Sponsorships        Spouse and Guest Program


AIMR-2017-theme-v3Check out the line-up of experts from the 45th Annual Conference in Seattle, Washington USA (October 17 – 20, 2017).





The Game-Winning 3 

Presenter: Dave Davlin

Wednesday, October 18th, 8:00am – 9:00 am

Success can be defined in its simplest form as making life better for someone else. Whether it comes in creating a better product, helping to relieve someone’s stress or pain, bringing someone laughter or joy or helping someone get more out of their life, success is always about serving.

This being the case, the key to success in any business lies not only in the development of great products and services, but more importantly in the development of great people. In this insightful presentation, Dave Davlin shares three essential ingredients for developing a purpose-driven mentality to achieve a fulfilling career and balanced life.

This presentation is an hour of interaction, humor, audience participation mixed with a powerful message. It is a roller coaster ride of emotion that will find the audience engaged in hilarious laughter one moment and brought to tears the next.

The audience will be challenged to make the most of every moment in order to develop themselves personally and professionally while creating value and making a difference in the lives of others.

About the PresenterDave Davlin Headshots Oct 2014

Over 25 years ago, Dave Davlin began bringing smiles to faces with a form of entertainment he developed as a young boy. From NBA and major college arenas across America to the Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea— and even to the world-famous Branson Strip— “Travelin” Davlin has entertained people of every age and background. His amazing ability with basketballs even landed his name and picture in the 1990 Guinness Book of World Records.

Dave began to hone his speaking skills in the early 90’s as a national speaker in the public schools across America. Combining his entertainment ability with a powerful message, he was instrumental in the fight for education and against drugs. At the advice of friends working in corporate America, Dave began to develop presentations for the corporate and association market and the rest is history. He now speaks at numerous corporate and association conferences each year. From public school students to CEOs, Dave’s message has made a difference in the lives of thousands, and his impact continues to grow each year as he shares his philosophy and wisdom through speaking and writing.


The Science of Selling

Wednesday, October 18th 9:30am – 10:00 am

Presenter: Robb Best, Elkay Manufacturing

Robb’s Science of Selling presentation focuses on critical sales methodologies and skills that change behavior, improve performance, and drive results. You’ll learn how using neuroscience can set you apart from your competition and take you to a higher level of productivity,­ personally and professionally. Discover how brain science can be applied to all aspects of your job.

About the Presenter

Robb Best, CKD, a highly sought after speaker in the U.S. and abroad, is the Senior ROBB BEST WALLET SZ - revAdvisor of Cognitive Strategy for Elkay Corporation. He is a 30-year industry veteran, at one time leading the largest independent kitchen and plumbing distributorship in thenation. He’s designed and remodeled over 50 showrooms and won numerous national sales and design awards.

Robb excels where most presenters fall short; actually teaching how to acquire and implement new skills. His seminars, delivered in his inimitably entertaining style, apply the latest research in neuroscience to all phases of the kitchen and bath business, from artistic design to effective representation and salesmanship.

His current blog, MindframeWithRobb, is regularly read in 14 countries. His new book,
Brain Apps; Hacking Neuroscience to Get There, is coming out in late 2017. In addition to being an author and lecturer Robb is an accomplished musician. He lives in the Minneapolis area with his wife, Mary.

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Evolving with e-Commerce

Wednesday, October 18th, 10:30am – 11:45am


Colin Puckett, Senior Marketing Manager – Amazon Business Marketplace

About the Presenter

Colin Puckett is the Head of Seller Marketing for Amazon Business, responsible for helping prospective, new and existing sellers take advantage of the growing suite of tools and sales opportunities stemming from Amazon’s expansion into B2B. He leads the strategic direction of all associated marketing channels, and is especially focused on increasing program awareness through field marketing and events. Prior to joining Amazon, Colin spent over a decade in the industrial manufacturing and distribution spaces, most recently in the global marine power generation sector.

About the Presenter

Photo_Colin Puckett_Amazon - CopyColin Puckett is the Head of Seller Marketing for Amazon Business, responsible for helping prospective, new and existing sellers take advantage of the growing suite of tools and sales opportunities stemming from Amazon’s expansion into B2B. He leads the strategic direction of all associated marketing channels, and is especially focused on increasing program awareness through field marketing and events. Prior to joining Amazon, Colin spent over a decade in the industrial manufacturing and distribution spaces, most recently in the global marine power generation sector.

Amazon logo

ROUNDTABLE: R.A.M – Rep & Manufacturer

Wednesday, October 18th, 1:00pm – 3:30pm

Moderator: TBA

 AIM/R Comedy Lounge

Wednesday, October 18th, 7:30pm – 8:30pm 

Immediately following the Reception, Dinner, and Awards Program

husband. dad. idiot.

Comedian: Don Friesen

His kids think he’s fun. His wife thinks he’s an idiot. Audiences think he’s hilarious!

Don is a modern suburban dad just trying to raise his kids and get through the day with a bit of money in the bank and a scrap of dignity intact. With a unique style that can best be described as frenetic and engaging, Don captures the irony of parenting, marriage and everyday absurdities through characters, voices, parodies and some of the best written routines around. He’s a wanna-be geek who constantly upgrades to the latest technology, but can never get it to work, leading to signature bits about tech support, Idiots Guides, texting and passwords.

Friesen has recently taken his smart, savvy, and highly-caffeinated comedy to the stage at the Alex Theatre in Glendale, CA, for the taping of his new Showtime one-hour special titled “Ask Your Mom.” In his first nationally released concert special, Don delivers a winnng hour of clever, true-to-life “he’s talking about my family up there” comedy that manages to be adult-smart yet family-friendly.


Leading in 2017 and Beyond…

Presenter: Sandra Long, Achievements Through Coaching

Thursday, October 19th, 8:15am – 9:30am

With over 25 years of experience working with Fortune 500 companies, Sandra Long specializes in organizational leadership, executive coaching and human resources. In addition, together with her husband she owned a highly successful Wholesale distribution company in Southern California.    Utilizing her education and experience, Sandra has provided insight019 to help organizations by developing talent to meet the demands of an ever-changing business landscape.

Driven by her passion to impact business results through effective leadership development, Sandra launched Achievements Through Coaching in 2010. She continues to help individuals and organizations succeed by creating a customized approach for solving unique business challenges. She is certified to administer many behavioural and personality assessment tools, and is able to incorporate these tools into her practice as a means for helping individuals and organizations gain deeper insight and self-awareness.

Sandra Long is a graduate of Arizona State University, where she earned her B.S. in Business Administration.  She is a certified executive coach and certified change management practitioner.  Additionally, she has served on the Board of Directors for charitable organizations which focus on empowering women and men at risk to confidently re-enter the workforce.


Fundamentals for Healthy Rep-Principal Relationships

Moderator: TBA


Stew Chaffee, President, Rich-Tomkins Co., Inc.

Bill Freeman, Spirit Group, Inc.

Tim Morales, Tim Morales & Associates, Inc.

Thursday, October 19th, 10:00am – 11:15am

This session’s goal is to raise awareness among AIM/R members of how important honest, candid communication is to a solid start when being hired, and later to strengthening relationships with manufacturers who employ us.   It will tackle some of the important (and more challenging) issues from which we might “shy away”.    In an interactive session with reps in the room, we hope to draw out time-tested ideas and strategies that can help each of us understand and sell our value more effectively, to build mutual respect and understanding, not just for our benefit, but also for our principals to whom we owe so much.

About the Panelists

With a degrePHOTO_Bill_Freeman_FullSizeRendere in Business Administration and a background in residential construction, Bill Freeman entered the manufacturer’s representative business over 35 years ago.  He and his wife Sheree founded Spirit Group, Inc. in 1994. He obtained his CPMR in 2001, and today is Spirit Group’s CEO (Chief Entertainment Officer), working closely for his two oldest sons.


Tim Morales, President, Tim Morales & Associates

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The Morales Family has served as Independent Manufacturer’s Representatives since 1957 when Tim’s parents, Grace and Joe Morales founded the J.H. Morales Sales Company in Nashville, TN. After their retirement in 1997 Tim founded his own agency.  Today TMI covers the Gulf Coast states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and the Florida Panhandle. The company is head quartered in Mobile, AL from which they provide a full range of customer service support activities; as well as, logistics for various industry partners. In addition to his industry duties, Morales is active in the local community volunteering with the Boy Scouts of America, Ronald McDonald Charities and other organizations.

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Knowing Your Business Facts

Moderator: Tobi Gibson, TM Sales and LOT/T Representative


Rick Banner, Keyline Sales, Inc.

Kelly Michel, Michel Sales Agency

Thursday, October 19th, 1:00pm – 2:00pm

About the Panelists

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Rick Banner was president of Keyline Sales, Inc., a premier manufacturer’s representative agency in Southern California, from 1999 through 2016, and recently entered a “semi-retired” phase in his career in the plumbing industry which began in 1974.

Rick has served AIM/R as a board member, president and chairman, and is one of AIMR’s first graduates of the Certified Professional Manufacturers Representative (CPMR) program. Having graduated from the CPMR program in 1998, Rick continues to be an outspoken advocate of the program’s merits and continued significance in creating a high level of distinction for accredited representatives.


Kelly Michel is a third-generation of the Michel Sales Agency, located in St. Paul, Minnesota. Currently, the company is into the 4th generation, with three of Kelly’s sons in the business. Michel Sales was founded in 1932 by Clarence Michel and he was joined by Chuck Michel after WWII.

Chuck Michel was one of the founders of AIM/R and served as its 3rd President, in 1977-78. Kelly joined the business after graduating from the University of St. Thomas in the spring of 1973. Graduation on Saturday and a road trip to Nebraska with Dad on Monday. As an active member and supporter of AIM/R, Kelly served as President in 1992-93. Currently, Michel Sales covers 4 Midwestern states and the UP of Michigan. Kelly and Mary have six children. Put them all through college and married off five. Eleven grandchildren continue to keep them busy and broke.


How Great Leaders Think: Inside the Minds of the Best 

Presenter, Dave Mitchell, the Leadership Difference 

(Author of Live and Learn or Die Stupid)

Thursday, October 19th, 2:00pm – 3:00pmDave with Book

Leadership is hard.  Even the best leaders can struggle and there are few resources to help them.  For years, Dave Mitchell has worked with companies all over the world to enhance their leadership.  This experience is the foundation for this incredible exploration of leadership best practices.

  • What are the personal characteristics of the best leaders?
  • What are the origins of personal accountability and can they be instilled in people after they reach adulthood?
  • How do you create a work environment that inspires all kinds of people to be committed to high performance?
  • How do you resolve conflict with colleagues, employees and even customers and keep these relationships healthy?

You will find out the answers to all these questions at How Great Leaders Think.

About the Presenter

Dave Mitchell is the Founder and President of the Leadership Difference, Inc.  Over the last 20 years he has worked with over 500 organizations worldwide including Allstate Insurance, AT&T, Bank of America, Hilton Hotels, Trek Bikes and Electrolux Appliances.  His unique style of combining rich, practical content with laugh out loud humor has made him a popular and unparalleled educator.  He has a M.Ed. in Global Human Resources Development from the University of Illinois where he also has served as an adjunct faculty member.

Dave was named Best Speaker of the Year at the 2013 World Education Congress in Las Vegas. In 2015, Meetings and Conventions Magazine named Dave to their short list of Best Speakers in the World.  Dave is also an advanced certified wine sommelier through the International Wine Guild. He is the author of two books, The Power of Understanding People (an Amazon Editor’s Choice for Best Business Book) and Live and Learn…or Die Stupid!  Dave lives in the Walla Walla Valley wine country with his wife Lori, three horses, two dogs and two barn cats Socks and Stinkerbell.


Rep Information System Exchange (R.I.S.E.)

Friday, October 20th, 8:15am – 10:30am

Moderator: TBA


Ready or Not, It’s Showtime!

Presenter: Bill Stainton

Friday, October 20th, 11:00am – Noon

 Life is not a dress rehearsal; neither is business. How would your organization be different if everyone stopped making excuses and started producing better results in every area of their lives? Not “later,” not “some day,” but now! Because when it’s showtime, all that matters is results. And in your business, as well as in your life, every day is showtime.29-time Emmy Award-winning TV Executive Producer Bill Stainton has discovered that whether you’re producing an award-winning television show, an award-winning team, or an award-winning life, real results come down to three simple questions: What’s the show? Who’s the cast? Where’s the script?

  • You can’t produce a great show if you don’t know what the show is. What’s the show you’re trying to produce? What’s the outcome you want to achieve? Step one to producing a breakthrough result is to define the result you’re trying to produce.
  • If you leave your cast to chance, you leave your results to chance. Who are the people you need to have on your team in order to produce your result?
  • The quality of your script determines the quality of your show.
    Behind every great achievement is a great plan—a script, if you will. And just as a TV script is broken down into acts and scenes, your plan needs to be broken down into milestones and benchmarks.

 About the Presenter

Bill Stainton is a multiple Emmy Award-winning TV producer, writer, and performer; an author; a business humorist; and an internationally-recognized Beatles expert. He blends the business smarts he learned from twenty years in corporate management with the show biz sparks he garSTAINTON_Folded_Arms_719x1024nered from working with people like Jerry Seinfeld, Ellen DeGeneres, and Bill Nye the Science guy to create entertaining and enlightening presentations enjoyed by audiences around the world!

As the executive producer of Seattle’s legendary comedy TV show Almost Live!, Bill led a talented and highly creative team to unparalleled success: a #1 rating for ten straight years, and over 100 Emmy Awards (29 of which went to Bill). At the same time, he also owned his own corporate training company, authoring nine training programs in subjects ranging from Office Politics to Customer Service to Team Motivation. He’s been quoted in The Wall Street Journal and Forbes, and is a regular columnist for Seattle Business magazine.

From Maine to Malaysia, Bill is committed to helping his audiences achieve their highest potential— while maintaining a sense of fun along the way!