Announcing This Year’s Thought Leaders

Gain insight from the unique knowledge and experiences that National Principals Conference™ thought leaders share. Learn how to be creative, take courageous action, maintain an entrepreneurial mindset, and get re-energized for the next school year!

Adolph Brown
President and CEO, The Business & Education Leadership Authority

I Am Because of You
Join Adolph Brown on an engaging journey of teaching and learning excellence as he celebrates the unique opportunity adults have to make a meaningful, lasting difference in the lives of students—students who deserve the highest quality education in every classroom. Brown will affirm teachers, leaders, and community stakeholders who will challenge, motivate, encourage, and support students to achieve academic and life success.

Adolph Brown overcame an upbringing of extreme poverty and violence to become the first in his family to graduate high school; one of the youngest fully tenured university professors in the U.S.; and founder, CEO, and president of The Business & Education Leadership Authority. Known as “the world’s greatest edu-tainer,” Dr. Brown is also the author of several books, including REAL TALK and Championship Habits. He blends humor with truism and research to challenge audiences to live and work more positively.

Scott Barry Kaufman
Professor, University of Pennsylvania

Cultivating Grit From Within
Presenting cutting-edge research, Kaufman shows how grit and resilience is a natural outcome of harnessing the unique strengths in children. As a result, we can see high levels of creativity and performance that we never could have predicted.

Scott Kaufman is a groundbreaking psychologist and professor at the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) investigating how we measure human potential, grit, achievement, and creativity. Angela Duckworth, author of Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, has referred to him as “a force of nature.” This four-year scientific director of the Imagination Institute at UPenn, and the author of Wired to Create and Ungifted, helps all kinds of minds lead creative, fulfilling, and meaningful lives.

Also this year, attend a special session featuring these practicing principals::

Unleash Your Superhero: Your Students Depend on You
In the words of Spiderman’s uncle, Ben, “With great power comes great responsibility.” As school leaders, we have a responsibility to unleash our superpowers to empower our students, staff, and teachers to become the superheroes they are meant to be. Practicing school leaders, award-winning principals, and nationally recognized leaders Carrie Jackson, Dwight Carter, and Bill Ziegler will share how to unleash your superpower to prepare your students for the future. You will walk away from this session equipped, encouraged, and empowered to take your leadership to the next level.


Dwight Carter, 2013 NASSP Digital Principal of the Year New Albany High School, New Albany, OH
Dwight Carter’s focus has been, and continues to be, establishing positive relationships with stakeholders in order to do what is best for students. He believes reflection is at the heart of a principal’s practice and encourages school leaders, teachers, and students to focus on personal leadership in order to create optimal conditions for learning to take place. Carter has won several awards for his collaborative and innovative leadership and has recently co-authored two books: What’s in Your Space? Five Steps to Better School and Classroom Design and Leading Schools in Disruptive Times: How to Survive Hyperchange.

Carrie Jackson, 2013 NASSP Digital Principal of the Year Timberview Middle School, Fort Worth, TX
Carrie Jackson helped open Timberview Middle School in 2010 and worked with staff members to set a tone of collaboration, flexibility, and novelty that would support 21st-century teaching and learning. From the physical design of the classrooms to the systems and processes, everything was carefully organized to promote personalized learning and teacher collaboration. Jackson also uses a number of digital tools to transform the way she does her job. She has built a professional network through Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, and she uses social media to connect with staff members, parents, and the community.

Bill Ziegler, 2015 NASSP Digital Principal of the Year Pottsgrove High School in Pottstown, PA
Bill Ziegler recently led a highly collaborative process to build a 1:1 program at Pottsgrove High School. His leadership extends to the state level where, as president of the Pennsylvania Association of Elementary and Secondary School Principals, he launched the weekly #PAESSPchat on Twitter. He regularly models the power of new media to everyone in the Pottsgrove community and believes that, as a principal, he is responsible for leading in a digital age and assuring that students are equipped, prepared, and ready to be digital learners, leaders, and citizens.