Keynote Speaker Bios
Dr. Sonia Nieto
A member of the National Academy of Education, Dr. Sonia Nieto is Professor Emerita of Language, Literacy, and Culture, University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Devoting her professional life to questions of diversity, equity, and social justice in education, her teaching has spanned early elementary through doctoral education and her research has focused on multicultural education, teacher education, and the education of students of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, with a particular focus on Latinx students. The author or editor of 12 books and dozens of book chapters and journal articles, she is also the author of a memoir, Brooklyn Dreams: My Life in Public Education. The first edition (1992) of her classic text, Affirming Diversity: The Sociopolitical Context of Multicultural Education, was selected for the Museum of Education Readers’ Guide as “one of the 100 books that helped define the field of education in the 20th century.” Now in its 7th edition, the 5th through 7th editions were co- authored by her friend and colleague Dr. Patty Bode. Dr. Nieto has received numerous awards for her scholarly work, activism, and advocacy including 9 honorary doctorates.
Alicia Lopez teaches English Language Learners at Amherst Regional Middle School. Her 24 years in the classroom span 2 states and 3 subjects (French, Spanish, ESL). She is also a lecturer in the ESL Licensure program in the Professional and Graduate Education program at Mount Holyoke College. Alicia is the co-author with Sonia Nieto of the book Teaching: A Life’s Work, a mother-daughter dialogue (Teacher’s College Press). She has been reflecting on her teaching through her blog, Maestra Teacher ( http://www.maestrateacher.com/ )since 2014.
Alicia is passionate about writing and teaching writing, teaching through a social justice lens, family engagement, and advocating for English Language Learners, as well as teaching them self-advocacy skills. Alicia received her B.A. in French and Anthropology at Wellesley College and her Master’s in Bilingual, Multicultural and ESL Education at the University of Massachusetts. Alicia lives with her husband, 3 teenage kids, 2 dogs and 2 cats.
Dr. Randi Reppen
Randi Reppen is Professor of Applied Linguistics and TESL at Northern Arizona University (NAU) in Flagstaff, Arizona. She has over 20 years’ experience teaching ESL students and training ESL teachers, including 11 years as the Director of NAU’s Program in Intensive English. Randi’s research interests focus on the use of corpora for language teaching and materials development. In addition to numerous academic articles and books, she is the author of Using Corpora in the Language Classroom and a co-author of Basic Vocabulary in Use, 2nd edition, both published by Cambridge University Press.
Dr. Tatyana Kleyn
Tatyana Kleyn is an associate professor and director of the Bilingual Education and TESOL programs at The City College of New York. She received an Ed.D. in international educational development from Teachers College, Columbia University. Tatyana was a Fulbright scholar in Oaxaca, Mexico and Past President of the New York State Association for Bilingual Education. She served as acting co-PI and an associate investigator for the CUNY New York State Initiative on Emergent Bilinguals and is co-PI for the Multilingual Learner Project, a federal Title III grant program to support practicing NYC high school content teachers earn TESOL certification. Her research, films and curricula address the intersection of immigration, education and language. In 2016 she received the early career award from the Bilingual Research SIG from the American Educational Research Association (AERA) and in 2019 she was awarded the Gladys Correa Award, the highest honor granted by the New York State Association for Bilingual Education. Tatyana was an elementary school teacher in San Pedro Sula, Honduras and Atlanta, Georgia.
Dr. Stella Flores
Dr. Stella M. Flores is Associate Dean for Faculty Development and Diversity and Associate Professor of Higher Education at the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development at New York University. She is also Director of Access and Equity at the Steinhardt Institute for Higher Education Policy at NYU. Dr. Flores holds an EdD in administration, planning, and social policy from Harvard University, an EdM from Harvard University, an MPA from The University of Texas at Austin, and a BA from Rice University.
In 2017 she was named “One of the Top 25 Women in Higher Education and Beyond” by Diverse Issues Magazine and has also been recognized as one of the top 200 scholars in Education Week’s RHSU Edu-Scholar Public Influence Rankings from 2015-2017 as well as a National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellow in 2010.
Dr. Diane Saehr Fenner
Diane Staehr Fenner, Ph.D. is the president of SupportEd, a New York State certified Women’s Business Enterprise located in Washington, DC, that is dedicated to empowering English learners and their educators. Diane has written five books on EL education, including Unlocking English Learners’ Potential: Strategies for Making Content Accessible and Advocating for English Learners: A Guide for Educators. SupportEd frequently partners with RBERNs, districts across New York State, state departments of education, and the U.S. Department of Education to serve ELs and their teachers through professional development, technical assistance, and curriculum and assessment support. Prior to forming SupportEd,
Diane was an ESOL teacher, dual language assessment teacher, and ESOL assessment specialist in Fairfax County Public Schools, VA. Diane grew up on a dairy farm in the Finger Lakes Region of NY and is a first generation college graduate. You can connect with her by email at Diane@GetSupportEd.net or on Twitter at @DStaehrFenner.
Maria has over 38 years of experience in public education in a variety of teaching and administrative roles. Her work has concentrated on building effective schools, project based- learning, literacy, academic language development, English Language Learners, special education and supporting district/school administrators in organizational planning. Nationally she has presented at conferences at AASA, ALAS, NABE, CUBE and CGCS. Additionally, she has lead educator as well as administrator professional development on educational issues and policies at multiple state and local levels. Maria has also taught undergraduate and graduate level courses on educational leadership, secondary literacy, culture, race and urban education with a focus on equity and instruction that addresses the needs of socially, culturally and linguistically diverse student populations. She is the National Equity and Leadership Consultant for Benchmark Education.