Key Note Speaker
Associate Professor - University of Florida
An Associate Professor in the Computer & Information Science & Engineering Department at the University of Florida’s Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering. As the co-chair of the AI for K-12 Initiative, Gardner-McCune is leading the development of national guidelines that articulate what students should know and be able to do with AI, curating an AI resource directory, and developing a K-12 AI Education Community. Nationally, Gardner-McCune is working with states and territories across the US including Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands to support the development of state-level K-12 AI Education Implementation.
Featured Speakers & Facilitators
Alicia D Beck
Ali Beck is an Academic Coach at the Tybee Island Maritime Academy. Over the past thirteen years Beck has taught a diverse array of subjects, populations, and grade levels including elementary school, middle school, high school language arts, computer science and scientific research. Beck believes that teachers should be advocates for equity and reform in education and is currently focusing her efforts on initiatives that address equity in STEAM education.
Professor - Indiana University
Barbara B. Jacobs Chair in Education and Technology, Professor of Instructional Systems Technology, Adjunct Computer Science, Indiana University – Bloomington
Educator and CEO of Maxporeal, LLC
With a background in business management and years of experience as a corporate training specialist, Betia entered the teaching profession as a career changer. Understanding the power of influence and positive impact she chose middle school as her educational “happy place”. Being a life-long learner and avid advocate for student choice, student voice, and student ownership, Betia empowers her “Bright Minds” to be successful in life by fostering an environment conducive for excellence. Betia has worked with various businesses and agencies to create and implement relevant and rigorous standards, curriculum and instruction, and trainings that are currently being utilized in the US and abroad. She endeavors to ensure that ALL students and training participants are equipped with desired competencies, confidence, and a game-plan for success.
C. Lindsay Linsky
Associate Professor - University of North Georgia
Lindsay is an Associate Professor in the College of Education at UNG where she is a champion for all things CS/cyber education. She is the Lead Instructor for the UNG GenCyber AGENT Initiative (Advancing GenCyber Education for NorthGeorgia Teachers), the co-founder of the new UNG Computer Science Endorsement, and the co-leader of the CyberStart Georgia Task Force. Additionally, she coordinates the ACCESS program (Addressing Cyber Career Equity for Student Success), which is a pilot funded by the National Cyber Scholarship Foundation to encourage diverse and underserved students to play CyberStart.
Senior Director - ISTE Standards Programs
With more than 20 years of experience in education leadership and programs, Carolyn Sykora, promotes adoption and leads implementation of the ISTE Standards and computational thinking in K-12 and in teacher preparation programs.
Dr. Emmanuel Schanzer
Co - Founder - (Bootstrap
Dr. Emmanuel Schanzer spent several years as a program manager and developer before becoming a public high school teacher and middle school academic coach in Boston. He is the founder and co-director of Bootstrap, which he first designed as a curriculum for his own students. He has long been involved in connecting educators and technology, connecting parties at the Computer Science Teachers Association, Google, Microsoft, Facebook and at universities across the country. He holds degrees in computer science and curriculum development, and completed his doctoral studies at Harvard with a research focus on using programming to teach algebra.
Director of Educational Innovation and Strategy
Constellations Center for Equity in Computing at Georgia Tech
Lien Diaz is a founding director of the Constellations Center for Equity in Computing at Georgia Tech. Bringing an essential core foundation of equity in access and opportunity to computer science education, her role as Director of Educational Innovation and Leadership helps establish the Constellations Center as a leader in expanding computer science education through an equitable and comprehensive approach in national/international, state, and local education systems.
Computer Science Program Specialist
Bryan Cox is the Computer Science Program Specialist at the Georgia Department of Education (GaDOE). Prior to working for the GaDOE, Bryan spent 8 years as a High School STEM teacher, teaching mat, computer science, and engineering courses. He is currently pursuing a PhD in Instructional Technology from Georgia State University with a research focus on educational games for computational thinking. He also received a M.A.T. in mathematics from GSU and a B.S. in Computer Information Systems from Florida A&M University. He has spent time working as a network designer and computer technician as well as working with after-school and summer youth programs.
Executive Director, Georgia Cyber Center at Augusta University
Eric Toler joined Augusta University in 2018 as Executive Director of the Georgia Cyber Center. Mr. Toler previously served in the U.S. Army as a Military Intelligence Officer, retiring with over 27 years of leadership and national security experience. During his military career, he was a pioneer in leading and developing cyberspace operations capabilities for the Army and Department of Defense, serving in key positions within Army Cyber Command, U.S. Cyber Command, and the National Security Agency.
In his role as Executive Director of the Georgia Cyber Center, Mr. Toler is responsible for fulfilling the mission of the Georgia Cyber Center, which is to create an ecosystem of collaboration that helps solve our state’s and our nation’s most challenging cybersecurity problems through innovative education, training, research, and practical applications between private and public industries. He works with a multitude of partners from government, academia, and private industry to help develop the professional workforce required to secure our state and our nation in cyberspace.
Teacher - Wheeler High School
Jeff Kent is a teacher in the Center for Advanced Studies in Science, Math and Technology at Wheeler High School where he teaches AP Statistics, AP Computer Science Principles, Advanced Mathematical Topics and Data Science. He was on the development team that created Data Science 1 and Data Science 2 for the Georgia Department of Education and currently leads the curriculum development teams for the new Linear Algebra with Computer Science Applications and Differential Equations classes.
Curriculum Lead - CS First
Josh is a former Middle School computer science teacher currently based in Berlin where he works on global CS education efforts at Google, including leading the curriculum for CS First. Prior to his work at Google Josh led the curriculum team at Code.org where he developed equity-oriented curriculum across K-12. He’s also the author of two books on integrating CS into other content areas, Creative Coding and Coding and the Arts.
Keith Osburn Ed. D.
Deputy Superintendent for Technology Services/Chief Information Officer
Professor - Georgia State University
Lauren Margulieux is an Assistant Professor of Learning Sciences at Georgia State University. Her research interests are in using computing as a tool to support learning in other disciplines. She coordinates an initiative in Georgia State’s teacher preparation programs to integrating computing into pre-service teacher training in all disciplines and directs a computer science endorsement to certify teachers to offer CS courses.
Chief Data and Privacy Officer - GADOE
Director of Cybersecurity Education & Training - Florida International University
Mr. Randy Pestana serves as Director of Education and Training at Cybersecurity@FIU, a designated Emerging Preeminent Program, and as Assistant Director of Research and Strategic Initiatives at the Jack D. Gordon Institute for Public Policy at Florida International University’s (FIU) Steven J. Green School of International and Public Affairs, where he manages the institute’s partnerships with U.S. Departments of Commerce, Defense, and State. Additionally, Mr. Pestana serves as an Adjunct Professor for the Steven J. Green School of International and Public Affairs and Honors College. His technical specialization is in International Relations with focuses on U.S. foreign policy, security studies, and cybersecurity. In his role as Director, he serves as conference director for the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) conference and expo and member of the NICE Community Coordinating Council. In this role, he works closely with the national CAE lead California State University, San Bernardino and the CAE regional hubs to host the CAE annual symposium and designation ceremonies. He also serves as FIU Co-PI for an NSA grant led by University of Colorado: Colorado Springs that provides forensics training to college and university professors across the U.S.; as FIU PI for an NSA grant led by the University of West Florida that provides cybersecurity training to transitioning military personnel, veterans, and first responders seeking to reskill and upskill; and as FIU PI on a forthcoming effort to provide cybersecurity fundamentals training to high school students in underrepresented communities in Miami-Dade County Public Schools. He also serves on Cyber Florida’s Advisory Board supporting unified curriculum across State University System schools. Prior to joining FIU, Mr. Pestana attended the Platoon Leader’s Course in Quantico, Virginia for the United States Marine Corps where he received a favorable evaluation and top five ranking by his peers as a Candidate Platoon Sgt., and served as a recruiting assistant in Miami, Florida where he helped train recruits prior to their departure to basic training. Mr. Pestana holds a M.A. in Latin American and Caribbean Studies with a Graduate Certificate in National Security Studies from FIU, and an Executive Certificate in Cybersecurity from Harvard University.
Sarah Graham & Jenna Barton
STEM & Math Coordinators - Paulding County School District