Twenty Advisory Board Members Share Their Schedules for SXSW EDU

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board members.

The 2018 SXSW EDU Conference & Festival is only a few, short weeks away and our excitement for March is on the rise. With the majority of the program already announced, now is the time to start thinking about your plans for the event.

On this note, we asked several of our Advisory Board members about their schedules for SXSW EDU. To no surprise, many have already started building out their personal schedule and were happy to share. Keep reading to preview Advisory Board member’s schedules and learn more about their goals for SXSW EDU 2018.

For tips and guidance on how to use the online schedule, check out the blog post Navigating the 2018 SXSW EDU Schedule.

Camedra Jefferson

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Camedra_ Jefferson. Literacy Curriculum Specialist, Houston ISD

  • I am a Literacy Curriculum Specialist, with 11 years of experience working with special populations, reading intervention, and currently 21st-century literacy curriculum and instruction.
  • My goal at the upcoming SXSW EDU Conference and Festival is to attend sessions that promote voice and choice for teachers and students in the classroom while enriching my exposure to new innovative approaches to learning and pedagogy.
  • My schedule highlights key interests in social justice, social-emotional learning, accessibility for all populations, and empowering teachers to empower students in the classroom.

Explore Camedra’s Schedule

Julie Willcott

Julie Willcott, Independent Educator, Kennebec Valley Community College Independent Educator, Kennebec Valley Community College

  • I teach Sustainable Food Systems and I provide educator training and content development for virtual reality in education.
  • My SXSW EDU goal is to learn more about where education is going as opposed to where it currently is.
  • My schedule includes lots of VR, AR, and AI sessions as well as a few “just for fun” sessions like Food Computers and Moth Storytelling.

Explore Julie’s Schedule

Jaime Casap

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member - Jaime  Casap, Education Evangelist at Google Education Evangelist, Google

  • Chief Education Evangelist at Google and 10th grade Communication Skills Teacher who believes we need equity in education because education disrupts poverty.
  • I go to SXSW EDU to see friends, meet new interesting folks doing cool things, and attending sessions that help me think and form ideas.
  • I am attending a lot of sessions on equity in education and sessions focused on transforming the structures of education.

Explore Jaime’s Schedule

Kai Dupé

SXSW EDU Advisory Board 2018 Member -  Kai Dupé, Technical Trainer, Amazon Web Services Technical Trainer, Amazon Web Services

  • I am a technologist, educator, diversity advocate, and researcher with more 30 years of experience in software development.
  • My SXSW EDU goal is to discover new methods and strategies for motivating and attracting underrepresented youth to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and math.
  • My SXSW EDU is composed of workshops that offer content focused on digital equity.

Explore Kai’s Schedule

Beth Carls

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Beth Carls. CEO, Co-Founder, OneSeventeen Media, PBC

  • In 2000, I jumped head first into ed tech and have loved every minute of it. I create online tools to help students, educators and parents have better interactions.
  • In 2018 at SXSW EDU, my objective is to “shop til I drop” and attend as many sessions as I can in my current areas of interest – artificial intelligence, early childhood education and social emotional learning.
  • My schedule is a multi-step process resulting in activities from (1) my primary topic objectives; (2) speakers I love; (3) support for Austin-based organizations and women; and (4) meeting with investors.

Explore Beth’s Schedule

Mark Rogers

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Mark Rogers. Teacher, Meridian School

  • I am a public K-12 educator who believes that looping (teaching cohorts of students for multiple years) is the best way to improve academic and SEL outcomes for our students.
  • My SXSW EDU goal is to attend a diverse set of sessions focused on workshops, implementation, and panel discussions related to pedagogy, equity, and producing better educational videos.
  • My schedule features strategies to promote equity in K-12 settings, engaging students so they have the best time in class, and creating educational music videos (I’m kind of like the Mathematical Weird Al Yankovic).

Explore Mark’s Schedule

Ann Witherspoon

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member - Ann Witherspoon, Instructional Technologist at Midlothian ISD Instructional Technologist, Midlothian ISD

  • I currently serve as part of a team of instructional technologists, the MitCrew, for my school district.
  • Goals for my SXSW EDU experience are to connect with industry experts and to discover what’s trending in education.
  • I’ve filled my schedule with sessions that center on innovation, creativity, and student advocacy in the classroom.

Explore Ann’s Schedule

Bruce Douglas

Advisory Board Member - Bruce  Douglas, Education Consultant, PCG Education Education Consultant, PCG Education

  • I’m an Educational Consultant at Public Consulting Group. I collaborate with school districts across the country to boost academic achievement and student engagement. Also, partnering with state departments and districts to solve the National Teacher Shortage Crisis. Moreover, I focus on facilitating the National Forum on Equity, through the My Brother’s Keeper Forum.
  • I’ve been coming to SXSW EDU for several years now. I look forward to learning about the new innovative tech solutions and educational practices from across the world. Also, continue to network and build relationships with colleagues that are looking to innovate K-12 education.
  • My schedule is to build on a deeper understanding around equitable outcomes in education and business, the relevance of Artificial Intelligence, and innovative solutions to innovating K-12 education.

Explore Bruce’s Schedule

Thurman D. Nassoiy, M.S.Ed.

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member - Thurman D. Nassoiy, M.S.Ed. Education Specialist, Digital Learning

  • I’m a digital learning specialist at Region 4 in Houston, TX and have been in the field of education for the last 16 years.
  • At SXSW EDU 2018, I want to dig in deeper with a few select topics that align with exciting new projects that I’m involved with this year.
  • My SXSW EDU schedule reflects my own personal learning this year regarding virtual reality/intelligence augmentation as well as reexamining prior work in the areas of equity and social justice.

Explore Thurman’s Schedule

Leila Toplic

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Leila Toplic. Programs Leader, NetHope

  • I am incredibly lucky to have had the opportunity to spend last 16+ years working on global technology brands and more recently, using my tech and business expertise to address some of the world’s toughest humanitarian and social problems.I’ve always been passionate about using technology to solve humanitarian problems, especially the global refugee crisis. Today, I lead the No Lost Generation (NLG) Tech Task Force which allows me to connect tech sector expertise and resources with the needs of the refugee children and youth.
  • My goal for SxSW EDU 2018 is to connect with educators, policymakers, private sector companies, nonprofits, and others who are interested in collaborating on and shaping the future of education and work for all. More on how I’m thinking about the future of education and work here.
  • My schedule is focused on future of education and work, including how emerging technologies like AI and blockchain will impact and benefit how we learn and work. I am also interested in closing the access and participation gap for underserved communities like refugee children and youth.

Explore Leila’s Schedule

James Miles

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, James Miles. Executive Director, Arts Corps

  • A former actor, accountant, model, and garbage man, I am now an educator with 20 years of experience, working in diverse classrooms around the world.
  • My goal for SXSW EDU is to build partnerships that help broaden the reach of equitable education, and to showcase youth perspectives at the intersection of arts, education, social justice, and the digital world.
  • My SXSW EDU schedule is defined by workshops and experiences focused on culturally responsive education, special needs, youth performances, and rural education.

Explore James’ Schedule

Peter Nilsson

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Peter Nilsson. Director of Research, Innovation, and Outreach, Deerfield Academy

  • I’m a teacher and administrator at Deerfield Academy, I direct a nonprofit that connects teachers around practice, and I edit weekly newsletter that curates learning-related news.
  • My goals are to learn from excellent sessions, to build relationships with people who can help me improve my work, and to reconnect with friends I’ve developed over the years attending SXSW EDU.
  • Some sessions on equity, some sessions on the future, some sessions about digital platforms, and a great talk about computation and kids.

Explore Peter’s Schedule

Kelly Schafer

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Kelly Schafer. Artist and Educator

  • I am a an art educator with 10 years teaching experience, currently pursuing my own art and arts advocacy on a community level.
  • My SXSW EDU goal is to keep up to speed with all of the exciting changes in education and to be inspired in new ways to help jumpstart my efforts at making a difference in my career and community.
  • My schedule outline reflects my interest in collaboration across the community to benefit the greater good, and the arts as a vehicle for this are a running thread.

Explore Kelly’s Schedule

Martin Moran

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Martin Moran. Lead Designer and Director of Upper School Bennett Day School

  • I have been in education for about 15 years, first as a history and sociology teacher, later as an Education Technology Director, most recently as a Director of Innovation; currently, I am designing and building a new project- and competency-based high school in Chicago, set to open in 2019.
  • I’m hoping to meet and connect with more educators looking to change the status quo in education and attend sessions on innovative practices that have been tested and proven at schools around the country.
  • My schedule is a mix of practices and mindsets for a new school; I want to hear about practices that are enhancing student voice and using technology to increase human connections.

Explore Martin’s Schedule

Matthew Cohen

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Matthew Cohen. Managing Director, Cohen Strategy Group, LLC

  • I’m the Managing Director of Cohen Strategy Group, LLC where my focus is on growing clients seeking to transform and improve the education landscape. A founding member of the executive leadership team or senior adviser to leading education technology companies (total capital raised exceeding $75M) as well as their private equity sponsors, I am best known for identifying opportunities, closing new business, and fostering strategic client relationships. As a result, he has earned an outstanding record of senior-level relationship development, resulting in significant revenue generation and value creation.
  • My primary goals for SXSW EDU include (1) identifying & advancing business development opportunities where I may help scale promising ventures, and (2) reconnecting with my friends & colleagues.
  • Personally, I’m very focused on social justice and creating greater economic opportunity for every learner—for every member of society—and my schedule reflects that.

Explore Matthew’s Schedule

Lindsey Own

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Lindsey Own. BIG Lab Coordinator, The Evergreen School

  • I have been a classroom teacher for over 15 years, and am currently in my third year as the makerspace integration teacher in our PS-8th grade school in Seattle, WA.
  • One of my biggest priorities at SXSW EDU this year is to explore program assessment so that we can determine objectively whether our makerspace is having the impact on our students’ learning we’re hoping for! To that end, I’m excited about the workshop: MetaRubric: Playful Assessment Design Workshop as well as networking with other SXSW EDU participants who focus on program evaluation!
    With our STEAM integration growing deeper across all subject areas through integration of our makerspace, we’re working on boosting our formal technology classes to push our students’ increasing skills. My other priorities are to dive deeply into robotics, AI, and other tech learning programming, as well as continue digging into equity conversations and sessions that can help frame inclusive education for special needs students, especially students on the autism spectrum. I’m looking forward to the panel Empathetic by Design: Designing Educational Spaces for Students With Autism and the campfire discussion The Spiderman Principle: Teaching Ethical Hacking.
  • My completely over-packed schedule includes sessions – especially hands-on workshops – that focus on assessment, robotics and AI, race and equity, and my constants: design thinking, STEAM, and project-based learning.

Explore Lindsey’s Schedule

Tony Brown

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Tony Brown. Principal, Public Consulting Group

  • I’ve worked in the cross-sector of Education, Health, Human Services, and Technology for nearly 30 years and continually look for synergies across these industries to elevate the way we serve the public sector.
  • My SXSW EDU goal is to learn, engage in deep conversations, and be challenged on how to bring a holistic lens to the way we support and provide services to all kids, across all sectors.
  • I’ve designed my SXSW EDU schedule with an array of sessions ranging from early childhood to workforce development, to achieve exposure to a diverse range of innovative topics, research, and discussions.

Explore Tony’s Schedule

Kathy Blankenship

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Kathy Blankenship. Teacher, Manor High School

  • I’m currently teaching CTE Tech courses at Manor High School, (outside of Austin), but I’ve taught almost every subject from PreK-12 in the past 20+ years.
  • This year, I’m planning on networking with other educators and discovering new ways to engage my low SES student population. I have no idea what I want to be when I grow up, so I’m always looking for new and interesting ideas. I’m considering pursuing a Library Science certification, so my “Swiss Army Knife” mentality will serve me well. (I’m not necessarily a screwdriver, but I can function as a screwdriver until you need me to do something else!)
  • My schedule is all over the place, since I have so many different goals for myself and my students. It will change from minute to minute, based on how I feel that morning.

Explore Kathy’s Schedule

David Ross

David Ross, CEO, P21 Partnership For 21st Century Learning CEO, P21 Partnership For 21st Century Learning

  • As the CEO of an a non-profit that sits at the juncture of policy, practice and business, I’m eager to interact with ideas and people who bridge disciplines and cross sectors at SXSW EDU.
  • My primary objective this year is to meet and interact with thought leaders and innovators.
  • My schedule is designed to push my boundaries and test my assumptions.

Explore David’s Schedule

Kathy Hurley

SXSW EDU 2018 Advisory Board member, Kathy Hurley. CEO, Kathy Hurley Consulting

  • Retired after 45 years in the education industry, but I am still consulting, active on several industry board (including SXSW), and am interested in new products and start-ups.
  • Look at trends in the industry, meet new people, and see new products.
  • I am there on Monday and Tuesday, but have not yet set up my schedule.


Jessica MacCall

SXSW EDU Sr Digital Media Manager

As part of the SXSW EDU marketing team, I am passionate about connecting people to ideas of impact. I earned a bachelor's degree in Mass Communications–Electronic Media and Photography from Texas State University and am currently pursuing an MBA from Western Governors University.

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