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Larry Westenberg - Resume


M.S.Ed. 8/98 Northern Illinois University DeKalb, IL
Education, with a concentration in Instructional Design/Training Design. 

M.S.W. 6/96 Aurora University Aurora, IL
Social Work, with a concentration in Mental Health 
Illinois Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)
Registered Social Worker Continuing Education (CEU) Sponsor 159-001305 2015)

B.A. 5/83 Coe College Cedar Rapids, IA
Majored in both Psychology and Music, concentrations in Experimental Psychology,  as well as Music Performance, Theory and Composition.
Attained highest grade in psychology department on senior comprehensive exams, 1983. (Missed one question)

Click here to jump to my training in NLP


  • Certified Trainer and Master Practitioner in Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP)

  • Create computer-based and leader-led training programs by combining programming and design work in:
    • Adobe Articulate Storyline1, Storyline 2; Lectora, Captivate, Brainshark, Dreamweaver, Flash, Authorware, Presenter, Illustrator and PhotoShop; Corel Draw and PhotoPaint; Microsoft Office (including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher and Access) and FrontPage, as well as Lectora (X or Inspire), Perception, SnagIt, Java, JavaScript, ActionScript 3.0 and HTML.

  • Frequently called in to enhance or repair ineffective training programs produced by other designers.  This is especially true of testing and courses that will not launch or track completion on an LMS accurately. Also repair incorrect programming and logic sequences found in final program testing and online assessments.  Utilized as resource for final proofreader due to excellent grammar and spelling skills by BMO Harris and AT&T for customer-facing copy.

  • Enjoy working with extremely challenging technical material and developing ways to explain complex material by constantly including analogy and metaphor, mnemonics, building cognitive schemas and relating new information to background knowledge.  Familiar with UML (Unified Modeling Language) including use case diagrams, class definitions and sequence diagrams for software design or business analysis.

  • Extensive (30+ years) background in accelerated learning and cognitive psychology.  Extensive background in applying cognitive learning theories and developing training programs that work for different learning styles.  Experience in graphic design and desktop publishing.

Career History:

Employment in Education:

03/2016 to 09/2016 Instructional Designer at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, Chicago, Illinois (Short-term contract)

  • Created classes on Medicare and Medicaid-related topics, due to extensive knowledge of these services from working as Social Worker/casemanager in the State of Illinois mental health system for the past 30+ years.
  • Created templates for test questions and for information storyboarding to allow for rapid content development.
  • Created several courses and templates in Captivate 8, and also in Articulate Storyline that included branching and variables.

12/2015 to 03/2016 Instructional Developer at Abbott Labs, Lake Forest, Illinois (Short-term contract)

  • Developed elearning courses in Articulate Storyline 2. Created simulations and demonstrations as well as Job Aids and manuals for new documant management software to be launched facility-wide.

02/2015 to 05/2015 Instructional Designer at BMO Harris Bank in Naperville, Illinois (Short-term contract)

  • Developed e-learning storyboards for developers using Articulate Storyline. Created testing and interactions; made recommendations for information delivery and testing for content utilization versus memorization.

11/2014 to 12/2014 Instructional Developer at Abbott Labs, North Chicago, Illinois

  • Developed elearning courses in Lectora Inspire from provided storyboards. Created testing and interactions. Utilized Lectora online review tool for team development coordinations. Created small project in Brainshark.

5/2013 to 03/2014 Instructional Designer and Developer and Blue Cross Blue Sheld, Chicago, Illinois

  • Developed elearning programs in Adobe Captivate (5.5 and 6.0) on a variety of topics from new health care laws to The Americans with Disabilities Act. Developed leader-led training for onboarding new employees offering new policies as a result of the Affordable Care Act.
  • Wrote training on Personal Safety utilizing experience of working with physically aggressive psychiatric patients for twenty years. Wrote sections of manuals related to mental health, community services, etc.
  • Launched elearning on the Learning Management System (SumTotal) for utilization within the company.
  • Developed materials in cooperation with various subject-matter experts.
  • Delivered leader-led training on numerous topics related to interaction and communication skills.

7/2012 to 12/2012 Instructional Designer and Developer for International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP), Brookfield, Wisconsin. (Six-month contract)

  • Updated and revised elearning on medical benefits and retirement fund management using Lectora Inspire software. Created standard e-learning templates in cooperation with graphics/branding department. Fixed incorrect programming (as well as grammatical errors) in older training programs for accurate completion tracking in LMS.
  • Created elearning interactions in Flypaper, Lectora and Flash for use as "practice tests" for complicated legal topics. Imported these into Lecctora for use in online courses on the Learning Management System.
  • Assisted with design and emplementation of new Learning Management System (Cornerstone).

12/06 to 12/08, and again 10/2009 to 5/2011: Instructional Designer for AT&T in Chicago, Illinois

  • Designed and developed half-hour to eight-week long training courses.  Extensive work in information mapping and development of materials incorporating a wide variety of software packages. 
  • Revamped ineffective training programs (evidenced by majority of students not passing final assessment) and proofread final materials created by other designers.
  • Wrote and edited Student Guides and Facilitator Guides.  Developed PowerPoint (or Presenter) presentations. Edited and proofread all training materials for compliance with branding and formatting guidelines. 
  • Authored multiple Web-based training modules using Flash, Dreamweaver, Captivate, Lectora and other proprietary software systems.

05/05 to 12/06:  Instructional Design Analyst for Accenture, LLC in Chicago, Illinois

  • Designed and developed 4-week training sessions teaching the Java, C++, C# and ASP/ADO.NET computer languages. Classes included object-oriented programming concepts, computer program architecture and debugging/testing during the development of scalable IT applications.
  • Wrote manuals for various server configurations on Linux systems, including Oracle setup, Windows Server 2003 and`various other delivery architectures.
  • Developed design and delivery standards for training programs
  • Wrote manuals for students and faculty to facilitate training delivery
  • Edited and proofread all presentation and training materials

My specialty/challenge is to take horrifically complicated systems and write setup instructions that are thorough and clear enough to be completed by an untrained child, yet specific enough to go quickly for an expert. Three of the classes I helped to design and wrote were purchased by an extremely prestigious Ivy-league technical school for use in their Graduate program.

02/01 to Present: President of Expanding Enterprises, Inc. in Westmont, Illinois.

  • Designed, developed and now deliver (part-time) 20 different training programs offering Continuing Education to clinical professionals in Illinois
  • Owner and Webmaster of www.expandingenterprises.com, the commercial website offering these training programs and NLP-related practice tools.

9/97 to 02/01: Director of Clinical Training and Coordinator of Educational Certifications for Success Technologies Corporation in Indianapolis, Indiana.

  • Designed and developed 25 different training programs, ranging from 1 to 5-day classes
  • Designed curriculum, objectives, manuals, evaluation methods, and PowerPoint presentation materials for classes
  • Obtained Continuing Education Certification and graduate school acceptance for programs
  • Developed trainer standards far exceeding those of the International Board of Standards for Training, Performance and Instruction; then created a training and evaluation program for trainers
  • Functioned as subject matter expert in NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) and influential communication techniques
  • Designed promotional and advertising materials for classes

These classes are being taught to business, professional and social service organization employees throughout Illinois, Indiana and Ohio. Seven of these classes are being used by the State of Ohio to train Welfare to Work caseworkers in methods for motivating difficult clients to return to work.

4/99 to 6/99: Staff Development Specialist I at Elgin Mental Health Center in Elgin, Illinois

  • Trainer and training designer, providing in-house mandatory and promotional training classes in accordance with both state guidelines and home agency requirements.
  • Designed computer-based (Intranet) training system for additional training programs, including testing and tracking programs for training results analysis (Learning Managemenet System development)
  • Coordinated a wide variety of multimedia presentation equipment for web-based presentations

Employment in Social Work:

7/01 to 5/05: Emergency Room Social Worker and Behavioral Health Admissions Coordinator at Hinsdale Hospital in Hinsdale, Illinois.

  • Assessed patients in the Emergency Department and inpatients at Hinsdale Hospital to determine need for inpatient or outpatient psychiatric treatment and chemical dependence services.   Completed all legal paperwork for voluntary and involuntary admissions.  Consulted on neurological cases to rule-out psychosis versus medical causes of abnormal behavior.
  • Taught Anger Management and Stress Management to staff and for community outreach program.
  • Led therapy groups and did individual counseling with both inpatient and outpatient clients.

12/96 to 4/99: Social Worker II in Central Admissions at Elgin Mental Health Center

  • Specialized in interview-based assessment of criminally insane patients found Unfit to Stand Trial or Not Guilty by Reason of Insanity.
  • Maintained extensive knowledge of a variety of legal, medical, ethical and social procedural guidelines to assist with involuntary commitment of mentally ill individuals by the courts and other crisis situations.
  • Received all operator-screened telephone calls into the facility, ranging from suicidal crisis calls, to angry relatives, to attorneys and government agencies.

1/84 - 12/96: Mental Health Specialist I and II at Elgin Mental Health Center

  • Extensive experience in individual, group and family counseling.
  • Taught anger control to patients and aggression management methods to staff.
  • Taught group, individual and family therapy techniques

Eighteen years of experience with targeting problems, designing outcome-based and competency-based interventions, and evaluating the effectiveness of programs designed.   Frequently invited into negotiations with families, violent individuals, and management staff to utilize negotiation skills.  Continue to provide individual and family counseling on an independent basis as an LCSW.

Other Interests:

  • Enjoy the study of cognitive learning theories and motivational psychology.  Also study Eastern philosophy, linguistics, and music theory.  Studied hypnosis and influential communication methods since early teens.
  • Enjoy creating multimedia presentations, Web pages, logos, advertising graphics, movie sound tracks, and effective information layouts.
  • Own a private recording studio.  Play viola, piano, guitar, program synthesizers and compose. 
  • Developed a system for mapping information structures into manual layout and design, and currently involved in research on the effectiveness of this programmed learning system via product/training results.
  • Enjoy information system analysis – creating computer programs that model the thinking and decisions of experts in various fields and topics.
  • Multiple certifications and extensive training in Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). (See list below)
  • Excellent verbal, written, organizational and human relations skills.
  • Authorized Instructor of The First and The Second Degree Official Program of The Radiance Technique®<\sup> since 1994.
  • Licensed Massage Therapist (Swedish Massage and Medical Gymnastics Certification) since 1983.


History of Training in Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP)

  • June 8- July 5, 1991NLP Comprehensive Practitioner Certification.28-Day Residential Training in Winter Park, Colorado.Received Certification as NLP Practitioner.

  • October 25, 1991 - April 27, 1992Trance-formations I, II and III.48 hours of intensive training in Ericksonian Hypnotherapy and NLP taught by certified NLP Comprehensive trainer Michael J. Banks, Ph.D. in Chicago, Illinois.

  • January 17 - May 31, 1992Training Intern/Assistant for NLP Comprehensive Practitioner Certification Training in Chicago, Illinois.Participated in an Intern training program that included monthly training in presenting NLP in John Grinder's Standard Presentation Format.Also received extensive training in strategies for intervening with groups.

  • June 5 - July 1, 1992NLP Comprehensive Master Practitioner Certification, 24-Day Residential Training in Winter Park, Colorado.Received certification as NLP Master Practitioner.

  • August 8 - 9 and 22 - 23, 1992Sponsored and attended PhotoReading™Training in Chicago.

  • September 11 - December 7, 1992Training Intern/Assistant for NLP Comprehensive Master Practitioner Certification Training in Chicago, Illinois.Received additional training is teaching NLP, group intervention strategies, and "tasking" participants.

  • October 31, 1992 - May 2, 1993Training Intern/Assistant for NLP Comprehensive Practitioner Certification Training in Columbus, Ohio.

  • March 5 - 11, 1993Attended NLP Comprehensive Trainer Training in Boulder, Colorado.

  • June 20 - 26, 1993Attended IDHEA Seminars Design Human Engineering™(DHE™) Certification Training in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.Received certification as Design Specialist in Design Human Engineering™.

  • September 23 - 29, 1993Hosted and sponsored Design Human Engineering™Certification Training, done by IDHEA Seminars in Chicago, Illinois.

  • October 15, 1993 - February 21, 1994Training Coordinator for NLP Comprehensive Master Practitioner Certification Training in Columbus, Ohio.

  • February 11 - 14, 1994Attended Perceptual CyberneticsTtraining with NLP Innovations in Atlanta, Georgia.Received advanced training developed by Charles Faulkner in cognitive modeling and NLP.

  • October 6 - 9, 1994Hosted and sponsored Perceptual CyberneticsTtraining in Chicago, IL.

(1993 - 1998Graduate School and Clinical Supervision)

  • July 23 - August 9, 2009  Taught 2-days of Hypnosis to the Practitioner Training.for NLP Comprehensive Certification Training in Winter Park, CO. Was a Coach/Training Assistant for Master Practitioner training as well.
  • May 16 – 18, 2014 Attended Level I Clinical Hypnosis with Rapid Trauma Resolution Certification and Training in Chicago, IL.

  • August 8 – 10, 2014 Attended Level II Clinical Hypnosis with Rapid Trauma Resolution Certification and Training in Chicago, IL. Received certification as a Practitioner in Rapid Resolution Therapy®

  • October 24 – 26, 2014 Attended Level III Clinical Hypnosis with Rapid Trauma Resolution Certification and Training in Chicago, IL. Received certification as a Master Practitioner in Rapid Resolution Therapy®


  • NLP-based book entitled, "Beliefs and How to Change Them." It is a cognitive-based model of how we build beliefs, and how we build prejudice into beliefs when we form them. The book then goes on to teach several sets of language patterns that influence belief structures conversationally. 

  • Published an article outlining a cognitive strategy for generalizing positive feeling states entitled, "A Strategy for Creating a More Loving World." Published in Anchor Point, January 1995 (Vol. 9, No. 1), pgs. 9-11.

  • Did all maps and computer-based graphics for the book "The History of Elgin Mental Health Center - Evolution of a State Hospital" published by Crossroads Communications, 1997. Book is about the history and evolution of the 100-year old Elgin Mental Health Center.

Unique Capabilities:


  • My experience as a clinical social worker and group therapist makes me uniquely qualified to teach "soft skills" such as empowerment, team building, mediation and conflict resolution. I am also uniquely qualified to teach skills such as problem solving and stress management techniques.
  • My training in cognitive therapy allows me to quickly assess and diagram the thinking patterns of subject matter experts (SME's), as well as the learning style of students in a training.  I can readily adapt my training and presentations to fit the learners.
  • My experience as a musical performer means I design (as well as present) training packages that are highly entertaining, yet also carefully structured to maximize learning and retention.

Problem Identification and Problem Solving:

  • My 15 years of experience in developing individual treatment plans and training in systems theory enables me to develop precise and effective intervention plans for complicated problem arrays.
  • My experience with outcome-based interventions combined with training in research methodology allows me to design competency-based training packages and offer excellent program analysis, documentation and results-oriented training.
  • My training in Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and assessment interviewing allows me to quickly model the thinking patterns of subject matter experts (SME's).
  • My background in music composition and recording enables me to compose original music in styles ranging from rock and jazz, to classical, to New Age for use in computer-based training and multimedia presentations.
  • My training in layout design and computer graphics combined with my knowledge of cognitive learning theory means I create original graphics to contribute to highly interactive and effective computer interface designs (GUI's).
  • My training in graphics and layout combined with my knowledge of cognitive learning theory allows me to design presentations that are entertaining, enjoyable and provide efficient "packaging" of information to facilitate learning and recall.
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