Topic: Leadership Lessons - On the Courts and on the Fields


Zach Mathers (M.Ed., ATC, LAT, CSCS) joined the University of Sioux Falls athletics staff in the spring of 2010 as the head athletic trainer and head strength and conditioning coach. Mathers oversees all aspects of athletic training and strength & conditioning for all sports at USF. Mathers is a member of the National Athletic Trainers Association (NATA) and the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA). He is a Certified Athletic Trainer (ATC) licensed in both Iowa and South Dakota and is also a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS).  Mathers serves as the State Director for the NSCA for South Dakota.

Mathers received national recognition in his first season with USF. Following a fall season that saw the Cougar football program go 13-1 to finish as the national runner-up, he was named the Samson Equipment/American Football Monthly "Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year". The award is given to a coach at the NFL, college and high school levels, with Mathers receiving the 2010 award for the NAIA.  Before USF, Mathers was in Sioux City, Iowa, where he served as the Director of Power and Performance Programs from 2000-2010. He was also an athletic trainer at the Center for Neurosciences, Orthopedics, and Spine (CNOS) in Dakota Dunes, SD.

Mathers is a native of Correctionville, Iowa, and a graduate of Gladbrook-Reinbeck High School in Iowa.  He received his BS from Buena Vista University in Storm Lake, Iowa, in Exercise Science with an Emphasis on Athletic Training. He was a 3 year starter and team captain in football at BVU and also was a member of five school-record relay teams. Mathers now resides in Sioux Falls, SD with his wife and two daughters.

Presentation will discuss leadership lessons learned athletics from 17+ years in the weight room and on the field and courts.  Topics will include but not be limited to: management of staff and athletes, Total Athlete Development including mind/body/spirit, time management and efficiency, and self-improvement.  Plan is to be an energetic and engaging presentation that gives the attendees actionable items to take away.


Topic: Developing an Effective Ethical Project Team


Dr. Martha Helland is an Associate Professor in the Vucurevich School of Business at the University of Sioux Falls. Dr. Helland received her doctorate (PhD) in Organizational Leadership from Regent University, her Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) from New York University and her Bachelor of Arts (BA) from Vassar College. In addition Dr. Helland holds a Certificate in Distance Learning from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Dr. Helland brings 32 years of executive experience in human resources and operations management at Citi to her teaching. She has served on numerous nonprofit boards including the Sioux Falls Visual Arts Center, the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra, Turning Point, the Garretson School Board, and the Advisory Board for Leadership in Educational Administration Development for South Dakota. She is a member of the Society for Business Ethics, the International Leadership Association and the Association of Leadership Educators. 


Topic: Team Building

DannielleCroughDanielle Crough is the Director of Leadership and Organizational Development at Interstates where she helps drive the talent management strategy for the organization. Prior to joining Interstates, Dr. Crough consulted for 10 years where she helped organizations with their selection as well as leadership and organizational challenges. Dr. Crough is also an adjunct faculty member at the University of Nebraska-Omaha where she teaches organizational behavior courses in their MBA program. Additionally, she serves her community through non-profit board memberships.  When not pursuing or speaking her passion for human capital strategy, Danielle spends time on her acreage with her husband and two little girls.


Topic: How to Write Human User Stories

JayFisherJay Fisher, PMP is a Product Manager at MetaBank focused on creating software that builds relationships with cardholders.  Jay believes that the key to a successful project is creating user stories that connect the team to the customer.  After spending almost a decade working on new product development projects, Jay knows that building the heart connection requires focus and an agile responsiveness to surprises.  Jay has launched cardholder websites, mobile apps, and enterprise software in the consumer products and financial services industries.  He is a certified Project Management, New Product Development, and Pragmatic Marketing Professional. Jay holds a BS in Mathematics and Economics from the University of North Dakota.

“How to Write Human User Stories” is a practical conversation on how to connect teams to the needs of the end user.  We will discuss using customer visits and personas to discover user problems and to make user stories more relatable.

Understanding user’s expertise level and usage frequency vs the types of complaining customers to show how to target user stories for maximum impact.  We will show how focusing on a well-defined customer can increase team effectiveness and bring novel solutions to light.

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