NIGP Forum 2024 - Schedule of Sessions
Full Session Listing

NIGP Forum 2024

In Person & Virtual

August 25 - 28, 2024

NIGP Forum 2024 Session Schedule

 

 

NIGP Learning Paths

     

Cornerstones

Leadership

Workshop

Construction

RFPs  

Technology

Current Conversation

Industry Expertise

Case Study

* All sessions, except the entity networking sessions, will be live streamed, recorded and on demand for 60 days post forum.


Use the filters below to view sessions by session type or topic.  The Level Filter allows you to view those sessions available at the Foundation Level and those for the Advanced Practitioner.

Schedule times are in Eastern Standard Time

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  • Foundation Learning Sessions: 
    Tailored for professionals who are seeking to understand and master the fundamentals of public procurement. The content in these sessions is foundation to intermediate, designed to ensure that attendees acquire the fundamentals of the topic moving towards proficiency. 
     
  • Advanced Learning Sessions: 
    Aimed at professionals who have mastered the foundations of procurement and are looking for more advanced content. Advanced sessions are premised on the assumption that attendees already have a solid understanding of the basic concepts, allowing the sessions to delve into new and more complex topics promptly. This level is intended to enhance and expand the participants’ expertise. 
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Saturday, August 24, 2024
 
Time
Session
Speakers
In Person/Virtual
Details
 
4:30 PM - 5:30 PM
First Timers/Young Professionals Event

IN PERSON

In Person Only
 
 
4:30 PM - 6:30 PM
Meet & Greet

IN PERSON

In Person Only
 
Sunday, August 25, 2024
 
Time
Session
Speakers
In Person/Virtual
Details
 
8:00 AM - 9:45 AM
Opening Plenary - Every Conversation Counts: Building Extraordinary Relationships in a Changed World

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1


Long before the era of ‘quiet quitting,’ loneliness was a social epidemic in our society. In an age of polarization, disconnection, and shallow substitutes for real relationships, every leader needs to know how to build and maintain meaningful relationships with clients and teams alike in our hybrid reality.

DRAWING FROM RIAZ’S YEARS OF EXPERIENCE INTERVIEWING ESTABLISHED LEADERS IN BUSINESS, ENTERTAINMENT, AND INNOVATION, WE WILL GAIN THE FOLLOWING INSIGHTS:

  • Spark real, authentic conversations to make meaningful connections, personally and professionally
  • Earn trust and build inclusive cultures, as you listen without distraction and make your small talk bigger
  • De-escalate conflict and collaborate effectively by leading with assertive empathy
  • Craft and tell compelling stories that will motivate your audience to take action
  • Explore the questions that create breakthrough moments in any conversation
Riaz Meghji
In Person and Virtual
 
9:45 AM - 1:15 PM
Break

VIRTUAL

Virtual Only
 
 
10:15 AM - 11:45 AM
Entity Networking Sessions

IN PERSON

 Contact Hours: 1.5

In Person Only
 
1:15 PM - 2:30 PM
Collaborate to Innovate: Key Trends for Public Procurement in 2024

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Euna Solutions will be releasing our annual, cutting-edge State of Public Sourcing (SOPS) report, revealing significant data and insights from procurement professionals like you. On Sunday, August 25th at 1:15 PM, join Euna Solutions and fellow procurement peers to discuss and review key trends in procurement, such as:    

  • Adjusting to economic changes, workforce shifts, and the rising cost of business operations 
  • Using technology for better collaboration in and outside the agency for strategic purchasing 
  • Meeting their communities' strategic goals such as vendor diversity and sustainability  
  • Deliberately considering AI and other emerging tools to achieve efficient, compliant procurement 
In Person and Virtual
 
1:15 PM - 2:30 PM
Concierge Live! Concierge Live! Find your Education & Career Path

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In a fun, interactive session, experienced procurement leaders will use a hands-on approach to literally walk participants through their current state, future goals and aspirations, and help them align the best educational, certification, and growth opportunities available to get them to where they want to be for their future. This Concierge Live! session will get participants out of their seats, following question prompts, and joining groups around the room to receive cards that will map out a clear learning path in a fun way. Attendees will meet others on the same journey and will take home a recommended personal path forward. The Concierge Team will also be available after Forum for coaching, guiding, and mentoring as participants move forward. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Discover where you are on your procurement professional growth, learning, and career path, and meet others on the same journey. 

  • Explore the NIGP Pathways educational and certification options that best fit your personal experience and education levels, their career goals and aspirations. 

  • Apply an individualized path forward to your job, with a recommended plan to take home. 

Cheral Manke, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPM, Keith Glatz, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, Carl Bonitto, CSCMP, Christine Coghill, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB , Donald Buffum, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, Jody Jacoby, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, Joe Benjamin, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, FCCM
In Person and Virtual
 
1:15 PM - 2:30 PM
Job Order Contracting: Procurement and the Development of a New Program

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25

Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M., Rhonna Endres, FMP, CME, CIP
In Person and Virtual
 
1:15 PM - 2:30 PM
Generative AI Powered Intelligent eProcurement and Supplier Relationship Management Using Strategic and Tactical Spend, and Contract Management Data

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


This session shows step-by-step with examples and case studies of strategic purchasing and supplier relationship management (SRM) initiatives how an intelligent system powered by generative AI using spend analytics and contract management data is utilized. Smart eProcurement guided by insights from aggregate spend data, benchmarks, trends, dashboards, Pareto analysis, and contract administration data can provide an incredible result for procurement processes and optimized SRM.  

Spend Analysis from all sources within the organization (i.e. purchasing card, eProcurement systems, etc.). This valuable information can be used to make strategic decisions by first providing answers to such questions as: what was bought; when it was bought; where it was purchased; how many suppliers were used and how much was spent with each; how much was paid for the item. The spend analytics data can provide insights into procurement strategy and SRM.  

Generative AI is a modern technique providing hidden insights in dynamic complex processes. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Discover Generative AI (Gen AI) as applicable to sourcing, contract management, and spend analytics. 

  • Apply modern techniques like Pareto Analysis, Artificial Intelligence, and GenAI in the insights driven procurement processes. 

  • Learn creative techniques how spend analytics data and contract management can be utilized with GenAI to achieve better Supplier Relationship Management (SRM). 

Sheema Mirchandani, CDPSE, Sam Adhikari
In Person and Virtual
 
1:15 PM - 2:30 PM
Let's Get Awkward! A Candid Look at Unpredictable Procurement Plot Twists

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join us for an engaging and thought-provoking presentation where we'll dive deep into the dynamic world of public procurement, where unexpected challenges can arise at any moment. This session will guide you through a series of real-life scenarios, providing you with a front-row seat to the procurement professional's dilemma. Through a "What Would You Do?" examination, we'll explore the critical moments when resilience and discretion become paramount. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Apply decision-making skills in high pressure situations. 

  • Explore adaptation strategies in dynamic procurement environments. 

  • Discover key takeaways from real-world procurement successes and challenges. 

Carrie Mathes, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, APP, CPPB, C.P.M., CFCM, MPA, Zulay Millan, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, FCCM, CPPB
In Person and Virtual
 
1:15 PM - 2:30 PM
You Think What? How Conducting a Survey Inspired Effective Changes at the City of Scottsdale

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


What do your customers think of your Procurement Department? If "Black Hole," "Slow," "A Roadblock," "No Training or Clear Direction," or any other form of negativity comes to mind, come hear how the City of Scottsdale overcame some of that perception by conducting a survey and creating an effective action plan from the results. 

Learning Outcomes 

After attending this session, you will be able to 

  • Survey customers to learn what they think of the purchasing department. 

  • Conduct discussions with your procurement team to create effective efficiencies internally, review process changes, provide consistent messaging, and provide professional development for team members. 

  • Engage stakeholders to listen to what they have to say.  

  • Train, share knowledge, and create tools for end users. 

  • Create an action plan for what you intend to do, and communicate the plan.  

Jenn Myers, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CPPO
In Person and Virtual
 
1:15 PM - 2:30 PM
Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Post Covid, there is an emergence of a new kind of leader. This leader offers a combination of expected skills, flexibility, and collaboration. Leadership now encompasses a high level of empathy over experience, coaching in lieu of correction, and authenticity instead of authority. The new leader knows when to lead, when to follow, and when to get out of the way. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Evaluate your team and develop team learning goals to strengthen the team's performance. 

  • Assess the team's current rising leaders and provide guidance and mentoring for their success. 

  • Participants new to procurement will explore resources and assess leadership to plan an effective path through their procurement journey. 

Yolanda Broome, JD, AMInstLM, NIGP-CPP, CPP, CPPM, CGPP, Kawanna Woods
In Person and Virtual
 
2:30 PM - 5:30 PM
Expo

IN PERSON

In Person Only
 
 
6:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Awards Dinner

IN PERSON

In Person Only
 
Monday, August 26, 2024
 
Time
Session
Speakers
In Person/Virtual
Details
 
8:00 AM - 8:45 AM
Plenary Session

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 0.75


 

In Person and Virtual
 
9:00 AM - 1:30 PM
Expo

IN PERSON

In Person Only
 
 
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Entity Networking Sessions

VIRTUAL

Virtual Only
 
 
1:45 PM - 4:45 PM
Level Up Your Cooperative Procurement Game

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 3


Cooperative Procurement is a simple solution with complex components. Its use has grown over the past decade and more public procurement teams are taking advantage of its benefits. While many know the basics, as procurement faces increasing challenges and more complicated issues, there are many factors and new ways to consider in developing a cooperative procurement strategy.  This specially designed workshop, with sports analogies and games to drive home learning objectives, is for professionals who have the goal to take their cooperative procurement knowledge to the next level. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Learn about new ideas and features of emerging technologies and cooperative contracts 

  • Discover how construction and consulting use is growing and how that differs from commodity purchases through a cooperative contract 

  • Tackle tough issues regarding federal funding, emergencies and comparing cooperative options 

  • Hear from a panel of experts who will share their own insights and success stories 

  • Learn how to present the concept of cooperative procurement to decision-makers 

  • Work through real scenarios and learn from others 

Tammy Rimes, MPA, Duff Erholtz, Crosby Grindle
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 4:45 PM
The "In the Know” Negotiator - An Advanced Workshop in Negotiating Tactics

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 3


No matter how well prepared you are for a negotiation on paper, the best preparation is experience and practice. This workshop will allow you to practice negotiation tactics and learn to recognize specific tactics and how to diffuse them. Participants will negotiate with each other, learn how to identify and diffuse tactics, and ultimately negotiate with the facilitator. Whether you are just learning how to negotiate or are fine-tuning your skills, come join us for an immersive negotiating experience. This session is for advanced practitioners looking to experience real-world practical negotiation scenarios, including identification and navigation of negative tactics.   

Pre-requisites: attendees should have foundations of negotiations or experiencing participating in or leading negotiations. 

 Learning Outcomes 

  • Identify negative negotiation tactics. 

  • Experience various negotiation tactics in a simulated negotiation so these tactics are not a surprise during real negotiations. 

  • Practice negotiating with stakeholders who may not have the same approach or ethics. 

  • Research, prepare, and practice in real world negotiations. 

Sean Carroll, NIGP-CPP, CPPO
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 4:45 PM
Building Contract Administration Plans

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 3


When developing a contract administration plan (CAP), it is important to clearly identify deliverables, collaborate with the team on performance management strategies and reporting requirements, and analyze risks to create mitigation plans. As procurement officials, even if we are not always involved, we need to know how to support successful contracts. During this workshop you and your colleagues will review a CAP template and complete sections for two challenging contracts — gaining examples and insights to guide your future contract administration.

Learning Outcomes 

  • Examine deliverables and determine missing elements. 
  • Develop performance management strategies and reporting requirements.
  • Identify unique contract risks, their probabilities, and impacts.
  • Evaluate any missed opportunities in the CAP within your group.
Kristy Varda, NIGP-CPP, MS, MBA, CPPO CPPB
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Learning Path Construction Session 1 - Procurement Planning Capital Improvement Construction

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Are you always pulled in when things go south after contract award, only to find out that there was a poor contract administration plan for the end user to follow, or none at all? Together with your colleagues, in this workshop you will review some suggestions for how to help the end users build better contract administration plans. Then we will tackle a couple of "tough" contracts by working in groups to review and build contract administration plans that will actually work. Also, we will use a bit of AI to see how we did! 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Examine unique attributes of a contract that need to be included in a CAP. 

  • Develop the framework of a CAP and be able to manipulate that framework for each unique contract. 

  • Apply templates to determine whether everything needed in the CAP has been addressed. 

  • Evaluate within each group any missed opportunities in the developed CAP. 

John Adler, CPPO, Lavonia Horne-Williams, Richard Formella, DBIA, PMP
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Learning Path Technology Session 1 - Ensure Responsible Use of AI for Procurement Tasks

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In the first session for the Technology Path, we delve into the heart of leveraging AI responsibly in procurement processes. Our experts will guide attendees through the development of practical guidelines to ensure AI is used ethically and effectively. We'll explore the significance of scrutinizing supplier use of entity data within AI platforms, ensuring transparency, and fostering trust. This session is designed to empower procurement professionals with the knowledge to harness AI technology while maintaining the highest standards of responsibility and data security. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Develop guidelines for practical and responsible AI use. 

  • Assess the supplier use of entity data within an AI platform.

Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC, Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE, Nathan Dawson
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Make Your Digital Transformation (DX) Easier and More Successful: Myths & Realities of Behavior Change

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Tripping over AI? End users’ resistance to e-procurement? Inefficient, manual processes? Let’s talk about it. Because while the world continues to change, we know there are some things that do not. For one, you can’t have a successful digital transformation without behavior change.  “Transformation” means people will be doing things differently. This session will challenge myths and realities confronting leaders about both digital transformation and change management—and provide practical solutions for cutting through the noise (and it’s noisy!) and focusing on what’s actually important. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Evaluate the readiness of your organization for digital transformation
  • Recognize digital transformation as a dynamic, ongoing process—not disparate projects
  • Construct strategies to get the right people on board and ensure they lead successfully throughout your transformation
  • Discover how to inspire end users (from procurement and other impacted groups) to want to (not have to) achieve the vision for success
Carolina Aguilera, PhD, Tim Nolan, Ph.D
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Natural Disasters: Before, During and Afterwards - What We Learned from Hurricane Ian

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Hurricane Ian, one of the most powerful storms to ever hit the US, made landfall on southwest Florida's Gulf Coast on September 28, 2022. Ian's 150 mph winds and heavy rains knocked out power for 2.6 million residents and caused $12.6 billion in insured losses. The hurricane came ashore near Cayo Costa, in Lee County, as a major Category 4 storm, with maximum sustained winds were only seven miles per hour shy of a Category 5. 

The Procurement Manager and Emergency Management Manager will be sharing information on what went well, what didn't, and what we have learned to improve our response in the future. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Discover how to plan for a disaster. 

  • Discover best practices before, during and after a disaster. 

  • Apply our lessons learned to improve your disaster planning. 

  • Use information shared to create a disaster work plan for your entity. 

Denise Finn, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M.,, Kristina Mathews
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Before the Crowd Goes Wild: The Dress Rehearsal - Communication Planning for Effective Communication

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Who's line is it anyway?  Strong communication requires planning; in this session we will explore the value of communication planning and how it relates to truly understanding and connecting with your audience.  Attendees will learn the elements of a communication plan including translating your message into a language your audience will understand. With the help of some fun improv acting, attendees will witness (and maybe even participate in) communication in action to help learn empathy in communication, active listening, and relationship building. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Engage better with Vendors. Share relevant information in a way that makes sense to the vending community. 

  • Advocate for a seat at the table. Translating your information into information that matters to your leadership, end user departments, or other stakeholder to help them see Procurement as a trusted advisor. 

  • Build better working relationships with your peers. With a little planning you will better articulate your values, concerns and needs. 

  • Better results and authentic conversations with your subordinates. Practicing empathy and active listening will help build trust.  

Tara Acton, NIGP-CPP, CPPB
In Person and Virtual
 
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
Increasing Vendor Participation - Don't Go It Alone By MDF Commerce

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


A key challenge many Public Procurement professionals face is garnering increased vendor participation. In this collaborative presentation, we will address this vital issue, offering professionals actionable strategies to enhance the number of bid responses from vendors.  

Explore practical methods to create a more inviting and accessible bidding environment. This includes leveraging digital platforms for broader outreach, simplifying bid processes to encourage more applications, and fostering transparent, open communication channels to build trust with potential vendors.  

Attendees will gain insights into effective vendor engagement practices, learn how to diversify their vendor pool and discover techniques to make their procurement processes more appealing. This session will equip procurement professionals with the tools and knowledge to increase vendor engagement and ensure a competitive, diverse, and effective bidding environment. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Gain insights into effective vendor engagement practices. 
  • Learn how other entities have diversified the vendor pool. 
  • Plan for diversifying vendor pool. 
  • Discover tools and knowledge to increase vendor engagement. 
  • Be better prepared to ensure a competitive, diverse, and effective bidding environment. 
Kim Cullen
In Person and Virtual
 
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
New Approaches to Leveraging ESG Reporting in Supplier Evaluation by Cintas

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25

Ryan Duncan
In Person and Virtual
 
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
The Future of Procurement: How to Set Yourself Up for Success

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join us as we delve into emerging trends and innovations shaping cooperative purchasing within public procurement. We'll touch on new technologies, address common misconceptions, and explore other key topics.

Matt Dugal, Matthew Bauer, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.M., CPSM, David Wheeler, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Mike Grade
In Person and Virtual
 
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
Current Conversations: BECOMING A HUMAN BEING—Driving leadership and courageous conservations to support employee mental wellness!

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


During this interactive session, participations will engage in courageous leadership conversations, explore mindful activities, share in group discussions about the role of leadership to include: modeling positive behaviors, flexibility in the work place, positive conservations to support employee's mental and emotional health, discuss employee training options. In addition, we will collaborate and participate in focused discussions around policies and procedural changes needed for promoting improved mental health in organizations, to develop an agile working environment conducive to the employee overall well-being. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Develop strategies and techniques for leading discussions about mental wellness with employees. 

  • Explore tools and resources for improving your overall health (i.e. mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical, etc.) 

  • Identify methods for creating a leadership mindset for improving employee well-being. 

Bobbie Tolston, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Jody Jacoby, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, Lourdes Coss, MPA, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, Cie Armstead, MPA, DBA
In Person and Virtual
 
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
Learning Path RFPs Session 1 - Yellow Flag: Getting Ready for the RFP

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In the first session of the RFP Path, we will dive into the foundational steps of crafting a robust RFP process, focusing on the organization of workload schedules, and identifying key milestones critical to the RFP process. This session will guide attendees through allocating RFP resources, emphasizing the RASCI model to delineate roles and responsibilities between end users and procurement professionals. Additionally, the session will explore strategies for assessing and mitigating a wide range of risks. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Create an RFP workload schedule and critical milestones. 

  • Allocate RFP resources. 

  • Communicate your RFP plan while “keeping the end in mind”, based on agreed SLA expectations. 

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Victor Leamer, CPPB , Kevin Yin, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP CPPO
In Person and Virtual
 
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
Artificial Intelligence: The Impact on Society and Public Procurement - Opportunities & Pitfalls

 Contact Hours: 1.25


The age of AI is clearly here, bringing some great tools and applications. The question all of us face is how we can best use it now, what we need to be aware of, and what dangers we should avoid. Today’s public procurement professionals need to know about every aspect of AI in government. This session will provide a healthy overview and dive into the many particulars of this emerging technology.

Learning outcomes

  • Will robots and AI take our jobs?
  • Understand the growing human-machine partnership
  • Learn what AI tools can enhance professional creativity & performance
  • Ethical considerations require care and attention
  • Exactly, what are we purchasing for and with AI?
  • Future AI directions and impact on public managers
Dr. Alan R. Shark
In Person and Virtual
 
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
Building Bridges: Strengthening Procurement-Department Partnerships

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Department end users often know what they want to buy, but they don’t know the procurement process. Procurement professionals know the process but are often discouraged that client departments see them as an obstacle to getting things done. If this sounds like what you deal with, then come learn about how you can be seen as a value-added partner and develop stronger working relationships with your departments. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Define the relationship Procurement would like to have with department end users in their entities. 

  • Apply strategies and tactics to build stronger relationships with client departments and become more customer-centric. 

  • Explore trainings and tools to empower department end users around procurement knowledge. 

Jedediah Greenfield, CPA, CTCD, CTCM
In Person and Virtual
 
3:30 PM - 4:45 PM
Procurement and Vendor Academies - Building Capacities

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


This session will highlight Miami-Dade County Strategic Procurement Department’s innovative and forward-thinking strategies in the establishment of a Procurement Academy and a Vendor Academy aimed at capacity building. With the evolutionary nature of public procurement, capacity building is vital for the efficient and effective functioning of a procurement system. The Procurement Academy empowers the County’s procurement professionals with knowledge and skills to implement sustainable procurement initiatives and respond to issues such as supply chain disruptions, globalization, and technology while the Vendor Academy helps vendors to understand the County’s procurement system and their responsibilities and obligation in the procurement process. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Develop procurement professionals to be strategic resources by strengthening their procurement knowledge and skills. 

  • Apply networking strategies to assist with the development and growth of procurement professionals. 

  • Explore vendor outreach and education initiatives that will increase the vendor base, promote competition and innovation, and provide an understanding of the procurement process, compliance requirements and best practices for effective participation in public procurement. 

Sophia Cunnigham, NIGP-CPP, MBA, MSc., CPPO, CPPB, Christopher Grant-Henriques, MBA, CPPB, FCCM
In Person and Virtual
 
6:30 PM - 10:30 PM
Social Event: Charlotte Motor Speedway – Buckle Up

IN PERSON

Join us at the Charlotte Motor Speedway for a fun-filled evening of food, drinks, music, dancing, games, and the chance to experience the excitement of NASCAR racing. Read more

In Person Only
Tuesday, August 27, 2024
 
Time
Session
Speakers
In Person/Virtual
Details
 
8:00 AM - 9:15 AM
Plenary: Escape the Type A Trap: Three Steps to Beat Burnout and Sustain Peak Performance

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1


After years of uncertainty, people from all industries and walks of life feel tired, disillusioned, stuck, overwhelmed and burnt out. They want a better way to succeed and stay at peak performance without the constant hustle and grind that ultimately leads them to burn out.  

Helping individuals and organizations break free from burnout is Erin’s mission with every keynote. Her three practical and easy-to-implement steps, coupled with her unique and inspiring message lead to real, measurable outcomes. Audiences leave feeling excited, re-engaged, motivated and fired-up again, not only about their work, but their lives. And most importantly, they leave with a toolkit they can put to use immediately to start seeing results quickly. 

As a result of this program attendees will:

  • Identify burnout warning signs before it’s too late.
  • Reevaluate priorities and processes to increase energy and joy.
  • Cultivate a mental health toolkit to maximize wellbeing when overwhelmed or burnt out.
  • Transform their perspective to increase resilience and sustain peak performance.
  • Feel seen, heard and hopeful. 
Erin Stafford
In Person and Virtual
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Learning Path Construction Session 2 - Procurement Methods for Alternate Project Delivery Methods

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In the second session for the Construction Path, we do a deep dive into alternate project delivery methods, focusing on the procurement strategies for Design-Build (DB) and Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR) contractors. Explore the nuances of each method, from the initial procurement stages to final selection, and gain insights into the best practices that lead to successful project outcomes. Come join for a holistic view of innovative procurement options tailored for the evolving landscape of construction projects. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Procuring a design build contractor. 

  • Procuring a Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR) contractor.  

John Adler, CPPO, Lavonia Horne-Williams, Richard Formella, DBIA, PMP
In Person and Virtual
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Learning Path Technology Session 2 - Review and Engage in Cyber Security Protocols

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In the second session for the Technology Path, we focus on fortifying your procurement operations against cyber threats. Participants will learn to identify their vulnerabilities and craft strategic plans to preemptively address these risks. We'll guide you through the creation of a robust checklist, designed to navigate the immediate actions required in the event of a cyber-attack. This session is essential for procurement professionals aiming to enhance their cyber resilience, ensuring the safety and integrity of their operations in an increasingly digital world. 

Learning Outcomes

  • Assess your own technology vulnerabilities. 

  • Develop plans to proactively mitigate technology risks. 

  • Develop a checklist of actions to take when a cyber-attack happens. 

Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC, Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE, Nathan Dawson
In Person and Virtual
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Putting the Pieces in Place: Solving the Puzzle of Connecting Supplier Evaluations, Scorecards and Rating

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Struggling to fit your procurement "piece" into your entity's big picture strategy? Puzzled by supplier evaluations? Do you find you are "missing pieces" between connecting how your customer described what they needed and getting the right supplier to deliver that need? Choosing the right supplier who excels in fulfilling a contract can be a challenge, but it should not be a matter of chance. You are a critical piece of the puzzle! Effective supplier performance management requires procurement professionals to carefully plan and take deliberate steps to identify, engage, and assess the top suppliers in the market. Evaluating a supplier’s performance enhances the likelihood of successful outcomes for both the entity and the contractor. Join this insightful conversation between suppliers and industry experts as we explore ways your organization can achieve better community outcomes through effective supplier performance management

Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPPB, CPM
In Person and Virtual
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Fell Into Procurement - Now What? Creating a Professional Development Action Plan

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Most of us fell into this complicated profession from an array of backgrounds, and without procurement-specific education or training. We will help attendees navigate public procurement, understand procurement organization types, positions and career paths available, then identify different ways to expand knowledge, skills and abilities through key resources and ideas for connecting with peers in today's virtual space. 

We will then discuss and share our own experiences around learning, answering questions about actions procurement professionals can take, and end with sharing our very own action plans and how we accomplished those goals and continue to revisit them. At the end of the session, we will provide the participants a career development action plan they can complete right away on their own or with a colleague or mentor. 

Learning Outcomes 

By the end of the session, attendees will be able to:  

  • Identify the hard and soft skills needed to reach their own professional goals and milestones. 
  • Understand avenues to develop these skills outside of the traditional pathways.  
  • Create a plan to take action on one or more opportunities in the year ahead. 
Cheral Manke, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPM, Ginny Justiniano, CPPB, John Tigert, Whitney Mugford-Smith, NIGP-CPP, CPPB
In Person and Virtual
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Managing Up! Elected Officials, Governing Bodies, and the Like

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


This session delves into the nuanced art of "managing up" within the context of public procurement. Managing up, a skill vital for procurement professionals, involves strategically navigating relationships with higher-ups—including elected officials and governing bodies—to ensure the smooth operation of procurement processes. This workshop aims to equip attendees with the tools and techniques necessary to enhance their communication and relationship-building skills, enabling them to more effectively influence and collaborate with those in positions of authority. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Enhance Communication Skills: Attendees will learn how to effectively communicate with elected officials and governing bodies, including how to articulate the value of procurement initiatives in terms that resonate with these stakeholders. 

  • Discover Influencing Techniques: Participants will gain strategies for influencing the decision-making processes of higher-ups, ensuring that procurement projects receive the necessary support and resources. 

  • Enhance Relationship Building: Attendees will leave with practical tips for building and maintaining positive relationships with elected officials and governing bodies, contributing to smoother procurement operations and better outcomes for their organizations. 

  • Navigate Conflict Management: Techniques for managing conflicts and navigating political sensitivities, ensuring that procurement operations can proceed smoothly even in challenging environments. 

Christin Webb, NIGP-CPP, MBA
In Person and Virtual
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
How Do I Cancel a Contract, Oh My, and What are the Legal Ramifications for All Parties

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Do you often send out the Mass Casualty Cleanup Procurement & Contract Specialist (M.C.C.P.C.S.) to fix contract issues after the fact? Do you shy away from contract cancellations, contract administration, and are unsure of the legal ramifications of doing so? Do want proven steps for contract administration? 

Then this learning session is for you! Learn how to create an airtight RFP, gain knowledge about contract cancellation and the legal ramifications involved, and take home examples of contract language to add when you face conflicting terms or conditions.  

Learning Outcomes 

  • Gain confidence in "How to Cancel a Contract,” with clearly defined steps to follow. 

  • Learn the importance of having clearly defined solicitation or bid documents.  

  • Gain knowledge about performance management and why it is an important part of a contract, solicitation, or bid document. 

Polly Alles
In Person and Virtual
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Introduction to Risk Management and Bonds: Everything You Wanted to Know about Surety Bonds but Were Afraid to Ask

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


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. This online training session is targeted at beginning procurement professionals. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Describe the types of surety bonds. 

  • Identify when to use a particular type of bond. 

  • Give examples of how the surety provides the assurance that a contractor can perform. 

Kirk Buffington, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPFIM, MBA
In Person and Virtual
 
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Vendor Onboarding as a Value Driver for Procurement

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Your entire organization relies upon the data within your vendor master file every day. Procurement, risk, finance, business owners...decisions are made, deals are struck, and risk is assessed based on what has been input into your ERP. With so much as stake, why do so many organizations consider vendor onboarding and management as a tactical, administrative function rather than the strategic gateway to better business than it is? 

Procurement leaders from NC State University and Cabarrus County will share their organizations' unique journeys with how automating vendor onboarding transformed their procurement team's processes and organizational value. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Unlock the impact of vendor onboarding and management on delivering organizational value. 

  • Calculate the organizational costs of manual vendor onboarding and change management. 

  • Evaluate the efficacy of your payables strategy and assess the role vendor onboarding plays in impacting preferred payment types. 

Sharon Loosman, Tom Nunn
In Person and Virtual
 
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
What Do They Want?? How to Give Your Customers What they Really, Really Want by Amazon Web Services

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Procurement leaders are constantly faced with meeting their customers' demands, but can struggle to figure out exactly what they need—and what to do about it. This often leads to procuring solutions that do not meet customer needs. At Amazon, we have the same challenge and use a "Working Backwards" approach to determine what problem or opportunity the customer really has and to define a solution to address that. In this hands-on session, attendees will be guided through the "Working Backwards" methodology to identify a solution to a real-world procurement challenge they might face. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Understand who your customers really are. 
  • Learn how to identify customer problems and opportunities. 
  • Learn how to identify solutions that address those problems/opportunities. 
  • Learn how to document how the solution addresses the problem/opportunity in a compelling manner. 
Danielle Hinz, CPPO, Mark Hampton, Ph.D.
In Person and Virtual
 
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
Learning Path RFPs Session 2 - Green Flag: Building the RFP, Working to Post

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In the second session of the RFP Path, we dive into the nuances of engaging stakeholders to extract critical information for a successful RFP. This session focuses on skills to elicit vital details without alienating stakeholders, uncovering the layers behind the needs, and ensuring that the scope of work and evaluation criteria are fully informed and strategically developed. Participants will learn the art of asking "why" in a manner that is professional and purposeful, aiming to gather deep insights while maintaining positive relationships. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Developing strategies for engaging with stakeholders.    

  • Interpret the information you received. 

  • Creating the RFP invitation (What information and where to get it from.) 

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Victor Leamer, CPPB , Kevin Yin, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP CPPO
In Person and Virtual
 
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
Present and Past NIGP Certification Commission Panel Q&A

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Meet with members of the NIGP Certification Commission and the NIGP Director of Certification for a Panel Q&A session about the NIGP Certified Procurement Professional (NIGP-CPP). The NIGP-CPP is the premier certification for procurement leaders, and this session is for procurement leaders who are interested in pursuing this certification. The panelists will provide information about the NIGP-CPP and will answer questions from the session participants.  Come join us to learn more about the NIGP-CPP.! 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Information about the value of certification and specifically the NIGP-CPP. 

  • How to prepare and begin the processes to attain the NIGP-CPP. 

  • How the NIGP-CPP will benefit you and your organization as you demonstrate your technical competencies, skills, abilities, and behaviors as a procurement leader in today's world. 

Stacy Gregg, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Rick Grimm, NIGP-CPP, Zulay Millan, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, FCCM, CPPB, Barb Johnson, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, MPA
In Person and Virtual
 
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
More Ways to Save Locally or Online at the Home Depot

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Home Depot will be highlighting more ways to save through our local stores or homedepot.com that the procurement professionals may not be aware they can take advantage of.   This incudes how Home Depot is investing in our Pro Ecosystem to better serve our customers and meet their procurement needs and the support available to support local procurement agencies.   This includes un-paralleled solutions supporting the different ways the procurement professionals chose to procure, supply chain enhancements, pricing programs focused on savings, and more. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Discover the capability to access and apply the benefits of our enhanced pricing options to help save public procurement professionals money.  
  • Learn about the eProcurement options with Home Depot to help be more efficient in procurement processes and timeliness.   
  • Understand the enhancements Home Depot has done, and is doing, to our supply chain focused on supporting professional customers who need the products at the right time, right price, right location, and quantities expected to complete their projects. 
Cameron Mickey, Rich Nyberg
In Person and Virtual
 
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
Making Connections - How to Use "The Art of Gathering" to Connect Intentionally

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join a transformative conversation exploring the importance of intentionality in how we meet and why it matters in this session on "Making Connections - How to Use "The Art of Gathering" to Connect Intentionally. In Procurement we are far too frequently perceived as "rule keepers," "policy enforcers," and, sadly, roadblocks. Let's gather and explore how intentionally connecting with our stakeholders, leaders and staff can eradicate those negative perceptions and help us build the kinds of relationships we long for.  We'll explore some of the practices Mecklenburg County has implemented to rebuild broken relationships and we'll share results we're beginning to see in both tangible and intangible ways.  Come participate and you might even find yourself a lucky winner of the book by Pria Parker which will absolutely change how you look at gathering at work, or with family and friends. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Evaluate how your customers, stakeholders, or departments grade your level of customer service and/or your relationship. 

  • Examine your methods for gathering. 

  • Assess success levels of those engagements and develop ways to improve how your gathering could be more intentionally developed. 

  • Apply new approaches to those opportunities for gathering in new and intentional ways and develop evaluation methods to start the cycle over again. 

Teresa Rausch
In Person and Virtual
 
12:30 PM - 1:45 PM
AI Contract Clauses

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Dive into the dynamic world of AI in public procurement with our interactive session designed for advanced professionals. Explore the nuances of evaluating AI solutions, developing data protection strategies, and mastering the art of risk mitigation in AI contracts through engaging discussions and real-world case studies. Join us to enhance your strategic skills, ensuring your agency harnesses AI's potential while safeguarding public interests and data integrity. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Apply comprehensive evaluation criteria to assess AI vendors, ensuring their solutions align with ethical standards and procurement objectives. 

  • Develop and implement data protection strategies specific to AI deployments, safeguarding Public Personally Identifiable Information within your agency. 

  • Mitigate risks in AI procurement contracts through enhanced understanding and strategic clause incorporation, protecting agency interests. 

  • Utilize real-world case studies to refine your approach to integrating AI in procurement processes, fostering informed decision-making 

  • Engage in critical analysis of AI applications, ensuring their alignment with legal compliance and public sector ethical values. 

Alena Croy, MBA, CPO, CPPB, CPPO, CPFO, Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC
In Person and Virtual
 
12:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Driving Procurement Forward - For New Drivers

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 3


This session is designed for those new to the procurement profession. As an informative and interactive class, you will be actively participating in a fun and lively environment to learn the basics that every procurement professional needs to know to be an asset by adding value to their entity and to prepare themselves for advancement. Topics covered in this class are also covered in the new Introduction to Public Procurement Pathways class, so be some of the first to get a foretaste of one of NIGP's newest course offerings by two of the subject matter experts who developed it. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Discover how to ensure compliance with expectations, laws, and regulations that govern public procurement. 

  • Determine the best procurement method for a particular solicitation. 

  • Increase efficiency and independence with procurement related tasks. 

  • Develop partnerships with various stakeholders. 

  • Plan for continuous professional development. 

Ron King, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, VCM, VCO, Terry L. McKee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, MPA, C.P.M. CPCP
In Person and Virtual
 
12:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Procurement and Public Speaking: Using Your Voice to Make Impact

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 3


The realm of public procurement is intricate, requiring not only a deep understanding of procurement processes and regulations but also the ability to effectively communicate complex information to a variety of stakeholders. This masterclass bridges the gap between procurement technicalities and the art of public speaking, emphasizing the pivotal role that effective communication plays in the success of public procurement projects. It is designed to arm professionals with the necessary skills to present, persuade, and communicate their ideas and decisions clearly and convincingly. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Understand the critical role of communication in procurement: Gain insights into how effective communication can influence procurement outcomes, including stakeholder engagement, negotiation success, and project implementation. 

  • Develop public speaking skills: Learn how to prepare and deliver presentations that captivate and engage a variety of audiences, with specific techniques for the procurement context. 

  • Engage with stakeholders Effectively: Acquire strategies for tailoring communication to different stakeholder groups, including procurement teams, end users, governing bodies, and community stakeholders. 

  • Handle questions and feedback: Master the skills needed to confidently and effectively address questions, handle objections, and incorporate feedback into procurement processes. 

  • Apply best practices in procurement communication: Understand the best practices for documenting and communicating procurement decisions and processes, ensuring transparency and compliance with regulations. 

Christin Webb, NIGP-CPP, MBA
In Person and Virtual
 
2:15 PM - 3:30 PM
Rent vs. Buy - A Review of Total Cost of Equipment and Fleet Ownership - United Rentals

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Rent vs. buy takes an in depth look at the total cost of equipment ownership. We will also look at key areas of focus when measuring whether to rent or buy, fleet maintenance cost and performance reporting.  Finally we will introduce some industry leading technology to assist the end user in these important buying decisions. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Explore rent vs. buy techniques to make better informed decisions. 

  • Apply data and analytics to determine the best use of public dollars. 

  • Discover the newest technology available to measure equipment performance and utilization. 

Joshua Higgins, Brad Laws
In Person and Virtual
 
2:15 PM - 3:30 PM
Learning Path Construction Session 3 - Construction Contract Compliance and Administration

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In the third session of the Construction Path, we navigate the complexities of construction contract compliance and administration. We discuss the development and implementation of a comprehensive contract administration checklist that ensures every phase of your project aligns with contractual obligations. Additionally, arm yourself with effective strategies for resolving contract issues, ensuring projects stay on track and within legal bounds. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Develop and implement a contract administration checklist. 

  • Resolve construction contract issues. 

John Adler, CPPO, Lavonia Horne-Williams, Richard Formella, DBIA, PMP
In Person and Virtual
 
2:15 PM - 3:30 PM
Learning Path Technology Session 3 - Ensure Practical Application of AI for Procurement Tasks

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In the third session of the Technology Path, we dive into the transformative power of AI to revolutionize procurement tasks. Discover how AI can be harnessed to craft specifications, evaluate solicitation responsiveness, and sharpen negotiation strategies for better contract terms. This session is tailored for those looking to seamlessly integrate AI into their procurement toolkit, driving innovation and achieving outstanding outcomes. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Utilize AI to write specifications. 

  • Utilize AI to determine if solicitations are responsive. 

  • Utilize AI to improve your negotiation tactics and contract terms.

Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC, Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE, Nathan Dawson
In Person and Virtual
 
2:15 PM - 3:30 PM
OYE! How Can I Connect & Communicate with Boomers, Gen-X or Others?

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Oye! Are you having challenges with hybrid or remote workplace communication? Do you want to bridge the generational gap in communication? Do you want to learn how “20 Seconds of Courage” can assist in difficult conversations? Do you like to have fun, while modifying proven steps of communication to enhance you or your team’s skills? 

Then this workshop is for you! Discover confidence in communicating between generations of employees, peers, and others. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Learn tools that may assist in generational gap differences, difficult situations, hybrid workplaces, and at home. 

  • "20 Seconds of Courage.” Explore ways to become more candid, transparent, and understanding of the obstacles that make communication efforts more challenging in today's workplace environment.  

  • Apply fresh ideas and communication tools to workplace scenarios and relationships, or to usher change within their workplace. WIIFM, WIIFT, and HDIAM! 

Polly Alles
In Person and Virtual
 
2:15 PM - 3:30 PM
When a Good Procurement Goes Bad, Do You Know What to Do?

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


You've taken the training and know the fundamentals of public procurement from basic competitive processes and negotiating contracts, but do you know what to do when a good procurement goes bad?  Join this interactive session to walk through a real-life situation regarding a breach of integrity in an active procurement process, with the names and specifics changed to protect the innocent (and not so innocent).  Through each step of the scenario, participants will have an opportunity to provide feedback on what they think I should have done and how they would have handled it.  We will also evaluate how emotional intelligence plays into the successful outcomes and how things could have gone from bad to worse. Participants will also be invited to share similar situations and seek guidance from their peers on their own ethical dilemmas. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Recognize that bad things can happen in procurement transactions. 
  • Assess how to react to the unexpected in a procurement process. 
  • Prepare for how you will react when you are faced with a similar circumstance. 
Cheryl Middleton, NIGP-CPP, CPPB
In Person and Virtual
 
2:15 PM - 3:30 PM
Removing Process Bottlenecks to Drive Organizational Efficiency

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In this session, you will learn from the Harvard Kennedy School Government Performance Lab how to diagnose operational problems by participating in a simulation about procurement process challenges. You will play the role of a newly arrived Chief Procurement Officer in "Citylandia" who is facing frustrations around a lengthy procurement process. Working in small groups, you will identify opportunities to 1) cut procurement cycle times and reduce administrative burden, and 2) improve the relationship with key Citylandia stakeholders: customer departments, legal, city leadership, and the vendor community. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Assess procurement operations by reviewing disaggregated data to understand how workload, seasonality, and other factors can contribute to procurement delays or bottlenecks. 

  • Apply a data-driven approach to identify the root causes of inefficient and burdensome procurement processes. 

  • Identify operational improvements that could be made within your entity to reduce administrative burden for staff and vendors, as well as mitigate the likelihood of delays. 

Colin Erhardt, MA, Isabel Garcia, MPP
In Person and Virtual
 
2:15 PM - 3:30 PM
Build It and They Will Come and Stay: Creating a Workplace Culture for Innovation, Productivity, and Sustainability

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join us for an enlightening session delving into the pivotal challenges facing public agency leaders today. Discover firsthand insights from an organizational culture expert and the former Chief Procurement Officer of Arizona's second largest city, renowned for spearheading one of the nation's most esteemed procurement organizations while fostering an enviable culture. 

In this engaging presentation, we'll delve into the importance of organizational culture for public agencies, drawing upon real-world examples and experiences. Explore the intricacies of culture through the lens of seven distinct layers, uncovering strategies to enact positive transformation. 

Gain invaluable strategies to retain and reward top talent, nurture the next generation of leaders, and craft an organizational ethos that magnetizes the best minds. Through interactive discussions and practical solutions, equip yourself with the tools to cultivate vibrant, sustainable, and innovative workplace cultures. Don't miss this opportunity to revolutionize your leadership approach and drive lasting change within your agency. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Identify and leverage the innate drivers of your team members to boost their productivity, motivation, and commitment to the organization. 

  • Develop a toolkit of motivation techniques tailored to individual preferences, ensuring sustained engagement and enthusiasm within your team. 

  • Determine strategies to foster an environment where creativity thrives, and knowledge flows freely, driving continuous improvement and adaptation. 

  • Enhance your ability to connect with and influence your team, fostering stronger relationships and more effective collaboration through improved communication practices. 

  • Gain insights into shaping organizational culture intentionally, crafting an environment that inspires and aligns with the values and aspirations of both individuals and the organization as a whole. 

Dr. Maria Church, Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPPB, CPM
In Person and Virtual
 
2:15 PM - 3:30 PM
Does It Really Say That: A Look at Court Cases Affecting Procurement

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


The intent of this workshop is to introduce the participants to court cases that have had an impact on the decisions made by procurement professionals. These court cases also have a significant impact on how an agency may respond to a protest or challenge to a procurement decision. This session will assist managers and directors in making recommendations to senior management and elected officials, that are consistent with decisions by the courts in similar sets of circumstance. This session will also align with the Pathways course, Advanced Protests and Appeals.  It is critically important that leadership is aware of the importance of many of these court decisions and more importantly how the court decisions affect how they structure a competitive solicitation, an RFP evaluation, or a protest response. We will look at cases from multiple jurisdictions including US Supreme Court decisions, so that participants can see how others interpret laws and regulations impacting procurement. And we will look at cases with very similar sets of facts litigated in two different jurisdictions with different results. There will also be new cases presented not seen in previous presentations. And we will look at one case in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims regarding the pandemic and non-performance, 

The presenter uses a teaching methodology like that used in law schools, the Socratic method, a dialogue between the presenter and the participants. The presenter does this by introducing pertinent facts of a particular case and then asking questions to drive the participants toward what they believe was the court decision in the case. Rarely do all participants agree, which allows for a spirited discussion between the participants and the presenter. 

There is no doubt that procurement has changed in the last 22 months and supply chain management is critical to the government in delivering the necessary goods and services. 

But, we still must conduct the management of the supply chain within the confines of our jurisdictional laws and the decisions of the courts. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Participants will understand the importance of case law and precedent. 

  • Participants will understand the jurisdictional sources of case law. 

  • Learn about the government’s discretionary authority. 

Kirk Buffington, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPFIM, MBA
In Person and Virtual
 
4:00 PM - 5:15 PM
Learning Path RFPs Session 3 – Checkered Flag: Getting to the Finish Line with Proposals Submitted

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In the third session of the RFP Path, we tackle the critical stages of the evaluation process with a strategic approach to planning and preparation. This session emphasizes the importance of optimism and foresight, guiding attendees through the process of planning for the best-case scenarios to capitalize on potential opportunities and achieve desirable outcomes. Equally important, this session will address the necessity of preparing for the worst-case scenarios, offering strategies to mitigate risks, handle unexpected challenges, and ensure continuity and resilience in the procurement process. By balancing these dual perspectives, attendees will leave with a comprehensive understanding of how to navigate the evaluation phase of RFPs. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Execute plans for the best RFP outcome. 

  • Implement strategies for the worst-case scenario. 

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Victor Leamer, CPPB , Kevin Yin, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP CPPO
In Person and Virtual
 
4:00 PM - 5:15 PM
The Vital Link in the Supply Chain by Graybar

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join us in this session to address how strategic vendors can assist agencies navigating through issues related to vendor relationship, material or labor challenges. We'll focus on key topics regarding strategic vendor partners and the value they provide to your organization. 

Learning Outcomes 

In this session we'll address:   

  • What is a strategic supplier partner 

  • How we bring value to the strategic relationship 

  • How strategic suppliers perform at all levels of their business 

  • The value of a cooperative program 

  • Tools to assess or rate your process and supplier partners 

Jeff Peskuski, Rob Rhoads
In Person and Virtual
 
4:00 PM - 5:15 PM
Driving Success: Unveiling Analytics and Procurement Strategies in Ground Transportation by Enterprise Mobility

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


We welcome attendees to a discussion titled “Driving Success: Unveiling Analytics and Procurement Strategies in Ground Transportation.” The session aims to address crucial aspects of ground transportation management, including analytics utilization, cooperative procurement strategies, policy development, and relationship management. Participants will engage in discussions geared towards optimizing operational efficiency and establishing sustainable partnerships within the ground transportation sector. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Implement Data-Driven Decision Making: Utilize key metrics identified in the discussion to evaluate ground transportation performance and make informed decisions to improve efficiency. 

  • Explore Cooperative Procurement Opportunities: Identify potential collaborative purchasing opportunities within the ground transportation sector to reduce costs and streamline procurement processes. 

  • Enhance Stakeholder Communication: Apply effective communication strategies discussed to engage with stakeholders in the ground transportation ecosystem, fostering stronger relationships and collaboration. 

  • Develop Action Plans for Relationship Management: Use insights gained from the session to develop action plans for nurturing partnerships, resolving conflicts, and mitigating challenges in ground transportation relationship management. 

Ryan Benhoff, Ericka Dombroski
In Person and Virtual
 
4:00 PM - 5:15 PM
Building Success — Navigating Construction Procurement Challenges - FOS of CannonDesign

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join this session to delve into the complexities of construction procurement and explore job order contracting (JOC) strategies to overcome common obstacles. From navigating supply chain disruptions to managing budget constraints and vendor relationships, our expert panel will share practical insights, best practices, and lessons learned through our JOC work with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to help you streamline your procurement processes and drive project success. Whether you're a seasoned industry professional or new to JOC and construction procurement, this webinar will equip you with the knowledge and tools you need to thrive in today's competitive landscape. 

James Matz, Paul Burns, Michael Perno
In Person and Virtual
 
4:00 PM - 5:15 PM
You Asked For It, You Got It! Navigating and Understanding Federal Rules and Regulations

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


You asked for it and you got it but, what do you do now? No matter if it is a grant, your agency is a direct recipient or the money is accessed through a state agency there are regulations associated with how the money is spent and it can often be confusing.  This session will provide information on how to navigate federal rules and regulations without going crazy, by showing participants how to access information, utilize tools and educate themselves on federal rules and regulations associated with federal funding. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Discover tools to review and understand federal regulations. 

  • Explore the need to develop processes and procedures associated with procuring with federal funds. 

  • Achieve an understanding of the Code of Federal Regulation and Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR). 

  • Review terminology associated with utilizing federal funding. 

  • Influence understanding in your organization related to the utilization of federal funding. 

Maria Roux
In Person and Virtual
 
4:00 PM - 5:15 PM
Tangled Triad: Decoding the Fraud Triangle

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Unlock the secrets behind fraud in public procurement at our session, "Tangled Triad: Decoding the Fraud Triangle." Delve into the intricate web of issues contributing to fraudulent activities, explore real-world examples, and learn practical strategies to fortify your organization's procurement processes. Join us for an engaging discussion and gain actionable insights to safeguard against fraud in the complex landscape of public procurement. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Implement comprehensive internal controls tailored to their organization's procurement processes. 

  • Identify and mitigate fraud risks specific to public procurement. 

  • Develop proactive fraud prevention strategies. 

  • Enhance procurement process efficiency to streamline procurement processes. 

Kelly Vickers
In Person and Virtual
 
4:00 PM - 5:15 PM
Failing to Plan is Like Planning to Fail: Acquisition Planning and Market Research are the Map to Successful Contracts

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Failing to plan is like planning to fail. To help ensure we get the best results from our solicitations and contracts, we need to do our homework. Acquisition planning and market research are critical to shaping our decisions from everything to source selection methods to terms and conditions for our contracts. When we start strong, we set ourselves up to finish strong. Join this session to learn more tips and tricks for effective acquisition planning. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Identify and explore the purpose, benefits, and various methods of conducting acquisition planning and market research. 

  • Explore ways to collaborate with stakeholders, including various ways to conduct exchanges with industry before issuing a solicitation while maintaining the integrity of the process and guiding principles of procurement. 

  • Determine information necessary when documenting acquisition planning and market research activities effectively. 

Stacy Adams, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB
In Person and Virtual
 
4:00 PM - 5:15 PM
Transform Your Procurement Team with The Trust Edge

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join our session to discover how trust can be cultivated and strengthened using the proven framework of the Trust Edge 8 Pillars. Learn from the experiences of Sourcewell's procurement team and leave equipped with actionable strategies to enhance collaboration, effectiveness, and engagement in your own workplace. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Explore the 8 Pillars of Trust. 

  • Identify ways to incorporate the 8 Pillars of Trust into procurement (based on success from the Sourcewell Procurement Department). 

  • Engage in discussion about trust challenges and ways to resolve them. 

Tara Wolff, Karen Hunt
In Person and Virtual
Wednesday, August 28, 2024
 
Time
Session
Speakers
In Person/Virtual
Details
 
8:00 AM - 8:45 AM
Plenary Session

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 0.75

In Person and Virtual
 
9:15 AM - 10:30 AM
Closing the Participation Gap: Small and Diverse Business Contracting Foundations and Strategies by Disaster Recovery Services

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join DRS for an overview of the foundations of S/M/WBE participation in federally funded contracts, followed by a panel discussion with a local government procurement leader, and a diverse business firm. Our panel will share both challenges and strategies for success to increase the participation of diverse firms in your federal grant projects. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Apply the six affirmative steps for socioeconomic contracting to purchasing activities with federal funds. 

  • Devise a system for adequately documenting the six affirmative steps. 

  • Develop a framework for better participation of diverse businesses in your local agency's federally-funded projects. 

Kim Abrego, PT, DPT, Shelley Vineyard, MBA, RTSBA, Jedediah Greenfield, CPA, CTCD, CTCM, Brandi Harleaux
In Person and Virtual
 
9:15 AM - 10:30 AM
Procurement: It's Not Just Purchasing

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Historically, procurement has been seen as just "buying stuff." But, it's far more complex than that. A skilled procurement officer has to do much more than purchase goods and services. This session aims to unpack the complexities of public procurement and show how it's different from simple buying. Organizations must understand these complexities and develop prudent strategies for effective procurement management. We'll cover various steps and factors essential for organizations to acquire goods and services that align with their mission and goals. This includes managing risks, maintaining good relationships, and creating value throughout the procurement lifecycle. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Explore the value of the procurement function, beyond the "front of brain" basics of transactional needs. 

  • Discover proactive ways to provide greater value to internal and external stakeholders at various inflection points during the procurement lifecycle. 

  • Apply session principles to real-world scenarios to achieve more optimal outcomes. 

Danny Mays, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPSM, CPSD, Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE
In Person and Virtual
 
9:15 AM - 10:30 AM
Streamlining Procurement: Harnessing the Power of Robotic Process Automation

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


RPA has emerged as a game-changer in procurement, offering the ability to automate manual, repetitive tasks, reduce human error, and increase overall operational efficiency.  

Join an insightful presentation on how RPA can revolutionize your procure to pay operations. You will gain an understanding of the benefits, challenges, and best practices associated with RPA in procurement, allowing you to harness the power of automation to optimize your processes and achieve greater efficiency and cost savings. 

Real-world case studies will showcase successful RPA implementations, highlighting benefits such as reduced errors, faster cycle times, and improved accuracy. We'll also address key challenges like security, compliance, and ROI measurement, ensuring a smooth implementation journey. Whether you're a procurement professional or a business leader, discover how RPA can revolutionize your operations and drive tangible results. Join us to explore the transformative power of RPA bots in procurement processes. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Analyze what areas in their current processes/organization may be good candidates for automation. 

  • Assess areas in the organization that will improve if personnel are able to focus on strategic tasks vs administrative tasks. 

Erin Mitchell
In Person and Virtual
 
9:15 AM - 10:30 AM
Leaders Like Us: Inspiring Diverse Leadership

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join us for an immersive session diving deep into the critical intersection of diversity, equity, and inclusion within professional settings, with a specific focus on public procurement. Discover how personal identity shapes professional roles and contributes to a more inclusive environment, empowering you to see yourself as the hero and leader you aspire to be. Through engaging storytelling and facilitated discussions, we'll explore the challenges and triumphs of promoting diversity in leadership, emphasizing the importance of representation and acceptance across cultural, racial, gender, and other attributes. Together, we'll create a safe space for open dialogue, fostering a culture of empathy, respect, and continuous growth as we work towards a future of equity and inclusion in public procurement. Join us on this journey of empowerment and meaningful change. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Lead and Inspire through Diverse Representation: Motivate participants to seek leadership roles, showcasing the value of diversity in guiding and inspiring organizational change. 

  • Mentor for Diversity and Inclusion: Equip attendees to mentor with an emphasis on inclusivity, fostering professional growth and supporting underrepresented talent. 

  • Promote Inclusivity through Identity Awareness: Encourage learners to use their identity to advocate for inclusive environments, enhancing respect and diversity in the workplace. 

Zulay Millan, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, FCCM, CPPB, Stacy Gregg, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB
In Person and Virtual
 
9:15 AM - 10:30 AM
Let's Plan a Wedding...Project Management Style

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Curious about Project Management? Now is a great time to learn the basics. Every industry—from tech to retail to public procurement—requires people with this skillset. This presentation will enhance your knowledge and effectiveness of procurement project management. 

By understanding the different processes and techniques associated with each knowledge area, procurement professionals can plan, execute, and deliver procurement projects more effectively and efficiently. Participants will learn terminology and concepts associated with project planning throughout the procurement lifecycle. Yes, it’s true…we’re going to learn it all while planning A Wedding. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Professional standards and frameworks utilized in the project management body of knowledge. 

  • Procurement project management as a strategic asset and best-in-class standard. 

  • Sharing lessons learned and adopting changes are critical to the procurement value proposition.  

  • Knowing the ten knowledge areas will improve procurement planning, communication, and execution.

Tony Reed, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, PMP, CPCP
In Person and Virtual
 
9:15 AM - 10:30 AM
Learning Path RFP Session 4

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join us for Session 4 of the NIGP Learning Path RFPs. In this engaging session, we will revisit the key concepts covered in the previous three sessions through a series of interactive activities. Collaborate with your peers as you brainstorm and develop strategic responses to a variety of procurement scenarios. This session is designed to solidify your understanding and application of the principles discussed so far, ensuring you're well-equipped to navigate the complexities of public procurement.

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Victor Leamer, CPPB , Kevin Yin, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP CPPO
In Person and Virtual
 
9:15 AM - 12:15 PM
Practical Hands-On Strategic and Tactical Applications of Spend Analytics

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 3


Lead the way, develop a strategy to use "big" data to make decisions.  This session will give you the tools to innovate, make data informed practical decisions and better serve your communities.  In this session we, I mean you, will work to develop individual spend analysis implementation and administration plans.  Participants will identify the various components of data inventories.  Identify potential data quality issues.  Develop data collection and cleansing strategies and, perhaps most importantly, develop specific strategies to use spend analysis to inform procurement and contract administration strategy. The session is designed so that each participant leaves with a plan for the implementation and/or improvement of their spend analysis program and a design for an ongoing data utilization strategy. 

Learning Outcomes 

Participants will learn how to use spend analysis to: 

  • Inform solicitation development. 

  • Make fact-based contract administration decisions. 

  • Maximize the value creation through data driven resource allocation.  

  • Enhance client success through data driven decision making. 

Michael Bevis, Esq., NIGP-CPP, JD, CPPO, CPSM, C.P.M.
In Person and Virtual
 
9:15 AM - 12:15 PM
Procurement with a Purpose: Re-imagining City Contracting for More Equitable and Sustainable Results

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 3


Many local governments in the United States are striving to build stronger, fairer and greener communities where local businesses and residents can thrive. Public procurement is one of the most promising untapped solutions to create economic opportunities, promote sustainability, improve social service delivery and build trust between government agencies, residents and companies. In this session, participants will hear from two city governments, Boston and Newark, and the Open Contracting Partnership, a global non-profit, that are using procurement to build more inclusive and sustainable communities. Join us to learn about tested procurement practices in the areas of data and digitization, vendor management and inclusion and change management. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Discover how to leverage procurement through concrete policy, data and processes changes to promote greater vendor inclusion and sustainabilities in their local governments. 

  • Explore approaches in data, vendor outreach and change management strategies to get better results. 

  • Gain access to new guidance, case stories and tools that OCP and the two cities will share that others can use. 

  • Establish connections to peers who are working on similar project for continued learning and support. 

Kathrin Frauscher, Natalia Gulick de Torres, Laura Melle, Gennie Nguyen
In Person and Virtual
 
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Benchmarking Procurement: Results of the 2024 NIGP Benchmark Study

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25

Marcheta Gillespie, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, C.P.M., CPPB, CPM
In Person and Virtual
 
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Innovation Technologies Require Innovative Procurement: Is Your Team Ready? by Toro

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Innovation Technologies are changing the landscape of how businesses and organizations operate. Please join me in exploring how changes to product life cycles, cost of ownership, infrastructure requirements, and new connections could impact your existing procurement processes. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Understand why exploring the 'Total Cost of Ownership' is more important than ever.   

  • Be equipped to evaluate 'additional innovative' opportunities and how they could impact your customers.   

  • Discover some basic hurdles these technologies face in a traditional procurement process and use those to optimize your own process. 

Ryan Miller
In Person and Virtual
 
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
The Case for Punchout Systems in IT Procurement by SWC

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


This session will provide an introduction and overview of punchout systems, as well as the benefits to agencies and procurement professionals. Specifically the presentation will cover: 

  • Inter-agency cooperation in defining items to add into a punchout system; 

  • Leveraging punchout systems as a tool to limit p-card fraud/create paper trail for all transactions; 

  • Enforce agency product standards

  • Reduce waste and more 

Learning Outcomes 

  • How to get started with punchout systems and reduce waste/fraud 

  • How to manage and maintain standards (we will focus on IT as an example) 

  • Managing and maintaining a more efficient procurement environment for regularly purchased items within an agency 

Jeremy Steadman
In Person and Virtual
 
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Houston We Have a Problem: How to Simplify Change Management and Leadership to Achieve Success

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Change management and change leadership are important in today's changing work environment and culture. Come learn about two approaches to help you on your journey to transformation and gain insights and real-world applicability into developing and implementing successful initiatives. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Explore the traditional efficiency-based approach to implementing change management and leadership and a new approach of purposeful simplicity. 

  • Discover how the approach of purposeful simplicity can be used in their organization to be successful in their change management and leadership strategies. 

  • Apply the principles discovered in the purposeful simplicity approach to change management and leadership by providing and hearing real word situation from discussion in the group and how application from the purposeful simplicity approach can be used to achieve success. 

Jedediah Greenfield, CPA, CTCD, CTCM
In Person and Virtual
 
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Purchasing Rapid Rounds

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join us for an engaging session where we dive into the latest purchasing-related hot topics in a dynamic rapid-round format. Led by three seasoned purchasing professionals, participants will rotate through guided discussions with their peers, offering a unique opportunity to network, share insights, and explore innovative strategies for tackling common challenges such as planning projects (getting a seat at the table), managing evaluation committees, and post-award best practices/debriefings. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Apply the strategies discussed in the session to assert their influence and involvement in project planning processes within their organizations  

  • Leverage the session's insights to optimize the composition and function of evaluation committees responsible for vendor selection and contract awards.  

  • Benefit from the session's focus on post-award best practices and debriefings to drive continuous improvement in procurement processes and supplier relationships 

Claudia Leon, CPPB, Rebecca Seifert, Michael Greene
In Person and Virtual
 
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
From Green to Checkered Flags: Getting Your Solicitation to the Finish Line

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


From the start of a NASCAR race (green flag) to the finish (checkered flag), flags control the flow of every race. Cars and drivers on the track must adhere to each flag, lest they be waved off-track and disqualified (black flag with an  X-stripe). Join us as we drive through the solicitation process, navigate around yellow flags (caution) and avoid black flags. Cross the finish line to complete your race and win the cup. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Assess their solicitation process to ensure they are following best practices. 

  • Develop strategies for successful completion of a bid or proposal process and contract award. 

  • Identify common risks or errors and learn how to mitigate them. 

Lori Bryant, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, Terry L. McKee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, MPA, C.P.M. CPCP, Camille Thomas
In Person and Virtual
 
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Case Study - Ivalua

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25

In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Volunteerism: Enhancing your Career, Contributing to the Profession, All While Having Fun

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Volunteering will change your life! Don’t believe me?  Try it! In this session we will explore the value of volunteering, not only for those you volunteer for and with, but for yourself as well.  Volunteering can come in every shape and size. In this session we will explore the various volunteer opportunities available with NIGP and its local chapters. There is something out there for everyone, and we will explore options in this Value of Volunteerism session that if you commit and try, it will change your life! No pre-requisites required to attend. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Explore the personal, professional, and "global" benefits to volunteerism.    

  • Examine the various volunteer opportunities with NIGP and its local chapters to determine participant interest, necessary skillset, and involvement necessary. 

  • Create an action plan. Upon completion of market research into volunteerism, the participant will be able to create an action plan that maps out the next steps to volunteerism. This could include completion of necessary applications or expressions of interest. 

  • Develop strategies to get the most out of volunteer experiences. 

Victor Leamer, CPPB
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Learning Path Construction Session 4

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join us for Session 4 of the NIGP Learning Path Construction. In this engaging session, we will revisit the key concepts covered in the previous three sessions through a series of interactive activities. Collaborate with your peers as you brainstorm and develop strategic responses to a variety of procurement scenarios. This session is designed to solidify your understanding and application of the principles discussed so far, ensuring you're well-equipped to navigate the complexities of public procurement.

John Adler, CPPO, Lavonia Horne-Williams, Richard Formella, DBIA, PMP
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Learning Path Technology Session 4

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join us for Session 4 of the NIGP Learning Path Technology. In this engaging session, we will revisit the key concepts covered in the previous three sessions through a series of interactive activities. Collaborate with your peers as you brainstorm and develop strategic responses to a variety of procurement scenarios. This session is designed to solidify your understanding and application of the principles discussed so far, ensuring you're well-equipped to navigate the complexities of public procurement.

Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC, Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE, Nathan Dawson
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Steering Clear of the Wreckage: Avoiding Disaster with Your ERP Project

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system procurement and implementation are some of the most complex and difficult projects for an organization. In addition, the ERP market evolves quickly and many governments are not in position to learn from past mistakes. This session will present the 10 mistakes that governments make in procuring ERP software and how that can lead to project challenges, cost overruns, and failure to achieve desired outcomes. This session will help equip procurement professionals with the tools and knowledge they need to navigate a complex and challenging procurement and ever changing vendor market. Focus will be on the process used to select the best vendor, develop an effective statement of work, and guard against future change orders or price increases. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Explore effective strategies for facilitating the evaluation process for ERP vendors  

  • Apply best practices in public procurement and contract management to ERP projects  

  • Identify critical elements of a statement of work for ERP implementation projects to ensure quality, provide accountability, and prevent costly change orders  

  • Gain understanding of the competitive market for ERP software and how procurement professionals can best position their government for success. 

Mike Mucha
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
A Roadmap for Driving Procurement Toward Success

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


In the summer of 2021, the Procurement department at Cincinnati Metro was known as "the place projects go to die." Staff were consumed with perfect intake documents, paralyzed with over-analysis and indecision, and terrified of any discussion by executive leaders. As a result, purchase requisitions were more likely to be rejected for minor imperfections rather than improved during processing. A change was desperately needed if the department was going to keep pace with the explosive growth happening within the organization. 

In this session, you'll learn how new Procurement leadership established a very different culture for the Procurement team. By implementing a few simple philosophies, our error rates and processing times decreased; we began receiving recognition from our customers for providing outstanding service, culminating in two Procurement staff being finalists for employee of the year; and other departments began to request our efforts in large-scale project planning and execution. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Discover ways to motivate staff toward continuous improvement and education. 

  • Learn how to incorporate affirmative language into policies. 

  • Use our roadmap and functional framework to begin making immediate changes to their own teams. 

  • Leverage our lessons learned for building successful stakeholder relationships. 

  • Use our roadmap for improving relationships with the local vendor community to improve diversity spend. 

  • Become inspired to create your own cultures of excellence. 

John Edmondson, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, Jason Roe
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Leveraging LinkedIn for Excellence in Public Procurement

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Join our panel for expert insights on networking, market research, and branding tailored for public procurement professionals. Whether you're new to LinkedIn or a seasoned user, discover valuable strategies to expand your professional network, identify vendors for upcoming procurements, find candidates to hire, boost your professional development, enhance your agency's (or association's) visibility, and stay ahead in the field.  

From leveraging LinkedIn groups to positioning yourself as a thought leader, gain actionable skills to advance your procurement journey. Don't miss this opportunity to harness the platform's exceptional offerings and propel your career forward. Join us and unlock the full potential of LinkedIn to elevate your procurement journey with LinkedIn's exceptional (and free) offerings! 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Strategic Networking Mastery: Take charge of your professional network by initiating connections with key stakeholders, vendors, and peers on LinkedIn. Nurture these relationships to establish a robust support system that can provide valuable insights, collaboration opportunities, and industry connections crucial for successful procurement endeavors. 

  • Market Research Expertise: Dive deep into LinkedIn's advanced search and analytics tools to conduct comprehensive market research. Uncover new vendors, evaluate their credibility and track industry trends to stay ahead of the curve. With a thorough understanding of market dynamics, you'll make informed procurement decisions, ensuring the best outcomes for your organization. 

  • Brand Amplification Skills: Leverage LinkedIn's platform to showcase your expertise and elevate your personal and agency brand. Share thought-provoking content, industry insights, and success stories to position yourself as a trusted authority in public procurement. Strengthening your professional reputation not only opens doors for new opportunities but also enhances your agency's or association's visibility and credibility within the procurement community. 

  • Continuous Learning Culture: Embrace a culture of continuous learning by actively participating in LinkedIn's professional development offerings. Engage in relevant courses, webinars, and discussions tailored to your career goals in public procurement. By staying abreast of the latest trends, best practices, and innovations in the field, you'll continuously enhance your skills and contribute to the growth and success of your organization. 

  • Talent Acquisition and Career Advancement: Utilize LinkedIn's powerful platform to discover top talent or explore new career opportunities. Leverage advanced search filters to identify candidates with the skills and expertise your organization needs, or to showcase your own qualifications to prospective employers. By tapping into LinkedIn's extensive professional network, you'll streamline the recruitment process, ensuring the acquisition of top talent, or uncover exciting career paths that align with your goals and aspirations. 

Jennifer Sulentic, John A. Flynn, Jr., NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, Dustin Lanier, CPPO
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Navigating the eProcurement Marketplace

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


Do you need an eProcurement solution but find the numerous options in the marketplace overwhelming? Let us be your guide to successfully navigating through this crowded space to the best fit solution for your organization.

Learning Outcomes

  • Analyze your organizational needs in terms of an eProcurement solution
  • Learn how to navigate the eProcurement marketplace
  • Clarify what is the best fit solution for your organization
  • Identify what is important to their organizational leadership to get this project authorized
Yen Pang, Jas Sandhar
In Person and Virtual
 
1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Connecting the Dots in Contract Management

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.25


A must-attend session for contracting staff to grasp the key concepts of contract management and apply best practices and techniques to successfully manage the contract and mitigate common errors and risks throughout the contract lifecycle. 

Learning Outcomes 

  • Understand the basics of contract management. 

  • Identify best practices in contract management. 

  • Develop strategies for effective contract management. 

  • Gain a comprehensive understanding of contract management and develop the skills and knowledge necessary to effectively manage and improve overall contract performance in your procurement roles. 

Lloyd Windle, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M., Bill Munch, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M.
In Person and Virtual
 
3:30 PM - 5:00 PM
Closing Plenary - Together We Are Limitless

IN PERSON and VIRTUAL

 Contact Hours: 1.5


Jeremy is not your ordinary motivational speaker. With a powerful personal narrative, a little wit and a strong inspirational message, he provides perspective to audiences and opens their eyes to see the power of interdependence.

Although Jeremy cannot see his audiences, he can help them see how to effect change and positivity in their own lives. His mission is to help people suspend judgment and focus on the good. His objective is not to dictate how to succeed in life; he speaks from experience to convince individuals that independence is good, while interdependence is great.

How will you find the power of interdependence in your life?

Key Takeaways

  • Seeing the Power of Interdependence
  • Suspending Judgment
  • Focus on the Good
Jeremy Poincenot
In Person and Virtual

Riaz Meghji

Riaz Meghji is a human connections expert.  He authored the book “Every Conversation Counts: The 5 Habits of Human Connection That Build Extraordinary Relationships” and his insights have been featured in Fast Company, Harvard Business Review and Financial Post.  Riaz is also an accomplished broadcaster with 17 years of television hosting experience.

Riaz is a natural storyteller with a proven ability to conduce engaging, in-depth conversations across various disciplines.

His keynote is an engaging experience that is candid and a far-ranging look at how authentic conversations can help reinvent yourself, and reenergize your teams.

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

Procurement Innovation Manager, WA State Dept of Enterprise Services Contracts & Procurement


Cheral Manke, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPM - Procurement Innovation Manager, WA State Dept. of Enterprise Services Contracts & Procurement; 20 years Public Procurement experience & 20 years private sector; Chair Governor’s SEEP Toxics & Plastics Reduction; Chair OneWA Procurement Advisory Council; Founder & Co-chair NIGP Pathways Concierge program; WA Chapter NIGP Emerging Professionals Co-Chair; Bellevue College Advisory Board member; Former WA State Procurement Manager, NIGP Governing Board Member & NIGP Member Council Chair; NASPO VP Board; UPPCC Board of Examiners; 3x WA NIGP Chapter President; BS Legal Studies/Exec JD - Cal State-Lexington; Certified Purchasing Manager - U of Texas-Arlington Certified Paralegal - Cal State-San Marcos; Certified Scrum Master; Disney Institute Grad. 

Keith Glatz, NIGP-CPP, CPPO

Purchasing and Contracts Manager, City of Tamarac, Florida


Keith K. Glatz, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, Procurement & Contracts Mgr. - Keith has served in the field of public procurement for over 40 years; and has been the Procurement & 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. 

Keith 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. Keith was also past President of both the Southeast Florida Chapter and the Illinois Association of Public Procurement Officials (IAPPO) chapters of NIGP. Most recently, Keith has served on the NIGP Mentorship Committee, and was its Chair from 2018 to 2021; and has been the host of the monthly “Way to Grow” segment on Radio NIGP. 

Keith 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. 

Carl Bonitto, CSCMP

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


Carl Bonitto has over 20 years of procurement experience and holds a bachelor’s degree in business management and a Certified Supply chain Management Professional (CSCMP) designation through the Supply Chain Management Association of Canada since 2009.  

He an international Speaker/Trainer and currently sits on the Ontario Public Buyers Association (OPBA) Certificate program advisory board as an instructor teaching courses since 2010 and currently sits on the NIGP Governing Board. He’s the Chair of the Supply Chain Management and Global Logistics advisory committee at Loyalist College and NIGP-CPP Certification Commission past Chair. He also held the position of a NIGP Chapter Ambassador for six years visiting numerous international conferences, connecting, and listening to their members’ needs to make changes where possible. 

He gained his procurement experience in a variety of business sectors including Automotive, Technology, Food (Pepsi co.), Sporting Goods (Wilson) and County government for the last 15 years. His current role as the Manager of Purchasing and Risk Management Services for the County of Northumberland allows him to procure a variety of goods, services, and construction for their seven diverse departments. On the risk management side, he manages the insurance portfolio and legal claims received by the County. 

Christine 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. Chris 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 Talent Council, a Talent Council liaison to the Leadership Development Committee, the Mentorship Committee, and the Pathways Concierge Program. 

Chris 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. 

Donald Buffum, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO

Donald G. Buffum, FNIGP, NIGP-CPP, CPPO – has practiced Professional Public Procurement for more than 42 years. Don recently retired from Mississippi State University where he was the Associate Vice President & Chief Procurement Officer at Mississippi State University. He previously served as the Director of the Office of Purchasing and Travel for the State of Mississippi, the central purchasing authority for the State. 

His experience at both the state and University levels, as well as his affiliation with multiple professional public procurement organizations has afforded Don the unique opportunity to work with and assist procurement professionals from all sectors of Government. Don is a Past President of the National Association of State Purchasing Officials and was a charter member of the Mississippi Association of Governmental Purchasing Agents. Don is a Past President of NIGP as well as a Fellow of NIGP. 

Don serves as an instructor for NIGP and has a strong passion for continuing education and certification. He has served as the Chair of both the UPPCC and the NIGP Certification Council. While Chairing the NIGP Certification Council the NIGP-CPP was developed and rolled out to a strong welcome from the profession. 

Jody Jacoby, NIGP-CPP, CPPO

Chief Procurement Officer, Metropolitan Council, St. Paul, MN


Jody’s current role is Chief Procurement Officer (CPO) with Metropolitan Council (Council) in St. Paul, Minnesota. The Council is the regional policy-making body, planning agency, and provider of essential services in the seven-county Twin Cities fostering efficient and economic growth. In the role of CPO, I lead a high functioning team of 36 talented procurement professionals. The Council’s annual procurement spend is approximately $800,000,000 with 39,000 individual procurement events. In 2023, our team earned the distinguished NIGP Quality Public Procurement (QPP) designation. Jody’s core values are community and connection while contributing to personal and professional growth. She has served in various volunteer roles within the profession including the Minnesota Chapter of NIGP, NIGP as a Chapter Ambassador (2015-2018), Member Council (2018-2024) and Member Council Chair (2022-2024). 

She began practicing yoga to create balance for an active lifestyle and demanding career that left her exhausted. In 2021, Jody completed a 200hr RYT in 2021 at Up Yoga in Minneapolis with a focus in Baptiste Methodology. Following certification, she started her own business teaching private sessions, group classes, workshops, and yoga retreats. The love she has for her practice inspires her to help others discover the endless ways that yoga creates balance on and off the mat. 

Joe Benjamin, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, FCCM

Director of Purchasing, Pinellas County Schools


 

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 (Albert H Hall 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). Michael’s teaching experiences include 23 years as an Instructor for NIGP, independent curriculum and training development for various agencies. 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.

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.

Sheema Mirchandani, CDPSE

Professor, Business School, Rutgers University


Sheema is a professional educator, and researcher of spend analytics, eProcurement, contract management and supply chain logistics systems. She is the chief architect of eProcurement portals, contract management systems, and spend analytics solutions. She has 25+ years of experience in eProcurement, contract management, spend analytics, supply chain logistics and optimization. Sheema is regularly invited speaker at many national conferences and forums such as NIGP, NCMA, ISM, and more on spend analytics, eProcurement, and contract management systems, practices, and research topics. She teaches contract management, eProcurement and spend analytics at a research university. She is a Certified Data Privacy Solutions Engineer (CDPSE). She is a recipient of Silicon Valley Best Innovation Award. 

Sam Adhikari

Professional researcher and consultant of eProcurement, contract management, financial, budgeting, spend analytics, supplier relationship management, and supply chain logistics systems. He is a certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) and data privacy solutions engineer (CDPSE) with 30+ years of experience. He performed extensive research on eProcurement, spend analytics, finance, contract management and informatics at Stanford University.  He is an invited speaker at many national conferences and forums such as NIGP, NCMA, ISM, ISACA, and more on spend analytics, finance, budgeting, supplier relationship management, eProcurement, and contract management systems, practices, and research topics. He holds several graduate degrees including data science and business intelligence from Stanford University.  He is an expert in Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) and AI driven procurement insights, and supplier relationship management. 

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

Procurement Manager, Orange County Government, FL


Carrie has over 25 years of procurement, currently serving as the Chief Procurement Officer for Orange County Government (Florida). 

Carrie has obtained several professional certifications including Certified Federal Contracts Manager (CFCM), NIGP Certified Procurement Professional (NIGP-CPP), Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO), Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB), Certified Purchasing Manager (C.P.M.), and Accredited Purchasing Practitioner (A.P.P.). Carrie holds a Master in Public Administration from the University of Central Florida. 

Carrie is the Immediate Past-Chair of the Governing Board for NIGP: The Institute for Public Procurement. She is Past President of the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials, and the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP. 

Zulay Millan, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, FCCM, CPPB

Deputy Chief Procurement Officer, Orange County Government


Zulay Millan is currently Deputy Chief Procurement Official at Orange County Government in Florida.  Zulay began her public sector career in 2001. For the past two decades, her career focus has been in procurement and process engineering/ improvement. Zulay holds a Graduate Certificate in Public Procurement, a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and has her NIGP-CPP, CPPO and CPPB certifications. Zulay is currently serving on the Governing Board of the National Institute of Government Procurement (NIGP) as a representative of the Member Council. Locally Zulay serves as Strategic Planning Chair for the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials and is a Past President of the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP. In 2023 Zulay was honored with the George H. Wolf Distinguished Service Award from the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials.  Zulay has previously been awarded the Inspiration Award for Procurement Professionals in Central Florida, NIGP’s Young Professional of the Year Award, Procurement Manager of the Year in Central Florida, FAPPOs Above and Beyond Award and FAPPOs Outstanding Educator Award. 

Jenn Myers, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CPPO

Procurement Manager, City of Tucson


Jenn Myers, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, MPA is the Purchasing Director at the City of Scottsdale. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration in 2012 from the University of Phoenix and started her City of Tucson procurement career shortly thereafter. Jenn also earned a Master’s Degree in Public Administration in October of 2022. 

In 2017, she completed the Foundations of Public Sector Leadership Program from the University of Arizona’s Eller Executive Education. Jenn also completed the Ignite Leadership Academy offered through the City of Tucson in 2019. 

In 2020, Jenn was recognized by NIGP as the Young Professional of the Year. The Copper Chapter of NIGP named Jenn as Copper Chapter Manager of the Year in 2021. 

Jenn is an active leader with NIGP at both the Institute and chapter levels. From 2017 through 2018 she served as the Secretary of the Copper Chapter, and then as President from 2020 through 2021. As an Institute volunteer, she has served on the Pipeline and Placement Committee and is currently serving as a member of the Talent Council. 

Yolanda Broome, JD, AMInstLM, NIGP-CPP, CPP, CPPM, CGPP

Director of Procurement Planning and Strategic Sourcing, City of Atlanta Department of Watershed Management


Yolanda Broome is an attorney with over thirty years of experience in contract management, government procurement, and process improvement. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from the University of Alabama and a Doctor of Jurisprudence from Cumberland School of Law and is currently the Director of Procurement Planning and Strategic Sourcing for the Department of Watershed Management in the City of Atlanta, Georgia. Yolanda is recognized as an innovative change manager and contract expert. She also serves on the NIGP editorial and publication committee seeking to provide guidance on global best practices in procurement and to creatively lead procurement newcomers on a journey to improvements in our industry. Yolanda is an Associate Member of the Institute of Leadership and Management, a world-wide leadership training organization and has earned many procurement certifications to include the NIGP-CPP. Her dedication to strategic team building is a testament to over two decades of procurement department overhaul and improvement. This presentation will outline Yolanda’s strategic approach to leading people while managing tasks. 

Kawanna Woods

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. 

Duff Erholtz

Sourcewell Client Relations and NCPP Chair of Educational Outreach  


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 the National Cooperative Procurement Partners Association and helps create educational tools to assist procurement on understanding and utilizing Cooperative agreements.  

Crosby Grindle

National Cooperative Procurement Partners (NCPP) Strategic Development  


Crosby is the President of Cooperative Services, LLC and is on the Board of Directors for the Fire and Emergency Manufacturers and Services Association (FEMSA). He currently works with Sourcewell to lead their public safety cooperative procurement initiative and provides strategic development for National Cooperative Procurement Partners (NCPP), the professional association for cooperatives. Formerly, he served as the President of a NPPGov and served on the Board of Directors for NCPP. 

He has held several leadership positions in association management including Director of Professional Development for the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) and Regional Director for the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). His local government career began in the fire service where he ultimately served as the Chief of Training and Technical Rescue in Roanoke, VA and a project manager for city administration. 

Sean Carroll, NIGP-CPP, CPPO

Founder, Procurement as a Service firm A Posteriori LLC


Sean Carroll is the founder of the Procurement as a Service firm A Posteriori LLC, a Procurement as a Service Firm serving Governments, businesses and other public procurement stakeholders. He served as the chief procurement officer for the state of New York from 2016-2023, and various counties, cities and school districts across NYS state since 2005. He has served under 4 governors and managed more than 3000 contracts with annual spend exceeding $50 Billion for state agencies, state campuses and local governments. He has expertise in end to end procurement, cyber policy and terms and conditions, legislation, rule making and policy and experience in public work, commodities, services, technology, including DEI, social equity, sustainability, fair labor practices and emergency procurement. He has served as an NIGP Chapter Ambassador, on the NIGP Governing Board and as Chair of the NIGP CPP Certification Commission.

Kristy Varda, NIGP-CPP, MS, MBA, CPPO CPPB

Contracting Officer, County of Loudoun, Virginia/Division of Procurement


Originally from Oklahoma and a proud Oklahoma State University Alum, Kristy spent 10 years as a military spouse before relocating to Virginia from Germany. Kristy completed her Masters in Biotechnology Studies in 2008 and her MBA in 2009 while working in a variety of industries. She has been in public procurement for over 12 years and now works as a Capital Contracting Officer for Loudoun County Government. Her passion to help others grow in their procurement profession began with presenting webinars on Sole Sources and Software Procurement. She has been a part of the NIPG taskforce to write the Best Practices series on technology procurement and helped to develop both the Foundations of Technology Procurement and Job Order Contracting Courses for Pathways. She currently teaches a variety of topics for NIGP, is a staff member of Radio NIGP, and an NIGP mentor. In her spare time Kristy spends time with her husband, Tony, her pup, Timmy and as a Service to the Armed Forces volunteer with the Greater Shenandoah Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross. 

John Adler, CPPO

John Adler, CPPO is a seasoned procurement professional with more than 40 years of experience, culminating in his role as Arizona’s State Procurement Director. John has been a member and officer of many professional associations, including NIGP, NCMA, and ISM. He is the Past President and a Life-Member of the National Association of State Procurement Officers (NASPO), former chair of the Procurement and Materials Management Committee and director for the American Public Transit Association (APTA), and he is a trainer for NIGP, NASPO and the National Transit Institute (NTI) at Rutgers University. John recently retired as vice president of procurement for Dallas Area Rapid Transit and authored or co-authored three procurement textbooks, including Contracting for Design and Construction Services in the Public Sector, published in 2024.

Lavonia Horne-Williams

Construction Procurement Manager, Austing ISD


An effective, well-versed leader in the field of procurement, LaVonia Horne-Williams has more than 20 years of experience in managing teams, operations, and personnel at the local, state government, non-profit and school district levels. An expert at deciphering issues and creating sustainable value through competitive sourcing and change management, LaVonia is committed to the development of lean, strategic processes to help facilitate professional procurements. Her leadership strategy is to plan for change, drive performance, and cultivate a people-first culture of engagement and accountability. 

Joining Austin ISD in 2021 as the Construction Procurement Manager, she leads a team of professionals who manage the district’s 2017 Bonds Program solicitations, contracts, amendments and change orders. Solicitations range from Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR), Design-Build (DB), Competitive Sealed Proposal (CSP), to Request for Qualifications (RFQ) and Request for Proposals (RFP). LaVonia has worked to implement procurement best practices and processes to bring structure, compliance and agility to procurement at Austin ISD. 

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.

Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC

Purchasing Agent & Deputy,  Murray City Corporation


Brooke Smith is a strategic administrative and leadership professional with an 18-year track record of building connections, creating impact, and fostering positive community change. With a passion for leveraging technology to enhance procurement processes, she has become a driving force in the integration of ChatGPT and AI in public sector organizations. As a City Recorder with expertise in managing the Procurement Division, Brooke has honed her skills in streamlining projects, optimizing procurement procedures, and promoting transparency in the public sector. Through her volunteer involvement with the Utah Chapter of NIGP, NIGP Finance Council,  Radio NIGP committee, and serving three years on the Pipeline and Placement Committee, she actively contributes to the growth and development of the procurement profession, sharing her insights and knowledge with fellow professionals. During the NIGP Forum Technology Track, Brooke will share her expertise on utilizing ChatGPT and AI in procurement processes. With a deep understanding of how technology can transform administrative teams, Brooke will guide attendees on harnessing the power of AI to streamline procurement projects, reduce agency risk, and create stronger, more resilient communities. Join Brooke Smith as she brings her wealth of knowledge, experience, and enthusiasm to the NIGP Technology Track, and together, let's explore how AI can revolutionize procurement processes and pave the way for a brighter future for communities across the nation.

Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE

Director of Purchasing, Columbia Association


Stephanie Akerley is the Director of Purchasing at Columbia Association.  She has been working in procurement for 28+ years, with 14 years of that experience focused on technology. Stephanie earned her first CPPB in 1997. After taking a career break to raise her family, she once again earned a CPPB in 2015.  In 2021, Stephanie earned her NIGP-CPP and CPPO certifications. In 2020, she earned her Certified Technology Procurement Executive (CTPE) certification from the Certified Technology Professionals Executives Society. Stephanie has contributed content to all of the NIGP Technology courses and enjoys teaching these classes, in addition to the Pathways competency courses.

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.

Carolina Aguilera, PhD

Director, Business and Digital Transformation Services Team


Carolina is an expert in the behavioral implications of large-scale organizational change. In her more than 24 years in practice, she has helped numerous Global Fortune 100 companies successfully undergo major digital and cultural procurement, finance, operations, IT, and HR transformations by providing leader-led, behavior-based change leadership, team development, and executive coaching services.  Currently, as the leader of Canon Solutions America's Business and Digital Transformation team, Carolina is committed to helping her clients redefine their vision of success for their digital transformations. Her focus is on creating the right culture that is essential for achieving her clients’ targeted financial, productivity, satisfaction, and sustainability goals.  

Carolina holds both Ph.D. and M.A. degrees in Psychology (with an emphasis in Behavior Analysis) from West Virginia University. She holds a B.A. in Psychology from Florida International University. 

Tim Nolan, Ph.D

Senior Change Advisor, Business and Digital Transformation Services Team


Tim is a Senior Change Advisor for Canon Solutions America’s Business and Digital Transformation Services team. In his role, he helps make change easier for organizations through thoughtful and creative approaches that call on his 25-plus years of experience in change leadership, organizational behavior, executive coaching, and operations. Tim leads teams that craft tailored communications for our customers, training, and internal marketing campaigns to support implementation of solutions for our customers. 

Tim has a Ph.D. in Applied Behavior Analysis from Western Michigan University as well as a Master of Arts in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. He is a highly skilled communicator with a track record of leveraging large-scale behavior change to get meaningful, measurable outcomes. 

Denise Finn, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M.,

Procurement Manager, City of Ft. Myers, FL


Denise Finn is the Procurement Manager for the City of Fort Myers; With almost thirty years of procurement experience in public and private sectors in the U.S and Canada she has a few stories to tell. She is passionate about the Procurement Profession, continuing education and certification and is always happy to mentor and share her experience and knowledge. She has achieved her NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M. and A.P.P. certifications. 

Denise is the President of the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials (FAPPO) and has been active in NIGP for more than twenty-five years. She also served on the Board of three different NIGP Chapters (Arizona, Kentucky, and Florida), the executive Board of NAEP during her time in higher education. 

Denise has presented at national meetings for NAEP, NPI, SparX, FAPPO, TxPPA and Educause and regional NIGP meetings; She is an NIGP instructor and a Senior Consultant for NIGP Consulting. 

Kristina Mathews

Emergency Management Coordinator, City of Ft. Myers


Kristy Mathews graduated from Florida State University in 2016 and spent 5 years with the Florida Department of Health in their Bureau of Preparedness and Response. During her time there she worked at every Hurricane and major health incident including Zika, Hep. A., blue/green algae, red tide, and Covid-19. For most of those responses, she was embedded in either Planning or Logistics. I was deployed for Hurricanes Michael, Irma, Dorian, Florence, and Sally for various response activities including managing Logistic Staging Areas, Logistics Chief for damage assessments, and support for deployed medical response teams. She accepted a position with the Okaloosa County Health Department as their Public Health Preparedness Planner where she spent a year growing her planning and preparedness experience and began working with the community in the Community Emergency Response Teams and Medical Reserve Corps. In June of 2022, she was fortunate enough to be offered the Emergency Management Coordinator position with the City of Fort Myers. Over the last two years she has had an incredible opportunity to manage the City’s Hurricane Ian Response as well as establish and grow the City’s response structure and capabilities. 

Tara Acton, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Director of Procurement and Central Services, Mohave County Procurement Department


Tara Acton, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, began her procurement career in September 2009 with Mohave County. After a 4-year service with the City of Tucson, she returned to the County as their Director of Procurement and Central Services in June 2020. 

Ms. Acton earned her Bachelor’s of Applied Sciences Degree in Public Agency Service from Northern Arizona University in December 2008. She received the designation of Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) in October 2012 and NIGP Certified Procurement Professional (NIGP-CPP) in May 2023. 

Tara is an active leader in NIGP. She served as the President of NIGP’s Grand Canyon Chapter from July 2015 through June 2017. She also served on several committees with NIGP’s Copper Chapter between October 2016 and May 2020. At the Institute level, Tara has served on multiple committees and task forces since 2015. She was elected to the Member Council in 2017 ultimately ending her service on that Council in 2022 as the Chair (and ex officio Governing Board Member). Since August 2022 Tara has been serving as a Member of the Talent Council. 

2019 was a year of professional recognition for Tara. She was recognized as the Copper Chapter’s 2019 Buyer of the Year, NIGP’s Young Professional for 2019, and she received the City of Tucson’s Business Services Department “Keys to Success” Award for her contributions to the City of Tucson as well as the work she has done on behalf of the profession. 

Kim Cullen

Director of Advocacy & Insight, mdf commerce


Kim Cullen is the Director of Advocacy & Insight for mdf commerce eprocurement including the Periscope, Bidnet and Merx solutions. Bringing nearly 25 years of marketing and customer relations experience to the team, her areas of focus include industry insight, customer engagement and connecting buyers and suppliers within the public sector. Kim is part of the NIGP Business Council and has her Supplier Mastery Designation from NIGP. In addition, she organizes and conducts educational seminars and webinars for NIGP regional chapters, procurement partners and customers, buying organizations and the vendor community throughout the country. 

Ryan Duncan

Global Account Manager - Cooperative Purchasing, Cintas


Ryan Duncan is the Global Account Manager for Cintas Cooperative Purchasing, working closely with our cooperative purchasing partners, lead public agencies and leading public sector customers. He focuses primarily on ensuring that our wide range of products and services provide the most value for public sector agencies, while helping them save time and money and stay compliant with their procurement requirements.

Ryan has held multiple leadership positions throughout his 25+ years with Cintas, including more
than six years in our Higher Education segment serving the State, Local and Education (SLED) market.  With national experience and exposure to public agencies in both government and education, he specializes in best practices, emerging trends and customized solutions that drive enhanced safety, efficiency, cleanliness and image — making it easier for public agencies to keep their focus on their operations and priorities.

As Global Account Manager, Ryan is passionate about fostering successful cooperative purchasing partnerships — helping our public sector customers consolidate vendors across a broad spectrum of categories and benefit from the best possible pricing achieved through buying power on a national scale.

A graduate of the Indiana University Kelley School of Business, Ryan lives in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin area with his wife Allison and their two children, Brendan and Lauren. 

Matt Dugal

Regional Manager, Florida, OMNIA Partners


Matt Dugal joined the OMNIA Partners team in March 2022, where he serves as the regional Manager of Florida-West. Prior to joining OMNIA Partners, Matt worked for Trane for nearly 5 years where he worked closely with many public sector agencies in Florida and he now currently works with the largest K-12, Cities, Counties & Special Districts in Florida.

Matthew Bauer, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.M., CPSM

Vice President of Procurement, Hillsborough County Aviation Authority


Matthew Bauer is the Vice President of Procurement at Hillsborough County Aviation Authority. Matt has over 16 years of experience in city, county, and special-district procurement departments. Matt earned both his bachelor’s degree in supply chain management and a master's degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Supply Chain Management from Arizona State University, as well as earned several professional certifications, including the CPPB, CPPO, NIGP-CPP, C.M., and CPSM. For his use of innovative procurement practices, he was awarded the Gabe Zimmerman Public Service Award for Innovation, ISM’s 30 under 30 Supply Chain Stars, AZNIGP’s Manager of the Year, and has been featured in several published articles, including Governing Magazine, Government Procurement Magazine (GOVPRO), CBS, Arizona Republic, and others.

David Wheeler, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Senior Director of Procurement, Orange County Public Schools


David is the Senior Director of Procurement Services for Orange County Public Schools in Orlando, Florida which is the eighth-largest school district in the nation serving almost 200,000 students and 25,000 employees. In this role, he has executive leadership responsibilities for all Procurement functions, including all contracting processes to include construction, supplier diversity programs, surplus operations, printing services, and mail and courier services. David holds CPPO, CPPB, and NIGP-CPP certifications in addition to holding both a bachelor's and master's degree in business administration from the University of Central Florida. David is actively involved with the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials (FAPPO), NIGP, the Council of the Great City Schools (CGCS), and the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council (UPPCC).

Mike Grade

Senior Vice President, OPUS, OMNIA Partners


Mike Grade is the Senior Vice President of OMNIA Partners OPUS, leading the team in expanding the OPUS e-commerce platform, which offers public sector and nonprofit agencies access to numerous cooperative contracts. He oversees supplier integration, member enablement, and platform development, focusing on growth and revenue opportunities. Previously, Mike was Vice President of Sales Enablement and Training at OMNIA Partners.

Bobbie Tolston, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Energy Resource Conservation Manager, Harford County Public Schools


Bobbie has over 25+ years of experience as a Procurement Officer. She is a “Change Agent” with a proven track record of modernizing procurement departments by implementing procurement strategies that align with the agency objectives. She changed processes to align with procurement best practices, levering technology (ERP), with drafting policies, procedures and training personnel. She leads teams with passion while ensuring to honor her core values of integrity, respect, and compassion. She is great with collaborating amongst internal and external clients to achieve organizational and departmental goals, effectively and efficiently. Additionally, she is a Consultant, Instructor, Life Coach, Trainer, currently volunteering on the Talent Council member, and Mentorship Committee Liaison, Content Developer, Procurement Subject Member Expert (SME), Radio NIGP member and member of NIGP since 2000.  

Bobbie regularly practices yoga and reflection/meditation as part of her self-care regime. 

Jody Jacoby, NIGP-CPP, CPPO

Chief Procurement Officer, Metropolitan Council, St. Paul, MN


Jody’s current role is Chief Procurement Officer (CPO) with Metropolitan Council (Council) in St. Paul, Minnesota. The Council is the regional policy-making body, planning agency, and provider of essential services in the seven-county Twin Cities fostering efficient and economic growth. In the role of CPO, I lead a high functioning team of 36 talented procurement professionals. The Council’s annual procurement spend is approximately $800,000,000 with 39,000 individual procurement events. In 2023, our team earned the distinguished NIGP Quality Public Procurement (QPP) designation. Jody’s core values are community and connection while contributing to personal and professional growth. She has served in various volunteer roles within the profession including the Minnesota Chapter of NIGP, NIGP as a Chapter Ambassador (2015-2018), Member Council (2018-2024) and Member Council Chair (2022-2024). 

She began practicing yoga to create balance for an active lifestyle and demanding career that left her exhausted. In 2021, Jody completed a 200hr RYT in 2021 at Up Yoga in Minneapolis with a focus in Baptiste Methodology. Following certification, she started her own business teaching private sessions, group classes, workshops, and yoga retreats. The love she has for her practice inspires her to help others discover the endless ways that yoga creates balance on and off the mat. 

Lourdes Coss, MPA, NIGP-CPP, CPPO

Author, Certified Coach, Trainer, Speaker, Behavioral Consultant & Owner - M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC


Lourdes Coss is a transformational leader and former Chief Procurement Officer with 30+ year career in government procurement. For over two decades, she spearheaded successful transformations at some of the largest local government. agencies in the United States, crafting and implementing polices, procurement. codes, and strategies to cultivate high-performing teams, streamline processes, and modernize procurement departments.  

As the author of “Procurement Methods: Effective Techniques,” Lourdes shares her wealth of knowledge and expertise. She is also a certified Maxwell Leadership Executive Program coach, speaker, and trainer levering her insights to benefit and empower others. 

Additionally, she is a Behavioral Consultant; a Licensed Brain Trainer; a certified Neuro-encoding Specialist, and a Cialdini Certified Professional. She is the Principal Owner of M. L. Coss and Associates, LLC. Lourdes has been recognized for her value-centered leadership and as a one of the “Top 50 Global Influencers and Thought Leaders in Procurement.” 

Cie Armstead, MPA, DBA

Owner & Principal: Owlservations, LLC, Servant Leader: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion


Nationally recognized for her expertise in the ever-changing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) arena, Cie builds upon more than 30 years’ experience in association management and as an innovative DEI leader. In August 2021, she joined the American College of Surgeons as an Executive Leader for its new strategic focus on anti-racism, diversity, equity, and inclusion.  Cie also is the founder and principal of her career service firm, Owlservations, LLC, that offers customized coaching and consulting services that equip and empower professionals of color to excel in their careers.  Previously, Cie served as the first Diversity & Inclusion Director for the American College of Healthcare Executives for over 5 years, and as Diversity Center Director at the American Bar Association. During her 24-year tenure with the ABA, Cie held several other positions including Senior Staff Advisor to the ABA President and Director of Litigation Section Periodicals. Cie is a frequent presenter, writer, and consultant on DEI and association management topics, specializing in evidence-based practices and creating collaborative initiatives to achieve DEI and organizational objectives. She serves as 2022-23 Chair of the American Society of Association Executive’s Research Committee, as the DEI Thought Leader for the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing’s Talent Council. Cie earned an undergraduate Journalism degree from Northwestern University, a Master’s in Public Administration from Roosevelt University, and a Doctorate in Business Administration, specializing in Industrial Organizational Psychology, from Northcentral University.

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Public Procurement Executive


Stéphanie Dion was most recently the Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence with the Government of Manitoba. She has 16 years of public procurement experience with various types of public entities in Canada. Stephanie graduated university with a teaching degree and has been involved with professional development in various capacities. She has been an active volunteer and advisor with professional associations since 2012 and now serves as the Chair of the Content Management Committee for the National Institute of Government Purchasing (NIGP). Stephanie recently contributed a few articles to procurement magazines and is the recipient of NIGP’s 2021 Buyer of the Year Award.

 

Victor Leamer, CPPB

Senior Buyer, Spokane County


Victor Leamer has over 33 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. Victor 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.

Kevin Yin, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Director, Contracts and Procurement, San Mateo County Transit District


Kevin has been in procurement for 20+ years, in both private and public sectors. Currently, he is the Director of Contracts and Procurement for the San Mateo County Transit District in San Carlos, California. He and his team are responsible for developing and administering the District's procurement policies and procedures, and all procurement activities.

Kevin's thoughts on learning... 1) You're never too old to learn. 2) It's forever. No one can ever take that knowledge away from you. 3) Learning should be fun (your brain may experience a bit of pain, but it's temporary). Kevin is an active member at the Northern California Chapter of NIGP, where he is serving as the Chapter Vice President; and at the National level, where he is a Certified NIGP Instructor. Kevin has served on committees and on the Board of the OPPA Chapter of NIGP (Oregon), including serving as the OPPA President during FY2008-2009. Also, he has served as the Vice Chair of the NIGP Member Council.

Kevin graduated from the University of Oregon (Eugene, Oregon) in 1993 with BAs in Finance, Marketing, and Psychology. GO DUCKS!

Kevin lives in the Bay Area in California. He is married to Kelly for over 25 years. They have two children, Ethan (20) and Abbie (18).

Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP CPPO

Project Lead (Retired), Ministry of Finance


Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP, CPPO has over forty years of experience as a public procurement leader within the provincial, municipal and health care sectors. She has extensive expertise in procurement legislation, both nationally and internationally, policy development, cross-functional planning, project implementation, procurement performance, sustainability program development and implementation, and business analysis. She has served the Institute in numerous capacities, is a Chapter Past-President and is a frequent Forum speaker and moderator. Lynda instructs public procurement classes for NIGP, the University of Guelph and others upon request. Lynda has been a part of the NIGP Consulting Program since 2010 and is NIGP’s 2021 Anne Deatherage Meritorious Service Award and the 2012 Distinguished Service Award recipient in the public procurement profession.

Dr. Alan R. Shark

Executive Director, Public Technology Institute (PTI)


Dr. Alan R. Shark's focus has been technology leadership, governance, civic engagement, and emerging technologies in the public sector, emphasizing artificial intelligence and the public sector. He has taught Technology & Public Administration for over 15 years. He is currently an associate professor at the Schar School of Policy and Government, George Mason University, where he also serves as an affiliate faculty member for GMU’s Center for the Advancement of Human Machine Partnership. Before GMU, he taught at Rutgers University.

In addition to his teaching and research responsibilities, he is the executive director of the Public Technology Institute (PTI) since 2004. He is co-chair of the Standing Panel on Technology Leadership for the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) and serves on the executive committee for the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) Science & Technology Interest Group.

He frequently writes about technology and government and has written or edited over 12 books, the most recent being Artificial Intelligence—A Primer for State and Local Governments and the textbook Technology & Public Management, second edition. He is also the host of the bi-monthly podcast Sharkbytes.Net.

Jedediah Greenfield, CPA, CTCD, CTCM

Chief Procurement Officer, City of Houston 


As the CPO for the City of Houston, Jedediah Greenfield directs the central procurement operations for the City of Houston. Responsibilities include leading day-to-day activities across all City departments for direct and indirect sourcing and procurement activities. Key activities include - acceleration and implementation of best in class procurement capabilities and organizational development efforts - transforming procurement to a strategic organization focused on optimizing the entire procure-to-pay process to meet City strategic and operation objectives.  Prior to the City, Jedediah was the Assistant Director as Houston Public Works where he led the operations of the Procurement, Fleet and Warehouse Services Division of Houston Public Works. This includes procurement and contract development, management and compliance, which represents nearly $1 billion in goods and services annually; purchasing, management and salvage of a diverse fleet of nearly 4,000 light, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles; and operations (purchasing, receiving and issuing of stocked commodities) of the five department warehouses. 

Sophia Cunnigham, NIGP-CPP, MBA, MSc., CPPO, CPPB

Division Director for Procurement Policy and Trainingm Miami-Dade County, Strategic Procurement Department


Sophia is the Division Director for Procurement Policy and Training at Miami-Dade County, Strategic Procurement Department. She oversees procurement policy formulation and implementation, employee training and development, procurement analysis and compliance, and marketing and promotion. In this role, Sophia spearheaded the development and implementation of the County’s Procurement and Vendor Academies providing training to procurement professionals and vendors. 

She has over 15 years’ experience in procurement and describes herself as a global strategic sourcing professional with demonstrated ability to innovate and drive transformation, develop and build capacity, and effectively collaborate with stakeholders across the supply chain to drive value. Sophia was instrumental in the Government of Jamaica’s Public Sector Procurement Reform Process and the establishment of a Prescribed License Information Database which is used to monitor and investigate the award, suspension, and revocation of more than 600 prescribed licenses under the purview of 198 public entities. 

Sophia is a volunteer at heart – she voluntarily prepares SPD staff for the UPPCC’s CPPB/CPPO examinations, is a mentor under the NIGP Mentorship Program and Secretary for the NIGP Greater Miami Chapter. 

Christopher Grant-Henriques, MBA, CPPB, FCCM

With over a decade of dedicated experience in procurement, Christopher Grant-Henriques is a seasoned professional adept at streamlining procurement processes, negotiating contracts, and optimizing strategies to drive operational efficiency and cost savings. 

Throughout his career, Christopher has served in senior procurement officer and management positions and has demonstrated the ability to develop and implement innovative procurement strategies tailored to various industries, ensuring alignment with organizational goals and industry best practices. Christopher has also partnered with the Policy and Training Division in Miami-Dade County to help train procurement professionals. He has even served as a UPPCC CPPB Study Group Facilitator twice! 

Christopher has been recognized for his collaborative approach, fostering strong relationships with suppliers and stakeholders to forge mutually beneficial partnerships. His commitment to continuous improvement and staying abreast of industry trends allows him to effectively adapt strategies to dynamic market conditions, ensuring sustained competitiveness. 

With a proven track record of achieving cost savings and enhancing operational efficiency, Christopher is a results-oriented professional dedicated to driving excellence in procurement practices while maintaining the highest standards of integrity and professionalism. 

Erin Stafford

Erin Stafford has blazed a trail of action-oriented success fueled by trial and error, bold decisions and unwavering self-confidence.  Her figure-it-out mentality has shaped her career journey from being a fledging public relations intern to a high-powered marketing executive at a hyper-growth company.

Erin is an award-winning global keynote speaker, best-selling author,  Cambridge social psychologist, burnout survivor and hyper-growth business leader.  Erin has worked with some of the most motivated, ambitious, famous over achievers in the world, all who thought that burnout was something that happened to weak, lazy people – not high achievers like them.  Yet leaders in all sectors suffer from severe cases of burnout as they struggle with pressure and effects of break-neck progress and hustle culture on the personal and professional lives.

During her keynote, Erin will use lessons gleaned from her international career as well as interviews and surveys with thousands of high achievers from all walks of life, which will inspire mindset shifts for leaders to move from exhaustion and burnout to kicking butt and thriving again.

John Adler, CPPO

John Adler, CPPO is a seasoned procurement professional with more than 40 years of experience, culminating in his role as Arizona’s State Procurement Director. John has been a member and officer of many professional associations, including NIGP, NCMA, and ISM. He is the Past President and a Life-Member of the National Association of State Procurement Officers (NASPO), former chair of the Procurement and Materials Management Committee and director for the American Public Transit Association (APTA), and he is a trainer for NIGP, NASPO and the National Transit Institute (NTI) at Rutgers University. John recently retired as vice president of procurement for Dallas Area Rapid Transit and authored or co-authored three procurement textbooks, including Contracting for Design and Construction Services in the Public Sector, published in 2024.

Lavonia Horne-Williams

Construction Procurement Manager, Austing ISD


An effective, well-versed leader in the field of procurement, LaVonia Horne-Williams has more than 20 years of experience in managing teams, operations, and personnel at the local, state government, non-profit and school district levels. An expert at deciphering issues and creating sustainable value through competitive sourcing and change management, LaVonia is committed to the development of lean, strategic processes to help facilitate professional procurements. Her leadership strategy is to plan for change, drive performance, and cultivate a people-first culture of engagement and accountability. 

Joining Austin ISD in 2021 as the Construction Procurement Manager, she leads a team of professionals who manage the district’s 2017 Bonds Program solicitations, contracts, amendments and change orders. Solicitations range from Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR), Design-Build (DB), Competitive Sealed Proposal (CSP), to Request for Qualifications (RFQ) and Request for Proposals (RFP). LaVonia has worked to implement procurement best practices and processes to bring structure, compliance and agility to procurement at Austin ISD. 

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.

Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC

Purchasing Agent & Deputy,  Murray City Corporation


Brooke Smith is a strategic administrative and leadership professional with an 18-year track record of building connections, creating impact, and fostering positive community change. With a passion for leveraging technology to enhance procurement processes, she has become a driving force in the integration of ChatGPT and AI in public sector organizations. As a City Recorder with expertise in managing the Procurement Division, Brooke has honed her skills in streamlining projects, optimizing procurement procedures, and promoting transparency in the public sector. Through her volunteer involvement with the Utah Chapter of NIGP, NIGP Finance Council,  Radio NIGP committee, and serving three years on the Pipeline and Placement Committee, she actively contributes to the growth and development of the procurement profession, sharing her insights and knowledge with fellow professionals. During the NIGP Forum Technology Track, Brooke will share her expertise on utilizing ChatGPT and AI in procurement processes. With a deep understanding of how technology can transform administrative teams, Brooke will guide attendees on harnessing the power of AI to streamline procurement projects, reduce agency risk, and create stronger, more resilient communities. Join Brooke Smith as she brings her wealth of knowledge, experience, and enthusiasm to the NIGP Technology Track, and together, let's explore how AI can revolutionize procurement processes and pave the way for a brighter future for communities across the nation.

Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE

Director of Purchasing, Columbia Association


Stephanie Akerley is the Director of Purchasing at Columbia Association.  She has been working in procurement for 28+ years, with 14 years of that experience focused on technology. Stephanie earned her first CPPB in 1997. After taking a career break to raise her family, she once again earned a CPPB in 2015.  In 2021, Stephanie earned her NIGP-CPP and CPPO certifications. In 2020, she earned her Certified Technology Procurement Executive (CTPE) certification from the Certified Technology Professionals Executives Society. Stephanie has contributed content to all of the NIGP Technology courses and enjoys teaching these classes, in addition to the Pathways competency courses.

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.

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 33 years, Marcheta has served as an experienced thought-leader, advocate and subject matter expert in the procurement profession.  As the former Chief Procurement Officer at the City of Tucson, Marcheta led one of country’s most highly acclaimed procurement organizations.  Retired from government service after 28 years of service, Marcheta serves as the President of NIGP Code & Consulting, leading a team of over 40 professional procurement consultants transforming procurement in the public and private sector. Marcheta 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 serves on the NIGP CARE Advisory Board and the NIGP Business Council. Marcheta has spoken at hundreds of international, national and regional events and authored numerous published works in the profession.   

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

Procurement Innovation Manager, WA State Dept of Enterprise Services Contracts & Procurement


Cheral Manke, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPM - Procurement Innovation Manager, WA State Dept. of Enterprise Services Contracts & Procurement; 20 years Public Procurement experience & 20 years private sector; Chair Governor’s SEEP Toxics & Plastics Reduction; Chair OneWA Procurement Advisory Council; Founder & Co-chair NIGP Pathways Concierge program; WA Chapter NIGP Emerging Professionals Co-Chair; Bellevue College Advisory Board member; Former WA State Procurement Manager, NIGP Governing Board Member & NIGP Member Council Chair; NASPO VP Board; UPPCC Board of Examiners; 3x WA NIGP Chapter President; BS Legal Studies/Exec JD - Cal State-Lexington; Certified Purchasing Manager - U of Texas-Arlington Certified Paralegal - Cal State-San Marcos; Certified Scrum Master; Disney Institute Grad. 

Ginny Justiniano, CPPB

Lead Contract Specialist,  King County International Airport


Ginny Justiniano, CPPB, Lead Contract Specialist, King County International Airport; 20 years public procurement experience ranging from city, transit and county public entities. 2024 WA State Chapter of NIGP President, Former Area 8 Chapter Ambassador and Member Council liaison, Radio NIGP staff, Standard Setting Panel member for NIGP-CPP and Co-Founder of Procurement Women Leader Facebook group. 

John Tigert

Assistant Purchasing Manage, City of Virginia Beach, Virginia


John Tigert currently serves as the Assistant Purchasing Manager for the City of Virginia Beach, Virginia - the most populous city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Prior to his work at the City of Virginia Beach, John also served as the Purchasing Services Manager for Dorchester County, South Carolina, and the Procurement Manager for St. Louis County, Missouri. John has a Master's degree in Public Administration, and holds the NIGP-CPP, CPPO, and CPPB certifications from NIGP and the UPPCC, respectively. His areas of focus during his public procurement career have been on construction procurement, procurement process & policy development, and cooperative procurement. John is currently a member of the Board of Directors for the Virginia Association of Governmental Procurement. 

Whitney Mugford-Smith, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Procurement Manager, City of Wheat Ridge, CO


Whitney is the Procurement Manager for the City of Wheat Ridge and current MAPO (Multiple Assemblies of Procurement Officials) Chairperson and is currently serving as an NIGP Area 9 Chapter Ambassador. Recently, Whitney served as an Advisor to the CU Boulder Leeds School of Business for their Customer Experience Program. Beginning in 2010 as a Department of Defense Contractor, Whitney has been working in public procurement in various capacities since 2012 and chose to make the leap to full-time public procurement in 2015. Since gaining her CPPB and NIGP-CPP, Whitney has been joining panels across the country to discuss the many benefits associated with cooperative procurement as well as collaboration in general. Whitney believes strongly in setting a firm foundation in terms of training and team exposure and then building upon that with steady participation and idea sharing. Whitney previously served RMGPA as secretary, and was a member of the NIGP mentoring committee. 

When Whitney isn’t working, you can find her creating art or working on a project for the Denver home she shares with her husband, two cats and two dogs

Christin Webb, NIGP-CPP, MBA

Consultant, Leadership Development, Coaching and Procurement


Christin Webb is the founder and CEO of The Greater You Leadership Series, with over two decades of experience in both public and private sectors. Her educational foundation includes a BA in Social Work from the University of Memphis and an MBA from Webster University, equipping her with a unique blend of skills for leadership coaching. Christin’s career highlights include serving as Chief Procurement Officer for Shelby County Government, where she managed over $1 billion in procurement processes, and holding leadership roles in TAPP and the NIGP Governing Talent Council. Her certification as a procurement professional and experience as a trained social worker informs her results-oriented, people-first leadership strategy. An international bestselling author and award-winning screenwriter, Christin's dedication to leadership excellence has earned her multiple accolades. She embodies the belief that greatness requires intentional effort, making her a significant influence in leadership development.

Polly Alles

Contracts Administrator/Senior Buyer, University of Utah Project, Design & Construction Department, University of Utah


Polly Alles is a Contract Administrator/Senior Buyer for the U-Facilities Project Design & Construction department at the University of Utah.

She is current Utah chapter Vice President and former Utah 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. Polly volunteers for two NIGP national committees such as Publications and content management.

She attained her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from Western Governors University and plans to achieve her Masters in Management and Leadership in 2024. Polly attributes her career success to her work experiences, life experiences, friends, mentors and peers, who are the most valued part of her education! 

She 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 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 finalizing the 1994 NAFTA Agreement between 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!

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

Former Director, Finance and Procurement, Retired


Kirk Buffington retired in June 2019, from the City of Fort Lauderdale, where he spent the last five years as Director of Finance. Kirk also served as Director of Procurement Services and Deputy Director of Administrative Services. Prior to Fort Lauderdale, Kirk was the Purchasing Agent for Osceola County. 

Kirk has a B.S. in Business Administration from Florida State University, an MBA, with a concentration in Procurement and Acquisitions Management, from Webster University, and a Masters of Legal Studies, MLS, from the University of Cinncinatti Law School. 

Mr. Buffington served as President of the Florida Association of Public Purchasing Officers and was elected to the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing, (NIGP) Board of Directors in July 2003, and served as President of NIGP from 2008-2009. 

Mr. Buffington co-authored the NIGP LEAP text “The Legal Aspects of Purchasing” and published various articles concerning Procurement Case Law in nationally peer-reviewed academic journals. 

In 2023 Kirk was awarded the Albert H. Hall Fellow award. 

Sharon Loosman

Chief Procurement Officer and Director of Procurement & Business Services, NC State University


Sharon Loosman is the Chief Procurement Officer and Director of Procurement & Business Services at NC State University, a position she has held since 2011. 

In this role, Sharon is responsible for multiple operations and program areas, including supplier relationship management, strategic sourcing & procurement, contract administration, eProcurement systems, automated payables solutions, corporate card programs, managed print services, surplus property, and campus warehouse operations. 

Sharon has development and management responsibilities for 40 staff members. Her teams are constantly seeking to design and implement innovative business process improvements. 

Sharon participates in various capacities in many professional organizations, including NAEP, NACUBO, SACUBO, HEUG and the Treasury Institute for Higher Education. 

Tom Nunn

Chief Procurement Officer, Cabarrus County Government


Tom Nunn, an esteemed Chief Procurement Officer, boasts a commendable career spanning 12 years of dedicated service with Cabarrus County Government. Before his invaluable contributions in procurement, he served with distinction in the United States Army, showcasing his unwavering commitment to public service. Tom's multifaceted expertise, coupled with his military background, enables him to navigate complex procurement challenges with precision and integrity, ensuring the efficient allocation of resources to benefit the community at large. 

Danielle Hinz, CPPO

Executive Government Advisor, Amazon Web Services (AWS)


Danielle is currently an Executive Government Advisor for Amazon Web Services (AWS) helping public sector customers on their digital transformation journey. Prior to joining Amazon in 2017, she worked in public procurement for over 20 years, including higher education and local government. As Chief

Procurement Officer for King County, Washington, she led a $3 billion procure-to-pay organization and was responsible for sponsoring multiple Lean Six Sigma transformation projects that reduced cycle time and improved the customer experience. She led procurement technology and policy modernizations at multiple organizations, and served for over a decade in leadership roles with NIGP-Institute for Public Procurement, Rocky Mountain Government Purchasing Association, and Colorado Municipal League.

She is a Certified Public Procurement Official and earned her Bachelors Degree and Masters Degree in Public Administration from the University of Colorado.

 

Mark Hampton, Ph.D.

Executive Education Advisor, Amazon Web Services


As an Executive Education Advisor, Mark works with higher education executives and line-of-business leaders to understand how cloud technologies can enable digital transformation efforts, particularly around the effective use of data and analytics. Prior to joining AWS, Mark served for 30 years as an administrator at six different institutions of higher education ranging from a small private liberal arts college to several large research universities with academic medical centers, holding faculty rank at three such institutions. Throughout his career in higher education, Mark has held Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Chief Information Officer (CIO) roles as well as institution-level leadership roles in analytics, and has played key leadership roles in Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) implementations, cloud migrations, managed-services provisioning of IT services, and the adoption of analytics-based decision-support and resource-allocation systems.

Mark earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mathematics, a Master of Statistics degree, and a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy, all from the University of Utah.

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Public Procurement Executive


Stéphanie Dion was most recently the Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence with the Government of Manitoba. She has 16 years of public procurement experience with various types of public entities in Canada. Stephanie graduated university with a teaching degree and has been involved with professional development in various capacities. She has been an active volunteer and advisor with professional associations since 2012 and now serves as the Chair of the Content Management Committee for the National Institute of Government Purchasing (NIGP). Stephanie recently contributed a few articles to procurement magazines and is the recipient of NIGP’s 2021 Buyer of the Year Award.

 

Victor Leamer, CPPB

Senior Buyer, Spokane County


Victor Leamer has over 33 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. Victor 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.

Kevin Yin, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Director, Contracts and Procurement, San Mateo County Transit District


Kevin has been in procurement for 20+ years, in both private and public sectors. Currently, he is the Director of Contracts and Procurement for the San Mateo County Transit District in San Carlos, California. He and his team are responsible for developing and administering the District's procurement policies and procedures, and all procurement activities.

Kevin's thoughts on learning... 1) You're never too old to learn. 2) It's forever. No one can ever take that knowledge away from you. 3) Learning should be fun (your brain may experience a bit of pain, but it's temporary). Kevin is an active member at the Northern California Chapter of NIGP, where he is serving as the Chapter Vice President; and at the National level, where he is a Certified NIGP Instructor. Kevin has served on committees and on the Board of the OPPA Chapter of NIGP (Oregon), including serving as the OPPA President during FY2008-2009. Also, he has served as the Vice Chair of the NIGP Member Council.

Kevin graduated from the University of Oregon (Eugene, Oregon) in 1993 with BAs in Finance, Marketing, and Psychology. GO DUCKS!

Kevin lives in the Bay Area in California. He is married to Kelly for over 25 years. They have two children, Ethan (20) and Abbie (18).

Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP CPPO

Project Lead (Retired), Ministry of Finance


Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP, CPPO has over forty years of experience as a public procurement leader within the provincial, municipal and health care sectors. She has extensive expertise in procurement legislation, both nationally and internationally, policy development, cross-functional planning, project implementation, procurement performance, sustainability program development and implementation, and business analysis. She has served the Institute in numerous capacities, is a Chapter Past-President and is a frequent Forum speaker and moderator. Lynda instructs public procurement classes for NIGP, the University of Guelph and others upon request. Lynda has been a part of the NIGP Consulting Program since 2010 and is NIGP’s 2021 Anne Deatherage Meritorious Service Award and the 2012 Distinguished Service Award recipient in the public procurement profession.

Stacy Gregg, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Director of Procurement, South Carolina State University


Stacy Gregg is the Director of Procurement at South Carolina State University. She is an Online Instructor for NIGP and currently serves as Chair Elect with the Institute on the Member Council and Certification Commission. Stacy is an active member of the SC Association of Governmental Purchasing Officials (SCAGPO). Stacy has an A.A. Degree in Public Service (Paralegal) from Midlands Technical College in Columbia, SC and B.A. Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies (Concentrating in English & Management) from the University of South Carolina. Stacy holds the credentials of NIGP- Certified Procurement Professional as well as Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO), and Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) designations. 

Rick Grimm, NIGP-CPP

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.

Zulay Millan, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, FCCM, CPPB

Deputy Chief Procurement Officer, Orange County Government


Zulay Millan is currently Deputy Chief Procurement Official at Orange County Government in Florida.  Zulay began her public sector career in 2001. For the past two decades, her career focus has been in procurement and process engineering/ improvement. Zulay holds a Graduate Certificate in Public Procurement, a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and has her NIGP-CPP, CPPO and CPPB certifications. Zulay is currently serving on the Governing Board of the National Institute of Government Procurement (NIGP) as a representative of the Member Council. Locally Zulay serves as Strategic Planning Chair for the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials and is a Past President of the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP. In 2023 Zulay was honored with the George H. Wolf Distinguished Service Award from the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials.  Zulay has previously been awarded the Inspiration Award for Procurement Professionals in Central Florida, NIGP’s Young Professional of the Year Award, Procurement Manager of the Year in Central Florida, FAPPOs Above and Beyond Award and FAPPOs Outstanding Educator Award. 

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

Retired, Radio NIGP


Barb Johnson FNIGP NIGP-CPP CPPO CPPB MPA currently serves with Radio NIGP. She has served the NIGP membership by volunteering for the NIGP Board of Directors, the NIGP-CPP Certification Commission and many Institute committees and task forces. Barb is an instructor, consultant, content developer, and textbook Co-author. She was honored to receive the 2021 NIGP Albert H. Hall Memorial Award. During her 37+ year career, Barb provided procurement leadership at the State (Ohio), City (Columbus), and Airport Authority (Columbus Region.)

Cameron Mickey

National Account Manager - Home Depot

Rich Nyberg

Pro Business/Government Contracts Manager, The Home Depot

Teresa Rausch

For over 20 years, I have lead and supported organizations in finding solutions to sourcing and process challenges. I thrive in environments where change is embraced and a better future is envisioned. I have two decades of experience in managing teams, creating healthy cultures and driving significant financial results through solid sourcing and procurement practices as well as Lean/Six Sigma initiatives. I have worked in Procurement leadership roles at organizations including PetSmart, Douglas County School District in Colorado, The University of Colorado, Wake Forest University and now Mecklenburg County in Charlotte, North Carolina. My community focus is intent upon supporting marginalized women and young adults in creating new and brighter financial futures for themselves through coaching, education and empowerment. 

Alena Croy, MBA, CPO, CPPB, CPPO, CPFO

Alena Croy, an Oklahoma City native, has over a decade’s experience with the City of Oklahoma City. She holds a bachelor’s in finance and an MBA, along with multiple certifications. Alena is actively involved with the Oklahoma Association of Public Procurement, serving in various roles including Treasurer, and is a Chapter Ambassador for NIGP. An accomplished athlete, she is a 3x IRONMAN finisher, a USAT Certified Race Director, and President of the Triathlon Club of Oklahoma City. Alena's commitment extends to community involvement and family, residing in Oklahoma with her husband Brandon and their four children. 

Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC

Purchasing Agent & Deputy,  Murray City Corporation


Brooke Smith is a strategic administrative and leadership professional with an 18-year track record of building connections, creating impact, and fostering positive community change. With a passion for leveraging technology to enhance procurement processes, she has become a driving force in the integration of ChatGPT and AI in public sector organizations. As a City Recorder with expertise in managing the Procurement Division, Brooke has honed her skills in streamlining projects, optimizing procurement procedures, and promoting transparency in the public sector. Through her volunteer involvement with the Utah Chapter of NIGP, NIGP Finance Council,  Radio NIGP committee, and serving three years on the Pipeline and Placement Committee, she actively contributes to the growth and development of the procurement profession, sharing her insights and knowledge with fellow professionals. During the NIGP Forum Technology Track, Brooke will share her expertise on utilizing ChatGPT and AI in procurement processes. With a deep understanding of how technology can transform administrative teams, Brooke will guide attendees on harnessing the power of AI to streamline procurement projects, reduce agency risk, and create stronger, more resilient communities. Join Brooke Smith as she brings her wealth of knowledge, experience, and enthusiasm to the NIGP Technology Track, and together, let's explore how AI can revolutionize procurement processes and pave the way for a brighter future for communities across the nation.

Ron King, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, VCM, VCO

Ron, originally from South Boston, VA, has over 37 years of purchasing experience in both the private and public sectors, beginning as a buyer with Leggett department store for six years then moving on to the public sector at the University of Virginia in 1987. Ron has performed procurement duties at the University of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Department of General Services/Division of Purchases & Supply, and the VA Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services. He retired in March of 2018 as Deputy Director, Sourcing & Contracting for the VA Department of General Services/Division of Purchases & Supply in Richmond, VA. He is currently the Content Developer for NIGP—The Institute for Public Procurement. Ron is certified as a CPPO, CPPB, Virginia Contracting Officer (VCO), and Virginia Contracting Master (VCM). He earned a Level 1 certificate in Purchasing from John Tyler Community College in 1996 and obtained Master Instructor status with NIGP in 2000. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of Arts degree in English from James Madison University. He taught at VCU as an adjunct professor in the English Department from 1988 - 2016.

Terry L. McKee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, MPA, C.P.M. CPCP

Procurement Director, Knoxville's Community Development Corp - The Public Housing & Redevelopment Authority

Terry McKee, MPA, CPPO, CPPB, NIGP-CPP, C.P.M., CPCP, is a consultant and experienced leader with 33 years in the procurement profession. Terry joined NIGP Consulting Services at its inception in 1995. He has been the Procurement Director at Knoxville’s Community Development Corporation-the public housing and redevelopment authority for the City of Knoxville and Knox County, Tennessee since 2005. Prior to that he served as head of procurement for Knox County government and Knox County Schools.

Terry shares his extensive experience and expertise with public and private industry through numerous roles in the industry.    

As a passionate advocate for the procurement profession, Terry possesses a broad and deep range of expertise in numerous areas of public procurement best practices, professional development and leadership, and overall procurement transformation. Terry was named NIGP’s Purchasing Manager of the Year in 2017, the East Tennessee Purchasing Association’s Procurement Manager of the Year in 2017, and in 1993 received the organization’s Purchasing Professional of the Year award. In 2013, Terry received NIGP’s “Spirit of NIGP” award. He co-shared NIGP’s Innovation of the Award in 2007 for business diversity activities.

Terry has served in dozens of task forces and committees in his 33 years of volunteer leadership to the profession, including local, state and national roles.  Terry has provided professional services to cities, counties, special districts and entities throughout North America. 

Christin Webb, NIGP-CPP, MBA

Consultant, Leadership Development, Coaching and Procurement


Christin Webb is the founder and CEO of The Greater You Leadership Series, with over two decades of experience in both public and private sectors. Her educational foundation includes a BA in Social Work from the University of Memphis and an MBA from Webster University, equipping her with a unique blend of skills for leadership coaching. Christin’s career highlights include serving as Chief Procurement Officer for Shelby County Government, where she managed over $1 billion in procurement processes, and holding leadership roles in TAPP and the NIGP Governing Talent Council. Her certification as a procurement professional and experience as a trained social worker informs her results-oriented, people-first leadership strategy. An international bestselling author and award-winning screenwriter, Christin's dedication to leadership excellence has earned her multiple accolades. She embodies the belief that greatness requires intentional effort, making her a significant influence in leadership development.

Joshua Higgins

Joshua Higgins brings over two decades of experience in the equipment rental industry, with a specific focus on government sales for the past twelve years. As a seasoned professional, Joshua has cultivated an understanding of the unique needs in the government procurement processes across the country. 

He is committed to fostering strong relationships and a solution/value based sales philosophy that make a positive impact for his customers. With a combination of industry expertise and a heart for service, Joshua Higgins remains dedicated to advancing the field of government procurement. 

Brad Laws

Brad Laws brings over 25 years’ experience in the Equipment Rental industry with 11 years specially dedicated to serving the government space. Brad leads a team of government account managers across the US and is responsible for all areas of United Rentals State, Local and Education (SLED) program that includes national cooperatives, state and local contracts, new business development and existing customer engagement. 

John Adler, CPPO

John Adler, CPPO is a seasoned procurement professional with more than 40 years of experience, culminating in his role as Arizona’s State Procurement Director. John has been a member and officer of many professional associations, including NIGP, NCMA, and ISM. He is the Past President and a Life-Member of the National Association of State Procurement Officers (NASPO), former chair of the Procurement and Materials Management Committee and director for the American Public Transit Association (APTA), and he is a trainer for NIGP, NASPO and the National Transit Institute (NTI) at Rutgers University. John recently retired as vice president of procurement for Dallas Area Rapid Transit and authored or co-authored three procurement textbooks, including Contracting for Design and Construction Services in the Public Sector, published in 2024.

Lavonia Horne-Williams

Construction Procurement Manager, Austing ISD


An effective, well-versed leader in the field of procurement, LaVonia Horne-Williams has more than 20 years of experience in managing teams, operations, and personnel at the local, state government, non-profit and school district levels. An expert at deciphering issues and creating sustainable value through competitive sourcing and change management, LaVonia is committed to the development of lean, strategic processes to help facilitate professional procurements. Her leadership strategy is to plan for change, drive performance, and cultivate a people-first culture of engagement and accountability. 

Joining Austin ISD in 2021 as the Construction Procurement Manager, she leads a team of professionals who manage the district’s 2017 Bonds Program solicitations, contracts, amendments and change orders. Solicitations range from Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR), Design-Build (DB), Competitive Sealed Proposal (CSP), to Request for Qualifications (RFQ) and Request for Proposals (RFP). LaVonia has worked to implement procurement best practices and processes to bring structure, compliance and agility to procurement at Austin ISD. 

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.

Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC

Purchasing Agent & Deputy,  Murray City Corporation


Brooke Smith is a strategic administrative and leadership professional with an 18-year track record of building connections, creating impact, and fostering positive community change. With a passion for leveraging technology to enhance procurement processes, she has become a driving force in the integration of ChatGPT and AI in public sector organizations. As a City Recorder with expertise in managing the Procurement Division, Brooke has honed her skills in streamlining projects, optimizing procurement procedures, and promoting transparency in the public sector. Through her volunteer involvement with the Utah Chapter of NIGP, NIGP Finance Council,  Radio NIGP committee, and serving three years on the Pipeline and Placement Committee, she actively contributes to the growth and development of the procurement profession, sharing her insights and knowledge with fellow professionals. During the NIGP Forum Technology Track, Brooke will share her expertise on utilizing ChatGPT and AI in procurement processes. With a deep understanding of how technology can transform administrative teams, Brooke will guide attendees on harnessing the power of AI to streamline procurement projects, reduce agency risk, and create stronger, more resilient communities. Join Brooke Smith as she brings her wealth of knowledge, experience, and enthusiasm to the NIGP Technology Track, and together, let's explore how AI can revolutionize procurement processes and pave the way for a brighter future for communities across the nation.

Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE

Director of Purchasing, Columbia Association


Stephanie Akerley is the Director of Purchasing at Columbia Association.  She has been working in procurement for 28+ years, with 14 years of that experience focused on technology. Stephanie earned her first CPPB in 1997. After taking a career break to raise her family, she once again earned a CPPB in 2015.  In 2021, Stephanie earned her NIGP-CPP and CPPO certifications. In 2020, she earned her Certified Technology Procurement Executive (CTPE) certification from the Certified Technology Professionals Executives Society. Stephanie has contributed content to all of the NIGP Technology courses and enjoys teaching these classes, in addition to the Pathways competency courses.

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.

Polly Alles

Contracts Administrator/Senior Buyer, University of Utah Project, Design & Construction Department, University of Utah


Polly Alles is a Contract Administrator/Senior Buyer for the U-Facilities Project Design & Construction department at the University of Utah.

She is current Utah chapter Vice President and former Utah 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. Polly volunteers for two NIGP national committees such as Publications and content management.

She attained her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from Western Governors University and plans to achieve her Masters in Management and Leadership in 2024. Polly attributes her career success to her work experiences, life experiences, friends, mentors and peers, who are the most valued part of her education! 

She 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 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 finalizing the 1994 NAFTA Agreement between 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!

Cheryl Middleton, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Loudoun County Government, Leesburg, Virginia


Cheryl Middleton has worked in public procurement for over 20 years, with the vast majority of her career spent at Loudoun County Government in Leesburg, Virginia. Cheryl has held various positions in Loudoun County during her tenure and has worked on a variety of complex, high priority projects including health insurance, banking, construction, and Public-Private Partnerships as well as managed multiple protests, claims, and disputes. Cheryl earned a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Shepherd University in 2002. 

Colin Erhardt, MA

Project Leader, Harvard Kennedy School Government Performance Lab


Colin Erhardt is an Assistant Director at the Government Performance Lab, where he leads the Procurement Excellence Network (PEN). PEN is a virtual community built by and for procurement professionals offering completely-free tools, training events, and other resources designed to help governments take their procurement practice to the next level. Colin recently held a position at the Commonwealth of Massachusetts overseeing a team responsible for leveraging procurement, contracting, and operational changes to overhaul the front door to its Emergency Assistance Program (Family Shelter). Colin has also worked for a corporate governance consulting firm, a criminal justice non-profit, and as an IT consultant. Colin holds a BA in Political Science from Boston College and a Master's Degree in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School. 

Isabel Garcia, MPP

Project Leader at the Government Performance Lab


Isabel Garcia is a Project Leader at the Government Performance Lab, where she works to support public sector leaders as they drive reforms to make their procurement practices more efficient, fair, results-driven, and equitable, and to sustain strategic transformations over time. Before joining the GPL, Isabel worked with the Boston Mayor’s Office of Economic Opportunity and Inclusion, primarily project managing, administering, and overseeing the implementation of American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to support women- and minority-owned small businesses recover from the pandemic. Prior to that, she worked in New York City as the Special Assistant to the President/CEO of FAIR Health, a healthcare nonprofit dedicated to healthcare cost transparency. Isabel earned a Master in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School and a Bachelor of Science in Social Policy and International Studies from Northwestern University. 

Dr. Maria Church

CEO, Government Leadership Solutions


Dr. Maria Church, CEO of Government Leadership Solutions specializes in organizational culture design, change agility, strategic off-site facilitation, and leadership development based on her 25-year career with local government, Fortune 500, non-profits, and academia. Maria holds a doctorate of management degree in organizational leadership and currently teaches for several universities.

Dr. Church is the author of Love-Based Leadership: Transform Your Life with Meaning and Abundance, the upcoming book A Course in Excellence: 21 Spiritual Lessons on Leadership, Love, and Miracles, and co-author of best-selling book, Answering the Call, has started a movement to revolutionize the workplace with a shift from fear to love.

She has been featured on radio shows, television interviews, and in magazines. Maria writes a weekly newspaper column on leadership and hosts an online leadership series, Dr. Maria TV. Splitting her time between Scottsdale and the canyons of Southern Arizona, Maria continues to work with high-performing organizations and is working on her next book.

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 33 years, Marcheta has served as an experienced thought-leader, advocate and subject matter expert in the procurement profession.  As the former Chief Procurement Officer at the City of Tucson, Marcheta led one of country’s most highly acclaimed procurement organizations.  Retired from government service after 28 years of service, Marcheta serves as the President of NIGP Code & Consulting, leading a team of over 40 professional procurement consultants transforming procurement in the public and private sector. Marcheta 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 serves on the NIGP CARE Advisory Board and the NIGP Business Council. Marcheta has spoken at hundreds of international, national and regional events and authored numerous published works in the profession.   

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

Former Director, Finance and Procurement, Retired


Kirk Buffington retired in June 2019, from the City of Fort Lauderdale, where he spent the last five years as Director of Finance. Kirk also served as Director of Procurement Services and Deputy Director of Administrative Services. Prior to Fort Lauderdale, Kirk was the Purchasing Agent for Osceola County. 

Kirk has a B.S. in Business Administration from Florida State University, an MBA, with a concentration in Procurement and Acquisitions Management, from Webster University, and a Masters of Legal Studies, MLS, from the University of Cinncinatti Law School. 

Mr. Buffington served as President of the Florida Association of Public Purchasing Officers and was elected to the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing, (NIGP) Board of Directors in July 2003, and served as President of NIGP from 2008-2009. 

Mr. Buffington co-authored the NIGP LEAP text “The Legal Aspects of Purchasing” and published various articles concerning Procurement Case Law in nationally peer-reviewed academic journals. 

In 2023 Kirk was awarded the Albert H. Hall Fellow award. 

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Public Procurement Executive


Stéphanie Dion was most recently the Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence with the Government of Manitoba. She has 16 years of public procurement experience with various types of public entities in Canada. Stephanie graduated university with a teaching degree and has been involved with professional development in various capacities. She has been an active volunteer and advisor with professional associations since 2012 and now serves as the Chair of the Content Management Committee for the National Institute of Government Purchasing (NIGP). Stephanie recently contributed a few articles to procurement magazines and is the recipient of NIGP’s 2021 Buyer of the Year Award.

 

Victor Leamer, CPPB

Senior Buyer, Spokane County


Victor Leamer has over 33 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. Victor 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.

Kevin Yin, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Director, Contracts and Procurement, San Mateo County Transit District


Kevin has been in procurement for 20+ years, in both private and public sectors. Currently, he is the Director of Contracts and Procurement for the San Mateo County Transit District in San Carlos, California. He and his team are responsible for developing and administering the District's procurement policies and procedures, and all procurement activities.

Kevin's thoughts on learning... 1) You're never too old to learn. 2) It's forever. No one can ever take that knowledge away from you. 3) Learning should be fun (your brain may experience a bit of pain, but it's temporary). Kevin is an active member at the Northern California Chapter of NIGP, where he is serving as the Chapter Vice President; and at the National level, where he is a Certified NIGP Instructor. Kevin has served on committees and on the Board of the OPPA Chapter of NIGP (Oregon), including serving as the OPPA President during FY2008-2009. Also, he has served as the Vice Chair of the NIGP Member Council.

Kevin graduated from the University of Oregon (Eugene, Oregon) in 1993 with BAs in Finance, Marketing, and Psychology. GO DUCKS!

Kevin lives in the Bay Area in California. He is married to Kelly for over 25 years. They have two children, Ethan (20) and Abbie (18).

Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP CPPO

Project Lead (Retired), Ministry of Finance


Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP, CPPO has over forty years of experience as a public procurement leader within the provincial, municipal and health care sectors. She has extensive expertise in procurement legislation, both nationally and internationally, policy development, cross-functional planning, project implementation, procurement performance, sustainability program development and implementation, and business analysis. She has served the Institute in numerous capacities, is a Chapter Past-President and is a frequent Forum speaker and moderator. Lynda instructs public procurement classes for NIGP, the University of Guelph and others upon request. Lynda has been a part of the NIGP Consulting Program since 2010 and is NIGP’s 2021 Anne Deatherage Meritorious Service Award and the 2012 Distinguished Service Award recipient in the public procurement profession.

Jeff Peskuski

Strategic Contract Manager - Omnia Partners Public - Central Region


Jeff is a 34-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


Rob Rhoads, Graybar Strategic Contract Manager, Eastern U.S. Region. Responsible for Graybar’s OMNIA Partners, Public Sector cooperative contract sales in the Eastern half of U.S. and resource for the state/local government and education business segment.

Rob joined Graybar in 2008 and is based in the Harrisburg, PA area. Prior to joining Graybar, Rob had several years of extensive experience selling to state/local government and education customers. He has actively worked with the U.S. Communities program since 1999 before it was acquired by OMNIA in 2018 and was previously the National Program Manager for another former U.S. Communities supplier. Rob’s 20 plus years of experience with state/local government and education customers provides Graybar with the leadership to effectively market the OMNIA Partners, Public Sector program. Rob’s overall goal is to show customers the benefits from the hard and soft cost savings perspectives to improve their procurement processes.


Rob has also have been a member of the NIGP business council for the past 10 years. NIGP’s Business Council is comprised of two representatives from each of the 11 companies participating in the Institute’s Enterprise Sponsor Program. (Graybar’s two representatives for the Business Council are Jeff Peskuski and Rob Rhoads). 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.

Ryan Benhoff

Strategic Sales Director, Enterprise Mobility


Ryan Benhoff is a Strategic Sales Director at Enterprise Mobility. With 24 years of operations, sales, and sales management experience at Enterprise; Ryan is a consultant that works collaboratively with strategic partners to create and develop customized ground transportation solutions to deliver value and enhance overall travel programs.  Outside of the office you will find Ryan coaching and enjoying both of his daughter’s sporting events, playing golf, and spending time outdoors.   

Ericka Dombroski

Assistant Vice President, Strategic Partnerships, Enterprise Mobility 


Ericka Dombroski is the Assistant Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, which includes Group Purchasing, Private Equity and Corporate Associations for Enterprise Mobility. In this role, Ericka is responsible for creating the overall business strategy for both Private and Public Sector GPO’s, overall business growth, relationship development and management of the GPO sales team. 

Ericka began her career with Enterprise Mobility in 2006 as an intern and then following graduation, she joined the Management Trainee program. She worked her way up the ranks in Daily Rental operations and had oversight of multiple territories across the country. In 2015, she joined the Business Rental division and in 2018 she was promoted to Strategic Sales Manager for Private Sector GPO’s. In 2020 she received a promotion to Director over the department and in 2023 she received another promotion to her current role of AVP. 

Ericka graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in Business Management and a minor in Economics. She currently lives in Knoxville, TN with her daughter. 

James Matz

FOS of CannonDesign


James has an extensive background in facilities management, construction procurement, JOC project management, and cost estimating – leveraging this knowledge in his role as a National Account Manager for FOS of CannonDesign. He has successfully implemented and managed JOC programs for public agencies nationwide including numerous universities, counties, cities, and others. James is committed to maximizing the solutions available to JOC users. Having worked in JOC as an owner’s consultant and a contractor’s project manager, James helps optimize communication and efficiency in the JOC process.

Paul Burns

FOS of CannonDesign


With over 35 years of experience as a project manager including experience from the owner, contractor, and consultant roles in JOC, Paul has extensive knowledge that spans the entirety of the construction lifecycle. Paul works to understand the challenges our clients face allowing him to provide creative solutions led by honesty, transparency, and dedication to a successful JOC program. A successful communicator and proven team leader, Paul operates on the belief that highly relational, professional interactions with peers and clients results in the best project outcomes and improves program performance. Paul is a veteran of the United States Naval Construction Battalions.

Michael Perno

FOS of CannonDesign


Michael has spent the past 8 years selling enterprise software solutions including eProcurement, Contract Management, eSourcing, Financial Reporting, and Analytics. He has led teams across the East Coast focused on State Governments, Local Governments, Higher Ed, K-12, and Healthcare. With his bachelor’s in supply chain and information systems from Pennsylvania State University, Mike brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the FOS leadership team and their clients.

Maria Roux

Asst. Chief Procurement Officer - QA Compliance, Georgia Department of Transportation 


Maria Roux currently serves as the Assistant Chief Procurement Officer -QA Compliance for the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) Office of Procurement, ensuring GDOT’s compliance with State and Federal rules/laws as pertains to Title 50 procurement and Engineering and Design related procurement utilizing FHWA funds. This role is also responsible for auditing the procurement function as well as developing and providing training for all procurement staff, end user and personnel who touch the procurement function. In her role, she is also responsible for ensuring local governments adhere to state and federal rule and regulations for Engineering & Design related procurements by performing policy review and providing training and assistance with LAP procurement certification. Ms. Roux formally served as the State Purchasing Division Training supervisor responsible for the procurement training function, and has over twenty five years of experience managing, developing and delivering training for large and small entities/corporations. Maria has earned her GCPM from the State of Georgia and national certification from Universal Public Certification Council the CPPB designation. Maria currently serves as the Education Chair for the Georgia chapter of NIGP. 

Kelly Vickers

Procurement Manager, WV Department of Health’s Management Information Services Division


Kelly currently holds the position of Chapter President for the West Virginia Chapter of NIGP. With a decade of dedicated service in public procurement within the State of West Virginia, she serves as the Director of Purchasing & Asset Management at the State Auditor’s Office. 

Her academic journey commenced at West Virginia State University, where she graduated with honors, earning a Regents Bachelor of Arts in Business and Finance. Undeterred by the demands of her professional career, Kelly has embarked on further academic pursuits, currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership at Marshall University. Concurrently, she is preparing for the NIGP-CPP certification, slated for completion later this year. 

She has successfully completed the NIGP-PPA certification and attained the Certified Solicitation Professional (CSP) designation from the Center for Procurement Excellence. Additionally, Kelly has demonstrated proficiency in numerous core competencies through NIGP, further enhancing her expertise in the field of public procurement. 

Beyond her individual achievements, Kelly actively contributes to the professional procurement community through her involvement in several esteemed organizations, reflecting her deep-seated commitment to fostering recognition and appreciation for the procurement profession and its diligent practitioners. 

Despite her demanding professional commitments, Kelly finds joy in her personal life as a devoted mother to four sons, two dogs, and two cats. In her leisure time, Kelly indulges in her passions for football, reading, and baking. 

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 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, was honored as the recipient of the B.D. Bland Distinguished Service Award in 2018 and the James H. Barnes Award in 2023 for her contributions to the Procurement Profession and the entity she serves. Stacy currently serves on the NIGP Governing Board and NIGP’s Talent Council as Chair in addition to serving on SCAGPO’s Past President Council. 

Tara Wolff

Director of Procurement, Sourcewell


Tara Wolff serves as the Director of Procurement at Sourcewell, leveraging her significant background as both an attorney and a leader. With a rich 18-year career spanning contracts, process improvements, supplier management, compliance, and negotiations, Tara's expertise initially flourished in the legal sector, focusing on complex contractual issues. Her transition to procurement has been marked by an adept integration of her legal knowledge with the nuances of public procurement, guided by her commitment to servant leadership.

At the heart of Tara's leadership style is a dedication to collaboration and inclusivity, actively seeking contributions from every team member. She is a staunch advocate for the idea that collective team intelligence, nurtured through collaboration, leads to groundbreaking solutions and long-term achievement. Tara practices servant leadership, prioritizing the needs of her team, encouraging their growth, and helping unlock their highest potential. Her approach is built on empowering her team, establishing trust, and sharing a common vision, with a focus on skill development and promoting a continuous learning environment.

Tara's profound legal expertise, combined with her extensive experience and adherence to the principles of servant leadership, drives Sourcewell's procurement department towards unparalleled excellence. Her leadership is characterized by joint successes, empowered teams, and a deep-seated dedication to enhancing procurement processes within the dynamic environment of Sourcewell.

Karen Hunt

Human Resources Specialist, Sourcewell


Karen serves on Sourcewell's human resources team as a Human Resources Specialist. With a passion for cultivating growth and empowering individuals, Karen is a seasoned professional with two decades of experience in the dynamic field of learning and development. Armed with a Master's degree in Training and Development, Karen brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the realm of instructional design and leader development. As a Trust Edge Certified partner, Karen is committed to fostering trust within organizations, recognizing its pivotal role in driving success. 

Kim Abrego, PT, DPT

COO and President, Disaster Recovery Services


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 ARPA and IIJA. With funding clawbacks often tied to procurement, Kim has a keen interest in educating and supporting public procurement professionals in the area of disaster recovery and optimizing funding related to federal grant programs. Kim has also achieved the NIGP Public Procurement Supplier designation and is serving as Chair of the NIGP Business Council for 2024. Kim also holds the NIGP PPSM (Public Procurement Supplier Masters) designation 

Shelley Vineyard, MBA, RTSBA

Procurement Practice Leader, Disaster Recovery Services


As the Procurement Practice Leader for Disaster Recovery Services (DRS), Shelley focuses on public entity risk management, and procurement and contracting strategies in the facilitation of complex disaster recovery projects. Shelley serves as a public procurement subject matter expert in the area of state and federal grant funding, assisting her clients in the optimization of available funding in support of resilient communities.  

Shelley spent thirteen years as the chief procurement officer and risk manager and is thrilled to continue her support of public entity procurement and risk management professionals in her current role. Shelley works closely with suppliers, cooperative purchasing groups, and client procurement departments to provide guidance, training, and assistance. She helps develop comprehensive disaster recovery procurement strategies to serve her clients by Delivering Results and Solutions for a better tomorrow. Shelley is also the Director of DRS Academy, the education arm of DRS. 

Shelley is in her fifth year of service on the NIGP Business Council and holds the NIGP-CPP designation. 

Jedediah Greenfield, CPA, CTCD, CTCM

Chief Procurement Officer, City of Houston 


As the CPO for the City of Houston, Jedediah Greenfield directs the central procurement operations for the City of Houston. Responsibilities include leading day-to-day activities across all City departments for direct and indirect sourcing and procurement activities. Key activities include - acceleration and implementation of best in class procurement capabilities and organizational development efforts - transforming procurement to a strategic organization focused on optimizing the entire procure-to-pay process to meet City strategic and operation objectives.  Prior to the City, Jedediah was the Assistant Director as Houston Public Works where he led the operations of the Procurement, Fleet and Warehouse Services Division of Houston Public Works. This includes procurement and contract development, management and compliance, which represents nearly $1 billion in goods and services annually; purchasing, management and salvage of a diverse fleet of nearly 4,000 light, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles; and operations (purchasing, receiving and issuing of stocked commodities) of the five department warehouses. 

Brandi Harleaux

Chief Operations Officer, South Post Oak Recycling Center, Houston, TX


Brandi is a leading figure in the metal recycling industry, serving as the Chief Operations Officer for South Post Oak Recycling Center (SPORC), a Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), located in Houston, Texas. 

In her multifaceted role as COO, Brandi sets vision, and strategy, manages financial aspects, identifies new markets, and drives the people strategy. 

Brandi's impact extends to the metals recycling industry, serving on boards like ISRI Gulf Coast Chapter, Recycling Council of Texas, and Houston Air Pollution Community Advisory Board. She was recently appointed Co-Chair of ISRI’s National Women in Recycling Council. 

Recognized for her impact, Brandi received the 2018 Pinnacle Award from the Greater Houston Black Chamber of Commerce. In 2023, she was named the U.S. Small Business Administration Small Business Person of the Year for Texas, with the City of Houston proclaiming it Brandi Harleaux Day on July 23, 2023. 

Danny Mays, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, CPSM, CPSD

Director of Procurement, Maryland Judiciary


Danny Mays is a seasoned public procurement professional dedicated to ensuring an efficient, transparent, and accessible process for all stakeholders, while maintaining a focus on integrity, honesty, and optimal customer service. During his 15+ years in public procurement, Danny has led large-scale operations, including demonstrable experience with policy writing, streamlining processes and procedures, developing, and delivering training, establishing standard templates, implementing emerging technologies and overall organizational transformation. As a procurement officer, he has broad-based experience leading billions of dollars of acquisitions for information technology, construction and architectural and engineering and other complex professional services. 

Danny is currently credentialed as a Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) and Certified Professional Procurement Officer (CPPO) by UPPCC, a Certified Procurement Professional (NIGP-CPP) by NIGP and a Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM) and Certified Professional in Supplier Diversity (CPSD) by the Institute for Supply Management (ISM), and a Certified Maryland Procurement Officer (CMPO) by the Maryland Procurement Academy. He also serves on the Board of Examiners, CPPO team for the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council (UPPCC), a member of the Leadership Development Committee and certified instructor for NIGP, President-elect of the Maryland Public Purchasing Association, and an instructor and content developer for the Maryland Procurement Academy and the University of Baltimore’s Certified Public Manager (CPM) certification program. 

Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE

Director of Purchasing, Columbia Association


Stephanie Akerley is the Director of Purchasing at Columbia Association.  She has been working in procurement for 28+ years, with 14 years of that experience focused on technology. Stephanie earned her first CPPB in 1997. After taking a career break to raise her family, she once again earned a CPPB in 2015.  In 2021, Stephanie earned her NIGP-CPP and CPPO certifications. In 2020, she earned her Certified Technology Procurement Executive (CTPE) certification from the Certified Technology Professionals Executives Society. Stephanie has contributed content to all of the NIGP Technology courses and enjoys teaching these classes, in addition to the Pathways competency courses.

Erin Mitchell

Director of Procurement, Georgia Institute of Technology


Erin Mitchell is the Director of Procurement at the Georgia Institute of Technology. She has over 13 years of procurement experience and 10 years at Georgia Tech. Erin's focuses include ERP implementation, process improvement, and automation in higher education. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Georgia and an MBA from Kennesaw State University. 

Zulay Millan, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, FCCM, CPPB

Deputy Chief Procurement Officer, Orange County Government


Zulay Millan is currently Deputy Chief Procurement Official at Orange County Government in Florida.  Zulay began her public sector career in 2001. For the past two decades, her career focus has been in procurement and process engineering/ improvement. Zulay holds a Graduate Certificate in Public Procurement, a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and has her NIGP-CPP, CPPO and CPPB certifications. Zulay is currently serving on the Governing Board of the National Institute of Government Procurement (NIGP) as a representative of the Member Council. Locally Zulay serves as Strategic Planning Chair for the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials and is a Past President of the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP. In 2023 Zulay was honored with the George H. Wolf Distinguished Service Award from the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials.  Zulay has previously been awarded the Inspiration Award for Procurement Professionals in Central Florida, NIGP’s Young Professional of the Year Award, Procurement Manager of the Year in Central Florida, FAPPOs Above and Beyond Award and FAPPOs Outstanding Educator Award. 

Stacy Gregg, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Director of Procurement, South Carolina State University


Stacy Gregg is the Director of Procurement at South Carolina State University. She is an Online Instructor for NIGP and currently serves as Chair Elect with the Institute on the Member Council and Certification Commission. Stacy is an active member of the SC Association of Governmental Purchasing Officials (SCAGPO). Stacy has an A.A. Degree in Public Service (Paralegal) from Midlands Technical College in Columbia, SC and B.A. Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies (Concentrating in English & Management) from the University of South Carolina. Stacy holds the credentials of NIGP- Certified Procurement Professional as well as Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO), and Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) designations. 

Tony Reed, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, PMP, CPCP

Director of Operations and Strategic Planning, City of Baltimore, MD


Tony Reed has over 30 years of experience in Federal, State and Local government.  His significant achievements throughout his career embodies the accomplishments necessary to qualify him as a subject matter expert.   

Tony began his public procurement career as Assistant Secretary/Chief Procurement Officer of the Maryland Department of General Services.   

He also served as Regional Administrator of the National Capital Region, General Services Administration, and Deputy Secretary of the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development  

Tony is currently the Director of Operations and Strategic Planning for the City of Baltimore, MD He serves as the principal trainer for the procurement officers and staff.   

He is responsible for Citywide Printing, Corporate Credit Cards, Citywide Disposal and Surplus Property, Supplier Management and Registration. 

Tony is the President-Elect for the Maryland Public Purchasing Association and is the Chair of the Strategic Planning committee.  

Stéphanie Dion, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Public Procurement Executive


Stéphanie Dion was most recently the Director, Procurement Centre of Excellence with the Government of Manitoba. She has 16 years of public procurement experience with various types of public entities in Canada. Stephanie graduated university with a teaching degree and has been involved with professional development in various capacities. She has been an active volunteer and advisor with professional associations since 2012 and now serves as the Chair of the Content Management Committee for the National Institute of Government Purchasing (NIGP). Stephanie recently contributed a few articles to procurement magazines and is the recipient of NIGP’s 2021 Buyer of the Year Award.

 

Victor Leamer, CPPB

Senior Buyer, Spokane County


Victor Leamer has over 33 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. Victor 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.

Kevin Yin, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Director, Contracts and Procurement, San Mateo County Transit District


Kevin has been in procurement for 20+ years, in both private and public sectors. Currently, he is the Director of Contracts and Procurement for the San Mateo County Transit District in San Carlos, California. He and his team are responsible for developing and administering the District's procurement policies and procedures, and all procurement activities.

Kevin's thoughts on learning... 1) You're never too old to learn. 2) It's forever. No one can ever take that knowledge away from you. 3) Learning should be fun (your brain may experience a bit of pain, but it's temporary). Kevin is an active member at the Northern California Chapter of NIGP, where he is serving as the Chapter Vice President; and at the National level, where he is a Certified NIGP Instructor. Kevin has served on committees and on the Board of the OPPA Chapter of NIGP (Oregon), including serving as the OPPA President during FY2008-2009. Also, he has served as the Vice Chair of the NIGP Member Council.

Kevin graduated from the University of Oregon (Eugene, Oregon) in 1993 with BAs in Finance, Marketing, and Psychology. GO DUCKS!

Kevin lives in the Bay Area in California. He is married to Kelly for over 25 years. They have two children, Ethan (20) and Abbie (18).

Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP CPPO

Project Lead (Retired), Ministry of Finance


Lynda Allair, NIGP-CPP, CPPO has over forty years of experience as a public procurement leader within the provincial, municipal and health care sectors. She has extensive expertise in procurement legislation, both nationally and internationally, policy development, cross-functional planning, project implementation, procurement performance, sustainability program development and implementation, and business analysis. She has served the Institute in numerous capacities, is a Chapter Past-President and is a frequent Forum speaker and moderator. Lynda instructs public procurement classes for NIGP, the University of Guelph and others upon request. Lynda has been a part of the NIGP Consulting Program since 2010 and is NIGP’s 2021 Anne Deatherage Meritorious Service Award and the 2012 Distinguished Service Award recipient in the public procurement profession.

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 (Albert H Hall 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). Michael’s teaching experiences include 23 years as an Instructor for NIGP, independent curriculum and training development for various agencies. 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.

Kathrin Frauscher

Deputy Executive Director, Open Contracting Partnership (OCP)


Kathrin Frauscher is the Deputy Executive Director of the Open Contracting Partnership (OCP), a global mission-driven non-profit organization that is transforming the trillions of dollars spent on public contracts to better serve people and protect our planet. Kathrin co-founded OCP in 2015 and helped grow it into a global team of 30 people working across 30 countries. Before OCP, Kathrin worked at the World Bank Group leading projects around the world that brought governments, business and civil society together to fight corruption and improve service delivery. 

Natalia Gulick de Torres

Bloomberg Harvard City Hall Fellow in the City of Newark


Natalia Gulick de Torres is interested in the advancement of social change driven through engaged dialogue, tactful policies, and conscious leadership. She is currently a Bloomberg Harvard City Hall Fellow in the City of Newark, seeking to improve procurement and contracting practices to increase local and minority-owned business vendor and contractor participation. She was formerly involved with the Bloomberg Center for Cities at Harvard University as a graduate student researcher with Data-Smart City Solutions, focusing on case studies of progressive private-public partnerships and innovations in digital municipal infrastructure. Natalia holds a Master in Design Studies from the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, where she focused her coursework on policy implementation in urban environments, strategies for equitable development, and methods of community interaction. She further holds a Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University. 

Laura Melle

Director of Procurement Planning and Support Services, City of Boston, MA


Laura Melle is the Director of Procurement Planning and Support Services for the City of Boston, launching a new citywide team to leverage Boston's $1B annual spend to serve both operational needs and policy goals. Laura has explored procurement as a tool to tackle complex challenges as a Fellow with the Mayor's Office for New Urban Mechanics, the IT Procurement Lead for the Department of Innovation and Technology, and the Deputy Director of Real Estate Administration with the Boston Planning & Development Agency. Prior to her time in Boston, Laura's career in city government took her from the Chicago Transit Authority to the Municipal Council of Lichinga, Mozambique as a Peace Corps Volunteer. She has a Master in Public Policy from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, and studied Social Policy as an undergraduate at Northwestern University. 

Gennie Nguyen

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 33 years, Marcheta has served as an experienced thought-leader, advocate and subject matter expert in the procurement profession.  As the former Chief Procurement Officer at the City of Tucson, Marcheta led one of country’s most highly acclaimed procurement organizations.  Retired from government service after 28 years of service, Marcheta serves as the President of NIGP Code & Consulting, leading a team of over 40 professional procurement consultants transforming procurement in the public and private sector. Marcheta 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 serves on the NIGP CARE Advisory Board and the NIGP Business Council. Marcheta has spoken at hundreds of international, national and regional events and authored numerous published works in the profession.   

Ryan Miller

Government Contracts Manager, Toro Company


Ryan is the Government Contracts Manager with The Toro Company. He has worked in supplier-side government contracting since 2015 and has completed the NIGP Master's Certification, which he finds instrumental as he works to establish win-win scenarios for his customers, end-users, contract partners, and distribution channel. 

Ryan currently resides in Orrville, OH, hometown of legendary basketball coach Bobby Knight, with his wife and four kids. He grew up in Southern California, where he studied Psychology at UC Santa Barbara and San Diego Christian College. 


In his free time, Ryan enjoys golfing and fishing, as well camping with his family, who is attempting to have each of their kid's camp at every one of Ohio's 75 State Parks before graduating High School. 

Jeremy Steadman

Vice President of Field Engagement, Southern Computer Warehouse


Jeremy Steadman is a 20 year veteran of public sector IT sales, working with hundreds of state, local and higher education clients to bring best of breed IT solutions that exceed customer requirements under budget. 

Jeremy believes that there’s still a place for onsite meetings and relationship building with stakeholders and partners to make sure every deployment of hardware and every integrated solution is delivered without a hitch. 

Through his work with SCW and in the IT channel, Jeremy has worked with fortune 500 customers, as well as some of the largest public sector entities in the United States with a focus on end user computing, networking, data center, power and network closet solutions. 

Jeremy holds a BA in Political Science/Economics from Florida State University, and is 12 credits shy of a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University. 

When not solving IT challenges, Jeremy can be found mountain climbing, riding motorcycles in the mountains of north Georgia, rooting for his Seminoles or spending time with his French Bulldog Norman in Atlanta, GA. 

Jedediah Greenfield, CPA, CTCD, CTCM

Chief Procurement Officer, City of Houston 


As the CPO for the City of Houston, Jedediah Greenfield directs the central procurement operations for the City of Houston. Responsibilities include leading day-to-day activities across all City departments for direct and indirect sourcing and procurement activities. Key activities include - acceleration and implementation of best in class procurement capabilities and organizational development efforts - transforming procurement to a strategic organization focused on optimizing the entire procure-to-pay process to meet City strategic and operation objectives.  Prior to the City, Jedediah was the Assistant Director as Houston Public Works where he led the operations of the Procurement, Fleet and Warehouse Services Division of Houston Public Works. This includes procurement and contract development, management and compliance, which represents nearly $1 billion in goods and services annually; purchasing, management and salvage of a diverse fleet of nearly 4,000 light, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles; and operations (purchasing, receiving and issuing of stocked commodities) of the five department warehouses. 

Claudia Leon, CPPB

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


Claudia has 28 years of procurement experience in the public sector with 3 school districts in Arizona. She has a Bachelor of Business Administration degree and holds NIGP-CPP and CPPB certifications. Claudia strives to provide a transparent and compliant procurement process that supports all stakeholders and best serves the public good. Claudia lives in Chandler, AZ with her husband and two children. 

Rebecca Seifert

Procurement Specialist, 1Government Procurement Alliance (1GPA)


Rebecca has over 23 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. 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. She lives in Gilbert, AZ with her husband and two young sons. 

Michael Greene

Michael Greene is the Procurement Administrator for the City of Tempe where he has worked for the past 15 years.  Michael has over 30 years of experience working in a variety of public sector organizations including Arizona Department of Transportation, Tempe Union High School District and Paradise Valley Unified School District.   Michael holds two certifications including a C.P.M. and CPPO.  Michael graduated from with ASU with a bachelor in Supply Chain and a Masters in Public Administration.

Lori Bryant, NIGP-CPP, CPPB

Purchasing Director, Clarksville-Montgomery County (TN) School System


Lori Bryant has over twenty-five years’ experience in procurement in both public and private sectors. For the past 20 years, she has worked in municipal and K-12 school purchasing departments, covering almost all aspects of procurement. She is currently the Purchasing Director for the Clarksville-Montgomery County (TN) School System, where she procures a variety of goods and services for 45 schools and supporting departments. Lori holds a bachelors’ degree from Lambuth University, a Certified Professional Public Buyer certification from the UPPCC, and a NIGP-CPP certification from NIGP. She is a member of the Tennessee Association of Public Purchasing (TAPP) and NIGP. Lori began a second three-year term on NIGP’s Member Council in July 2022. Lori serves as TAPP’s professional development committee chair and she is a TAPP Past-President. In her free time, she enjoys doing genealogy research, and has traced several family lines back to colonial America, including just a few counties over from Charlotte, North Carolina. 

Terry L. McKee, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, MPA, C.P.M. CPCP

Procurement Director, Knoxville's Community Development Corp - The Public Housing & Redevelopment Authority

Terry McKee, MPA, CPPO, CPPB, NIGP-CPP, C.P.M., CPCP, is a consultant and experienced leader with 33 years in the procurement profession. Terry joined NIGP Consulting Services at its inception in 1995. He has been the Procurement Director at Knoxville’s Community Development Corporation-the public housing and redevelopment authority for the City of Knoxville and Knox County, Tennessee since 2005. Prior to that he served as head of procurement for Knox County government and Knox County Schools.

Terry shares his extensive experience and expertise with public and private industry through numerous roles in the industry.    

As a passionate advocate for the procurement profession, Terry possesses a broad and deep range of expertise in numerous areas of public procurement best practices, professional development and leadership, and overall procurement transformation. Terry was named NIGP’s Purchasing Manager of the Year in 2017, the East Tennessee Purchasing Association’s Procurement Manager of the Year in 2017, and in 1993 received the organization’s Purchasing Professional of the Year award. In 2013, Terry received NIGP’s “Spirit of NIGP” award. He co-shared NIGP’s Innovation of the Award in 2007 for business diversity activities.

Terry has served in dozens of task forces and committees in his 33 years of volunteer leadership to the profession, including local, state and national roles.  Terry has provided professional services to cities, counties, special districts and entities throughout North America. 

Camille Thomas

Purchasing Director, City of Clarksburg, TN


Camille Thomas has over 30 years’ experience in procurement, both in the public and private sectors. For the last 27 years, she has worked for the City of Clarksville’s Purchasing Department seated in every position offered. She was appointed the Purchasing Director in 2016 wherein she manages a variety of procurement related activities including disposal of real and surplus personal property, managing the PCard program, contract management oversight and procuring goods and services for 19 city departments and 3 component agencies that receive city funding. As Purchasing Director, Camille has implemented many new processes which help streamline the procurement process. She was instrumental in receiving council approval for funding for the city’s first Contract Manager. Together, the city’s first Contract Administration Policy and process was born. She has served in various roles for the Tennessee Association of Public Purchasing (TAPP) to include membership chair, Secretary, Vice President, President and now immediate past President and Communications chair. She also serves as co-chair for the East Tennessee Association of Public Purchasing’s Pro-D Committee. At last year’s Forum, she served as moderator for the small to medium cities session. Camille has one daughter, Ryan and a dog named Ottis. Camille graduated college in August 2021 proving that you are never too old to go back to school. 

Victor Leamer, CPPB

Senior Buyer, Spokane County


Victor Leamer has over 33 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. Victor 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.

John Adler, CPPO

John Adler, CPPO is a seasoned procurement professional with more than 40 years of experience, culminating in his role as Arizona’s State Procurement Director. John has been a member and officer of many professional associations, including NIGP, NCMA, and ISM. He is the Past President and a Life-Member of the National Association of State Procurement Officers (NASPO), former chair of the Procurement and Materials Management Committee and director for the American Public Transit Association (APTA), and he is a trainer for NIGP, NASPO and the National Transit Institute (NTI) at Rutgers University. John recently retired as vice president of procurement for Dallas Area Rapid Transit and authored or co-authored three procurement textbooks, including Contracting for Design and Construction Services in the Public Sector, published in 2024.

Lavonia Horne-Williams

Construction Procurement Manager, Austing ISD


An effective, well-versed leader in the field of procurement, LaVonia Horne-Williams has more than 20 years of experience in managing teams, operations, and personnel at the local, state government, non-profit and school district levels. An expert at deciphering issues and creating sustainable value through competitive sourcing and change management, LaVonia is committed to the development of lean, strategic processes to help facilitate professional procurements. Her leadership strategy is to plan for change, drive performance, and cultivate a people-first culture of engagement and accountability. 

Joining Austin ISD in 2021 as the Construction Procurement Manager, she leads a team of professionals who manage the district’s 2017 Bonds Program solicitations, contracts, amendments and change orders. Solicitations range from Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR), Design-Build (DB), Competitive Sealed Proposal (CSP), to Request for Qualifications (RFQ) and Request for Proposals (RFP). LaVonia has worked to implement procurement best practices and processes to bring structure, compliance and agility to procurement at Austin ISD. 

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.

Brooke Smith, MIS, MMC, UCC

Purchasing Agent & Deputy,  Murray City Corporation


Brooke Smith is a strategic administrative and leadership professional with an 18-year track record of building connections, creating impact, and fostering positive community change. With a passion for leveraging technology to enhance procurement processes, she has become a driving force in the integration of ChatGPT and AI in public sector organizations. As a City Recorder with expertise in managing the Procurement Division, Brooke has honed her skills in streamlining projects, optimizing procurement procedures, and promoting transparency in the public sector. Through her volunteer involvement with the Utah Chapter of NIGP, NIGP Finance Council,  Radio NIGP committee, and serving three years on the Pipeline and Placement Committee, she actively contributes to the growth and development of the procurement profession, sharing her insights and knowledge with fellow professionals. During the NIGP Forum Technology Track, Brooke will share her expertise on utilizing ChatGPT and AI in procurement processes. With a deep understanding of how technology can transform administrative teams, Brooke will guide attendees on harnessing the power of AI to streamline procurement projects, reduce agency risk, and create stronger, more resilient communities. Join Brooke Smith as she brings her wealth of knowledge, experience, and enthusiasm to the NIGP Technology Track, and together, let's explore how AI can revolutionize procurement processes and pave the way for a brighter future for communities across the nation.

Stephanie Akerley, NIGP-CPP, CPPB, CTPE

Director of Purchasing, Columbia Association


Stephanie Akerley is the Director of Purchasing at Columbia Association.  She has been working in procurement for 28+ years, with 14 years of that experience focused on technology. Stephanie earned her first CPPB in 1997. After taking a career break to raise her family, she once again earned a CPPB in 2015.  In 2021, Stephanie earned her NIGP-CPP and CPPO certifications. In 2020, she earned her Certified Technology Procurement Executive (CTPE) certification from the Certified Technology Professionals Executives Society. Stephanie has contributed content to all of the NIGP Technology courses and enjoys teaching these classes, in addition to the Pathways competency courses.

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.

Mike Mucha

Deputy Executive Director, GFOA


Mike Mucha joined GFOA in 2006 and is now GFOA's Deputy Executive Director and the Director of the Research and Consulting Center. In this role, Mike oversees GFOA's member facing programs and services including award programs, education, consulting projects, research activities, the Government Finance Review, the Certified Public Finance Officer program, 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, reduce risk of ERP implementation projects, and implement best practices in financial management. 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, process improvement, performance management, project management, and budgeting. Mike also serves on the governing board for the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP). 

John Edmondson, NIGP-CPP, CPPO

John Edmondson has been a public procurement professional for more than 19 years with expertise in stakeholder management and relationship building; requirements gathering and analysis; project scope development and monitoring; vendor management and contract administration; developing strategic policies and procedures; and managing regulatory requirements. Throughout his career, John has specialized in developing common sense solutions to procurement and compliance obstacles. 

John is a Certified Procurement Professional from the National Institute of Government Purchasing (NIGP-CPP) and a Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO) from the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Business and Management and a Master of Business Administration in Supply Chain Management from Western Illinois University and is currently pursuing a Master in the Study of Law at The Ohio State University. 

Jason Roe

Jason is a solution focused, collaborative, strategic transit professional with a passion for public procurement. He has an appropriate blend of Project Manager experience and empathy for developing innovative solutions that lead to customer success. 

Jason is a Transit professional with more than 23 years within the industry. He serves currently as the Sr. Manager of Procurement. Previous experience includes Inventory Manager, Quality Assurance Quality Control Manager, Fleet Management. Throughout his career, Jason has specialized in process development, relationship, and team building. 

Jason currently holds ASCM Supply Chain Procurement Certification, National Transit Institute Procurement certificates, and National Association of State Procurement Officials certificates. 

Jason is a member of the Transit Alliance of Public Purchasing, Central Ohio Organization of Public Purchasers, and ASCM local Cincinnati chapter. 

Jennifer Sulentic

Vice President, CompareCoOps


Jennifer leads CompareCoOps as its Chief Procurement Ally, automating cooperative purchasing to make it easier to get quotes for specific projects from multiple companies across multiple cooperatives, all in one place. With over 12 years of experience working as an advocate and resource for public buyers and suppliers alike, she is well-known and widely respected in the world of public procurement cooperative contracting. 

Jennifer's consultative efforts with U.S. Communities & ProcureSource 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. 

Making connections for the good of others is a passion of Jennifer's. She uses LinkedIn frequently as a way to stay connected to people, places, and opportunities as well as to stay in the "know" on the industries she's involved in.

She has been a frequent guest speaker at multiple NIGP, ASBO, NGA, NACo, NACE, NLC, NRPA, IT, Facilities, Design/Architecture, and GFOA events across the country 

Jennifer grew up on a dairy farm in Iowa. While she's no Caitlin Clark, she did once score 30 points for her 6-on-6 basketball team.

John A. Flynn, Jr., NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB

Procurement Contracts Officer, Oregon State University 


John Flynn is a Procurement Contracts Officer for Oregon State University supporting the Regional Class Research Vessel (RCRV) Project. Prior to joining OSU, he was the Purchasing Officer for Liverpool (NY) Central School District..John holds a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology, and has completed graduate coursework at Lehigh University. John is a Past President of the New York Society of Municipal Purchasing Officials (SAMPO). He is also a Member of The Institute for Public Procurement (NIGP) having served on several committees, and as a Subject Matter Expert for the NIGP-CPP exam preparation guides. He has earned the designations of Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB), Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO), and NIGP Certified Procurement Professional (NIGP-CPP). He lives in Vestal, New York with his wife Lori. John and Lori have three sons, Connor, Donovan and Evan. 

Dustin Lanier, CPPO

President, Civic Initiatives


Dustin Lanier, a Certified Public Procurement Officer, founded Civic Initiatives in 2010.  Civic Initiatives has supported public procurement offices in in over 35 states, with projects in acquisition operations, strategic transformation, and automation success.

In the decade prior to Civic Initiatives, Dustin held a variety of leadership roles related to strategic planning and contracting in Texas state government, including the Director of Strategic Initiatives for the State CIO and the Executive Director of the state Council on Competitive Government, a specialized public procurement function.  

As a thought leader in the public sector procurement industry, Dustin has conducted educational sessions on numerous topics from strategic procurement to planning for the next generation of the procurement workforce. Mr. Lanier has delivered several keynote addresses for major regional governmental procurement association events around the country.

Yen Pang

County of San Mateo - County Contracts Manager


Yen Pang has 20+ years of County procurement experienced gained from the County of San Mateo and the City and County of San Francisco. She fell into County and procurement work purely by accident and only meant to stay for a few years.

While with the City and County of San Francisco she was located at San Francisco International Airport with the most gorgeous office that she will ever have which over looked the runways and San Francisco Bay. Her favorite plane is the Airbus A380 which looks like a whale in the sky.

She specializes in finding procurement solutions for complicated organizational issues and designing RFPs to get to a successful result. When she’s not at work she is planning her next trip and trying to figure out how to get to Antarctica so that she can set foot on her 7th and final continent.

She is the 'other' Australian in NIGP and also does not know Chris Hemsworth, but she may have met Health Ledger during debate competitions in high school.

Jas Sandhar

Jas Sandhar has 10+ years of government experience at the State and County level. She uses that knowledge in her role as the Procurement Manager of San Mateo County.

She obtained her bachelor’s in finance and MBA in Strategy and Innovation from Cal State East Bay. She leads a small but dedicated procurement team overseeing procurement, training, and special projects for the County. The team has made major changes to procurement policy in the organization, designed procurement trainings, implemented an eProcurement solution and received several AEP trophies.

In her spare time, you will find her at the gym and hanging out with her nieces.

Lloyd Windle, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M.

Contract Administration Manager, Procurement Division, City of Tucson, AZ


Lloyd Windle graduated from the University of Arizona in 1993 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. He has received certification as a Certified Purchasing Manager (C.P.M.), Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB) and Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO).  

He is an experienced procurement professional with more than 22 years of combined private and public sector procurement experience. Seventeen of those years have been with the City of Tucson’s Procurement division where he currently serves as a Contract Administration Manager.  He leads several compliance programs including the Small Business Enterprise/Disadvantage Business Enterprise (SBE/DBE) program, the Davis Bacon & Related Acts (DBRA) program, the Surplus Auction & Materials Management (SAMM) program and the Contract Administration & Management (CAMP) program. 

Bill Munch, NIGP-CPP, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M.

Procurement Compliance and Training Officer, Valley Schools Management Group, AZ


Bill Munch graduated from Arizona State University in 1988 with a Bachelor of Arts in Purchasing and Materials Management. He has received certification as a Certified Purchasing Manager (C.P.M.), Certified Professional Public Buyer (CPPB), Certified Public Procurement Officer (CPPO) and NIGP Certified CPP (NIGP-CPP).   

He was recently National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP) Chapter Ambassador for Area 9 which serves public purchasing officials in Arizona, California, Nevada, Wyoming, Utah and New Mexico. He is current VP and Past President of the Arizona State Capitol Chapter and past VP of the Arizona Copper Chapter. Bill has over 35 years of experience in public procurement at the Arizona State Procurement Office and various Arizona school districts.  He currently serves as the Procurement Compliance and Training Officer for Valley Schools Management Group, a public entity insurance group serving public entities throughout Arizona.  

Bill is a certified Arizona Community College Instructor. He regularly teaches classes and workshops in public procurement.  In addition, Bill has also served four years on the Governing Board Tempe Elementary School District and was its President in 2010. Bill is a true advocate for public procurement and the cooperative procurement process. 

Jeremy Poincenot

Jeremy Poincenot is an extraordinary figure, not just as a renowned keynote speaker but also as a world champion in blind golf.  At 19, Jeremy’s lift took an unexpected turn when he was diagnosed with Leber’s Hereditary Optic Neuropathy (LHON), a rare genetic disorder that led to the loss of his central vision.  Initially viewing this as a life-limiting setback, Jeremy soon realized that every challenge comes with an opportunity for growth.  With determination and the support of his family and friends, he not only adapted to his new reality but also excelled in it.

Jeremy is not your ordinary motivational speaker. With a powerful personal narrative, a little wit and a strong inspirational message, Jeremy provides perspective to audiences and opens their eyes to see the power of interdependence.

Although he cannot see the audience, he can help them see how to effect change and positivity in their own lives. Jeremy’s mission is to help people suspend judgment and focus on the good. His objective is not to dictate how to succeed in life; he speaks from experience to convince individuals that independence is good, while interdependence is great.

** Schedule is subject to change. **
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