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2021 Executive Board Election

Nomination Statements

Each year, the membership of ATDChi elects the executive members of the ATDChi board.  A nominations committee recruits and vets ATDChi members for your consideration to server on the executive board.  They offer the following for your consideration.  Each candidate has provided a statement for your review.    

Submit your Vote (Members-Only)


Dave Lee

In 2020 in dealing with the impact of COVID-19, we’ve had great success with building out our online events including monthly webinars and our first online conference coming up in November. We also have taken initial steps toward a more data-driven ATDChi to enable better management and value-added engagement with members.

ATDChi has to be prepared to lead in the “new normal.” We will need to listen to our members and the greater Chicagoland Talent Development Community and be agile and responsive enough to change to meet the needs and expectations of our community.

To meet this challenge, I am proposing that ATDChi needs too focus our efforts in three key areas for 2021:

  1. Volunteers - Creating a better volunteer experience to increase the number of volunteers
  2. Leadership - 2 areas of leadership will be addressed
    1. Create new expectations of ATDChi leaders to be more strategic and focused on recruiting and empowering teams
    2. Explore how ATDChi can better serve the leaders in the TD Community
  3. Technology - Examine our technology in light of what we need to be a more effective and interactive member-based organization.

I believe if we can begin to deliver on these goals, we will be building that new normal ATDChi needs to be in the post-pandemic world. For more detail on my vision, check out this presentation.

I have been on the ATDChi Board of Directors for the past two years serving as the Director of Member Engagement and Retention in both years. I have led the revision of the annual survey so that it better reflects the thoughts, needs, and behaviors of our community and will begin to yield data that is actionable and measurable. I created the Voice of Our Community project which is looking at all of the feedback mechanisms we have in place and where do we need to revise/add tools to provide a better understanding of our member, former, and the greater TD.

I have solid experience with non-profit organizations and their management. I served 4 years on the Board of Directors of the Boston Gay Men’s Chorus, 2 years on the Board of Directors of the New Opera Theater Essenble, and 4 years on the Membership Council of the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus - one of these years as it’s President. My last job was with the Association for Supply Chain Management where I was developing a learning community strategy to reach their 40,000 members worldwide.

With all that going on I still find time to sing in the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus and to play softball in the summer. I live on the beach in Edgewater - a calming place in my hectic life.

If this vision of a more interactive, ATDChi community appeals to you, I would appreciate your vote for President in this year’s ballot. But more importantly, come help make it happen. Volunteer! www.atdchi.org/volunteer

Submit your Vote (Members-Only)

President - Elect

Deanna Claerhout

My goals for ATDChi are to bring valuable learning content to our members and to promote member connection by elevating networking opportunities in 2021.

I have been a part of ATDChi’s Programming team for two terms. In 2019, I held the Manager of Events position and I’m currently serving as the VP of Programming. This year has been interesting, but I’m proud to say that COVID did not stop the Programming team from bringing learning and networking opportunities to our members. This year we have hosted nine webinars and we’re currently in the process of planning a virtual conference. Through collaboration with other ATD chapters, we were able to provide 24 additional learning opportunities to our members. From a networking aspect, we joined forces with Matt Elwell to offer several virtual networking sessions so our community could stay connected during this period.

I have over 15 years’ experience in the Talent Development field, in which I have held a variety of positions that have led to a broad background in the industry. These roles include work in the following areas: instructional design, course development, project management, learning program management, engagement management, and learning solutions strategy and architecture. I have ideated and developed several learning solutions aimed at improving human performance, which have led to strategic impact on the businesses I have served.

I’m excited to help support the Chicagoland Talent Development community in their professional development.

Submit your Vote (Members-Only)

Vice-President of Membership

Ben Cardenas

My vision for the role of VP, Membership is to create an experience for our members that is rewarding, meaningful, and engaging. I will work effortlessly with the membership team to ensure that our members feel included, respected, and feel that they are a part of a supportive community.

I have been an active member of ATDChi as well as a Power Member since 2015.

I served on the ATDChi Board as the Director of Volunteer Engagement in 2017 and 2018. I also supported the board for part of 2019 as Newsletter Editor. In addition, I sit on the Capella University SHRM Student Executive Council. Most recently, I joined the Illinois Diversity Council, and I am a part of the Education Committee.

My career spans over fifteen years in leadership positions within the banking industry and environmental services. I have held various positions in retail banking management, learning and development, project management, branch banking operations, leadership development, and classroom/virtual facilitation during my career. I have a passion for adult learning, leadership development, and change management. I currently serve as the Manager of Learning and Development for my company. As a Talent Development Professional, I find ways to improve training programs and work effortlessly to deliver an impactful training experience. My professional mission is to empower every professional to communicate with confidence, recognize their strengths, and add value to their organization. I focus on delivering end products that lead to team member engagement, culture innovation, and retention. I have had the honor and pleasure to implement learning and leadership development initiatives globally.

In my spare time, I love to spend time with my family. I have two daughters, who are my pride and joy. My husband and I enjoy traveling every chance that we get. I also enjoy cooking and baking; my culinary educational experience serves me well while hosting dinner parties.

Submit your Vote (Members-Only)

Vice-President of Programming

Janeé Johnson

My name is Janeé Johnson and I am excited to run for the Vice President of Programming.

My vision as the Vice President of Programming is to offer learning opportunities that challenge us to grow as talent development professionals, elevate our talent development capabilities, showcase the expertise of ATDChi members, and strengthen our professional value propositions.

My volunteer experience includes President of the Society for Human Resource Management, Roosevelt University (RU-SHRM) Chapter, National Board Member and Professional Development – Mentorship Lead for the Next Generation Empowerment Network (N-GEN) at U.S. Cellular, Peer Community Advisor for Gartner Peer Connect, and general membership and volunteer for the eLearning Guild, the Human Resources Management Association of Chicago (HRMAC), and ATD. If elected, this would be my first leadership role within ATDChi.

I bring 20 years of talent development experience, advanced degrees in Training & Development and Human Resources Management from Roosevelt University, and am currently pursuing CPTD certification. My expertise includes learning strategy development, digital learning transformation, digital learning ecosystem development, and employee experience roles in mid- to large-sized organizations. Currently, I lead the Learning Architecture and Instructional Design team as the principal L&D technology and innovation strategist at U.S. Cellular.

Outside of work, I’m an avid runner, voracious reader, restless world traveler, and podcast junkie, who suffers from an incurable case of curiosity.

I would appreciate your consideration and vote in the upcoming ATDChi election.

Submit your Vote (Members-Only)

Vice-President of Marketing & Communications

Lydia Manteufel

My goal as VP of Marketing and Communications with ATDChi is to elevate us as an organization to empower the L&D community to embrace and thrive in our next normals.

I began volunteering with ATDChi right when COVID-19 hit, as the Liaison for CETS, a marvelous eLearning showcase held locally in the Chicagoland area. I also serve as a strategic partner and Opportunity Catalyst with HRHotSeat, an incredibly inclusive group of HR professionals who gather to find real solutions to real HR problems. I’m also immensely proud to have served as committee co-lead for HRMAC’s Learning and Development Interest Group, helping to stand up this group for its first two years (2017-2020).

I’m a self-starter and self-described Strategy to Execution Champ. I currently lead the Learning and Development practice at Sprout Social, a social media management solution that helps companies connect to customers through the power of social, which has become more important than ever during 2020. My role provides an incredible challenge and exciting opportunity for impactful L&D for our times.

Outside of work, I love to travel, so womp, womp 2020. In the meantime, I got engaged over the summer and now identify with an entirely new group: COVID Brides of 2020 and soon 2021.

I would be thrilled for the opportunity to contribute to the direction Dave Lee wants to take ATDChi with an impressively dynamic group of folks.

Submit your Vote (Members-Only)

Vice-President of Finance

Kiersten DeBrower

My goal for ATDChi is to help our members navigate the ever-evolving roles of talent development. I want to help people adapt and grow to meet the changes in our world.

I have been a member of ATDChi and ATD for several years, and I’ve attended several events. In June, I completed my MBA at DePaul’s Kellstadt Graduate School of Business with a 3.9/4.0 GPA. I really enjoyed the challenges of the accounting classes, and I look forward to applying these lessons to ATDChi’s finances.

I have more than ten years of talent development experience. I love creating and facilitating experiential learning programs and helping teams work more efficiently. I’ve created programs for Fortune 500 companies in diverse industries including pharmaceutical, insurance, cloud management, fast moving consumer goods, and entertainment. I’m also passionate about mentoring and coaching. I have an improv and news writing background that bring lightness and fun to my training.

Submit your Vote (Members-Only)


ATD Chicagoland Chapter
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Elk Grove Village, IL  60007-7908

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