Board Members - 2022-2023



Krisztina Domjan

President

president@watesol.org



Krisztina is an educator and advocate of inclusive pedagogy. She has experience in a range of educational settings: higher, adult, and secondary education of civilian and military learners; in Hungary, in England, in Germany (military base) and in the USA. She teaches International Communication, Intercultural Studies, Research Writing, Composition and Discussion courses at American University. She enjoys sharing innovative and stimulating ideas and professional development resources with colleagues in professional learning circles. She has experience teaching in-person and online courses pre sessional, undergraduate and graduate students. American University



Greer Mancuso

Past President

pastpresident@watesol.org
Greer Mancuso teaches ESOL in Fairfax County Public Schools. She holds a PhD in Teaching and Teacher Education from George Mason University (GMU). She has taught ESOL at the elementary, middle, and high school level. She is a Nationally Board Certified Teacher (NBCT) in the area of English as a New Language. She currently is a reviewer for NBCT candidates and has been an instructor for NBCT cohorts. She has taught courses at GMU as an adjunct instructor. Her primary research interests focus on English Learners (ELs) who have experienced interrupted schooling. She recently led a collaborative action research study with K-12 teachers across the country to explore what knowledge, skills, dispositions, and instructional strategies teachers need to support ELs with interrupted schooling.
Fairfax County Public Schools
 

Melissa Hauke

Vice President

vicepresident@watesol.org

Melissa is a high school ESOL Resource Teacher for Fairfax County Public Schools. In addition to teaching high school, she has also taught elementary, university and adult students. She is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (Macedonia 2007-2009), an English Language Fellow (Russia) and an English Language Specialist (Thailand). She has an MS in Education in Reading and an M.Ed in Curriculum and Instruction. Fairfax County Public Schools


Connie Patsalos

Recording Secretary

recordingsecretary@watesol.org

Connie Patsalos teaches ESL at Deal Middle School in DCPS. In addition to teaching middle school, she has also been an adjunct at American University in both the English Language Training Academy, where she taught Media & Culture and History of Higher Education, and the TESOL department, where she taught Academic Writing for Graduate Students. In her role as a public school teacher, Connie is very interested in helping ELs be more fully integrated into the general education classroom. She received a BA in English from Colgate University and an MA TESOL from American University.  District of Columbia Public Schools

Rebecca Mercado

Treasurer  

treasurer@watesol.org

Rebecca has a dual career: Accounting (B.A. Business Administration) and TEFL (MATEFL-Applied Linguistics).  In her first career, Accounting, she is currently contracted with WL Bonner College as their Contracted CFO.  Rebecca has owned and operated an accounting and tax office for 21 years with over 200 clients before moving on to her second career which includes receiving her MATEFL – Applied Linguistics degree from the American University in Cairo.

In Rebecca’s second career, she has developed and delivered workshops and conducted classroom observations in her role as the Professional Development Supervisor in the English Language Skills Department at King Saud University in Saudi Arabia for 5 years.  Rebecca has worked in management and taught EFL for over 10 years.

King Saud University

Elissa Robinson

Membership Secretary

membership@watesol.org 


Elissa Robinson is a high school ESOL in Fairfax County Public Schools.  She graduated from American University with degrees in French and Cross-Cultural Communication, before spontaneously moving to Japan to teach English.  After three years abroad, Elissa returned to Fairfax and earned her Master’s in Education from George Mason University. 

Elissa loves working with newly-arrived ELs. She is currently working on a degree in Education Leadership and hopes to work for FCPS Instructional Services designing a curriculum for newcomers that is more reasonable for older ELs and allows equitable access to graduation.

Fairfax County Public Schools

Tabitha Kidwell

Communications Chair

communications@watesol.org


Tabitha Kidwell is a faculty member in the TESOL program at American University.  She holds a Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics and Language Education from the University of Maryland, College Park.  Her research focuses on language teacher education, particularly how language teachers are prepared to teach about culture.  She has taught French, Spanish, and English to students ranging from pre-schoolers to adults, and has conducted professional development for language teachers in Indonesia, Malaysia, India, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Tanzania, and the United States. Dr. Kidwell is a frequent presenter at regional and international TESOL conferences.
American University

Debora Amidani Kimmel

PD Co-Chair

pd@watesol.org 

Debora Amidani Kimmel was an EFL teacher in Brazil, her home country, for 15 years; she taught a wide range of ages - from 8 years old to 60+. She then decided to take her Master's Degree in TESOL in the United States, at American University in Washington, DC. She was a graduate assistant in her program's office and she graduated in Spring 2020. In the same year, she started working as an ESL instructor at The Family Place Public Charter School in DC. Her population now is adult immigrants, mostly from Spanish-speaking countries.

The Family Place, PCS
 

Mayonne Granzo

PD Co-Chair

pd@watesol.org 

Mayonne Granzo is an adjunct faculty member at Georgetown University's English Language Center where she teaches in the intensive English program. She is also a Literacy Specialist in the Accelerated Career English program at Holyoke Community College where she teaches English to new immigrants transitioning into the American workplace. She has a Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies and a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction with a focus on ESOL. Mayonne has also led teacher training workshops for pre-service and in-service English language teachers in Morocco, as part of her fellowship with English Language Programs. She has taught students from all around the world while learning about their culture and providing them with the essential English tools needed to pursue their life goals.  Georgetown University, Holyoke Community College
 

Marina Dewees

Newsletter Co-Editor

newsletter@watesol.org

Marina Dewees is a teacher and a curriculum writer in FCPS. She holds a PhD in social linguistics. She has taught all age groups -from K to adults. Marina has worked in DCPS, FCPS and overseas. Marina is an National Borad Certified Teacher, a Fulbright alumni and a regular presenter at national and international conferences. Among Marina's main professional interests are teacher training and support, development content area curricula for ELs and students' skills re-uptake in post-pandemic environment. 

Fairfax County Public Schools

Kathleen Kearney

Newsletter Co-Editor

newsletter@watesol.org




Kathleen F. Kearney teaches international students and professionals at Georgetown University’s English Language Center. She has taught for American University, Kaplan International English, International Language Institute, Lado International Institute and Education USA-Russia. She has also taught young English learners at DCPS, DC public charter schools and the National Defense University.  Since 2009, she has been a volunteer at the Washington English Center. She holds an M.S. in Literacy, Culture and Language Education from Indiana University. She also holds professional certificates in Instructional Design and Teaching English as a Foreign Language from Georgetown University, an M.A. from Indiana University, and a B.A. from Miami University (Ohio).
Georgetown University
 

Qaïs S. Ahmadī 

Newsletter Co-Editor

newsletter@watesol.org
Qaïs S. Ahmadī is an Afghan refugee scholar-activist raised in the East Bay Area, California with over a decade of international experience in higher education. He is an active researcher having produced highly acclaimed peer-reviewed publications in his respective fields. His expatriate experiences include the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the State of Qatar, Japan, the People’s Republic of China, and Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT).  
 

Max Rhinehart

Higher Ed SIG 

higheredsig@watesol.org

Max is an instructor at American University’s English Language Training Academy and International Accelerator Program. After studying Spanish and English as an undergraduate, he earned a Masters degree in Applied Linguistics from Ohio University. He has taught English to students of diverse backgrounds in Ohio, North Carolina, and here in Washington, DC.

American University


  John Simpson

Higher Ed SIG 

higheredsig@watesol.org

John Simpson is a former English Language Fellow, Specialist, and Alumni Ambassador at Georgetown University and values inclusive education practices in Higher Education. From 2020-2021, John was Director of the English-Speaking Nation Program with American Councils for International Education in Uzbekistan. A former Clinton Fellow for Service in India and Senior Fellow at the Asian University for Women in Bangladesh, John brings a multitude of international teaching experiences and diverse leadership skills to WATESOL. John currently serves as Director of the Professional Fellows Program for Economic Empowerment in the Middle East and North Africa with Legacy International. Legacy International

William Newman

K-12 SIG

k12sig@watesol.org

William Newman teaches English Learners (ELs) at Ballou High School in Washington, DC.  He previously worked as an English teacher in China and Australia and as a district EL program coordinator in Mississippi.  He completed his Master of Arts in the Teaching of Languages (Spanish and TESOL) at the University of Southern Mississippi.

District of Columbia Public Schools

Vivian Njosa

Adult Ed SIG

adultedsig@watesol.org

Vivianne Njosa is from Cameroon, Central Africa and has been in the United States for Forty-Five years.  She lives in Burtonsville MD with her two children, Gabriella and Michael. For years, she worked as a Realtor in Maryland, educating low-income families on the home buying process. She received her Masters Degree in Curriculum and Education in 2015 and immediately got hired as an ESOL Instructor at Montgomery College. For the past six years,  she has been an instructor for the AELG program in Montgomery College, and she hopes to continue facilitating learning for adult learners in Montgomery county for as long as she can. 
Montgomery College

Ahri Lee

Adult Ed SIG

adultedsig@watesol.org

Ahri Lee holds a master's degree in TESOL and has been working with English learners for about 20 years. She has fond memories of teaching high school students in Seoul, South Korea. She also worked at Somali Adult Literacy Training in Minnesota, University of Florida in Florida and many institutes around the greater Washington area. Currently she works with adult English learners at Montgomery College. Her research interests are language learning strategies, teacher training, and an asset-based approach to language teaching.  

Montgomery College

 

Maria E. Silva
NNEST Caucus Liason
nnest@watesol.org


Maria E. Silva is an English teacher and a Specialist in Foreign Language Teaching from Venezuela. She teaches Spanish for the District of Columbia Public Schools. Mrs. Silva participated in the Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program at George Mason University, the Youth Ambassador Program in Tennessee, and English Teaching trainings with the University of Oregon. She was an active member of VENTESOL (Venezuelan Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages), volunteering for English teachers’ professional development, workshops, and conventions.  District of Columbia Public Schools
 

Leah Passauer

NNEST Caucus Liason
nnest@watesol.org

Leah Passauer works at FHI360 as the Regional Program Officer supporting the English Access Microscholarship Program in Sub-Saharan Africa. Previously she worked as an English Language Fellow (ELF) and Virtual English Language Fellow in Vietnam from 2019 - 2021. During her time as an ELF, she helped to coordinate, present, and review proposals for VietTESOL and CamTESOL Conferences. She has nine years of programmatic and teaching experience, specifically focusing on English teacher training in Burundi, China, Indonesia, Madagascar, and the West Bank. Leah received her M.A. in International Education from the School for International Training.  FHI 360
 

Lesley-Jane Dixon

Advocacy Chair

advocacy@watesol.org

Lesley-Jane formerly worked as a Partner and SVP for an investment firm in NYC and a single-family office in MD.  A life-long commitment to education as a volunteer in numerous nonprofits led to the decision to pursue a TESOL certification in hopes of teaching English overseas.
 
  Heather Mehrtens

Advocacy Chair

advocacy@watesol.org

Heather Mehrtens holds an MA in TESL, a BA in Linguistics with Highest Distinction, and a BA in Germanic Languages & Literatures from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She has been teaching TESOL for nearly 14 years, has earned an Excellence in Teaching Award from Harvard Extension School, and is currently an ESOL lecturer at the Maryland English Institute. She has worked in a variety of programs and settings and has taught nearly every language level. Her research interests include content and task based instruction and global Englishes. She is excited about serving on WATESOL's board and hopes that her diverse experience can help advocate for the field.   Maryland English Institute
Heather TH headshot.jpeg Heather Tatton-Harris
Archivist
archives@watesol.org
Heather is the Curriculum & Assessment Manager at Carlos Rosario International Public Charter School.  She earned her MA in TESOL and EdM in Applied Linguistics with a focus on pragmatics and classroom discourse at Teachers College, Columbia University.   She is passionate about connecting research to practice. Carlos Rosario International Public Charter School








Fall 2022 Conference Sponsors


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