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Atlanta Workplace Learning Radio


May 8, 2013 – Susan O'Connell with Habitat for Humanity International

May 8, 2013
David Adelman with TrainingPros and Susan O'Connell with Habitat for Humanity

Susan O’Connell is a fifteen year veteran in the learning field, leading and advising on strategic and cost-effective learning programs that develop staff skills, enhance productivity, and support organizational change.

In 2009, she successfully transitioned from the Fortune 50 business setting to the international non-profit sector where she played a key role in increasing online course enrollments by 50% over a one-year period. Susan serves as the Learning and Organizational Development Manager with Habitat for Humanity International.  She holds a Master of Education in Human Resource and Organizational Development from the University of Georgia.

March 20, 2013 – Richard Fletcher and Doug Samuels with the Greater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD


In this show, Richard Fletcher and Doug Samuels will discuss what’s new in the programming offered by the Greater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD this year, along with what is staying the same.

Richard Fletcher

Richard Fletcher/Zaxby's
Richard Fletcher, CHT is Sr. Director, Learning and Organizational Development for Zaxby’s Franchising, a franchisor of gourmet chicken restaurants with 550+ locations and 20,000 employees throughout the Southeast. He has been with Zaxby’s since 2003. Richard has responsibilities for overseeing the structures, systems, and processes within the organization to improve organizational effectiveness and is also responsible for identifying, recommending and implementing short and long term strategy for design development and delivery of leadership, team-related, professional, and interpersonal skills development programs.

Richard has over 25 years of executive level experience in sales, operations, organizational development and training with other national companies such as Wolf Camera, Zaxby’s and Sprint PCS.

Richard is a national member of ASTD and President-Elect for the Greater Atlanta chapter. He is an active member of the Council for Hotel and Restaurant Trainers (CHART) and Regional Director for the CHART’s Atlanta Regional Training Forum.

Richard received a Bachelor of Science degree from Auburn University. He is a certified EQ-I, EQ-360 administrator and has received the Certified Hospitality Trainer (CHT) certification from CHART. When he isn’t busy developing people, he loves hitting the links and traveling.

Doug Samuels

Doug Samuels/Georgia State University
Doug Samuels is Manager, Organizational Development & Consulting Services at Georgia State University in Atlanta, GA. His focus is on developing leadership bench strength and improving employee engagement throughout the university and across the University System of Georgia (USG). He uses the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence as a process framework.

Doug’s professional career in learning and development has taken him around the world. After flying KC- 135s (Boeing 707) for many years, he served as a Master Instructor at the USAF’s Navigator Training School and later created and delivered the military’s first software engineering training program. He was selected to direct the Department of Defense’s (DOD) Ada Software Engineering Education and Training Program, created to ensure the Ada programming language was used in all mission-critical software development across the military. He received the DOD Meritorious Service Medal for his efforts.

Previously, Doug served as the Director, Training and Development in a Fortune 50 company and Director, Organization Development at a burgeoning Fortune 1000 company. He holds a BS in Mathematics from Valdosta State College, a BS in Computer Science from Chapman University, an MEd in Adult Education from the University of Southern Mississippi, a BA in Psychology and MS in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Valdosta State University.

In the Studio, March 20, 2013
In the Studio, March 20, 2013
Richard Fletcher
Richard Fletcher
Doug Samuels
Doug Samuels

September 13, 2012 – Gary Whitney with InterContinental Hotels Group, Gwen McPherson with Northside Hospital, and Jerry Eonta with EBSCO Publishing on Informal Learning

Gary Whitney
Gary Whitney

Gary Whitney/InterContinental Hotels Groups

Gary Whitney is Vice President of Learning & Delivery for InterContinental Hotels Group IHG). Gary has been with IHG since 1998 in various facilitation, design, and learning leadership roles. Gary holds an MS degree from Purdue University and a BS degree from Southwest State University.

IHG is an international hotel company whose goal is to create Great Hotels Guests Love. IHG consists of 9 hotel brands, over 153 million guests annually, more than 660,000 rooms in over 4,500 hotels in nearly 100 countries around the world. Hotel brands include Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Crowne Plaza, Indigo, Staybridge Suites, Candlewood Suites, Even Hotels, Hualuxe, and InterContinental.

Gwen McPherson
Gwen McPherson

Gwen McPherson/Northside Hospital

Gwen McPherson is the Coordinator for the Learning and Organizational Development department for Northside Hospital located in Atlanta, Georgia. She has over 17 years of experience in the fields of Learning and Human Resource Management in the non-profit and retail industries.

Gwen is a certified Instructor for Franklin Covey and a certified Instructor for Employment Learning Innovation. In addition to her certifications she also serves as an Adjunct Professor for Central Georgia Technical College in the school of Business Technology/Business Management.

Gwen has her B.A. from the University of South Carolina and her Masters of Arts in Organizational Management from the University of Phoenix. Gwen lives outside the Atlanta, Georgia area with her husband Clifton and their children.

Jerry Eonta and Gwen McPherson
Jerry Eonta and Gwen McPherson

Jerry Eonta/EBSCO Publishing

Jerry Eonta is VP of North American Corporate Sales for EBSCO Publishing.

August 10, 2012 – Michael Woodard with Return on People Development, ASTD Conference


Michael Woodard joined us in the studio to highlight the ASTD upcoming conference on August 20th called ACE.   The 2012 Atlanta Conference & Exposition (ACE) will be held at the Westin Atlanta Perimeter North.

ASTD (American Society for Training & Development)

ASTD is the world’s largest association dedicated to workplace learning and performance professionals. ASTD’s members come from more than 100 countries and connect locally in more than 130 U.S. chapters and with more than 30 international partners. Members work in thousands of organizations of all sizes, in government, as independent consultants, and suppliers.

Michael Woodard/Return on People Development

Michael Woodard is a Learning & Development expert with more than 26 years of experience in sales, sales leadership and training and development, in the Retail and Food Service industries. Mike is known to be a thought-leader in Adult Learning and Sales and Corporate Leadership Development and is recognized for his contributions throughout the Learning community.

Michael spent the first 12 years of his career in various sales and leadership roles at Sweetheart Cup Company, Amoco Foam Products and Tenneco Packaging. In 1997, Mike made the move from Sales to Sales Training and Leadership Development. Over the past 14 years, he has served as the Director, Global Sales Training and Development for SC Johnson, Georgia-Pacific, PepsiCo and Gillette. Michael consistently developed high-impact Sales and Leadership Development curriculum to address strategic business issues, drive individual, team and organization performance, while maximizing ROI.

Michael earned a B.S.B.A in Economics and Finance from Aquinas College and an M.A. with emphasis in Management and Leadership Development from Webster University. He is also a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government Executive Education with an emphasis in Leadership Development and the Harvard Business School of Executive Education with an emphasis in Negotiations and Critical Decision Making.

Married to Diane for the last twenty-five years, Michael is the father of three daughters. He is an avid golfer, scuba diver, traveler, and reader. When he is not with his family in Atlanta or traveling on business, Michael enjoys spending time down at the beach in Destin, FL.

July 12, 2012 - Workplace Learning Special – Atlanta Conference and Expo Preview: Align, Connect and Engage

Sarah Gilbert and Todd Wilmore
Sarah Gilbert and Todd Wilmore on the air, July 12, 2012.

Today on our Workplace Learning Special Edition we interviewed with some of the presenters and organizers for the upcoming 2012 Greater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD Atlanta Conference and Expo happening on August 20th at the Westin Atlanta Perimeter North. The Theme of the conference this year is “Align, Connect, and Engage!” The Keynote speakers for this event are Jane Bozarth (opening) and Elliott Masie (closing).

Our guests today are Leigh Ann Lankford, Todd Wilmore, and Sarah Gilbert. Leigh Ann Lankford is an organizer for this event, as is Sarah Gilbert. Sarah is also one of the presenters along with Todd Wilmore. Their sessions are “Blended Learning: Driving the Virtual Classroom” presented by Sarah and “Storytelling and Talking Frogs” presented by Todd.

June 14, 2012 - ASTD Workplace Learning Special Edition


Dr. Stephen Harmon, GSU Director of Learning Technologies

In this ASTD Workplace Learning Special Edition interview, hear from Dr. Stephen Harmon. Dr. Harmon is the Director of Learning Technologies and an Associate Professor in the school of Education at Georgia State University where he promotes effective and innovative uses of technology

After majoring in English literature at Furman University, Stephen moved to Upper Egypt to teach fourth-grade English for two years. While there he had the opportunity to travel extensively through the Middle East and Africa. During this time he realized that there was a tremendous need for education and training in developing countries, but few resources to provide it. He decided to attend graduate school and enrolled in graduate studies in instructional technology at the University of Georgia,where he completed a masters and doctorate in instructional technology with a cognate in global policy studies.

Dr. Harmon then accepted a position as an assistant professor of instructional technology at the Universityof Houston-Clear Lake and worked there the next five years building a masters program and working to improve the university’s educational technology infrastructure. He returned to his native Atlanta, along with about 15 million other people, just in time for the summer Olympics in 1996 and joined the faculty in Middle, Secondary Education and Instructional Technology at Georgia State University, first as an assistant and then as an associate professor.

In addition to his academic appointments, he has served as theDirector of Educational Technology in the College of Education and as Chair of the Division of Learning Technologies. His research centers on educational uses of emerging technologies and has focused on elearning for the last few years, particularly with respect to synchronous online learning environments. He also conducts research on educational technology in developing countries.

He has served as president of both the Division of Learning and Performance Environments and of the Research and Theory Division for the Association of Educational Communications and Technology, and is currently President elect of that organization.

May 10, 2012 - ASTD Workplace Learning Special on Mobile Learning

Laurie and Larry
Larry Brambrut and Laurie Genevish on the air Thursday, May 10, 2012
Laurie Genevish/The Performance Difference
Laurie serves as CEO of The Performance Difference. The Performance Difference is an organization that assists companies in achieving their business goals by building employee growth in specific skills based on the company’s business drivers. By providing a holistic approach that encompasses – determining skill gaps, comprehensive instructional objectives and analysis and selection of the best delivery modality, a learning environment is created that ensures the knowledge is implemented and carried forward. They have provided solutions for clients in various industries including – financial, healthcare, telecommunications, automotive, restaurant, software and services.

Laurie Genevish is a skilled performance improvement professional with more than 15 years of assessment and learning experience. Her extensive expertise encompasses strategic development, design, implementation and facilitation of technical, employee and management development programs.

Laurie served as Instructional Content Manager at InfoMentis. She was responsible for overseeing the design, development and project management of sales focused performance improvement materials. Designed and developed on premise and web based client programs, customized to individual business needs, based on client consultation. Consulted directly with clients on learning needs and objectives, ensuring the business need was satisfied.

As a manager of Global Professional Development at Manhattan Associates Laurie was responsible for strategy, design, implementation, and evaluation of all global training programs for over 1,700 employees. In addition, Laurie partnered with the CEO to develop and implement an Executive Leadership program. She also designed and implemented several programs focused on management development to coach and build the skills of front line and middle management and on-boarding to help integrate new employees into the company culture.

Laurie’s background includes extensive experience in developing and managing corporate training programs for large organizations such as Transamerica Insurance & Investments and Kinko’s. She began her career working for North Carolina State University as the Assistant Director of Parents Association/Annual Fund Development Coordinator and with the March of Dimes as a Community Director credited with improving fundraising goals by 200%.

Laurie is a member of the American Society of Training and Development (ASTD) both nationally and in Atlanta. With the Atlanta ASTD chapter she has served as Chair for the Corporate Training Special Interest Group and Project Manager for Community Involvement.

Laurie is a certified Harrison Assessment (HA) distributor and coach. Laurie earned a bachelors degree in Speech Communications and Marketing.

Larry Brambrut/VeryMobileApps
Larry is the 2012 Vice President of Technology at Greater Atlanta ASTD and has over 30 years experience in manufacturing, and the implementation and training of software applications. Applications include iOS applications and development (iPhone, iPad), ERP, Knowledge Management, Collaboration and Search. Larry is also the Founder and Creative Leader of VeryMobileApps.

Larry is an iOS developer with eight apps in the app store and has several mobile learning prototypes, one of which is being readied for sale. Mobile Learning is now a focus of his business. He is an excellent instructional designer developer, technical writer and trainer.

Larry volunteers to teach basic computer skills to seniors as part of Cobb County Computers4Seniors, Habitat for Humanity and other non-profits. He also helps develop the training materials.

April 19, 2012 - ASTD Social Media Special Edition

Adam Karwoski/Social Brand U

Adam Karwoski is the CEO of Social Brand U.  After 17 years in senior leadership positions with AT&T Mobility and Nokia USA, Adam formed Social Brand U, a social media consultancy that partners with technology companies, with a B2B sales model, to extend their product and brand strategies via social media.

Their mission is to work with their clients to leverage social media to build value for the customer, a brand for the business and growth for the company.  At Social Brand U, they show their clients how to use social networks to develop relationships with clients that produce long term, sustainable growth and profitability while creating evangelistic customers.

Sarah Gilbert/Greater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD

Sarah Gilbert is the Vice President of Communications for the Greater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD. She is a workplace learning professional in instructional design, facilitation, and implementation. She specializes in e-learning development and social media communications. For the past two years, she has organized and deployed the communications strategy for the ASTD Greater Atlanta Chapter’s CPLP Study Group. In 2011, she used this strategy to support an asynchronous multi-chapter CPLP Study Network. Sarah is also contributing to a chapter-wide communications plan to improve the connection to members using various forms of social media: Facebook: Greater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD | twitter: @astdatlanta | Linkedin: ASTD Greater Atlanta

Sarah was published in ASTD’s The Book of Road-Tested Activities by Elaine Biech, and is now working with Darin Harley as a contributor to an upcoming book on social media best practices. She has over 12 years of experience in training and development, project management, and call center consulting. She has a BSBM, MBA, and is studying for the CPLP.

March 22, 2012 - ASTD Special on Nonprofit Training and Community Involvement

Jennifer Williams/Greater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD

Jennifer is the Vice President of Community Involvement at theGreater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD, American Society for Training and Development. ASTD is the world’s largest association dedicated to workplace learning and performance professionals. There are 130 U.S. Chapters and members of the ASTD come from over 100 different countries. The Atlanta Chapter is one of the largest in the Country and is thought to be one of the thought leaders with multiple awards.

The Community Involvement group is apart of the ASTD Chapter and is designed to give members the opportunity participate in community involvement activities around the city. The group supports metro Atlanta non-profits with Training & Development resources to increase the workplace readiness skills of their staffs and clients. They have developed partnerships with Habitat for Humanity, Goodwill, and the Atlanta Community Food Bank.

Jennifer is also a Sales Force Effectiveness Trainer at Georgia Pacific. She is responsible for managing the entry-level sales professional new hire onboarding program as well as designing and developing e-learning platforms for external, distributor sales teams.

Lanous Wright/Georgia Center for Nonprofits

Lanous is the Nonprofit University Director at Georgia Center for Nonprofits.  The Georgia Center for Nonprofits’ mission is to improve the quality of life by making nonprofits more successful and their vision is to build the country’s highest performing state-focused resource center as well as to position Georgia as a national model for nonprofit excellence and achievement.

Cindy Smith/Designs to Perform

Cindy has been volunteering with the Goodwill of North Georgiafor several years now teaching a basic computer skills course. Recently she has helped to join Goodwill of North Georgia and ASTD. She describes their working together as a partnership, seeing as GoodWill’s mission is  putting people back to work and ASTD Atlanta’s is about workplace learning and performance, the partnership has worked out very well. Their project is to create more courses for the Goodwill centers. She and her team are currently developing new courses for the Goodwill centers. Looking to sign up and help Cindy go here and check out their project.

In addition to her volunteer work she does instructional design.

February 16, 2012 - ASTD Atlanta Performance Consulting Special

Today we had another ASTD Atlanta Special.

On today’s show we talked about Performance Consulting and featured Ben Roberts and Jonathan Keith with Coca-Cola Refreshments and Susan Greathead with Lead America Training.

Susan Greathead
Ben Roberts and Jonathan Keith Ben and Jonathan talked about the new Center of Excellence with the Coca-Cola system. And Susan shared some of her best performance enhancing tips. A special shout out to our sponsor – the Business Marketing Association – Atlanta Chapter. Please go to their website to register for their monthly networking events www.bmaatlanta.com/events
Also, if you know of a business in Atlanta that we should know about, please email Amy Otto at Amy@ atlantabusinessradio.com and we’ll invite them to appear on the show.

Ben Roberts and Jonathan Keith

January 5, 2012 - ASTD Special – 2012 Mission Align, Connect and Engage

Steve Maul and Cecil Fricano

Today we had another American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) special featuring current President Steve Maul and VP of Member Services Cecil Fricano.  This year the main theme for the ASTD is Align, Connect and Engage. In 2011 the Atlanta chapter of the ASTD was the largest chapter in the country. By continuing to provide vale to the community, their sponsors, learning leaders in organizational companies and their individual members ASTD hopes to maintain their growth trajectory.

By focusing on their Align, Connect and Engage theme in 2012 they will further the value and competency of their own practitioners and ultimately allow their members to offer the very best workplace learning and performance.

A special shout out to our sponsor – the Business Marketing Association – Atlanta Chapter.  Please go to their website to register for their monthly events www.bmaatlanta.com/events

Also, if you know of a business in Atlanta that we should know about, please email Amy Otto at Amy@ atlantabusinessradio.com and we’ll invite them to appear on the show.

December 1, 2011 - ASTD Atlanta Workplace Learning Special


Today Mark Myette 2011 President of the Greater Atlanta Chapter of the ASTD took over the show to celebrate some of the big winners in the area of workplace learning, performance and training.

His guests were Renee Stevens, Vice President Global Talent with the International Hotel Group (IHG). Renee was recently named one of the 2011 Top Young Training & Development Professionals by Training Magazine. To learn more about what is happening at IHG please go to their website www.ihgplc.com

Also on the show were some folks from CBEYOND, a company committed to continuous learning and organizational development. Nicole Ashe is the Director of CBEYOND University and Susan Mitnick is the Senior Director of Training. To learn more about CBEYOND please go to their website www.cbeyond.net

The Greater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD is the premier community for Georgia workplace learning and performance improvement professionals, with our professional development, service and leadership recognized throughout the profession.

A special shout out to our sponsor – the Business Marketing Association – Atlanta Chapter.  Please go to their website to register for their monthly events www.bmaatlanta.com/events

Also, if you know of a business in Atlanta that we should know about, please email Amy Otto at Amy@ atlantabusinessradio.com and we’ll invite them to appear on the show.

November 1, 2011 - ASTD Employee Learning Week Special

Mark Myette, Richard Fletcher, David Gates, and

Employee Learning Week is an awareness campaign highlighting the important connection between learning and achieving organizational results.

The Greater Atlanta Chapter of ASTD is the premier community for Georgia workplace learning and performance improvement professionals, with our professional development, service and leadership recognized throughout the profession.

Seth Salzman is a restaurant and franchise industry veteran with experience creating and growing brands. Seth has started a consulting firm to provide assistance to restaurants, from single unit operators up to chains. He also works with franchise companies that operate in other industries outside of food service.