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Keynote Speakers Monday | Tuesday

Monday, December 8, 2014

MONDAY     8:00 A.M. in the Pheasant Run Exposition Center

Tom Schimmer Schimmer is an independent education author, speaker, and consultant from Penticton, British Columbia (Canada). He is recognized as a leader and expert in the areas of assessment for learning, sound grading practices, educational leadership, and positive behavior interventions and supports.

Tom has been an educator since 1991. His teaching career began at Vancouver College in Vancouver, BC where he spent 7 years as a full-time classroom teacher having taught a variety of subjects from grades 7-12. He then spent the next 11 years as a school administrator.  After spending one-year as the Assistant Principal for the Senior School at Vancouver College, Tom moved to School District No. 67 in Penticton, BC (Canada) where he was a middle school Assistant Principal for 7 years and a High School Assistant Principal for three.  In 2009, Tom was appointed to the position of District Principal where he was a member of the senior management team and was responsible for overseeing the efforts to support & build the instructional capacities of teachers & administrators throughout the district.

Tom is an experienced, sought-after presenter who has delivered both keynote and workshop sessions and major conferences, as well as for schools and/or school districts, internationally. Tom’s first book, Ten Things that Matter from Assessment to Grading, was published by Pearson Canada (May 2011) and Pearson ATI (January 2013).

Tom holds a Teaching Degree from Boise State University and a Master’s Degree (Curriculum & Instruction) from the University of British Columbia.

Learn more about Tom at



Tuesday, December 9, 2014

TUESDAY      8:00 A.M. in the Pheasant Run Exposition Center


Mawi Asgedom Asgedom has written eight books that are used in thousands of classrooms across North America, and spoken to over 1,000,000 students and educators in more than forty states. In 2012, Mawi partnered with Florida Virtual School to release a 2-semester leadership class that is taught across the world.

As a child, Mawi fled civil war in Ethiopia and survived a Sudanese refugee camp for three years. After being resettled in the United States, he overcame poverty, language barriers and personal tragedy to graduate from Harvard University, where he gave the Commencement address to an audience of 30,000.  

Mawi’s bestselling memoir, Of Beetles and Angels: A Boy’s Remarkable Journey from a Refugee Camp to Harvard, has been read as a one-book, one-community reading selection by thousands of schools and communities, including the cities of Philadelphia and Green Bay.

Citing the impact of Mawi’s work, The Illinois Association of Teachers of English named Mawi the 2006 Illinois Author of the Year. Media outlets that have featured Mawi include:

You can learn more about Mawi’s work in education at