2020 Virtual Education NY Summit

August 18, 2020  
1:00PM - 4:30PM
New York’s Current and Future Education in a Post COVID 19 Era
Event Description

City & State's 2020 Virtual Education in New York event will take what we have done for years with our in-person event and transform the program with new situations that have come out of COVID 19.  It will offer industry executives, public sector leaders and academics the opportunity to share ideas and debate over critical issues such as remote learning, standardized testing, public school funding and more.

To see a recording of the webinar click here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4

Betty A. Rosa
Interim State Education Commissioner
Dr. Rosa was first elected as the Regent for the Twelfth Judicial District (Bronx County) to a five-year term (April 1, 2008 – March 31, 2013), re-elected (April 1, 2013 – March 31, 2018) and re-elected for a third term (April 1, 2018 – March 31, 2023). In March 2016, Dr. Rosa was elected by her Board of Regents colleagues as Chancellor for the term April 1, 2016 through March 2019, and, in March 2019 was re-elected by her Board of Regents colleagues as Chancellor for a second term April 1, 2019 through March 2022. Born in New York City but raised for the first ten years of her life in Puerto Rico, Dr. Rosa attended public elementary and junior high schools in the Bronx (Districts 9 and 10) before graduating from St. Helena's High School, now Monsignor Scanlon High School, in the Throggs Neck section of the Bronx. She received a B.A. in psychology from the City College of New York and holds two Master of Science in Education degrees, one in Administration and Supervision and the other in Bilingual Education from the City College of New York and Lehman College respectively. She also received an Ed. M. and Ed. D. in Administration, Planning and Social Policy from Harvard University. Dr. Rosa worked in the N.Y.C. Department of Education as a bilingual paraprofessional, teacher and reading coordinator, served as an assistant principal and principal in special education, introduced an integrated linguistic model in developing a multilingual and multicultural school for general and special education populations, was principal of I.S. 218, a full-service community school in partnership with the Children’s Aid Society in District 6, and developed and implemented the Office of Conflict Resolution for the NYC Division of Special Education. She has taught graduate level education courses including Education of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Exceptional Children, Due Process: Law and the Handicapped, and Applied and Action Research for Doctoral Students, has served on dissertation committees, and is an executive coach for doctoral students. Chancellor Rudy Crew appointed Dr. Rosa to the position of Superintendent of Community School District 8 in the Bronx. District 8 consisted of approximately 25,000 students and 30 schools encompassing neighborhoods of the South Bronx including Soundview and Hunts Point and the northeast section of the Bronx known as Throggs Neck. Chancellor Harold Levy later appointed Dr. Rosa to serve as the Senior Superintendent of the Bronx. One of the schools Dr. Rosa founded as superintendent, M.S. 101 (Maritime Academy for Science and Technology) became the top ranked middle school in the City of New York based on New York State examination results. She was elected to a four-year term to the Alumni Council of Harvard University's Graduate School of Education and also appointed to a three-year term to the Principal/Site Administrator Advisory Committee of the American Association of School Administrators. Dr. Rosa also served as a consulting member of the Educational Research Development Institute and is currently a member of the New York Team of the National Education Policy Center’s Schools of Opportunity project. Dr. Rosa is the President of B.D.J. & J. Associates LLC, a company she founded in 2005. The company serves in a consulting capacity to large urban school districts throughout the country and to companies in the educational services field. A new division provides business development assistance in sports, recreation, and camps for profit and not-for-profit enterprises and organizations. Since 2015, Dr. Rosa has been honored with the Champions of Education Leadership Award from the Alliance for Quality Education, Woman of the Year Award from the New York League of Puerto Rican Women, Heimlich Community Service Award from the Ben Franklin Reform Democratic Club, Transformative Education Leadership Award from the International Chartership High School, Education Leadership Award from the National Puerto Rican Day Parade, Leadership in Education Award from the Association of Dominican-American Supervisors and Administrators, Women of Distinction Award from the Bronx Chamber of Commerce, and the Latina of the Year Award from the New York State Assembly and Senate’s Puerto Rican/Hispanic Task Force.
Shelley Mayer
Chair, New York State Senate Committee on Education
Shelley Mayer has spent her career as an advocate for New Yorkers. She is an experienced and progressive leader. Shelley was elected to the New York State Senate to represent the 37th District in an April 2018 Special Election, and she was subsequently re-elected in November 2018. Prior to her time in the State Senate, she served in the State Assembly for six years. Shelley has been a champion for education issues and public schools throughout her time in the State Legislature. From 2013 to 2017, Shelley served as the Chair of the Assembly Education Subcommittee on Students with Special Needs. During this time, she advocated for and ensured that schools which serve the state’s most vulnerable students (Special Act, 4201, and 4410 Schools) receive increased funding from the state. While representing the City of Yonkers in the Assembly, Shelley prioritized delivering for the city’s 26,000+ public school students. In 2019, after being re-elected to the State Senate, Shelley was appointed to serve as the Chair of the State Senate Education Committee. One of her first achievements was the passing of the APPR bill which decoupled teacher evaluations from an undue reliance on state standardized tests. Shelley is also working on a civics package of bills to prepare New York State students for being engaged, active citizens in our democracy. She continues to work with her colleagues to deliver the resources and policies school districts throughout the state need to provide a quality education for every child, regardless of zipcode. Prior to being elected as a member of the State Legislature, Shelley served as Chief Counsel to the New York State Senate Democrats, where she helped lead the effort to expel the disgraced Hiram Monserrate and helped draft critical legislation to reform Albany and protect taxpayers. Before serving as Chief Counsel, Shelley was a Senior Counsel at the National State Attorney General Program at Columbia Law School, where she focused on health care and labor law rights. For over seven years, she was Vice President of Government and Community Affairs at Continuum Health Partners, one of New York City’s largest teaching hospital systems, working to protect Medicaid and Medicare services and improving the relationship between New York City’s diverse communities and the hospital system. From 1982 to 1994, Shelley was an Assistant Attorney General in the office of New York Attorney General Bob Abrams where she handled major reproductive health litigation. Shelley served in the Civil Rights Bureau, as Chief of the Westchester Regional Office, as the legislative liaison for the Attorney General and ultimately as a senior advisor to the Attorney General. As an Assistant Attorney General, Shelley fought to protect civil rights for New Yorkers and to broaden laws protecting consumers and tenants. Shelley received a JD from SUNY Buffalo School of Law in 1979 and a Bachelor of Arts from UCLA in 1975. Shelley lives in Yonkers with her husband of 36 years, Lee Smith. Shelley and Lee have three adult children – Aaron, Julia, and Arthur Smith.
John C. Liu
Chair, New York State Senate Committee on NYC Education
John C. Liu is a New York State Senator representing a broad area of northeast Queens. He is chairperson of the Senate’s committee on New York City Education and also serves on the committees of Finance, Education, Transportation, Alcoholism and Substance Abuse and Rules. John was Comptroller of the City of New York (2010-2013) and a New York City Councilmember (2002-2009). In 2013, John was a candidate for Mayor of New York City, in lieu of running for re-election as Comptroller. Currently, John teaches municipal finance and public policy in Masters programs at the City University of New York (CUNY) and Columbia University.
Toby Ann Stavisky
Chair, New York State Senate Higher Education Committee
Toby Ann Stavisky, the first woman from Queens County elected to the State Senate and the first woman to Chair the Senate Committee on Higher Education, is a native New Yorker who was born and raised on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. She attended P.S. 9 before graduating from the Bronx High School of Science and Syracuse University, which she attended on an academic scholarship. The Senator completed graduate school at Hunter and Queens Colleges. After working in the actuarial department of a major insurance company, Mrs. Stavisky taught Social Studies in the New York City high schools. As a result of her involvement with issues such as better schools, programs for older adults, social justice, opportunities for New Americans, and assisting small business, the Senator has been honored by many organizations. These include the Taiwanese Association, the Korean American Association of Queens and the Forest Hills Volunteer Ambulance Corps. For her “dedicated service to seniors across Queens,” Senator Stavisky was presented with the Rose Kryzak Legislative Award from the Queens Interagency Council on the Aging. The New York Branch of the NAACP honored her contributions toward furthering “freedom and human dignity.” The Senator is proud to have been honored twice by the Flushing Chinese Business Association and in 2016 by the University Student Senate of CUNY. In June, 2016, at the Queensborough Community College commencement, she was awarded the Presidential Medal for her “exceptional and longstanding commitment to public higher education.” Currently, she serves as Vice Chairwoman of the Democratic Majority Conference and Chairwoman of the Senate's Committee on Higher Education. Senator Toby Ann Stavisky was first elected to the Senate on November 2, 1999, and has subsequently been re-elected ten times. The Senator resides in Forest Hills. Standing Committee Assignments 2019: Higher Education (Chairwoman), Education, Ethics, Finance, Health, Judiciary, and Racing, Gaming and Wagering. The former Toby Ann Goldhaar was married to Dr. Leonard Price Stavisky, a university professor, who served in the Assembly and Senate until his death in June of 1999. She has one son, Evan, who is married to Kristen Zebrowski Stavisky.
Mark Treyger
Chair, New York City Council Education Committee
Mark Treyger, the second child of Ukrainian Jewish immigrants Naum and Tatyana and the first member of his family born in the United States, is the Council Member for the 47th District, representing the Southern Brooklyn neighborhoods of Bensonhurst, Coney Island, Gravesend, and Sea Gate. A fluent speaker of the Russian language and a graduate of Edward R. Murrow High School and Brooklyn College (B.A. in Political Science, M.A. in Social Studies Education, and M.S. in School Leadership), Treyger spent eight years teaching World History, Government, and Economics at New Utrecht High School. While teaching, Treyger took an active role in the United Federation of Teachers, serving as a union delegate, staff developer, and member of the school Leadership Team. With a love for public service, Treyger began interning for Assemblyman William Colton in 2001. In 2003, at the age of 21, Treyger became the youngest president ever of the United Progressive Democratic Club (UPDC) in Bensonhurst. In 2013, Treyger won a competitive Democratic Primary, and then received 71% of the vote in the general election to become the Council Member of the 47th District. Upon his election, he worked with then City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito on the creation of a new committee, Recovery and Resiliency, which he chaired during the 2014-17 session, helping to oversee the city’s recovery efforts responding to the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy. Since his election to the Council, Treyger has led the fight to make our city more resilient and environmentally conscious in the face of climate change and extreme weather threats, helping to secure federal funding to rebuild public housing and hospitals after Sandy. He also successfully advocated for the expansion of transportation options throughout the outer boroughs, investment in the maintenance and preservation of public housing, and the upgrading and enhancing of the city’s schools. In 2018, Treyger was appointed by Speaker Corey Johnson to serve as Chair of the Committee on Education. He has proudly championed many causes to provide better educational opportunities for all students in New York City. He also serves as a member of the City Council’s Budget Negotiation Team, selected by Speaker Johnson, Co-Chair of the City Council’s Brooklyn Delegation and is a senior member of the City Council’s Jewish Caucus.
William Murphy
Deputy Commissioner for Higher Education, New York State Education Department
William Murphy is Deputy Commissioner for Higher Education for the NYS Education Department. The Office of Higher Education (OHE) coordinates New York State's higher education system, encompassing 250+ colleges and universities and serving over one million undergraduate and 235,000 graduate students. Dr. Murphy oversees OHE’s organizational units, which includes the Office of College and University Evaluation; the Office of School Personnel Review and Accountability; Office of Access, Equity and Community Engagement Services; the Office of Educator Quality and Professional Development; and the Office of Teaching Initiatives which oversees teacher certification in NY. Prior to this role, Dr. Murphy served in various higher education and administrative roles in government, community and Community College settings; most recently as NYSED’s Director of Professional Education where he led teams responsible for evaluating and accrediting higher education programs for professional licensure at public and private colleges and universities in New York State and internationally. In this role, Dr. Murphy maintained relationships with academic accrediting bodies, federal and state education agencies and all sectors of higher education. He holds a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University at Albany, a Master of Science in Education (M.S.Ed.) in Higher Education Administration from Baruch College and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Le Moyne College.
Michael Mulgrew
President, United Federation of Teachers
Michael Mulgrew is the fifth president of the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) which represents approximately 185,000 teachers, paraprofessionals, school secretaries and other professional staff in New York City public schools as well as child care providers, nurses, adult education instructors, retired members and other titles and organizations. A Staten Island native, Mulgrew has degrees in English literature and special education from CUNY’s College of Staten Island. He taught for 12 years at William E. Grady High School in Brooklyn, where he served as chapter leader, before becoming the union’s vice president for career and technical education high schools and later its chief operating officer. He was appointed president in 2009, and has since been elected to three terms. During his tenure, the UFT has advocated for smaller classes, increased city and state funding, initiatives designed to remove barriers to learning and to promote positive school climates, greater parental involvement and reduced reliance on standardized testing. In response to the dangers posed by the federal administration’s privatization agenda, Mulgrew in 2017 launched #PublicSchoolProud, a grassroots, school level and social media campaign supporting neighborhood public schools. Mulgrew ensured teacher voice on Governor Cuomo's Common Core Task Force, resulting in a fundamental reset of education policy in New York State, including a four-year ban on the use of state growth scores to evaluate teachers and students.
Noel Hara
Senior Director, Public Sector Strategy, NTT Data
Noel Hara is an experienced strategist that infuses technology solutions across the public sector to help solve the most challenging problems. As a Senior Director with NTT DATA, he blends over two decades of experience in the public and private sector with an insatiable curiosity for technology and applications. Since the start of the global pandemic, Noel has been responsible for adapting the company’s offering portfolio in support of helping schools safely return students to campus and efficiently delivery synchronous learning for those continuing their education at home. Noel is a graduate of Illinois State University where he serves as a Student Affairs Alumni Ambassador. He has also served on the Dean’s Advisory Board at Kendall College.
Marc Jerome
President, Monroe College
Marc M. Jerome is the fourth president of Bronx-based Monroe College, a national leader in urban education that delivers some of the best outcomes in the country for first-generation urban students. He has played an integral role in leading the College for two and a half decades, serving as Executive Vice President for 22 years prior to his elevation to President in January 2017. As part of the College’s work to improve college access, affordability, and outcomes for New York students, Mr. Jerome unveiled an innovative program in 2016 that provides generous scholarships, as well as heightened academic support and personal mentorship to graduates of local high schools. Today, as a result of that initiative, the vast majority of the 1,000 students in the program – including more than 100 undocumented students – will graduate with zero tuition debt. A seasoned educator and recognized expert on the impact of higher education policy on underrepresented student populations, Mr. Jerome has long championed students’ interests in Albany and Washington, DC. He has shared his perspectives on higher education policy and regulatory design with the White House, the Department of Education, the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, and NASFAA, among others, and provided counsel on fair and balanced solutions to achieve desired outcomes. Notably, he served on the U.S. Department of Education's Gainful Employment Negotiated Rulemaking Committee in 2013-2014 and again in 2017-2018. In 2018, he was appointed to the Board of Trustees of the Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC), following confirmation by the New York State Senate.
Michael J. Smith
President, Berkeley College
Michael J. Smith was appointed President of Berkeley College in June 2015. As President, Mr. Smith is unwavering in his commitment to student success. As such, he has been an instrumental leader in the conceptualization and implementation of initiatives aimed at making graduation an institutional priority, thus leading students to achieve lifelong success in dynamic careers. Mr. Smith has placed a particular focus on the delivery of extensive student support services, the integration of career-focused preparation into academics, and the use of assessment and technology to enhance the delivery of teaching and learning. Under the leadership of Mr. Smith, Berkeley College, a career-focused institution, has expanded its reach among diverse communities, including prominent Latino and African-American organizations. U.S. News & World Report has named Berkeley College among the Best Colleges for Online Bachelor’s Programs and among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Veterans, for seven consecutive years. In addition, the College has been recognized for its volunteer and community service contributions, and was named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. Prior to becoming president, Mr. Smith held key leadership positions at Berkeley College for 19 years, including Senior Vice President, Finance, and Chief Financial Officer of BES Inc., the corporate office of Berkeley College. He also was Treasurer for the Berkeley College Board of Trustees and Campus Operating Officer of Berkeley College in White Plains, NY. In addition, he has served as an evaluation team member for the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, a regional accrediting organization covering the mid-Atlantic region of the United States. Under Mr. Smith’s leadership, Berkeley College garnered numerous best workplace and best employer awards. Before joining Berkeley College, Mr. Smith was Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer of MetLife Realty Group. He is also an accomplished public servant. He was twice elected to represent the 55,000 residents of District 3 on the Westchester County Board of Legislators from 2012 to 2015, serving as the Chairman of the Committee on Economic Development and Capital Projects during the 2014-15 legislative term. From 2005 to 2011, Mr. Smith served on the Valhalla Union Free School District Board of Education, where his peers elected him President of the Board of Education for three consecutive years from July 2008 to June 2011. Mr. Smith is a Certified Public Accountant and a Chartered Financial Analyst. He holds a Master of Business Administration degree in Finance from Fordham University Graduate School of Business and a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Fairfield University.
Mark F. Cannizzaro
President, Council of School Supervisors and Administrators
CSA President Mark Cannizzaro has been a New York City educator for more than 33 years. Born and raised in Staten Island, New York, Mr. Cannizzaro is the son of a Korean war veteran and a school secretary. Growing up in the NYC public school system, he had plans to join the police or fire department like others in his blue-collar neighborhood, until he was inspired by his teachers to follow in their footsteps. He received his bachelor’s degree in Physical Education from SUNY Cortland (1986), a master’s degree in Special Education (1990) and a sixth-year certificate in Supervision and Administration (1993), both from the College of Staten Island. Additionally, Mr. Cannizzaro completed studies at Cornell University’s AFL-CIO Union Leadership Institute in 2014. Mr. Cannizzaro began his career teaching physical education at Totten Intermediate School on Staten Island, where, in 1994, he received the Angela Zirpiades Outstanding Physical Educator Award. In 1995 he was named Assistant Principal at Totten, and eight years later (2003), he was named Principal of Paulo Intermediate School, which was subsequently recognized as a "model middle school” by Region 7 in 2005. Mr. Cannizzaro first became active in CSA in 2006, serving briefly as District 31 Assistant District Chair before his election as one of the union's Vice Presidents in the Fall of that year. In 2008, he also began simultaneously serving as CSA’s Secretary and was named CSA Executive Vice President in September of 2012. He served as CSA’s chief negotiator from 2012-2017, successfully negotiating the current collective bargaining agreement and assumed the CSA Presidency on September 1, 2017. Mr. Cannizzaro is also President of the New York State Federation of School Administrators (NYSFSA), a position he has held since Oct. 1, 2015, and a Vice President of the American Federation of School Administrators (AFSA). He is a member of the NY Academy of Public Education and the Middle School Principals' Association of NYC, having served as MSPA's President from 2009-2011. Mr. Cannizzaro is the recipient of many awards and honors, including the 2008 Entertainers4Education Outstanding Leadership Award, a 2009 Cahn Fellowship from the Teachers College of Columbia University, the 2013 Educator of the Year award from St. John's University's Phi Delta Kappa International, the Emerald Society’s 2015 Irish Pro de Patria Award, the 2016 Thomas C. Giordano Leadership in Education Award from the Forum of Italian American Educators, and the 2019 Medalist Award from the New York Academy of Public Education. In addition, City and State Magazine has included him on several of their lists highlighting the most influential figures in labor and education.
Scott Ready
Accessibility Evangelist and Senior Customer Success Manager, Verbit
As an accessibility evangelist, Scott Ready has served the education industry for 20+ years and worked for 35+ years in accessibility. Ready studied at Columbia International University and the University of Central Missouri. Ready’s first language is American Sign Language, and he has been part of the deaf community through his parents, who are both deaf, since birth. His parents were teachers at the Missouri School for the Deaf.
Tracy Waalkes
Account Executive, OverDrive Education
Tracy Waalkes is an Account Executive II for OverDrive Education. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Education and History from Maryville University. Tracy also earned a master’s degree in Teaching from Webster Groves University. Tracy spent 8 years teaching high school social studies before transitioning to ed tech where she has spent 20 years working with schools to implement digital resources into the 21st century classroom. Please let me know what else you need from us to get started.
David P. Bain Ed.D
Vice President of Academic Planning and Analytics, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Dr. David Bain currently serves Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the role of Vice President of Academic Planning and Analytics. In this role, David leads a team of former district administrators, data scientists, and assessment experts to assist districts in creating coherent systems of support that incorporate curriculum, assessment systems, and intervention models. In response to the COVID 19 crisis, David led a team of learning scientists to create modeling to predict impact of missed instruction on various student populations In addition, he worked with a team HMH learning architects to author HMH’s Bridge and Grow Resources which provide districts specific instructional resources to assist in re-entry to grade-level expectations. Previously, Dr. Bain has served students in a wide array of educational environments as a classroom teacher, building leader, Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment, and Associate Superintendent. Dr. Bain has served in both urban and suburban school districts in both Chicago and northern Illinois. Dr. Bain has significant research and data analytic experience in monitoring students enrolled in intervention programming. In multiple districts, he has built comprehensive intervention models in the areas of literacy, mathematics, and English learners. Dr. Bain has a bachelor’s degree in biology from Indiana University, a Master’s of Arts degree in Education from DePaul University, and a doctorate from National Louis University in Chicago where he studied the application of multiple adaptive assessment systems to various student populations.
Samantha Lieberman
Regional Manager, Google for Education
Samantha Lieberman is a Regional Manager with Google for Education, working with the NYC Department of Education and other large K-12 districts in the Northeast to support adoption of Google for Education tools and programs. Sam has worked in various facets of education for over a decade. Prior to joining Google, she served in roles spanning policy implementation and technology at the New York City Department of Education. She is a native New Yorker and proud graduate of NYC public schools.
Dave Barclay
Regional Sales Manager: Eastern Canada, Northeastern US & GCC, Hāpara
Dave is a former high school social studies teacher and IT Director with Glens Falls City School District in Upstate NY. Prior to joining Hāpara, Dave was an education technology consultant, working with schools throughout the United States and United Arab Emirates on projects ranging from infrastructure upgrades to G Suite implementation. He's right at home discussing the technical details of Hāpara, as well as the impact on pedagogy and today's digital learning environment.
Leighton Spencer
East Regional Manager, Google for Higher Education
Leighton Spencer is the East Regional Manager with Google for Higher Education, he supports all higher education institutions in the eastern United States and Canada with the adoption of G Suite for Education and Google for Education programs. Leighton has been engaged with numerous higher education and K-12 institutions to further equity in education for all students. Since joining Google, he has worked directly with these institutions to provide technology to assist in teaching and learning. Lastly, as a native New Yorker, he is also dedicated to ensuring NYS and NYC colleges and schools have the resources they need to thrive.
Jake Brown
AVP State, Local Government & Education, Qualtrics
Inez Barron
Council Member & Chair, Higher Education Committee
New York City Council Member Inez Barron is the Chair of the Committee on Higher Education and also serves on the Committees on Economic Development, Education, Health, Juvenile Justice and Land Use. Inez Barron was elected to the NYC Council in 2013, after having served 5 years in the NYS Assembly. Her political service follows a distinguished career of public service in the NYC Department of Education. Inez is the daughter of George and Margaret R. Smith, who raised her to “put God first.” Inez credits her parents with instilling in her the value of education and pride in her culture. Their encouragement to her was “always give your best, do your best, be your best and expect the best.” Inez Barron is succeeding her husband, Hon. Charles Barron as Council Member of the 42nd Council District. Inez and Charles are the parents of Jelani Johnson and Jawanza Barron. For more than fifty years, Ms. Barron has been actively engaged in community activism as well as human rights protesting regarding issues such as segregation, discrimination, apartheid, exclusion of Africa from the NYC curriculum, police misconduct and environmental racism. As Assembly Member, Ms. Barron was the author of the State legislation that maintains affordable rents in Spring Creek Towers/“Starrett City” for the next 30 years. Ms. Barron was born and raised in public housing and attended the New York City public schools. She is a graduate of Hunter College of the City University of New York (Bachelor of Science in Physiology, minor in Psychology) and Bank Street College of Education (Master of Science in Reading and Special Education). During her 36 year tenure with the NYC Board of Education, Ms. Barron held various instructional and administrative positions, before retiring as a principal. Ms. Barron's philosophy is that students should be valued and motivated to achieve, and teachers have a responsibility not only to provide the skills necessary to be life-long learners and become productive and critical members of society, but also to challenge and stimulate students' thinking. Inez’ affirmation is “I believe God.”
Dr. Catherine Collins
Board Member, New York State Education Department
Catherine Fisher Collins is a distinguished educator, author and member of the New York State Board of Regents. She has dedicated much of her personal and professional life to promoting the twin issues of good health and a sound education, with a special emphasis on the needs of underserved youth/women and individuals in western New York. She is a forceful and passionate advocate in promoting the success of all students in New York State. Dr. Collins educational background includes an undergraduate degree in nursing from Trocaire College and a bachelor of science degree in Vocational Technical Education from the State University College. Dr. Collins also earned a master’s degree in allied health education and curriculum development and a doctoral degree in education administration from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo. Additionally, she graduated from SUNY Buffalo’s School of Nursing in the nurse practitioner’s program. Dr. Collins holds certifications in health occupations and junior college teaching. At a joint session of the New York State Legislature on March 10, 2015, Dr. Collins was elected to the Board of Regents for a five-year term. On the Board, Regent Collins represents the 8th Judicial District, which includes Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans and Wyoming counties. Dr. Collins is a respected author and editor of over thirteen published books, including Black Girls and Adolescents: Facing the Challenges, Sources of Stress and Relief for African American Women (Race and Ethnicity in Psychology), The Imprisonment of African American Women: Causes, Experiences and Effects, and many others. Dr. Collins has also held positions in health care and education administration, among them: school nurse, practical nursing instructor, director/instructor of a registered nursing program, executive director of the University at Buffalo’s Offices of Preparatory Programs, coordinator/instructor at the Educational Opportunity Center’s certified nursing assistant program, assistant academic dean for allied health education and directory ambulatory care, as well as in health planning. She also served for five years on the Buffalo Board of Education and held several Board positions, among them Vice President. Dr. Collins has received over 70 awards and honors, including: the Western New York Women’s Hall of Fame; SUNY Outstanding Faculty Fellow; honors from the governors of New Jersey (for outstanding service), New York (Attica Prison Health Initiative), Connecticut (community services) and Kentucky (International Community Services); the SUNY Empire State College 2014 Jane Altes Prize for Exemplary Community Services; and the Life Time Achievement Award from Jack and Jill of America, where she served as National Vice President. Dr. Collins is a State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo, State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo Trocaire College and Lafayette High School Distinguished Alumna. She is also a graduate of England’s Oxford University Women’s Roundtable. In 2015, she received the Arthur O. Eve award from the NYS Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators; that award is given to individuals who demonstrate a passion for assisting their communities in understanding and supporting both public and higher education. Her most recent awards include, Buffalo Business First Power 125 Women of 2016, 2017 and 2018, Utopian Euphoria Women of Excellence Award of 2017 and the Minority Bar Foundation 2018 Education Award. Dr. Collins is currently an Associate Professor at SUNY Empire State College and since 2011 hosts the Women’s Health Radio show that airs in the Buffalo, NY area. She is co-chair the Higher Education Committee also serves as the chair of the Buffalo Black Achievers Scholarship Committee. She is the proud mother of Dr. Clyde A. Collins, a gastroenterologist, and Mrs. Laura Harris, a former school administrator.

Welcome and Introduction


One on One with Betty Rosa, Interim State Education Commissioner and Jon Lentz, Editor in Chief, City & State NY


Special Presentation By Samantha Lieberman, Regional Manager, Google for Education & Leighton Spencer, East Regional Manager, Google for Higher Education 


Public School Education in a Post Covid World

Back in March when the Mayor shut down the largest public school system in the country, most were in favor due to fears of the virus spreading.  However very quickly it became clear that this also served to highlight the equity and disparity issues in New York as it took some families weeks and even months to access technology which created a wider than normal learning gap.  How can we avoid problems like this going forward?  What does the Fall look like now given this year’s makeshift education and with the lack of standardized tests this year being considered?  Some experts are calling for a hybrid of some sort. We’ll discuss the role of innovation, technological solutions, new trends and ideas, protection protocol, and remote learning.  We discuss what can be expected for the 2020-21 school year.


  • David Bain, Vice President for Academic Planning and Analytics, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (Session Facilitator)
  • Senator John C. Liu, Chairperson, Committee on New York City Education
  • Senator Shelley Mayer, Chairperson, Committee on Education
  • Council Member Mark Treyger, Chair, Committee on Education
  • Michael Mulgrew, President, United Federation of Teachers
  • Mark Cannizzaro, President, Council of School Supervisors & Administrators
  • Tracy Waalkes, Account Executive, OverDrive Education

Special Presentation:  Student Dashboard for Google Classroom: Improve Student Focus and Reduce Parent Frustration

Dave Barclay, Regional Sales Manager: Eastern Canada, Northeastern US & GCC, Hāpara


Higher Education Plans for New York

Since the beginning of the pandemic, universities and colleges have been worried about deep cuts to their academic programs, campuses and students.  Issues that emerged as education went online go beyond simply ensuring laptops and internet access, as many students lost jobs, internships and housing.  Hear about practical solutions to higher education technology problems and a community of tech leaders gathered to advance students’ learning experiences.  What will Higher Education both in public and private universities look like in the Fall?  How will admissions be altered for the incoming class without standardized tests or grades from the previous year? What will dorms, classes, security and activities look like?


  • Council Member Inez Barron, Chair, Higher Education Committee (Session Facilitator)
  • Senator Toby Ann Stavisky, Chair, Higher Education Committee
  • William Murphy, Deputy Commissioner for Higher Education, NYS Education Department
  • Dr. Catherine Collins, Board Member, NYS Education Department
  • Noel Hara, Senior Director, Public Sector Strategy, NTT Data
  • Marc Jerome, President, Monroe College
  • Michael J. Smith, President, Berkeley College
  • Scott Ready, Accessibility Evangelist & Senior Customer Service Manager, Verbit

Reimaging School in the Ongoing New Normal

K-12 and Higher Education leaders must safely teach and care for students during a global pandemic. Regular listening, learning and acting on how students, teachers, staff, and families are working and feeling in the ongoing new normal is critical. Enable school leaders and administrators to make informed decisions for when to reopen and close buildings, how to adjust school operations, and what changes must be made in real-time to keep your stakeholders safe.


  • Jake Brown, AVP State, Local Government & Education, Qualtrics (Session Facilitator)
  • Johan Starr, Instructional Technologist, NYU School of Law, Learning, Innovation & Design
  • Dan Dickinson, Associate Director, IT Experience, Weill Cornell Medicine 

Announcements & Closing Remarks

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