Date: February 21-22, 2019
Location: Kalahari Resort and Convention Center, Wisconsin Dells, WI
Anthony Ianni, of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights, is one of the most sought after anti-bullying motivational speakers. At the age of 4 Anthony was diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD), which is on the Autism Spectrum (ASD). Doctors and specialists told Anthony's parents that he would barely graduate from high school, never from college, never be an athlete, and would likely live in an institution with other kids with Autism. His family was devastated but pledged they would help Anthony be successful.
And he is. Despite bullies, adversity and numerous personal challenges, Anthony never gave up. Not only did he earn his Bachelor's Degree from Michigan State University in Sociology, he is the first known athlete with autism to play Big 10 basketball. Anthony played for legendary coach Tom Izzo while at MSU. He won two Big Ten Championships, a Big Ten Tournament Title, was the recipient of the 2011 Tim Bograkos Walk On Award and the 2012 Unsung Player Award. He was a member of the 2010 Final Four Team.
Anthony has pledged his life and career to help those who face similar challenges
Cinda Johnson, Ph.D. is an associate professor and director of the graduate Special Education program at Seattle University. Dr. Johnson is the principal investigator for the Center for Change in Transition Services. She is a national leader in the area of transition from high school to post-high for young people with disabilities. She has a particular interest and passion for supporting children, adolescents and young people with mental health conditions to assure that they are provided the best opportunity to be successful after leaving high school. She is the co-author of Perfect Chaos: A Daughter's Journey with Bipolar, A Mother's Struggle to Save Her (St. Martin's Press. 2012).
Dr. Barbara Van Haren is currently the Assistant State Superintendent of the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction and formerly the State Director of Special Education. Barb has worked at the district and regional levels and in higher education prior to coming to the state level. She brings rural, suburban and urban experiences to her work at the department.