NISOD Announces Keynote Speakers for Its 2018 Annual Conference

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Austin, TX — (ReleaseWire) — 01/16/2018 –The National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) proudly announces that St. Petersburg College President, Dr. Tonjua Williams and because I said I would Founder, Alex Sheen, will serve as keynote speakers for NISOD's 2018 International Conference on Teaching and Leadership Excellence, May 26-29, in Austin, Texas. Alex Sheen will share his remarks during the General Session Lunch on May 28. Dr. Tonjua Williams will wrap up the conference with comments made during the Closing General Session Lunch on May 29.

Dr. Williams, who currently serves as president of St. Petersburg College, has over 20 years of experience in higher education, ranging from student affairs to academic and collegewide administration. In 2016, Dr. Williams was awarded the prestigious Aspen Presidential Fellowship for Community College Excellence, making her part of the inaugural class of the Aspen Presidential Fellows, a cadre of diverse and student-success focused reformers identified to push the community college sector forward. Dr. Williams has served in a number of leadership capacities, including Achieving the Dream's Advisory Network Committee and American Association of Community College's President Round Table.

Alex Sheen is the founder of because I said I would, a social movement and nonprofit dedicated to bettering humanity through promises made and kept. Sparked by the loss of his father, Alex and his organization send “promise cards” to anyone anywhere in the world at no cost. Alex is someone who truly honors commitment, having once walked over 240 miles across Ohio in 10 days to fulfill a promise. Alex's charitable projects and awareness campaigns have been featured on ABC World News with Diane Sawyer, CBS Nightly News, Fox News, CNN, The Today Show, Good Morning America, NPR, The Los Angeles Times, and most recently, Megyn Kelly TODAY.

“These keynote speakers are outstanding additions to NISOD's 2018 conference,” said Edward J. Leach, NISOD's executive director. “The distinguished individuals announced today continue to define our annual gathering as the foremost destination for educators seeking to improve teaching, learning, and leadership at community and technical colleges.”

NISOD's 2018 conference not only features remarkable keynote speakers, but also peer-led presentations, hands-on workshops, a comprehensive exhibit hall, exceptional networking opportunities, and fun and informative excursions, all of which complement the conference's main focus of convening community and technical college educators committed to improving student achievement.

Individuals interested in attending the conference can save $100 off the regular registration rate by registering prior to the Super Early Bird Registration Deadline of April 13, 2018.

Visit to learn more about NISOD's International Conference on Teaching and Leadership Excellence.

The National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) is a membership organization committed to promoting and celebrating excellence in teaching, learning, and leadership at community and technical colleges. For community and technical colleges that want to make the most of their professional development dollars, NISOD provides budget-friendly, high-quality, and faculty-focused programs and resources. For nearly 40 years, NISOD's customer-focused approach has helped align our wide array of benefits with the needs of our members, which explains why the American Association of Community Colleges named NISOD, “The country's leading provider of professional development for community college faculty, staff, and administrators.”

For more information about NISOD, visit

If you would like more information about the International Conference on Teaching and Leadership Excellence, please contact Edward J. Leach at [email protected] or 512-232-1430.

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Sarah Thompson

Sarah Thompson

Sarah is a financial reporter, focusing on technology, national security, and policing. Before joining Daily Telescope she worked as a staff writer at Fast Company and spent two years as a foreign correspondent in Turkey. Her work has been published in Al Jazeera America, The Nation, Vice News, Motherboard, and many other outlets.
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