topics and makes them easy to understand and accessible for everyday people.

Crystal’s clients comprise Fortune 500 companies including Google, Microsoft, and GE, and as a sought-after keynote speaker, she has entertained and educated audiences around the globe.

As one of Forbes’ 50 Leading Female Futurists, She appears weekly on season two of the Emmy nominated show, Life 2.0 and she’s appeared in numerous publications including Entrepreneur and Bloomberg Businessweek. She is regularly called on by major television networks as a tech expert.

Crystal is the author of the books One Tech Action and The Social Media Why.

Lynda Allair NIGP-CPP CPPO

Project Lead (Retired), Ministry of Finance


Lynda Allair currently serves the NIGP membership as an instructor and on many task forces, committees, and course development groups. She often provides input on International Procurement content. She is a former Director for the Canadian Public Procurement Council and a Past President of the Ontario Public Buyers. Ms. Allair’s provided procurement leadership for almost thirty years within a variety of public entities; federal, provincial, hospital, and library.

Barb Johnson, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Agency Procurement Officer (Retired) State of Ohio Dept. of Rehabilitation and Correction

Barbara R. Johnson served for 38 years as a State, City and Airport Authority Procurement Leader. She serves the Institute members on many committees, task forces, and as a frequent Forum speaker and moderator. Barb instructs public procurement courses for the Institute (NIGP), the Ohio State University, and others upon request, as well as providing consulting services through NIGP's Consulting program.

Stacy Adams, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Director of Statewide Sourcing, State of South Carolina, Division of Procurement Services


Stacy Adams, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, is the Director of Statewide Sourcing for the State of South Carolina, Division of Procurement Services managing the State Term Contracting Teams. With almost 20 years of experience her skills represent governmental purchasing at the county, state agency and state-wide levels. 

Stacy is a leader who has been actively involved in content builds for The Institute for Public Procurement (NIGP) Pathways program. She also instructs courses nationally as a NIGP Certified Instructor.   

Stacy’s desire to “give back” to the profession she so dearly loves continues in her service to NIGP and its local Chapter, the South Carolina Association of Governmental Purchasing Officials (SCAGPO). As an active member of both, she has served in many capacities including SCAGPO President. She was awarded SCAGPO’s Buyer of the Year for 2014 and was honored as the recipient of the B.D. Bland Distinguished Service Award in 2018 for her contributions to the Procurement Profession and the entity she serves.  Stacy currently serves on SCAGPO’s Past President Council and NIGP’s Talent Council as Chair Elect. 

Andrea Mindenhall, CPPO, CPPB - Manager of Strategic Sourcing, Regional Municipality of Halton, ON

Andrea Mindenhall is currently the Manager of Strategic Sourcing, Regional Municipality of Halton in Ontario.  Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, she is currently working and supervising her procurement team remotely.  She brings her experiences with remote work and remote supervision and support of employees to this session.  She has been an Executive Member of the Ontario Public Buyers Association for many years.

Keith Glatz, NIGP-CPP, CPPO

Purchasing and Contracts Manager, City of Tamarac, Florida


Keith has served in the field of public procurement for over 40 years; and has been the Purchasing & Contracts Manager for the City of Tamarac, Florida since 2003. Prior to that date, he held various public procurement positions in municipal and state government in Illinois. Mr. Glatz has served in various volunteer capacities with NIGP and its various affiliated chapters including Chair of the NIGP Governing Board in 2015-2016 as part of his 10 years of service on the NIGP Board. Mr. Glatz was also past President of both the Southeast Florida Chapter and the Illinois Association of Public Procurement Officials (IAPPO) chapters of NIGP. Mr. Glatz was the recipient of both the NIGP Anne Deatherage Award for Meritorious Service and the NIGP Professional Manager of the Year Award, as well as the FAPPO George H. Wolf Distinguished Service Award and the FAPPO Above and Beyond Award.

Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPPB, CPM

President of NIGP Code & Consulting, Periscope/NIGP Code & Consulting


Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, CPPO, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, C.P.M., CPM, is a dynamic international speaker, professional consultant and trainer. For over 30 years, Ms. Gillespie has served as an experienced thought-leader, advocate and volunteer leader in the procurement profession. As the former Chief Procurement Officer at the City of Tucson, she led one of country’s most highly acclaimed procurement organizations.  Retired from government service, Marcheta now serves as President of NIGP Code & Consulting, working with public and private industry to transform their procurement operations. Ms. Gillespie is the 2019 Albert H Hall recipient and 2017 Distinguished Service Award recipient, the highest honors bestowed upon individuals by NIGP.  Marcheta is a former Chair of the UPPCC Governing Board, Former President of NIGP and served on the NIGP Board of Directors for 10 years. She now serves on the NIGP Business Council and Chairs the NIGP Mentorship Committee. Ms. Gillespie has spoken at hundreds of international, national and regional events and authored numerous published works in the profession.

Shirley, Webb, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Retired, State of Illinois Chief Procurement Office for Higher Education


Shirley Webb, CPPO, CPPB, NIGP-CPP retired after 34 years of expereince from the State of Illionis as the Deputy Chief Procurement Officer for Higher Education.

Joshua M. Steinfeld, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor and Director, Graduate Certificate in Public Procurement & Contract Management and Graduate Certificate in Public Sector Leadership, Old Dominion University


Josh Steinfeld, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor of public service and Director for the Graduate Certificate in Public Procurement & Contract Management and Graduate Certificate in Public Sector Leadership. He completed his doctoral degree in public administration from Florida Atlantic University, an M.S. in Finance at Johns Hopkins University, M.P.S. in Organizational Leadership at University of Denver, and B.S.B.A. in Organizational Behavior at Boston University. Before joining ODU, Dr. Steinfeld was a Visiting Instructor at the University of Central Florida.

Dr. Steinfeld specializes in strategic procurement and public-private partnerships, especially with regard to the defense industry. For the previous six years, he has taught courses in procurement and contracting to students from all branches in Department of Defense, including specially formed cohorts of executive managers in the U.S. Navy. Through his teaching, Dr. Steinfeld has educated industry leaders across a host of areas including cybersecurity, shipbuilding and repair, shore and offshore operations and logistics, supply chain, sea lift and intermodal transport, air components acquisition, operations, and communications, among numerous other areas of acquisition and contracting.

Rick Grimm, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, FCIPS,

Chief Executive Officer, NIGP

Rick Grimm has served as NIGP’s Chief Executive Officer for 23 years.

Rick holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Miami and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Florida International University.  He served county governments and public school districts for 23 years, including over 12 years in the management of the public procurement function, before joining the NIGP team in 1998. 

As NIGP continues to develop, support and promote public procurement, Rick’s recent priorities have been the development of partnerships with universities and associations that represent the direct reports of the procurement function. To leverage these relationships and enhance NIGP’s role as a trusted advisor, Rick reorganized the NIGP team with a focus on content management and sustained membership growth.  The Institute now offers certificate programs for professionals entering the workplace and for seasoned professionals who seek high-level skills on procurement specialties such as technology and construction.

Diane Daly

NIGP's Director of Certification Programs

Dean Mealy, II, CPPO

Town Purchasing Manager, Town of Palm Beach, Florida


Dean Meally, II serves at the Town Purchasing Manager for the Town of Palm Beach Florida and has served in this position since 2017. Mr. Mealey is a graduate of Florida International University. Additionally, he holds a CPPO and Six Sigma Black Belt Certification. During his career, he has served as the Chief Purchasing Officer for the  largest Public Utility located in the State of Florida,   and as the Director of Administrative Services and Information Services for the City of New York. Mr. Mealey’s focus has been and continues to be, the focus on providing excellence in customer satisfaction as it relates to procurement experiences.  To accomplish this end, he has focused on re-engineering staff’s approach to both simple and complicated procurement actions.

Lisa Mehalko, NIGP-CPP, MBA, CPPO, CPSM

Director of Procurement, Georgia Technology Authority (GTA)


Lisa Mehalko is the Director of Procurement for the Georgia Technology Authority (GTA) overseeing statewide technology initiatives, with over $500M in spend annually. She has over 20 years of government procurement and currently holds a MBA. . She holds a NIGP-CPP, CPPO and CPSM from the ISM. Ms. Mehalko is a proud member of the national Finance Committee, serves as the Treasurer and Educational Chair of the Georgia Chapter of NIGP (GANIGP), and is also a board member of the Atlanta Chapter of ISM.

Cheral Manke, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPM

Procurement Innovation Manager, State of Washington


Cheral Manke currently serves as the Procurement Innovation Manager for the State of WA. Prior to her appointment, she was the Former State Procurement Manager/ Marketing & Relationship Manager, State of WA. Ms. Manke was deemed “Face of moving to a Human-centered Organization.” Ms. Manke believes in leading Procurement community thru key directives-environmental, diversity, equity & inclusion, One WA ERP. She has 17 years public procurement & contracting and 20 years private sector contract management. She currently serves as a NIGP Governing Board Member and is a past NIGP Member Council Chair. She holds a NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB and Certified Purchasing Management (CPM) from the University of Texas, Arlington. Ms. Manke holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Legal Studies-Contracts/Executive JD fromCal State University-Lexington University.

Elena McGrew, MBA

Statewide Enterprise Procurement Manager, Washington State Department of Enterprise Services


Elena McGrew is Statewide Enterprise Procurement Manager for Contracts and Procurement Division of Washington State Department of Enterprise Services (DES).  She provides oversight and technical direction to 7 teams responsible for: (a) providing procurement consultation to other agencies; (b) developing and administering contracts for DES and on behalf of small agencies; and (c) developing and administering statewide contracts valued over $1.3 billion and utilized by state agencies, institutions of higher education, and local government entities. She is a recipient of 2021 Governor’s Award for Leadership in Management and has over 9 years of public procurement experience. She is committed to creating and implementing strategic plans and procurement procedures to improve value of every dollar spent and drive the state’s procurement priorities, such as environmental considerations, and small and diverse business participation. Ms. McGrew earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and International Relations from University of California, Davis, and Master of Business Administration from California State University, East Bay.

Christine A. Coghill, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Procurement Director, City of Groveland, FL


Chris Coghill, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB is a seasoned procurement professional with a servant heart. She has been blessed to have experienced a variety of procurement offices which has led to a better understanding of how to manage a procurement department. She graduated Leaders Edge in 2020 and is the Vice President of the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP as well as a member of NIGP’s Leadership Development Committee.  Ms. Coghill has a passion for giving back to the profession through various means.  She has led study groups for the CPPO and CPPB certifications for the past few years and finds tremendous joy in hearing all the success stories.  Ms. Coghill supports her City as a one-woman show through various technology platforms.

Erin D'Vincent, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Procurement Manager, City of Austin


Erin D’Vincent is a Procurement Manager for the City of Austin specializing in end to end procurement and contracting.  Ms. D’Vincent has a degree from Texas State University, is a member of NIGP, graduate of Leaders Edge, has her CPPB, and NIGP-CPP. Erin leads all procurement activities for the City’s Industrial, Facilities, Water, and Waste Team and Mobility, Health, and Safety Team. She supervisors a staff of ten that manage a portfolio of over 585 contracts valued at more than $1.3 billion.

Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO

Owner, M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC


Maria de Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO - is the owner of M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC; the author of "Procurement Methods: Effective Techniques;" an Independent Executive Director and a certified member of the John Maxwell Team. She is a Professional Speaker, Executive Coach, and Trainer. She is a DISC Personality and an Emotional Intelligence EQ i-2.0/EQ 360 Consultant. Ms. Coss is a Licensed Brain Trainer and a Certified Neuro-encoding Specialist. Ms. Coss is also an instructor for NIGP and the American Management Association, and a senior consultant for NIGP Consulting.  As a transformational leader and former Chief Procurement Officer, Ms. Coss invested two decades of her 27-year career successfully leading procurement transformations at some of the US's largest agencies such as the City of Houston, Cook County, University of Illinois, the Public Building Commission of Chicago, and the City of Chicago. She now leverages her experience and expertise to help individuals and organizations transform their performance to reach new heights within the continental US and its terrirories. She shares her expertise by providing training, consulting, and coaching. Ms. Coss continues to add value to the profession through her educational procurement transformation blog and podcast.  Ms. Coss graduated magna cum laude from the University of Puerto Rico and received her MPA from Florida State University. She has served on several boards, including the NIGP Board. She is the recipient of the 2016 Spirit of NIGP Award and the 2018 NIGP Integrity Award. Ms. Coss was recognized by Thinkers360 as one of the top 100 Women Thought Leaders to Follow and one of the Top 50 Global Influencers and Thought Leaders in Procurement. Ms. Coss is the Chair of the NIGP Talent Council Leadership Committee and a member of the John Maxwell Team President's Advisory Council.

Nick Canjar, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Procurement Agent III, City of Palm Bay


James (Nick) Canjar has worked for The City of Palm Bay for a year and a half. He holds a Bachelors of Applied Science in Organizational Management from Eastern Florida State and Bachelors of Arts in Event Management from the University of Central Florida.

Vitesh Patel

Procurement Manager, City of Little Rock


Vitesh Patel is passionate about supplier equity, vendor outreach, energy drinks, and butter chicken. He holds a master's degree from the University of Arkansas in Supply Chain Management. Mr. Patel  has worked in various roles in supply chain management over the last ten years. Mr. Patel currently holds the title, Procurement Manager at the City of Little Rock. Outside of work, he can be found being a jungle gym for his two daughters, Amelia and Avah and working at his family businesses.

Grace Enlow

Buyer, City of Little Rock


Grace Enlow is passionate about supplier engagement and developing innovative training documents for internal and external stakeholders. She graduated last year with a business degree from the University of Arkansas, and is currently in her second semester of her Master's Program in Supply Chain Management. Ms. Enlow currently holds the position of Buyer at the City of Little Rock. Outside of work, she can be found wakesurfing, studying for her exams, playing pickleball, or trying new types of coffee.

Toni Cook, MPA, MBA

Assistant Procurement Manager, City of Little Rock


Toni Cook has a passion for process improvement, advocating for equity for women, traveling, and soft-shell tacos. She grew up in Central Arkansas and loves extreme sports, virtual reality, and skydiving. Ms. Cook is an avid lifelong learner, as she is a graduate of Arkansas Tech University, Kentucky State University, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and the Arkansas Coding Academy. She holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration and one in Business Administration. As a procurement official with more than eight years of experience, she’s worked in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors, and specializes in ERP’s and technology procurement. Ms. Cookcurrently holds the title of Assistant Procurement Manager for the City of Little Rock. Outside of work, you will find Ms. Cook volunteering as a CASA or cheering on the Little Rock Rangers Semi- Pro Soccer Team.

Thao Hill, SVP

General manager and SVP for OpenGov Procurement


Thao Jones-Hill is the SVP for OpenGov Procurement where he leads their public procurement software roadmap. He is a Government Technology executive with 24 years of experience leading cloud-based software companies and projects at the Federal, State, Regional, and Local levels. Mr. Jones-Hill was a member of the founding executive team for Granicus, one of the world’s leading local government cloud-based software companies, for 10 years. During his tenure there, he led their highest profile project implementations, including The US House of Representatives, The US Senate, and the City of Los Angeles. He has led engineering teams, customer support teams, hosting infrastructure teams and sales and marketing teams, for several govtech companies including Granicus, Govdelivery, and Public Systems Associates. He has also worked as a reliability engineering consultant for Facebook, Google, Twitter, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Amazon, Pinterest, and CBS Interactive. He received his electrical engineering degree from Tennessee Technological University.

Jennifer L Olzinger, CPPB

Assistant Director-Procurement Manager, City of Pittsburgh, Office of Management and Budget


Jennifer Olzinger joined the Office of Management and Budget for the City of Pittsburgh, PA as the Assistant Director-Procurement Manager in September 2015. She is responsible for managing and coordinating the City’s procurement process, as well as overseeing the preparation and evaluation of bid proposals, selection of contractors and negotiation of contracts. Ms. Olzinger determines the procurement strategy for obtaining goods and services in the most effective and efficient manner; develops and enforces “best practice” policies and procedures to certify compliance with City Code; and ensures procurement practices are consistent, open and designed to encourage maximum competition and best value procurements. Ms. Olzinger and her team analyze the city-wide and departmental spending to identify opportunities to reduce costs and/or procure goods and services more efficiently and effectively to provide the best overall value to the City.  Ms. Olzinger is currently serving as the Second Vice President for the Pennsylvania Public Purchasing Association (PAPPA) for the 2019-2020 calendar year. She previously served as the PAPPA Board Secretary for the 2018-2019 term. She was also recently named to the first-ever NIGP Impact Circle, a task force created by NIGP to help them further develop their new Pathways educational programs to reduce the barriers to obtain NIGP certifications. In addition, the task force seeks to tailor their offerings to better prepare procurement staff across the Country to handle the varied “smart” technologies and more technically complex IOT procurements that Cities are looking to implement.  Ms. Olzinger served as Acting Director of the Office of Management & Budget from September 2018 – September 2019. In addition to her primary duties as Assistant Director, Ms. Olzinger also oversees all areas of the Department including Operating Budget, Capital Budget & Asset Management, Fleet, Grants and the administration of the Community Development Block Grant program. Prior to joining the City, she served as the Manager of Procurement Operations at Education Management, LLC, where she managed a team of buyers supporting the purchasing process for 100+ EDMC locations.

John D. Veal, Jr.

District Director, Oklahoma District Office, U.S. Small Business Administration


John D. Veal, Jr. is the District Director for the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Oklahoma District Office.  He directs the team that assists small business owners in accessing capital, obtaining technical assistance, and obtaining government contracting opportunities.  Veal holds a Master in Business Administration and a Master of Science in Accounting from Oklahoma City University.  He is also certified a NIGP-CPP; CPPB, and Level I Contracting Professional.

Stefanie Taylor, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPCM, CPPB

Contract Compliance Manager, Cobb County Department of Transportation 


Stefanie Taylor is the Contract Compliance Manager and Small Business Liaison for the Cobb County Department of Transportation (CDOT). She is responsible for planning and developing the processes to ensure compliance with Federal, State and Local mandated policies and regulations which include mandatory small business participation. Stefanie has 15+ years of government procurement and contracting experience and currently holds four professional certifications - NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPCM and CPPB.

Lisa Mehalko, NIGP-CPP, MBA, CPPO, CPSM

Director of Procurement, Georgia Technology Authority (GTA)


Lisa Mehalko is the Director of Procurement for the Georgia Technology Authority (GTA) overseeing statewide technology initiatives, with over $500M in spend annually. She has over 20 years of government procurement and currently holds a MBA. . She holds a NIGP-CPP, CPPO and CPSM from the ISM. Ms. Mehalko is a proud member of the national Finance Committee, serves as the Treasurer and Educational Chair of the Georgia Chapter of NIGP (GANIGP), and is also a board member of the Atlanta Chapter of ISM.

Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPPB, CPM

President of NIGP Code & Consulting, Periscope/NIGP Code & Consulting


Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, CPPO, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, C.P.M., CPM, is a dynamic international speaker, professional consultant and trainer. For over 30 years, Ms. Gillespie has served as an experienced thought-leader, advocate and volunteer leader in the procurement profession. As the former Chief Procurement Officer at the City of Tucson, she led one of country’s most highly acclaimed procurement organizations.  Retired from government service, Marcheta now serves as President of NIGP Code & Consulting, working with public and private industry to transform their procurement operations. Ms. Gillespie is the 2019 Albert H Hall recipient and 2017 Distinguished Service Award recipient, the highest honors bestowed upon individuals by NIGP.  Marcheta is a former Chair of the UPPCC Governing Board, Former President of NIGP and served on the NIGP Board of Directors for 10 years. She now serves on the NIGP Business Council and Chairs the NIGP Mentorship Committee. Ms. Gillespie has spoken at hundreds of international, national and regional events and authored numerous published works in the profession.

Maria Pirona, CPPO, MBA

County Procurement Officer, County of Orange, CA


Maria Pirona serves as the County of Orange Procurement Officer. She is responsible for overseeing the County’s procurement organization that includes over 260 Deputy Purchasing Agents across 22 County departments with a 2020 procurement spend of $1.6B.  Over the last 15 years, Ms. Pirona has served in various Procurement Leadership positions with OC Public Works, OC Waste & Recycling and the OC Health Care Agency giving her expertise in not only Commodities and Professional Service contracts but also Human Service, Architect and Engineering and Construction contracts. Prior to joining the County of Orange, Ms. Pirona spent seven years at Raytheon focusing on military defense contracts both domestic and international. Ms. Pirona earned her Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) from Pepperdine University and is a Certified Procurement Professional Officer (CPPO) through the National Institute of Government Purchasing. In 2020 Ms. Pirona received the California State Association of Counties (CSAC) County Procurement Officer of the Year Award.

Greg Tatar, J.D., MBA

Procurement Director, St Louis County, Missouri


Greg Tatar worked in New York City government for many years, eventually becoming Deputy Chief Contracting Officer for the Health Department and later the Department of Education. From there he moved to the San Diego Association of Governments, then to San Mateo County, CA as Procurement Director and later to the Southern California Regional Rail Authority as procurement director. Mr. Tatar currently serves as Procurement Director for St. Louis County. In addition to a J.D. and an M.B.A., he has been a budget analyst as well as Director of Facilities and IT.

Kirk Buffington, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPFIM, MBA

Retired


Kirk Buffington retired in June 2019, from the City of Fort Lauderdale, where he spent the last five years as Director of Finance.  Prior to serving in that capacity he served the City as Deputy Director of Finance, Director of Procurement Services, and Deputy Director of Administrative Services.  Before coming to the City of Fort Lauderdale, Kirk was the Purchasing Agent for Osceola County. In addition, Mr. Buffington has purchasing experience with the Orange County School Board, and as a Grocery Buyer with the Wal-Mart Corporation, and as a Receiving Supervisor with the Walt Disney World Co.  He has a B.S. in Business Administration from Florida State University, and an MBA, with a concentration in Procurement and Acquisitions Management, from Webster University, St. Louis, MO.  Mr. Buffington served as President of the Florida Association of Public Purchasing Officers and was elected to the NIGP Board of Directors in July 2003, and served as President of NIGP in 2008-2009.  In addition to his activities with NIGP, Mr. Buffington has also served the National Purchasing Institute, NPI, on their Selection and Evaluation Committee for the Achievement of Excellence in Procurement Award.  Mr. Buffington co-authored the NIGP text “The Legal Aspects of Public Purchasing” now in its third edition and has published  various articles concerning Procurement Case Law both in local news blogs, and in nationally peer reviewed academic journals.  In January, 2022, Mr. Buffington was admitted to the Masters of Legal Studies Program at the University of Cincinnati School of Law.

Amy Flack, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, PMP, CPPO, BA

Senior Manager, Non-Capital Program, Hillsborough County Aviation Authority


Amy Flack has over 16 years of public procurement experience, obtained her CPPB and CPPO and is working towards a bachelor’s degree in Legal Studies. She has successfully facilitated the procurement process for various projects, including Janitorial Services, Remote Baggage Check Services, Spa Services, Long-Term Disability Insurance Benefit Services, and Glass Cleaning Services. she is Procurement’s Training Administrator, responsible for supplier and Authority-wide staff procurement training. She currently serves on the Member Council for NIGP and as the Public Relations Director for the Airport Purchasing Group. Shewas named 2015 Buyer of the Year and 2017 Manager of the Year by her Chapter and the 2017 Inaugural Young Professional by NIGP National. She has served on NIGP’s Forum Committee and the Dictionary Update and NIGP-CPP Item Writing Task Forces. Ms. Flack has held various leadership roles within her local Chapter such as Treasurer, Vice President, President, Membership Director and currently serves as the Programs Chair.

Theresa Webb, M.A. CPPO, CPPB, CPSM, C.P.M.

Retired


Theresa Webb, M.A., NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M. has over 30 years of experience in procurement. In her leadership roles Ms. Webb oversaw the procurement of goods, services, technology, construction, concessions and capital improvement. She has Bachelor and Masters degrees in Business. Since retiring Ms. Webb has continued serving the profession as an NIGP Instructor, on NIGP coursework creation teams, as Chair of the NIGP Accreditation Committee and her role as consultant for Civic Initiatives.

Nathan Dawson

Procurement Manager II, South Carolina Fiscal Accountability Authority


Nathan Dawson serves as the Procurement Manger of the Sourcing Team for the Division of Procurement Services in South Carolina. His job is to assist State Agencies purchase goods and services whose value exceeds those Agencies’ certification levels. In other words, he buys stuff. The majority of that “stuff” is now IT-related – Mr. Dawson has purchased hardware and software solutions, ranging from electronic poll books for the presidential elections to grants management systems, as well as software maintenance and application development services. He is an active member of his local NIGP Chapter, as well as one of NIGP's instructors, teaching primarily the two Technology Procurement classes. He has presented at past NIGP and chapter Forums around the country. Originally from Australia, Mr. Dawson worked for both Federal and State Governments in Australia and England before moving to South Carolina 15 years ago and discovering his true calling as a procurement professional.  And no, he does not know Chris Hemsworth.

Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE

Corporate Procurement Program Manager, Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission


Stephanie Akerley is a Corporate Procurement Program Manager with The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission.  In 2017, Stephanie became an instructor for NIGP and shortly thereafter, began to write class content for NIGP technology courses.  In fact, Stephanie has participated in the creation and writing of all of the NIGP technology pathway courses.  Stephanie holds several certifications: NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CPPO and CTPE  and is a Radio NIGP staff member.

Myrna Quihuis, CPPB

Procurement Officer, Town of Queen Creek, AZ


Myrna Quihuis is a procurement officer working for the Town of Queen Creek, Arizona and has a combined 26 years experience working in government procurement. She has held various positions with municipal government agencies including the City of Chandler, City of Mesa and Town of Queen Creek. In her current role with the Town, she solicits, awards and manages contracts for various goods and services for a variety of departments and most recently the newly formed Police department.   Ms. Quihuis was part of the transition team that launched a police department within 18 months which brought on many challenges during Covid and supply chain issues.  Ms. Quihuis is a member of the National Institute of Government Procurement (NIGP) and a member of the local chapter of NIGP, Capitol Chapter, where she has served on past regional conference committees. She also holds a Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) designation from the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council (UPPCC).

Melissa Bauer

Procurement Manager, Town of Queen Creek, AZ


Melissa Bauer is the Procurement Manager for the Town of Queen Creek, Arizona where she provides leadership and oversight of the Finance Department Procurement Division. She has 32 years’ experience working in government procurement where she has held various positions within State, County and municipal government agencies that include the State of Wisconsin and Arizona, Maricopa County and the Town of Queen Creek.  Ms. Bauer has served on the Maricopa Association of Governments Elderly and Persons with Disabilities Transportation Committee and the Regional Domestic Violence Council.  She has received a Platinum Excellence award from the State of Arizona for Mass Communications Systems Team and a National Association of County Governments (NACO) Award for Project Management System (PAM). Melissa is a member of the National Institute of Government Procurement (NIGP) and a member of the local chapter of NIGP, Capitol Chapter

Toni Cook

Assistant Procurement Manager, City of Little Rock


 

Vitesh Patel

Procurement Manager, City of Little Rock


Vitesh Patel is passionate about supplier equity, vendor outreach, energy drinks, and butter chicken. He holds a master's degree from the University of Arkansas in Supply Chain Management. Mr. Patel  has worked in various roles in supply chain management over the last ten years. Mr. Patel currently holds the title, Procurement Manager at the City of Little Rock. Outside of work, he can be found being a jungle gym for his two daughters, Amelia and Avah and working at his family businesses.

Christin Webb, NIGP-CPP, MBA

Administrator of Purchasing, Shelby County Government


Christin Webb is a procurement leader who holds a bachelors degree from the Univ. of Memphis and an MBA from Webster Univ. She is a Certified Professional Public Buyer and NIGP Certified Procurement Professional. With over 15 years of combined management and procurement experience in public and private industry, she serves as the Administrator of Purchasing for Shelby County Government. She is the VP of the Tennessee Association of Public Purchasing and is an NIGP Talent Council member.

Carol Neelis

Contract Management Specialist, New York State Office of General Services


Carol Neelis is a Contract Management Specialist at the New York State Office of General Services where she is the primary manager of the Vehicle Marketplace. Her duties include the day to day management of the platform which includes the review of vehicle use requests, posting of the documents and the review of results.

Heidi Langley

Team Leader, New York State Office of General Services


Heidi Langley is a Team Leader at the New York State Office of General Services where she supervises a team of Contract Management Specialists overseeing Fleet related contracts for automobiles, buses, heavy duty equipment, electric vehicle charging stations, vehicle lifts and garage equipment and related parts and supplies.

Rhonna Endres, FMP, CME, CIP

Executive Director, Center for JOC Excellence (CJE)


Rhonna Endres, CME, FMP, CJP is the Executive Director for the Center for Job Order Contracting Excellence (CJE).  CJE is the national non-profit industry association assisting both governments and contractors with education, certification, credentialing, and best practices for job order contracting. For over 30 years, Rhonna has been an avid voice and subject matter expert on efficient alternative construction project delivery methods. Her early career was served in architecture followed by many years in program management and construction management. She has authored numerous papers serving as a subject matter expert on both higher education and government facilities in addition to her expertise in job order contracting. She teaches workshops on a regular basis, manages the national certification and CJP credentialing programs, and consults on cost savings in JOC procurement.   Rhonna is certified in change management, facilities management, ethical leadership, government compliance, nonprofit compliance, construction management, pursuit management, and is a Certified JOC Professional (CJP).  In addition to her role on the nation’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Council, she serves on national committees advising government facilities and procurement groups. Her undergraduate degree is in interior architecture and her graduate studies were in political science, construction, and leadership.

Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.

Chief Procurement Officer, City of Norfolk, VA


Michael Bevis is an internationally recognized thought leader in the public procurement profession. He is currently Chief Procurement Officer for the City of Norfolk, Virginia, where he is charged with integrating business, technology, operations and budgeting goals to further the City’s commitment to grow Norfolk’s economy and adopt programs that build a solid foundation for partnering with the business community. He currently serves the Chair of the Center for Job Order Contracting Excellence and in the immediate past Chair of the Governing Board of NIGP the Institute for Public Procurement; he also represents the International Federation of Purchasing and Supply Management on the Global Standards Board. Michael’s professionalism has been recognized by NIGP (Agency Advancement Award, Distinguished Service Award, Pareto Award of Excellence, Manager of the Year, Outstanding Agency Accreditation and Innovation awards), IFPSM (the Lewis Spangler Award), National Purchasing Institute (Achievement of Excellence in Procurement – awarded to his jurisdictions 18 times).  Mr. Bevis’s teaching experiences include 23 years as an Instructor for NIGP, independent curriculum and training development for various agencies. Mr. Bevis is a graduate of Georgetown University Law School (JD), Lincoln Memorial University (BA magna cum laude) and has completed post graduate studies at North Central College (Leadership Studies) and Northern Illinois University (Public Administration).  He holds the NIGP-CPP, a CPPO from the UPPCC and the CPSM and lifetime CPM from the Institute for Supply Management.

Rebecca Heiss - Keynote

After earning her PhD with research designated as “transformative” by the National Science Foundation, Dr. Rebecca Heiss went on to hold multiple appointments in academia and applying her research to solve practical problems in overcoming what she refers to as “biological ghosts” - subconscious behaviors that haunt modern life. She is currently launching a new self-awareness, 360-review app, called Icueity (I-cue-it-ee), to help every individual reach her, or his, full potential, and finishing her new book, Instinct, due to be published in May 2021. She has been honored to speak internationally on her work, including multiple TEDx talks, and has found her calling in helping others recognize the power of biological applications in their lives. Rebecca lives in South Carolina with her spoiled rotten dog, named Guinness, and tries every day to live her life motto: “spread happy.”

** Schedule is subject to change. **
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