April 26-27, 2023

The Westin Rancho Mirage Golf Resort & Spa, Rancho Mirage, CA

*Please note: If you are a current BARR Member School, there is a special link and discount code. Please email: conference@barrcenter.org with questions and/or access.

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2023 Conference Speakers

P.J. Fleck

University of Minnesota Golden Gopher Head Football Coach

It’s the spirit. It’s the heart. It’s the unconquerable will. It’s the connection. It’s the ability to have that relationship so how you do something matters way more than what you do.

Coach Fleck

Denise Forte

Ed Trust, CEO

Ed Trust builds awareness — tapping into strong relationships we have with policymakers and advocates — making the case for data-driven strategies we know will help students of color and students from low-income backgrounds. The data is telling us that they are the ones most greatly impacted by the pandemic — and the ones who have fallen the furthest behind.

denise forte

Robert Balfanz

Everyone Graduates Center, Johns Hopkins University, Principal Investigator and Research Professor

There has to be a caring supportive relationship behind the work being done. You have to have skill as an educator, but you also have to build the relationships. Support and care make a considerable difference in the mental health of our students.

Robert Balfanz

Angela Jerabek

BARR Center, Founder and Executive Director

BARR has two key foundational beliefs: students are very capable of learning if we can truly see who they are and educators are incredibly talented if we provide a system where we can realize their talents.

angela jerabek

Irvin Scott

Harvard Graduate School of Education, Senior Lecturer on Education

A favorite quote from my mentor:

Isolation is the enemy of improvement. A key part of growing involves connecting with others so that we can all learn and thrive together. This will help accelerate learning for our children.

richard Elmore

Catherine Thimmesh

Children’s Author

When I was a kid, I wanted to be a lot of things when I grew up, but it never occurred to me to be an author. At some point in time, I was going to be a teacher, a judge, a stunt woman, a mom with twelve kids who lived on a farm in the city, or a business woman who wore suits and worked in a glass-windowed high-rise. My ultimate dream was for a job that didn’t exist: an all-purpose idea-thinker-upper.

Catherine Thimmesh

Bill Milliken

Communities In Schools, Founder and Vice Chairman

It’s relationships, not programs, that change children.

Bill Milliken

Treopia Green Washington

Bowie State University, Director of Special Initiatives

I think all people know too little about other people. When you get to know people and know them as people without stereotyping, good things happen.

treopia washington

Highlights from the 2022 Conference

I learned if you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. That will be my new “motto” for our school when continuing travel on the BARR path.

2022 Conference Attendee


Hotel and Travel Information

Westin Rancho Mirage Golf Resort and Spa

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Nearby Hotels:

Best Western Plus Desert View Inn & Suites (1.8 miles)
Holiday Inn Express & Suites- Cathedral City (3.8 miles)
Hampton Inn & Suites Palm Desert (4.5 miles)
Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Palm Desert Coachella Valley (4.7 miles)
Homewood Suites by Hilton Palm Desert (4.9 miles)
Omni Rancho Las Palmas Resort & Spa (5.1 miles)
Courtyard by Marriott Palm Desert (5.3 miles)
Residence Inn by Marriott Palm Desert (5.4 miles)

Nearby Villas:

The Westin Mission Hills Resort Villas, Palm Springs (0.5 mile)
Marriott’s Shadow Ridge I- The Villages (3.5 miles)
Marriott’s Shadow Ridge II- The Enclaves (3.5 miles)
The Westin Desert Willow Villas, Palm Desert (5.3 miles)