• 2018 WIPS Speakers and Presenters

    Elizabeth Tolzmann Elizabeth_Tolzmann_Thumbnail

    Director of Policy and Planning, Ramsey County

    Elizabeth Tolzmann currently serves as the director of policy and planning in Ramsey County, where she leads planning and policy analysis across the organization to inform the county's strategic priorities and supports its vision, mission, and goals. She reports directly to the county manager and serves on the county's executive leadership team. Prior to joining Ramsey County, she served as the assistant city manager for the city of Bloomington, where she led overall organizational management, strategic planning, employee engagement, workforce development, and community engagement in the city. She also worked in Hennepin County as a workplace culture specialist for the Public Works business line and for the city of Brooklyn Park as a community engagement coordinator. She has practiced immigration law for over 13 years, managed her own law firm, and served as the US branch manager of a leading, international-based immigration and visa consult firm in London, England. Elizabeth received her juris doctor degree from the University of St. Thomas School of Law and bachelor’s degree in business/marketing from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. She is also an adjunct faculty member teaching the Mentor Externship program at the University of St. Thomas School of Law and a board member of Mines Advisory Group (MAG) America based in Washington, DC, which works to raise awareness and clear landmines and cluster munitions from the world’s most impoverished countries.

    Marcia BierschenkMarcia Bierschenk

    Business continuity and risk management planner, Health Care Administration

    Marcia Bierschenk is the business continuity and risk management planner at the Department of Human Services (DHS), Health Care Administration (HCA). In this role, she leads the development and coordination of the HCA business continuity and risk management work. Marcia is also the regional director for Local 2101 for the Minnesota Association of Professional Employees (MAPE) union, leading the strategic plan and serving on MAPE’s board of directors. In addition, she chairs and co-founded the DHS Black Women’s Employee Resource Group, where she strives to be a proactive force who motivates and supports underrepresented black women at the state. Prior to joining DHS, she managed communications and marketing for nonprofits and the private sector. She received her BA in communications from Concordia University and an MA in communications from Bethel University.

    Johanna Clyborne Johanna_Clyborne_Thumbnail

    Commissioner and chief information officer, Minnesota IT Services

    In February 2018, Brigadier General Johanna Clyborne was appointed by Governor Mark Dayton to serve as commissioner and chief information officer (CIO) for the state of Minnesota. Commissioner Clyborne brings extensive experience in operations, leadership, and cybersecurity to Minnesota Information Technology Services (MNIT). Commissioner Clyborne is a traditional guardsman, holding the rank of brigadier general in the Minnesota National Guard, where she serves as the director of the joint staff, providing guidance, leadership, and oversight. A combat veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom, where she received the Bronze Star, Commissioner Clyborne holds the distinction of being the first female to command a brigade and to obtain the rank of brigadier general in the Minnesota Army National Guard.
    In addition to her military service, Commissioner Clyborne is a founding partner of the Shakopee-based law firm Brekke, Clyborne, and Ribich, LLC, where she focuses on family law, military pension and federal benefits, and legal issues particular to the United States Armed Forces. As an attorney, Commissioner Clyborne is a frequent presenter and author on military family law matters. She co-authored Minnesota’s Uniform Deployed Parents Visitation and Custody Act, chairs the Minnesota State Bar Association’s Veterans and Military Affairs Council, and participates in the Legal Assistance to Military Personnel through the Minnesota State Bar and Volunteer Lawyers Network. She is named as a Minnesota Super Lawyer and one of Minnesota’s Top Women Lawyers by Minnesota Law & Politics  

    Ginny Dodds
    Giny DoddsRet. state grant manager, Minnesota Office of Higher Education

    Following in the footsteps of her mail-carrier father and teacher mother, Ginny Dodds began her own career in public service after graduating from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities with a BA in political science. Through her 35 years with the state of Minnesota, Ginny had short stints as a civil rights investigator and management analyst but spent the bulk of those years as manager of state financial aid programs at the Minnesota Office of Higher Education. Ginny retired from state service in the fall of 2016 but later returned to the office for one year on a post-retirement agreement.

    Tenzin DolkarTenzin-Dolkar

    Rail director and senior policy advisor to Governor Mark Dayton, Governor’s Office

    Tenzin Dolkar is the state of Minnesota’s rail director and senior policy advisor to Governor Mark Dayton. Governor Dayton appointed Dolkar as the state rail director to lead the administration’s efforts to enhance railway safety, serve as the chief rail strategist, and pursue infrastructure improvements to spur economic growth in rural areas. Dolkar was the chief architect of the governor’s executive order on connected and automated vehicles. Dolkar also co-chairs the governor’s Young Women Initiative, a public-private partnership to improve the lives of young women. Dolkar’s expertise is in policy development in the areas of transportation, trade, and agriculture. Dolkar excels in political and legislative strategies, policy design, coalition building, and civic engagement. Dolkar has a bachelor’s degree in international studies and social work (minor) from the University of St. Thomas and a master’s degree in social work from the University of Minnesota. Dolkar believes that the policy-making process should be equitable, inclusive, and accessible to all.

    Stephanie DomroseStephanie Domrose

    Creative transformist, embeau, cohost; We are Wellness Warriors

    Hi! I’m Stephanie. I’m a coach, hair and make-up artist, and entrepreneur—and I’m here to show you you’re beautiful. After over a decade in the beauty industry working/creating/educating at a top salon in the Aveda network, I realized nurturing outer beauty only covers half the picture. I woke up one day and realized the “beautiful” life I’d created was actually killing me. I left that life, the husband, the house, the overworking, the negativity, and the old me—I dumped it all and reinvented myself. This time, by my own design. I help women create beautiful, powerful, authentic lives and businesses by identifying values and establishing routines to live from a place of groundedness and intention. It's never too late to create a life you love.

    Kim FosterKim Foster 

    Human services representative, Minnesota Department of Human Services

    Kim began her public-service career with Washington County, Minnesota, in 1997. She worked in financial assistance as an eligibility specialist for two years and has worked in the child support program since 1999. She began her career with DHS, Child Support Division, in July, 2016, as a help desk advisor. Kim’s work with the help desk includes outreach with community organizations such as PICA Head Start and The FATHER’s Project. Kim is passionate about helping families, employers, and stakeholders navigate the complexities of the child support program. Kim maintains an active work/personal life balance. In her free time, she enjoys hunting, camping, fishing, golfing, and bowling. Kim and her husband have a teenage daughter who is a freshman in high school and who is active in band, track, cross country, church youth group, and cello lessons. Kim is also the primary caregiver for her elderly, disabled father.

    Cathy Heying Cathy Heying

    Developer/creator, Lift Garage

    Cathy Heying is the executive and operations director of The Lift Garage, a nonprofit auto repair shop that provides low-cost car repair for low-income Minnesotans. Born and raised in a town of 800 people in northeast Iowa, Cathy has lived in Minneapolis since 1997, where she has worked in a variety of church and social-service fields. Holding a BA in social work from Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa, and an MA in pastoral ministry from St. Mary’s University in Winona, Minnesota, Cathy returned to Dunwoody in 2008 to receive an AS degree in auto technology with a vision of starting a garage to provide affordable car repair to people in need. The Lift Garage has now been open five years. In her free time, she enjoys reading, riding her motorcycle, and traveling.

    Mary HurlimanMary Hurliman

    Deputy director of public works, city of Bloomington

    Mary Hurliman is the deputy director of public works for the city of Bloomington. Before taking on the role of deputy director, Mary served as streets superintendent and assistant to the city administrator in the city of Woodbury. Mary has a master’s in public administration from Northern Illinois University. She also is a proud graduate of the Minnesota Advancing Racial Equity Cohort through the Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE), the University of Virginia’s Senior Executive Institute, and the Wilder Community Foundation’s Neighborhood Leadership Program. Mary has served on the International City/County Managers Association Taskforce for Women in the Profession and Task Force for Inclusion. Mary began working in local government in 2010 as an intern to the village manager in the village of Downers Grove, Illinois. She is passionate about public service; she served two terms with AmeriCorps and worked for LeadAmerica, a leadership camp for accomplished high school students, and in 2013, Mary was a recipient of the Hamline University Women in Public Service Rising Star Award

    Lina Jamoul Lina Jamoul

    Executive director, Minnesota Association of Professional Employees (MAPE)

    Lina Jamoul is the executive director of the Minnesota Association of Professional Employees, a 15,000-strong labor union of state workers. Lina has almost 20 years of experience as a nonprofit, community, and labor leader. She has worked as an organizer and advocate, producing results from millions of dollars for affordable housing in Illinois; the first Living Wage Olympics in London; and, more recently, paid parental leave for Minnesota state workers. Lina was born in Syria and grew up in Cyprus and London. Her parents tried to organize for justice and democracy in the late 1970s in Syria and eventually had to leave the country because of their political work. The value of bringing people together to have a collective, democratic voice and keep those in power accountable is deep rooted in her family history. Lina holds a PhD in human geography from University of London.

    Tina Jones Tina Jones

    Community outreach administrator, Hiway Federal Credit Union

    Based in Saint Paul, Tina Jones, community outreach administrator at Hiway Federal Credit Union, oversees the credit union’s financial literacy outreach and community involvement events. Tina is fully committed to our community’s youth and adult financial education. This is evident by her passion to involve herself and support any financial literacy program she can be a part of. Not only has she completed the National Credit Union Development Education Program, Tina serves as the cochair for the Hiway Credit Union Foundation and is the treasurer for the Minnesota Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy, a subcommittee member for the city of Saint Paul’s College Savings Accounts, Saint Paul Schools’ CTE business chair, a part of the Best Prep Ambassador committee, chair on the Best Prep Volunteer Engagement Committee, and a part of Hiway’s Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Committee. Over her nineteen years with Hiway, she has been awarded and recognized for her extraordinary dedication to community involvement. She has received a Service Award from the Minnesota Federal Executive Board for serving federal employees, is a two-time Best Prep Service Award recipient for financial education presentations to the youth in the community, was nominated Junior Achievement High School Volunteer of the Year and MACTA Advisory Board Member of the Year, and was bestowed a Hiway Federal Credit Union Employee Service Award for going above and beyond to demonstrate Hiway’s mission.

    Erin Leonard Erin_Leonard_Thumb

    Executive director, Minnesota State Retirement System

    Erin Leonard is the executive director of the Minnesota State Retirement System (MSRS). MSRS administers six defined benefit pension plans for state employees with assets exceeding $15 billion as well as the fifth largest 457b plan in the country with assets exceeding $7 billion, a defined contribution health care savings plan with over $1 billion in assets, and two smaller defined contribution plans. Erin has been with the system for 14 years, serving in a variety of roles including the assistant executive director, overseeing benefit operations, and as the legislative coordinator. She began her Minnesota public service career working for the Minnesota House of Representatives in 1998. Erin earned a BS in political science and public administration from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and a Masters of Public Administration from Hamline University in Saint Paul, Minnesota. She also holds her FINRA Series 6, 63, and 26 licenses.

    Rebecca Malmquist Rebecca Malmquist

    Assessments director and 29% Club Executive Leadership Team member, city of Minneapolis Assessor’s Office

    Rebecca Malmquist, CAE, SAMA, is the director of assessments in the Minneapolis Assessor’s Office, where she oversees a team of 38, who are responsible for the valuation and classification of more than $52 billion in estimated market value. She, along with her forward-thinking, passionate coconspirators, formed the first Employee Resource Group at the city of Minneapolis, The 29% Club. The name represents the percentage of female employees at the city when the group formed. In addition to her love of geeking out on all this property assessment, her passions include exploring and educating about emotional intelligence, coaching and developing others, and building team talent.

    Qiana Mazique Qiana_Mazique_Thumb

    Diversity and inclusion iLEAD chair, Minnesota Department of Revenue

    Qiana Mazique has been with the Minnesota Department of Revenue since 2011. She is currently serving as chair of the agency’s employee led diversity and inclusion committee, iLEAD. iLEAD, which stands for inclusion, learning, equality, advocacy, and diversity, is a cross-divisional team supported by management to strengthen and promote a culture of inclusion and diversity at the Department of Revenue and the Office of Administrative Hearings. Our session, Implicit Bias: What it is and How to Deal with it, will create an awareness within to support you in your professional relationships to build inclusive and respectful communities.

    Heather McGannon

    Assistant commissioner, Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry

    Heather McGannon is the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry’s assistant commissioner of general support, which includes the following agency divisions: communication, financial, human resources, legislative, legal, projects and planning, and research and statistics. She joined DLI in September 2014 and has served as director of the projects and planning unit responsible for agency innovation projects, grants, continuity planning, continuous improvement, and facilities as well as employment-based programs such as the PIPELINE Program and Youth Skills Training program. Prior to her work at DLI, she was in various leadership roles in workforce development within the Minnesota State System at Saint Paul College and Hennepin Technical College for 13 years. McGannon is a graduate of the University of Minnesota (BS) and St. Mary’s University of Minnesota (master’s degree in management).

    Verona Mitchell, M.A. Verona-Mitchell

    Equity coordinator, Children and Family Services, Minnesota Department of Human Services

    Verona Mitchell serves as equity coordinator for the Minnesota Department of Human Services, Children and Family Services Administration. In her role, she directs the administration’s efforts of mitigating disparities within service populations by advancing equity within policies, practices, and procedures. Verona worked nationally and internationally with companies, researchers, and educational institutions focused on diverse and ethnic markets. Verona’s expertise spans nonprofit management and leadership, public policy, community and civic engagement, and public speaking. Verona holds both a BA and and MA in organizational leadership from Bethel University in Saint Paul, Minnesota. She is an ABD candidate for a PhD in public administration. Verona is a native of New Orleans, Louisiana, and resides in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with her family.

    Nitika MoibiNitika Moibi

    supervisor, Healthcare Workforce Analysis Program, Office of Rural Health and Primary Care, Minnesota Department of Health

    Nitika directs the state’s Health Workforce Analysis program, which collects and analyzes healthcare workforce data at the Office of Rural Health and Primary Care within the Minnesota Department of Health. The program serves as a resource for regulators, policymakers, educators, and researchers, helping them better understand healthcare workforce access, distribution, and pipeline challenges and inform related policies. Through her data and evaluation work, Nitika has helped establish pathways for new providers and further improve the health system’s ability to expand access to the underserved. Prior to her current position, Nitika worked in health services research. Nitika has a master’s in public policy from the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota and a bachelor’s in sociology from the University of Minnesota Duluth.

    Cherie Penn Cherie_Penn

    Battalion chief

    Cherie Penn is a senior master sergeant in the U.S. Air Force Reserves stationed at the 934th Airlift Wing in Minneapolis. She is employed with the Minneapolis Fire Department as a battalion chief. As a senior noncommissioned officer in the Air Force, she ensures the safe movement of cargo and troops to support peace and wartime efforts through the world. She also works for the safety and welfare of service members to protect them from self-harm, unwanted advances, and the effects of post-traumatic stress. Sergeant Penn began her career in the military in 1984 in the U.S. Navy. She began her career with the Minneapolis Fire Department in 1994 and held the position of assistant chief of administration from 2008 to 2016. Sergeant Penn acquired her associate’s degree in fire science technology from Hennepin Technical College, Eden Prairie, Minnesota, in 2009. She graduated with honors from Metropolitan State University in Saint Paul, Minnesota, with a Bachelor of Applied Science in 2011. She obtained a master’s degree in security studies at the Center for Homeland Defense and Security’s Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, in 2014. In 2015, she attained an associate’s degree in transportation management from the Community College of the Air Force in Montgomery, Alabama. Although Minneapolis has been her home since 1992, she is originally from the Bronx, New York, and grew up in Martinsville, Virginia. Before becoming a firefighter, she served on active duty in the U.S. Navy for eight years, stationed aboard the USS L. Y. Spear (AS-36) in Norfolk, Virginia; in Yokosuka, Japan; and at Treasure Island Naval Station in San Francisco, California.

    Susan Raverty Susan Raverty

    Diversity and inclusion iLEAD committee member, Minnesota Department of Revenue

    Susan Raverty is the agency policy specialist for the property tax division of the Minnesota Department of Revenue. At the department, Susan is an active member in iLEAD, a cross-division team created to strengthen and promote a culture of inclusion and diversity at the Department of Revenue and Office of Administrative Hearings. As part of iLEAD, Susan helps coordinate quarterly events to increase awareness of diversity and inclusion and assists her division in holding discussions on diversity in the workplace. Prior to working for the state, Susan worked as an immigration attorney for the Department of Justice and in private practice and volunteered with a number of organizations including Catholic Charities, Casa de Esperanza, and Su Familia Multicultural Counseling. Susan is a proud East Saint Paul resident and spends most of her spare time raising a confident five-year-old girl and emotionally intelligent two-year-old boy.

    Rosa RaarupRosa Raarup

    Graduate student UMN CCAPS ACL; lead visitor services associate, Walker Art Center

    Rosa Raarup grew up in northern Minnesota surrounded by art, nature, and a community of creative and innovative thinkers. This background influenced and informed her path, from volunteer work around the world to community engagement within Minnesota. After graduating from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities with a BA in theatre arts and a focus in social change and applied drama, she worked at various theatres and art organizations before finding a newfound love for the museum world. She currently works at the Walker Art Center as a lead visitor services associate, helping specifically with event management and volunteer coordination. This past year, she also worked with In The Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre doing community engagement and as the in-residence instructor for the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum's outreach program, Growing Good as a Children's Garden. This experience helped to create many memorable moments for both community members of Minneapolis and staff members. She will be entering her second year of the Arts and Cultural Leadership program with a minor in museum studies this fall at the University of Minnesota and hopes to tie together her love of the arts with her passion for community engagement to help create impactful memories for everyone involved.

    Kimberly Roan

    Enterprise talent director, Minnesota Management and Budget;

    Dr. Kimberly Roan is the enterprise director for Minnesota Management and Budget’s (MMB) Enterprise Talent Development Center of Excellence. Dr. Roan is responsible for leading, directing, and managing the talent strategy for the executive branch of Minnesota State Government. She oversees the development of policies, priorities, and programs to improve productivity of state employees, increase leadership capabilities, attract and retain top talent, and ensure an inclusive work environment for all. Dr. Roan has a wealth of experience from the higher education field, where she has served as a dean of student affairs, registrar, director of diversity and inclusion, HR consultant, and adjunct instructor. She has also served as president of a nonprofit organization in Minnesota. She earned a bachelor’s of science degree in early childhood education from Albany State University, a Masters of Education in Curriculum Development from the University of Minnesota, and a Doctorate of Education in the Higher Education Administration from St. Cloud State University.

    Denise Rohrick

    Vice president of wealth management, UBS

    I began my career in 1999—a year of tremendous market exuberance and rapidly appreciating stock prices—only to be followed less than a year later by the dot-com crash of 2000. Over the past 16 years, I have helped clients successfully manage their wealth through good markets as well as some of the most difficult markets on record. I have found that the most effective way to address investors' needs is to cut through the noise and herd mentality and focus on sound, unbiased investment strategies. I work as your advocate to develop solutions that address your unique situation, including specific financial goals as well as accurately assessing and monitoring risk. As a certified financial planner, I emphasize total portfolio management coordinated with other critical aspects of financial planning, including retirement cash flow planning, estate planning, income tax planning, and asset protection strategies. I believe it is crucial to secure and protect the success you have achieved and also to potentially increase its value for generations to come. I hold the Series 7, 63, 66, and 31 securities licenses and am licensed in several states for life, health, and long-term care insurance as well as annuities. A graduate of the University of North Dakota, I am a member of ARC of Hennepin County, the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, and the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. I am also a contributing member of the Salvation Army, Fisher House, and Soldiers Angels.  

    Parichay Rudina Parichay Rudina

    Caregiver consultant and social worker, Amherst H. Wilder Foundation

    Parichay Rudina, LISW, provides support to family and friend caregivers of older adults at the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation. As a caregiver consultant and social worker, Parichay works with individuals, families, and groups to provide information and education, connections to resources, problem-solving strategies, and emotional support. Previously, Parichay worked at the Metropolitan Area Agency on Aging on the Senior LinkAge Line after obtaining a master’s degree in social work from the University of Minnesota.

    Laura Seabloom

    Cohost, We are Wellness Warriors


    Lily Shaw Lily Shaw

    Director of external relations, James J. Hill Center

    Lily is currently the director of external relations at the James J. Hill Center, where she works to promote and connect the worlds of entrepreneurship, business, culture, and community through innovative programming, top-notch resources, and cultural experiences that combine history, performance, and music. Lily attended Bradley University in communications and earned her BFA at DePaul University Theater School, founded as the Goodman School of Drama in Chicago, Illinois.

    Maikhou Vang
    Owner/CEO; Weaving Cultures, LLC


    Lauren White
    Lauren Whitegraduate student, UMN CCAPS ACL; assistant director of leadership gifts, Augsburg University

    Lauren White (she/her) is an assistant director of leadership gifts in Institutional Advancement at Augsburg University. She recently transitioned to Augsburg after nine years in recruitment and institutional relations at HECUA, a social justice higher education nonprofit. Lauren is currently pursuing her master’s degree in arts and cultural leadership at the University of Minnesota and recently completed the mini MBA for nonprofits at the University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business. She has also served on the board of directors for the Art Shanty Projects.

    Claire Wilson
    Claire WilsonRepresentative, State Aging and Adult Services Division, Minnesota Department of Human Services

    Claire Wilson is assistant commissioner for the Community Supports Administration. Community Supports includes all DHS behavioral health policy areas, including the divisions of mental health, alcohol and drug abuse, disability services, deaf and hard of hearing services, and housing and support services. Wilson has more than two decades of experience in public policy and related issues. Wilson came to DHS June 13, 2016, from the Minnesota Association of Community Mental Health Programs, where she served as executive director. In that role, she provided strategic and administrative leadership, creating coalitions of stakeholders to advance improvements in mental health. She has also served in a leadership role for the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State, where her work included outreach to underserved communities. In addition, she was a 2013 Humphrey Policy Fellow at the University of Minnesota Humphrey School of Public Affairs.