Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Keynote Speakers

Opening Keynote  |  Closing Keynote

Monday, April 8 Opening Keynote Speaker

Shola Richards 35th Quest Opening Keynote Speaker Bio Photo
Credit: Shola Richards

Shola Richards

Founder & CEO, Go Together Global & Best-Selling Author

Unstoppable Resilience™: The Keys to Staying Strong During Any Challenge
Monday, April 8  |  8:30 am  |  #BaldrigeQuest

Shola Richards is the CEO and Founder of Go Together Global™, the best-selling author of "Making Work Work", and "Go Together", and he is a civility writer with a passionate worldwide following. His articles and extremely popular "Go Together Movement" email series have been read by readers in over 160 countries, and his work has been featured on the Today Show, CBS This Morning, Forbes, Black Enterprise, Complete Wellbeing India, Business Insider Australia, and in numerous other outlets all over the world who recognize him as an authority on workplace happiness and engagement.

As a speaker, Shola has shared his transformative message with top universities, leading healthcare organizations, Silicon Valley, the motion picture industry, on the TEDx stage, and in his greatest honor to date, in September 2021, he was invited to testify in front of the House of Representatives on Capitol Hill to share his expert recommendations on how to bring more civility to Congress.

Last, but certainly not least, Shola is a father, husband, identical twin, and self-professed "kindness extremist" who will not rest until bullying and incivility is extinct from the American workplace.


35th Quest Opening Keynote Shola Richards, Founder & CEO, Go Together Global & Author
Shola Richards, Opening Keynote speaker, 35th Baldrige Quest for Excellence® Conference
Credit: Shola Richards

Quest Keynoter to Speak on Benefits of a "Resilience Mindset"

JANUARY 23, 2024
Dawn Bailey

Richards defines resilience as the ability to bounce back quickly from difficult or unpleasant circumstances; for organizations, this could mean bouncing back from natural disasters, economic downturns, supply-chain challenges, and, most recently, global pandemics. For individuals, it is about having “a resilience mindset.”

“Organizations that are able to bounce back from challenging circumstances will be made up of individuals who are balancing their own resilience challenges,” he said. “The idea is to make sure the individual is strong so that he or she can pair up with other strong individuals to ultimately build strong organizations.”

Read more

Wednesday, April 10 Closing Keynote Speaker

Robert Martichenko 35th Quest Closing Keynote Speaker Bio Photo

Robert O. Martichenko

Business Leader, Author, Speaker, Educator, Strategic Advisor, and Chair of TrailPaths Incorporated

Building Meaningful Employment Environments™
Wednesday, April 10  |  8:30 am  |  #BaldrigeQuest

TrailPaths is a People Development and Technology Company whose purpose is to create Meaningful Employment Environments™.  To achieve this goal, TrailPaths has developed organizational assessments, interactive learning modules and digital platforms to humanize organizational decision making, modernize leadership behaviors and advance team member participation in the workplace.

Previously, as a business leader with an entrepreneurial focus, Robert spent over fifteen years as the founder and CEO of the LeanCor Supply Chain Group, an organization focused on implementing lean principles across the end- to- end supply chain.

A continuous thought leader, Robert sits on multiple advisory boards, including Chair for the American Logistics Aid Network (ALAN) and the executive board for the Association for Manufacturing Excellence (AME). In addition, he has received several prominent industry awards, most notably, the Distinguished Service Award from the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP), the highest recognition achievable for professionals in the supply chain industry.

Robert has written and co-written award-winning business books and multiple articles related to Lean, Enterprise Excellence, Supply Chain Management and Leadership. In addition, Robert published a fiction novel, Drift and Hum, which won multiple awards including the IBPA Benjamin Franklin Gold Winner Award for Best First Book-Fiction. He has also written poetic verse for two children’s books.

Robert is an active member of the business community and is passionate about the people side of Lean, Enterprise Excellence, the Future of Workforce Development and Creating Meaningful Employment Environments.

Robert complements his professional experience with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics, an MBA in Finance, and a Six Sigma Black Belt. Born in Timmins, Ontario, Canada, he and his family have lived in the United States for the past three decades. 


Blog photo of Robert Martichenko 35th Quest Closing Keynote
Robert Martichenko, Closing Keynote speaker, 35th Baldrige Quest for Excellence® Conference

Quest Speaker Offers Insights on Meaningful Work Environments

FEBRUARY 6, 2024
Christine Schaefer

Is your organization challenged by high turnover and low engagement, especially among frontline employees? What’s more, are you prepared to meet changing workforce needs so you can attract and retain high-performing employees in the future? 

“Two core things that leaders need to do are treat people with dignity and focus on making the work meaningful.”

Read more


  • Baldrige Customer Service
    (301) 975-2036
    100 Bureau Drive, M/S 1020
    Gaithersburg, MD 20899-1020
Created January 22, 2018, Updated February 12, 2024