Meet Our Team

Empowering Excellence Together

English Learner Portal's professional development team is exceptional, boasting extensive experience in various areas of public education. The team combines the latest research, best practices, legal requirements, program management, and practical know-how.

Kelly Reider, Founder

  • With 30 years of experience in public education
  • Consultant, ESL district program coordinator, school administrator, instructional specialist, and teacher.
  • International workshop facilitator and former WIDA Certified Facilitator.
  • Recipient of TESOL ELT Leadership Management Certificate and National Board Certified Early Childhood Generalist.
  • Expertise in instruction, language development, program evaluation, curriculum development, and system-level program planning.
  • Holds a Master's degree in Instructional Systems Development and certifications in Elementary Education, Spanish, ESOL, and School Administration

Katie Davis: Administrative Coordinator

  • Handles logins, passwords, digital credentials, grad credits, and enrollment questions
  • Over 20 years of administrative experience in the public and private sectors
  • Supports Title I schools and special education students

Beth Skelton

  • With 30 years of language educator experience.
  • Works with learners of all ages in diverse settings.
  • Active board member of CoTESOL.
  • Published materials on teaching adult English Learners using the TPRS method (Putting it Together).
  • Holds Master's Degree in Multicultural Teacher Education and certifications in German and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education.

Amy Kines

  • 30 years of experience as a classroom teacher, staff developer, and instructional specialist
  • National Board Certification and Masters in School Administration from Johns Hopkins
  • Founder of Ready Aim Teach in Rockville, MD
  • Passionate about active learning and student engagement, support teachers, schools, and districts nationwide

Farhana Shah

  • M.Ed. with a focus on administration and multiple teaching certifications
  • Over 20 years of teaching experience, leading teams, and providing staff development
  • U.S. Speaker and Specialist delivering training and community outreach internationally
  • Author of articles on Islam and Muslims

Brenda Custodio

  • Former secondary ESL teacher, district-level resource teacher, and building administrator
  • Helped create programs for SIFE learners in Columbus City Schools
  • Presenter on literacy development, refugee resettlement, trauma-informed strategies, and more
  • Author of three professional books

Judith O'Loughlin

  • Former New Jersey K-8 ESL and special education teacher
  • Provides professional development on newcomers, SIFE, differentiated instruction, and intervention
  • Presenter at TESOL, NABE, CABE, and CATESOL
  • Author of the Academic Language Accelerator and chapters in three books

Frank Bonkowski

  • Over 30 years of experience in English language teaching and course development
  • Teaches at Cégep de Saint-Laurent in Montreal, Canada
  • Co-authored nine textbooks and consulted with publishers and e-learning companies

Laura Gardner

  • 17 years of experience in public education, refugee resettlement, and social work
  • Worked as a district-level manager for immigrant family and community engagement
  • Managed national technical assistance initiative for federal Refugee School Impact Grantees
  • Holds Master’s degree in Social Work and Bachelor’s degree in Education
  • Course developer and professional development facilitator for ELP

Dr. Karen Woodson

  • Retired Principal of a high-English learner enrollment Title 1 elementary school
  • Over 35 years of service in public education as a teacher, instructional specialist, and EL Program Director
  • Focuses on equitable conditions for English learners and school improvement strategies
  • Founder of Leading for School Improvement

Natasha Quiroga, Esq.

  • Advocate for immigrant children, youth, and families as a lawyer, fundraiser, and executive director.
  • Director of Parental Readiness and Empowerment Program (PREP) and Senior Counsel in Educational Opportunities Project
  • Former Executive Director of Escuela Bolivia (now Educación Para Nuestro Futuro)
  • Holds a J.D. from the American University Washington College of Law and a Master's in International Politics

MiaAriela Allen

  • EdS in Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment focused on English Language Learning programming
  • Master in Elementary Education with a focus on Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students
  • Studied bilingual special education at the University of Colorado-Boulder
  • Content developer and workshop facilitator for ELP

Ruslana Westerlund, Ed.D.

  • Associate researcher in WIDA's Research and Development Division
  • ELD Specialist, teacher preparation programs & refugee student specialist
  • Adjunct faculty member teaching ESL/bilingual licensure programs at several universities
  • Course developer for ELP

Rachel Ross

  • 20 years of experience in public education in Florida & Maryland
  • Experience as a teacher specialist, literacy coach, mentor teacher, and ESL teacher
  • ELD curriculum writer and model unit author for the Maryland State Department of Education
  • Holds Master’s degree in Leadership in TESOL and certifications in Elementary Education, Administration, and ESL

Savanna Flakes

  • International education consultant specializing in Inclusive Practices, Special Education, and Social Emotional Learning
  • Worked as Division-Wide Technology Specialist, Inclusion Coach, and Professional Learning Manager
  • Professor at American University, training teachers on best practices for learners with exceptionalities

Susan Zimmerman- Orozco

  • Retired member of the professional development team
  • Supports the English Learner Portal Community
  • Author of the young adult novel, "Hear My Words"

Tan Huynh

  • Career teacher, consultant, and author specializing in language acquisition and literacy development
  • Taught students from 5th to 10th grade in various school settings
  • Shares teaching strategies on blog and podcast to support multilingual learners

What Learners Are Saying

Wendy, ESL District Coordinator

"I love this (vlog) so much! Just sent it out to all the content supervisors, who will be sharing it in their beginning of year newsletters! A few things...the bilingual Thinking Verb Place Mats are a huge hit! Will be ordering more soon. We had our big county-wide Literacy Conference yesterday, and I presented along with one of my ESOL teachers that attended your workshop--she was able to share a couple of the strategies she learned from that workshop at the conference. 🙂 ...You guys are really great, Kelly. I am so thankful for English Learner are providing exactly what we need!"

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