The SPEAK Series


Speakers for Parents Educators And Kids

Louisville Collegiate School offers free community talks for the general public through the SPEAK series. The goal of SPEAK is to build the well-being of our community by offering a forum for conversation on current educational, health, wellness, artistic, social, psychological, technological, and economic topics that are relevant to our time. For several decades, local, regional, and national thought leaders have delivered talks and workshops at Collegiate.

Dave Mochel at Collegiate, Tuesday, November 13

Coping Strategies to Combat Stress & Anxiety and Improve Well-Being

Tuesday, November 13, 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Open to the Community
Thornton Dining Commons

Shelly Sowell at Collegiate, Wednesday, February 6

Social & Emotional Impacts of the Digital World in Which We Live

Wednesday, February 6, 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.
Open to the Community
Thornton Dining Commons

Dr. Derrick Gay at Collegiate, Wednesday, March 27

Cultural Competence & Inclusion

Wednesday, March 27, 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Open to the Community
Thornton Dining Commons

Dave Mochel

For over thirty years, Dave Mochel has been focused on the foundations of wellbeing, healthy communities, and leadership. After a twenty-year career teaching human development and neuroscience in independent schools, he founded Applied Attention to help individuals, teams, and organizations focus their attention and energy where it will make the greatest positive difference. Using principles drawn from modern scientific research and enduring wisdom, he had the opportunity to work with leaders, educators, executives, parents, students, and athletes all over the world. Dave draw upon my degrees in biology from Williams College, a Master’s in Humanistic and Multicultural Education from SUNY New Paltz, and a clinical internship in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center.

Dave’s work with people represents what he has learned over the last twenty-five years in the fields of well-being, neuroscience, performance, and group dynamics. The principles and practices he teaches have been distilled and synthesized from thousands of years of enduring wisdom, thousands of scientific studies, and thousands of conversations with colleagues, students, friends, and clients.

Applied Attention is a mindfulness consulting company that partners with businesses, schools, and individuals to bridge the gap between what matters most and how time and energy are used. The goal is to teach people how to consistently refocus on what is present, what is important, and what is effective. This simple and powerful practice builds the fundamental skills necessary to embrace challenge, learn from others, and thrive in any circumstance. The result for individuals is greater engagement, flexibility, and resilience. Within teams and organizations, this practice creates powerfully positive and purposeful cultures.


Watch Dave’s Ted Talk:

Shelly Sowell

Shelly Sowell works as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor and Education Consultant. She moved to Louisville from California and opened a wellness business in Crescent Hill serving individuals, families, schools and community programs.

Shelly holds a License in Mental Health Counseling in the state of Florida, a License in Professional Clinical Counseling in the state of Kentucky, and is a National Certified Counselor. She attended graduate school at Vanderbilt University Peabody School of Education and trained at Vanderbilt University Psychological Counseling Center in Nashville, Tennessee.

She has worked with community agencies, public and private schools, non-profits for underprivileged families, colleges and universities, and an eating disorder residential treatment center. Shelly is passionate about working with school communities and has been teaching Mindfulness-Based Life Skills to students, training faculty in mindfulness and inner resilience practices, and creating programs for parents since 2007.

Shelly has created wellness businesses in Miami, Florida, Los Angeles, California, and Louisville, Kentucky. Recently, Shelly is a founding partner of the Center for Integrative Learning and Teaching in Nashville, Tennessee. CILT Nashville serves as a regional hub for providing mindfulness-based trainings for educators and designing programs for schools, universities and community programs that serve youth.


Dr. Derrick Gay

Dr. Derrick Gay is an internationally recognized consultant to organizations, both domestically and abroad, on issues of Diversity and Inclusion, Cultural Competency, and Global Citizenship. Dr. Gay collaborates with thought leaders to foster empathy, enrich inclusion and cultivate cultural competency.

Dr. Gay has been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post The Huffington Post, El Tiempo Latino and on NPR, The Brian Leher Show, and 60 Minutes. Dr. Gay has also produced two TEDx Talks: “The Double-Edged Sword,” which explores the irony that the word diversity often undermines diversity goals; and “Why Elephants Hold the Key to Success in the 21st Century,” which explores the nature of racial discourse in the United States.  In addition to his direct work in the nursery-12th grade world, Dr. Gay also advises Sesame Street; Carney, Sandoe, and Associates; KIPP Foundation; Peabody Conservatory; American Montessori Society; and the Einhorn Family Charitable Trust Foundation.

Within the education world, Dr.  Gay is equally comfortable and effective working with students, faculty and staff, parents, administrators, and boards. He has partnered with scores of schools in wide-ranging work including facilitating parent meetings and workshops; conducting Inclusivity Climate Assessments; guiding administrative teams and Boards through Strategic Planning;  presenting student workshops to Lower School, Middle School and Upper School students; training Boards on issues of community life; delivering keynotes to regional consortia; and providing faculty and staff professional development.

Dr. Gay is a proud graduate of Whitney Young Magnet High School; Merit School of Music; Oberlin College (BA in Romance Languages); Oberlin Conservatory of Music (BM in Opera); Columbia University (MA, Klingenstein Program, Educational Leadership in Independent Schools); and The University of Pennsylvania (Ed.D Educational Leadership).



Thank you to the SPEAK planning committee and the Parents Association for your support.

Questions about SPEAK? Contact Associate Head of School, Tracie Catlett,