2011 NAIS Annual Conference | National Harbor, MD | Feb 23 - Feb 25, 2011

Featured Speakers

General Session Speakers

 11AC Sheena Iyengar

Sheena S. Iyengar
Thursday, February 24, 9:30 - 11:00 am
The Art of Choosing

Follow Iyengar on Twitter at http://twitter.com/sheena_iyengar or if you have a specific question, she has generously shared this email address with NAIS members, siyengar@columbia.edu.

Sheena S. Iyengar is the inaugural S.T. Lee Professor of Business at the Columbia Business School. She has taught on a wide variety of topics, including leadership, decision making, creativity, and globalization, earning an Innovation in the Teaching Curriculum award. Internationally she has taught at the Global Leadership Fellows Program at the World Economic Forum in Geneva, Switzerland.

During her doctoral studies at Stanford, Iyengar investigated how people make choices, particularly the importance and universality of choice in people's lives. Her dissertation, "Choice and its Discontents," earned the Best Dissertation Award for 1998 from the Society of Experimental Social Psychology.

Iyengar's innovative research on choice has been funded by the National Science Foundation, National Institute of Mental Health, and National Security Education Program. In 2002, she was awarded the Presidential Early Career Award for Social Scientists by the Executive Office of the President. Fortune, Time, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, NPR, and popular books, including Blink by Malcolm Gladwell and The Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz, have all cited her research.

In our world of shifting political and cultural forces, technological revolution, and interconnected commerce, our decisions have far-reaching consequences. Her latest book is The Art of Choosing.

Click here to view the TEDGlobal 2010 Talk Iyengar presented on the art of choosing in July 2010. 


Dan Heath
Thursday, February 24, 3:00 - 4:30 pm
Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard

Dan Heath is coauthor, along with his brother Chip, of the book Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die - a Business Week and New York Times bestseller now translated into 23 languages, including Thai, Arabic, and Lithuanian. Amazon.com readers voted it one of the top 100 books of 2007, and Amazon editors named it the #2 business book of the year. Heath's latest book, Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard, written with his brother, released in February 2010 and is already a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller.

Heath writes a monthly column for Fast Company and is a consultant to the policy programs at the Aspen Institute. He has taught and consulted on the topic of "making ideas stick" with organizations such as Microsoft, Macy's, Nestle, and the American Heart Association; conducted research and written case studies for Harvard Business School; and taught in the executive education division of Duke University. He co-founded Thinkwell, a startup textbook publishing company in Austin, TX, that celebrates its 10th anniversary in fall 2010.

A proud geeky moment for Heath was his victory in the 2005 New Yorker Cartoon Caption contest, beating out 13,000 other entrants.


Read an article about the Independent Matters General Session given by Elizabeth Coleman, Anya Kamenetz, and Salman Khan.

View the graphic recordings of the Independent Matters presentation.

 11AC Liz Coleman

Elizabeth Coleman
Friday, February 25, 9:30 -11:00 am
Independent Matters

A leading innovator in higher education, Bennington College President Elizabeth Coleman is widely recognized for her vision for liberal arts and their role in reinvigorating society. A veteran TED Conference speaker, Coleman serves on the board of advisors for the European College of Liberal Arts in Berlin and lectures on strategic leadership at the Royal College of Defense Studies in London.

At Bennington, Coleman led an organizational restructuring to revivify Bennington's pioneering educational philosophy, return the college to fiscal health, and advance new curricular programs - including a distinguished low-residency graduate program in writing, a unique center for the study of language and culture, and the Center for the Advancement of Public Action, which invites students to put the world's most pressing problems at the center of their education. Trailblazer Coleman emphasizes that learning is a "task of discovery."

Beyond her work as an educational leader, Coleman has served on the boards of the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute, Council for a Community of Democracies, Committee for Economic Development, and Neurosciences Institute in California. She delivered the keynote at the Artes Liberales General Conference in Warsaw, Poland, on "The Relationship Between Liberal Education, Freedom, and Democracy" and at the Getty Museum on "Art, Artists, and the Challenge of Liberal Education."

 11AC Salman Khan

Salman Khan
Friday, February 25, 9:30 -11:00 am
Independent Matters

Salman Khan is the founder and faculty of Khan Academy - a one-man, open-education resource on the Internet. An instant Internet sensation and inspiration, Khan's 1,400+ free educational videos on YouTube have been viewed more than 16 million times. Every month, more than 200,000 students (both young and old) from around the globe use his videos to learn basic skills from arithmetic to finance to chemistry to vector calculus. The Khan Academy is now the most used open-education resource on the Internet.

Khan's mission is nothing short of creating a free, world-class virtual school for anyone in the world (videos, self-paced exercises/assessment, and peer-to-peer instruction). Hear what he has to say about his experience starting the nonprofit Khan Academy and the massively transformational changes in learning and teaching that he thinks are inevitable over the next five to 10 years.

CNN, PBS NewsHour, NPR's All Things Considered, and the San Francisco Chronicle have all reported on the Khan Academy.

After graduating from MIT with computer science and math degrees, Khan received his MBA from Harvard Business School. He left his "day job" as a hedge fund analyst in 2009 to dedicate himself full time to his nonprofit academy.

Anya Kamenetz 

Anya Kamenetz
Friday, February 25, 9:30 -11:00 am
Independent Matters

Educational futurist and staff writer for Fast Company magazine, Anya Kamenetz brings an entirely unexpected perspective on the future of knowledge, talent, and innovation. The rare speaker on generational and innovation issues facing the Millennials (also known as Generation Y, Generation Next, or The Net Gens), who actually belongs to this generation, she delivers core insights into change, innovation, technology, and talent.

Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize by the Village Voice, her feature series later became a highly regarded book entitled Generation Debt: The New Economics of Being Young. Written when she was just 24, Generation Debt drew national media attention and passionate online debate with its argument that young people are facing unique and unprecedented economic challenges. Her new book, DIY U: Edupunks, Edupreneurs, and the Coming Transformation of Higher Education, tells the story of how technology is disrupting one of the most tradition-bound industries in the country -- education. It's an important book about talent, human capital, and how our institutions must evolve to meet the challenges of the next century.

She is a sought-after media expert regularly appearing on major news networks including CBS, ABC, CNN, MSNBC, FOX News, CNBC, and NPR. Currently, she covers the future of business, including sustainability and social entrepreneurship, as a writer for Fast Company magazine. 

 11AC Geoffrey Canada

Geoffrey Canada
Friday, February 25, 3:00 - 4:30 pm
Creating Success for All Children

Passionate author and advocate for education reform, Geoffrey Canada is president and CEO of Harlem Children's Zone, Inc. (HCZ), which The New York Times Magazine called "one of the most ambitious social experiments of our time." Nationally recognized for his pioneering work helping children and families in Harlem, Canada was named one of "America's Best Leaders" by U.S. News and World Report.

You may already recognize Canada, who stars in the acclaimed documentary Waiting for Superman, which opened to rave reviews in fall 2010. Watch the movie trailer at http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1566648/.

HCZ offers a comprehensive range of services -- educational, social, and medical -- to form a safety net for kids from birth to college. All the TV networks and prominent newspapers have featured Canada and HCZ as a national model for education reform.

Despite his youth spent in the violent South Bronx, Canada excelled academically. After earning his master's from the Harvard School of Education, he started helping children who, like himself, were disadvantaged by their lives in poor, embattled neighborhoods. Canada has written Fist Stick Knife Gun: A Personal History of Violence in America and Reaching Up for Manhood: Transforming the Lives of Boys in America.

National Book Award-winning author Jonathan Kozol called Canada, "One of the few authentic heroes of New York and one of the best friends children have, or ever will have, in our nation." 

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NAIS - National Association of Independent Schools