Featured Speakers

Keynote SpeakerMichael Canfield

A Personal Journey of Leadership and Service

Michael Canfield, President and CEO of the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center

Mr. Canfield’s address to the UPCEA conference attendees will include his personal history as it relates to his Native American background including:

  • The unique education route he has taken and how important continuing education has been in his journey.
  • Understanding and responding to the diverse needs of individuals who choose nontraditional education paths.
  • Harnessing the power of continuing education to impact and improve our communities.

Michael Canfield has over 35 years of business experience. He entered into small business ownership in1989 when he founded Valliant Enterprises. His company, which is now doing business as Valliant Consulting Group, provides Human Resources and Organizational Development consulting services.

Michael is currently on assignment as the President and CEO of the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center and Indian Pueblos Marketing. These corporations are owned by the 19 Pueblos of New Mexico and are responsible for operating the tribally owned organizations located within the Albuquerque Indian School District.

Michael has been recognized by Albuquerque Business First as a New Mexico Power Broker and was awarded the Top CEO in the tribal business category in 2013. In 2014 he was the recipient of the first All Pueblo Council of Governor’s Award. He was a recipient of the 2015 New Mexico Governor’s Distinguished Public Service Award. And in 2016 Michael was recognized as one of the Albuquerque’s top diverse business leaders.

Michael has strong ties to the New Mexico community. He is a member of the Laguna Pueblo and serves on many community based Boards including the United way of Central New Mexico, The Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce, Albuquerque Economic Development, Economic Forum, New Mexico Mutual and the Near North Valley Neighborhood Association. He also serves as a Commissioner for the City of Albuquerque’s Commission on Indian Affairs.

JimGeneral Session: Jobs of the Future and the Emergence of Alternative Credentials

Jim Fong, Director, Center for Research and Marketing Strategy, UPCEA

A review of labor and other secondary data, including trend reports, employer surveys and futurist blogs, reveals major changes to job classifications and the identification of emerging professions. These changes span many industries ranging from healthcare to information technology to agriculture--among others.  Some of these evolving professions may not require a traditional degree, while others may benefit from degree holders enhancing their education through an alternative credential. And while the degree remains the standard of higher education, colleges and universities need to make informed decisions regarding the role of alternative credentials in workforce education. This presentation and dialogue will identify these jobs of the future and the intersection of credentials needed for success.

General Session: Diversity and Inclusion in Online Education: A Panel Discussion

Designing programs for an increasingly diverse student audience provides both challenges and opportunities for educators. A panel of senior instructional designers will utilize this session to broaden an understanding of what diversity and inclusiveness means, how best to design inclusive programs, and pitfalls to avoid.

Melody Buckner, PhD, Director of Digital Learning and Online Education, University of Arizona

Melody Buckner oversees instructional design, graphic design, video production and quality assurance for the UA Online Campus. She came to UA eight years ago as an Instructional Designer to help faculty create online courses that reach out and engage students in an online UA experience.  Her educational background includes, a Bachelor of Science from the College of Architecture at Arizona State University and a Masters in Educational Technology at Northern Arizona University.  She recently graduated with a Ph.D. in Teaching, Learning and Sociocutural Studies at the University of Arizona. Her informal education consists of living in over 40 different places including several countries in Europe.


Anne Guptill, PhD, Director, M.S. Ed, option in Online Teaching and Learning, Cal State University East Bay

Anne is a graduate of the master's program she currently directs at Cal State University East Bay and her doctoral dissertation was on Universal Design for Online Learning: A Conceptual Model. She has been dedicated to technology-based training and education since 1998.


Christopher Phillips, Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Coordinator, Utah State University

Christopher Phillips leads the efforts to provide and training towards creating a more accessible university experience for students with disabilities. His professional background in instructional design, web development and special education provide a unique perspective on designing online learning experiences that are accessible to all learners.


Igor Akpovo, Instructional Designer, Outreach Credit Programs, University of Wyoming

Igor Akpovo is a Ph.D. Candidate in the college of Education at the University of Wyoming, and a Fulbright Alumnus. He possesses graduate degrees in TESOL and in TEFL/TESL. His research explores the experiences of foreign-born faculty in the US, specifically how they construct academic identities. He is passionate about educational technology and ESL (English as a Second Language). He has been an ESL instructor at the University of Wyoming since 2011.


Becky Adams, Ph.D., Director, Faculty Services and Online Course Development, University of New Mexico

Becky Adams holds a PhD in Education specializing in Instructional Technologies, and a minor in Educational Administration, as well as a Technical Coordinator Certification with the State Department of Education. She has taught online for more than ten years and her combination of educational and technical background, as well as experience as an online student, course designer and online instructor, assists her in managing the increasing demand of online courses. She works with her staff to facilitate the design and delivery of UNM Online Courses for Main Campus, ensuring quality day-to-day support for online faculty and students, as well as training services for faculty and students utilizing the UNM Learning Management System and academic applications. Becky served on the New Mexico Learning Network's Statewide initiative for online learning, chairing the sub-committee for Best Practices. She is also a Quality Matters Master Reviewer, her OI&LS online course is Quality Matters Certified and she received a 2012 Director's Choice Blackboard Catalyst Exemplary Course Award.

Becky Adams


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