We’re proud to feature a list of prominent speakers who are at the forefront of their fields. These professionals are always eager to share their knowledge and inspire like-minded enthusiasts. Read more about this year’s speakers below, and contact us if you would like to learn more information.
Nicole Thomas, RN, MSN, CCM, DNP(C)
Educator, Mentor, Nurse, Entrepreneur & Author are a few of the words to describe Nicole Thomas, RN, MSN, CCM, DNP(C) the founder of Nicole Thomas INC., a educational firm that provides education, tools, and resources to nurses, nurse practitioners, and allied healthcare professional who have a desire to take their career to a level that is beyond the confines and limits that have placed on them by society’s perception of what their respective role should be.
Nicole has lead in her roles as a leader, manager, associate director, and servant for various fortune 500 companies in the area of medical & clinical operations, teams of nurses, nurse practitioners, & allied health professionals that where challenged to go deeper into their “job” roles which resulted in 80% of her direct reporting staff expressing the desire to want to do more in their roles as a healthcare professionals and 65% accepting the challenge and put in the work under her guidance & leadership, which concluded with an end result of all personnel going on to successfully further their education in healthcare, advancing to other roles within their respective organizations, or opening their own businesses which range from community health centers, healthcare organizing firms, consulting firms, home health agencies, and more. She has consistently maintains a 98% success rate on her ability to lead a successful team of healthcare professionals in the areas of productivity, education, motivation, and empowerment which has afforded her the opportunity to be the recipient of the Super Hero award, a prestigious award in which over 1,500 were nominated but only 125 were selected.
In addition to being a Master’s prepared Registered Nurse & Certified Case Manager, Nicole utilizes her 11- years of leadership, healthcare expertise, clinical knowledge, and business acumen to provide healthcare consulting services through her company Impact Nurse Consulting . As an accomplished Nurse, healthcare professional, educator, & strategist, Nicole is known for her ability to help individuals reach their ordained level of success as healthcare professionals all while ensuring it aligns with THEIR purpose as a healthcare professional. She is the author of "In Health, On Purpose! Awakening Your True Calling In The Healthcare Profession" , a purpose guide for the healthcare professional. The strategies in this book have helped dozens of healthcare professionals change their mindsets, adjust their language and begin to identify, manifest and fulfill their purpose.
Duke started with an Associates Degree in Nursing From Goldfarb School of Nursing at Barnes-Jewish Hospital College in St. Louis, and finished her BSN at City University of New York- Hunter College. She completed her education with a Masters of Science in Nursing as an Adult Geriatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner from Columbia University in the City of New York.
Ms Duke has 15 years experience in Nursing, with the last 4 years spent working as a Board Certified Acute Care Nurse Practitioner specializing in Inpatient Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery in New York City at one of the Nation’s top hospitals, Mount Sinai Hospital.
In addition to her full time career as an NP, she also serves as a clinical preceptor to NYU ACNP graduate students, editorial contributor, motivational speaker, mentor, agency represented social media influencer, hosts the “Bad Decisions Podcast”, and is the founder of the “Duke It Up Event” which is an empowerment and mentoring workshop.
Katie is respected most for her authentic, raw transparency and relatable content focusing on motivation, lifestyle, and professional career insights and guidance.
In 2019, the Katie Duke + Cherokee Uniforms Collection launched; making it the first collaborative scrubs collection in the world between a medical apparel brand and a Nursing Professional. The collection is an affordable, functional, and all-inclusive size line of trendy and classic pieces for all healthcare providers.
Over the course of building her personal platform, she has worked with global brands such as Cherokee Uniforms, Laneige, Prudential Financial, Clinique, Magee Women’s Research Institute, Nestle Boost Nutrition, Match.com, Dentyne, Kaplan NCLEX Prep, Anisa Beauty, Panera, Jet.com, SoFi Financial, Littmann Stethoscopes, Swimsuits For All, Easy Spirit, Nurses Travel Network, and more. She has been featured in global women’s empowerment media campaigns alongside Ashley Graham, Brooke Shields, and Angela Simmons.
In addition to continuing her inpatient NP career, Katie Duke’s 2 year goals include authoring a book about embracing your bad decisions and mistakes as a stepping stone to success, expanding her motivational event series, growing her Collection with Cherokee Uniforms, and branching into lifestyle products to help the everyday professional woman find work + life balance.
Kay Epi Slane
Master of Ceremonies
Highway Hypodermics, LLC® is dedicated to providing quality and up to date information to travel nurses around the world to assist them in finding the adventure of a lifetime. As the longest running informational website for travel healthcare, run by a practicing travel nurse, it is our mission to bridge the gap between traveling nurses and travel nurse companies. Only by education on how to be a quality traveling nurse and how to be a quality traveler recruiting agency can we change the image of both sides.
Kay Slane, also known by her pen name “Epstein LaRue”, created Highway Hypodermics, LLC® in 2003 as a precursor to the book, Highway Hypodermics: Your Road Map to Travel Nursing. The website is intended to supplement the unparalleled information contained in the book and be a trusted resource for veteran travelers and newbies alike to help them discover the road to an adventure of a lifetime. Since releasing the first book and creating the Highway Hypodermics website, she has also released, Travel Nursing 2007, On The Road Again, Travel Nursing 2012, Travel Nursing 2015, and Travel Nursing 2017. All of the books since 2007 have continued to hang out on the Amazon best seller list for Medical Reference and Nursing Trends, Issues, and Roles.
Movers and Shakers
Joanie Reneer, COO, Medical Staffing Solutions
Breaking a Contract
Chief Operating Officer and co-owner of MSS, I have spent the last 13 years growing this wonderful business. As a Registered Nurse, I started my career in hospitals, working in Med/Surg, telemetry, ICU, and CVICU. Transitioning into homecare, I eventually opened and operated a Medicare Certified Home Health Agency and a Home Infusion Agency. In 2003, MSS became the next challenge for me and it was so cool to build it with another nurse who cares about our employees as much as I do.
Adam Gomez, COO, Moxie Mentoring
Adam began his career in the healthcare staffing industry nearly a decade ago, working in a dual role as a client manager and recruiter. Throughout his career, he has worked with peers and leadership to improve the experience of travelers and client facilities alike. His drive and passion to this end has not gone unnoticed. He is known as a thought leader by many in the industry, and is frequently consulted by senior leadership because he is solutions-oriented and has a panache for creative problem-solving.
Patty Hingst, RN, Adventures in RV Traveling
Travel RV and Housing
I am a travel ICU RN and my husband Bob Hingst, is a traveling recruiter for Atlas Medstaff We'd love to have you join the journey and contribute tips, advice and ask questions you might have about travel nursing and RVing and get viewpoints from both sides of the fence! This page is sponsored by Atlas Medstaff, travel nurse agency who are huge supporters of those of us who choose the RV lifestyle! However, there is no recruiting on this page! Recruiters are welcome on this page as long as they follow that rule. Let's get this show on the Road!
Pete Geldes, Atlas Medstaff Recruiter
Concealed Carry Info
Donna Robinson, Travel Tax
As a company, TravelTax prepares over 1000 tax returns a year, almost all by internet, email, fax, and phone. We also spend considerable effort and energy educating our clients so they understand the issues that pertain to tax homes, temporary contracts, reimbursements, and multi-state taxation
Michael Schlottman, Extended Stay America
Michael Schlottman has over 30 years of experience in the Hospitality industry. His expertise in lodging emphasizes in Operations, Sales and Partnering with the Healthcare Travelers and their Agencies to find the right fit among the lodging necessities. Michael has been with Extended Stay America for 10 years and his passion for the traveling and lodging industry shows in his relationship building and partnership mentality with the hotel sites, travelers and agencies alike.
Steven T Vaughan, CEO
SquadBuilders Medical Staffing
Technology for Travelers
Steve Ryan, President, Atlas Medstaff
Steve Ryan has been the owner/President of Atlas MedStaff for the last 4 years. He joined Atlas 5 years ago as a client manager and soon after was told the company would be closing its doors. After spending close to 13 years between two large staffing industry firms, he recognized an opportunity to do things differently: to treat everyone like one big family, both internal staff and travelers alike. So, he made the intimidating leap from employee to business owner. He prides himself on staying current and not losing track of what is going on in the industry. He does this by being a working leader who shares a cube with the rest of his staff on the floor.
Melanie Theriac, Medical Staffing Solutions
I am proud of what this company stands for. As an RN myself, it gives me such satisfaction to know that we are providing healthcare facilities with excellent clinicians to help with their shortage of healthcare staff. We do live by our Mission: "Healthcare with Purpose" by always placing the care we give patients as our number one priority. As the CEO and Managing Partner of Medical Staffing Solutions, the best part of my day is hearing the buzz of the growth in our office and knowing that we are employing hundreds of healthcare professionals.
Jack Swinney, CEO, Onestaff Medical
Joel Tremblay, President, Medical Solutions
Jake Brower, Atlas Medstaff
Jake Brower lives in Omaha, NE with his wife of 18 years, and three children. Jake has been a recruiter with Atlas Medstaff for a little over a year. His passion for seeing people realize their dreams and discover what they were made for has always been the engine that drove his life, and the travel nurse recruiter life is no different.
“I love watching people take risks, knowing it will be difficult, but also knowing it will be worth it. I love celebrating the wins, and being a source of encouragement in the midst of disappointment. So much of the travel journey finds nurses on both ends of this spectrum and it is my privilege and honor to walk that road with every nurse I come in contact with.” -Jake
Meghan Sullivan, Premier Medical Staffing
Meghan Sullivan was born & raised in sunny, SW Florida where she received her BA Degree from Ave Maria University. She has a strong passion in connecting the right nurses to the right assignments with a strong focus on Wisconsin and Illinois hospital needs. Meghan loves what she does because building relationships is something she prides herself in being able to successfully do, and what a better group of people to build relationships with than our nation’s healers – nurses! Outside of work, Meghan likes riding her bike to the gym, spending time with little ol’ Lacy, her dog, and volunteering at various non-profit events including Heroes for Healthcare.
Mike McQueen, Onestaff Medical
Jen Lyman, Medical Solutions