Prior Conferences



2022 Conference logo



2022 MI-ACE schedule at a glance 

2022 DWA Awardees

Press Release updates can be found HERE



2021 conference infographic

Each day of the conference started virtually with wellness sessions.  Britt Rios-Ellis opened the conference with an inspiring keynote, “Progressing with Culturally resonant and Compassionate Certainty in Uncertain Times”.  DeAnna Burt-Nanna served as keynote for the second day charging participants to “Lead Resiliently.  Transform Boldly. Elevate Purposefully”.  The second-day keynote wrapped up with an authentic conversation on leadership.

The Distinguished Women in Higher Education awards were presented to Ms. Kim DiCaro, C. Michelle Piskulich, and DeLois Leapheart.  A dynamic panel with the winners provided a rich discussion as part of the workshop schedule.

In the session Women: Use Your Voice! Using your Power to Influence Public Policy, we were honored with a message from the governor and Brandy Johnson from the governor’s office shared insights into the positive impact that programs like Reconnect and Future for Frontliners have brought women to college.  We posthumously celebrated State Representative Maxine Berman and Lt. Governor Connie Binsfield

The Leadership Panel included Steven Robinson, President, Lansing Community College; Jane Goodnow, President, Delta College; Sonja Feist-Price, Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, University of Michigan-Flint; and Edward Montgomery, President, Western Michigan University.

The 2021 Conference was virtual and hosted by Madonna University.  Connie Tingson-Gatuz was conference chair.


Keynote speakers were Michelle Loyd-Paige, executive associate to the president for Diversity and Inclusion at Calvin College; Caroline Kim and Kat Walsh, from the University of Michigan, who gave a presentation about “Why Is Change So Hard?”; Ora Hirsch Pescovitz, M.D., president of Oakland University; and Valerie Young, author and expert on the imposter syndrome.

Laurie Chesley, provost at Grand Rapids Community College, was interviewed during a leadership panel about her upcoming move to Oregon, where she will assume the role of president of Central Oregon Community College.

A panel of elected officials spoke about serving the public in today’s climate. Moderated by state Rep. Vanessa Guerra, panelists were Jacqueline El-Sayed, vice president for academic affairs at Marygrove College; Lynette Findley, clerk of Superior Township; and Sherikia L. Hawkins, city clerk for Southfield.

The Distinguished Women in Higher Education awards were presented to Ann E. Austin, professor of higher education, adult and lifelong education and associate dean for research for the College of Education, Michigan State University; and Kay Keck, vice president for student and community services, Kellogg Community College.

The Outstanding Institutional Representative Award was was renamed to honor Chiara Hensley, retired assistant vice president for student affairs for Eastern Michigan University, and presented to LCC co-IRs Lisa Mazure, controller, and Patricia Spagnuolo, director of University Center and Transfer Initiatives.

The MI-ACE annual dinner recognized Public Policy Pioneers Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and (posthumously) Carol Hollenshead.

The conference was hosted by Olivet College; Linda Logan, MI-ACE board member and Olivet vice president and dean for Student Life, served as conference chair.

Valerie Young

Keynote speaker Valerie Young

Ora Hirsch Pescovitz

Keynote speaker Ora Hirsch Pescovitz, president of Oakland University

Michelle Loyd-Paige

Keynote speaker Michelle Loyd-Paige


Speakers were Mona Hanna-Attisha, the doctor who exposed the dangerous levels of lead in Flint’s drinking water; Beverly Walker-Griffea, president of Mott Community College; Judith S. White, retired president and executive director of Higher Education Resource Services; and Kathy Beauregard, athletic director for Western Michigan University.

Leadership panelists discussed “Leading in a Climate of Change.” They were Maria Davis, provost and dean of Olivet College; Beverly Walker-Griffea, president of Mott Community College; Christine Hammond, president of Mid Michigan Community College; and Virinder Moudgil, president and CEO of Lawrence Technological University. Claudia Douglass acted as moderator.

Introduced at the annual dinner, Public Policy Pioneers were Cora Reynolds Anderson (1882-1950) and Charline Rainey White (1920–1959).

Recipients of the Distinguished Woman in Higher Education awards were Cindy Allen, vice president for Administration and Human Resources at Jackson College, and Olukemi (Kemi) Fadayomi, professor of biology at Ferris State University.

The co-IRs from Eastern Michigan University, Colleen Croxall and Chiara Hensley, were named Outstanding IR recipients.

The conference was hosted by Olivet College; Linda Logan, MI-ACE board member and Olivet vice president and dean for Student Life, served as conference chair.

Mona Hanna-Attisha

Mona Hanna-Attisha

2018 Conference Panel

Leadership panelists with state chair Claudia Douglass as moderator.

2018 MI-ACE Conference Video

2018 Conference Video


The keynote speaker on June 6 was Susan E. Borrego, chancellor of the University of Michigan-Flint. Borrego is a nationally renown leader for student success, particularly for traditionally under-represented students. She also has served on numerous boards and national task forces, including as a team leader for the AASCU Hispanic Success study, chair of NASPA undergraduate fellows program, and consultant for the Irvine Campus Diversity Initiative project.

Speakers for June 5, hosted by the Women of Color Collaborative, were Denise B. Maybank, vice president for Student Affairs and Services at Michigan State University, and DeAngela Burns-Wallace, vice provost for Undergraduate Studies at University of Kansas.

Maybank currently serves as commissioner of the Greater Lansing Area Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Commission. She has served as co-chair of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities’ Council on Student Affairs Executive Committee and as a member of the Lansing Community Board of Ele’s Place, a nonprofit, community-based organization dedicated to creating awareness of and support for grieving children, teens, and their families.

Burns-Wallace was selected as an American Council on Education Fellow for the 2013-2014 academic year, working directly with presidents and other senior leaders, observing how the institution and its leaders address strategic planning, resource allocation, development, policy, and other issues and challenges.

Leadership Panel: Panelists discussed “Moving the Needle: Promoting Women in Leadership.” They were Susan E. Borrego, chancellor of the University of Michigan-Flint; Michelle Crumm, CEO/owner of Present Value and member Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents; Diana McKnight-Morton, Washtenaw Community College board member; Cynthia Wilbanks, vice president for government relations, University of Michigan; and James M. Smith, president of Eastern Michigan University.

Award Recognition: Recipients of the Distinguished Woman in Higher Education Leadership award were Christine Wallace, Kettering University, vice president of the Kettering Global Campus Clinical Faculty, Department of Business; and Theresa Stephens-Lock, Mott Community College, chief executive of public safety.

The Outstanding Institutional Representative award was presented to co-IRs Lisa Jones Copprue, Henry Ford College, vice president, Student Affairs; and Amy Ducher, Henry Ford College, special project coordinator, Academic Affairs and adjunct biology faculty member.

Public Policy Pioneers were recognized at the Annual Dinner: U.S. Representative Debbie Dingell and Lenore Romney (posthumously).

The conference was hosted by Oakland University; Stephanie Lee, MI-ACE board member and Oakland administrative assistant to the provost, served as conference chair.

Susan E. Borrego

Susan E. Borrego

Denise Maybank

Denise Maybank

DeAngela Burns-Wallace

DeAngela Burns-Wallace

2017 MI ACE Conference Video

2017 Conference Video


Keynote speakers were Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran and Phyllis Wise.

Wilson-Oyelaran, president of Kalamazoo College, presented “Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now: Reflections of a Sister President” during the morning session on June 6; and Wise, former chancellor of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, presented “Threading the Needle of Leadership during Turbulent Times” in the afternoon.

The first day of the conference was planned by the network’s Women of Color Collaborative. The day focuses on specific career issues and challenges that women of color encounter.

Yves Salomon-Fernandez, who was named president of Cumberland County College in New Jersey, gave the keynote address on June 7.

Cumberland County College is a designated Hispanic-serving institution. Prior to assuming the presidency at Cumberland, Salomon-Fernandez served as interim president at Massachusetts Bay Community College. Her professional portfolio includes experiences at public and private four-year universities as well as two-year colleges.

The conference was hosted by Oakland University; Stephanie Lee, MI-ACE board member and Oakland administrative assistant to the provost, served as conference chair.

Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran

Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran

Phyllis M. Wise

Phyllis M. Wise

Yves Salomon-Fernandez

Yves Salomon-Fernandez

2016 MI-ACE Conference Video

2016 Conference Video

Page last modified February 26, 2024