Monthly thoughts and chapter happenings shared from the desk of Dana Devlin, ATD Dallas President for 2023.

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  • 10 Jun 2023 8:02 PM | Dana Devlin (Administrator)

    May was a super busy month for ATD – both on the local and international level!  I would love to share some of my experiences from being both a leader for ATD Dallas and a member of our amazing international professional organization.

    2023 AXIS Awards

    The AXIS Awards is one of the highlights of the year for me!  Not only because I get to be in the company of such innovators who are changing their organizations for good, but also because I have so many wonderful memories tied to this signature event of the chapter…all the way back to when it was called Best Place to Learn! 

    But do you know why it is now called the AXIS Awards?  Because organizations REVOLVE around people.  And YOU (all those TD folks) are the ones developing those people!

    This event could not have happened without the hard work of volunteers!  A big thank you goes out to Jamie Cook and Halima McWilliams for co-chairing the event this year.  And to Steff Allison, Laurie Lumston, and Susan Brookshire for providing their weekly support too!

    I also want to recognize the 18 individuals that served as judges this year to select our 2023 winners and those that were onsite as “day of” volunteers.  A big shout out to the 2023 Board of Directors that served as award presenters this year too!

    And of course, we want to continue to celebrate the companies and teams that received awards this year!  Some categories were extremely competitive!  We appreciate the time our judges took to review the redacted applications and score each one against the published rubric to ensure a fair process.

    2023 ATD Chapter Leader Conference

    The annual ATD Chapter Leaders Conference (ALC) brings together chapter leaders from across the country to learn from one another. Current and incoming board members network with other chapter leaders as they share best practices for running an ATD chapter.  This year I was joined by Cheryl Zobal (President Elect) and Karen Clem (VP Professional Development).  We attended a welcome reception and a full day of sessions in the days leading up to ATD23 in San Diego.  We had fun seeing our friends from ATD Fort Worth and making new connections with leaders from Houston and San Antonio too!


    For 80 years, ATD has hosted conferences to educate and inspire professionals in the talent development field.  I attended my first ICE (International Conference & Expo) in 2013 when it was in Dallas.  I learned then that you could volunteer one day and then receive a complimentary day, so I followed that same plan in 2023!  Plus, I don’t know if I can go to an ATD conference and not volunteer!  Too many SWLS’s under my belt, I guess.

    The two keynotes that I was able to attend were quite insightful – Adam Grant and Priya Parker.  And Karen and I learned that Chapter Leaders have a special section up front in the large auditorium, so we were sitting on the second row!  And since it was the 80th anniversary, they had a live band playing fun 80’s tunes to warm up the crowd!  We were definitely singing along!

    My other highlight was getting to meet and have conversations with some of our industry’s titans that have shaped my knowledge through the years.  I was lucky to be the volunteer in their session rooms or to catch them at the expo.

    Karen and I were able to spend a good hour with Kassy LaBorie as we talked through her upcoming L&D SIG with the chapter on June 30th and the exclusive opportunity to obtain her Virtual Facilitation Certification starting in August.  We even recorded a quick promo video that you can check out.  She is super fun and has so much wisdom to share!  Hope everyone registers for one (or both) of these events.

    Hello June!

    As I said at the beginning…May was a busy month!  But June is an important month too!  You have to submit your “request for proposal” to speak at Southwest Learning Summit 2023

    • What impactful work are you doing in your company that others can learn from?  
    • Or what have you discovered from another TD colleague that they should share with our community? 
    • The deadline to complete the online application is June 30th.

    Also, take advantage of Early Bird pricing that is currently available for #SWLS2023.  Register today!  We will see you at the Plano Event Center on Thursday, September 28th!

  • 16 Apr 2023 8:45 AM | Dana Devlin (Administrator)

    As a volunteer-run organization, it is the generous people giving of their time and talents that makes ATD Dallas a successful chapter!  This month we have the opportunity to celebrate our volunteers during National Volunteer Appreciation Week!

    I have found that there are several types of volunteers here at ATD Dallas:

    1. The Newbie: Fresh, full of energy, and ready to jump in
    2. The “Day of” Supporter: Able to help during our signature events when we need many hands on deck
    3. The Floater: Floats in and out of volunteer roles as their time allows throughout the years
    4. The Multi-tasker: Is involved and contributes on several of our committees
    5. The Lifer: Will always be here and ready to serve

    We see all of these types of volunteers support our largest signature event, Southwest Learning Summit.  Here was most of team that made it happen in 2022!  

    The Benefits of Volunteering

    I originally got involved as a volunteer because I wanted to meet other learning and talent development professionals in Dallas.  I found it was easier to get know people by working with them!  If you read "My Volunteer Story" in February, then you know how that story goes!  I was so lucky to build a strong NETWORK and gain lifetime FRIENDSHIPS!

    There are other known benefits of volunteering.  It is good for your MIND and BODY.  It brings FUN and FULFILLMENT to your life.  I think you can see this happening in our “SWLS Packing Party” that happens the Saturday before the annual Southwest Learning Summit.

    You can also develop NEW SKILLS that can impact your career path.  Some skills that come to mind are planning, communication, project management, building relationships, public speaking, leading others, presentation design, A/V, marketing, problem solving, mentoring, data analysis, decision making, budgeting, and negotiating.  And the list could just keep going!

    Volunteering also allows you to lean into your STRENGTHS while also STRETCHING yourself!  We saw this happen for our volunteers in 2020!  The SWLS team had to turn on a dime and create the first ever virtual conference.  The team picture was a little different that year via Zoom!  And we had to conduct our volunteer recognition virtually as well.  Thankfully we had some “Zoom experts” by the time we got to that event at the end of 2020!


    Recognizing Our Volunteers

    Traditionally the chapter has recognized our volunteers at the end of year.  And since 2015, specifically at the AXIS Awards.  With the shifting of this signature event to May 16th this year, we will be taking a different approach to close out 2023!

    But we don’t need to wait until the end of year to CELEBRATE OUR VOLUNTEERS!  I want to share my most sincere THANKS and APPRECIATION for all of the volunteers that I have had the pleasure to work with across all my years with ATD Dallas.  

    • The volunteers that stepped forward in 2022 helped bring things back to “normal.”  
    • The volunteers that are currently driving our efforts and events in 2023 are charting the course to where the chapter goes next!  This includes our leaders serving on the Board of Directors and all of the amazing people working on the following teams: AXIS Awards, Marketing, Membership Professional Development, Programs, Strategic Partnerships/Sponsorship, and SWLS.

    Do YOU want to be a part of FUN?  Then reach out to me directly to discuss how you can get involved or fill out our volunteer form.

    And please join us at the Chapter Meeting on Tuesday, April 18th to help show YOUR APPRECIATION for your fellow members that are serving our chapter as volunteers.  We have some time set aside to recognize them!

  • 12 Mar 2023 4:55 PM | Dana Devlin (Administrator)
    Celebrating Our Members

    Happy Member Appreciation Month to our incredibly talented and hardworking members!  March is designated as Member Appreciation Month – both for National ATD and the local chapters.  THANK YOU for being a member of ATD Dallas and for contributing to our thriving community of learning and talent development professionals in the DFW Metroplex and beyond!

    Looking Back – ASTD/ATD…What’s That?

    Do you remember when you became aware of this international organization that supported our profession of training and development? 

    A prior boss introduced me to the ASTD back in 2011. I had no idea of the resources and network that was available through this professional organization.  I was even more surprised to find out there was a local chapter in Dallas!

    As part of Member Appreciation Month, the current Board of Directors has been reaching out via phone to CONNECT with our members.  While we have left a TON of voicemails, we have been lucky to chat with a number of you!  Thanks for picking up your phone when a random number was calling!  In one of my conversations, we shared our stories about how we found out about ATD and became a member.  We laughed because I think most of us have a similar story…that a boss or prior colleague introduced us to the organization!

    Our Awesome Community & Chapter Resources

    It feels so GOOD to be part of a vibrant community of over 325 talent development professionals in Dallas who are changing their organizations for good.  At ATD Dallas, we believe that talent isn't just our business, it's who we A.R.E.!  Our chapter strives to offer our members, Access, Recognition, and Expertise. 

    Here are few of the ways that our members can impact their professional development because of their membership:

    • Connect with other professionals who are pushing talent development boundaries at our community-wide events and happy hoursWe are able to offer most of these events FREE to our members.  ACCESS is great, but FREE is even better!
    • Grow your EXPERTISE at a monthly chapter meeting or by attending a professional development event focused on your interests, in-person or online.  For 2023, chapter events are being held in-person while our Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are being conducted virtually via Zoom.
    • Create a development pathway in your FREE Degreed account.  We have made some recent updates in the platform. Learn how to maximize Degreed as a tool for your personal and professional learning!
    • Share your EXPERTISE with our community as a speaker or your TALENTS as a volunteer for the chapter.  Or share your space - we are looking for corporate locations to host our chapter meetings!
    • Attend our Signature Events to gain ACCESS to industry thought leaders. Don't miss our annual regional conference, Southwest Learning Summit. And get RECOGNIZED for your great work in talent development by submitting a proposal to receive an AXIS Award!
    Membership Opportunities

    This is a wonderful time to remind you to RENEW!  We would hate for your membership to lapse and for you to miss out on some of the events that lie ahead!

    If you have other members on your team that want to become a member of ATD Dallas, consider a Corporate Membership!  The savings are great based on this formula…($90 x 4) + 1 Free!  So instead of $500 for 5 team members, it would be only $360!  (The “5th free” provision holds true for all multiples of 4 registered.)  Please contact if you are interested in this rate.

    Are you a member only at the local level?  Consider joining ATD National and becoming a Power Member.  You can benefit from TWICE the support, resources, and networking.  Learn more online or through this brochure Take advantage of the Membership Sale starting Monday, March 20 at to save!

    Stay Connected with Our Chapter

    As a member of ATD Dallas, you are part of a movement to make Dallas the talent development capital of the world.  We can't do it without you!  Be sure to follow us on social media to stay CONNECTED and in the know -- LinkedIn (@ATD Dallas), Twitter (@ATDDallas), Instagram (ATD_Dallas), or Facebook (@ATDDallas)!

    If you haven’t taken advantage of all your membership has to offer, then it's time to plug in!  If you have questions about ATD Dallas, please reach out to any member of the Board.  We would love to hear from you!

  • 19 Feb 2023 4:41 PM | Dana Devlin (Administrator)

    This is a topic that seems to be an important one these days.  From how to use STORY in marketing, instructional design, and in professional networking situations. 

    If you need some insight into that last way, join our Career Development SIG on Monday, February 27 to hear from Rance Greene on this subject of “What’s Your Story?” and how you can share YOUR STORY with the world. 

    So, with this inspiration, I thought I would share MY STORY around how I got involved with ATD Dallas (or ASTD as it was back then)!

    My Volunteer Story

    My story started in 2012 when Scott Harris, incoming Dallas ASTD President, asked me to consider stepping into the role of Southwest Learning Summit & Exposition Chair for the 2013 event.  I was shocked because I had only attended the conference once and had not previously volunteered.  But my boss at the time was on the board and highly recommended me for the role based on what I did in my day job!  This is the point in the STORY where they typically say, “and the rest is history!

    I jumped into the deep end for my first volunteer experience!  But luckily, I had a wonderful mentor, a couple of longtime chapter members, a past president, and a handful of other new, gung-ho volunteers that were part of my first SWLS planning committee.

    After a successful 2013 event, I stayed on the planning team to mentor the next SWLS co-chairs.  I wanted to give the same support that I had gotten from the past chair.  And thereafter, I kept coming back each year to see how we could grow the event, but also to hang out with these fun people!  Fast forward ten years later, I still have dinners and virtual happy hours with some of these folks that are now dear friends!

    I was honored to serve as the SWLS Main Stage Emcee from 2016-2019.  And in 2020, I was thrilled to work with Trey Talley as we took SWLS virtual.  It was an amazing experience where I could help the team out while gaining new skills too! (I felt a little like Savannah Guthrie reading the teleprompter and broadcasting online!)

    My volunteer journey also includes helping with the AXIS Awards, the other signature event for the chapter.

    This is a fun STORY that I can share with you at happy hour!  I was a last minute “phone a friend” to help out on stage when someone else had an emergency in 2016.  That led to emceeing in 2017, 2018, and 2019.  And in 2021, I gave judging a whirl!

    And finally, in 2021 I received an email asking if I would be open to a phone call to discuss the role of President Elect in 2022.  I guess we know how that went since I am serving as ATD Dallas President in 2023!

    Your Volunteer Story

    So...that is a little bit about my volunteer story.  What is YOUR STORY going to be?  Getting involved with ATD Dallas provides you the opportunity to lean into your strengths, gain new skills, and build lifelong friendships.  I know I wouldn’t trade any of it!

    We would love to have you join the fun and start creating your STORY!  Learn more about volunteering here or come join us for the Volunteer Summit on Saturday, March 4 from 9:00 AM until 12:00 PM at the CoreLogic offices in Irving.  It will be a great way to plug into one of our teams --- Membership, Marketing, Professional Development, Monthly Programs, Southwest Learning Summit, AXIS Awards, or Strategic Partnerships.  I hope to see you there!

  • 05 Jan 2023 6:22 PM | Dana Devlin (Administrator)

    Hello ATD Dallas!  Happy New Year! 

    The turning of the calendar is always so EXCITING!  And at ATD Dallas, that means we have a new Board of Directors that steps into their role and I am now the ATD Dallas President.  As I continue the tradition of a message from the President, I have aptly named it “Notes from Dana’s Desk.”  In this month’s “notes” I would love to share the journey the chapter has been on in 2022 and where we are headed in 2023!

    Reflections on 2022

    The chapter, like many other professional organizations, was focused on getting back into the swing of things after Covid.  We focused on finding the balance of what people were comfortable doing in-person and what we could offer and execute with a limited number of volunteers.

    I want to say a big THANK YOU to our amazing volunteers and recognize the huge impact they made in this challenging year, especially with executing Southwest Learning Summit (#SWLS2022).

    In addition to #SWLS2022, ATD Dallas held 5 Chapter Meetings, 3 Happy Hours, 8 Special Interest Group (SIG) Virtual Meetings, 3 New Member Virtual Orientations, and 1 CPTD/APTD Study Group.

    As we close the books and finalize all of our stats for the year, we will post the 2022 Annual Report soon on our “Members Only” webpage.

    Looking Ahead at 2023

    After serving in various volunteer roles with the chapter over the last ten years, I am ready to serve as the ATD Dallas President for 2023.  I have a number of GOALSmaybe wishes and dreams for the chapter too!  The biggest goal is that I want to SEE and interact with more of our 300+ members!  My hope is that this will be in person at our chapter meetings, happy hours, or signature events (AXIS Awards & Southwest Learning Summit).  But if it must be through a camera lens, then I’ll see you at a SIG (Special Interest Group) or one of our many volunteer committee meetings!  (Interested in volunteering, fill out our Volunteer Form.)

    The 2023 ATD Dallas Board of Directors came together in person back in December for our Strategic Planning Meeting.  We talked about the direction we want to take the chapter, how we want it to evolve, and the approach we will use to make it happen!  It was a very energizing day!

    Many people have a key word for the year.  The 2023 Board landed on CONNECTION as our word.  We want to provide ways for our member to network and connect with each other in 2023!  And your first opportunity to CONNECT is coming up soon!

    Our January Chapter Meeting is on Tuesday, January 17, 2023 at the American Airlines CR Smith Flight Museum.  So that we can CONNECT with even more of our Learning and Talent Development Peers, this first meeting of the year is going to be a joint meeting with our friends from ATD Fort Worth / Mid-Cities!  Register ASAP here.  I look forward to SEEING you there!

    Dana Devlin

    ATD Dallas President 2023

  • 04 Jan 2023 6:55 PM | Dana Devlin (Administrator)

    Stories from the President came to an end as Rance Greene, ATD Dallas President for 2019 and 2020, ended his extended term. 

    In 2021, Bart Castle stepped into the ATD Dallas President role.  And Bart's Beat was born.  Bart's Beat shifted to another area of website.


    In 2022, the president's message turned over to Lawrence Price.

    And as we enter into a new year, and Dana Devlin steps into the ATD Dallas President role for 2023, a new blog space is coming!

  • 14 Dec 2020 12:24 PM | Rance Greene

    There's so much more to be done. Keep looking outward and upward. Dallas is becoming the Talent Development Capital of the World. Here's how you can help:

    Join us! Take advantage of Transition Membership. 

    Volunteer. Find your family within our community.

    Build your expertise. There's great programming already on the calendar!

    #Access #Recongnition #Expertise


    Rance Greene

    President 2019-2020

  • 02 Nov 2020 6:21 PM | Rance Greene
    It's been a wonderful two years leading ATD Dallas, along with an amazingly engaged board and volunteer leaders. Bonnie Endicott, who has served as President-Elect in 2020, has an announcement she's like to make: 

    "This year has certainly brought more change than we could ever expect.  One change I was deliberately planning for, along with Rance, was the transition into the President role of the great ATD Dallas chapter.  When you know change is coming, you can anticipate it and make a solid plan.  And then there are those changes that come your way that you are really not expecting.  Like a delightful new job opportunity that comes your way, along with a move to a new city.  These kinds of changes can be welcome and exciting, but it also means stepping away from those other changes you were excited about.  I let Rance know a few weeks ago about a change in my day job and that we would be moving away from the Dallas area.  Rance, being the great friend that he is, first congratulated me.  Then we set about creating a plan to identify a new president for 2021.  And you know, it wasn't a challenging feat.  The current ATD Dallas board is a strong team of leaders, who are involved and care deeply about the chapter and the work we do in talent development.  They have been very supportive of this change of plans and will ensure that your experience moving into 2021 is a great one.  They have some neat thoughts for 2021, which is going to be another year full of unexpected challenge and change.  As I sign out of my role in Dallas and look to a new adventure, I want to send encouragement to each of you -- whether we've had the opportunity to meet or not.  I love the talent development space and think that what you do everyday makes a BIG difference for your organizations.  Keep learning, growing and connecting with each other.  ATD Dallas is a terrific place to do that.  Get involved next year -- we need each other!  Rance, thank you for your support, encouragement and friendship!  A huge thanks to the ATD Dallas board, you are the coolest group of folks I know!" - Bonnie Endicott

    A big congratulations to you, Bonnie as you pursue this next chapter. Dallas will miss you greatly and we're glad you'll be checking in with us every once in a while! 

    Bonnie's departure opens up an opportunity for one of our existing board members to serve as President in 2021. Bonnie and I (and the board) are pleased to announce that Bart Castle has agreed to assume the role of President beginning Jan 1, 2021. Bart has served as a leader in our organization for many years, focusing on Membership. His team's concentration of meeting members where they are has driven innovative and practical engagement of our members from their very first encounter with ATD Dallas. This is going to be even more important in the coming year as many talent development departments are getting back on their feet in 2021 and looking to invest in their own teams in affordable and impactful ways. Bart's expertise in this area will serve the chapter well and we look forward to a good year ahead. You will receive an email to confirm the nomination of Bart (and the rest of the board) later this week. 

    Have a wonderful week and thank each one of you for giving so much to our chapter. I'll see you at one of our upcoming events!


    Rance Greene

    President 2019-2020

  • 01 Sep 2020 7:01 PM | Rance Greene

    I love September. Throughout my life, it's marked periods of major changes in my life and career. I moved to New York City from my little town in North Carolina in September, 1997. I was thrilled to be living at the crossroads of the world. I came face to face with new cultures, new experiences and, of course, new foods (I still miss that part of New York!). I still maintain friendships with people I met in New York who have returned to their home countries or are living abroad. To say that my horizons were broadened by spending nine years among such diversity is an understatement. What a gift. 


    It was in September, in New York, that my son (our first child) was born. It was in September that we (my wife and two babies) moved to Dallas. My son was three and my daughter was one. This year, my son will be taking his driver's test (which I'm actually stoked about--he's a good driver). Time flies! When we moved to Dallas, I was transitioning from full-time ministry to…? I didn't know what was next, but fast forward a few years to another September when I took my first corporate role in talent development as a performance consultant. Shortly thereafter, I attended my first-ever ATD Dallas event. I'll never forget the warm welcome, the comradery and that special feeling: "Hey, these people care about making life at work better as much as I do!"

    September also marks a change in our chapter.

    It's at this time when leadership begins to transition to the next year's board. I'll meet with the 2020 board by ourselves one more time before we attend the ATD Chapter Leaders Conference, after which, new board members who will begin their service in 2021, will join the current board for the remainder of our board meetings this year. Usually, the conference takes place in DC. We set time aside to focus solely on the chapter, spending daytime hours attending the conference and making connections with other chapter leaders and spending evenings strategizing and planning for the upcoming year. This year, it will be a virtual conference and virtual planning sessions. The energy coming out of these planning session vault the chapter into another impactful year with new ideas and renewed passion for our members. 


    I've served as your President since 2019. The volunteers who have served alongside me these past two years are remarkable. Through triumphs and challenges, we've changed and grown together. We will end 2020 strong, laser-focused on delivering A.R.E. (Access, Recognition, Expertise) through the end of the year and into 2021, as I continue to serve…this time, as Past-President. 


    I'd like to spend the next few blog posts introducing you to your 2021 board. Stay tuned! In the meantime, check out our upcoming events, sign up to volunteer and stay connected to your ATD Dallas family. This is also an appropriate time to remind ourselves of ATD Dallas's purpose: "To empower people who are changing their organizations for good."




    Rance Greene

    President, 2019-2020


  • 22 Jun 2020 6:33 PM | Rance Greene

    Every month, I have a phone date with two other men—Vincent & Joey—that I met while living in New York City. All three of us moved to different parts of the country, but the first Friday of every month, we still call one another to catch up and to pray for each other. Vincent is black. Joey is Hispanic. I’m Caucasian. Until June 5, the first Friday of June, I don’t think the differences in the color of our skin even crossed our minds. But during that call, for the first time, we talked about it. We talked about what it was like to grow up black, Hispanic and white. And even though we’ve been there for each other through many difficulties in our lives, the conversation wasn’t necessarily an easy one. 


    I called Vincent again later in the week to ask him more about some of the thoughts he expressed during our conversation. He shared many personal stories about racism. Since that conversation I’ve met with many friends in the black community who are part of our ATD Dallas family to talk about inclusion, equity and racism. I’m grateful to each one of you who shared your stories with me. I know it wasn’t comfortable for you. It’s awkward. It’s emotional. It’s not something we’re used to talking about. But I’m hopeful that as more of us engage in these conversations, we’ll all have a greater understanding and respect for one another. Thank you. Because of your openness, I understand how ATD Dallas can support greater inclusion and equip members with the tools to overcome ingrained biases. And more importantly, I know why it’s so crucial. 




    ATD Dallas does, and always will, offer every member #ACCESS to our vibrant community. For members of our chapter who are black, please keep coming to our events and being yourselves. Your presence, your friendship, your perspectives keep us thriving. Stay connected and keep sharing your stories with those you trust and who are willing to listen.


    We care about you and we #RECOGNIZE that, with the help of our active volunteer base, we can do more to support thoughtful, sustainable programming that gives our members, and the organizations our members belong to, skills that help us see our own biases and overcome them. We’ll start with our July chapter meeting, when Korn Ferry will guide us through the talent management cycle through the lens of inclusion. 


    I encourage all of our members to build the #EXPERTISE of engaging in healthy conversations that build understanding. To get started, I’ve shared two pathways on Degreed with all of our members on Unconscious Bias and Diversity and Inclusion. Please check out all of Degreed’s curated content on related topics, such as empathy, and approach your conversations well-equipped. 


    If you are a Power Member, you also have access to National’s diversity and inclusion curated resources, which you can find here

    Our best resource to understanding and leading the way to equity at every level is one another. It begins with listening. Start there. 


    With love and respect,

    Rance Greene

    President 2019-2020

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