2018 IMAGIN Conference
Keynote Speakers

Each day of the IMAGIN Conference, we start with a keynote speaker.  Our keynote speakers feature innovative or inspiring topics that help you to focus and motivate you.

Monday Keynote - Tim Cusack, Motivational Speaker

Tim has entertained and touched tens of thousands over the past 25 years. To imagine Tim’s work, think of him as a combination of Garrison Keillor, Robin Williams and the Dalai Lama. Tim is the rare speaker who can open himself up with an incredible candor that makes each event special.  As a recent client described, “Tim has a way of balancing humor with impact and then inspiring action through engagement.”

Tim developed his versatility and unique approach as one of ten children, raised on a beef farm in Michigan. With an undetected learning disability, Tim barely made it through school. While figuring out who he was and what he wanted to do, he traveled the country working as a ranch hand, ski resort dishwasher, prep cook, house painter and Christmas tree trimmer. Tim also ventured to Alaska to work on fishing boats in the Bering Sea (aka “World’s Deadliest Catch”).

Eventually Tim convinced Grand Valley State University to let him attend and he re-learned to read and write. In college Tim discovered the life-changing world of psychology and theater. He then traveled the country with a professional children’s theater troupe, and worked with the founder of Second City Improv.

Tim has recorded hundreds of radio commercials—he’s known to create content and humor on the spot. As a member of the Screen Actor’s Guild, Tim has filmed numerous industrial videos and TV commercials where, once again, he helps improve the client’s message.  He’s also co-hosted a morning radio talk show helping people enjoy their morning with a few laughs to start the day.

Monday Lunch Guest Speaker - John T. Ellingson, Regional Geodetic Advisor for NOAA's National Geodetic Survey

John Ellingson graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Madison with a degree in Civil Engineering with emphasis in surveying and geodesy.  He serves as the National Geodetic Survey’s (NGS) Geodetic Advisor to the Great Lakes Region (IL, IN, MI, WI).  As the Regional Advisor John works with surveyors and GIS professionals, as well as local, state and Federal agencies, helping them better understand and use the geodetic control of NGS’s National Spatial Reference System (The NSRS).  John is licensed as a Professional Land Surveyor and a Professional Engineer.

Tuesday Keynote - Marilyn A. Sanders, Regional Director of the U.S. Census Bureau

Marilyn A. Sanders is currently serving as the Regional Director for the Chicago Region.  Her extensive career spans four Decennial Censuses and multiple Survey Data Collection innovations and improvements.  Mrs. Sanders is committed to excellence at every level in pursing the Bureaus mission.

Mrs. Sanders joined the Census Bureau as a Field Representative in the mid 70's, and has served in many different capacities in the Regional Office before being selected as a Survey Statistician in the mid 80's.  Mrs. Sanders's interest in exploring all facets of the Census Bureau led her to accepting a position as a Geographer and subsequently to a Supervisory Geographer.  She provided her expertise in this area for more than 10 years before returning to her role as a Supervisory Survey Statistician/Coordinator.  She was selected as the Assistant Regional Director for the Chicago Region in 1998. She has a strong commitment to knowledge sharing and mentoring, understanding this to be pivotal in the success of the Region.

Mrs. Sanders’ extensive knowledge of field data collection has been an invaluable asset to the Chicago Region.  Her contributions as Coordinator, Survey Statistician, Supervisory Geographer, Assistant Regional Census Manager and Deputy Regional Director in both the 2000 and 2010 Censuses provide a glimpse of her forty-year career with the U.S. Census Bureau.  Additionally, she was instrumental in the planning and implementation of the Special Census Program, serving as the Coordinator of the National Special Census Program, and has served in the capacity as a resident SME for the HQ staff.   She has received many commendations during her career, earning three Bronze Medals in 1992, 2000 and 2011, and the Presidential Hammer award in 2010.  She has been nominated twice for Federal Employee of the year for her outstanding public service.

Mrs. Sanders earned her BA degree in Business Management with a concentration in Economics from Stillman College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  She attended the University of South Alabama and Governor State University, pursuing post graduate studies in the area of Geography and Statistics.

IMAGIN: Improving Michigan's Access to Geographic Information Networks

IMAGIN is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization with offices at 416 S. Cedar Street, Suite C, Lansing, MI 48912

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