Keynote Speakers


Gary McLean

Gary N. McLean was born in 1942 and grew up in London, Ontario, Canada. He graduated from Graceland College in pre-commerce in 1961, the University of Western Ontario in 1964 (Honors B.A. in business administration and secretarial studies), Teachers College, Columbia University in business education (M.A., 1965; Ed.D., 1971), and United Theological Seminary in New Brighton, MN, in 1983 (M.Div.). Prior to his current position, Gary taught at Quinsigamond Community College in Worcester, MA; worked in the Research and Evaluation Office of the City University of New York; was an instructor and acting department head in Business Education at Teachers College, Columbia University; and Professor and Coordinator, Human Resource Development and Adult Education, and Morse Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professor, Work and Human Resource Education, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN, for 39 years and is now a Professor Emeritus. He also served for five years as Senior Professor and Executive Director of International HRD Programs at Texas A&M University in College Station, TX.

He has been a visiting professor in many universities around the world, teaching regularly in Thailand, France, and Mexico. Gary teaches courses in organization development, international human resource development, mergers and acquisitions, and research. For 16 years, he taught regularly in the HRD master’s program in Saudi Arabia

He is a frequent speaker and has written over 400 publications and 22 textbooks. He was a co-editor of Practicing Organization Development, 1st Ed. (a best-seller in the U.S. and translated into Mandarin Chinese) and is author of Organization Development: Principles, Processes, Performance (2006), recipient of AHRD’s R. Wayne Pace Book of the Year Award for 2006. He is a past editor for Human Resource Development Quarterly, past general editor for Human Resource Development International, and past North American editor for the Journal of Transnational Management Development; currently, he serves as consulting editor (and previous executive editor) for the Journal of Education for Business, consulting editor for Adult Education Quarterly, associate editor for NIDA’s HRD Journal in Thailand, and editorial board member for Human Resource Development Review and member of the management board for Human Resource Development International, as well as serving as an editorial board member for several journals located internationally. He served as President for the Academy of Human Resource Development (AHRD) and as President for the International Management Development Association (IMDA). Under his leadership, AHRD now has an annual Asian conference, cooperates in co-sponsoring with UFHRD an annual European conference, and in 2009 will cooperate with Golden Trust Consulting in Bahrain to offer a Middle East and Northern Africa (MENA) conference, in addition to the conference held in the Americas. He is also providing leadership in developing National HRD world-wide.

He has been an independent consultant, primarily in international HRD, training, organization development, strategic planning, and quality transformation, for 42 years, serving as principal consultant with ECCO (Effecting Creative Change in Organizations) Consulting and now McLean Global Consulting as one of three partners. He was one of two consultants who began the quality journey with Zytec, 1991 winner of the Malcolm Baldrige and Minnesota Quality Awards. He is also one of five owners of HRConnection, headquartered in Minneapolis, MN.

He has worked as a consultant, taught, and done research in over 45 countries, including India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Korea, Jamaica, The Bahamas, Japan, Poland, Nicaragua, France, People’s Republic of China, Kenya, Nigeria, Venezuela, Thailand, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Belarus, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Taiwan, The Netherlands, Kyrgyzstan, and Morocco, in addition to Puerto Rico. He was the lead in a funded three-and-a-half-year State Department grant for Educational Leadership in Kyrgyzstan.

He has received numerous recognitions for his teaching, research, and service, including induction into the International Adult and Continuing Education Hall of Fame (2006) and the Academy of HRD’s Scholar Hall of Fame (2007), Outstanding Scholar by the Academy of HRD (1997), Honorary Life Member in Delta Pi Epsilon (1996), Honorary Life Member in the Minnesota Chapter of the Organization Development Network (1995), and recipient of numerous “best paper” and teaching awards, along with supervision of numerous students who have received “best dissertation” and “best paper” awards. In January, 2010, he received an honorary Ph.D. in HRD from the National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA) in Bangkok, Thailand, bestowed by the Crown Princess of Thailand.


Mesut Akdere

Mesut Akdere is an Associate Professor at the Department of Administrative Leadership at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He has received his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota in Human Resource Development with a minor in Human Resources and Industrial Relations. His research focuses on quality management, leadership, and performance improvement through training and organization development. He conducts research both in the US and internationally. He has published in Training & Development, Human Resources, Organization Development, and Education journals. He teaches graduate courses in Human Resource Development, Training & Development, Organization Development, Strategic Planning, and Leadership. Currently, Dr. Akdere is serving as the member of the Board of Directors of the Academy of Human Resource Development and as the member of the several editorial boards including, Journal of Knowledge Economy and Knowledge Management, Advances in Developing Human Resources, The European of Journal Training & Development, The International Journal for Responsible Employment Practices and Principles, and Eurasian Business Review. He is also an affiliated faculty of the Master of Human Resources and Labor Relations Program and the Master of Science in Nonprofit Management and Leadership at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.  He has served as an Examiner for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality award program as well as a reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. He has also served as a consultant in several international companies and organizations around the world.