School Climate & Improvement

Dinwiddie, Rodger

Rodger Dinwiddie

Rodger Dinwiddie

Rodger Dinwiddie has been the CEO STARS-Nashville, an evidenced-based Student Assistance Program as recognized by the National Registry of Evidenced-based Programs and Practices, since 1986. Prior to joining STARS, Rodger served as the Executive Director of a nonprofit organization working with juvenile court referrals. He also was a classroom teacher in the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools for 7 years. Rodger is also a Certified Prevention Specialist - Level II. He is a certified trainer and Olweus Technical Assistance Consultant for the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program and Safe Dates Program, and he serves as the Tennessee State Olweus Coordinator in partnership with the Tennessee Department of Education, Clemson University, and Hazelden Educational Publishing, where he currently provides consultation in the areas of best practices in bullying prevention and intervention, school climate improvement, and the development of social emotional competencies. In addition, he provides consultation to both businesses and school districts to assist leaders in building strong(er) relationships in the workplace. Rodger is also the Immediate Past-President of the International Bullying Prevention Association. He is a native Nashvillian, where he is involved in numerous community organizations, including the Nashville Rotary Club. He and former CEO of Oasis Center, Hal Cato, were named Nashvillians of the Year by the Nashville Scene for their work in the collaboration and development of the Youth Opportunity Center, a partnership between Oasis Center and STARS.

Click here to download Rodger Dinwiddie's session descriptions.

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Everest, Kathryn

Kathryn Everest

Kathryn Everest is in her 22nd year as Director of Guidance andCounseling for the Fort Worth Independent School District. She provides leadership and program managementfor 240 professional school counselors.Kathryn, appointed by Governor Rick Perry to serve on the State Boardfor Educators Certification, was instrumental in pushing for revisions in the TACfor more rigorous requirements for school counselor certification. She was recognized as Texas' Counseling Supervisorof the Year and is recognized for her innovative andcomprehensive implementation of crisis response in schools andcommunities. For her work in the area of "wellness" on anational level, Kathryn was chosen "Great Woman of Texas - A Woman of Influence". Everest is recognizedas one of the best in her field as Kathryn's wide range of experiences, coupledwith her own unique perspective and insight intuitively and strategicallyaddresses today's ever changing issues as an advocate for students.

Click here to download Kathryn Everest's session descriptions.


Hodge, John

John HodgeJohn Hodge

Dr. John W. Hodge is president and co-founder of UrbanLearning and Leadership Center (ULLC), an organization focused on studentachievement and reduction of the achievement gap. He has served as a readingteacher, English teacher, AVID teacher, Assistant Principal and AssociateDirector of AVID Center Eastern Division. He served as Director of AnAchievable Dream Academy, an inner city school that piloted many of theinterventions used by Urban Learning and Leadership Center. An Achievable DreamAcademy is a high performing, high poverty school that has received numerous nationalawards. Prior to his career in education, Dr. Hodgedistinguished himself in the service of our country with the 7th InfantryDivision of the United States Army.

What sets Dr. John W. Hodge apart in the field ofeducation is his well-documented ability to put research and theory intoeveryday practice in rural, urban and suburban schools. His career has beendefined by assisting students and teachers overcome obstacles and achievegoals. He has served as an inspirational speaker at national, regional, andstatewide conferences across the United States. His presentations are often"the spark" for schools in their quest to meet and exceed state/federalaccreditation standards and implement strategies for continuous improvement.Dr. Hodge is an expert in helping schools create and sustain academicexcellence..

Click here to download John Hodge's session descriptions.

Click here to see video clips of John Hodge.

Click here to see an interview of John Hodge.


Williams, Deirdra

Julia TaylorDeirdra Williams

Deirdra is a graduate of NC State University (French Language and Literature) and NC Central University, where she received a Master of Arts in School Counseling. As a National Board Certified Teacher in K – 12 school counseling, she enjoys practicing school counseling at the secondary level so that she can help students prepare for and make a positive transition to post high school. She believes all students can learn and have something special to contribute to society. They just need the right resources and be willing to put forth a little effort.

Deirdra has been a professional school counselor in Wake County Public Schools for over 14 years. She has been able to advocate for school counseling and student achievement by actively using ASCA National Model documents to show evidence of a data driven and student centered school counseling program. During her tenure in the district, she has led two separate counseling teams to RAMP status, one receiving RAMP in just the school’s second year of existence. She currently serves as an ASCA RAMP reviewer and has traveled the state teaching and encouraging school counselors to use the ASCA National model to advocate for students and the profession.

Click here to download Deirdra Williams's session descriptions.


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