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North Central National Service Conference Keynote Presenters Info

North Central National Service Conference Keynote Presenters Info

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Keynote Presenters Info
Keynote Presenters Info

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Published by: America's Service Commissions on Aug 07, 2013
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North Central National Service Conference: Keynote and General Session Speakers

Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth is an Iraq War Veteran
and former Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs. Duckworth attended college at the University of Hawaii and then went on to the George Washington University, where she earned a Masters of Arts in International Affairs. Following graduation, Duckworth, who is fluent in Thai and Indonesian, moved to Illinois, where she began pursuing a Ph.D. in Political Science at Northern Illinois University. While at NIU she also worked at the School of Nursing researching public health and environmental causes of cancer. Later Ms Duckworth worked for Rotary International as a manager for administration of Rotary's clubs in the Asia Pacific Region. In 2004, Duckworth was deployed to Iraq as a Blackhawk helicopter pilot for the Illinois Army National Guard. She was one of the first Army women to fly combat missions during Operation Iraqi Freedom until her helicopter was hit by an RPG on November 12, 2004. Duckworth lost her legs and partial use of her right arm in the explosion and was awarded a Purple Heart for her combat injuries. Duckworth spent the next year recovering at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. As one of the highest-ranking patients, she quickly became an advocate for her fellow Soldiers and testified before Congress about caring for our Veterans and wounded warriors. Following her recovery, Duckworth ran for Congress in 2006. After a narrow loss, she became Director of the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs. In Illinois, she worked to create a tax credit for employers who hired Veterans, established a first-in-the-nation 24/7 crisis hotline for Veterans, and developed innovative programs to improve Veterans’ access to housing and health care. In 2009, President Obama appointed Duckworth to be Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs. At VA, Duckworth led an initiative to end homelessness among Veterans. She created the Office of Online Communications to improve the VA’s accessibility, especially among young Veterans, and also worked to address the uniq ue challenges that Native American and female Veterans face. Duckworth ran for Congress in 2012 to advocate for the practical solutions and cooperation needed to rebuild our economy and ensure that every American has a chance to achieve the American Dream. Duckworth lives in Hoffman Estates with her husband Bryan, an Army Major. Since her recovery, Duckworth has taken up scuba diving, surfing, skydiving and flies as a civilian pilot. Fulfilling a promise she made at Walter Reed, she has also completed several marathons. She has resumed her Ph.D. studies at Northern Illinois University and is also working toward a Ph.D. in Health and Human Services at Capella University. In her spare time, she volunteers at local food pantries and enjoys couponing and flea markets. Duckworth declined a military medical retirement and continues to drill as a Lieutenant Colonel in the Illinois Army National Guard.

North Central National Service Conference: Keynote and General Session Speakers
William (Bill) C. Basl was appointed as the Director of AmeriCorps in June
2012 at the Corporation for National and Community Service. Prior to this appointment, during the past 40 years, Bill worked in a variety of capacities for the state of Washington. He served as the initial Executive Director of the Washington Commission for National and Community Service established by Governor Mike Lowry in 1994 to implement and expand volunteerism and national service initiatives including AmeriCorps. In 1983, prior to being named to this position, Bill founded the Washington Service Corps which was the first statewide youth service initiative in the nation designed to address priority local education and human service’s needs. Bill was reappointed to this position by former Governor and current Ambassador to China Gary Locke and in 2005 by Governor Chris Gregoire. He served as a member of the Governor’s Small Agency Cabinet. He has assisted agencies and organizations nationally and internationally to expand and strengthen national service. Bill supported the State Department in promoting national service, requested by Italian government and civic service leaders to assist in developing new service initiatives. He is the co-founder of Service America, a national program that placed cadets from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point with AmeriCorps members to address critical community needs. He has developed the Leadership Forum for National Service Executives at the University of Washington’s Evans School of Public Affairs, which offers graduate level course work designed to meet the needs of senior leaders in national service from throughout the country. He has served as a board member and immediate past Chair of America’s Service Commissions. From 1970-72, Bill served as a VISTA Volunteer in Walla Walla, WA, helping migrant farm workers establish their own businesses. In Spokane, where he was a VISTA Volunteer Leader, he helped form a regional legal services network. A native of Pittsburgh, PA, Bill received a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of Rhode Island. In 2011 The White House named Bill a Champion of Change-Service Innovator. Contact Information: bbasl@cns.gov Office: (202) 606-6790 Mobile: (202) 489-5894

North Central National Service Conference: Keynote and General Session Speakers Engaging Veterans Panelists
Pete Kalenik is the Chief Operating Officer of Leave No Veteran Behind. He is
also a Paratrooper and a Non-Commissioned Officer in the U.S. Army Reserve. Pete enlisted in the military under the National Call to Service Program after the announcement of the Surge into Iraq and has served as a two-time AmeriCorps volunteer; first teaching in one of America's most violent communities and then practicing community development techniques in Chicago's most diverse neighborhood. Pete is committed to service and works to create opportunities for individuals to improve the quality of life for families throughout the City of Chicago.

Originally from Grand Rapids, Michigan, Peter Meijer served as an Army noncommissioned officer in Operations Iraqi Freedom and New Dawn from the summer of 2010 to the summer of 2011. Peter was as an embedded advisor with the Iraqi Army at Joint Security Stations in the Baghdad area, conducting bilateral training missions, and continues to serve in the Army Reserves. Peter is active in several non-profit organizations, holding the position of Strategic Partnership Coordinator for Team Rubicon USA and serving on the Board of Directors of Student Veterans of America. Peter began working with SVA in the spring of 2008 when he campaigned for the passage of the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and recently testified before the Senate on veteran education. Today, Peter holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology and Political Science from Columbia University and has worked over a hundred emergency calls as an Emergency Medical Technician with Columbia’s volunteer EMS. In addition to his role as Strategic Partnership Coordinator for Team Rubicon, Peter is also an active volunteer. He deployed to South Sudan to conduct humanitarian relief, led the Sandy response in New York, and recently returned from tornado recovery operations in Moore, Oklahoma. Peter lives in New York when not deployed with Team Rubicon.

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North Central National Service Conference: Keynote and General Session Speakers
Eli Williamson (EWilliamson@McCormickFoundation.org), Director of the
Veterans Program for the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, is a former staff sergeant with the U. S. Army and co-founder of Leave No Veteran Behind, an Illinois-based non-profit focused on employment opportunities for veterans. While serving as Executive Director at Leave No Veteran Behind, Eli implemented debt relief and transitional employment programs, workforce skills training, and community service opportunities for veterans making the transition from military to civilian life. Prior to 2009, Eli served in both Iraq and Afghanistan as a member of “psychological operations” teams and as an Arabic linguist, working on outreach to civilian communities and supporting special operations forces. Before leaving the Army, Eli served as a retention officer, providing career counseling to a battalion of over 150 soldiers. He is the recipient of numerous awards and medals, including the Bronze Star, two Army Achievement Medals, an Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal, and Iraq and Afghanistan Campaign Medals. Eli received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Linguistics (with a minor in African studies) from Luther College in Iowa and is presently completing a Master’s Degree in Non-Profit Management from DePaul University.

Brandon T. Bodor was appointed by Governor Pat Quinn as Executive Director
of the Serve Illinois Commission on May 17, 2012. Brandon brings with him a strong record of service. He is coming off of a distinguished military career in the United States Army, which included combat deployments to both Iraq and Afghanistan between 2005 and 2012. He is the recipient of two Bronze Star Medals, the Combat Action Badge, and is a graduate of both the U.S. Army Ranger and Parachute schools. Brandon graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 2005, finishing in the top 3% of his class; at West Point, he served as Class Treasurer, was the Director of both the Special Olympics and Big Brothers Big Sisters programs, and spent a summer working on HIV/AIDS awareness initiatives in a village in the southern African country of Lesotho. Brandon still serves as a Military Intelligence officer in the Army Reserves out of Fort Sheridan, Illinois, and is currently completing his MBA at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He resides with his wife and two sons in Chicago.

North Central National Service Conference: Keynote and General Session Speakers
Jeff Snell is the special advisor to the president at Marquette University, where
he works with the university leadership to determine strategies and academic priorities in support of the Office of the Provost. Jeff has helped develop key initiatives and partnerships, including technology transfer, leadership searches, the national Youth of the Year scholarship program with Boys & Girls Clubs of America, and the university's ongoing Social Innovation Initiative, placing Marquette among the first ten universities nationally to be designated a Changemaker Campus by Ashoka; Innovators for the Public, the world's largest network of social entrepreneurs. The Social Innovation Initiative’s developments to date include founding the Midwest Consortium for Social Innovation, a partnership with the New York Times (FixesU) funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Brady Corporation Midwest Social Innovation Design Contest (the first regional platform), the executive education Social Innovation Leadership Experience, graduate and undergraduate course design and teaching, and the first university-backed feasibility study to explore a Cristo Rey Network school in Milwaukee. Prior to joining Marquette, Jeff served from 2004 to 2007 as chief operating officer for the Argosy Foundation, a private foundation with assets projected at $1 billion. His duties included designing and implementing the full scope of all operations in support of the Foundation’s board of trustees. Prior to joining Argosy, Jeff served for eight years at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee, including three years as president and CEO. His tenure at the Clubs coincided with the largest member and resource development expansion in the Clubs’ 118-year history, making Milwaukee arguably the largest Club out of more than 3,500 nationally. Jeff’s key professional accomplishments include the development of a nationally replicated outcomes study, significant collaborations with public and private entities to enhance the Club’s service to more than 25,000 members, and completing the largest endowment bequest campaign for a social service agency in the history of Wisconsin. His combined fundraising totaled nearly $100 million during his tenure at the Clubs. Jeff received his doctor of philosophy in education from Marquette in 1996. He also holds a master’s in social ethics from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Massachusetts, graduating magna cum laude and receiving the Seminary’s division award in Apologetics and Thought. In 2007 he received the School of Education’s Distinguished Alumni Award. In 2006 Appleton East High School awarded him the Alumni Patriot Award for “outstanding civic achievement [and] professional accomplishment.” In 2001 The Business Journal serving Greater Milwaukee recognized him through their 40 Under Forty awards program as an “emerging difference-maker in the community.” Jeff resides in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, with his wife of more than 20 years, Jennifer, and their two children.

North Central National Service Conference: Keynote and General Session Speakers
Jonathon Monken was appointed by Governor Pat Quinn as Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) on February 14, 2011. As director, Mr. Monken oversees Illinois’ disaster preparedness and response, nuclear safety and homeland security programs, as well as the agency’s 245+ employees and a budget of more than $618 million. In this capacity, he also serves as the Illinois Homeland Security Advisor to the Governor. At IEMA, Mr. Monken has directed the response and recovery effort to 91 Illinois counties declared State disaster areas which included the statewide response to the 2011 blizzard, the record floods in 2011 and 2013 and the devastating tornado that struck Harrisburg and Ridgeway in Southern Illinois. Mr. Monken is Chairman of the Central United States Earthquake Consortium (CUSEC), a partnership of the eight states affected by the New Madrid Seismic Zone. He was most recently elected the NEMA Vice-President for FEMA Region V and appointed the Vice-Chair of the National Emergency Management Association (NEMA) Homeland Security Committee. Mr. Monken is also a member of the Governors Homeland Security Advisors Council. Prior to becoming IEMA director, Monken served for two years as Acting Director of the Illinois State Police, an agency with a staff of 3,400 sworn and civilian personnel and an annual budget of approximately $428 million. Jonathon also possesses a distinguished military career having served one tour of duty in Kosovo and two combat tours in Iraq between January 2003 and December 2006. While serving with the United States Army, Captain Monken was awarded the Bronze Star Medal and the Army Commendation Medal with “V” Device for valor in combat. Monken graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point, where his military class rank placed him in the top 1% of his class. He also holds an MBA from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. Jonathon enjoys being active in his community and is a proud member of American Legion Post #1922 and Springfield Mid-Town Club of Rotary International. He lives in Springfield with his wife Jennifer and their sons Jack, Luke and Zach.

North Central National Service Conference: Keynote and General Session Speakers
Matthew McCabe is an AP World History teacher at Pritzker College Prep, a campus of the Noble Street Charter School on Chicago’s west side. At Pritzker, Matthew has worked to leverage partnerships with local service nonprofits (such as 826 Chicago) to maximize learning gains for his students. He is a grade level lead teacher, as well as the coach of the varsity ultimate team (in 2013 he was selected as USA Ultimate Illinois Coach of the Year). In 2010, President Obama nominated Matthew as a Board Member for the Corporation for National and Community Service. Confirmed in 2012, he has helped to provide oversight for the agency as well as promote the voices of service participants and AmeriCorps alumni. Matthew is also currently a 2012 Teach Plus Policy Fellow in Chicago where he works to amplify the voices of classroom teachers in education public policy. Previously, Matthew was a Leadership for Educational Equity Policy and Advocacy Fellow at the Illinois State Board of Education. He also served as a third grade teacher while a 2009 Teach For America corps member in Chicago. A native of Philadelphia, Matthew received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and English from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master’s Degree in Teaching from Dominican University.

North Central National Service Conference: Keynote and General Session Speakers
Dan Milnes is assigned as the Region Director for the AmeriCorps National Civilian
Community Corps (NCCC) North Central Region in Vinton, Iowa. Dan joined the Corporation for National and Community Service in the summer of 2008 following completion of a 27-year military career with the United States Air Force. Following his military career, Dan wanted to continue serving his country in a government-based and service related leadership capacity. He has found the AmeriCorps NCCC program to be a perfect fit as a full-time, team-based residential program for young men and women who desire to serve. Dan has thoroughly enjoyed the esprit de corps and camaraderie of the NCCC staff and partnering agencies, and he has found deep satisfaction in working with the assigned Corp Members. He is honored to lead the AmeriCorps NCCC North Central Region team. Dan holds a Bachelors of Business Administration Degree and a Masters Degree in Public Administration. He and his wife Brenda have been married for 33 years. They have two grown children and one grandson. Dan and Brenda live near Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Jody Burns is currently the Deputy Region Director for Programming with
AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) North Central Region. She has been with the organization for 19 years. As the Deputy Region Director for Programming, she focuses on projects, training, service learning, member development and accomplishment reportage for the North Central Region. Prior to joining the AmeriCorps NCCC team, Jody worked in the areas of academic service learning, career development and criminal justice.

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