Get to know our selection of qualified speakers with backgrounds in higher education, online and distance learning, policies, and enrollment strategy. 


Keynote Speaker: Dr. Stacy Adkinson

Dr. Stacy Adkinson is an education consultant and entrepreneur with a passion, talent, and experience to transform higher education toward a sustainable, productive future. 

Dr. Adkinson has served in several leadership roles in both education and for-profit industries and currently is owner and President of SHE: Strategic Higher Ed. Dr. Adkinson uses her experience and expertise to improve and resolve sustainability challenges that are plaguing Higher Education.


Doctorate in Education, Ed. D. 2005 
Ball State University, Muncie, IN 
Dissertation: “Examining Organizational Culture and 
Subculture in Higher Education: Utilizing the Competing Values 
Framework and the Three-perspective Theory” 
Interests & Scholarship: Leadership and Administration in Higher Education, Organizational Learning and Change, Assessment and Institutional Improvement, The Professoriate 

Master of Arts in Adult and Community Ed 1998 
Ball State University, Muncie, IN 
Focus: Biology and Adult Learning 
Interests & Scholarship: Adult Learning, Learning and the Brain: Biologically Focused Investigation of Brain-Based Learning; Transformative Learning; Organizational Leadership; Evaluation Research and Assessment in Higher Education 

Bachelor of Science in Biology/Pre-med 1990 
Anderson University, Anderson, IN 

Marianne Boeke, Ph.D

Marianne Boeke joined NC-SARA in 2018 as the Associate Director for Policy Research and State Support.  Prior to joining NC-SARA, Marianne served as a Senior Associate at the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems (NCHEMS). Marianne has worked on a variety of long and short-term projects including ones associated with the Aspen Institute, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Lumina Foundation for Education, National Science Foundation (NSF), Strada Education Network, WICHE, and WCET State Authorization Network (SAN).  

Marianne has also held administrative positions at The American University, the University of Denver, and the Western Governors University (WGU).   Marianne’s work in state authorization began in 2011 when she co-created the SHEEO survey on state authorization.  She has presented at numerous regional and national conferences and co-wrote several white papers on state authorization topics including: “State Authorization and Military Students” and “State Authorization and Non-Credit Courses and Programs.”  Marianne holds a B.A. from San Jose State University, a M.A. from The American University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Denver.

Earl "Tex" Brieger

Tex Brieger currently serves as the Director of Distance Education at Gannon University where his primary role is strategic leadership of distance education and online programs. 

Initially Tex worked in IT for his first 8 years in Higher Education including serving as Angel LMS administrator. He has experience teaching online and has taught for 10 years as an adjunct in computer science. 

Tex was an instructional designer for 6 years in Gannon’s Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning training faculty to develop and deliver courses online as well as designing pedagogy for ground instruction.

Mary Larson

Mary Larson joined NC-SARA in September 2017. She is Associate Director for Student and Institution Support where she brings more than 27 years of experience working in higher education. 

Prior to joining NC-SARA, Mary was the Director of Student Access Programs and Services at SREB where she was the director of S-SARA, worked with state authorization and oversaw a number of SREB programs that help students start or continue their education, the 16-state Electronic Campus and related state authorization issues. 

Before SREB, she worked at Fort Lewis College. Mary has a master's in adult education from the University of Georgia and a B.A. in English literature from Montana State University.

Matt Norsworthy

Matt Norsworthy, Ed.D. establishes relationships with institutions in order to develop strategies for improvement in their online and blended programs.  Matt provides professional development options and project development solutions for institutions of all sizes, both public and private, domestically and internationally.  

Dr. Norsworthy has been designing, developing, and teaching English and Humanities courses for over fifteen years.  He has a Masters of Fine Arts (MFA) in Creative Writing from National University and a Masters of Liberal Studies in English from Fort Hays State University.  In addition, he holds a Doctorate of Education in Higher Education and Organizational Change from Benedictine University where he wrote his dissertation on “A Comparison of the Experiences of Online and Face-to-Face Doctoral Students in the Humanities."

Brit Peek

Brit Peek is a seasoned 15+ year Human Resources professional with over ten years experience in the healthcare field. Brit currently supports a not-for-profit medical institution that provides services to the underserved population in South Texas. She completed a Human Resources undergraduate degree from Abilene Christian University, and a Master in Business in Administration from Texas A&M University in San Antonio.

Brit is currently working on a doctoral dissertation to measure the underserved population's usage of preventative care services prior to and post the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. She is looking forward to earning her Doctorate of Business Administration from the University of the Incarnate Word in the fall of 2019.

Bridget Seth

Bridget Seth serves as the Online Student Engagement Coordinator at Gannon University.  Bridget facilitates the day-to-day student retention efforts for the online student population.  Bridget has 4 years of experience working in the University’s Purchasing Department where she led institutional policy training for all new hires.  

She also works as a software trainer in Gannon’s Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning as well as serving as a Blackboard course builder for online programs.  Prior to joining Gannon, Bridget worked for 23 years in manufacturing which included 2 years of corporate training.