vision 2020 Conference Speakers



Dave Thompson, APR has spent the past 16 years responding to daily crises for the Oregon Department of Transportation, including winter storms, road-closing crashes, landslides, mudflows and now, a total solar eclipse. He is currently the Public Affairs Program Manager, overseeing ODOT’s spokespersons spread around the state.

Dave spent 20 years in broadcast news working as science reporter, business reporter, producer and anchor. His reporting took him to Bosnia during the 1990s war and to Romania after the overthrow of Ceauşescu.

Dave earned a B.A. in Mathematics from the University of Colorado and an M.Sc. in Computer Science from the University of Toronto, Canada. He earned his Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) in 2009.



Les Kodlick is a corporate communications consultant serving clients in a variety of industries.

Before private consulting, the general served in the Air Force for almost 30 years, retiring from the Pentagon as the Director of Public Affairs. He was the service’s top spokesman, responsible for the Air Force’s entire communication operation, and led a career field of 5,500 Airmen and civilians.

A leader in strategic communication, planning, and executive training, he has successfully led organizations, businesses and corporations through product launches, branding initiatives, budgetary challenges, natural disasters, environmental issues and major crises.

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Lisa Jones has a B.A. in Communications from the University of Colorado and offers a broad PR background, and extensive media relationships to assist her clients in telling their stories and reaching their target audiences.

Lisa is also an adjunct faculty member at Flathead Valley Community College (FVCC) where she provides customized training for businesses in conjunction with FVCC’s Workforce Training Center.

Her crisis communications experience has spanned decades, having received the Montana Governor’s Award for “Partnership of the Year” for her leadership with the 2003 Wildfire Media Relations Task Force. 

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Marlene graduated from the country’s premier ad school, the ArtCenter College of Design, in Pasadena. She then rose up the ranks of several agencies in Los Angeles, working on accounts from NEC Electronics to Tag Heuer watches.

When Montana called, she joined Spiker Communications as Senior Art Director and was a driving force behind the agency’s work for clients such as St. Patrick Hospital, First Security Bank and The Stock Farm. After more than a decade as an employee, Marlene spread her wings and launched Hutchins FreeRange Creative, where she hatches focused strategies and creative, campaign-worthy ideas for her clients.

Clients who work with Marlene, in a one-on-one process, gain an understanding of “why” their brand exists. We identify your customers/consumers/users. This strategic focus results in clear communication of your “why” to your audience. Discovering your “why” is essential to customer resonance, loyalty, and your brand’s growth.

Marlene’s work has appeared in the CLIO awards, the Lulu awards, and the Addys (Montana and Northwest). Her award-winning brand-focused materials range from website design and development, to print and broadcast production, including the supervision of budgets and the creation of bulletproof, drum-tight artwork. In her few off hours, Marlene plays guitar and belts the blues with an ever-growing group of local and nationally known musicians.

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Jason Mudd is an Emmy Award-winning, PRWeek “Rising Star," accredited public relations practitioner, speaker, author, and entrepreneur.

He is a trusted adviser and dynamic strategist for some of America’s most admired brands. Since 1994, he's worked with American Airlines, Budweiser, Dave & Buster’s, H&R Block, Hilton, HP, Miller Lite, New York Life, Pizza Hut, Southern Comfort, and Verizon.

He founded Axia in July 2002. And when he's not doing PR, he's playing trivia with his wife, tolerating his teenagers, and working on his stand-up material.


Christina ragsdale

Named the Public Relations Society of America's (California Capital Chapter) "Influencer of the Year" in 2015, Christina Ragsdale has a long record of achieving client goals in all aspects of public relations, marketing communications, strategic planning and organizational communications and development including conflict resolution, issues management and partnership-building.

She has launched or restructured communications programs in a variety of large organizations including; hospitals/healthcare, municipal services and utilities, water, transportation, environment and local government.

Her work has been recognized with numerous local, regional and national awards for achievements in organizational development and cultural change, strategic planning, internet/intranet sites and social media, media relations, crisis and emergency communication, print and online publications, video programs (for clients including NASA and Intel) and special events.

For more than a decade, Ragsdale led the Communications Office of the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District, a national leader in air quality and climate programs. She now serves consulting clients in the government, environmental, utilities, healthcare and professional services sectors. As of January 2017, she is also affiliated with Hermocillo Azevedo Strategic Communications.