National Leaders to Address American Federation for Children’s 2013 National Policy Summit

Speakers include: Gov. Mike Pence, Cardinal Wuerl, WNBA Star Lisa Leslie and former White House Press Secretary Mike McCurry

WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 9, 2013)— The American Federation for Children, the nation’s voice for educational choice, today released its full program schedule and list of keynotes for the 2013 National Policy Summit, titled, “Educational Choice for Children: Go Big, Go Bold.” Keynote speakers include Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, Archbishop of Washington, D.C. Donald Cardinal Wuerl, WNBA star Lisa Leslie and former White House Press Secretary Mike McCurry.

“Every day children are finding new opportunities as a result of educational choice and the National Policy Summit will address our momentum, future challenges and the imminent opportunities that await us,” said Betsy DeVos, chairman of the American Federation for Children. “We are excited about our dynamic speakers and panelists from across the country and across the political spectrum.”

The fourth annual summit will be held at Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland and runs from Monday, May 20 to Tuesday, May 21.

“With nearly a quarter of a million students currently enrolled in publicly funded private school choice programs, there is no better time than now to join together and celebrate our accomplishments as a movement and how we continue to build on the momentum,” added DeVos.   “This year’s summit’s theme: ‘Educational Choice for Children: Go Big, Go Bold’ exemplifies our vision for the future of the school choice movement – big and bold policies and advocacy strategies to ensure that every child, especially those from low-income families, have access to a quality education.”

Below is a schedule (bold indicates keynote speaker), times are subject to change:

Monday, May 20
9:00 a.m.       Registration begins, coffee and networking
10:00 a.m.     Hear from the “Insiders,” Exclusive state-by-state update from AFC  Government Affairs Team
10:30 a.m.   Special Educational Choice Legal Update by Dick Komer, lead counsel for the Institute for Justice
11:00 a.m.      Pre-lunch networking
12:00 p.m.      Lunch program

  • Emcee Kevin P. Chavous, Executive Counsel,  American Federation for Children
  • Keynote: Donald Cardinal Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, D.C.;
  • Parent Speaker Shelia Jackson;

1:30 p.m.         Post-lunch networking
2:00 p.m.         Breakout Session I

  • Panel #1: Empowering Parents to Make Informed School Choices
    • Moderator: Bill Jackson, Founder and CEO, GreatSchools
    • Mark Gleason, Executive Director, Philadelphia Partnership
    • Brother Bob Smith, former CEO, Messmer Catholic Schools, Milwaukee
    • Georgia State Rep. Alisha Thomas Morgan (D-Austell)
  • Panel #2: Local Leaders Standing up for Educational Choice
    • Moderator: Ann Duplessis, Executive Director, New Orleans French Market Corporation
    • Chas Roemer, President, Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
    • Richard Vinroot, former mayor of Charlotte, NC
    • Maggie Lewis, Indianapolis City Council President

3:30 p.m.          Breakout Session II

  • Panel #1: The Role of Accountability in Publicly Funded Private School Choice Programs
    • Moderator: John Kirtley, Vice-Chairman, American Federation for Children
    • Khawla Asmar, Assistant Principal, Salam School, Milwaukee
    • Adam Emerson, Director, Program on Parental Choice, The Fordham Foundation
    • Robert Enlow, President and CEO, The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice
    • Joe McTighe, Executive Director, Council for American Private Education
  • Panel #2: The Fight for Educational Choice in State Capitols
    • Moderator: Scott Jensen, Senior advisor, American Federation for Children
    • Ohio State Rep. Anne Gonzales (R-Westerville)
    • Ohio State Rep. Bill Patmon (D-Cleveland)
    • Pennsylvania State Rep. Jordan Harris (D-Philadelphia)

5:30-6:30 p.m. Pre-Dinner Networking Reception
7:00 p.m.           Dinner program

  • Betsy DeVos, Chairman, American Federation for Children
  • Invocation Rabbi Yehiel Mark Kalish, National Director of Government Affairs, Agudath Israel of America
  • Keynote: Gov. Mike Pence (R-IN)
  • Student Speaker Denisha Merriweather
  • Walton Award Ceremony

Tuesday, May 22
8:00 a.m.          Breakfast program

  • Keynote Speaker Mike McCurry, former White House Press Secretary
  • Parent Speaker Tera Myers

9:15 a.m.          Breakout Session I

  • Panel #1: Charter and Voucher Communities Join Forces to Fight for Children
    • Moderator: Nina Rees, President and CEO, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools
    • Darrell Allison, President, Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina
    • Jon Hage, Founder and CEO, Charter Schools USA
    • Tony Roberts, CEO, Georgia Charter Schools
  • Panel #2: ZIP Codes Should NOT Determine Access to a Quality Education
    • Moderator: Peter Groff, Principal MCG2 Consulting
    • Derrell Bradford, Executive Director, Better Education for Kids, Inc.
    • Dr. Howard Fuller, Distinguished Professor of Education and Director of the Institute for the Transformation of Learning, Marquette University
    • Martín Pérez, Esq., President, Latino Leadership Alliance of New Jersey
    • Rebeca Huffman, Executive Director, Democrats for Education Reform

10:30 a.m.     Panel: Has Educational Choice become a mainstream issue?

  • Moderator: Ken Campbell, President, Black Alliance for Educational Options
  • Deborah Beck, President, Beck Research
  • Matthew Dowd, Strategist and Founding Partner, Vianovo
  • John Diez, Principal, Magellan Strategies

11:30 a.m.      Pre-lunch networking
12:00 p.m.     Closing Luncheon Program

  •  Keynote: Lisa Leslie, Olympic gold medalist and former-WNBA star
  • Moderator: Kevin Chavous
  • Student Speaker: Sandeep Thomas

1:30 p.m.          Summit Concludes