Breakout Sessions


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Session Speakers and Topics


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2017 USG Staff Council Presentation10.20.17


Keynote:  People Map

Mr. Peter Metzner

PeopleMap System Certified Trainer

Peter Metzner is principal of the executive coaching and team building service, Dynamic Change, Inc. Before starting DCI, Peter was Vice President of Client Relations and Program Development for The Leadership Trust, and a developer of executive training programs for The Center for Creative Leadership. He holds Master of Art degrees from West Georgia College and the University of Georgia in Humanistic Psychology and Public Administration respectively, and has completed the executive coaching program at The Institute of Life Coach Training, where he is also adjunct faculty. In addition to his work with Dynamic Change, Peter is a psychology instructor at Vance Granville Community College and an adjunct instructor at Elon University and Peace College where he facilitates leadership seminars.


Session A:   Emotional Intelligence

Mr. Peter Metzner

PeopleMap System Certified Trainer

During this session, we will look in depth at the 13 Qualities of Emotional Intelligence that include attitudinal, behavioral and social aspects that are the core makeup of Emotional Intelligence. Participants will walk away with a better understanding of themselves and the skills to better lead, motivate, and influence others.



Session B:  Inbox Zero

Mr. Daniel Rivera

Director, Instructional Resources Center

College of Education

Georgia Southern University

Inbox making you crazy? Do you dread opening it? Need a better approach to managing your calendar? Google won’t make you less busy, but this session can make it easier to be busy as we explore tips and techniques for better efficiency at your desk. Take these first steps to Gmail & Calendar mastery; your sanity may depend on it!

Daniel Rivera has provided instructional technology leadership, guidance, and professional development for university students, faculty, and staff for 14 years. He worked as an instructional technology specialist for First District RESA before joining the team at Georgia Southern University. He now serves as the Director for Instructional Resources Center for the College of Education at Georgia Southern University. Daniel is a Google Apps Certified Trainer and Google Apps for Education Innovator.


Session C:  Creating a Happy Organization

Dr. Trey Denton

Professor, Marketing and Coordinator of Business Honors

College of Business Administration

Georgia Southern University

Learn about the emerging areas of positive psychology and conscious capitalism and their potential to greatly improve the productivity of the workplace.  Share ideas for boosting happiness at work and learn how to best frame your role at work for personal and professional success.  Explore ways to boost the true drivers of motivation and organizational success (and life satisfaction).

The recipient of Georgia Southern awards for Excellence in Contributions to both Teaching and Service, Dr. Trey Denton has been teaching at GSU for 25 years.  In addition to his duties teaching International Marketing and the Honors Business Seminar, he regularly leads business training courses on leadership for a variety of companies and programs.  He is also a regular facilitator for organizations in need of a strategic plan.  He is a licensed falconer and he and his wife enjoy travel and all things outdoors (and empty nesting).  His educational and personal experiences lend themselves to hopefully interesting insights into the power of being a conscious and caring leader, and how to create high functioning organizations.



Session D:   Multigenerational Workforce

Ms. America Minc

Director, Campus Recreation & Intramurals

Georgia Southern University

From Baby Boomers to Millenials, leading a team of people from different generations is enough to drive you totally insane. This session will explore characteristics of each generation to help you lead each generation effectively.

America Minc currently serves as the Director of Campus Recreation & Intramurals and leads operations for Georgia Southern’s Recreation Activity Center, a 215,000 square foot state-of-the-art recreation facility. Holding a B.B.A. and an M.B.A., she is a proud alum of the College of Business and was just named one of Georgia Southern’s Top 40 Under 40 Alumni. Working in the fitness industry for the last 15 years, America is a certified personal trainer and fitness instructor, and is passionate about motivating others to reach their goals.



Session E:   Staff Council Round Table

Moderated by Mr. Jasper Stewart , Chair & Mrs. Brenda Richardson, Chair-Elect

Georgia Southern University Staff Council

Is your Staff Council looking to increase campus awareness, support, and participation? Do you have new ideas and initiatives you would like to share? Are you new to Staff Council or interested in joining your institution’s council? Join us for an opportunity to share best practices, discuss common issues/concerns, exchange ideas, and network with other Staff Council members from across the state.



Session F:   Networking

Mrs. Alice Mathews

See her presentation at the link below:



Have you wanted to connect with others in your field or expand your personal circle? Join this discussion to learn both how and why networking can benefit your career, open your mind to new experiences and grow your potential.


Alice Mathews is a Marketing and Public Relations professional, as co-owner of buzzMarketing here in Statesboro. She and partner Jenny Lynn Anderson specialize in strategic marketing and social media management. Alice received her Bachelor’s Degree in Communications with an emphasis in Public Relations from Valdosta State University.

As a young professional, Alice worked in Atlanta for a marketing agency and in the non-profit sector before marrying and moving to Statesboro. She brought her skills to our community and has served in many volunteer roles throughout the years for organizations such as the Statesboro Service League, First Baptist Church, Bulloch Academy, and more recently as the founding Committee Chairman for Young Life which is a relationship focused teen ministry in three local high schools. She currently serves as a board member for the Lynda Brannen Williamson Foundation and a mentor for cohorts within the Leadership Academy.

Notably, Alice has been an active volunteer for Zeta Tau Alpha Fraternity for women, serving both on the local and national levels. She served as the organization’s National President for four years overseeing the second largest national sorority that is headquartered in Indianapolis. She currently serves on the Extension Team and travels as a motivational speaker for Stand Up! Stand Out!, which is a program that empowers young women to fight against negative influences and to help them find a voice. In addition, she has served as the local chapter advisor at GSU for the past fifteen years and remains involved with her alumnae chapter. Alice has written leadership manuals and been a keynote speaker at conventions and conferences.


             Session G:   Creating Safer Spaces for Staff and Students:  Title IX and Non-Discrimination


Dr. Joel Wright

Director, Equal Opportunity & Title IX

Georgia Southern University


Dr. Lisa Costello

Associate Professor/Program Director

Georgia Southern University Women’s and Gender Studies


This presentation will provide a brief review of Title IX and Georgia Southern University’s non-discrimination policy, so that participants can see how these progressive safeguards work to protect staff, faculty, and students on campus. Each of the speakers will present brief information on how these policies relate to issues like sexual harassment and gender expression and identity. We will discuss reporting obligations and best practices on campus. There will be an open Q&A session for the last portion of the session.

Joel Wright currently serves as the Director of Equal Opportunity & Title IX and Title IX Coordinator for Georgia Southern University.  After graduating from Statesboro High School, Joel joined the United States Marine Corps, where he served our country for nearly 13 years, attaining the rank of Captain. During that time, Joel earned a B.S. in Political Science from Georgia Southern and his Juris Doctor from Michigan State University, College of Law. In his current role at Georgia Southern University, Joel is  responsible for Title IX compliance matters involving faculty, staff, and students, including training, education, communication, and all complaints of discrimination (including sexual harassment and sex discrimination) involving faculty, staff, and visitors, as well as complaints filed by students.

Dr. Lisa A. Costello is the Director of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program (WGST) and Associate Professor in the Department of Writing and Linguistics at Georgia Southern University. She teaches courses in both WGST and in writing. Her research areas include gender, rhetoric, Holocaust memorialization, and composition. She is an activist working  for inclusivity and diversity. She has always been a feminist teacher seeking social justice and equality for all.


             Session H:   Finding Your Hell Yes

Ms. Jill Johns

Wealth and Well-Being Coach

Owner, Jill Johns International

See her presentation at the link below:

Finding Your Hell Yes

hell yes activity sheet

Speaker One Sheet – Hell Yes (1)


You have so many decisions to make in your career. Should you take that assignment or not? Should you speak up in this meeting or not? Should you talk to your boss about your idea or not?

Clarity is key in decision-making. Without clarity, you say yes when you should say no. You burn out quicker. You find yourself halfway down the path of your career wondering how in the world you got there.

In this presentation, you will learn how to get clarity so that your decisions lead you away from confusion and missed opportunities toward the confidence of hell yes.


Jill Johns is a certified life coach, TEDx speaker and the owner of Jill Johns International. At 40, Jill was diagnosed with breast cancer. Since then, she has made it her mission to not only survive but thrive. She creates space for women to press pause in order to find their hell yes. Whether through one-on-one coaching sessions, delivering keynote addresses or facilitating workshops and retreats, Jill is changing the world, one woman at a time. She can be reached at


Session I:   Managing Up / Leading Teams

Mr. Darron Burnette

President and CEO

Sea Island Bank

A graduate of Georgia Southern University with a BBA in finance with an emphasis in banking, Burnette was an honor graduate of the Georgia Banking School at UGA. He joined the faculty of the Banking School in 2003 and currently serves as the Director. Darron is past president of Leadership GBA, the leadership development division of the Georgia Bankers Association. He is active in many community organizations such as a member of the Rotary Club of Statesboro, Secretary for Georgia Southern Athletic Foundation, Board Member at East Georgia Regional Medical Center, Board Member of the Ogeechee Technical College Foundation, and Board Member of the Coastal Georgia Alzheimer’s Association. He is currently co-chairing the team for the South Main Street Revitalization in Statesboro now known as the Blue Mile project. Darron serves as the co-chairman of two annual fundraising events to include Striking Out Alzheimer’s and Rockin’ Out Alzheimer’s.

Darron is the immediate Past Chairman of the Statesboro-Bulloch County Chamber of Commerce. He has served as president of the following organizations: Kiwanis Club of Statesboro, Leadership Bulloch, Optimist Club, and Statesboro Sigma Chi Alumni Association. Darron has held numerous other board positions including Bulloch Academy, Georgia Southern Performing Arts Center, Keep Bulloch Beautiful and United Way. He has been involved with the Entrepreneurial Learning and Leadership at Georgia Southern University.

In March of 2008, he was recognized as a Deen Day Smith Service to Mankind recipient.  In April 2011, he was honored by receiving the William B. Turner Humanitarian Award for Synovus Financial Corporation.  

Session J:   Wellness in the Workplace

Mrs. Michele Martin

Assistant Director, Campus Recreation/University Wellness Director

Georgia Southern University

See her presentation at the link below:

USG Wellbeing PPT Template_8_16_17a FGS Oct 20 USG Staff Council Present…

Many companies are embracing employee wellness. How do we learn from them without going too far while we are utilizing the tax payer dollars? Learn tips and tricks to create a culture of wellness within your organization while also exploring common myths associated with workplace wellness programs.

Michele serves as an Assistant Director for Campus Recreation & Intramurals and University Wellness Director for Georgia Southern University. She has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Exercise Science. Some of her accomplishments include designing two university fitness centers, including the fitness center at the RAC, serving as chair of the Georgia Southern University Staff Council, serving on the President Search Committee and being part of many stories of individuals that have quit smoking, reversed diabetes and lost over 100 pounds. She has a passion for women in leadership and behavior change. Outside of work, she spends her time with her husband and son, community service and cooking.


Session K:   Are You Engaged? Work Engagement, Leadership, & Promoting     Connections to the Campus

Ms. Denise Gabara

See her presentation at the link below:

Work Engagement

Employee work engagement has emerged as a primary measurement of the employees’ connection to their work, their teams, and their organization. Further, outcomes such as turnover rate, productivity, and dedication have been linked to engagement scores. This break out session aims to answer the questions: what is employee engagement, how can we measure it, and how can we positively impact engagement levels in our campus community.



             Session L:  Walking Tour of Georgia Southern University’s Statesboro Campus

Southern Ambassadors

Office of Admissions

Georgia Southern University

Need some fresh air? Want to work up an appetite for lunch? Just need a change of scenery?  Join our Southern Ambassadors as they lead a walking tour of Georgia Southern University’s Statesboro Campus.



Last updated: 8/3/2018

Department of Human Resources • P.O. Box 8104 • Statesboro, Georgia 30460 • (912) 478-5468