Who’s Who at This Year’s #140edu Conference

The #140edu Conference is an exciting and innovative gathering of people from all over the world to discuss the current state of education and the role of technology in revolutionizing the classroom. A focus of the conference is providing a platform for people on Twitter to connect with one another and listen to fascinating speakers, all the while exploring the ways that the Internet and social media are shaping the future.

This year’s conference will take place from July 31 through August 1 in New York City at the 92nd Street YMCA (1395 Lexington Avenue). The event will draw dozens of amazing speakers whom you should definitely check out if you’re in the area --- or online even if you're not! Here are five in particular that you should keep an eye out for:

Brian Mannix

Brian Mannix is an innovative teacher whose work in education takes him from social studies to the integration of Web 2.0 technology in the classroom. He was named "Leader of the Year" by Tech & Learning Magazine in 2010 and is the CEO of Babysitting Barter, a website that uses technology to help people find and schedule babysitters. He has been a middle school social studies teacher for 11 years and has recently become the Technology Staff Developer at Great Neck South Middle School, helping his colleagues enhance and expand their lessons. Recently, he has been hosting an Internet show called "The Power of 10: Discussing Education’s Future" on Google+. Make sure to follow him on Twitter @manixlab.

Danya Cheskis-Gold

Danya Cheskis-Gold worked for four years as a recruiter for Teach For America, the nationwide teacher corps that aims to close the achievement gap by preparing highly qualified teachers to work in high-needs schools. She recruited hundreds of college students from across the country and designed training for the corps’ countrywide campus intern program. She is now the community manager of Skillshare, an online community marketplace that empowers teachers and democratizes learning by connecting educators with one another to share their knowledge and expertise. In her own words for WeAreNYTech, Danya “made a crafty transition from the non-profit world to the tech sector by telling anyone and everyone how passionate I am about the intersection of social impact and technology.” Follow her on Twitter @danyacg.

Hadley Ferguson

Hadley Ferguson is a middle school history teacher at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy and the cofounder of EdCamp Philly, an innovative “unconference” devoted to discussing and addressing issues in K-12 education. She has a Master of Education and is a leading voice in the movement to integrate Web 2.0 technology in the classroom. Hadley serves on the Library of Congress Teaching with Primary Sources Mentor Advisory Board and speaks far and wide about the benefits of educational technology. She’s written three articles for the International Society for Technology in Education’s Learning and Leading journal and is a frequent conference presenter. You can learn more about Hadley’s tech enthusiasm, including the other publications she has contributed to, on her website. Follow her on Twitter @hadleyjf.

Jennifer Wagner

Until 2008, Jennifer Wagner worked in various facets of education, including as an academic law librarian and as the head of a computer school for children. She is also the coordinator of a conference program called “Multitasking Millenials.” In 2008, Jennifer began writing a blog called "Connect with Your Teens Through Pop Culture and Technology." She is also the author of the book The Gamer Generation and contributes to RoleMommy and Technorati Media. Follow her on Twitter @jenwag57.  

Mary Beth Hertz

Mary Beth Hertz teaches in Philadelphia, where she has worked since 2004 as a science teacher for grades K-6 and now as a technology teacher for grades K-7. She has been a moderator for the #edchat discussion on Twitter every Tuesday and is a frequent presenter at conferences, including the International Society for Technology in Education 2011 meeting in Philadelphia. She is one of the organizers of EdCamp Philly and a frequent blogger for Edutopia, where she writes about technology integration at the elementary level. She sits on two boards as treasurer of the EdCamp Foundation and as a member of the International Advisory Board for the Digital Harbor Foundation. You can learn more on about Mary on her website. Follow her on Twitter @mbteach.