Capital Region

Capital Region

University at Albany

A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  V  W  Y 

A

Daniel AndersonDaniel Anderson

Queensbury School District

Daniel Anderson earned his BS in Mathematics and Computer Science and Master of Arts in Teaching in Secondary Education from Union College. In the classroom for over ten years, Mr. Anderson teaches mathematics and computer programming at Queensbury High School. A strong advocate for the integration of technology into classroom teaching, his students work instructional technology tools in their lessons. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mr. Anderson has participated in the Dissection in 2D & 3D mini-course, various workshops including “Building and Keeping Strong Math Foundations,” and is a member of the Women in STEM Professional Learning Team.

Rachel AndersonRachel Anderson

Greenville School District

Rachel Anderson earned her BS in biology and Master of Arts in Teaching in Agricultural Education from Cornell University.  She then continued her education earning a Certificate of Advanced Study in Educational Administration from the SUNY Albany and National Board Certification in Adolescent and Young Adult Science.  For the past 14 years, Ms. Anderson has taught Agriculture and Applied Sciences in the Greenville Central School District.  In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she advises the Future Farmers of America and National Honor Society, and serves on a variety of district committees including the District Planning Committee and the High School Shared Decision Making Committee.  Ms. Anderson is also active in the New York Association of Agricultural Educators and National Science Teachers Association of NYS and serves as the Agricultural Education Liaison to the New York Association for Career and Technical Educators.  Ms. Anderson enjoys spending time with her family and trying out new recipes for Thai and Indian dishes.  As a new member of the NYS Master Teacher program, Ms. Anderson is looking forward to finding ways to improve her own instruction and make STEM resources available to teachers in other disciplines. 

Yvonne AndersonYvonne Anderson

Glens Falls City School District

Yvonne Anderson graduated magna cum laude from SUNY Plattsburgh with a BS in Secondary Mathematics Education, and earned her MS in Curriculum and Instruction, earning the Kathleen T. Schaffer Award, the SUNY Scholarship for Academic Achievement, and the Ingrun Lafleur Memorial Scholarship Award during her studies. Ms. Anderson was also inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi National All-Academic Honor Society. As a driven and dedicated math teacher, she has taught 7th and 8th graders at Glens Falls City School for 15 years. In addition to teaching, she has served as a Department Resource Leader, worked extensively on curriculum mapping, and has hosted many student teachers. In the past, Ms. Anderson has taught in her school’s Summer Success Program and more recently, teaches in the STEM Summer Enrichment Program. As a NYS Master Teacher, she wishes to continue working with new teachers as they begin rewarding and challenging careers. She is excited about learning from other peer Master Teachers and looks forward to working to improve the STEM education for all students.

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B

Leonard BaconLeonard Bacon

Schodack School District

Leonard Bacon earned his BS in geology, MS in Science Teaching from SUNY Albany, and a certificate of advance study in Educational Leadership from The College of St. Rose. Mr. Bacon has been in the classroom for 18 years and teaches earth science, Advanced Placement (AP) Environmental Science, and Science Applications at Maple Hill High School. Mr. Bacon has enhanced the educational program at Maple Hill High School through the increased use of technology in science classes and the development of a multi-year lab skills program. To support these initiatives he has been awarded the Toyota Tapestry Grant, Best Buy Education Grant, and a Toshiba Foundation Grant. Outside the classroom, Mr. Bacon has served as a reader for the AP Environmental Science exam since 2004. He coaches the Girls Varsity Volleyball, Science Olympiad, Science Bowl, and Envirothon teams and has worked to foster collaboration between Schodack Central School’s incubator STEM companies and high school students. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Bacon is looking forward to improving his ability to engage students by participating in the wide variety of professional development opportunities.

John BaletJohn Balet

Ballston Spa Central School District

John Balet earned his BS in Business and Biology from Cornell University, and his MS in Teaching from Union Graduate College.  Prior to his teaching career, he worked in the private sector, with a strong focus on recycling and green power technologies.  His teaching career began 12 years ago at Ballston Spa High School.  For the past four years, he has taught in the Clean Technologies and Sustainable Industries Early College High School partnership with Ballston Spa High School and Hudson Valley Community College.  He currently co-teaches with an English and Math teacher and his courses of instruction include Environmental Science & Sustainability and a 21st Century Skills on-line course.  As the Advisor for the Ballston Spa High School Outdoor Club, Mr. Balet takes students on adventures in the Adirondacks.  He additionally supports the high school Parent Teacher Student Association as its Faculty Liaison.  If you happen to see Mr. Balet outside of school, he will most likely be cycling to work, working on home construction projects, camping with his family, or driving that same family crazy aiming for a simpler and more sustainable low impact lifestyle. As a NYS Master Teacher, he looks forward to working with the others to develop quality instruction for our 21st century students.

Janice BaloghJanice Balogh

Schodack School District

Janice Balogh earned her MA in mathematics from SUNY at Albany. A 20 year veteran teacher, Mrs. Balogh teaches Advanced Algebra and Trigonometry, Precalculus and Topics in Mathematics at Maple Hill High School in Schodack.  She is dedicated to creating a classroom of inquiry and engaged learning for all students in order to develop competency with skills and ability to apply those skills in problem solving situations. Her professional interests focus on a collaborative approach in the classroom to solving non-routine mathematics problems with an emphasis on integrating appropriate technology.  In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Mrs. Balogh has served on Knowles Science Teaching Foundation Interview Committee, the National Science Foundation Math and Science Partnership Grant review panel, is a member of the Capital District Association of Mathematics Supervisors and the Association of Mathematics Teachers of NYS.  Past honors include recognition as a teacher of positive impact through the Scholars’ Recognition Program, being named the school’s yearbook dedicatee, and Schodack Faculty Association grant recipient to attend the National Conference of Teachers of Mathematics Annual Conference.

Erin BellErin Bell

Saratoga Springs City School District

Erin Bell graduated magna cum laude from Bucknell University with a BS in Chemical Engineering and a minor in Biomedical Engineering. She earned her Masters of Arts in Teaching from the University of Southern California. Prior to teaching, she worked in the private sector for four years as a Systems Integration Consultant to a large pharmaceutical company. Mrs. Bell has been teaching for six years, and is currently teaching Advanced Placement Chemistry and Regents Chemistry at Saratoga Springs High School. She has also coached the Science Bowl team at Saratoga for four years. Mrs. Bell is a member of American Chemical Society, Society of Women Engineers, and the American Association of Chemistry Teachers and is deeply motivated to inspire young women to pursue careers in the STEM field. Ms. Bell is excited to be part of the NYS Master Teacher Program to continue to learn better ways to serve her students and to collaborate with peers to encourage young women to seek success in STEM driven disciplines.

Victoria BoulayVictoria Boulay

Averill Park Central School District

Vicky Boulay earned her BS in Nutrition and Food Science from the University of Rhode Island, and MS in Education from SUNY Albany. She has been teaching biology at Averill Park High School for 26 years, with a one-year hiatus teaching in Nicaragua. In her years at Averill Park, she has taken students on a school exchange with a South Bronx High School, biennial whale watches out of Boston, and to Costa Rica twice to study flora, fauna, and sustainable agricultural practices. At Averill Park High School, she developed the Horticultural and Social Justice clubs. Ms. Boulay has a special interest in Apis mellifera, the European honeybee, and has been experimenting raising bees in unique and unusual hive spaces that mimic those of feral honeybees. She recently installed an observation beehive in her classroom. Ms. Boulay is a member of the Ulster County Bee Association, and the Southern Adirondack Bee Association. She feels strongly that students need to rediscover the unique and delicate web of life that surrounds and nurtures us so that they can recognize the changes that are currently taking place, and the impacts these changes might have on their lives. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, she looks forward to the Evolution and Health mini course this spring.

Jeffrey BowerJeffrey Bower

Scotia-Glenville School District

Jeffrey Bower earned his BA in psychology from Ithaca College and Master of Arts in Teaching from Union College.  In the classroom for over ten years, Mr. Bower teaches Earth Science and created, and now teaches, a Science and Engineering course at Scotia-Glenville High School.  A strong proponent of project- based learning, he has created numerous activities that enable the students to learn to problem solve in order to complete unique tasks.  As a founding member of the Student Research committee he helped construct the guidelines for Grade Level Expectations for Student Research for the district.  His professional interests focus on the development of a full STEM (or STEAM) program at his school and the creation of a new Regents diploma with a STEM designation.  He was also solely responsible for attaining the grant to purchase the Scotia-Glenville Central School professional weather station that posts current weather conditions on the schools website, and is actively participating in the Citizen Weather Observer Program and the Global Learning and Observation to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) Program, a world-wide program to support student learning through research.

Susan BoyleSusan Boyle

Cairo-Durham Central School District

Susan Boyle earned her BS in biology and chemistry from Maynooth University in Ireland, and MS in Education from SUNY New Paltz. Ms. Boyle initially planned on working in research; however, she discovered her true passion in teaching after securing a science position at a Manhattan high school. Ms. Boyle has taught for over 18 years at Cairo-Durham High School, teaching a variety of STEM based courses including biology, chemistry, and Environmental Science. Currently she specializes in biology, teaching Advanced Placement, and Regents level courses. At Cairo–Durham, Ms. Boyle participates in many aspects of school life; she is the facilitator of the Science Department, serves on the Curriculum Development Committee and is a member of the Building Leadership Team. In addition to her teaching and committee responsibilities, Ms. Boyle is active in the Cairo-Durham Teachers' Association, organizing many events to recognize student achievement including the Cairo-Durham 5K and annual Scholarship dinner. Outside of school, she is very active and enjoys all kinds of exercise ranging including Zumba and running. As a NYS Master teacher, Ms. Boyle is looking forward to participating in a variety of workshops to further enhance her teaching, and sharing ideas and resources with other STEM teachers in her school and district

Jessica BradshawJessica Bradshaw

Voorheesville Central School District

Jessica Bradshaw earned her BA in biology from Russell Sage College and MS in Secondary Education in Biology from Sage Graduate School.  Prior to teaching, Mrs. Bradshaw worked as an Administrative Lab Manager and a Technical Sales Chemist.  In the classroom for 13 years, Mrs. Bradshaw teaches Online Physical Science and The Living Environment Lab in the Voorheesville Central School District.  Mrs. Bradshaw is an active member of her school community as the Middle School Student Council Advisor and Middle School Book Fair Chairperson. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she is a member of the Technology, Literacy, Team Building and Professional Development committees, an Instructional Rounds participant, and has been awarded several grants to help implement educational equipment into her school.  With the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mrs. Bradshaw is excited to learn innovative techniques that continue to inspire students to find magic and wonder in the world around them.   While an intern at The Land Pavilion in Walt Disney World, she was inspired by the words of Walt Disney who said, “Our greatest natural resource is the minds of our children.”

Jason BrechkoJason Brechko

Glens Falls City School District

Jason Brechko earned his AA in Liberal Arts from Broome Community College, BS in Environmental and Forest Biology from SUNY ESF, and MS in Science Education from Syracuse University. Mr. Brechko is a National Board Certified science teacher in his 19th year of teaching. He presently teaches Accelerated Biology and seventh grade Science at Glens Falls Middle School where he also runs an intramural rock climbing program and outing club. Over the years, Mr. Brechko filled various leadership roles in his district, has taught numerous professional workshops, given community presentations on scientific topics, contributed to books, and developed his knowledge through continuing education. Of pedagogical interest to Mr. Brechko is incorporating the latest educational research into his teaching, and the role of assessment in instruction. He has been collaborating with the Association for the Cooperative Advancement of Science and Education (ACASE) on these topics for a number of years. Mr. Brechko has a passion for the preservation of the Adirondack ecosystem and has collaborated with agencies and organizations, particularly for the management of invasive plants. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Brechko is looking forward to learning from and collaborating with fellow Master teachers.

Kim BrutonKim Bruton

Troy School District

Kim Bruton earned her BS in Earth Science and Education from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and MS in Earth Science and Education from SUNY Albany. A veteran teacher of 33 years, she teaches Earth Science at Troy High School. A strong advocate of hands-on, inquiry-based learning, Mrs. Bruton he involves her students in a variety of problem-solving and technology-infused activities that provide them with opportunities to engage actively in their learning and to make real-world connections. Her professional interests include sustainability and global climate change, and she engages her students in discussions that deal with today's pressing global environmental issues. Mrs. Bruton is a member of the Science Teachers Association of NYS, and Phi Beta Kappa. As an active member of Therapy Dogs International, she makes frequent visits to area hospitals, nursing homes, colleges and her own classroom with her golden retriever, Douglas. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mrs. Bruton participated in the Measuring Global Climate Change mini-course, and various workshops including Using Google Tools in the Classroom, and Mentor Training.

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C

Katie CalhounKatie Calhoun

Ballston Spa Central School District

Katie Calhoun earned her BS in biology from Simmons College in Boston, MA in Science Education from SUNY Albany, Certificate of Advanced Studies from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, and National Board Certification in Secondary Biology.  Ms. Calhoun has been teaching secondary science for over 19 years and currently teaches Project Lead the Way Biomedical Science and International Baccalaureate Environmental Systems and Societies at Ballston Spa High School.  She advises the school’s Environmental Club, is an active member of the Building Leadership Team, and works for Project Lead the Way as a Master Teacher.  Ms. Calhoun finds inspiration in the words of English Primatologist and Anthropologist, Jane Goodall, “You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.”  As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Calhoun is looking forward to participating in the numerous professional workshops available through the NYS MTP, and working with her peers to improve science education for our students.

John CarlinoJohn Carlino Jr

Bethlehem Central School District

John Carlino graduated magna cum laude with a BA in Mathematics Education and MS in Educational Administration from SUNY Albany, and holds a certificate in School Administration and Supervision.  In the classroom for 12 years, he teaches Honors Geometry, Enriched Geometry, and Trigonometry at Bethlehem Central School District. In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Mr. Carlino coaches football and is the advisor of the Junior Class.    In 2009, Mr. Carlino hosted a statewide broadcast of “Regents Review Live” for Geometry.  Outside of the classroom, Mr. Carlino has run multiple marathons and participated in numerous adventure races.  Every day, Mr. Carlino lives his life through the words of legendary UCLA basketball coach John Wooden: “Fail to prepare, prepare to fail.” As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Carlino is looking forward to sharing and learning best practices with his fellow Master Teachers, and to mentoring aspiring teachers to be successful from their first day in the classroom.

Elizabeth CarrollElizabeth Carroll

North Colonie Central School District

Elizabeth Carroll earned her BA in mathematics and her MS in Secondary Education from the University at Albany.  In the classroom for eight years, Mrs. Carroll teaches 8th grade math and Algebra 1 at Shaker Junior High School. A strong advocate for improving student learning by the use of technology in the classroom, she involves her students in a variety of learning opportunities such as flipped learning, QR codes as guiding resources, and Google tools for assessment. Her professional interests focus on how the brain learns mathematics, and using this knowledge to guide her teaching practice to maximize students learning. Her current projects include creating interactive flipped learning videos. Mrs. Carroll is passionate about sharing new ideas and learning experiences with her community of teachers. As such, she regularly presents to teachers in her district regarding innovative technology applications.  In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she serves as the Instructional Technology Specialist for her building, is a co-founder of her school’s recycling club, a member of her school’s Gay Straight Alliance, and a member of the Association of Mathematics Teachers of NYS.

Andre CastagnaAndre Castagna

Albany City School District

Andre Castagna earned his BS in Aeronautical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and his MS and PhD from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. After graduating, he worked for 10 years as an engineer at the Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory, working on a team designing and supporting nuclear reactors for the Naval Nuclear Reactor program. In 2005, he decided on a career change, earned a Master of Arts in Teaching from Empire State College, and began teaching mathematics at Albany High School. Dr. Castagna has taught mathematics from the Algebra level through Calculus and enjoys working with students of all abilities. He is currently teaching Geometry and Advanced Placement Calculus, and is also a mentor of the Albany High School Robotics team. In 2015, Dr. Castagna authored the Barron’s: Let’s Review Geometry book for the NYS Geometry Regents. In his spare time, he enjoys camping and hiking the 46 Adirondack High Peaks with his family. He also enjoys gardening, and taking the family dog, Violet, on outings, and teaching Sunday School. As a NYS Master Teacher, Dr. Castagna is looking forward to learning more about how colleagues integrate technology and other interdisciplinary topics in their daily mathematics lessons.

Annie ChienAnnie Chien

Schenectady School District

Annie Chien earned her AB in Psychology, Biology, and Education from Barnard College of Columbia University and MA in Educational Communication and Technology from New York University. As a part of her graduate work, she completed a semester in Pretoria, South Africa, examining the effect of educational transformation on AIDS Education. She spent several summers under the tutelage of Dr. Ron Breslow at Columbia University, synthesizing and characterizing oligothiophenes as nanostructures for electron transport. Ms. Chien loves teaching Biology at Schenectady High School. During her 17 years of teaching, she sponsored students in independent research, mentored student-teachers, taught at the graduate level, sat on school committees, and served as advisor to student organizations. Yet, the activity she enjoys most is upkeeping her Reptile Sanctuary with the collaboration of her students, who are the best ambassadors for reptile compassion and proper husbandry! Ms. Chien’s most cherished accomplishment was when a former student accredited her as inspiration to teach biology. In her spare time, she enjoys sewing and raising ball pythons. Ms. Chien looks forward to bringing best practices back to Schenectady from the NYS Master Teacher Program.

Stephanie ConklinStephanie Conklin

Saratoga Springs City School District

Stephanie A. Conklin earned her BS in mathematics from Union College, MSEd in Math education from Harvard University, and is currently working on her doctorate at SUNY Albany to analyze the experiences of female engineers.  In the classroom for more than eight years, Mrs. Conklin teaches mathematics at Saratoga Springs High School.  A strong advocate for student-centered instruction, she focuses on differentiating lessons for all learners, particularly special education and English Language Learners.  Her professional interest focuses on how to encourage more students to pursue STEM study and careers. She was previously honored with the Sontag Prize for Urban Education for outstanding teaching in mathematics, and the selection as a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation “Gates Master Teacher,” to share best teaching practices with educators around the world. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, she is the facilitator of the Women in STEM Professional Learning Team (PLT) and member of the Elementary Science Kits PLT, and has participated in various workshops including Google Tools in the Classroom and STEM Saturday.

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Tammy DarbyTammy Darby

Lake George School District

Tammy Darby earned her BS with a double major in biology and geology and concentration in secondary education from Castleton State College, MSEd in secondary curriculum from SUNY Plattsburgh, and is a National Board Certified Teacher. In the classroom for over 16 years, Mrs. Darby teaches earth and environmental sciences at Lake George High School.  She is a strong advocate for problem-solving, real-world relevance, and student-driven learning that will help students transition from students to productive citizens.  Mrs. Darby uses Common Core learning standards to introduce literary shifts to enhance the science content; students are participating in close reads, questioning techniques, and contacting community resources as part of these shifts.   In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Mrs. Darby is the environmental club advisor, co-chairperson for the Lake George High School’s 5K fundraiser, and officer and representative for her teachers’ union.  Past accolades include being named Earth Service Teacher of the Year through the Warren County YMCA. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mrs. Darby participated in The Safety of Genetically Engineered Food mini-course and the Mentoring workshop with the Capital Area School Development Association.

Kris DarlingtonKris Darlington

Galway School District

Kris Darlington earned his BS in Industrial Economics from Union College, and Master of Arts in Teaching in Science Education from the University of California, Santa Cruz.  A teacher for seven years, Mr. Darlington is dual certified in Physics and Chemistry and teaches both subjects at Galway High School.  During the summer, he teaches Electrical Engineering at the Johns Hopkins University Center for Talented Youth. Mr. Darlington is a strong advocate for project-based learning experiences that focus on college and career readiness, and models his courses after experiences his students will encounter at community college and university.  To that end, he is developing projects involving water rockets, photolithography, and distributed computing. He is also involved in developing a software model to accurately forecast end of year Regents achievement to support student growth throughout the school year. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mr. Darlington has participated in the Bring Your Own Math/Science and Google Tools for Educators workshops, served on a panel for the national “100K in 10” initiative to encourage more individuals to consider a career in STEM teaching, and spoke to undergraduate students at SUNY Albany about future careers. Most recently, Mr. Darlington was honored with the invitation to be the Galway High School commencement speaker.

Marnie DeJohnMarnie DeJohn

Queensbury School District

Marnie DeJohn earned her BS in chemistry from SUNY Geneseo and her Master of Arts in Teaching in Secondary Education from Union College.  In the classroom for 14 years, Ms. DeJohn teaches Advanced Regents Chemistry at Queensbury High School. A strong advocate for integrating science in the curriculum for younger students, she involves her students in hands-on projects with children in kindergarten through third grade.  Her professional interests focus on encouraging more girls to pursue STEM studies and careers. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Ms. DeJohn serves as the Science Department Chair and coach of the First Lego Robotics team. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Ms. DeJohn participated in the workshop about the integration of the Next Generation Science Standards and the Women in STEM Professional Learning Team.

Nicole DixsonNicole Dixson

Greenwich School District

Nicole Dixson earned her BA in biology with a minor in writing from Hartwick College and her Master of Arts in Teaching from Union College. In the classroom 12 years, Mrs. Dixson teaches Living Environment, Science Research and Accelerated Science at Greenwich Central School.  A strong advocate for authentic inquiry-based science education, she involves her students in student-driven independent research projects. Her professional interests focus on the development and implementation of Next Generation Science Standards, specifically using the standards to unite the Common Core Learning Standards in Math and English Language Arts to design cross-curricular study.  Recent projects include the use of the development and implementation of problem-based inquiry labs in the Living Environment class, differential instruction, and student empowerment thorough student-centered goal-setting. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Mrs. Dixson is curriculum ambassador for science at Greenwich Central School, member of the STEM committee, a STOP (Students to Oppose Pollution) co-advisor, and the girls’ varsity lacrosse coach.  In 2008, she was a Toyota Tapestry large grant winner, and a “Dog Ate My Homework” teacher of the week.  Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mrs. Dixson has participated in various workshops including Mentoring, and Research in the Classroom, and presented at STEM Saturday.

Margaret DolenMargaret Dolen

Bethlehem Central School District

Margaret Dolen graduated magna cum laude from Cabrini College with a BS in Chemistry and earned an MS in Education from the College of Saint Rose. She began her career as an American Society for Clinical Pathology certified specialist in Clinical Chemistry, but discovered her true passion for teaching after volunteering to develop and facilitate an after-school enrichment program in science for her local elementary school. In the classroom for 16 years, Mrs. Dolen teaches 6th grade science at Bethlehem Central Middle School. As a strong advocate for hands-on instruction, she focuses on differentiating lessons for all learners, particularly students with special needs. Mrs. Dolen advises the Weather Club, assists with the Garden Club, and serves as a Teacher Technology Trainer and a member of the Technology Committee. She is a member of National Science Teachers Association, National Earth Science Teachers Association, Science Teachers Association of NYS, and the Albany Area Amateur Astronomers. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, cross-country skiing, and ballroom and swing dancing. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Dolen is looking forward to working with professional learning teams and sharing resources with other STEM teachers.

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Victoria Eddy-HelenekVictoria Eddy-Helenek

Watervliet School District

Victoria Eddy-Helenek earned her BS in chemistry from Union College, MS in Organic Chemistry from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Master of Arts in Teaching in Secondary Science Education from Union Graduate College.  In the classroom for 12 years at the Watervliet Junior Senior High School, she has taught eighth grade science, Living Environment, physics, and Regents Chemistry. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Mrs. Helenek serves as the Chemical Hygiene Officer, coaches the Masterminds team and serves on the Faculty Council of the National Honor Society chapter. She was a member of the American Chemical Society for over 30 years and is currently a member of the National Science Teachers Association of NYS.  Mrs. Helenek has always been inspired by the words of Carl Sagan: “Science is a way of thinking much more than it is a body of knowledge.” Prior to teaching, Mrs. Helenek was employed as a research chemist for General Electric Corporate Research and Development in Niskayuna, where she earned multiple US patents and teamwork awards.  Mrs. Helenek is married with two children in college studying engineering. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Helenek is eager to participate in the mentorship retreat and the Bring-Your-Own Science programming for Master Teachers and their colleagues in the Capital Region.

Erin EricksonErin Erickson

Albany City School District

Erin Erickson earned her BA in Mathematics from SUNY Geneseo and her MS in Reading from the University at Albany. Mrs. Erickson currently teaches at Albany High School (AHS), where she has been for the past 17 years. She has taught everything from Pre- Algebra to Algebra 2 to Advanced Placement Calculus AB. She has also taught two College in the High School courses at AHS through Hudson Valley Community College. Mrs. Erickson is the Math Department’s Building Curriculum Team Leader and serves as a mentor with the New Teacher Mentoring Program. In 2014, she won the Golden Apple Teacher Award, an annual award that recognizes district teachers who practice creative and innovative methods that significantly affect students’ learning. Mrs. Erickson maintains three websites at AHS, has been Co-Advisor of the Senior Class, and coach of Junior Varsity and Varsity Volleyball, and Junior Varsity softball. In her free time, she is an active member of Iroquois Empire Volleyball Association, and travels the country playing volleyball. She enjoys spending time with her family, including her children. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Erickson is looking forward to working with new teacher candidates and participating in professional development opportunities with peer Master Teachers.

Sabine EricksonSabine Erickson

Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Central School District

Sabine Goetz Erickson grew up in Huntsville, Alabama where the Marshall Space Flight Center is located. Her late father worked on both NASA’s Saturn V and Space Shuttle Main Engine projects, and is the one who inspired her to become a math teacher. Mrs. Erickson earned her BS in Mathematics from Birmingham-Southern College and her MA in Math Education from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She spent over 14 years teaching in Jefferson County, Alabama, where she served as math team coach and department chairperson, teaching a wide range of courses, including Algebra I and Advanced Placement (AP) calculus. She is currently teaching Precalculus and Statistics at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School (BH-BL). Mrs. Erickson established and grew the new AP Statistics program at BH-BL, and is focused on introducing new technology into her classroom. Mrs. Erickson is very excited to be a part of the Master Teacher Program because it is ultimately her goal to encourage more students to choose a STEM-related career. She looks forward to growing professionally as a STEM educator and collaborating with other Master Teachers. The Space Shuttle is now retired, but Mrs. Erickson believes that STEM literacy in America is more important than ever in our high-tech, data-driven world.

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Michele FamosoMichele Famoso

South Colonie Central School District

Michele Famoso graduated magna cum laude from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute with a BS in Biomedical Engineering with a concentration Electrical Engineering, and an MS in Natural Science. Prior to entering the education field, she was employed by the Haemonetics Corporation, where she managed projects involving blood collection and cell separation technologies. In the classroom for more than 16 years, Ms. Famoso currently teaches Regents Physics and Advanced Placement Physics at her alma mater, Colonie Central High School. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she advises the Science Club, coordinates district‐wide Hour of Code activities, and helps develop Regents Exams in Physics for the NYS Education Department. Passionate about encouraging young women to pursue STEM education, every July she teaches engineering design in the Union College EDGE (Educating Girls for Engineering) Program, a two‐week residential workshop for high school girls from across the United States. In her free time, Ms. Famoso sings semi‐professionally. She enjoys ballroom dancing, walking her dog, and playing with her young daughter. As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Famoso is looking forward to participating in professional development activities, networking with other enthusiastic STEM teachers, and sharing best practices.

Alan FieroAlan Fiero

Guilderland School District

Alan Fiero earned his BS in Biology, MS in Advanced Classroom Teaching, MS in Reading, and PhD in Science Education from the State University of New York at Albany, and, National Board Certification in Science.  In the classroom for almost 40 years, he teaches 7th grade science at Farnsworth Middle School, in Guilderland, NY.  His professional interests involve engaging students in hands on research and restoration work in the globally rare Pine Bush ecosystem. His work with students and their resulting research has garnered numerous accolades including the Toyota/National Science Teachers Association Tapestry grant, the Sea World/Nature Conservancy Environmental Award, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Environmental Education and Environmental Quality awards, and a Christa McAuliffe Fellowship.  Dr. Fiero has co-authored the “Big 8 Science Review Book,” and founded, “Butterfly Station”, a student-run butterfly house that brings thousands of visitors to the school each year to learn about ecology from students.  One particular project that Dr. Fiero is looking forward to as a NYS Master Teacher is the extended discussion of the Next Generation Science Standards with an eye towards the new NYS science standards.

Jason FinnJason Finn

Fort Edward School District

Jason Finn earned his BS in biology and his MSEd from SUNY Plattsburgh.  In the classroom for 15 years, Mr. Finn teaches Living Environment, Physical Setting/Chemistry, and General Chemistry at Fort Edward Union Free School District in Washington County.  A strong advocate for laboratory-centered lessons, he enjoys finding new and exciting ways to weave inquiry-based, open-ended laboratory activities into the fabric of the Regents curricula.  Mr. Finn’s professional interests focus on using laboratory investigations and content-area reading to increase the scientific literacy of his students. In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Mr. Finn has served his district as an advisor to the Outing Club and National Honor Society, is a member of the High School Building Leaders Committee, the National Science Teachers Association, and the Science Teachers Association of NYS.  A member of the Adirondack Mountain Club, Mr. Finn enjoys leading students on hikes in the High Peaks.  With the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mr. Finn has participated in two mini-courses—Measuring Global Climate Change and the Safety of Genetically Modified Food—and attended the Ashokan Retreat designed and facilitated by the NYC region.

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Matthew GlogowskiMatthew Glogowski

Ballston Spa Central School District

Matthew Glogowski earned his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Union College and MS in Secondary Education from The College of Saint Rose. Prior to teaching, Mr. Glogowski worked as a production engineer in the private sector.  Dual-certified in Mathematics and Technology, he has been teaching secondary mathematics for 11 years at Ballston Spa High School, the last five of which have been at The Clean Technologies & Sustainable Industries Early College High School. Teaching Applied Math in Clean Technologies and an on-line 21st Century Skills class allows him to work with an English and Environmental Science teacher to develop and deliver problem-based curricula. Mr. Glogowski has served as a mentor for Ballston Spa’s Code-a-Thon initiatives and has acted as a Cooperating Teacher for pre-service math teachers. In addition to teaching, Mr. Glogowski is Vice-Chair of Adirondack Masters Swimming and has participated in the Lake George Marathon Swim in support of the Lake George Association. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Glogowski is looking forward to collaborating with colleagues to better reach the hearts and minds of his students.

Laura GrootenLaura Grooten

North Colonie Central School District

Laura Grooten earned her BS in Secondary Education Earth Science from SUNY College at Oneonta, and MS in Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology from SUNY Albany. In the classroom for 13 years, Mrs. Grooten teaches Earth Science, Earth Science Lab, and Applied Earth Science at Shaker High School. An active member of the school community, Mrs. Grooten presented to elementary school colleagues about teaching science, taught a professional development course on the same topic, chaperoned dances, and attended sporting events and school musicals. Mrs. Grooten also mentored new teachers, and hosted student teachers and several student observers over the course of her career. Mrs. Grooten is a member of the Science Teachers Association of New York State, and presented a workshop entitled “Hands-On Lab Activities for Earth Science” at their Eastern Section Conference. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Grooten is looking forward to working with many talented STEM educators and professionals to enhance her teaching. In addition, she is excited to share the information she learns at the many professional development opportunities offered through the program with her colleagues and preservice teachers.

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Colleen HagadornColleen Hagadorn

South Glens Falls School District

Colleen Hagadorn earned her BS in Wildlife Biology from SUNY ESF in Syracuse, her MS in Teaching from SUNY Plattsburgh, and National Board Certification in Science.  Prior to teaching Miss Hagadorn was a volunteer hack-site attendant for peregrine falcons and helped reintroduce six immature peregrine falcons back into the Adirondacks. In the classroom 22 years, Miss Hagadorn teaches Living Environment and Practical Forensics at South Glens Falls High School.  Miss Hagadorn is a dedicated to deepening her content and pedagogical knowledge and works collaboratively with her colleague, Master Teacher Mrs. Moore-Palumbo.  Together they have presented numerous workshops, on such topics as “ForensicFacial Reconstruction: Blending Science and Art,” “Forensics Writing Workshops, “and "Tox-in" the City.  They also engage in grant writing activities, and over the last ten years have procured over $30,000 in grant money for their school district. Miss Hagadorn is developing a new course entitled “Living off the grid,” which is designed as cross-curricular collaboration with colleagues.  As a NYS Master Teacher, Miss Hagadorn participated in several mini course offerings and is a member of the Elementary Science Kit Professional Learning Team.   Miss Hagadorn is excited, and proud to be working with other Master Teachers as they develop projects to engage and excite students about STEM.

Stephanie HaigneyStephanie Haigney

Queensbury School District

Stephanie Haigney earned her BA in Mathematics and Masters of Arts in Teaching in Secondary Education from Binghamton University. Ms. Haigney spent the first two years of her teaching career at a rural school district in Virginia. During that time, she collaborated with Rappahannock Community College to introduce and implement a new Pre-Calculus course in which high school students could receive college credit. She is now in her fourth year at Queensbury Union Free School District, currently teaching Geometry Regents, Algebra 2 Honors, Statistics, and Career Track Math at Queensbury High School. Ms. Haigney is Co-Advisor for the Class of 2019, participates in school fundraisers, and has coached modified girls basketball. She is originally from Syracuse, NY and enjoys running, college basketball, and spending time with her friends and family. As a NYS Master Teacher, she is looking forward to the opportunity to improve her teaching by meeting and collaborating with teachers from the Capital Region and throughout the state.

Sarah HalbigSarah Halbig

Shenendehowa School District

Sarah Halbig earned her BS in Biology with a minor in Chemistry from Quinnipiac University and her Master of Arts in Teaching from Union Graduate College. In the classroom for five years, Ms. Halbig currently teaches Honors Living Environment, Environmental Science, and AIS Biology at Shenendehowa High School. She enjoys involving her students in scientific inquiry and using new technology in the classroom. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she coaches the Girls Modified 9 Soccer team, advises the Habitat for Humanity Club, and chaperones Ski Club. Ms. Halbig also leads international field trips to Costa Rica and Belize. As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Halbig looks forward to collaborating with other STEM teachers to further enhance her teaching as well as sharing ideas and resources with other teachers in her school.

Mary HancharMary Hanchar

Niskayuna School District

Mary Conway Hanchar earned her BS in biology from Siena College, MS in Biology and Education from SUNY Albany, MS in Educational Leadership and Curriculum Development from New England College, and National Board Certification in Science. As a member of the Niskayuna School District community for over 25 years, Ms. Hanchar teaches science at Iroquois Middle School, where her students use many technologies including graphing calculators and digital microscopes. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Ms. Hanchar developed and implemented the Niskayuna School District’s elementary STEM gifted and talented program, which includes working directly with gifted students and designing STEM professional development opportunities for elementary school teachers. Her professional interests include student engagement in science inquiry, research in practicing science labs, and the study of the redesign of science programming. Ms. Hanchar is committed to nurturing pre-service teachers, and has been an adjunct faculty member for over 15 years at Union University’s School of Education.  She was selected as a Woodrow Wilson Princeton University Fellow to create a lab manual for middle school science teachers, Health Research Institute Fellow at Wadsworth Laboratory, and an American Geological Institute Field Test Educator and Curriculum Development Advisor. Ms. Hanchar is looking forward to creative interaction with other NYS Master Teachers.

Shannon HansenShannon Hansen

Ballston Spa Central School District

Shannon Hansen earned her BA in geology and BA in art from Lafayette College, her MSEd from SUNY Plattsburgh and her National Board Certification in Chemistry.  As an undergraduate, Ms. Hansen studied mapping in California and through the National Science Foundation, she conducted researched at Cambridge University in England.  Her work was published in Mineralogical Magazine and she was awarded the Mineralogical Society of America’s Undergraduate prize.   She participated in Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Astronomy Institute and was awarded a grant for coursework at Colorado School of Mines at Mesa Verde. In the classroom for 13 years, Ms. Hansen teaches chemistry and Earth Science at Ballston Spa High School.  In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she runs a community group focused on outside opportunities for families such as gardening, outdoor education and recreation.  Ms. Hansen often takes field trips with her husband and four kids and shares those experiences with her students through her Twitter handle. With the NYS Master Teacher Program, Ms. Hansen aspires to connect ideas surrounding holistic learning that fuse English Language Arts, math, history, art and science in the classroom.

Jill HavensJill Havens

Cohoes City School District

Jill Havens earned her AA in sciences from Hudson Valley Community College, BS in Environmental Forestry and biology and Resource Management at SUNY Environmental Science and Forestry, and her MA in education from Antioch University in Seattle.  Twelve years prior to entering a classroom, she spent several years doing biological field work.  Mrs. Havens works in the Cohoes City School District, where she teaches 6th grade science and math.  She is highly involved in activities in her school and community, where she grew up and now resides.  In addition to her classroom responsibilities, she is the co-advisor of the 8th Grade Activities Club at Cohoes Middle School, and for the last three years she has worked at the Bernard Harris Exxon-Mobil Science Summer Camp and the GE Girls Summer Science Camp. Mrs. Havens promotes the idea of Carl Sagan that, “Science is a way of thinking much more than it is a body of knowledge.”  She looks forward to the NYS Master Teacher Program professional development experiences that will deepen and broaden her content and pedagogical knowledge in order to fuel her students’ love of science and learning.

Sean HigginsSean Higgins

Cairo-Durham Central School District

Sean Higgins earned his BS in Biology from St. Lawrence University and MEd in General Studies from St. Lawrence University. He is certified in Biology, Earth Science, and General Science. In the classroom room for 15 years, Mr. Higgins teaches Regents Earth Science, Regents Living Environment, co-taught Regents Earth Science and serves as a Distance Learning teacher for Meteorology at Cairo-Durham High School. Mr. Higgins serves as the Science Department Facilitator, and member of the Career and Technical Education (CTE) Exploration Committee and Cairo-Durham District Goal Data Team. For the past two years, Mr. Higgins was a Research Fellow through Questar III BOCES at the NYS Department of Health in the Organic Analytical Laboratory at the Empire State Plaza. His work focused on the following study: “Determination of 89 drugs and other micropollutants in unfiltered wastewater and freshwater by LC-MS/MS: An alternative sample preparation approach”. Mr. Higgins is a co-author of the manuscript that has been submitted for possible publication in a science journal on this research. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Higgins is looking forward to being a member of the Biology Professional Learning Team, participating in professional development activities, networking with other STEM teachers, and sharing best practices.

Melissa HirtMelissa Hirt

Albany City School District

Melissa Hirt earned her B.S. in Technology Education/Industrial Arts at SUNY Oswego and M.S.Ed. from the College of St. Rose. Ms. Hirt holds National Board Certification in Career and Technical Education and currently teaches middle school Technology and Engineering at Stephen and Harriet Myers Middle School. She brings hands-on, project-based learning, real-world experiences, and 21st century skills into the classroom to foster future success. In addition to her classroom responsibilities, she mentors early career teachers and evaluates the Content Specialty Test. Ms. Hirt coaches the Robotics Club, preparing students for the FIRST LEGO League tournament and volunteers for FIRST LEGO League, Future Cities and Global Girls. Melissa works with the Center for Initiatives in Pre-College Education at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on curriculum development, pre-service teacher outreach, and professional development, and has presented at numerous conferences. Ms. Hirt is a member of the Capital District Technology and Engineering Teachers Association, and currently serves as the Northeastern District Vice-President for the NYS Technology and Engineering Teachers Association. As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Hirt looks forward to collaborating with colleagues and exploring new ways to integrate all aspects of STEM into engaging classroom activities.

Jessica HladikJessica Hladik

East Greenbush School District

Jessica Hladik earned her BS in Applied Mathematics with a concentration in Computer Science from Siena College and her MS in Applied Mathematics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.  In the classroom for over 18 years, Mrs. Hladik currently teaches Introduction to Algebra IA, Precalculus, Computer Programming, and Algebra II at Columbia High School.  In addition to her classroom responsibilities, she has been the Building Level Curriculum Specialist for mathematics, a member of the districtwide Committee for Curriculum Study, and advisor for NYS Math League, the Varsity and Junior Varsity Masterminds teams and the Siena College Computer Programming competition teams.
Mrs. Hladik is a member of the Association of Mathematics Teachers of New York State and the Capital District chapter of the Computer Science Teachers Association.  In her free time, she enjoys hanging out with her children, being at the lake, playing strategy board games and binge-watching sci-fi with her husband. As a NYS Master Teacher, she is looking forward to participating in the Professional Conversations Professional Learning Team (PLT), and sharing and learning from her colleagues in the Math PLT. 

Christopher HoodChristopher Hood

Shenendehowa School District

Christopher Hood earned his BA in Biology from SUNY Geneseo and MS in Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology from SUNY Albany. In the classroom for 14 years, Mr. Hood teaches Advanced Placement Environmental Science, Honors Biology and Forensic Science at Shenendehowa High School. He also serves as the ACT and SAT Testing Supervisor and has multiple roles within the athletic department. A strong advocate of local and international travel among students, he has chaperoned student groups to Belize and plans on taking students to Costa Rica and Hawaii. Mr. Hood has also directed the Forensic Science exhibit for the district’s Science, Health and Discovery Night for the past five years. In the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mr. Hood looks forward to working with other educators in sharing best practices.

Jolene Hopkins

Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk School District

Jolene Hopkins earned her BA in Earth Science from SUNY Plattsburgh and Master of Arts in Teaching in Earth Science from Union Graduate College. In the classroom for six years, Mrs. Hopkins teaches 8th Grade Physical Science, Earth Science, and Physical Science at Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk School District in Coeymans.

Michelle HuckinsMichelle Huckins

Albany City School District

Michelle Huckins earned her B.S. in mathematics from St. Lawrence University and M.S. in Instructional Technology from SUNY Potsdam, and is certified as a MBTI (Myers -Briggs Type Indicator) and a Military Adult Education/Adjunct/Distance Learning Instructor thru the Command and General Staff College. Ms. Huckins teaches Algebra at Albany City High School. She transitioned from Brasher Falls Central School where she coached the Robotics team, diligently worked to improve her school by participating on the School Improvement Committee, worked with the after school program, and served as a Math Mentor for regional math competitions. Ms. Huckins has been recognized by the St. Lawrence County Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) for her workshops Making Math Fun, Math 8 Common Core, and Algebra Common Core Teacher-to-Teacher Workshop. Ms. Huckins has proudly served for more than 30 years as an officer in the US Army, mobilizing all over the world. Colonel Huckins currently serves in the US Army Reserves and is in charge of Detachment 1, 75th Training Brigade in Orangeburg, NY. As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Huckins looks forward to professional development opportunities and learning from other Master Teachers.

Meagan HughesMeagan Hughes

Niskayuna School District

Meagan Hughes earned her BS in Chemistry from SUNY Brockport and MA in Chemistry from the University of Buffalo. She was honored with the Mattern-Tyler Award for Exemplary Teaching while in graduate school and recently received the Murray Award for Excellence in Education at Niskayuna High School. In her 17 years of teaching chemistry at Niskayuna High School, Mrs. Hughes has taught all levels of chemistry and serves as the co-advisor for National Honor Society. She has served as a member of the Professional Development Committee at the high school, where she helped present sessions on technology tools to her colleagues. For more than 10 years, Mrs. Hughes has assisted the New York State Education Department in developing test questions and helping to edit and analyze the Chemistry Regents exams. With two young children at home, she is constantly learning new Minecraft creatures and refereeing Nerf Battles. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Hughes is looking forward to exploring ways to help her students learn to communicate effectively in the scientific world. She is also excited about working with educators to further develop her teaching strategies, techniques, and content knowledge.

Darlene Kehn HunterDarlene Kehn Hunter

Averill Park Central School District

Darlene Kehn Hunter earned her BS in Meteorology from SUNY Oneonta and her Master of Arts in Teaching in Earth Science Education from Union Graduate College. Ms. Hunter worked at Hoosick Falls High School for the first seven years of her teaching career as an Earth Science and SUNY Earth Science Outreach Program Meteorology teacher and had the pleasure of co-leading geoscience trips for students to Yellowstone and Hawaii. She is currently in her ninth year teaching Earth Science at her alma mater, Averill Park High School, where she is also the Junior Varsity women’s basketball coach. Ms. Hunter is a member of the Science Teachers Association of NYS, the National Science Teachers Association, and the Geological Society of America. Ms. Hunter is passionate about sharing experiences in the classroom and connecting them with local examples to help students gain an appreciation for their surroundings. She is currently a fellow in the Questar III BOCES Summer Science Research Program conducting hands-on research with a local college and applying it to her curriculum. As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Hunter is excited to learn more about the interconnections and applications in the sciences with other teachers, specifically via collaboration on field experiences and local resources.

Nichole HuskieNichole Huskie-Simmons

Fort Ann School District

Nichole Huskie-Simmons earned her BS in biology from SUNY Geneseo and MS in Secondary Education from SUNY Albany. In the classroom for over ten years, Miss Huskie teaches 6th, 7th and 8th grade science at Fort Ann Central School. A strong advocate for inquiry based teaching methods, Miss Huskie involves her classes in student-created scientific investigations that emphasize problem solving. Her professional interests focus on enhancing science at the elementary level and mentoring new STEM teachers. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Miss Huskie is a Teacher Leader for Washington County area schools where she helps to create professional development opportunities and provides instructional support to new teachers. Miss Huskie is a dedicated life-long learner: In past summers, she participated in Cornell University’s Biology Teachers Institute to research epigenetics and plant science, and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute conference to study space science and the Next Generation Science Standards. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, she has participated in various workshops including “Science Saturday,” and is a member of the Elementary Science Kits Professional Learning Team.

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Jennifer JaskolkaJennifer Jaskolka

Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk School District

Jennifer Jaskolka earned her BS in Biology from SUNY Geneseo and MS in Secondary Science Education from SUNY Brockport. Before teaching, Ms. Jaskolka was a research lab technician at the University of Rochester, Cancer Center. In the classroom for 16 years, she currently teaches 7th and 8th grade at Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk (RCS) Middle School. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Ms. Jaskolka is active with the Science Olympiad competition, serving as both coach for the RCS team and also Capital District Science Olympiad Regional Coordinator. At RCS, she is also advisor to the Astronomy, the Stamp and Crafting, and Garden Clubs, and has worked as Curriculum Content Specialist. Ms. Jaskolka is a member of the National Science Teachers Association and Science Teachers Association of NYS, and was awarded a Rising Star internship through the Dudley Observatory, ‘Outstanding Teacher of the Year’ from Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society, and an Earth Day grant for a ‘Native Wildflower Garden’ on the school campus from the Air and Waste Management Association. As a NYS Master Teacher, she would like to expand the opportunity for students to experience STEM in their community and foster their love of the natural world.

Christopher JenningsChristopher Jennings

Niskayuna School District

Christopher Jennings earned his BS in Biology with a concentration in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and a Master of Arts in Teaching in Secondary Science Education from Cornell University, and National Board Certification in Adolescent Science. Mr. Jennings teaches Regents and Advanced Placement Biology at Niskayuna High School and is an adjunct professor for Schenectady County Community College’s College in the High School program. Mr. Jennings has been awarded the General Electric Star award, the Stanford University Teacher Tribute Initiative Award, and the Cornell University Merrill Presidential Scholar Honorary Teacher Recognition Award. Mr. Jennings is co-advisor of the National Honor Society, advisor of the Horticulture Club, coordinator of the high school’s Outdoor Science Classroom, and technology tools presenter to his colleagues. Mr. Jennings is an annual participant in the New York State Museum’s Evolution Teacher Workshop series. Outside of teaching, Christopher enjoys all things food-related including cooking and growing his own produce. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Jennings looks forward to learning new and creative ways of using more technology tools and acquiring innovative content in relation to ecology, specifically climate change and invasive species biology.

Emily JonesEmily Jones

Cairo-Durham Central School District

Emily Jones earned her BA in mathematics and art from Binghamton University and Master of Arts in Teaching Secondary Mathematics from SUNY Albany.  Prior to teaching full time, Mrs. Jones worked as a counselor and teacher at Binghamton University in the Upward Bound Residential Program assisting at risk students.  Mrs. Jones spent a year learning other cultures’ approach to education by teaching mathematics at Langley Grammar School in England.  In the classroom 15 years, Mrs. Jones teaches Advance Placement and College Calculus, Accelerated Pre-Calculus, College Math Prep, Math Lab and Peer Mentoring at Cairo Durham High School.  Mrs. Jones has created and advised the schools’ Environmental Club for the past seven years.  In addition to teaching, Mrs. Jones has been a cooperating teacher and has mentored new teachers just entering the profession.  As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Jones is looking forward to participating in the Mentoring Monday Program and the 3-D Printing mini-course.

Christopher JuddChristopher Judd

Scotia-Glenville School District

Chris Judd earned his BS in Forest Biology and Master of Professional Studies in Forest Pathology at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, and MSEd in biology from Syracuse University.  In the classroom for ten years, Mr. Judd first taught biology in Rockingham, N.C. before returning to NYS to teach biology, Science Research, and CISCO IT Essentials at Scotia-Glenville High School.  After school, he runs the Computers for Kids, employing student-volunteers to refurbish donated PCs for community members in need. Outside of the village of Scotia, you may spot him running long distances on the byways of Schenectady County.  As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Judd hopes to help propel teaching into the 21st century by leveraging technology to engage New York students in more authentic learning that promotes problem-solving, research, and collaboration.

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Mark KaercherMark Kaercher

North Colonie Central School District

Mark Kaercher earned his BS in Mathematics and Secondary Education, with a Business minor from SUNY Plattsburgh, and his MSEd in Mathematics Education at Plymouth State College. Mr. Kaercher taught math at Newport Middle High School in Newport, NH for 9 years. While there, he led the Mountain Biking Club. He was also awarded a 2001 Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award. Mr. Kaercher is now a Mathematics Teacher at Shaker High School, in Latham. Since joining Shaker that same year, he has served as a Technology Resource Teacher, a Cooperating Teacher for many pre­service teachers, and the Advisor for the New York Math League contests, and he has provided numerous instructional technology classes for district and area colleagues. From 2009 ­ 2011, Mr. Kaercher served as the facilitator for the SEMI High Tech University student and teacher programs, for which he received the SEMI  Foundation Teacher of the Year award in 2011. He is honored to be a NYS Master Teacher, and looks forward to working with Professional Learning Teams in Math and Mentoring. In his free time, Mr. Kaercher enjoys DIY­projects, hiking, playing golf, and traveling with his family.

Margaret KelliherMargaret Kelliher

Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Central School District

Margaret Kelliher earned her BA in Mathematics with a concentration in Computer Science from Binghamton University, MS in Computer and Systems Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic University, and teaching certification from the College of Saint Rose. Prior to teaching, Mrs. Kelliher worked as a Systems Analyst for North American Phillips, an Applications Engineer for GE Aerospace, and a Computer and Systems Engineer for GE Research. In the classroom for 11 years, Mrs. Kelliher currently teaches technology and math at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School and coaches the Robotics Team. She has also taught at Mohonasen High School, Schenectady High School, and Mont Pleasant Middle School. Mrs. Kelliher is “Project Lead the Way” instructor, certified in Digital Electronics and Introduction to Engineering Design. She has presented at the annual conference of the Association of Mathematics Teachers of NYS on strategies for reluctant students, and she has led workshops for Girls Inc. Mrs. Kelliher especially likes two quotes attributed to Thomas Edison: “I have not failed. I've just found 10000 ways that won't work,” and “We often miss opportunity because it’s dressed in overalls and looks like work.” As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Kelliher is looking forward to working with a very impressive group of educators to help integrate our approach to STEM education.

Carol KellyCarol Kelly

Guilderland School District

Carol Ann Kelly earned her BA in biology from The College of Saint Rose, MS in Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology from SUNY Albany, and Certificate of Training in Electron Microscopy via an internship at VA Hospital in Albany. In the classroom for over 20 years, Mrs. Kelly has taught pre-K through graduate students, and is currently teaching Living Environment Regents, 8th grade Science, and 7th grade Science at Farnsworth Middle School. She is also advisor for the Organic Garden and Native Plant Sanctuary Club, Astronomy Club, Crochet Club and presently working with a colleague to re-establish a Nature Trail at Farnsworth. Respected for her inculcation of literacy and writing in science, Mrs. Kelly was one of three Capital Region members of the Capital District Writing Project to work on a Gates Foundation/National Writing Project grant for three years.  It is evident that Mrs. Kelly’s cherishes any and all opportunities to share her craft of teaching as she presents across the Capital Region (Fueling the Passion, Writing and Science, Common Core and Science), always highlighting the tremendous respect she has for all stakeholders in the profession of education.  She is most honored by becoming a NYS Master Teacher this year and looks forward to collaborating with her colleagues.

Jodie KimbroughJodie Kimbrough

North Colonie Central School District

Jodie Kimbrough earned her BS in chemistry and Master of Arts in Teaching in chemistry and General Science from Union College.  She began her 18 year teaching career at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School and has spent the past 13 years at Shaker High School.  Mrs. Kimbrough teaches Honors Chemistry and Chemistry Lab at Shaker High School.  She was honored with the “Outstanding High School Chemistry Teacher” Award from the Eastern Section of the American Chemical Society.  As an active member of the school community, Mrs. Kimbrough is the advisor for the High School Medical Club and a long standing member of the National Honor Society Selection Committee.  Along with reading, cooking, and gardening, each year she enjoys volunteering for the National Chemistry Week celebration activities at the NYS Museum.  As a newly appointed NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Kimbrough is looking forward to meeting other STEM professionals and participating in professional development opportunities that will help foster her love of science and enhance classroom teaching.

Sarah KowalskiSarah Kowalski

North Colonie Central School District

Sarah Kowalski earned her BS in geology and MS in Science Education from SUNY Brockport.  Prior to teaching, Mrs. Kowalski worked for SUNY Brockport through a grant awarded to the college from the NYS Geology Survey.  In the classroom for 16 years, she teaches Earth Science and Natural Disasters at Shaker High School.  In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she has been the cooperating teacher for student teachers, and works for the NYS Education Department to develop the Earth Science Regent Exams.  Mrs. Kowalski’s love of learning and passion for science has led her to seize many professional development opportunities, including serving on the Building Council, participating in meetings hosted by the Teachers Association of NYS meetings, and traveling to the Green River in Colorado and Yellowstone National Park to take a geology course.  Mrs. Kowalski finds inspiration for her students in the words of Winston Churchill: “Never, never, never give up”. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Kowalski is looking forward to participating in the upcoming mini-course on Chemistry and Physics in Earth Science, collaborating with her peers, presenting at the Capital Region NYS MTP Earth Science Share-a-thon, and participating in the Women in STEM and Earth Science Professional Learning Teams.

Jillian KreppelJillian Kreppel

Hudson Falls Central School District

Jillian Kreppel earned her B.S. in Mathematics from The College at Brockport and M.S.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from SUNY Potsdam. Ms. Kreppel holds NYS Teacher Certifications in Mathematics and Special Education in Early, Elementary, and Secondary Education. With her multiple qualifications, she has taught a wide range of classes. An educator for seven years, she currently teaches Math 8 and Algebra at Hudson Falls Middle School. Before Hudson Falls, Ms. Kreppel spent 6 years teaching at Tupper Lake Middle High School. In addition to her teaching responsibilities at Tupper Lake, she was the assistant coach of the Cross Country team and the Sophomore Class Advisor. Jillian wants her students to succeed and experience meaningful, interesting learning that will help them become lifelong learners and productive citizens. She works on accomplishing this through the use of hands-on activities, cooperative learning, and an integrated curriculum consisting of diverse learning experiences and technology. As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Kreppel looks forward to collaborating with other Master Teachers. She always enjoys learning something new to add to her repertoire of content knowledge.

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Paul LevinPaul Levin

Galway School District

Paul Levin earned his BA in geology and Masters of Science in Teaching in Secondary Science Education from SUNY Potsdam, and School District Administration certificate from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.  Mr. Levin’s 19 year career teaching Earth Science spans the middle and high school grades.  Courses he has taught include Forensics, Environmental Science, Oceanography, 7th grade Physical Science, and 8th grade Project Lead the Way, a hands-on project-based STEM curriculum. He currently teaches 10th grade at Galway High School. In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Mr. Levin has been the Varsity Softball coach, Science Club advisor, class advisor, District Technology Trainer, Union building representative, and member of the Technology, Professional Development and Discipline Committees.  Mr. Levin has also shared best practices with colleagues as a teacher trainer for the Washington Saratoga Board of Cooperative Educational Services, The Greater Capital Region Teacher Center, and North Hudson Electronic Education Empowerment Project Grant.  As a Master Teacher, Mr. Levin is looking forward to expanding his content and pedagogical knowledge to better inspire his students.

Mary LilesMary Liles

New Lebanon School District

Mary Beth Liles earned her BA in biology from SUNY Plattsburgh and MS in Curriculum Development from SUNY Albany.  Prior to teaching, she was a Semiconductor Engineer for IBM.  After 10 years with IBM, her family relocated to North Carolina where she attended Meredith College and earned a certification in Elementary Education.  In the classroom 20 years, Mrs. Liles started teaching 4th and 5th grade in public and charter schools in North Carolina.  Afterwards, she expanded her certificate by earning the Middle Childhood Generalist National Board Certification, allowing her to teach middle school math and science.  Mrs. Liles currently teaches 7th Grade Mathematics, 7th/8th Grade Accelerated Mathematics, 8th Grade Mathematics and 7th/8th Grade Academic Intervention Services at New Lebanon Junior/Senior High School.  Mrs. Liles is passionate about her involvement with the Future Cities program, a program for middle grade students to learn engineering principles.  Her students have reached national level competitions.  As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Liles is looking forward to working with beginning teachers, especially those teaching math at an elementary and middle school grade levels, and attending the summer professional development “Real World Math and Science” will be an exciting first step as she begins this journey.

Carolyn LitynskiCarolyn Litynski

Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Central School District

Carolyn Litynski earned her BA in Economics from Hamilton College, graduating second in her class, and Master of Arts in Teaching in Mathematics from the University of Chicago. Ms. Litynski spent a year of her undergraduate studies abroad, studying economics at the London School of Economics. In the classroom for 26 years, she has taught at both the college and high school level. She currently works at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High where she teaches Common Core Algebra I, University in the High School Precalculus (through SUNY Albany) and Advanced Placement Calculus AB. She runs the Math Club, is the Teacher Representative on the school Parent-Teacher-Student-Association, and has advised two student teachers. In the past six years, Ms. Litynski has applied for and received over $9000 in grants for mathematics laboratory equipment. She highly values and uses technology in the classroom and project-based learning. What she loves most about teaching is seeing her students smile as they too come to understand the beauty of mathematics. As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Litynski is looking forward to furthering her education and creativity by engaging in the diverse array of NYS MTP workshops offered.

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Deborah MabeyDeborah Mabey

Hoosick Falls School District

Deborah Mabey, a National Board Certified Teacher and New York Educator Voice Fellow, earned her BS in Nutrition from Michigan State University and Post-Baccalaureate and MS in Secondary Science Education from Eastern Michigan University. In the classroom for 18 years, Mrs. Mabey teaches Earth Science, Living Environment, Advanced Placement Environmental Science, Astronomy, and SUNY-ESF Global Environment at Hoosick Falls High School. A strong advocate for instruction that promotes mastery and that leads to lifelong inquiry, she involves her students in opportunities inside and outside school that allow every student to explore interests, refine skills, and receive the academic support he/she needs. Her professional interests focus on differentiated instruction and environmental education. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she serves as advisor for Student Council, High School Ski Club, and the Earth Club, and participated in the Questar III Summer Science Research Institute through which Mrs. Mabey was placed at a local research lab for two summers conducting research that she was able to share with her students. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mrs. Mabey has participated in many activities including mini-courses, and is a member of the Professional Conversations Professional Learning Team (PLT), and Action Research PLT, and has served on the Advisory Council for TeachNY.

Anthony MalikowskiAnthony Malikowski

Hoosick Falls School District

Anthony Malikowski earned BS in General Biology from Penn State University, Teaching Certificate from Kutztown University, and MSEd from SUNY Albany. In the classroom for 17 years, Mr. Malikowski teaches Regents Physics, Forensic Science, and College Physics at Indian Lake Central School.
 

Tammy Mandwelle

South Glens Falls School District

Tammy Mandwelle earned her BS in Chemistry from Niagara University and Master of Science for Teachers from SUNY Plattsburgh. In the classroom for 22 years, Ms. Mandwelle teaches Living Environment and Chemistry in the South Glens Falls School District.

Mary MannMary Mann

South Glens Falls School District

Mary Mann earned her B.A. in Biology at Russell Sage College and her M.A.T. in Secondary Science at Union Graduate College. Mrs. Mann teaches Regents Chemistry, Foundations in Chemistry, and Advanced Placement Biology at South Glens Falls High School where she greatly enjoys working in integrated collaborative teaching partnerships, such as team teaching in the Math, Science, and Technology (MST) block of Regents Chemistry and Advanced Algebra Trigonometry. She finds great value in working with other teachers across disciplines to help students investigate authentic research, work as teams to creatively solve problems, and utilize multiple forms of technology to hone their presentation skills. In addition to her classroom responsibilities, she is the Instructional Teacher Leader for the Science Department, class advisor for the freshman class, and committee member and volunteer for the South High Marathon Dance. Outside of school, Mary enjoys travelling, hiking in the Adirondacks, skiing, reading, and spending time with her family. As a Master Teacher, Mrs. Mann has joined the Chemistry and Curriculum Development PLTs, participated in the Hands-On Minds-On Lab Day, and taken the Tissue Engineering mini-course. Mary looks forward to continuing her collaborative work with teachers from across the Capital Region.

Kaitlin McGannKaitlin McGann

Schodack Central School District

Kaitlin McGann earned her B.S. in Chemistry from Siena College and her M.A. in General Education from SUNY Albany. Ms. McGann teaches Regents Chemistry at Maple Hill High School, as well as Nanotechnology and Semiconductor Industry, a lab-based distance learning course she developed. Ms. McGann serves as Chemical Hygiene Officer and member of the Google Trainers group for Schodack Central School District. She is Coordinator of the Science Seminar Series, a program she began to help expose high school students to current practitioners in STEM careers and has served her students as a modified soccer coach, National Honor Society advisor, and Trivial Pursuit team coach. Kaitlin enjoys spending her summers immersed in STEM-based professional development such as the Research Experience for Teachers Program at the Cornell Center for Materials Research and as a Questar III Summer Science Fellow at Momentive Performance Materials. As a Master Teacher, Ms. McGann has joined Nanotechnology and Chemistry PLTs, attended Photoresists: from Microelectronic Devices to Tissue Engineering and The Biology of Cancer mini-courses, and participated in workshops on using Break-out Boxes and on writing Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning lessons. Kaitlin is passionate about finding ways to help her students be the masters of their own learning and is pleased to be connected to a larger professional development community through the NYSMTP.

Ankie MeuwissenAnkie Meuwissen

Ballston Spa Central School District

Ankie Meuwissen earned her M.Sc. in Geophysics from Utrecht University, the Netherlands, where she grew up. She spent time at Penn State conducting her Master’s Research, studying the subduction zone beneath Fiordland, New Zealand. She extended her stay in the US by teaching hands-on science classes at Nature’s Classroom. There, she discovered her love for teaching and decided to move to New York. Ankie teaches Physics, college-level Astronomy, and a 9th grade Physical Science elective at Ballston Spa High School and has taught Earth Science and Astronomy at Skidmore College and Empire State College. Ankie has attended summer sessions to learn more about space at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the Lunar and Planetary Institute in Houston, TX. She collaborated with NYSMTP colleagues, organizing community-wide Star Parties. prior to joining the program. As a Master Teacher, she has joined a Book Study and a Girls in STEM PLT, assisted at a Girls Rock STEM! event, and attended a Solar Eclipse Workshop. Ms. Meuwissen continually seeks excellent professional development to increase her knowledge, to enrich the learning environment for all of her students, and to discuss best practices with other educators. She is excited about expanding her collaboration with other NYS Master Teachers.

Judy MoffittJudy Moffitt

South Glens Falls School District

Judy Chittenden Moffitt earned her BS in biology from Cornell University, MS in Secondary Education from the College of St. Rose, and National Board Certification in Chemistry. Mrs. Moffitt has been in the classroom since 1983, and currently teaches Regents Chemistry, MST (Math, Science, and Technology) Chemistry, and Syracuse University Project Advance Forensic Science in the South Glens Falls School District. Outside of the classroom, she has facilitated National Board for Professional Teaching Support Groups and worked as a Chemistry Mentor for the NYS Biology-Chemistry Professional Development. She is very involved in community and mentoring activities including being an adult mentor for “Sources of Strength,” and raising awareness for heroin addiction. In her free time, she enjoys hiking with her two dogs and friends, church activities, and working with other advocates to help make changes in the community. Mrs. Moffitt is looking forward to working with other enthusiastic NYS Master Teachers in designing and creating science kits for elementary schools as well as collaborating with other teachers in the Chemistry Professional Learning Team.

Susan Moore-PalumboSusan Moore-Palumbo

South Glens Falls School District

Susan Moore-Palumbo earned her BS in Environmental Biology from the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, her MS in Secondary Science Education from Syracuse University, and National Board Certification in Science.  In the classroom for 29 years, Mrs. Moore-Palumbo enjoys teaching biology and forensics at South Glens Falls High School where she also co-created and implemented the curriculum for Practical Forensics and Environmental Technology courses at her school.  To support this coursework, she wrote numerous successful grants to fund the equipment costs.  Currently, she is the co-adviser for Key Club and Environmental Club and sits on the National Honor Society Faculty Council.  Past professional projects include creating and leading workshops called “Fun with Forensics” about facial reconstruction, and co-facilitating the North Country Support Group for teachers pursuing National Board Certification.  During her free time, Mrs. Moore-Palumbo can be found hiking, traveling and volunteering.   She enjoys wielding a hammer for Rebuilding Together Saratoga County to help homeowners in need live independently.  As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Moore-Palumbo is passionate about helping more women enter STEM fields and is looking forward to joining the Women in STEM and Elementary Science Kit Professional Learning Teams.

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Mary Ann NickloyMary Ann Nickloy

Rotterdam-Mohonasen School District

Mary Ann Nickloy earned her A.A.S. in Early Childhood from SUNY College of Agriculture and Technology Cobleskill, her B.S. in Elementary Education/Mathematics from Russell Sage College, and M.S. Ed. in Reading from Sage Graduate School. Mrs. Nickloy teaches Mathematics at Draper Middle School in the Rotterdam-Mohonasen Central School District, where she serves as the Instructional Leader for the Mathematics Department. Mrs. Nickloy is an active member of professional associations such as the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics, and Capital District Area Mathematics Supervisors. At the Greater Capital Region Teacher Center, Mrs. Nickloy provides professional development for teachers as a Mathematics Teacher Leadership Coach. She enjoys snowmobiling, is a board member on the Frontier Sno-Riders Snowmobile Club, and is a Certified New York State Snowmobile instructor. As a Master Teacher, Mary Ann has taken the Mathematical Ideas in Curve Stitching and String Art mini-course, participated in several workshops including Sphero Robots, Mathematical Art: Laser Engraving, Self-Correcting Google Forms, and National Weather Service Tour and Balloon Launch. She has joined the Nanotechnology PLT and attended the Deeper Dive into NYSSLS conference with Paul Andersen. Mrs. Nickloy looks forward to continued opportunities to receive and provide professional development in New York State and beyond.

Michelle NowakMichelle Nowak

Hudson City School District

Michelle Nowak earned her B.S. in Biology with a Minor in Spanish from Union College and M.A. in Educational Psychology from Marist College. She is a secondary science teacher in the Hudson City School District with experience teaching General and Applied Science, Veterinary Science, Botany, Environmental Science, and Regents Living Environment. Michelle offers a new course she designed to help students who have failed the Living Environment Regents multiple times. The course focuses on students’ diverse educational needs and has been highly successful in increasing motivation and the overall Regents passing rate. Having facilitated conferences in active learning strategies for the Taconic Hills and Peru School Districts, Ms. Nowak promotes the development of differentiated science lessons that are engaging, challenging, and fun. Her innovative instructional practices have won her praise from administrators and students and the 2015-2016 NYS Senate Award for Teaching Excellence. Outside the classroom, Ms. Nowak spends time with her children, instructs Kick Boxing/Zumba, and tends to her organic gardens. As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Nowak has participated in workshops on a range of topics including Google Classroom, Lab Day: Hands-On Minds-On Lab Activities, and POGIL: Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning. She looks forward to new opportunities for sharing her passion for teaching science and learning from her colleagues.

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Charlotte NaplesCharlotte Osborne

Saratoga Springs City School District

Charlotte Osborne earned her BS in Geology from the University at Albany, Master of Arts in Teaching in Earth Science Teaching from Union College, and National Board Certification in 2008.  In the classroom for 15 years, she teaches Earth Science and Astronomy at Saratoga Springs High School.  Her focus in the classroom is to provide a rich inquiry and hands-on approach for students to develop a deep understanding of science.  In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Ms. Osborne is the club adviser for her school’s NASA Club, a rocket club that for the past two years have qualified for the National Team America Rocketry Challenge. She serves on the board of directors for the Challenger Learning Center of Tech Valley.  Her professional interests are collaborating with colleagues and keeping up to date on the latest space studies; her recent learning in this area centered on a Mars MAVEN mission.  Her hope is to inspire students to consider pursuing a career in the STEM fields.  In her free time Ms. Osborne enjoys reading, photography, using her telescope at night as well as kayaking and just enjoying nature.

Kimberly OsinskiKimberly Osinski

Voorheesville Central School District

Kimberly Osinski graduated summa cum laude with a BS in biology and a Masters in Education from Canisius College. As an Oishei Fellowship Recipient at Canisius College, Ms. Osinski conducted biology research in the Philippines and Costa Rica. She started her teaching career in the Albany area as a biology and chemistry teacher at Notre Dame Bishop Gibbons in Schenectady. A veteran with eight years experience, she now teaches Regents and Advanced Placement Chemistry at C.A. Bouton High School in Voorheesville. Ms. Osinski is the Assistant Coach for the Science Olympiad Team, and has proudly taken her team to the state competition for two consecutive years. She also serves as the Science Department representative for the Academic Steering Committee. Traveling is one of Ms. Osinski’s greatest passions; past adventures include whale watching and fishing off the coast of Vancouver Island and snowboarding through the Alps in Switzerland and Italy. Ms. Osinski also loves to read, and highly recommends the book Your Inner Fish by Neil Shubin. As a NYS Master Teacher, Kimberly is looking forward to deepening her content knowledge (with the spring mini-course on the Chemistry and Physics of Earth Science, for example) and sharing best practices with her fellow Master Teachers.

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Crystal Perno

Saratoga Springs City School District

Crystal Perno earned her BS in Geology from James Madison University, MS in Atmospheric Science from Ohio State University, and MA in Secondary Science Education from Adelphi University.  At Ohio State, Mrs. Perno researched tropical cyclone genesis under the direction of Dr. Hobgood and Dr. Hennon of the National Hurricane Center. In the classroom for eight years, Mrs. Perno taught Earth Science and Introductory Science at Saratoga Springs High School and is now teaching Earth Science and 8th grade science at Acadia Middle School in the Shenendehowa District.  As an accomplished high school science teacher, Mrs. Perno values the whole child and strives to teach her students to believe in themselves and reach their individualized educational goals. In addition to teaching, Mrs. Perno is passionate about long distance running. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mrs. Perno co-facilitates the Elementary Science Kits Professional Learning Team dedicated to designing and creating science kits for elementary schools. Mrs. Perno’s favorite part about teaching STEM is seeing the excitement in her students when they see how science applies to their everyday life.

Jennifer Phillips-KrakatJennifer Phillips-Krakat

North Colonie Central School District

Jennifer Phillips-Krakat earned her B.S. in Biology from Siena College and her M.S. Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from the College of St. Rose. Mrs. Phillips-Krakat teaches Biology and Forensic Science at Shaker High School. An advocate of student-centered and project-based learning, Mrs. Phillips-Krakat strives to create curriculum that helps students understand science while building critical thinking skills and enthusiasm. Mrs. Phillips-Krakat is an avid environmentalist who shares her interest with students by serving as advisor of Shaker's Environmental Club and coordinator of projects such as Adopt-a-Bison, Earth Day art competitions, and the creation of a courtyard pollinator garden. Mrs. Phillips-Krakat is involved with science activities at the elementary, middle and high school levels as a Science Career Day committee member, a judge for the elementary school science fair, and the director of Farnsworth Middle School's Butterfly Station, an environmental program where student volunteers educate community members about local ecology. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Phillips-Krakat has attended the Tissue Engineering: Fundamental Cell Biology and Medical Applications and The Biology of Cancer mini-courses and participated in Albany Professional Conversations and POGIL: Problem Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning training. Jennifer looks forward to continuing collaboration with colleagues who share her dedication and enthusiasm for science education.

Jennifer PlourdeJennifer Plourde

Saratoga Springs City School District

Jennifer Plourde earned her B.S. in Sciences from Ithaca College and two M.A.T. degrees – one in Education from Elmira College and the other in Secondary Education from Union Graduate College. Mrs. Plourde teaches Living Environment at Saratoga Springs High School. Before teaching, she practiced as a certified Athletic Trainer at Skidmore College. Outside the classroom, Jennifer participates in activities such as the Mentor Program, the SPRING program (Success and Perseverance in Ninth Grade), and chaperones as often as possible to meet students outside of her own classroom. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two sons and baking in any free time she has left. At Saratoga Springs High School, Mrs. Plourde co-led a professional development course titled “Best Practices to Address Gender-based Learning Preferences” and would like to explore this topic further with other Master Teachers, so that she can apply her learning to her classroom. As a Master Teacher, Mrs. Plourde has taken The Biology of Cancer mini-course, participated in a variety of Professional Conversations, and attended workshops on Google Docs, Drives and Forms and on How to Motivate Unmotivated Students. Jennifer looks forward to continuing to share ideas and best practices with other professionals who are passionate about their work.

Joseph PortoJoseph Porto

Shenendehowa Central School District

Joseph Porto earned his B.S. in physics from SUNY Albany and M.S. in Secondary Education from SUNY Plattsburgh.  Mr. Porto started his teaching career at the middle school level teaching general science.  During that time, he was able to teach higher-level physics as an Adjunct Physics Instructor at SUNY Adirondack.  Mr. Porto currently teaches Regents Physics and Principles of Physics at Shenendehowa High School.  In his free time, Joseph enjoys being outdoors and spending time with his family. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Porto looks forward to many professional development opportunities and is especially interested in meeting with other physics teachers and sharing new ideas that can connect to other subject areas.  Since joining the Master Teacher Program, Mr. Porto has enjoyed many diverse PD opportunities including pertinent workshops such as Google Earth, Project-Based Learning, Science Demo Day, Annual MTP Conferences, and many others.  He has also enjoyed being a part of the Energy PLT which has had tours and education in geothermal facilities, solar companies, the NYISO, and more.

Amanda PowersAmanda Powers

Cohoes City School District

Amanda Powers earned her B.S. in Biology with a minor in Faith, Peace, and Justice from Boston College, her M.A. in Science Education from City College, and her M.P.H. in Community Health Education from Hunter College. Mrs. Powers teaches Honors Living Environment, Human Anatomy and Physiology, and Advanced Placement Biology at Cohoes High School. At CHS, Mrs. Powers is the National Honor Society Advisor and Co-Coordinator of the annual Earth Day event. Amanda is inspired by the curious nature of her students and loves kindling their enthusiasm for learning science. As a member of the National Science Teachers Association of NYS (STANYS) and the New York Biology Teacher’s Association, Mrs. Powers has attended professional development training in Formative Assessment and Common Core practices at Columbia Teacher’s College, in Biology class curriculum development at the American Museum of Natural History, and in STEM practices at the annual STANYS Conference. As a NYS Master Teacher, Amanda has joined the Biology PLT, attended Girls in STEM and Civics in STEM workshops, and participated in several Professional Conversations on topics that include 1:1 computing, student motivation, and honors and accelerated STEM programs. Mrs. Powers looks forward to continuing her development of rigorous science curricula, accessing resources that engage students in science, and sharing new STEM ideas with other teachers in her school and district.

Diana ProutDiana Prout

East Greenbush School District

Diana Prout earned her AAS in Veterinary Science from SUNY Delhi, and worked as a microbiologist and animal health technician for several years before pursuing her BA in Biology/Secondary Education from The College of St. Rose, and Master of Science for Teachers from Union College. In the classroom for 25 years, Mrs. Prout has taught 7th grade science, Biology, and Chemistry, and has served as Department Chair at Columbia High School in East Greenbush Central School District. Her passion for encouraging students to be innovative problem solvers led her to become the Head Coach of the Columbia Science Olympiad Team. Her proudest achievement over the last 20 years has been helping the team climb the ranks within NYS to be named State Champions in 2015. Mrs. Prout has mentored many pre-service and early career teachers, and as a NYS Master Teacher, looks forward to the opportunity to develop innovative ways to encourage an enthusiastic new generation of STEM teachers. With the NYS Master Teacher Program, she is a member of the Energy, and Chemistry Professional Learning Teams, and attended the "SciGirls" training. She credits the “Google Docs” workshop with new knowledge that she can share with her colleagues as her high school transitions into a Google school.

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Andrew QuellAndrew Quell

Shenendehowa Central School District

Andrew Quell earned his B.A. in Biology and Secondary Education from the College of Saint Rose and his M.S. in the Science of Teaching Mathematics and Science from Union Graduate College. Mr. Quell teaches seventh grade life science at Acadia Middle School in the Shenendehowa Central School District. He is a Level 2 Certified Google Teacher and serves on the building technology team. Andrew also teaches Intro to Biology at the College of Saint Rose and co-authored a journal article entitled “A Sweet Dive into the Gene Pool: An Easy Look at p & q” published in The American Biology Teacher. When not in the classroom, Mr. Quell is the mentoring coordinator for the local chapter of Ice Hockey Officials and an avid hiker who loves the outdoors and inspiring students to share that enthusiasm. As a Master Teacher, Andrew has attended The Biology of Cancer and Mathematics Ideas in Curve Stitching and String Art mini-courses, shared ideas with colleagues through a series of Professional Conversations, joined the Beekeeping PLT, and participated in the Flipped Classroom and Team Based Learning workshop. Mr. Quell looks forward to continuing work with his local Biology PLT and to sharing STEM ideas through peer professional development.

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Christopher ReddyChristopher Reddy

Averill Park Central School District

Christopher Reddy earned his B.S. in Environmental Forest Biology from SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and his M.S. in Adolescent Education from The College of St. Rose. After his undergraduate studies, Christopher moved to Alaska and worked with salmon on a secluded remote island. He moved back to the northeast in 2006 and leapt head-first into education and now teaches Earth Science and BIOL 105: The Human Gene at Averill Park High School. Aside from teaching, Mr. Reddy seeks to continually improving upon ways to teach science and has developed a pedagogy and methodology to instruct learners in laboratory science at a distance through Interactive Television. To hold himself accountable for what he reads and learns, Christopher writes and has been published several times which helps him in his newest initiative: working on a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology specializing in learning at SUNY Albany. As a Master Teacher, Mr. Reddy has attended Photoresists: From the Manufacture of Microelectronic Devices to Tissue Engineering and The Biology of Cancer mini-courses, participated in workshops on forensic analysis and Google tools, and joined a variety of Book Talks and Professional Conversations. With the paraphrased quote “If you are the smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room…” in mind, Mr. Reddy is excited by the prospect of spending more time in the right room - a room full of Master Teachers.

Karyn ReesKaryn Rees

Averill Park Central School District

Karyn Rees earned her BS in Engineering and Management from Clarkson University and MSEd from SUNY Albany.  In the classroom eight years, Mrs. Rees teaches Physics at Averill Park High School, and serves as the Leader of the STEM Fair for sixth graders.  Prior to teaching, she worked as a National Account Executive for AT&T on the General Electric Sales Team, earning a Sales Vice President Pinnacle Award.  Mrs. Rees is a co-leader of a Girl Scout Cadette Troop, volunteers with organizations feeding the hungry, and is currently a member of the Science Teachers Association of NYS.  In her spare time, she enjoys skiing, music, cooking and travel.  The highlight of her summer is the Grey Fox Bluegrass Music Festival in Oak Hill.  In her tenure as a NYS Master Teacher, she looks forward to professional development opportunities  collaborating with enthusiastic professionals, and working with pre-service science teachers to inspire them to become Middle School Science Teachers.

Jason ReinhardJason Reinhard

Cairo-Durham Central School District

Jason Reinhard earned his BA in mathematics from Marist College, and MS in Mathematics Education from Syracuse University. In the classroom over ten years, Mr. Reinhard teachers Regents Algebra 1 and Algebra Concepts at Cairo-Durham High School.  A strong advocate for all high school students to take a 4-year math sequence, he facilitated the creation of a program preparing students for college entrance math exams.  Mr. Reinhard’s professional interests focus on brain-based learning and helping his students build their confidence in mathematics.  In addition to his teaching responsibilities, he serves as the Math Department Facilitator for grades 6-12, and is a member of the High School and Middle School Leadership Teams.  Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mr. Reinhard is a member of the Algebra Professional Learning Team and participated in the STEM Saturday and Bring Your Own Math/Science Night workshops.

George Reluzco‌George Reluzco

Rotterdam-Mohonasen School District

George Reluzco earned his MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Vermont and a graduate teaching certificate in Technology Education from the College of St. Rose. In the classroom for 13 years, Mr. Reluzco teaches Intro to Engineering Design, Robotics, Aerospace Engineering, and Principals of Engineering at Mohonasen High School in Rotterdam. His professional focus is preparing students to be college and career ready by developing their 21st Century STEM. Mr. Reluzco is a strong advocate for hands-on, project-based learning, and is currently coaching the FIRST robotics team at his school. He was recently honored as a Teacher Scholar by the Scholar Recognition program of the Capital Area School Development Association. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mr. Reluzco has participated in mini-courses including the Geo-Science of Hydro-fracturing, Fractals & 3D Data Processing, and the Safety of Genetically Engineered Food, and the workshop to learn Google Tools for Educators.

Michelle RileyMichelle Riley

Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Central School District

Michelle Riley earned her BA in Mathematics Education from Elmira College and her MA in Gifted Education at Teachers College Columbia University.  In the classroom for five years, she teaches Regents Common Core Geometry, Algebra 2 & Trigonometry at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School.  Mrs. Riley is a strong believer in providing students with multiple pathways for their learning and engages her students in creating 3-dimensional graphic organizers and study guides, and in using a graphing calculator to do investigative learning. Past accolades include a grant from the Bender Scientific Fund from the Community Foundation for the Greater Capital District to purchase a classroom set of graphing calculators and related educator tools.   Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mrs. Riley has participated in the Fractals & 3D Data Processing mini-course, and various workshops such as the “Building and Keeping Strong Math Foundations,” and is a member of the Women in STEM Professional Learning Team.

Douglas RosenbergDouglas Rosenberg

South Colonie Central School District

Douglas Rosenberg graduated Cum Laude with a BS in Mathematics and MS in Secondary Mathematics Education from the University at Albany, receiving the Outstanding Academic Achievement Award as a graduate student.  In the classroom for eight years, Mr. Rosenberg teaches Advanced Placement (AP) Calculus AB and BC at Colonie Central High School and an after school SAT preparation course.  He is an advisor for both the Math Club and MasterMinds team, a mentor for pre-service teachers, a chaperone and volunteer at numerous sporting and fundraising events, and has served a three-year term on the Curriculum Review Board.  Mr. Rosenberg was recently names a Lead Learner at his school to help create professional development opportunities for other members of the high school faculty. Mr. Rosenberg shares his experience as Adjunct Professor at Union Graduate College’s School of Education, where he helps prospective math teachers begin their journey into education.  As a Master Teacher, Mr. Rosenberg looks forward to enhancing his content and pedagogical knowledge for his high school students and pre-service teacher colleagues.

Todd RosenbergTodd Rosenberg

Saratoga Springs City School District

Todd Rosenberg earned his BS in Atmospheric Science from the SUNY Albany in 1997, and Masters of Arts in Education in 2006 from Empire State College. Prior to teaching, Mr. Rosenberg worked as a meteorologist with experience in aviation and marine forecasting, and taught Astronomy and Earth Science in the Saratoga Springs City School District. He currently teaches 7th grade science. He is a member of his School District’s K-12 Science Task Force, a mentor for new teachers and presenter at Science Night at Maple Ave Middle School. Mr. Rosenberg is also an Education Specialist for New York State’s Department of Education, involved with Earth Science and Intermediate Level Science assessments and the Next Generation Science Standards review. Mr. Rosenberg also supervises the scoring of edTPA portfolios assessing new science teacher candidates. His hobbies include traveling to the Adirondacks where he enjoys kayaking, hiking and sightseeing with his wife and two children. As a new Master Teacher, he is looking forward to sharing his skills, knowledge and love of teaching science with other teachers, and helping new teacher candidates navigate their way to a personally fulfilling career in education.

Pamela RosiPamela Rosi

North Colonie Central School District

Pamela Rosi earned her BS Mechanical Engineering and M.Eng. in Environmental Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.  Prior to becoming a teacher, she worked as a Mechanical Engineer for General Electric and as a Civil Engineer in the NYS Air National Guard.  In the classroom 18 years, Ms. Rosi teaches physics and chemistry at Shaker High School.  She appreciates Astronaut Mae Jemison’s quote that expresses the importance of both Arts and Sciences: “The difference between science and the arts is not that they are different sides of the same coin even, or even different parts of the same continuum, but rather, they are manifestations of the same thing. The arts and sciences are avatars of human creativity.”  As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Rosi is looking forward to furthering her education and creativity by engaging in the diverse array of topics offered in the mini-courses.

Gary RothenbucherGary Rothenbucher

Hunter-Tannersville School District

Gary Rothenbucher earned his AAS in Natural Resources Conservation from SUNY Morrisville, BS in Wildlife Resources from West Virginia University, BS in Secondary Education Biology from SUNY Oneonta, MS in Natural Science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and National Board Certification in Adolescent and Young Adult Science. Prior to teaching, Mr. Rothenbucher worked as a Land Surveyor and CAD (computer-aided design) Draftsman. In the classroom for over 20 years, Mr. Rothenbucher teaches Biology and Chemistry at Hunter­Tannersville Central School where he also serves as the Yearbook Adviser, mentors new science teachers, and is active in the district’s continuing efforts to engage students and teachers in digital learning experiences. Mr. Rothenbucher has also volunteered his time at his local school district as a Bio Team Leader in a stream monitoring project. He finds inspiration in the words of John Burroughs: “Joy in the universe and keen curiosity about it all ­ that has been my religion”. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Rothenbucher is looking forward to collaborating with other STEM educators to deepen and expand his content and pedagogical knowledge so he may better inspire his students and rekindle their love of learning.

Jamie RoweJamie Rowe

Bethlehem Central School District

Jamie Rowe earned her B.S. in Atmospheric Science and her M.S. in Education from SUNY Albany. Ms. Rowe teaches three levels of Science Research, Astronomy, as part of an Earth Science Outreach Program through SUNY Oneonta and Wildlife Biology at Bethlehem Central High School where she is a member of the STEAM Advisory Committee. Jamie is a past recipient of a Geoscience Teachers in the National Parks Internship and spent six weeks at Mammoth Cave, Kentucky, working with their Science and Research teams. She was recently chosen to be a NASA/IPAC (Infrared Processing and Analysis Center) Teacher Archive Research Program Intern for 2017 and is a member of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, the National Science Teachers Association, and the American Astronomical Society. As a Master Teacher, Ms. Rowe has joined the Earth Science PLT, participated in Professional Conversations, and attended workshops on beekeeping, POGILs: Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning, and forensic science. She looks forward to continuing to improve her own teaching skills and to collaborating with fellow Master teachers to produce quality classroom materials.

Kelly RyanKelly Ryan

North Colonie Central School District

Kelly Ryan earned her BS in biology from SUNY Buffalo and MSEd from SUNY Albany. A veteran teacher of 26 years, Mrs. Ryan teaches biology and Forensic Science at Shaker High School. A believer that the path to student achievement is through the application of scientific concepts to the real world, she regularly incorporates problem-based learning activities and the case study method of teaching science into her curricula. Mrs. Ryan is active in professional associations, serving as a Living Environment Subject Area Representative (SAR) for the Eastern Section of Science Teachers Association of NYS. In this role, she provides professional development to colleagues at both the local and state levels. Past accolades include the 2012 New York Outstanding Biology Teacher Award, given in recognition of excellence in the teaching of biology and service of the profession as determined by the National Association of Biology Teachers, and the 2012 Science Teachers Association of New York State Eastern Section Service Award. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, she has participated in mini-courses, including Measuring Climate Change and The Safety of Genetically Engineered Food, and is a member of the Women in STEM Professional Learning Team.

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Paul Scott

Niskayuna School District

Paul Scott earned his BS in Geological Engineering from Cornell University, MS in Geology from Penn State, Master of Arts in Teaching from Union College, and National Board Certification in Science. Prior to teaching, Mr. Scott worked for BP Exploration in Houston, TX as an Exploration Geologist in their Gulf Coast Operations. In the classroom for 21 years, Mr. Scott teaches Earth Science and Environmental Science at Niskayuna High School and also serves as the Science Department Teacher Leader. He has received several awards and honors, including 5-time GE Star Award winner and a NYS Finalist for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science. He tells his students every day to “Think Science!” and they get plenty of practice as part of the Science Bowl Team and the Recycling Club, which he advises. He has led students on geology field trips to the Grand Canyon and climate studies on the continental ice sheet of Greenland. When not teaching, he is working with teachers to perfect their craft in a course called “Data Driven Instruction” at Union Graduate College. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Scott is looking forward to incorporating and integrating a “flipped classroom” model into his repertoire.

John ScrivoJohn Scrivo

Saratoga Springs City School District

John Scrivo earned his B.S. in Biology and Secondary Education from The College of New Jersey and his M.S. in Environmental Science from Rutgers University. As an undergraduate, Mr. Scrivo participated in a summer internship with The Darrin Fresh Water Institute in Lake George. In graduate school, John presented his research on pollution microbiology at an American Society of Microbiology conference. Mr. Scrivo teaches Physical Science and Living Environment at Maple Avenue Middle School where he chairs the middle school science department, advises the Science Club and Science Bowl, and co-advises the Ski Club. John serves on several committees, has been awarded two grants for innovative technology use, and is founder and coordinator of his school's annual science night. He credits his teaching success to his teacher mentor and longtime friend Ann Lomanto. Mr. Scrivo is a member of the National Science Teachers Association and a two-time presenter at the NYS Middle School Association Conference. As a NYS Master Teacher, John has taken The Biology of Cancer and Tissue Engineering mini-courses, attended a Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning workshop, and participated in several Professional Conversations on topics that include 1:1 computing, student motivation and course acceleration. Mr. Scrivo looks forward to continuing to learn and share best practices with fellow Master Teachers and with members of his science department.

Stacey SebertStacey Sebert

South Colonie Central School District

Stacey Sebert graduated Cum Laude from Stony Brook University with a B.S. in Biology, concentrating in Marine Biology and Medicine. She received her M.S. in Biology Education at SUNY Albany. Ms. Sebert has worked with the Capital Region Science Education Partnership and the National Science Foundation developing science curriculum for elementary teachers. Ms. Sebert teaches 7th and 8th grade Physical and Earth Sciences at Sand Creek Middle School and has taught biology to future nursing students. Ms. Sebert has coached students in the Kid Wind Competition, built new science curriculum for English Language Learners, and served as instructor at Camp Invention. Stacey is a member of the National Science Teachers Association and the Science Teachers Association of New York State and is the only teacher in New York to receive the Maitland Simmons Award and to be certified by the Department of Environmental Conservation to run Project WILD, Project WILD Aquatic, and Project WET professional development workshops. As a Master Teacher, Ms. Sebert has joined PLTs on Curriculum Development, Earth Science, and Nanotechnology, assisted at a Girls in STEM event, attended a book discussion with Nathalia Holt, author of Rise of the Rocket Girls, and served as mentor for pre- and in-service STEM teachers. Stacey looks forward to continuing her collaboration with other Master Teachers, preparing students for possible futures in STEM.

Judith SeligJudith Selig

Ballston Spa Central School District

Judy Selig earned her BS in Wildlife Science from Cornell University, MS in Environmental Toxicology from the University of Rochester, and her Master of Arts in Teaching from the Graduate College of Union University.  Prior to teaching, Ms. Selig worked as a wildlife technician at the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, a chemist at Eastman Kodak, an environmentalist for a non-profit environmental organization, and a consultant for various government agencies. In the classroom for the past eight years, Ms. Selig has taught Earth Science, Living Environment, Regents Chemistry, Honors Biology, International Baccalaureate Biology, and Medical Interventions, which is the third course in the Project Lead the Way series.  Ms. Selig takes advantage of many professional development opportunities at Cornell University, the NYS Museum, and Project Lead the Way curriculum planning.  Inspired by fresh air and exercise, Ms. Selig loves to bike, cross country ski, hike, and generally be outside.  As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Selig is excited to enhance her content and pedagogical knowledge by attending interesting and challenging courses, and meeting and collaborating with Master Teachers from across the state.

Erin SharkeyErin Sharkey

Greenville School District

Erin Sharkey earned her BS in biology from Villanova University and MS in Adolescence Education from The College of St. Rose.  Prior to teaching, Ms Sharkey was a microbiology analyst for a pharmaceutical company.  Her true passion is in the classroom where she has been teaching for 11 years.  Ms. Sharkey teaches Living Environment and International Baccalaureate (IB) Biology HL at Greenville High School. In addition to her classroom responsibilities, she is a mentor teacher, and an active member of the Building Leadership Team, the International Baccalaureate Team and the Building Safety Committee.  Ms. Sharkey firmly believes that all educators are lifelong learners, and sharing best practices is an essential piece of continuing to grow in the profession.  Ms. Sharkey’s educational philosophy can be conveyed by combing two famous quotes, one by Nelson Mandela, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” and another by Eleanor Roosevelt,  “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of dreams."  Ms. Sharkey looks forward to the wonderful opportunities and the people that she will have the opportunity to collaborate with in the NYS Master Teacher program.

Tom ShilandThomas Shiland

Saratoga Springs City School District

Tom Shiland earned his BA in chemistry from Dartmouth College, MS in Environmental Science from Drexel University, and MS in Education and Educational Administration from SUNY Albany.  He also achieved National Board Certification in Secondary Science Teaching. Prior to teaching, Mr. Shiland worked for nine years at the Environmental Protection Agency in Philadelphia. In the classroom for 31 years, he teaches chemistry and Advanced Placement Chemistry at Saratoga Springs High School. Mr. Shiland has served as the president of the Science Teachers Association of NYS (STANYS) and the Professional Development Director of STANYS.  He actively contributes to the science education field by facilitating presentations at the local, state, and national level, and has published papers in the Journal of Chemical Education, the Journal of Research in Science Teaching, Science Education and The Science Teacher.  Presently, he is in charge of the Siena Conference that is sponsored by the Eastern Section of STANYS.  As a Master Teacher, Mr. Shiland is looking forward to engaging with his peers in discussions of how to apply the results from recent cognitive science research to improve student learning in STEM areas.

James St. DenisJames St. Denis

Shenendehowa School District

James St. Denis earned his BS in biology at the State University of New York at Albany and MA in Science Education at West Virginia University.  In the classroom for 15 years, Mr. St. Denis teaches biology, earth science, chemistry, and environmental science at Shenendehowa High School.  He created and also teaches forensic science, a course for senior year students that expressed an interest in continued STEM study.  In 2010, Mr. St. Denis achieved National Board Certification and went on to become a Candidate Support Provider to guide other teachers through the process.  A strong advocate of international travel among students, he has taken groups of students to Costa Rica and to Ecuador. His future projects include taking students to Belize and the Grand Canyon.  With the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mr. St. Denis is looking forward to working with teachers throughout the state who enjoy challenging themselves and advancing their teaching techniques.

Stephanie Stiles

South Colonie Central School District

Stephanie Stiles earned her BA in Mathematics and Education from The College of St. Rose, and MSEd in Psychology from SUNY Albany. In the classroom for 14 years, Mrs. Stiles teaches Geometry, and Algebra 2/ Trigonometry at South Colonie Central High School.

Dolores StoreyDolores Storey

New Lebanon School District

Dolores Storey earned her BS in mathematics and MS in Mathematics Education from the University at Albany. A 20 year veteran teacher, Ms. Storey teaches Algebra 2/Trigonometry, Advanced Placement Calculus, and a Graphing Calculator course that incorporates mathematical modeling at the New Lebanon Junior/Senior High School.  She involves her students in problem solving activities where they can apply math concepts to other disciplines.  She is interested in finding ways to help students be excited about math and science, and is working with a colleague to organize a STEM day at the elementary school.  In addition to her teaching responsibilities, she serves as the Mathematics Coordinator for the New Lebanon Junior/Senior High School, and is a member of the Alpha Nu Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, the Association of Mathematics Teachers in NYS, the NYS Association of Mathematics Supervisors, and the Capital District Association of Mathematics Supervisors.

Jody SuprenantJody Suprenant

Fort Edward School District

Jody Suprenant earned her BS in biology from the SUNY Albany, degree as Cytotechnologist, American Association of Clinical Pathologists (CT (ASCP)) from Albany Medical College, and MSEd and Certificate of Advanced Study in Educational Leadership from SUNY Plattsburgh.  In the classroom for 13 years, Mrs. Suprenant teaches General Science, Regents Earth Science, and Regents Living Environment in the Fort Edward Union Free School District.  Her professional interests focus on science literacy and communication, lesson and assessment design, and technology integration. A strong advocate for making science accessible to all, she involves her students in activities to improve science literacy, citizen science, and individual research. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Mrs. Suprenant is Technology Core Senior Teacher, High School Building Leader, Class Advisor, Science Club Advisor, and Trustee of the Fort Edward Free Library Board of Directors. She was honored with the National Association of Geoscience Teachers Outstanding Earth Science Teacher Award for her contributions to Earth Science Education. With the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mrs. Suprenant has participated in two mini-courses—Measuring Global Climate Change and the Safety of Genetically Modified Food—and is a member of the Women in STEM Professional Learning Team.

Daniel SwanDaniel Swan

Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Central School District

Daniel Swan earned his B.A. in Geology from SUNY Binghamton where he also served as an EMT for the local ambulance squad. He later earned his M.S. in Education from the College of Saint Rose. Mr. Swan teaches Earth Science at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School and previously taught 5th – 8th grade science at Brown School in Schenectady. In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Mr. Swan serves as co-advisor to the yearbook club and recently took on the role of treasurer of the Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Teacher’s Association. As a NYS Master Teacher, Mr. Swan has attended The Biology of Cancer mini-course, assisted at a Girls in STEM event, taken a variety of STEM outings, joined the Earth Science PLT, and participated in Lab Day: Hands-On Minds-On Lab Activities for the Secondary Science Classroom workshop. Daniel was inspired to work and contribute to the STEM fields by his science teacher mother and business teacher father and would like to pass that inspiration onto his students by making science a fun, approachable subject, as it was made for him by his past teachers. He looks forward to continued collaboration with other Master Teachers to develop new cost-efficient STEM resources that can be easily integrated into classroom instruction or demonstrated online.

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Laura TedescoLaura Tedesco

Troy School District

Laura Tedesco graduated cum laude from Hartwick College with a BA in Geology, and Master of Arts in Teaching from the Graduate College of Union University. She achieved National Board Certification in Adolescent/Young Adult Earth and Space Science. In addition, she holds a Certificate of Advanced Study (CAS) in National Board Certification and Teacher Leadership and a CAS in Service Learning and Teacher Leadership. Ms. Tedesco has spent the last 12 years teaching Earth Science at Troy High School. She is also an instructor for the Sunset School Program at Troy High and enjoys working with at-risk youth. She tutors and mentors through the Sponsor-A-Scholar Program, which helps economically disadvantaged students with academic and financial support during their high school and college years. Ms. Tedesco spent ten days on board the Joint Oceanographic Institutions for Deep Earth Sampling (JOIDES) Resolution, an international ocean drilling research vessel, in British Columbia. She worked with scientists to learn about how ocean sediments are analyzed. She followed up this experience by spending one week on board the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Lake Guardian, during which she participated in the most recent EPA study of Lake Ontario. Ms. Tedesco hopes to inspire teachers to participate in scientific field work that helps them become teacher-scientists in the eyes of their students.

Melissa ThomasMelissa Thomas

Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Central School District

Melissa Thomas earned her BS in Environmental Science and MA in Teaching from Union College.  In the classroom for 16 years, Mrs. Thomas teaches Earth and Environmental Science at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School. A strong advocate for student-centered, hands-on learning, she always investigates ways to integrate technology into classroom activities.  Mrs. Thomas is passionate about the environment, and is part of an alternative energy group which has received grants to purchase a small wind turbine and a photovoltaic solar array.  This group of educators, from the science, math, technology and economics departments, is collaboratively creating an interdisciplinary approach to project-based learning.  Mrs. Thomas serves her community in several leadership roles, including as President of her school building, Co-Chair of the Professional Learning Communities Committee and Google Trainer for the Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake School District.  She was recently honored with the PTA Founder’s Day Award for her contributions to her students, school and charity work in the local community. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, Mrs. Thomas has participated in the Geo-Science of Hydro-Fracturing, Measuring Global Climate Change and The Safety of Genetically Engineered Food mini-courses, workshops at STEM Saturday and Google Tools for Educators, is a participant of the Elementary Science Kits Professional Learning Team, and facilitated an information session for prospective NYS MTP applicants.

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Jessica Vaccaro-PiperJessica Vaccaro-Piper

North Colonie Central School District

After graduating from the College of Saint Rose with a BA in biology, Jessica Vaccaro-Piper worked in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries in research and development labs, quality control and sales over the course of six years. Mrs. Piper earned a MS in Secondary Education- Biology from SUNY Albany and was a recipient of the Gertrude Hunter Parlin Teacher’s Scholarship. She has been teaching biology at Shaker High School in Latham for 11 years. Mrs. Piper has participated in numerous professional development activities and has mentored prospective science teachers over the course of her career.  In addition to teaching, Mrs. Piper is an employee of the NYS Education Department where she works on teams with other educators to create the Regents exams in biology. As a newly appointed NYS Master Teacher, Mrs. Piper is most looking forward to participating in exciting professional development opportunities and collaborating with other master teachers to continue to grow in her practice. She also hopes to inspire her students to pursue careers in STEM fields.

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Karen W. WellsKaren W. Wells

North Colonie Central School District

Karen W. Wells earned her B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Clarkson University her M.S. in Mechanical Engineering, with a focus in Thermal Fluid Sciences, from Virginia Tech, and her M.A.T. in Mathematics Education from Union College. Prior to teaching, Karen worked at General Electric for ten years. Mrs. Wells teaches Regents Algebra II, an Algebra II stretch course and Pre-Calculus at Shaker High School. She participates in professional conferences and consortia and is Nationally Board Certified in Adolescence and Young Adult Mathematics. Mrs. Wells has chaperoned school dances and the prom, served on the Ethics Committee, and helped design her school’s policy on Academic Integrity. Outside of school, Mrs. Wells is a mother of three college-aged children and her family has hosted a Fresh Air child since 2002. She loves outdoor activities and is striving to become an Adirondack 46er. As a NYS Master Teacher, Karen has joined a Math PLT, engaged in several Professional Conversations, participated in a book discussion with Nathalia Holt, author of Rise of the Rocket Girls, and attended workshops on Breakout Boxes and building 3-d geometric figures. Mrs. Wells looks forward to continuing her collaboration with an amazing group of STEM Master Teachers to strengthen and energize her own teaching and her mentoring of pre-service teachers.

Barry WitteBarry Witte

South Colonie Central School District

Barry Witte earned his BS in Chemistry from the US Naval Academy and MA in Education from Old Dominion University, and has been teaching for 23 years. Mr. Witte teaches high school pre-engineering courses at South Colonie High School.  A strong advocate for STEM integration, he involves his grades 9-12 students in many open-ended design problems. Mr. Witte’s professional interests focus on renewable energy and engineering-prep education and his recent projects include collaboration on a web-based electronic portfolio and evaluation system for engineering students.  In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Mr. Witte serves as a certified master teacher for Project Lead the Way, a national organization of STEM resources for k-12 teachers. Mr. Witte is also an adjunct instructor for Hudson Valley Community College’s Photovoltaic courses and a Naval Academy Admissions Counselor for Northeastern New York. Within the NYS Master Teacher Program, he is a member of the Energy Professional Learning Team. Mr. Witte’s favorite part about teaching STEM is his belief that the material is always changing, so there is always something new to learn and teach.

Connie WoytowichConnie Woytowich

South Colonie Central School District

Connie Woytowich earned her B.S. cum laude in Biology and Chemistry Education and M.S. in Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology from SUNY Albany, as well as two Certificates of Advanced Study. Ms. Woytowich teaches secondary level chemistry and biology at her alma mater, Colonie Central High School. She is Co-Director of Camp Invention and has led professional development sessions as a lead learner in the Colonie High School Professional Learning Community. Connie has developed an elective course called Personal Genetics for high school students interested in learning about new technologies and ethical issues regarding genetics research and its applications. She developed and chairs the STEM Expo at the elementary level in her district, has written successful grants for the STEM Lab, which provide materials for STEM instruction, and serves as the PTA President. Ms. Woytowich was recognized by Assemblywoman Carrie Woerner and Saratoga Springs Mayor Joanne Yepsen as a 2017 Woman of Distinction, honored with the "Excellence in Education Award." As a Master Teacher, Ms. Woytowich has joined the Chemistry PLT, attended the Tissue Engineering mini-course, and participated in several STEM workshops and discussions. Connie looks forward to continuing her work with other Master Teachers to help maximize educational opportunities for all students.

Margot Plumadore WyanMargot Plumadore Wyan

Albany City School District

Margot Plumadore Wyan attended SUNY Potsdam where she completed her coursework in the B.A./M.A. program in Mathematics and double-majored as an undergraduate in Secondary Education. Originally from Saranac Lake, Mrs. Wyan now resides in Albany where she teaches mathematics at Albany High School, including International Baccalaureate (IB) Mathematics SL 2, IB Theory of Knowledge (STEM perspective), and Algebra 1 Test Prep. She has served as the math department’s Building Curriculum Team Leader and Coordinator of the IB Diploma and Advanced Placement programs. Mrs. Wyan has been honored by her students in the regional Scholars Recognition Program and was named by one of her IB students as a teacher of influence in the Presidential Scholars program. She has been a Ski Club chaperone and enjoys playing ice hockey in her spare time. As a NYS Master Teacher, Margot has joined the Math PLT, participated in Professional Conversations, and attended workshops on topics that include TI Nspire, Mathematical Ideas in Curve Stitching and String Art, and Mathematical Art: 3D Printing. Mrs. Wyan looks forward to continued opportunities for high-quality interdisciplinary professional development the NYS Master Teacher Program.

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Susan YagielskiSusan Yagielski

Guilderland School District

Susan Yagielski earned her BS in Marketing and MS in Math Education from Saint Joseph’s University, and an Advanced Certification in Educational Leadership from the University of Rochester.  Ms. Yagielski has been in the classroom a total of 16 years. After beginning her career as a classroom teacher, Ms. Yagielski spent five years as a math coach and professional development specialist.  Most recently, she served as the Capital District Board of Cooperative Educational Service Network Team Institute math coach.  Returning to the classroom, Ms. Yagielski is a middle school math teacher and co-advisor of Farnsworth Middle School’s state-qualifying Math Counts Team.   Fascinated by the lives of historic female mathematicians, including her mother who was an early programmer with Kodak, Ms. Yagielski is inspired by Sonya Kovalevsky who said: “It is impossible to be a mathematician without being a poet in soul.”  As a NYS Master Teacher, Ms. Yagielski is looking forward to collaborating with teachers whose love of learning is infectious and to continuing to promote the noble profession of teaching.

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Master Teacher Program

Leading and Learning Together: Professional Development Opportunities for K-12 Teachers in New York State
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