Global Leadership Forum (GLF) Annual Technology Summit

April 5, 2018

St. Louis, MO

At the 2018 Global Leadership Forum (GLF) Technology Summit: Educate to Action 2.0, attendees will discuss solutions to historical problems that contribute to disparities in Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Math (STEAM).

The 2018 Techonology Summit will bring together leaders from:
• Fortune 500 Companies
• Technology Startups
• Foundations and Nonprofits
• Education and Public Policy
• Local, State, and Federal Government

The Summit will feature:
• Keynote Panels on STEAM
• Plenary Sessions and Workshops
• Announcements from GLF and Partners on future commitments to developing multicultural talent.

Location: World Wide Technology Global Headquarters 


Category: Events

ITSMF and Fannie Mae Networking Event

April 19, 2018

Join ITSMF and partner Fannie Mae for an evening of networking and best practices sharing.

Hear about technologies and strategies that drive digital reinvention.  An expert panel will share how they are leveraging Design Thinking, Blockchain, Robotics Process Automation – AI, and Natural Language Processing, and applying new strategies to rethink and create a unique customer experience.

Then you’ll have the opportunity to network and mingle with ITSMF members and affiliates, Fannie Mae professionals and other external partners – learn more about the work that ITSMF and Fannie Mae are doing to chart a digital path to reinvention.

The Ritz Carlton – Tysons Corner, 1700 Tysons Blvd, McLean, VA 22102

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Category: Events

ITSMF 2nd Quarter 2018 Symposium & GIPD Graduation Ceremony

May 10-12, 2018

#ITSMFQ2 Symposium

The ITSMF 2nd Quarter Symposium will focus on leadership as it graduates three leadership academy cohorts from the Global Institute for Professional Development: Management Academy, EMERGE Academy and Executive Academy. This 2 1/2 day event will address how leaders are leveraging innovative technology, while exploring what tools leaders have to perform, and how they communicate and lead forward in a world that is moving beyond digital.


May 11, 2018

Leadership Academy Graduation Ceremony

Reception – 6:00 PM     Ceremony - 7:00     Networking Lounge – 9:30 PM

A key highlight of the Symposium will be the annual Leadership Academy Graduation Ceremony.  This event celebrates the completion of three yearlong programs focused on the development of the current and next generation of technology executives.  This effort is an integral part of ITSMF’s “Leaders Transforming Leaders” portfolio and is very much aligned with our vision:

By 2020, ITSMF will graduate 500 professionals through a series of rich, developmental, and career-advancing programs, and do so by being a second family to its members and partners.

The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner  •   1700 Tysons Boulevard, McLean, VA 22102

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Category: Events

NAF Next

July 8-11,2018

NAF Next is a dynamic professional development conference that brings together education, business, and community leaders to address some of the biggest challenges facing education and the economy.

Working together with members from across the NAF network, all participants will leave the conference inspired and equipped with practical and proven strategies to ensure all NAF students, teachers, and partners can Be Future Ready. Highlights include:

  • New information and ideas to further implement the NAF educational design
  • Cross-sector dialogue on innovative ways to engage the business sector
  • Opportunities for role-alike and peer-to-peer networking
  • Industry updates for academy themes
  • Regional and school planning time
  • Reception with cash bar and light complimentary food
  • Celebration dinner
  • Programming for business partners and advisory board members

Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, 2660 Woodley Road NW, Washington, DC 20008

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Category: Events

40th Annual BDPA Tech Conference & Career Fair

August 9-11, 2018

Details coming soon.  More information...

Category: Events

Wow! The BEYA STEM Conference 2018

I did not know what to expect from this year’s BEYA conference, held at the Marriott Wardman Park in Washington D. C. last month, with Global Competitiveness as its theme.  It had been more than a decade since I last attended.  When I entered the lobby of the hotel on Thursday afternoon I was completely surprised….very pleasantly so.

It was not just the number of people (the huge main lobby and registration area outside of the ballroom were both full), there were also a couple of other things that caught my attention.  First, the wide range of ages of the attendees was very much to my liking.  It speaks to the focus to bring professionals and students from a wide variety of STEM-related fields together.  Second, the diversity amongst the participants was also very nice to see.  Not just demographically was there diversity, but also the mix of military and civilians, corporate and non-profit, students and educators, entrepreneurs and community activists, lawmakers and pleased parents, employers and job seekers, were all represented.

Over the course of 3 days ~10,000 people came and went through the conference to receive one or more of the many awards presented throughout, attend the free career fair (Intel hired 70 people on site), network with generals and cadets or highly successful entrepreneurs and executives.  Some professionals were there for mentoring and on-site training where individuals earned continuing education units across numerous knowledge areas, there were education and collaboration opportunities for educators via the STEM Innovation Program where they interacted with industry leaders in best practice sharing, military and federal employees were there to network, receive honors and mentor 300+ high school students.  I even got to present the Global Leadership Forum to a large audience of attendees at the WWT customer appreciation event.

Of course there were parties!  There were parties for the young folks kick it and the grown folks to unwind, catch up and throw down on the dance floor.  The weekend culminated Saturday evening with the black tie gala where the 32nd Black Engineer of the Year award was presented to Alicia Boler Davis, Executive Vice President Global Manufacturing, Manufacturing Engineering and Labor Relations at General Motors.

Everyday there were fully packed agendas that filled the entire hotel and everything went off without a hitch.  When I left Sunday morning, I promised myself I would not wait another 10 years to attend the BEYA conference.  Next year it is at the same location, 7-9 Feb 2019.  Be there.

by Kendall Norris

Category: Press Release

ITSMF 1st Quarter 2018 Symposium & Technology Achievement Awards

The “ITS My Family” team put on another smashing symposium 8-10 Mar that was designed for innovators, pioneers, leaders and entrepreneurs alike seeking to drive business growth in an age of uncertainty.  The event had nationally-renowned speakers (one was a phenomenal 12 year-old who presented and demonstrated on cybersecurity, Reuben Paul), industry experts, entrepreneurial leaders, ITSMF members and students engaged in content rich sessions.  This year’s event was sponsored by NFL player, Kelvin Beachum, Jr.

The annual Technology Achievement Awards Ceremony is ITSMF’s marquee event that recognizes today’s innovators and tomorrow’s game changers. The ceremony serves as ITSMF’s largest organizational and foundation fundraiser.  The 14th annual ceremony honored 2018 award recipients: Mr. Christopher Gray, Ms. Yoli Chisholm and Dr. S. Keith Hargrove.

As the Founder & CEO of Scholly, Christopher Gray’s success in leveraging technology to bridge the gap for students to access scholarship opportunities has simply revolutionized the search process. Ultimately, nearly $100 million dollars has been awarded to students to further their educational endeavors. Technology impacts every aspect of our daily lives and his achievements in technology secured his recognition as a Beacon Award recipient.

Yoli Chisolm, Chief Marketing Officer, is being recognized as a senior-level executive who leverages innovation and technology to reshape an organization’s culture, business practices, products or services to effectively impact their position in the marketplace. Her achievements at Microsoft both domestically and internationally, and the principles in which she supports serve as a roadmap for aspiring and accomplished leaders.

Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, Dean of the College of Engineering, Technology, & Computer Science, Tennessee State University (TSU), is dedicated to the education and advancement of students in the STEM disciplines. His achievements at TSU have inspired and educated hundreds of students. He also serves as a Founding Board member of STEM Preparatory Academy in Nashville, TN, and serves on the advisory STEM boards of several local K-12 schools. These examples amplify Dr. Hargrove’s commitment to developing tomorrow’s STEM leaders.

“All three of these award recipients have demonstrated a commitment to advocating for and advancing diversity in the technology industry. As a role model, influencer and game changer, each embodies the work of ITSMF: to positively impact the STEM pipeline and increase the representation of black professionals in technology,” said Viola Thompson, President and CEO for ITSMF.

Category: Press Release

The Global Leadership Forum Invests in NPower, St. Louis

The Global Leadership Forum Expands Reach of NPower’s Tech Training Pipeline in St. Louis with $600K Contribution

The Global Leadership Forum (GLF) has announced that it will invest $600K in the nonprofit work training organization - NPower -  over a four-year period. This contribution provides NPower students in St. Louis and across the country with transformative, high-quality technology skills training and professional development.

This contribution supports and aids NPower’s five-year strategic goal of placing 15,000 military veterans, minorities and young adults from underserved communities in career-track tech jobs by the end of 2022.

This gift is part of the GLF strategic mission to create, nurture and evolve a coalition of organizations whose collective missions will drive increased numbers of diverse leaders in the talent pipeline that will demonstrate leadership in their communities and in the global marketplace. 

“We are excited to team with NPower to increase the number of diverse graduates and professionals who are prepared to meet the growing demand of a tech-qualified workforce,” says Kendall Norris, CEO of the GLF. “The Global Leadership Forum investment supports NPower’s goal of becoming the go-to leader for employers to recruit diverse, entry-level technology talent by 2022.”

GLF and NPower Create Pathways for Digital Careers in St. Louis

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in today’s economy, over 50 percent of all jobs require some degree of technical and digital skill, and this is expected to grow to 77 percent by 2020 in the U.S. Yet, the job market is not keeping pace.  And minorities remain underrepresented in tech. The U.S. Census Bureau reports that 2.2 percent and 4.7 percent of tech professionals were black and Hispanic respectively in 2015.

“In order for America to compete on a global scale, we need to train our workforce with the digital skills required for prosperous economic growth,” says Dave Steward, Founder of GLF and chairman and founder of World Wide Technology. “With NPower, students benefit from a curriculum that is designed by corporations and industry leaders. This education prepares them for work immediately upon graduation.”

Co-chairs and Advisory Board members, Linda Gooden and Larry Quinlan, echoed the sentiments and issued personal appeals to engage in the mission of the GLF and NPower.  Linda stated, “I believe it's time to focus on our youth! It's time to ensure they too have an opportunity to achieve the proverbial American Dream. I believe access and affordability to a quality education is foundational, because education is fundamental in changing one's economic paradigm.”  Larry also reiterated the importance of education with his statement, ”Education, opportunity and action are hallmark traits of highly successful people. The Global Leadership Forum is dedicated to ensuring that our youth and our professionals are equipped with the education, opportunity and network required to help them achieve whatever level of success they choose.

The GLF and NPower share a common goal of boosting a diverse, domestic technology workforce where all people regardless of ethnicity, gender or socio-economic background can succeed in the digital economy.

The CEO of NPower, Bertina Ceccarelli, says this GLF contribution will change the life trajectory for thousands of young adults, military veterans and minorities from communities that are frequently overlooked.

“This contribution from GLF will help expand the work-training programs NPower already has in place,” says Bertina Ceccarelli, CEO of NPower.” “Our tech-training, mentoring from business leaders, paid internships and career development workshops continually set NPower apart from all others. Our graduates also leave with industry-recognized certifications and private networking opportunities with our alumni.”

The next NPower tech training programs begin in St. Louis on January 22, 2018. Students can apply here.


About NPower

NPower is a national nonprofit, founded in 2002, that creates pathways to economic prosperity by launching IT careers for military veterans and young adults from underserved communities. They empower underrepresented talent to pursue tech futures by teaching the technical and professional skills demanded by the marketplace, and engaging corporations, volunteers and nonprofits in the long-term success of their students. NPower programs are free to qualified students. For more information, visit and follow NPower on FacebookTwitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.


About Global Leadership Forum (GLF)

Global Leadership Forum (GLF) promotes state-of-the-art programs that will produce workforce ready diverse talent from entry to C-level positions in the public and private sectors, and foster entrepreneurialism in technology. This is accomplished by jointly and strategically focusing on improving the graduation rates in the STEAM disciplines, enhancing the soft skills, fostering innovation and creative thought, developing leadership skills and mastering leading technology industry competencies. 

GLF achieves its strategic goals by:

  • Fostering core values that are critical for sustainable success -

        Commitment * Courage * Humility * Open-minded * Servant leadership * Visionary * Integrity * Trust

  • Facilitating collaboration between policymakers, educators non-profit and corporate entities and diverse leadership focused on creating transformative change for underserved communities
  • Engaging students in the classroom, through rigorous mentorship, by providing internships, scholarships, permanent employment and jointly creating business opportunities
  • Addressing educational/skills gaps and workforce needs of the public and private sectors through partnerships and alliances

For more information, visit  

Categories: Press Release, Events

GLF announces new CEO Kendall Norris

The Global Leadership Forum (GLF) is pleased to announce the appointment of Kendall Norris as its first Chief Executive Officer.  Kendall has worked with the GLF as a volunteer since its inception.  Most recently, Kendall was a global managing director with Deloitte in the Global Technology Services organization.  In addition to his 7 years with Deloitte, he previously held numerous technology leadership roles over a 20 year career with corporations, such as, TRW, EDS, USG and American Airlines.  Kendall will formally take the helm of GLF as CEO on 14 August 2017, working closely with Valerie Patton (Senior Advisor to the CEO).  He and his family will relocate to St. Louis, MO.

Categories: Press Release, Events

2017 National Academy Foundation Conference

The National Academy Foundation (NAF) honored the city of St. Louis and the Jennings, MO. school district with the President’s Award at the recent NAF Next 2017 annual conference held at the Gaylord resort Dallas, TX.  The award was accepted on behalf of the Jennings school district, St. Louis Chamber of Commerce and WWT by Dr. Art McCoy (Jennings school district superintendent and architect of the Jennings academies), Valerie Patton (SVP Community Development, St. Louis Chamber of Commerce and Executive Director, Global Leadership Forum), Ann Marr (VP Global Human Resources, WWT) and Juanita Logan (Director Corporate Development, WWT).


The NAF President’s Award is an annual honor presented to the school district(s) that demonstrates outstanding work in preparing students to be college and career ready upon graduation. The theme for this year’s conference wasBeFutureReady.  The award was presented to the St. Louis team by NAF president, J.D. Hoye.  Jennings was a natural selection for the award based on the district’s ability to leverage the rigorous learning platform already in place and fast track three NAF academies in the high school in three months and achieve a 100% high school graduation rate for the 2017 graduating class!  Under the NAF, schools partner with local businesses and establish career-oriented academy tracks for students.


Additionally, Art and Juanita participated in a panel discussion during one of the conference super sessions,Engage! High Quality Academy Experiences for All.  They were accompanied on the panel by Allison Schwabish (Academy Director, Northport Academy of Finance), Connor Nolan (Chair Northport Advisory Board and Alumni, Northport Academy of Finance), Dr. Erin Bibo (Deputy Chief, College & Career Programs, District of Columbia) and Lisa Wilson (Business, Finance & Marketing Education Associate, Delaware Dept. of Education.  The panel led an engaged audience in a discussion on education best practices and proven examples of how to achieve educational excellence amidst challenging circumstances.  Also in attendance to celebrate the award were members of the Jennings team:

  • Rhonda Key, Principal of Jennings Senior High
  • Miranda Ming, Assistant Principal of Jennings Senior High
  • Remy Bryant, Instructional Coach/Science Teacher/NAF Teacher Expert
  • David Fox, Math Teacher
  • Vanessa Meads, School Counselor
  • Christopher Sellers, Math Teacher/STEM Coach

The NAF, is a national network of education, business and community leaders who work together to ensure high-school students are meticulously prepared for college and their careers.  NAF academies focus on one of five career themes: finance, hospitality & tourism, information technology, engineering, and health sciences. During the 2016-17 school year more than 96,000 students attended 675 NAF academies across 36 states, including D.C. and the U.S. Virgin Islands. In 2016, NAF academies reported 96% of seniors graduated with 92% of graduates with post-secondary intentions. For more information, please visit: NAF - Be Future Ready

Category: Events