National Conference Breakout Sessions

Breakout Session Details

Details on the different breakout sessions available will be continually updated.


Pete Visintin Headshot

Student Recruitment in the Digital Age

Pete Visintin

Macoupin County IL CEO Facilitator

Room: TBA

Time: TBA

About Pete:
I have been an entrepreneur and business owner for 7+ years building a non-profit organization that has generated $100,000+ in financial donations via online apparel sales to help individuals in need pay for large medical expenses. My experience and journey as an entrepreneur has lead me to become the Facilitator for the Macoupin County (IL) CEO Program guiding area high school students through the process of starting their own businesses and preparing them for the professional world beyond high school.


Community Foundations & Fiscal Agents

Room: TBA

Time: TBA

Amanda Lessley

President/CEO - Southeastern Illinois Community Foundation

Amanda Lessley joined Southeastern Illinois Community Foundation as Development Officer in February 2016 and began her new role as President/CEO in January 2019. Lessley providesprofessional leadership and assistance to the Board of Directors of Southeastern Illinois Community Foundation and its fund advisors in making the Community Foundation an effective, viable organization. Lessley is responsible for the entire operation, growth and development of the Community Foundation and administers staff, programs and facilities of the organization.

In 2002, Lessley graduated from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville with a Bachelor of Science in Speech Communications/Public Relations. Since earning her degree, she has dedicated her career to the non-profit sector, explaining “I truly believe that private charity is one of the greatest traditions of American history and the most effective tools for meeting needs of our local communities.” Lessley has more than 12 years of experience in non-profit development and fundraising. She currently is coordinating 100 Women Who Care Jasper County, a giving circle designed to engage women in local philanthropy. Amanda resides in Newton, Illinois with her husband, Brett, and two daughters, Lydia and Nora.

Connie Lilly

Accounting/Donor Services Administrator - Southeastern Illinois Community Foundation

Connie Lilly is the Accounting/Donor Services Administrator for Southeastern Illinois Community Foundation since January 2017. Connie oversees office management, accounting, gift and grant processing and reporting as well as administrative support for giving circles and corporate philanthropy programs.

Prior to joining Southeastern Illinois Community Foundation, Connie worked approximately 22 years as administrative manager for Southeastern Container, a manufacturing cooperative under ownership of Coca Cola bottling companies. During that time, she handled office administration, human resource duties and payroll functions. Connie also worked as a billing auditor for World Color Press corporate offices until their departure from the Effingham area.

Connie graduated from Beecher City High School and Sparks Business College in Shelbyville. Connie and her husband, Gene, reside in the rural Beecher City/Loudon Township area.


Austin Brooks

Investor Recruitment

Room: TBA

Time: TBA

Austin Brooks

Austin Brooks as one of the Midland Institute for Entrepreneurship team members specializes in Investor Recruitment and Care. After successfully launching 11 new CEO Programs last year he is the torch bearer for best practices for new CEO Programs and CEO Renewals.


Working with Generation Z

Le Hartman

CEO Facilitator for WACC CEO

Room: TBA

Time: TBA

About Le:

This breakout session will take a look at Generation Z, which is made up of individuals born between 1995 and 2015. Le Hartman will share information that gives insight to the world they've experienced and how it influences the way we educate today's youth. A former high school educator, Le has just finished her 6th year as facilitator in Northern Illinois. LeAndra Hartman graduated from the University of Northern Iowa in 1979 with a degree in Family and Consumer Sciences and immediately entered the world of education, teaching high school students in the Eastland District (Lanark, IL) for 33 years. In her retirement, LeAndra’s true passion is with her current position facilitating the CEO program (Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities) through the Whiteside Area Career Center. The challenge of bringing the business and education world together for high school juniors and seniors is extremely eye-opening and rewarding. LeAndra’s daughters, Lauren and Liberty, and granddaughter Kennedy are her greatest joys.