WSRA 2020 Conference Presenters

Learning Together in Communities of Practice ~ February 6-8, 2020

WSRA is grateful for the record number of proposals submitted. The Program Committee is busy reviewing the submissions and will send notifications to the submitters in August, 2019.  THANK YOU! 

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Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020
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Thursday, February 6, 2020

Thursday Keynote Presentation by Cornelius Minor

Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020 Presenters
Cornelius Minor

Jennifer Abrams is former high school English teacher and a new teacher coach in Palo Alto Unified School District in Palo Alto, CA. Jennifer Abrams is currently a communications consultant and author who works with educators and others on new teacher and employee support, being generationally savvy, effective collaboration skills, having hard conversations, and creating identity safe workplaces. Jennifer’s publications include Having Hard Conversations, The Multigenerational Workplace: Communicate, Collaborate & Create Community, Hard Conversations Unpacked - the Whos, Whens and What Ifs, and her newest book, Swimming in the Deep End: Four Foundational Skills for Leading Successful School Initiatives. Jennifer is honored to have been named one of the “18 Women All K-12 Educators Should Know,” by Education Week’s ‘Finding Common Ground’’ blog. More about Jennifer’s work can be found at her website, www.jenniferabrams.com, and on Twitter @jenniferabrams.

Carl Anderson is an internationally recognized expert in writing instruction for grades K-8. He works as a consultant in schools and districts around the world, and is a longtime staff developer for the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project. Carl is the author of numerous books on teaching writing, including the brand new A Teacher’s Guide to Writing Conferences, the best-selling How’s It Going?: A Practical Guide to Conferring with Student Writers, as well as Assessing Writers and Strategic Writing Conferences. Tweet him at @conferringcarl.

Kathy Collins works in schools and presents in conferences all over the world to support teachers in developing high-quality, effective literacy instruction in the early childhood settings through middle school. She is the co-author, along with Janine Bempechat of Not This But That: No More Mindless Homework (Heinemann, 2017). She co-authored, with Matt Glover, I Am Reading: Nurture Meaning-Making and Joyful Engagement with Texts (Heinemann, 2015). Kathy’s other books include Reading for Real: Teach Children to Read With Power, Intention, and Joy in K-3 Classrooms (Stenhouse, 2008) and Growing Readers: Units of Study in Primary Classrooms (Stenhouse, 2004). Kathy has worked closely with the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University, and she taught in Brooklyn, New York. Kathy and her family live in Durham, New Hampshire. 

Catherine Compton-Lilly is the John C. Hungerpiller Professor at the University of South Carolina where she teaches courses in literacy studies and works with local educators.  Her past research followed eight of her former first grade students through high school. In a current study, now in its tenth year, she is exploring the longitudinal school experiences of children from immigrant families. Dr. Compton-Lilly has authored several books and many articles in major educational literacy journals including the Reading Research Quarterly, Research in the Teaching of English, Written Communication, and The Journal of Literacy Research. Her interests include examining how time operates as a contextual factor in children’s lives as they progress through school.

Racheal Gabriel is an Associate Professor of Literacy Education and director of the Reading/Language Arts Center at the University of Connecticut. She is author of more than forty refereed articles, and author or editor of five books for literacy teachers, leaders and education researchers. Rachael serves on the editorial boards of six journals focused on literacy, education research and education policy, and on the board of the International Literacy Association. In addition to experience as a classroom teacher and reading specialist, Rachael holds graduate certificates in both quantitative and qualitative research methods, and teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in literacy instruction, assessment, leadership, and research.
Gravity Goldberg is the author of several books including Teach Like Yourself, Mindsets and Moves, What Do I Teach Readers Tomorrow, and Conferring with Readers. She spends most of her days leading workshops, coaching teachers, and admiring the learners all around her. Gravity leads a consulting group in the NY/NJ area and supports districts and schools in taking on a balanced approach to literacy learning

Dr. Marcelle Haddix is a Dean’s Professor and chair of the Reading and Language Arts department in the Syracuse University School of Education, where she is an inaugural co-Director of the Lender Center for Social Justice. She is the 2019 President of the Literacy Research Association. She facilitates literacy programs for adolescent and adult communities in Syracuse, including the Writing Our Lives project for urban youth writers and a Black women’s literary club and free library project. Dr. Haddix’s scholarly work is published in Research in the Teaching of English, English Education, Linguistics and Education, and Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy and in her book, Cultivating Racial and Linguistic Diversity in Literacy Teacher Education: Teachers Like Me, which received the 2018 Outstanding Book Award from the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education. Also known as The ZenG, Dr. Haddix is also a 200-hour certified registered yoga instructor who specializes in yoga and mindfulness for underrepresented groups and for community-based organizations with strong commitments to maternal health and food justice. Her community engaged approach to yoga, wellness, and healthy living culminates in yoga and writing retreats for women and couples of color, yoga and mindfulness workshops in urban school contexts, and regular yoga classes and sister circles in her community. Follow her at @MarcelleHaddix and @zengangstayoga.

Dr. Towanda Harris  is the author of "The Right Tools," Towanda Harris has trained teachers throughout the state of Georgia. She brings almost 20 years of professional experience to each of her sessions. Her workshops are engaging and provide teachers with useful tools that allow them to reflect on their current practice. Originally an elementary school teacher, she has served as a literacy coach, adjunct professor, K–12 staff developer, and curriculum writer. Some of her presentations at state and local conferences include, “Welcome to Comprehensionville” (Georgia Reading First Conference 2007), “Change is Not a Four-Letter Word” (Teachers of Atlanta Conference 2017), and “Creating Superhero Writers” (GDOE Summer Literacy Institute 2018). In addition to writing and consulting, Towanda serves as an Instructional Leadership Coordinator for an urban school district in Atlanta, Georgia. She and her husband Aaron have two sons and one daughter.

Carol Jago has taught English in middle and high school for 32 years and is associate director of the California Reading and Literature Project at UCLA. She has published many books with Heinemann including The Book in Question: Why and How Reading Is in Crisis. She is also author of With Rigor for All: Meeting Standards for Reading Literature and Cohesive Writing: Why Concept Is Not Enough and published books on contemporary multicultural authors for NCTE. She is a consulting author on the new Into Reading and Into Literature programs from HMH. In 2015 Carol was awarded the International Literacy Association’s Adolescent Literacy Thought Leader Award and in 2016 the CEL Exemplary Leadership Award. She has been named by the U.S. Department of Education to serve on the National Assessment Governing Board overseeing the NAEP assessments. She is incoming president of ILA’s Adolescent Literacy group.

Matthew Kay is a proud product of Philadelphia’s public schools and a founding teacher at Science Leadership Academy (SLA). There, he teaches an innovative inquiry driven, project based curriculum. He also is the Founder and Executive Director of Philly Slam League (PSL), a nonprofit organization that shows young people the power of their voices through weekly spoken word competitions. The PSL is the only season-long, school-based slam poetry league in the United States. He is the author of Not Light, But Fire: How to Lead Meaningful Race Conversations in the Classrooms. 

David A. Kilpatrick, PhD is a professor of psychology for the State University of New York College at Cortland. He is a New York State certified school psychologist with 28 years experience in schools. He has been teaching courses in learning disabilities and educational psychology since 1994. David is a reading researcher and the author of two books on reading, Essentials of Assessing, Preventing, and Overcoming Reading Difficulties, and Equipped for Reading Success, and is a co-editor of a third, The Science of Reading Development and Reading Difficulties: Bridging the Gap Between Research and Practice (forthcoming 2019). 

Rafael López was born and raised in Mexico, a place that always influenced the vivid colors and shapes in his artwork. He now creates community-based mural projects around the world and illustrates acclaimed children's books, including The Day You Begin, Bravo!, Drum Dream Girl, We've Got the Whole World in Our Hands, and Book Fiesta! He is the recipients of two Pura Belpre Medals, A Tomas Rivera Award, two America's Awards, and a Silver Medal from the Society of Illustrators in New York. Rafael divides his time between Mexico and California.

Heid MessmerA former classroom teacher, Dr. Mesmer works extensively with teachers, schools, and young readers, directing numerous school-based initiatives to improve reading instruction. She studies beginning reading instruction and text difficulty and her work has been published in Reading Research Quarterly, The Educational Researcher, Elementary School Journal, Early Childhood Research Quarterly, and other outlets. She is the author of Letter Lessons and First Words: Phonics Foundations that Work (Heinemann, 2019), Tools for Matching Readers to Texts (Guilford, 2008), Reading Interventions in Primary Grades: A Common Sense Guide to RtI (Guilford, 2014), Teaching Skills for Complex Text: Deepening Reading in the Classroom (Teachers College Press, 2016).

Kristi Mraz is a teacher, writer, and consultant. She has co-authored numerous books on the intersection of literacy and social emotional learning, the importance of play, and best practices. When not working with children and their teachers, you can find Kristi with her family, preferably outdoors, definitely with books and snacks on hand. You can learn more about her at www.kristimraz.com.
Molly Ness began her teaching career as a Teach For America corps member and 6th grade teacher in Oakland, California. She earned a doctorate in Reading Education from the University of Virginia. Since 2006, she has been a teacher educator and associate professor at Fordham University. She is the author of three books and multiple articles in peer-reviewed journals. Her research focuses on reading comprehension, teachers’ instructional decisions and beliefs, word study, and matching books to readers. She resides in Westchester County, New York and is a native of Baltimore.

Marilyn Pryle has taught for over 20 years and is currently an English teacher at Abington Heights High School in Clarks Summit, PA. She is the author of several books for teachers, most recently Reading with Presence (Heinemann) and 50 Writing Activities for Meeting Higher Standards (Scholastic). Marilyn has also taught in Boston, Philadelphia, and Nepal, and was recently named Pennsylvania’s 2019 Teacher of the Year. 

Linda Rief recently stepped from the classroom after teaching 8th graders at Oyster River Middle School in Durham, NH for 40 years. She is an instructor in the University of New Hampshire's Summer Literacy Institute and a national and international presenter on issues of adolescent literacy. She is the author of The Quickwrite Handbook (2018), ReadWriteTeach (2014), Inside the Writer's-Reader's Notebook (2007), Vision and Voice (1999), and Seeking Diversity (1992), and co-editor (Beers, Probst, and Rief) of Adolescent Literacy (2007). For five years she co-edited Voices from the Middle, an NCTE journal. She is the author of 100 Quickwrites (2003) and co-author with Roger Essley of Visual Tools (2008), both published by Scholastic. A recipient of NCTE’s Edwin A. Hoey Award for Outstanding Middle School Educator in the English Language Arts her classroom was featured in the series Making Meaning in Literature produced by Maryland Public Television for Annenberg/CPB. For three years she chaired the first Early Adolescence English/Language Arts Standards Committee of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

Pernille Ripp (@pernilleripp) helps students discover their superpower as a former 4th and 5th, but now 7th grade English teacher in Oregon, Wisconsin. She opens up her educational practices to the world on her blog www.pernillesripp.com and is also the creator of the Global Read Aloud Project, a global literacy initiative that has connected millions of students. She is an internationally known educational speaker and also the author of several education books, with her latest release titled Passionate Readers - The Art of Reaching and Engaging Every Child. Look for Pernille surrounded by her four amazing kids, lovely husband, and with a book in her hand.

Critical Issues Panel:
Martin Nystrand
Bob Fecho

 

Friday, February 7, 2020

Friday Keynote Presentation by Donalyn Miller

Friday, February 7, 2020 Presenters
Donalyn Miller

Stephanie Affinito is an educator in the Department of Literacy Teaching and Learning at the University at Albany in New York. She has a deep love of literacy coaching and supporting teachers’ learning through technology. Stephanie creates spaces for authentic teacher learning that build expertise, spark professional curiosity and foster intentional reflection to reimagine teaching and learning for students. She recently published a book with Heinemann Publishing titled, Literacy Coaching: Teaching and Learning with Digital Tools and Technology. She presents regularly at state and national conferences on literacy coaching, teacher collaboration and supporting teachers’ reading, writing and learning through innovative technology. 

Wiley Blevins has taught elementary school in both the United States and South America. A graduate of Harvard Graduate School of Education, he has written over 15 books for teachers (including Phonics from A to Z, A Fresh Look at Phonics, Building Fluency, and Teaching Nonfiction), authored elementary reading programs, conducted research on topics ranging from fluency to using decodable text, and regularly trains teachers throughout the U.S. and Asia. His current interests include using adaptive technology and working with districts to correct instructional and material deficits. Wiley lives in New York City and also writes children’s books.

Kathy Collins works in schools and presents in conferences all over the world to support teachers in developing high-quality, effective literacy instruction in the early childhood settings through middle school. She is the co-author, along with Janine Bempechat of Not This But That: No More Mindless Homework (Heinemann, 2017). She co-authored, with Matt Glover, I Am Reading: Nurture Meaning-Making and Joyful Engagement with Texts (Heinemann, 2015). Kathy’s other books include Reading for Real: Teach Children to Read With Power, Intention, and Joy in K-3 Classrooms (Stenhouse, 2008) and Growing Readers: Units of Study in Primary Classrooms (Stenhouse, 2004). Kathy has worked closely with the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University, and she taught in Brooklyn, New York. Kathy and her family live in Durham, New Hampshire. 

Dr. Sunday Cummins is a literacy consultant and author of professional books on assessment-driven instruction with informational sources. She has a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana and a Master of Arts Master of Arts in Curriculum and Teaching from Columbia University’s Teachers College. Sunday’s work in schools includes teaching and learning alongside educators and students as a consultant and researcher with a focus on the power of informational texts to transform students’ thinking. She shares her experiences by presenting at state and national conferences, writing articles for numerous publications, and blogging regularly. You can learn more about her work at www.sunday-cummins.com.

Bob Fecho is a professor of English Education at Teachers College, Columbia University where his work continues to focus on issues of language, identity, sociocultural perspectives, and dialogical pedagogy as they relate to adolescent literacy among marginalized populations. His single and co-authored books include Dialoguing across Cultures, Identities, and Literacies: Crosscurrents and Complexities in Literacy Classrooms; Teaching for the Students: Habits of Heart, Mind, and Practice in the Engaged Classroom; and “Is This English?” Race, Language, and Culture in the Classroom, the last of which received the James N. Britton Award (CEE/NCTE) recognizing exemplary studies published by English Language Arts teachers. His work has also received the Richard Meade Award for Education Research (CEE), as well as the Alan C. Purves Award (NCTE), which honors articles published in Research in the Teaching of English most likely to influence classroom practice. 

J. Richard Gentry, PhD is an internationally acclaimed author, researcher, and educational consultant known for his groundbreaking work in education on topics such as early literacy; best-practices for reading, writing, and spelling; and dyslexia. In addition to authoring 17 books, 2 textbook series, and numerous journal and magazine articles, he blogs for the prestigious Psychology Today magazine offering commentary on a range of topics including education and policy, reading and the brain, baby/toddler reading, and educational standards. Dr. Gentry received a BA from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a PhD from the University of Virginia. He currently resides in Mobile, Alabama.

Matt Glover has been a teacher, principal, and consultant for over 30 years. His newest book is Craft and Process Studies: Units that Provide Writers with Choice of Genre. He is the coauthor with Kathy Collins of I Am Reading, the author of Engaging Young Writers, coauthor with Mary Alice Berry of Projecting Possibilities for Writers, and coauthor with Katie Wood Ray of Already Ready and Watch Katie and Matt…Sit Down and Teach Up, a video enhance ebook that combines video and text to examine conferring with young writers. Along with Ellin Keene, Matt is the coeditor of The Teacher You Want to Be: Essays about Children, Learning, and Teaching. A nationally known literacy consultant, Matt frequently speaks on topics related to nurturing writers, early reading, and supporting children’s intellectual development.

Georgia Heard received her M.F.A. in writing and poetry from Columbia University. She is a founding member of the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project where she worked as a lead staff developer in NYC public schools for over 10 years. A frequent speaker at conferences, she also presents school-wide writing workshops and staff development throughout the United States and internationally. She is the author of numerous books on teaching writing including: Awakening the Heart: Exploring Poetry in Elementary and Middle School which was chosen by Instructor Magazine as one of the “12 Books Every Teacher Should Read,” and Heart Maps: Helping Students Create and Craft Authentic Student Writing about which she was invited to give a TEDX talk: Mapping Your Heart. She also writes books for children. Her titles include Falling Down the Page: A Book of List Poems, The Arrow Finds Its Mark: A Book of Found Poems which was a CCBC Choice and Bank Street Best Children’s Book of the Year, and her newest collection Boom! Bellow! Bleat!: Animal Poems for Two Or More Voices about which the NY Times Book Review wrote, “Some of the best pictures books are poems… Heard’s engaging poems are designed to bring readers together.” www.georgiaheard.com  twitter: @georgiaheard1

Dr. Troy Hicks is a professor of English and education at Central Michigan University. He directs both the Chippewa River Writing Project and the Master of Arts in Learning, Design & Technology program. A former middle school teacher, Dr. Hicks has authored numerous books, articles, chapters, blog posts, and other resources broadly related to the teaching of literacy in our digital age. Follow him on Twitter: @hickstro

Aeriale N. Johnson teaches second graders for liberation at Washington Elementary School, a school bursting with the energy of multiculturalism and multilingualism in downtown San Jose, CA. She is a National Board Certified Teacher, specializing in early-middle childhood literacy, and a recipient of many grants and fellowships. Aeriale most recently served as a Heinemann Fellow. She is an Associate Director for the San Jose Area Writing Project, facilitating professional development for teachers and writing workshops for children, and serves on NCTE’s Build Your Stack committee. Her blogs, articles, and essays have been published by Heinemann, the International Literacy Association, and Scholastic.

Hena Khan is an award winning Pakistani American children’s author. Her middle grade novel Amina’s Voice was named a Best Book of 2017 by the Washington Post, Kirkus Reviews, NPR, and others. She is the author of the popular Zayd Saleem: Chasing the Dream series: Power Forward, On Point, and Bounce Back. Hena has written several acclaimed picture books including Golden Domes and Silver Lanterns, Night of the Moon, It’s Ramadan Curious George, Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets, and Under My Hijab. Learn more about Hena at www.henakhan.com.

Penny Kittle teaches freshman composition at Plymouth State University in New Hampshire. She was a teacher and literacy coach in public schools for 34 years. She is the co-author of 180 Days with Kelly Gallagher, and is the author of Book Love, and Write Beside Them, which won the James Britton award. She also co-authored two books with her mentor, Don Graves, and co-edited (with Tom Newkirk) a collection of Graves’ work, Children Want to Write. She is the president of the Book Love Foundation and was given the Exemplary Leader Award from NCTE’s Conference on English Leadership. She regularly works beside teachers to empower young readers and writers.
Chris Lehman

Lindsey Moses is an associate professor of literacy education at Arizona State University and an author and consultant. A former elementary teacher, Lindsey works with classroom teachers across the country supporting the implementation of effective literacy instruction. She conducts ongoing classroom-based research on elementary literacy instruction in diverse classroom settings. Lindsey brings her classroom and research experience together to provide practical, research-based instructional ideas for teachers in her books and presentations. Her latest books include What Are the REST of My Kids Doing? Fostering Independence in the K-2 Reading Workshop, and Supporting English Learners in the Reading Workshop.

Liz Prather teaches writing at Lafayette High School in Lexington, Kentucky. She holds an MFA from the University of Texas-Austin and is the author of Project-Based Writing: Teaching Students to Manage Time and Clarify Purpose (Heinemann 2017) and the forthcoming Story Matters: Teaching Teens the Tools of Narrative to Argue and Inform (Heinemann 2019)

Kate Roberts is a national literacy consultant, top-selling author, and popular keynote speaker. She taught reading and writing in Brooklyn, NY and worked as a literacy coach before joining the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project in 2005, where she worked as a Lead Staff Developer for 11 years. Kate's latest book, A Novel Approach, asks how we can teach whole class novels while still holding onto student centered practices like readers workshop. She is also the co-author of Falling in Love with Close Reading (with Christopher Lehman), DIY Literacy (with Maggie Beattie Roberts), and she co-wrote two Units of Study books on Literary Essay. Her work with students across the country has led to her belief that all kids can be insightful, academic thinkers when the work is demystified, broken down and made engaging. To this end, Kate has worked nationally and internationally to help teachers, schools, and districts develop and implement strong teaching practices and curriculum.

Maggie Beattie Roberts began her teaching career in the heart of Chicago and then pursued graduate studies as a Literacy Specialist at Teachers College, Columbia University. She worked as a staff developer for the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project for nearly ten years where she led research and development in digital and media literacy, as well as differentiated methods of teaching and content area literacy. Maggie is currently a national literacy consultant, guest teacher, author, and frequent presenter at national conferences. She is committed to helping teachers tap into the power of their own deep engagement in reading and writing, and leads school-wide staff development around the country. She is happiest teaching alongside teachers in their classrooms. She is co-author of the popular book, DIY Literacy: Teaching Tools for Differentiation, Rigor, and Independence (with Kate Roberts), and authored several Heinemann Unit of Study books on the teaching of writing. Her article, Thinking While Reading: The Beautiful Mess of Helping Adolescents Learn and Celebrate How Their Minds Work (co-authored with Kristen Robbins Warren), was featured in the December 2016 issue of NCTE's middle school journal, Voices from the Middle. You can learn more about Maggie’s work, as well as access videos and other resources, at www.KateAndMaggie.com Follow Maggie on Twitter: @MaggieBRoberts

Frank Serafini has been an elementary classroom teacher, a literacy specialist, an educational consultant, and a professor of literacy education and children’s literature for the past thirty years. During that time, Frank has published ten professional development books with Heinemann, Scholastic, and Teachers College Press. In addition to his academic publishing, Frank has written and illustrated seven children’s picturebooks, including the Looking Closely Series with Kids Can Press. During his tenure as an author and teacher educator, Frank has garnered numerous awards, including the Distinguished Professor of Children’s Literature from the ILA, Faculty Teaching Awards at both UNLV and ASU, and the Bank Street Best Book Award and the Teachers Choice Award for his Looking Closely picture books.

Stacey Shubitz is an author, a certified literacy specialist, and a former classroom teacher who taught fifth grade at P.S. 171 in East Harlem, NY and fourth grade at The Learning Community in Central Falls, RI. She is the co-author of Welcome to Writing Workshop: Engaging Today’s Students with a Model that Works (Stenhouse Publishers, 2019), the author of Craft Moves: Lesson Sets for Teaching Writing with Mentor Texts (Stenhouse Publishers, 2016), and the co-author of Day by Day: Refining Writing Workshop Through 180 Days of Reflective Practice (Stenhouse Publishers, 2010). Stacey is the Chief of Operations and Lead Writer for Two Writing Teachers. You can find her on Twitter @sshubitz. 

Cynthia Leitich Smith is the New York Times and Publishers Weekly bestselling, award-winning YA fantasy author of the Tantalize series and the Feral trilogy (Candlewick). Her acclaimed realistic children’s books include Jingle Dancer, Indian Shoes and Rain Is Not My Indian Name (Harper Children's). Smith is also the author of Native YA novel, Hearts Unbroken (Candlewick). She looks forward to the publication of several contracted middle grade books in 2020 and beyond. She is published widely in realism and speculative fiction, in all age-markets for young readers and in prose, poetry, narrative nonfiction, short stories, and graphic format. Cynthia is a citizen of the Muscogee (Creek) Indian Nation of Oklahoma and has been named a Writer of the Year by Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers. She makes her home in Austin and teaches on the faculty of the low-residency MFA program in Writing for Children and Young Adults at Vermont College of Fine Arts. She also serves on the honorary advisory board of We Need Diverse Books. The Austin chapter of SCBWI has instituted the Cynthia Leitich Smith Mentor Award in her honor. Learn more at www.cynthialeitichsmith.com and her Cynsations blog at www.cynthialeitichsmith.blogspot.com.
Dana M. Stachowiak, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Curriculum and Instruction in the Watson College of Education at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, where she also serves as the coordinator of the Masters of Education Curriculum Studies for Equity in Education Program. Dr. Stachowiak's research interests include gender studies in education, literacy curriculum development, and social justice education.

Nic Stone burst onto the YA scene with her powerful debut novel, Dear Martin. A hard-hitting, and honest look at American race relations, the book was widely embraced by readers of all ages. Her second novel, Odd One Out explores sexuality, friendship, and first love. Through engaging presentations, she examines how fiction and literacy can impact social change.

Alfred Tatum

Jacqueline Witter-Easley, Ed.D., is the dean of the Division of Professional Studies at Carthage College, where she also serves as professor in the Education Department. Dr. Witter-Easley is the director of their literacy programs at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. She is the editor of the WSRA Journal. Her recently published book, Literacy Moments: Creating Daily Teachable Moments with Beginning Readers, is available through Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Company.

 

Saturday, February 8, 2010

Saturday Keynote presentation by Monique Gray Smith

Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020 Presenters

Monique Gray Smith is a proud Mom of sixteen year old twins and an award-winning, best-selling author. Her first published novel, Tilly: A Story of Hope and Resilience won the 2014 Canadian Burt Award for First Nation, Métis and Inuit Literature. Since then, Monique has had 6 books come out, including My Heart Fills with Happiness, which has won numerous awards and continues to be a bestseller. Monique’s latest release, Tilly and the Crazy Eights is a novel about an epic road trip that Tilly and eight Indigenous Elders take. The story reminds the reader of the power of the human spirit and that love is medicine. In September, Monique has a new picture book coming out called, When We Are Kind with Orca Book Publishers. Monique is Cree, Lakota and Scottish and has been sober and involved in her healing journey for over 28 years. She is well known for her storytelling, spirit of generosity and focus on resilience.

Tricia Ebarvia
Aeriale Johnson
Cynthia Leitich Smith is the New York Times and Publishers Weekly bestselling, award-winning YA fantasy author of the Tantalize series and the Feral trilogy (Candlewick). Her acclaimed realistic children’s books include Jingle DancerIndian Shoes and Rain Is Not My Indian Name (Harper Children's). Smith is also the author of Native YA novel, Hearts Unbroken (Candlewick). She looks forward to the publication of several contracted middle grade books in 2020 and beyond. She is published widely in realism and speculative fiction, in all age-markets for young readers and in prose, poetry, narrative nonfiction, short stories, and graphic format. Cynthia is a citizen of the Muscogee (Creek) Indian Nation of Oklahoma and has been named a Writer of the Year by Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers. She makes her home in Austin and teaches on the faculty of the low-residency MFA program in Writing for Children and Young Adults at Vermont College of Fine Arts. She also serves on the honorary advisory board of We Need Diverse Books. The Austin chapter of SCBWI has instituted the Cynthia Leitich Smith Mentor Award in her honor. Learn more at www.cynthialeitichsmith.com and her Cynsations blog at www.cynthialeitichsmith.blogspot.com.
Dana M. Stachowiak, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Curriculum and Instruction in the Watson College of Education at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, where she also serves as the coordinator of the Masters of Education Curriculum Studies for Equity in Education Program. Dr. Stachowiak's research interests include gender studies in education, literacy curriculum development, and social justice education.
P. L. Thomas, Professor of Education (Furman University, Greenville SC), taught high school English in rural South Carolina before moving to teacher education. He is a former column editor for English Journal (National Council of Teachers of English), current series editor for Critical Literacy Teaching Series: Challenging Authors and Genres (Brill/Sense Publishers), and author of Teaching Writing as Journey, Not Destination: Essays Exploring What ‘Teaching Writing’ Means (IAP). NCTE named Thomas the 2013 George Orwell Award winner. Recent edited volumes include Haruki Murakami: Challenging authors (Sense, 2016) and Critical Media Literacy and Fake News in Post-Truth America (Brill/Sense, 2018). His teaching and scholarship focus on literacy and the impact of poverty and race on education, as well as confronting the political dynamics influencing public education in the U.S. Follow his work @plthomasEdD and the becoming radical http://radicalscholarship.wordpress.com.