2023 Conference Schedule & Speakers
Sport for All: Stronger Together
We are thrilled to welcome you to the 2023 Play Like a Champion Conference!
Browse this year's Conference Schedule and read more about our featured speakers below.
2023 Conference Schedule
*All Times Eastern Daylight Time
Thursday, June 15th
Registration Open with Breakfast Available for Conference Attendees
Jordan Hall of Science Atrium
Location: Jordan Hall of Science
2nd Floor Landing
An Introduction to Play Like a Champion & A Team for Every Child
Dr. Clark Power
The Unifying Power of Sport for Social Good
Stewart knows the impact that sports can have on children in a community. In 2009 he founded Lost Boyz Inc. to combat antisocial behavior and violence among youth in the local community. Learn how Lost Boyz uses baseball and softball to provide sports-based youth development to help boys and girls ages 4-24 in Chicago's under-resourced neighborhoods develop confidence, resilience, and life skills.
Icy Jones & Kevin Triskett
The Pitch & the Pen: Building Community Through Soccer and Poetry
America SCORES serves more than 13,000 students in 11 major cities across the country. Learn how the organization integrates soccer, poetry and service to impact youth, with an emphasis on their work in Chicago. SCORES inspires youth to live healthy lives, become engaged students, and change the world.
Lunch is served in the Atrium, where participants will engage in a group discussion with peers on impact within their own communities. Groups will be assigned at registration.
1:00 PM -
Play Like a Champion Coach Clinic Training
New Youth Coach Clinic
New High School Coach Clinic
Join Play Like a Champion trainers for a journey through our acclaimed Coach Clinic.
Returning Partner Roundtable Conversation
A Team for Every Child Roundtable Conversation
Returning partners will enjoy a roundtable discussion with updates on material and best practices, as well as discussion on important topics in their communities.
Dr. Clark Power
Empowering Young Athletes: The Power of Sports Psychology
This session will focus will on providing practical strategies for empowering youth athletes, including goal setting, visualization, positive self-talk, and stress management. The presentation will also address common challenges that young athletes face, such as performance anxiety, burnout, and balancing academic and athletic demands. Attendees will learn how to empower young athletes to develop a growth mindset and overcome challenges, as well as how to foster a positive team culture and support the mental health of youth athletes."
Panel Discussion: Dr. Clark Power with Anna Haskins, Darryl Heller, Nicole McNeil and Hugh Page
The University and the City: Addressing Generational Poverty and Racism
Dr. Clark Power
This session puts members of the “town and gown” into a dialogue about the responsibility of colleges and universities to serve the “public good,” as the physical activity and achievement gap between the “haves” and the “have nots” widens. How should colleges with their considerable academic and athletic resources foster health and educational equity?
Team Circles: An Example & Breakout Session
Auditorium & Atrium
Learn why the circle process is a tremendous way to have meaningful conversations in your teams, schools and community. Watch a live example of what a team circle discussion looks like, then experience it yourself with peers focused on a critical topic impacting today's leaders and kids.
Fabian Debora, Homeboy Industries
The Power of Healing Through the Arts
The arts offer a terrific way to expand our impact on children in our communities. An accomplished artist and Executive Director of the Homeboy Art Academy, Fabian Debora will take us through an interactive demonstration of how art can offer an opportunity for self-reflection and healing.
End of Day Community Roundtable
Stay in the auditorium as we wrap-up the day with discussion and takeaways.
Dinner, Drinks & Thursday Evening Keynote Featuring Priscilla Loomis
The Olympic Mindset
Namoli Club, Joyce Athletic & Recreation Center
What does it take to become an Olympian? 2016 Olympic Track & Field athlete Priscilla Loomis will talk about focusing on high achieving routines, Speaking life into turning obstacles into opportunities, Persistent Practice, Thriving through Failure and growing from feelings of comparison and lack to a mindset of self-confidence and purpose!
Friday, June 16th
Location: McKenna Hall
A Catholic Mass will be celebrated for those who wish to attend.
Tour of the Notre Dame Campus
New around here? Meet at the entrance to McKenna Hall and join fellow conference participants on a 45 minute tour of the University of Notre Dame campus.
Breakfast & Networking
2nd Floor McKenna Hall
Opening Prayer & Opening Charge
Begin the second day of our conference with prayer!
Join a panel of athletes for this lively conversation about the state of sports at different levels. Panelists to be announced at a later date.
Dr. Jenny Conviser
The 411 on Eating Disorders: Strategies for Reducing Risk and Building Confidence
This session will help coaches and administrators understand the reality of eating disorders with athletes. Factors that perpetuate the risk will be discussed as well as ways coaches can reduce the risk with their athletes and teams.
Dr. Jenny Conviser
Lunch & Conversation
New & Returning Partner Roundtable
Location To Be Announced
A Team for Every Child Roundtable
Location To Be Announced
Grab a bite to eat and join fellow leaders in roundtable discussions about current issues, best practices and solutions for the future.
Secretary of the Dicastery for Culture and Education on the Vatican's Pastoral Care in Sports
Bishop Tighe will join us live from Ireland to offer comments on the theme of Sport for All. The Dicastery of Culture and Education at the Vatican is home to the Church's work in sport, which in 2022 held the international summit Sport for All from which our conference takes this year's theme.
Coaching Inside and Out: A Practical Theological Framework
This fascinating session will explore the connection between faith and sport, considering this intersection in both a historical and contemporary context while diving into what Pope Francis has called a "culture of encounter" in sport and how our games can help develop virtue in young athletes.
Dr. Matt Hoven
This continuation of Dr. Conviser's first session will provide opportunities for small group discussion to build a positive culture on sport teams that reduces the risk of athlete mental health challenges including eating disorders.
Dr. Jenny Conviser
An Armchair Conversation on the Value of Sport for All
Having spent a lifetime in sport as an athlete and media personality, Golic will join us for a conversation on what he's learned along the way and the value of sport for everyone in our communities.
Stronger Together, Together Irish
In ensuring sport is a place for all, what we do and how we do it is a key factor in the success of our participants, individually and collectively. For Notre Dame Athletics, how we see, discuss and harness the power each member brings to the space(s) they occupy has allowed us to connect with ourselves and each other in new, impactful ways. During this session, you will be engaged in an opportunity to explore how you can better leverage the individual and collective strengths you and your teams possess.
Afternoon Breakout Sessions
Parent Like a Champion Workshop
Join Play Like a Champion's Kristin Sheehan as she takes attendees through our popular Parent Like a Champion Workshop. Learn about how this unique hour-long workshop can transform the culture in your youth or high school setting.
Aligning with Excellence
The power couple will speak on how they are changing the culture of sport and the mindsets of today's athletes, pulling from their own experience as collegiate and professional athletes.
Ken & Priscilla Loomis
End of Day Community Meeting
Let's wrap-up the conference experience with takeaways discussing how we will each use the information to inspire us to impact our local communities.
Dr. Clark Power
What is futsal? Justin Becht will be our guide as we learn the fundamentals of this exciting, growing game. Learn why futsal is a great way to get kids of all ages in your community playing, then experience it for yourself in a friendly competition.
Friday Evening Banquet Dinner
featuring Play Like a Champion Trivia Night!
Downes Ballroom at Notre Dame Stadium
Friday evening presents the perfect way to end the conference with fellowship and fun! Enjoy a meal overlooking the field at historic Notre Dame Stadium, then join your table in a friendly trivia competition to close out the evening.
Connect with fellow attendees and check out these important resources referenced during the conference!
Speakers Listed in Alphabetical Order
JP Abercrumbie joined Notre Dame Athletics in February 2022 as the Executive Associate Athletics Director, Culture & Engagement, leading organizational culture, diversity, equity, inclusion, and various operational effectiveness efforts. Abercrumbie’s role includes active relationship building with student-athletes, coaches, staff, campus & industry colleagues, the local community and alumni. Managing key initiatives of the AD’s office, Abercrumbie serves as chair of the Athletics Leadership Team and influences all aspects of the department. Prior to Notre Dame, Abercrumbie served as the Associate AD for SOAR/Chief Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer at Rice University. Her career also features stops at Mississippi State University, University of California, Berkeley, and Temple University. A Chicagoland native, Abercrumbie competed in track and field at Temple University, graduating with honors in linguistic anthropology. She holds a Master’s in the Cultural Studies of Sport in Education from the University of California, Berkeley.
Justin Becht is the Director of Futsal for Indiana Soccer, focusing on the growth and development of Futsal at all age levels and ages in Indiana. Born and raised in Milroy, Indiana, Becht moved to Indianapolis to attend IUPUI for Sports Management. It was there that he was introduced to the game of futsal through his work at Indy Parks. The work gave him purpose and a new mission to provide access to soccer and futsal to communities that are underserved by the existing soccer structure. In 2015, Becht was appointed Director of Indiana Futsal under the Indiana Soccer Assocation. Over the past eight years the organization has worked to serve Indiana communities through place making, in-school programming, capacity building, and public advocacy.
Dr. Jenny Conviser
Jenny H. Conviser Psy.D is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences in the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University, as well as the Founder of Ascend Consultation In Health Care. A Certified Mental Performance Consultant, she holds a master's degree in Exercise Science from Northern Illinois University, and spent 7 years as the head coach of gymnastics at the University of Wisconsin. Today, Dr. Conviser works with athletes, musicians, parents and coaches across the nation to assist them in achieving excellence in performance, including US Figure Skating National Champion and 2014 Olympian Gracie Gold. In addition, Conviser has served on the Advocacy and Communication Committee for the Academy of Eating Disorders (AED), conducts research and participates in policy development toward the prevention and awareness of eating disorders. Learn more about Dr. Conviser by clicking here.
Fabian Debora is the Executive Director of Homeboy Art Academy. Born in El Paso, TX, he began his career in 1995 as a member of the East Los Angeles Streetscapers, where he was mentored by many Chicano artists and muralists, and was introduced to creative expressions of all forms. Debora’s work has now been showcased in solo and group exhibitions throughout the United States and abroad, including Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, Kansas City, Brooklyn, and throughout Latin America. He served as a counselor and the Director of Substance Abuses Services & Programming as well as a mentor at Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles for a decade, then moved on to worked as Community Connection Director at Arts for Incarcerated Youth Network. He also works in collaboration with Latino Producers Action Network (LPAN) as the Art Director, and is an instructor for community artists and students throughout Boyle Heights.
A senior captain on Notre Dame's 1985 football team, Mike Golic enjoyed 8 years as a defensive lineman in the NFL before embarking on more than three decades (and counting) in sports media. From 2000-2017 his voice greeted American sports fans each weekday morning as one-half of the popular duo Mike & Mike on ESPN Radio and ESPN2, where his experience and passion for all things sports gained the show a legion of fans. Golic has since served as an analyst for college and professional football while appearing on a variety of popular shows and hosting a podcast. Alongside his wife Christine and three children, Golic is active with the family's non-profit Golic Family Foundation, which provides grants and financial assistance to organizations in the local community.
Anna Haskins is a professor of sociology at the University of Notre Dame and the Associate Director of the Initiative on Race and Resilience.
Darryl Heller is a professor of women’s and gender studies at Indiana University, South Bend and the Director of the Civil Rights Heritage Center.
Dr. Matt Hoven
Matthew Hoven is a professor at St. Joseph's College, University of Alberta and an author of the 2022 book On the 8th Day, A Catholic Theology of Sport. His work focuses on the educational dynamic within religion and the religious dynamic in education, exploring forms of religious education that range from schools or parishes to the ice rink or basketball court. Hoven says that "People often overlook historical and contemporary connections between sport and religion. They downplay sport's significance or limit religion's reach. I want to change that." Raised in rural, central Alberta, Hoven earned his education degree from the University of Alberta and his Doctorate in Religious Education from Catholic University of America. He lives in Edmonton with his wife and three children, who he also helps to coach. Learn more about Matt by clicking here.
Icy Jones is the Executive Director of America SCORES, which inspires youth to "lead healthy lives, be engaged students, and have the confidence and character to make a difference in the world." SCORES serves more than 13,000 students at more than 300 public and charter schools in 11 major cities, integrating soccer, poetry and service to impact youth. Jones has held leadership roles in numerous education, nonprofit, and government agencies. Before joining SCORES, he served as the Director of Policy for the Maryland Department of Human Services Social Services Administration and previously worked for the Baltimore City Department of Social Services and the Philadelphia Education Fund.
Priscilla Frederick Loomis is a dynamic speaker, entrepreneur and Olympian, having recently retired after a Track & Field career that saw her compete in the 2016 Summer Olympics and become a two-time Pan Am Games medalist. Priscilla brings the "Olympic Mindset" to everyday life, working with high school and college student-athletes as well as professionals from the business world to help them find purpose, overcome obstacles, and become the best versions of themselves. A wellness advocate and purveyor of positive energy, she has more than 10 years' experience as an athlete, speaker, content creator and coach. Through the Priscilla E. Frederick Foundation, she helps to assist single parent households with their children's education while offering relief and assistance to individuals, families and communities in need. You can learn more about Priscilla by clicking here.
Nicole McNeil is professor of Psychology at the University of Notre Dame, and the Director of the Education, Schools, and Society minor and TutorND.
Rev. Canon Hugh Page
Rev. Canon Hugh Page is a professor of theology and Africana Studies at the University of Notre Dame and the first Vice President for Institutional Transformation focused on fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Andrea was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. She grew up playing sports and became a student athletic trainer throughout college; she not only has experience in athletics, but a passion for it. Andrea graduated from the University of Hawai’i with a Bachelor’s in Kinesiology and is now pursuing a Masters in Sports Psychology at Pepperdine University. She is committed to helping athletes learn how to improve their sports performance and mental well-being with mindfulness and practice. Andrea believes in taking a collaborative approach to helping them reach their goal and improve their wellbeing. She is currently a practitioner at Sport Psychology north of Los Angeles, where her work focuses on individuals learning to cope with trauma, grief, depression, and anxiety.
Derrick Perry is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps who was born and raised in South Bend, IN. Having worked in mental health with children and adolescents for over 10 years, Derrick is passionate about ensuring our youth can grow into productive citizens of the world. He serves as a Board Member for the Michiana Athletic and Recreation Association and leads its Relationships Activate Life Long Relationships Program, connecting with youth in school and program settings. "I’ve seen this city go through a lot," says Derrick. "As a South Bend native, entrepreneur, mental health counselor and community organizer, I’ve worked with just about every slice of life in this city. First and foremost, I consider myself a facilitator. I’ve learned how to have tough conversations—especially with regard to race and the criminal justice system. Whether or not you know someone who is justice-involved, the principles of restorative justice can help you grow as an individual and as a neighbor."
LaVont'e Stewart earned a degree in Computer Science from Chicago State University and his Master's in Public Administration from DePaul University. Having specialized in gang intervention and violence prevention for the Black United Fund of Illinois, he also worked for six years in the Illinois General Assembly. Stewart founded Lost Boyz Inc. in 2009 when he felt a call-to-action after witnessing how antisocial behavioral patterns and local violence were increasingly impacting area youth. Having experienced firsthand the profound impact baseball can have on a child’s development, he rallied the community around organized youth baseball. The organization added softball in 2014. Today, Lost Boyz provides sports-based youth development to help boys and girls ages 4-24 in Chicago's under-resourced neighborhoods develop confidence, resilience, and life skills.
Bishop Paul Tighe
Born in Navan, Ireland, Bishop Paul Tighe has long been known as the Vatican's "Media Guru", having been named Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications in 2007 before being appointed by Pope Francis to his current role as the Secretary of the Dicastery for Culture and Education in 2017. The Dicastery is home to the Catholic Church's efforts to engage sport and works for the development of human values while considering how faith, religion and the Church interact with society. Bishop Tighe has spent much of the last 20 years looking at how an increasingly digital culture is changing the world and how to better communicate in that world. Doing so has meant working both in the Vatican as well as traveling across the world to dialogue with leaders. He celebrates 40 years since his ordination as a priest this year and was consecrated a bishop in 2016.
Kevin Triskett was named the Executive Director of America SCORES Chicago in June 2022, following more than 15 years working in nonprofit and foundation sectors across Chicago. Triskett works closely with his staff to serve students in some of Chicago's most underserved communities, using soccer, poetry and service to impact kids and the community around them. Before joining SCORES, Triskett spent nearly seven years in program operations at Start Early, a nonprofit champion for quality early learning and care, focused on closing the opportunity gap for our young learners. He also previously worked at the Chicago State University Foundation, playing an integral role in advancing the interest and welfare of CSU by building relationships, securing philanthropic support, stewarding assets and otherwise procuring private support on behalf of the University.