Please note that this is a tentative list and more conference presenters will be added before the conference. Check this web page for updates.
Alexander (Sandy) R. Bilus, J.D. Partner
Saul, Ewing, Arnstein and Lehr
Alexander (Sandy) R. Bilus assists clients who are facing complex litigation or who need legal advice on issues involving cybersecurity and data privacy, particularly in the higher education industry. As a core member of the firm’s Higher Education Practice, Sandy understands the concerns that colleges and universities face when crises unfold on campus. His experience includes helping higher education institutions address legal issues involving campus unrest and protests, sexual abuse, First Amendment/free speech issues, data privacy and cybersecurity issues, hazing, and criminal acts committed by employees.
Karl F. Brevitz, J.D. Consultant
Karl F. Brevitz Consulting
Karl F. Brevitz provides consulting services to institutions of higher education. From June 1999 – August 2013 he served as Director of Legal Resources for NACUA in Washington, DC where he managed the legal resources and programming of the Association and served as a staff liaison to the Annual Program, Legal Education and Web Page Legal Resources Committees, as well as to the Journal of College and University Law and NACUANOTES Editorial Boards. He serves on the Advisory Board for the annual University of Vermont Legal Issues in Higher Education Conference. Prior to joining NACUA he served for 12 years as Director of Education at the Institute of Continuing Legal Education at the University of Michigan Law School, and for six years as college attorney for Ferris State College, a public institution in Michigan. He received his B.A. summa cum laude from Adrian College and J.D. magna cum laude from Wayne State University Law School. Since 2017 he has also served as co-leader of the Research and Intellectual Property planning group for the NACUA Annual Program Committee. He organized and moderated a session on “Foreign Academic Influence and Espionage and University Research and Intellectual Property” at the 2019 NACUA Annual Conference.
Charles Carletta, J.D. Chief Operating Officer
College of Saint Rose
Charles F. Carletta, Sr. has been admitted to the Supreme Court of the United States, the United States Court of Military Appeals and all local federal and New York State courts.
Upon graduation from law school in 1969, he served as a Deputy Staff Judge Advocate in the United States Air Force. In addition to criminal prosecution and defense litigation, he became a primary civil rights officer for the Air Force and participated in the formulation of the United States Armed Forces’ first inter-active training program on civil rights.
After military service, Mr. Carletta joined a law firm in the Capital Region of New York where he practiced law for twenty-seven years, both as a litigator and a practitioner specializing in the laws regarding banking, commercial real estate, hospitals, news media, and higher education.
During this time, he served as outside general counsel to several private and public, two and four-year institutions of higher education. He also published a chapter in a book on legal issues in higher education as well as over fifty papers or articles regarding education law and practice. He currently serves on two national professional boards centered on the interrelationship of law and higher education including as a founding director for the University of Vermont’s annual conference on Legal Issues in Higher Education. He enjoys presenting regularly as an adjunct professor or guest lecturer at various colleges.
In 2000, Mr. Carletta became the first Secretary of the Institute and General Counsel for Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, a position he maintained for sixteen years. During this time, he served for several years as one of twelve nationally chosen attorneys to advise the General Counsel of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).
Upon retirement from RPI, Mr. Carletta assumed the role of Senior Associate Counsel at the Albany Medical Center. During leaves of absence from that position, he has served as the Vice-President and Chief of Staff at Siena College and currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer at The College of Saint Rose.
During his career, Mr. Carletta has served as a trustee on two hospital boards and the board of a medical college. He has also served as a director on the boards of two captive insurance companies as well as several not-for-profit or charitable organizations.
Mr. Carletta is the proud father of four children and grandfather of four grandchildren.
Ainsley Carry, Ed.D. Vice President for Students
University of British Columbia
Ainsley Carry is a three-time graduate of the University of Florida earning his doctorate in Higher Education Administration. He also earned a Masters of Business Administration from Auburn University and Masters in Study of Law from the University of Southern California. He is a respected higher education administrator with more than two decades of service and leadership at Southern Methodist University, the University of Arkansas, Temple University, Auburn University, the University of Florida, and the University of Southern California. Ainsley currently serves as the Vice President for Students at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He is the author of Executive Transitions in Student Affairs: A Guide to Getting Started as the Vice President. In his new book — Washington Next? Disputed Monuments, Symbols, and Honorees on Campus — Ainsley examines the rapid rise of disputed memorials on campus between 2015 and 2020. The book includes an analysis of twenty-five disputed memorial cases on campus and essential themes and strategies for negotiating these disputes.
Eva Chatterjee-Sutton, B.S.,M.A. Vice President of Student Life & Dean of Students
Washington and Jefferson
Eva Chatterjee-Sutton joined W&J as the Vice President of Student Life & Dean of Students in July of 2013. Dean Eva earned her BS in Sociology and Political Science at Kansas State University (Manhattan, KS) and her MA in College Student Development with a minor in Organizational Change & Development at the University of Iowa (Iowa City, IA). Upon completion of her graduate work, Dean Eva assumed a position at the University of Maryland – Baltimore County (UMBC) where she held several positions within the Office of Residence Life. In the summer of 1997, Dean Eva joined Bennington College, first as the Associate Director of Student Life and later transitioned to the Dean of Students at Bennington, a role she held for 7 years.
In her tenure at Bennington College, Dean Eva’s commitment to creating a student experience with a strong foundation in student development theory, a deep commitment to community development, and a dedication to creating support structures to provide students the opportunity to realize their full potential was realized. Dean Eva grew the student affairs operation from having a limited focus to an operation that encompassed a broad range of supports and services for students. In addition to the work at Bennington, Dean Eva grew the connection of Bennington College to the neighboring communities through partnerships and programs with community agencies and her own commitment to education and community development.
In 2006, Dean Eva was elected to the School Board of North Bennington, VT and served in that capacity until 2011 when she transitioned to leading the Board of Directors of The Village School of North Bennington. The Village School of North Bennington is only the second school in the nation to transition from a public school or an independent school. The process of this change was led by Dean Eva with support from a committee of citizens form the North Bennington community. This work, 5 years in duration, encompassed a highly political and community based process which received state and national attention both during and at is successful conclusion.
Now at W&J, Dean Eva has continued her commitment to creating a holistic and robust student experience. To date this has been marked in part by creating a team in the Division of Student Life whose work resonates with the values of student and community development. She is working to create connections and collaborations across the campus to assist in this effort. Dean Eva serves as a member of President John Knapp’s cabinet and leads a division of over 80 dedicated staff members who are deeply committed to the mission of W&J. In addition, Dean Eva serves on several non-profit boards. She resides in Washington, PA with her husband, two daughters and several rescued animals.
Kristie Damell, Ed.D. Associate Dean of Students and Title IX Coordinator
New Jersey Institute of Technology
Dr. Kristie Damell is currently the Associate Dean of Students and Title IX Coordinator at New Jersey Institute of Technology; she has extensive and diverse experience in higher education as a Student Affairs scholar and practitioner for over fifteen years. Prior to her time at NJIT, she served over 10 years at Stevens Institute of Technology (NJ), most recently as the Associate Dean of Students and Title IX Coordinator, and previously as Associate Director of Student Life among other positions. She is also an adjunct professor at Montclair State University’s graduate program for higher education (NJ) and presents regularly at conferences. Most recently, she presented “Doctorates and Diapers: Women’s journeys navigating the doctoral degree with children,” and, “Changing our Campus Culture by Speaking Up: A collaborative approach to bystander intervention.” She received her EdD from Fordham University in Educational Leadership, MA in Higher and Postsecondary Education from Columbia University, and her BS in Community Health Education from East Stroudsburg University. Kristie is the proud mother of two children and moonlights as a singer in a wedding band as well as has a background in vocal performance.
Gary Derr, M.A., Ed.D. Vice President for Operations and Public Safety
University of Vermont
Gary L. Derr began working in the executive offices at the University of Vermont in July 2000. During that period, he served in a variety of roles, including Executive Assistant to the Provost and Senior Vice President and Director of Operations/Chief of Staff to the President and Provost, before being named to his current position as Vice President for Operations and Public Safety. In his current role he oversee Risk Management and Safety, Police Services, University Events Services, Emergency Management, and CatCard Service Center. Before coming to UVM he served as Dean of Students at Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vermont (1990–2000), Assistant Dean of Students at the University of Hartford (1984–1990), and Director of Housing at Alliance College (1980–1984).
Mr. Derr earned his Doctorate of Education from the University of Vermont in 2002, Master of Arts in Higher Education Administration from the University of Connecticut in 1984, and Bachelor of Arts in Religion from Thiel College in 1980. The topic of his doctoral research was how spirituality shapes presidential leadership.
Megan Farrell, J.D., MBA Advisor and Consultant
Megan C. Farrell is an advisor and consultant to educational institution clients with a focus on Title IX compliance. Ms. Farrell’s approach focuses on providing practical, reasoned advice to universities, colleges, and schools who are implementing change and bringing her legal, business, and education expertise to unique challenges.
Ms. Farrell’s background includes working as Title IX Coordinator at Palo Alto Unified School District and Notre Dame of Maryland University. She has also served as in-house counsel, faculty member, and graduate program director. Aside from these in-house positions, Ms. Farrell also has provided risk and litigation management counseling to institutions, developed internal policies and procedures for education clients, and designed customized training programs for schools across the country.
Ms. Farrell holds a Bachelors of Arts degree from Loyola University, a Juris Doctor from Widener University, and a Masters of Business degree from University of Maryland. She also holds certificates in Diversity and Inclusion from Cornell University and Mentor Coaching through the Coach Training Alliance, an International Coach Federation (ICF) program.
Janet Elie Faulkner, J.D. Founding Attorney
Janet Elie Faulkner was Emerson College’s first general counsel and also was in-house counsel for Northeastern University for over ten years. Janet conducts independent investigations of Title IX, employment, faculty, discrimination, disability, and athletics matters. She recently co-authored a peer-reviewed article on accommodating disabilities in the Title IX process. Janet has held leadership roles in the Boston Bar Association’s College and University section, is a member of the NACUANOTES Editorial Board, and has developed training modules for the Student Conduct Institute. She was a co-author of SCI’s Joint Guidance on the 2020 Title IX regulations, including the article on the intersection between Title IX and Title VII. Janet currently is serving as interim Employment Counsel for Cengage Learning. She also teaches Education Law and Public Policy at Boston College.
Janet established Faulkner Legal in 2014. Faulkner Legal is a boutique firm with a focus on the areas of employment, education, disability & privacy law. Faulkner Legal provides legal advice to colleges and universities, non-profits, education vendors, & small businesses. Faulkner Legal is a member of the Partner Network of the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine’s Action Collaborative on Preventing Sexual Harassment in Higher Education.
Tom Fontana, M.A. Alchohol, Cannabis, and Other Drugs Initiatives Manager
University of Vermont
Tom Fontana (he/him) is the Alcohol, Cannabis, and Other Drugs Initiatives Manager for the University of Vermont. He coordinates prevention, education, and the brief intervention model BASICS, which is designed to assist students in exploring their relationship with substance use in a shame-free environment. This provides the opportunity to talk with hundreds of students each year individually. Additionally, Tom meets with student groups, including FSL and Athletics. Tom is a member of UVM’s CHIP team, which helps steer AOD policy and best practice.
Tom is author of the ‘T-Break Guide’ a resource to help people take a tolerance break from cannabis. He is Principal Investigator of a research study seeking to gage the effectiveness of cannabis harm reduction resources.
Zach Gall, M.A. Prevention Education Specialist and Staff Therapist
The College of New Jersey
Zach serves as Prevention Education Specialist and Staff Therapist at The College of New Jersey. Under the umbrella of Counseling and Prevention Services, he provides specialized care to survivors of interpersonal violence and supervises efforts for the prevention of the same. In collaboration with TCNJ’s Office of Title IX and Sexual Misconduct, Zach co-authored TCNJ’s workshops for respondent education and has facilitated that process since its inception. Zach also teaches courses in both Gender & Sexuality Studies and Psychology. Zach hold an MA in Mental Health Counseling from TCNJ and licensure as a Professional Counselor.
Jason Garvey, J.D., Ph.D.
Dr. Jason C. Garvey (he/him/his) is the Friedman-Hipps Green and Gold Professor of Education and Program Coordinator for the Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration program at the University of Vermont. His research examines student success primarily using quantitative methods, with particular attention to uplifting queer and trans collegians. Jay’s approach to scholarship and professional practice is rooted in positive affect and love, recognizing the grounding and uplifting role of emotions and relationships in higher education. Prior to his faculty appointment, Jay worked in student services across a variety of functional areas, including academic advising, LGBTQ student involvement and advocacy, undergraduate research, and student affairs assessment.
Seth Gilbertson, J.D. Associate Counsel
State University of New York, Upstate Medical University
Seth F. Gilbertson is an Associate Counsel for the State University of New York’s Office of University Counsel. In addition to his general responsibilities as labor and student affairs counsel for SUNY’s six Western New York campuses (“Westcam”), Mr. Gilbertson specializes in records management, applied learning, and international programs issues for SUNY on a system-wide basis. Before joining SUNY, Mr. Gilbertson was an appellate court attorney at the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Judicial Department. In a previous life, he was the Mountain Manager of Apple Mountain Resort in Freeland, Michigan. He earned his B.A. from Saginaw Valley State University and his J.D. from Albany Law School, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Albany Law Review. He is active in both the New York State Bar Association and the National Association of College and University Attorneys.
Howard Gillman, Ph.D. Chancellor
University of California
Howard Gillman became the sixth chancellor of the University of California, Irvine in September 2014. He is an award-winning scholar and teacher with an expertise in the American Constitution and the Supreme Court.
Under Chancellor Gillman’s leadership, UCI has accelerated its ascendency among globally preeminent research universities. It has been consistently ranked in the top 10 of all public universities in the nation by U.S. News & World Report; received special recognition for advancing student success and promoting social mobility; fostered regional economic development; and expanded its capacity to improve lives in our region and around the world.
A native of Southern California, Chancellor Gillman was a first-generation college student, earning bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in political science at UCLA
Leslie M. Gomez, J.D. Vice Chair
Institutional Response Group
Leslie is the Vice Chair of the Institutional Response Group at Cozen O’Connor. She is a former career child abuse and sexual assault prosecutor with the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office.
Leslie focuses her practice on the institutional response to sexual and gender-based harassment and violence, child abuse, and other forms of harassment, discrimination, and criminal conduct. She assists institutions in designing effective institutional responses that integrate the complex federal and state regulatory framework with the unique dynamics of trauma and the impacts of interpersonal violence on individuals and communities.
Leslie helps institutions develop comprehensive policies, procedures, systems, and training programs in compliance with Title IX, the Clery Act, as amended by VAWA, and state and local laws. Leslie conducts policy audits, advises on Title IX informal resolution, investigations, adjudication and appeals, conducts investigations, and assists schools in meeting federal compliance obligations and responding to investigations by OCR and the Clery Compliance Division.
Leslie is also nationally recognized for her knowledge and experience related to child sexual and physical abuse, child protection, and child protective services laws.
Leslie received her undergraduate degree from Brown University, magna cum laude, and her law degree from Yale Law School.
Joshua Grubman Associate General Counsel
Rhode Island School of Design
Joshua Grubman is Associate General Counsel at Rhode Island School of Design, focusing on regulatory compliance, policy development, employment, and operational matters. Prior to his role at RISD, he served as General Counsel for Mount Ida College. Joshua counseled Mount Ida through the closure process in 2018, handling the transfer of students, termination of faculty and staff, program closures and adoptions, accreditation, closed-school discharge liability, asset purchase agreement, final audit, modification and transfer of restricted funds, defense of trustees, executives, and senior management in litigation and investigations, wind down operations, and other issues. He continues to share his experience in this area with other institutions in transition. His practice prior to in-house positions included outside counsel for post-secondary education, regulatory compliance, and government relations.
Steven J. Healy Chief Executive Officer
Steven J. Healy is Chief Executive Officer of Margolis Healy and is a nationally recognized expert on campus public safety, Title IX and the Clery Act. From 2003 through 2009, he was the Director of Public Safety and Chief of Police at Princeton University where he led the University’s safety, security, and law enforcement programs and is credited with enhancing and expanding the department’s overall professionalism and capabilities through improved leadership, additional personnel, significant strategic investments in training, updated equipment, new computer systems and a relocation to a technologically advanced facility. Prior to Princeton, Steven was the Chief of Police at Wellesley College in Wellesley, MA. He also served as Director of Operations at the Department of Public Safety at Syracuse University for five years.
A past president of the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators (IACLEA), Steven served as a member of the association’s Government Relations Committee for 13 years, and was the IACLEA Regional Director for the North Atlantic Region during his tenure at Wellesley. As president of IACLEA, Steven contributed significantly to the national dialogue about campus safety and security in the aftermath of the tragic rampage-shooting incident at Virginia Tech University in April 2007. As the Immediate Past President of IACLEA, Steven led an IACLEA special panel reviewing post-Virginia Tech challenges and concerns for the higher education community. He also served as IACLEA’s representative to the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO) “National Campus Safety and Security Project” and to EDUCAUSE’s “The IT Role in Campus Safety” project. He was a featured speaker and panelist with Dr. Gary Margolis, co-founder of Margolis Healy, on emergency response and recovery at the NACUBO annual meeting. In 2009, he was named a Fellow at the Department of Education’s Higher Education Center for Alcohol, Other Drug Abuse and Violence Prevention. Steven is also a past president of the Massachusetts Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators.
Steven serves as a subject-matter expert for the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice. He testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs on the topic of “Security on America’s Campuses” and testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Education and Labor on the topic of “Best Practices for Keeping America’s Campuses Safe.” At the request of the U.S. Department of Education, he was asked to serve on a special working group developing emergency management planning guidelines for the higher education community.
Steven has been a featured presenter at several ACE Annual Meetings, addressing various issues related to campus safety, security, emergency management, and regulatory compliance. He served as chairperson of the National Center for Campus Public Safety Advisory Board and was responsible for leading the development of a strategic plan and framework for the National Center for Campus Public Safety. Steven is currently the Chair of the Advisory Board for the National Center for Campus Public Safety, which was funded by Congress with bipartisan support in 2013.
Steven is a frequently requested and nationally recognized consultant, presenter, and trainer who speaks on issues related to campus safety and security. He has appeared on numerous national news programs and talk shows including CNN, ABC Nightly News, CBS, FOX, MSNBC, and National Public Radio. Steven was named one of the “Top 25 Most Influential People in the Security Industry” by Security Magazine.
Steven is a 1984 graduate of the United States Air Force Academy. He spent 10 years on active duty with the United States Air Force as Security Police Officer. From 1992 to 1995, He was the Operations Officer for the 95th Security Police Squadron at Edwards Air Force Base.
James Hudziak, M.D. Director of the Vermont Center for Children, Youth, and Families
UVM Medical Center and UVM’s College of Medicine
Dr. James Hudziak is the Director of the Vermont Center for Children, Youth, and Families at the UVM Medical Center and UVM’s College of Medicine. He is a Professor of Psychiatry, Medicine, Pediatrics, and Communication Sciences & Disorders, and the Thomas M Achenbach Chair of Developmental Psychopathology, holding Professorships at Washington University, Dartmouth, and Erasmus MC in Rotterdam. He is known internationally for his work in genetic and environmental influences on developmental psychopathology and wellness, and for his work in developmental neuroimaging of adversity and wellness outcomes. Dr. Hudziak has created clinical and health strategies aimed at developing healthy brains, so that healthy bodies will follow. He is the creator of the Vermont Family Based Approach, an innovative health promotion and illness prevention model for children and families. He created the innovative Wellness Environment (WE) program at UVM which has garnered national and international attention for the approach of incentivizing young adults to pursue healthy lifestyle choices. He has been identified as being a member of the top 1% of Doctors in the United States, has over 240 peer-reviewed publications, and is considered a leader in the field of promoting brain health as a strategy to deal with life’s stresses.
Chelsea L. Jacoby, Ed.D. Director for Title IX Compliance & Sexual Misconduct and Title IX Coordinator
The College of New Jersey
Dr. Chelsea Jacoby serves as the Director for Title IX Compliance & Sexual Misconduct and Title IX Coordinator for The College of New Jersey (TCNJ). Being
responsible for overseeing the College’s compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and other laws and rules relating to discrimination and sex or gender-based violence, Chelsea receives and monitors all reports of sexual harassment, misconduct, and discrimination at the College, and oversees the implementation of supportive measures, the receipt of Formal Complaints, and the handling of both formal grievance processes and informal resolution options grounded in restorative practices. Notably, Chelsea has maximized her professional experience and educational background to foster the informal resolution option by intentionally creating learning environments designed to encourage self-reflection, skill-building, and the acknowledgement of accountability amongst Respondents, and the reparation of harm for Reporters. Additionally, Chelsea coordinates the development of comprehensive training, education, and awareness programs around responding to sexual violence; monitors developments in the law/best practices to inform changes to applicable policies/procedures; and provides leadership in all areas implicated by Title IX and other related laws to both TCNJ in her current role, and to other institutions, as a consultant with Title IX Consult, L.L.C.
SUNYJim is an Associate Counsel with the SUNY Office of General Counsel, primarily focusing on labor relations and employment matters, student affairs, and athletics. Jim was previously Associate Vice President for Human Resources and Director of Employee Relations at the University at Buffalo. His prior experience includes serving the City of Buffalo as its Director of Labor Relations; as an Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of Syracuse; and a two-year federal court clerkship in the Northern District of New York, in Syracuse. He earned a B.A. in Communication from UB, and received his J.D. from UB Law School.
Adam Jussel, J.D. Dean of Students
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Adam serves as the Dean of Students for University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. Before UWM, Adam was the Assistant Dean of Students and Director of Student Conduct/Community Standards at Washington State University. He previously represented WSU as an assistant attorney general, and has a certification in higher education law and policy from NASPA Adam served as a faculty member for the Foundations Track at the 2018 Gehring Academy, and has been fortunate to speak at a number of conferences about how to better serve students, including the National Conference on Law and Higher Education, University of Vermont Legal Issues Conference, the Higher Education Alcohol Other Drug & Wellness Summit, and the National Conference on Campus Sexual Assault and Violence. Adam was also a member of NASPA’s Culture of Respect CORE Constructs Advisory Board, advising NASPA on creating best practices regarding sex and gender based violence. Adam received his juris doctorate from Seattle University and his Bachelor of Science in Business Information Systems from California Lutheran University. He is a member of the Washington bar, and soon to be Wisconsin.
Jason Katte, M.A., LPC Assistant Director of University Counseling Services
University of Wisconsin
Jason serves as the Assistant Director of University Counseling Services for University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. In his role, Jason is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations and clinical oversight of the counseling center as well as providing direct therapeutic and outreach services to students. Prior to his role at UWM, Jason was the Director of Outpatient Services for Volunteers of America – Ohio and Indiana where he was responsible for the oversight and management of their outpatient behavioral health services. Jason is credentialed in Wisconsin as a licensed professional counselor and received his master’s in clinical psychology from the University of Indianapolis.
Sara Kelly, M.Ed., Ph.D. Assistant Vice President for Enrollment Management
Dr. Sara Kelly is the Assistant Vice President for Enrollment Management at SUNY Brockport. Overseeing recruitment and retention efforts, Dr. Kelly has the following areas within her portfolio: Residential Life/Learning Communities, Academic Success Center (Orientation, Student Retention, Advising, Transition Programs, Tutoring, Student Accessibility), Career Services, the Educational Opportunity Program, Registration & Records, Financial Aid and Assessment. Prior to this role, she served as the Associate Dean of Students.
Since March 2020, Dr. Kelly has served on the college’s Emergency Operation Center leadership team, which includes development and implementation of pandemic-related operations, policy, and programming.
Dr. Kelly earned a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish: Multicultural Studies & Bilingual Education, and a Master’s Degree in Education: Curriculum Specialist with a Concentration in Students with Disabilities from SUNY Brockport. Dr. Kelly also earned a Master’s Degree in Higher Education Administration, as well as her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from the University at Buffalo.
Nicholas F. Laino, M.S. Senior Vice President for Administration & Finance
Nicholas F. Laino is currently serving as the Senior Vice President for Administration and Finance at Herkimer County Community College in Herkimer, NY. He served as Interim President for twelve months in 2014-2015 and as Officer in Charge for four months in 2014 and six months in 2008. He is Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Central New York Regional Transportation Authority in Syracuse, NY and Chairman of the Audit and Finance Committee. He also serves as a Community Director for the Bank of Cooperstown in Cooperstown, NY, and an Advisory Board Member of HNP Capital in Pittsford/Rochester, NY and as an Adjunct Lecturer at Utica College of Syracuse University, SUNY Institute of Technology at Utica/Rome, Cazenovia College and an Adjunct Associate Professor at Herkimer County Community College. Mr. Laino also served as a Former Treasurer for the Utica City School District and Former Councilman for the City of Utica – elected at age 23.
Mr. Laino received a Master of Science in Business Management and a Bachelor of Business Administration in Business and Public Management from SUNY Institute of Technology at Utica/Rome and an Associate in Applied Science in Business Administration from SUNY College of Technology at Delhi.
Mr. Laino’s Professional Affiliations include President for the New York State Community College Business Officers Association where he formerly served as the Vice President and Chairman of the Education Committee, Evaluator for Middle States Commission on Higher Education, former Member of the SUNY Shared Services Steering Committee, and former Member of the SUNY Strategic Planning “Group of 200.”
Tamla Lewis, J.D., M.Ed. Associate General Counsel
The Pennsylvania State University
Tamla J. Lewis is Associate General Counsel at The Pennsylvania State University. Prior to joining the Office of General Counsel, Tamla served for three years as Associate Dean for Administration, Compliance and Special Initiatives for the University of Arkansas School of Law. Prior to her Law School tenure, Tamla served for ten years as an Associate General Counsel with the Office of General Counsel for the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, where she was lead attorney on matters involving Title IX, Student Affairs, and campus safety, including Clery compliance. She conducted extensive trainings on student conduct and student records, contract compliance, and sexual assault awareness and prevention.
Tamla received a J.D. from the University of Arkansas School of Law and an M.Ed. in Workforce Development Education from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. She is a Summa Cum Laude graduate of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, with a B.A. in English. During law school, Tamla served for two years as a Law Clerk in the University of Arkansas General Counsel’s office. Immediately after law school, she practiced as an Associate with the Rogers, Arkansas office of Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard, where her practice focused on civil litigation, including employment and business litigation. Prior to law school, Tamla was employed as a paralegal by the Jefferson County, Arkansas, Public Defender’s Office and the Cross, Kearney & McKissic law firm in Pine Bluff, Arkansas.
Steven J. McDonald, J.D. Retired Higher Education Counsel
Steven J. McDonald served as general counsel of Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) from 2002 to 2021. In that role, he was the college’s primary legal counsel and managed its legal affairs, providing legal services to trustees, administrators, faculty, staff, student leaders, and affiliated entities in connection with their activities on behalf of the institution.
For the decade before he came to RISD, Steve served as associate legal counsel at The Ohio State University. He began his legal career at Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue, where among other things he successfully represented CompuServe in Cubby v. CompuServe, the first online libel case. He also taught at Ohio State’s College of Law and at Capital University Law School.
An active participant in the higher education legal community, Steve is a past member of the Board of Directors of the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA), the editor of the NACUA publication The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act: A Legal Compendium, one of the developers of its NACUANOTES legal information service, and a regular leader or member of its committees.
Steve also presents and writes frequently on issues of higher education law. He has spoken at ACE, AGB, CUPA-HR, EDUCAUSE, IAPP, ICPL, NACUA, NACUBO, NASAD, NASPA, NERCOMP, URMIA, and United Educators programs, among others, as well as at the Stetson, University of Vermont, and Valencia higher education legal issues conferences. In addition, his articles have appeared in the Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Education, and other publications. He served on the legal advisory boards for the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries, the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts, and the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Open Educational Resources. At RISD, he often lectures on intellectual property law and artistic freedom.
In 2007, NACUA named Steve a Fellow in recognition of his “extensive scholarship in higher education law over an extended period of time.” In 2016, NACUA granted him its Distinguished Service Award for “extraordinary service both to NACUA and to institutions of higher learning over an extended period of time.”
Steve received his AB in political science from Duke University and his JD from the Yale Law School. In State, ex rel. Thomas v. The Ohio State University, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled that he really is a lawyer.
Thomas Mercurio, J.D. Student Conduct Appeals Officer
University of Vermont
Thomas Mercurio served in the General Counsel’s Office at the University of Vermont for twenty-eight years before retiring in early 2017. He now serves part-time as an appeal officer in the Division of Student Affairs at UVM. Before coming to UVM, Tom was a law clerk with the New Hampshire Supreme Court and an instructor at Vermont Law School. He was also a staff attorney with Vermont Legal Aid and legal counsel for the Vermont Department of Education. He has taught classes in education law, higher education law, and special education law. Tom has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia and a law degree from Boston College.
Jeffrey Nolan, J.D. Senior Counsel
Holland & Knight
Jeffrey J. Nolan is an education and labor and employment attorney with Holland & Knight who represents, advises, educates and helps clients throughout the United States manage conflicts, enhance the safety of individuals and environments, and successfully navigate the maze of legal obligations faced by educational institutions and employers. Mr. Nolan is based in Holland & Knight’s Boston office.
Mr. Nolan represents and advises colleges, universities and independent schools throughout the United States regarding situations that implicate Title IX, the Clery Act, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and other laws that apply in the higher education context. He also conducts system-wide compliance assessments and helps clients develop Title IX/Clery Act and other policies, practices and training programs to minimize risk and enhance compliance with those laws. In 2018-19, Mr. Nolan served on the American Council on Education’s (ACE) Title IX Working Group that prepared ACE’s comments to the U.S. Department of Education’s proposed Title IX regulations, and his work on fair, equitable trauma-informed investigations was cited 8 times in the Preamble to the final Title IX regulations issued by the Department in May 2020. Mr. Nolan also advises higher educational institutions on the governance, faculty relations and related challenges that they face in the current economic and regulatory environment.
In the employment law area, Mr. Nolan assists employers in dealing with the full range of employee relations issues, advises them on how to comply with applicable employment laws, and helps them to create effective employment policies and training programs.
Mr. Nolan has more than 25 years of experience representing clients in federal and state courts and before administrative agencies such as the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Mr. Nolan has successfully argued many cases that created favorable precedent in the higher education and employment contexts.
In client-sponsored and public venues, Mr. Nolan regularly trains education and human resources professionals throughout the country on best and promising practices in Title IX/Clery Act compliance, witness-centered/trauma-informed fair investigations of Title IX/Clery Act and workplace harassment complaints, how to conduct hearings under the new Title IX regulations, threat assessment and management, ADA issues and other education and employment law issues.
Mr. Nolan advises clients on threat assessment practices, which use a proven methodology to assess and manage potential risks of targeted violence in the higher education and workplace settings. In addition, he collaborates with full-time threat assessment professionals where necessary and helps clients to create appropriate violence prevention policies.
Mr. Nolan also provides independent investigations of sensitive campus and workplace issues, such as reports of alleged sexual misconduct, intimate partner violence or stalking, alleged sexual harassment, faculty misconduct and other workplace misconduct. Jeffrey Nolan is a Certified FETI® Practitioner (CFP-B). More information is available about Certified FETI.
Mr. Nolan is licensed to practice law in Massachusetts, New York, Texas, Vermont and Virginia, and practices in other jurisdictions as appropriate under state practice regulations.
Kimberly Novak, CEO
NovakTalks & PIKE Fraternity
Kimberly Novak, Kim is the CEO of NovakTalks, a higher education consulting firm that specializes in facilitating the development of strategic prevention, intervention, and accountability initiatives. A foundational characteristic of her team’s our work is the involvement of students in the governance of their organizations. Additionally, she. serves on Pi Kappa Alpha’s Staff as the Director for Health & Safety. In this role she provides training and support specific to health and safety for chapter leadership, collegiate members, volunteers, and staff.
Kim is recognized as a thought-leader in Student Organization Conduct having worked in student conduct administration for over 25 years. She is frequently called up to educate campus professionals and international fraternity staffs on the design as well as implementation of organization conduct systems. In 2007 Kim lead the development of the Interdisciplinary Institute for Hazing Prevention, the first educational experience designed to apply the principles and framework for prevention to the issue of hazing. The Institute is now in its 15th year and continues to be the leading hazing prevention program in higher education.
Prior to embarking on her consulting career, Kim served as the Director for Student and Campus Community Development at Arizona State University, Downtown Phoenix campus. Her primary responsibilities involved the oversight and development of administration and supervision of a team that led Student Conduct Programs, High Risk Behavior Education, Student Affairs Risk Management, Student Advocacy Services, Crisis Intervention and Response as well as Campus Safety for the urban campus. She was also the Assistant Director for Student Affairs Risk Management at Arizona State University, Tempe Campus where she led the design and implementation of a comprehensive and proactive risk management model for The Division of Student Affairs. Prior to joining the ASU community, Kim worked for eight years at Texas A&M University where she served as a student conduct administrator and as the Program Coordinator for Risk Management and Organizational Development and led the implementation of the University’s internationally recognized proactive risk management plan for student organizations.
Kim approaches her work with college students with the heart of an advocate and is committed to the advancement of communities of care on college campuses across the country.
Debbie Osgood, J.D. Partner
Hogan Marren Babbo & Rose, Ltd
Debbie Osgood is a Partner in the Education Group at Hogan Marren Babbo & Rose. Debbie represents public and private colleges and universities on a wide range of educational policy and legal issues, including civil rights issues relating to Title IX sexual harassment, athletics, transgender students and employees, and accommodations. Her area of specialty is advising colleges and universities on how to best position their institution to avoid claims of discrimination and how to effectively respond to any claims. Debbie is a nationally recognized expert and frequent speaker on educational civil rights issues. Prior to joining HMBR in 2016, Debbie was an attorney for 25 years with the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR). She most recently served as National Enforcement Director in OCR Headquarters and previously as the Director and Chief Attorney of the OCR Chicago Office. Debbie’s OCR career spanned four different Presidential administrations. She began her career at Covington & Burling in Washington, D.C. specializing in federal administrative law. Debbie graduated from Brown University and the University of Michigan Law School. She is licensed to practice in Illinois and D.C.
Jennifer L. Papillo, LL.M., J.D. Associate General Counsel
University of Vermont
Jennifer L. Papillo joined the University of Vermont Office of the General Counsel in August 2010 in the position of Assistant General Counsel, and was promoted to Associate General Counsel in July 2015. She represents, advises, and educates her institutional clients to proactively identify and manage legal risk, enhance the safety, security, and well-being of individuals and the campus community, and successfully navigate the maze of legal obligations faced by educational institutions.
Jennifer is a frequent speaker and author on issues related to student conduct, distressed and disruptive students, admissions practices, the First Amendment, Title IX, the Clery Act, FERPA, and the ADA. She has spoken at national and regional conferences of the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA), National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA), New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), and the Association for Student Conduct Administration (ASCA), as well as at the University of Vermont higher education legal issues conference. Jennifer is an active member of the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA), a member of the UVM Legal Issues Board of Directors, and a contributor to the SUNY Title IX Joint Guidance Initiative.
Before coming to UVM, Jennifer served as a tax law clerk for the American Cancer Society, Inc.’s Office of Corporation Counsel in Washington, DC, and a research assistant to Peter F. Lake in the writing of Beyond Discipline: Managing the Modern Higher Education Environment (Hierophant Enterprises, Inc., 2009). She holds a bachelor’s degree from Elon University, a Juris Doctor degree from Stetson University College of Law, as well as a Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Taxation from Georgetown University Law Center, with a focus on tax exempt organizations.
Joshua W. B. Richards, J.D. Partner
Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr LLP
Hannah S. Ross, J.D. General Counsel, Chief of Staff, and Secretary to the Corporation
Hannah Ross was appointed as the first General Counsel of Middlebury College on December 1, 2016. She serves as the General Counsel to the liberal arts college in Vermont, as well as the Middlebury Institute for International Studies in Monterey, California, the Bread Loaf School of English, and Middlebury’s Language Schools and Schools Abroad. She provides legal and strategic advice to the President, the Board of Trustees, and senior administrators. As Chief of Staff, Hannah serves as an advisor and thought partner to the President and her senior leadership team, organizing, coordinating, and translating initiatives and plans into action. Ms. Ross has practiced in higher education since 2003, when she joined Princeton’s Office of the General Counsel. Ms. Ross supervises litigation and provides advice and counsel on a number of state and federal regulatory and compliance matters. She has particular expertise in issues of student health and safety, including threat assessment, managing students in crisis, and self-harming situations, as well as issues of open expression, campus speech and protest, governance and policy development, privacy, and copyright. Ms. Ross is actively involved in the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA) and regularly writes and speaks on higher education legal issues. She also serves on the Steering Committee of Higher Education Real Estate Lawyers (HEREL) and hosted the 8th HEREL conference in 2010. Before coming to Middlebury, Ms. Ross served as university counsel at Princeton University for 13 years, and prior to that served in private practice as a civil litigator and employment lawyer with Hill & Barlow, P.C. and Goulston & Storrs in Boston. After law school, she clerked for Justice Denise Johnson of the Vermont Supreme Court. Ms. Ross received her J.D., cum laude, from Harvard Law School and her B.A., summa cum laude, from Yale University.
Scott Schneider, J.D. Partner
Husch Blackwell LLP
Scott advises companies and educational institutions nationwide on a variety of complex legal issues with a focus on particularly sensitive matters.
He is a prominent litigator as well as a sought-after advisor on Title IX, labor and employment law issues, and various risk management concerns. He has led numerous investigations of serial sex abuse allegations, allegations of misconduct involving senior leadership and other acts of institutional misconduct, as well as high-profile program reviews of institutional response.
Over the last decade, Scott has provided training nationally to thousands of personnel on a variety of issues, including Title IX; labor and employment law; faculty hiring, promotion and tenure processes; and Greek Life risk management. Scott regularly presents to national organizations, including the National Association of College and University Attorneys, the National Association of Independent Schools and the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators.
Scott is an award-winning professor at Tulane University and also serves on the faculty for the State University of New York’s Student Conduct Institute. In addition, Scott has been retained by the National Center for Campus Public Safety to serve as a faculty member for its Trauma-Informed Sexual Assault Investigation and Adjudication training program for campus officials.
Jody Shipper, J.D. Managing Director
Grand River Solutions, Inc.
Jody Shipper is a Managing Director of Grand River Solutions. Jody has more than 25 years of experience in Title IX, equity and diversity, and related fields. She is known for her insight into best-in-class programming, policies, and community outreach aimed at addressing sexual misconduct on campus. She lectures extensively at universities and conferences throughout the U.S. on Title IX, VAWA, harassment, and implementation of best and emerging practices. Jody also co-founded Project IX in 2014, a nonprofit focused on Title IX-related services to schools with a mission to provide effective solutions for preventing and responding to sexual violence.
Jody previously served as the systemwide director for Title IX/VAWA/Clery compliance for the University of California system. Prior to that, she served for 11 years as executive director of the Office of Equity and Diversity at a large research university where she also held the post of chief Title IX administrator. In these roles, she provided direct, hands-on experience in the fields of Title IX, civil rights, employment law, and workplace and academic investigations. Her responsibilities included focusing on diversity efforts, sexual assault prevention and training, affirmative action, and protecting minors on campus.
Previously, Jody served as outside counsel to businesses and nonprofits in California, litigating employment and education matters.
Gina Maisto Smith, J.D. Chair
Institutional Response Group
Gina focuses her practice on the institutional response to sexual and gender-based harassment and violence, child abuse, and other forms of harassment, discrimination, and criminal conduct. Recognized as a thought leader in the areas of sexual harassment, sexual violence, and child abuse, in 2006 Gina founded the institutional response practice area, which is the only practice of its kind, dedicated exclusively to institutional responses to sex and gender based harassment and violence and child abuse. She provides consulting, counseling, and legal advice on all aspects of the institutional response to misconduct. She assists institutions in designing effective institutional responses that integrate the complex federal and state regulatory framework with the unique dynamics of trauma and the impacts of interpersonal violence on individuals and communities. Gina is frequently called upon to advise institutional clients including presidents, boards, senior leadership, and counsel on the complex intersections of trauma-informed, fair, and impartial processes with the intersecting legal landscape. In addition, Gina has also counseled corporations, hospitals, religious institutions, and not-for-profit organizations in connection with policy, compliance, investigations, system design, and governance issues.
She regularly advises educational and child-serving institutions including public and private K-12 schools and colleges and universities about policies, changes in the law, and investigations into allegations of child abuse and sexual misconduct, including sexual violence. She regularly conducts policy audits and assists in the development of policy and the design and implementation of internal operating procedures. She conducts training for K-12 administrators and multiple university constituencies, including Title IX coordinators, sexual assault response teams, judicial hearing boards, investigators, and members of the campus community.
Gina assists clients with the development of comprehensive policies, procedures, systems, and training programs in compliance with Title IX, Title VII, the Clery Act, as amended by the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013, and state and local laws. Gina conducts comprehensive policy audits; drafts policies, procedures, and internal operating protocols; develops and trains multi-disciplinary teams; serves as an adviser to campus task forces and working groups; consults and advises on Title IX investigation, adjudication, and appeal proceedings; and assists educational institutions in meeting federal compliance obligations and responding to investigations by the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and the Clery Compliance Division. She served on the training subcommittee of the U.S. Department of Education’s Negotiated Rulemaking Committee for the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act and has been designated as an approved equity consultant by OCR.
In addition to her work on sexual assault and intimate partner violence, Gina is nationally recognized for her knowledge and experience related to child sexual and physical abuse, child protection, and child protective services laws. She frequently advises clients in evaluating and responding to historical allegations of abuse in a legally informed and open and transparent manner designed to promote child safety and welfare. Her experience includes several high-profile external investigations for clients including the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, health care institutions, daycare centers, summer camps, and K-12 schools. Gina conducts training and prevention programs on the identification and prevention of child abuse; provides child protection planning related to background checks, professional boundaries, physical plant, and mandatory reporter policies; coordinates internal investigations with child protective services and local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies; and conducts child abuse investigations.
Before entering private practice, Gina spent nearly two decades in the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office where she investigated numerous cases, handled more than 100 jury trials, and developed unmatched experience in the investigation and prosecution of sex crimes, child abuse, and domestic violence. She also trained prosecutors, investigators, and police handling the most difficult aspect of sex crimes, child abuse, and domestic violence investigations.
As the senior prosecutor for child abuse and sex crimes litigation, Gina instructed on pretrial investigation, case preparation, evaluating credibility, trial strategy, ethical issues, and the unique dynamics of sexual assault, intimate partner violence, child abuse and stalking, including the neurobiological impacts of trauma. She authored numerous training materials that continue to be used as the core of the District Attorney’s training program. She has a firm grasp on policy and law with respect to competency, taint, prior bad acts, other crimes evidence, tender years hearsay exceptions, rape shield, physical and medical findings of abuse, forensic issues, alcohol-facilitated sexual assault, non-stranger sexual assault, intimate partner violence, and stalking.
Gina currently presents education and training programs and CLE programs at educational institutions and conferences across the country. She is a regular contributor to the Clery Center, National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA), College and University Police and Investigators Conference (CUPIC), Stetson University National Conference on Law and Higher Education, the Virginia Campus Safety Forum, University of Vermont Legal Issues in Higher Education Conference and the Pennsylvania Bar Institute. Prior speaking or CLE engagements include the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office, National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA), Association of American Universities, Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, Association of Delaware Valley Independent Schools, Headmistresses Association of the East, and United Educators. Recent publications include articles in the ABA’s Dispute Resolution Magazine and Penn State Law Review, as well as a chapter in Campus Sexual Assault Response Teams: Program Development and Operational Management.
Gina served for more than a decade as an adjunct professor at Temple University James E. Beasley School of Law and the University of Pennsylvania Law School. She has served as a mentor for second-year law students through the Temple Summer Professional Experience Curriculum, a domestic-violence protocol trainer at the Philadelphia Police Department, and as a guest speaker educating local high school, college, and law students about sexual assault, domestic violence, and legal career topics.
Gina is an adviser to the ALI Project on Sexual and Gender-Based Misconduct on Campus: Procedural Frameworks and Analysis. In addition to publishing several recent articles on Title IX and related issues, in June of 2016, Gina presented at the New York Times Higher Education Leaders Forum. Currently, Gina serves on The Center for Excellence in Higher Education Law and Policy at Stetson University College of Law on the board of directors and previously served on The University of Pennsylvania’s Field Center for Children’s Policy, Practice and Research.
Gina received her undergraduate degree from Saint Joseph’s University and her law degree from Temple University School of Law
William Stackman, Ph.D. Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs
University of Missouri-Columbia
Dr. Bill Stackman is currently the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at the University of Missouri-Columbia. He previously served for seven years as the Vice Provost for Student Affairs at Notre Dame University. Dr. Stackman has been working in student affairs for 38 years and has held leadership positions at a number of institutions, including Director of Student Activities at Texas A&M University, Dean of Student Affairs at Rhodes College, Associate and Acting Dean of Students at Oberlin College, Director of Student Activities/Mayer Campus Center at Tufts University, Associate Director of the Illini Union and Program Director at the University of Illinois, and Associate Director of Student Activities at Temple University.
Dr. Stackman earned his doctorate at Boston University in Leadership, Administration, and Policy Studies. He also holds a master’s degree from West Virginia University in Higher Education Administration, a master’s degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia in Parks and Recreation Administration, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Kentucky in Parks and Recreation. He is currently completing a master’s degree from the University of Missouri in Positive Psychology with an emphasis in Positive Coaching.
Joseph Storch, J.D. Associate Counsel
Joseph Storch (@JosephStorchNY) is an Associate Counsel in the SUNY Office of General Counsel and Chair of the Student Affairs Practice Group. He concentrates his practice on student affairs, intellectual property, and campus safety and serves as Principal Investigator on more than $9 million in grants and external funding to support innovations in violence prevention and response on campuses and in the community. He oversees the SUNY Student Conduct Institute, which offers compliance and best practice training annually to thousands of higher education professionals engaged in response to violence and conduct violations. Joe has provided live training to tens of thousands of higher education professionals in 30 U.S. states, manages a webinar series that reaches thousands of professionals annually, furnishes technical guidance to numerous education institutions, organizations, and associations, and has twice served as an expert witness before the United States Senate (Armed Services, 2019; Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, 2016). He regularly advises legislators and staff at the federal and state level on best practices in drafting and analyzing pending domestic and international campus violence prevention legislation. In 2014, Joe received the Commissioner’s Award from the State University Police for contributions to safety on campus. In 2015, he served as a technical adviser to the Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, developing comprehensive legislation enacted in July 2015 as Article 129-B of the Education Law (also called “Enough is Enough”) and has since served as principal author on guidance issued to implement that law. That same year, the National Association of College & University Attorneys awarded him its First Decade Award. Beginning in 2016, Joe has overseen the SUNY’s Got Your Back program which has provided over 100,000 comfort bags to victims and survivors of violence, while educating tens of thousands of students and community members. In 2017, the One Love Foundation recognized his work in relationship violence prevention with its Unsung Hero Award and in 2018 the Pride Center of the Capital Region awarded him its Straight But Not Narrow Award. In 2020, City and State selected him as one of its 40 Under 40. Joe serves as Principal Investigator of the Biennial SUNY Uniform Campus Climate Survey, one of the largest such surveys in the nation, and of the SPECTRUM conference, the nation’s largest gathering addressing violence against members of the LGBTQI+ community. Joe is a Summa Cum Laude graduate of SUNY Oswego where he served as Vice President of the Student Association, of the University at Albany with a Masters of Public Policy, and of Cornell Law School where he served as Moot Court Board Chancellor. After graduating, he clerked for the New York State Appellate Division, 3rd Department and he currently serves as a member of that Court’s Committee on Character and Fitness. Joe served four years as Executive Editor of the Student Affairs Compliance Report & Analysis and is the author of more than 70 articles and book chapters in law reviews, practitioner journals, and popular media, most centering around campus safety or copyright law. He serves on the board of the Daughters of Sarah Nursing Foundation, and raises funds for technology for the Bethlehem Public Library.
Denzil J. Suite, Ph.D. Vice President for Student Life
University of Washington
Dr. Denzil Suite, Vice President for Student Life, joined the University of Washington in July 2013. In that capacity, he provides leadership and direction for strategic planning, assessment, and staff development for a comprehensive division of student programs and services. He leads a team of approximately 1,000 professionals in creating and maintaining a healthy campus environment through services, programs, and innovative learning experiences beyond the classroom, and through a highly collaborative relationship with other senior UW leaders.
Prior to joining UW, he served as Associate Vice President of Student Affairs at the University of Southern California where he had oversight responsibilities for over 20 departments in the division. He also served and as an Associate Professor for Clinical Education at the USC Rossier School of Education. He taught master’s level courses on Student Development, the History of Higher Education, and on Intervention Strategies.
Suite earned his bachelor’s degree in Psychology at The Ohio State University, a master’s degree in Education from the University of Vermont, and a Ph.D. in Policy and Organization from the University of Southern California. His research for his doctorate centered on factors affecting student success in college. He is especially interested in how students from differing backgrounds are affected by the college environment. He chose this topic because of his long-standing commitment to college students and their success.
Dr. Suite has worked professionally in student affairs for over 20 years and has held positions of responsibility at UC Berkeley, Cal State L.A., and UC Santa Cruz. He is the recipient of numerous awards from national, local, and student organizations.
He recently served as the Chair of the Board of Directors for NASPA—the world’s leading association for Student Affairs professionals.