Schedule & Speakers

Annual Meeting Schedule & Speakers


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Speaker Bios and Titles

Lawrence E. Armstrong, Ph.D., FACSM

Dr. Armstrong is a Professor Emeritus, University of Connecticut, Human Performance Laboratory with joint appointments in the Nutritional Sciences and Physiology & Neurobiology departments. Dr. Armstrong is a Past President of the American College of Sports Medicine (2015 – 2016) and has authored/coauthored over 220 peer-reviewed scientific publications and 3 books in the fields of human hydration, thermoregulation, and performance in hot environments.
He is doing two presentations:

Topic #1: The Human Intestinal Microbiota Influences Health & Sports Performance
Topic #2: Individual Assessment of Hydration Status During Exercise and Daily Activities

Pat Davidson, Ph.D

Dr. Davidson is a coach, author, lecturer, former professor, and former strongman athlete. Pat received his Ph.D from Springfield College in 2009, was a professor at Brooklyn College and Springfield College, was the Director of Training and Education at Peak Performance, and is now an unaffiliated Ronin in the fitness and performance world.

Topic: The Future of Program Design: Moving Towards an Objective Biomechanics Based Model

Micah Drummond, PhD

Dr. Drummond completed a PhD in Exercise Science at Brigham Young University and afterwards a postdoctoral fellowship at University of Texas Medical Branch in skeletal muscle protein metabolism. Currently, he is an Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy & Athletic Training at the University of Utah with a research emphasis in skeletal muscle, aging and physical inactivity. The research projects within Dr. Drummond’s laboratory hold two general themes: 1) Understanding the cellular and molecular regulation of muscle mass and insulin sensitivity in healthy and physically inactive older adults and 2) utilization of therapeutic approaches (nutritional, exercise, pharmaceuticals) to slow muscle atrophy and metabolic dysfunction in older adults during physical inactivity. Topic: Muscle and metabolic decline with disuse in older adults: Mechanisms and countermeasures

Anna Hartman, AT, MS, ATC, CSCS(R), PMA-CPT(R) 

Anna Hartman is an Athletic Trainer with 16 years of experience working with athletes in the NFL, MLB, NBA, USTA, WTA, PGA, LPGA, NHL, MLS, and Olympics. Anna is also a PMA Certified Pilates Teacher, comprehensively trained in Polestar Pilates, has completed a 200hr Vinyasa Yoga training, and is a NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach. For the past 5 years Anna has been studying and practicing The Barral Institute’s Visceral, Neural, Vascular, and Articular Manipulation techniques for assessment and manual therapy as well as exploring the integration of osteopathic philosophies within her movement, rehabilitation and performance methods. As an athletic training professional, she’s presented at world-class conferences such as the National Athletic Trainers Association Annual Symposium, and has been featured in on big-name fitness sites such as USA Today Sports, Women’s Running and ESPN, just to name a few. Now, Anna is the Founder of MovementREV. At MovementREV Anna utilizes manual therapy and movement working with professional athletes to restore and revitalize their body in order to enhance their performance, decrease their injury potential, and create space in their body and mind. Anna also consults with various professional athletes during their season, traveling on a regular basis to keep them healthy, moving well, and performing at a high level. Previously, Anna was the Director of Performance Physical Therapy at EXOS (formerly Athletes’ Performance) where she worked for 11 years. When she’s not traveling, speaking, healing or teaching, you can find Anna close to the water with a margarita in-hand or taking even more movement and professional education classes. To find out more about Anna, go to

Topic: Sensory Integration and Biotensegrity- A whole organism approach to movement efficiency

Mike Howell

Yo! I’m Mike. I grew up a military brat, so short of the east coast, there aren’t too many places I haven’t lived. Most of my growing up went down in Oregon’s Willamette (Will-ah-met) Valley. In stereotypical Oregonian fashion, I met my spectacular wife in a coffee shop, and that led to our two chocolate labs and two boys-in that order.
After school, I accidentally became a collegiate strength & conditioning coach. Coaching at the high school and college level for almost a decade taught me that I love to coach and lead. I eventually opened my own gym and fell in love with all-things small business.
I dig a good challenge and problem solving which is why I love being a gym owner and coaching.

Topic: Managing Expectations and Leading Up: Doing Your Part to Bring Your A-Game Every Time

Michael J. Barber, MD, PhD, FACC, FHRS, FAHA.

Dr. Barber  is a board certified Internist, Cardiologist and Electrophysiologist, former managing partner of Colorado Springs Cardiologists, co-creator and founding member of the Vascular Center of Colorado (VCC) - a joint venture heart center in Colorado Springs, a member of the Board of Managers of the VCC and former Medical Director of this entity.  He currently is the Medical Director of Strata Integrated Wellness Spa in Colorado Springs. Dr. Barber received his A.B. in Biology from Wabash College where he was graduated cum laude. He went on to Loyola University of Chicago where he completed his PhD in Cardiovascular and Exercise Physiology. After graduate school, he attended the Indiana University School of Medicine where he performed four-years of post-doctoral research study while obtaining his M.D.  After graduation he performed his internship and residency at the University of Virginia Hospitals before completing clinical fellowships in Cardiology and Electrophysiology as well as a second post-doctoral research year at Duke University. He returned to the University of Virginia as an Assistant Professor of Medicine prior to moving to Colorado Springs to join Colorado Springs Cardiologists and establish the Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology Program.

Topic:  The Future of Medicine: The Roles of Non-Physicians in the Paradigm of Integrative Medicine  

Robert J. Confessore PhD, RCEP, CEP, EP-C, EIM3, FACSM

Dr. Confessore is a clinical exercise physiologist with almost 40 years of experience in the Exercise Science field. He began work at KRH SMFC in the fall of 2014. His previous position was lead clinical exercise physiologist of the University of Chicago Medicine’s Personal Health and Prevention program. Rob has held numerous professional positions including: Exercise Physiologist Cardio Fitness Corporation [New York City], Research Associate at Applied Research Associates [Fire, Police, Military Fitness] and Walter Reed Army Institute of Research; Professor/Program Coordinator Exercise Science within the NH Community College system; Founding Director Human Performance Laboratory Elliot Health System, Manchester NH; Senior Clinical Exercise Physiologist New England Heart Institute, Catholic Medical Center, Manchester NH. Dr. Confessore holds all ACSM Certifications within the clinical tract; is an ACSM Fellow; and former Legislative Committee Chairman of the Clinical Exercise Physiology Association. He takes great pride in a professional life dedicated toward helping others improve their health, fitness, and physical performance.

Topic: Cardiopulmonary Exercise Testing [CPET]- An Underutilized Powerful Clinical Tool

Aaron W. Harding, MS, RCEP, FAACVPR

Aaron is a clinical exercise physiologist and the supervisor of the cardiac rehabilitation program at the Oregon Heart and Vascular Institute at Sacred Heart Medical Center in Springfield, Oregon. He received his master’s degree in exercise physiology from the University of Oregon in 1993 and his bachelor’s degree in communication from Southern Oregon University in 1990. He has 24 years of experience working in the field of cardiovascular wellness and rehabilitation. Aaron served as president of the Oregon Society of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation in 2003, 2004 and 2005. He is a fellow of the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR) and a member the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM). He teaches a clinical ECG and exercise course for the Human Physiology Department at the University of Oregon and is the clinical advisor for the clinical exercise physiology program. Aaron is a past president of the Clinical Exercise Physiology Association.

Topic: Cardiopulmonary Exercise Testing [CPET]- An Underutilized Powerful Clinical Tool

Jim Davis, EdM, MA

Jim Davis graduated from Harvard University with a Master’s degree in Human Development and Psychology. He has previously earned degrees from Northwestern University and Knox College, where he is a now a member of the Athletic Hall of Fame. Jim is the Staff & Student Wellness Coordinator at New Trier High School, the Director of the Good Athlete Project (501c3), a former professional football player and current coach. He has presented all over the world, most recently at the NSCA National Convention, the SHAPE America National Convention, and the ASCA World Conference. His award winning writing has appeared in the Harvard Crimson, the Orlando Sentinel, and the Globe Post, among many other locations.

Topic: Eat, Move, Sleep: the Bedrock of Human Performance

Eli Lankford, PhD, FACSM

Dr. Eli Lankford is a professor at BYU-Idaho and owner of Outdoor and Fitness Research.  He currently sits on the scientific advisory board for Wilderness Athlete and directs internal research for several of the largest health and fitness companies.  He is an expert on fitness marketing research and federal trade commission compliance.  He specializes in working with companies in the outdoor, and health and fitness industry in creating research designed to bridge the gap between business marketing and academia.  In his free time he can be found traveling the world or spending time hunting and fishing in Alaska and the Rocky Mountains with his wife and four children.   

Topic: How to mix exercise science and business: what's missing?

Michael Lynch, MS, RDN, RCEP, CDE, CHWC

Michael is the Clinical Lead for the Nutrition and Diabetes Center in the Lifestyle Medicine program at UW Medicine/Valley Medical Center near Seattle, WA.  Michael is has served as Chair of the Registered Clinical Exercise Physiologist (RCEP) Committee of ACSM’s Committee of Certification and Registry Boards (CCRB) for the past three years.  Michael current serves on the Executive Committee of ACSM’s CCRB, and has accepted the position as Chair of the Clinical Exercise Physiology (CEP) Committee for ACSM for the next three years.  Michael is writes as a columnist for Diabetes Forecast writing for their “Ask the Expert” column, and Diabetic Living writing fitness articles and workout routines. Michael has been asked to serve on the Board of Advisors for Diabetic Living Magazine for 2019.  Michael served as a review for Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription (GTEP) 10.  He currently operates his private practice, Nutrition with Heart, in Edmonds, WA.

Michael has developed non-profit organizations benefiting children with diabetes.  He has also earned national awards in health promotion for his work with Spokane Public Schools Nutrition Services, and in dietary management for his innovation and leadership in Nutrition Services Management in diabetes camping.  He has facilitated the Bellingham Diabetes Support Group, and developed a fitness class specifically for people with diabetes through St. Joseph Hospital.  He has his Master’s Degree in Exercise Science from Western Washington University, and his credentialed as a Registered Clinical Exercise Physiologist with the American College of Sports Medicine.  After receiving his degree in Nutrition and Metabolism Michael taught as a Nutrition Educator for Washington State University.

Topic: Clinical Exercise Physiologist Profession, What’s in it for me? Current status and Future Opportunities

Andrew Mitchell, ACE, CSCS, EP-C, EXOS, FMS2, SFG2, PN1

Andrew is current trainer and Master Instructor for Equinox in San Francisco. I’ve been a trainer for 7 years now, with continuing education of myself and others being my greatest passion in the industry. I attended Elon University where I earned a BS in Exercise Science. I’m fortunate to have earned numerous certifications, such as ACSM EP-C, NSCA-CSCS, as well as FMS and Precision Nutrition.

Topic: MNR (Movement, Nutrition, Regeneration) Approach to Training and Coaching

John Quindry, PhD

Dr. Quindry earned a BS/MS in exercise physiology at Illinois State University, followed by a PhD in Biomedical Sciences from the Quillen College of Medicine at East Tennessee State University. Following an NIH funded postdoctoral fellowship in the Scott Powers’ lab at the University of Florida, he progressed through the academic ranks at Appalachian State University and then Auburn University. In 2016, Quindry transitioned his career and family to Missoula and the University of Montana where he is Department Chair. Throughout his career, Dr. Quindry’s research interest has focused on research questions related to exercise-cardiovascular disease-free radical biology. A variety of funding sources form NIH, non-profit foundations, and industry have supported both animal and human studies in the Quindry. Graduate protégé from the Quindry lab are now successful faculty members and physicians throughout the United States.

Topic: Bench to bedside to sideline: Animal models in exercise science


Brad currently serves as an Executive Director at Kalispell Regional Healthcare (KRHC)  in Kalispell, Montana where he oversees the Summit Medical Fitness Center, Westshore Medical Fitness Center, Polson Medical Fitness Center, Cardiac and Pulmonary Rehabilitation, Occupational Health, Employee Health, the KRH self-funded Worker’s Compensation program, Home Health, Hospice, Private Care, the KRMC IRB, and a number of other medical center clinical departments. Brad has served in the healthcare and fitness industries for over 40 years and has been employed at KRH since November of 1995, just prior to the opening of the Summit Medical Fitness Center.

Brad is an ACSM Fellow and currently serves as Editor-in-Chief of ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal, Chair of the Exercise is Medicine Credential Committee, member of the Exercise is Medicine Advisory Council, and a number of other committees and task forces. He was recently elected President-Elect for ACSM’s affiliate, the Clinical Exercise Physiology Association and is a past-president of NWACSM.

Additionally, Brad is a Fellow in the Medical Fitness Association and served on the Medical Fitness Association board from 2003 to 2012 and as board chair from 2009-2011. He served as editor for the Medical Fitness Association’s Standards & Guidelines for Medical Fitness Center Facilities (first and second editions), chaired the Fellowship Review Committee from 2013-2017 and currently services on the Facility Certification Committee. He was honored to receive the Distinguished Service Award from MFA in 1999 and as the Hank Boerner Pioneer Award recipient in 2014.

Topic: Clinical Exercise Physiologist Profession, What’s in it for me? Current status and Future Opportunities.

Ekaterina Urch, MD

Dr. Ekaterina Urch is a fellowship trained sports medicine physician with a passion for helping patients overcome injury to live an active and healthy life. From her experience as a collegiate volleyball player, she understands firsthand the frustration and stress that injury can cause. Dr. Urch treats patients of all ages with diverse orthopedic injuries. She specializes in injuries and conditions of the knee and shoulder, with a particular interest in women’s health and caring for female athletes and other active women.

Dr. Urch earned her medical degree at New York University where she graduated at the top of her class and was elected to the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society. She completed her orthopedic surgery residency training at the world-renowned Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City where she trained with some of the world’s leading orthopedic surgeons. 

During her time in New York, her athletic achievements were also recognized and she was inducted into the New York University Athletic Hall of Fame for captaining the women’s volleyball team and bringing it to national prominence.  She went on to complete a fellowship in sports medicine at the prestigious Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles. During her time in Los Angeles, she helped take care of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Los Angeles Kings, Anaheim Ducks, and served as a team physician for Loyola Marymount University. Dr. Urch is excited to continue her career alongside the team of passionate and driven physicians at The Center. On her first visit, Dr. Urch felt an immediate connection with the dynamic, outdoor-loving and friendly people of Central Oregon. She and her husband are excited to raise their family in this community. In her spare time, she enjoys snowboarding, running, hiking, and traveling with her husband and daughter.

Topic: Internal Bracing in the Knee: Rationale, Applications and Outcomes

Bret Contreras, PhD, CSCS

Bret Contreras has a PhD in Sports Science from AUT University and a CSCS with distinction from the NSCA. He is the owner of The Glute Lab in San Diego and the inventor of the barbell hip thrust.

Topic: Posterior Chain Training for Athletes

Steve Thompson, CSCS

Steve Thompson has spent 6 years as a goaltending coach for professional, college, and international teams. He currently serves as the goaltending coach from the US Womens National Team. Outside of coaching athletes, he puts a lot of time into running coaching education programs around the world for hockey coaches looking to better serve their goaltenders. 

Topic: Coaching the Modern Athlete: How technology is pioneering a new chapter in coaching and athletic development.