2024 GAEL Winter Conference Keynote Speakers’ Biographies

Sean Covey, FranklinCovey Education

Sean Covey is a business executive, author, speaker, and innovator. He is President of FranklinCovey Education and is devoted to transforming education around the globe through a principle-centered leadership approach. Sean oversees FranklinCovey’s whole-school transformation process, called Leader in Me®, which is now in over 7,000 schools and 70 countries throughout the world.

As a New York Times best-selling author, Sean has written several books, including the Wall Street Journal #1 Business Bestseller, The 4 Disciplines of Execution, The 6 Most Important Decisions You’ll Ever Make, The 7 Habits of Happy Kids, and The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens, which has been translated into 20 languages and sold over 8 million copies worldwide. He is a versatile keynoter who regularly speaks to kids and adults within schools and organizations and has appeared on numerous radio and TV shows.

Abran Maldonado, Co-founder of Create Lab Ventures

Abran Maldonado is a leading AI expert, OpenAI ambassador, and co-founder of Create Labs, a Black and Brown founded startup disrupting the AI and digital human design space. With years of experience in DEI, entertainment and education technology, including a background in Hip-Hop, digital media, and youth culture, Abran brings a unique perspective to the AI community. As a Gates Millennium Scholar, he is dedicated to advancing diversity in tech and has worked to expand 5G VR/AR edtech solutions to schools nationwide. He is recognized as one of the first AI prompt engineers of the ChatGPT era and the creator of the first GPT-powered AfroLatina virtual avatar, C.L.Ai.R.A. Abran‘s pioneering work in generative AI and digital human design has earned him a reputation as a visionary in the development of AI technology, and he is dedicated to bringing culture and innovation to life with authentic, AI-powered immersive experiences.

Eddie Slowikowski, sponsored by: Varsity Brands

Eddie is a former “world-class” runner and Gold Medal winner for the USA Track & Field Team.  Eddie was a 3-time Division 1 NCAA All-American and National cross country champion out of Loyola University in Chicago. Eddie was a former reporter in training at CNN before launching his own business. Today Eddie is a highly sought-after Speaker, Consultant & Author.

Eddie is known throughout the industry as a “Inspired Performance” Expert! His widely acclaimed “Four Minute Formula” has been utilized by people from all walks of life. Through years of training as an athlete and running his own successful speaking & consulting business, he knows what it takes to be elite. Eddie has always had the can-do spirit of an entrepreneur, in all walks of life. Best of all, Eddie can channel that sense of accomplishment through interactive storytelling and raw emotion to audiences everywhere. He can make you laugh, cry, dance and learn… all in one presentation. It’s a rollercoaster journey like no other, and Eddie’s been doing it for 3 decades!

Ron Chandler, Leader, US Education Customer Engagement

Ron leads customer engagement for the US Education business at Apple. Prior to Apple, Ron was CIO for Harvard Business School, where his team deployed a reimagined way to teach and work online. He led the transition to improved cyber hygiene and established a product development group that created software used by educational institutions worldwide. Before joining Harvard, Ron was the CIO of the Los Angeles Unified School District. He has an MBA from the University of Michigan and a BS in Electrical Engineering from Southern University. Most importantly, he is the son of an Elementary and Special Education teacher who taught for more than 40 years.