Making Schools Work Conference Keynote and Featured Speakers


Making Schools Work Conference Speakers

SREB is delighted to announce that Freeman A. Hrabowski, III, President of UMBC (the University of Maryland – Baltimore County) will be the opening keynote speaker at the 2019 Making Schools Work Conference.

Opening General Session – Keynote Speaker

3 p.m., Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Freeman A. Hrabowski, III – President, UMBC

Freeman A. Hrabowski, III - President of UMBC

A highly regarded STEM educator and civil rights champion, Hrabowski has helped UMBC build its reputation as a world-class public research university and one of the nation’s top producers of African-American graduates in STEM fields.

Hrabowski’s research focuses on STEM education with an emphasis on advancing the participation and performance of underrepresented minorities.

Hrabowski graduated from Hampton Institute and holds an M.A. in mathematics and a Ph.D. in higher education administration and statistics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Featured Speakers

Baruti Kafele

Baruti Kafele

Highly regarded urban educator Baruti Kafele has distinguished himself as a master teacher and a transformational school leader over the course of his career. As a middle and high school principal, Kafele led the turnaround of four different New Jersey urban schools, including Newark Tech, which rose from low performance to receiving national recognition three times as one of America’s best high schools by U.S. News and World Report.

Kafele has delivered thousands of keynotes, workshops and seminars and published extensively on professional development strategies for creating a positive school climate and culture, transforming the attitudes of at-risk student populations, motivating Black males to excel in the classroom and school leadership practices for inspiring school-wide excellence.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in Management Science/Marketing from Kean University and a master’s degree in Educational Administration from New Jersey City University.

Craig J. Boykin

Craig Boykin

Motivational speaker, author and mentor Craig Boykin offers an inspiring message of hope to educators and the at-risk students they serve. Boykin’s highly regarded speeches, seminars and workshops focus on helping educators engage, support and motivate young people who struggle with the effects of poverty and trauma.

Boykin’s personal story informs his work. Born into poverty to a teenage mother, Boykin continued the family cycle of dropping out of high school and began engaging in dangerous behaviors that ultimately led to jail. After his release, Boykin enrolled in the Job Corps, where he earned both his G.E.D. and a diploma. He then enlisted in the U.S. Army — an experience he credits with helping him develop the integrity and discipline he needed to pursue higher education.

Boykin earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Auburn University at Montgomery and master’s degrees in theology and criminal justice from Faulkner University. He is currently working on his doctorate in adult education and continuous learning.

Closing General Session – Keynote Speaker

10:15 a.m., Saturday, July 13, 2019 – Celebratory Brunch