2021 Seminar Keynote Speakers


Chance Rush

Monday, Oct. 4 Keynote Session

Keep Building Your Culture

Chance serves as a consultant to tribes and organizations in reference to business, community outreach, staff trainings, and curriculum development.  His passion for strengthening Native communities combined with his experiences led him to the development of Cloudboy Consulting, LLC.

Chance travels throughout the United States and Canada to work with Native communities in efforts to inspire, heal, motivate, and energize. He has a talent for using his energy and humor to spread a simple message, “Use your personal talents to lead you to greatness.” He promotes healthy living and lives his life alcohol and drug free.

Learn morechancerush.com.


Dr. Barbara Sorrels

Tuesday, Oct. 5 Keynote Session

Capsized Canoe or Smooth Sailing? Navigating the COVID Storm

Barbara Sorrels, EdD is a child development specialist, educator, and consultant with a heart for “children from hard places.” As the founder of Connected Kids, she provides educators, parents, and advocates with compassionate, evidence-based strategies for guiding children through trauma and other challenges. Her approach is based on the belief that when children feel connected to themselves, their families, and the world around them, they can overcome even the darkest of circumstances and reach their fullest potential. 

Dr. Sorrels’ passion for helping children began at the age of 14 in Washington, D.C., when she volunteered at a hospital caring for abandoned babies. In the decades since, she has used that passion to raise awareness about the needs of our society’s most vulnerable children. 

Prior to founding Connected Kids, Dr. Sorrels spent more than 20 years in education as a classroom teacher, a founder/director of early childhood centers, and a professor of graduate and undergraduate students in the Early Childhood Education program at Oklahoma State University. 

In 2007, Dr. Sorrels founded The Institute for Childhood Education to provide consulting and professional development training for educators, professionals from state agencies, and other child advocacy organizations. After recognizing the extent of need, she participated in extensive training with Dr. Bruce Perry at his Child Trauma Academy and became certified in the Neurosequential model of therapeutics, as well as education, and expanded her work to provide educational workshops through Connected Kids, which she founded in 2015. Dr. Sorrels lives in the Tulsa area with her husband, Bob, and is a proud mother and grandmother.

Learn more: connectedkids.org.