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Another SLI has Come and Gone!

This year’s Summer Leadership Institute was a resounding success – but don’t just take it from us!

A note from Carrie Hobbs Guiden, NCE Chair, Executive Director, The Arc of Tennessee:

Carrie Hobbs-Guiden

Carrie Hobbs-Guiden

It is hard to believe that another NCE SLI has come and gone!  With over 50 speakers, 30 sessions, and over 25 topics, it was hard to choose who and what to attend.  We had so many amazing sessions this year and over 100 new attendees joined us to experience this wonderful program. Our conference was opened with the story of how SAP is tapping into the often unrecognized talent of people on the autism spectrum by Jose Velasco, head of SAP’s Autism@Work and closed with a thought-provoking address on how to look beyond inclusion to foster a sense of belonging for people with IDD in their communities drew many questions from the audience. In between, we were captivated and emotional by Chris and Nicole Jorwic’s story of Chris finding his voice; intrigued by Alonzo Kelly’s many insights into building effective relationships by examining the intersection of emotional intelligence, book smarts and life experience (especially his “pause two–seconds” rule before responding); explored ways to engage our DSP workforce with insights from both The Arc of Prince George’s County and John Dickerson from Quillo; identified ways to maximize legal advocacy with state leaders from Connecticut, Delaware, and Pennsylvania; and amazed by the magic of Michael Karl and his ability to have us look at our environments in new ways. And so much more.

Though the weather was less than ideal, we learned that it takes more than a few clouds to dampen our spirits! Between the raindrops, over 80 attendees took on the Great SLI Instagram Scavenger Hunt and took Penn’s Landing by storm. Please check out the fun on Instagram with the #NCESLI2018 (My team did come in 2nd). Of course, the Phillies and Dodgers decided to go to extra innings (16!?!?!) and an intrepid few even made it to inning 13!

We laughed, we talked, we engaged, we networked, we pondered, we explored, we learned, and we’ve come home with experiences and connections that can help us continue to grow and be strong.

If you just came back from SLI 2018, don’t forget to give us your feedback with the online attendee questionnaire. And if you missed 2018, don’t worry, we’ll be doing it all again in 2019! 


And, we heard from first-time attendee and speaker Dante Martin from The Arc of Prince George’s County:

As a first time attendee and speaker at the NCE SLI conference, I was extremely impressed with how well organized the entire event was, in particular, the concise and very informative presentations of each speaker as well as the ability to access each sessions notes using the NCE website. Furthermore, the breakout session provided greater opportunities for interaction with the audience who were more apt to engage on topics of interest and relevance to their area of service.