Each year we secure a dynamic lineup of 100 breakout sessions taught by 50+ first-class speakers from around the country. Whether our attendees are front line supervisors, trade workers, or safety directors overseeing hundreds of employees, they’ll find training for every level designed to strengthen safety cultures, improve safety communication and build leadership skills.

2024 KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

Wednesday Keynote – Johnny Quinn – Keynote Speakers & U.S. Olympian

Olympic bobsledder Johnny Quinn is a highly sought-after speaker for businesses and organizations of all sizes. Known for thought-provoking and action-packed content, Johnny is a trusted voice on resilience and change management. Johnny has been featured on: ABC, BBC, CNN, ESPN, FOX, NBC, TIME, USA Today and the Wall Street Journal. Johnny’s newest book, “PUSH: Breaking Through The Barriers” ushers readers through the valleys of life to the thrills of rocketing down icy mountains at 80+ mph with no seat belts. Johnny, his wife Amanda (m. 2014) and their two children, Amelia (2018) and Oliver (2021), reside in McKinney, Texas. Be sure to connect with Johnny on social media: @JohnnyQuinnUSA

Thursday Keynote – Jim Craig – Miracle on Ice

“Miracle on Ice” goalie Jim Craig will be our keynote speaker on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2024. Gold-medal goalie Jim Craig will inspire and motivate the crowd exactly 44 years to the day after leading Team USA to a gold medal in the “Miracle on Ice.” Craig is best known as the backbone of the 1980 Olympic Gold Medal hockey team, whose ‘Miracle’ win was voted by Sports Illustrated as the greatest moment in sports history in the 21st century. Over the past 40+ years, Craig has carefully studied the expert leadership tactics of 1980 ‘Miracle’ team coach, Herb Brooks, and learned how what happened that day in 1980 was no ‘Miracle’ at all, but rather the result of powerful leadership, careful strategy, hard work, and seamless execution. Craig experienced how a group of people from incredibly different backgrounds were able to come together in pursuit of a bigger dream, and Craig has a passion for inspiring others to do the same.

Friday Keynote – Matt Booth – Speaker

Matt earned his Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) designation, which puts him in the top 17 percent of the National Speakers Association worldwide. Groups and professionals can be assured that Matt has a track record of professionalism, commitment, and success. His keynote speeches are powerful, insightful, and engaging—inspiring audiences to take massive action and achieve their goals.

SESSION SPEAKERS

Mitchell Abrahamsen

Mitchell Abrahamsen is the President and Chief Operating Officer of Xena Therapies. Xena Therapies, based in Red Wing MN, manufactures two brands of
FDA-registered cool therapy products: Onyx Cool and Opal Cool. These wearable products are anatomically designed to deliver safe, comfortable
and effective cool therapies that support injury repair, women’s health issue and heat stress reduction in the workplace. Mitch is a former professor at the University of Minnesota and has held senior leadership positions in multiple Fortune 500 companies and several Biotech and Medtech startups. In his presentation today, Mitch will address how different cooling modalities can be effective at reducing heat stress and injuires in the workplace.

Adele Abrams

Adele is an attorney, safety professional and trainer who is president of the Law Office of Adele L. Abrams P.C., a DC-area based national firm focusing on safety, health and employment law. Adele is an ASP and certified mine safety professional and she provides legal defense, consultation, safety audits and training services to MSHA and OSHA regulated companies. She is an MSHA certified trainer. Adele is co-author of several books related to mining, construction, employment law, and occupational safety and health. She is a member of multiple state and federal courts, including SCOTUS. She is an NSC’s delegate and received its DSSA award in 2017. She is also a recipient of ASSP’s SPY award, and in 2022 was named an Avetta Fellow.

Mike Adams

Michael is an industrial oil and gas professional with a history of managing teams through mentoring, training, observation and interaction. His strong safety and technical training background includes serving as a petroleum service technician instructor, operations maintenance lead, and safety training manager.

Michael is a true safety leader who is never afraid to stop an unsafe act or intervene in situations that need attention. Michael has acquired numerous trainer credentials throughout his professional career including PEC certified instructor for SafeLandUSA Basic Orientation, Core Compliance, H2S Clear, and Core Compliance Refreshers. He is also an NDSC Authorized Instructor for fire extinguisher, hazcom, lockout/tagout, silica, trenching, and more.

Kam Alipour

Kam Alipour is the National Manager for Protective Apparel and Safety in the Direct Sales division for Cintas. He has over 16 years of experience with Cintas and has a solid working knowledge of regulations and standards related to the care and maintenance of protective apparel and PPE. Kam’s professional experience with NFPA 70E lies in nearly every industry with customers ranging from local, regional and Fortune 500 companies. His passion is around helping companies with solutions around PPE and Protective clothing and helping to understand what’s out there and available to help keep your employees safe

Kevin Baumgarn

I’ve been in education for 28 years. I have taught in the classroom and have been a superintendent. I present on some stories that I have from the field of education and how it has changed since I have started teaching. I also have made significant changes to my attitude and lifestyle after a having a heart attack on a football field as I was reffing a game two years ago. Luckily, there were three nurses and a football player who responded and brought me back to life. I don’t “sweat the small stuff” anymore. I have learned to laugh more and enjoy each moment as we don’t know how long we will be around.

Ryan Bouda

Ryan Bouda is a dynamic speaker, coach, and trainer with years of experience taking leaders, teams and organizations to their next level of greatness. He has spoken to thousands of people on cultivating leadership, building teams and improving communication. Ryan has a master’s degree in leadership development and is certified in Conversational Intelligence®. His passion is to develop a company’s greatest asset: their people. Ryan has worked with companies such as NASA, Hospital Corporation of America, Habitat for Humanity, Nebraska Medicine, and Medical Solutions. Specific to safety, Ryan has spoken at the VPPPA and NSC national events as well as multiple regional conferences.

Aaron Butler

My tenure at NASA’s Mission Operations Directorate in Houston, TX was a period of both pride and profound grief. February 1, 2003, stands etched in my memory — the day we witnessed the Columbia Space Shuttle tragedy, claiming seven lives during its re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere. The magnitude of the disaster at an institution as advanced and meticulous as NASA served as a poignant reminder: even the most elite organizations are susceptible to overlooking precursors that can lead to monumental disasters. This realization was a turning point for me. Columbia’s loss transformed into a fervent passion for EHS. I now help companies embrace cutting-edge technologies to identify, prioritize, and minimize risk.

Chris Carlsen

As Roco Rescue’s Director of Training, Chris Carlsen is responsible for all aspects of the training segment of the business. At a high level, Chris’ focus is on ensuring that Roco’s courses meet customer needs and exceed their expectations. Chris oversees the development and evolution of the entire curriculum, and is also charged with making sure Roco courses are taught by a world-class team of instructors.

Chris is a self-proclaimed “technical rescue geek.” In addition to graduating from the National Fire Academy’s Special Operations Program Management course, he also is SPRAT Level II certified, an ITRA qualified instructor and assessor, technical rescue trainer for a National Lab, and has taught fire science at Central New Mexico Community College.

Tarek Chase

Tarek Chase is a Trooper with the North Dakota Highway Patrol. Chase brings expertise in recognizing drug and alcohol impaired drivers to his fellow officers all over North Dakota. He has been with the Patrol since 2008 and has been stationed in Williston, Elgin, and New Salem, North Dakota. Chase has a passion for learning and law enforcement. He is one of 3 aircraft FLIR operators with the Highway Patrol, a certified Drug Recognition Expert as well as a DRE Instructor, Standardized Field
Sobriety Tests Instructor, and an Emergency Vehicle Operation Course Instructor. In 2017, Chase was appointed North Dakota’s first SFST State Coordinator. Then in 2019, he was appointed North Dakota’s combined DRE/SFST State Coordinator.

Travis Clark

27 Years with OSHA
* 14 years Compliance Officer (Bismarck, ND)
* 2 years Assistant Area Director (Ft. Worth, TX)
* 3 years Enforcement Programs (Region 6 Dallas)
* 6 years Area Director (Corpus Christi, TX)
* 2021 – Present Assistant Area Director (Bismarck, ND)
*4 years USMC

Teresa DeVore

Teresa DeVore is the Director of Customer Experience at FactorLab, the developer of SmartTagIt—a leading safety indicator application used over two million times by field professionals across dozens of enterprises. With over 20 years of experience working with clients on their journey towards accident and injury reduction, Mrs. DeVore is committed to helping contractors, utilities, and energy companies leverage emerging technologies, organizational science, and machine learning to significantly reduce workplace incidents.

In her previous role as Director of Analytics Solutions at Predictive Solutions and now at FactorLab, Mrs. DeVore has dedicated her career to studying operational systems complexity, identifying key risk indicators, and collaborating with industry leaders to innovate safer workplaces.

A pioneering thought leader, Mrs. DeVore continues her passion for helping organizations build high-impact safety systems that leverage workplace conversations, computational linguistics, and natural language processing to detect early signs of potentially catastrophic events.

Erika Erb

Erika Erb has 17 years of combined experience in general industry and construction. Erb excels in creating training programs and workplace safety policies to ensure workers have the best chance of going home safely. Erb has degrees in both Occupational Safety and Health and Human Resource Management, as well as an extensive background of on-the-job leadership roles. Erb is certified to instruct more than a dozen courses from ASC classes to OSHA 500 level courses at the North Dakota Safety Council as a Safety Consultant.

Mike Evans

In addition to being a leading authority on Artificial Intelligence Impact and Future Work, clients rely upon Mike’s solutions to; Accelerate Change, Shape Their Optimal Culture, Unleash Personal and Organizational Accountability, Flawlessly Execute Key Strategies, Ignite Leadership Capacity at all Levels, Amplify Employee Engagement, Embrace The Role of CEO of Your Life, Career and Destiny, and Cultivate Peak Performance. Mike Evans is an award-winning author/speaker, and has developed a unique perspective from 20+ years of working alongside a star studded list of world-renowned thought leaders, including: Dr. John Kotter, Dr. Stephen Covey, Tom Peters, Jim Kouzes, Hyrum Smith, Steve Farber and Chris McChesney. 34 of Fortune 50 are clients. Mike works with organizations around the globe and in virtually every arena, from the tech sector to financial services, manufacturing, health care, hospitality, entertainment, retail, and the US Government. Clients include: Carrier Corporation, Intel, Capital One, Apple, Caterpillar, Maytag, PNC Bank, Cargill, Pfizer, General Mills, H&R Block, The United States Navy, John Deere, Fidelity Investments, Monsanto, Google, US Steel, Rite Aid, Agilent Technologies, Johnson & Johnson, Symantec, Cigna Corporation, ITPA, US Department of Commerce, BNY Mellon, Oracle, Astra Zeneca, Baxter International Inc., Shell Oil, UPMC, Citrus Valley Health, McAfee, American Airlines, Masonite, Novartis, Ernst & Young, ACE Hardware, DuPont USA, Quest Diagnostics, State Farm, BP Oil, Heinz USA, NAFCU, and NASA

Christin Fine

Christin Fine, Director for EHS at the EERC, focuses on leading the EERC’s Environment, Occupational Health, and Safety Programs. Fine is passionate about the sharing of safety knowledge to improve workplace environments. She is actively involved in a variety of professional organizations where she mentors young safety professionals, coaching them in how to find solutions to hazardous worksite situations. She is involved in non-profits throughout the region and shares her knowledge to contribute to a safe and healthy community.

Rick Halldorson

Rick Halldorson has 14 years of experience in safety management including program design, auditing, incident investigations, back-to-work programs and process safety management auditing. At his previous position, Rick developed, organized and conducted training programs for 110 plant employees, including industrial forklift, respiratory protection, industrial ergonomics, industrial rail yard safety, lockout of hazardous energy, permit required confined spaces, fire and gas detection, behavior-based safety programs, and management of the Workers Comp program.

Rick’s teach credentials with the North Dakota Safety Council include MSHA Part 46, the NSC’s Advanced Safety Certificate Courses, Defensive Driving, CPR/AED/First Aid, and Lift Truck Operator, OTIEC OSHA 500, 501, 502, 503, 510 and 511 courses, OSHA Recordkeeping, Confined Spaces, Fall Protection, Lock Out/Tagout, Scaffolds, Supervisory Development, Trenching and Excavation, and many more.

Carla Hixon

Coming soon.

Preston Johnson

Preston Johnson has been the Industrial Hygienist for the Bismarck Area OSHA office since November 2021. He graduated in 2021 from North Dakota State University with a bachelor’s degree in biology and chemistry. In his short time with OSHA, he has conducted over 100 inspections which includes chemical sampling for welding fumes, hexavalent chromium, carbon monoxide and more. Alongside working for OSHA, Preston Johnson is a 1st Lieutenant in the North Dakota Army National Guard
where he serves as the intelligence officer for a military police battalion.

Peter Juarez

Peter Juarez has spent more than 12 years directly involved with worker safety. He’s been a part of the North Dakota Safety Council team for four years with an active schedule based in the Williston area. Peter is a bilingual instructor who uses his real-life knowledge from the Bakken to make a difference. As a One Basin One Way trainer, CPR/AED/First Aid certified trainer, and a Defensive Driving trainer, Peter can work directly with companies to fit their training needs. With more than seven years of experience working with Bakken oil producers before coming to the NDSC, Peter has proven himself to be a difference maker in empowering workers and businesses. While Peter can train on several courses, he’s best known for his work as a Safety Consultant who goes directly onto job sites. Peter says consultations are his favorite part of the job because he gets a variety of interactions and opportunities, while also being able to directly help others develop a more resilient safety culture.

Stacey Kautzman

Stacey Kautzman is the Special Investigations Unit Director at Workforce Safety and Insurance (WSI). She started her career at WSI in 1997 within the Claims Department where she served in multiple positions to include Senior Claims Adjuster and Claims Unit Supervisor. Stacey joined the SIU in 2008 and served as a Paralegal before becoming the Director in 2014.

Dan Klug

Dan Klug is an accomplished leader that enjoys creating a collaborative environment. He has successfully delivered results in customer experience, employee engagement, change management, branding, marketing, development, and events. He is an accomplished public speaker and trainer. Klug has held leadership positions with Birdsong Hearing Benefits in Jacksonville, FL; Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota in Fargo, ND; Northland Community and Technical College in East Grand Forks, MN, and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association in Charlotte, NC. Dan has been married to his wife Marna Klug for over 34 years. They have one son Jacob. Klug enjoys motorcycling, sports, movies, reading, travel, baking and being on the beach.

David Kraft

David Kraft is a Loss Control Safety Consultant for North Dakota Workforce Safety and Insurance, serving the Devils Lake region for the past 8 years. He has a degree in Mechanical Engineering and has 15 years of experience managing environmental health and safety programs in manufacturing facilities prior to being a safety consultant. When away from work he enjoys spending time with his family, hunting, fishing, and boating.

Jason Kunz

With over a decade of experience with the 3M company in a variety of technical and leadership roles, Jason Kunz demonstrates his passion for the safety and health profession across multiple platforms. A forward-thinker, with the objective to elevate the health and well-being of all workers, Jason uses his voice to amplify the profession and the professional. His life journey, blessings, and struggles have inspired a commitment to building professional communities that ensure an
empowerment of their people. Jason is a husband, co-founder, speaker, coach, and community advocate. He’s a CIH and CSP, but mostly grateful to have a J-O-B and work with some of the most passionate and compassionate people on the planet.

Kevin Lombardo

Kevin is a widely recognized thought leader with substantial experience in workplace safety and injury prevention. Having worked as CEO and a Senior Executive for many large organizations along with his significant experience in the healthcare space, Kevin’s unique perspective illuminates the critical intersections between talent, assets, and ideas – the dynamic formula that drives business performance.

Erica MacDiarmid

Erica MacDiarmid has been serving the Bakken region for almost ten years working in HR, compliance, and safety. Her experience led her to be a safety trainer and has developed a variety of HSE and HR manuals for small companies. Before that, she has over 28 years of experience as an HR and MARCOM professional working in the Minneapolis and Chicago areas.

Currently, she helps businesses understand the importance of state and federal compliance while merging it with oil and gas expectations and regulations. Through her coaching on being “proactive”, she bridges the gap between field operations and administration. Her message helps both the leadership team and field operations understand how they are interconnected.

Shelly Meadows/Martin Franchi

Meet Shelly and Martin, the visionary co-founders of Navigation Consulting & Training (NavCT). With a shared mission to foster thriving and healthy
workplaces for organizational success, through strategic HR and Health & Safety consulting, training and development and workplace harassment investigations. They bring a wealth of expertise and passion to the table. Shelly is a CHRP, MBA, CPA, and certified psychological H&S advisor with executive-level experience. Shelly leverages her professional expertise, combined with her passion as a speaker, facilitator, and consultant to have a positive and meaningful impact on organizations and their people so that they can thrive.

Joe Melton

Joe is the Director of Operations for Master Builders of Iowa. As an experienced Director of Consulting Services he’s demonstrated a history of working in the managements consulting industry.

Mark Miner

Mark is currently employed as the Safety Manager for Consolidated Construction of Appleton, WI. He is responsible for leading Consolidated Constructions efforts regarding safety management and risk control. Consolidated Construction has operations throughout the United States and provides their customers with both self-perform capabilities and construction management.

Marks background includes an extensive history of construction experience with nearly 40 years of those years in risk management/risk control. Mark has a bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education, a Special Fields Certification, a Minor in Traffic Safety and a Master of Science Degree in Safety and Loss Control from the University of Wisconsin Stout. Marks greatest asset’s that he can share with an organization is his solid leadership skills and the fact he is driven by a solution minded philosophy. His employment experience includes heavy commercial, heavy highway, heavy industrial, power/ energy and underground construction.

Jodie Mjoen

Mjoen plays a leading role developing strategy for modernizing North Dakota’s manufacturing base and coordinating the interface of technology & growth strategies with the needs of manufacturers.

He has 27 years experience in manufacturing industries including high tech, industrial & military based business. His experiences working with an extensive variety of manufacturing teams in the United States & abroad have contributed to his diverse expertise in quality mgmt systems development & compliance, org leadership & team development, product & process development, supplier management, risk assessment & mitigation and continuous improvement.

A U.S. Army veteran, former mayor & he enjoys traveling adventures with his family for fun.

Don Moseman

Don is originally from Rapid City, SD. He served in the United States Air Force with his last assignment as a squadron safety officer. He obtained the highest security clearance in the Air Force, whichat that time which was for Critical Nuclear Weapon Design Information. Don was honorably discharged from the Air Force in 1990 and received the USAF Commendation Medal.

He then became a state police officer from 1991 to 2007 and has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice. He had many duties, including his role as a hand-to-hand combat and active shooter instructor. He began working in schools in 1996 as part of a federal anti-school violence program which placed police officers in schools. In 2003, he was recognized as the Law Enforcement Education Officer of the Year for the United States by the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms for his work in combating school violence. He has been a certified instructor in more than 40 state, federal and National Safety Council programs.

In total, he has taught more than 1,000 law enforcement, safety and leadership courses and instructed over 50,000 people. Don has studied more than 100 school and workplace shootings and has responded to three active shooter events. Don is a practitioner for emergency risk assessments through the National Institute of Crime Prevention. Don previously worked for the National Safety Council and came to the NDSC in 2013.

Barry Nelson

Barry Nelson is a seasoned entrepreneur and currently serves as the President and CEO of Factorlab, the provider of the popular and rapidly growing safety leading indicator application SmartTagIt, which has been used by field professionals across dozens of enterprises over two million times in the last 2.5 years. With over 20 years of experience at the intersection of incident prevention and technology, Mr. Nelson and his teams have helped hundreds of companies, including Fortune 100s and startups, to utilize emerging technologies, organizational science, and machine learning to significantly reduce accidents and injuries in the workplace.

Amanda Norton

Amanda Norton has been working in the field of safety since 2017, and has been with Noble Inc. since 2018. She attributes her success in occupational health and safety to the front line field employees and is dedicated to earning their trust, and works together with all employees, to push the growth and improvement of occupational safety forward. Prior to working in HSE Amanda worked in Emergency Medical and Fire Services since 2007. After years of treating people after being injured her goal was to help prevent injuries and accidents from occurring.

Harlan Olson

Harlan Olson is a Certified Safety Professional who has been in the safety profession for over 28 years. Prior to coming to WSI 22 years ago, he spent over 6 years as a safety coordinator for a large organization in western North Dakota. When speaking to groups of people, he will sometimes pull experiences from his early years in the construction industry. It is one of these experiences that ended his construction career and started his journey in the safety & health field.

Scott Overson

Scott Overson joined the Occupational Safety & Health Administration in February of 2003 as a compliance safety and health officer. Prior to joining OSHA, he spent five years in the construction industry as an industrial sandblaster and painter. He also served as a Fire Captain with 17 years in the fire service. He graduated from the University of North Dakota with a bachelors degree in Occupational Safety & Environmental Health.

Tim Page-Bottorff

Tim is an inspirational certified safety professional who brings over 20 years of occupational health, safety and environmental experience. He has
received the coveted ASSP Safety Professional of the Year award and currently serves as Director-at-Large on their board. As a United States Marine, Tim earned the Humanitarian Service Medal and is a veteran of Operation Desert Shield/Storm. He started his safety career in the Marine Corps and is very proud of his continued grassroots approach. Tim has been published in industry magazines and online, including in Safety Decisions, Coatings Pro Magazine, Professional Safety Magazine,
the Journal of Environmental Management, and by the Water Environment Federation.

Kurt Rhea

From its inception in 2010, Rad Pros has been a leader in waste management including TENORM/radioactive and, hazardous materials.
The Rad Pros team has been serving the oil and gas, water treatment, and mining sectors ever since. A strong supporter of the NDPC, NDSC, API, and the U.S. energy sector, Kurt and his team have been appointed as Radiation Safety Officers on multiple licenses across an 8-state region. Rad Pros provides field services (site and facility demo/remediation/reclamation) as well as consulting, training, and regulatory affairs support to their clients. With years of experience and only
the best personnel, Rad Pros excels in special waste management. They are passionate advocates for FCA, Covered Colorado, and Lifeline.

Reyne Richter

Reyne Richter is a Claims Supervisor in the Injury Services Department at Workforce Safety & Insurance (WSI). Along with her 28 years of experience working in the Claims Department, she essentially is Injury Services primary provider of education and assistance to WSI’s external customers to aid them in their claims management and return to work programs emphasizing pro-activeness and involvement with injured workers.

Mitch Rumple

Mitch owns and operates Compliance Services LLC, a company that assists motor carriers with Federal DOT Compliance.
He grew up north of Minot, ND in the small town of Glenburn. He went to College at Minot State University. Mitch was a police officer in North Dakota for 36 years and retired from the North Dakota Highway Patrol in 2014 after serving 25 1/2 years with that agency. From 2014 to 2020 worked as a field safety rep., and DOT Compliance Manager for Nuverra Environmental Solutions.

Derek Sang

Derek Sang has 25+ years in the Flame-Resistant clothing industry in a variety of roles, he has assisted in both developing and implementing programs for some of the largest companies worldwide. In his position as the Technical Training Manager for Bulwark Protection, Derek has developed over 40 hours of training curriculum for Bulwark University covering all aspects of Flame Resistant and Arc Rated clothing. He has conducted 250+ educational and informational seminars on the hazards of
arc flash and flash fire across a variety of platforms including live events, webinars and seminars for organizations all over North America, the Middle East and Europe. Derek is a recognized as a Subject Matter Expert on FR PPE.

Rodger Schmidt

Rodger serves the employees of Borsheim Crane by being an advocate for safe choices and accountable professionalism throughout the organization. He has served as the Safety Director for 6 years and recently achieved a goal of attaining the ASP & CSP certifications while growing the safety culture at Borsheim Crane Service. Prior to Borsheim Crane, he worked as a project manager in the environmental department of Terracon Consultants helping organizations manage their IH needs. Rodger tries to balance work with his personal life of being a husband of 32 years and father of 3 remarkable young men. He enjoys traveling and spending time outdoors on the lake, golfing, hunting, or in a side-by-side.

Joe Schommer

Joe Schommer has been involved in the electrical maintenance and testing industry for over 28 years. Starting as a field service technician and progressing through the disciplines, Joe has experienced the importance of maintenance and electrical testing and how these practices improve reliability and ultimately safety within your electrical distribution system. Joe brings practical application experience for improving the safety of your facility by adhering to NETA and the NFPA 70E and 70B guidelines, merging electrical safety with electrical maintenance which are both critical in regards to your electrical safety program.

Alex Smith

Alex Smith, a native of Arizona, graduated from Arizona State University with a degree in Kinesiology, setting the stage for a career dedicated to enhancing physical health and well-being. With over 15 years of experience in physical therapy and an additional 7 years specializing in industrial medicine, injury prevention, and ergonomics, Alex has become a trusted authority in creating safe work environments and facilitating injury recovery.

Jay Skarphol

Jay Skarphol is a former Senior Environmental Health and Safety Specialist with a wide range of experience in general industry, construction, and oil and gas safety. In his former positions, responsibilities included: safety management system reviews including: incident investigations, safety training, and on-site inspections, audits, and evaluations. With an associate’s degree from the University of North Dakota – Williston Center, Jay also has a background in HAZWOPER, Level 5 Hazardous Materials Incident Command and was a TapRooT Advanced Investigations Team Leader.

His credentials with the North Dakota Safety Council include NSC’s CPR/AED/First Aid, Defensive Driving and Lift Truck Operator. Jay also teaches Adverse Weather, School Bus Driver, OSHA 10 & 30 Hour Construction and General Industry, OSHA Recordkeeping, Confined Spaces HAZWOPER 8, 24 AND 40 Hour, Fall Protection H2S Awareness, Machine Guarding and Trenching & Excavation, among others.

Dennis Snodgrass

Dennis is a safety professional, former Police Chief and United States Marine veteran but the titles he cherishes most is being father and grandfather. In 2012, Dennis entered the world of public speaking. Since then, he has spoken at many events to thousands of people nationwide. From Bakersfield, CA to Newark, NJ, from Houston, TX to the great state of North Dakota and nearly everywhere in between, Dennis has delivered his message on the dangers of distracted driving. In April 2020, Dennis wrote and published his first book, “Passing Through the Storm,” which was featured on SiriusXM radio on the Road Dog channel.

Paul Snyder

Professor Snyder is an Assistant Chair / Director of UAS Program for the John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences and Lead for Autonomous Platforms at the University of North Dakota (UND). He continues to be active in aviation education with experience as an FAA Designated Pilot and Instructor Examiner, an OEM certified Insitu ScanEagle UAS pilot, Chief Flight Instructor, Associate Professor, and Safety Consultant for various aviation organizations. As a DOT-certified SMS trainer, Professor Snyder is a member of UND SMS Committee and Events Review Team (ERT), analyzing flight data and conducting safety risk assessments to reduce risk within the organization. He has worked with the FAA to assist UND Aerospace in being recognized as meeting active conformance for UND’s Part 141 Pilot School and Part 145 Maintenance Repair Station under the FAA SMS Voluntary Program. Professor Snyder also actively teaches safety management systems, aviation safety, unmanned aircraft systems, and various advanced flight courses for the UND.

A sample of Professor Snyder’s recent research activities include: Identifying Models for Advanced Air Mobility (AAM)/Urban Air Mobility (UAM) Safe Automation, developing UAS Right-of-Way Rules for Unmanned Aircraft Systems Operations and Safety, identifying Safety Risk and Mitigations for UAS Operations On and Around Airports, conducting counter-UAS Drone Mitigation Demonstration and Test and Evaluation, and UAS Parameters, Exceedance, and Recording Rates for ASIAS.

Published author of Practical Safety Management Systems Edition 2, Aviation High School Facilitator Guide, and Aviation High School Student Notebook; Professor Snyder holds a degree in Aeronautical Studies and Master of Science in Educational Leadership.

Nicole Spoor

Nicole Spoor has worked in the Policyholder Services division of Workforce Safety & Insurance for 14 years. In her role as the Employer Compliance Specialist, Nicole provides individualized support to the various departments within the organization, assisting and educating both employers and WSI staff with understanding the workers’ compensation requirements in North Dakota.

Nicole joined WSI with a diverse background in business and finance working in various roles including credit analyst and commercial loan officer for Bremer Bank and Finance Director for the North Dakota Ballet Company. Nicole holds the CWCP, Certified Workers’ Compensation Professional designation, as well as an APA, Associate in Premium Auditing.

Sean Sugden

With over 25 years of experience in the architectural field, Sean is a leading expert in Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) and safety measures. Operating from North Dakota, Sean’s work encompasses a wide range of projects across various sectors, including education, workplace spaces, and comprehensive master plans. His collaboration with the North Dakota Safety Council plays a pivotal role in educating facility administrators about implementing safety-focused designs. A graduate of the National Institute of Crime Prevention’s CPTED course, Sean also offers a variety of virtual safety training courses. Sean’s expertise is nationally recognized and highly sought after.

Dr. Yoav Suprun

Dr. Yoav Suprun is an author, TEDx Speaker and a spine specialist. He is highly sought after for his expertise and innovation in treating and
preventing neck and back pain. After serving in the Israeli Air Force for 4 years, Dr. Yoav moved to NYC and began his career in health and wellness. He has been blessed with more than 3 decades of helping organizations, executives and professional athletes live a healthier life, without medications, injections, or surgery. He
empowers his clients to self-treat and prevent common mechanical lower back pain, sciatica, neck pain and stiffness. By implementing proper work habits, individuals can optimize their performance reduce absenteeism, and contribute to an efficient work environment.

Joe Tantarelli

Joe is a passionate presenter who leaves his audiences feeling inspired. His down-to-earth presentation style is a direct result of over 40 years of experience in heavy equipment construction, where he worked his way up from laborer to safety manager. He became a human error management expert after discovering that his near-fatal trench collapse accident could have been prevented. Joe has been a popular speaker at the NSC Congress, the ASSP and VPPPA national conferences and he’s been
published in various trade magazines. He has also assisted companies in achieving Star Approval in OSHA’s Voluntary Protection Program

Pat Traynor

Executive Director of Dakota Medical and Impact Foundations.

Jason Uhlir

Born and raised in North Dakota, Jason grew up on a family farm outside of Grand Forks. He started working in the field of safety while attending UND,and went on to make safety his career. Jason led the safety programs at UND for many years, and for the last 10 years has been the Safety Manager for Minnkota Power. Jason is a firm believer that safety is about caring for people, and he hopes to share some of that energy with all people he interacts with.

Leland Vetter

After attending North Dakota State College of Science and working in the oil industry, Leland taught welding and machine tooling at Eastern Wyoming College for 34 years where he was also the safety officer. Then Bismarck State College and the University of Mary until his retirement in 2023. He has been training and testing welders for over 30 years in the power and mining industries.

Tyler Vujovich

Please welcome Tyler Vujovich as 3M Fall Protection Specialist for MN, SD, and ND. Tyler joins us with over 8 years of safety & PPE sales
experience, and has held roles supporting 3M’s safety, abrasives, tapes & adhesives portfolios. In his current role, Tyler is solely focused on 3M’s fall
protection and confined space portfolios providing product, technical and demo awareness solutions.

Brad Warr

Brad Warr has been a career firefighter for 19 years with Nampa Fire Department in Nampa, Idaho where he has served as a Captain for the last 11 years. In addition, Brad is responsible for coordination and training of Nampa Fire’s Technical and Heavy Rescue Program. Nampa’s technical rescue responds regionally to technical rescues in the southwest corner of the state. They provide technical rescue for local industry as well as the mountain sports community.

Brad is a Chief Instructor for the Roco Rescue Corporation. He has been a member of the Roco instructor cadre since 2003 and a chief instructor since 2005. He teaches throughout the United States as well as internationally, specializing in Rope Rescue, Confined Space, Trench, and Structural Collapse. He is also a member of Roco’s Confined Space Rescue Team providing safety, compliance, and confined space rescue standby services for plants, refineries and other industrial complexes.

Randy Wegge

I have been employed with WSI for 21 years. I worked in the Return-to-Work Dept when I first started with WSI…and have been working in the Loss Control Dept for the last 14 years where I oversee the ergonomic grant program. My background is in Occupational Therapy…with a certification in ergonomics.

Daniel Wells

Daniel Wells has been working in safety management in industries ranging from heavy civil/technical construction, industrial electrical construction, drilling and oil and gas. Wells’s diverse background in safety leadership and project management extends to extensive hands-on work with the teams he’s managed. Wells believes that employee-driven, relationship-based safety cultures lead to safer workplaces. Wells is a Safety Consultant specializing in ONE Basin – One Way! instruction and H2S training.

Aglae Young

Aglae has a Bachelor of Science in Computer Systems for Management from the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey in Monterray, Mexico and a Master’s degree in Education from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona. She has more than 20 years’ experience as a trainer in multiple areas. She has been a volunteer EMT with the New Salem Ambulance Service for more than 13 years and has been a Spanish interpreter for the ND Court System since 2009.

John Young

John Young is a safety professional with almost 30 years of experience. He retired from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) having spent 20 years with OSHA conducting or reviewing investigations as both a Compliance Safety and Health Officer or Assistant Area Director. John spent over eight years in private industry managing safety in manufacturing environments with responsibility for multiple manufacturing plants nationally and internationally.

He has a Masters of Science in Industrial Management from the College of Engineering at South Dakota State University and a Masters of Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle Pennsylvania. His certifications include the CSP, CHMM, OHST, CHST, CIT.

Tandy Zitkus

Tandy Zitkus is an OSHA Region VIII Whistleblower Investigator out of Denver, Colorado. She received her master’s degree in engineering from Colorado School of Mines and trained as both an OSHA compliance officer and whistleblower investigator. Tandy has a unique 13-year background in safety, industrial hygiene and whistleblower investigations, which provides complainants and employers with advantages because of her experience and knowledge in the agency. Tandy has conducted multiple accident, fatality and retaliation investigations as well as settlements and merit cases. She has experience working in the general, construction, oil and gas, and process safety management industries in addition to working with the 25 whistleblower statutes.

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