Revolution(ary) Keynote Speakers

Thursday, October 8
5:15 pm - 6:30 pm

Dr. Nadine Burke Harris

California Surgeon General

Breaking the Intergenerational Cycle of Adversity


Friday, October 9
9:00 am - 10:15 am


Derek Francis

Manager of Counseling Services, Minneapolis Public Schools, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Lessons Learned at The Heart of Racial Injustice
Equity starts with understanding. And at the heart of understanding is love! Racial and ethnic hostility is one of the most pervasive problems facing our nation today and now is the time to unite to make a difference with our youth and others.  The senseless killing of George Floyd, and the racial injustice that continues around the world every single day, drives right to the core of what this presentation is about. Derek Francis, the head counselor from a district located in the heart of this nation's civil uprising - Minneapolis, Minnesota, will share about his experiences as a school counselor navigating racial incidents with students, staff and the community.  His call to action is not only for educators, but for parents and others to be proactive and stand in solidarity for equitable treatment of students in our schools.  This is not a sit and get keynote.  Come ready to do something different because of the presentation.


Saturday, October 10
12:30 pm - 1:45 pm


Dr. Carl Cohn

Professor Emeritus, Claremont Graduate University

Listening: The Most Important Leadership Skill in Times of Crisis

Carl Cohn shares reflections on the many crises that he has handled over a 50-plus year career as a teacher, a counselor and administrator. He's handled many crises, including drive-by shootings, riots, gang warfare, fires, floods and drownings--events that unfortunately put students and school staff in harm's way. Each of these tragedies had a beginning, a midpoint and an end or, in the case of gang warfare, a time when the severity of the crisis abated. Not so with this current worldwide pandemic. None of us know when this is going to end and what the human casualty implications are going to be before this is over. He argues, however, that our ability to listen remains the most important leadership skill to have in abundance as we collectively weather these uncertain times.

Dr. Carl Cohn is professor emeritus at Claremont Graduate University. From 2011 through 2018, he  served the state of California first as a state board of education member, and then as executive director of the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence. Previously, he was superintendent of schools in both the Long Beach and San Diego school systems, as well as the Federal Court monitor for the Los Angeles school system. His tenure in Long Beach culminated with his winning the McGraw Prize in 2002, and the district winning the Broad Prize in 2003. Dr. Cohn currently serves on the following boards: the Spencer Foundation, CTA’s Institute for Teaching, the Center for Assessment, the Alder Graduate School of Education, the Education Standing Committee of the California Catholic Conference, and the National Center for Learning Disabilities. In addition, he recently joined the Leadership Council of California Competes. In addition to his work in K-12 education, he has prepared future educational leaders at Pittsburgh, California State University, Los Angeles, USC, Harvard, GW and Claremont.