Travel Lane County
541.484.5307 · 800.547.5445 ·
Adventure Center/Visitor Information: 3312 Gateway St · Springfield OR (Open daily 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.)
Downtown Eugene Visitor Center: 754 Olive St · Eugene OR (Open Monday-Friday 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.)
Mailing Address: PO Box 10286 · Eugene OR 97440 s


2018 Speakers


David Higdon

Session: The Power of Sports

David serves as Advisory Board Chair of the University of Oregon’s Lundquist College of Business Warsaw Sports Marketing Center and on the University’s Sports Product Management Board. He has held senior-level executive positions at the ATP World Tour, LPGA Tour, Champ Car World Series and NASCAR. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, ESPN The Magazine, and Sports Illustrated for Kids.

Al Kidd

Session: The Future of Sports Events & Tourism

A graduate of Euclid High School near Cleveland, Ohio, Kidd attended Bowling Green State University with majors in math and physical education. He taught in Ohio and in Utah before entering the advertising world. His career eventually led him to San Diego, with several positions in advertising and venture capital investing. In 2003, Kidd helped with the financial turnaround of the San Diego Hall of Champions sports museum. As president of the San Diego Sports Commission, he led a merger effort to consolidate several non-profit sports organizations. Most recently, he was with BoldPointe Partners, a private equity firm specializing in middle market companies.


Sunny "Rex Havoc" Arthurs

Session: Grassroots Events

Sunny has been a member of the Emerald City Roller Derby league since its inception in 2006 and has been the Director of the Big O Tournament since 2012. During this time Sunny has served several terms as a member of the league's Board, including a 2-year term as President. During her time as a member of the ECRD Sunny has also coached the Emerald City Junior Travel team, as well as the Emerald City Adult Travel team. 

Matt Bonniksen Speaker

Session: Utilizing Your Local Sports Commission

Matt Bonniksen has worked as the Sports and Events Sales Manager at Travel Salem for over a year. Prior to joining Travel Salem, Matt was the Director of Marketing at Cherry Country, a cherry and chocolate factory located in Rickreall. Matt has a communication and marketing degree from Portland State.


Collin M Brum

Session: What Sponsors Want

Collin is a Senior Marketing Asset Manager for the Coca-Cola Company located in the Pacific Northwest. At Coca-Cola, he manages the relationships of 13 professional and collegiate sports teams. He has recently returned to the USA after living the past 8 years internationally in 4 different countries. During his time abroad, Collin worked as a SME helping Coca-Cola business units across the globe develop and execute its Olympic Games marketing plans.

Stuart Burke

Session: What Sponsors Want

Upon graduating from Oregon State University, Stuart began his career at Learfield Inc., with Beaver Sports Properties. He managed radio, promotions, social media, signage, and hospitality for the 200+ corporate sponsorships sold for OSU Athletics. As Marketing Strategist for PacificSource Health Plans, Stuart updated the marketing programs, focusing on designing content marketing programs and developing sponsorship programs that reach marketing goals.


Ryan Burns

Session: Event Medical & Emergency Staff

Ryan's background stems from 6 years as an Air Force Medic stationed in Alaska while supporting missions in the middle-east as well as southwest Asia. Following PA school graduation from Pacific University he continues to serve as the Battalion Surgeon for an Armored Calvary unit with the Oregon National Guard as well as practice rural urgent and emergency medicine in Oregon and Idaho. 

Bob Choquette

Session: Grant Writing

Bob Choquette is a senior instructor at the University of Oregon in the School of Planning, Public Policy and Management, where he has written successful grant applications to a variety of foundations and federal and state agencies. In addition, he has taught grant writing to a variety of audiences for over 20 years.


Greg Duff Speaker

Session: Legal Session

Established hospitality industry advisor, Greg Duff is part of the Hospitality, Travel and Tourism Group at Garvey Schubert Barer. With experience in hotel management and operations, sales and marketing, and distribution, Greg brings a unique perspective to each engagement.

Aiden Forsi

Sessions: Hosting Sustainable Events

Aiden is the Responsible Event Program Coordinator for the City of Eugene, and has spent the last year diving deep into how events can be managed for long-term positive impacts. Aiden is a Masters in Community and Regional Planning candidate at the University of Oregon (graduating March 2018), focusing on sustainability and community involvement.


Michael Fuller

Sessions: How Oregon SBDC Can Help Your Team Win

Michael joins the Lane SBDC after working at Intel Corporation and teaching special education in the Portland area. At Intel, Michael held various management positions in operations and program/product management, working in different functional areas including IT and Opensource Software R&D. Outside of work, Michael is a long time half marathon runner, a guitar player and hiker - and most often rides a bicycle or walks to work.

Jeff Gayduk

Sessions: Working with the Media

Jeff Gayduk is the founder and president of Premier Travel Media, a diversified print and digital publishing company serving the leisure group travel industry. Premier is the publisher of titles such as Sports Planning Guide, Reunions Workbook, Leisure Group Travel and Student Travel Planning Guide. Premier also custom-publishes niche travel guides for over 15 state tourism offices.


Tara "Alluya" Gilbert

Sessions: Grassroots Events

Tara found roller derby while studying for her M.S. degree at the University of Oregon in 2008. She retired from active skating and has spent the last 7 years coaching the sport. She has served for Emerald City Roller Derby (a 501c3 organization) over the years as Head of Social Media, a Board member and most recently as President. She brings enthusiasm and a lifetime love of sports to the table.

Anne Hallinan, CMP Speaker

Sessions: Event Management

Anne Hallinan’s more than 25 years planning and organizing events of all shapes and sizes – including national conventions, alpaca shows, grand openings and training events. In 2012, with the help of a tourism grant from Lane County, they launched Tour de Lane, a three day, non-competitive, bicycle rally based in Lane County, which attracts cyclists from all over the country.


Jackie "Jax" Jamison

Session: Grassroots Events

"Jax "began as a skater with the Emerald City Roller Derby in 2013 and has since transitioned to the Assistant Director and Hospitality Coordinator of the Big O Tournament. With a passion for people and a professional background in hospitality, this serves as an ideal role. Currently working on an M.S. in Management in Leadership, she hopes to continue to bring a strategic edge to the tournaments grassroots, 100% volunteer-run, foundation.

Paige Jarmer

Session: What Sponsors Want

Paige Jarmer is Corporate Communications Manager for Daimler Trucks North America in Portland, OR. She began working for Daimler in 2011. Currently, her areas of responsibility include Public Relations, Internal Communications, and Corporate Sports Marketing. Paige has Bachelor’s degrees in Business and Spanish from the University of Oregon and is a proud Portland native.


Joey Jewell Speaker

Session: Utilizing Your Local Sports Commission

Joey has a Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Management and a Graduate Degree in Sport Administration and Policy. Since coming to Eugene, Joey develops and supports Eugene’s local sports events and securing others, such as the 2016 Oregon’s Strongest Man and Woman Championships and the 2016 & 2017 USA BMX Gold Cup Finals Northwest.

Tom Jordan Speaker

Sessions: Event ManagementWorking with the Media

Tom Jordan is in his 34th year as Director of the Prefontaine Classic, the No. 1-ranked invitational track meet in the world in 2016 & 2017. For 20 years, from 1989 to 2009, he and business partner Barbara Kousky owned Northwest Event Management, which organized multiple National Championships, two World Masters Championships, and 13 editions of the OTC Butte to Butte Road Race.


Corey Kearsley Speaker

Session: Utilizing Your Local Sports Commission

Corey holds a sport management master’s degree and has 21 years of sports experience with a sports consulting company, Minor League Baseball, and the Washington County Visitors Association where he currently directs the sales of sporting events, meetings, group and FIT travel for the Tualatin Valley.  He is a father of four and a bib-less Boston Marathon squeaker.

Cathy Kretz

Session: Grant Writing

Cathy Kretz, CMP, has worked in the sports industry for 19 years at Travel Portland as their Sports Sales Manager. She works in conjunction with the Oregon Sports Authority to market Portland for sports meetings and events ranging from small competitions to notable events such as NCAA March Madness, Dew Tour, the MLS All-Star Game and the World Indoor Track & Field Championships.


Amy Linder

Sessions: Event Permitting

Amy Linder serves as the AIC Fire Marshal for Eugene Springfield Fire, overseeing fire and life safety education, code enforcement, fire investigation, new construction review and inspection, hazardous materials permitting and special event permitting. The Fire Marshal’s Office is involved in a wide variety of events, through the permitting process, to ensure public safety and adequate infrastructure for emergency response. Amy holds a Bachelor of Science in Safety and Health Management and has over 25 years of experience in the fire service.

Adam Mack

Sessions: Event Medical & Emergency Staff

Adam is a Paramedic with 7 years’ experience in the field and the co-owner of Adventure Medics, a Bend based company that specializes in event medical services and remote medicine. Adam’s experience as a collegiate athlete and as a wilderness guide gives him a unique perspective on sports based medicine and the needs of athletes in the field.


Kelli Matthews

Sessions: Social Media

Kelli is well-known nationally as a communications and social media strategist with an ability to bring order to chaos and create processes and systems that bring more return on investment. She is the managing director of Verve Northwest Communications and also teaches public relations and social media courses in the School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Oregon.

Sky Muller

Sessions: Working with the Media

Sky Muller is the Sports Director at KVAL/KMTR-TV in Eugene, Oregon. He’s served in this role since August 2015, covering everything from the Olympic Trials to the Oregon Men’s Basketball teams journey to the Final Four. When he’s not covering sports, Sky likes to spend his summers hiking and golfing and winters snowboarding.


Deveron Musgrave

Session: Hosting Sustainable Events

After working in the non-profit sector in sustainability and reuse, Deveron shifted into a role as a public employee in the Waste Prevention and Green Building Program at the City of Eugene.  As the Program Coordinator, she works on the City’s Sustainable Events program and the Love Food Not Waste commercial composting program, and serves as the Internal Zero Waste program coordinator for the City.

Dr Cornelius Peeples

Session: Event Medical & Emergency Staff

Dr. Cornelius Peeples is an Emergency room physician in Bend, OR and serves as the medical director for Adventure Medics. An avid athlete himself, he brings a unique perspective to the Adventure Medics team and his patients. His vacations are usually spent volunteering in warzones and disaster relief areas around the world.


Suzanne Penegor

Session: How Oregon SBDC Can Help Your Team Win

Suzanne Penegor owned a local log trucking brokerage for 17 years. She is a graduate of the University of Oregon and was in sales/marketing for 11 years at Seneca Sawmill Co. in Eugene. Suzanne has been a business instructor/advisor at the Lane SBDC for 6 years. Suzanne’s areas of focus include: Startup Registration, Business Entity and Business Plans, and General Marketing Practices.

Keith Peters

Sessions: Working with the Media

After heading up Nike's running sports marketing team in the late 80s, Keith Peters served as the company’s PR Director from 1993-1997. From 1995, until he left Nike in 2001, he was intimately involved in developing ways the company could use its websites to service the media while, at the same time, connecting with consumers. Since leaving Nike he has focused on helping participant sporting events become more sustainable.


Becky Radliff

Session: Volunteer Management

Becky has worked for TrackTown USA since 2010, playing a pivotal role on the management teams for the 2012 and 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Track & Field, the annual NCAA Division | Track & Field Championships, and two international events: the 2014 IAAF World Junior Championships and the 2016 IAAF World Indoor Championships. She was also a member of the bidding team for the upcoming IAAF World Championships - Oregon21.

Michael Reilly Speaker

Session: Oregon21

Michael Reilly is a graduate of Stanford University. His long career in event athletics began as a student athlete; and includes serving in roles at Stanford, Oberlin, UO, and as Competition Director for four USA Championships, the Olympic Trials, the NCAA Championships, and the London Organizing Committee. His current focus is on delivering the World Championships in 2021: known as Oregon21.


Iris Ringer

Session: Event Permitting

Iris Ringer loves the adrenaline from event planning and putting all the pieces together to make a successful event. Iris has been working in the event world since 2005. She has been working for the City of Hillsboro Parks & Recreation the past seven years overseeing event production as well as special event permits. Iris is a proud University of Oregon graduate. 

Janis Ross Speaker

Session: Group Housing

Janis's experience includes hotel sales and meeting/event management. She holds both an MBA and Bachelors in Business Administration from Portland State University. Janis serves on the National Association of Sports Commissions Board of Directors, as well as organizing committees for the U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials in 2008, 2012 and 2016, and the IAAF World Junior Track & Field Championships in 2014.


Matt Sabelman

Session: Event Medical & Emergency Staff

Matt is the co-owner and founder of Adventure Medics. His experience stems from 13 years in the field both on a city ambulance and working remote medical in Alaska. When not working you can find Matt with his family hitting the mountain bike trails, local climbing spot, or riding his motorcycle through Central America.

Mavis Sanchez-Scholes

Session: Volunteer Management

Mavis is the District Volunteer Coordinator for Willamalane Park and Recreation District. Mavis graduated from Southern Oregon University with a B.S. in Psychology. Mavis has several years of experience with volunteer recruitment for a wide range of populations within for profit and non-profit organizations.


Sandy Shawver, PhD

Session: What Motivates Seniors Athletes to Compete?

After spending 23 years in Non-Profit management, Dr. Shawver joined the faculty at Midwestern State University, bringing with her experience and expertise in a variety of areas to share with both undergraduate and graduate students. Dr. Shawver has been associated with the National Senior Games movement since 1999 and serves on the Texas Senior Games State Board of Directors.

Bev Smith

Session: Community Youth Sport Solution Revolution

Bev was the Oregon Women's Basketball Coach from 2001 to 2009. From 1997 to 2001 she was the Canadian Women's Basketball Coach; including for the 2000 Sydney Olympics. She returned as the Assistant Coach for the 2016 Rio Olympics. A two time Olympian: 1984 Los Angeles Olympics; 1996 Atlanta Olympics. Bev has a BS in Human Performance from the University of Oregon. She helped write the draft for Canadian Basketball’s Long Term Athlete Development.


Kyle Stanfield Speaker

Session: Working with Facilities

Kyle has been with the Oregon School Activities Association (OSAA) for 10 years and oversees corporate sponsorships, public relations, marketing and oversee multiple state championship events. Additionally, Kyle is the director of the OSAA Foundation, a separate 501(c)3 to the OSAA. OSAA is the governing body of high school sports in the state. 

Vicki Strand Speaker

Session: Working with Facilities

Joining the UO Athletics staff in 1998, Vicki Strand has managed Pac-12/NCAA playoffs and championship events, Olympic Track & Field Trials and IAAF World Championships. She developed event procedures for Autzen Stadium expansion and the opening of Matthew Knight Arena. Before joining UO, Strand work in Arts Administration at the Oregon Bach Festival and University of Idaho.


Brian Strickland

Sessions: Group Housing, Understanding Event Data

Leveraging more than 15 years of experience in operations, sales and account management, Brian joined Experient in 1999. He is responsible for Experient’s performance to the client throughout the relationship. Brian earned his Certified Association Sales Executive Certification (CASE) through PCMA in August of 2004. Brian in his personal life is a father, mentor, adventurer and explorer. 

Shelley Villalobos

Sessions: Hosting Sustainable Events

Shelley Villalobos is the managing director of the Council for Responsible Sport. Since 2010, she has served in various roles to support the local and national development of applying systems thinking and sustainability concepts to the sports event industry. 


Whitney Wagoner Speaker

Session: Building Sponsorship Proposals, What Sponsors Want

Whitney is the director of the University of Oregon’s Warsaw Sports Marketing Center. A graduate of the University of Oregon, she spent seven years in marketing positions with the National Football League (NFL) in New York. Wagoner serves on the Sports Advisory Council for the Eugene, Cascades & Coast Sports Commission and has served on the Sustainability Committee for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials. She is the first woman to serve as director of the Warsaw Center.

Michael Wargo Speaker

Session: Working with Facilities

Michael is the Deputy Superintendent of Willamalane Park and Recreation District, winner of the 2016 Gold Medal Award for Excellence in the Field of Park and Recreation Management. A Certified Recreation and Park Professional, he has over 25 years’ experience in the field of athletics, parks and recreation.


Kari Westlund

Session: Understanding and Calculating the Economic Impact of an Event to a Community

Kari has 35 years of experience in the hospitality industry in Alaska and Oregon, the past 21 as President and CEO of Travel Lane County. Kari is a past-chair of the Oregon Tourism Commission, the Oregon Tourism & Hospitality Consortium, Oregon Destination Marketing Organization, Oregon Track Club, and Arts & Business Alliance of Eugene. She currently serves on the U.S. Travel and DMAWest Foundation boards.

Lorelei Williams

Session: Event Permitting

Lorelei Williams is a native of Bend, Oregon. She works as a Program Manager for the City of Bend, coordinating such programs as Special Event and Noise Permits, Short Term Rental Operating Licenses, Liquor Licenses and Marijuana Licensing and now tackling Vehicle for Hire licenses. 


Angela Wood Speaker

Session: Utilizing Your Local Sports Commission

Angela has worked at Travel Medford since 2010. When it became clear that sports tourism was a huge industry in Medford and the Rogue Valley, she was instrumental in creating the Southern Oregon Sports Commission (SOSC). The SOSC officially launched in 2012 and is made up of 17 community sports enthusiasts.

Michelle Woodard

Session: Grant Writing

As Grants Manager, Michelle Woodard administers and monitor’s Travel Oregon’s competitive and matching grants program. Michelle spent the first half of her career working in college athletics in sports information/media relations. She enjoys spending time outdoors, exploring the state with her husband and two sons, and keeps her foot in athletics by coaching youth basketball.