Workforce2030 Conference

October 25-26 | Independence

The fourth annual Workforce2030 Conference will explore the many strategies and programs that Missouri’s employers, educators and organizations can implement leading up to the year 2030 to make our state the home of a thriving, vibrant workforce.

There are 8.25 SHRM credits available for the Workforce2030 Conference.


Tuesday, Oct. 25

8:45AM Breakfast & Check-in

9:35AM Welcome
Dan Mehan, President/CEO, Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry

9:45AM Kick-off
Governor Mike Parson, 57th Governor, State of Missouri

10:00AM Opening Keynote | “Workforce: a throttle on American growth”
Ted Abernathy, Managing Partner, Economic Leadership, LLC

10:40AM — Transition & Break

10:50AM Breakout Sessions:

  1. Apprenticeship Track | “Straight from the source: apprentice panel” moderated by Katie Kirwan, Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry
  2. Educator Track | “Real world learning” Donna McDaniel, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation
  3. HR Track | “Test anxiety: cannabis testing in the workplace” James Foster, McMahon Berger (moderator); Clarice Rogers, Hubbell Power Systems, Inc.; Brenda Snider, WireCo
  4. Policy Track | “Funding our state’s education and workforce systems” Rep. Rusty Black, Missouri House of Representatives

11:35AM — Transition & Break

11:45AM Breakout Sessions:

  1. Apprenticeship Track | “Joining the apprenticeship revolution” Casey Steinbacher, Finding Next
  2. Educator Track | “Employer engagement in CTE: the key to preparing tomorrow’s workforce” Dr. Brandon Russell, Columbia Area Career Center
  3. HR Track | “Better ways to recruit your next star employee” Scott Holsman, Next Level Performers
  4. Policy Track | “Child care: a bipartisan workforce issue”

12:30PM Lunch

1:05PM Luncheon Keynote | “Building a tech workforce with overlooked people and places” Stephanie Moreno, Bitwise Industries

1:45PM — Transition & Break

2:00PM Breakout Sessions:

  1. Apprenticeship Track | “Getting the job done: employer panel discussion” moderated by Casey Steinbacher, Finding Next
  2. Educator Track | “The CAPS Network: bridging the gap between young talent and business” Brett Kisker, Northland CAPS
  3. HR Track | “Making the case for second chance hiring” Maleah Evans, Weatherproofing Technologies, Inc.; Dr. Tiph Jones, Concordance; Michelle Tippie, Transition Center of Kansas City
  4. Bonus HR Track | “Reducing risk in the workplace: salary, benchmarking and compensation trends” Greg Wolf,

2:45PM — Transition & Break

2:55PM Breakout Sessions:

  1. Apprenticeship Track | “Dynamic career pathways for youth through registered apprenticeship” Cynthia Walker, IWSI America
  2. Educator Track | “The Missouri Innovation Campus program: identifying and retaining IT and Engineering talent in the KC region” Stanley Elliott, Missouri Innovation Campus and Andy Cole, SS&C Technologies
  3. HR Track | “Engaging others: employee retention and your bottom line” Rhonda Travers, Travers Training & Consulting
  4. Policy Track | “Learning from a competing state: tech credentials” Kevin Boehner, Ohio Chamber of Commerce

3:40PM — Transition & Break

3:50PM Closing Keynote | “Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Panel”
Clyde McQueen, Full Employment Council (Moderator); Dr. Clarence Green, Northwest Missouri State University; Doris Rogers, St. Luke’s Health System

4:30-6:00PM Networking Reception 



Wednesday, Oct. 26

7:30AM Breakfast

8:15AM Welcome

8:20AM Opening Keynote | “Tapping into valuable foreign-born talent”
Betsy Cohen, St. Louis Mosaic Project and Nalini Mahadevan, MLO Law

9:00AM — Transition & Break

9:10AM Breakout Sessions:

  1. Apprenticeship Track | “Future proofing with modern apprenticeship” Nick Wyman, Institute for Workplace Skills and Innovation
  2. Educator Track | “Durable skills: Supporting successful pathways into the world of work” Torree Pederson, Aligned
  3. HR Track | “Employment law concerns of the new normal: Remote work” Erin Naeger, Stinson
  4. Policy Track | “Legislative panel” Sen. Lauren Arthur, Missouri Senate and Sen. Mike Cierpiot, Missouri Senate

9:55AM — Transition & Break

10:10AM Breakout Sessions:

  1. Apprenticeship Track | “Combining community with opportunity” Sally Payne, City of Springfield, Missouri
  2. Educator Track | “Educating Generation Z: Developing and externally validating desired skills” Dr. Susan Thomas, Truman State University
  3. HR Track | “Be part of the solution: Become a recovery friendly workplace” University of Missouri Extension
  4. Policy Track | “Future of workforce” Dr. Mardy Leathers, Missouri Office of Workforce Development

10:55AM — Transition & Break

11:05AM Closing Keynote | “Attract, retain and develop: win the battle for skilled workers”
Nick Wyman, Institute for Workplace Skills and Innovation

11:50 am Closing Remarks



Stoney Creek Hotel & Convention Center

18011 Bass Pro Drive
Independence, MO 64055

The room block expired Sept. 25, but rooms may still be available

by calling 1-800-659-2220 and providing group code MCC.


Photo of Stoney Creek KC and lake with trees

Click on a speaker photo to read their bio:

Ted Abernathy headshot

Ted Abernathy


Rusty Black campaign photo

Rep. Rusty Black


Mike Cierpiot headshot

Sen. Mike Cierpiot


Kara Corches headshot

Kara Corches


Maleah Evans headshot

Maleah Evans


Clarence Green headshot

Dr. Clarence Green


Tiph Jones headshot

Dr. Tiph Jones


Brett Kisker headshot

Brett Kisker


Nalini S. Mahadevan headshot

Nalini Mahadevan


Clyde McQueen headshot

Clyde McQueen


Erin Naeger headshot

Erin Naeger


Sally Payne headshot

Sally Payne


Clarice Rogers headshot

Clarice Rogers


Brandon Russell Headshot

Brandon Russell


Julia Vander Weele Headshot

Julia Vander Weele


Rhonda Travers Headshot

Rhonda Travers


Nick Wyman Headshot-square

Nick Wyman




Lauren Arthur Headshot

Sen. Lauren Arthur


Kevin Boehner headshot

Kevin Boehner


Besty Cohen headshot

Besty Cohen


Stanley Elliott headshot

Stanley Elliott


James Foster headshot

James Foster


Scott Holsman headshot

Scott Holsman


Katie Kirwan headshot

Katie Kirwan


Mardy Leathers headshot

Mardy Leathers


Donna McDaniel headshot

Donna McDaniel


Stephanie Moreno headshot

Stephanie Moreno


Governor Parson headshot

Gov. Mike Parson


Torree Pederson headshot

Torree Pederson


Doris Rogers headshot

Doris Rogers


Sue Thomas headshot

Sue Thomas


Casey Steinbacher headshot

Casey Steinbacher


Cynthia Walker headshot

Cynthia Walker




The agenda will consist of five keynote general sessions and six breakout segments split into four tracks: apprenticeships, education, human resources and policy. There are 8.25 SHRM credits available for the Workforce2030 Conference.

The Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for SHRM-CP® or SHRM-SCP®.



If you have questions related to the Workforce2030 Conference, contact Ashley Schwab, Director of Conference Development.

Ashley Schwab

Director of Conference Development


Featured Segments

Ted Abernathy headshot
Ted Abernathy

Keynote Speaker

Workforce: A throttle on American Growth

Abernathy, long-time research partner of the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry, recently published a workforce report for the National Association of State Chambers. This first-ever, 50-state study highlights efforts from around the country to address the national workforce challenges. Ted will outline some of the best practices states have implemented to boost their workforce development.

Stephanie Moreno headshot
Stephanie Moreno

Keynote Speaker

Building a Tech Workforce with Overlooked People and Places

Stephanie Moreno, VP of Apprenticeships for Bitwise Industries, will be joining this year’s workforce conference to discuss how and why the Bitwise model is having such transformative outcomes.

The technology industry has centered their operations in pockets across the country, leaving those who would benefit most from the high wage, high growth jobs with no real pathway to entry. For nearly a decade Bitwise Industries has sought to make this opportunity accessible to some of the most overlooked people and communities by centering their operations in cities across the nation where you wouldn’t instantly think a thriving tech hub could exist. Their successful model has expanded to 10 locations across the country, having served over 10,000 individuals with 80% finding tech employment after participating in the training programs. Taking many of the people who were previously making under $21K/year, to incomes over $60K/year, accounting for over a-quarter-of-billion-dollars in aggregated wages going to women, people of color and those traditionally excluded from the economic opportunities of the tech industry.

Nick Wyman Headshot
Nick Wyman

Keynote Speaker

Attract, Retain and Develop: Win the Battle for Skilled Workers

The Covid 19 crisis has created unprecedented economic upheaval. Companies have been forced to reconsider the fundamentals of how they work and operate. Nick’s presentation will explore how skills-based workplace-based training must be central to all economic and employment strategies. Nick will explore what the future of work looks like in an age of accelerated technological change and how your organization can turn the uncertainty into opportunity. Nick will give an insight into how investing in programs to up-skill Missourians will ensure the state remains resilient, adaptable and job ready.

Check out Nick's portfolio
Keynote Panel-headshots
Besty Cohen and Nalini Mahadevan

Keynote Speakers

Tapping into valuable foreign-born talent

At a time when companies are struggling to find talent, how can immigration help fill the gap? What policy changes can we anticipate with regard to immigration and how will they affect hiring? Immigration law expert, Nalini Mahadevan, and Betsy Cohen, author of Welcome to the U.S.A: You’re Hired, will provide insight on recent policy changes that will help employers hire more foreign talent. Learn how to fill job openings by connecting with international students, relocating immigrants, international executives and foreign-born, work-authorized job seekers.

Governor Michael L. Parson

Keynote Speaker

Focused on Workforce

Governor Parson understands the importance of education and workforce development to meet the needs of the future. Missouri has made major progress in these areas in recent years, and we must continue to take action, improve education, and provide more options for high-demand job training. From early childhood education to post-secondary opportunities, Governor Parson’s budget makes substantial investments aimed at giving more Missourians the education and training necessary to succeed in filling the jobs of tomorrow.








If you are interested in learning more about how to become a sponsor of the Workforce2030 Conference, contact Leisa Fox, Vice President of Business Development.

Leisa Fox

Vice President of Business Development