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Coffee Connections

2016-17 Facilitators

Alfred L. Carter, Retired Dean of Students at Manchester Community College, is an accomplished career educator, sociologist and humanist who has extensive experience and has been active in the field of higher education for approximately forty (40) years in various positions including: Student Leader, Academic Advisor, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Program Director, Division Director, Assistant Academic Dean, and Educational Consultant.  He has provided training in the areas of diversity, team building, stress management, leadership, communications, conflict management, mentoring / advising, managing change, and teaching effectiveness.  Alfred  was a founding partner in Rodgers and Carter Educational Consulting.  Since retiring, he has continued participating in higher education, serving as Special Assistant to the Dean of Students at Capital Community College, training and speaking as well as continuing to mentor students and professionals who seek support and encouragement.  This is important because as a result of being mentored and being a mentor, a shy, introvert became a student leader and professional leader;  an individual with a low self-image became a confident professional; a “loner” evolved into a Teacher and educator.

Lauren Gibson-Carter is a licensed clinical social worker, who holds a Master’s degree in Community Organizing. Throughout her career Lauren’s work has focused on educating and advocating for the needs of families and their communities. Her work experience includes higher education program and curriculum development, and teaching, multicultural team building with parents and professionals, as well as training professionals on the local and state level in the respectful approach of working with families as allies in their children’s education. While employed with The Village, Lauren was an active member of the agency’s diversity team.  She continues to utilize opportunities to recognize and appreciate diverse cultures, families and communities. Lauren’s personal goal is to assist in bringing down the barriers that separate and isolate us while building bridges that connect and empower people and communities to utilize the strengths of their past to work together to build a better present and future.

Andréa Hawkins is a Co-Owner of Berkins Blend Café in Glastonbury, CT where she lives.  Over the past 20 years Andréa has held roles increasing in responsibility in the Insurance and Financial Service sector at Aetna, CIGNA, MassMutual, The Hartford, UnitedHealth Group at Optum and progressed to Vice President of Operations at Prudential and TIAA-CREF.  A long-standing volunteer at The Amistad Center for Art and Culture, she was awarded the Millard H. Pryor award for her 20 years of service.  Andréa has served the Hartford Region YWCA Board since 2011.  Andréa holds her masters degree in Organizational Behavior, Series 7 (Registered Representative), Series 24 (Supervisory Principle) and CT Life and Health Producer's licenses and is a ProSci Certified Change Leader.  Andréa is a graduate of the Leadership Greater Hartford, Quest, Class of 2011 and a self-proclaimed life long student.

Glenn Winfree is a gifted speaker and trainer with a passion for people and over 20 years experience in corporate America. He inspires people to dig deep inside themselves to bring out their personal best. Glenn connects with his audience by delivering entertaining and high-impact presentations and workshops. His message is compelling, emotional, humorous and above all, life affirming. With a deep understanding of the human psyche, he encourages people to act, to embrace change and to overcome obstacles. Glenn currently works as the Head of School with Covenant Preparatory School in Hartford, Connecticut. Covenant Preparatory School is a tuition-free, independent school for boys living in Hartford and the surrounding communities. The school was established as a part of the Nativity Miguel coalition, a faith-based collection of schools working to eradicate poverty through faith-based education. Prior to serving as Head of School, Glenn functioned as Director of Diversity and Inclusion with Aetna. He started his Aetna career as a performance consultant with the Enterprise-wide Learning and Performance group. Prior to joining Aetna, Glenn was a regional training manager with Accenture. Glenn is a certified instructor of the world-famous Dale Carnegie training program, and functions as the regional trainer for the Dale Carnegie Generation Next Youth Character Development program. Glenn is also licensed by Kahler Communications to teach the Process Communication Model (PCM), a language-based, personality assessment and behavioral model used in the selection and training of astronauts for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). He is trained to deliver PCM programs in corporate, spiritual, and educational settings. Glenn founded Elegant Communication Solutions, LLC (ECS) in 2008 offering training and coaching for executives, managers, pastors, educators, professionals and students using the Process Communication Model®. Glenn earned his Bachelors degree in Business Economics from Rutgers University, and a Masters degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from the University of Hartford. Glenn also received a certificate in Diversity Management from the University of Houston.