LEAD Conference

A conference for education leaders

Conference logo with tagline: leading in equity, action, and diversity for prek-12 system improvement.

The 2024 Leading in Equity, Action, and Diversity (LEAD) conference supports education leaders in improving PreK-12 school systems to disrupt pervasive racial inequities. It offers actionable insights, tools, and strategies for creating more equitable education systems that eliminate racial harm and disparities in students’ opportunities, experiences, and outcomes.

July 30 and 31, 2024

McNamara Alumni Center

Early bird rate (until May 1): $405
Regular rate (after May 1): $450

2024 Keynote speakers

Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings

Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings is Professor Emerita and former Kellner Family Distinguished Professor in Urban Education in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction and was Faculty Affiliate in the Departments of Educational Policy Studies, Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis and Afro American Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is the Immediate Past President of the National Academy of Education. Ladson-Billings’ research examines the pedagogical practices of teachers who are successful with African American students.

Ladson-Billings is the author of her newest book, Justice Matters, as well as the critically acclaimed books: The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children, Crossing over to Canaan: The Journey of New Teachers in Diverse Classrooms, and Beyond the Big House: African American Educators on Teacher Education. She is editor of 9 other books and author of more than 100 journal articles and book chapters. She is the former editor of the American Educational Research Journal and a member of several editorial boards. She has won numerous awards for her scholarly work.

Gloria Ladson-Billings
Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings

Dr. Gholnecsar (Gholdy) Muhammad

Dr. Gholnecsar (Gholdy) Muhammad is an associate professor of literacy, language, and culture in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Illinois Chicago. She has previously served as a classroom teacher, literacy specialist, school district administrator, curriculum director, and school board president. She studies Black historical excellence in education, intending to reframe curriculum and instruction today.

Dr. Muhammad’s scholarship has appeared in leading academic journals and books. She has also received numerous national awards and is the author of the best-selling book, Cultivating Genius: An Equity Framework for Culturally and Historically Responsive Literacy. Her book, Unearthing Joy, is the sequel to Cultivating Genius and provides a practical guide for putting culturally and historically responsive education into curricular practice.

She also co-authored Black girls’ literacies: An Edited Volume. Her Culturally and Historically Responsive Education Model has been adopted across thousands of U.S. schools and districts across Canada. In 2022 she was named among the top 1% Edu-Scholar Public Influencers due to her impact on policy and practice. She has also received numerous awards from national organizations and universities. She was named the American Educational Research Association Division K Early Career Award and the 2021 NCTE Outstanding Elementary Educator in the English Language Arts. She has led a federal grant with the United States Department of Education to study culturally and historically responsive literacy in STEM classrooms.

Dr. Gholdy Muhammed
Dr. Gholdy Muhammed

Dr. Anton Treuer

Dr. Anton Treuer (pronounced troy-er) is a Professor of Ojibwe in the Department of Languages and Indigenous Studies at Bemidji State University. He has a BA from Princeton University and an MA and PhD from the University of Minnesota. He is Editor of the Oshkaabewis (pronounced o-shkaah-bay-wis) Native Journal, the only academic journal of the Ojibwe language and the author of many books including Everything You Wanted to Know About Indians But Were Afraid to Ask, The Language Warrior’s Manifesto: How to Keep Our Languages Alive No Matter the Odds, Warrior Nation: A History of the Red Lake Ojibwe (Winner of Caroline Bancroft History Prize and the American Association of State and Local History Award of Merit), Ojibwe in Minnesota (“Minnesota’s Best Read for 2010” by The Center for the Book in the Library of Congress), The Assassination of Hole in the Day (Award of Merit Winner from the American Association for State and Local History), Atlas of Indian Nations, The Indian Wars: Battles, Bloodshed, and the Fight for Freedom on the American Frontier. He has also edited numerous books of illustrated short stories written in the Ojibwe language such as Awesiinyensag, that bring to life stories told by Anishinaabe elders. (“Minnesota’s Best Read for 2011” by The Center for the Book in the Library of Congress).

Dr. Anton Treuer
Dr. Anton Treuer


Submit your proposal for a breakout session

Submit an idea for a breakout session and encourage colleagues and friends to do the same.
All submissions are due by April 15.

Frequently asked questions


McNamara Alumni Center, Memorial Hall, 200 Oak Street S.E., Minneapolis, MN 55455

Parking and Transportation

*On this page, you also will find mass transit and bike rental information.

Additionally, Campus Maps allows you to zoom in and use the "Walk and Bike Safely" layer to view bike parking options. The McNamara Alumni Center campus map also includes Alternate Transportation Options.

Hotel block

The Graduate Hotel Minneapolis, 615 Washington Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

  • Custom Booking Link
  • Guests can also call the hotel at (612) 379-8888 and ask for reservations and ask for the CEHD – LEAD Conference room block
  • Cutoff Date: 7/1/2024


CEHD strives to host inclusive, accessible events that enable all individuals, including individuals with disabilities, to engage fully. To request closed captioning or other accommodations in order to fully participate, please contact CEHDLEAD@umn.edu by July 15.

Photo release note

Photographs taken at the event may be used in University of Minnesota print and online publications, promotions, or shared with the CEHD community.


The LEAD Conference event opens at 8 am, and the program begins at 9 am. Receptions on both days end at 5:45 pm. — When the breakout sessions are announced, we will add them to this website and email all registered attendees.

Continuing Ed Units

CEUs will be available. More information to follow closer to the conference dates.

Additional questions, comments, or concerns?

Please contact: cehdrsvp@umn.edu.

Non-discrimination statement

The University of Minnesota shall provide equal access to and opportunity in its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, familial status, disability, public assistance status, membership or activity in a local commission created for the purpose of dealing with discrimination, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

Land grant acknowledgement

The University of Minnesota Twin Cities is built within the traditional homelands of the Dakota people. It is important to acknowledge the peoples on whose land we live, learn, and work as we seek to improve and strengthen our relations with our tribal nations. We also acknowledge that words are not enough. We must ensure that our institution provides support, resources, and programs that increase access to all aspects of higher education for our American Indian students, staff, faculty, and community members.