PENworks 2019

PENworks 2019 Annual Conference

May 2-3, 2019
Mystic Lake Conference Center
Prior Lake, MN

Don't miss this powerful event!

Experience the region’s largest, most powerful conference focused on continuous improvement and organizational excellence!

Hear what others have to say about the value of PENworks 2019!


  • Learn best practices that facilitate continuous improvement and performance excellence from dozens of local, regional, and national speakers!

  • Network with hundreds of other leaders & professionals who are passionate about improving themselves, their organizations, and their communities.

  • This year's conference them focuses on best practices for engaging and empowering people -- workers, customers, and partners -- to achieve ever-improving results.


Jenn LimJenn Lim

Jenn Lim is the CEO and CHO (Chief Happiness Officer) of Delivering Happiness (DH), a company she and Tony Hsieh (CEO of co-founded to inspire science-based happiness, passion and purpose at work, home and in everyday life.

Jenn was a consultant with Zappos in its start-up days since 2003, and helped to shape it into the multi-billion dollar business it is today. She was the co-creator and chief editor of the Zappos Culture Book, an embodiment of how companies can use company culture as a way to increase productivity and profitability.

Jenn’s experience with Zappos, combined with her development of scientific frameworks for workplace happiness, created the evidence that happier employees = happier customers = successful companies (and meaningful lives).  Jenn has traveled to over 30 countries to speak on this equation and most importantly, share the practical ways of HOW this equation works. Jenn has been featured in several TED Talks.

Jenn will explore how we can better inspire people, organizations, and communities so that we can change the world.

Stevie RayJeff Brown

Jeff Brown inspires happiness in the personal and professional lives of leaders -- and we're all leaders of somebody or something!  As the "Chief Happiness Yoda" at Experience Happiness, Jeff guides his team to create a competitive advantage for businesses through happiness.  The Happiness Practice (THP) is an evidence-based mental health solution and a life-transforming and sustainable practice that mitigates and prevents stress and fear, while increasing happiness, mindfulness, and performance.  THP empowers leaders to champion and cultivate individual and organizational happiness, while measuring Return On Happiness (ROH) tied to key performance measures.  Jeff will share THP at PENworks, helping us all to be happier as individuals and more effective as leaders.

Jeff has spent his career starting and leading businesses, after first working at Apple in that company's early years.  At Apple, Jeff lead the team focused on setting a culture of innovation (the rest, as they say, is history!).  From his experience at Apple, Nike, Google, and other cutting edge companies, he’s been labeled a thought leader in customer satisfaction, helping to create market-leading strategies and cultures. 

"Visionary," "optimistic," "innovative," and "experienced" describe his presentation style.  Now in his "refinement years," he’s a frequent speaker on happiness, building an innovative workplace culture, and knowing your why.  He explores why the happiest employees in the world create the happiest customers in the world, and how the leadership style in business directly impacts performance positively as well as fostering trust, creativity and engagement.  Jeff's interactive talk will help you understand the value of you and your community -- and that being happy is how we are meant to be!  We're thrilled to have his energy and insights to close Day 1 of PENworks 2019!


Stevie RayStevie Ray

Stevie Ray is Executive Director of Stevie Ray's Improv Company and is a master at taking good and making it excellent. He has spent the last thirty years helping individuals and teams reach the next stage of their development. He is like no other speaker you have ever heard. Rather than lecture or flip through PowerPoint slides, he will engage us at PENworks with interactive exercises designed to help leaders improve their effectiveness, professionals reach the next stage in their development, teams reach their next stage of teamwork, and organizations reach their next stage of performance.

Stevie will close PENworks by focusing on how important people are to achieving excellence.  His talk will:

  • Explore the elements of an effective team, to help your working groups work better and enjoy each other in the process
  • Help leaders learn what really makes your employees tick so you can inspire them to deliver their best
  • Share the link between engaged employees and engaged customers, exploring how organizations can achieve both

Stevie is a successful keynote speaker, corporate trainer, entertainer, talented writer, lucky husband, and worn-out stepdad. He is equal parts entertainer and educator.  In addition to his role at Stevie Ray’s Improv Company, he is a professional member of the National Speakers Association and has been a nationally recognized speaker and corporate trainer for over thirty years. An author of ten books on a variety of subjects, he has also been published in over a dozen national publications and is a nationally syndicated columnist for the Business Journal newspapers, writing for the publication since 1997.  Stevie's full bio is here.


Featuring Plenary Keynotes from Four Baldrige Winners

Hear powerful case studies of how these organizations reached true levels of performance excellence – methods and best practices that can help drive results for your organization!

Sue Dunn


Sue Dunn

President & CEO
Donor Alliance


Lindel Fields


Lindel Fields

Superintendent & CEO
Tri County Tech



C. Richard Panico


C. Richard Panico

President & CEO
Integrated Project Management Co.



Kathy Raethel


Kathy Raethel

Adventist Health Castle



Mystic Lake Conference Center

New location, new energy, same valuable content!  PEN is excited to announce that we're moving PENworks to a world class conference facility: the Mystic Lake Conference Center in Prior Lake, MN.

Start Your PENworks Experience Now

View the full conference schedule, presentation overviews, speaker bios, exhibitors/sponsors, AND start connecting with other conference attendees!

Click here to ----> View full conference details on CrowdCompass

You can also download the app onto any device:

Step 1: Search for "CrowdCompass" in your app store
Step 2: Once the app is installed, within CrowdCompass search for the event "penworks2019"

New in 2019: Peer-to-Peer Sharing & Networking Formats!

PENworks 2019 will feature shorter breakout sessions, followed by structured (and some unstructured) peer-to-peer knowledge sharing -- helping attendees translate the new methods learned into their own organization's circumstances and learn from each other in the room! 

Unique to PENworks, this should help you reflect, absorb, and take action on new ideas and benefit from all the knowledge in the room!

"PENworks is one of the best conferences I've attended in 30 years!

-- Marvin Plakut, CEO, Episcopal Homes of MN, St. Paul


"PENworks is an absolute must for those driving improvement in their organizations.  The caliber of learning opportunities is outstanding, and the atmosphere is energized by a netwrk of leaders eager to share their best practices." -- Michael Ganer, Olmsted County, Rochester


"PENworks allows me to peer inside regional and national organizations who are leaders in their industry and learn from their best practices." -- Philip Zeccardi, Children’s Hospitals and Clinics, Minneapolis



"I always look forward to the PENworks as a way to learn more about what's possible.  I have gained valuable nuggets that I have been able to take back and apply immediately to my team's work.  Content is timely, relevant, and can be used across multiple industries.  Well worth the time!" -- LaToya Bell, University of MN, Minneapolis


"This is one of the most affordable, high value conferences I've ever attended." -- Pam Helgeson-Britton, former Vice President, Strategy, Performance System and Process Excellence, Essentia Health, Duluth

PENworks 2019 Pricing

Conference rates start at $450. Early Bird, Member, and Group (5+) discounts available.

Full pricing listed on registration page:

CEU and Clock Hours Available for attendance (including 10.25 hours approved by Board of Examiners for Nursing Home Administrators)


Don’t miss this incredible event!

Learn best practices in achieving – and sustaining – outstanding results!

Improve yourself; improve your team; improve your organization; improve your community!!

Thank you to our PENworks sponsors!

For information on sponsorship or exhibiting, please contact

Hotel Reservations 

PEN has arranged a special conference rate of $122/night at the Mystic Lake Hotel.  You may call directly at 952-445-9000 or 800-262-7799, and mention the PENworks 2019 conference to get the special rate.  Alternatively, you can register online by clicking here.  Consider coming a day early or staying a day later and enjoy the casino, world class golf, or entertainment -- make PENworks an experience!