The OkACTE Diversity Action Symposium
November 10, 2023
9:00am - 4:00pm
Metro Technology Centers- Springlake Campus
The OkACTE Diversity Action Committee is excited to invite you to join us to attend the 2023 Diversity Symposium! We are thrilled to be expecting an excited audience for this conference. Take advantage of the chance to get inspired by some brilliant individuals.
This mini conference will bring together industry leaders and influencers to create a one-of-a-kind experience. With an exceptional group of speakers that will be covering topics on diversity, equity and inclusion. See the list of the confirmed speakers below.
Our keynote speaker, Crystal Carter will kick off the morning with "What to Do When You Make a Mistake". Attendees can prepare to select breakout sessions including topics such as: Autism Basics, Wellness & Well-being, Unlocking Diversity and Belonging, and more!
Lunch will be provided and included in registration.
This is a Business Casual event, jeans are permitted.
Registration ends November 8, 2023.
Additional information about the OkACTE Action Symposium will be emailed
to all registered participants.
2023 DIVERSITY SYMPOSIUM
2023 DIVERSITY SYMPOSIUM
Dr. Monique Miles Bruner has been teaching at the college level for over 20 years.
Dr. Bruner has served Rose State College in several areas: academic advisement, tenured political science faculty member, associate dean and interim dean of social sciences division and currently, she is the Executive Director, Diversity and Cultural Affairs. She also has been a long-time adjunct faculty member at Langston University/OKC and Oklahoma Panhandle State University. Dr. Bruner has received numerous awards and honors for her teaching and administration at the collegiate level. Dr. Bruner has dedicated endless amount of time and hard work to support the community. She is involved with several community organizations, specifically The Sharing Tree, The OKC Black Chamber, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Brandon Carey is a staff attorney for the Oklahoma State School Boards Association, focusing on education law, Title IX, and other civil rights issues related to education. Prior to joining OSSBA, he was the General Counsel for Oklahoma City Public Schools. He began his career in education law as a civil rights attorney for the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights.
Dr. Lindsey Churchill is Professor of History and the Director of the Women's Research Center and BGLTQ+ Student Center at the University of Central Oklahoma. In 2015 Dr. Churchill worked with the campus community to create the Women's Research Center and BGLTQ+ Student Center, which is unique to the state of Oklahoma. She is also the creator and Director of the Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program. UCO offers the only Sexuality Studies Bachelor's Degree in the state of Oklahoma. Her book Becoming the Tupamaros: Solidarity and Transnational Revolutionaries in Uruguay and the United States was published in February 2014. She currently has a contract with Texas Tech University press for a book on the history of the Queer Plains.
Dr. Twyler Earl, Associate Vice President for Student Success, Southern Nazarene University . Even as a young child in rural Louisiana, Twyler understood the power of education and experienced firsthand the effects of institutionalized biases and social injustice. Consequently, for the last 20+ years, Twyler has built a career in advocacy, fighting for educational equity, and community asset-building. She enjoys time spent advising students and equipping them with the tools necessary to advance on their educational journey and in many cases hoping to change the landscape of their family.
Kelly Falkner has been an educator since 2002, first as an English teacher in the public school system, then as an EAST Facilitator at Kiamichi Tech in Poteau, Oklahoma, and now as the Employment Facilitator at the same campus. She is the owner of Songbird Yoga and a 500-Hour Registered Yoga Teacher. Her philosophy of teaching has always been focused on student growth, empowerment, community building and self-reflection. Her goals in the classroom and in the workplace have been to inspire positive change and to create a space where students and colleagues feel supported and respected. She is dedicated to empowering others with the tools of mindfulness and self-awareness, normalizing self-care as a practice and facilitating opportunities for students to become confident, impactful community leaders.
Angelisa Henderson is the Executive Director of Freedom Healing Center which is a non-profit organization that provides direct services to human trafficking victims and survivors, and she has spent the last 5 years in advocacy and awareness for Human Trafficking. Her credentials are: SOAR (National Human Trafficking Training & Technical Assistance) Certified, Office for Victims in Crime Training Assistance, Certified National Victim Assistance Academy Graduate, and a Masters degree in Theology from Christian Life School of Theology. Freedom Healing Center has partnered with the DHS Blue Campaign to train local colleges, schools, convenience stores, hospitality and many other sectors in human trafficking awareness and has toolkits to provide to each industry.
Dr. Teara Flagg Lander currently serves as the Associate Vice President of Student Services at OSU-OKC. Formerly she served as an Assistant Vice President for Diversity Equity and Inclusion at the University of Oklahoma, where she specializes in DEI and leadership equity. While at OU, Dr. Lander was awarded the 2023 Visionary Award for her work creating dynamic programming like the IDEA Summit, a Motherscholar working group and her role in creating the Division of DEI. Currently, as an AVP she engages with faculty, staff and students to create a more inclusive environment while supporting students' academics and life goals. She oversees the onboarding of every student and provides leadership to ensure all students at OSU-OKC are seen, valued and know they belong. In addition to her university work, Dr. Lander is also the owner and principal Consultant of TFL Consulting wherein she specializes in DEI, Inclusive leadership and women in leadership.
Gerald Scott is Metro Technology Centers’ Nondiscrimination /Title IX Coordinator. In this role, Gerald is committed to hard work, and be devoted to all things Metro Tech, including community involvement. This Spring, Gerald participated and received a certificate from the Oklahoma Center for Community and Justice, Inclusive Leadership Institute (ILI). ILI provides Oklahoma professionals, with the tools needed to create inclusive workshops at their organization.
Gerald is one of the founding members of Metro Tech’s D.I.C.E. committee, (Diversity Inclusion Culture & Equality.) DICE is dedicated to provide resources and other opportunities, that help create a more inclusive and diverse community at Metro Technology Centers.
Gerald founded and is Executive Director of STAAR Foundation, a 501 c 3 faith-based nonprofit, that provides mentoring and practitioner delivered programs to justice-served groups.
Adam Soltani is the Executive Director for CAIR Oklahoma. Adam is a graduate from the University of Oklahoma holding a Master’s degree in Human Relations with a certificate in Organizational Diversity and Development. He has served the Muslim community in various capacities as a professional including serving as an assistant director for outreach at the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City, coordinating youth development programs at the Islamic Society of Edmond, and being one of the founding members of the Oklahoma Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. Soltani also serves as an Adjunct Instructor of Islamic Studies at Oklahoma State University teaching courses such as Introduction to World Religions, Islam Cultural Perspectives, Religions of the Middle East, and Religion, Race, and Social Justice.
Kodney Toney is the director of the Pervasive Parenting Center C.P.R.C., but most importantly he is a father and husband. He and his wife Jennifer have two sons, Konner and Kruz. Konner’s diagnosis of autism at the age of three has sparked him to create the Pervasive Parenting Center, a resource center to help families in eastern Oklahoma coping with disabilities. Since its incorporation in 2014, Toney has helped to train more than 3000 educators on autism behavior in the classroom and disability acceptance. In addition, more than 900 families have received assistance through training, screenings, social groups, peer mentoring, IEP advocacy, and system navigations.
His work with advocacy has led to his appointment on many boards and committees throughout the state and nation including several that impact head start and early childhood. Many of the board are interested in his input as both a father and someone who is a voice for the rural communities.
Theron Wahkinney is a citizen of the Comanche Nation of Oklahoma. He was born and raised in Lawton, OK, and currently resides in Oklahoma City, OK. Theron was previously a Teacher and Administrator at Sovereign Community School, an Indigenous-focused charter school in Northern OKC. He regularly works with Indigenous youth to address educational challenges and inequalities. He is passionate about Indigenous rights, the environment, tribal governance, and education. Theron is currently attending the University of Oklahoma – College of Law, obtaining his Master of Legal Studies in Indigenous Peoples Law. It is his hope to represent Tribal communities in various spaces, including local, state, and federal law. Theron is the Director of Operations at We The People Consulting (Oklahoma City, OK), providing strategic planning and support to small businesses, non-profits, tribal organizations, education institutions, and community members.
Chaz Wesley is widely recognized for his work in thanatology, consciousness counseling and trans-denominational chaplaincy. An inspirational speaker and noted writer published in 17 languages, Chaz is an award-winning multimedia producer and maintains a private practice in grief counseling, individual coaching and corporate consultancy. Connect with him at chazwesley.com.