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Seen & Heard Around the Conference: A Phone Rescue and a Sign of an Overly Exuberant Conference Attendee

The AASA block letters suffered a break on the second day of the National Conference on Education.

Staff Perform an Emotional Rescue

Meghan Moran and Tammy Barbara endeared themselves to a conference attendee from Washington state who left behind his cell phone in a Lyft vehicle that dropped him at the Music City Center.

His decision to come to the conference’s Information Kiosk was a wise one. Moran and Barbara, both AASA staff members, tracked down someone in Lyft management, who in turn were able to notify the vehicle driver, who within 20 minutes was back outside the center with the cell phone, leaving one attendee especially relieved and delighted.

Exuberance Not Always Welcome

An overly rambunctious conference participant got a little carried away when he or she opted to take a seat on the 5-foot-tall letter A that was part of the oversized AASA welcome sign outside the conference’s exhibit hall. That act left a three-foot-wide gash in the reinforced cardboard.

The broken A and the intact letters were moved inside the exhibit hall late Friday for packing and repair before their reuse at the 2023 conference in San Antonio, Texas.

AASA conference officials already have a plan in mind for ensuring no future damage occurs to the giant image.

“We are putting them on blocks next year so they can’t be climbed on,” an AASA conference planner said.

A Day of Emotional Extremes

About two hours after he was named 2022 National Superintendent of the Year at the conference’s 1st General Session Thursday afternoon, Curtis Cain of Wentzville, Mo., learned his father had died earlier in the day.

Cain told colleagues from Missouri that his father had passed away earlier in the day but said his mother withheld the news, hoping not to put a damper on his moment in the limelight at the AASA conference in Nashville.

No further details were immediately available.

A Touch and Feel Experience

Dr. Bob Lubitz, a physician working for 3Oe Scientific, spent the better part of two days in the AASA exhibit hall, persuading conference attendees to roll up their sleeves and place their hands in “Iggy,” a desktop machine that cleans hands with a spray of aqueous ozone.

Iggy is named after Ignaz Semmelweis, a 19th century German-Hungarian physician who was the first to urge doctors to wash their hands before delivering babies, as the practice dramatically reduced incidents of fever and lessened infant mortality.

(Compiled by Jay P. Goldman with contributions from Roman Nikolaev and Eric Randall.)

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