On behalf of the Morgridge College of Education, I am pleased to welcome you to our 10th Anniversary Gifted Education Conference, presented by the Office of the Daniel L. Ritchie Endowed Chair in Gifted Education. In recognition of our decade of conferences, the theme this year is Celebrating Gifted Education:  Reflecting on our Past and Impacting Our Future.

Designed for teacher leaders, building and district leaders, researchers, parents, mental health professionals, and education service providers, the conference is intended to provide specific topical information about selected areas in gifted education.  Our setting this year, in celebration of our 10th Anniversary, is the beautiful Wellshire Event Center, providing an opportunity for participants to interact collaboratively, recognize accomplishments and begin implementation of actions to impact our future.

Our dynamic and informative Symposium and Conference focuses on both leading-edge research advances and practical classroom strategies.  This year we are pleased to welcome the Palmarium winners from across the country as our featured speakers.  These invited leaders include Dr. Sylvia Rimm, Dr. Julia Link Roberts, Dr. Del Seigel, Dr. Marcia Gentry and Dr. Frank Worrell.

Join us to learn theory and practical strategies to improve your own work in gifted education. Important policy issues and trends facing gifted education today will be highlighted and discussed during the Symposium. The Gifted Education Conference will join leading educators and researchers with participants to explore gifted education from multiple perspectives.

Please bookmark this page and check back often as we will continually update information as we finalize speakers and other important details about this exciting event. We look forward to having you join us in January 2020!


Norma Lu Hafenstein, Ph.D.
Daniel L. Ritchie Endowed Chair in Gifted Education
Clinical Professor, Curriculum Studies and Teaching
Morgridge College of Education


Access the Breakout Sessions At-A-Glance and the Breakout Session Descriptions.

Thursday, January 30, 2020
9:00am – 11:30am: Pre-Conference Workshop 1 & 2
1:00pm – 3:30pm: Pre-Conference Workshop 3 & 4
4:00pm – 4:30pm: Reception & Poster Sessions
4:30pm – 5:30pm: Policy Symposium

Friday, January 31, 2020
8:00am – 8:30am: Breakfast & Registration
8:30am – 9:30am: Welcome & Palmarium Presentation
9:45am – 10:45am: Breakout Sessions A
11:00am – 12:00pm: Breakout Sessions B
12:00pm – 1:00pm: Lunch
1:00pm – 2:00pm: Breakout Sessions C
2:00pm – 2:30pm: Poster Session
2:30pm – 3:30pm: Breakout Sessions D
3:45pm – 4:00pm: Closing General Session

New! Pre-COnference WOrkshops

New this year, we are offering pre-conference workshops Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020 at the Wellshire Inn. Morning sessions will be from 9-11:30 a.m. and afternoon sessions from 1-3:30 p.m.

Click here for pre-conference workshop details.

Register for pre-conference workshops on Jan. 30 and the Gifted Education Conference on Jan. 31 here.

Announcing the 2020 Palmarium Award Recipient – Dr. Tracy L. Cross

The Office of the Daniel L. Ritchie Endowed Chair in Gifted Education at the Morgridge College of Education is pleased to announce Dr. Tracy L. Cross as the recipient of the 2020 Palmarium Award, an annual award given to an individual who most exemplifies the vision of the Office of the Daniel L. Ritchie Endowed Chair in Gifted Education. The office seeks a future in which giftedness will be understood, embraced, and systemically nurtured. Recipients of the Palmarium Award demonstrate the vision through understanding of giftedness in the areas of:

  • Practice by impacting graduate education, pre-service, and P-12 community
  • Outreach through advocacy at a variety of levels (local, national, international)
  • Publications informing teachers, children, parents, policy makers, and academia
  • Research influencing theory, practice, and policy

“Through the generosity of the Considine Family Foundation, the Palmarium Award provides professional acknowledgment and tangible support to eminent leaders in the field of Gifted Education,” said Norma Hafenstein, the Daniel L. Ritchie Endowed Chair in Gifted Education. “Dr. Cross’ commitment to the social and emotional needs of gifted learners in inspirational. We are pleased to recognize Tracy’s visionary leadership in support of mental health challenges and positive intervention.”

Speakers Featuring Previous Palmarium Award Recipients

Dr. Sylvia Rimm – 2013 Palmarium Recipient

Dr. Sylvia Rimm, our 2013 Palmarium recipient, is a psychologist who directs the Family Achievement Clinic in Ohio and specializes in working with gifted children and adults.  She is also a clinical professor at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and counsels at Menlo Park Academy, a K-8 charter school for gifted children.  Dr. Rimm speaks and publishes internationally on parenting, giftedness, creativity and underachievement.  Among her many books are Education of the Gifted and Talented, Why Bright Kids Get Poor Grades and What You Can Do About It, How to Parent So Children Will Learn, Keys to Parenting the Gifted Child, See Jane Win®, How Jane Won, and See Jane Win for GirlsSee Jane Win® was a New York Times Best Seller and was featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show and in People magazine.  Her newest book is Jane Wins Again: Can Women Have It All? A Fifteen Year Follow Up. Dr. Rimm was a longtime contributor to NBC’s Today Show, hosted Family Talk on public radio nationally, and served on the Board of Directors of the National Association for Gifted Children.  She has received the prestigious Anne F. Isaacs, Robert Rossmiller and Palmarium awards for her lifetime contributions to gifted children.

Dr. Julia Link Roberts – 2015 Palmarium Recipient

Dr. Julia Link Roberts, our 2015 Palmarium recipient, is the Mahurin Professor of Gifted Studies at Western Kentucky University. She is also the Executive Director of The Center for Gifted Studies and The Carol Martin Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science in Kentucky. She is active in international, national, and state organizations. Dr. Roberts is one of seven members of the Executive Committee of the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children, past-president of The Association for the Gifted (a division of the Council for Exceptional Children), co-chair of the Legislative and Advocacy Committee for the National Association for Gifted Children, a member of the Kentucky Advisory Council for Gifted and Talented Education, and a board member of the Kentucky Association for Gifted Education. Her writing has focused upon differentiation, assessment, STEM schools, advocacy, and gifted education. Dr. Roberts received the first NAGC David Belin Advocacy Award, the 2011 Acorn Award as the outstanding professor at a Kentucky four-year college or university, and the 2011 William T. Nallia Award for innovative leadership from the Kentucky Association for School Administrators. Dr. Roberts was the recipient of the 2015 Palmarium Award. She directs summer and Saturday programming for gifted children as well as travels internationally with high school students.

Dr. Frank C. Worrell – 2019 Palmarium Recipient

Dr. Frank C. Worrell, our 2019 Palmarium recipient, is a Professor in the Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Berkeley, where he serves as Director of the School Psychology Program, Faculty Director of the Academic Talent Development Program, and Faculty Director of the California College Preparatory Academy.  He also holds an affiliate appointment in the Social and Personality Area in the Psychology Department and was a Visiting Professor in the Faculty of Education and Social Work at the University of Auckland (2014–2017).  His areas of expertise include at-risk youth, cultural identities, gifted education/academic talent development, scale development and validation, teacher effectiveness, time perspective, and the translation of psychological research findings into school-based practice. Dr. Worrell is a recipient of UC Berkeley’s Chancellor’s Award for Advancing Institutional Excellence (2011), the Distinguished Scholar Award from the National Association for Gifted Children (2013), the Distinguished Contributions to Research Award from Division 45 (the Society for the Psychological Study of Culture, Ethnicity, and Race) of APA (2015), and the Outstanding International Psychologist Award from Division 52 (International Psychology) of APA (2018).  Dr. Worrell has ongoing international collaborations in China, Ethiopia, Germany, Iran, Israel, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Nigeria, Peru, Slovenia, Sweden, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.

This year’s speakers will also be presenting during the Policy Symposium, moderated by Dr. Susan Assouline, University of Iowa, Jacqueline N. Blank Endowed Chair in Gifted Education and the director of the UI Belin-Blank Center for Gifted Education and talent Development. Check out our past speakers here.


Pre-Conference Workshops

Call for proposals

Call for Proposals for the January 2020 conference has closed.

Palmarium Award

Call for Nominations for the January 2020 conference has closed.

Hotel & Parking

  • Event: Wellshire Event Center, 3333 S. Colorado Blvd Denver, CO
  • Hotel: Hilton Garden Inn Denver/Cherry Creek
    • 600 S Colorado Blvd, Denver, CO 80246 303-754-9800
  • Parking: Free at the Hilton Garden Inn & Wellshire Inn


Vendor Opportunities

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