For leaders and meeting planners who need
a dynamic keynote speaker or trainer to
inspire, enlighten & motivate your members
at your next Conference or In-service ...

Programs to help you improve your:

* Attitudes, Aptitudes & Actions in your job,
* Teamwork, Customer Service, Leadership,
* Ability to positively influence others.

collage of terms covered in Kim's keynote

(952) 938-4472 | | 3665 Woody Lane, Minnetonka, MN 55305

Kim's Home Page Keynotes & Workshops Video/Song Demos Books, CDs & Articles F.A.Q.s About Kim

Clients & Testimonials

Don't just take my word for it that my message and style could be a good fit for your group; here's the list of hundreds of clients I've worked with since 1994, and just some of the many testimonials from my satisfied customers.

1. K-12 Schools & Districts, & their Professional Associations

K-12 Schools & School Districts:

Note: Collectively these groups involve every group of employees who work in schools, including: Teachers, Principals, Central Office Administrators & Business Office, Custodians, Secretaries and Receptionists, Special Education, School Nurses, Social Workers, Classroom Support Staff, Buildings & Grounds, School Nutrition, School Bus Drivers, MIS & Technology Specialists, other Specialists, and School Board Members. These clients requested presentations at workshops for various school employee groups, sites and committees, All-staff events, Back-to-School kick-offs, volunteer recognition events, or to facilitate a planning or continuous improvement project.

  • Academy for Science & Agriculture Charter High School
  • Anchorage School District, AK ***
  • Anoka-Hennepin School District ****
  • Battle Lake School District *
  • Braham High School
  • Brooklyn Center School District **
  • Buffalo School District *
  • Caledonia School District
  • Cambridge High School
  • CESA 7, Green Bay, WI
  • Chaska Area School District *****
  • Cherry Creek School District, CO
  • Columbia Heights School District
  • Delano School District
  • Eden Prairie School District **
  • Exeter (Reading) School District, PA
  • Fairmont School District
  • Greece Central School District, NY
  • Green River Reg'l Educ Coop, KY
  • International Falls School District **
  • Inver Grove Hts. School District
  • Jordan School District *
  • Juneau School District, AK *****
  • Klamath Falls School District, OR
  • Lane Ed. Serv. Dist., Eugene, OR **
  • Lincoln Public Schools, NE
  • Litchfield School District
  • Long Prairie / Grey Eagle School District
  • Marshall Public Schools
  • Minneapolis Public Schools **
  • Minnehaha Academy
  • MN Math & Science Academy Charter High School
  • Moorhead School District
  • Morten School District, MB, Canada **
  • Mound Westonka School District ***
  • Mounds View School District
  • NE Metro ISD 196
  • New Horizons Academy
  • New Prague School District
  • New Ulm Public Schools
  • North St Paul School District
  • Osseo Area Schools ***
  • Paiedea Academy Charter
  • Princeton High School
  • Prior Lake-Savage School District ***
  • Rochester School District
  • Roseville School District ***
  • Salem-Keizer School District, OR **
  • Shakopee School District**
  • Shattuck-St. Marys School
  • South Washington County School District *****
  • Spring Lake Park School District ***
  • St. Cloud School District *****
  • St. Francis School District **
  • St. Louis Park School District *****
  • St Michael/Albertville School District *
  • St. Paul Public Schools**
  • St. Vrain Valley School District (Longmont, CO)
  • Stillwater Area Schools******
  • SW Metro School Nutrition Consortium **
  • SW MN Education Service Coop *
  • Twin Cities International School
  • Valley City School District, ND
  • Waseca School District
  • West Bend School District, WI **
  • White Bear Lake School District
  • Willamette Ed. Serv. Dist., Salem, OR
  • Winkler School District, MB, Canada **
  • Wolf Creek Online High School

To Top of page

I have been asked several times about who I would recommend as an inspirational speaker to kick off a fall event for schools. Kim Ratz immediately comes to mind. I used Kim at a statewide conference and he was very well received. He customizes his programs to meet his clients needs, his program is professionally delivered and full of energy, and his ideas and information are relevant to educators and immediately useful. But the most obvious feature he offers a meeting planner is his wonderful music - it truly inspires the listener and energizes the message. -- Bill Beck, Confederation of Oregon School Administrators

This was my second opportunity to engage the services of Kim Ratz - "The Speaker who Sings." Accepting change and working with new peers can be challenging and we needed a little pep talk on how to cope and deal with the growth, changes and challenges we're experiencing in our school division. What I appreciated about Kim's presentation was his effort to know to whom he was speaking and incorporating that into the presentation. He is very familiar with School Policy, Structure and Issues, and his work in schools gives him credibility. We've had a very positive reaction from our staff(s) with many thank yous and requests to bring Kim back. - Ken Bergen, Supervisor of Operations, Garden Valley School Division, Manitoba, Canada

Your presentation had even the usually cynical people looking at the world more positively. Thanks! - Teacher, Transition Plus Dept. Minneapolis Public Schools

We had the opportunity to have Kim perform in our district at our opening day of school celebration. What a positive way to start the school year! The feedback from staff was unanimously enthusiastic. One teacher told me "this was exactly what we needed!" Kim took time to really listen to our needs, priorities, and goals and integrate them into a personalized performance for us. His message was inspiring and entertaining, but never preachy. I highly recommend him to any school district. - Dr. Beverly A. Martin, Assistant Superintendent, Exeter Township School District, Reading, PA

There is always a concern that having someone speak might be good for motivation, but what about lasting change and improvement? Kim provides follow-up to help assure that there are concrete and specific improvements. As a result of his eight presentations on topics including Customer Service, team Building and Leadership, we have instituted helpful initiatives. We continue to build on ideas introduced and nurtured by Kim. -- Diana Kasper, Director of Admin. Services, School District 112, Chaska, MN

It is with pleasure that I recommend Kim Ratz as a prospective presenter. I had an opportunity to see Kim present a couple of programs and was so impressed that we contracted with him to come to our district. He was an excellent choice as we had nothing but raving, positive comments from our several employee groups involved in his programs. Kim's programs and his personal touch provided us with outstanding inservices for our employees. If you're looking for a quality presenter, Kim Ratz is the one! -- Galen Munn, Dir of Elementary Curriculum, Klamath Falls (OR) City Schools

K-12 Professional Associations & Organizations:

  • Alaska Assoc of Elementary & Secondary Principals
  • Alaska Assoc of School Boards
  • Alaska Assoc of School Business Officials
  • Arizona School Administrators
  • Business Professionals of America-MN (High Sch. & College) *
  • California School Nurses Organization
  • Canadian Pupil Transportation Assoc.
  • Central MN Assoc of Student Councils
  • Colorado Assoc of School Business Officials
  • Confederation of Oregon School Administrators
  • Connecticut Assoc of School Business Officials
  • Distributive Education Clubs of America-MN (High Sch. & College) *
  • Education Minnesota
  • Georgia School Nurses Assoc
  • Idaho Assoc of School Business Officials
  • Kansas Assoc. School Business Officials
  • Manitoba Assoc of School Business Officials
  • Massachussetts Student Transportation Assoc.*
  • Minnesota Assoc of Education Office Professionals ***
  • Minnesota Assoc of School Business Officials ***
  • MN Education Facilities Mgmt. Assoc.
  • Minnesota Elementary School Principals *
  • Minnesota School Boards Assoc
  • Minnesota School Nutrition Assoc
  • Minnesota Secondary School Principals
  • Missouri Career & Technical Ed
  • Missouri School Nutrition Assoc.
  • Montana Assoc of School Business Officials
  • Nat'l. Assoc. of Education Office Professionals **
  • National. School Public Relations Assoc
  • National Youth Leadership Council
  • Nebraska Council of School Administrators
  • New Brunswick Assoc of School Business Officials, Canada
  • New Mexico Assoc Elementary Principals
  • Northland Foundation Youth Conference
  • Oregon Pupil Transportation Assoc
  • Oregon School Public Relations Assoc
  • Pennsylvania Assoc of School Nurse Practitioners
  • Prince Rupert Northern Lights Youth Leadership Summit, BC, Canada
  • Region 10 (MN) Quality Assurance Project
  • Saskatchewan School Boards Assoc
  • Saskatchewan Assoc School Business Officials
  • School Nutrition Assoc of Arizona
  • School Nutrition Directors of MN
  • Southern MN School Nutrition Consortium
  • Upper Midwest SASI Computer Assoc
  • User Network in Technolgy Education (Nat'l.)
  • Utah Assoc Secondary School Principals
  • Utah Service Learning Conference
  • Washington Assoc of Education Office Professionals
  • Washington Assoc of Maintenance & Operations Administrators
  • Wisconsin Assoc of School Business Officials
  • Wisconsin Nutrition & Fitness Conference
  • Wisconsin School Public Relations Assoc
  • Wisconsin Student Councils
  • WY Interdisciplinary Educators Conference **

Kim: A great big thank you for all that you did at the GASN Conference! Your presentations, songs and engaging with the participants were exactly what we were looking for. You were a spark at the reception, the luncheon performances were great, and your breakout and closing sessions were right on target. As a meeting planner I enjoyed working with you. You made it so easy for me over the last hectic 6 months leading up to the conference. When on site you were very flexible and adjusted to any changes we requested of you. Without a doubt you "connected" very well with the school nurses at the conference. Please use me as a reference as you work with other groups. Best Regards -- Rich Brown, Conference Planner, GA Assoc of School Nurses

On behalf of the members, board and staff of the Association of Alaska School Boards, I would like to thank you for an outstanding message and performance at our annual conference in Anchorage. Few speakers give the time or energy you offered this program. You rallied our members to the theme of "Making Children Alaska's Top Priority" through your songs and stories. We appreciate your efforts to help us make children Alaska's top priority. -- Joseph Reeves, Assoc of Alaska School Boards

Kim Ratz spoke at the New Brunswick Association of School Business Officials conference, and his address was upbeat, insightful, entertaining and informative. Prior to our conference, Kim and I had several conversations about our organization and what our goals are. This resulted in Kim delivering a message that was very much in tune with what was on the mind of our delegates. Feedback from the our members was positive in several ways - there was a lot of audience participation, abundant laughter and noticeable head nodding ! At the conclusion of our conference, "Feedback Forms" confirmed our initial feelings about Kim Ratz's presentation - people were enlightened, energized, and entertained. Therefore, it is with great pleasure that I recommend Kim Ratz as a speaker at your conference or seminar. -- Chris Toole, President, NBASBO

Kim: Words cannot express my sincere gratitude for your leadership at our 2009 NAEOP Institute. We all will come away from your message filled with new ideas, energy and hope. It's my dream to see more school districts learning from you and implementing your tools. Thank you very much for coming forward so we could all be filled with your "good stuff" that will help us improve relationships and helping kids learn. - Carol Larson. Institute Chairperson, National Assoc. of Education Office Professionals.

2. Early Childhood Centers & Educational Associations

We just want you to know that your name continues to come up, even two months later, as people share all the things you did to make the conference so successful - and fun. We appreciate that your presentations were so specific to MO and the Head Start audience. Your words were truly inspiring, revealing, heartwarming and challenging. People loved your songs, and especially the way you genuinely shared your appreciation of and support for the work we do in Head Start. Thanks AGAIN! -- Donna Veatch, Exec. Director, Missouri Head Start Assoc.

We hired Kim Ratz to speak at our fall Head Start staff orientation and training. I was looking for someone to provide a positive message of change presented in a manner that staff would enjoy. Kim delivered a wonderful presentation entitled, "How to Thrive in a Radically Changing World -- and Enjoy a Nice Sandbox Too." He used humor and music, tailored to our organization, in his presentation and incorporated our training theme, "All Aboard the Head Start Train." Staff gave very positive feedback to his presentation with many staff personally thanking me for having Kim end our training on such a positive, humorous and relaxed note. I know my Head Start staff are using some of his suggestions to help them get through the many changes our program is going through. I recommend Kim Ratz as a presenter to any organization that is looking for someone to deliver a positive message in a relaxed and fun way. - Skip Ferris, Head Start Director, Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency, Virginia, MN

Kim Ratz's presentations on "Thriving and "Collaboration" were a great fit for our conference. His messages help create success in many aspects of life and should be shared with all. He presented in a manner that was entertaining and informing. Kim would be a huge asset to any group who is looking for an amazing, one-of-a-kind speaker. If planning a conference or event where you want to share an important message with excitement, style and grace, I recommend you give Kim Ratz your highest consideration. - Tonya Frehner, Dir of Programs, IL Assoc for the Education of Young Children

After hearing Kim at our Region 2 conference, I asked him to bring us a half-day program to refresh our spirits and make us feel good about the work we do with children and families. Kim accomplished all of this and more through his positive message and style, aided by his knowledge of Head Start. His message was inspiring and believable, and his music made him unique. What we really appreciated was that his message reached everyone who attended -- Head Start staff and invited guests as well. Weeks later I continue to hear people say: They enjoyed the presentation -- It was a mental health workshop -- They had fun in the class -- Wonderful speaker -- He was a 10! It's especially tough mid-year, when staff morale is dropping ... People need to feel good about themselves and the job they do. Kim's program did just that and more. - Freedom Carrigan, Dir of Education, Head Start, Tioga Opportunities Inc., Owego, NY

We needed a fun and inspiring keynote speaker and a workshop presenter that could deliver meaningful content on leadership and supervision. Kim Ratz provided that and more. He was well prepared for a variety of sessions and very flexible. Kim tailored his sessions to our specific needs, stayed throughout the conference, was sincerely interested in our work and engaged staff in discussion and activities. His workshop sessions and materials were highly rated and he successfully led a high energy "American Idol" evening event. It was a great value. - Judy Miller, Exec. Director, Oregon Head Start Assoc.

Kim's "back-to-school" message was relevant for all of our staff - bus drivers, cooks, teachers, aides, and managers. This speaker comes from the heart -- he's a wonderful presenter, the music is great, and we are so glad that we invited him. Our staff have started the year with a great positive attitude and we're ready to thrive. You can see it in their job performance. We received feedback that this was a great way to start the year, and when can we have Kim come back? You can just take my word for it -- if you work with kids he will be a good fit for your organization. He helps you look at yourself first, and that is where it all starts! - Elaine Laird, Executive Dir, Absaroka Head Start, Wyoming

Kim Ratz was the proverbial "icing on the cake" at our 2010 Georgia Head Start Association conference, where he shared relevant motivational messages at both the opening and closing sessions, led 3 workshops, and even served as an exceptional emcee at our Live Auction and "Head Start Idol" Contest! His presence from beginning to end brought consistency throughout the conference and participants enjoyed interacting with him at various levels. We titled Kim our "Conference Troubadour" and he wrote and performed eight wonderful songs tailored to our conference theme, three of which he didn't even write until after the conference started! Most importantly, he has a love for and is knowledgeable about early childhood education, and his breadth of experience enables him to connect with others in many ways. He's a phenomenal planner, a consummate team player, people loved his novel approach, and we were fortunate that he joined us for our conference. - Ramona Warren, Exec. Officer, Georgia Head Start Assoc.

Local Programs:

  • Absaroka Head Start, Worland, WY
  • Anoka Hennepin ECFE
  • Arrowhead Region Head Start
  • Austin ECFE
  • Bloomington Early Childhood Conference
  • Bradford-Tioga Head Start, Mansfield, PA
  • Brooklyn Center ECFE *
  • Calsiceau Parish Early Childhood, Lake Charles, LA
  • Carver-Scott-Dakota Head Start *
  • Carver-Scott ECFE Consort *
  • Child Care Conference, Cameron County, TX
  • Child Care Providers Conference, Marshall, MN
  • Childrens Developmental Services, Gillette, WY
  • Dakota County Licensed Family Child Care Assoc *
  • Eden Prairie ECFE
  • Family Services Inc Head Start, Winston-Salem, NC
  • Good News Childrens Ctr, Rochester *
  • Hope Montessori Academy, Colorado Springs, CO *
  • Hope Montessori Academy, Denver, CO
  • Interlakes (SD) Head Start
  • Kentucky River Foothills Head Start, Richmond, KY
  • Laramie County Head Start, Cheyenne, WY *
  • Lee County Head Start, Ft. Myers, FL
  • Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe Head Start, MN
  • LeSueur-Henderson ECFE *
  • Mahube Head Start
  • Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Head Start, MN
  • Minnetonka ECFE
  • North Metro ECFE Consortium
  • Northern IA Community Action Head Start, Mason City, IA *
  • PEACE Inc. Head Start, Syracuse, NY
  • Primrose School
  • Robbinsdale ECFE *
  • Rockland County Head Start, Stoney Point, NY
  • Scott County Licensed Family Child Care Assoc *
  • SE MN Head Start, Rochester
  • Southern MN ECFE Consortium
  • St. Paul ECFE
  • Tioga County Head Start, Binghamton, NY *
  • TLC Early Learning Center
  • Twin Cities Professional Nannies
  • Waseca ECFE
  • Washington County Head Start, Portland OR
  • West Central Illinois Head Start
  • Winston-Salem Head Start, NC
  • YWCA of Minneapolis, Early Childhood Dept. *

State, Regional & National Associations

  • Alaska Early Childhood Conference (AEYC & Head Start)
  • California Assoc for the Education of Young Children
  • Child Care Assoc. of Louisiana
  • Evangelical Lutheran Education Assoc Reg. 3 (MN, ND, SD)
  • Florida Dept of Ed (Even/First/Head Start Conference)
  • Florida One Goal Early Childhood Conference
  • Georgia Head Start Assoc
  • Illinois Assoc for the Education of Young Children
  • Illinois Head Start Assoc
  • Indiana Infant/Toddler Institute
  • Kentucky Head Start *
  • Lakes & Prairies Community Action Head Start
  • Michigan Head Start Assoc.
  • Minnesota Licensed Family Child Care Providers **
  • Minnesota Assoc for the Education of Young Children
  • Minnesota Assoc for Family and Early Education
  • Minnesota Child Care Resource & Referral
  • Minnesota Head Start Assoc
  • Missouri Head Start Assoc
  • North Dakota Child Care Resource & Referral
  • North Metro ECFE Consortium
  • Oklahoma DHS, Div. of Child Care Licensing
  • Oregon Head Start Assoc Specialist Conference
  • Region 2 Head Start (NJ, NY, PR, VI)
  • Region 7 Head Start (IA, KS, MO, NE) *
  • Region 8 Head Start (CO, MT, ND, SD, UT, WY)
  • Region 10 Head Start (AK, ID, OR, WA)
  • Rocky Mountain Early Childhood Conf, Denver
  • So. Carolina Head Start Assoc.
  • So. Dakota Early Childhood Conf (AEYC & Head Start)
  • Southern MN ECFE Network
  • Univ. Wisconsin-Platteville Early Childhood Conference
  • WI Head Start Assoc.

Parenting Conferences

  • Anoka County Youth First Mayors Prayer Breakfast
  • Burnsville Parent Conference
  • Hastings Youth First Initiative
  • Indian Education Parent Board, Anoka S.D.
  • Mid-Willamette Valley Community Action Head Start (OR)
  • Minnesota Head Start Parent Workshop
  • Minnesota PTA *
  • Minnesota Valley Mothers of Multiples
  • Nat'l. Assoc of Partners in Education (MN)
  • National Head Start Parent Conference
  • Oregon Head Start Assoc Parent Conference
  • Polk County (OR) Parent & Provider Conference
  • Rosemont/Apple Valley/Eagan Parent Conference
  • San Antonio (TX) Community Ed. Fatherhood Workshop
  • Successful Parenting (NC)
  • Wayzata Parent Forum

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3. Community Education & Lifelong Learning

Local Programs

  • Anchorage (AK) ***
  • Anoka-Hennepin *
  • Buffalo
  • Cambridge Area Learning Center
  • Cass Lake
  • Central Lakes Community College
  • Century College *
  • Chaska ***
  • Deer Valley Community Ed. (AZ)
  • Delano
  • Eden Prairie
  • Fairmont **
  • Hastings
  • Hennepin Tech. Coll. *
  • Hopkins
  • Inver Grove Community College
  • International Falls
  • Jordan **
  • Juneau (AK) **
  • Minnetonka
  • Oregon Coast Community College (Lincoln City, OR)
  • Prior Lake-Savage ***
  • Rochester *
  • Roseville *****
  • St Cloud *****
  • St Francis *
  • St Louis Park ***
  • St Paul GED Graduation
  • Stillwater *****
  • South Washington County ****
  • St Vrain Valley (CO)
  • Tulsa Community College, OK
  • Univ of MN, Dept of Kinesiology *
  • Univ of MN, Office of Financial Assistance
  • Univ of MN, Speech Dept. *
  • Univ of Nebraska Office Professionals Assoc *
  • Univ of St. Thomas *
  • Waseca ***
  • Washington Elem Schools KidSpace (AZ)
  • Wayzata After School Program
  • Westonka ***
  • Willmar Community Ed & Rec.
  • Winona *

Associations & Organizations

  • Alaska Assoc for Community Education ***
  • Arizona Community Education Assoc.
  • British Columbia Assoc for Community Education
  • Connecticutt Assoc. for Adult & Continuing Education
  • Delaware Assoc for Adult & Community Education
  • Illinois Regional Community Ed conference
  • Indiana Assoc for Adult and Community Education
  • International Community Educ. Assoc (Vancouver, Canada)
  • Iowa Adult Education Assoc
  • Michigan Assoc of Adult and Community Education
  • Minnesota Assoc for Adult and Continuing Education
  • Minnesota Community Education Assoc ***
  • Minnesota Collection Assoc ***
  • Minnesota Dept of Ed Community Education Section
  • Mountain Plains Adult Education Regional Assoc (CO, ID, MT, UT, WY)
  • Multi-State Conference (IA, MN, ND, SD, WI) *******
  • National Community Education Assoc. ********
  • National Council of State Community Education Assoc.
  • New Mexico Adult Education Assoc
  • Oklahoma Center for Community Education
  • Oregon Community Education Assoc ***
  • Pacific Assoc of College Registrars
  • Texas Community Education Assoc **
  • Upper Midwest Assoc of Coll Registrars & Adm Officers
  • Utah Assoc of Adult Education *
  • Wisconsin Community Education Assoc

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It's a tough way to make a living. You make it look easy. Phil Houseal, Texas Community Education Assoc.

Kim Ratz was the troubadour for the National Community Education Association (NCEA) 2010 Conference, and in a word, he was: "Amazing." Before arriving at the conference he'd interviewed most of the past-presidents of NCEA, incorporating both their memories and their future dreams into a song he wrote, and which all tied into our conference theme: "Future Forward." Through his music, audience involvement and inclusiveness, Kim set the tone for the conference. He truly was a troubadour -- he played and sang in the hallway as people went to sessions, at the opening session, and the closing session. He also went to classes, listened to participants, added his 35+ years worth of community ed. experience as he could, and added his genuine spirit and warmth to our NCEA conference. - Bridget Gothberg, Conference Coordinator

Kim Ratz has an extraordinary way of delivering important messages about working with adults and students. His keynote address and subsequent workshops were well received by a mixed audience of teachers, administrators and youth development workers. "Playing Nice in the Sandbox" was very informative and thought provoking, It definitely helped in understanding the gender and generational outlook of individuals so they could work together for the same common goal. Delivering the message through spoken word and song kept everyone's interest throughout the day! We would definitely have Kim back again to present to our group. - Julie Wild Curry, President, AK Assoc for Community Education

Thank you so much for a job not just well done but very well done! Your presentation style was refreshing, and the fact that you took the time to personalize your focus to address the specific needs of our organization made it much more meaningful to all involved. In going through the conference evaluations, many participants echoed these sentiments. It's easy to hire a presenter who will come in, give a speech and catch the next flight out. It's much more difficult to find someone who will become as much a part of the conference as the planners and participants -- well done and thank you so much in making our conference a memorable, successful event. -- Terri Odell, 2005 Conference Coordinator, Texas Community Ed Assoc

I take pleasure in commending you for the superior keynote and workshops you provided New Mexico Adult Basic Education practitioners at our 2009 conference. Members of our executive board have also asked me to pass along their sincere appreciation for your participation. We've received numerous positive comments about your Collaboration and Community Involvement and Playing Nice in the Sandbox presentations. Your ability to explain the "process" as a team began a very positive process for best practices for many institutions. The Open Space Technology "train the trainer" offered administrators not only the opportunity to discuss their issues and opportunities, but also provided them an exceptional tool to use with their own program. You certainly captured the interest of your audience with your skilled speaking abilities and the in-depth knowledge you possess. Thank you for providing excellent, motivational, inspiring, high level workshops. There's no doubt in my mind that our conference would have been the success it was without your enthusiastic participation. Without hesitation, I recommend you to other organizations. - Shari Jobe, Executive Director

I observed Kim while he presented at the IN Assoc for Adult & Community Education conference and was impressed with his ability to connect with members in a variety of ways. His unique approach incorporating music certainly made it more interesting to pay attention to and participate in his programs - a great adult learning strategy. His background in adult and community education, including his years with the Alaska Dept of Education helped Kim connect his valuable message in many relevant and timely ways. He went far beyond tweaking a standard presentation. His skills were also evident in his conversations with many individuals between his presentations. He became familiar with issues and participated in activities. He was flexible and committed to doing anything he could to contribute to an enjoyable and successful conference. I highly recommend Kim to any group of adult educators who are also seeking to be adult learners - and have fun while doing so. - Linda Warner, Director, Div of Adult Education, Indiana Dept of Ed

4. After-School Programs / Recreation

Kim Ratz provided us with a wonderful way to kick the year off. He was entertaining and motivating! His stories and songs impart a lighthearted approach while still ensuring some very serious "thinking" is going on. He tailors himself well to the after-school arena and helped make our entire orientation for 300 employees (college students to "veterans") a rousing success! -- Becky Stoughton/ Director, Community Education & After School Programs - Northeast ISD, San Antonio, TX

I asked Kim (rather last minute) to do an inspirational and participatory workshop for our staff development day. Through his style, and program, "Playing Nice in the Sandbox," Kim came into our Center and immediately lifted us up. With his unique blend of songs, stories and knowledge of our field of work, he had us at "hello." And held us there. For over three hours. Kim informed and taught, he listened and heard, he drew out of the crowd their own stories, challenges and highlights. Kim was masterful at bringing his many years of experience to our district, and acknowledging our own expertise. And like the "Wizard of Oz," he caused us to know/remember what we had all along - hope, answers and resolutions. The experience was sustaining - we continue to reference comments, lyrics and mantras used during our day with Kim. We would welcome him back anytime and know that his presentation would be fresh, not simply the same material retold, but new and interesting and relevant to our needs. Kim is a true teacher. A Bodhisattva! Many thanks - Kristi Sabby, Tiger Club Coordinator, Fridley School District 14

Kim presented at the Missouri School Age Community Coalition Leadership Institute in St. Louis, and we loved how he designed his Keynote presentation and concurrent workshops around our conference theme, "The Performance of a Lifetime." His variations of presentation style using humor, song, music, presentation skills and audience participation kept everyone interested and intrigued with what he was going to do next! Survey results from our attendees reflected a high level of satisfaction with their new learning, activities and opportunities fostered by Kim's presentations. Kim was extremely easy to work with and his main concern was always ensuring that he was providing what we needed. We will definitely invite Kim again! - Laurie McTearnen, MOSAC2-Leadership Development Institute Chairman

We brought Kim in to conduct a half-day training program to help kick off the new school year, and he did an exceptional job! Given his passion for Community Education and after school programs, he also reminded us just how important what we do really is, and why most of us love what we do. Kim's customized program, and willingness to be involved before, during and after the training was noticed and appreciated by everyone. Since the training, many people have been talking about the exciting ideas they took away from the training and some are already incorporating them into their programs. I you want a dedicated, knowledgeable, entertaining and passionate trainer to help you energize your team, I highly recommend Kim. - Susan Zimmerman, District Coordinator of Community Schools, St Vrain Schools, Longmont, CO

(Local Programs & State/National Associations

  • Aberdeen (SD) YMCA
  • Alaska Assoc for Community Education **
  • Alaska Recreation & Parks Assoc **
  • Aurora (CO) Park & Recreation Dept
  • Burnsville-Eagan-Savage Schools
  • Colorado Assoc of Quality School Age Programs
  • Colorado Springs Area (CO) Schools
  • Eagan (City of) Parks & Recreation Dept.
  • Eugene (OR) 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CLC)
  • Fargo (ND) - Moorhead (MN) YMCA
  • Farmington Schools
  • Farmington Parks and Recreation Dept. *
  • Fridley Schools **
  • Griggs/Steele County (ND) 21st Cent. CLC
  • Hopkins Kids & Co *
  • Kentucky Afterschool Institute
  • Minnesota Recreation & Parks Assoc *
  • Minnesota School Age Care Alliance ***
  • Missouri School Age Care Coalition
  • Mound Westonka Schools
  • Mounds View Schools
  • National Recreation & Parks Assoc.
  • Nebraska Recreation & Parks Assoc.
  • North St Paul Schools
  • NE San Antonio (TX) Schools
  • Northside San Antonio (TX) Schools
  • Northwest YMCA, New Hope
  • Osseo Area Schools
  • Oregon Parks & Recreation Assoc.
  • Owatonna Parks and Recreation Dept.
  • Prior Lake-Savage Schools
  • Ridgedale YMCA, Minnetonka ****
  • Robbinsdale Area Schools-Adventure Club ****
  • Rosemount Parks & Recreation Dept. **
  • Salem, OR 21st Century CLC
  • South Carolina Recreation & Parks Assoc.
  • South Dakota School Age Care Assoc.
  • Star of the North Games, Minnesota
  • Stillwater Schools **
  • US Bureau of Land Management, Washington DC *
  • Utah After School Alliance
  • Westonka Schools **
  • White Bear Lake Schools ***
  • Wyoming Recreation & Parks Assoc.
  • YMCA of the Twin Cities-Summer Camp *

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5. Other Helping Professions -- Health Care, Public Safety, Social Services


  • Faith Presbyterian Church, Minnetonka
  • First Presbyterian Church, Mankato
  • Oak Knoll Lutheran Church, Minnetonka
  • St Patricks Catholic Church, Eagan
  • St Lukes Presbyterian Church

Community Action:

  • Albany (NY) Community Action Partnership
  • Bi-County Community Action Partnership, Bemidji
  • Colorado Community Action Assoc.
  • Community Action Directors of Oregon
  • Community Action for Suburban Hennepin
  • Community Action Mgmt Info Systems, MN
  • Heartland Community Action Agency, Willmar
  • Lakes & Pines Community Action Council, Moorhead
  • National Community Action Partnership
  • Region 8 & 10 Community Action Conference ***
  • So. Carolina Community Action Patnership Assoc
  • Umpqua Community Action Network, Roseburg, OR
  • Western Community Action

Health Care/Public Health:

  • Allina Hospitals & Clinics, Dept of Surg. Svcs, Coon Rapids
  • Allina Hospital & Clinic, New Ulm
  • Anoka County Community Health Dept
  • Cancer Fundraising Benefit, St Paul
  • CUPES (Community / University Partn'shp for Health & Educ Serv)
  • Fairview-University Medical Center, Minneapolis
  • Lakeview Hospital, Stillwater
  • Methodist Hospital, St Louis Park
  • Park Nicollet Clinics, St Louis Park
  • REM Northstar, Crookston
  • Seaside (OR) Wellness Conference
  • St. Francis Healthcare Campus, Breckenridge
  • St Joseph Immanuel Hospital, Mankato
  • St Peter Regional Treatment Center **

Public Safety:

  • Gulf Coast 911 Conference AL NENA
  • Louisiana Chapter APCO/NENA (9-1-1)
  • Minnesota Chapter APCO/NENA *****
  • Minnesota Sherrifs Assoc
  • North Central Regional Conference (IA, KS, MN, MO, ND, NE, SD, WI) Public Safety Communication Officers (9-1-1)
  • Oregon APCO/NENA
  • Wisconsin Chapter NENA

Social & Community Services:

  • Alaska Govt Finance Officers Assoc
  • American Volunteer Assoc, SE WI Chapter
  • Anoka County Compassion Action Network
  • CommonBond Affordable Housing ***
  • FIG So MN Homes for Disabled
  • Hennepin County Government *****
  • Lennox Senior Center, St Louis Pk
  • Meadowbrook Collaborative, St Louis Park
  • Minnesota Assoc of County Social Services Administrators
  • Minnesota Dietetic Assoc
  • Minnesota Municipal Clerks & Finance Officers Assoc
  • Minnesota Public Works Assoc
  • Minnesota Veterans Home, Mpls
  • Medford, OR Job Council
  • Municipal Clerks Finance Officers Assoc-MN
  • Natl Assoc of State Veteran Homes
  • Options, Inc., Big Lake
  • OR Employment & Training Assoc *
  • Plymouth Rotary
  • Roseburg (OR) Interagency Training Network
  • Roseville Area Senior Center
  • Skills First - St. Paul Welfare to Work ***
  • St Paul School to Work Partnership
  • Stillwater Community Collaborative
  • Stillwater Rotary

Kim's workshop with our staff was exceptional and received the highest ratings from our staff. His presentation was done in a way that got information across in a manner that staff could understand and remember and was done with a great sense of humor and in a manner that was respectful, enjoyable and memorable. At the end the staff not only heard the messages Kim was presenting, but it resonated with them. It was a great day for all of us. Thanks Kim for a wonderful day. -- Mike Fieldman, Exec Director, Umpqua Community Action Network, Roseburg, OR

Each year our employees complete a Performance Culture Assessment survey. Although all of our scores are very good, the area of "Conflict Resolution" was the lowest. To provide us with the tools to improve our skills, we invited Kim to speak to us about Conflict Resolution. Kim did an outstanding job in engaging our employees and providing us with education for recognizing our own communication and conflict resolution behaviors. He helped us better understand we all use different styles, and gave us information explaining what that means so that when we are communicating with others, we can be more effective in delivering our message. Kim used humorous stories, relevant scenarios, and song that provided a fun and relaxed learning environment. I have received many thank yous and positive comments from staff for brining Kim to our facility. Thank you Kim for helping us on our journey of providing excellent patient and resident care! - Gail Grant, Director of Human Resources, St Francis Healthcare Campus, Breckenridge, MN

I'm writing this letter to thank you for the wonderful job you did at our recent North Central Regional APCO Conference. Your topic, "Playing Nice in the Sandbox" was well received and dealt with a common problem experienced by most dispatch centers. Multiple personalities working in a high stress environment and keeping a harmonious work place is a common issue for our business. You understand this, and delivered; here's what he kept hearing, consistently, after you spoke:
"It was obvious he researched his topic and the audience he was delivering it to." "The time went by so fast, he kept the audience involved and attentive." "I thought this was going to be another so-so seminar, wow! Was I wrong." "This was so great, we want to bring him to one of our conferences."
So I want to personally thank you for the way you worked with our committee, taking the time to sit in with several of our dispatchers to learn what they do and hear some of their concerns in order for you to make your presentation personal to our industry. It is obvious from working with you on this conference and from that initial conversation at the airport in 2001 that you are a man with a message, and that you sincerely believe it. I look forward to working with you again at a future event. - Charles Venske ENP, Secretary, North Central Assoc of Public Safety Communication Officers (911)

Our group was looking for a motivational speaker to help kick off our conference on a positive note, and Kim was able to do this with ease by bringing a unique presentation style to our conference. His stories of personal experiences, intertwined with music, sets him apart from other speakers; Kim has the ability to guide everyone to an "Ah-ha" moment, and our members were left with a new outlook on things both in their personal and professional lives. For days after, people were still talking about Kim and how great his session was. He really brought that certain "something" that our conference has been missing for a long time, and Kim's role got us off on the right start! Kim's tips for being more positive really helped our attendees to "go with the flow" when we had to change things up because the next day's speaker had to cancel. Personally, I really appreciated Kim's words of wisdom on that "crisis day" - I know they helped me! I would recommend Kim Ratz for any type of event where you want positivity to be your focal point. - Nick Audette, Conference Planner, MN Community Action Management Information Systems Network.

6. Businesses, & Business-to-Business

I want to thank you for the time, effort and energy you put into the presentation at our summer sales meeting. It was the perfect message, given in just the right way, at just the right time. I've heard many comments over the last several weeks about the concepts and techniques you discussed. It's not often I get this much positive feedback about guest speakers! In this day of increased expectations and 'doing more with less', lots of things come at us that can be a little tough to swallow. It's good to have folks like you that can provide insight, clarity, hope, reassurance and little humor to wash it all down. - Michael Ferch, Inside Sales Manager, Wenger Corporation

Kim: It was fun seeing you again, and hearing you speak for the first time, at the Alaska Travel Industry convention. I felt like I was talking to someone right out of an article titled "Local Boy Makes Good." Way to go, Kim! I was very impressed with your presentations on "Customer Service," and "Dealing with Difficult People." I'll be sharing many of your ideas with my employees as soon as I get home! I will also be listening to your music soon and know I will enjoy it as much as I did the "live" version in Juneau. Take care, and thanks again! - Debbie Tilsworth, Executive Vice President, Alaska Riverways, Inc., Fairbanks

  • Alaska Travel Industry Assoc
  • American Business Women Assoc, MN Chapter *
  • Anchorage, AK Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Bayview Event Center, Excelsior
  • Brooklyn Center Chamber of Commerce
  • Ernst & Young, Minneapolis
  • Honeywell, Inc., Minneapolis
  • Klondike Gold Dredge, Skagway (AK)
  • Mankato Professional Development Assoc
  • Midwest Dairy Assoc, Kansas City, MO
  • North Star Chapter Int'l. Assoc. Administrative Professionals
  • PLM, Inc.
  • Professional Secretaries Int'l, Mankato
  • St Paul Chamber of Commerce
  • State Farm Insurance - Aspiring Agents **
  • Twin Cities North Chamber of Commerce, Coon Rapids **
  • Twin Cities West Chapter, Intl. Assn. Admin. Professionals (IAAP) *
  • TwinWest Chamber of Commerce, Minnetonka *
  • Wenger Corp., Owatonna

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