Ryan W. Pontier, Ph.D. (President, 2021-2023)
Dr. Pontier is assistant professor of bilingual education and TESOL at Florida International University in Miami. A former two-way dual language elementary school teacher in Texas and Florida, his research interests include teachers’ language ideologies, teacher education for teachers who will be working with bi/multilingual students, and effective instruction for bi/multilingual students. Dr. Pontier and his wife are raising two bilingual daughters.
Susanne Peña, Ph.D. (President-Elect, 2022-2023)
Ms. Peña has been an educator in the K-20 setting for over 16 years. She started her career as a teacher in Title I schools in the New York City Department of Education. She has served as District Coordinator for ESL, Bilingual Program & World Languages for the Amityville Union Free School District. She also served as an instructional coach, supervisor, and evaluator of bilingual and ENL (English as a New Language) teachers at Amityville School District and was the Dual Language Program Coordinator (PK through 8th grade) at PS/IS 180M in Harlem, NY. Ms. Peña has also held the position of Adjunct Instructor at Brooklyn College for Bilingual and Multicultural Education. She has also held the position of Director/Project Manager for the Dual Language STEPS (Support Through Technology Enhanced Programs and Strategies) Grant at the University of Central Florida. Ms. Peña is the lead education consultant at SMP Education Consulting, LLC, and she is currently pursuing her doctorate in Adult Education with a concentration in Social Justice at the Kansas State University.
Cathy Rodriguez, Ed.D. (Secretary, 2022-2023)
Dr. Rodriguez is Head of School at Sarasota’s first dual language school, Dreamers Academy, which opened its doors in August of 2021. In past roles, she has served as a Spanish Teacher, Dean of Students, and Instructional Coach, and she holds a doctorate in Education Leadership and Innovation from Wilmington University.
Laura Pantin, M.A. (Treasurer, 2022-2023)
Ms. Pantin is a dual language 4th grade teacher and Dual Language Team Leader in Broward County, Florida. She has a MA in Bilingual/Bicultural Education from Teachers College, Columbia University and holds teaching certifications in ESOL K-12, Reading K-12, Middle Grades Mathematics 5-9, and Birth through Age 4. Ms. Pantin has an avid following on her @LearningBilingually Instagram account.
Edwidge Bryant, Ed.D. (Past President, 2020-2021)
Dr. Bryant is an Associate Professor of Education and ESOL Coordinator at Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida. She received her doctorate in education from Teachers College, Columbia University in New York. She is a native Haitian Creole speaker and advocate and author of two books with Dr. Joyce Nutta (Show, Tell, Build and Educating English Learners: What Every Classroom Teacher Needs to Know).
The final bylaws (constitution) for the Florida Association for Bilingual Education are attached here and were approved by unanimous vote of the Board on Feb. 18, 2019.
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