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2017 WCGTC Biennial World Conference

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2.10.5 Developing leadership identity: Universal needs necessary for cultural connections

The significance of identifying traditionally marginalised students as gifted learners is a matter of life quality and economic concern for rural communities. This state-wide grant project builds on the capacity of developing leadership identity. Developing leadership identity is connected to the categories of influence, group influences, and developing self with others. Through individual and collective demands of on-going reflection, analysis of values, beliefs, and attitudes—broad student, parent, and community views of leadership are revealed. A conceptual model illustrating the grounded theory of developing leadership identity and its influence on the identification of underrepresented gifted students is presented.


Justine Lopez
University of Denver
United States

Justine López, MA, is a doctoral candidate at the University of Denver. She is currently a member of the Right4Rural Research Team/Javits Grant, examining the impact of school/district leaders on the identification of underrepresented gifted students in rural areas. Teaching experience includes affiliate faculty at Regis University’s Dual Language Program; Department of Marketing, The Colorado Women’s College, Multicultural Voices of Discovery at the University of Denver; and Graphic Arts Communications instructor at the Community College of Denver. Her leadership perspectives align with 15+ years as a business owner, educating, leading, building, implementing, and guiding non-profit and for-profit business ventures.

Norma Hafenstein
University of Denver
United States

Dr. Hafenstein’s award-winning professional career spans numerous positions in leadership and scholarship. She is a Full Clinical Professor in the Teaching and Learning Sciences Department, founded the Ricks Center for Gifted Children, a PS-8 school on the campus, in 1984, and founded the Institute for the Development of Gifted Education in 1997. She presents extensively on giftedness at national and international conferences. Dr. Hafenstein has presented at the International Dabrowski Congress, Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted Annual Conference (SENG), World Council on Gifted and Talented Children Biennial World Conference (WCGTC), and the American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting (AERA).

Kristina Hesbol
University of Denver
United States

Kristina A. Hesbol is Assistant Professor in the Educational Leadership & Policy Studies Department at the Morgridge College of Education, University of Denver. She has taught preK-graduate school, has served as a principal of three multi-lingual, multi-cultural schools, coordinated school improvement for a diverse school district, and served as a district Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources. Hesbol earned her Ph.D. at Loyola University (Chicago), and currently serves as a member of the Right4Rural Research Team, examining the impact of school and district leaders on the identification of culturally and linguistically diverse rural students.


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