Education with Purpose Conference

Education with Purpose Conference

Today, education and workforce development are at a crossroads. As our world continues to change, organizations must step into the breach and equip the next generation for a new future.

The 2021 Education with Purpose Conference is designed to empower teams, individuals, and stakeholders with a strategic plan to meet these challenges head-on. Now more than ever, organizations must find new ways to deliver a competitive advantage to the young people they serve. This visionary event empowers educators and employers to make a bigger difference through valuable tools, connections, best practices, and planning time. By extolling the value of all postsecondary pathways — including specialized industry training, college, apprenticeships, and more — we can shift the paradigm to start making students career ready, period.

Meet the Speakers

Mark C. Perna, Speaker, Author, and CEO

Holly Stiel, Service Consultant and Author

Judson Laipply, Speaker and Entertainer

David ‘Daveeed’ Wagner, Customer Experience Director










Get to know our keynote speakers on the “Speakers” tab at the top of the page!


What It’s All About

The Education with Purpose Conference is divided into three main phases:

  • Focus. The conference will open with a clear picture of the issues, strategies, and information needed to shift the paradigm in education and workforce development. By informing and inspiring each participant, this phase creates the crucial buy-in for organizations to start the next phase with everyone walking in lock-step toward the goal.
  • Plan. Dynamic, focused planning time will empower teams and individuals to create their own action plan for paradigm shift. A digital reporting platform used at the conference will feature the profile, plan, and goals of each organization represented, facilitating organic connections among attendees. Attendees will report out their successes, challenges, and custom plans for others to see and follow their progress. In turn, they will also choose other organizations and colleagues to follow as they pursue their own paradigm shift. As a result, each organization is both leader and follower in a unique cohort model that generates accountability and momentum.
  • Take action. After several rounds of planning, calibrating, and collaborating, teams and individuals will regroup to begin the actual implementation of their plans. This dedicated, laser-focused phase will jumpstart the plan and ensure that no time is lost in moving forward with all objectives.

Why Now?

Never in our history has there been a more crucial time for career-focused education and workforce development. The challenges are tremendous—but so are the opportunities. The strategic action steps we take now will make a difference for young people far beyond the immediate moment. We can reshape the future with a new paradigm for America’s postsecondary pathways—if we focus, plan, and take action.

As automation continues to expand, it is increasingly critical to adapt, adopt, and scale K14 and university career pathways to meet workforce demand. At the same time, today’s younger generations must be motivated to perform at a higher level in their education and career journey.

In partnership with key stakeholders, organizations can equip students and trainees to fill high-demand, high-skill, high-wage jobs. Building sustainable regional employment pipelines will proactively meet the coming “silver tsunami” of our aging workforce—and the challenges of a post-pandemic world. The Education with Purpose conference brings teams, individuals, and stakeholders together to create new solutions for economic vitality and student performance.




Get ready to:

  • Become both a leader and a follower by sharing your best practices and hearing from other likeminded organizations across North America
  • Collaborate with team members, stakeholders, and other organizations in facilitated sessions to uncover where your organization sits on the plan for paradigm shift
  • Focus, plan, and take action by creating a powerful trajectory toward change and implementing the first steps before you leave the conference
  • Experience strategies and best practices from nationally renowned industry expert, speaker, author, and TFS Results CEO Mark C. Perna as well as other thought leaders
  • Be recognized as a difference-maker and recognize others who are making positive strides in education and workforce development
  • Discover how to connect the younger generations to education with purpose so they can perform at a higher level and invest wisely in higher education
  • Leave with a strategic plan and action items to change the narrative within your organization, community, and region

Download a customizable letter to ask your supervisor for permission to attend the conference!

If you need a customizable letter requesting permission for a team to attend, contact Conference Producer Alyssa Perna at 440-865-6166 or by email at alyssa.perna@tfsresults.com.

Who Attends

  • Educators: Teachers, administrators, counselors, and support staff in K-12 and postsecondary institutions, including middle schools, high schools, career centers, community and technical colleges, and other specialized training programs
  • Stakeholders: Elected officials, business and industry partners, and other community leaders
  • Employers: Workforce development and talent acquisition leaders, especially in industries impacted by the skills gap

Whether you attend as part of a team or as an individual, you will be inspired and motivated to shift the paradigm in your sphere of influence!



Questions? Contact Conference Producer Alyssa Perna at 440-865-6166 or by email at alyssa.perna@tfsresults.com.

2021 Education with Purpose Conference Speakers

Mark C. Perna

Mark C. Perna, Keynote Speaker

Author and CEO, TFS Results

Mark C. Perna is the founder and CEO of TFS Results in Cleveland, Ohio, a full-service strategic communications and consulting firm at the forefront of the national paradigm shift in education and workforce development. Perna, a graduate of John Carroll University, has many years of experience addressing industry leaders on the topic of expanding their reach in an increasingly global marketplace. As an international expert on the millennial and Z generations, Perna has devoted his career to empowering educators and employers to unleash the tremendous potential of today’s young people, both in the classroom and on the job.

A dynamic and motivational public speaker, Mark delivers more than 70 keynote speeches annually at national and statewide events and spoke at Harvard University by special invitation. His genuine personality and warm sense of humor make him a fun and memorable communicator that people connect with immediately. He regularly addresses both small groups and massive crowds in his capacity as a generational and performance expert, reaching thousands of educators, employers, parents, and young people every year.

At TFS Results, Perna heads an energetic team of talented professionals who share his vision of making a bigger difference in education and workforce development. TFS Results partners with schools, districts, businesses, and state organizations of all sizes to help them experience significant gains in enrollment, engagement, retention, and performance rates.

Perna, a weekly contributor at Forbes.com, has published many articles in national publications as a recognized voice in student engagement and success. His award-winning bestseller, Answering Why: Unleashing Passion, Purpose, and Performance in Younger Generations, was written to help educators, employers, and parents understand the millennial and Z generations and inspire them to greater performance in all areas of life.

Holly Stiel

Holly Stiel, Keynote Speaker

Service Philosopher and Consultant

Holly Stiel is a trailblazing service philosopher, keynote speaker, trainer, and consultant known for her dynamic and interactive presentation style, as well as her talent for transforming companies and their cultures. Her insights have been conveyed in 25 languages and delivered across the globe, from Japan to Johannesburg.

Holly started her career on the front lines of service in the hospitality industry. In 1976, Holly became America’s first female concierge when she created the desk at the Grand Hyatt San Francisco. In 1992, Holly stepped out from behind the concierge desk to share her passion for the everyday inspirations to be found in the world of hospitality. Her unique perspective has inspired paradigm shifts at organizations like Bank of America, NASCAR, Audi, and many others.

As an author, Holly has written the definitive works on concierge service for hotel professionals: The Art & Science of the Hotel Concierge and Ultimate Service: The Complete Handbook to the World of the Concierge. She has also authored books with broader appeal for all industries: Tank You Very Much — A Book for Anyone Who Has Ever Said, “May I Help You?,” The Neon Signs of Service, and The A–Z Guide for Making the Most of Your Hotel Concierge.

Holly has been honored as: the first female and non-corporate executive to receive the “Distinguished Visiting Professor” Chair from Johnson and Wales University; spokesperson for the concierge services provided by the VISA Signature® card; worldwide speaker for The American Express Centurion Card Concierge Services; and recipient of the Honorary International Member Award by Les Clefs d’Or. The USA chapter of this association of professional hotel concierges, with which she has been very active, designated 2013 as “The Year of Holly” in honor of her many contributions to the profession. Holly lives on the California coast with her husband Bill Apton.

As a keynote speaker at the 2021 Education with Purpose conference, Holly will share the secrets of an industry that serves the emotional as well as the business needs of its clients. Educators, employers, and stakeholders will appreciate Holly’s insights to enhance their own leadership abilities and teamwork effectiveness.

Judson Laipply

Judson Laipply, Keynote Speaker


Judson Laipply, M.Ed, CSP, is an enigma wrapped in an anomaly contained inside a quandary. As the world’s first YouTube celebrity, Judson is the creator of the viral video “The Evolution of Dance” that has garnered over a billion impressions.

As a highly entertaining keynote speaker, Judson has been engaging audiences for over 20 years around the globe. Combining comedy and content, laughter and learning, energy and engagement, Judson gives his audiences both immediate joy and lasting impact. He’s been featured on The Today Show, Ellen, Oprah, GMA, and more. As an author, Judson has published or been featured in three books and is currently working on his next title. Judson is also an Ironman Triathlete, terrible singer, and reformed Kool-Aid eater.

At the 2021 Education with Purpose Conference, Judson will capture attendees’ hearts and minds with his fun approach and meaningful message of empowerment and change.

David 'Daveeed' Wagner

David ‘Daveeed’ Wagner, Master of Ceremonies

Director of Customer Experience, TFS Results

David ‘Daveeed’ Wagner is the Director of Customer Experience at TFS Results and is responsible for the company’s strategic marketing and brand initiatives. Alongside this role, Daveeed is also the founder of 1marketingidea, a full-service marketing agency that leverages the social media experience to build personal brands.

As a dynamic keynote speaker, Daveeed delivers 5-star presentations to re-energize and empower teams with an innovative approach to digital marketing. In his keynotes, Daveeed shares a 6 Point System which has been implemented by world-renowned authors, consulting firms, and keynote speakers.

As the former Chief Marketing Officer of The DiJulius Group, Daveeed produced and grew, among other things, the Customer Service Revolution convention from 200 to 800 attendees, making it America’s #1 customer service conference. Today, he shares that wealth of knowledge with audiences to maximize the social media experience for business growth.

Daveeed, a recipient of the Hispanic Business Entrepreneur Award, is the Chief Editor of the Marketing Memo. He has a BA in Marketing from John Carroll University, is fluent in Spanish, and resides in San Diego, California, where he plays tennis as often as his knees allow.

As the master of ceremonies at the 2021 Education with Purpose Conference, Daveeed will maximize the conference experience by keeping the agenda on track and inspiring and entertaining all those in attendance.

2021 Education with Purpose Conference Steering Committee

CyLynn Braswell

Executive Director for College, Career Readiness and Innovation
North Fort Worth Region

CyLynn Braswell has worked with Career and Technical Education for sixteen years. She has taught Agriculture, Business and Engineering while establishing various student certification programs within each career cluster. As the Executive Director for College, Career Readiness and Innovation she works to bridge industry and education in her geographic region of North Fort Worth. In order to build a work-ready community while providing valuable experiences for the students of Northwest ISD, she has implemented certifications and work experiences as the cornerstone of all the 27 CTE programs offered. She currently serves as the President of the Career and Technical Educators of North Texas, Interlink board member as well as a member of NASCO (North American Strategy for Competitiveness). In an effort to equitably invest in every student, Mrs. Braswell believes students should be afforded opportunities early and often to begin exploring their future in the world of work.

Jim Orth

CTE Director
Salem-Keizer Public Schools

Jim Orth has been innovating and leading instruction in the classroom, school, and district levels for 29 years in Oregon. Having worked in large and small school districts, he keenly understands the advantages and challenges of implementing a wide range of initiatives across a continuum of educational organizations.

Currently, Orth is the Career & Technical Education (CTE) Director for Salem-Keizer Public Schools. He oversees 52 CTE programs at 6 comprehensive high schools, one alternative high school, and the Career Technical Education Center (CTEC). He works closely with the middle schools to align instruction, equipment, and elective courses to high school CTE programs.

Jeff Frost

Executive Director for Technical and Professional Education
Waterloo Community Schools

Jeff Frost is now in his 30th year in the education field, having spent the first ten years in the classroom as a high school Social Studies teacher and Head Wrestling/Assistant Baseball coach within Vinton-Shellsburg Schools located in Vinton, IA. During the last 20 years, Frost has served in a variety of administrative positions. For ten years, he was an Assistant Principal/Athletic Director at Waterloo West High School, Waterloo, IA. Next, he served as the Chief Administrator for Cedar Valley Catholic Schools, also in Waterloo. His following position was Director of Secondary Education for Linn-Mar Community Schools in Marion, IA. Frost is currently the Executive Director for Technical and Professional Education for Waterloo Community Schools. In this role, he helped open the $17.5 million, state-of-the-art Waterloo Career Center, a program that focuses on all things career and technical education related.

Frost has served on many state and regional committees and boards related to career and technical education, and is a member of Waterloo’s Cedar Valley Coalition that lobbies federal representatives in Washington, D.C. on pertinent issues related to career and technical education. He and his wife Amy have been married 26 years and are the parents of four children, Brett, Abbie, Maddy, and Cole.

Scott Rogers

Assistant Administrative Director
York County School of Technology

Scott Rogers serves as the Assistant Administrative Director at the York County School of Technology in York, PA, a position he has held for over a decade. After attending the University of Vermont, Rogers entered the teaching ranks as a Social Studies and English teacher. After teaching in Vermont, Rogers moved to Maryland where he earned two Master’s Degrees, one in Educational Technology from Johns Hopkins University and another in Career and Technology Education from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. During that time, he served as a Cisco Networking Academy Technical Teacher, Cooperative Education Coordinator, and educational technology professional development trainer for Baltimore County Public Schools.

He then attended Penn State University to earn both his CTE Directors and K-12 Principal Certifications. Rogers served as Director of Career and Technical Education at the Carlisle Area School District for four years, before transitioning to the Assistant Administrative Director position of Pennsylvania’s largest comprehensive technical high school.

In 2019, Rogers was selected by the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) to participate in their National Leadership Fellowship Program for 2019 as a representative from the Administrative Division. He has also been recognized as a leader within CTE both as a teacher and as an administrator, having received the 2005 Cisco Networking Academy Outstanding Demonstration of Rigor Instructor award and NOCTI’s 2015 C. Thomas Olivo Outstanding Service Award in recognition of exceptional leadership in technical skill assessment and dedication to CTE.

Harriet Happel

Dean of Career Technical Education and Integrative Learning
College of the Canyons

Harriet Happel serves in the role of Dean of Career Technical Education and Integrative Learning at College of the Canyons in Santa Clarita, CA. She also serves as the Regional Vice President for the South Central Coast Regional Consortium of the California Community College Association of Occupational Education. Prior to coming to College of the Canyons, Happel served as the Director of Perkins Grant Operations and Career Technical Education Coordinator at Elgin Community College in Elgin, IL. She is also an instructor in the disciplines of Advanced Manufacturing, Business, and Career Skills.

After completing her undergraduate work in Political Science from the University of California at San Diego, Happel worked as a Project Manager and Managing Business Partner at Management Resource Group, a business consulting firm specializing in performance management for non-profit organizations. After moving to the Midwest, she worked with Camcraft, Inc., a manufacturer of high-precision component parts for the automotive industry, as the Program Manager for New Product Introduction. While in the Midwest she completed her Master of Business Administration degree at Keller Graduate School of Management with specializations in Project Management and Sustainability. Harriet also holds certification from The University of Vermont in Campus Sustainability Leadership and is a certified instructor in Phi Theta Kappa’s Leadership Development Studies Program and the International Public Safety Leadership and Ethics Institute Leadership Development Programs. When not working, Happel enjoys gardening and traveling with her family.


Questions? Contact Conference Producer Alyssa Perna at 440-865-6166 or by email at alyssa.perna@tfsresults.com.

Sponsorship Opportunities

TFS Results has an array of sponsorship opportunities available for the Education with Purpose Conference. Contact us today to find out how you can position your organization as a leader in education and workforce development as a valued sponsor of this event.

Contact Us

More Information

For more than 20 years, TFS Results has been a passionate advocate for making a difference in education and workforce development, serving a wide array of K–12 districts, career centers, business and industry groups, community and technical colleges, and other training organizations.

TFS Results CEO Mark C. Perna has devoted his career to empowering educators and employers to unleash the tremendous potential of today’s young people, both in the classroom and on the job. Guided by a dynamic Steering Committee of educational professionals from across the U.S., the Education with Purpose conference program content is designed to inspire a paradigm shift in communities nationwide. Learn more about the Education with Purpose Steering Committee by clicking the tab at the top of the page.

Alongside his role as the CEO of TFS Results, Mark frequently delivers keynote speeches at national and statewide events and spoke at Harvard University by special invitation. Mark, a weekly contributor at Forbes.com, has published many articles in national publications as a recognized voice in student engagement and success. His award-winning bestseller, Answering Why: Unleashing Passion, Purpose, and Performance in Younger Generations, was written to help educators, employers, and parents understand the millennial and Z generations and inspire them to greater performance in all areas of life.

Rave Reviews on TFS Results Professional Development:

“Mark’s session was the most inspiring and engaging experience I have had in a long time in regard to K-12 public education and the shift we have to make to help our young students define their purpose.” – Chad Wyen, Superintendent at Mad River Local Schools

“This was the best keynote I have ever been to! It was so inspiring the whole way through, provided easily applicable information and left me ready to act!” – Shelley Baudean, Grants Specialist

“Lifechanging message. Let me say I feel I’ve learned a new way to understand and speak to my grandkids and the younger generation.” – Terry Strayhand, CTE Grants & Accountability LEAD

“Absolutely hit target for students of today and the impact of teaching for their future.” – Missie McKinney, Assistant Principal at Dalton High School

“Amazing presenter! Mark makes it real. He bridges the gap between education and employment.” –Terry Krezmer, VP, Human Resources at Larson Design Group

“You know a speaker is great when he inspires you to race back to your office or classroom to start implementing what he said. Mark is that kind of speaker.” – Sally Pestana, Kapiolani Community College

“Mark Perna — what a change agent! Amazing presentation! Mark shows that we should believe in today’s younger generation and help them open every new door.” – Timothy Reilly, Teacher, Author, Global Director at Farmington High School

“Buckle up for a fast, furious conversation of motivating younger generations and becoming aware of the issues with employment gaps and the way to fix them. Very exciting conversation with Mark Perna.” – Sadie Fritzler, Career Coach at Northeastern Junior College

Follow Mark Perna

Follow Mark’s latest articles at Forbes.com.

Connect with Mark Perna on social media:
Facebook: @MarkCPernaLeadership
Twitter: @markperna
LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/markperna
Instagram: @mark_c_perna

Questions? Contact Conference Producer Alyssa Perna at 440-865-6166 or by email at alyssa.perna@tfsresults.com.

Ticket Information


Register Now

Invoicing is available for those who would like to avoid additional fees incurred when purchasing online. Contact kristy.warrell@tfsresults.com to inquire.

Not ready to sign up yet? Register your interest and we’ll be in touch!

Register Your Interest


Schedule of Events

Dates: October 12–13, 2021

Time: 8am–5pm

Location: The Hilton Cleveland Downtown, 100 Lakeside Avenue East, Cleveland, OH 44114

Check back in November 2020 for the hotel’s unique booking link. Additionally, TFS Results will email all registered conference attendees with the booking link as soon as it’s available.

Super Early Bird: $599.00 (until 8/11/2020)
Standard: $875.00

At a crucial time in education, the 2021 Education with Purpose Conference brings together trailblazers and key leaders in K–12 education to deliver a breadth of knowledge. The conference’s facilitated planning time empowers for teams and individuals to adapt the best practices to their own context and challenges. Attendees will also make new connections with leading education professionals and organizations across the United States.

This event redefines America’s “college and career ready” goal by extolling the value of all postsecondary pathways, including college, specialized industry training, apprenticeships, and more. The conference’s innovative format will deliver not just vital strategies and ideas, but also the impetus to get more of the right students, in the right pathways, for the right reasons. Your team will walk away with a custom strategic plan to shift the paradigm in your organization and community — and the motivation to make it happen.


Event Logistics

Questions? Contact Conference Producer Alyssa Perna at 440-865-6166 or by email at alyssa.perna@tfsresults.com.

Discover Mark's Award-Winning Bestseller, Answering Why

Learn more, read a sample chapter, and download the free book resources.