The Nyquist Leadership Series

The Nyquist Leadership Series explores New York State’s most pressing contemporary challenges through the eyes of its most prominent government, education, and industry leaders.

The series honors the late Ewald B. “Joe” Nyquist, a civil rights leader and former New York State Education Commissioner who played a key role in efforts to desegregate New York schools. The “visionary author” of Excelsior College, Nyquist fought to extend quality educational opportunities to learners of all ages.

Next Event:

Creating College-Ready Students Through Open Education

When: October 18, 7:30 am ET
Where: Wolferts Roost, 120 Van Rensselaer Blvd., Albany, NY 12204

Registration, Breakfast, Networking: 7:30 am ET
Program: 8:00–9:30 am ET

The lack of college readiness and ineffective, costly remediation programs have formed a perfect storm for struggling students. The disastrous results make national headlines: high drop-out rates, large student loan debt, and rising unemployment rates. Bridging the readiness gap and increasing student success is a societal imperative, and it will require a concerted, collaborative public-private effort.

Join us on October 18 as higher education experts explore strategies, tools, resources, and policies that will help traditional and adult learners transition to college and attain higher education success. The discussion will focus on assessing and improving college readiness, and how to expand the use of innovative open educational resources to lower costs and increase student success.

Moderator: Dan Fuller, NYS Assistant Secretary for Education


  • Jason Bryer, PhD, Executive Director, Diagnostic Assessment and Achievement of College Skills (DAACS), Excelsior College
  • Elizabeth Johnston, PhD, Associate Professor, English Composition and Literature, Monroe Community College
  • Frank Crocco, PhD, Director, Online Writing Lab (OWL), Excelsior College
  • Gerard L. Hanley, PhD, Assistant Vice Chancellor, Academic Technology Services; Executive Director of MERLOT, California State University

Past Events

Strengthening Communities by Bridging Health and Economic Development (June 7, 2016)
Experts explore the reciprocal relationship between health and economic development – the investment of resources into neighborhoods, buildings, and businesses – and the collective positive impact on communities. Panelists included Kathy M. Sheehan, City of Albany Mayor; Tray Hairston, Attorney, Butler Snow LLP; former gubernatorial counsel and policy advisor; Karen Lee, MD, MHSc, healthy built environment and health policy advisor and consultant; and, Kaitlyn W. Meirs, program associate, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The Real Costs of Cyber Ignorance (February 23, 2016)
Executives at all levels of government, industry, and academia are faced with a troubling paradox. Success in a globalized economy demands the storage and sharing of sensitive information. But how do you protect your systems from those who seek to exploit not only your digital vulnerabilities but also human behavior?

Ethics, Integrity, and Leadership in Public Service (October 7, 2015)
An exploration of public sector ethics, the corruptive influence of politics, and how to best develop the next generation of government leaders. Panelists included Mike Arcuri, former New York State Congressman, Heather C. Briccetti, President and CEO of The Business Council of New York State, and David Soares, Albany County (NY) District Attorney. Rex Smith, Editor, Times Union, served as program moderator. Held at WMHT Studios in Troy, New York.