2023 Emerging Training Leader Winners

Training magazine announces the 25 winners of its 2023 Emerging Training Leaders Awards.


Lorri Freifeld


Minneapolis (September 1, 2023)Training magazine named the winners of its 2023 Emerging Training Leaders awards, recognizing 25 learning and development (L&D) professionals who empowered and engaged their organizations with exceptional leadership, business acumen, and game-changing training. The winners have been in the industry for two to 10 years and have demonstrated stellar leadership skills, teambuilding, strategic thinking, and training instincts.

These professionals will be profiled in the March 2024 issue of Training magazine and online at www.trainingmag.com. They also will be honored at an awards ceremony on February 27, 2024, at Disney World’s Coronado Springs Resort during the Training 2024 Conference & Expo in Orlando, FL.

All Emerging Training Leader candidates had to be nominated by co-workers or industry peers. Training Editorial Advisory Board members and the editor/publisher judged the 71 nominations and chose the 25 winners based on the following factors:

  • Has been in the training industry for a minimum of two years but no more than 10 years
  • Took on at least one new responsibility in the last year
  • Successfully led a large-scale training/learning and development initiative within the last year that required management/leadership of a group of people and resulted in the achievement of a business/business unit goal (with results provided for Kirkpatrick Levels 3 and 4)
  • Demonstrates specific leadership qualities
  • Has the potential to lead the Training or L&D function at an organization in the next one to 10 years

In addition, Training created an “Emerging Training Leaders to Watch” list, which features five up-and-coming professionals who didn’t receive an award this year, but who are well on their way to becoming future Emerging Training Leaders.

The judges included:

Diane August, Chief Learning Architect, Nationwide

Gabe Berezin, Learning Project Specialist, Americas Learning, EY

Brent Bloom, President, Consulting Service Solutions inc

Douglas Bryant, VP, Training Sonic Automotive

Alison Bundgaard, AVP, Training, United Wholesale Mortgage

Tina Claure, Senior Learning Strategist and Curriculum Manager, Booz Allen Hamilton

Judy Claybrook, Senior Manager, Training and Development, Dollar General Corporation

Jessica Edgerton, VP, Operations/Corporate Counsel, Leading Real Estate Companies of the World

Genevieve Forosisky, Lead Learning and Development Specialist, Deloitte Services LP

Daniel J. Goepp, Managing Director, Learning & Development, PwC

Vicente Gonzalez, CLO/Director, Enterprise L&D, Lockheed Martin Corporation

Bruce I. Jones, former Senior Cast Development and QA Director, Disney Institute

Rhonda Lewis, HR, Training, OD, Safety/Risk Management Officer, Birmingham Water Works Board

Meredith Maples, Senior Director, Training, Keller Williams University, Keller Williams Realty, Inc.

Michael Orth, Senior Director, KPMG Business School – U.S.

Robin Renschen, Director, Learning and Development, McCarthy Building Companies, Inc.

Catherine Rickelman, former Manager, IBM Learning

Debra Ross, AVP, Learning & Development, BNSF Railway

Ross Tartell, former Manager, Learning & Development – North America, GE Capital Real Estate

Lou Tedrick, Vice President, Global Learning & Development, Verizon

Lorri Freifeld, Editor/Publisher, Training magazine

“The 2023 Emerging Training Leaders are passionate champions of learning and development as they help lead their organizations to success,” says Lorri Freifeld, editor/publisher of Training magazine. “In the last year, they willingly shouldered new responsibilities; unflinchingly met challenges; spearheaded creative solutions; and inspired their learners, direct reports, teammates, and colleagues to new heights. We are proud to recognize these leaders and their tremendous accomplishments.”

Training magazine’s 2023 Emerging Training Leaders are:


Katey Fabian, Learning & Development Supervisor, Medical Solutions

Kyle LeHew, Associate Director, Global Learning & Development, Verizon

Paula Miller, Consultant, Interactive Designer and Developer, Nationwide Insurance

Kara Peeler, Senior Manager, Training Development, Appian

Jiao Zou, Senior Manager of Learning and Development, PwC


2023 20 WINNERS

Valdeta Ademoski, Training & Development Coordinator, Weston Forest Products Inc

Liezelle Agustin, Senior Learning Specialist, PPD, part of Thermo Fisher Scientific

Nate Becker, Training and Development Specialist, Intek Plastics

Elizabeth Blanchette, Instructional Designer, AAA Northeast

Becky Burke, VP, Learning & Strategic Development, BankWest, Inc.

Jane Crowe, Team Lead, Senior Enablement Manager, SAP Concur

Kelly Dickens, Senior Instructional Designer, CNO Financial

Audrey Erker, Corporate Trainer, Nelnet

Amanda Hallock, Senior Learning Specialist, PPD, part of Thermo Fisher Scientific

Dekel Levinson, Senior Corporate Trainer, KLA Corporation

Matt Manzer, Senior Manager, Learning Operations, KLA Corporation

Andrew McCallister, Learning Experience Designer, National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)

Jamie McKinney, President, JMD Consulting, DBA Speak Up, Sister!

Tanya Misajlovski, Regional Learning and Development Manager, Brose North America, Inc.

Damarshall Nickerson, Talent & Development Advisor, Gainwell Technologies

Ken Ortiz, Manager, Learning Technologies, KPMG

Bob Pantalone, Director, Sales Enablement, Hayes Locums

Robert Roberts, Manager, GM Talent, AutoNation

Jessica Sieminski, Director, Learning & Performance, Nationwide Financial

Marie Corchado-Stewart, Director, Standards, Training and EEDI, AbbVie Inc.



Matthew Becton, Senior Manager, Learning & Development, Verizon

Amanda Fullbright, Senior Vice President, Learning and Performance Development, Blue Sprig Pediatrics

Jamie Hill, Senior Program Manager, Talent Development, Booz Allen Hamilton

Tiaja Sabrie, National Sea Logistics Trainer, Kuehne + Nagel

Karin Springer, Learning and Development Manager, Huntington Bank


About Training magazine

Training is a 59-year-old professional development magazine written for training, Human Resources and business management professionals in all industries that advocate training and workforce development as a business tool. Trainingalso produces world-class conferences, expositions, and digital products that focus on job-related, employer-sponsored training and education in the working world. Training is published by Lakewood Media Group.

Lorri Freifeld
Lorri Freifeld is the editor/publisher of Training magazine. She writes on a number of topics, including talent management, training technology, and leadership development. She spearheads two awards programs: the Training APEX Awards and Emerging Training Leaders. A writer/editor for the last 30 years, she has held editing positions at a variety of publications and holds a Master’s degree in journalism from New York University.