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Opening Plenary

  • Event
    • Apr 17, 2018

    Educación: Recovering and Revamping to Ensure Access

    Join us to learn how leaders, educators, and communities are rebuilding and revitalizing the educational pipeline by supporting educators and inspiring students from secondary and postsecondary educational systems. In this session Dr. Keleher and Dr. Ramírez Rivera will discuss methods of transforming an educational system, coping with the devastation caused by hurricanes, and aiding displaced students and families.

    • 8:45–9:45 a.m.


Dr. Julia Beatrice Keleher
Secretaria de Educación, Departamento de Educación de Puerto Rico

Julia Keleher is the Secretary of Education in Puerto Rico, a system of over 1,200 public schools serving more than 350,000 students. She has designed and implemented various large-scale change initiatives over the course of her 20 year career.

Julia was recognized as an emerging leader in government and was selected to participate in the Excellence in Government (2011) and Federal Executive Institute (2012) programs.

Julia earned her BA in Political Science and MSEd in Psychological Services from the University of Pennsylvania. She completed her MBA in 2013 and holds a doctoral degree in Education Leadership from the University of Delaware. In addition to her work with Keleher & Associates, Julia holds an adjunct appointment at The George Washington University’s Business School.

Rafael Ramírez-Rivera
Chancellor, Inter American University of Puerto Rico, Arecibo Campus

Dr. Ramírez-Rivera is the chancellor of Inter American University of Puerto Rico – Arecibo. Prior to his role as chancellor he served as a consultant to education institutions. He has served as the president of Huertas Junior College, Humacao Community College, and Columbia College. Dr. Ramírez-Rivera began his professional career as an assistant to the president for academic affairs at Caguas City College in 1984 and was then promoted to the position of academic dean.

Rafael Ramírez-Rivera earned a doctoral degree in educational administration in 2000, from Inter  American University of Puerto. He graduated from the University of Puerto Rico, where he obtained both a bachelor’s and master of arts in economics in 1982 and 1984.


James Montoya
Chief of Membership, Governance, and Global Higher Education Secretary of the Corporation, The College Board

In partnership with our members, Jim leads our membership, governance, and global higher education teams, managing large-scale, high-impact initiatives that promote equity and access for all students. In this role he directs efforts that engage, support, and mobilize our members—including events, conferences, and outreach campaigns. He oversees all matters relating to our governance structure and Board of Trustees. Additionally, he directs our work with higher education institutions and leaders across the globe. Working with constituents across K—12 and higher education, Jim and his team ensure that the College Board meets the needs of our diverse member institutions and the students they serve.

Jim has held a number of executive roles at the College Board, including senior vice president of higher education and international, vice president of the Western Region, vice president for higher education assessments, and vice president for higher education relationship development.

Before joining the College Board, Jim served in a number of leadership positions at Stanford University, including chief student affairs officer, vice provost for student affairs, dean of undergraduate admission, and dean of admission and financial aid. He remains a guest-lecturer at Stanford through the department of comparative studies in race and ethnicity. Earlier in his career, Jim served as the director of admission at Occidental College and Vassar College, respectively.

Jim is active on a number of boards and committees, including the board of directors of the Young Women’s Leadership Network in New York City, and the advisory board of the World Leading Schools Association.

Jim earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Stanford University.


  • Event
    • Apr 17, 2018

    The State of Latino Education

    Join us as we explore the state of Latino education with an esteemed group of panelists, who will discuss topics including college affordability, DACA, civil rights, educational attainment, and immigration from both the secondary and postsecondary viewpoints. The panel will discuss and debate the latest developments and the ways in which we can take collective action to clear a path for Latino students to own their future.

    • 1:30–2:30 p.m.


Catalina Cifuentes
Executive Director, College and Career Readiness, Riverside County Office of Education

Catalina Cifuentes is an educator who has demonstrated a gift for school counseling and student advocacy. She is the executive director of college and career readiness for Riverside County Office of Education and is also a California governor–appointed commissioner for the California Student Aid Commission. Catalina’s work on Riverside County’s FAFSA and California Dream Act submission initiative Race to Submit led to an increase of over 6,000 completed applications countywide in 2017 and is now the new California statewide race.

As a former Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) student and first-generation college graduate, she shows the impact that can be made when educators have high expectations for all students.

Jaime Guzman
Deputy Director, Chicago Youth Opportunity Programs, Obama Foundation; Vice President, Chicago Board of Education

Jaime Guzman is the Deputy Director, Chicago Youth Opportunity Programs at the Obama Foundation where he leads the strategy, design, and implementation of the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance’s initiatives in Chicago. The My Brother’s Keeper Alliance is focused on building safe and supportive communities for boys and young men of color where they feel valued and have clear pathways to opportunity. Since 2016, Jaime has also served on the Chicago Public Schools Board of Education, the governing board for the Chicago Public Schools, the third largest school district, and was elected Vice President, a position he continues to hold. Jaime holds a Bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College, and a Master’s degree in Education from Harvard University.

Felicia Ortiz
Board Member District 3, Nevada State Board of Education

Felicia Ortiz, a longtime Las Vegas resident and successful local businesswoman, has shown strong community leadership through her consistent involvement in nonprofit organizations. Felicia’s passion to help others is evidenced by her dedication to the various organizations she represents. She is currently an elected member of the Nevada State Board of Education, recently completed an appointment as Vice-Chair of the Community Implementation Council overseeing the reorganization of the Clark County School District, and now sits on the Community Budget Advisory Council for CCSD. Felicia is also a member of the New Mexico Highlands University Foundation Board, the Latino Leadership Council, and she also sits on various education committees and volunteers with other community organizations. She hopes to continue to be a role model and inspiration for the younger generation and help the community to thrive by growing her business and continuing her public service.

Dr. Lilliana Patricia Saldaña
Associate Professor, The University of Texas at San Antonio

Dr. Lilliana Patricia Saldaña is an Associate Professor of Mexican American Studies at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Saldaña’s research centers on Chicana/o teacher identity and consciousness, decolonial pedagogies, and struggles for epistemic justice in Chicana/o schools. She has published in nationally recognized journals and currently serves as Associate Editor for Chicana/Latina Studies, the premiere Chicana/Latina feminist studies journal in the nation and the flagship publication of Mujeres Activas en Letras y Cambio Social, an organization dedicated to creating bridges between academia and communities of color. As a first-generation scholar and child of immigrants, Saldaña is dedicated to creating equitable policies and practices for first-generation and immigrant students in higher education, and is actively involved in the movement for Mexican American Studies in Texas preK–12 public schools.


Dr. Rosita Ramirez
Director of Constituency Services, The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO)

Dr. Rosita Ramirez is the Director of Constituency Services for the Education Portfolio at the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund. NALEO Educational Fund is the leading nonprofit organization that facilitates full Latino participation in the American political process, from citizenship to public service. In this capacity, she is responsible for the overall design, implementation and development of professional development opportunities and programmatic efforts within the organization to promote the governance and policymaking capacity and success of Latino elected and appointed officials.

Prior to joining NALEO Educational Fund, Dr. Ramirez was a Project Specialist at the Center for Urban Education (CUE) at the University of Southern California. Dr. Ramirez also holds practitioner experience in her work within Student Affairs as an Academic Advisor in the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) at the University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB). She earned her Ph.D. from the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education at UCSB, obtaining an emphasis in Cultural Perspectives and Comparative Education. She holds a M.A. degree in Education.

Closing Plenary

  • Event
    • Apr 18, 2018

    Práctica: Essential Habits for Students

    Be inspired by a diverse group of students, who will share how their educational and personal aspirations are supported by practice. Learn how these students have embedded practice into their daily lives in a variety of ways, from the classroom to extracurricular activities, as well as faith and work situations, and the role that educators and institutions play in supporting practice.

    • 1–1:30 p.m.



Al Mijares
County Superintendent of Schools, Orange County Department of Education 

Mijares was appointed Orange County superintendent of schools in August 2012, and prior to that time he served as the vice president of the College Board, where he worked to expand the high school-to-university pipeline, in order to assure the college readiness and success for students.

He has served as Superintendent of the Santa Ana Unified School District, Bakersfield City School District, and Coachella Valley Unified School District. 

He earned his bachelor’s degree in child development and special education from California State University, Northridge. Mijares earned his master’s in social welfare from the University of California, Berkeley, and his PhD from the University of Southern California.


Jocelyne Asturias
College Student, California State University Long Beach

Jocelyne Asturias is a first-year student at California State University, Long Beach. She is an alumna of Marco Antonio Firebaugh High School in Lynwood, Calif. Jocelyne began her journey with the College Board when she enrolled in the Advanced Placement program. Through academics, the arts, and civic engagement, Jocelyne has grown to be a community leader. In July of 2017, she spoke on behalf of her school district at the Annual College Board Conference in Washington D.C., where Lynwood Unified was recognized as AP District of the Year. She is currently pursuing a double major in the social sciences and humanities, aspiring to return to her community as an educator.

Cameren Carter
College Student, Columbia University

Even though Cameren Carter was raised in the suburbs of Georgia, he decided to continue his education and return to his roots in the amazing state of New York, where he is currently a freshman at Columbia University. Cameren hasn’t chosen his major yet but he plans to study health administration with a business management concentration, working to select a career path where he will be able to exemplify his passion of helping others who don’t have the means to help themselves. In addition to committing to academic success, Cameren is an athlete who enjoys playing football for the Columbia University team.

Kendall Harvey
College Student, Columbia University

Kendall Harvey (Diné) is from Bloomfield, New Mexico. He is a junior at Columbia University where he majors in Ethnicity and Race Studies specializing in Native/Indigenous Studies with a concentration in Education. On campus, he is one of the Co-Presidents for the Native American Council, a member of the Multicultural Recruitment Committee, and active with the Ivy Native Council. He is interested in building community by and for Native students on Columbia’s campus—an environment that empowers and enriches every student. Kendall was one of four undergraduates who interned for the College Board in the summer of 2017 as part of the second cohort for the Native Intern Program. After graduation, he hopes to attend grad school to receive a PhD and ultimately pursue a career in education.

Valeria Quinones
College Student, University of Central Florida

Valeria was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico and attended Antilles High School located on the military base, Fort Buchanan. She eventually moved to attend the University of Puerto Rico – Rio Piedras Campus where she majored in Biology. This past semester she transferred to the University of Central Florida where she switched to a Biomedical Sciences major. She aspires to continue on to medical school after she graduates in May 2020 and plans on returning to her home island after obtaining her MD. Now attending a university where she feels like a minority for the first time, she always embraces her culture and makes it part of her daily life, whether it’s through food, spending time with friends, or speaking the language.

Closing Remarks

  • Event
    • Apr 18, 2018

    Conference Closing

    Join College Board President and CEO David Coleman as he highlights programs, partnerships, and recent initiatives the College Board has led to help Latino students and their families thrive. From opening up access to advanced coursework to removing barriers on the pathway to college, the College Board is doing everything in its power to clear the path for more Latino students to succeed.

    • 1:30–2 p.m.

David Coleman
President and Chief Executive Officer

David grew up in a family of educators and followed them into the field. He went to public school in New York City before enrolling at Yale University. At Yale, he taught reading to high school students from low-income families and started Branch, an innovative community service program for inner-city students in New Haven, Conn. Based on the success of Branch, David received a Rhodes Scholarship, which he used to study English literature at the University of Oxford and classical educational philosophy at the University of Cambridge in the U.K.

With a team of educators, David founded the Grow Network, an organization committed to making assessment results truly useful for teachers, parents and students. The Grow Network delivered breakthrough-quality reports for parents and teachers as well as individualized learning guides for students. McGraw-Hill acquired the Grow Network in 2005.

In 2007, David left McGraw-Hill and cofounded Student Achievement Partners, a nonprofit that assembles educators and researchers to design actions based on evidence to improve student outcomes. Student Achievement Partners played a leading role in developing the Common Core State Standards in math and literacy. David left Student Achievement Partners in the fall of 2012 to become president of the College Board.

David was named to the 2013 Time 100, the magazine’s annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world. He has been recognized as one of Time magazine’s “ 11 Education Activists for 2011” and was one of the NewSchools Venture Fund Change Agents of the Year for 2012. He is the proud father of two.