webinar register page

Webinar banner
Special Series | State Spotlight: North Carolina’s Efforts to Engage Adult Learners
Nearly 50 percent of North Carolinians between 25-64 have less than a postsecondary degree or credential. In order to ensure that we are prepared to meet North Carolina’s workforce needs and earn a life-sustaining wage, this population needs to re-engage with higher education. This webinar series will discuss the role of two-year institutions in re-engaging adult learners.

Jan 31, 2023 02:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Webinar logo
* Required information


Dr. Laura Leatherwood
President @Blue Ridge Community College
Dr. Laura B. Leatherwood has served since 2017 as the fourth president of Blue Ridge Community College, leading three campuses with 11,000 students in Henderson and Transylvania Counties. This work has afforded her the opportunity to work and advocate for higher education at the local, regional, and state levels as well as at the national level with the American Association of Community Colleges. She serves on the Executive Committee of the NC Association of Community College Presidents and was named 2022 President of the Year for the North Carolina Community College System. Prior to being named president at Blue Ridge Community College, she served for 17 years in various roles at Haywood Community College. Dr. Leatherwood holds a doctorate degree in university and community college leadership, a master’s degree in human resource development, and a bachelor’s degree in business law, all from Western Carolina University.
Mike Krause
Senior Advisor @John M. Belk Endowment
Mike Krause serves as a Senior Advisor at the John M. Belk Endowment, focusing on initiatives to support adult learners in higher education. Previously, he was the executive director of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission, managing a $2.1 billion budget and serving as the administrator for all state financial aid programs. Mike also served as a senior staff member for Governor Bill Haslam and as the founding director of Tennessee Promise, where he led the design and implementation of the nation’s first free community college program.
The Honorable Deanna Ballard
State Senator @North Carolina General Assembly
As a member of the North Carolina State Senate, Deanna has worked diligently to represent her constituents while serving as Chairwoman on the Committees on Education/Higher Education Appropriations, Education/Higher Education Policy, and Pensions. She also serves as a member on Health Care, Health Care Appropriations, Appropriations/Base Budget, Government Operations, Finance, Nominations and Rules/Operations of the Senate.
Shauna Davis
Strategy Director for Community College Participation @Lumina Foundation
Shauna Davis is the strategy director for community college participation for Lumina Foundation, an independent, private foundation in Indianapolis that is committed to making opportunities for learning beyond high school available to all. Davis leads a portfolio of work designed to increase enrollment and re-enrollment in AA degree and short-term credential programs. Prior to joining Lumina, previous roles included serving as executive director of programs at Achieving the Dream; executive director of the Student Success Center and Office of Professional Development for the Virginia Community College System; director of student services at the Extended Learning Institute (now NOVA Online) for Northern Virginia Community College; and assistant vice-president for Workforce Development for the Community College Workforce Alliance. Davis was one of 35 women recognized by Diverse: Issues in Higher Education March 2020 edition for making a positive difference in education.