NIGP VCON Virtual Conference Logo

Virtual Conferences

Attend a conference without leaving your office.

Thank you NIGP for the Virtual Conference. Excellent information and great presenters.

Gerald J. Flaska, CPPB, Purchasing Manager, Greater Edmonton Foundation

A virtual event is a web-based event that replicates many aspects of a traditional, location-based conference, membership meeting or trade show.  It may take place on a standalone basis or in conjunction with a location-based conference.  Unlike a single webinar, virtual events feature multiple sessions and may include keynote presentations, training, workshops, discussion areas, social networking, exhibits, and more.

NIGP’s Spring VCON will feature ten 60-minute sessions; two offered at a time, allowing you to attend up to five live sessions. Recordings will be made of each session, giving you access to all ten sessions. Attending live provides access to chat with the presenter and other attendees as you watch the session.

Sponsored in part by Periscope_FinalLogo_RGB

VCON Spring

March 27 & 28

1:00 pm to 3:30 pm

March 29

1:00 pm to 2:15 pm

5 Contact Hours

$129  - Members
$229 - Non-Members

Agency Group Discount

11-20 registrants - 5% off

21+ registrants - 10% off

Agencies, register your group to take advantage of these discounts!

Group Registration Form


March 27, 2019


The Strategic Value of Procurement

Procurement Fraud

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
The Strategic Value of Procurement: Wear the Crown, Be the Crown

Procurement professionals are the valuable gems that propel the entity's mission forward. So, why are we perceived as clay obstacles rather than diamond strategic partners? Join NIGP’s Global Practices Manager as she shares resources, tips, and strategies for elevating the public procurement function while increasing appreciation and respect for procurement’s role and the professionals who support it.

Lisa Premo
Lisa Premo is NIGP’s Global Practices Manager. For over 13 years, she has worked collaboratively with academics, staff, volunteers, and other stakeholders to plan and execute community events and initiatives for a non-profit organization, to manage a University Lecture Series, and, more recently, to develop public procurement guidance. Lisa earned her bachelors of Music in Cello Performance at Indiana University, her Masters of Public Management at Carnegie Mellon University, and her Professional Life Coaching Certificate at Duquesne University.

Global Practices Manager
NIGP: The Institute for Public Procurement
Bobbye Marsala, CPPO, CPPB, C.P.M., FCPM, FCPA
As the Chief Procurement Officer for the City of Palm Bay, Florida, Bobbye has managed the procurement process and contract issues for commodities, services and construction for the City for more than 25-years. She is the 2004-Past President of the Florida Association of Public Procurement Officials (FAPPO), and the 2006 recipient of FAPPO’s George H. Wolf Distinguished Service Award. She is also the 2016 recipient of the FAPPO Outstanding Educator award. She holds a Lifetime Certification as a C.P.M. by the Institute of Supply Management and a Certified Public Purchasing Officer and a Certified Professional Public Buyer through the UPPCC. Bobbye has served on the NIGP-National Professional Development & Finance Committees. Bobbye currently serves as the FAPPO Representative for National Council of Public Procurement and Contracting (NCPPC) and was the Chairperson for 2017. She has served on the FAPPO Legislative Committee since 2008 and has been its Chairperson since 2014. She also serves on the Central Florida Chapter of NIGP Legislative Task Force. Bobbye has a bachelor’s degree in organizational management and is a certified NIGP instructor who has also conducted training sessions for many conference engagements at local, state, and national levels, to include FAPPO, NIGP, and FGFOA.

Chief Procurement Officer
City of Palm Beach, FL
Don’t Mess with the FEDS: Assessing Fraud and Limiting Risk

Every day, procurement professionals are bombarded with new regulations, requirements, and statutes that bring awareness to how we must deal with potential fraud and waste. As public representatives, we must always take steps to assess our systems, evaluate our controls, and adjust these mechanisms when and where needed. Join us and explore how your entity can reduce fraud risk, implement an internal risk assessment process, and bring constant awareness to how potential fraudsters are planning to cheat your systems.

Jesus Amezcua, PhD, CPA Jesus J. Amezcua is the Assistant Superintendent for Business Services for Harris County Department of Education. He has over 30 years’ experience in the areas of school business, finance, accounting procurement, investments, debt management, and compliance. He has a bachelor’s degree from Tarkio College Missouri, three master’s degrees from Texas A&M International University, and a doctorate from Texas A&M University in Educational Administration. He is a CPA and a Registered School Business Administrator.

Assistant Superintendent for Business Services
Harris County Department of Education
2:00 PM - 2:30 PM
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
The Procurement Value Challenge: Building a Winning Game Plan

Whether discovered through NIGP Position Papers or a simple Google search, it is fairly easy to identify ways in which procurement adds value to public entities. How many procurement organizations, however, are capable of providing the quantifiable, results-driven data necessary for “winning” the respect of senior management? Discover proactive ways to add value to your organization and explore how procurement professionals can win the procurement-numbers game by collecting, analyzing, and presenting data to build a winning game plan.

Steven Demel, CPPO
Steve Demel is the Director of Purchasing for the Tacoma School District, where he also manages the District’s Warehouse and the Printing & Graphics Department. Prior to his 12 years with the district, he spent 6 years as a Purchasing Manager with the Washington Office of State Procurement. For twelve years, he held a variety of contracting positions in the U.S. Air Force. Steve was also an Air Force helicopter search and rescue pilot. He is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy and has a Master’s degree in Procurement Management and Finance from Webster University. Steve has served on several task forces and committees and is the recipient of several awards, including his selection in August 2018 for NIGP’s Distinguished Service Award for his career works in procurement.

Director of Purchasing
Tacoma School District, WA

Charge It Up: Mitigating Risks for Your P-Card Program

The P-Card Program may be one of the most loved—and—feared resources in public procurement. While people love it because it simplifies purchasing and payment processes, underlying worries of fraud and abuse make procurement professionals nervous to adopt the program on a wide scale. Fear, however, doesn’t have to hinder your program. Join us as we review case studies taken from national sources, identifying instances of impropriety, and explore tools that you can use to mitigate risks in your p-card program.

Stacy Gregg, CPPO, CPPB
Currently serving the local Chapter SCAGPO as the Immediate Past President, Stacy Gregg holds the distinction as being the only President to serve two consecutive terms in 2015 & 2016. She is also one of NIGP's Region 4 Chapter Ambassador and has presented at several NIGP Forums previously. Stacy is a previous recipient of the Chapter's Bland and Barnes Award. Stacy currently works as the Procurement Manager for the South Carolina State Fiscal Accountability Authority and is an NIGP instructor.

Procurement Manager
South Carolina State Fiscal Accounting Authority

March 28, 2019


The Strategic Value of Procurement

Procurement Fraud

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Show Me the Money: Raising Awareness on the Value of Procurement

Despite the strategic value it brings to entities, procurement is oftentimes categorized as an administrative financial function in entities across North America. Despite best efforts, the procurement function fights to perform at its full potential, struggling to keep up under enhanced legislative requirements and public scrutiny. Join us and explore various strategies that you can use to raise awareness among colleagues, management, and even elected officials on the value of procurement, discovering how you can propel the procurement function forward in an impactful manner.

Stephanie Dion, CPPB
Stephanie Dion is a Strategic Sourcing Specialist with Manitoba Hydro. She was previously employed as a Procurement and Contract Specialist at the City of Red Deer, Alberta, and a Procurement Advisor for the Government of Yukon. She practiced extensively in both the contract A and non-contract A paradigms. Stephanie graduated university with a teaching degree and has been involved with professional development at various local, national, and international events. She also volunteers with United Way as well as other similar organizations. Since 2013, Stephanie has been an active volunteer with NIGP: The Institute for Public Procurement. Stephanie received the Spirit of Kaishi award from NIGP in 2014 as well as the Mayor of Red Deer special award in 2015 and 2016. Her first article was published in Purchasing B2B magazine in the October 2018 edition.

Strategic Sourcing Specialist
Manitoba Hydro
Swimming with the Sharks: Staying Clear of Common Procurement Pitfalls

As stewards of the public trust, procurement professionals are often put in situations that force us to make difficult decisions which may challenge our financial stability. Navigating through politics and personal agendas to do what’s right for your organization, however, can be incredibly difficult, especially when the road of best intentions is laced with common traps and pitfalls. Join us as we discuss some of the traps that procurement professionals often fall into, learning how to not only identify but also avoid them to preserve your integrity, your reputation, and your career.

Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO
Lourdes Coss, MPA, CPPO, is the author of “Procurement Methods: Effective Techniques” and a certified John Maxwell Team Coach, Speaker, Teacher, and Trainer. She is an accomplished procurement professional with approximately 30 years of experience. Lourdes held executive level positions in major public organizations, such as the City of Chicago, University of Illinois at Chicago, Public Building Commission of Chicago, Cook County, and City of Houston; and is now working with Canon Solutions America as a subject matter expert for government. She continues to add value to public entities through consulting and training. Lourdes led transformative changes in various agencies leading to savings in excess of $100 million, higher personnel credentials; and transition to strategic/value-add operations. She authored and implemented the procurement code for the City of Houston and participated in the development of and implemented the procurement code for Cook County. Achievements include: national awards for operational excellence, cost savings, and Spirit of NIGP. Lourdes also held positions on various Boards, including NIGP. In addition to graduating magna cum laude from the University of Puerto Rico and receiving her master’s in public administration from Florida State University, Lourdes is a UPPCC Certified Public Purchasing Officer.

Government Subject Matter Expert
Canon Solutions America
2:00 PM - 2:30 PM
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM

Making It Work: Strategic Alignment in the Real World

When working in the procurement function, it’s critical to align operations with entity goals, promoting a line-of-sight process that brings forth the best aspects of the entire entity. But manifesting these aspects can be hard, especially when the tools and long-term engagement aren’t invested. By analyzing the tools of strategic management and strategy mapping, however, you and your entity can align the procurement function with organizational priorities, demonstrating the matchless value of public procurement. Join us as we examine various strategy mapping tools, including mission, vision, and value statements, along with other tools that can help you make procurement work across every function.

Rebecca Kee, CPPO, CPPB
Rebecca Kee, CPPO, CPPB, is the Chief Procurement Officer and Purchasing Agent for the City of Virginia Beach, VA. She has over 13 years’ experience in the public procurement field. Rebecca has worked extensively to develop, create, and support educational programs and opportunities for the profession. She has served as Director of Procurement for the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and as the Assistant Purchasing Agent for Arlington County, Virginia. In addition, she served as an adjunct faculty at Arkansas State University. Rebecca has served on the NIGP Awards Committee and currently serves as an NIGP Chapter Ambassador for Area 2. She earned her bachelors of science in management from Arkansas State University and maintains both her CPPO and CPPB certifications.

Purchasing Agent
City of Virginia Beach, VA

Hacking Procurement: How Cybersecurity Plays a Critical Role in Procurement

With the ever-increasing presence of technology impacting all aspects of our lives, it is crucial for entities to understand how to keep their operations safe and functioning. Due to their troves of personal and supplier information, procurement entities provide a rich target for hackers looking for a plethora of valuable information, information that they can then turn into easy money. Join us as we take a practical walk through the world of cybersecurity, exploring how hackers can comprise everything from your phones to your people and the steps you can take to mitigate their best efforts.

Peter Miller
Peter Miller is the Chief Security Officer for Orange County Government in Orlando, Florida—the tourist capital of the United States—which receives over 70 million visitors per year. His responsibilities include cybersecurity and physical security systems that cover over 1,000 square miles of territory and more than 400 government buildings. He has spent over 20 years in the public sector, working to secure government agencies ranging from circuit courts, to correctional institutions, to 911 systems. In addition to his public safety work, he has also been involved in protecting the critical infrastructure systems at water and wastewater facilities, as well as healthcare systems and the nation’s 2nd largest convention center in the nation. Mr. Miller has also worked with local, national, and international law enforcement agencies and has consulted on cybersecurity initiatives around the world. He has been directly involved with the creation of international cybersecurity policies, laws, and incident response practices.

Chief Security Officer
Orange County Government

March 29, 2019


The Strategic Value of Procurement

Procurement Fraud

1:00 PM - 2:15 PM
Procuring Respect: Educating Management on Procurement's Value

A strong procurement department provides support to its internal customers and achieves savings for the entity, but how do you close the gap between procurement goals and elected officials and management understanding procurement’s strategic value? Join us and explore the importance and creation of a procurement value message, identifying what procurement should be promoting to elected officials and upper management and developing a marketing/promotional communications plan to accomplish the goal. We discuss the advantages and disadvantages of new and exciting tools, including social media, to determine how the everyday procurement professional can raise the profile of procurement organization wide.

Paul Brennan, FNIGP, CPPO  Paul J. Brennan, FNIGP, CPPO, has more than 24 years’ experience in public sector procurement. He has been actively involved in promoting public procurement and educating public procurement practitioners throughout his career. Paul served The Institute for Public Procurement (NIGP) Board of Directors for 12 years and was elected President of the Institute from 2009–2010. In 2016, Paul received the institute’s highest honor, the Albert H. Hall Award, and was named a Fellow of the Institute. Paul’s achievements also include his service on the Executive Board of the New York State Association of Municipal Procurement Officials, which began in 1996, and his service as president from 2004-2006. Paul continues to serve his NIGP Chapter as Chairman of the Legislative Committee. He has earned an Executive Certificate in Public Procurement from Florida Atlantic University, attended Nyack College, and earned an Associates Degree in Business Administration from Rockland Community College. He is also a veteran of the United States Coast Guard. Paul resides in Suffern, NY, with his wife Kristin and children Emily and Jack.

Director of Purchasing
County of Rockland, NY
Under the Magnifying Glass: Procurement Fraud Defined

Many individuals do not worry about fraud until it happens to them, believing that it will either never happen to them or that their entity’s are sufficiently protected against fraudulent action. This dangerous belief prevents procurement professionals from asking the most important questions we can: What is procurement fraud, and how can we prevent it? Join us in this case-study focused session as we define fraudulent behaviors, identify the different types of fraud, and explore how you can detect and prevent fraud from happening to you or your entity.

Andrea Philyaw, CPPB, PMP
Andrea Philyaw is the Procurement Director for Loudoun County Public Schools and has been with LCPS for 20 years. Andrea first started with LCPS as a bid specialist and also held the positions of Procurement System Specialist, Project Manager and Financial Services Coordinator. Andrea's most recent accomplishments include being named to the Director position, serving on the implementation team to replace a 30-year-old financial and HR/Payroll system with Oracle, and becoming a certified NIGP instructor. She holds a degree in business administration from Strayer University and a Certified Professional Public Buyer certification.

Procurement/Risk Management Director
Loudoun County Public Schools

I love how easy it is to get training without having to travel, Thanks NIGP!

Ashley J. Provenza, CPPB, MPA, CPM, Purchasing Agent, Polk County Sheriff's Office

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