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Conferences and Workshops
(Click here for the 2019-2020 Professional Development Series PDF)


ISACS Leadership Academy in Partnership with the Kellogg Center for Nonprofit Management

Tuesday, June 24, 2014 8:30 am - Thursday, June 26, 2014 3:30 pm

Kellogg's Downtown Chicago Campus - Wieboldt Hall
Chicago, IL


Dates/Times: The Academy starts at 8:30 am on Tuesday, June 24 and ends at 3:30 pm on Thursday, June 26, 2014.

Who Should Attend: Heads of Independent Schools *

(* For those administrators who are not currently heads of school but are interested in attending the Leadership Academy, please call the ISACS office at 312-750-1190 to be put on a waitlist. If space allows, ISACS will open the Leadership Academy on April 1, 2014 to non-heads and will honor the partial scholarships for schools with assets of less than $12 million.)

Our schools are small businesses as well as academic institutions. Most of us were well-prepared for the latter, maybe not so much for the former.  Our education or years of work experience may not have covered topics such as finance, marketing, or negotiating --  business school-type training. 

The ISACS Leadership Academy is designed to be an introduction to business education for school heads. It includes four sessions on marketing, two sessions on negotiations, two sessions on distributive leadership and four sessions on finance. We hope it will encourage participants to pursue additional training at Kellogg or other convenient business schools.

Most of the professional development opportunities available for heads do not address this need.  So, ISACS is proud to offer a partnership with the Kellogg's Center for Nonprofit Management at Northwestern University and the E.E. Ford Foundation to provide this unique executive education opportunity.  The ISACS Leadership Academy will be offered from Tuesday, June 24 - Thursday, June 26, 2014 at Kellogg's downtown Chicago Campus, Wieboldt Hall for heads of school.  The Academy is a unique opportunity to develop or deepen heads' leadership skills to more effectively lead a school. It will also be an unusual and exciting networking opportunity for similar-minded heads of schools.

The ISACS Leadership Academy is designed to be an introduction to business education for school heads. We hope it will encourage participants to pursue additonal training at Kellogg or other convenient business schools.

Topics include:

  • Negotiations with Nicholas Pearce
    Receive formal training in a subject that is critical to building relationships and reaching satisfactory outcomes.  Learn to negotiate agreements, resolve disputes, and make decisions that are best for both the participants and the school.
  • Distributive Leadership with Jim Spillane
    Explore the distribution of leadership among your administrative team and the ways in which leadership is stretched over tools and physical materials (memos, scheduling procedures, evaluation protocols, and computer programs) in the school.
  • Finance for Educational Leaders; Understanding and Using Financial Statements with Marian Powers
    Improve your understanding of the entire financial picture of your school by learning to better understand financial statements, spot financial trends, identify areas of cost containment and predict the implications of your management decisions.
  • The Customer-Focused School with Julie Hennessy 
    Learn best practices of marketing strategy and how they can be applied to independent schools.  Topics include market segmentation, target selection, and focused campaigns.  This session will have implications for fund-raising as well as admissions.
  • Building Strong School Brands with Tim Calkins
    Brand image is a powerful but underutilized marketing tool for schools.  Learn to develop a brand enhancement and management strategy that will increase internal engagement and external awareness and interest.
Featured Speakers
  • Tim Calkins, Clinical Professor of Marketing at the Kellogg School of Management
  • Julie Hennessy, Clinical Professor of Marketing at the Kellogg School of Management
  • Dr. Nicholas Pearce, Clinical Assistant Professor of Management & Organizations at the Kellogg School of Management
  • Marian Powers, Adjunct Associate Professor of Accounting at the Kellogg School of Management
  • Jim Spillane, Spencer T. and Ann W. Olin Chair in Learning and Organizational Change/Professor of Human Development and Social Policy, and Learning Sciences at Northwestern University
Click here for Featured Speakers Bios

Leadership Academy Brochure
Click here for the Leadership Academy’s brochure.

The Academy will take place at the Kellogg Center for Nonprofit Management at Northwestern University, Wieboldt Hall in downtown Chicago.

Hotel Accommodations - Update as of April 15
*** The room block at the Courtyard has reached capacity. You can still call the Courtyard Marriott Magnificent Mile and obtain a room at a higher rate. Below please find two hotel options - The Hotel Monaco and the Club Quarters at Michigan and Wacker - that you can consider for your hotel needs. Please call Karen at the ISACS office at 312-750-1190 if you have any questions.
ISACS has secured special discounted room rates at the Courtyard Marriott Chicago Magnificent Mile, 165 East Ontario Street, which is located just a few blocks from the Kellogg Center's downtown campus.  The special rate is:  $199/night plus tax (single or double occupancy) for the nights of June 23, 24, and 25 To make a reservation, call 1-800-321-2211 and use Group Code "ISF" or "ISACS" to reserve a room.  The Courtyard Magnificent Mile Chicago is located just a one block east of Michigan Ave. Here is a link to the hotel's website: The Courtyard is conveniently accessible by public transportation and taxis. Click here for directions and parking information.
ISACS has two additional options for your hotel needs - the Hotel Monaco or Club Quarters - both within walking distance to the Leadership Academy location (about a 10-15 minute walk).  Below is information on the two options, select the one that best meets your needs.

Hotel Monaco: ISACS has secured a discount off the standard room rates at the Hotel Monaco, 225 N. Wabash, Chicago, IL. The hotel is located less than three blocks from the new ISACS office/conference room. To view rates and reserve your room, please call 1-800-KIMPTON and request the ISACS rate. Click here to book your room online.  Rates and availability vary based on time of year.

The Monaco Chicago, a Kimpton Hotel is an award winning boutique hotel offering a stylish window onto the Windy City. Located in the heart of downtown Chicago, the Hotel Monaco is in the Loop business district and just steps from North Michigan Avenue shopping and the popular Millennium Park. Complimentary highlights of the Hotel Monaco include: a 24-hour fitness center, pet friendly policies, and complimentary coffee and tea and evening wine reception in the living room. Join the Kimpton InTouch loyalty program and receive complimentary wireless internet access, personalized amenities and a whole lot more. For more details on the Monaco Chicago, visit

Click here for directions and parking information.


Club Quarters at Wacker and Michigan: The Independent Schools Association of the Central States is now a member of Club Quarters, full service business hotels for member organizations.  The entire ISACS community has access to low member rates at Club Quarters, Wacker at Michigan and 15 additional locations in the United States and London.  When you stay at Club Quarters, Wacker at Michigan, you are just steps from the Magnificent Mile.  Member guests enjoy automatic Gold Status benefits including subsidized weekend and holiday rates, complimentary onsite benefits including WiFi, exercise facilities, chilled, purified bottled water and access to the Club Living Room with snacks and refreshments and Gold Rewards, the richest guest rewards program.

For additional information or to to make a reservation, please contact Member Services at 203.905.2100 anytime between Mon.-Fri. 7am-11pm, Sat. 9am-5pm and Sun. 10am-6pm (EST). Make sure to identify yourself as a member of ISACS - Independent Schools Association of the Central States and provide them with the Group Code: Ind Schl Assoc Central Sta. Credit cards are required to book all room reservations. While Club Quarters is getting ready to launch their new website sometime in the summer, we ask that if you wish to make a reservation online that you visit their website at and login with the ISACS Member Password: ISACS.

Click here for directions and parking information.

Kellogg will be providing participants with additional details on parking options via email as the Academy approaches.
Daily Parking  at the Courtyard - If you arrive by 9:00 am and leave by 7:00 pm, there is a special parking rate of $16.00. This is valid Monday - Friday only.  The garage is adjacent to the hotel and has a door to the hotel lobby. This is a self park only option. If you arrive after 9:00 am regular rates, depending on the length of stay, apply. The hotel does not offer valet daily parking. The self parking garage entrance is on St. Clair Street just south of Ontario Street.
There are several other parking lots in the surrounding area if the parking garage is full.
Overnight Parking at the Courtyard- The self parking rate with in and out privileges is $49 and is valid from the time of check in until 3pm of the checkout date, and must be arranged through the front desk upon check in. Valet overnight parking with in and out privileges is $62 from the time of check in until 3pm of the checkout date.
Registration Fee
$2250 - ISACS Member Fee
$2500 - Non Member Fee
Academy includes: Three breakfasts, three lunches, one reception and one dinner.
Partial Scholarships Available
Thanks to a grant from E.E. Ford Foundation, schools with assets of less than $12 million can receive partial scholarships. To determine your school's assets, go to the Statement of Financial Position from your most recent audit and find "Year-End Total Net Assets." These scholarships are available for member and non- members schools.
For more details about the partial scholarship, please contact the ISACS office at 312-750-1190 for details.
Cancellation Policy
Cancellations must be received in writing to ISACS by emailing 10 business days prior to the event to receive a 50% refund. Cancellations received within 10 days of the event will not receive a refund. Registration may be transferred to another member from the same school. ISACS reserves the right to cancel the workshop for insufficient enrollment. In this case, participants will be notified and given a full refund. 
Questions? Please call 312-750-1190.

Member Cost: $2250     Non-member Cost: $2500


55 West Wacker, Suite 701 · Chicago, IL 60601 · Telephone (312) 750-1190 · Fax (312) 750-1193
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