Delegate Assembly 2022-2023
Region I/Long Island
Sonia Argueta is an educator with 22 years of experience in bilingual education. She’s worked at the second largest New York State School District, Brentwood Union Free School District, where she served as a 2nd, 3rd and 4th grade bilingual teacher. She’s also worked with adult English Language Learners (ELLs) in an ESL Evening High School program for Adult Education.
As a native Spanish-speaker, Mrs. Argueta loves sharing the love of her language and culture with her students. She was raised in Venezuela where she earned her first college degree in Business Administration. Mrs. Argueta immigrated to the United States, where she fulfilled her dream of learning English and earned an Early Childhood Education degree at Five Towns College. She later continued her professional career at Saint John’s University where she earned a Master of Science in Education degree in TESOL.
As an educator, Mrs. Argueta understands the importance of professional development and serving others. She enjoys teaching ELL students, providing them with meaningful lessons, strategies, and skills to help them reach their full potential. She also enjoys assisting parents by providing them with information and developing workshops that help them understand the educational system in America, but also, to help them learn about the many services that are available through the school and overall community.
Mrs. Argueta has a passion for teaching bilingual students. She brings her students’ culture into the classroom by bridging students’ personal backgrounds and experiences to their experiences in a U.S. school. In her daily teaching, she engages students by looking at similarities and differences through products, practices, and perspectives of cultures.
Mrs. Argueta believes that a good education shapes, not only minds, but also the hearts of students. She believes that learning the language and traditions of other cultures can make students gain cross-cultural understanding and an appreciation of others. Her biggest joy is seeing students thrive, develop their self-esteem and grow in confidence while they are learning English.
Dr. Jordan Gonzalez
Dr. Jordan González started his career teaching English as a Foreign Language in Madrid, Spain. He followed his passion for bilingual education and became an ENL and Spanish for Heritage Speakers Teacher for five years, in the New York City Department of Education.
Dr. González then served as the Director of Language Acquisition for Yonkers Public Schools, where he led K-12 programs in Bilingual Education (Dual Language and Transitional Bilingual Education), English as a New Language, and World Languages, across forty schools. During those four years, he provided leadership and professional learning to principals, teachers and families on ELL-English Language Learner state regulations (CR-Part 154), ELL programs, and instruction for language development. Dr. González started and cultivated the NYS Seal of Biliteracy program in Yonkers, in 2017, where seniors graduate with formal recognition of their proficiency and academic achievement in English and a World Language.
Currently, Dr. Jordan González serves as the administrative coordinator and lead resource specialist for the Long Island Regional Bilingual Resource Network (L.I.RBERN), where he provides technical assistance, professional development, and support to school districts in Nassau and Suffolk counties as it relates to ELLs. He participates in NYSED taskforce committees for the Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages (OBEWL) including the NYS Seal of Biliteracy Taskforce and is currently the Chair for the ELL Graduation Rate Taskforce.
Region II/ New York City
Luis is devoted to ensuring that all students receive the highest quality education within an academically rigorous and culturally responsive setting. He has dedicated his career to educational equity, particularly for bilingual children and their families. After graduating from Yale University, Luis started his career in the New York City Department of Education as a bilingual teacher with Teach for America. As a graduate of the Bank Street College Bilingual/ENL Teacher Leader Academy (BETLA), he coached teachers and led ELL professional development at his elementary school in The Bronx. After graduating from the Summer Principals’ Academy (SPA) at Teachers College, Columbia University, Luis became Director of English Language Learners and Family Engagement for a majority of schools in District 6 and 11. In this capacity, he provided daily coaching and supervisory support at a macro-level to a cadre of ELL liaisons and parent coordinators, building capacity to support a network of 35 schools, impacting over a 1000 multilingual learners. In 2015, Luis joined the Bronx Field Support Center (BFSC) as an ELL Services Administrator for District 9. During his time at the BFSC from 2015-17, he was responsible for addressing the instructional needs of the District 9 bilingual/ESL teachers as well as district- and school-level goals, assessments and professional development plans. As an Assistant Principal at Public School 73 in The Bronx, he helped strengthen the dual language program and improve literacy outcomes. Currently, as an Elementary School Principal at Public School 126X, he continues to lead for equity and systemic change. Luis is also an adjunct professor for bilingual education at Hunter, the City College of New York City, and Bank Street College of Education.
In the many roles that he has served, Luis has always been committed to educational excellence and advocacy for multilingual learners.
Lisa Pineda, born in Brooklyn, NY, of a Puerto Rican mother and Honduran father, serves as the Associate Director of Partnerships and Family and Student Programs for the Division of Multilingual Learners and Family Community Partnerships at the New York City Department of Education (NYC DOE). For the past 11 years, Lisa has dedicated her career to supporting family and student empowerment. She has held positions at NYC DOE as the Director of Family Engagement at the Office of Family and Community Empowerment and the Office of Cluster One Office, serving over 300 schools. As the Family Leadership Coordinator at The Office of High School Superintendents, Lisa led borough and citywide training for parent coordinators, school administrators, and parent leaders. She has coached new principals and assistant principals on school-parent connections and parent leadership structures. She also supported the design of the first Welcome Centers at the Thomas Jefferson Campus and the Franklin K Lane Campus in Brooklyn. In her current role at the Division of Multilingual Learners, Lisa collaborates with organizations to develop culturally responsive programs that promote education advocacy for parents and students, particularly newcomers and students in temporary housing. As the supervisor of the Angelo Del Toro Puerto/Rican Hispanic Youth Leadership Institute, Lisa works in collaboration with the RBERNs at Fordham University and New York University as well as the NYSED/NYC DOE Seal of Biliteracy initiatives to provide students with greater opportunities for success. In addition to working at the NYC Department of Education, Lisa has experience in organizing study and travel abroad programs for students to Europe, Asia, Middle East and The University of Rio Piedras in Puerto Rico.
Nancy de la Cruz-Arroyo
Nancy de la Cruz-Arroyo serves as the Director of Multilingual Learner Programs for the Ossining Union Free School District. The daughter of a Puerto Rican mother and a Dominican father, Nancy has worked as a bilingual teacher, higher education administrator, school administrator and school district administrator throughout her career.
Nancy began her career as a bilingual teacher in New York City’s District 4 in East Harlem before transitioning to multiple roles within the CUNY Hunter College School of Education. She served as coordinator of two funded programs which increased the number of highly-effective certified teachers in Schools Under Registration Review (SURR) through college coursework, mentoring and professional development. She also served as the Director of Clinical Experiences, facilitating fieldwork and student teaching placements for teacher candidates; and as the Coordinator of the Childhood Education program, the largest within the School of Education.
She has served the Ossining School District since 2008. As the Coordinator of Funded Programs, she has written dozens of grants which have provided extensive funding and resources to support students and families via academic programs and wrap-around services. She served as the Assistant Principal of the district’s early childhood center, offering her the opportunity to work with the youngest learners, and their families, as they began their journeys in the district’s schools.
Presently, as Director of Multilingual Learner Programs, Nancy supports the district’s ENL program and World Language programs, as well as the Two Voices/One World Dual Language Program, to promote bilingualism and multilingualism for students. She works closely with faculty to increase the number of students receiving the NYS Seal of Biliteracy and she has helped design and implement the district’s EdPrep Academy, a program to inspire and prepare multilingual high school students to pursue careers in education. Nancy remains passionate and committed to building pathways to opportunities for academic and life success for multilingual learners.
Dr. Dixelia López
Dixelia López Ph.D, an immigrant from the Dominican Republic, is an educator, researcher, consultant and mother with 20+ years of experience in culturally relevant, culturally responsive practices; particularly in relation to assessment and mental health of the Latinx/Hispanic community.
Currently, she is serving Ossining Union Free School District as the Assistant Director of Social & Emotional Learning and is in charge of supporting a Culture of Care for students, staff and families alike.
Dr. López considers herself a life-long learner earning her doctorate in International Psychology from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology in 2016. She also holds a Masters in Educational Psychology and an advanced degree in School Psychology from the State University of New York at Albany. Dr. López obtained her bilingual extension in School Psychology from the College of St. Rose (Albany, NY) and most recently, obtained a Masters in Educational Leadership from Bank Street College of Education in 2021.
Dr. López holds her international work in high regard. In particular, she examined resilience in the Burmese population resettled in Albany, NY and engaged in program development while employing the significance of cultural beliefs and practices in effective-community based interventions in West & South Africa. She was the first advocate of bilingual-special education in Albany, NY helping lead the work in support of the only bilingual program in the area. As the evaluation specialist/bilingual psychologist for Putnam Northern Westchester County BOCES, Dr.López lead a team of multicultural-multilingual evaluators and consulted with various school districts around equity in evaluation practices.
Dr. Lopez is a self proclaimed child and family advocate who has presented on trauma, and culturally relevant practice for various organizations. During the fall 2021 and spring of 2022, Dr. López had the privilege to be invited to present in Spanish at the Hispanic Parent Leadership Conference in the Changing Suburbs Institute sponsored by Manhattanville College, School of Education. This October 2022, she co-presented at the New York State Association of School Psychologists Conference in Long Island (entitled: Multilingual Children: Assessment Considerations and Specific Interventions for Reading) and was most recently invited to present for the National Association in School Psychology in Colorado during their national conference in February 2023.
Dr. Dixelia López served as co-delegate of Region III/Hudson Valley, NY State Association of Bilingual Education (NYSABE), and continues to serve as an Executive Board Member within the Multicultural Affairs Committee, and Lead CoChair of the Latinx Committee of the National Association of School Psychologists. Most recently, she was nominated to serve as the lead Chair for the Culturally Responsive Practice Committee within the New York Association of School Psychologists.
Dr. Dixelia López, as a former ESL student and mother, wishes to transform the educational system so that all black and brown youngsters feel a sense of purpose and belonging; including her one and only Natalia, who is six years old.
My name is Gloria Kimmich. I am a kindergarten teacher in the dual language program for the seventh year in a row in Syracuse City School District. I am originally from the South Bronx, New York. I grew up in a Hispanic neighborhood where many of my neighbors and friends spoke more than one language and came from diverse backgrounds. My upbringing shaped my outlook on different cultures and helped me to understand and welcome unique individuals and their experiences. It has also heavily influenced me in my career path in education. I am certified in Early Childhood birth to 2, Childhood Education grades 1-6, and ENL certified. I have been a member of my districts Emergent Bilingual Language Team for the last 7 years and have assisted in the creation of our mission and vision of the school that pertains to our dual language program.
I have a wonderful husband and two children, ages 4 and 17, that support me in the work that I am committed to in the dual program. My family understands my dedication and the time I spend to involve myself in dual language initiatives and programs that support teachers, students, and families alike.
As a dual language delegate, I hope to continue to advocate for dual language programs that support students in bilingualism and high academic achievement. I also want to be the model for teachers of color who foster a sense of self and belonging in unique programs such as dual language programs.
Ilianatacha Rosa was born in Puerto Rico and raised in Williamsburg, Brooklyn in the State of New York. She attended SUNY Cortland and obtained a bachelor’s degree in Education. She went on to receive a Masters in TESOL Education at SUNY Brockport and a Bilingual Extension at SUNY Oneonta. Ms. Rosa has been teaching Bilingual/Dual Language education at the Syracuse City School District for the past eight years and is currently taking courses towards an Educational Leadership degree.
Ms. Rosa grew up in a family that instilled the importance of culture, heritage and language. She is a product of Bilingual and ENL education, having received support from both programs throughout her elementary years. Ms. Rosa hopes to use her leadership to advocate for bilingual education and its initiatives. She wishes to educate and share with others the benefits of Bilingual Education.
Analy Cruz-Phommany currently serves as the Director of Bilingual Education for the Rochester City School District. As a former English Language Learner, she considers it an honor to have begun her career as a bilingual pre-kindergarten teacher. She served students as a bilingual fifth-grade teacher for eight years and three years as an instructional coach at Enrico Fermi School No. 17. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood and Childhood Education from SUNY Cortland, as part of Cortland’s Urban Recruitment of Educators (CURE) Program. She went on to obtain a Master’s Degree in TESOL at Nazareth and a Master’s Degree in School District Leadership at the University of Rochester.
With a focus on Bilingual Education and Latino Achievement, she currently serves her local community as a member of the Rochester Latinx Leadership Roundtable, the NYSED ELL Leadership Council, and as a newly inducted regional delegate of the New York State Association of Bilingual Education (NYSABE).
Her aspiration is to establish a district culture where there is an individualized learning plan for bilingual students, where the success of each student matters, and where teachers are empowered to meet the language needs of all students. Working together to cultivate a bilingual, biliterate, and bicultural community.
Enid De Jesus López
Mrs. De Jesus-Lopez is the Director of Transition Systems for the Rochester City School District (RCSD). She works at the Office of Student Equity and Placement, supervising the Language Assessment Proficiency Center (LAPC), as well as supporting students in the Juvenile Justice and foster care systems. She started her career at RCSD in 2003, as a School Counselor, and her passion for supporting students and families led her to earn a degree in School Administration.
In 2017, when Mrs. De Jesus-Lopez began working with LAPC, she worked to streamline protocols and procedures, advocate for Bilingual programs and services for English Language Learners/Multilingual Learners. In 2018, she championed for additional services for SIFE students, which resulted in the implementation of the BRIDGES program through collaboration with RBERN and district level administration. Mrs. De Jesus-Lopez is committed to the work of strengthening the collaboration of Bilingual Educators.
Region VI/Western New York
Selena Borek is a Bilingual Education Coach for Buffalo Public Schools. She has taught in both transitional bilingual education and dual language education programs at Frank A. Sedita Academy in the City of Buffalo. Selena is certified in K-12 TESOL, Childhood 1-6, Spanish 5-12, School Building Leadership, and School District Leadership. She also holds her Bilingual Education extension. Selena earned a Masters in Bilingual Childhood Education from Canisius College and a second Masters in Educational Leadership from Niagara University. Selena is committed to educational equity and recognizes the barriers and challenges our multilingual learners and their families face. As a Regional Delegate for NYSABE, she hopes to increase parent advocacy for children in bilingual schools and develop partnerships with local universities to support the certification of new bilingual teachers. Selena is excited to join NYSABE in a leadership capacity and is honored to represent bilingual teachers, multilingual learners and families, and the multilingual community of Region VI.
Dr. Maeva López-Kassem
Dr. Maeva López-Kassem is a Bilingual Education Coach for the Division of Multilingual Education in the Buffalo Public Schools District. During her 35+ years of experience, she has taught ELLs in general, special, and bilingual education settings in Puerto Rico and New York State. She also serves as adjunct professor at SUNY College at Buffalo. As a fierce advocate for bilingual education, Maeva believes it is essential to educate members of the school community about the merits of exemplary bilingual education programs so that they may become advocates themselves.
Maeva’s interests in bilingual education include Dual Language Program implementation and sustainability, integrated language and content curriculum development, constructivist learning, culturally and linguistically relevant teaching, translanguaging, metalingual awareness, and productive data-driven instruction.
Dr. Gliset Colón
Dr. Gliset Colón is an Assistant Professor with the Exceptional Education Department at SUNY Buffalo State. She is also the Coordinator for the Bilingual Graduate Certificate Program. Dr. Colón teaches courses on topics related to bilingual special education, behavior and classroom management, and foundations of special education. In addition to teaching, Dr. Colón has research interests and expertise in literacy and language outcomes for multilingual students with and without disabilities, multi-tiered systems of support, disproportionality, culturally relevant and sustaining pedagogy, and intersectionality. Dr. Colón is actively involved in several professional organizations including the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), CEC Teacher Education Division (TED), National Association for Bilingual Education (NABE), and the New York State Association for Bilingual Education (NYSABE).
Cynthia Felix Jeffers
Cynthia Felix Jeffers is a highly respected and accomplished educator who has served culturally and linguistically diverse students in the NYCDOE for 29 years in a variety of roles including Senior Director of Bilingual Programs, Network Leader, Deputy Network Leader, Instructional Support Specialist, Administrator of Special Education, Curriculum Specialist, Director of Parent Outreach, Director of Title VII Programs, Director of Bilingual/ESL Programs, Bilingual and Monolingual Teacher and her favorite PTA Mom. During that time, she has been instrumental in the planning, development, implementation and expansion of bilingual education programs from assessment and evaluation to content and curriculum. She is dedicated to ensuring all students, in particular multilingual learners and students with disabilities, have access to and receive a high quality education. She has presented at many national and local conferences and has served as a guest lecturer at colleges and universities. In addition, she is an active member of various professional organizations and serves as trustees on several community boards.
She is a proud alumnus of NYC public schools and graduated summa cum laude from Brooklyn College with an Advanced Certificate in School Administration & Supervision, a Master’s Degree in Special Education and a Bachelor’s Degree in Education & Speech.
Madelyn Ortiz has been an educator and advocate for multilingual learners for over 20 years. She is an educator at the Bedford Central School District where she serves as a Spanish teacher in the Dual Language Program at Mount Kisco Elementary School. Mrs. Ortiz’s experience as a Bilingual teacher and TESOL teacher has allowed her to engage in varied school and district projects to promote language instruction for English Language Learners.
A leader and pioneer in Bedford’s Dual Language Program, Ms. Ortiz has served on various committees from the planning and implementation phase of Dual Language to bridging communication with middle school staff and central office administrators to ensure continuity of instruction and transition. She has presented on various topics for the parent community within her district. During the pandemic, she offered workshops for parents on how to connect with students, families and teachers when in a remote learning setting in collaboration with Neighbors Link, a community based organization. Ms. Ortiz engages in political action as a NYSUT representative in the Committee of 100. She also serves as a field supervisor at Hunter College for graduate students completing their student teaching experience in early childhood. She is looking forward to a partnership, through NYSABE, with colleagues and families for continued advocacy for the multilingual community.
Ms. Ortiz holds degrees and credentials from the City University of New York at Lehman College, College of New Rochelle and the College of St. Rose where she completed her Certificate in Advanced Studies in School Building Administration.
Lyda Ragonese is the Assistant Director for the Office of English as a New Language, World Languages and Bilingual Education in the Syracuse City School District. She is a Hmong-American from Laos and is a fluent speaker of Hmong. She began her teaching career in 1993 as an English as a Second language teacher at Franklin Elementary before moving to Frazer K-8 School in Syracuse. She has her TESOL certification from Le Moyne College and M.A. in Reading Education from Syracuse University. After leaving the classroom, her experiences varied in the fields of student learning objectives (SLO), APPR, and was elected as the treasurer of the teacher’s union in Syracuse. She has served as an adjunct professor at Le Moyne College and earned her Certificate of Advanced Studies (C.A.S.) from Syracuse University in Educational Leadership.
Shirley J. Vargas is an accomplished educator who has dedicated over 20 years of her career to serving multilingual students of diverse backgrounds and has held various roles in the learning community. For 10 years, she served as Chairperson of the Department of World Languages at Westbury High School. She was instrumental in establishing a Home Language Arts program in
the Westbury School District, expanding the department with new teaching positions, and also establishing a language lab as an educational tool for language students via technology. The AP Spanish program has since grown two-folds, gearing students to become high achievers and true commodities to the industries they
will enter post-graduation. She serves as the NYS Seal of Biliteracy Coordinator for her district, and also co-leads as a Grant Advisor at Westbury for Nassau Community College Science and Technology Entry Program. (NCC-STEP)
Ms. Vargas’ experience includes professional development and instructional practices for second language study, English language learners, bilingual education, and college-level language study. Additionally, she holds several board positions, President of HHSRC of Melville NY, Secretary of Club Salitre Ecuatoriano of NY, and board member of Long Island Immigrant Student Advocates; each engaging the community in cultural connections and family-oriented initiatives.
She is a graduate of Hofstra University where she completed a dual major in Elementary Education and Spanish, alumni of Queens College, has completed two Master Degrees, in Education and Educational Leadership, obtained her Advanced Certification in leadership at the College of St. Rose in Albany, NY, and completed the 21 Century Learning Design/STEAM Academy program via NYIT. Additionally, she holds U.S federal clearance and works in pre-trial preparations, for DOJ Offices.
Serving as a co-leader for Latina Moms Connect, has also invited personal and community engagements for her family. Together with her husband, they have nurtured in their children pride in their Ecuadorian and Dominican backgrounds. As a proud parent of four bilingual children of her own, Ms. Vargas has dedicated her life to educating children to embrace the following ideology, “Your fluency in more than one language, pride in your cultural background, and passion to learn, are the core principles to success and the emblem that defines your greatness.”
Dorothy Santana has a long history of working in the field of social work supporting and working alongside various diverse populations to ensure they’re afforded the opportunities to secure services that meet their needs to live safe and fulfilling lives. She is the founder and President of Latina Moms Connect, Inc. where for the past eight years has guided the work in supporting and celebrating communities in cultural preservation and nurturing cultural identity. Latina Moms Connect intentionally builds spaces to share culture with our children and community that also help enrich cultural identity. Through Social Networking, Facilitated Dialogues and group activities, Latina Moms Connect has impacted over 1500 women and families to our programming, resources, and partnerships across Long Island. HIghlighted events have been, Parranda Navideña , Cena Con Los Reyes, Sofrito Sunday, Bochinche Brunch,and more, where mothers or families have authentic conversations and make connections around cultural identity formation and their parenthood journey. Dorothy has been a long-time advocate for social justice and has served on various committees representing the various needs of communities of color. She is a trained facilitator of the Parent Leadership Training Institute and facilitated parent leadership training courses for seven years. Dorothy is currently the Culturally Responsive Education Specialist for the Long Island Regional Partnership through Long Island University’s Center for Community Inclusion, funded by the NYSED Office of Special Education where she works facilitating regional culturally responsive professional development as well as offering embedded support with her team in identified school districts around cultural responsiveness.
Aide Zaino Flores
Mi nombre es Aide Zainos Flores, soy mexicana y vivo en el Bronx. Soy madre de dos niños que asisten a programas de Lenguaje Dual, Español-Inglés, K-6to grado, en una de las escuelas públicas de Nueva York. Uno de mis hijos se graduará de la Escuela Elemental en este ciclo escolar e ingresará a la Escuela Intermedia. He sido una madre muy involucrada en su educación, he aprendido más sobre cómo funciona el sistema educativo y espero poder apoyar a mi hijo en la Escuela Intermedia.
Soy presidente de la Asociación de Padres y Maestros, PTA, de la escuela de mis hijos y participo en el grupo de liderazgo de la escuela, SLT, así como también en el grupo de liderazgo del distrito escolar, DLT. Como tal, he brindado mi ayuda a los padres/madres, especialmente a aquellos que no hablan inglés, para que así puedan involucrarse más en la escuela de sus hijos.
También sirvo como presidente del Concejo de Educación Comunitaria (CEC) del distrito 9 del Departamento de Educación de la ciudad de Nueva York y miembro del equipo de Equidad del Distrito 9 del Bronx. Como presidente del Concejo de Educación Comunitaria (CEC) del Distrito 9, miembro del Equipo de Liderazgo del Distrito 9 (DLT) y miembro del Equipo de Equidad del Distrito 9, abogo por todos los padres en todo el distrito. Aseguro así el proporcionar traducción e interpretación en todas nuestras reuniones y hacer que todos los padres estén informados y tengan voz en las conversaciones.
Igualmente ejerzo como miembro del grupo de Padres en Acción (PAC), miembro de la organización comunitaria de apoyo a la familia y la educación MASA, miembro activo del grupo de apoyo LINC y miembro embajadora de la organización de acción alimentaria Hunger Free NYC en el Bronx. También soy voluntaria en el centro comunitario y participo en talleres dirigidos a la comunidad. Estas membresías me han permitido brindar muchos servicios a los padres de mi comunidad, especialmente a los padres que no hablan inglés.
Me gusta escuchar y ayudar con las necesidades que existen en la comunidad de la que soy embajadora.
My name is Aide Zainos Flores. I am Mexican and live in the Bronx. I am the mother of two children who attend NYC DOE public schools. They are in the Spanish-English dual language program K-6 grades. My son will be moving on to Middle School this year. I have been very involved in my children’s education, have learned more about how the educational system works, and look forward to supporting my son in Middle School.
As the PTA president and member of the School Leadership Team, I have been helping parents, especially those who do not speak English, to be more involved. As chair of the Community Education Council for District 9, member of the District 9 Leadership Team, and member of the District 9 Equity Team, I advocate districtwide for all parents. I ensure that we provide translation and interpretation at all our meetings, and that all parents are informed and have a voice.
I am also a member of Parents in Action, PAC, member of the community and family support organization MASA, the community support group LINC, and member of the food action organization Hunger Free NYC in the Bronx. I also volunteer at the community center and participate in workshops directed to the community. These memberships have allowed me to provide many services to the parents in my community especially to those who do not speak English.
I like to listen and help with the needs that exist in the community for which I am an ambassador.
Silvia Nina Vergara
Nina is a very proud parent of an SCSD alumni. Her daughter attended Edward Smith and graduated from Nottingham High School.
Nancy King Wang
Dr. Marie Lily Cerat
Dr. Cerat has worked in the K-16 New York public education system as a classroom teacher, a staff developer and a college teacher for over 20 years. Her academic writings have appeared in Rethinking Schools, the Journal of Haitian Studies, and the International Journal of the Sociology of Language. In addition to her scholarly activities, Dr. Cerat has a long history of organizing within the New York Haitian community. She is the co-founder of Haitian Women for Haitian Refugees (HWHR), a group that was established in 1992, to provide ESL and adult literacy programs to Haitian immigrants and refugees in the Brooklyn area. Today, HWHR continues to provide educational services, as well as organizes leadership training to help members advocate on their own behalf for civil, educational, social, labor/economic and immigration justice.
Dr. Miriam Eisenstein Ebsworth
Dr. Miriam Eisenstein Ebsworth is a teacher educator, researcher, and advocate in the areas of Bilingual Education, TESOL, Second Language Acquisition, and Applied Linguistics. She is Academic Director of the English program for the families of international students at New York University, Past Director of PhD Programs in Multilingual Multicultural Studies; and co-chair of the ELL Think Tank at NYU.
Her research interests include using technology in second language pedagogy, second language academic writing, and intercultural pragmatics. She is a consultant for the UN in the continued development of Actionthroughwords, a website for English learning and has appeared in “The Three R’s,” a film exploring academic language and the T.V. show Public Voice Salon. Miriam is the recipient of the NYSABE Bilingual Teacher of the Year award (2018-2019), the NYU Teaching Excellence Award and the NYSTESOL Outstanding Teacher Award.
Dr. Hyunjoo Kwon
Hyunjoo Kwon is a Resource Specialist at the NYSED Language Regional Bilingual Education Resource Network at NYU. Before retiring from the NYC Department of Education, she was a bilingual teacher and LAU Coordinator at a New York City public high school. She also worked at the Asian Languages Bilingual Education Technical Assistance Center (ALBETAC) as a Resource Specialist given opportunities to reach out to various Asian communities.
Dr. Kwon has been active in supporting immigrant children’s education. In collaboration with the Korean Teachers Association of New York, founded by her in 1992, she has coordinated citywide activities such as the Korean parents and Korean language teachers’ workshops. She was honored with the Korean Government’s Presidential Award (2003) for her leadership in leading the Korean educational community.
Dr. Kwon received a B.A. from Ewha Women’s University, Seoul, Korea and an M.S. from State University of New York at Buffalo. She completed her doctoral study in educational administration at NYU Steinhardt School of Education.
Alicja Winnicki is a bilingual resource specialist at the NY Statewide Language RBERN. A retired superintendent of the Community School District 14 in Brooklyn, in her tenure she promoted advancing equity and access through languages by opening many linguistically diverse bilingual and dual language programs, including Spanish, French, Japanese, Polish, German and Italian among many. Under her leadership, CSD 14 schools hosted national delegations of bilingual educators showcasing promising practices in embracing multilingual learners. She also gave voice to parts of the district that have been silent and overlooked.
She is a recipient of many leadership awards, including the 2020-2021 NYSABE Dr. Antonia Pantoja Bilingual Advocacy Award. She was a key-note speaker at the 50th NYS TESOL Conference 2020.
Alicja holds Master’s Degrees in the Polish Language and Literature, TESOL, and Administration and Supervision. She is a Cahn Fellow 2010. She publishes briefs and articles about bilingualism and dual language programs in professional journals in the US and in Poland.
Marina Vinitskaya has been working as a Resource Specialist for NYS Language RBERN at New York University since 2020. She is training ENL, Bilingual, World Language, and subject area teachers. She is leading Russian World Language PLS and providing professional development to Russian Dual Language Programs. She is supporting teachers and parents of multilingual learners on high school requirements for graduation, and the college application process.
Marina worked for the New York City Department of Education, for more than 25 years, as an ESL teacher, Regional Instructional Support Specialist and a High School Principal. As a RIS, Marina was in charge of compliance and instructional programs for ELLs, Bilingual and Dual Language programs. She provided support to Superintendents and their network of schools on compliance, designing staff development, and instructional programs. Marina was the founding high school principal. As a result of practices and achievements of ELLs, the school was featured in the Stanford University Research for its “school-wide language development framework that integrated content, analytical practices, view of assessment practices, and social-emotional support for students and their families.” Marina coached new assistant principals and principals through the Leadership Program and the Wallace Foundation.
Also, Marina is a TESOL Clinical Supervisor at Pace University and was an ENL consultant for the K – 8 Charter School. Marina was honored as a noteworthy educator, by New York State Senator, Kevin S. Parker.
Dr. Eliezer Hernández
Eliezer Hernández was born in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico, and raised in a bilingual, multicultural household in the South Bronx to a Dominican immigrant. After graduating from high school, he attended SUNY Oswego, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Music and a Master’s in Education. He served as President of Nuestra Esperanza, the Latino Student Union, and a co-founder of Phi Iota Alpha Latino-American Fraternity, Inc. chapter at SUNY Oswego. Dr. Hernández earned his doctorate in Executive Leadership from St. John Fisher University in May 2020. His dissertation focused on the identification and the Influence of Urban School Leaders’ Personal Beliefs, Attitudes, and Behaviors on Leading Urban Social Justice Schools.
Dr. Hernández worked as a Spanish teacher in the Auburn Enlarged City School District for ten years. While in Auburn, he became the Spanish Club advisor and founded the José de San Martin chapter of La Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica. In 2010, Dr. Hernández joined the Syracuse City School District as an administrative intern and later became a vice principal at the Westside Academy at Blodgett. In 2014, he became the principal of Delaware Primary School, where he began building a PreK-5 bilingual school in Syracuse. He now serves as the Coordinator of Data Management for the Syracuse City School District.
In the community, Dr. Hernández serves as the President of the Auburn/Cayuga County Branch of the NAACP, a board of directors of the National Math Foundation, a board of directors of AADUNA, Inc., and secretary of the Minority Professionals Association. He is serving his fourth term on the Auburn Enlarged City School District Board of Education. Dr. Hernández is the secretary and Spanish Language Delegate of NYSABE.