Session 6: Finding Your Way - Personal Paths to Leadership

Leadership opportunities, both formal and informal, are easy to find. What gives someone the confidence or self-awareness to step into a leadership role and walk the path? This panel will allow participants to engage with community members who will share the stories of their own journeys, their inspirations and fears, their visions, and victories. A guided activity will help you identify your current capacity as you consider your own leadership potential.

Carla Stough-Huffman (Session Moderator)

Coordinator of Professional Development and OST Program Quality
Greater Rochester After-School and Summer Alliance
(585) 747-5715

For over 30 years, Carla Stough Huffman has been working with youth in Rochester, NY, where she’s done everything from program design/delivery and staff development to grant writing and assessment. A trainer, coach, role model, certified external observer in SELPQA, and more, her education started with a BA in Developmental Psychology from Bard College, and continues every day through reading, conversation, webinars, random Internet searches, media channels like History, Discovery and the Food Network, Ted Talks and following links sent to her, including those from people outside her echo chamber. Known as a community connector, Carla serves as program officer for the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Legacy Fund for Youth Sports and oversees the Youth Sports Leadership Team. A creative thinker and problem-solver, she believes all adults should know and act from a positive youth development stance.

Jamia Williams Jamia Williams(she/her/hers)

Health Sciences Librarian
Drake Memorial Library
SUNY Brockport
(585) 395-215

Jamia Williams earned her Bachelor of Science in History from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Brockport and earned her Master of Library Science from North Carolina Central University. Jamia is a Health Sciences Librarian at SUNY Brockport’s Drake Memorial Library. She serves as the liaison to the following academic programs, African & African-American Studies, Biology, Health Science/Healthcare Studies, Public Health, Health Education, McNair Program, Athletic Training, and Nursing. Williams is the co-creator and co-host of the podcast LibVoices which amplifies the voices of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color who work in archives and libraries. Jamia founded the Diversity Fellow’s blog which is a platform used to document her journey as a Black librarian.

Paula Barbel Paula Barbel

Associate Professor
Department of Nursing
110 Lathrop Hall
(585) 395-5310

Dr. Paula Barbel earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology, from Rochester Institute of Technology in 1998. She worked in biotechnology for two years before continuing her education and earning a second Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Rochester. Dr. Barbel continued her studies at the University of Rochester, earning her Master of Science in Nursing and her PhD in Health Practice Research.

Dr. Barbel began her nursing career working as an R.N. at the Golisano Children’s Hospital at Strong in 2000. She began working at Starlight Pediatrics, formerly, Foster Care Pediatrics, in 2002 as a pediatric nurse practitioner caring exclusively for children and teens in foster care. In 2010, Dr. Barbel joined the faculty of the Department of Nursing at SUNY Brockport, State University of New York as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Nursing. She currently teaches the pediatric nursing course and clinical, senior capstone and academic planning seminar for freshman nursing intent students.

Dr. Barbel’s research interests include child maltreatment, child abuse prevention, foster care, and parenting. As a professor and clinical instructor, Dr. Barbel is very invested in student learning and incorporating active and fun learning methods.

Keith Davis

Associate Director, International Enrollment and Campus Support
Center for Global Education and Engagement
202 Dailey Hall
SUNY Brockport
(585) 395-5466

Keith Davis is currently the Associate Director for International Enrollment and Campus support at SUNY Brockport, located in Rochester, NY. This role oversees all aspects of the international student experience, from recruitment to graduation and beyond.

He is originally from Columbus, Ohio where he completed his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Italian linguistics and French at the Ohio State University. He has continued to develop a passion for empowering students through international education ever since he began his travels abroad in high school.

In addition to studying abroad, Keith has also served as a Resident Director for a study abroad program in Lecce, Italy.

Eric Wheeler

Assistant Director of Veteran Services
Monroe Community College

Eric Wheeler served in the United States armed forces and is a leading advocate for veterans and their families in the Rochester area. During his two decades of service he was a member of both the United States Army and Navy Reserves. In the Navy, Eric conducted training overseas, acted as a Leading Petty Officer for weapons and tactics instruction, and earned his Seabee Combat Warfare Specialist insignia. While in the Army, he deployed overseas as a Civil Affairs Team Sergeant for Operation Joint Forge in Bosnia-Herzegovina and later mobilized as a Staff Sergeant responsible for instructing Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations soldiers in support of Operations Enduring and Iraqi Freedom. His awards and decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and Korean Defense Service Medal.

Eric is currently the Assistant Director of Veteran Services at Monroe Community College where he assists veterans as they transition from the armed forces to higher education. He serves as the college’s liaison with community agencies whose work affects the lives of veterans and their families. Eric also instructs courses as an Adjunct Associate Professor at Monroe Community College and has taught as a Lecturer at Nazareth College and SUNY Brockport. Having performed significant academic research in the field of military history, he has taught undergraduate courses on both World War I and World War II, interviewed former service members for the Veterans History Project of the Library of Congress, escorted World War II and Korean War veterans to Washington, D.C. on multiple Honor Flight missions, and facilitated several lecture series on modern warfare and the reintegration of veterans for the New York Council for the Humanities.

Eric received an Associate of Science in Liberal Arts from Monroe Community College and went on to receive a Bachelor of Science in History (summa cum laude), a Master of Arts in American History, and a Master of Public Administration, all from the State University of New York, College at Brockport. He is also a graduate of the Leadership Rochester program where he later served as the Program Chair. Eric is proud to volunteer for a number of local veterans’ organizations—including CDS Monarch’s Warrior Salute where he is a member of their clinical advisory board, Veterans Outreach Center, Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR), the American Red Cross Service to Armed Forces Committee, and the Monroe County Veterans Advisory Council.

Yversha Roman

Monroe County Legislator District 26
Minority Leader of the Democratic Caucus

Yversha Roman has twenty years of experience in progressively responsible roles within not-for-profit services settings. Having lead teams and initiatives at non-profits including United Way of Greater Rochester, Center for Youth Services, Center for Disability Rights, Rochester After School Academy, Action for a Better Community/ Action Front Center, and as an Adjunct at Nazareth College, where she graduated from with her B.S. in Social Work. Currently serving as Director of the CASH (Creating, Assets, Savings, and Hope) Coalition at Empire Justice. As a non-profit professional and community advocate, she also serves the community as the Minority Leader of the Democratic Caucus, Legislator of the 26th Legislative District.

Yversha’s continued service to the community has received recognition on numerous occasions, including “Rochester 10” by City Newspaper, Inspiration in Action award by Latino Rotary, and 40 under 40 by the Hispanic Institute of New York State. She has been an active participant on many boards and committees, such as the Advisory Board for the Community Youth Development at Nazareth College and the Healthi Kids Coalition of Common Ground Health. She is the co-founder of Rochester’s Pay Equity Coalition, State Board member and facilitator of the Women Elect Program, and founding member of the Monroe County Language Access Coalition. As a new mother, fiancée, and homeowner in Northwest Rochester, she is committed to ensuring our community serves us all.

Back to Brockport Today