2021 Hybrid Conference Speakers & Schedule


Connecting in Real Time 

Today, many companies and organizations have moved towards a hybrid and remote workplace. During this keynote session, participants will learn how to create equity, and invite inclusion of diverse people and perspectives back into the workplace. As a result of our new normal, many companies and organizations may heavily rely on a few people or groups instead of leaning on those who have valuable expertise, perspective, or connections that are being underutilized.

Through a DEI lens, participants will see how unintentional bias may be built into their networks, which can lead to limitations for themselves and their teams. Ultimately, participants will learn how to map and create opportunities across boundaries.

Kendra Brim

Director of Diversity, Inclusion, and Opportunity at Nardin Academy

Kendra Brim is a DEI and racial equity practitioner, bringing over 10 years’ experience working in project management, healthcare, non-for-profit organizations, and education. Kendra is the Director of Diversity, Inclusion, and Opportunity at Nardin Academy, an independent school located in Buffalo, NY and CEO and Principal Consultant of K. Savannah Consulting, a diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) firm focused on implementing strategies in order to maximize an organization's potential and to shift overall culture.

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See what others are saying!  Kendra Brim’s voice is in demand in Buffalo

Conference Schedule as of December 4, 2021:

ANNOUCEMENT - After much consideration, discussion, and research, the Conference Planning Team, in conjunction with the ATD Board of Directors, has made the difficult decision to pivot our Hybrid Conference from a hybrid format to a fully virtual format. Although we planned for this eventuality, it did not make the decision any easier. Using CDC and Health Department guidelines and data, we made a decision to keep everyone as safe as possible, while ensuring inclusion of all parties.

Presenter - Kennedy Schultz

Founder, KMS Intercultural Education

Session Title: Learning to Unlearn: How to recognize and interrupt bias in organizations

Program Connection: Learning

Session Description: Organizations are striving to create robust company cultures that value and include all members. Creating an inclusive culture has implications for ROI due to increased employee retention and higher innovation and productivity, according to studies from Forbes and SHRM. Often, the things that get in the way of inclusion and equity are patterns of thinking and being that are difficult to undo because 'that's the way we've always done them'. Becoming aware of how these patterns manifest in leadership, programming, and policies can help organizations pinpoint obstacles to inclusion and identify strategies to overcome them. In this session, we'll examine how intercultural competence plays out in the workplace and identify strategies to analyze ourselves and our programming to better promote inclusivity.

Session takeaways: During this session, participants will gain insights into how to identify unconscious patterns in the workplace, and use that knowledge to evaluate learning programs and employee engagement to identify challenges to inclusivity. With this knowledge and subsequent strategies, learners will be able to shift their practice existing programs/policies.

About the Speaker

Kennedy Schultz, Ph.D. is the founder of KMS Intercultural Education, a consulting firm focused on developing intercultural competence in organizations. Kennedy has been an educator for more than 20 years, developing and teaching courses in cultural studies and French for students in K-12 and university settings. After studying abroad in college, Kennedy realized the transformational impact of broadening one's perspective and sought to focus her career on building cross-cultural understanding. She started Explor-A-World LLC to design and implement a world language curriculum for elementary school students, and served as Director of Studies for a private K-12 school. She is committed to building a culture of inclusion and equity organizations, and providing individuals with the skills they need to develop their intercultural competence. Kennedy received her bachelor's from The College of Wooster, and her master's and doctorate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has pursued training in diversity, equity, and inclusion through the Education Collaborative of Western New York, Re-Set Schools, and the University of South Florida Muma School of Business. A skilled coach, facilitator, and Qualified Administrator of the Intercultural Development Inventory, she currently works with education and business leaders to develop their intercultural competence.

Connect with Kennedy on LinkedIn

Presenter - Sheri L. Mooney

Principal Consultant & Leadership Coach | Mind Squad HR

Session Title: Appreciative Inquiry: Asking Powerful Questions

Program Connection: Ideas

Session DescriptionEvery company emerging from the short-term Covid coma is faced with an enormous transitional challenge particularly with its most precious asset, human capital. To spur creativity and thrive in the long-term, learning and development professionals will develop their own personal appreciative approach so they can deeply inquire into why and find leaders will need to develop a positive, pro-active approach to engage their team. Appreciative Inquiry is an approach to organizational (or personal) change that makes use of positive questioning. By utilizing the Appreciate Inquiry approach, employees develop a positive state of mind when being questioned. Leaders have discovered that this approach results in significant improvements in the quality of responses, increased creativity, more thoughtful insight, and better focus on the challenges ahead.

In this session, we will take an in-depth look at appreciative inquiry and how successful companies use the approach to grow and manage change. Attendees will learn how to ask powerful questions and applying the concepts of appreciative inquiry in their training programs to foster engagement and promote a culture of openness that will unlock creativity and insight.

Session takeaways: During this session participants will learn how best to use the curiosity-based or thought-provoking approach of appreciative inquiry to ask appropriate and powerful questions. By learning how to focus on a personal appreciative approach, these professionals will be able to facilitate sessions in their workplace using Appreciative Inquiry so they can educate and inform teams, support learning, and invoke positive change. Powerful questions improve a leader's reputation for authenticity, and they encourage reflection on the part of the employee and team. Part of the session will identify dangerous questions and how to avoid the "Advice Trap" and changing from problem-focused to possibility focused approaches.

About the Speaker

Over the course of her multi-faceted career and life, Sheri L. Mooney was provided with an enviable opportunity to work and lead employees and clients across a vast array of industries. She has worked alongside some of the best and brightest executives and professionals in their respective fields. The experiences and lessons Sheri has accumulated along the way have shaped her intentions and her approach to coaching, training and consulting. At the heart of everything she does is her expertise in building and maintaining relationships. She asks powerful thoughtful questions, encourages curiosity and leads with authenticity. Sheri firmly believes that trust and collaboration are the key to developing solutions for nearly every complex business problem. She creates a safe, sacred place for her coaching clients and the executives she advises. Whether her clients want direction on leading high performing teams or developing a productive and engaged workforce, Sheri is there to help them achieve positive, sustainable outcomes.

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Presenter - Diane Roesch

Solutions Consultant | RV Rhodes, Inc

Session Title: The Art of the Intentional Conversation

Program Connection: Results

Session DescriptionThis highly interactive session will provide participants with insights on how to better communicate to others through intentional, compassionate conversation. Too often when we communicate with others the message we are trying to convey gets lost in translation and our intention is misunderstood. The Art of Intentional Conversation helps learners how individuals respond to physically/and psychologically to communication and provides simple tools and insights for influencing others, how to challenge others without creating conflict, and scripting difficult conversations. Participants will have an opportunity to practice the techniques they learn and can incorporate immediately for more effective conversations and coaching sessions.

Session takeaways: Talent professionals work with numerous departments within an organization. They need to be able to voice their opinions, influence others, provide coaching to individuals, and understand the needs of teams/individuals within the organization. Communication skills are vital when delivering training, and for having a meaningful voice with regard to the development of talent.

About the Speaker

Diane Roesch has been part of the RV Rhodes, Inc. team since 2009 providing leadership development to private and nonprofit organizations in the Western New York region. As a co‐facilitator of Aspiring Executives, (recognized by in 2015 as one of the top ten executive coaching programs in the country), she has worked closely with emerging leaders in business, academia,

and the health industries. Diane holds certifications for various psychometric assessments such as DiSC, WorkPlace Big Five, Emotional Intelligence, and Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team. Her experience and in‐depth knowledge of assessments opens the door for self‐knowledge, discovery and growth to people of all ages—from the high school student seeking a career path

to the executive director building a dynamic, collaborative team. With a strong interest in education and social emotional learning, Diane works with the Edge Foundation to bring one‐on‐one coaching to students. This impactful intervention helps students who have experienced ACEs (adverse childhood experiences such as homelessness, poverty, violence) and ADHD become more focused and achieve greater success and happiness in their lives.

Connect with Diane on LinkedIn!

Presenters - Rebecca Boyle, Judith Gooch, and Anne Moretti

Rebecca Boyle


Energizing Talent

Judith Gooch

President & Senior Consultant

DBA – JAG HR Consulting

Anne Moretti


Moretti Consulting, LLC

Session TitleSuccession Planning & Development: Now More Than Ever

Program Connection: The Future

Session Description: With the projected high turnover of leaders and employees in key roles expected in the next few years due to the aging and retirement of Baby Boomers, technological disruptions, global business shifts, talent gaps or lack of leadership pipeline, a thoughtful succession & development plan is essential in today’s changing workplace. As positions are vacated, organizations become more vulnerable. A smooth transition, especially at the executive level is key to the stability and sustainability of organizations. Of even more concern, the percentage of leaders and employees who would require more than 5 years of development to advance has risen to 44% showing a significant talent gap across the nation. Through targeted development and effective performance management systems, professionals in our field are able to proactively impact the long-term success of our organizations.

3 Learning Objectives for Effective Succession:

  • Identify critical roles and future vacancies for those roles.
  • Describe methods to evaluate who, amongst existing staff members, would likely best fill a future vacuum in key positions.
  • Evaluate ways to assess and develop potential candidates

Session takeawaysParticipants will have the opportunity to engage in a review of succession & talent review models, ways to effectively assess performance, and identification of needed development plans they can immediately apply to their workplaces.

About the Speakers

Rebecca Boyle is the President of Energizing Talent, a consulting firm focused on Organization and Leadership Development.  Rebecca has more than 25 years of experience in all aspects of Human Resources.  She has worked in numerous industries including financial services, higher education, healthcare, insurance and energy.  Rebecca has experience with both for-profit and non-profit organizations.  She is a recognized expert in the talent development field and is a frequent speaker for the Association for Talent Development (ATD) at their International Conference and Exhibition. 

Rebecca earned an MBA at Canisius College and is certified as a Society for Human Resources - Senior Certified Professional and a Senior Professional in Human Resources through the HRCI.  She is an effective communicator, facilitator, presenter, change agent, and coach across organizational levels. She has implemented highly visible organizational improvement efforts and strategic initiatives. Rebecca possesses significant experience in leadership development, organization development, human resources operations and processes, and performance improvement.

Rebecca has been recognized by ATD with the Leigh Woehling Memorial Award in recognition of outstanding contributions to the Training and Development / Human Resource profession, the Lewis Robinson Memorial Award for mentoring those in the Human Resource Development field and the Staff-Volunteer Partnership Award. In addition, she has received the Leadership Service Award, Outstanding Contributor Award, and was the first recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Buffalo Niagara Chapter ATD.

Connect with Rebecca on LinkedIn!

Judith Gooch is a Western New York native and resides in Lancaster, New York. Judith has over 20 years of experience in the Human Resource discipline. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Human Resource Development and a Masters of Art in Organizational Leadership. Throughout Judith's career in HR and as an Operations manager, she has led and conducted mediation and employee /management interventions in a variety of different industries such as; aerospace and defense, manufacturing, operation, financial services, banking, customer service and higher education. 

She is certified in several leadership development programs, team building assessments, and has actively used the tools throughout her career; e.g. Zenger Miller Team Building, Myers Briggs Assessment Tool, Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) 360 Assessment Tool, DDI Facilitator, Leading & Coaching Program through Blessing & White, and a Six Sigma Green Belt. Judith has received certifications in Executive Coaching-Self Awareness from Gestalt Coaching Institute and Weatherhead /Case Western Coaching.   In addition, she has experience as an Adjunct Professor at Medaille and D'Youville Colleges. 

Judith possesses background and expertise in Talent and Learning Management, with a focus on teambuilding, training, executive coaching /mentoring employees and managers. Judith has performed many HR roles, such as Human Resource Manager & Business Partner, Recruitment, Employee Relations Partner, Organizational Development and Facilitation, Talent & Learning Business Partner, Team Developer and as a consultant. She is active in the Buffalo Niagara Partnership Leadership Exchange Program.

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Anne M. Moretti, President of Moretti Consulting LLC, has 25+ years of experience working in Executive roles and as a consultant with extensive experience in organizational development and leading successful organizational-wide change efforts nationally. On the international front, she served as project leader for ten years over International Management and Change programs in Russia, Hungary and in Bosnia including a 2-year, USAID White House grant project for the Tuzla Medical Center and the Ministry of Health in Sarajevo. Over 15+ years, Anne led several healthcare system merger integration initiatives to develop and implement strategies and tools to assess/select talent for new roles, identify successor candidates for hundreds of clinical and non-clinical executive positions, consolidate and develop governance boards and physician leadership, align/develop leadership and teams through coaching and development programs system-wide.

Anne is an effective problem solver with key strengths in coaching, change management, diversity, strategic planning, talent and leadership development, relationship building, cultural alignment, team building and retreat facilitation. She is a member of the Organizational Development Network, SHRM and served as a Board member for ASTD, United Way, American Cancer Society and former Board Chair and Pathfinder Award winner of the Niagara Frontier Industry & Education Council. Anne completed her undergraduate and graduate education at the State University of New York at Fredonia, University of Siena in Italy, State University College of New York at Buffalo and University at Buffalo. Anne serves as an Executive Coach at UB’s center for Leadership & Organizational Effectiveness and as a Mentor at UB’s Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership. She also serves as a facilitator for the Buffalo Niagara Partnership’s CEO/Executive Exchange.

Connect with Anne on LinkedIn!


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