Co-Founder & CEO at Wisr
As a former first-generation college student, Kate is extremely passionate about improving educational outcomes for college students across the country. After working in Admissions and Career Services for the University of Chicago, Kate became interested in how technology can be used to support student outcomes. She returned to Northeast Ohio as VP of Business Development at DecisionDesk before founding Wisr in 2016.
Kate is heavily involved in Cleveland’s entrepreneurial community as the Chair of the JumpStart Leader’s Council. She has been recognized by WYCA Cleveland as a Distinguished Young Woman and Crain’s Cleveland as a Notable Woman in Entrepreneurship.
Director of Marketing at Wisr
As Wisr’s Director of Marketing, Anna oversees the company’s digital and in-person marketing strategy. This includes programming design and coordination of the HIGHER summit series and Wisr Academy learning hub.
Prior to Wisr, Anna worked in Deloitte Consulting’s Human Capital practice. In her work as a human capital consultant, Anna focused on guiding her Fortune 500 clients - and their people - through transformational change. Whether managing enterprise communications, redesigning organizational structures, or developing culture and engagement workshops, her priority has always been to create space for people to be their best at work.
Associate Vice President & Dean of Students at Louisiana State University
Dr. Fuentes-Martin joined the LSU staff on August 24, 2015, and serves as the Associate Vice President and Dean of Students. As the official second-in-command to the Vice President for Student Affairs, she is the chief administrator for the Office of the Dean of Students, which advises Student Government and oversees the departments of Campus Life, Disability Services, Greek Life, and Student Advocacy & Accountability, Transfer Student Programs, and the William A. Brookshire Military and Veterans Student Center.
Fuentes-Martin received Bachelor’s degrees in History and Business Administration and a Master’s degree in not-for-profit administration, both from the University of Notre Dame, and received a Doctorate of Education from Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.
Prior to LSU, Fuentes-Martin held positions at the University of Texas-Pan American, as Associate Vice President and Dean of Students from 2013-15; and Associate Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley from 2014-15. She has also held positions at the University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College, as Dean of Students from 2000-04 and Associate Vice President and Dean of Students from 2004-13; Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, as Assistant/Associate Dean of Students from 1994-2000; and the University of Notre Dame, Assistant Director in the Office of Multicultural Affairs from 1991-94, Assistant Director of Alumni Clubs from 1990-91 and Minority Student Recruiter from 1986-89.
Fuentes-Martin is also the proud mother of three sons: Jacob and Zachary graduated from Texas A&M University in May 2018; and her youngest son, Michael, is attending LSU this Fall. She and her husband Randy have been married for 23 years. Randy is an LSU police officer.
Dean for Student Development at Baylor University
Dr. Elizabeth (Liz) D. Palacios currently serves as the Dean for Student Development at Baylor University and Special Assistant to the President on Diversity. She is a native of San Antonio, Texas, and has over 37 years of experience in higher education. Dr. Palacios received both her bachelor’s degree in business administration and master’s degree in student services and professional counseling at Baylor University. Since 1981, she has served in various areas at Baylor including graduate minority recruitment in the Graduate School and community service in the Department of Student Activities. In 2002, she earned her Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin in School Psychology and joined the faculty in School of Education.
Dr. Palacios taught undergraduate courses in secondary education and graduate courses in school psychology and educational administration. In 2006, she was named Dean for Student Development in the Division of Student Life overseeing Multicultural Affairs, Community Engagement and Service, and the Academy for Leadership Development. She currently teaches in the Higher Education and Student Affairs graduate program at Baylor. In 2015, she was charged with leading the Division of Student Life in both student leadership education and development as well as cultural competency, diversity, and inclusion. In 2016, she was named the first Special Assistant to the President on Diversity at Baylor University. In 2018, she was elected President for the Texas Association of Chicanos in Higher Education, a statewide organization focused on the promotion of Latina/os in higher education as scholars and leaders.
Dr. Palacios has authored numerous publications, presentations, a book chapter in the National Association of School Psychologists primer on training and research on multiculturalism in the schools, and in 2018, a book chapter in the NASPA book on Latino/a/x Student Affairs leaders in higher education. She served as an inaugural faculty member for the NASPA Escaleras Leadership Institute for Hispanic Student Affairs professionals. She serves on various national, regional, and local boards on higher education, retention, diversity, and leadership development
Associate Vice Provost for Diversity Engagement, Training and Education at North Carolina State University
Stephanie Helms Pickett holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Radio & Television Broadcasting from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale; and a Master’s and Doctorate degree in Higher Education Administration from North Carolina State University. She has worked at private, public, single-sex, predominantly White and historically Black institutions of higher education, in residence life, commuter life, multicultural affairs, orientation, leadership, international student affairs, disability services, academic support services and as an Education Consultant with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction.
Most recently, Dr. Helms Pickett was appointed as the Associate Vice Provost for Diversity Engagement, Training and Education in the Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity at North Carolina State University. Prior to the appointment, over the last 12 years, she served as the Director of Assessment and Professional Development, as well as the Director of the Women’s Center in the Division of Student Affairs at Duke University. Dr. Helms Pickett has held faculty appointments at Bennett College for Women, Walden University, Duke University and Grand Canyon University. Her research interests are in the areas of higher education policy, women’s engagement, cultural competency and leadership. She most recently served as board president of the Interfaith Prison Ministry for Women which engages in preparing incarcerated women for reentry. She is married, with two young adults.
She is a member of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Graduate Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. She is the author of three books, “Later Never Came Until Now,” “Her Name Is SHE” and “Worshipper in the Workplace.” Dr. Helms Pickett writes a weekly blog that may be found on the website, drhelmspickett.com.
President at Meredith College
Jo Allen, Ph.D., Meredith College Class of 1980, took office as the eighth president of the College on July 1, 2011. She is the first Meredith College alumna to assume leadership of the 128-year-old institution, one of the largest private colleges for women in the United States. Allen brought her extensive experience as a faculty member, administrator, and scholar to her current role.
A North Carolina native, Allen earned her Master’s degree from East Carolina University and her doctorate from Oklahoma State University. Both her M.A. and her Ph.D. are in English literature, with an emphasis in Technical and Professional Communication. Her B.A. from Meredith is also in English. She served as tenured associate professor of English at East Carolina University and tenured associate professor at North Carolina State University in addition to her administrative roles. Dr. Allen was an American Council on Education Fellow at the University of Virginia.
Allen previously served as senior vice president and provost, and tenured professor of English, at Widener University, in Chester, PA. There she oversaw academic and student affairs on four campuses in two states for approximately 6,500 students and more than 700 full- and part-time faculty. Other leadership positions held by Allen at East Carolina University and at North Carolina State University include special assistant positions for various projects, as well as associate vice provost and interim vice provost.
Allen has made numerous contributions to the advancement of higher education. She has been the featured speaker and facilitator at programs including the American Council on Education Chief Academic Officer’s Institute and the Pennsylvania State University's Academic Leadership Academy. She was a Commissioner for Middle States Commission on Higher Education, for whom she also led training workshops on assessment and led site visits for regional and international institutions’ accreditation. She also served on the Board of Trustees and has been a frequent site reviewer for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) Commission on Colleges.
She has been recognized by Meredith College as a Distinguished Alumna and by East Carolina University as an Outstanding Woman of ECU.
Currently, she is chair of the Executive Board and serves on the Audit Committee and the Administration Committee for the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU). She is also the past treasurer and current vice chair of the North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities (NCICU). She serves on the Presidents’ Council of the Cooperating Raleigh Colleges and on the Presidents' Council of USA South, Meredith's athletic conference. In addition, she is a member of the Raleigh Chamber of Commerce Board of Advisors.
Associate Vice President for Student Affairs & Dean of Students at Duke University
For the past thirty-eight years (except for a brief nine-month hiatus to practice law), Sue Wasiolek has worked in the Division of Student Affairs at Duke University. In her role as Associate Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students she has oversight
for student health, wellness education and programming, counseling and psychological services, crisis response, student conduct, and parent and student veterans’ programs. She has served for over thirty-five years as an academic advisor to freshmen and sophomores and has taught courses in education, law and cultural anthropology. Sue has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Science Education, a Master of Health and Hospital Administration and a Master of Law degree from Duke. She has also completed a Juris Doctor degree from North Carolina Central University and a Doctor of Education from the University of Pennsylvania.
Having served as a peer reviewer for the NCAA, Sue enjoys intercollegiate athletics from an intellectual and spectator perspective. Her master’s of law thesis was entitled “Intercollegiate Athletics and Federal Income Tax Policy” while her doctoral dissertation focused on the efficacy of the NCAA self-study certification process.
In 2008, Sue co-authored a book entitled, “Getting the Best Out of College,” with the second edition released in March 2012.
Sue currently resides in an all-freshman residence hall at Duke and loves it!
President at the University of North Georgia
Bonita Jacobs is President of the University of North Georgia, which serves about 20,000 students across five campuses and offers a range of degree programs from the associate to doctoral levels.
Jacobs took office as the seventeenth president of North Georgia College & State University, prior to its consolidation with Gainesville State College to become UNG, in July 2011, becoming the University’s first woman president and only the second woman to lead one of the country’s six Senior Military Colleges.
She has been named by Georgia Trend magazine one of the "100 Most Influential Georgians" and by the Atlanta Business Chronicle as one of the "Top Education Leaders in Atlanta" and to its list of “Women Who Mean Business.”
Jacobs currently serves on the Board of Directors of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, the Board of Trustees for the Georgia Council on Economic Education, and the BB&T Georgia Regional Advisory Board.
Previously, Jacobs served as Executive Director of the National Institute for the Study of Transfer Students (2009-2011), Vice President for Student Development (1998-2009), and as a tenured professor of counseling and higher education at the University of North Texas. She also served as Assistant Vice Chancellor and as Interim Vice Chancellor for Student Development at Western Carolina University and in student development positions at Stephen F. Austin State University.
Jacobs received bachelor’s degrees in Spanish and history and a master’s degree in counseling from Stephen F. Austin State University. She earned her doctorate in educational administration from Texas A&M University.
A recipient of multiple awards for leadership in higher education and student development, Jacobs is a frequent speaker on transfer and student success issues. Jacobs is the former editor of The Journal of College Orientation and Transition and has served on three other editorial boards. Her publications include The College Transfer Student in America: The Forgotten Student and Starting From Scratch: Your First-Year Experience, as well as numerous chapters, journal articles and reviews.
Jacobs is originally from Huntington, Texas, and she and her husband, Glenn, live in Dahlonega.
Senior Vice President for Strategy at Arizona State University
Executive Director of Career Services at Princeton University
Provost; Executive Vice Chancellor at University of Missouri – Kansas City
Director of the Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Mount Saint Mary's University
Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Kent State University
Senior Vice Provost of Academic Affairs, Teaching
Senior Associate Vice Chancellor of Development at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Deputy Majority Leader; Office of Early Childhood Chair in the State Senate of Connecticut
Associate Provost for Faculty Development & Faculty Success at Wayne State University
Social Impact Officer Principal, EdPlus at Arizona State University
President; CEO of the Florida State University Alumni Association
Professor; Chair of the Commission on Diversity & Inclusion at Eastern Michigan University
Vice President of Inclusion & Equity at Towson University
Vice President for College Advancement at Wheaton College
Dean of the Walker School of Business & Technology at Webster University
Associate Vice President for Student Affairs; Dean of Students at the
Former Vice Provost of Student Access, Success, & Diversity at Illinois Institute of Technology
Associate Provost; Chief of Staff to the Provost at the University of Illinois at Chicago
Provost at Alvernia University
Vice President for Advancement at Kenyon College
Associate Professor of Human Evolution at Arizona State University
Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the Texas A&M University System
Assistant Vice President of Alumni Relations & DAR Communications and Marketing at Rice University
Secretary; Vice President for Student Life at Yale University
Associate Professor of Student Affairs at the University of Maryland; Editor of the Journal of Diversity in Higher Education
Vice President for Campus Life & Student Success at Stetson University
Head of The Agnes Irwin School; Former Provost and Dean of the Faculty at Lafayette College
Associate Dean of Corporate Relations & Career Services at the New York University Stern School of Business
Associate Dean of Admissions at the Duke University Fuqua School of Business
Senior Vice Chancellor for Engagement; Secretary to the Board of Trustees at the University of Pittsburgh
Associate Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Mount Saint Mary's University
Senior Vice President for Global Partnerships at The New School
Associate Dean & Director of Graduate Student Professional Development at Princeton University
Managing Director of Full-Time MBA Admissions and Program at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business
Vice President for Inclusion & Equity; Chief Diversity Officer; Title IX Coordinator at the University of Akron
Associate Vice President for Academic Operations at Texas A&M University at Galveston
Vice President for Enrollment Management at John Carroll University
Deputy Provost; Vice President for Academic Affairs at Arizona State University
Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs at Colorado State University
Chief Strategy Officer at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center
Executive Director for Organizational Culture & Inclusion at the University of Texas at Austin
Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs/Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion; Title IX Coordinator at Bowling Green State University
Director of Athletics & Recreation at the University of Chicago
Vice President; Chief Financial Officer at Northern Illinois University
Vice President for Student Affairs at the University of Cincinnati
President at Hamline University
Associate Provost of Faculty Development & IR at Baylor College of Medicine
Associate Dean of Career Services & Corporate Relations at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business
Dean of the School of Arts, Science & Business at Chatham University
Vice President of Administration at the University of Colorado
Associate Vice President of Advancement at the University of Miami
Associate Dean of MBA Operations at the Vanderbilt University Owen Graduate School of Management
Vice President for Institutional Diversity & Equity at DePaul University
Dean of the Burnett Honors College at the University of Central Florida
Associate Vice President for Career Development at the College of William & Mary
Associate Vice Provost for Online Initiatives; Director of Distance Learning at Fisk University
President; CEO of the Common Application
Provost; Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs at Ball State University
Chief of Staff at the Emory University Goizueta Business School
Provost; Executive Vice Chancellor at the University of Missouri – St. Louis
Vice President for Equity & Social Justice at Emerson College
Senior Director of Diversity Initiatives at the University of North Florida
Vice Provost for Admissions & Financial Aid at Washington University in St. Louis
Vice President of Development at Prairie View A&M University
Deputy Chief Diversity Officer at Tennessee State University
Vice President of Enrollment Management at Hamline University