Speakers: Tech Forum New York 2011

Speakers: Tech Forum New York 2011

Keynote Speaker
PUNYA MISHRA, Professor of Educational Technology, Michigan State University

Dr. Punya Mishra is Professor of Educational Technology at Michigan State University where he directs the Master of Arts in Educational Technology program. He (with Dr. Matthew J. Koehler) co-chaired the SITE2011 conference and is former chair of the Innovation & Technology Committee of the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education (AACTE). He is nationally and internationally recognized for his work on the theoretical, cognitive and social aspects related to the design and use of computer based learning environments. He has worked extensively in the area of technology integration in teacher education which led to the development (in collaboration with Dr. M. J. Koehler) of the Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) framework, which has been described as being “the most significant advancement in the area of technology integration in the past 25 years.” The readers and editors of Tech & Learning magazine recently named Dr. Mishra as one of the ten most influential people in educational technology. He has received over $4 million in grants, has published over 45 articles and book chapters and has edited two books. Dr. Mishra is an award winning instructor who teaches courses at both the masters and doctoral levels in the areas of educational technology, design, and creativity. Dr. Mishra is a gifted, creative and engaging public speaker, having made multiple keynote and invited presentations for associations and conferences nationally and internationally. He is also an accomplished visual artist and poet. You can find out more about him by going to http://punyamishra.com/


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

Adam Bellow, Founder, eduTecher In addition to working as the Director of Educational Technology for the College Board Schools, Adam Bellow is the Founder of eduTecher, a free social web resource for teachers, students, and parents that finds and explains how to use free Web tools in the classroom. He has previously worked as technology integration specialist as well as a high school English teacher. Recently named the Outstanding Young Educator of the Year by ISTE, Bellow has been asked to present at conferences across the country and all around the world. You can check out his site at www.eduTecher.net, download free eduTecher apps for you iPhone/iPad/Android, and follow him on Twitter @AdamBellow.

Lorraine Brooks, Principal, River Dell Regional High School, NJ Lorraine Brooks has served as principal of River Dell Regional High School in Oradell, New Jersey, for the past 18 years.Prior to that, she was an assistant principal at Horace Greeley High School in Chappaqua, NY, and an administrator and English/drama teacher at Spring Valley High School in Spring Valley, NY.During her time at River Dell, the school’s AP and Syracuse University Project Advance courses have grown as the curriculum, in general, has expanded to meet the growing needs of the students.River Dell’s one-to-one program began in 2005, and with it, the professional development for all teachers.

Vivian Birdsall, Technology Integrator, New Canaan Public Schools, CT Vivian Birdsall is the math instructional leader and the technology integrator for Saxe Middle School in New Canaan, Connecticut.The Saxe Math Department uses multiple technologies to improve student learning including the use of assessment technology.Birdsal has conducted teacher training for Texas Instrument technologies and other educational technology programs. During the summer she runs a highly successful extended school year program in math for grades 3 through 9 at New Canaan High School using SMART Board technology and one to one computing.

Jerry Crisci, Director of Technology, Scarsdale Public Schools, NY As director of technology for the Scarsdale Public Schools, Jerry Crisci helped develop an innovative computer curriculum that has been profiled in The Wall Street Journal and CBS radio's Charles Osgood program. In 2003, Scarsdale was one of three districts honored nationally with a "Technology Salute" by the National School Boards Association. Crisci’s articles and software reviews have appeared in many books and publications. He has served as an adjunct professor at the St. Thomas Aquinas College and a technology instructor at several ASCD Summer Technology Academies. He has also presented papers and workshops at numerous conferences and, as a Google Certified Teacher, conducted dozens of workshops on using Google technologies in education. Crisci is president of Chestnut Hill Media, an educational technology consulting firm and software design studio, and has authored two commercial software packages. His book on future trends in education will be published later this year.

Pat Kimmerling, Technology Integrator, Saxe Middle School, New Canaan, CT Before becoming a technology integration teacher at Saxe Middle School, Pat Kimmerling was an education specialist at one of Connecticut’s Regional Educational Service Centers where she provided professional development for K-12 teachers and administrators. She is thrilled to be at the middle school level now, not only working with teachers but also with the “digital generation.” Kimmerling encourages her teachers to dive into the digital world of their students by collaborating with them on projects and providing support along the way. She is a member of her districts’ ICT team and professional development team, planning and providing professional learning throughout the school year. She is also a member of ASCD and CoSN’s Emerging Technologies Committee.She has been a certified SMART Technologies trainer for six years and has provided training in both Connecticut and New York.

Diana Laufenberg, Teacher,Science Leadership Academy, Philadelphia, PA Diana Laufenberg has taught Social Studies at all grade levels from 7-12. She currently teaches at the Science Leadership Academy in Philadelphia, an inquiry-driven, project-based high school focused on modern learning. Her practice has deep roots in experiential education, taking students from the classroom to the real world and back again. Before finding her way to Philadelphia, she was an active member of the teaching community in Flagstaff, AZ where she was named Technology Teacher of the Year for Arizona and a member of the Governor's Master Teacher Corps. Recently Laufenberg was featured on TED.com for her “How to Learn? From Mistakes” talk and recognized for earning National Board Certification. Her publications include a featured piece on the New York Times Learning blog, co-authoring a chapter in an educational leadership book, an upcoming article in the Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy and regular contributions to teachinghistory.org.

Susan Luft, Teacher, Scarsdale, NY Susan Luft is a first grade teacher at Fox Meadow Elementary School in Scarsdale, NY, where she has been teaching for the past fourteen years. Her innovative first grade classroom focuses on building emergent skills in Internet Communication Technologies as a resource for learning and problem-solving. She has facilitated teacher training in a variety of courses offered by the Scarsdale Teachers Institute. She has also taught many workshops and graduate courses as an adjunct professor at Fordham University. Luft is a PHd candidate who is currently writing her dissertation on socially constructed problem-solving through Internet Workshop activities.

Michelle Luhtala, Library Department Chair, New Canaan High School, CT Michelle Luhtala is the Department Chair of New Canaan High School Library, which won several 2010 awards including the National School Library Program of the Year Award. She also facilitates a 2,300+ member online professional learning community for school librarians called Using Emerging Technology to Improve Your Library Program at edWeb.net/emergingtech, where she presents monthly webinars (all of which are archived online). She is co-authoring a forthcoming book for Libraries Unlimited with the working title Relevant Librarian: a 21st Century Guide to the Responsive Library and contributing a chapter to a forthcoming book (also for Libraries Unlimited) called School Librarians as Leaders in Professional Development. She blogs at Bibliotech.me.

Rob Mancabelli, Consultant, Speaker and Writer, Boston, MA With nearly twenty years of experience in leadership, technology and planning, Rob Mancabelli partners with schools and corporations to develop Twenty-First Century learning organizations. His focus is on global collaboration, customized content and engaging learning. He is the former CIO of Trinity School in NYC and, prior to that, served as director of IS for Hunterdon Central School District in New Jersey. Mancabelli’s book, Personal Learning Networks, co-authored with Will Richardson, was released in May 2011.Supporting his understanding of learning is a background in planning and leadership that includes certification as a project manager and experience leading dozens of large scale projects.

Brian Mannix, Teacher and Technology Staff Developer, Great Neck South Middle School, NY Brian Mannix is a seventh grade social studies teacher and technology staff developer at Great Neck South Middle School in New York.He was named Tech & Learning magazine’s 2010 Education Leader of the Year for his creative and innovative work that breaks down the boundaries of the traditional classroom.He is a Flat Classroom Certified Teacher who has piloted a program called “The Connected Classroom” where his students, aided by technology, interact and collaborate with students around the world.Brian prides himself on his ability to turn over the control of his classroom to his students and has recently pioneered an online educational talk show called The Power of Ten:Discussing Education’s Future, which utilizes Google+’s Hangouts’ interactive video chatting feature.The shows can be viewed on www.edhangout.com.Brian is also the president and CEO of www.babysittingbarter.com, where, using his same collaborative philosophy in the classroom, he is seeking to revolutionize how moms and dads do babysitting across the country.He can be reached at mannixlab@gmail.com

Dcn. Kevin McCormack, Principal, Xaverian HS, Brooklyn, NY Kevin McCormack has been involved in Catholic secondary education for over 25 years. Together with Robert Alesi, the President of Xaverian High School, he has been searching for a way to bring one-to-one computing to their school. With the introduction of the iPad, they were able to find a form factor and a price point that could make the dream of one-to-one computing a reality. McCormack has implemented a professional development plan that puts aside the typical descending model of introducing content and encourages each teacher to be a leader in this latest technological development. Xaverian is becoming a school in which former luddite and early adopter work side by side to help create a 21st century learning community.

Dr. Robert Miller, Director of Information and Communications Technologies, New Canaan Public Schools, CT Rob Miller is in his seventh year as director of information and communication technologies for the New Canaan Public Schools. Before that, he spent five years in a similar role in a neighboring school district. Miller is responsible for the technology infrastructure, technology support, data services, state reporting, and the instructional program for technology and library media, merged as “Information and Communication Technologies” in New Canaan. He recently finished his Doctorate of Education at Northcentral University in E-Learning and Teaching Online. His dissertation focused on the development of 21st century communication, collaboration, and digital literacy skills through the use of social network tools at the high school level.

Maria Narciso, Supervisor of Technology, Montclair Public Schools, NJ In her role as supervisor of technology for Montclair Public Schools, Maria Narciso is responsible for supervision of technology staff membersand for planning, purchasing and supporting district technologies and technology-related staff development for 11 schools.Major initiatives include the installation of a fiber network and IP Telephony, Internet2 membership, the implementation of the District Technology Plan and Curriculum and the adoption of Blackboard.com as the district eLearning standard. Narciso has presented at NECC, NJEA, ASCD, ISTE, various Universities and K12 districts and Seton Hall’s NJ Superintendent’s Roundtable.

Lisa Nielsen, Author, Speaker and Blogger, The Innovative Educator Lisa Nielsen is an outspoken and passionate advocate of learning innovatively. She has worked for more than a decade in various capacities helping schools and districts to educate in innovative ways that will prepare students for success. Nielsen is frequently covered by local and national media for her views on "Thinking Outside the Ban" to harness the power of technology for learning. She blogs, promotes cell phone use for educators and students, and friends students on Facebook despite an outdated educational system designed to keep students and their teachers stuck in the past. In addition to her award-winning blog, The Innovative Educator, Ms. Nielsen writes for places such as The Huffington Post, Tech & Learning, and Leading & Learning.She has co-authored, with Willyn Webb, Teaching Generation Text. She and Webb speak to audiences around the globe and teach classes for educators interested in empowering students to use mobile devices for learning.You can follow her on Twitter @InnovativeEdu.

Eric Sheninger, Principal, New Milford High School, NJ As the principal at New Milford High School in Bergen County, NJ, Eric Sheninger firmly believes that effective communication, listening, support, shared decision making, and the integration of technology are essential elements necessary for the transformation of school cultures.. He is passionate about establishing and fostering learning environments that are student-centered, collaborative and flexible, and prepare all learners to succeed in the 21st Century.Sheninger has emerged as an innovative leader in the use of social media and web 2.0 technology as tools to engage students, improve communications with stakeholders, and help educators grow professionally. He is a Google Certified Teacher, ASCD 2011 Conference Scholar, co-author of "Communicating and Connecting With Social Media: Essentials for Principals," writer for the Huffington Post, and was named to the NSBA "20 to Watch" list in 2010 for technology leadership. He now presents and speaks nationally to assist other school leaders embrace and effectively utilize technology. His blog, A Principal’s Reflections, earned first runner up in the Best Administrator Blog category in 2010 from Edublogs.

Cathy Swan, Technology Integrator and Professional Developer, New Canaan Public Schools, CT Cathy Swan has been the technology integration teacher at New Canaan High School since the program's 2002 inception, collaborating with classroom teachers to integrate technology into the existing curriculum and conducting training as needed for staff and students. Before that, she taught French and Spanish for 26 years. Swan is a Google certified teacher and a member of the district ICT team awarded honorable mentions in both the COSN Team Award 2010 and ISTE's Sylvia Charp Award for District Innovation in Technology, 2010. Since 2005, Swan has held a position on the board of the Connecticut Educators Computer Association (CECA). She has served on the New Canaan Public Schools Professional Development Team for the past decade where she is responsible for the planning and implementation of high school professional learning days and events throughout the school year. She is a member of the National Staff Development Council's Academy XVI. She has presented at various CT and NY districts, as well as at the Tech Forum, CoSN and CECA conferences on the topic of Web 2.0 technologies in education. Swan's program and district were featured in a 2010 Intel Blueprint publication as well as the 2010 CoSN Compendium.

Lisa Thumann, Senior Specialist in Technology Education, Center for Mathematics, Science and Computer Education, Rutgers University, NJ Formerly a K-6 technology teacher, Lisa Thumann has been with the Center for Mathematics, Science and Computer Education at Rutgers University in New Jersey since 2002. As the center's senior specialist in educational technology, she facilitates professional development sessions on campus as well as travels throughout New Jersey helping teachers integrate technology into their classrooms. Her focus for the center is her 21st Century Learning Initiative and helping teachers to develop and participate in personal learning networks. Thumann also presents at State and National conferences such as Alan November's Building Learning Communities and ISTE (formally NECC). You can find her speaking annually for the NJ Association for Educational Technology and the NJ Educational Computing Cooperative. She has been the keynote presenter for the NJEA Technology Institutes and the NJETI 2010 Annual Conference and blogs regularly for Tech & Learning. You can read more about Lisa on her personal blog at ThumannResources.com.

Dr. Harry Tuttle, Instructor, Onondogua Community College, NY Dr. Harry Grover Tuttle has been a classroom teacher (English and Spanish), technology integration teacher, technology director, and college instructor for education, English, ESL and Spanish. He also served as president of the International Society for Technology in Education's technology coordinators' SIG and of the New York State Association for Computers and Technology in Education. He received ISTE's Making it Happen award and is a member of ISTE SIGML. He has published many articles and six books on education and learning. He enjoys sharing with teachers new avenues of learning through his blog,Education with Technology (http://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/).

Marianthe Williams, Director of Technology, River Dell Regional School District, NJ Marianthe Williams has served as director of technology with the River Dell Regional School District in Oradell, New Jersey, for four years.Prior to that, she was director of technology with the Glen Rock School District in Glen Rock, NJ, and before that, served as a secondary school science teacher at Glen Rock.One of the most exciting aspects of her job at River Dell is the one-to-one program and its impact on students and teachers