John specializes in labor market analytics, workforce and economic development, strategic workforce planning, comprehensive planning, and transportation and community planning. He received his education at the University of Idaho and holds master’s degrees in civil engineering (transportation planning) and regional planning (community economic development). He is also a certified Strategic Workforce Planner. John has served on the NAWDP Board since 2016 as the Director representing Region 10.
What is your vision for the workforce development profession?
Whether through educating, innovating, funding, brokering, convening, networking, or any other verb that gets the job done, workforce development professionals need to step up to the challenge of becoming regional leaders – at all levels of the profession. I believe that NAWDP has the opportunity to play a leading role in all of this. NAWDP can become for workforce development what IEDC has become for economic development - a trusted adviser, educator, and advocate to and for the profession.
Do you have a particular interest area or passion in workforce development?
Data is my passion. Particularly, leveraging labor market data to help connect job seekers, businesses, and educators. The profession has made great strides in utilizing LMI, but we still have a long way to go.
Why do you want to serve on the Board?
I have served on the Board since 2016 and am currently on the Executive Committee (Treasurer) and am the Chair of the Events Committee. I feel we have made great strides through the transition in hiring a new Executive Director/CEO and with our events - I look forward to continuing this work and pushing for even more improvement.
What do you think is the biggest challenge facing the profession today and how can NAWDP address that challenge?
The biggest challenge facing the professionals today is a problem that has been around for a while and also exists across economic development, higher education, and the private sector: How do we connect the people that want to work to the employers that want to hire them? There is a lot of ongoing talk about a skills gap in the U.S. and many people think this is a big reason why job seekers are struggling to find employment and why employers are struggling to find the talent they need.