Leading Projects Through Rock Bottom

Presented by Brian Turner


Rock Bottom, the place where projects stall and fail can also be a place of opportunity and creativity. The Halo Effect is the basic human tendency to make inferences based on general impressions. We are quick to blame failing projects on poor leadership, bad requirements and ineffective project management.

 But project performance is inherently relative. Many highly effective leaders making the right decisions with the right controls still find their projects at Rock Bottom. The key ingredients are: understanding what got you there; taking a big picture view of how to move forward; and architecting a multi-threaded solution that positions the project for success. 

 This presentation provides leaders with a decision making framework to understand the dynamics of projects as they land at Rock Bottom, a framework on how executives make decisions to move forward, and strategies for leading the executive and a troubled project team forward towards a successful conclusion.

PDU # C331_011910

Project Management at the End of Age of Silos

Presented by Dave McComb, PMP



Dave McComb, PMP is the President of Semantic Arts, Inc., a consulting company specializing in helping clients plan and implement modern software infrastructures and migrate to Service Oriented Architectures.  He has 30 years of experience in designing, building, and managing enterprise level applications.  He is the author of Semantics in Business Systems and a frequent lecturer and magazine contributor.

“We've come to an interesting inflection point for information systems.  For the last several decades we've managed software projects by managing their scope.  And we've mostly managed their scope by reducing their size.  The direct result of this has been that most large organizations have created hundreds of silos of information and functionality.

This trend has run to its logical conclusion.  In his presentation, Dave discussed why this trend has ended, what replaces it and focused on how Project Managers can update their skills and approaches to participate in this new world.

Dave McComb, PMP


PDU # C331_021610

Pragmatic Project Management: Five Scalable Steps to Success

Presented by Dave Pratt, PMP


Project Services, an IT project management consulting firm. He has more than 20 years’ experience managing projects of all types and sizes in both the public and private sectors. He currently teaches project management at the South Puget Sound Community College in Lacey, Washington, where he helped design the project management certificate program. 

 One size does not fit all in project management. Selecting an approach that is appropriate for the size and complexity of a project is essential to achieving success. Over-managing a small project can bog it down in bureaucracy, while a laid-back approach can lead to disaster on a complex project.

 Pragmatic Project Management: Five Scalable Steps to Success, guides you in selecting the methodologies and tools that enable you to expend minimum effort to achieve maximum gain on your project.

 PDU # C331_031610

Hood Canal Bridge Replacement & Retrofit Project

Presented by: Dave Ziegler, PE and Jeffrey D. Cook, PE

hood canalDave Ziegler, P.E. has worked for the Washington State Department of Transportation for over thirty years with the last eighteen years being involved in project management. His work has taken him through many different disciplines in WSDOT from design team leader, construction inspector and field engineer to Assistant Project Engineer in a Design Office and Project Engineer in a Construction Office. His most recent position as the Principal Engineer on the Hood Canal bridge replacement project was one of the most challenging projects he has faced in his career.

Jeffrey D. Cook, P.E. currently serves as the WSDOT Project Engineer on theHood Canal Replacement and Retrofit Project. He has worked for WSDOT for nearly 10 years beginning as an entry level roadway inspector and advancing in the department through various design and construction offices. For the last two years he has also been working intensively in the development and implementation of the WSDOT Project Management and Reporting Systems (PMRS); an effort to standardize the project management tools and methodologies used throughout WSDOT in the delivery of projects.

Dave and Jeff presented how the construction project delivery changed once the artifacts were discovered in Port Angeles and why a new team were formed to deliver the project. They also spoke about the planning and communication challenges associated with the six‐week closure and float‐in of the new bridge.


 PDU # C331_042010

Everest – Extreme Project Management and Team Decision Making on the World’s Highest Mountain

Presented by: Steve Giesecke, PMP


Steve Giesecke, PMP, Olympia PMI chapter member, will describe his 2007 ascent of Mt Everest as one segment of his project to climb the world’s Seven Summits.  He will highlight the aspects of project planning, team organization and synchronization, identify risks and mitigation strategies, discuss contractor procurement criteria and performance measurement, present logistical challenges encountered and relate other “extreme project management characteristics” against a backdrop of pushing personal and team limits past previously set benchmarks.  

Steve is a health services IT consultant with extensive experience in health care information system project management, compliance, privacy and security consulting. He is a former deputy CIO of the Military Health System, based out of the Pentagon, and in a previous life, commanded military medical facilities, including a MASH hospital in Korea.  He earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Duke University and holds an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.   
Steve has two more of the Seven Summits to climb:  Mt Vinson, Antarctica; and Carstensz Pyramid in Indonesia.

PDU # C331_051810

Special Meeting Celebration – PMI Olympia’s 5 Year Anniversary

Key Note Speaker:  Motivational Business Entertainment presented by Grammy Nominated Singer/Song Writer Karen Taylor-Good

Karen Taylor-Good, from Nashville, Tennessee, is an Author, Business Woman, Speaker, Award-Winning Singer/Songwriter with a powerful, life affirming presentation blending wisdom, humor and music.  As a professional speaker, she enhances her keynote presentations with a unique speaking style and powerful songs which never fail to inspire, motive and uplift her audiences.  

 As a Philanthropist, Karen donated her time and talent to ‘The Planet Earth Project.’ The song (which she recorded in seven different languages) was set to footage furnished by NASA, and won anInternational Video Award. This program will inspire, motivate and energize your conference attendees with Karen’s delightful blend of music, humor and story-telling.  

 As a songwriter, she has had numerous international radio hits, with songs recorded by such artists as Collin Raye, Melissa Manchester, Al Jarreau, Patty Loveless & Laura Branigan. She has garnered several ‘Songwriter of the Year’ awards. Karen writes powerful songs about issues that most writers would not even attempt to address.  As a vocal artist, she has recorded with such notable performers as Dolly Parton, Al Green, Willie Nelson, Kenny Rogers & George Jones. As a solo artist, she has had nine nationally-charted singles.

Effective Project Sponsorship - A Collaborative Journey

 Presented by: Vicki James, PMP

Effective Project Sponsorship – A Collaborative Journey: Sponsorship can make or break a project and the Project Manager has a responsibility to support effective sponsorship. This presentation will explore what project sponsorship is, how to increase commitment of the project sponsor, project management duties in supporting project sponsorship, and the role of project steering committees.  Please extend an invitation for this event to your project sponsors so that you can together explore each of these roles and how they complement and support each other.  Participants will be led through an interactive discussion to fully explore the nature of the relationship, their roles in supporting a project, and strategies for success. 

Vicki James, PMP began her career in project development in 1999 as a Product Manager at the Office of Financial Management (OFM) working on the Budget and Allotment Support Systems. Vicki received her Bachelor’s in Liberal Arts from the Evergreen State College in 2002 and went on to achieve her PMP in 2005. She was then promoted to Project Manager where she was successful in delivering varied projects, from infrastructure to web applications.  She provided a significant contribution to the establishment of the OFM PMO Office by drafting processes and implementing collaboration tools. 

Vicki previously held volunteer positions including Chair of the Interagency Committee of State Employed Women and Vice President of Marketing for the PMI Olympia Chapter.  Most recently Vicki left public service to begin Project Management consulting with Professional Project Services to broaden her experience in order to gain and share best practices across organizations.

PDU # C331_092110


Turnaround of the OMNI Project

Presented by: Kit Bail, CIO for the DOC and BJ Bard

Turnaround of the Omni Project: This presentation will focus on the “turnaround of the OMNI Project”.    The OMNI project   began in late 1999 with the charter to replace the Department of Corrections legacy offender management system. Over the subsequent 5 years it became one of the state’s seriously “troubled” IT development projects. The presentation will describe the steps the Department took from 2006 forward, to turn this troubled project into a successful one. We will also discuss what we believe were the critical strategies used to ensure a successful new system implementation.
Kit Bail is the Chief Information Officer for the Department of Corrections. Kit came to IT from the business / operations side of DOC where she held various operational management positions. Kit moved into IT as the Business lead for the OMNI Project in January of 2006. Before her tenure with the Department of Corrections, Kit was the Chair of the State Parole Board for approximately 15 years.
BJ Bard is a Sierra Systems Consulting Director who has over twenty years experience in Project Management, Governance, Organizational Change Management and Business Transformation.  She has supported clients in establishing Project Management Offices and advised clients on large scale enterprise-wide projects.
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PDU # C331_101910


 The Project Mindset

Presented by: Barry Otterholt, CMC, PMP 

Northwestern University 

We've always known we were different, but not really sure how. Our sponsors call on us when there's a challenge, but not necessarily because we know their business. Our functional peers look at us and ask why we like this work with all the stress surrounding it, and our answer seldom sways them. Our family asks us to explain our work, and our answer doesn't remove the glazed look in their eyes. And when we look in the mirror, we're not really sure ourselves what makes us gravitate to projects. It's just a mindset, and we can't shake it. The Project Mindset provides a light-hearted look at ourselves as project managers and helps us sort it all out.

Barry Otterholt, CMC, PMP has been meddling in project management for 25 years. His experience spans the public, private, and not-for-profit sectors. Mr. Otterholt is best known for his recovery of struggling projects. He teaches project management at Northwest University and does a bit of therapeutic writing on the subject which can be viewed at www.stoufferco.blogspot.com.

PDU # C331_111610