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More 2018 NASW National Conference Keynote And Plenary Presenters Announced

2018ConferenceSpeakerWebHeaderWe are excited to announce more of our 2018 NASW National Conference Keynote Presenters and Plenary Session Presenters! From June 20th through the 23rd, more than 2,000 social workers and other related professionals will convene at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, D.C. for an information-packed agenda.

Our conference provides wonderful opportunities to earn up to 25.5 CEUs, participate in unique professional development seminars, hear from a captivating group of renowned Keynote Presenters and Plenary Session Presenters, and build your social work community.

Here is a sampling of presenters through our four-day conference, with more exciting presenter announcements to come:

  • Van Jones, Opening Keynote Presenter, Wednesday, is a CNN Correspondent, and President and Founder of the nonprofit Dream Corps, a justice incubator that houses initiatives that create innovative solutions to “close prison doors and open doors of opportunity.”
  • Kane Smego, Opening Presenter, Wednesday, is a spoken word and hip hop artist, a National Poetry Slam finalist, and Co-Founder of the youth arts and education nonprofit Sacrificial Poets.
  • Fredi Lajvardi, Keynote Presenter, Thursday, is a nationally-recognized STEM educator. Lajvardi captivated the country when he led his team of disadvantaged teenagers in a university-level underwater robotics competition, where they defeated leading schools, including top-ranked MIT. Their story inspired the acclaimed documentary “Underwater Dreams” and was also adapted into the major motion picture “Spare Parts.”
  • Wendy Sherman, Plenary Session Presenter – Shaping Tomorrow Together: Maximizing Opportunities to Create a Just Society – Thursday, Ambassador Sherman is a member of the NASW Social Work Pioneers®, Senior Counselor at Albright Stonebridge Group, former Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs at the U.S. Department of State, and was awarded the National Security Medal by President Barack Obama. She is a Senior Fellow at Harvard’s Belfer Center, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Aspen Strategy Group.
  • Vanita Gupta, Plenary Session Presenter – Shaping Tomorrow Together: Maximizing Opportunities to Create a Just Society – Thursday, is President and Chief Executive Officer of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. Before joining The Leadership Conference in June 2017, she served as Acting Assistant Attorney General and head of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division. In October 2014, she was appointed as the chief civil rights prosecutor for the United States by President Barack Obama.
  • Elinore F. McCance-Katz, MD, PhD, Keynote Presenter, Friday, is the Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use and advises the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary on improving behavioral healthcare in America. She also leads the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) within HHS.
  • Julius W. Hobson, Plenary Session Presenter – Election Forecast – Friday, is Senior Policy Advisor for Polsinelli, where he assists clients with legislative and regulatory advocacy for health care, appropriations, budget, taxes, and other public policy issues. With more than 45 years of experience working with the U.S. Congress and the Federal Executive Branch, he served as Director, Division of Congressional Affairs, American Medical Association (AMA).
  • Gretchen Rubin, Closing Keynote Presenter, Saturday, is author of New York Times bestsellers, “The Four Tendencies,” “Better Than Before,” “Happier at Home,” and “The Happiness Project,” and hosts a weekly podcast, “Happier with Gretchen Rubin.”

Our special events include: Pre-Conference Workshops, an Advocacy Program, a Welcome Reception, Film Festival, and A Night at the Awards, A Night To Remember!

To learn more about the conference agenda, special events, and to register, please visit the NASW website. Stay tuned for more exciting updates on presenters and breakout sessions. For questions, email We hope to see you in Washington in June!

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