Belinda J. Wilkerson, Ed.D, GCD
Independent Educational Consultant, College Counselor, Counselor Educator | Founder/Owner of Steps To The Future, LLC, Montessori School of Raleigh and Providence College
Dr. Belinda J. Wilkerson, the founder of and principal counselor at Steps To the Future, LLC, helps families eliminate random acts of college planning. A lifelong educator, she held teaching, school counseling and counselor educator positions in Rhode Island before relocating to North Carolina. Active in her community, she is the former Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Cumberland County Public Library and information Center and provides college and career workshops for the GEARUp Program at Fayetteville State University. The former VP of Ethics and Professional Practices for the Independent Educational Consultants Association, she served on the IECA board for six years and is a member of the Black IECs Affinity Group. Currently, she serves on the IECA Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee. Connect with her on LinkedIn and subscribe to the STEPS YouTube channel at bit.ly/stepsCC, where Dr. Wilkerson conducts informational interviews with Black and brown career professionals as part of the “Representation Matters” playlist. A first-generation college student, her interest in career awareness, career development and career exploration began at an early age with her interest in a teaching career.
Married with two adult sons, she enjoys reading, traveling and listening to podcasts.
Emily Gomez, MS Career Counseling, CCC
DEI Business Partner, Hire Heroes USA
Emily Gomez earned a Master of Science in Counseling with a specialization in Career Counseling from California State University, Sacramento. Her work has spanned 4-year institutions, community college settings, and the non-profit sector. She enjoys supporting job seekers in transition, whether it be planned or unplanned, to get to their next step in life. In her current role, she oversees a program supporting federal job seekers and empowers more than 300 new clients every month. Ms. Gomez was the 2020 NCCDA Outstanding Program/Professional recipient and selected for the 2021 Leadership Academy Cohort.linkedin.com/in/gomezemily
Stacey Huffman (she, her, hers), MA College Student Development & Student Affairs
Career Navigation Consultant, Cone Health
I love the community of support and encouragement that NCCDA offers. This organization helped me to establish my identity as a career development practitioner back when I was in graduate school and continues to foster growth in me, both personally and professionally. I am grateful for the opportunity to be able to give back to the organization that has meant so much to be throughout the years.
Beth Hwang, M.Ed., NCC, Gallup Strengths Certified Coach
Director, StrongPoints, Meredith College
Beth is a higher education enthusiast with a B.A. in Economics from Meredith College and a Masters of Education in Counseling from NC State University. As someone who struggled to identify a career path, she discovered a passion to help others navigate their career journey. The work she does in StrongPoints utilizes the CliftonStrengths assessment to assist students in using their natural talents to be successful in their academics, careers, experiences, and finances. Previous experience in corporate human resources, career counseling, and being a Certified Strengths Coach prepares her to help individuals identify strengths, interests, and values to successfully complete their education and find fulfilling careers. Additionally, she volunteers with Hire Heroes USA to assist veterans in their transitions to civilian work life.linkedin.com/in/bethhwang
Career Coach, Wake Technical Community College
Johnette Smith is a Career Coach at Wake Technical Community College with over five years of experience in career exploration and professional development. Johnette uses that experience to assist perspective, enrolled and alumni students to assess career possibilities and establish professional goals. As an experienced higher education professional, she fosters opportunities to bring career and academic dreams to fruition while dispelling myths and barriers that prevent education attainment and advancement.
By focusing on making a difference in the lives of others, Johnette is also an advocate for sexual assault victims and domestic violence. Over the years, she served two consecutive terms as a North Carolina Domestic Violence Commissioner Board Member. In this capacity Johnette supported domestic violence survivors statewide by approving court-ordered DV Intervention programs, evaluating services, policies & programs provided to survivors and recommending new programs.
When she is not hard at work advocating and coaching, Johnette enjoys traveling and sightseeing while learning the history of each place she visits. She is a native of North Carolina, born in New Bern, NC where history is highlighted on every corner. Johnette currently resides in Cary, NC where she commuted after attaining her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration followed by her Master of Business Administration degree.
Johnette believes in equality and justice for all. She desires to leave a positive lasting impression on everyone she encounters. It is her life’s mission to propel others into reaching their dreams and fulfilling their purpose.
As an employer relations professional, Andrea focuses on building relationships with employers and campus partners to share meaningful career-related opportunities with college students. As a strengths-based higher education professional, Andrea believes in the importance of encouraging students to recognize and utilize their unique abilities so they are empowered to reach their goals. She loves helping students discover how their passions and interests connect to career opportunities.
Andrea is a native of Indiana, completing both her undergraduate and graduate degrees in her home state before relocating to North Carolina. She earned a BA in English from Anderson University (Anderson, IN) and an MA in Student Development Counseling and Administration from Indiana Wesleyan University.
Kelsey has been a member of NCCDA for 3 years and is currently serving as the Best Practices Grant Chair for the second year in a row. She has a little over five years of experience working in education as an elementary school teacher. Wanting to further her education experience, she completed her Master’s Degree in Career Counseling in December 2019.
She is currently working as an EC/Intervention teacher, where she is able to provide students with the necessary tools and skills to help them succeed. She enjoys interacting with others and using their skills and interests to find careers they are passionate about. She hopes that by being part of this team, she can continue to grow in both her professional and personal career journey.linkedin.com/in/kelsey-hines-415394121
Mallory Harris earned a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her work has spanned various roles with the Kannapolis City Schools Career and Technical Education department including Culinary Arts and Hospitality Teacher, Career Development Coordinator and presently, CTE Curriculum and Professional Development Coordinator (CIMC). In her current role, she oversees and supports 25 CTE educators or coordinators in ensuring equitable and accessible academic experiences for all KCS grades 6-12 students that sit in Career and Technical Education classes. In 2019, Ms. Harris was on the team that won the NC Governor's Innovative Partnership Award for WIN Partnership, a pre-apprenticeship program that places engineering and carpentry students in experiential learning experiences with Wayne Brothers Companies.
Ram comes from the world of Engineering and Information Technology. He is from New Orleans, but has lived in the Triangle area for over 30 years. He has worked in private industry, and in academia as an instructor, tutor, and advisor. Over the years, he developed a passion for helping students with career development. In 2021, he graduated with a M.Ed. in College Counseling and Student Development from NC State University. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, watching hockey (Go Canes!), and spending time with family and friends.
Victoria Hamill is an Eastern North Carolina native and graduate of East Carolina University. She holds multiple licensures in education, a BS in Hospitality Management, and Masters in School Administration. She has 12 years of classroom experience and has held support and administrative positions at K-12 schools for 13 years. She is currently serving as the Director of Career and Technical Education (Workforce, Innovation, and STEM) for Beaufort County Schools.
Amy has over 15 years of education experience, and over 10 years in the Business Sector with Human Resources, Publishing, and Corporate Education and Development. She has a background teaching Graphic Communication Industrial Technology in the 6-12 (NJ), Community College of Morris (NJ), and Illinois State University (ISU).
Amy currently serves as the Career and Technical Education (CTE) Career Development Consultant for the NC Department of Public Instruction where she provides leadership, professional development, curriculum development, consultation, and advocacy to the NC Career Development Coordinators (CDC), CTE Directors, and other stakeholders to ensure NC students are career and college ready. She is certified NCDPI National Career Development Association's "Facilitating Career Development" (FCD) licensure course instructor for new NC CDCs.linkedin.com/in/amypsbethedifference
Brittany graduated from East Carolina University in May 2023 with an M.S. in Counselor Education and is interested in continuing to work to increase career and college access, especially for low-income, first-generation, and underrepresented students. She recently completed an internship with Career Services for NC State's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences where she incorporated her passion for wellness into her career counseling work with students. Prior to starting her degree, she served as a college advisor for the Carolina College Advising Corps at Nash Central High School, an experience that sparked her love for counseling. She also spent her summers in undergrad working with UNC's Project Uplift.
In her free time, Brittany loves to be outdoors whether it's to hike, run, or camp. She also loves anything that involves using creativity!linkedin.com/in/brittanyngrant
Ms. Karen Ingram is a National Board-Certified Teacher (NBCT) with over two decades of experience in the educational field. Her background includes a broad range of working in education – from the elementary classroom to the collegiate level. In addition to classroom experience, she has served in multiple leadership roles including district CTE Coordinator, school improvement team, Regional Coaching Coordinator, Regional Coaching Champion, Regional CTE Administrator’s Group Treasurer and as a school district’s Lead Career Academy Director. Ms. Ingram’s prior experience includes serving in Wake County Schools, Raleigh, NC, where she was selected as one of only two NBCTs from the district to participate in the “Standards-Setting Session” for the CTE discipline. She was also selected as the first Teacher of the Year for the City of Medicine Academy during the 2008-2009 school year. Ms. Ingram holds an undergraduate degree in Organizational Management from St. Augustine’s College, a Master’s Degree (M.Ed.) in Business and Marketing Education Curriculum and Instruction from NC State University, and a K-12 Administration license earned at Gardner Webb University. She is currently pursuing her doctoral degree in Educational Leadership – Learning, Design, and Technology from UNC-Charlotte. Ms. Ingram loves to read, conduct research, travel, watch old movies and spend time with friends and family in her spare time.
Dr. Nadia Chamberlin is the Assistant Dean of Career Services and Professional Development of Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University. She leads a comprehensive and integrated career and professional development center focused on Sanford students. Dr. Chamberlin has served in the higher education arena since 2001 in numerous academic and administrative roles, including: Associate Director of Employer Engagement and Recruiting with Career and Leadership for MBA and Alumni at Kenan-Flagler Business School of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Associate Director of University Career Services at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Assistant Vice President for International Education, Interim Dean of Student Development, and Adjunct Faculty Member at Upper Iowa University; Assistant Director for International Students and Scholars and Assistant Director of International Programs at University of Northern Iowa; and Academic/Career Advisor, Financial Aid Advisor and Adjunct Instructor in Political Science at Hawkeye Community College. In addition to her administrative roles, she has taught undergraduate, graduate, and non-credit courses both face-to-face and online.
Dr. Chamberlin earned her PhD in Educational Leadership from Iowa State University, her MA in Public Policy from the University of Northern Iowa, and her BA in International Law and English from Taurida National Vernadski University. Over the years, she has served on numerous university committees, and was an active member of several community and professional organizations. Dr. Chamberlin is a recipient of several grants and awards, including 2021 North Carolina Career Development Association Outstanding Professional award, 2020 Student Affairs Assessment award, 2013 Fulbright International Education Administrators seminar grant, 2013 Germany Today special information program grant from DAAD, 2011 Cedar Valley Business Monthly 20 under 40 award, and 2009 City of Waterloo Human Rights Special Recognition Award. In 2015, she co-authored a peer-reviewed article, “A Comparative Student of Student Engagement, Satisfaction, and Academic Success among International and American Students,” and she has had the pleasure of presenting at local and state conferences and leading a wide variety of trainings and webinars.linkedin.com/in/nadia-korobova-phd
Duke Wallin, M.Ed.
Career Development Coordinator/Student Support Services, Dare County School System
Duke Wallin works in the Student Services office at First Flight High School in Kill Devil Hills, NC. Duke has over 25 years of experience in education as a classroom teacher, coordinator, facilitator and advisor. Professionally, he belongs to the NCCDA, the National Career Development Association's (Ethics Committee), American Association of Adjunct Education and both the NC and national chapters of the Association for Career Technical Education.
At First Flight, Duke works collaboratively with administrators, students services personnel, teachers, parents, business/industry, post-secondary institutions, military, community organizations, and other stakeholders to ensure the delivery of career development services for all students. The coordinator works both in public and behind the scenes to help students secure educational goals & success.
Duke received his associates in broadcasting from Finger Lakes Community College, Bachelors of Science in Vocational Education & Communications and Masters in Career Technical Education Administration from the State University of New York at Oswego. He currently is mid-way through an education doctoral program in Global Training and Development at Northcentral University.
Duke is a proud pet parent of one . . . Abby (cat). The rest of my human family lives in New York state and Pennsylvania. His hobbies include coffee shops, being a foodie, dining out, outdoor recreation, watching Netflix, listening to music, weekend travel and of course, the beach. One additional fun fact, he has a great collection of fancy socks (over 300 pairs).
In her spare time, Morgan spends time with her husband Harry and 12-year-old daughter Taylor watching Marvel and Disney Movies and traveling to Disney World and Universal Studios as much as possible!linkedin.com/in/morganbray
Allison is a Career Coach at Southeastern Community College. She has worked in education for over 7 years as a teacher, school counselor, and now career coach. She has a masters degree in school counseling from North Carolina State University and recently attained her Global Career Development Facilitator credential. Her undergraduate degree is also from North Carolina State University in Business and Marketing Education. Her time as a Career Coach is spent talking to high school students and staff, meeting industry partners, and collaborating with SCC staff to connect all three. Allison recently moved back to her hometown in Columbus County and looks forward to serving the community she grew up in.
Continuing Education Committee Member
Jamie Johnson, MS Counseling, NCC, CCC
Counselor/Owner, Paths2take Consulting
Jamie’s passion is helping others find their purpose/passion. She loves helping others navigate through the career development process. She has been in the field of Career Development for over 30 years. She has worked in business, education and non-profit settings helping others with their career/life development. She received her Master’s in Counseling from the California University State, Northridge in Marriage, Family and Child Counseling and her Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communications. She is a Certified Career Counselor (NCDA) and certified in the Strong Interest Inventory and a MBTI Master Practitioner. She runs her private practice in Career Counseling, Paths2take, part-time and works full-time as a Career Advisor for the University of Phoenix.
On weekends, she spends her time serving as a Cantor at a Messianic Jewish Synagogue and plays percussion in the praise and worship band. She loves animals and is currently rescuing feral kitties from the streets of Kannapolis. She has three kitties, Max, Prince, and Tigger (rescued from the streets) and Rami a Straight Egyptian Arabian.
Cindy has 20+ years of experience as a high school and community college counselor, career development coordinator, academic and career advisor, as well as non-profits. She routinely volunteered to serve on school improvement, SACS accreditation, student success committees and other initiatives designed to promote a quality educational experience for students and staff. Since retiring from the State of NC, she has been engaged in part-time private practice as a career coach in Wilmington, NC. She continues to be passionate about supporting and empowering students and adults in creating their best life story, whether choosing a college or identifying occupational fit.
She completed the M.Ed. in Counseling (Agency and School) at North Carolina State University and B.S. Psychology at Central Michigan University. As a lifelong learner, she completed the NCDA Career Development Facilitation Instructor training in 2022 and remains active in several professional and community organizations. She’s meets monthly with the NCDA Private Practice constituency group, and attends local, state, and national conferences that focus on mental health and career development.
Traveling, quilting, crafting, yoga, swimming, walking, biking, wine tasting, coffee with friends, family gatherings at the beach and her grand dog round out her days!
Crystal Waters a Lewiston-Woodville, North Carolina native has a distinguished higher education career with over 15 years of experience coaching and supporting students for lives of impact. She was recently named Placement Coordinator in the Talent Acquisition Division at UNC Health Care where she serves as the direct liaison between stakeholders to include internal employees returning to the UNC Health Workforce, Case Management, hiring managers, recruiters, HR Business partners, and Employee Relations regarding the job placement process. Crystal Waters is the point of contact for employees seeking a new position due to Worker’s Compensation, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) or Reduction in Force. Prior to joining the Talent Acquisition Division at UNC Health Care, Crystal served as the Senior Coordinator, Career Services and Student Life at Duke University School of Nursing as well as the Part Time Temporary Career Coach/Counselor for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Office of Career Services.
Waters also served at East Carolina University Office of Career Services as the Senior Career Counselor, working closely with the College of Nursing, College of Allied Health Sciences, School of Dental Medicine, and Brody School of Medicine leadership on efforts regarding on and off campus recruiting activities, alumni and employer relations, career education programming and individualized culturally appropriate coaching services. Campus wide programs, under her direction, included the 1st Health and Wellness Virtual Career Fair, "MY WORTH" Salary Negotiation Series, and the Pirate Nurse Expo. Waters was featured in the "Woman to Watch" Pitt County (Greenville, NC) Women's Journal for her professional highlights in 2019 and received the "Forty Under Forty" East Carolina University Leadership Award in 2020.
Over the years, her research, teaching, public engagement and scholarly presentations have focused on integrating technological resources that facilitate career exploration, skill development, internship and job search strategies. Prior to joining the UNC System, Crystal Waters served the North Carolina Community College System at Martin Community College and Central Carolina Community College. In 2015, Waters formed a committee with Martin County NCWorks and Martin Enterprises to address the deficiencies identified by employers and job seekers. The "GET THE LIFE YOU LOVE" Job Fair and Career Expo was developed as an ingenious way to address the needs for career readiness and to promote workforce development within the local NCWorks Career System and to provide an opportunity for increased employer education in the Eastern North Carolina counties of Beaufort, Bertie, Hertford, Martin, and Pitt. This initiative was recognized by the Region Q Workforce Development Board and was awarded the Sam Carson Award.
Crystal Waters was chosen to serve the The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) as a Virtual Certified Career Coach in 2021 along with the North Carolina Career Development Association as a volunteer of the Strategic Plan Committee. In 2019, Elizabeth City State University Chancellor Dr. Karrie G. Dixon awarded Crystal Waters the "Forty Under Forty" Leadership Award, one of the highest honors granted by the Office of Alumni Relations and Engagement, which is awarded to young alumni who have made significant contributions in the arts, entertainment, healthcare, sciences, education, law, business, entrepreneurship, philanthropy, public service or government. She also was selected in 2021 by the Institute for Educational Excellence at Duke University School of Nursing to provide teaching strategies for preparing nursing students of color for the future workforce. In Fall 2021 and Spring 2022, Waters developed the Career Resource Center at Duke University School of Nursing (DUSON) and provided strategic vision and leadership to create the largest career fair in DUSON history with actively participating healthcare organizations both locally and nationally known.
Crystal Waters is a culturally competent and service oriented vibrant doer with a strong work ethic dedicated to providing oversight and leadership in the areas of career counseling, disability and accessibility services, student engagement and multicultural affairs. Waters is a member of the National Career Development Association and the National Association of Colleges and Employers. Crystal Waters received her Bachelor of Arts in English from Elizabeth City State University, a Master of Education in Psychological Studies from Cambridge College, and a Master of Science in Counselor Education from East Carolina University. She is a Certified Career Counselor (CCC), member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated®, and a Worship Leader for LifeHouse Church in Raleigh, North Carolina. Crystal prioritizes time for family and friends, enjoys singing, traveling and interior decorating.