Keynote Speakers

Col. Thomas Henry Magness, US Army, Retired, PE 

COL Tom Magness P.E. resizedColonel Magness' last position in the Army was managing a five billion dollar construction project in Afghanistan, so he'd understand many of the challenges that School Facilities Directors deal with regularly in overseeing projects and budgets and managing a large staff. He also was a teacher/coach/consultant at the Army's National Training Center for four years, where he mentored military leaders. 

Tom has over 26 years of practical leadership experience both in traditional military units and non-traditional, civilian-based, bottom line-focused construction organizations. He served in leadership assignments around the world, culminating as a commander for a $5B engineering and construction program in Afghanistan. He has served as commander (CEO) for five different organizations, all with diverse responsibilities and missions. He served for 4 years as a teacher/coach/consultant at the US Army’s National Training Center, mentoring military leaders on fundamental elements of leadership. An Airborne Ranger, Tom is comfortable with the leadership of both small units and large with years of practical experience leading groups, both military and civilian, from 30 to 1,400.

Tom retired from the military in 2011. His last assignment in Afghanistan, served as an opportunity to demonstrate that visionary, inspiring leadership resonates not just with Americans. During his 12-month deployment, he more than tripled the output of his organization by making people believe in the seemingly impossible and focusing not just on building projects but on building people to be able to accomplish more than they ever thought possible. He built a team of military, civilians, contractors, and Afghan engineers who found ways to overcome life and death challenges to accomplish the mission. 

Bill Daggett, Ed.D., Founder and Chairman 

Bill Headshot 9Bill Daggett, Ed.D.is recognized worldwide for his proven ability to move preK-12 education systems towards more rigorous and relevant skills and knowledge for all students. For 25 years, he has crisscrossed our nation, as well as the industrialized world, to lead school reform efforts to effectively prepare students for their future.

While an avid supporter of public education, he also challenges all of us to be more focused on our children’s future than on maintaining the schools of our youth. His insights and leadership has caused nearly every major education association in the country, hundreds of school districts, numerous political and business leaders, publishers, and others to seek out his advice and guidance.

Before founding and now serving as Chairman of the International Center for Leadership in Education, Dr. Daggett was a teacher, local administrator, and a director with the New York State Education Department.

He is the creator of the Rigor/Relevance Framework which has recently become the cornerstone of much of the nation’s school reform efforts. He is also the author of numerous books about learning and education, textbooks, research reports, and journal articles.