Speakers


Year over year, the National Conference on Student Leadership (NCSL) assembles a dynamic group of facilitators who represent a diverse calling in life.

We are pleased to introduce the Fall 2017 speakers who are dedicated to offering their best to you.


Dr. Nancy Adegoke

Nancy Adegoke

Dr. Nancy Adegoke earned her PhD at Seton Hall University. Her research interest lie in examining mental health issues in minority communities. In 2013, she published her first book, Eating Disorders in Black Women. Adegoke is a member New York Psychological Associationand the Haitian American Psychiatric Association. Currently, Adegoke is a consultant psychologist where she provides clinical services to adults in hospital, rehabilitation centers, and skilled nursing homes.

Program: Distressed, Disruptive, & Potentially Dangerous Students (Advisors)


Claudio Josuel Alejo

Claudio Josuel Alejo

Claudio Josuel Alejo is an educator and performer from Jersey City, N.J. of Afro-Dominican descent. After studying at New Jersey City University and earning his BA in history he became a graduate student at Montclair State University and is its current graduate coordinator of Greek life. As an undergraduate student Alejo was a diligent student leader.  He has delivered lectures about resiliency at New Jersey City University’s annual LofT conference and #KnightTalks and has held diverse workshops in different conferences including Psi Sigma Phi’s Annual National Summit, the ASCEND Summer Bridge Program, and the Annual EOF/OSP High School Conference.

Program: One Beat, One Step, One Sound!


Darryl Bellamy

Darryl Bellamy

Darryl Bellamy is a professional speaker and author. His company is Bellamy Inspires, LLC. Bellamy is a corporate America dropout turned author of Waking Up Chase, professional speaker, and a rising star in student development. Bellamy graduated with his undergraduate degree in business management from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and now speaks at conferences, orientations, and campuses around the nation inspiring students to conquer their fears and self-doubt to lead on campus and in life. Bellamy prides himself in only giving advice that he uses in his everyday life to overcome his fears and setbacks. What he teaches is what he does!

Program: Fearless Leadership: Conquering Your Fears to Dominate in Everything and How Intelligent are you?- Emotional Intelligence and the Leadership Altering Effects

Contact: www.bellamyinspires.com


Odell Bizzell Jr.

Odell Bizzell Jr.

Odell Bizzell Jr. is a nationally known blogger, speaker, author, internet personality, and expert in training leaders to overcome obstacles to succeed. While in high school Odell started a small candy retail distribution center that earned him over $75,000 and an academic scholarship to college. As a successful keynote speaker, Bizzell has been featured in USA Today, Yahoo Finance, CNBC.com, and over 200 other media outlets. Through his company, The Impact Student Success Program, Bizzell has partnered with more than 200 colleges, youth organizations, and the military to reach tens of thousands of students. He’s also the author of five books and is a nationally recognized voice in helping students turn their life story into a success story. His presentations help students learn about the intersection of leadership and diversity and how to become more effective leaders in a diverse world. Bizzell has presented on the same stages as Super Bowl winning coaches, national politicians, and celebrities such as Stephen A. Smith, David Letterman, and Oprah Winfrey.

Program: How to find the truth in the age of Fake News and Alternative Facts (Advisors) and IMPACT – Six Ways to Build Unstoppable Leaders

Contact: www.odellbizzell.com


Ash Cash

Ash Cash

Ash Exantus is called Ash Cash by many. He helps people maximize their full potential by providing the inspiration, tools, and resources needed to live their best life. He is a personal finance expert, speaker, television/radio personality, bestselling author, business consultant, brand ambassador, and life coach to entrepreneurs, celebrities, athletes, executives, and high net-worth individuals. He also is the head of financial education at BankMobile, a digital app. He has been featured on popular national media outlets including CNN, The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, American Banker, CNBC, TheStreet.com, Black Enterprise, Essence Magazine, Ebony, BET, and Fox Business News.

Program: The LiveFree Life: 8 Steps to Financial Freedom

Contact: www.iamashcash.com


Wendy Gates Corbett

Wendy Gates Corbett

Wendy Gates Corbett is one of 1,900 professionals in the world who’ve earned the Association for Talent Development’s Certified Professional in Learning and Performance credential. She speaks locally, regionally, and nationally about the power of visuals and presenting powerfully with presence. She’s the author of the TD@Work, “Five Questions for Great Presentation Visuals”, the co-author of two ATD Infolines on designing and delivering live virtual training, and a contributing author of three books: 101 Ways to Make Learning More Active Beyond the Classroom, 101 More Ways to Make Training Active, and SCORE! For Webinar Training: Super Closers, Openers, Revisiters, Energizers. She served on the board of directors of the ATD-Research Triangle Area chapter for nine years and is a National Advisor for Chapters with ATD. She was a Speaker Coach and the Slide Designer for TEDxRaleigh 2016. She’s a charter member of the Presentation Guild and of Black Women in Business and currently serves as a board advisor for both Black Women in Business and the Business Alliance in Raleigh. She was named a 2016 Emerging Leader by Emerging Women NC for her ability to lead with compassion and integrity.

Program: Seven Language Secrets for Presenting Yourself with Power

Contact: www.wendygatescorbett.com


Dave Collins

Dave Collins

Dave Collins is an award-winning improviser, coach, and corporate strategist with 10 years of experience in improvising and coaching. He presently works to find innovative ways to develop practical business skills through improv training. Like Aesop’s fable about Oak and the Reeds, he believes modern organizational cultures must incorporate basic improv tools and techniques to survive and thrive in any storm. Along with his teammates, Dave won the National Collegiate Improv Tournament in 2010, has headlined shows across the country, and individually coaches hundreds of students and professionals in the art and practice of improv. When not on stage or directing, he has applied his analytical and facilitation talents to his work as a workplace strategist and change management expert for AECOM Strategy Plus, encouraging clients to embrace change.

Program: Practical Improv for Leadership and Personal Storytelling Playbook

Contact: www.oakandreeds.com


Tamara Cunningham

Tamara Cunningham

Tamara Cunningham has been a leader in higher education for 18 years and has held roles in both academic affairs and student affairs, including adjunct faculty in the department of English, coordinator for residence life, assistant director of campus life, SGO & greek life advisor, assistant dean of students, supervisor of transfer student services, and assistant to the president and provost. She is currently the assistant vice president for global initiatives at New Jersey City University where she oversees the institution’s strategic internationalization plan. Cunningham and her husband are ministers at Christian Love Baptist Church in Irvington, N.J., and they have three children.

Program: The Irrelevant Giant (Advisors) and iBrag Different (Advisors)


Jeff Dess

Jeff Dess

MrJeffDess is a dynamic public speaker, author, emcee and professor of Haitian descent. The native New Yorker known as the Disruptive Educator is also the co-founder of the educational platform, Trill or Not Trill. The company bridges the gap between popular culture and student development. MrJeffDess is the author of five books, including Trill Motivation, which through imagery, poetry, and commentary tackles leadership and motivation from a contemporary perspective. After studying at St. John’s University and earning a BA and MA in English literature, he worked in student affairs for more than 10 years. He has delivered lectures at more than 25 universities including Columbia and Princeton University has performed globally in Indonesia, Italy, and South Africa. He’s been featured in Ebony Magazine, The Root, and Urban Cusp Magazine.

Program: Student Leadership Workshops and Beyonce Always on Beat


Bertrand Gervais

Bertrand Gervais

Acknowledged by President Obama for his work as a young leader in America, Bert Gervais, The Mentor Guy, is an author, thought leader, and mentor evangelist. Black enterprise.com describes him as a rising star and Millennial Leaders calls him one of “The Top Gen Y” leaders in the country. His secret? By the time he was 25 years old he had already formed 25 mentor relationships. Born in Haiti, one of the poorest countries in the world, Gervais quickly realized the value of seizing opportunities and encourages others to do the same. He came to America with no connections, limited resources, and was separated from his mother. By 2006, while at Binghamton University, he started an internet company and was named the east coast student entrepreneur of the year. His best-selling book Who’s In Your Top Hive: Your Guide to Finding Your Success Mentors shares the lessons he learned during his journey. He has spoken to over 30,000 young adults in 30 states and two countries and has been featured on Fox News and USA Today.

Program: Freestyle Rap Leadership and Communicator to Motivator


Cassandra Gomez

Cassandra Gomez

Cassandra Gomez is the epitome of what it means to be a strong, fierce, and sophisticated leader. She is a proud alumna of New Jersey City University, earning her BS in criminal justice. As an undergraduate, Cassandra balanced being a full time student, part time employee, and NJCU's campus life spokesperson. She never fails to motivate herself and others with her passionate, optimistic, hyperactive personality.

Program: One Beat, One Step, One Sound!


Alvert Hernandez

Alvert Hernandez

Alvert Hernandez is a graduate student pursuing his MA in higher education administration and leadership at Montclair State University. He is a former two-term student government president, and has leadership experience in residence life, new student orientation, greek life, admissions, and first year student experience programs. He is a proud Cuban and Dominican American and loves arroz con habichuelas y pollo guisado.

Program: Avoid THEY: How to Handle Criticism as a Leader, Luke Cage Leadership: Always F.O.R.W.A.R.D.!, and Leadership X Mentoring (Advisors)


Valerie Jeannis

Valerie Jeannis

With a mandate to challenge women to never settle, author and motivational speaker Valerie Jeannis is the creative force behind the I Dare to Dream Project, a campaign daring women and youth to pursue their dreams unapologetically. As part of the campaign, Jeannis is currently producing a user-generated documentary web-series with the aim of collecting at least 10,000 videos showcasing the dreams and fears of women of all ages and from all walks of life. Her books include: Dare to Dream: A Dreamer’s Manifesto, I Am Beautiful: The Confidence to Pursue My Dreams, and soon to be released, Diary of a Dreamer: The Temptation to Quit and God Is My Business Coach: The Dreamer’s Manual. Jeannis is an international motivational speaker who is rapidly becoming a highly sought-after voice to millennials, young professionals, and those in faith communities pursuing personal development, transformation, and the discovery of purpose.

Program: Breaking Up with Fear


Saby Labor

Saby Labor

Saby Labor is a first-generation college student, fierce campus-inclusion advocate, and a high-energy force to be reckoned with. She is the founder and CEO of Resilient Campus, a leadership and inclusion organization. Saby coaches college leaders across identities to live inclusive leadership excellence. She has more than 10 years of experience working in colleges and universities. Saby has a doctorate degree in higher education administration and aspires to be a community college president and published author when she grows up. When Saby isn’t teaching gender studies classes and running her business, you can find her hanging with her spouse and dogs in Minneapolis. Saby uses she/her and they/them gender pronouns.

Program: KEYNOTE: “Alternate Dimensions: Sci Fi Lessons for Visionary Leaders” and Transform US: Transformational Leadership for a Brighter Tomorrow


Maurisa C. Li-A-Ping

Maurisa C. Li-A-Ping

Maurisa C. Li-A-Ping is an educator, storyteller, and humanitarian from Brooklyn, New York. She seeks to bring spoken word into conventional spaces within the academy to push the boundaries on ways of knowing and learning. Her dedication to her craft has led her to receive The Ernst Pawel Award for literary excellence. Her performances include the Women’s Center Stage Festival, World Famous Apollo Theater, United Nations, New York Civil Liberties Union Annual Benefit Concert, and more. Li-A-Ping holds a BA in sociology from St. John's University. At St. John's she established Haraya's 1st Legacy Scholarship for Racial Justice and then went on to be honored by Who's Who Among Students in American Universities & Colleges. Li-A-Ping is currently continuing her education in Indiana University- Bloomington's Higher Education Student Affairs master’s program.

Program: Spoken Word and Leadership


Ashley Mui

Ashley Mui

Ashley Mui is the co-founder of PlanIt Brooklyn, a creative consulting company in New York City that specializes in social engineering. It is committed to growing start-ups, emerging leaders, and small institutions. Crowned the Gratitude Guru by her community, she is also the creator of Gratuity Included, a business dedicated to putting the ease into daily gratitude. In early 2012, she led Love & Gratitude: A 21-day gratitude challenge, activating women across the country to cultivate grateful lives. Mui is most proud of self-publishing a 365 perpetual gratitude calendar, “Gratitude Made From Scratch”. She is currently working on documentary films as an associate producer to honor and pay tribute to extraordinary people who have made an impact on music, sports, and humanity. As a power giver, she continues to support people in creating rich, full, and abundant lives.

Program: Acknowledgement Circle

Contact: Follow her on instagram @ashleythebalm, read her musings on www.ashleythebalm.com, and participate in her gratitude movement at www.gratuityinc.com


Paulie Nassar

Paulie Nassar

Growing up in New York City, Paul Nassar was inspired by all the writing on the walls—and that's where his obsession with murals began. He took his love of art, studied economics for college in Scotland, and made it his mission is to create daily. Nassar took his passion for creating and his love for community and co-founded Off The Wall Graffiti, a nonprofit dedicated to young artists whose only exposure or opportunity to paint is in the streets. The group takes these kids and gives them a place where they can create safely. Nassar's art takes him on many ventures, including murals, canvas, body paint, and music. His current projects include playing percussion on upcoming projects with Young Guru, as well as painting murals for elementary schools in New York, Los Angeles, and Miami.

Program: Sketchbook Oragami and Dream and Draw (Advisors)


Camryn Nelson

Camryn Nelson

Throughout her education, Nelson worked to be what she thought she “should” be. She was a successful student and a leader on her campus while building a platform to speak to girls about media manipulation. Through her work with empowerment programs like Girls on the Run International, the Dove Self-Esteem Campaign, Generation Know from U by Kotex, Girls World Expo and the launch of her non-profit, Rep Your School–Build a School, Nelson became an activist in her community and pursued her dream of changing the world. During her undergraduate education, Nelson traveled the country speaking to young women about self-esteem, media literacy, and cultivating confidence. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin River Falls, Nelson continues to speak to young women on a national level. Through her business Brave Like Me, Nelson inspires women to believe in their own acts of everyday bravery. Nelson is completing her MA in communication studies at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities where she is researching the interaction of young women, Instagram, and empowered media production.

Program: Brave Like Me

Contact: www.bravelikeme.org


Tiffany R. Paige

Tiffany R. Paige

Tiffany R. Paige is a 2002 graduate of Jackson State University with a degree in biology. She received her JD degree from Mississippi College School of Law in 2006 and a Masters in library and information Science from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2010. Tiffany is a doctoral candidate in the higher education administration program at the University of Southern Mississippi. In 2012, Paige rejoined the Mississippi College law administration as its inaugural director of diversity and outreach. Currently, she is the assistant dean for student services. Paige has been a as guest lecturer at Tougaloo College, Jackson State University, and the University of Southern Mississippi. In 2015, she served as a cluster facilitator with LeaderShapeâ at its National Institute Session in Boston, Mass. Paige is a researcher with interest in historically black colleges and universities, social justice, minority student retention, and undocumented students. Paige mentors high school students, is a charter member of the Sunrise Rotary Club of Metro Jackson, and is a founding member of the Jackson Professional Group. She is member of the Clinton (MS) Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and a member of the 2013 Leadership Greater Jackson class and 2015 Mississippi Black Leadership Institute.

Program: Not Just for Likes: A Workshop on Social Media Branding


Stan Pearson II

Stanley Pearson II

Stan Pearson II is a bi-lingual speaker, motivational comedian, and author. He was voted Speaker of the Year 2011 by APCA and a Diversity Artist of the Year finalist by Campus Activities Magazine. His presentations connect, entertain, and educate everyone, regardless of race, gender, age, religion, or cultural or socio-economic background. Stan earned his BA in Spanish from Missouri Western State University and his MBA with a concentration in management from Texas A & M International University. While an undergraduate, Stan had political aspirations and was able to intern for the late Governor Mel Carnahan in the Office of Boards and Commissions, and later for his wife, Senator Jean Carnahan, on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. He believes you're good, you're great, you're worth it!

Program: The S.A.L.S.A. Life: 5 keys to Finding your Rhythm to Success, Just Because I Am… Doesn’t Mean…, and Three Ways to Improve Your Office Environment and Personal Life in Less than a Week (Advisors)

Contact: www.stanpearson.com


Alyea Pierce

Alyea Pierce

Alyea Pierce holds an MEd and a BA from Rutgers University New Brunswick. She is an author, international poet, and playwright who is a “real nice cook up” of the West Indies. Pierce’s work has been featured on the stages of the Apollo Theatre and Broadway’s New Amsterdam Theatre, as well as countless TEDx events across the states and abroad. Her work has been published in the Caribbean Writer, and she is the 2016 playwright-in-residence and actress for the Strength Out of Shadows Theatre Company, in which she wrote and performed in her spirited play, Financial Slavery: The College Debt Sentence.

Program: KEYNOTE


Marcey Rader

Marcey Rader

Marcey Rader is the founder of the Work Well. Play More! Institute and Marcey Rader Coaching. She is a productivity and health expert specializing in helping high achievers climb the ladder without sacrificing productivity and health. Marcey coaches busy professionals from solopreneurs to Fortune 100 companies how to eat for energy, find movement opportunities to increase creativity, efficiently control the inbox and best manage their time to Work Well and Play More! She is the bestselling author of Beyond Travel: A Road Warrior’s Survival Guide and Hack the Mobile Lifestyle: 6 Steps to Work Well and Play More!

Program: Email Extinguisher: Simple steps to shrink your inbox and Conquer the Calendar: Meeting mastery to work in your line of genius (Advisors)

Contact: www.marceyrader.com/speaking


Brandi Baldwin-Rana

Dr. Brandi Baldwin Rana

After spending over six years in higher education as a psychology and business professor, Baldwin-Rana turned in her grade book and started a new career as an entrepreneur. Today she is a highly sought after workforce engagement consultant and owner of Millennial Ventures Holding Company, a firm that manages a growing suite of brands focused on developing today's workforce. She is recognized as a leader in helping companies design employee development programs to develop, engage, and retain their top talent. She wants to level the playing field for millennial professionals so they are positioned to have success in their lives and careers.
Baldwin-Rana speaks at over 30 corporations and conferences annually to teach on various topics related to millennials, employee engagement, entrepreneurial leadership, and talent development. She was recently appointed from a pool of over 400 professionals to Mayor Jim Kenney's 2017 Millennial Advisory Committee, and was formerly featured as a part of the Philadelphia Business Journal's "People on the Move" campaign in 2015. She is the author of "Put in Work: Gain Respect, Influence Others, and Get Results as a New Leader, " available on Amazon.com and Kindle.

Program: Oh No You Didn’t!?! How to Communicate Your Way Out of Conflict Situations and Make Them Say I Do: How to Get Engaged with Today’s Student Leaders (Advisors)

Contact: www.doctorbrandi.com


Tonya Rapley

Tonya Rapley

Tonya Rapley is a nationally recognized millennial money expert and creator of the award winning site, My Fab Finance. In 2014 she was deemed the “New Face of Wealth Building” by Black Enterprise magazine and featured as their cover subject. Rapley’s mission is to help millennials break the cycle of living paycheck to paycheck so that they can become financially free and do more of what they love. She is the host and executive producer of the web-series Fab Finance with Tonya for Centric and the creator of the #BanishTheBalance challenge, a debt elimination challenge that helped over 4,000 participants pay off more than $200,000 of debt in sixty days. Selected by TV One as a modern day history maker, Tonya is a full-time entrepreneur and tours the country providing workshops. Her client list includes Fidelity Investments, Prudential, the National Endowment for Financial Education and FinCon ( the financial bloggers conference). Tonya has spoken at Bloomberg, Essence Fest, Millennial Week, PepsiCo, the Blogging While Brown Conference, BlogHer, Circle of Sisters, and at a host of colleges and universities. Tonya’s fierce financial advice has appeared on media outlets including US News, N.Y. Daily News, Buzz Feed, Essence.com, The Root, Credit.com, Go Banking Rates, Reuters, Refinery29, and Centric.

Program: Building Your Power Network: How to effectively network for professional success and Money Lessons Every Student Should Know Before Graduation


Scott A. Siegel-Ortiz

Scott A. Siegel-Ortiz

Scott A. Siegel-Ortiz is a well-rounded higher education professional with more than eight years of dedication to the development and success of students. His passion for making an impact knows no boundaries and is constantly striving to reach the next level while encouraging his students to do the same. He currently serves as the associatet director of student life and engagement at Columbia University Business School. Siegel-Ortiz also loves long walks down the aisles of Target and likes to post lots of pics of his cats on social media.

Program: House of Targaryen Leadership and Leadership X Mentoring (Advisors)


Antonio Talamo

Antonio Talamo

Antonio Talamo is a higher education professional with experience working in student activities and advisement. He is the coordinator for commuter students and programs at Montclair State University. He has grown from a go-to-class-go-home student to a professional who is passionate about giving students the best college experience at any level. He is a huge sports fan who loves the New York Giants and the Boston Red Sox and swears he is the reason the Red Sox broke the Bambino curse.

Program: Stranger Things : The Upside of Down of Networking, Wear Your Passion, and Bringing the Cool into the Now: Pop Culture Programming


Lenny A. Williams

Lenny A. Williams

Lenny Williams holds an MBA from New Jersey City University where he currently serves as a professor of entrepreneurship within the School of Business. He also teaches in the business departments of Union, Hudson, and Brookdale Community Colleges. Within higher education, he has a strong background in enrollment management, admissions, and retention. Still under the age of 30, he’s already impacted many students inside of the classroom and has assisted hundreds more get into college. Lenny has traveled nationwide and abroad speaking to many companies and schools to spread the message of being an effective entrepreneur. Lenny has overcome hurdles and has a masterful storytelling ability. With every engagement, he strives to achieve his mission of reaching generations and reminding them that greatness can be achieved against all odds. In addition, he has created a scholarship program in his hometown, and worked with schools and organizations such as: Yale University, Columbia University, Rutgers University, Towson University, YouTube sensation Latoya Forever, Thisis50.com, Free from 106 and Park, The Root, The Breakfast Club, NFL Players Association, and many more.

Program: KEYNOTE and Views from the Six


Natalie Williams

Natalie Williams

Natalie Williams is from Chicago, Il. and a graduate of Central Michigan University (CMU) where she received a BAA in integrative public relations with a double minor in legal studies and public affairs. While at CMU, she studied abroad in Singapore, interned on Capitol Hill through the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, and interned with Special Olympics Michigan. She received her MA in communication from Illinois State University with a focus on Intercultural Communication. Williams is a corporate business analyst, college instructor, and travels the nation to speak to students about on leadership and collegiate success.

Program: Professional Development is A Different World