Dr. Selma Botman
Dr. Botman has dedicated her career to higher education. She previously served as the Vice President for Academic Affairs at the University of Massachusetts, the president of University of Southern Maine, and the provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at The City University of New York. Dr. Botman has also taught at the College of the Holy Cross where she was involved in international programs and promoted Middle Eastern studies.
In her current role as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Yeshiva University, Dr. Botman is working with faculty and deans to expand curricular offerings for both undergraduate and graduate students. Along with her administrative responsibilities, Dr. Botman continues to teach undergraduates in the area of her academic specialty, modern Middle Eastern history and culture.
Dr. Botman holds a BA in Psychology from Brandeis University, a BPhil in Middle Eastern studies from Oxford University, and an AM in Middle Eastern Studies and PhD in History and Middle Eastern Studies from Harvard University.
John R. Connolly is the co-founder and executive director of 1647, a non-profit start up that partners with schools to implement effective family engagement strategies including training teachers to conduct home visits. Prior to founding 1647, John spent six years as a Boston City Councilor where he chaired the Committee on Education and co-chaired the annual review of the Boston Public Schools' budget. During his time as a City Councilor, John led the effort to reform the Boston teachers contract, lengthen the school day, and fully staff school-based social and emotional health services. John also led a Council investigation that exposed rampant mismanagement of the Boston Public Schools' food services department. From 1995-1998, John taught seventh and eighth grade at the Nativity Mission School on the Lower East Side of Manhattan and taught sixth grade at the Boston Renaissance Charter School. John has also worked as an attorney at Ropes & Gray and Hanify & King, P.C. from 2001 – 2007.
John currently serves on the board of FUEL Education. He formerly served on the board of Meridian Academy and Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD).
Hugh has been in and around the education industry as a professor, administrator, marketer and serial entrepreneur since 1995, with successful tenures at Emerson College, Lesley University and Laureate Education, Inc., (home of Walden University, Kendall College, National Technological and others). In 2007, he formed Trinity Education Group, Inc. as a Maryland S-Corps, and has served as its President and General Manager since. Hugh is a frequent presenter at professional education conferences such as NAGAP, AACRAO SEM, SXSW Interactive, SXSWedu and Connexions. He has held several board positions for corporations, including his current role as Board Chairman for InSync Education. He is a founding board member of SXSWedu and held a board position on Rice University's OpenStaxx OER Center until 2013. Hugh received his BA summa cum laude from Moravian College (1990) and his Master of Fine Arts/Creative Writing from Emerson College (1995).