Here are the bios of some of the more frequent presenters at FEA workshops. Check out the FEA calendar of events and look for workshops with these presenters.
Chris Bickel is currently the Supervisor of Social Studies for Livingston Public Schools in NJ. He has over 18 years in education working as a teacher, administrator, and curriculum specialist. He is a passionate advocate of service learning, environmental sustainability, big picture visioning, and using nature based coaching techniques for out of the box creative thinking and idea generation. He strives to create schools that will truly educate children for the world they will inherit; a world not just of technology infusion, but of sustainability, global awareness, and respect for the ancient wisdom of the natural world. Chris is a Fellow with NJ Learns and Earthwatch International and author of a children’s book, “The Nest Seekers”, published in April of 2012. He was Livingston’s “Educator of The Year” in 2012. Chris has conducted workshops on ELA and Social Studies integration, harnessing nature-based metaphors to elicit new ideas in school leadership, reigniting creativity to combat the culture of testing, data and evaluation and UbD best practice.
Judith T. Brendel
Judith T. Brendel is an educational consultant who has been a teacher, supervisor, author and professional educator who develops, facilitates and presents professional learning opportunities for teachers and other educational leaders across New Jersey and nearby states. She has just completed over 35 years as a teacher, director of curriculum and educational supervisor working in all grade-levels K-16. Presently, Judith is on the Executive Board of FEA (Foundation for Educational Administration), on the speaker’s bureau of AMTNJ (Association of Math Teachers of NJ), FEA, and TMI (The Madison Institute). Judith earned a Master’s Degree in Educational Administration, Curriculum and Instruction from Rutgers University and received various undergraduate degrees and certifications in mathematics and in elementary education from William Paterson University in New Jersey, and earlier in fine arts from Hunter College in New York. Judith also authors math review books for Barron’s Publishers; her most recent ones are a Common Core Math Workbook for grade-2 and a Grade-8 PARCC NJ Math Review book for Barron’s new assessment series. Her next will be a national edition of a grade-8 PARCC Review book.
Ed Canzanese enjoyed 39 years as a teacher, coach and administrator for the Cherry Hill School District, retiring on January 1, 2014. For the last fifteen years of his career, Ed served as Principal of Rosa International Middle School. In those fifteen years, Rosa International was awarded two State Character Education Awards and in 2008 received the National Character Education Award. Also, in 2009, Rosa was received the NCLB National Blue Ribbon School of Academic Excellence Award. His coaching background led him to seek strategies that can be used to develop character in athletics. His work in reforming middle school athletics within the Cherry Hill School System, can be found in Bob Bigelow's 2001 book titled "Just Let The Kids Play."
Emil has 40 years’ experience as an educator and instructional leader working with students with disabilities and regular education students. He graduated Jersey City State College (now New Jersey City University) with a Bachelor of Arts in Education and a Masters of Arts in Special Education. He received his principal and supervisor certificate education at Jersey City State College. He began his teaching career as a Teacher of the Handicapped in Lodi at the Lincoln and Roosevelt schools. He was a Title I teacher Columbus School. He is presently the principal of Washington School for the past 24 years. Emil has been actively involved in a variety of educational committees on the local, county, state, and national level. He has served as President of the New Jersey Principal and Supervisors Association and was the recipient of the NJPSA Visionary Leader Award for 2015. He received the 2015 NAESP National Distinguished Principal Award. He is presently serving as a member Educator Leaders’ Cadre for the State of New Jersey, representing administrators at PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) on the national level. He has presented on Common Core and PARCC at National, State, and County Conferences. He is presently an Adjunct Professor at Felician University teaching graduate courses on Curriculum and Special Education.
Dr. Brian Chinni
Dr. Brian Chinni has served the educational profession as a mathematics teacher, school assistant principal and principal, district-level administrator, college and university professor, and consultant/entrepreneur. Brian has conducted numerous workshops for FEA over the years and continues to proudly serve educators throughout the world as the Chief Project Director of Project ABLE.
Brad Currie is the author of All Hands on Deck: Tools for Connecting Educators, Parents, and Communities and the newly released Personalized PD. He is one of the founding partners of Evolving Educators LLC. Brad is a 2014 ASCD Emerging Leader and Google Certified Trainer. Brad currently serves as a K-8 Supervisor of Instruction and Dean of Students for the Chester School District in Chester, NJ. He is a Google Certified Trainer and speaks nationally about tech integration. Learn more about Brad by following him on Twitter @bradmcurrie or visiting his website at www.bradcurrie.net.
Dr. Robin Daniels
Dr. Robin Daniels is an author and accomplished professional developer whose passion for transformative education is apparent through her content knowledge and work in student advocacy. Dr. Daniels began her career in education in college preparatory schools in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. She then transferred her skills to the public school classrooms in Camden County. Here, her vision for a transformative education found a broader and more diverse expression. Her eclectic educational experiences span the socio-economic spectrum; they help inform her understanding of the salient achievement needs of ethnically diverse children. This understanding is effectively used in her trainings on cultural competence and culturally relevant instruction. Dr. Daniels holds four degrees- a Bachelor’s degree from Hamilton College, two Masters’ degrees from Harvard University and the University of Scranton, respectively, and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Rowan University. In addition, Dr. Daniels’ workshops are further enriched by over 20 years of educational experience as a teacher, principal, and central office administrator. She is the co-partner and lead consultant at the Daniels Consulting Group.
Dennis M. Fare is the assistant superintendent for the Mahwah Public School district. Fare holds master’s degrees in English and Educational Administration from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY. Teaching introductory composition courses at local colleges and universities as an adjunct professor, Fare has also supervised teacher-training programs at the university level. Understanding the importance of “the test,” Fare has served as both an SAT rater and an AP reader for the AP English Language and Composition exam. He is the author of the first PARCC test prep series, Common Core: PARCC ELA/Literacy Assessments, Grades 6-8 and Common Core: PARCC ELA/Literacy Assessments, Grades 9-12, and has conducted PARCC professional development across the state.
Ms. Jacqueline Frangis worked in the education field for over 20 years. She began her career as an Intern-Fellow at Fordham University earning a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education. Upon her completion, she was appointed by the HoHoKus Board of Education as an elementary teacher. She completed her second Master’s Degree in Administration and Leadership at Fordham University and became an Assistant Principal and later a Principal in Bergen County. Her enthusiasm, passion and dedication for education led her to working with leading educators nationwide. Her work with formative assessment, as well as other curricular and leadership initiatives, helped her earn the honor of being named NJPSA’s Gold Lamp Award for Excellence in Educational Leadership in 2005. In 2010, Ms. Frangis began mentoring our future leaders through the FEA-NJ Leader to Leader program and teaching for the NJEXCEL. Consulting and presenting workshops to administrators and teachers for school districts, universities and the FEA on a host of topics ranging from instructional rounds, assessment to balanced literacy is a passion of hers. Currently, Ms. Frangis is the Director of Curriculum for Lady Liberty Academy Charter School in Newark, New Jersey. Ms. Frangis is pursuing an IFT accredited professional coaching certification with the organization Leadership That Works in Manhattan, New York. Ms. Frangis enjoys cooking, traveling, reading, practicing yoga and spending time with her family.
Barbara Gantwerk received her BA and MA in Speech Pathology from Brooklyn College. She began her career as a speech pathologist in Tel Aviv Israel where she worked at a treatment center for children with disabilities and taught at the University of Tel Aviv. Upon returning to the United States, she worked as a speech pathologist with children with disabilities. She began her career with the New Jersey State Department of Education in 1979 as the state consultant for speech and language services, and in 1994 she was appointed state director of the Office of Special Education, a position she held for 11 years. Ms. Gantwerk was then appointed to the position of Assistant Commissioner for the Division of Student Services, the division responsible for state and federal programs serving the needs of the student populations most at risk for educational problems including; students with disabilities, economically disadvantaged students (Title I) homeless, migrant and limited English proficient students. Her work also addressed student health services, school climate issues such as harassment, intimidation and bullying, after school programs and the Katzenbach State School for the Deaf.
Dr. Dorian Giorgio
Dr. Dorian Giorgio began her career as a mathematics teacher, and quickly gained experience in teaching mathematics, computer programming and technology to all ages from Kindergarten through college. She has served as a supervisorin many content areas, including Science, Language Arts, History, Music, Art, Physical Education, and Business. As an assistant principal, Dr. Giorgio developed new teacher skills, managed student activities, designed the master schedule, and was a significant contributor to the whole school reform process and school improvement plan. After receiving a doctorate degree with a specialization in Knowledge Management from Walden University, Dr. Giorgio returned to a supervisory and curriculum role to work closely with teachers and the curriculum development process in order to improve student test scores on state standardized tests. Additionally, she has worked with Rowan University serving as a supervisor for teacher candidates as they complete their clinical practice experience. Dr. Giorgio’s expertise in professional development topics include student engagement, Next Generation Science Standards and inquiry instruction, developing vocabulary in the content classroom, and data driven processes to improve curriculum and instruction.
George Guy, Jr.
George Guy Jr. is entering his 19th year in education and currently serves as principal of the Rosa International Middle School in Cherry Hill, NJ. He has served in urban, rural and suburban districts in central and southern New Jersey. For the last four years, George has served on his district’s Cultural Proficiency Committee. This committee has been charged with using the four tools of Cultural Proficiency to address inequitable educational outcomes that continue to fuel achievement gaps. George has helped with development and delivery of a standardized curriculum addressing the four tools of Cultural Proficiency. George has also helped by drafting hiring questions related to the tools of Cultural Proficiency, and he has developed Cultural Proficiency workshops for new teachers. George has presented about some form of Cultural Proficiency for the Corwin Cultural Proficiency Institute in Howard County, MD, at Lehigh University and at the University of Pennsylvania. In addition to Cultural Proficiency, George’s presentations focus on ESL/ELL issues, achievement gaps, educational equity & access, Response to Intervention & Intervention and Referral Services, and special education disproportionality.
Lois Hagie’s foundation in education began with a B.S. degree in Elementary / Early Childhood Education followed by an M.S. degree in Advanced Elementary Education from Wagner College, Staten Island, N.Y. Post-graduate work was completed for Certification in Supervision of Instruction at Rutgers and Kean Universities. A long career in public education included positions as an upper elementary classroom teacher, a curriculum resource teacher (master teacher), and as Supervisor of Elementary Curriculum and Instruction for the Public Schools of Edison Township.
Mrs. Hagie is a Teacher Consultant and Presenter for the National Writing Project at Rutgers University. She also serves as a Trainer for The Foundation for Educational Administration / New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association providing professional development for teachers and administrators in various districts and was a presenter at “Engage” 2014 Fall Conference for FEA/NJPSA. Lois Hagie has shared her expertise with language arts literacy in several workshops at FEA/NJPSA having extensive training by many of the respected literacy leaders such as Lucy Calkins, Leah Mermelstein, Susan Zimmermann, Irene Fountas, Gay Su Pinnell, and Carl Anderson. She is currently an Adjunct Instructor at Middlesex County Collegeand; her courses include Introduction to Education, Introduction to Early Childhood Education, Educational Field Study.
Sandra L. Jacques, Esq.
Sandra L. Jacques is the Supervisor of Legal Research and Content Development for the LEGAL ONE program.
Ms. Jacques simultaneously earned a Bachelor of Science in Sports Management and a Bachelor of Art in Political Science at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. While a student at the University of Massachusetts, she completed an internship with the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association. She holds a Juris Doctor from Widener University School of Law, and a Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Trial Advocacy from Temple University Law School.
Prior to joining LEGAL ONE, Ms. Jacques practiced as an Insurance Defense Attorney in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. She has represented public school districts in civil litigation matters including civil rights, discrimination, negligence and workers' compensation claims.
Billy Krakower is the author of three books Connecting Your Students with The World, Using Technology to Engage Students with Disabilities and soon to be released 140 Things Educators Can Do With Twitter. Billy is part of ASCD's 2014 Emerging Leaders Class, a Google Educator and a Microsoft Office Specialist. He has presented on such topics as Connecting Beyond the Classroom, Twitter & You, Tech Tools to use for the PARCC, Google Hangouts, Edmodo and The Science Behind a Mystery Location Call. Billy currently serves as the Computer Technology Instructor, Gifted & Talented and STEAM Lab Teacher for grades three and four at Beatrice Gilmore Elementary School in the Woodland Park Public School District.
Jessika Kleen, Esq.
Jessika Kleen, Esq. is a dedicated attorney who provides zealous representation to clients. Building upon over fifteen years of experience as a litigation paralegal, Jessika provides counsel in matters relating to the Individual with Disabilities Education Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act; student disciplinary actions; discrimination matters including, Office of Civil Rights (OCR) and Department of Education complaints; and personnel-related matters including, teacher dismissals and discipline, and discrimination and harassment claims. Jessika has successfully represented clients in mediations, administrative hearings, and in state and federal court, including the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Jessika routinely conducts seminars and in-service workshops to boards of education, school administration and staff, and at school law and bar association forums. Past presentations include the Legal One four-part Special Education Law Series, which she developed for the organization, Board Members’ Roles and Responsibilities, the Basics of Special Education, Student Records and Confidentiality, Reducing the Costs of Special Education Litigation, Procedural Safeguards, Hot Topics in Special Education, Section 504: A Road Map to Compliance, I&RS: Effective Usage and Best Practices, Special Education for General Education Staff, Nursing Services In The School Setting, Legal and Effective IEPs, Understanding and Resolving Conflict, and Special Education and the Law. Jessika served as counsel to low-income children in the Special Education Clinic while attending law school at Rutgers School of Law-Newark. She is a member of the New Jersey Bar Association, the American Bar Association, and is admitted to practice in New Jersey and in the federal court, including the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.
Steve Levine is an educational consultant who specializes in building capacity at the classroom, school and district levels. He has served in a variety of roles that have built his knowledge and skills in helping to lead successful school change efforts. At the administrative level, Steve has served six years as Director of Professional Development, twelve years as middle school principal and seventeen years as principal at the elementary school level. Most recently, he served as the Interim Director of Curriculum for the Cherry Hill School District. In addition to his administrative positions, Steve served as an adjunct professor at Rutgers University in Camden for six years, which included teaching an online course. He also served for three years as a leadership coach in the Philadelphia School District as part of the University of Pennsylvania’s Distributive Leadership Annenberg Grant. Mr. Levine developed and supervised a principal coaching program for the Delaware County Intermediate Unit that was successfully implemented. As a consultant for FEA, Steve has presented workshops on Questioning Strategies and PARCC.
Isabel Machado, Esq.
Isabel Machado, Esq. is the founding partner of the Machado Law Group in Clark, New Jersey. Ms. Machado’s practice involves all aspects of education law, including litigation at all levels of state and federal courts and administrative agencies. She focuses primarily on counseling and litigating on behalf of school districts with respect to employment and contract matters and special education.
Ms. Machado routinely conducts workshops and in-service programs for board of education members, school administrators and staff, and industry organizations. She is also a contributor and regular presenter for LEGAL ONE and LRP Publications. A graduate of Rutgers University and Seton Hall University School of Law, in 2008 Ms. Machado was recognized by the New Jersey Law Journal and NJBIZ Magazine as one of its “40 Under 40” and a Super Lawyers Rising Star. Ms. Machado also holds a Certificate of Eligibility as a School Business Administrator.
Barbara Mammen has more than 25 years’ experience in public education, beginning her professional career as a middle school science teacher and later, as a Supervisor of Science and Technology. Recently, Barbara held a position at Stevens Institute of Technology’s Center for Innovation in Engineering and Science Education, where she was the Project Manager of an $11.5 million NSF grant to improve student achievement in science and engineering in 14 NJ school districts. Upon leaving Stevens Institute, Barbara moved on to a position at Rider University’s Graduate School of Education. With her expertise as an instructional leader and professional developer, Barbara has worked as a consultant/writer for several educational publishers and conducts workshops for teachers and administrators on an array of topics. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from Pace University and a Master’s Degree in Science and Environmental Education from Brooklyn College. She pursued additional graduate studies in curriculum and instruction at Rutgers University and Georgian Court University. Barbara earned her Principal and Chief School Administrator certificates through the NJEXCEL program. She has served as a committee member on NJPSA’s, Curriculum & Assessment Committee and Technology Committee.
Donna McInerney, Ed.D.
Dr. Donna McInerney is the Director of Program Development and Design at NJPSA/FEA. A former high school Social Studies teacher and supervisor, she earned her doctorate from the Graduate School of Education at Rutgers University, specializing in curriculum theory and development. Over the last 15 years she has been an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Graduate Education, Leadership and Counseling at Rider University and currently teaches at The College of New Jersey.Throughout the course of her career, Dr. McInerney has provided professional learning experiences on a wide variety of topics including the Connected Action Roadmap (CAR), research-based instructional strategies, classroom management techniques, problem-based learning, differentiated instruction, curriculum integration, cooperative learning, teacher evaluation and the development of student growth objectives. Her most recent work has focused on the instructional leadership skills and coherent frameworks needed to improve teacher practice, drive student achievement and ensure systemic, sustained, school improvement.
Teresa Moore, Esq.
Teresa Moore, Esq. joined the firm of Riker, Danzig, Scherer, Hyland & Perrettiin in May 2014 as Counsel, bringing extensive experience in the field of education law to the firm’s School Law group. In addition to training teachers, administrators, and other school leaders on issues such as tenure, special education, employment discrimination, employee whistleblowing claims, student harassment and anti-bullying law, ethics, governance, and student rights, Teresa has argued before the New Jersey Supreme Court, has substantial experience in federal and state courts, and has tried numerous disputes to conclusion in the New Jersey Office of Administrative Law.
Prior to joining the firm, Teresa co-created and acted as counsel to LEGAL ONE, a partnership between Rutgers University and the Foundation for Educational Administration. In that capacity, she developed education law courses for K-12 school leaders and presented them throughout New Jersey. Teresa also consulted with the Institute on Education Law and Policy (IELP) at Rutgers University-Newark, and taught education law as an adjunct professor at Rutgers Law School-Newark and Rutgers School of Public Affairs and Administration. At IELP, she researched and wrote publications including “Governance and Urban School Improvement: Lessons for New Jersey from Nine Cities;” “Shared Services in School Districts: Policies, Practices and Recommendations;” and “Guide to the New Jersey Quality Single Accountability Continuum.” She has also appeared as a commentator on NJTV for the law and justice series “Due Process.”
Before serving as counsel to LEGAL ONE and providing consulting services with IELP, Teresa practiced law for eighteen years as a litigator with the law firm of McCarter & English, LLP in Newark, New Jersey. Her concentration was in education and employment law, and she litigated matters involving civil rights, business franchise and other contract disputes, products liability, and insurance coverage.
Upon graduation from law school, Teresa served as a law clerk to the Honorable John E. Keefe in the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division (Ret. J.A.D.). She holds a J.D. from Rutgers Law School-Newark, was a member of the Rutgers Law Review, and is a graduate of Wellesley College with a B.A. in Spanish and English. She also studied at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
Dr. Matthew Murphy
Dr. Matthew J. Murphy presently serves as the Superintendent of River Vale Public Schools in Bergen County, New Jersey. Before becoming a Superintendent, Dr. Murphy served as an Assistant Superintendent, Principal, Assistant Principal and teacher. Dr. Murphy is also an adjunct professor at Ramapo College. He earned his doctorate from Fordham University in 2002, and in 2006 he received the New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association Principal of the Year: Rewarding Visionary Leadership award.
David Nash, Esq.
David Nash currently serves as Director of Legal Education for the Foundation for Educational Administration and as the Coordinator for the LEGAL ONE program, an innovative program that provides school law professional development for school leaders and other educators.
From 2003 to 2011, Mr. Nash served as legal counsel for the New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association. In that role, Mr. Nash provided legal assistance to NJPSA members for legal issues arising out of the performance of their duties. Mr. Nash also served as Assistant Director of Government Relations for NJPSA from 1994 to 2003.
He has also taught graduate level courses in the areas of school finance and school law at Rutgers University, New Jersey City University and Ramapo. Mr. Nash received his B.A. from Rutgers University and graduated with High Honors from Rutgers Law School in 2003. While at Rutgers Law School he served as an editor for the Rutgers Law Review. Mr. Nash served on the Board of Trustees for Healing the Children New Jersey, Inc. from 2012 to 2014, which is dedicated to providing needed medical services to children in New Jersey and around the world.
His prior civic involvement includes six years service as a member of the Old Bridge Board of Education, including two years as board president, and six years of service as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Association for Children of New Jersey, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the interests of children.
Pat O’Keefe has served as an FEA trainer and Leader to Leader mentor since 2011. An experienced elementary school principal currently serving as the interim principal at Park Avenue Elementary School in Freehold Borough, Pat has also held positions as an assistant superintendent and director of special services. Pat has conducted training in the Stronge teacher evaluation model, school climate/bullying prevention and Connected Action Roadmap (CAR). She has stayed current in the field by way of advanced training and interim administrative positions. Pat is a NJ certified school psychologist and former high school teacher of English.
Wayne Oppito, Esq.
Wayne Oppito has served as legal counsel for the New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association since 1981. Prior to becoming an attorney, he was a high school teacher of Social Studies. He is a frequent presenter at school law forums across the State of New Jersey and was an instructor for the Rutgers/FEA Education Law and Policy Institute from 2005 to 2008.
Mr. Oppito earned his B.A. in History from Northeastern University and his J.D. from Seton Hall University School of Law. He has served as an adjunct professor at Georgian Court College. He was appointed by the Commissioner of Education to serve on the committee which revised seniority regulations. He has also served on the New Jersey Advisory Council on Law Related Education and the Attorney General's panel on Drug and Alcohol Abuse in the schools.
Frank W. Palatucci. Jr.
Frank W. Palatucci, Jr. retired from a 41-year career in public education. He began his teaching career in the Philadelphia Public School District, where he taught for nearly ten years. He received a B.S. in Secondary Education (English) from Temple University. He then obtained his Master’s Degree in School Administration and Supervision from Rider University. He did additional graduate work at Rowan University where he earned his School Administrators Certificate. He obtained his first administrative position at Paulsboro H.S. in 1979. He served Paulsboro for 6.5 years – the last two as Principal. He was then appointed as Principal of Bensalem H.S. in Bensalem, PA in 1985 where he served for seven years. He was then appointed as Principal of Highland Regional H.S. in 1992. He was named as the NJ Principal of the Year (Southern Counties) in 2003. He was then named as the NASSP/Met-Life NJ Principal of the Year in 2007. He has traveled and spoken extensively on the important role of school climate and culture has on student performance. Mr. Palatucci has been active with NJ-EXCEL for the past seven years. He has served as an E-Mentor to three cohorts.
Dr. Jane Petrozzino
Dr. Petrozzino is a Learning Consultant and Educational Therapist in private practice and specializes in Learning Disabilities, Dyslexia, ADHD, and other learning-related issues. Dr. Petrozzino has a wide range of educational experience in both general and special education and has held various administrative positions in private and public schools. Dr. Petrozzino has been a Director of Special Services, Principal, Special Education School Administrator for Curriculum and Instruction, Assistant Superintendent of Schools, Assistant Executive Regional Director for Special Education, Child Study Team Member, Special and Regular Education Teacher, and College Professor. As a speaker, Dr. Petrozzino has provided Professional Development Workshops for teachers and administrators in both private and public schools in current trends and best practices in the education of students with Learning Disabilities, Dyslexia, and ADHD.
Dr. Aili Pogust
Dr. Aili Pogust has been an educator for over 30 years in elementary schools, high schools and graduate schools. For nine years she was a district-wide supervisor, providing intervention programs across the grades from struggling primary students to high school seniors. She received her doctorate in 1993 from Temple University. While participating in 400 hours of literacy training spanning a three-year period with the Literacy Collaborative at Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Dr. Pogust coordinated an elementary literacy program for a New Jersey school district. Teachers and administrators within and outside the school district interested in moving toward a reading and writing workshop model visited her model classroom. The visits assisted educators with implementing the framework. Dr. Pogust focused her post-doctoral training as a coach with Coaches Training Institute where she received 150 hours of coach training. She has totaled over 1500 hours coaching teachers, supervisors and principals. Her expertise with understanding the complexities of teaching reading, writing, speaking and listening literacies keeps her busy as a consultant, trainer and coach. Her workshop repertoire also includes classes on building more effective ways to listen and communicate with students, colleagues, parents, and family members. She is the author of a delightful little book entitled Communicating With Clarity: A Pocket Guide for Humans. As a former president of a Toastmasters International local chapter, she brings organized word-power to her keynotes.
David Rubin, Esq.
David Rubin is a sole practitioner with offices in Metuchen, and represents public school districts and private schools throughout New Jersey. Mr. Rubin received his undergraduate degree from Duke University in 1974, majoring in public policy studies and economics. He received his law degree from Rutgers School of Law - Newark in 1977, and has pursued post-graduate study in taxation at New York University School of Law. He has served as President of the New Jersey Association of School Attorneys, Chair of the National School Boards Association’s 3000-member Council of School Attorneys, Chair of the New Jersey State Bar Association’s School Law Committee, and a lecturer in education law at the Rutgers Graduate School of Education. He is a frequent speaker and author in the field of school law, and has represented school districts in numerous precedent-setting cases before the Commissioner of Education, and at all levels of the state and federal court system.
Mr. Rubin has received the "AV" designation from the Martindale-Hubbell Legal Directory, the highest rating for competence and character based on confidential peer reviews. He has been recognized by SuperLawyers magazine (2009) and Best Lawyers in America (2009), and been honored by the New Jersey Commission on Professionalism in the Law as a recipient of the Professional Lawyer of the Year Award, given annually to lawyers who, by virtue of their conduct, competence and demeanor, have been found to set a positive example for others in the profession.
Dr. Anthony Scannella.
Dr. Anthony Scannella is the former Chief Executive Officer of the Foundation for Educational Administration, Inc. (FEA). Prior to this, Dr. Scannella served as the Director of Professional Development for the New Jersey Principals & Supervisors Association. Dr. Scannella, a former principal, assistant principal, director of curriculum and psychotherapist, is the author of a number of notable projects and texts including Sending the Right Signals, a program to eliminate sexual harassment; co-author of The Children We Share, a program for parents and principals, and the author of Changing Student Behavior: Comprehensive Learning and Interventions for Correcting Kids and Successful Interventions for Today’s Exceptional Kids: Cultivating a Passion for Compassion (Rowman & Littlefield, publishers). Dr. Scannella has trained at the state, national and international levels. He previously conducted 15 Leadership Conferences (FEA Principal’ Center) held on the campus of Princeton University which attracted school leaders throughout the United States and abroad. He received his doctorate from Rutgers University in 1982, and in 1998 received the Distinguished Educator Award from the Rutgers Graduate School of Education for outstanding and exemplary service in his field.
Dr. Scannella worked extensively for 10 years as a therapist and trainer, specifically in the areas of Ericksonian hypnosis, NLP and medical psychotherapy. He has worked alongside of a number of notable New Jersey medical and psychiatric doctors in private practice.
Robert Schwartz, Esq.
Robert Schwartz currently serves as chief counsel to the New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association. He has been an attorney specializing in the areas of school law and public sector labor relations for a period of more than 30 years. Mr. Schwartz is a frequent presenter at school law forums across the State of New Jersey and was an instructor for the Rutgers/FEA Education Law and Policy Institute from 2005 to 2008.
Mr. Schwartz earned his B.A. from the American University, School of Government and his J.D. from the Franklin Pierce Law center in Concord, New Hampshire. After clerking for a New Jersey Superior Court Judge, he became the first counsel to the New Jersey Elementary and Middle School Administrators and later became the first counsel to the New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association, as well as the Foundation for Educational Administration.
Debra Serafin is a professional educator with 35 years combined experience as a teacher, building level supervisor, assistant principal and district level supervisor for curriculum and instruction. Graduating from Rutgers University in 1977 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Health and Physical Education, Debra furthered her education by receiving a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Monmouth College in 1991, and continued her post Master’s education in the Doctoral program of Educational Leadership at Rowan University in 2010. She continues her pursuit of lifelong learning by engaging in online courses towards the E-Learning and Online Teaching Certification from the University of Wisconsin-Stout in 2015.
A visionary leader, Debra was instrumental in being a change agent in the Freehold Regional High School District and North Brunswick Township School District by facilitating secondary school reform initiatives and implementing new courses and programs to address the growing needs of students and the school community. Since retiring from public education in December 2012, Debra has joined the team of Educational Trainers at the New Jersey Foundation for Educational Administration. She has presented numerous workshops on a variety of educational topics throughout the state and has remained actively involved in the New Jersey Council of Administrators of Health and Physical Education as an Executive Board member and Treasurer.
Tracey Severns, Ed.D.
Dr. Tracey Severns has dedicated her career to the service of students, teachers and administrators. She was a special education teacher, vice principal, principal, superintendent, adjunct professor, and the Chief Academic Officer for the New Jersey Department of Education. Currently, she is Director of Student Performance in the Mount Olive.
Dr. Severns is a renowned presenter who has provided professional development on the Standards, assessment, instructional leadership, data analysis, special education, and school improvement on the state and national levels. She won three Principal Fellowship Grants from the Dodge Foundation and was selected as one of eight principals to represent the United States in Brazil.
Sarah Tantillo, Ed.D.
Sarah Tantillo, Ed.D. is the creator of The Literacy Cookbook (www.literacycookbook.com) and author of The Literacy Cookbook: A Practical Guide to Effective Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening Instruction (Jossey-Bass, 2012) and Literacy and the Common Core: Recipes for Action (Jossey-Bass, July 2014). She has consulted in NJ and nationally with schools (esp. urban schools) seeking to improve student achievement since 2007. Sarah taught high school English and Humanities in both suburban and urban New Jersey public schools for 14 years, including seven years at the high-performing North Star Academy Charter School of Newark, where she chaired the Humanities Dept. and her students achieved a 100% passing rate on the Language Arts/Literacy section of the HSPA in 2006 and 2007. She coaches K-12 schools on literacy instruction, data-driven instruction, interdisciplinary curriculum development, school culture-building, and strategic planning. She has studied at Princeton (B.A. ’87), Harvard (M.Ed. ’91), Johns Hopkins (M.A. ’95), and Rutgers (Ed.D. ’01). Her dissertation was on culture formation in charter schools. She currently writes two blogs: The Literacy Cookbook (http://theliteracycookbook.wordpress.com/) and Only Good Books (http://onlygoodbooks.wordpress.com/).
Gary L. Vermeire has been a leader in the education and human services professions for more than 40 years, addressing comprehensive school and community prevention and intervention programs, policies and services for various at-risk behaviors. His extensive experience as a service provider, trainer, administrator and consultant on the national, state and local levels has been centered on the development and implementation of systems-oriented approaches that empower people and institutions to build assets, solve human problems and shape positive and productive climates and cultures. He is an author and contributor to various national, state and local publications.
Mr. Vermeire has served as an officer, leader and member of state and local boards, task forces and advisory bodies, including the New Jersey Governor’s Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, for which he chaired the Interdepartmental Advisory Panel; the Governor’s Youth Suicide Prevention Advisory Council; the New Jersey Commission on Bullying in Schools; and the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Prevention Alliance, for which he served as Vice-President, as well as having been an adjunct faculty member to various colleges and universities. Gary had been employed in a variety of capacities for over 24 years with the New Jersey Department of Education, in the areas of student support services, intervention and referral services, school climate and culture improvement, health education and comprehensive prevention and intervention programs and services for student at-risk issues and concerns. He retired in 2013 as the Coordinator of the Safe and Supportive Schools Unit for the New Jersey Department of Education.