Curriculum & Instruction Faculty
Mamzelle V.S. Adolphine, Ph.D.
Mamzelle V. S. Adolphine has worked as a teacher and a trainer at the elementary school level. She joined the faculty of American College of Education in 2010 as a professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction. She received her Ph.D. from Capella University and is a New York University Honors Scholar and a returned Peace Corps Volunteer who served in Mauritania, West Africa. She is very involved in her community and facilitates an ASTDEdge Restructuring Schools group. She enjoys hiking and cycling.
George Ash, Ed.D.
George Ash holds an Ed.D. from Walden University and has taught in the prison system to adult learners, traditional K-12 students, and graduate students. He has served as an administrator for over eight years in various roles including superintendent. His research interests include rural education, opportunity analysis, and mathematics. As a speaker and writer, his areas of expertise include leadership in educational administration and school finance.
Karen E. Austin, Ed.D.
Karen E. Austin currently serves as an assistant principal with Chicago Public Schools and faculty member of American College of Education. Dr. Austin’s research interests include the effects of positive behavioral support and teacher and leadership effectiveness on student achievement. Dr. Austin is most proud of her work focusing on appropriate practices for students with disabilities. She enjoys serving the community through her sorority and traveling the world. She received her Ed.D. from Argosy-Chicago, her M.A. from National-Louis University and her B.A. from Chicago State University.
Sarah Becerra, Ph.D.
Sarah Becerra received her Ph.D. from Texas Woman’s University and published her dissertation, entitled "Death of a Parent in Childhood and Resilience in Adulthood." She also earned her M.A. in Family Therapy from TWU and holds a B.A. in Psychology from University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. An advocate of online teaching, Dr. Becerra is also a licensed marriage and family therapist who provides mental health and substance abuse assessments for hospitals. She enjoys playing the guitar.
Ellen Brewer, Ed.D
Ellen Brewer holds an Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction/Curriculum Development from Nova Southeastern University, an M.A. in Secondary English Education, and a B.S. in Secondary Education from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. She is certified in educational leadership and library information services from Jacksonville State University. Dr. Brewer has taught English, college composition and literature courses in grades 5-12, and secondary education courses in ELA teaching methodologies. She works as a literacy coach in grades 9-12, was twice selected as a teacher-fellow with the National Writing Project and currently serves on the JSU Writing Project Advisory Board.
Bridgette Davis, Ph.D.
Bridgette Davis earned a Ph.D. in Secondary Education with an emphasis in literacy and science from Southern Mississippi University. As a former 7th and 8th grade science teacher, Dr. Davis developed a passion for preparing teachers to reach middle and high school students. She is committed to high expectations with purposeful literacy integration to meet the needs of culturally diverse students while making meaningful instructional connections to real-life applications. Her research interests include adolescent literacy and STEM integration into content areas across the secondary school curriculum, developing low-cost tools to teach science, e-learning, authentic assessments, and classroom climate. Dr. Davis is a world traveler.
Rita Deyoe-Chiullán, Ph.D.
Rita Deyoe-Chiullán earned her bachelor’s degree from Kansas State University where she was the first exchange ESL instructor to a university in Colombia. She later taught ESL/linguistics in universities and a bi-national British/Colombian school. Returning to KSU for both her M.A. and her Ph.D., she taught English for International Students, returning to Colombia to teach ESL and prepare ESL teachers. She was KSU’s first Title VII USOE Bilingual/Multicultural doctoral fellow, earning a degree in Curriculum & Instruction (Bilingual/Multicultural). Dr. Deyoe-Chiullán taught bilingual/ESL teachers and administrators and was an alternative certification bilingual specialist at Dallas ISD. Currently, she teaches bilingual/ESL education courses at American College of Education.
Deborah Gilbert, Ed.D.
Deborah Gilbert was a South Carolina State Department of Education Curriculum Specialist for many years. She is a National Board Certified Teacher in ELA and has developed many workshops and seminars involving professional learning communities, curriculum mapping and unwrapping standards, teacher as leader, program evaluation, and using data to drive school decisions. Dr. Gilbert has taught middle school and high school English and Spanish, college business communications, online leadership, curriculum, and doctoral education courses for several schools. She holds an Ed.D. in Education Leadership from Nova Southeastern, an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Technology from the University of Phoenix, and a bachelor's degree in Spanish literature from SUNY Oswego. In addition to serving on the faculty at American College of Education, she is exploring the use of virtual schools for K-12.
Rebecca Good, Ed.D.
Rebecca Good has been a teacher, campus administrator, central office administrator, school superintendent, and graduate-level university professor in both Educational Administration and Bilingual/ESL courses. She has published journal articles and books on current educational topics and has expertise in helping assistant principals become stronger instructional leaders before becoming principals. She began presenting at national, state, and local conferences in 1994 and has made more than a thousand presentations on a variety of educational topics. Dr. Good’s current interest is in early childhood, since she now has a toddler granddaughter who can easily operate an iPad.
Tiffany Hamlett, Ph.D.
Tiffany Hamlett has a background in early childhood development and education with an emphasis on developmentally appropriate practice. She has served as a mentor to student teachers and supervised field experience in lab and classroom settings. Her publications include the subjects of analyzing aggression in television programs for preschoolers, caregivers’ roles in the development of babies’ brains, and cross-gendered play in preschool. Dr. Hamlett holds a Ph.D. from Texas Woman's University.
Therese Kanai, Ph.D.
Therese Kanai has been involved in the field of education for more than 20 years. After graduating from the University of Hawaii, she moved to Kailua-Kona and worked as a substitute teacher. After discovering her passion for teaching and children, she attended UH Hilo and earned her secondary teaching certification in mathematics. Subsequently, she received her M.A. in Education from Heritage College and earned a Ph.D. in Education from Walden University.
Katrina Landa, Ed.D.
Katrina Landa has been in education for more than a decade, teaching elementary and high school and supervising adult education programs. She received her master's degree in Early Childhood Education and ESOL from the University of Miami and her Doctorate in Special Education (with a minor in Educational Leadership) from Florida International University. Dr. Landa loves to travel and spend time with her family.
David Mapp, Jr., Ed.D.
David Mapp, Jr., is a social studies instructor in Pinellas County, Florida. Dr. Mapp, colloquially called "Dr. M," was a 2008 Teacher of the Year Award recipient in the category of Creativity and Innovation. He frequently makes presentations at conferences on technology and PowerPoint use in the classroom. With roots in the Caribbean island of St. Croix, he is an advocate for ESOL students. He holds an Ed.D. from Argosy University in Instructional Leadership and is certified in Educational Leadership and K-12 Social Science.
Marsha Moore, Ph.D.
Marsha Moore has been an educator for 20 years. She earned an undergraduate degree from Georgia State University in Early Childhood Education, a master's degree in Child Development, and a doctorate degree in Child Development and Education from Texas Woman's University. Her research interests include constructivist teacher training/staff development, child guidance, play and diversity. Dr. Moore has four young children who influence her growth as a teacher and as a person. She enjoys running and reading Mental Floss magazine.
Joyce Myers, Ed.D.
Joyce Myers, a graduate of the University of North Texas with an Ed.D. in Early Childhood Education, also studied at Mercer University, Dallas Baptist University, and Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Currently she teaches university courses in early childhood and elementary education. She is a former elementary school principal and classroom teacher, and she is also the author of an instructor's manual for a textbook on early childhood education. She and her family lived in countries outside the U.S. for more than 10 years.
Jose Arturo Puga, Ed.D.
Jose Arturo Puga is currently a vice principal at Stillman Middle School in Brownsville, Texas, and a retired U.S. Army officer. His career in education, which spans nearly two decades, includes experience as a bilingual elementary teacher, guidance counselor and administrator at the elementary, middle school, and high school levels. Dr. Puga was awarded the Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Bilingual Education at Texas A&M - Kingsville. He has earned a bachelor's degree in Spanish Literature, master's degree in Guidance and Counseling from the University of Texas System and most recently a master's degree in Sociology from Texas Tech University.
Denita B. Scott, Ed.D.
Denita B. Scott, Ed.D. has served as an educator for 24 years. Her current role is Assistant Superintendent of Student Learning and Programs for Dolton School District 149. Previously, she was a Director of Student Learning and Assistant Principal for an elementary and middle school, a reading coach, a Title I teacher, a Reading Recovery teacher, and a classroom teacher. Throughout her tenure in Dolton School District 149, Dr. Scott has displayed a strong passion for improvement of student achievement and has advocated for children's success. During the summer of 2011, she chaired a committee to update the reading and math curriculum and established the district's Curriculum Planning Council.
Dr. Scott has earned a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree with a concentration in reading from Governors State University in University Park, Illinois, and a doctorate in educational leadership from Roosevelt University in Chicago. Dr. Scott has served as an adjunct professor at Chicago State University in Chicago for three years and taught Foundations of Reading and Content Area Reading for Middle School. She was a presenter for the Illinois Principals Association and the Superintendents Commission for the Study of Demographics and Diversity Conference. In addition, she is a member of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, the Illinois Principals Association, International Reading Association, Illinois Reading Council, South Suburban Reading Council, and the Data for School Innovation Advisory Board (DSI).
Rosita Tormala-Nita, Ph.D.
Rosita Tormala-Nita began her career in higher education about 15 years ago in the interdisciplinary field of International Studies and Business Administration. Her international projects focused on improving language policies to expand access to higher learning and use technology to create world-wide classrooms. As Dr. Tormala-Nita studied the role of higher learning in creating access and the importance of scientific philanthropy, her career moved toward research administration. In 2003, she earned a Ph.D. in educational policy studies from Marquette University and served as an educational foundations faculty member at a public R1 university. As her interest in the work of educators grew, she spent time in schools as a substitute teacher and completed an additional master's degree in secondary education. In the last five years, she has fully transitioned into the field of education. In 2010, she joined the American College of Education faculty. In teaching for ACE, she realized her goal of working for a single-purpose institution within the concept of world-wide classrooms. Dr. Tormala-Nita is now a core faculty member. Her areas of research interest include helping educators worldwide find solutions to educational issues through action research. In her free time, she enjoys activities with her family as well as running 5K/10K and half-marathons.
Deborah VanOurkerk, Ed.D.
Deborah VanOurkerk is a veteran educator with more than 35 years of K-8 teaching experience. Presently, she is the Science Department Chair at a middle school. She is a Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) certified teacher and her site's district representative. She is a member of a school site team that analyzes and determines the appropriateness of proposed curriculum. She holds an Ed.D. from Fielding Graduate University, Santa Barbara.
Gordon Vessels, Ed.D.
Gordon Vessels taught in public schools for several years in addition to being a teaching assistant for undergraduate education students at the University of Georgia. He completed degree programs in Education, Sociology, and School Psychology as well as a leadership-training program at Georgia State University. He worked 25 years as a school psychologist in urban, rural, and suburban schools. His doctoral dissertation was on nonbiased assessment. He authored and directed U.S. DOE grant projects in multiple schools and published a book in 1998, entitled Character and Community Development.
Rebecca Wiehe, Ph.D.
Rebecca Wiehe has been a Spanish teacher for 18 years and has taught at levels ranging from preschool to university. She currently teaches at the high school level. Her undergraduate degrees are in Spanish and Spanish Education from Miami University (Ohio). She holds a master’s degree in Spanish from the University of Cincinnati, and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from Kent State University. Dr. Wiehe has worked extensively with both student teachers and veteran teachers as they continue their professional development.
Educational Leadership Faculty
Peggy Blood, Ph.D.
Peggy Blood's interest in teaching sparked in college when she was hired to direct Office of Economic Opportunity programs for disadvantaged children in Arkansas. As a result of that OEO position, she was inspired to influence how children were taught. Since earning a Ph.D. from Union Institute and University in Cincinnati, she has been a director of campuses and a teacher education program in California. By providing tools and strategies to understand and help challenged students learn, she shares her knowledge with students across the nation.
Donald DeMoulin, Ed.D.
Donald DeMoulin is a former elementary school teacher, principal, and district superintendent who earned an Ed.D. at Mississippi State University. In 1987, he became a member of the American College of Education core faculty. Dr. DeMoulin has published more than 150 articles, books, and technical manuscripts, and made more than 250 international research presentations. He has been recognized for his research in early childhood self-concept development and use of personalization to enhance reading skills, distance-learning/technology training, online curriculum development, leadership development training, and violence prevention strategies for schools. He is also an education and business consultant.
Audrey Donaldson, Ed.D.
A veteran of 35 years in public education, Audrey Donaldson is a former chief officer for Chicago Public Schools' Office of Teacher Recertification and Professional Standards, where she oversaw the implementation of the Illinois state teacher recertification guidelines for Chicago’s 28,000 teachers. She has been a teacher and principal at the elementary and secondary levels and an assistant superintendent for elementary education. As an educational consultant, she conducted an independent evaluation of the tutorial programs in the U.S. Virgin Islands and worked in several school districts across the United States. Dr. Donaldson holds a B.S. in English Language Arts from Loyola University (Chicago), an M.A. in Educational Administration and Supervision and a doctorate in Educational Leadership. She has completed post-doctoral coursework at Western Illinois University to fulfill the requirements for the superintendent's endorsement.
Steven Funk, Ed.D.
Steven Funk is an assistant principal at Aledo High School in Aledo, Texas, and faculty member at American College of Education. He holds a B.S. from Texas Tech University, an M.Ed. from Tarleton State University, and an MBA and Ed.D. from Texas Christian University. Married and the father of two children, Dr. Funk was elected to the Granbury ISD School Board, where he resides.
Beverly J. Greene, Ed.D.
Beverly J. Greene currently serves as principal of a Head Start through 8th grade elementary school in a large urban school district. Previous professional experience includes reading specialist, assistant principal and curriculum coordinator. As an instructional leader, Dr. Greene has provided professional development on topics including data-driven, standards-based instruction, assessments and effective literacy practices that build instructional capacity in school faculty and staff. Dr. Greene earned an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from DePaul University, an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction and a B.A. in Communications. She is passionate about teaching, learning, and literacy.
Brenda Hargrove, Ed.D.
An educator for 21 years, Brenda Hargrove has advocated for cultural understanding and tolerance. Dr. Hargrove and a colleague published an article in the Spring 2011 edition of The Journal for the Education of the Gifted as a follow-up to her dissertation, “Gifted Programs: Teacher and Administrator Perceptions." She is a two-time Fulbright Scholar, participating in two different programs: An Administrative Exchange to Argentina (2007) and a Fulbright Hays to Mexico (2010). Dr. Hargrove holds an Ed.D. from East Carolina University.
Dawn Hickman, Ph.D.
Dawn Hickman has spent her teaching career educating students with disabilities at both the middle and high school levels in small town and inner city settings in Tennessee. Currently, she teaches students with emotional disturbances and resource math to students in middle school. Over the years, she has also been a GED instructor and a tutor. For more than a decade, Dr. Hickman has spent her summers as director of Camp Discovery, a haven for special needs adults and children in Gainesboro, Tennessee. Dr. Hickman earned her B.S. in Special Education from Tennessee Technological University and her M.S. in Educational Leadership/Administration from Trevecca Nazarene University. She later earned her Ph.D. in Education from Capella University.
Michelle Howard-Schwind, Ph.D.
Michelle Howard-Schwind earned her Ph.D. in Educational Administration at the University of North Texas. She served five years as a middle school principal and five years as an assistant principal. Dr. Howard-Schwind taught ESL, speech, theater, and the arts for nine years. She currently serves as a director of Organizational Improvement in Texas. In her life outside of education, she attempts to corral a Cub Scout, a ballerina, and a mechanical engineer.
Joanne Hughes, Ph.D.
In her career as a teacher and principal, Joanne Hughes has received numerous awards. They include the 2004 Twenty-First Century School of Distinction Intel from the Scholastic Administrator, the 2000 Principal of the Year from the Dallas Association of School Librarians, the 2000 Texas Mentor School award from the Texas Education Agency, the 1999 Principal of the Year from the Dallas ISD Special Education Department, 1999 Principal of the Year Dallas from the Dallas ISD, the Character Counts School Award from the Dallas Coalition on Character and Values, the 1999 Special Emphasis Award in Character Education, and the 1998 Blue Ribbon School from the U.S. Department of Education.
Patricia Krumnow, Ed.D.
Patricia Krumnow earned her bachelor's degree in Secondary Science and began teaching middle school in 1999. Dr. Krumnow has earned three additional degrees in education, culminating with her Ed.D. in Educational Leadership. She is married with two young daughters.
Deborah Lee, Ed.D.
Deborah Lee has more than 28 years of experience in education, working as a high school teacher, high school administrator, on-line professor, and federal grant administrator. She is especially proud of her work with at-risk students and online adult learners. She holds an Ed.D. from Georgia Southern University.
Marsha Phelps, Ed.D.
Marsha Phelps holds an Ed.D. from Northern Illinois University, with focus in HRD/Workforce Development, and an MBA from the University of Chicago, with concentrations in Urban Education, Marketing, and Finance. Blending her industry and educational experiences, Dr. Phelps served as vice president of Academic Affairs for a city college in Chicago and as full-time consultant/coordinator for the Illinois State Board of Education, training teachers in the preparation of curriculum for 21st Century secondary career preparation programs. She is certified and experienced in teaching grades K-12, and possesses endorsements in Secondary English, Cooperative Education, and Business, Marketing & Entrepreneurship.
Camille Quarterman, Ph.D.
Camille Quarterman is a graduate of Lake City Community College and Florida State University. She received a B.S. in Criminology, which prompted her to want to help students before they became involved with the legal system. At Armstrong Atlantic State University, she completed work to earn her teacher’s certification. Three years after beginning her teaching career, she received her M.Ed. and subsequently her Ph.D. from Union Institute and University.
Karen Rooks-Dotson, Ed.D.
Karen Rooks-Dotson has been part of the Chicago Public Schools system for many years, working as a principal. She is a recognized leader among teachers and administrators. Dr. Rooks-Dotson authored "An Educational Applied Dissertation Model: Effectively Identifying Students at Risk Using School-Based Problem Solving." She is a seasoned traveler whose favorite adventures include climbing the Great Wall of China and visiting other countries in Southeast Asia.
Theresa Seeley, Ed.D.
Theresa Seeley has taught early childhood development and teacher education at the undergraduate and graduate levels for more than 17 years. She also works as an independent consultant to train instructors and provide teacher workshops for elementary and secondary schools. Dr. Seeley has worked in education programs with the U.S. Air Force, including attending workshops at Reggio Emilia Schools (Italy). She has worked with the California Legislature in Sacramento to bring bills pertaining to children to the State Senate. Her Ed.D. is in Education and Organizational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University and her master’s and bachelor’s degrees are from California State University Sacramento in Child Development and Education Administration and Policy, respectively.
William Smith, Ed.D.
William Smith has taught at the elementary, middle school, and high school levels, and he also has worked with adult learners. He has served as a building principal of a large comprehensive high school and a district level superintendent of a K-12 school district, as well as the leader of an intermediate school district's efforts to reform secondary education in one of the highest achieving counties in Michigan. Dr. Smith's experience includes successful federal grant writing, leadership in professional education organizations, and professional development for all levels of educators. Dr. Smith holds an Ed.D. from Northcentral University in Boston.
Herman L. Standberry, Ed.D.
Herman L. Standberry holds certification as a superintendent, general and secondary administrator, curriculum and instruction specialist, school counselor, and K-12 teacher. He is superintendent/principal of United Educational Cultural Academy and a former graduate professor at Indiana Wesleyan University. He is an authorized professional provider for the Illinois State Board of Education and Child Development Associates Credentialing in Washington, D.C. He has designed four successful academic accelerated behavioral programs for the Illinois Prison School District 428 as well as several public school districts. Dr. Standberry holds an Ed.D. and D.Min., an M.Ed. and an M.A. and a B.S. He has received numerous honors and recognitions and serves on multiple boards of directors.
Carol Theodorou, Ed.D.
Carol Theodorou is a former chair of the Educational Leadership Program at American College of Education and has taught at the college level for several years. A former high school principal, she also taught U.S. history and government, sociology and English at the secondary level. Dr. Theodorou was a vice-president of International Education Enterprises after retiring as a high school principal. She holds an Ed.D. from the University of Illinois-Champaign.
Kimberly Truslow, Ed.D.
Kimberly Truslow received an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas. She has served as middle school science and math teacher, math instructional specialist, middle school assistant principal, middle school principal, full-time college professor, and elementary principal. Dr. Truslow's research interests include women in leadership and conflict management.
Kristine Vowels, Ed.D.
Kristine Vowels earned an Ed.D in Supervision, Curriculum, and Instruction from Texas A&M Commerce. Additionally, she holds a master’s degree in Educational Administration and a degree in Health and Physical Education from Stephen F. Austin State University. She holds a Texas principal certification, as well as a Texas teaching certificate in multiple fields of instruction. She is an extreme sports enthusiast.
Justin Weindorf, Ed.D.
Justin Weindorf has been teaching high school advanced programs for nine years, staying active in leadership roles. Currently he is involved with a leadership program in his district and has been a member of the faculty of American College of Education for several years. Dr. Weindorf holds an Ed.D. from Nova Southeastern University, and his dissertation explores technology in the classroom in the 21st century.
David Weischadle, Ed.D.
David Weischadle has extensive experience in elementary, secondary, postsecondary, special and early childhood education, and at-risk children and youth programs. His Ed.D. from Rutgers University in Curriculum and Instruction was the gateway for him to teach, perform research, and consult in schools, colleges, state and federal governmental agencies, and other organizations and institutions. He is a professor of Education (emeritus) at Montclair State University (New Jersey) with experience in healthcare, social agencies, and community education. Dr. Weischadle has also served as a faculty fellow at Princeton University and as an adjunct professor at a number of other institutions.
Julius Wynn, Ed.D.
Julius Wynn holds a bachelor’s degree in Business from Florida State University and a master's degree and Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from the University of South Florida. He is an assistant principal at Palm Harbor Middle School. He has also taught Applied Ethics and Diverse Populations at St. Petersburg College. He is an avid chess player and golfer.
Kim Ochs, Ph.D.
Dr. Kim Ochs graduated from University of Oxford with a specialization in Comparative and International Education. She completed post-doctoral studies at London School of Economics Department of Social Policy and currently serves as an advisor for Chrysalis Project South Africa. She has also consulted with European Youth Forum, UN Volunteers, and Commonwealth Secretariat. Dr. Ochs earned a B.A. from Boston University, an M.A. from Boston College in Sociology, and an M.Sc. and Ph.D. from University of Oxford in Educational Studies focusing on Comparative and International Education. Her research has focused on migration of workers and international educational policy.
Nikela Owens, Ph.D.
Dr. Nikela Owens is an educator, researcher, and public school consultant. Dr. Owens has more than twenty years of experience in education including working in public schools, federal educational programs, non-profit organizations, and university settings. Visionary leadership, combined with innovative practices and an unwavering commitment to excellence, are consistent themes in her career.
Dr. Owens in has taught and developed programs and curricula for grades 7-12, pre-professional and graduate level students. She also has led both university and federally-funded educational programs and has conducted research on a variety of issues involving education. A cornerstone of Dr. Owens's career is her ability to create programs and courses that critically engage and challenge students in their learning experiences. Dr. Owens holds a doctorate from University of Cincinnati.