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Jack is a freelance writer and communications consultant with more than 25 years of experience. He provides communications support for a wide range of companies, from small website development firms to Fortune 500 companies, as well as creates professional resumes and cover letters for clients. Jack graduated from Drake University with a B.A. in Journalism and Mass Communications. He lives in West Des Moines, Iowa, where he and his girlfriend, Theresa, enjoy attending concerts, warm nights on the patio and spending time in Arizona (when patio season in Iowais over).
Dr. Matthew Arau
Matthew is an Assistant Professor of Music, Chair of the Music Education Department and Associate Director of Bands at the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music. He conducts the Lawrence Symphonic Band and student and faculty chamber groups, guest conducts the Lawrence Wind Ensemble, supervises student teachers, and teaches Conducting and Instrumental Methods and Rehearsal Techniques I & II.
Arau has presented clinics on student leadership, rehearsal techniques, and unlocking potential at the following: The Midwest Clinic: An International Band and Orchestra Conference, the Western International Band Clinic, the American Band College of Sam Houston State University, the Conn-Selmer Institute, the Pan-Hellenic Wind Band Conference in Cyprus, the Colorado, Oregon, and Wisconsin Music Educators Association, Midwest Music Seminars, and universities and high schools around the country. He teaches student leadership at the Metro-Capitol Leadership Academy in Sherwood, Oregon and the Colorado State University Band Leadership Academy in Ft. Collins, Colorado, and he is a Conn-Selmer Education Clinician. He conducts honor bands and honor jazz bands of all levels, is an active concert band, jazz band and marching band clinician, and has continued to be an active jazz and classical saxophonist throughout his teaching and academic career.
Arau earned a DMA in Instrumental Conducting and Literature from the University of Colorado Boulder, a Master of Science in Music Education from the American Band College at Southern Oregon University, and a Bachelor of Music in Music Performance, Jazz Studies and Music Education and a Bachelor of Arts in Government from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin.
Prior to pursuing his doctoral degree, Arau was the Director of Bands at Loveland High School in Loveland, Colorado from 2005-2012 where he established the Leadership Symposium for the development of student leaders. The Loveland H.S. Wind Symphony was featured at the Western International Band Clinic (WIBC) in Seattle and two times at the Colorado Music Educators Association Convention. The Loveland Marching Band won the Colorado 4A State Marching Band Championship and the Class AA Championship at the Bands of America Super Regional in San Antonio, Texas. Arau began his teaching career in 1997 as the Director of Bands at Walt Clark Middle School in Loveland, Colorado. The Walt Clark Honor Band was featured at the Colorado Music Educators Association Convention in 2003.
Mr. Arau’s professional affiliations include the College Band Directors National Association, the National Association for Music Education and the World Association of Symphonic Bands and Ensembles. He is a past Western Region Representative of the American School Band Directors Association and Instrumental Representative of the Colorado Music Educators Association. His writings on music and music education are published in Conn-Selmer Touchpoint, Bandworld Magazine, and The Saxophone Journal.
Valeria is a Learning Specialist/Tutor Coordinator at the University of North Dakota (UND). That is just her title, there is so much more to her. She has been an educator for over 20 years, she started her career as a Physical Science teacher in high school and after acquiring her Masters degree in Education she continued working at the UND. While at the UND she has been an instructor teaching courses in Effective Study Strategies, Critical Thinking Strategies. She has been the coordinator for the tutoring program at UND for the last 16 years. She also delivers a variety of presentations on and off campus. She has also been contracted to be an Academic Coach for students not attending UND. Her expertise are in Time Management, learning strategies for science and math courses, critical thinking, and learning and the brain. Overall, her passion is educating and assisting others to find the love of learning!
Dr. Robert Dillon
Robert has served as an educational leader in a number of public schools throughout the Saint Louis area over the last twenty years as a teacher, principal, and director of innovation. Dr. Dillon has a passion to change the educational landscape by building excellent engaging schools for all students. Dr. Dillon serves on the Leadership Team for Connected Learning, a Saint Louis based organization designed to reshape professional development to meet today's needs. Dr. Dillon has had the opportunity to speak throughout the country at local, state, and national conferences as well as share his thoughts and ideas in a variety of publications. He is the author of four books on best practices in learning, Leading Connected Classrooms Engage, Empower, Energize: Leading Tomorrow's Schools Today, Redesigning Learning Space, and his most recent book on learning space design called The Space: A Guide for Educators.
Jaime is a passionate technology enthusiast. She began her career as a math teacher, and eventually taught grades from Pre-K through 8th grade. During that time, she used multiple technology resources to engage students and improve learning.
As an educational technology presenter, she provides staff development and training on trending technology topics. Her latest adventures include the startup of EdChange Global (formerly edcamp Global) and Global Maker Day.
Dr. Daniel Fanella
Dr. Fanella has been a contributor for Atomic Learning since 2007, developing educational content for Microsoft and Apple productivity software, Adobe CC products, as well various programming languages and other topics. Dan's full time job is that of lead Educational Designer and Researcher for the U.S. Army War College's Department of Distance Education. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science degree in Psychology, and achieved a PhD in Learning Design and Technology from Penn State University. He is currently enrolled in the U.S. Army War College's Strategic Studies Program. In 2013 he self published a juvenile fiction novel called "The Strange Days Society" and is currently working on a sequel.
Brandi Farrow grew up in the small town of Farmington, MO. She had a love for Art and went to Southeast Missouri State University as an Art major. It was during this time that she fell in love with education. Her passion for helping others learn led to a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education. She also holds a master’s degree in Educational Administration. Since that time, she has continued to follow her passion of helping others. She is currently a 5th grade Reading teacher in Farmington and a leader in the district, earning District teacher of the year in 2014. She has served as CTA President, vice president, and works with several committees throughout the district to improve curriculum and instruction. She is currently leading the way in the district’s 1:1 program, designing new and engaging ways to teach kids with the powerful technology tools now at their disposal. Brandi’s husband is a principal for the Cape Girardeau school district and they have 2 children, Aiden who is 7 years old and Sophie who is 2.
Ron is the principal of Franklin Elementary school in Cape Girardeau MO. He previously served as the District Instructional Technology Coordinator for Cape Girardeau School District, where he designed the instructional framework for tech integration and launched a successful 1:1 initiative for 1700 students in grades 7-12.
Ron began his career in education as a teacher in Farmington, MO, where he cultivated a passion for infusing pedagogy with technology. After spending 11 years in the classroom, Ron became an Educational Technology Facilitator for the district, where he launched a 1:3 iPad program in district elementary schools. Ron holds a B.A. in Music Education from Southeast Missouri State and a M.Ed. on Educational Administration. He believes that technology is the future of education, but it's more about the change in instruction that comes along with the technology rather than the devices themselves. His wife, Brandi Farrow, is a 5th grade Reading teacher in the Farmington School District. They have 2 children, Aiden, age 7, and Sophie, age 2.
Brad has been an elementary, middle, and high school teacher, as well as the director of technology which gives him a perspective of teaching all ages of students and what it is like at both the classroom and district levels.
He focuses on designing technology curriculum for students from kindergarten to 5th grade. Brad is an educational futurist who specializes in teaching tech skills to students, teachers and administrators by showing simple and easy tricks to incorporate and integrate technology into everyday lessons. He works with schools to inspire teachers to use these tech skills to energize and engage students. In addition, he is a consultant and speaker who gives workshops, seminars and conferences to educators on how to do what he does.
Jason brings over 25 years of Information Technology experience, SharePoint Development and Management, IT Project Management, Systems Administration, Staff Support, and Development. He currently works as an IT Manager and Systems Administrator for the state of Iowa. Jason received his Associate's degree in electronic system while serving in the United State Air Force. He completed his Bachelor of Management Information Systems and is also a Google Apps Certified Administrator and Microsoft Certified Professional.
I work hard to infuse creativity daily as an Information Technology Literacy Teacher with the Oregon School District for the past 20 years. Personalized learning has been the focus in my district for the past 4 years, so I have grown to learn many strategies towards creating a learner-driven environment. As a Google-Certified Educator in a 4k-12 G Suite district, I get the opportunity to immerse myself in the ever-changing Google stratosphere daily! I have served as the Gaming Chair and Co-Program Chair on the WEMTA committee for the past 3 years and worked closely with Games + Learning + Society to gamify the conference. I have presented at many other conferences including ICE, SLATE, WEMTA, Wisc-Net, and WASDA. My passion is teaching everyone that it is alright to fail! It’s the First Attempt In Learning!
Sam is an administrator at a secondary school in the Twin Cities area. Before joining administration, Sam was a setting three Special Education teacher and worked with students with learning disabilities in reading and math, as well as students with emotional/behavior disorders and autism. He currently holds K-12 licences in Learning Disabilities, Developmental Disabilities and holds a Principal's license. Sam earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from The University of Colorado, a Master’s in Special Education from The University of Colorado, and his K-12 Principal Licensure from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota. Sam, who has been recognized as a TIES “Exceptional Teacher” in 2014, is passionate about the transformative power of technology and developing the potential of all learners.
Dr. Therese Kiley
Therese earned her EdD from Illinois State University in 1991. Her primary higher education teaching emphases focus on Literacy/Reading and Writing, Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education, Gifted Education, Special Education, Teacher Education, Assessment and Evaluation, Curriculum and Instruction, Professional Development and Educational Leadership.
She co-authored two books with her colleague, Dr. Rita Jensen. Teaching, Leading and Learning: Becoming Caring Professionals was published in 2000; the publisher is Houghton Mifflin Company. The more recent Teaching, Leading, and Learning in Pre-K - 8 Settings: Strategies for Success (2nd ed.) became available in June, 2004 (a 2005 publication; Houghton Mifflin Company). This second edition is accompanied by a powerful web site and an instructor’s manual. To request a review copy, please visit www.hmco.com.
Dr. Kiley has published over 30 refereed professional papers and has presented and keynoted at over 500 international, national, state, and regional conferences. Her wide-ranging teaching experiences have included working with learners of all ages—from birth through the doctoral level. One of her most rewarding positions involved teaching in a Parent Child Unit (PCU) Program at Metcalf Laboratory School, Illinois State University, from 1982 to 1990.
From 2000 to 2004, Dr. Kiley chaired the Teacher Education Department at Hamline University in Saint Paul, Minnesota and taught both undergraduate and graduate courses. She also served as Director of the Master of Arts of Teaching Program in the Graduate School of Education. Before moving to Saint Paul, she taught at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois for ten years.
Dr. Kiley joined the Western Illinois University Curriculum and Instruction Department in August of 2004. Housed at the Quad Cities campus, Dr. Kiley taught courses in the undergraduate and graduate reading programs. During the summer of 2006, Dr. Kiley was selected to serve as the Coordinator of the Honors Program at Western Illinois University’s Quad Cities campus.
Following her tenure at Western Illinois University, Dr. Kiley taught in the online doctoral and master’s programs at Argosy University for 7 years. This year, Dr. Kiley was asked to serve as a Content Specialist at Atomic Learning, an online professional development program for faculty in higher education.
Dan has created online, classroom, and mobile courses for over 10 years for Universities, K-12 schools, and Fortune 500 companies. A specialist in Learning Technology, Data Visualization, and Pedagogy, Dan works with a variety of clients to break down complicated data, develop problem solving strategies, and design innovative solutions for both simple and daunting problems faced by educational institutions and businesses.
Dan has a BA in English from St. Mary’s University. Dan believes the carrot is mightier than the stick and that software programs, AI, and emerging technologies are valuable tools but never complete solutions. Dan has been a contributor to Atomic Learning since 2013 and covers a variety of software training programs, instructional philosophies, and a variety of other subjects.
Dr. Jenna Linskens
Jenna is an Instructional Technology Coordinator with the Seymour Community School District. She also provides trainings and is a consultant to school districts in technology integration, instructional design, and e-learning in education. With a MAEd in Curriculum & Instruction and EdD Educational Technology & E-Learning she has taught elementary school, graduate courses in Ed Tech and worked with the International Society for Technology in Education providing support to schools around the world. She is a Google Certified Educator and Google Certified Teacher. Dr Linskens is an Ed Tech Rockstar and has presented at education conferences around the United States.
Mason is a Digital Instructional Coach in Garland, Texas. He received his Bachelor of Arts in English and Education from The Ohio State University and his Master of Education in Educational Leadership from Southern Methodist University. He blogs about education technology at www.edtechmason.com.
A graduate of Arizona State University’s College of Education, JoAnn started her education career as a fifth grade teacher in the Plano Independent School District in Texas. While at the district, JoAnn had the opportunity to write curriculum for the integrated science, social studies, and health program. This sparked an interest in professional development and lead to a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of North Texas, with a specialization in educational technology.
From a classroom environment, JoAnn migrated to a professional development one full time, as she began work at the Education Service Center Region 11, and eventually the Texas Virtual School Network the where she resides today. Currently, JoAnn focuses on accessibility of online courses to students with disabilities.
JoAnn uses her years of classroom, professional development, and instructional technology experience to create instructional videos that will help make the educational landscape more equitable and accessible for all students.
Cindy has been working for Galloway Township Public Schools since 1994, most recently teaching gifted & talented classes (GEM in grades 4-6 and PEP in grades K-3). Her responsibilities include developing units of study, writing curriculum, planning objectives, and instructing students.
She has also taught fifth grade. This included teaching communication arts, mathematics, social studies, science, health, and computer skills. I developed a system for staying in constant contact with my students and their parents from their homes.
She has also worked as the District Technology Coordinator for Galloway Township Public Schools. This position had her working closely with administrators, teachers, and support staff on all of their technology needs. Her responsibilities included planning, coordinating, and facilitating all aspects of technology in the K-8 school district of approximately 3,800 students and 500 employees.
In addition to being an Atomic Learning eLearning content developer, Heather is also an author of YA fiction.
When asked what drew her to want to create training, Heather said "I’ve wanted to teach ever since I was little and would stand in front of my classroom of stuffed animals teaching them about helping verbs. (Yeah. I’m a dork.)"
She did soft skills and software training at a corporation, and then found Atomic Learning and joined in a marketing role. Heather left to follow her passion for teaching and became the writing center coordinator at a local college, and also taught some composition and facilitated technology workshops. But she found her way back to Atomic Learning and is now on the eLearning team.
"It’s such a fun and innovative place to work. I love it here!" Heather adds, "I get excited when I help people alleviate stress. Maybe it’s a minor thing, like they can’t figure out how to create a new playlist in iTunes, or maybe it’s something that affects their ability to do their job or their homework. If I can help them remove a roadblock, I’m excited. And if people are more than okay about something—if they’re really excited about something after learning more about it—I’ve done good work. That is satisfying."
Nick received an Applied Associates of Science Degree in Video Production & Applied Associates of Science Degree in Multimedia from Hennepin Technical College in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota.
His professional experience includes being a Commercial Producer for Hubbard Broadcasting since 2009. He also worked as a Videographer and Commercial Producer for Dreamworld Studios from 2005 to 2009. He still enjoys working as a Videographer and Director for Robbinsdale School District 281 which he has done since 1999.
Nick is a Member of the Upper Midwest Emmy Chapter, and has received the Midwest Emmy Award in 2012, and was nominated for Midwest Emmy Awards in 2010 and 2013. His special interests include being a Tough Mudder, running, kayaking, skiing, sports, traveling, surfing, thrill seeking, music, writing, and camping.
Liz Van Kleeck
Liz has developed learning objects in video and text format for 18 years on topics including Adobe Connect, Microsoft Office, Dragon Naturally Speaking, and learning management systems Blackboard, Sakai, and Moodle among many others. In her partnership with Atomic Learning, Liz especially enjoys creating tutorials for integrating digital multimedia into the classroom and keeping up with new ideas for using technology to reinvent tried-and-true teaching strategies to create more engaging learning experiences.
As an educational technologist at Loyola University Chicago, Liz planned, designed, coordinated, and delivered an online, on-demand Technical Competencies Instructional Technologies curriculum for faculty, students, and staff. In addition, Liz developed and taught three levels of online and on-ground faculty development workshops in Adobe Connect web conferencing, as well as faculty workshops in Digital Multimedia and Podcasting.
Liz holds an M. Ed in Educational Technology from Loyola University Chicago and a Certificate of Professional Development in Distance Education from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Liz played Renaissance lute in Early Music groups in Boston and New York, and enjoys listening to music.
Dr. Rachael Waller
Rachael is currently an Assistant Professor of Reading and Literacy at Montana State University Billings. She holds a Master’s degree in Reading Education from the University of North Dakota and a Ph.D. in Teacher Education from the University of North Dakota. Dr. Waller’s research interests focus on increasing opportunities for marginalized populations to access literacy. Dr. Waller serves as the President of the Organization of Teacher Educators in Literacy and as President Elect of the Montana State Reading Council. She also works as a Montana EPAS trainer, a model based on the Danielson Teacher Evaluation Model, and is certified in Teachscape.
Bryn is a Licensed Psychologist that has been providing mental health therapy to children of all ages for many years. Most of her years of experience have been working with children within the schools. She currently has her own independent practice and contracts with school districts to provide therapy to the students and consultation to the school staff.
Bryn has a passion for helping others feel mentally and emotionally healthy and feels that most everyone could use more mental health support. She is hopeful that creating a mental health series for Atomic Learning will be an avenue to reach more people in their pursuit of happiness.
In her spare time, Bryn enjoys traveling, baking, and doing anything active outside… especially running, hiking, biking, and skiing.
A few bios from the qualified educators and experts who bring you the resources that make our solution awesome!