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General Session Speakers

Thank you to all our 2015 general session speakers! Below you will find interviews, videos, articles, and graphic recordings from these enlightening sessions.

Interested in hearing what NAIS President John Chubb had to say at the conference? Visit this page for access to his slides and a video of his opening general session remarks (coming soon).
 
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 General Session Speakers

 
  • John Maeda

    John Maeda

    Thursday, February 26, 9:30 - 11:00 AM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    Redesigning Leadership

    ​Read an article about John Maeda's NAIS Keynote here.

    Watch interview clips with Maeda on the NAIS YouTube channel.

    View the graphic recording of the opening general session.

    Currently a design partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, John Maeda previously led the Rhode Island School of Design as its 16th president from 2008 – 2013. For 12 years before that, he served as professor and associate director of research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Media Laboratory. This intrepid innovator honed his skills as a researcher and software engineer at the International Media Research Foundation from 1990 – 1996. Currently Maeda serves on the board of directors of Sonos, Inc. and Wieden+Kennedy. He also chairs the eBay Design Advisory Council. Maeda received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from MIT, an MBA from Arizona State University, and a Ph.D. in design science from the University of Tsukuba Institute of Arts and Design in Japan.

  • Brian Bordainick

    Brian Bordainick

    Thursday, February 26, 2:45 - 4:30 PM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    Independent Matters

    ​You can read an article about the Independent Matters general session here.

    View the graphic recording of the Independent Matters session.

    Watch Bordainick's session and interview clips on the NAIS YouTube channel.

    Brian Bordainick is a bona fide serial entrepreneur. In summer 2007, while working for Teach for America, Bordainick traveled to New Orleans, arriving to find a parking lot full of FEMA trailers and the flooded skeleton of a high school. With trailers for classrooms, no money, no supplies, too few desks, and no experience, Bordainick rose to the challenge as full-time teacher and athletic director at G. W. Carver High School in the 9th Ward. He helped raise $1.85 million to construct a state-of-the-art football field and track on Carver's campus. It empowers the community as it contributes to the health and wellness of students, lowers crime rates by providing after school activities, and sends a much needed message to the students: Despite the great setbacks they have faced, they still matter.

    Recognized as one of New Orleans' highest achieving young entrepreneurs, Bordainick was recruited to work as the "entrepreneur in residence" for the Idea Village. Following this, Bordainick worked for the mayor of New Orleans and then piloted an education entrepreneurship program. With 4.0 Schools, Bordainick encourages a different dialogue in education to source new, innovative — and alternative — learning strategies, many of which are kinesthetically focused.
     
    Anderson Cooper 360, ESPN, The Today Show, and CBS News have featured Bordainick. He’s spoken at TEDxGoldenGateED, The Feast Social Innovation Conference, and various universities. Forbes listed him on its "30 Under 30: Education" list.
  • Neri Oxman

    Neri Oxman

    Thursday, February 26, 2:45 - 4:30 PM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    Independent Matters

    ​You can read an article about the Independent Matters general session here

    View the graphic recording of the Independent Matters general session.

    Neri Oxman, an award-winning designer who looks to nature for practical design solutions opens a vista onto a lush, wondrous, and sustainable future within reach — one where technology and nature live in harmony. Featured on the cover of Fast Company's 100 Most Creative People in Business issue (2009), Oxman transcends the boundaries between art, science, and environmentalism. 

    Oxman is the Sony Corporation career development professor, associate professor of media arts and sciences, and research group director at the MIT Media Lab, where she directs the Mediated Matter research group. Her group explores how digital design, engineering, material science, artistic forms, and ecology can combine to radically transform the design and construction of everyday objects, buildings, and systems. Oxman's goal is to enhance the relationship between the built and the natural environment by employing design principles inspired by nature and implementing them in the invention of digital design technologies. 

    A graduate of the AA School of Architecture, and previously a medical scholar at the Hebrew University and the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Oxman has won numerous awards, including the inaugural Earth Award. She's one of Esquire's "Best and Brightest;" ICON listed her in the top 20 most influential architects to shape our future (2009); and SEED Magazine named her a "Revolutionary Mind" in 2008. World-renowned museums display her work around the globe.

  • Sunni Brown

    Sunni Brown

    Thursday, February 26, 2:45 - 4:30 PM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    Independent Matters

    ​You can read an article about the Independent Matters general session here.

    View the graphic recording of Independent Matters general session.

    Watch interview clips with Brown on the NAIS YouTube channel.

    Author and “chief infodoodler” Sunni Brown leads the global campaign for visual literacy called The Doodle Revolution.  Fast Company named Brown one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business and one of the 10 Most Creative People on Twitter. An internationally known speaker, Brown is founder of a creative consultancy and the coauthor of Gamestorming. Oprah.com praised Brown’s second book The Doodle Revolution as, "a book every joy-seeking woman should read." Winning devotees around the globe, her TED Talk on doodling has drawn nearly a million views on TED.com.

  • Marc Lamont Hill

    Marc Lamont Hill

    Thursday, February 26, 2:45 -4:30 PM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    Independent Matters

    ​You can read an article about the Independent Matters general session here.

    View a graphic recording of the Independent Matters general session.

    Watch interview clips with Hill on the NAIS YouTube channel.

    Marc Lamont Hill is one of the leading hip-hop generation intellectuals in the country. His work, which covers topics such as culture, politics, and education, has appeared in numerous journals, magazines, books, and anthologies. Dr. Hill has lectured widely and provides regular commentary for media outlets like NPR, Washington Post, Essence magazine, and The New York Times. He is the host of the nationally syndicated television show Our World with Black Enterprise, which airs Sunday mornings on TV One and broadcast markets around the country. He also provides regular commentary for CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News Channel, where he was a political contributor and regular guest on The O’Reilly Factor. An award-winning writer, Dr. Hill is a columnist and editor-at-large for the Philadelphia Daily News. Since 2009, Dr. Hill has been on the faculty of Columbia University as associate professor of education at Teachers College. He also holds an affiliated faculty appointment in African American Studies at the Institute for Research in African American Studies at Columbia University. Since his days as a youth in Philadelphia, Marc Lamont Hill has been a social justice activist and organizer. He is a founding board member of My5th, a nonprofit organization devoted to educating youth about their legal rights and responsibilities. He is also a board member and organizer of the Philadelphia Student Union. Dr. Hill also works closely with the ACLU Drug Reform Project, focusing on drug informant policy. In addition to his political work, Dr. Hill continues to work directly with African American and Latino youth. In 2001, he started a literacy project that uses hip-hop culture to increase school engagement and reading skills among high school students. He also continues to organize and teach adult literacy courses for high school dropouts in Philadelphia and Camden.  In 2005, Ebony magazine named him one of America’s “top 30 black leaders under 30 years old.”  Dr. Hill is the author of Beats, Rhymes, and Classroom Life: Hip-Hop Pedagogy and the Politics of Identity and co-editor of Media, Learning, and Sites of Possibility and The Anthropology of Education Reader. His newest book is The Classroom and the Cell: Conversations on Black Life in America.

  • Rebecca Chopp

    Rebecca Chopp

    Friday, February 27, 9:30 - 11:00 AM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    Panel on the Future of Education

    ​You can read an article on the general session Panel on the Future of Education here.

    View the graphic recording of the Panel on the Future of Education general session.

    Watch the Panel on the Future of Education on the NAIS YouTube channel.

    New Chancellor of University of Denver Rebecca Chopp came from Swarthmore College. As president of Swarthmore since 2009, Chopp passionately upheld the college's longstanding commitment to admitting the most highly qualified students without regard for their financial circumstances. She supported innovative ways for faculty and students to interact at Swarthmore and extended the distinct role the school plays in educating students to build inclusive communities and become leaders motivated to contribute to the common good. Before joining Swarthmore, Chopp served as president of Colgate University, where she led a comprehensive strategic plan that expanded the university's academic space, strengthened academic programs, and developed new interdisciplinary centers. She also served as provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at Emory University and as a dean at Yale University. Noted author and editor, Chopp most recently published the book Remaking College: Innovation and the Liberal Arts. She has published more than 50 articles and five other books. Chopp is the immediate past chair of the Centennial Conference President's Council. Previously, she served on the governing boards of the Association of American Colleges and Universities and the National Survey of Student Engagement. Chopp has also served as a member of the executive committee of the Annapolis Group, trustee of the Carnegie Foundation for Teaching, and president of the American Academy of Religion.

  • Pamela Gunter-Smith

    Pamela Gunter-Smith

    Friday, February 27, 9:30 - 11:00 AM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    Panel on the Future of Education

    ​You can read an article about the general session Panel on the Future of Education here.

    View the graphic recording of the Panel on the Future of Education general session.

    Watch a recording of the panel and interviews with the participants on the NAIS YouTube channel.

    Pamela Gunter-Smith, president of York College of Pennsylvania, previously served as Drew University's provost and academic vice president, as well as the Porter Professor of Physiology at Spelman College. She has also held academic appointments at The George Washington University and the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. For 12 years before joining Spelman, she served as research scientist and science administrator at the Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute.  Gunter-Smith holds a bachelor's degree in biology from Spelman College and a doctoral degree in physiology from Emory University. She conducted postdoctoral studies at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. She has published in the areas of gastrointestinal physiology and membrane ion transport and has won grants to support science education and her research.

  • Paul LeBlanc

    Paul LeBlanc

    Friday, February 27, 9:30 - 11:00 AM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    Panel on the Future of Education
    You can read an article about the general session Panel on the Future of Education here.

    View the graphic recording of the Panel on the Future of Education general session.

    Watch a recording of the panel and interview clips with the participants on the NAIS YouTube channel.

    Since Paul J. LeBlanc became president of Southern New Hampshire University in 2003, the university has more than quadrupled in size. It’s now the largest provider of online higher education in New England, one of the five largest in the country, and the first to have a full competency-based degree program untethered to the credit hour or classes approved by a regional accreditor and the U.S. Department of Education. In 2012 the university ranked 12 on Fast Company’s World’s Fifty Most Innovative Companies list – the only university included. Repeatedly named one of New Hampshire’s Most Influential People by New Hampshire Business Review, LeBlanc won a New England Higher Education Excellence Award in 2012 – the same year Forbes listed him as one of its 15 Classroom Revolutionaries, Bloomberg TV featured him on its Innovators series, and Fast Company included him on its 1,000 Most Creative People list. As a child LeBlanc immigrated to the U.S. and became the first person in his extended family to attend college. He earned his bachelor’s from Framingham State University, master’s from Boston College, and doctorate from University of Massachusetts. Prior to leading SNHU he directed a technology start up for Houghton Mifflin Publishing Company and served as president of Marlboro College.
  • Nannerl Keohane

    Nannerl Keohane

    Friday, February 27, 9:30 - 11:00 AM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    Panel on the Future of Education

    You can read an article about the general session Panel on the Future of Education here.​

    View the graphic recording of the Panel on the Future of Education general session.

    Watch a recording of the panel and interview clips with the participants on the NAIS YouTube channel.

    Nannerl Keohane is a political philosopher who served as president of Wellesley College (1981 – 1993) and Duke University (1993 – 2004), and has taught at Swarthmore, Stanford and Princeton, as well as Wellesley and Duke. Keohane is the author of Philosophy and the State in France: the Renaissance to the Enlightenment (1980); Higher Ground: Ethics and Leadership in the Modern University (2006), and Thinking about Leadership (2010). She is a member of the Harvard Corporation and on the Board of Trustees of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.Keohane has also served on the boards of IBM, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, the American Political Science Association, the Brookings Institution, the National Humanities Center and the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford. She is currently a visitor at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, NJ, and a visitng professor at Princeton University.

  • Sarah Lewis

    Sarah Lewis

    Friday, February 27, 3:00 - 4:30 PM
    Veterans Memorial Auditorium
    The Rise: Creativity, the Gift of Failure, and the Search of Mastery

    ​Read an article about Lewis's general session here.​

    View the graphic recording for Lewis's general session.

    Watch interviews with Lewis on the NAIS YouTube channel.

    Sarah Lewis is a rising intellectual star. Her book, The Rise: Creativity, the Gift of Failure, and the Search for Mastery, has been hailed by a who's who of creative thinkers. Lewis Hyde calls it a “welcome departure from standard accounts of artistry and innovation.” The New York Times calls it "strikingly original." Kirkus Reviews writes: "Creativity, like genius, is inexplicable, but Lewis’ synthesis of history, biography, and psychological research offers a thoughtful response to the question of how new ideas happen."

    Lewis appears on Oprah's “Power List,” served on President Obama's Arts Policy Committee, has been profiled in Vogue, and is a faculty member at Yale's School of Art. She has held positions at the Tate Modern and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Artforum and The Smithsonian have published her essays. Her second book, Black Sea, Black Atlantic: Frederick Douglass, The Circassian Beauties, and American Racial Formation in the Wake of the Civil War, will be published by Harvard University Press in 2015. She received her bachelor’s from Harvard, master’s from Oxford, and doctorate from Yale. She spoke at TED2014 in Vancouver, BC.

 

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