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THOUGHT LEADERS

Networking Group

THOUGHT LEADERS

STEVE SAMIKKANNU

General Manager, AmTab Manufacturing

steve.samikkannu@amtab.com

Steve Samikkannu is currently the General Manager of AmTab Manufacturing and has been the driving innovator here for over 10 years.

 

Steve Samikkannu has served on the Board Of Directors, Chair, and is an active member of the Education Market Association for the last 4 years. His work in the educational space encompasses all aspects of the school which include: computer and technology rooms, music and performance spaces, classrooms, science labs, and K-12 dining commons and K-12 food courts. Steve’s work at AmTab has helped transform the experience students have within schools which is especially true in K-12 food courts. On average, schools see a 15% - 25% increase in student participation in nutrition programs after forming a partnership with AmTab. Steve will continue to be an ambassador of change within schools in order to create modern, fun, and popular environments for students.

Please visit our YouTube page to hear what they had to say.

Randall Sampson, PhD, ensures equity and access for students through innovative learning models. Dr. Sampson has experience at the K-12 secondary education level as an administrator, teacher, and a national school innovation leader. Liberty Leadership Development is structured to serve the needs of your unique learning community.


Dr. Sampson's focus areas:
1. Closing achievement gaps through the implementation and coaching of rigorous learning standards
2. Systemically increasing college and career-readiness
3. Boosting graduation rates
4. Implementing Innovation Learning Pathways
5. Building Public-Private Partnerships through our community engagement process

Click here to listen to what he had to say.

DR. RANDALL SAMPSON

Owner, Liberty Leadership Development

Regional Superintendent,

St. Clair County ROE

ssarfaty@stclair.k12.il.us

@scsarfaty

SUSAN SARFATY

Ms. Sarfaty has been an educator for over 30 years.  She joined the St. Clair County Regional Office of Education in 2000.​

Susan Sarfaty is a lifelong resident of Belleville. She attended Belleville #118 and is a graduate of Belleville West High School. She continued her education at Belleville Area College and received her bachelor’s degree from Southern Illinois University. She continued her education with Master’s and post-Master’s work through both SIU Carbondale and Edwardsville. Susan taught elementary and middle school from 1983 before joining the St. Clair County Regional Office of Education in 2000 as the Grants Manager. She became the Assistant Superintendent in 2006 and was appointed as the Regional Superintendent in 2010. She was elected to this position in 2012.

Please visit our Soundcloud to hear what she had to say.

BEN SCHWARM

Deputy Executive Director,

Illinois Association of School Boards

bschwarm@iasb.com

Ben is Deputy Executive Director and oversees, Advocacy/Governmental Relations, State and federal legislative representation, Delegate Assembly and member resolutions, Statewide School Management Alliance, legal calendar, new school laws, the digest of bills passed, IASB position statements, and advocacy.  In addition, he assists in covering Association management, membership relations, records and dues, being on the board of directors, NSBA relations, job fairs, annual reports, and sponsored programs. Includes offices of Meetings Management, General Counsel, and Executive Searches.

Ben assists the Executive Director in policy formation and budget formation for the statewide association. Responsible for Human Resources, general staff supervisory responsibilities, and day-to-day operations for a staff of 70 employees located in offices in Springfield, IL, and in the Chicago suburbs.

 

Heads the Governmental Relations Department, consisting of State and federal legislative efforts, legislative tracking, direct lobbying, legislative reporting, and chief lobbyist coordinating a team of six legislative specialists in an advocacy coalition. Media spokesman for requests on pertinent education issues.

Ben participated on Issues in Education for a special edition which aired live from the Old State Capitol, as well as the School Safety Security Security Symposium.

Please click here to hear what he had to say.

STEM  Program Director,

YMCA Community Development

& STEMpact Facilitator

orlando.sharpe@gwrymca.org

ORLANDO SHARPE

Orlando is the Program Director for YMCA Community Literacy STEM programs serving the Gateway Region. In this position, Orlando works in collaboration with schools and community partners to create opportunities in the developing STEM ecosystem.  With more than 15 years of experience as a classroom teacher and technology specialist, he has developed a technology curriculum and delivered high-quality professional development for technology instruction/integration.


Orlando continues to look for exciting life-long learning opportunities and holds a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Harris Stowe State University as well as an MBA from Fontbonne University. Over the past three years, Orlando has worked with the STEM Teacher Quality Institute to enhance teacher quality in STE(a)M education and regularly participates in various local opportunities to develop skills and build capacities in STE(a)M Education and Community/Youth programs. His love of technology and innovation inspires his exploration of a diverse range of topics and adventures. From LEGO Robotics to Cardboard Prototyping, Orlando actively participates in the Maker Movement collaborating with other makers and artists to develop projects and ideas. Orlando’s passion for innovation, education, and technology is only matched by his sense of family and community. 

Click here to listen to what he had to say.

Dr. Skeeters participated in Transforming Schools, along with Dr. Robert Dillon, Director of Innovation, University City School District; Jim Elkins, Cisco Networking Academy Instructor, North Technical High School, Special School District; Miles Anderson, Student from North Technical High School, Special School District

 

Click here to listen to what she had to say.

DR. KERI SKEETERS

Director of Instructional Programming,

Wentzville School District

kerisketters@wsdr4.org

@KeriSkeeters

Media literacy has been her passion since 1997, and she will talk about it to anyone who will listen.  Worst thing ever said about her as a professor?  “She took the joy out of watching ‘Jersey Shore’ for me.” The best thing?  “She never played games on my computer ONCE during her classes.”

She teaches media courses as an adjunct Webster University.

She advocates less preaching and more coaching when it comes to digital citizenship education.  Whatever you call it –media literacy, digital literacy, digital citizenship, news literacy – it all boils down to one thing: CRITICAL THINKING

Click here to listen to what she had to say.

JULIE SMITH

Adjunct Professor, Webster University

heyjuliesmith@gmail.com 

@julnilsmith

Director, eMINTS

terryce@emints.org

CHRISTINE TERRY

"At the eMINTS National Center, we do not expect schools to implement a scripted program. We work closely with your school to:

 

Identify Goals – From personalized learning to problem-based instruction, we help schools clarify their vision for digital age learning and the technology that will make it possible.

 

Create an Evaluation Plan – If it doesn’t work for kids, it isn’t worth your time. That’s why we believe it's important to build meaningful measures into any program that helps us make adjustments along the way and understand if we are on the right path.

 

Customize and Contextualize – One size does not fit all. Professional development should be closely aligned with your goals, well-planned, thought-provoking, and fun.

 

Create Lasting Change – We can train your staff to implement your vision for professional development and design new learning experiences."

Click here to listen to what she had to say.

Degrees and Certifications:
• Doctorate of Educational Leadership, St. Louis University
• Master’s degree in educational Administration, Lindenwood University
• Bachelor’s in Education, Central Missouri University

Click here to listen to what she had to say.

DR. JENNIFER TILLER

Chief Academic Officer, EducationPlus

jtiller@edplus.org

@EducPlus

Superintendent, Liberty 53 School District

mjtucker@liberty.k12.mo.us

@TuckerTim

DR. JEREMY TUCKER

Jeremy is focused on continuous improvement for all in an ever-changing society.

Tucker began his job with the district on July 1, 2015. He previously served as the superintendent of the Logan-Rogersville School District located outside of Springfield, a position he has held since July 2008. Tucker brought 17 years of education experience to the Liberty district, including time spent as a teacher, principal, and coach.


“When I looked at the job, I realized Liberty is in a good place and needs a 

good leader, someone who will stay around for a while,” Tucker said. “My introductory message would be that our focus is kids. At the end of the day, if we can say we’re doing great things for kids, then we’ve accomplished a lot. It’s not one person, it’s not the school district by itself. It’s the entire community, and I think that Liberty understands that and values that. I look forward to sharing my vision in that area.”

 

Please click here to hear what he had to say.

ANDY TURGEON

Superintendent, Knox County R-1

aturgeon@knoxr1.us

@Superturg

Andy Turgeon became the Knox County R-I Superintendent on July 1st, 2010. 
 

Mr. Turgeon was previously with Knox County as the middle school and high school principal. Mr. Turgeon succeeded DJ Leverton who will be going to the Pilot Grove C-4 School District as superintendent. 
Mr. Turgeon’s professional career began as a mathematics teacher at Canton R-V for five years and where he also served as a high school principal for four years before coming to Knox County R-I. He earned his Bachelors of Science 

Degree in Education from Hannibal – Lagrange College, Masters of Education and specialist Degrees in Education from William Woods University and is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from St. Louis University.

 

Mr. Turgeon is also an adjunct instructor for William Woods University and is currently pursuing a doctorate in Educational Leadership from St. Louis University. 

 

Please click here to hear what he had to say about technology and the I Grow Program.

Dedicated to public education and an active member of his community, Wilson has served on his local board since 2007. In 2013, Wilson served as president of the Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA), and he has served on the OSBA Board of Trustees, Executive Committee, and numerous other regional and state committees. Following his term as OSBA president, the Central Region elected Wilson as their representative to NSBA’s Board of Directors. Wilson has taught as an associate professor at Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law for more than 30 years and earned his law degree from New York University School of Law.

“I am honored to serve as NSBA’s president and to champion public education at this critical juncture in our nation’s history,” said Wilson. “Amid the rapidly changing COVID-19 crisis and an unprecedented time of uncertainty, securing vital supports that will enable public schools to continue to serve more than 50 million students has never been more important.”

Click here to hear what he has to say.

CHARLIE WILSON

NSBA President

Superintendent, Fox C-6

jwipke@foxc6.org

@FoxC6Super

DR. JIM WIPKE

Dr. Wipke has been the superintendent of the Fox C-6 school district since 2014.  He had served as Executive Director of Secondary Education for Rockwood School District, a position he had held since 2011.

 

Dr. Wipke received his BS degree from Harris-Stowe State College.  He has a MA degree in Education and a MA degree in Administration.  His doctorate degree from Maryville University is in Educational Leadership.

 

During his 22 years in education, Dr. Wipke has served as an elementary and middle school teacher in the Rockwood School District, a middle school assistant principal in the Parkway School District, a middle and high school principal, and Executive Director of Secondary Education in the Rockwood School District.

“Dr. Wipke has the education, experience, strength of character, and vision to lead the Fox School District into the future,” said John Laughlin, Board President.  “We look forward to a smooth transition and are anxious for Dr. Wipke to meet the students, teachers, parents, staff, and the entire Fox Schools community.”

Please click here to hear what he had to say. 

314.421.3542 | St. Louis, Missouri

  ©2021 Issues in Education

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