Through our annual conference, you can gain access to timely, essential information on bullying, victimization and related issues that can be utilized in school and community settings.
Centering Diversity, Equity and Inclusion to Promote Positive School Culture and Student Well-Being
8 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET
Classics V Banquet Center
2425 Niagara Falls Blvd.
(or online for virtual attendees)
Psychological Well-being: Fostering Resilience Among Students of Color
This keynote address will focus on promoting resilience and well-being of diverse students in schools. School personnel will learn ways to create an educational context that embraces the needs of racially and culturally diverse students, enhances belonging, and engages students. Attendees will learn practical strategies for activating culturally grounded protective factors that can unlock the potential of historically disadvantaged students. Research results on effective strategies for culturally responsive school engagement will also be presented.
Attendees will be able to…
1. Recognize chronic stress in children and adolescents and its impact on belonging and school engagement
2. Analyze and mitigate threats to resilience and sense of belonging for youth of color in schools
3. Use identity affirming practices when supporting the needs of racialized and minoritized youth.
Janine M. Jones, PhD, NCSP
Professor of School Psychology and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
University of Washington
Perspectives on DEI in Schools and Community
Moderated by: Amanda Nickerson, PhD
Darren J. Brown-Hall, EdD
Superintendent of Schools
Williamsville Central School District
Dr. Darren J. Brown-Hall is the Superintendent of the Williamsville Central School District. He previously served as the Chief of Staff for the Buffalo Public Schools as well as Interim Superintendent and Associate Superintendent for Human Resources. In addition, Dr. Brown-Hall served as Principal of Buffalo Academy for Visual and Performing Arts, Community School #53 and as Assistant Principal at South Park high school. Dr. Brown-Hall began his career in education as a Mathematics teacher at Sweet Home High School.
Dr. Brown-Hall has over 20 years of experience in the field of Education and works every day to have a significant impact of the lives of students – realizing that every decision that is made at the senior executive level has an immediate effect on school buildings and the continued success of all children.
Realizing his love for education and the impact that he had on students, Dr. Brown-Hall returned to the field of education after working for two years at HSBC Bank as an eBusiness analyst once he finished HSBC’s management development program and working in London.
Dr. Brown-Hall received both a B.S. and M.S. degree in Mathematics Education from Buffalo State College, an M.B.A. from Canisius College with concentrations in Finance and Management Information Systems. Dr. Brown-Hall also completed his coursework for School and District level administrator certification at Canisius College, and received an advanced certificate in School Business and Human Resources management from the University at Buffalo (U.B.). Dr. Brown-Hall earned his Doctor of Education degree in Educational Administration from the University at Buffalo in 2018.
Beginning in the Fall of 2022, Dr. Brown-Hall will be an adjunct instructor in the Educational Administration program at Buffalo State College. He is an active member of several professional organizations including the Committee for the Identification and Development of Educational Leaders (CIDEL) and serves on several Boards including the Western New York Education Service Council, Compass House, and Gay and Lesbian Youth Services.
Lura Lunkenheimer, EdD
President and CEO
Dr. Lura is the President and CEO of Peaceful Schools, an educational consulting company serving the k-12 sector since 1997. With an Education Doctorate in Executive Leadership from St. John Fisher College, her studies have focused on social justice through the lens of school leadership, management of school culture and climate, development of tiered support systems and focused attention on student social emotional development. Dr. Lura earned her Masters’ Degree in Counseling & Psychological Services, from the State University of New York at Oswego, specializing in School Psychology. Her combined experiences provide a strong foundation, as she leads her team to implement pro-active and responsive systems of support for students in the k-12 setting. As an educator and staff development trainer Dr. Lura has expertise in youth development, social emotional learning, conflict resolution, restorative practices, and multi-tiered systems of support. Under her guidance Peaceful Schools has developed the capacity to support education initiatives focused on improving youth outcomes, reducing risk factors, and increasing protective factors.
In addition to her work with Peaceful Schools, Dr. Lura has been involved with numerous organizations to benefit the safety and well-being of children, including work as a volunteer for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the Central New York Ride for Missing Children, as a founding member of the Central New York Out of School Time Network, and as a regional representative for New York State Network for Youth Success. Most recently, Dr. Lura has been working with a small group of committed educators to launch the New York State Community ARCH, an organization committed to supporting schools connect with resources to support underserved populations.
Chantele M. Thompson, MPA, MEd
Chief Diversity Officer
Mayor Byron Brown's Office
City of Buffalo
Chantele Thompson, Chief Diversity Officer for the City of Buffalo, born and raised in Buffalo, New York, is a graduate of City Honors School. She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from Canisius College, as well as a Master of Public Administration and Master of Education, both from Regent University. Chantele is currently pursuing her doctorate in American and Africana Studies at the University of Buffalo.
Chantele has served the Buffalo and the Western New York communities throughout her entire career in service of marginalized and underrepresented groups in the areas of public health, nonprofit, mental health, and education. In addition to service to her local community, Chantele has served in Ghana, Ivory Coast, the Dominican Republic, and Haiti.
Sitting on several boards for local organizations, she currently serves on the board of directors for International Child Advancement. She is a steering committee member for the 5/14 Fund through the National Compassion Fund. She is a member of The Buffalo (NY) Chapter of the Links Incorporated, Buffalo Urban League Young Professionals, and Society for Diversity. As a Certified Diversity Professional, she received the Business First IDEA Award during her time with Child and Family Services as Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer.
Chantele is also co-founder of Black Girls Hike Buffalo and enjoys visiting museums, watching documentaries, and taking road trips with her son. She resides in Buffalo with her son Quentin and their puppy Storm.
Tonja M. Williams, EdD
Buffalo City School District
Dr. Tonja M. Williams was recently appointed as the Superintendent of the Buffalo Public Schools (BPS), which is the second largest school district in New York State. The Buffalo Board of Education voted unanimously on July 14, 2022 to appoint Dr. Williams to this position. In her position, she is responsible for all instruction, operational, and business functions of the District. Her priorities are focused on ensuring the Safety and Wellness and Educational Excellence for ALL students in the BPS district. Prior to her appointment, Dr. Williams served as an executive member of the Cabinet for Buffalo Public Schools and Interim Superintendent since March of 2022.
Superintendent Williams is a graduate of the Buffalo Public Schools. She has earned a Bachelor, Master’s, and a Doctoral Degree in Executive Leadership. Over her 32 year career, she has had the fortune to work in multiple: school building and district leadership roles, including: Building Principal, Director of Guidance and Counseling, Assistant Superintendent, and Associate Superintendent. In addition, she has taught at Canisius College as a Minority Teaching Fellow and as an Adjunct Professor at Bryant and Stratton.
Dr. Williams is the proud mother of two adult daughters, Desiree and Kelly Williams and one grandson, Cortland Boone. She exemplifies the product of hard work, perseverance, and commitment.
Her favorite quote by an unknown author is: “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and will be able to say, “I used EVERYTHING that you gave to me.”
She attributes all of her accomplishments to the support of a loving family and a strong, unyielding belief in God.
Registration is now closed for this event.
The University at Buffalo Counseling Services is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists, recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #SW-0504, and recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors #MHC-0129. The University at Buffalo Counseling Services maintains responsibility for this program and its content
NASP Professional Development approval!
The University at Buffalo’s School Psychology Program is approved by the National Association of School Psychologists to offer continuing professional development. The University at Buffalo maintains responsibility for this continuing professional development activity.