We will start with a warm welcome to set the tone for the day. Some of the guest speakers during the Welcome & Kick-Off are listed below.

Geoff Belleau

Education Program Consultant, California Department of Education

Sacramento, CA

Belleau has 25 years of experience as a high-school, middle-school, and elementary-school educator. Previously he was a county office administrator, serving as program manager to coordinate instructional technology projects with district IT administrators and working with schools and districts on technology integration and professional development. He has presented at several state and national education technology conferences and is a member of the Technology Information Center for Administrative Leadership Cadre.

Dr. Faris Sabbah

Superintendent, Santa Cruz County Office of Education

Santa Cruz, CA

Over the past 25 years, Dr. Faris Sabbah has served as county deputy superintendent, county assistant superintendent, university professor, director, assistant principal, teacher, and instructional aide. He obtained his bachelor’s in Psychology from UC Santa Cruz, his masters in Educational Leadership from San Jose State University, and his doctorate in Leadership for Educational Equity from UC Berkeley.

He carries a deep sense of urgency to disrupt inequitable practices. He is committed to partnering with districts and other organizations to create a network of support that propel our students to achieve and thrive.

Dr. Sabbah is committed to the values of diversity, equity and inclusion as he helps lead the evolution of the County Office of Education in addressing the needs of students, districts, and the community. His top priorities are to support students and districts by expanding the COE presence throughout the county, engage the community through an ambitious communication plan, develop a data-driven culture of improvement, create safe spaces for all students, and build programs and opportunities that uplift the voices of students.