2020 Virtual Conference Keynote Speakers

Scott Stump

Scott Stump is the assistant secretary for career, technical, and adult education at the U.S. Department of Education. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on July 16, 2018, after being nominated by President Donald J. Trump on May 15, 2018.

Stump serves as the principal adviser to Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos on all matters concerning high school, career, technical and adult education as well as community colleges, the workforce and economic development.

Prior to assuming the role of assistant secretary for career, technical, and adult education, Stump served as the chief operating officer of Vivayic, Inc., a learning solutions provider devoted to helping individuals, organizations and corporations do good in the world. 

James E. Rzepkowski

James E. Rzepkowski is the Assistant Secretary for the Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning at the Maryland Department of Labor. Within the Division are five Offices that implement the mission of the Division: Workforce Development, Adult Education & Literacy Services, Correctional Education, Fiscal Administration, and Workforce Information & Performance. From January 2019 to August 2019, he served as Acting Secretary of the Maryland Department of Labor.

Prior to his appointment by the Hogan-Rutherford Administration in February 2015, he served 8 years as the Corporate Director of Workforce Development at Constellation Energy Nuclear Group, LLC (CENG), headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland. He developed and implemented the company’s mission critical workforce development initiative leveraging strategic partnerships with educational institutions in multiple states to provide a pipeline of skilled and qualified workers to meet the growing needs of the energy industry. Mr. Rzepkowski represented CENG on numerous national industry association boards focused on adult learning and technical training as well as state and local workforce development organizations.

Dr. Meghan McBride

Dr. Meghan McBride serves as the Dean for Adult Education at Georgia Piedmont Technical College, which serves DeKalb, Newton, and Rockdale counties. Meghan is a product of the Technical College System of Georgia, having earned a GED and diplomas in Business and Medical Administrative Technology from Southern Regional Technical College (SRTC) in Moultrie, Georgia.

With hopes of becoming a teacher, Meghan went on to earn an Associate of Science degree from Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in 2005 and a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Studies Education from Valdosta State University in 2007. After teaching high school social studies for several years, Meghan pursued a graduate degree so that she could access a career in higher education.

Dave Weber

For over 25 years Dave Weber’s fun, high energy, and entertaining style have made him one of the country’s most sought after speakers. Presenting well over 160 times each year to tens of thousands all across the country, he is often described as a “Chihuahua on caffeine” and is always a crowd favorite.

From the most well respected corporations in the world, to middle schoolers, and everyone in between, Dave delivers an infusion of life into any event. Whether it is an inspirational keynote to kick off or close out a conference, or a “nuts and bolts” personal organization training program to a small group, participants come away eager to implement what they have learned.

As a captivating presenter and phenomenal story teller, Dave has discovered that laughter opens the head and the heart to consider internalizing new principles…and humor is a big part of all of his presentations.

Sharon Bonney

Sharon Bonney began her career with COABE as a part-time administrator in 2009, moving up in the organization as she showed an unparalleled commitment to the field of adult education. Sharon has helped advance the organization on a number of fronts, including managing efforts to move it from a 1,300-member group in 2009 to 28,000 active members in 2020.

She was the guiding force behind designing and implementing a new national conference model; developing new state, national and workforce partnerships with more than 100 organizations; rebranding the COABE research journal and a related research-to-practice initiative; and designing all new professional development offerings, including webinars that engage have engaged more than 25,000 members.

Dr. Don Finn

Dr. Don Finn has been elected to serve as President of the board of directors for the Coalition on Adult Basic Education (COABE) for the 2019-2021 term beginning on July 1. His previous COABE service includes a term as President Elect, Secretary to the Board and Region 2 Representative.

Don has been an adult educator since 1992 and currently serves associate professor of education specializing in adult education, professional development, curriculum and instruction, and leadership at the Regent University School of Education (SOE). Don has served in a number of leadership positions at Regent University including SOE Dean (2015-2018), chair and vice chair of the university curriculum committee (2007-2015), and chairman of the SOE doctoral and curriculum & Instruction programs. Prior to joining the Regent faculty, Don participated in and led several initiatives on various projects through the School of Education at Virginia Commonwealth University between 1999 and 2006.