Being the Mentor You Would Want for Yourself
Focusing on being the mentor for someone that you would want for yourself, Jim encourages the audience to surround themselves with the best people to bring out their best, and to in turn give themselves and others the best chance for success. During this humorous and moving keynote address, Jim tells his own story of defeat while believing in the wrong kind of people, and also about his successes when surrounded by key people who helped him believe in himself and pushed him to be the man he is today.

Jim "The Rookie" Morris 

Morris was a high school science teacher and coach in west Texas who miraculously made it the Major Leagues at the age of 35. His life story made cinematic history with the heartwarming and unforgettable Disney movie, The Rookie, starring Dennis Quaid. He pitched two seasons for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays reaching speeds up to 102mph. Before choosing to retire to raise his children. Since 2000, Jim has been a highly sought-after motivational speaker traveling the world inspiring audiences to follow their dreams and never give up.

In his latest book, Dream Makers: Surround Yourself with the Best to Be Your Best, Jim shares more of his incredible life story including the people who helped make him the success he is today - his Dream Makers. 

Jim has been honored to receive a Lifetime Achievement award from the Bobby Bragan Youth Foundation, a CAMIE award for character and morality in entertainment for The Rookie, he has been involved with BCFS, Arms of Hope, Texas Youth Commission and other philanthropic efforts. He launched his own Foundation in 2015 to give back to underserved communities and children.


Thank you to our Wednesday general session sponsor


Hopelessness in American Students Today! The Solution: Sweethearts & Heroes
During this keynote session, you will be inspired and entertained by keynote speakers Tom Murphy and Rick Yarosh who formed Sweethearts & Heroes. 

Sweethearts & Heroes

Sweethearts & Heroes is a team focused on promoting healthy, positive social connections and relationships while fostering a sense of community and emotional resilience. They bring the power of HOPE and ACTION into schools and communities. Their focus is to teach human skills to build empathy and compassion in our youth and develop young Sweethearts & Heroes by promoting bystander empowerment through leadership roles.

Tom Murphy
Murphy grew up in Philadelphia, PA where his parents ran a small shelter and recovery home for the hopeless in their home. Murphy has gone on to help and care for others as his life's mission. After graduating from college, he spent the next 16 years advancing through the railroad industry. He stepped down after becoming a Corporate Director to pursue his passion of helping others.

Rick Yarosh

Yarosh, a Retired Sergeant with the United States Army, spent 9 months deployed in Iraq before he was severely injured by IED in ABU Ghraib on September 1, 2008. He spent half a year in the hospital fighting through his second- and third-degree burns. He lost his right leg, both ears, his nose, multiple fingers, and most of the function in both hands. For his heroic service, Rick received the purple heart. Yarosh has spoken about overcoming adversity and turning a negative situation into a positive one to millions from all walks of life.

Thank you to our Thursday general session sponsor


Ignited by Possibility: Staying in Sync to Elevate Our Potential
Much like musicians performing a song, everyone in an organization benefits exponentially from staying in sync, keeping in tune, and remaining exponentially from staying in sync, keeping in tune, and remaining in tempo with each other. Re-ignite a sense of ownership in your contributions, find new motivation to leveraging your skills, and learn to build connection with peers to create a thriving collaborative environment during this high-energy, music-filled presentation.

Collision of Rhythm
Collision of Rhythm is a duo comprised of tap-dancing classical virtuoso, Aaron Willams, and beatbox-juggling keynote speaker, Bronkar Lee. Though there are only two of them, they fill the stage as a 12-person ensemble would, moving from instrument to instrument with a high level of skill and diversity. What's created is a richly explosive experience like nothing else out there - rhythm-centered, but also full of melodic movement and dynamic depth. With drumming, tap dancing, rhythmic juggling, marimba, piano, saxophone, flute, and so much more, the show has been described as "Stomp meets Blue Man meets Cirque du Soleil." The pure joy that music and rhythm has instilled within these two humans is extended to every audience member throughout the performance. Between choreographed musical pieces, there is audience interaction, humor, and personal stories that make this show all at once captivating, inspiring, and flat-out extraordinary.

Bronkar Lee
Bronkar Lee is a musician, producer, and keynote speaker whose unique background includes touring Europe as ringmaster to a world-renowned circus, appearing with Jay Leno on the Tonight Show, and beatboxing with his son in a viral video that received over 200 Million views. Bronkar plays 42 instruments and counting (including drums, saxophone, guitar, and Native American flute) which he’s incorporated into live performances and presentations for over 20 years. He serves as the current president for the Georgia National Speakers’ Association, and he collaborated with his wife Cyndi Harvell Lee to write the book BAM: Bold Achievement Method, which outlines their 6-step process for accelerated learning.

Aaron Williams

Aaron Williams is a virtuosic tap dancing multi-instrumentalist, trained in classical music, jazz, and rudimental percussion technique. He achieved internet fame with his viral video, Mario on Marimba, which has received millions of views on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media sites. In addition to his online and commercial successes, Aaron is a world-class music educator. He holds Level 3 Certification in Orff Schulwerk pedagogy, and he has presented teacher training workshops for AOSA, KIPP Schools, CMEA (California Music Education Association), and several colleges and universities. He is a recipient of the ACEMM Winter Spotlight Award, which is granted for outstanding work in learning communities utilizing music and movement.