The WAFLT Nominating Committee is pleased to present a ballot for WAFLT President-Elect for the biennium 2017-18 that carries the names of two dedicated language teachers with records of service to our association.
The candidate earning a plurality of votes will undertake a six-year period of service to WAFLT in the following two-year offices: President-Elect 2017-18, President 2019-20, and Past President 2021-22.
According to our constitution requirement to rotate the presidency among the languages represented on the WAFLT Executive Board, this year’s nominees for President-Elect have been selected from colleagues teaching German.
Please read the qualifications of each candidate carefully. Vote for one candidate. You may cast your vote online. Vote Today!!
I have been an active member of the Wisconsin Association for Language Teachers since 1994, co-presenting numerous educational sessions at WAFLT, CSCTFL and ACTFL. I have served as co-chair for the annual WAFLT Fall Conference since 2013 and will conclude this work at the 2016 WAFLT Fall Conference. In spring 2016 I was elected to the CSC Board of Directors and have also been named program co-chair for CSCTFL in 2019.
Since 2011, I have taught German in the Greendale Schools. Prior to joining Greendale I taught both German and Spanish in the Mequon-Thiensville School District (2003-2011), the Shorewood School District (2002-2003) and the Elkhorn Area School District (1994 – 2002).
I attended UW-Milwaukee for both my bachelor’s degree in secondary education as well as my master’s degree in curriculum and instruction. I received a second master’s degree in educational leadership from Cardinal Stritch University in 2015, which brought me additional licenses in school administration and director of instruction. Each of these degree programs has broadened my professional horizons in many ways, offering different perspectives on the myriad challenges and opportunities inherent in teaching today.
One of the most gratifying aspects of our work as language teachers is the opportunity to travel abroad with our students. As world language teachers, we all are well aware of the exhilaration of witnessing our students’ wonder when they first see monuments and places that had seemed abstract in the classroom. And while that is important (and to me, will never get old), it’s even more compelling to see them use their language and becoming more engaged with their world than they might have without having studied a language. especially in our ever-changing global society.
I view working within our professional organizations such as WAFLT, CSCTFL and ACTFL in much the same way. The unparalleled collegiality that our associations enjoy as we continue to support each other and help each other to grow professionally is one of the most powerful aspects of our work. Even though this is my 23rd year in the classroom, I still come away from our professional conferences energized and inspired to continue to improve my practice. This energy also extends to the critical role of advocacy as we continue to work for legislation and policies that reflect the importance of language learning and education.
I am honored to have been nominated for the WAFLT presidency and would welcome the opportunity to continue working with and for my colleagues in Wisconsin in this capacity.
My vision for WAFLT is twofold. First, I would like to see WAFLT continue to support members in their classrooms through topical and engaging professional development. As an organization, we must continue to be on the cutting edge of language education by both supporting and strengthening existing programs such as the Global Education Achievement Certificate as well as exploring new opportunities for our membership.
We can all agree that proficiency in another language is today nothing less than a necessity in our global society. This is the second component of my vision for WAFLT. I hope to work with the WAFLT membership to continue to build upon the positive momentum in Wisconsin’s world language classrooms. Just as our successes in the classroom are built upon small, everyday victories, so must be our successes in advocacy. Each WAFLT member has something to contribute, to share, and to celebrate. With our individual and collective voices, we can not only ensure that our communities are made more aware of the amazing things happening in world language classrooms around the state every day, but also continue to advocate for legislation and policies that reflect the importance of maintaining and increasing opportunities for language learning and education.
It has been my honor to serve WAFLT for the past four years as co-chair of the annual conference and I sincerely thank you for considering me as a candidate for the WAFLT presidency.
I was honored when members of the Wisconsin Chapter of the American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) encouraged me to consider running for the office of President-elect of WAFLT. I have been a member of WAFLT since 1984, when I moved to Wisconsin, after living in and being a member of language teaching organizations in Minnesota, Illinois, and Bavaria (Germany). In the past 30 years I have seen radical changes not only in language teaching, but also in our ideas as to how young people best learn other languages. Over the years as a teacher and as a teacher educator in both the U.S. and Europe, I have become familiar with concepts such as Audiolingualism, Cognitive Code, Communicative Competence, Suggestopedia, Applied Linguistics, Second Language Acquisition, TPR(S), Proficiency, Common Core, “the Five Cs”, etc., all contributing profoundly to our understanding of language learning. As a tester for the Oral Proficiency Interview in the 1980s, I discovered how language works in individual learners. Proficiency is now the organizing principle behind many teaching and assessment strategies. As a member of the University of Wisconsin System’s German Placement Test in the 1990s, I was able to learn how Wisconsin teachers assess their students’ performance. Finally, when I was President of the Wisconsin Chapter of AATG and briefly a member of the WAFLT Board, I was impressed by the leadership that my colleagues in other languages demonstrated in their classroom teaching and outreach activities in their communities. Over the years I have been proud to work with leaders like Connie Knop, Roma Hoff, Lynn Bolton, Mark Seiler, Frank Grittner, Paul Sandrock, Pam Delfosse, Gerhard Fischer, Donna Clementi, Lynn Sessler Neitzel, and many others.
I see WAFLT as both a meeting space and as a catalyst for continued progress by our students from wherever they start their language learning journeys all the way up to independence in their language skills. At the same time, under increasing pressure from various political entitles, especially those who have the financial power to guide our work in ways that we may not always approve, WAFLT can remain a clear voice in a chorus of other voices speaking for education at all academic levels and across all academic subjects, both public and private. WAFLT has been a leader for over 100 years, not only locally and regionally, but nationally and even internationally as well. I am indeed honored and humbled to be considered for the presidency of WAFLT. I have received much from WAFLT. As president, I hope to be able to give some of what I have learned back to WAFLT. I thank you for your consideration of this opportunity to serve.