2018 Board of Directors 


  Deb Howard

Deb has managed a Level 1 Research University Training and Organizational Development organization and led Organizational Development Division efforts for a Fortune 500 company.  She is also the Principal for Connect Solutions.

She has extensive knowledge and experience in the areas of adult learning, experiential learning, leadership development and change management.  Deb has business experience in manufacturing, high tech, and higher education. She has held various leadership and management roles in IT, Human Resources and Organizational Effectiveness and Change Management.

Deb earned her B.B.A. in Management and an M.S. in Organizational Development and Change Management. Her professional certifications include Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) and Society for Human Resource Management Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP).

Deb has served on the board of the New Mexico Association for Talent Development in various roles.  She has served on the board for American Business Women’s Association in various roles including Chapter President and has served as an HRMA Conference Committee chair. She is a member of The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the College & University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA).


  Past President

  Sara Sanasac

Sara Sanasac obtained her Master’s degree in 2016 from the Organization, Information, and Learning Sciences program at the University of New Mexico.

She received her B.B.A. in Organizational Management from UNM in 2005. Sara has a diverse background working in performance improvement, organizational development, training, and instructional design.

Sara has worked with the Pueblo of Laguna, Lovelace Health Systems, U.S. Coast Guard, Transportation Security Administration (TSA), Indian Health Services (IHS), and the Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM Resources).

She was on the team who was awarded the 2016 International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI) Award of Excellence for Outstanding Human Performance Intervention for its customer experience project. She currently works for Presbyterian Healthcare Services as an Organizational Development Consultant.

Sara also facilitates for the National Issues Forums.


  Vice President of Programs

  Leah Kier

Leah Kier is a Learning and Performance Expert with over 20 years of experience as a training manager, instructional systems designer, instructor, and facilitator.

She previously worked as a Senior Training Manager at the University of New Mexico, Division of Continuing Education, where she created customized training programs.

She has managed, designed, developed, delivered, and evaluated hundreds of training courses and programs for government and business clients on a local, state, and national level.

Leah has a Master’s degree in organizational learning and instructional technology from the University of New Mexico, and a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management. Leah has served on the board of the New Mexico Chapter of ATD for 13 years.


  Vice President of Finance

  Shanika Ricks‚Äč

Shanika Ricks is the Training Program Coordinator at Nusenda Credit Union. 

She is the Learning Management System administrator and coordinates logistics for all in-house training programs, classes, and requests. 

She works closely with management on leadership development efforts and monitors all contract training efforts. Shanika received her Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting from the University of New Mexico in 2014.

She has worked as a tutor at UNM and has management experience from previous roles.


  Co-Vice President of Membership

  Laura Suazo

Laura is a CAD Specialist in the Advanced Technologies support group at Bohannan Huston, with over 29 years of support experience in virtually every aspect of land development, engineering and surveying consulting. 

Laura earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Technology and Training from University New Mexico, and holds an AAS in Computer Aided Drafting. 
Laura leads the BH CAD Users Group and is an active member and officer of Journal Center Toastmasters.  In addition to her responsibilities for Help Desk support to the BHI technical staff, CAD standards implementation, data management, and production workflows for CAD and GIS applications,

Laura is the technical lead for the BH Institute, Bohannan Huston’s internal workforce development initiative, and coordinates all aspects of technical learning solutions for the BH technical staff.


  Co-Vice President of Membership

  Julie Fisher

Julie Fisher is the Assistant Vice President of Training and Employee Development at Nusenda Credit Union, managing the organization’s technical, soft-skill and leadership training efforts. 

Her prior experience includes contributing to the development and facilitation of successful collegiate onboarding efforts, supervisor training, strengths-based leadership training, a college wellness program, teaching various business communication classes and technical trainings. 

She is skillfully able to align professional development with organizational goals while motivating employees to challenge themselves and exceed performance expectations.  Julie ensures training and classroom participants improve their knowledge, skills and abilities while knowing their input and voice is valued.   

She has a Master’s Degree in Communication Studies from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and had an excerpt of her thesis published in the Communications Journal.


  Vice President of Technology
  Felipe Amaral

Felipe Amaral is an accomplished Instructional Designer and Web Master with an outstanding performance history in the fields of technology, education and training.

He has two Master of Arts degrees from the University of New Mexico (UNM): Organizational Learning and Instructional Technology (with Distinction) and Spanish and Portuguese.

His research focuses on e-Learning, Multimedia Design, Instructional Design, Computer Mediated Intercultural Communication, Second Language Acquisition, and the role of technological advances in the social framework of today’s world.

He currently works at Project ECHO, part of the UNM School of Medicine as a Training & Development Consultant, where he plans, designs, and coordinates the delivery of training in a variety of formats including face-to-face and online. He uses multimedia technologies and tools to develop educational videos, fact sheets, educational websites, and presentations.


    Vice President of 
  Communications & Marketing
  Greg Casaus

Greg Casaus brings over 20 years of experience in many facets of change and transition management, training and organizational development. He has worked in manufacturing, higher education, and healthcare, and has just embarked upon a new path in software implementation consulting. 

A native New Mexican, Greg demonstrates a passion for servicing and supporting his community, having served on numerous school district committees and judging science fairs at local elementary, middle, and high schools.

Greg earned his Associates degree in engineering from UNM, his BS in business management from University of Phoenix, and his MA in Organizational Design and Effectiveness from the Fielding Graduate Institute.

  Vice President of Operations

  Charles Hinson


As a seasoned Learning, Performance and Organizational Development leader, Charles’ diverse background includes more than 20 years experience as a global learning and development executive, IT QA/Testing manager, business technology consultant, instructional designer, instructor, and facilitator.

As Global Head of Training for a leading financial services firm in New York, he built the learning infrastructure for and led a team of learning & development professionals responsible for global deployment of learning initiatives.

Prior to that, he led the IT QA/Testing Team at a major insurance carrier managing quality assurance and testing across multiple software applications.

Currently, he is Organizational & Professional Development Specialist at University of New Mexico Hospitals aligned with patient safety and quality of care initiatives.

Charles has a B.S. in Business Management, a certificate in Adult Learning from Teacher’s College, Columbia University of New York and is working toward a master’s degree in Organization, Information and Learning Sciences (OILS) at the University of New Mexico.

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ATD New Mexico

1112 San Pedro Drive NE #235

Albuquerque, NM  87110

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