Better Business Summit Education Sessions

Spend time working on your business as you learn best practices from local companies. Attendees leave with cutting-edge tips and information you can apply to your business or career!


Sponsored by Five Star Telecom

Living Core Values Through Your Workplace

Gensler’s La Crosse office decided to implement what it teaches others to do – maximize office space through agile workspace philosophies. This includes innovations like no permanent desk assignments, no paper files, collaborative space and more. Discover the lessons learned and the benefits gained from their move.

Joan Meyers, Managing Director, Gensler

When: Thursday, August 6th at 12:00 p.m.

Learn more about Joan

As Managing Director of Gensler’s La Crosse office, Joan leads the strategic growth of software and services that bring clarity to corporate and commercial real estate portfolios. Leveraging data as the basis for an informed strategy, Joan guides her team in capturing the right metrics for portfolio optimization. Her experience in data integrity, project management, and spatial data management have prepared her for leading teams in complex software implementations and multifaceted projects for clients around the globe. Involved in both civic and industry organizations, Joan participates in CoreNet and IFMA, and supports her community through the Children’s Miracle Network.


Closer to Home: What Family-Owned Businesses Do Differently

Family-owned businesses have unique challenges as family members share responsibilities and leadership. J.F. Brennan Company and La Crosse Sign Company are in their 100th and 102nd year of being family-owned. Come learn how the next generation is navigating these new paths.

Mark Binsfeld, VP of Business Development, J.F. Brennan Company 
Audra House, Internal Development, La Crosse Sign Group
Learn more about Audra

Audra House has been surrounded by the sign industry her whole life and has been employed at her family’s business, La Crosse Sign Group, for four years. She graduated from Viterbo University with a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance and brings a creative edge to her position focusing on Internal Development. In addition to her role at La Crosse Sign Group, Audra is part of the World Sign Association.

In her free time, she enjoys community involvement running the Vocal Academy at the Terry Erickson Boys and Girls Club, mentoring at Northside Elementary, and volunteering at First Free Church in Worship Arts and Children’s Ministry.



Going All In to Beat COVID-19

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), the state’s commerce engine, shares tips to help communities, businesses, and individuals adopt and amplify efforts to keep their customers, employees, and neighbors safe and get Wisconsin’s economy back on track.

Kelly Lietz, Vice President, Marketing and Brand Strategy, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation
Learn more about Kelly

Kelly has more than 20 years of public relations, marketing and brand development experience, including work for some of the world’s leading consumer and business-to-business brands.

Hired by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation in 2012 to build a new business climate marketing capability for the state, Kelly has worked with statewide economic development partners to expand perceptions of Wisconsin to include an understanding of and preference for the unmatched opportunities the state offers for business, career and personal success.

Kelly holds a bachelor’s degree in English and linguistics and a master’s degree in English with a linguistics concentration from UW−Milwaukee; as well as a master’s degree from Oklahoma City University in mass communications.

Best Practices in Engaging with Higher Ed

Our community is fortunate to have several quality higher education institutions that feed our workforce and our quality of life. Representatives from the University of Wisconsin La Crosse and Viterbo University will share strategies for businesses to engage with higher ed to tackle our area’s talent and workforce issues collaboratively.

Karolyn Bald, Assistant Director – Academic Advising Center & Career Services, University of Wisconsin La Crosse
Lisa Klein, Community Engagement Coordinator, University Advancement, University of Wisconsin La Crosse
Hope Hembd, Director of Corporate Relations, Viterbo University
Learn more about Karolyn

As the Assistant Director of the Academic Advising Center & Career Services (including the Pre+Health Student Resource Center) at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, Karolyn is responsible for managing, directing and implementing new career, academic and pre-health related initiatives in an effort to support student learning and exploration.  

After leading two study tours (Ghana and Vietnam), Karolyn was instrumental in bringing the Peace Corps Prep program to UWL and currently serves as co-coordinator.  In an effort to educate the campus community on civic, global and social responsibilities, Karolyn served on the 2017-19 UWL ACE Internationalization Laboratory Steering Committee; she currently serves on the UWL Internationalization Advisory Committee and Community Engagement Council.

Karolyn is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse with a BS in Public Administration and Political Science and MSE in College Student Development and Administration. Karolyn has been a member of various organizations including WIACE, NACE, NACADA, NAAPH and the Career Leadership Collective.

Learn more about Lisa


After a successful 20-year career as an anchor and reporter for WKBT-TV News 8, Lisa has returned to her alma mater as the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse’s Community Engagement Coordinator. In this new role on campus, Lisa manages the community relations efforts to support the university’s mission, programs and services. She is dedicated to strengthening partnerships currently in place and creating new opportunities and relationships with the community, civic and business groups.

Learn more about Hope

As the Director of Corporate Relations, Advancement, at Viterbo University, Hope is responsible for community engagement and the development of partnerships. Tasked with managing sponsorships, she helps the university as a fundraiser as well. Her work helps bridge a connection between Viterbo University and the surrounding La Crosse area.

Her seasoned 20-year career includes corporate training and marketing for a Fortune 500 company, business consulting and strategic partner development across non-profit and for-profit organizations. Priding herself on customer service, she looks to connect on a personal level with local businesses.

With a Bachelor’s of Arts from Viterbo, she recently moved forward in her education at the university and completed her Masters in Servant Leadership graduate work this summer.

Hope considers it a privilege to be a leader in her hometown, and believes that everyone should continue to discover how each of us might lead through serving. 


Elevating the Customer Experience with Net Promoter Score (NPS)

While revenue is the end result of a strong customer base, many companies like Logistics Health Inc. (LHI) are leveraging the Net Promoter System (NPS) as a leading indicator of how they’re performing and the health of their relationship with their customers and employees. Learn how you can leverage this highly adaptable customer satisfaction system to gain the insights you need to forge deeper connections with your internal and external audiences, all while improving the overall satisfaction. 

Thomas Foster, NPS Program Manager, LHI
Learn more about Thomas

As the Program Manager of LHI’s Net Promoter System, Thomas Foster’s expertise is focused sharply on deepening relationships and elevating experiences of the customers and clients they serve. His diverse experience in Marketing, Communications, User Experience and Project Management brings a dynamic approach to designing and implementing Experience Management Systems to capture the motivations of customers, and drive changes that result in measureable results. Thomas holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Marketing from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, and maintains certifications in Net Promoter System and Agile Project Management.

#Winning: The Influencer Space

If you have spent any time on Snapchat, Instagram and/or Facebook in the past 5 years, you have undoubtedly seen sponsored influencer content. According to the Digital Marketing Institute, 49% of consumers depend on influencer recommendations when making purchase decisions. Organic Valley’s influencer model has shifted and grown over the last 3 years to produce its current winning strategy. Regardless of budget, size, and location, use Organic Valley’s learnings to help inform your company’s influencer program!

Shannon Greenbaum, Influencer Program Manager, Organic Valley
Learn more about Shannon

Shannon Greenbaum is the Manager of the Influencer Program for Organic Valley, the nation’s largest organic, farmer-owned cooperative. Fueled by her passion for organic education as well as sustainable farming techniques, she leads the strategy and growth of Organic Valley’s In-house influencer marketing program.

Shannon is an energetic, passionate marketing professional having started her career in Pittsburgh, PA working for DICK’S Sporting Goods and only recently moving to La Crosse, WI. Amid the influencer craze, Shannon has taken a different approach to influencer marketing as she tries to build a program of authentic creators no matter how large their following.  She holds a bachelor’s degree from Penn State University in Marketing and International Relations.


Sponsored by Advanced Multimedia Solutions

User Experience & Human Centered Design

Danielle Maravelas, Sr. Digital Product Analyst, LHI 
Learn more about Danielle

Danielle Maravelas is a Software Product Owner and Experience Designer with Logistics Health Incorporated, an OptumServe company and is all about advocating for technology users and improving their online experience through website and software design. She leads teams that design and develop software applications that bring better healthcare care, faster to those who serve our country.  She brings with her 7+ years working in IT and over 4 years in the Healthcare Industry and has worked with clients such as; The DOD, Mayo Clinic, LATAM Airlines, Telcel, Coca Cola (Latin America) and Digicel Communications.