Ernesto Mejia, the proud son of Mexican immigrants, is a true example of the American dream. Diagnosed with the rare disease of Guillain-Barré Syndrome at the age of 16 that left him temporarily paralyzed, he was not supposed to be a successful student, much less a College Dean of Students. Through his hardships, Mejia learned to never give up on life. A founding member of the Student Leadership Inspired by Consuelo Kickbusch (SLiCK) program, Mejia now speaks to students, parents and teachers about overcoming obstacles and never giving up on the American dream: education. Mejia holds a bachelor’s degree in Spanish Language and Literature from Eastern Michigan University and a master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Lewis University.
Daron K. Roberts, is a former NFL coach who serves as founding director of the Center for Sports Leadership & Innovation (CSLi) at the University of Texas. CSLI is the first university-based institute dedicated to developing leadership and character curricula for high school and collegiate athletes. Roberts has a proven track record in improving management systems and developing leadership strategy for managers in both the private and public sectors. He has been featured in ESPN the Magazine, Bloomberg Businessweek and Sports Illustrated. Roberts is also a lecturer at the University of Texas, focusing on issues of governance and innovation in the sports arena. He teaches two upper-division honors courses – “Leadership Strategy in Sports” and “Disruptive Innovation in Sports.” Roberts holds a B.A. in Plan II Honors and Government from the University of Texas, an M.P.P. from Harvard’s Kennedy School, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Teresa Granillo, Ph.D is the Executive Director of Con Mi Madre an organization empowering young Latinas and their mothers through educational and support services that increase preparedness, participation, and success in post-secondary education. As a Latina Granillo, grew up with a single mother who didn’t have an education. Her mother encouraged her to do well in school and pursue post-secondary education. Granillo had many mentors outside of her family that helped her throughout high school, college, and graduate school. Thus, she believes whole-heartedly in Con Mi MADRE’s mission. She is proof that with the right guidance, support, and mentorship, even Latinas from low-income families can achieve great things in education. For 10 years she has been doing research on finding ways to improve the lives of young Latinas, to provide them with opportunities to be healthy (physically and emotionally), happy, and successful. The opportunity to serve as the Executive Director of Con Mi MADRE, is a dream come true! Granillo gets to use her personal experiences and knowledge to empower young Latinas and their mothers to fulfill their dreams of obtaining a college education and having a successful career. Granillo holds a bachelor’s in Psychology from the University of Arizona. Additionally, Granillo earned a Masters of Social Work, Masters in Psychology and Ph.D. in Social Work and Psychology from The University of Michigan.