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2017 Annual Convention Speakers
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Beth Brooks, CAE                          
National Association of Women in Construction

Beth Brooks, CAE, is a respected association executive, speaker and trainer.  Author of “The New CEO’s Guide” published by ASAE, she is the Executive Vice President of the National Association of Women in Construction.  

Brooks has spent her whole career in association management ., serving as CEO of the Texas Society of Association Executives, the Texas Pest Control       Association, and the Texas Dental Association.   She  lives in Austin, TX. 

Joey Comeaux                      
CoverSix Training Academy 

Joey Comeaux is the Founder and CEO of CoverSix Training Academy. He is a Louisiana native born into a military family that drove him to a career of saving lives. He has over eight years experience including Emergency Logistics Response, Law Enforcement and Active Shooter Response Training. He has worked on scene in every natural disaster in the United States and Haiti between 2007 and 2011. Through his years of disaster response and law enforcement, Comeaux saw firsthand the need to educate the law enforcement and general public community on active shooter training. With a lot of research and help from many people he decided to open CoverSix Training Academy to the public. CoverSix has currently trained over 5,000 people in three short years across several states. His mission for CoverSix is to help saves as many lives as possible through proper training. 


Ann Edelman                     
Zehnder Communications

For more than 30 years, Ann Edelman has helped clients strengthen and protect their corporate reputations through strategic public relations. In addition to on-point messaging, she specializes in building relationships with key audiences through customized approaches that integrate clients’ existing branding and marketing efforts.

Edelman’s clients represent a broad spectrum of  industries – workers’ comp insurance, large physician practices, banking, oil and gas, hospice care, quick-service restaurants, non-profits and tourism, among numerous others. She also has experience on both sides of the media desk. Edelman spent several years as operations manager for a top-rated news-talk radio station and knows firsthand the news media’s needs and expectations.

A veteran of political campaigning, the proving ground for crisis communications, Edelman’s clients have sought her expertise in responding to tough-news scenarios like workplace accidents, government regulatory violations, wrongdoing by company executives, homicide and criminal cases, along with high-profile litigation. Her work has      included crisis communications involving an NFL franchise, NBC’s cancelled coverage of the 2015 Miss USA Pageant and fallout from major disasters like Hurricane Katrina and the 2010 BP oil spill.

Edelman holds bachelor and master degrees. Her many industry honors include national promotion awards on behalf of Pepsi-Cola USA.

Jim Engster, Journalist
Radio Network

Jim Engster is a lifelong Louisiana Broadcaster. From his days at LSU through the present, Jim has been a reporter, observer and commentator on the events that have shaped Louisiana. His experience includes time as the News Director at the Louisiana Radio Network and host of the statewide talk show “Louisiana Live” for six years. He has hosted an award winning show on WRKF, the public station in Baton Rouge, for the past eleven years.

A graduate of LSU’sof Journalism, Engster was inducted into theof Fame in 2012. He is the President of the Louisiana Radio Network, the Baton Rouge Press Club and the National Association of State Radio Networks.

In addition, Engster appears regularly as a political analyst for WAFB-Channel 9 in Baton Rouge. He was named Communicator of the Year in 2008 by the Public Relations Association of Louisiana.


Norman Morris, CAE, RCA                          
Louisiana REALTORS®

Norman Morris is a native of   Shreveport, Louisiana. He received his undergraduate degree from    Louisiana Tech University and his MBA from Southeastern Louisiana University.  Morris has been active in the political arena and has conducted fundraising campaigns and political support for candidates and non-profit companies such as the Republican Party of Louisiana and the Muscular Dystrophy Association.  Morris has over twenty - two years of experience in the trade association arena. Morris also holds the Certified Association Executive Designation from the American Society of Association Executives and the REALTOR® Association Certified Executive from the National Association of REALTORS®.

Morris presently serves as Chief Executive Officer and Chief Lobbyist for the Louisiana REALTORS®.  In this capacity, Morris coordinates and staffs the overall  operation and management of the Louisiana REALTORS® and manages the Political Action Committees of the Association.  

Morris is married to Sheri Marcus Morris of Metairie and has a fifteen year old daughter.

Buck Vandersteen, CAE                  
Louisiana Forestry Association 

Buck Vandersteen is the Executive  Director of the Louisiana Forestry Association, a private trade association representing landowners, loggers, and the forest industry. Vandersteen is responsible for public relations, governmental affairs, membership development and education, as well as promoting the practice of sustainable forestry in Louisiana.  


 Vandersteen received a Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry from the University of Massachusetts and a Master in Business Administration from Louisiana Tech University.  He is also a graduate of the Institute of Organizational Management in non-profit management through the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and a graduate of the LSU Agricultural Center’s Agricultural Leadership Program.  Vandersteen is involved in the forest products industry in various capacities, including growing, harvesting, and using forest resources. He has served with the Peace Corps in Liberia, West Africa, as an  advisor to that government in forestry-related matters. Vandersteen received the Distinguished Service to Forestry Award in 1996 from the Louisiana Society of American Foresters and became a Fellow in the Society of American Foresters in 2004. In 2005, he was awarded an Honorary State FFA Degree in the Louisiana FFA Association and Honorary Membership in the LSU Forestry, Wildlife, and Fisheries Alumni  Association. In 2008 he was awarded Member of the Year by the Louisiana Society of Association Executives. In 2013 he received the Presidential Award for Leadership by the Louisiana Society of American Foresters. He was inducted into the Louisiana Agricultural Hall of Distinction in 2017.

Beth Ziesenis                                                   
Your Nerdy Best Friend

Although the only real trophy she ever won was for making perfect French fries at McDonald’s in high school, Beth Ziesenis has been featured on Best Speaker lists by Meetings & Conventions magazine and MeetingsNet.


Since her first Commodore 64 computer, Beth Z has made a verb out of the word nerd. She helps computer users all over the country filter through thousands of apps, gadgets, widgets and doodads to find the perfect free and bargain technology tools for business and personal use through presentations and her books, including the latest title, Your Nerdy Best Friend’s The Big Book of Apps, available on

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