Board of Directors

2018 - 2019 Officers

See also: Board Nominations (Process & Calendar)


Scott Casad, CPT, PhD
Performance Consultant Coast Guard Training Center Yorktown
1 U.S. Coast Guard Training Center
Yorktown, VA 23690

Scott Casad, CPT, PhD serves as a Commander in the U.S. Coast Guard where he is the Chief of Training at Coast Guard Training Center Yorktown. Originally a resident of Oregon, he graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science in marine environmental science.
After six years of operational assignments, he landed an instructor position and found his passion for performance technology, which led to Master's degrees from Old Dominion University and Boise State University. Over the past 12 years, his experiences range from schoolhouse instructional designer to performance consultant for major acquisitions to headquarters training manager of operational and mission support programs. Scott holds a Doctorate from Old Dominion University in organizational learning and development. His dissertation explored the role and effect of elementary teacher psychology capital on turnover, work roles, stress, commitment, and satisfaction.


Rose Noxon, PhD, PMP, CPT
Training And Education Solution Architect at CACI International Inc

Rose Noxon has more than 30 years’ experience in training, training evaluation and business process improvement. She holds certifications as a Certified Performance Technologist (CPT), as a Project Management Professional (PMP) and in Service Delivery Management (ITIL) and also holds a certificate from ASTD’s ROI Certification program. She has a PhD in Education with a specialization in Training and Performance Improvement from Capella University and holds a Masters of Education Studies from Capella.
Rose’s career has included training evaluation of troop readiness at the 7th Army Training Command in Germany, founding CACI’s award-winning corporate university, and designing numerous training and human capital governance processes. Rose currently serves as CACI’s training and education solution architect.

Rose was the founder and first president of the award-winning International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI) virtual chapter for Capella University and remains on the chapter’s board as a mentor, a position she has had for the past five years. She served as the ISPI Chapter Partnership Committee chair for two years and earned the ISPI Presidential Award for her service in 2013.


Atena Bishka

I am a results-focused performance improvement professional having worked with diverse client groups within the financial services, academic / research, transportation and public broadcasting industry sectors. Taking a business perspective in performance improvement efforts, my demonstrated expertise includes innovative learning design and development, business process improvement, assessment of program impact on business goals, and evaluation of training programs - all contributing to boosting performance, enhancing capabilities, developing leaders and transforming cultures. 

Core areas of expertise include:
- Instructional design / training development: identifying learning solutions which optimize performance outcomes; developing creative instructional and information design including instructor led and eLearning training materials such as: webinars, online courses and support tools.
- Program evaluation: measuring program outcomes by developing and implementing effective evaluation frameworks and methods, standardized processes, scorecards, tools and templates; analyzing data and interpreting results demonstrating return on investment and revealing well-grounded recommendations to optimize performance outcomes.
- Special depth: strategic change management; instructional design; learning assessment; program evaluation; research and analysis; process improvement; leadership and talent development; need and gap analysis.

A frequent invited speaker, I share my knowledge and work at a variety of conferences including The Institute for Performance and Learning (IPL formerly CSTD), the International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI), the Conference Board of Canada and the Association for Talent Development (ATD formerly ASTD). I have published and edited articles in the Journal of Education for Business; International Journal of Science, Innovation and New Technology; Performance Improvement Journal, PerformanceXpress and the Canadian Learning Journal.


George Limin Gu, CPT
Co-founder & Chief Consultant
Shanghai Management Improvement Consulting Co., Ltd.

George has more than twenty years of total working experience in both China and the United States. He specializes in human performance technology (HPT), management consulting, talent strategy, corporate university, instructional system design, e-Learning, curriculum development, and organizational development, etc.

George studied and worked in the U.S. for many years. He helped organizations solve capability management problems and brought value to their growth, especially in a fast-growing economies. He has served in various world-class companies such as IBM, Ericsson, HayGroup, and Qwest. He has been the lead on a variety of projects with various responsibilities in both countries, and possesses verifiable track record of creating proven results. He possesses the record of being the first Chinese to become Certified Performance Technologist (CPT) jointly by ISPI and ASTD in August 2003.


Ryan Watkins, Ph.D.

Ryan Watkins, Ph.D. is a Professor at the George Washington University in Washington DC. His research and teaching focus on needs, needs assessment, instructional design, research methods, and team science in cross-disciplinary research areas. He is the developer of (an online science fair) and (a comprehensive resource site).

Some of his most recent publications include The Art of Knowledge Exchange (World Bank, 2014), available for free online, and A Guide to Assessing Needs: Essential Tools for Collecting Information, Making Decisions, and Achieving Development Results (World Bank, 2012), also available in print and free online. In 2013, A Guide to Assessing Needs was the most read online book available through the World Bank, with more than 57,000 reads.
Ryan is also an author of the world's top-selling text on e-learning (with more than 150,000 copies in press and in its 4th edition), the E-learning Companion: A Learner’s Guide to Online Success (Houghton Mifflin, 2005, 2007; Cengage 2010, 2013), along with other books including the Handbook for Improving Performance in the Workplace - Volume 2 (Pfieffer/Wiley, 2010), Performance By Design: The systematic selection, design, and development of performance technologies (HRD Press, 2006), and 75 E-learning Activities: Making online courses interactive (Pfieffer, 2005).

The Handbook for Improving Performance in the Workplace won a 2011 ISPI Award of Excellence in the field of performance improvement. In addition, he has co-authored three other books on organizational planning and more than 100 articles on instructional design, strategic planning, needs assessment, distance education, and performance technology. His articles are frequently cited in the performance improvement literature, as of 2010 he was the 4th most cited author of journal articles in the field of performance improvement.

Ryan has been an active member of the International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI) since the mid-1990s, and he is active in the American Evaluation Association (AEA), and was a vice president of the Inter-American Distance Education Consortium (CREAD). In 2005 Ryan was a visiting scientist with the National Science Foundation, and he routinely works on projects with the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank on applying needs assessment, instructional design, and performance improvement to international assistance programs (including work in Kenya, Tunisia, China, Mexico, and Laos PRD).

Executive Director

Courtney Brooks Kamin
International Society for Performance Improvement

Courtney brings over a decade of experience in operations and program management in the non-profit and higher education sectors. Courtney joined ISPI in 2014 as the Chapter and Program Manager, and in 2016, she stepped into the role as Operations Manager.

Prior to ISPI, Courtney worked in the field of violence prevention as an advocate, trainer, and policy advisor on state, national, and global issues. She still works independently with colleges and universities to provide federal mandated training as well as evaluating policy and training for faculty and staff on best practices.

Courtney is a doctoral candidate in Sociology at the University of Kentucky with a Master’s degree from East Tennessee State University. Her research focuses on the intersections of violence, mechanisms of resistance, and reclamation of identity.

Courtney is honored to continue serving ISPI in this role and looks forward to continuing to collaborate with members, committees, staff, and Board to build on the foundation that has been developed and expand our organization as the leading force in performance improvement.


Nancy Crain Burns, CPT, PhD, MBA, PMP, CAEL

Nancy Crain Burns, CPT, PhD, MBA, PMP, CAEL, is the founder/president of Crain Burns Associates LLC. As a Certified Performance Technologist, she leads individuals, teams and organizations through strategies, identifying opportunities that achieve effective solutions. Her dissertation research connected aspects of leadership, communication and influence styles that enhance self-reflection and collaboration with others.

During her career in an automotive/financial services organization, Nancy worked her way through the field organization to a position in the firm’s executive office (from the “mail room to the board room”). She has worked in operations, accounting, project and information technology management, as well as a liaison with business Executives for strategic planning and technology requirements.

After “retirement” from the corporate world, Dr. Burns moved into academia as an instructor and Teaching/ Learning Coordinator. In this role, she developed courses, mentored faculty and enhanced courses in the Global Project Management curriculum. She has taught Leadership, Entrepreneurship, Organizational Behavior, Management (Strategic/ Human Resource/Operations), Philosophy of American Enterprise, Training in Organizations and Project Management at the University level.
Dr. Burns is active in her community and has served on several non-profit boards. She is the chair of the steering committee for a rural community visioning implementation.

Nancy joined ISPI (International Society and Michigan Chapter) in 2003. She served as VP pf Programs in Michigan, CPT Chair/President of the Capella University Chapter and Program Chair/Society Liaison of the Tennessee Chapter. She is a CPT Reviewer for the international organization. As ISPI Director, she serves as a liaison to the Chapter Partnership Committee and collaborates with the Finance/Marketing Director, as well as other Board members.


John Lazar, MA, MCC, NCOC™

CEO | Leadership/Executive Coach and Management Consultant John B. Lazar & Associates, Inc.
7309 Randolph St. Forest Park, IL USA

John B. Lazar has been a performance consultant and coach since 1983, including twenty-three years as an executive coach to CEOs and Presidents, business owners, executives, and senior managers through his company John B. Lazar & Associates, Inc.

He works with individual leaders and their teams, altering their perspectives, skill sets, and performance to produce socially and emotionally intelligent leadership and management, breakthrough execution and business results.

In addition to his leadership and executive coaching, he consults to companies on issues of leadership and management practices, communications, evaluation, executive team alignment, culture-strategy fit, and organizational change.

Client organizations include AbbVie, Alcan, Boeing, CBOE, CDK Global, ComEd, Deloitte, E.ON Climate and Renewables, KPMG, Lee Health, NASA, National Starch, Nefab, Northern Trust, U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, PricewaterhouseCoopers, ReSource Pro, Rogers Wireless, Service Partners, Stericycle, Suncor and Tyco.

John has been a member of NSPI/ISPI for more than 35 years, serving in both chapter and international society positions of leadership. He coached TED Fellows and continues to coach Fellows from the Unreasonable Institute. He was a founding member and past President of the Board of Directors of the International Consortium for Coaching in Organizations (ICCO). He is a current Director on the Board of the Association for Redevelopment Initiatives. John is co-founder, owner, and Executive Editor of IJCO The International Journal of Coaching in Organizations®. He has made more than 90 presentations to audiences in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, England, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, Turkey, Australia, New Zealand, India, and China.

John has a master’s degree in clinical psychology from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Lake Forest College. He has been certified as a Master Coach by the International Coach Federation (ICF) since 1999. He received his coach training and certification from Newfield Network in 1992 and 2000 and from the Institute for Generative Leadership in 2010. He resides in Forest Park, Illinois, USA.