Meet the 2016 GlobalEdCon Keynote Speakers

The Global Education Conference Network invites you to participate in the 7th annual Global Education Conference. This free annual celebration of globally connected teaching and learning will take place around the clock and online November 13–16, 2016. @GlobalEdCon is scheduled to coincide with International Education Week.

The conference seeks to present ideas, examples, and projects related to connecting educators and classrooms with a strong emphasis on promoting global awareness, fostering global competency, and inspiring action towards solving real–world problems.

This year’s conference strands are:

  • Dual Language
  • Teachers
  • Students
  • Curricular
  • Leadership

For the past seven years, hundreds of global thought leaders, educators and organizations have practiced professional generosity and shared their work with a global audience. Visit the conference archives to access these presentations.

This year, iEARN will be holding its annual conference and youth summit in conjunction with the Global Education Conference. Details about this event are located here.

The GEC is pleased to share information about our 2016 keynote speakers. More announcements to follow!

Joseph Ball, Curriculum Coordinator, Crash Course — Joe is the Content Creator for the Crash Course World History curriculum. He is also the Vice President of Indy Film Fest. He digs museums, travel, food, space, random trivia, and his family.

Kevin Baloyi, Teacher, LEAP Science and Maths School — Kevin Baloyi was born and bred in Alexandra Township, Johannesburg, South Africa. After graduating from the LEAP Science and Maths School and following a gap year, Kevin joined the Future Leaders Program in 2014 with plans to become a teacher. He is currently working at LEAP in Johannesburg as a student teacher and is a student at the University of South Africa studying for his Bachelors of Education. Kevin was part of a select group of teachers-in-training who traveled to the U.S. in 2016 as a part of a Global Teachers Institute and Teach With Africa exchange program studying schools and programs in California. Kevin is passionate about Education and Technology and has taught himself many technology strategies that he plans to incorporate in his teaching. He was also part of the EdTech Summit Africa 2016 program training educators around South Africa and Swaziland on how to use certain technology tools in their classrooms to make it fun and engaging. He recently started a production business, designing logos, posters/flyers, as well as taking and editing videos. He trains some of the students at school on how to take professional photographs, design posters, invitations and newsletters. He believes that learners should have other skills apart from the curriculum that is covered inside the classroom.

Karen Blumberg, Technology Coordinator, The Brearley School and EdTech Summit Africa — Karen Blumberg has been teaching and coordinating technology since 1996. She is thrilled to be the K-12 Technology Coordinator at The Brearley School in New York City. Previously, she was a technology coordinator at The School at Columbia University working with faculty and students to integrate technology academically, creatively, and responsibly, a technology integrator at Sacred Heart teaching robotics and programming, a math teacher at The Dalton School, and a math teacher for The School District of Philadelphia.

Tosca Killoran, NIST International School — Tosca Killoran has been teaching in the IB international community in Asia and Europe since 2000. Tosca acts as an EDTech consultant to international schools as well as a presenter and keynote speaker at conferences and professional development sessions. As a doctoral student, Tosca’s published research focuses on innovation in education. She co-founded ED-ucation Publishing, founded TEDxYouth@BIS, and TEDxYouth@NIST in order to give a voice to #youthchangemakers. She is an Amazon bestseller author of children’s books, a website designer and app creative director. Her passion is character education, service learning and providing opportunities for learning communities to grow.

Dr. Chip Kimball, Superintendent, Singapore American School — Dr. Chip Kimball serves as superintendent of Singapore American School, the largest single-campus international school in the world serving nearly 4000 students. Singapore American School (SAS) has a worldwide reputation for excellence, high student achievement, and innovation. Since his arrival, Dr. Kimball has led SAS through a process of continuous improvement of the already high-performing school. This “R&D” process is resulting in more project-based learning, interdisciplinary courses, curriculum supporting 21st century learning outcomes, personalized learning, language immersion programs, advisory, and new advanced topics course offerings. Under Dr. Kimball’s leadership, professional learning communities have become central to the school’s work, resulting in recognition as one of the only model PLC schools outside of the US. Dr. Kimball joined SAS after sixteen years in the Lake Washington school district (WA) where he served as chief technology officer, assistant superintendent, and deputy superintendent before becoming superintendent in 2007. His work in Lake Washington resulted in multiple awards and recognition as one of the most innovative school districts in the United States. In 2010, Dr. Kimball was awarded a national award for technology leadership and was also awarded Superintendent of the Year by the Washington Library Media Association.

Nate McClennen, Vice President for Education and Innovation, Teton Science Schools — Nate is the Vice President for Education and Innovation at Teton Science Schools (TSS) in Jackson, Wyoming. His work focuses on how to scale the impact of place-based education through technology, innovation, design learning, and school networks. He was part of the founding faculty at Journeys School from 2001–2006 and was Head of Journeys School from 2006–2015. Since 1993, he has taught science, technology, robotics, and math at the secondary and university level. Nate is also the co-founder of ImproveClass, a technology company which crowdsources teacher excellence. He serves as an adjunct faculty of the Teacher Learning Center at Teton Science Schools, implementing teacher-workshops nationally and internationally. Additional time is spent supporting education transformation efforts nationally through work with Education Reimagined, GettingSmart, and the Northwest Association of Independent Schools Innovation Committee. Nate represents TSS as a design partner with Motivis Learning, a technology company supporting TSS efforts to create an online competency-based system for place-based education.

Jeanne Meyers, Co-Founder/Director of MY HERO & Director of Media Arts Education — Jeanne Meyers is the cofounder and director of The MY HERO Project. She is a media arts educator, film producer and director. Jeanne attended the American Film Institute Producing program after traveling around the world working as a freelance producer for NBC News. Prior to that she directed Brown University’s Media Services. She has produced and directed several award winning documentaries. Jeanne has been directing The MY HERO Project since the project launched online in 1995. She has built a devoted team of media arts educators, programmers, editors, writers, filmmakers, musicians, teachers and students from around the world who contribute to the project. The MY HERO website hosts digital story telling tools and a rich multi-media archive. Visitors from around the world come to MY HERO to share and discover stories, art, films and music that honor heroes from all walks of life.

Tonya Muro, Executive Director, iEARN-USA — As Executive Director of iEARN-USA (the International Education Resource Network) — Learning with the World, Tonya leads the professional team, sets strategy with stakeholders, and cultivates relationships with like-minded global learning partners in both the virtual and physical exchange landscape to help foster global competency with educators and youth. Tonya has over 15 years of experience working as a global education practitioner and educator. She is also a published author, seasoned public speaker, presenter and backup singer. Prior to joining iEARN-USA’s team, Tonya was the Director of School Outreach and Educational Partnerships for AFS-USA, an intercultural learning organization, and before that, she was the Program Director for Global Nomads Group, an NGO that fosters dialogue and mutual understanding amongst the world’s youth. Tonya holds an Ed.D. and M.A. in International Educational Development from Columbia University’s Teachers College, where she was a U.S. Fulbright scholar in Tanzania. She received her B.A. in primary education and Spanish from the University of Massachusetts (Amherst), and is a fluent Spanish speaker. However, her most important achievement — and what drives her — is being a mother of twin daughters, to whom she dedicates her efforts to advance global citizenship.

Beate Nguyen, MA.Ed., Principal, St. Augustine School (ADLA) — Growing up a 3rd Culture Kid and global nomad, who has lived, studied and worked on four continents, she experienced the best of many worlds. Navigating with ease through new cultures, speaking multiple languages, and adapting to new situations, were constant learning expectations. Mrs. Nguyen studied Diplomacy & World Affairs and education. She has worked at the U.N., with students in rapidly emerging markets, and as Fulbright-Hays GPA scholar with the U.S. Dept. of Education. A transformative leader-practitioner, and doctoral student in educational leadership for social justice, she focuses her research on global competency from Preschool to High School. Mrs. Nguyen is a member of the Leadership Council and the I3 Innovation Institute of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, where she serves as principal at a Catholic school (PS-Jr. HS). She collaborates globally with peer educators, including the Think Tank for Global Education (TGE 2016) at Harvard University, and the Global Education Forum 2016, to discover new pedagogical frontiers.

Karen Kirsch Page, Founder/Producer, K2 Productions Global and EdTech Summit Africa — Karen Kirsch Page, more commonly known by the nickname of K2, is passionate about helping schools and organizations create a culture receptive to implementing technology for creative teaching and learning. As a filmmaker and music engineer/producer, she is interested in creative digital and technical arts and has worked with schools to launch coding, robotics, makerspace and visual design programs. She believes innovative technology strategies can make education come alive in even the most distressed of situations, especially in the ever-growing robust mobile landscape for both informal and formal learning. K2 is committed to building bridges in education for at-risk youth and teachers in challenged communities around the world. Following a successful career as a touring sound engineer and then a long stint as a K-8 technology and STEM electives teacher at Town School for Boys in San Francisco, Karen has continued to provide instructional support and develop programs for K-12 teachers both in the U.S. and Africa where she founded the free annual teaching conference, EdTech Summit Africa, now going into its fifth year. These days based in New York City, Karen is currently working as a Professional Development Associate at the Center for Technology & School Change at Teachers College, Columbia University. She has a BA in Broadcast Engineering from San Francisco State University and an MA in Instructional Technology and Media from Teachers College. In addition to working full time and producing the annual conference, Karen is pursuing her doctorate at Columbia in Adult Learning and Leadership with a focus on professional development and technology integration.

Anne Polaski, Vice President, Pages for Peace Foundation — Anne Polaski currently serves as vice president of the board of directors of Pages for Peace Foundation. This non-profit organization is dedicated to supporting and promoting the work of Groton/Dunstable, Massachusetts school students in creating Big Book: Pages for Peace and sharing its messages worldwide. She holds a Masters of Education degree in Curriculum and Instruction and is a retired educator with 25 years of experience teaching elementary and middle school students. Anne’s commitment to this project stems from her close friendship with her teaching colleague, Betsy Sawyer, who was the inspiration and driving force behind this extraordinary project. Anne is the foundation’s education liaison with the school district and focuses her efforts on collaborating with administrators and teachers to advance the mission of the project and provide student peacemakers with meaningful opportunities to share their work. She has also worked as an adjunct university supervisor for student teachers and is a strong proponent of global peace education for all.

Diane Repaal, Advisor, Peace Club, Groton Dunstable Middle School / Pages for Peace Foundation — Diane Repaal has been a middle school educator for 32 years and is currently a 7th grade math and science teacher. She has been involved with students as a class advisor, service learning advisor and Peer Mediation advisor. In addition, she has coached track and cross country teams, and is the musical director for the yearly school musical performance. Diane has also been involved in community service learning experiences as a team leader for Habitat for Humanity and Relay for Life. Diane is the current advisor of the Peace Club at Groton Dunstable Middle School in Groton, MA. The Peace Club, established by Betsy Sawyer, is designed to promote global understanding of peace for middle school students. The Peace Club works in conjunction with the Pages for Peace Foundation, with students serving as ambassadors of Big Book: Pages for Peace, sharing the project’s messages of peace with other students and the global community.

Jonathan Rochelle, Director of Product Management — G Suite for Education — Jonathan Rochelle (aka JR) is Director of Product Management at Google and a co-founder of Google Docs and Google Drive, including other apps in that suite such as Google Sheets, Slides, Forms, Apps Script and Google Fonts. Jonathan is now primarily responsible for Google Apps for Education, which reaches more than 40 million educators and students, and most recently launched Google Classroom and Google Expeditions. Jonathan and his teams are primarily based in Google’s NYC office. Prior to joining Google in 2005, Jonathan co-founded and sold two technology start-ups — ITK Solutions, a technology consulting firm, and 2Web Technologies, a software product company which was acquired by Google in 2005 as the technology behind Google spreadsheets — the first publicly launched component of Google Docs. Before founding the start-ups, Jonathan spent 16 years as a software engineer and applications development manager, primarily at JP Morgan & Co., across a broad set of financial service businesses. He’s a strong advocate of innovation culture, entrepreneurship and education technology and is very active in his current creative passion — 3D Printing (

Kevin Smith, Senior Director of Global Schools, VIF International Education — Kevin Smith serves is the Senior Director of Global Schools for VIF International Education. His field of action creates a roadmap towards dual language/immersion and global literacy programs. With the support of a globally minded team, together they create opportunities for districts, schools, and educators to enhance their practice by developing the skills to integrate global literacy into daily instruction impacting student development of languages and cultural frameworks.

Terry Smith, Assistant Professor, Teacher Education, Radford University — Terry K. Smith is an assistant professor in elementary teacher education at Radford University. Taught 14 years in the elementary classroom using project-based learning and global projects. He has taken students to Taiwan on two occasions. He manages two long-running Internet projects: The Monster Project and The Landmark Games. He is on the board of the Kidlink Association, an international group providing free projects for elementary and middle school classes around the world. He serves on the National Geographic steering committee for the Geo-Educators program and is a trainer-mentor for the National Geographic Educator Certification program. He recently co-chaired Radford University’s first Global Education Conference.

Dr. Tim Stuart, Executive Director of Strategic Programs, Singapore American School — Dr. Timothy S. Stuart is the Executive Director of Strategic Programs at the Singapore American School. In this role, Tim serves as the chief architect for research and development and supports strategic school reform. He is the former High School Principal of Singapore American School where he led this division through multiple successful change initiatives, culminating in its recognition as a PLC exemplar school. Tim also served as the High School Principal of Jakarta International School. Dr. Stuart is the editor and contributing author to the anthology Global Perspectives: Professional Learning Communities at Work in International Schools, published by Solution Tree in 2016. He is a contributing author to It’s About Time, Planning Interventions and Extensions in Secondary School, published by Solution Tree in 2015. He is the co-author of the books Children At Promise and Raising Children At Promise, published by Jossey-Bass in 2003 and 2005. Dr. Stuart’s research and writing reflects his passion for creating optimal school environments so that all kids can learn at high levels.

Susan Colt Willcox, President, Big Book: Pages For Peace — Susan Colt Willcox currently serves as president of the board of directors of Pages for Peace Foundation, Inc. This non-profit organization is dedicated to supporting and promoting the work of Groton/Dunstable, MA school students in creating Big Book: Pages for Peace and sharing its messages worldwide. She holds a degree in Early Education, and is currently the director and lead teacher at a preschool she owns in Groton, Ma. Susan’s commitment to the Big book project and its mission began when she became the original parent volunteer ten years ago when her own daughter was a 5th grade student of Betsy Sawyer and in the original after school writing club where the project all began. Susan was a founding board member and served as vice president since its inception. Susan has been a steady and ongoing force in leading a small group of volunteers to assist the students and their amazing teacher/leader Betsy Sawyer to help make their dreams of the biggest book on peace a reality and spread their messages of peace worldwide.

Follow these keynotes on Twitter.

For more information about participating in the Global Education Conference, please review this flyer.

Many thanks to our sponsors: VIF International Education, Google, TES, and iEARN-USA.