Elizabeth D. Jones, President & Co-Founder
Ms. Jones has been an educator, researcher and administrator of educational programs for over 30 years. She holds a master’s degree in special education from the University of Southern California and has completed doctoral work in the field of educational policy and learning theory. Ms. Jones served as the Associate Director of Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth and the Director of the Western Region for ten years prior to founding the Institute for Educational Advancement in 1998. While at CTY, Elizabeth served as Co-Principal Investigator with Dr. Sally Ride and Dr. JoBea Way for a NASA and NSF sponsored educational initiative called KidSat. She received recognition from the National Diffusion Network for the creation and implementation of exemplary programs for underserved gifted students and specialized in the intellectual, social and emotional needs of students. She created and implemented the SDB teacher recognition program and expanded the scope of services at CTY. As President of IEA she was contracted to assist in the creation and implementation of the Davidson Young Scholars program. She went on to lead in the creation and implementation of the Award-winning Yunasa summer camp for the gifted and the Caroline D. Bradley Scholarship program.
James W. Davis, Co-Founder
Mr. Davis has over 30 years of experience in education. He serves as a speaker and consultant to organizations on a variety of educational issues. He is the founder and President of The Davis Group, Ltd., an international educational consulting firm.
Patricia Gatto-Walden, Ph.D.
Patricia Gatto-Walden, Ph.D, is a nationally recognized psychologist, who has worked therapeutically with gifted, highly and profoundly gifted children, adolescents and adults for over three decades. In her consulting practice, she aids individuals to embrace their whole self, which promotes contentment, health and well-being. Her foundational book, “Embracing the Whole Gifted Self,” personifies giftedness. She is a featured speaker at international, national and state gifted conferences and teacher trainings. She is a Senior Fellow at the Institute of Educational Advancement and has received two national awards: Anne Marie Roeper’s 2014 Service to Gifted Youth, and SENG’s 2016 Clinician of the Year.
Elizabeth Meckstroth, M.S.W. Emeritus
Ms. Meckstroth earned a master’s in education and a master’s in social work. She has worked in the field of gifted education since 1979, serving families and their social/emotional and educational issues. She has published numerous articles and is a co-author of Teaching Young Gifted Children in the Regular Classroom and Guiding the Gifted Child. Her work focuses primarily on self-development and the highly gifted.
Michael M. Piechowski, Ph.D.
Michael M. Piechowski, Ph.D, is the author of “Mellow Out, They Say. If I Only Could: Intensities and Sensitivities of the Young and Bright and Living with Intensity” (with S. Daniels). Earning a Ph.D first in Molecular Biology and later in Counseling Psychology, he served as a faculty member at three universities and one small college. He has published extensively in the areas of emotional development, developmental potential of the gifted, and emotional and spiritual giftedness. He is one of the original designers of Yunasa. In 2016, he was given the Lifetime Achievement Award by SENG and the NAGC Global Awareness Network Annemarie Roeper Award. He lives in Madison, Wisconsin.