Why choose Louisiana
for Higher Education?

The benefits of a Louisiana higher education degree are endless! Whether choosing an Associate’s degree at one of our Community and Technical Colleges, a Bachelors, Masters, or Ph.D. at one of our four-year institutions, or even a professional degree at one of our medical or law schools your educational experience at any Louisiana public institution is guaranteed to positively impact your future. Read More >>

 

 ~ REGISTRATION IS NOW CLOSED~

Join us for a dynamic and engaging learning experience!

Day One, Game Changers: Think 30 Louisiana!

A special session planned for ALL Academic and Student Affairs Staff including Enrollment Mangers, Registrars, Academic Advisors, Deans of Students, Career Counselors, Recruiters, IR/Data Managers and others who provide academic advising to students. 

Day One Keynote Speakers

Dr. Joseph C. Rallo serves as the 8th Commissioner of Higher Education for the Louisiana Board of Regents. Dr. Rallo served as the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs for the Texas Tech University System. Dr. Rallo is also the Past-President of Angelo State University. Prior to that appointment, he served as Provost and Academic Vice President at Western Illinois University, and was Dean of the College of Business and Administration and the Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs.

  

Dr. Dhanfu E. Elston serves as Complete College America's Vice President for Alliance State Relations where he utilizes his campus expertise for practical application, implementation, and scaling of CCA strategies at institutions throughout the nation. He also provides oversight of CCA's 15-To-Finish strategy and coordinates relationships with Governor's Offices and higher education state-wide systems in their college completion efforts. Over two decades of his higher education career in academic and student affairs, Elston has created and implemented comprehensive success and retention programs that have garnered national attention.

 

Blake Johnson manages Complete College America’s media and communications strategy, including the development and implementation of all external communications such as publications, digital and social media, and stakeholder outreach. He oversees a national portfolio of reporters, bloggers and influencers who cover higher education, state government and public policy. In addition to his work in communications, Blake manages a policy portfolio in a number of CCA Alliance States and co-leads the organization’s 15 to Finish initiative.

 

Dr. Nia Woods Haydel is the Director of the Academic Center for Excellence, the Thompson/Cook Honors Program and Assistant Professor of Urban Studies and Public Policy at Dillard University.   Dr. Haydel has been a higher educational professional for over 18 years working in Student Affairs, Enrollment Management, Academic Affairs and Intercultural Relations.   In her current role, she oversees the University’s retention initiatives, as well as, academic advising, progression and academic enrichment initiatives and service learning for first-year students, and coordinates initiatives for Honors students.  Additionally, she is responsible for assessment initiatives within the first-year experience. 

 

Rajni Soharu has worked at UNO since 2003, in the capacity of a Graduate Assistant (Bursar’s Office and Financial Aid Office), Assistant Registrar for Technology, Associate Registrar for Technology, Director of Catalog and Curriculum and now Interim Registrar. She has a B.S. in Telecommunication Engineering (Bangalore University, India), M.S. in Engineering Management (UNO), M.B.A. with Management of Information Systems Concentration (UNO) and currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Engineering Management. She is married to a UNO graduate for the past 7 years, and together they have a 5 years old daughter and 1 year old son.

 

Larry Tremblay was born and raised in the Boston area.  He received his undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Massachusetts - Boston.  From there he relocated to Nashville, Tennessee where he earned a Masters of Management degree from Vanderbilt University.  In 1975, he earned a Ph.D. in higher education administration from Florida State University.  Dr. Tremblay joined the Louisiana Board of Regents in 1976 where he has remained holding a variety of positions. Following many years as Associate Commissioner for Planning and Research, today Dr. Tremblay serves as Deputy Commissioner for Planning, Research and Academic Affairs. 

 


Richard A. Lipsey, Louisiana State University graduate, 1961; Harvard Business School OPM 1987.  Married to Susan Haspel Lipsey; has two daughters and three grandchildren, all who reside in Baton Rouge. While in the Army (1962-64), he served as Aide to the Commanding General of the Military District of Washington and was intensely involved with the funeral of President John F. Kennedy (the only military officer to witness the entire autopsy of the President).  Richard returned to Baton Rouge and entered the family business, Steinberg Sports Centers.  In 1977, he purchased S & S Wholesale Sporting Goods (now Lipsey’s) and grew it into the nation’s largest firearms distributor.  He and his family own Haspel, a major line of men’s tailored clothing that originated in New Orleans in 1909.   He is founder and partner in Lipsey Communications, a chain of over 100 wireless phone stores. Richard was appointed to serve on the Louisiana State Board of Commerce and Industry and subsequently on the State Board of Regents by former Governor Jindal.  He served as a co-chair for the transition team for Governor John Bel Edwards. Richard is a longtime higher education leader and has served on the Louisiana Board of Regents since 2013 and currently is serving his second term as its Chair.
Dr. Claire Norris serves as the Assistant Commissioner for Academic Affairs at the Louisiana Board of Regents.  In that role, she reviews existing and proposed degree programs and administrative units of Louisiana's public colleges and universities.  She has also worked extensively with higher education leaders to advance policies that increase college access and success. Prior to joining the Board of Regents, Dr. Norris served as faculty at Xavier University in New Orleans.  During her tenure at Xavier University, she enjoyed teaching and mentoring students.
 
 
State Representative Nancy Landry (R - Lafayette), is a leading Republican voice on issues facing Louisiana families and children.  She is also a leading proponent of student-centric education reform, working to ensure that every child has the opportunity to receive a quality education. Representative Landry represents District 31 in the Louisiana House of Representatives.  District 31 includes portions of Lafayette and Vermilion Parishes.  Nancy was elected to the House in 2008 and re-elected without opposition in 2011. 

 

Day Two, Elevate Louisiana: Reimagining Higher Education & Workforce Preparation

This session is designed to engage faculty and other higher ed leaders in a way that they may never have been involved before; expose attendees to speakers who will share innovative practices in higher education, and enable participants to network and provide feedback. 

On both days, sessions have been set aside to give participants an opportunity to delve into ACT 619. It would also provide game-changing strategies that improve student learning and promote timely completion. 

Day Two Keynote Speakers

Dr. Joseph C. Rallo serves as the 8th Commissioner of Higher Education for the Louisiana Board of Regents. Dr. Rallo served as the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs for the Texas Tech University System. Dr. Rallo is also the Past-President of Angelo State University. Prior to that appointment, he served as Provost and Academic Vice President at Western Illinois University, and was Dean of the College of Business and Administration and the Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs.

 

Dr. Dhanfu E. Elston serves as Complete College America's Vice President for Alliance State Relations where he utilizes his campus expertise for practical application, implementation, and scaling of CCA strategies at institutions throughout the nation. He also provides oversight of CCA's 15-To-Finish strategy and coordinates relationships with Governor's Offices and higher education state-wide systems in their college completion efforts. Over two decades of his higher education career in academic and student affairs, Elston has created and implemented comprehensive success and retention programs that have garnered national attention.

 

Named one of the "Power 100" by Ebony Magazine in its list of the 100 most influential African Americans a year after assuming the role of President and CEO, Johnny C. Taylor, Jr. leads the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF), the only national organization representing nearly 300,000 students attending this country's 47 publicly-supported Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). With approximately 80 percent of all HBCU students attending TMCF member-schools, Mr. Taylor leads an organization responsible for providing this country a robust and diverse pipeline of talented workers and future leaders.

 

Susana Schowen joined LED FastStart, a division of Louisiana Economic Development, in June of 2011. As the Director of Workforce Initiatives, she is tasked with implementing high-level strategies focused on systemic workforce reform. Based on analyses of workforce supply and demand, she is collaborating with educational stakeholders to align offerings to the needs of Louisiana employers. Prior to joining LED, Susie managed a private technical college in Baton Rouge after creating a nationwide basic skills program focused on underperforming high schools for Thomson Peterson’s.  Before that, she held a number of positions with Kaplan, Inc. managing test preparation courses, financial services training, and online college programs. She received degrees in chemistry from Wellesley College and Columbia University.

 

Sachin Chintawar has been with the Louisiana Workforce Commission in various roles providing him with perspectives on the application and value of labor market information (LMI) as a producer, consumer and administrator. In his five year career, he has managed a wide range of statistical programs, led a multi-agency workforce and education data alignment initiative and instituted innovative new LMI products for consumers including businesses, job seekers and policy makers. He currently serves on several national advisory panels including the U.S. Census Bureau, Projections Management Partnership, and Bureau of Labor Statistics Policy Council. In his current role as the Research and Statistics Director, Sachin is helping design data driven decisions on workforce issues in the state. In his spare time Sachin loves to ride horses and is known for his passion for salsa and chips.

 

Dr. Lisa S. Vosper currently serves as the Associate Commissioner for Workforce Education and Training at the Louisiana Board of Regents. She has a very diverse professional background, including having worked as a legislative assistant to a state senator; a seventh grade English teacher and drop-out prevention counselor; a community college instructor; and as an executive on loan to the Louisiana Workforce Commission.  Dr. Vosper has received numerous honors, awards and other forms of recognition, including being invited by First Lady Michelle Obama’s Reach Higher Initiative to participate on a team representing Louisiana; being featured as a ”Higher Education Headliner” by the State Faculty Senate Association, “Trailblazer in Higher Education” by the Louisiana Association of Women in Higher Education (LAWHE); appointed by Governor Kathleen Blanco to her gubernatorial transition sub-committee on the Workforce and Economic Development, and later, to the Louisiana Women’s Commission on Policy and Research; and appointed by Governor Bobby Jindal to his first transition team as a member of the Workforce Advisory Committee. 

 

Richard A. Lipsey, Louisiana State University graduate, 1961; Harvard Business School OPM 1987.  Married to Susan Haspel Lipsey; has two daughters and three grandchildren, all who reside in Baton Rouge. While in the Army (1962-64), he served as Aide to the Commanding General of the Military District of Washington and was intensely involved with the funeral of President John F. Kennedy (the only military officer to witness the entire autopsy of the President).  Richard returned to Baton Rouge and entered the family business, Steinberg Sports Centers.  In 1977, he purchased S & S Wholesale Sporting Goods (now Lipsey’s) and grew it into the nation’s largest firearms distributor.  He and his family own Haspel, a major line of men’s tailored clothing that originated in New Orleans in 1909.   He is founder and partner in Lipsey Communications, a chain of over 100 wireless phone stores. Richard was appointed to serve on the Louisiana State Board of Commerce and Industry and subsequently on the State Board of Regents by former Governor Jindal.  He served as a co-chair for the transition team for Governor John Bel Edwards. Richard is a longtime higher education leader and has served on the Louisiana Board of Regents since 2013 and currently is serving his second term as its Chair. 

 

Carrie Robison has been with the Board in the Sponsored Programs section since 2001, having previously taught as an adjunct as LSU A&M. From 2001 through 2010, she worked as Special Programs Manager, managing the Graduate Fellows, Awards to Louisiana Artists and Scholars, and Post-Katrina Initiative Support Fund programs and working with unit leadership on strategic planning, development of a statewide research plan, and implementation of CDBG post-Katrina research and education funding. In 2010, she was appointed Associate Commissioner for Sponsored Programs Administration, responsible for day-to-day administration of the Board of Regents Support Fund, and in 2016 she was named Deputy Commissioner for Sponsored Programs. In this capacity, she is responsible for all work of the Sponsored Programs Section. She has assisted with or led implementation of new programs and comprehensive program evaluations, and coordinated the restructuring of the Support Fund in 2016. Ms. Robison also participates in development of policies related to higher education research and innovation.

Program Agendas 

February 1st - Day One Agenda 

February 2nd - Day Two Agenda 

Lodging

Please note that there has been a venue change to the newly remodeled Holiday Inn Alexandria - Downtown.  A block of rooms has been reserved for the Forum at the hotel rate of $97/night.  The hotel will honor tax exemptions with appropriate documentation.  The room block is under the registration code SpringForum.

Holiday Inn Alexandria - Downtown

701 4th St | Alexandria, Louisiana

Phone: 318.541.8333

Alexandria Restaurants

To explore restaurants in downtown Alexandria, click here

 

Thank you for planning to attend and add value to the Commissioner’s 2017 Spring Forum! We will see you in Alexandria.

 

 

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