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Keynote Speakers

Dave Weber – President and CEO - Weber Associates

Mark Victor Hansen, the noted co-author of the #1 New York Times best selling series, “Chicken Soup for The Soul”, says of Dave Weber…“Dave is a superstar. He WOW’s his audience to think and take action now. I predict he will become one of the top 10 speakers of our time.”
Dave Weber is an internationally recognized speaker, author, and trainer in helping people make progress on purpose…and he has the track record to prove his techniques work.
An honors graduate from Mercer University, he simultaneously captained the university’s NCAA Division 1 soccer and volleyball teams for three years and was accorded All-Conference honors in both sports.
Upon graduating in 1984, Weber began his professional career at Motorola. After three years of award-winning selling and training, he left corporate America to launch his own speaking and consulting firm.
Since 1987, Weber has been one of the country’s most sought after speakers. Speaking over 160 times a year, his high energy and entertaining style have made him a crowd favorite. While his style might initially get him invited to present, it is his great content and timeless principles that get him invited back time and time again.
Weber’s client list reads like a “Who’s Who” of America. Not only has he spoken to tens of thousands of education clients from all 50 states, but his corporate clients include some of the best companies in the world: FedEx, The Weather Channel, Bank of America, Chick-fil-A, AT&T, Southern Company, Cintas, Allied Waste, Shaw Industries, Aflac, IBM, Nike and hundreds more
In addition to presenting on the motivational speaking circuit, Dave is the author of “Sticks and Stones Exposed: The Power of Our Words”, “Leadership Redefined” and the creator of The LifeTime Organizer® (the world’s most practical personal planner).Dave and his wife Tina are the proud parents of two great kids and reside in Marietta, GA.

Dr. Isabel Perry - President - The Safety Doctor

Dr. Isabel Perry is a highly motivated professional with a unique combination of experiences as a corporate executive, entrepreneur, author and speaker. She is an effective communicator who has the expertise and natural ability to bring "real life" solutions to her audiences worldwide.

Dr. Perry climbed the corporate ladder in a Fortune 50 company and "broke the glass ceiling." While working with all levels of the organization she led teams in international operations; these teams were inspired to excellence and won international awards for their performance and contributions to the corporation. 
After 25 years of expansive responsibilities Dr. Perry combines the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed and is currently a much sought after consultant, speaker and trainer. Employees in manufacturing industries, hospitals and health care, government agencies and service industries have all benefited from Dr. Perry's enthusiastic spirit. She opens her audiences mind and heart to all the possibilities of increased excellence. Audiences are challenged and inspired to new ideas and approaches in improving their performance.

Dr. Perry holds a bachelor's degree in design and architecture, a master's degree in safety management and a doctorate degree in safety and educational psychology. Being self-motivated she obtained the last two degrees in night school over an eleven-year period as she operated her construction business... she brings motivation to an all-new level. Her audiences are energized by her "can do" attitude and transfer their newly gained skills into success. 


Don Theune - Principal - Donnic Consulting Group, LLC

Donald Theune is a Principal and Co-Founder of DONNIC  CONSULTING GROUP, LLC which specializes in reducing accidents and injuries by changing unsafe attitudes and behaviors.  “It is about taking safety to the next level while improving employee participation and engagement.”  Don has presented the concepts of safety culture change at over 200 conferences and worked with many pulp and paper mills as well as petrochemical, refinery, pharmaceutical, and food manufacturing companies.


Bob Williams - VP/Mill Manager - Weyerhaeuser, Port Wentworth Mill

Robert (Bob) Williams has been in industry for 36 years working as a laborer, engineer, supervisor, and manager. His career spanned three companies, Roseburg Lumber Company, General Electric Company, and Weyerhaeuser NR with the last ten years working as a Plant Manger. He now manages Weyerhaeuser’s Port Wentworth Cellulose Fiber mill specializing in manufacturing fluff pulp.

Bob has a Bachelors Degree from Oregon Institute of Technology in Klamath Falls, Oregon and a Masters degree from Portland State University in Portland, Oregon. His view on safety has been formed by various experiences in his lifetime and can be categorized by the simple statement, “I’ve / we’ve seen enough. Do we care enough to live, lead, and change our safety culture?” It is a driving passion he encourages others to embrace.

In April, Mr. Williams will be married for 34 years to his wife Barbara and has two daughters, one residing in Georgia and the other in Michigan. His hobbies include family, outdoor activities, and old cars.

Michael Hignett - Plant Manager - RockTenn, Wakefield Container Plant

Mike Hignett has been in the corrugated container industry for 37 years, the last 25 years as Plant Manager for the RockTenn facility in Wakefield, Massachusetts. His facility produces over 300 million pizza boxes yearly and introduced their first process printed pizza box at the Las Vegas Pizza Show in 1998. Previously he has managed operations for both International Paper and Horn Packaging. During his career, he has managed both union and non-union facilities. Despite being measured by many metrics, running a safe operation remains a top priority throughout his career. He has turned around poor performing plants by changing the culture through communicating the need to change, engagement of his employees, and holding all accountable.
Mike and his wife Beth, have been married for 39 years, have three children, and reside in New Hampshire.

Bill Edwards - VP/Mill Manager - Domtar Paper Mill – Marlboro

Bill began his career in the paper industry in 1990 at the Domtar Plymouth, NC mill (former Weyerhaeuser mill). Prior to that, Bill worked for a private engineering firm. During his 16 years at the Plymouth Mill, he progressed through various roles such as Project Engineering; Assistant Linerboard Superintendent; Linerboard, Fluff Pulp & Recycled Operations Superintendents; Fine Paper Operations Manager; and Mill Paper Manufacturing Manager. Bill joined the Marlboro Mill as General Manager in October 2006.

Throughout Bill’s career, he has had numerous opportunities to present his safety values and beliefs to organizations, industry events, community groups and peers; however it is in the day-to-day safety talks with his own team that has strengthened Bill’s commitment to safety leadership.

Committed to community service, Bill serves as member and Board of Director for the Bennettsville Rotary Club, Board Member for Marlboro County Economic Development Partnership and Chairman of the Marlboro County Industrial Council. He has also served as member of the 2010 and 2012 American Heart Association Pee Dee Heart Walk Executive Leadership Team and Chairman of the 2011 American Heart Association Pee Dee Heart Walk Executive Leadership Team. Bill is involved in his local church where he and his wife teach Sunday school to youth as well as a weekly adult Bible study.

In addition to his current community services and accolades, Bill serves annually as a volunteer for the Salvation Army’s “Ringing of the Bell” program since 2009. He was recognized and awarded the 2011 South Carolina Economic Ambassador of the Year, representing Marlboro County and recently received the 2012 TAPPI PIMA Ray H. Cross award for his contribution to community service.
Bill lives in South Carolina with his wife, Kathryn, and their two daughters.

Thomas E. Evans - CEO - Training Logic

Thomas founded Training Logic Inc. on the belief that business results are available through people. He has 30 years of training experience. Thomas started his training career as an instructor for the Dale Carnegie Training Systems in 1982 and was employed as the National Training Manager with Willamette Industries, Inc. in 1988. In August 2002 he opened Training Logic, Inc. and started building a team of professional trainers which has worked with many pulp and paper organizations across the Nation such as: Weyerhaeuser, Boise Cascade, Domtar, International Paper, Graphic Packaging, RockTenn, etc. While offering many topics in the area of; Leadership Development, Sales, and Communications training Thomas and his team of professional trainers are extremely proud of the safety results they have helped many organizations achieve. 

Dr. Chuck Pettinger - Predictive Solutions

Chuck Pettinger has over 20 years of experience designing, implementing and evaluating culture step-change initiatives. His major interests include developing large-scale corporate behavior change initiatives, assessing industrial safety cultures, using advanced predictive analytisc to develop leading indicators and conducting organizational Leadership Workshops.

Chuck earned his Bachelors from the University of Florida, his Masters from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and his Doctorate from Virginia Tech under Dr. E. Scott Geller. Before joining Predictive Solutions, Chuck was a Senior Project Manager with the Safety Performance Solutions and a Grant Project Manager with Virginia Tech’s CABS, a research and development organization led by Dr. E. Scott Geller. While at Virginia Tech, Chuck and Dr. Geller completed many research grants including a two-year project funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health titled "Critical Aspects of Behavior-Based Safety." This research investigated several key strategies for implementing a successful Behavior-Based Safety processes in industry. Chuck is also a Certified Behavior Analyst and has served as a Behavioral Program Specialist for the State of Florida and other private industries.

In addition to being named one of the 101 Top Leaders in Safety by ISHN, Chuck has authored many training/technical manuals while designing, customizing and developing training materials for use in industry and government agencies. In addition, he has numerous published abstracts and papers and many scheduled speaking engagements at professional conferences yearly, including invited international multi-day workshops in Africa, Australia, China, France, Hong Kong, India and Singapore.

Eric Hobbs - Partner - Michael Best & Friedrich Law Firm

Eric Hobbs is a partner whose practice focuses on labor and employment law. As a substantial part of his work, he represents employers of all sizes in a variety of industries, from service to agriculture to heavy manufacturing to construction, in occupational safety and health, worker’s compensation and related matters. He has litigated before state and federal agencies and courts throughout the United States and has experience in Canadian occupational safety and health laws issues.

Mr. Hobbs is the Immediate-Past Management Co-Chair of the American Bar Association’s OSH Law Committee and a co-author and chapter editor of the Bloomberg/BNA treatise, Occupational Safety and Health Law, 3d ed., which is the “bible” for occupational safety and health practitioners. He also has been recognized in the area of labor and employment law in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business and The Best Lawyers in America, published by Woodward/White, Inc. He has repeatedly been named in the area of labor and employment relations as a “Wisconsin Super Lawyer” by Super Lawyers Magazine, a Law and Politics publication.

Don Wilson - Vice President - Electrolab, SafeStart

Don Wilson is part of the ownership group and Vice President of the SafeStart safety training & consulting division of Electrolab Training Systems

Don is a frequent presenter at Corporate Health & Safety Meetings, as well as at NSC, ASSE and VPPPA conferences at both the national and local level. He has presented briefings on 24/7 safety to the leadership of all branches of the U.S. armed services at the Pentagon, and has also taught classes on various subjects at safety schools and organizations across North America and in many other countries around the world. His working background includes over 25 years of experience in Instructional Design, Vocational Education, E-Learning, Industrial Education and Health & Safety Training.

Jeff Bell - Recovery Operator, USW Local 415 - RockTenn, Fernandina Mill

Jeff currently works for a major paper company as a recovery operator and draws on his 40 years of experience in the paper industry when delivering his powerful and moving presentations. Jeff has 17 years of practical experience in Behavioral Based Safety (BBS) and has implemented and facilitated successful BBS processes. He has spoken to rave reviews at the BST Users Conference, Region IV VPPPA Conference, ConocoPhillips, Delta, Eastman Chemicals, Kroger, Arch Chemicals, Nucor Steel, Shell, and many other industrial sites and conferences.

David Wilbanks - Gerdau Long Steel America

David W. Wilbanks is corporate safety manager, downstream operations, with Gerdau Long Steel North America, based in Tampa, FL. He has more than 20 years' SH&E experience, including international consulting, heavy industry and corporate roles. He holds a B.S. in Industrial Safety and Health from Murrary State University and an M.P.H from Tulane University, and is pursuing a Ph.D in Safety Sciences at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Wilbanks is a professional member of ASSE's West Florida Chapter. 


Linda Bruce - Regional Safety Manager – RockTenn

Linda Bruce is a Regional Safety Manager for the Southeast Region & Automated Packaging Systems, Container Division, RockTenn. She is a former nurse with the U.S. Navy and has been a Safety Manager in the industry for 15 years. She is currently responsible for overseeing safety at 27 facilities stretching from Canada to Puerto Rico. Linda is known for her creativity in making safety fun and exciting. She is very passionate about involving employees and their families in keeping them safe at work and at home. She has two daughters and two grandchildren. Linda lives in Covington, Georgia with her husband and daughter. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, crafts and spending time with her family (especially at the beach).