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Authors and Topics

Edward R. Amend, Psy.D.

dr ed amendDr. Amend is a Clinical Psychologist at Amend Psychological Services, P.S.C., in Lexington, KY, where he focuses on the social, emotional, and educational needs of gifted and talented youth, adults, and their families. He is an expert on the misdiagnoses of gifted children and on dual diagnoses of gifted particularly regarding  Attention Deficit/ Hyperactive or Asperger’s Disorder. Dr. Amend is a co-author of Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children and Adults and A Parent’s Guide to Gifted Children
He presents on topics that include:


  • Managing Intensity, Perfectionism, and Stress
  • Addressing the Affective Needs of Gifted Learners
  • Misdiagnoses of Gifted and Talented Children
  • Similarities and differences between giftedness and clinical syndromes.
  • The Twice-exceptional Child: Issues and Interventions
  • Challenges for Gifted Children with Asperger’s Disorder
  • Worry and the Gifted:  How much is too much?
  • Social and Emotional Needs of Gifted Children
  • The Social and Emotional Aspects of Growing up  Gifted
  • Is My Child Gifted or Just Smart:  Understanding the Characteristics of Gifted Children
  • Parenting Your Gifted Child:  Fostering Communication and Discipline
  • Outsmart your Smart Child:  Practical Strategies for Parenting Gifted Children
  • Myths and Realities about Gifted Children

To learn more about Dr. Amend, please visit his website.


Susan G. Assouline, Ph.D.

 Susan Assouline NEW June 2010Dr. Assouline is a professor of school psychology at  The University of Iowa and the director of the UI Belin-Blank Center. She, along with, Dr. Nicholas Colangelo and others, developed the internationally used research-based Iowa Acceleration Scale: A Guide for Whole-Grade Acceleration K-8. Now in its third edition, the IAS is the most widely used guide for considering and implementing whole-grade acceleration.   Dr. Assoulline will demonstrate to your audience  how to use the IAS to determine when whole-grade skipping is a good decision for certain gifted students.
She presents on the following topics:



  • Academic Acceleration
  • When Grade Acceleration is Appropriate
  • How to Use the IAS
  • Case Examples of Whole-Grade Acceleration
  • Implementation of Acceleration in Schools
  • Twice-Exceptionality
  • Learning Disabilities
  • Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Development of Math Talent


Paul Beljan, Psy. D. ABPdN, ABN

Paul BeljanDr. Beljan, a Clinical Psychologist who specialized in pediatric neuropsychology and is in private practice at  Beljan Psychological Services, in Scottsdale, AZ. He is also a consultant  for The Davidson Institute for Talent Development Defenders of Children and the Southwest Institute. His professional focus is on Gifted Intelligence, Alcohol/Drug Related Neurodevelopmental Deficit (A/DRND), Learning Disorders, Traumatic Brain Injury, Trauma, and Attention and Executive Functioning Deficit  interventions. Dr. Beljan also specializes in the pediatric psychology of pain management. He is a  nationally retained forensic neuropsychology expert, has lectured internationally, and is a co-author of Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children and Adults. He presents on the following topics:

  • Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children
  • Executive Functioning and Attention in Gifted and  Asynchronous Development
  • Depression in Gifted Adults and Children
  • Motivation of Gifted Adults and Children
  • Behavioral Management of Gifted Children
  • Learning Disabilities and How to Diagnose or Rule Them Out for Gifted Children and Adults
  • General Lecture on Gifted Topics: Misdiagnosis,  Asynchronous Development, Behavioral Management
  • Parental Understanding of the WISC IV IQ Test

For more, visit Dr. Beljan’s website.


Janine Walker Caffrey, Ed.D.

Caffrey-photo-headshot2010-300x239Dr. Caffrey
, superintendent of schools in Perth Amboy, NJ, holds a bachelor’s degree in education, a master’s in educational administration, and a doctorate in educational leadership. She spent ten years as a special education teacher in public schools; ten years as the education director for AMIKids, a leader in programming for troubled youth; and six years as the head of school for Renaissance Academy, a private school for the arts that she founded. She has also worked as a consultant for groups seeking to create new schools and taught curriculum and instruction at the University of South Florida.   Janine has been speaking for audiences, large and small, throughout the United States, the Caribbean, and Sweden for nearly twenty years. She has appeared on radio and television, including Oprah and Friends Radio, Martha Stewart Radio, The Today Show, and Daytime, spreading her parenting and education messages while also writing her book Nurturing Brilliance: Discovering and Developing Your Child’s Gifts. She speaks on the following topics:

  • Pathfinder Parenting
  • Raising Your Child to Become Confident and Self-Reliant
  • Super Schools: Learn What Needs to Be Changed, and How YOU Can Be a Catalyst for Change in Your Community.
  • Nurturing Brilliance: Learn How to Bring Passion Back into the Classroom so That All Children Can Develop Their Gifts.
  • Learn How Simple Changes in School Structures and Practices Can Result in Nurturing the Brilliance in All Students, and Liberate Gifted Students to Truly Reach Their Full Potential.

For more information on Dr. Caffrey, visit her webpage.


Susan Daniels, Ph.D.

Susan Daniels

Dr. Daniels is Professor of Educational Psychology at California State University – San Bernardino, where she directs the College of Education Graduate Certificate in Gifted Education and teaches courses in child and adolescent development; gifted education; and creativity, thinking, and problem solving. She is also co-founder, with Dr. Dan Peters, and Educational Director of the Summit Center, with offices in Northern and Southern California. At the Summit Center, Dr. Daniels provides differentiated educational plans for children and adolescents as part of comprehensive psycho-educational and neuropsychological evaluations. She is also available for consultation with families and schools. Dr. Daniels is an internationally recognized expert in the field of gifted education and creativity, with numerous publications and presentations given annually at educational and psychological conferences. She specializes in the social and emotional development of gifted children and adolescents, intensity and sensitivity of gifted individuals across the lifespan, and the development of creative potential. Dr. Daniels is co-author of Living with Intensity and Raising Creative Kids.

  • Living with Intensity – Overexcitabilities in Gifted Youth
  • Gifted Kids on the Edge: At-Risk and At-Promise
  • Taming  the Worry Monster: Anxiety in Gifted and 2e Youth
  • Avoiding Avoidance: Just Use Your Disaster Supply Kit
  • Gifted and Learning Disabled: What Can We Do?
  • Building Fortitude in Gifted Youth
  • Perfectionism in the Gifted
  • Organization for the Creative Mind
  • Raising Creative Kids
  • Developing Differentiated Education Plans
  • Bringing it all Together: Integrative Assessment and Educational Planning for Gifted Youth
  • Diagnosis and Misdiagnosis of Gifted Youth
  • The Essence of the Gifted Person
  • Passion for Learning Beyond Kindergarten: The Power of Choice

For more information on Dr. Daniels and the Summit Center, visit the Summit Center webpage.


Joy Davis, Ed.D.

Joy davis

Dr. Davis is Associate Professor and Chair, Dept of Teacher Education at Virginia Union University. She holds two advanced degrees in Gifted Education from the College of William & Mary in Virginia. An active member of the National Association for Gifted Children, currently serving her second term as chair of the NAGC’s Diversity and Equity Committee, Dr. Davis is also a co-editor of the Special Populations Newsletter and writes a column for NAGC’s Teaching for High Potential focusing on special populations of gifted learners. She is a Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted board member and as an educational consultant, she has provided extensive services to school districts and presented at conferences in the United States, Trinidad and Tobago, and South Africa.

She speaks on the following topics:

  • Access and Equity in Gifted Programs
  • Culturally Diverse Learners

For more information and insight, visit Joy Davis’s blog.


Arlene DeVries, M.S.E.

Arlene DeVries‘ degree in Guidance and Counseling and her nearly three decades as a consultant for the gifted/talented program with the Des Moines, Iowa, public schools have led her to a special interest in the social and emotional needs of gifted children. DeVries has served as President of SENG (Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted) and been a member of the Board of Directors of the National Association for Gifted Children. She has served as chair of the Parent-Community Division. A Past-President of the Iowa Talented and Gifted Association, she received its Distinguished Service Award in 2003. In 2005, she received the Drake University School of Education Distinguished Alumni Award. She currently teaches an online class for Drake titled “Social and Emotional Needs of Gifted.” At the 2009 SENG conference, she was honored with SENG’s Leadership Award for promoting social emotional needs of the gifted.

She speaks on the following topics:

  • Living in the Gifted Family (Sibling Rivalry)
  • Quality Gifted Programs
  • What Parents Should Expect for Their Gifted Child
  • Establishing Parent Advocacy Groups
  • Gifted Education Beyond the Classroom
  • Underachievement and Motivation
  • Perfectionism
  • Stress
  • Friendship Issues and Peer Relations


Tamara Fisher, M.A.

Tamara Fisher earned her B.S. in Elementary Education from Montana State University, Bozeman, where she was an Honors Scholar, and her M.A. in Gifted Education from the University of Connecticut. Tamara was selected as the 2013 Montana AGATE Educator of the Year.  She’s the K-12 Gifted Education Specialist for a school district located on an Indian reservation in northwestern Montana and is a SENG facilitator and also the Past President of Montana AGATE (Association of Gifted and Talented Education).

She speaks on the following topics:

  • Learning Differences
  • Nurturing Creativity


Leslie Forstadt, Ph.D.

Dr. Forstadt is the Child and Family Development Specialist for the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. She earned her doctorate at the University of Iowa in Educational Psychology, where she held a research assistantship at the Belin-Blank Center.

She speaks on the following topics:

  • At-risk Families
  • Parenting Education
  • Attribution


Joanne F. Foster, Ed.D.

Joanne FosterJoanne Foster 
is co-author of the award-winning Being Smart of Gifted Education, and author of the new book Not Now, Maybe Later: Helping Children Overcome Procrastination. She attained her doctoral degree in Human Development and Applied Psychology from the University of Toronto, and she’s taught Educational Psychology and also Gifted Education there over the past ten years. Her writing is published extensively, and she presents at conferences across North America on matters pertaining to high-ability learners. Her work reflects more than 30 years of experience and expertise as an educator, teacher trainer, and consultant in the field of high-level development. She continues to collaborate with co-author Dr. Dona Matthews, and together they write about intelligence, and how to nurture children’s capacities and well-being. Dr. Foster also writes ABCs of Being Smart, a series of featured articles in the e-issues of the journal Parenting for High Potential published by the National Association for Gifted Children. Dr. Foster speaks on the following topics:

  • ABCs of Being Smart
  • Procrastination and Kids: Not Now, Maybe Later…?
  • Being Smart about Fit and Focus: Connecting to Meaningful Learning
  • Keys to Empowered Teaching – Real Issues, Real Solutions
  • Gifted Education: Flaw and Order
  • Being Smart about Motivation and Productivity
  • Over Fifty Ways to Love Your Learner: Parenting for High-Level Development

For more information on Joanne Foster, visit her webpage.


Jean Goerss, M.D.

Dr. Goerss, a Board Certified pediatrician, is co-author of the book, Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children and Adults ADHD, Bipolar, OCD, Asperger’s, Depression and other Disorders. As the parent of two gifted sons, Dr. Goerss has been active in gifted education for over 10 years. She served on a Gifted Education Task Force in Rochester, Minnesota, was a founding member of the Scottsdale Supporters of the Gifted in Arizona, and participated in rewriting the curriculum for gifted students in the Deer Valley (Arizona) Unified School District. Dr. Goerss enjoys speaking on the following topics:


      • Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children and Adults
      • Parenting Gifted Children
      • Social and Emotional Needs of Gifted Children, Especially the Effect Those Needs Have On Their Future Success and Happiness.



Ted George Goertzel, Ph.D.



Dr. Goertzel retired as a Professor of Sociology at Rutgers University in Camden University New Jersey. As son of the original author and author of the most recent edition of Cradles of Eminence: Childhoods of More than 700 Famous Men and Women, Dr. Goertzel is an expert on the material and topics within the text. He has presented at many national, state, and local meetings of parents and educators. His talks contain information and details that are both entertaining and of value to those interested in parenting and/or teaching gifted children. He also offers suggestions for parents based on the lives of eminent achievers, including:



      • Sharing Passions and Enthusiasms With Your Children
      • Embracing Eccentricities
      • How to Make it Clear That You Don’t Want Your Children to Be Just Like You
      • Embracing Failures
      • Encouraging Children to Develop Their Strengths
      • Well Rounded vs. Very Good at One Thing


Nancy Heilbronner, Ph. D.

Dr. Heilbronner is an Assistant Professor in the Education Department at Western Connecticut State University, where she teaches classes on talent development, leadership, technology, creativity, statistics in the Instructional Leadership Doctoral Program, gifted and science education, as well as issues related to gender. Dr. Heilbronner is the author of Ten Things Not to Say to Your Gifted Child: One Family’s PerspectiveShe presents on the following topics:



      • Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children
      • Gifted Education
      • Science Education
      • Social and Emotional Characteristics of the Gifted
      • Differentiation of Instruction in the Classroom
      • Gender Issues


Karen Isaacson

Karen Isaacson, a freelance writer and mother, lives in Rigby, Idaho. She is the author of the delightful books: Raisin’ Brains: Surviving My Smart FamilyLife in the Fast Brain: Keeping Up with Gifted Minds, and  Intelligent Life in the Classroom: Smart Kids and Their Teachers. She is the mother of five children who each struggle with giftedness in his or her own way, and writes from personal experience, using humor and stories to illustrate concepts and the characteristics of giftedness. You will laugh with her as she shares her anecdotes while addressing the following topics:

      • The Common Characteristics of Gifted Children from a Mother’s Perspective
      • How Gifted Characteristics Affect a Child’s Behavior and Performance
      •  As How They Affect Teachers and Other Students
      • Specific Ways Parents Can Help Gifted Children Learn to Negotiate, Plan, and Overcome Personal Weaknesses
      • Tips for Getting Through the Most Difficult Years


Barbara Kerr, Ph.D.

Barbara KerrDr. Kerr is The Williamson Family Distinguished Professor of Counseling Psychology at the University of Kansas. She is the author of the new book with Robyn McKaySmart Girls in the 21st Century: Understanding Talented Girls and Women as well as  Smart Girls: A New Psychology of Girls, Women, and Giftedness. She’s co-author of Smart Boys: Talent, Manhood, and the Search for Meaning. Dr. Kerr will help your audience to understand why smart boys and girls have problems with depression, anger, underachieving in school, and reaching their true potential. She will provide suggestions for helping smart students stay motivated. The topics she discusses can include:

      • Masculinity from Boyhood to Manhood
      • Milestones and Danger Signs
      • Violence and Anger
      • Relationships and Family Issues
      • “Fat Boys, Sissies, and Nerds”
      • Stories of Eminent Women and Their Successes
      • Internal and External Barriers to Women’s Achievement
      • Academic Programs Beneficial to Gifted Girls
      • Suggestions for Career Guidance
      • Positive Psychology
      • Counseling the Gifted and Creative


Ann G. Klein, Ed.D

Dr. Klein, Professor Emerita from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, is the author of A Forgotten Voice: A Biography of Leta Stetter Hollingworth. Dr. Klein will inform your audience about the fascinating life and career of Dr. Leta Hollingworth, who is considered the mother of gifted education while also addressing the following:




  • Inspiration and Encouragement
  • Current Issues in Gifted Education
  • Early History of Gifted Education
  • Insights into the Education and Special Needs of Gifted Children and Adults
  • Gifted Education Now and 100 Years Ago


Monita Leavitt, Ph.D.

Dr. Monita Leavitt

Dr. Leavitt, an educator of gifted children for 25 years, works internationally as an educational consultant and teacher trainer for high ability students.  Dr. Leavitt, now living in Connecticut, has presented lectures, workshops and papers for Nord Anglia, ECHA (European Council of High Abilities), the Asia-Pacific Gifted Conference, and both National and World Gifted Conferences.  A former Academic Dean at Yale University with SIG (Summer Institute for the Gifted), Dr. Leavitt now teaches online SIG courses for high ability students and teachers.  She is the author of Building a Gifted Program: Identifying and Educating Gifted Students in Your School  and a How to Build a Gifted Program contributing author of the NBPTS Exceptional Needs Standards (National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, 2010).  Dr. Leavitt speaks on the following topics:

      • Understanding What is Meant by Giftedness
      • Examining the Myths of Gifted Children
      • Differentiation: What is it; How do we do it; Why do we do it?
      • Nurturing the Social and Emotional Development of High Ability Children
      • Maximizing the Potential for High Achievement in All Students: What Schools and Parents Can Do


Ann Lupkowski-Shoplik, Ph.D.

LupkowskiShoplikADr. Lupkowski-Shoplik is Director of the Carnegie Mellon Institute for Talented Elementary and Secondary Students (C-MITES). She conducts the annual Elementary Student Talent Search throughout Pennsylvania, and she oversees the C-MITES summer program, Weekend Workshops, and other activities for academically talented kindergarten through seventh-grade children. She also directs a professional development program for teachers of gifted students at Carnegie Mellon University.

She speaks on the following topics:

      • Identifying Gifted Children
      • Programming for Academically Talented Youth



Dona Matthews, Ph. D.

Dona matthews photo

Dr. Matthews is a psycho-educational consultant in Toronto. Her practice includes graduate teaching, writing, counseling, and conducting research on optimal human development. She has been involved in research on the gifted-related issues since 1985. Dr. Matthews is the  co-author of the books: Being Smart About Gifted EducationThe Development of Giftedness and Talent Across the Life Span and The International Companion to Gifted  Education. In addition to co-authoring books, Dr. Matthews is the author of dozens of articles, book chapters, and conference presentations. She presents on the following topics:

      • Changing Mindsets: How Parents’ and Educators’
      • Attitudes Can Support—or Undermine—Achievement
      • R&R for the Brain: It’s Good to Do Nothing Sometimes
      • Talent Development across the Life Span: Birth through Older Adulthood
      • Turbulent Transitions in Giftedness and Talent: Early Adolescence
      • Neural Plasticity and Other Goodies from the Frontier: What Does the Research Say about Giftedness and Talent Development


Kate Maupin, M.A.

Kate MaupinKate Maupin received her B.S in Elementary Honors Education from the University of Maine and her M. Ed. in Educational Psychology with a focus on the education of the gifted and talented at the University of Connecticut. There, she studied at the National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented. She went on to work with gifted children throughout New England and in China.

She’s also actively involved in state and national programs such as the Future Problem Solving Program, Invention Convention, and Minds in Motion. She enjoys working with parents and teachers of gifted students in New England through workshop presentations, in-service trainings, curriculum support, and educational classes and lectures. She is a member of the Connecticut Association for the Gifted as well as the National Association for Gifted Children. 

 She presents on the following topics:

      • Cheating and Dishonesty

Robyn McKay, Ph.D.

Robyn McKayDr. McKay is the founder and creative director of she{ology} by Dr. Robyn McKay, an international leadership and coaching program for bright women. Her mission is to promote economic growth and equality by empowering girls and women to create sustainable businesses using their unique talents and abilities.

Previously, she was the psychologist at the Gary K. Herberger Young Scholars Academy at Arizona State University and the founding adviser for ASU’s Women in Science and Engineering (WiSE) Leadership program. She cofounded the Counseling Laboratory for the Exploration of Optimal States at the University of Kansas. She received her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Kansas, her M.A. in Psychology from the University of St. Mary, Kansas, and her B.S. in Biology from the University of Kansas.

 She presents on the following topics:

      • Bright Girls and Women
      • Mood and Money
      • Entrepreneurship


Sal Mendaglio, Ph.D.

Dr. Mendaglio is an associate professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Calgary, as well as a chartered psychologist.

He presents on the following topics:

      • Emotionality of gifted persons
      • Self-concept
      • Dabrowkski’s Theory of Positive Disintegration
      • Counseling of the gifted


Daniel Peters, Ph.D.

Dan Peters

Dr. Dan Peters is a licensed psychologist and award winning author who has devoted his career to the assessment, consultation and treatment of children, adolescents, and families, specializing in learning differences, anxiety, and issues related to giftedness and twice-exceptionality. He is passionate about helping parents and teachers engage children in the classroom, at home, and in life so that they can realize their full potential. Dr. Peters is co-founder and Executive Director of the Summit Center, and is the author of Warrior Workbook: A Guide for Conquering Your Worry Monster, Make Your Worrier a Worrier: A Guide to Conquering Your Child’s Fears, From Worrier to Warrior: A Guide to Conquering Your Fears, and Raising Creative Kids (co-authored with Dr. Susan Daniels). He blogs regularly for The Huffington Post and Psychology Today and is a frequent media guest. Dr. Peters speaks regularly at state and national conferences and writes on topics related to parenting, learning differences, and education.

      • Living with Intensity – Overexcitabilities in Gifted Youth
      • Gifted Kids on the Edge: At-Risk and At-Promise
      • Taming  the Worry Monster: Anxiety in Gifted and 2e Youth
      • Avoiding Avoidance: Just Use Your Disaster Supply Kit
      • Gifted and Learning Disabled: What Can We Do?
      • Building Fortitude in Gifted Youth
      • Perfectionism in the Gifted
      • Organization for the Creative Mind
      • Raising Creative Kids
      • Developing Differentiated Education Plans
      • Bringing it all Together: Integrative Assessment and Educational Planning for Gifted Youth
      • Diagnosis and Misdiagnosis of Gifted Youth
      • The Essence of the Gifted Person
      • Passion for Learning Beyond Kindergarten: The Power of Choice


F. Richard Olenchak, Ph.D.

Dr. Rich Olenchak is a professor, psychologist, and Director of the Urban Talent Research Institute at the University of Houston in Texas, where he has been since 1998. He graduated cum laude from the University of Michigan and completed advanced work in Educational Leadership at Eastern Michigan University and in Educational Psychology at Arizona State University. He earned his Ph.D. in Gifted Education and Educational Psychology from the University of Connecticut. For 11 years prior to going to Houston, he was Director of Teacher Education and Chair of Special Education at the University of Alabama.

He speaks about:

      • Students With Learning or Emotional Differences
      • Enhancing Creative Productivity
      • Overcoming Underachievement

Jean Peterson, Ph. D.

Dr. Peterson, professor and director of School Counseling at Purdue University in Indiana, has focused most of her clinical work and research on children and adolescents with exceptional ability, often exploring their experience of development with longitudinal and qualitative methods and focusing on populations that do not fit common stereotypes and therefore not often studied.  Dr. Peterson has written or  co-authored more than 80 books including Gifted at Risk: Poetic Portraits, journal articles, and textbook chapters, contributing to both school  counseling and gifted education literature and often bridging the two fields. She presents on the following topics:

      • A Developmental Perspective of High Achievement and Underachievement
      • The Asset-burden Paradox of Giftedness
      • Making Sense of Underachievement
      • Bullying in the World of Gifted Children
      • Development-oriented Small-group Work for Gifted Students
      • Curriculum for Social and Emotional Development of Gifted Kids
      • Many Kinds of Losses for Gifted Kids


Michael M. Piechowski, Ph.D.

Michael PiechowskiDr. Piechowski, now living in Madison, WI, is a Senior Fellow at both the Institute for Educational Advancement and Yunasa Summer Camp for Highly Gifted Youth. Dr. Piechowski’s expertise is in Counseling Psychology. He focuses on the psychology of giftedness and the development throughout gifted childhoods. He is the author of the book Mellow Out, They Say. If I Only Could and the co-author of the books Living with Intensity and Theory of Levels of Emotional Development. Additionally, he is the author of numerous individual book chapters and papers about gifted psychology and education. He presents on the following topics:

      • Living with Intensity
      • Empowering Children Through Personal Growth
      • Childhood Experiences and Spiritual Giftedness
      • Positive Disintegration
      • Emotional Giftedness: The Measure of Intrapersonal Intelligence
      • When Intensity Goes to School: Overexcitability, Creativity, and the Gifted Child
      • Theories and the Good: Toward Child-Centered Gifted Education


Jane Piirto, Ph.D.

Dr. Piirto is the Trustees’ Professor of Graduate Education and the Director of Talent Development Education at Ashland University Ohio. Dr. Piirto is best known for her development of the Piirto Pyramid, a powerful framework for developing student talent and is the author of Understanding CreativityHer focus is on how to nurture the important traits associated with creativity, such as persistence, imagination, resilience, and self-discipline.  Your audience will learn about:




      • The Seven I’s of Creativity
      • The Creativity Process
      • How Parents and Teachers Can Enhance Creativity in Children
      • Exercises to Promote Creative Thinking
      • The Piirto Pyramid of Talent Development in the Inclusionary Classroom


Sylvia B. Rimm, Ph.D.

sylvia20headshot20better20qualityDr. Rimm is a psychologist, director of Family Achievement Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio, and is a clinical professor at Case Western Reserve School of Medicine. Dr. Rimm speaks to thousands each year at schools, conferences, and meetings throughout the world and is the author of Jane Wins Again: Can Successful Women Have it All?Keys to Parenting the Gifted Child, How to Parent So Children Will Learn: Strategies for Raising Happy, Achieving Children, and Why Bright Kids Get Poor Grades and What You Can Do about It. Her energizing and inspiring messages make her an ideal speaker for parents, educators and students. She is able to adapt her wide range of messages to suit keynote addresses, seminars, one-, two-, or three-day workshops, or college credit workshops to fit the needs of particular audiences. These are a few of the topics that she presents on:

      • Underachievement Syndrome: An Educational Epidemic
      • Marching to the Beat of a Different Drummer
      • Parenting for Achievement
      • How to Parent So Children Will Learn
      • Pressures Gifted Children Feel
      • Gender Issues in Achievement
      • How to Engage Girls to Become Successful Women
      • Raising Girls with Optimism and Resilience
      • Raising Happy and Well-Behaved Preschoolers
      • Identification of Gifted and Creative Students
      • Growing Up Too Fast (for Middle- and/or High-School Students)
      • How to Respond to Bullying
      • Getting Along with Your Adult Children: When You Can Friends
      • Rescuing the Lives of Overweight Children

For more information regarding Dr. Rimm’s speaking engagements, please visit her webpage.


Karen B. Rogers, Ph.D.


Dr.  Rogers is a recently retired Professor in the Curriculum and Instruction Department at the University of St. Thomas, MN. She has been a visiting lecturer at universities and many educational conferences both in the United States and abroad. A widely acclaimed speaker, she is the author of Re-Forming Gifted Education: How Parents and Teachers Can Match. Dr. Roger’s presentations are very practical and a real eye-opener for educators and parents unfamiliar with the full body of research in the field of curriculum for gifted education.
Your audience will learn about:



      • Types of Giftedness
      • Gifts vs. Talents
      • Assessment Tools
      • Parent Inventory for Finding Potential
      • Types of Acceleration
      • Monitoring Progress
      • Types of Enrichment
      • Grouping Practices
      • Independent Study
      • Yearly Educational Plans
      • Negotiating with Schools


Deborah L. Ruf, Ph.D.

Deborah RufDr. Ruf works professionally in the Minneapolis area as a specialist in gifted assessment, test interpretation, and guidance for gifted children and adults. Having been a parent, teacher, and administrator in elementary through graduate education, she writes and speaks about school issues and social and emotional adjustment of gifted children, particularly children at the highest levels of giftedness. Her expertise is in “levels of intelligence” is highlighted in her book 5 Levels of Gifted: School Issues and Educational Options. Dr. Ruf has earned an under-graduate degree in Elementary Education, a Master’s degree in Administration & Supervision, and her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology with emphases in Test & Measurement and Learning & Cognition. She presents on the following topics:

      • How Teaching Reading and Math to Children By Age Makes As Much Sense As Teaching Reading and Math to Children By Height!
      • What to Do When the School Won’t Do What You Want It To Do: How to Work Effectively With the School
      • If I’m So Smart, Why’d I Do So Badly in School? Giftedness and Underachievement
      • Levels of Giftedness
      • How are Gifted People Identified?
      • Parenting Guidelines for You and Your Gifted Child: A Checklist of Do’s and Don’ts for Parents of Gifted Kids
      • Typical Development for Gifted is Often Not Typical
      • Social & Emotional Issues of the Gifted: Moral, Emotional Growth, and Giftedness in Adults & Children
      • Male or Female: How Being Gifted Affects Each
      • Discovering and Using Your Gifts


Wendy A. Skinner


Wendy Skinner lives in St. Louis Park, Minnesota, with her husband and two gifted children. She earned her B.A. in Elementary Education from the University of Northern Colorado and her MFA in writing from Hamline University. She has written the book Infinity and Zebra Stripes: Life with Gifted Children  and several articles in gifted journals, and she is a member of the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis. She currently writes patient and family-education material for a local children’s hospital.
She presents on the following topics:




      • How Parents and Teachers Can Advocate for Gifted Children
      • The Arts & Storytelling: Understanding and Encouraging Your Child’s Natural Artistic Urges
      • Gifted Children in Public School
      • Creative Writing for Elementary Age Children  


Razel Solow, Ph.D.

razel 2

Dr. Solow, now a gifted education consultant to schools, groups, and individuals, most recently served as Director, Center for Gifted Studies and Education, at Hunter College in New York City. Previously, she was Director of Research, Program for the Exceptionally Gifted (PEG), at Mary Baldwin College. Dr. Solow’s primary interest is parenting gifted children; she was a founding editorial board member of the NAGC magazine Parenting for High Potential and ran a parent-resource support group for 7 years. Her foci include the social, emotional and intellectual well being of gifted students with a specialization in profoundly gifted females, which is highlighted in her book College at 13: Young, Gifted, and Purposeful. She also focuses on how to attract gifted girls to the topics of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). Dr. Solow presents on the following topics:

      • Parenting of Gifted Children
      • How to Start and Maintain a Gifted Parent Group
      • The Social and Emotional Needs of Gifted Children
      • Differentiation of Instruction with Backward Design
      • Great Lesson Plans Begin with Enduring Understandings
      • Gifted Lives of Purpose: How to Encourage Children to Give Back to Society
      • STEM the Leaking Pipeline: Gifted Girls in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics


Lisa Van Gemert, M.Ed.T.

Lisa Van Gemert usies a combination of neuropsychology, pedagogy, humor, and technology to share best practices in gifted education with audiences around the world. Lisa is an expert consult to television shows including Lifetime’s “Child Genius,” writer of award-winning lesson plans, and author of the children’s and teachers’ guides to the National Book Festival, as well numerous published articles on social psychology and pedagogy. A former teacher, school administrator, and Youth & Education Ambassador for Mensa, she shares resources for educators and parents on her website She talks about the following topics:



          • Creativity & Instructional Strategies
          • Depth & Complexity
          • Differentiation
          • Identification & Assessment
          • Social & Emotional Needs of the Gifted
          • Perfectionism
          • Threats to giftedness
          • Motivation


      James T. Webb, Ph.D., ABPP-Cl

      dr-james-webbDr. Webb has been recognized nationally as one of 25 psychologists who have most influenced gifted education. A licensed clinical psychologist, Dr. Webb has focused on the social and emotional needs of gifted and talented children and adults. Dr. Webb established SENG (Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted), a national nonprofit organization that provides information, training, conferences, and workshops to parents and educators of gifted children, and he remains as Chair of SENG’s Professional Advisory Committee. He has co-authored A Parent’s Guide to Gifted ChildrenMisdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children and AdultsGrandparents’ Guide to Gifted Children,Guiding the Gifted Child: A Practical Source for Parents and TeachersGifted Parent Groups: The SENG Model, 2nd Editionmore than 70 professional publications, 15 books, three videos, and many research papers for psychology conventions or conferences regarding gifted and talented children. Dr. Webb’s presentations include the following topics:

              • Do Gifted Children Need Special Help?
              • Could Giftedness Be Mistaken for ADD, OCD, Bipolar, or Other Behavior Disorders?
              • How Can Grandparents Play a Role in Gifted Education?
              • Why Do Gifted Children Underachieve?
              • How Do I Raise a Successful Child?
              • Issues for Gifted Adults
              • Parenting Successful Children


      Suki Wessling, MFA

      Photo of Suki Wessling

      Suki Wessling writes articles about parenting, gifted education, and homeschooling for a variety of publications including Life Learning Magazine, The Gifted Education Communicator, Understanding Our Gifted, and Home Education Magazine. Her popular blog offers a parent perspective on current issues in education and parenting. She is the author of From School to Homeschool and also writes children’s fiction.
      She can speak on the following topics:



              • The What, How, and Why, of the Current Alternative Education Homeschooling Movement
              • Alternative Perspectives on Current Education Issues, Including Testing, the Common Core and Standardized Curriculum, and School Choice/Flexibility
              • How Homeschooling Affects Children’s Development
              • How Parents Can Find Resources, Support and Advice for Gifted Children.
              • How Parents Can Improve Their Parenting to Nurture Their Children’s Giftedness
              • Creative Writing for Parents About Their Experiences With Gifted Children
              • How to Improve Writing Skills, Develop Creativity, and Explore Ideas in More Depth


      Carol Strip Whitney, Ph.D.

      Dr. Carol Strip Whitney

      Dr. Whitney is a gifted education specialist for Midwest Educational Therapists & Associates, Enrichment Center, in Dublin, OH. Her focus is in gifted educational therapy for the twice exceptional (2e) student. Dr. Whitney is the author of Helping Gifted Children SoarHelping Gifted Children Soar, 2nd Ed. as well as A Love for Learning: Motivation and the Gifted Child.  She has been both a teacher and a consultant at the Summer Institute for the Gifted at Denison University. She works toward helping gifted children become all that they can be through skillfully crafted curriculum and motivation techniques designed to create autonomous learners.
      Dr. Whitney presents on the following topics:


              • How Parents and Teachers Can Motivate Gifted Children
              • The Gifted Brain and How it Differs
              • Classrooms That Work for Gifted Students
              • Gifted Educational Therapy for the Twice Exceptional (2e)


      Judy Willis, M.D., M.Ed.

      Dr. Willis is now a teacher at the Santa Barbara Middle School, after practicing neurology for fifteen years. Her specialization is practical applications of  school, classroom, and learning strategies that are derived from neurological research. Her work helps to use neuroscience research to create classroom success ranging through using information about how the brain best attends to, remembers, conceptualizes, and develops the executive functions to use knowledge most successfully for decision making, transfer, and innovation. Dr. Willis can present on:

              • Sustaining Students’ Attentive Focus and Memory Construction in the Digital Age
              • Participation and Mistakes are Keys to Learning and Intelligence
              • Understanding the Brain’s Responses to Emotion and the Strategies that Promote the Motivation and Growth Mindset
              • Motivating Active Learning and Perseverance through Challenge by Harnessing the Power of the Video Game Model
              • Maximizing Long-term, Conceptual Memory
              • The Executive Functions: The Essence of the Common Core Standards and UsingBrain Research to Help Students Develop Their Highest Cognitive Potentials for 21st Century Success
              • Memories that Stick

      For more information on Dr. Willis and the topics she can speak on, visit her website.



      To schedule an event with any of our authors, please contact Great Potential Press

      phone: (520) 777-6161  ·  fax: (520) 777-6217  ··

      Great Potential Press,Inc., 1650 North Kolb Road, Suite 200 Tucson, AZ 85715




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