Speakers: Tech Forum Atlanta 2012

Speakers: Tech Forum Atlanta 2012

Keynote Speaker
SCOTT FLOYD, District Instructional Technology Specialist, White Oak ISD

Before he began serving as the district instructional technology specialist in White Oak, Scott Floyd spent ten years in the classroom, mostly teaching middle school reading, English, and gifted and talented. He has also taught first grade in a self-contained classroom. His current focus is on helping teachers integrate technology tools into their curriculum both in instruction and personal learning. He works with administrators, faculty, and students on creating electronic portfolios – utilizing online tools with hosting in the cloud – to better showcase themselves to the world outside the school walls. As a former Texas secondary teacher of the year, Floyd has worked with educators on the local, area, state, and national levels. He also spends time lobbying on behalf of education in the Texas legislature.


Tech Forum is well known for its great speakers, attendees and networking opportunities. The following team members will be presenting:

Jaclynn Aurisch, Instructional Technology Specialist, Forsyth County Schools, GA Jackie Aurisch has focused on helping children reach their potential for the last ten years as a classroom teacher, a gifted teacher, and now as the instructional technology specialist for Big Creek Elementary in Forsyth County, GA. For the last two years, she has been implementing Forsyth County's Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT) program at the elementary level, using technology to break down barriers and demonstrate new ways to connect with students. She has presented numerous times on technology integration within her countyandis piloting Forsyth’s Virtual World, NOBLE.

Angela Bacon, Ed.D, Director of Instructional Technology, Cobb County School District, GA Prior to coming to Cobb County School District one year ago, Dr. Angela Bacon was employed as the executive director of technology for Clayton County Public Schools, where she managed instructional technology, information systems and field services. She has worked in technology for eight out of her 24 years in education. She began her teaching career in Clayton County where she taught at the elementary, middle, and high school levels as a classroom teacher, media specialist and instructional technology specialist.

Frances Bryant Bradburn, Program Director, North Carolina New Schools Project, Raleigh, NC The former director of instructional technology for the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, Frances Bryant Bradburn currently focuses on 1:1 learning initiatives across the state. She has worked at the K-12, university, and state levels in a variety of media and technology positions. She is the former editor of North Carolina Libraries, author of Output Measures for School Library Programs, a reviewer of young adult titles for Booklist, and the author of a variety of journal articles on both media and technology. Bradburn was awarded the Mary Peacock Douglas Award in 1998, the UNC-G/SLIS Outstanding Alumnus in 1995, the East Carolina University Friend of Education in 2007, the NCLA Distinguished Service Award in 2007, the NCAECT Service Award in 2008, and North Carolina Association of School Librarians, Distinguished Service Award (now known as the Frances Bryant Bradburn Distinguished Service Award), October 2008.

Christina Clayton, Ed.D, Director of Virtual Learning, Georgia Department of Education Dr. Christina Clayton is a career educator, having served in the classroom in both secondary and post-secondary, LEA, and now SEA positions, all with a strong focus on educational technology and online learning. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, Master of Education in Curriculum and Instructional Technology, and Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership. Clayton is currently serving in the role of director of virtual learning at the Georgia Department of Education, which directly impacts the vision of all online learning, digital content, and blended learning opportunities in Georgia.

Lucas Gillispie, Instructional Technology Coordinator, Pender County Schools, NC Lucas Gillispie worked as a high school science teacher for nearly ten years before taking the position as a district-level instructional technology coordinator for Pender County Schools in southeastern North Carolina. He holds an MS in Instructional Technology from the University of North Carolina Wilmington where he completed thesis work researching the effects of a 3D video game on middle school student’s achievement and attitude in mathematics. His interests include gaming in education particularly the use of MMORPG’s (Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplay Games), mobile game-based learning, virtual training and simulations. His current projects include iPod Games for Learning, a program that explores the use of game-based learning using the iPod Touch, and the WoWinSchool project, a collaborative effort to explore the impact of using World of Warcraft in both an after-school program and as part of the regular instructional program.

Marisa Greenlee, Chief Information Officer, Fulton County Schools Marisa Greenlee has been in technology leadership for over 14 years and brings over twenty years of experience in technology to her job as CIO of the Fulton County School System System in Georgia’s Metro-Atlanta area. In this role she is responsible for defining and deploying a set of IT services that support the school district’s mission of teaching and learning. Under her leadership, the Information Technology key initiatives include improving on the execution and scalability of programs managed through instructional technology (e.g. Technology Leadership Forum, TEACH, Summer Camps). These programs are focused on: technology integration in the classroom; improved planning for disaster recovery and business continuity; utilizing various technologies to do more with less (e.g. virtualization, cloud computing, unified communications); implementing and solidifying collaborative approaches to solve issues that prevent the enabling of technologies to support teachers and students . Prior to that, Greenlee was director of Information Systems for Georgia Perimeter College, which has six campus locations in the Metro-Atlanta area.There she was responsible for strategically planning all applications development projects and operation for the college. She previously worked as deputy program manager for SAIC, an IT Consulting company in Arlington, Virginia, and for Quality Technology, Inc., Metro-DC area, as the Practice Manager for Enterprise Solutions.

Donita Hinckley, System Instructional Technology Coordinator, Thomasville City Schools Donita Hinckley has been with Thomasville City Schools for 20 years, serving as a computer lab paraprofessional, elementary teacher, instructional technology specialist and technology coordinator. Before that, she spent several years teaching computer classes to adults in a business setting. In her current position she is the grant administrator for a number of Title IID grants, including the eTextbooks ARRA grant.

Will Mansfield, Seminar Presentations and Workshop Developer, iSchool Initiative William Mansfield is a sophomore at Kennesaw State University. He is majoring in human communication with business management. William joined the iSchool Initiative team in the Spring of 2010. When he heard about this opportunity he readily joined the team. William is a part of the seminar A team and hopes to help revolutionize education throughout America. William also develops the science and mathematics workshops which integrates these subjects into the 21st century classroom. Through the years he has attended many internationally recognized leadership seminars which have augmented his skills as an orator and a leader. Along with the rest of the all important team William hopes to bring iSchool Initiative to the forefront of modern day education systems, and eventually spread the message internationally.

Bailey Mitchell, Chief Technology and Information Officer, Forsyth County Schools Bailey Mitchell has 25 years of experience as an educator and has worked for the past fifteen years as CTIO for Forsyth County Schools. He is responsible for both the educational and administrative technology enterprise with a focus on online learning, collaborative classrooms, parent communication and teacher support. Forsyth's technology enterprise is nationally recognized as a leader in educational technology. Mitchell serves on the board and is chair of Consortium for School Networking (CoSN), a professional association for school district technology leaders.

Max Monroe, Assistant Principal, Pickens High School, SC As assistant principal at Pickens High School in South Carolina, Max Monroe works with juniors and seniors, overseeing Graduation, Class Day, Baccalaureate, school safety, and technology within the administration at the school. Monroe became involved in instructional technology during its earliest days in education and has been a user, trainer, developer, and advocate for technology in schools ever since. Digital Media, MS Office, the use of technology to support writing, and Google Apps usage for administrators and teachers are among his areas of interest. He is an avid follower of the development of future technology and its impact on society, education, and business.

Julia Osteen, Teacher and Technology Integration Chair, Greater Atlanta Christian School As technology integration chair and language arts teacher at Greater Atlanta Christian School, Julia Osteen provides teachers in grades K-12 with technology integration support and serves on the school's iLearn committee where she is involved with strategic planning. Her duties include helping to lead educational visioning, innovative learning practices, networked learning, and teacher professional development. Keeping an eye on emerging technologies, she provides a much-needed bridge between the technical and academic realms. Osteen is an alumna of Richardson and Beach's Powerful Learning Practice, where she served as a Fellow and holds an Ed.S. from the University of Georgia in the area of Learning Design & Technology. She has presented sessions for GaETC, Georgia Independent Schools Association Conference, iSummit, AATE meetings and the K-12 Online Conference.

Renee Padgett, Director of Human Resources /Secondary Curriculum, Elbert County Schools As secondary curriculum director for Elbert County Schools, Renee Padgett has served as the grant administrator for five Title IID grants, including the eTextbooks ARRA grant. Elbert County has grown from very little technology to 21st century classrooms throughout the district since Padgett came to the district in 2006. She is an advocate of employing technology in ways that improve teaching and learning through increased student engagement.

Laura Perkins, Principal, Westside High School, Bibb County Schools Laura Perkins has been principal at Westside High School for the past six years and was principal at a smaller Career/Technical High School in Bibb County prior to that. Over the last 30 years she has served as an English teacher, guidance counselor, and an assistant principal prior to becoming a principal. Two years ago she worked with the Westside faculty on writing a blended learning grant, which was awarded in July of 2010. The experience she has had in implementing the grant has changed her philosophy and perspective on high school education and the use of technology, leading her to the conviction that high school, as we know it, must be reconfigured to allow for the blended learning experience to be shared with all students.

Lissa Pijanowski, Associate Superintendent of Academics and Accountability, Forsyth County Schools Lissa Pijanowski has served as a public school educator for over 19 years. As associate superintendent, she works with educators who are committed to designing personalized learning experiences that reflect high expectations, promote student engagement, and produce results. Forsyth County Schools is considered a lighthouse district in Georgia for fostering innovative practice, exemplary use of technology, and achieving high levels of student performance. Prior to working in Forsyth County Schools, she was the director of school improvement at the Georgia Department of Education, where she led regional teams to reduce the number of Needs Improvement Schools in Georgia through intense training on data analysis, performance standards, and focused improvement planning. Pijanowski has been a school administrator and classroom teacher and served on the Governor's Race to the Top committee for Teacher Effectiveness. In 2010 she was recognized by the Georgia Association of Educational Leaders with the 2010 Dr. Jim Puckett Outstanding Educator Award.

Kathy Politis, Director of Instructional Technology, Fulton County Schools Before joining Fulton County Schools as director of instructional technology, Kathy Politis managed the Georgia Standards.Org website, a repository of curriculum and instructional resources for the Georgia Department of Education, coordinated technology training for Fulton County Schools, and served as a middle school technology specialist. With more than 20 years of experience in educational technology, Politis is active in the Georgia Educational Technology Consortium and serves on the steering committee for the Georgia Technology Fair.

Arvin Ross, Director of Media Development, iSchool Initiative Arvin Ross is a sophomore at Kennesaw State University. He has honed his skills in digital photo editing and photography under the leadership of his mentor Kito Johnson, the Senior Pastor of Covenant Christian Center in Canton, GA. Under Kito’s leadership, Ross has excelled in understanding the arts of film, video production, and also public speaking. He uses his skills to better the iSchool Initiative, creating videos, graphic arts, and presenting seminars to schools. Connecting with the iSchool Initiative has helped Arvin Ross find a way to gain even more experience in the areas that he is already passionate about. He has found that the mission of the iSchool Initiative is one he can directly work to fulfill and is making strides to bring the future of education into the here and now. A combination of his passion, mentoring, and vision leads to the success and accomplishments that are sure to come.

Esterine Stokes, Technology Specialist, Westside High School, Bibb County Schools Esterine Stokes has worked for 33 years in the Bibb County School System, first teaching business and computer science, then serving as a performance learning coach, and now as the graduation coach at Westside High School. She has long realized the importance of technology in students' lives and within the field of education and was doing "Blended Learning" – with a drive set up on the school network for posting assignments and student work – before she had even heard the term! Stokes has served on the technology team for Westside and for Bibb County since 1997. When Westside received a Blended Learning Grant in the summer of 2010, she was appointed to the leadership team and served as co-chair.

Connie White, Director of Technology and Learning, Lakeview Academy, Gainesville, GA Connie White has served as the director of technology and learning at Lakeview Academy for the past 11 years and is the visionary of the academy's highly respected one-to-ome program. A former high school physics, chemistry and math teacher, White has specialized in start-up technology initiatives, curriculum mapping, pedagogy, strategic planning, laptop integration, staff development, and digital literacy since 1995. She has conducted hundreds of workshops and seminars throughout the country and is a frequent conference speaker. She recently completed a three-year team as the President of AATE, which is an ISTE Affiliate. She is a Google Certified Teacher, a Paul Harris Fellow, and a consultant for Educational Collaborators. She has also published numerous articles, lesson plans, integration guides and software training manuals.

Jeff White, Instructional Technology Specialist, South Forsyth High School, Forsyth County, GA A 13-year science, drama and technology educator, Jeff White currently serves as an instructional technology specialist at South Forsyth High School in Forsyth County, GA. He has worked with the Georgia Educational Technology Training Centers delivering the first incarnation of InTech certification, and for Georgia Public Broadcasting's education division, managing their science and math programming and delivering multimedia and video trainings across the state. Over the last three years, his school has helped to pilot and implement Forsyth County's Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT) initiative, and he has worked with a few of his teachers to look at the use of proprietary simulation games as "virtual labs" in the social studies classroom.

Hoke Wilcox, Information Technology Specialist, ETC, Kennesaw State University, GA Hoke Wilcox has had a truly unique experience in education beginning with his first teaching assignment as generalist for Yupiit School District in Alaska on the Kuskokwim River. His career has taken him from rural Alaska to metro Atlanta where he currently works with some of the largest school districts in Georgia. Wilcox has served as an administrator, teacher and trainer during his 17 years of experience helping educators to use technology effectively in the classroom. He currently serves as associate chair for GaETC and as a board member for the Georgia Educational Technology Consortium.

Lisa Young, Director of Professional Learning and Instructional Technology, Clayton County Public Schools Lisa Young transitioned into public education 18 years ago as a career changer – coming from a background in architectural engineering. Having worked as a technology support training specialist in Fulton County Schools and an eLearning specialist in Atlanta Public Schools, Young began in Clayton County Public Schools as Director of Instructional Technology in 2008 and additionally took over the helm of Director of Professional Learning in 2010. Her philosophy: “Unlike traditional corporations, K-12 school districts have as their core outcome, the well-being and success of children. As a result, it is supremely vital to ensure that every adult exposed to students possesses the highest skill set in their area of expertise. We are charged to empower students with the skills to succeed as 21st century career-ready citizens.”