Keynote Speakers

Jonathan Banks



Jonathan Banks is motivated to see people thrive by challenging them to grow and inspiring them to rise. He actively serves his church and community and strives to help others reach their God-given potential in every area of life.

Jonathan earned an undergraduate degree in engineering from Purdue University and an MBA from Northwestern University. Jonathan has enjoyed an amazing career path which has included Non-Profit Leadership, Youth Ministry, Food Ingredient & Flavor Research, Real Estate Finance and Business Development, Teaching and Tutoring K-12 & College level courses. He currently serves as the Director of Ministry at Apostolic Faith Church where Bishop Horace E. Smith, M.D. is the Pastor. His own academic and tutoring experiences helped him form an effective approach to success that he willingly shares with the next generation.

Jonathan is a passionate educator who serves his church and community in Illinois where he resides with his wife, Jacinta, and their teenage sons.

Dr. Lorena Mancilla


Dr. Lorena Mancilla is an advocate for bilingual students and families. Her passion for working with families comes from her own family history and her experiences as a classroom teacher, workshop facilitator, and researcher. Dr. Mancilla completed her Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Her research focused on Latino parent engagement in K–12 language education.

Al Clevland


Al Cleveland, II a Spouse, Father, Minister, Motivational Speaker, and Confidante, is a gift to all humanity. In 2007, he became the founder of: Rehoboth Ministries / Wheaton, IL an organization who's mission is to uplift people and their communities through free educational resources, job fairs, food drives, housing assistance, and social & emotional care referrals. In 2010, the Parent Leadership Academy Network organization /P.L.A.N. was formed through Hegemon ConSulting / Wheaton, IL to partner with schools an empower parents with information that will guarantee their child's academic success.

Al Cleveland has served in various capacities of church ministry for over 40 years from musician to Sr. Pastor. He has also been an active part of the business and civic community for 25 years creating and building professional relationships with Fortune 500 companies, successful CEO's, local and national community activist to help enhance the lives of others in the Chicagoland area, Uganda Africa, Trinidad, Spain, and across America.

Al Cleveland's 25 years of success in the corporate arena as a Regional Manager/Great American Products, Sales Analyst/Inland Steel Co., and Operations Supervisor/Williams Communications enhanced his ability to manage large accounts with net revenues of over one (1) million dollars, diversified his knowledge of global and community initiatives, and increased his capacity for working with and leading large groups of People.

Currently the President & CEO of Hegemon ConSulting,LLC a company that specializes in writing Parental Involvement Curriculums for school districts since 2010 has successfully implemented P.L.A.N organizations (Parent Leadership Academy Network) into 6 DuPage and Kane County Public Schools in the suburban areas of Chicago, IL. The average P.L.A.N. Graduating class since 2011 has been 25 or more parents from each school, all receiving certificates from their perspective districts certifying them as Level 1 P.L.A.N. Advocates. Each graduating parent becomes eligible upon completing the full program to become a Level 2 P.L.A.N. Advocate. After completing the 2nd year of the program the parent becomes a Level 3 P.L.A.N. Advocate which allows them to become certified P.L.A.N. trainer for their District.

Jonathan Edison



Jonathan Edison is one of the most compelling thought leaders and Motivational Business Speakers today. As an expert in human development he delivers strategies, methods and tools filled with insight and humor that consistently move people and organizations to their highest potential. His personal Motto is “Results don’t Lie, people do!” Growing up in an environment that was a prescription for failure, young John John— his grandmother’s affectionate nickname for him—faced many hardships. After exposing him to drugs and violence, his mother was removed from the household by the Department of Social Services when he was five years old. Two years later Jonathan’s father left to start a new family on another side of town. Then, his grandmother Cloraine that took on the challenge of raising him died of cancer when he was 14. 

Now homeless, Jonathan was forced to take up residence in his aunt’s basement. To afford the $50.00 a month in rent and his portion of the electric bill, he worked a full-time job as a dishwasher/bus boy at Chili’s Grill and Bar in the evenings and on weekends. He graduated from high school with a 1.63 grade point average and completed his first year of college with a 0.62 GPA before dropping out completely.

Instead of becoming another statistic, Jonathan found the courage he needed within himself to rise above adversity. He enrolled in remedial classes at Wayne County Community College. In 1993, Jonathan graduated with an associate’s degree as a part of the Urban Teacher Program. In 1995 Jonathan continued his education at Wayne State University, earning a bachelor’s and a master’s degree. During college, Jonathan worked as a bus attendant, waiter, gas station attendant and often slept in his car so that he could hold down his jobs and attend classes.

After teaching for four years, at age 27 Jonathan became the youngest assistant principal in the history of Detroit Public Schools. In 2002, he was named Wayne County Spokesman for Success. Then, along with hundreds of other dedicated educators, Jonathan was fired. With no savings, clients or plan, in 2004 he launched Edison Speaks International, a motivational and training development company. Since then Jonathan has shared his “Strategies for Success” with over 500,000 people, authored four books and has spoken in over 40 States. Jonathan’s Fortune 500 clients include: CVS Pharmacy, Daimler Chrysler, FBI, Folgers Coffee, General Motors, Hewlett Packard, McDonald’s and State Farm Insurance.