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2015 TPA University Speakers




Opening Keynote - Michael Hoffman

Being #1 On Purpose - How to be a Catalyst for the Winds of Opportunity

Michael Hoffman is President of Igniting Performance. A Dallas based company that specializes in the skills of sales, customer loyalty and leader-ship. Over the last 20 years, Michael has delivered professional speaking engagements and customized training to organizations across this country and abroad.
With a highly interactive style, Michael's unique delivery cements his ex-pertise in the minds of his attendees to ignite the tactics and techniques necessary to approach their jobs "on purpose" with an attitude of owner-ship and professionalism. Michael uses his rich background to drive home his message that business is and will always be about "people". "How we approach our customers both internal and external will set us apart from all our competition."
Effective training combines the right informational tools with the right amount of motivation. Motivation alone is fleeting, but the right tools with-out motivation are lifeless... He provides both - therefore, getting results that matter. His highly contagious passion for business has earned him the loyalty of many repeat customers such as Bank of Montreal, Aflac, ALLTEL, Knight Ridder, KRLD Radio, Erricson, SYSCO Foods, Dryers Grand Ice Cream, VHA, Novation, Comcast, California Press Association, and many, many more.

Collaboration for Operational Excellence Sessions - Brian McDermott & Gerry Sexton of GrowthWorks

Gerry’s background is in aeronautics – and medicine. He earned an aeronautical degree and a commercial pilot’s license from the University of North Dakota. Then he earned his second degree – his Doctorate of Medicine – at the University of Texas in San Antonio. Before GrowthWorks, he spent five years at the Calhoun Beach Club, where he first ran the health fitness center and later was the General Manager for the entire facility, leading a team or more than 200 employees.

Brian’s background is in journalism. He has worked for newspapers, magazines, in
corporate communications, and for one of the leading U.S. publishers in the training,
human resources and management areas. He also co-authored Time Out for Leaders:
Daily inspiration for Maximum Impact and was the lead writer on the books Versatile
Selling: Adapting Your Style So Customers Say ‘Yes,” and The Social Styles Handbook:
Find Your Comfort Zone and Make People Feel Comfortable with You.


Keynote - Nancy Friedman of Telephone Doctor Customer Service

How to Excel in the Winds of Change

Nancy Friedman is the Telephone Doctor, and one of America’s most sought after experts on sales, customer service and communication skills. She has appeared on programs with Colin Powell, Lou Holtz, Bill Walsh, Pete Rose, Bobby Knight, Tom Peters and Ken Blanchard, among many other prominent speakers. Her message reaches across all industries and touches all job titles.
She has been published in the Wall Street Journal with her article, “Don’t Strike Out With Your Customers,” and has been named one of the 25 Most Influential Business Women in St. Louis.

Nancy has been a featured guest on Oprah, the Today Show, Fox News, CNN, CBS This Morning, and hundreds of other radio and TV programs worldwide. The author of eight books on customer service, and the spokesperson in the popular Telephone Doctor customer service training library, Nancy’s following is large and loyal. 

Her energy and theatrical background promise an entertaining and engaging program, as she shares how The Telephone Doctor came to be, and a wealth of ideas, skills, tips and techniques you’ll be able to use immediately and forever.

Session - Bobby Ahrens, Director of Partner Solutions, Soluta Health

What We've Got Here, Is a Failure to Adjudicate!  An Operational Discussion on the Processing of PBM Claims

Starting in the TPA business in 1987 in Austin as Director and Information Officer was responsible all technology aspects of the TPA applications, telecommunications and security systems for a New York Life TPA.

His experience in executive management roles includes: 
Executive Vice President El Dorado Computing, 
Director of Information Systems Boon-Chapman Administrators,  
Executive Vice President of Operations, Healthnow Administrative Services, a division Healthnow/BCBS of Western New York. 

He is currently working with SolutaHealth to assist third party administrators and carriers improving technologies, workflows and developing employer clinic partnerships. He holds a Management Information Systems/BBA degree from Texas State University.

Session - Jeff Walter of Professional Benefit Administrators

Disaster Recovery Planning: Security Breach

I have been with PBA since 1989 and have developed my knowledge of various computer systems to create as much customer friendly automation as possible.

Specialties:Project Management, Application Development, Team Leader, Implementation coordination

Session - Josh Sears, JD of Freestone Corporate Law

Bulldoggin' Beats Bull Ridin': Wrestling with ERISA's Legal Challenges & the Plans it Protects

Josh Sears is founder of Freestone Corporate Law, Chtd., based in Boise, Idaho.  Josh’s expertise includes ERISA, COBRA, HIPAA, and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. This expertise, and his enthusiasm for making the law accessible, has afforded Josh the opportunity to be a regular speaker for clients, industry and government groups, and community organizations on a variety of employee benefit and human resource topics.  Josh is licensed to practice in Idaho and Oregon.    

Session - Linda Myrick, CPC of United Claim Solutions

What You Need to Know About Correct Coding for 2015

Linda Myrick is a Certified Professional Coder. She has lived in Phoenix Arizona since 1970. Linda works at United Claim Solutions as the Director of Claims. In her role Linda manages the department responsible for reviewing all claims with potential for edits. Linda also provides all HIPAA Compliance training as well as information on all coding and editing changes for UCS staff.  Linda spends her free time volunteering with the Local AAPC Chapters by maintaining an office (i.e. 2014 President, 2013 Treasurer) and speaking at education seminars, as well as proctoring exams for future CPC professionals.    

Linda has spent 20+ years working with medical claims through insurance carriers.  Her responsibilities over the years have include management of staff within coding related roles to ensuring claims are processed correctly following national guidelines while saving companies the cost of overpaying for services provided. Linda is always working to increase her education; currently she is studying through AAPC to obtain a credential specific to inpatient coding. 

Session - Tim Callender of Ameriben

Common Causes of HIPAA Disclosures and Lessons Learned 

Tim serves as Corporate Counsel with AmeriBen in Boise, Idaho.  Prior to joining AmeriBen Tim spent many years in private practice in the Boise area, preceded by positions with the Boise City Attorney’s Office and the Idaho Industrial Commission.  Tim heads up AmeriBen’s legal and compliance efforts as well as overseeing AmeriBen’s Plan Document Department.  Tim is also AmeriBen’s HIPAA Privacy Officer.  

Tim received his undergraduate degree from the College of Idaho and his Juris Doctor degree from the University of San Diego School of Law.  Tim is licensed to practice law in the State of Idaho as well as before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.  Tim currently sits on the Idaho Immunization Assessment Fund’s Board of Directors.  


Session - Trina Rich and Jeanne Noe of htms, an Emdeon company

Managing projects in our changing, fast-paced, world

Trina Rich, a Senior Manager with HTMS, has over twenty (20) years’ experience in the healthcare industry.  She is a results-oriented professional with proven skills in project management, system implementations, quality assurance, change control, training, and business process alignment.  Ms. Rich has served as a Program Manager over multiple core system replacement implementations and as a Project Manager over various scales of projects.  She is a certified Project Management Professional through the Project Management Institute.

Jeanne Noe, a Consulting Director with HTMS, has more than twenty-five (25) years of experience in the healthcare industry, with extensive project management and leadership experience with managed service organizations, insurance companies and third party administrators. Ms. Noe’s areas of expertise include program and project management, operations management (Call Center, Claims, and Enrollment), business systems implementations, process improvement and re-engineering efforts, and account/product installation.  She is a certified Project Management Professional through the Project Management Institute.

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