Association of
Leadership Educators









2017 Keynote Speakers


Dr. Matthew White is currently Professor of Trumpet, Coordinator of Jazz and Commercial Music, and Director of Ensembles at Coastal Carolina University (Conway, SC) and was previously a first call freelance and session musician in Nashville and Miami.  He holds degrees from the University of North Florida and The University of Miami and has appeared on numerous albums, radio broadcasts, and television shows, performing with: Bob Mintzer, Jeff Coffin, Arturo Sandoval, Dave Liebman, Rihanna, Oscar DeLeon, Brian Setzer, the Mavericks, Steve Bailey and Victor Wooten, Howard Levy, and various other artists, ensembles, symphonies, and big bands.  In 2013, Matt released his first album as a leader, The Super Villain Jazz Band, on ARC. The album has gained widespread critical acclaim, including 4 stars in Downbeat Magazine.

“It heralds the arrival of a new major voice in jazz, one whose name belongs in the pantheon of its true heroes.”– Russ Musto, New York Jazz Record

“In The Super Villain Jazz Band, Matt White validates himself as a legitimate jazz composer assisted by a group of outstanding jazz sidemen in an exceptional collection of jazz compositions.” -- Jeffrey Uhrich, AllAboutJazz.com

In addition to a an active performing and teaching schedule, Matt is involved in a number of music research topics, including the preservation and archiving of traditional Gullah Spirituals, Visualization and Improvisation, and Brass Performance Fundamentals and Techniques. He edited Augie Haas’ Build Your Range method book, which has international distribution and is used in over 25 Collegiate Trumpet Studios.  He manages the CCU Recording Studio and has engineered and produced recordings for Dave Douglas, the Athenaeum Press, and Ron Daise.

Matt will record his second album as a leader in Winter 2015 and continues to be active as a recording artist in Nashville and a clinician throughout the United States. Matt is a Bach Trumpet performing artist and endorses Patrick Mouthpieces.


Erin Fischer is the owner and CEO of The Leadership and Training Studio. She has spoken in 45 states, recruited in Hungary, volunteered in Hawaii, taught in Brazil and has been on stages with thousands of people in the audience, all with the focus of developing people, while building teams and organizations. Erin considers herself a leadership nerd - a woman on a mission to help teams and individuals excel at what they do. Her forum is the stage, but her focus is super-cognitive skills. She wants to support the growth of people by giving them time to think, reflect and gain new knowledge. She has been through too many trainings and sat through too many boring speakers to know that the person who is leading the conversation must be dynamic. So, she is a speaker that will keep your attention, give you practical skills, and you will walk away thinking, “That was awesome. I can’t believe how fast that went.” 


Dr. Josie Ahlquist is a digital leadership educator, discovering the intersection of digital communication technologies and leadership development in higher education.  She believes in challenging how education thinks about social media for community building, leadership development, and student services.

Josie received her EdD from California Lutheran University doctoral program, studying higher education leadership. She is very attuned to the landscape of higher education and is passionate about developing leadership capacity of college students, as well as administrators. She brings over a decade of experience in the field of higher education in areas such as student activities, campus recreation, student unions, marketing, residence life, judicial affairs, student leadership and new student orientation. Currently, she is an adjunct faculty member with Florida State University teaching undergraduate and master level courses.

Josie is committed to advancing research, knowledge, and skill around technology for higher education faculty and administrative leadership around the world. Josie was appointed to the ACPA (American College Personnel Association) President’s Task Force on Digital Technology, co-chairing the Research and Scholarship team. She has also provided education in the following countries, United States, Canada, Mexico and United Arab Emirates.

For the third year in a row she has been named to the “Top 50 Must Read Higher Education Technology Blogs” by Ed Tech Magazine.  As a writer, she is a co-author in the Handbook of Student Affairs Administration textbook, writing the chapter on Computer-Mediated Communication and Social Media. She is also published in The Journal of Leadership Studies, in a thought piece called Trending Now: Digital Leadership Education using Social Media and the Social Change Model.  She is also a co-editor and author in the New Directions in Student Services volume, “Engaging the Digital Generation," as well as co-editor and author in the recently published New Directions in Student Leadership, "Going Digital in Student Leadership." Josie is currently writing a book with Stylus Publishing, set to release summer 2018 on Digital Leadership in Higher Education.

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