Meet the Speakers
Steve Baker is vice president of The Great Game of Business, Inc., and coauthor of Get in the Game as well as the update of the No. 1 bestseller, The Great Game of Business—20th Anniversary Edition. Known for his engaging and irreverent style, Steve is a top-rated, sought-after speaker and coach on open-book management, strategy and execution, leadership, and employee engagement. His audiences range from Harvard University to the Department of Defense, and he is a regular at Inc. magazine’s Inc. 5000 Conference. He has served on the board of the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO) and SRC Holding’s Ownership Culture Initiative.
James R. Fedich, DC, was a very athletic child and excelled at sports. One day his family was driving to upstate New York when a car ran a stop sign and smashed into them. The entire family was hospitalized with multiple injuries. Several weeks later, James found himself laying on the floor with back spasms. He was no longer able to play sports. His mother took him to a chiropractor and soon he was playing basketball again. At the age of 13, he told his parents he would be a chiropractor. After graduating from chiropractic college, he went, over 14 years, from a one man show to a 6,000 sq. ft. facility with three chiropractors, two physical therapists, an acupuncturist, a nutritionist, and an MD. Dr. Fedich now helps others grow their practices and live a well-balanced life. He is a bestselling author of Secrets of a Million Dollar Practice and host of the popular podcast “Path to Success with Dr J,” which has over 80,000 downloads. He has spoken all over the country and helped thousands of chiropractors grow their practices. Learn more at http://www.drjamesfedich.com.
Cindy M. Howard, DC, is a board-certified chiropractic internist and nutritionist. She speaks nationally, presenting on topics such as pre- and post-concussion nutrition, neuroadrenal dysfunction and infection in sport, male and female pelvic disorders, pediatrics, immunology, GI disorders, endocrinology, nutritional blood analysis interpretation and genetics. She is the owner of DC Consulting, assisting private practices and advanced education. She loves to help doctors improve communication with patients, increase compliance and build a better functional medicine or nutritional practice. She is a past president of the ACA Council on Diagnosis and Internal Disorders and currently serves as the president of the College of Pharmacology and Toxicology. She also serves on the medical advisory board for Functional Medicine University, is a board member for Before the Hit and is an associate editor of The Original Internist. Locally, Dr. Howard serves on the concussion oversight team for the local school district and works with the Frankfort Falcons Youth football organization, the Dreamz Elite competitive cheer organization and the local wrestling club.
Michael Ingui, DC, graduated summa cum laude in 2014 from the University of Bridgeport School of Chiropractic (UBSC). He began a career in private practice in Ramsey, N.J., and returned to UBSC in 2015 as an adjunct professor. In 2017 Dr. Ingui completed a two-year fellowship in neuromusculoskeletal medicine, earning his diplomate, and became board certified by the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine. Afterward, Dr. Ingui began full-time work with UBSC as an assistant professor of clinical services. He was fortunate to work on a joint project between the school and the New Jersey Pain Collaborative, where he developed and implemented an on-site chiropractic program at two New Jersey community health centers (CHCs). He served as the head chiropractic clinician for the project and became the first chiropractor in New Jersey to be credentialed at a federally qualified health center (FQHC) and participate in the state Medicaid CHC reimbursement program. Dr. Ingui developed a passion for population health and finding solutions to address social disparities. He began a two-year program at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, earning a Masters of Applied Science. He founded CareLink Health Services Group in 2019 to help healthcare organizations and primary care teams better manage people living with pain without the use of opioids and other pharmaceuticals.
Thomas LaBrot, DC, has taken a leadership role in policy development, standards of care, and medical-legal consulting. Dr. LaBrot is a Certified Health Insurance Executive (through AHIP ELP-MD Fellowship Program) and he holds diplomat status with the American Board of Quality Assurance and Utilization Management Physicians (ABQUARP). He has more than 25 years of experience as a treating chiropractor. He is currently vice president of clinical services and professional affairs for American Specialty Health (ASH), the nation’s largest complementary healthcare company. His responsibilities include utilization management, quality management, credentialing, and policy development as well as managing relationships between ASH and state and national professional societies and associations.
Bill Lauretti, DC, spent more than 15 years in private practice in Maryland before joining the chiropractic clinical science faculty at New York Chiropractic College in 2005. He has written numerous journal articles and textbook chapters about the safety of chiropractic neck adjustments and has lectured extensively on the topic. He is a media spokesperson for the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) and has participated in interviews about chiropractic risks with major news outlets, including CNN, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, and Reuters International News Service. He is a Fellow of the International College of Chiropractors, a past recipient of ACA’s Presidential Award for Outstanding Achievement, and he was named the Maryland Chiropractic Association’s Chiropractor of the Year in 2000.
Lee Matthis, DC, is a 2002 graduate of Campbell University in Buies Creek, N.C., where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology. Later, he received his Doctor of Chiropractic degree from College of Chiropractic. During his education, he received many honors including graduating from the National Outdoor Leadership School in Lander, Wyo., the prestigious Vogt Leadership Society Award and the Virgil V. Strang Chiropractic Philosophy Award from Palmer College. Dr. Matthis serves as team chiropractor and is an honorary member of the Virginia Tech Cycling Team. Dr. Matthis originally planned to become a general and vascular surgeon until, at age 17, his grandmother passed away during a “routine surgery.” He decided then that he wanted to help people express vitality and quality of life using nonsurgical and nonmedicinal means.
Davis McAlister, DC, specializes in strength and conditioning, sports performance development, treating sports injuries, functional assessment, and exercise rehab therapy. He has served as a clinic faculty doctor for the Parker University Dallas Wellness Clinic since 2017. While at Parker, he established the Parker Sports Performance clinical program to train interns in identifying, diagnosing and treating sports injuries. He has served as the team chiropractor for the WNBA Dallas Wings and the XFL Dallas Renegades. Dr. McAlister has also worked with a variety of Minor League baseball, semi-professional hockey, and high school teams as well as with the Pro Bull Riders Sports Medicine Team for North Texas. He has conducted research on a variety of topics and has spoken at the World Federation of Chiropractic conference in London and at ACC-RAC. In his spare time, he is the girl’s powerlifting coach for Aubrey High School in Aubrey, Texas, and coaches his own team of powerlifters for USA Powerlifting that have advanced to the national level of competition. Dr. McAlister earned his Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Parker University in 2003. He also earned a bachelor’s degree in Anatomy, a master’s degree in Educational Leadership and holds a Principal Administrator certification from the Texas State Board of Education.
Craig Nelson, DC, graduated from Northwestern College of Chiropractic in 1978 and was in private practice for 10 years. In 1988, Dr. Nelson joined the faculty of the Center for Clinical studies at Northwestern College. During his tenure there, he was an investigator in four randomized clinical trials evaluating the effectiveness of spinal manipulation. Dr. Nelson has extensive experience reviewing and evaluating the scientific literature for the purpose of clinical guideline development for both academic and business interests. He has been published in a wide range of scientific journals and is currently on the editorial board of the Journal of Manipulative and Physiologic Therapeutics. In 2001, Dr. Nelson completed an NIH fellowship in Health Services Research at the University of Minnesota. He is currently director of health services research at American Specialty Health.
Mia Ortega, DC, is a staff chiropractor for Sentara Healthcare, which offers chiropractic and acupuncture services at hospitals in Suffolk, Va. She is a diplomate of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine and a member of the American Chiropractic Association and the Virginia Chiropractic Association. Dr. Ortega graduated from the University of Bridgeport School of Chiropractic (UBSC) in 2014, and after associating in private practice, decided to return to UBSC to complete the three-year residency program formerly known as Chiropractic Orthopedics. During residency, she rotated to eight different community health centers, offering evidence-informed chiropractic care to underserved populations. While living in Connecticut, she served on the board as compliance officer for the Connecticut Chiropractic Association. Dr. Ortega earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Virginia Tech prior to pursuing chiropractic.
Joelle Santiago, DC, is a graduate of the University of Bridgeport School of Chiropractic (UBSC). Her grandparents were both graduates of Logan University, her mother and two uncles are graduates of New York Chiropractic College. During her undergraduate studies at Assumption University she studied Human Services and Rehabilitation Studies. During her undergraduate education, she developed a passion for advocating for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities. At UBSC, Dr. Joelle served as president of the Student Connecticut Chiropractic Association. She is the 3rd vice president of the Connecticut Chiropractic Association, and a past secretary. Dr. Santiago also serves as vice president and treasurer of the Northeast Chiropractic Council. She practices in Avon, Conn., with her mother, Joanne Santiago, DC. Dr. Joelle continues to encourage her peers to engage in cultural competency to foster a welcoming and inclusive clinical setting.
Kevin Sharp, DC, has more than 30 years of experience as a chiropractic physician and has been a member of ACA for over 20 years. He runs a successful practice, Sharp Chiropractic, in Winston Salem, N.C., and is a recognized expert in coding, documentation, and compliance. Dr. Sharp previously served as president of the North Carolina Chiropractic Association and currently serves as a member of the ACA Coding Advisory Board. He has spoken at several ACA conferences and provided training at various state chiropractic events throughout the nation on the topics of coding and documentation.
Brandon Smolarek, DC, is a Michigan native who has personal experience with the opioid epidemic, having had family members whose only option for pain was surgery—which resulted in a magnitude of opioid prescriptions. Seeing his family members struggle with pain management, Dr. Smolarek understood early on the importance of conservative management. He started his healthcare experience as a collegiate athlete who worked with trainers and physicians, providing preventative care to help athletes stay competitive. While in college, he studied Biology and Chemistry at Suffolk University in Boston, where he continued his journey into the healthcare field while also participating in undergraduate research. Upon graduation in 2016, Brandon enrolled in the University of Bridgeport School of Chiropractic (UBSC) in May 2020 to do his part to combat the ongoing opioid crisis. He is currently a research associate with Carelink Health Services Group, founded by Dr. Michael Ingui, which has a vision of improving the quality of patient care by providing chiropractic care as a complementary management option to combat chronic pain and reduce unnecessary opioid prescriptions.
John Stites, DC, is a professor and director of clinics at Palmer College of Chiropractic. He holds a Doctor of Chiropractic degree and has diplomates in Radiology and Orthopedics. He has worked as an editor, editorial board member and peer reviewer for several publications, including the Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association and Spine. He also provides chiropractic care in a Community Health Care Center. Dr. Stites has served as the chair of the Chiropractic Health Care section of the American Public Health Association and is currently serving on its governing council. He has participated on advisory councils for the Iowa Department of Public Health as well as for managed care organizations. For the past six years, he has been an invited tutor in the seminal workshop in Evidence-Based Clinical Practice at McMaster University. Dr. Stites has developed multiple workshops and programs on Evidence-Based Clinical Practice and has lectured extensively on the subject for chiropractors and complementary and integrative practitioners. A 1979 Palmer graduate, he has been on faculty there since 1983.
Ray Tuck, DC, is the president of Tuck Chiropractic Clinic, consisting of 18 doctors over 10 locations throughout the southwest region of Virginia. His approach is one that respects best business practices while ensuring that patient-centered care is delivered. Dr. Tuck is the immediate past president of the American Chiropractic Association and current president of the Virginia Board of Medicine.
Linda Wheatland Smith, DC, is both a chiropractor and certiﬁed acupuncturist. She is a 1982 graduate of Logan University and has been in private practice in St. Louis, Mo., for 38 years. She has post-graduate training in the diagnosis and treatment of muscular imbalances from Washington University School of Physical Therapy. Dr. Smith has taught at the graduate and post-graduate levels for Logan University, St. Louis University School of Medicine, and Washington University School of Physical Therapy. She has presented programs to Logan’s Spring Symposium and the Institute for Functional Medicine’s International Conference. Dr. Smith has focused her practice on the comprehensive management of musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction. She is compelled by the challenge of interrupting the cycle of repeated incidents of acute low back pain with nonpharmacologic methods of care. She has developed an integrated, eﬀective and eﬃcient protocol based on current research and clinical experience for managing this common and expensive condition. Dr. Smith received the Humanitarian Award from Logan University for the creation of two chiropractic clinics serving the uninsured in the city of St. Louis.