Coconino County

Local Workforce Board Roster and Organizational Chart


    Bruce Sobczak, Chair

    SOBO Associates LLC

    I grew up in suburbs outside a mid-western city and pursued a career in the machining trades. After completing an apprenticeship, I relocated to Orange County, California where I found incredibly diverse communities. Working in factories and attending classes at local community colleges I learned about many cultural differences in the countless ethnicities of my new colleagues, friends, and associates. As globalization dramatically changed the dynamics of business, I found myself leading operations in across the US, Asia, Europe, and Mexico. The first international location I was given responsibility for was production and customer service support based in Singapore. My diverse engineering group was now engaged with the culturally diverse melting pot of Singapore. I gained additional experience in Virginia working with the Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission (TRRC) where I gained valuable insights into the diverse needs of rural communities vs. urban communities while implementing advanced manufacturing training centers and economic incubators. The Virginia Tobacco region is made up of over 40 counties across most of southern and southwestern Virginia. Many of the counties have the highest unemployment rate and lowest per capita income in the US. In contrast, Northern Virginia and the Hampton Roads areas have some of the lowest unemployment and highest per capita incomes in the US. My work with the TRRC also gave me the opportunity to work with Virginia Department of Veterans Services (DVS) and Virginia Values Veterans (V3) where I developed training programs for veterans and transitioning military. I helped leverage this population as a unique resource for employees with superior soft skills which are greatly in demand with employers. I found the military to be a multicultural blend of people into one larger unique culture. Having never served in the military, I am grateful to have had this experience of working with this special population.

  • Heather

    Heather Bachicha

    Workforce Supervisor, Arizona Department of Economic (WIOA Title III Employment Services)

    Working at Arizona@Work for almost 2 years, I have been successfully helping clients looking to return to work. We host workshops to assist with resume writing, combining forces with out Business Service Team with hiring events and job fairs. We work with many local businesses to find quality job referrals and new career pathways. Working with many Veterans on overcoming many barriers is a huge drive for me.

  • Gail Jackson

    Gail Jackson, Vice Chair

    President/CEO, ECoNA

    Bringing forward highly motivated individuals from all across the region makes for hearing different perspectives. It is an opportunity for us all to listen and learn more about the different cultures and experiences. I get the pleasure of hearing these varying perspectives through the various committees we have through ECoNA; Business Retention & Expansion, Workforce Development, Business Attraction, our Board and Employer Workforce Housing Committee.

  • Valerie Kelly

    Rehabilitation Services Supervisor, Arizona Department of Economic Security Vocational Rehabilitation (WIOA Title IV Rehabilitation Services)

    I provide oversight to the local Flagstaff and Page DERS offices. I have been hiring skilled counselors to assist people with disability to identify employment goals, assist them with training or education needed to achieve that goal.

  • Armando Bernasconi, Secretary

    CEO, Quality Connections, Inc.

    The last 20 years we have spent developing Quality Connections as a Community Rehab Program. In that time, we have helped over 2,000 people in Coconino County become more independent through training programs. Workforce development is what we do. Quality Connections currently supplies over 400 customers mostly in Coconino County with all their office supply needs. These customers are employers that hire our clients. Our relationship with community employers and our partnership with the State is our most important asset that can assist the Coconino Workforce Development Board in achieving the desired outcomes.

  • Julie Pastrick

    CEO/President, Greater Flagstaff Chamber of Commerce

  • Beth Caplan

    Business Owner, Performance Staffing

  • Sipe photo

    Brenda Sipe, Ed.D.

    Associate Vice President for the Office of Workforce Development at Northern Arizona University

    Brenda Sipe brings 23 years of experience in higher education and workforce development to her role as Associate Vice President for the Office of Workforce Development at Northern Arizona University. In addition to her leadership roles, she taught courses at several colleges and universities and published articles on the topics of student success, organizational culture, and innovation. Dr. Sipe is passionate about access and success for adult learners through workforce development, and about launching both for credit and non-credit opportunities. Her expertise in the advancement of business partnerships and strategic planning allows her to effectively lead the Office of Workforce Development at NAU.

  • Judy Franz

    Judy Franz

    Executive Director, Ambassador Guides Lake Powell Stripper Fishing

    As Executive Director of the Page Lake Powell Chamber of Commerce, I bring consistent connections and interactions with the Business Community in the Page and Northern Region of Coconino County.  The Business newsletter provides information on opportunities for career paths with classes from Coconino Community College and/or NAU that are being offered.  The Chamber shares with all our members updated information and opportunities as they occur.  The Chamber works closely with City of Page, Gregg Martinez – Economic Development Coordinator and together we explore opportunities that will be of value to our Business Community.

  • Geoffory D. Lloyd

    Production Supervisor, Nestle Purina

    Not specifically on any named state, or local boards but my experience has brough me a wealth of knowledge. I attended NAU elementary through grade 2, Marshall grade 3-6, Flagstaff Jr. High grade 7-9, Flagstaff High school 10-12. Worked at Western Truss 1993 - 2010 starting in production and working my way up to plant manager. TagWorks 2010 - 2012 part of a team for startup of a pet ID tag company as Production Manager, working on tag creation and laser engraving kiosk build that we rolled out to all PetSmart locations in the US. At Tagworks I created all Safety, QA and production SOP's. With TagWorks I was required at corporate PetSmart meeting, vendor site visits and store installations. 2012 to present working as a Production Supervisor at Nestle Purina in Flagstaff. As part of the Purina local leadership team, I am involved with Safety Team, HAZMAT Team, Food Safety Team, Quality Assurance Team. I lead a group of 15 direct reports and am responsible for the safety, quality and production of the team and driving for improvement daily.

  • Seth Gregar

    United Flagstaff Firefighters Union Local #1505

    Being involved with United Flagstaff Firefighters union, Local 1505, we are always trying to find the best quality workers and career paths for people. We put people in the right positions to help facilitate these paths. Many of these people do the job because they want us to succeed as a group, many times not being paid for it. I have been fortunate to have been taught by many leaders with experience and have challenged me to do better. I have gained an extreme amount of knowledge working with city groups and leadership and how the city runs. I have also been a part of the hiring process for our Fire Department and have been tasked with the job of finding the right people based on how they do during this process. I believe my line of work brings a different perspective to the Coconino Workforce Development Board.

  • Brent Neilson

    Brent Neilson

    Superintendent, Coconino Association for Vocation, Industry & Technology

    CAVIAT works with Coconino County High School students to pursue industry recognized certification. We work with 16 career pathways and multiple programs, countywide, to provide skills training, industry certification and work-based learning opportunities. Additionally, CAVIAT works at the state, county, and local level to ensure industry needs are being meet through training and certification programs. CAVIAT also funds the Career and Technical Training in Coconino County and monitors county programming, so it is imperative CAVIAT understand and help promote the direction the Coconino Workforce Development Board.

  • Donavon Wiedmann

    Senior Program Manager, Coconino Community College (WIOA Title II Adult Education)

    To the Coconino Workforce Development Board, I bring perspective and the lived experience of someone who grew up as a minority, in a low-income family from rural Coconino County. I have also been fortunate to have lived and worked throughout America and in Japan. I come from similar demographics as many of the people the Coconino Workforce Development Board endeavors to serve, including having shared a similar reality that our immigrant population experiences, immersed in a language and culture that is foreign. 
    Through my work in adult education, I have strived to educate those from diverse demographics and backgrounds about the programs and services that are available to them. In my recent work, I have focused efforts on improving service delivery to Native American communities, including our recent expansion to the Village of Supai. In matters of diversity, however, it is important continue to ask questions, strive for understanding and be inclusive of the needs of people unlike myself. This is critical in delivering our services to diverse populations. In sum, I offer a unique perspective to Coconino Workforce Development Board and a sustained effort to ensure the activities of the board are inclusive of our community’s needs.

  • John Saltonstall

    Economic Development Director, Coconino County

    The creation of roadmaps to productivity for the local and regional population has been a focus of mine for Coconino County. Productivity is a key component to individual and community health. Providing roadmaps to career opportunities across the spectrum of workforce opportunities will enable the current and future workforce pipelines to have tangible and realistic maps to their productivity potential. I continue to think creatively and strategically to identify opportunities to build, enhance, and leverage relationships that deliver results for our regional community. The development through community partnerships of Internship Network, Career and College Readiness Team, Law Enforcement Initiative, Industrial Technologies Summits, and community network mapping are a few examples of such abilities.

  • Kay Leum

    Kay Leum

    Executive Director of Extended Learning, Coconino Community College Page Campus

    Providing workforce development and education is a part of my job description with Coconino Community College!  Through my over 30 years in higher education, primarily at community colleges in rural areas, I have worked with faculty, staff, employers, and partners to identify and develop education and training that effectively meet the needs of our communities.  A bonus is the constant interaction and collaboration with other colleges and universities to enhance educational opportunities.