Faye Brownlie is a passionate literacy and learning educator. She believes that collectively we know enough to teach all our learners to become readers and writers, and recognizes the promise of building our professional capacity as leaders of literacy learning. Faye creates engaging, thoughtful literacy experiences for students in diverse classrooms, K-12, through her writing, her in-class teaching, and in workshop settings.
Carolyn has served in the roles of Superintendent, Student Services Coordinator, and Curriculum Coordinator in Southwest Horizon School Division. Carolyn has extensive experience in rural Manitoba as a K-12 classroom, resource, and reading recovery teacher. She also has considerable experience with the mRLC as a participant in numerous learning networks, as a regional advocate, and as a former Board member. Carolyn is a passionate instructional leader who champions collaborative professional learning for teachers across rural Manitoba.
Michelle is a school psychologist and therapist, and has worked with the Winnipeg School Division for 22 years and in private practice for 16. She is honoured to work with educators and believes schools are in a powerful position to provide students, families and communities with the mechanisms that foster resiliency, hope and empowerment. She has served in leadership roles as a director in clinical support services, psychology supervisor and on the executive with the Manitoba Association of School Psychologists.
Michelle is passionate about inspiring and supporting educators to help strengthen their resiliency both in education and in their everyday lives. Michelle prioritizes and promotes inclusivity, equity, self-awareness, acceptance and compassion in her work and in life. She encourages participants to reflect on how their inherent bias, power, privilege and experiences shape their unique world view, and affect their behaviours with students, families and others. This includes discussing how we can each be an ally with Indigenous peoples and community on a path of reconciliation.
Her other areas of professional interest and practice include trauma informed practice, vicarious trauma and compassion fatigue, stress and anxiety, ADHD, positive psychology, mindfulness, and acceptance. She facilitates professional learning opportunities on all of these topics.
Lori Emilson has been an educator for over 30 years, most of that with Lakeshore School Division. As a classroom teacher, she has experience with every grade from Kindergarten through Gr. 8. For the past eight years, Lori’s role as Curriculum Support Teacher in her division has focused on Literacy, Numeracy and Technology. Lori is a member of the Manitoba Reading Association, currently serving as that organization’s president.
Tracey Tokuhama-Espinosa is a founder and member of CONEXIONES The Learning Sciences Platform and a Harvard professor.
Fiona England is a passionate and energetic school social worker who is excited to share her knowledge about mental health and how mental wellness can be integrated into all aspects of our school communities. Fiona strives to share her 25 years of experiences both within schools and child welfare to create trauma resilient spaces for our children, youth and families. She is currently the Healthy Minds Specialist for Winnipeg School Division and has over 16 years of experience providing specialized seminars and learning opportunities on several topics such as child welfare legislation, children in care, safeTALK, mental health literacy, trauma, anxiety/ depression, staff wellness and mindfulness. Fiona believes in a child – centered, systemic approach to supporting and enhancing your safe and caring schools.
Jenny has been a Middle School teacher within the Portage la Prairie School Division since 2016, after graduating from the Education After Degree Program from The U of W. She has been working with Grade 6 Math and the Numeracy Achievement Program in her classroom for over 5 years. She has seen the benefit of the program and is looking forward to sharing what she has learned with you.
Working to create more inclusive environments through the presentation of a different world view, enhancing and enriching the educational and cultural experience of the workplace. Laura is a proud Métis educator and a descendant of the Huppes, Morins, Berards and the Wards. She earned her Doctorate at the University of Manitoba.
Jamie Galbraith has a Master of Education in Inclusive Education/Special Education from Brandon University. Ms. Galbraith has 17 years' experience as a rural educator. She has taught most grades in the K-8 system, as well as several years in student services as a resource teacher and recently as an administrator. Ms. Galbraith now holds the divisional position of Coordinator of Curriculum and Assessment, focusing on supporting schools to implement inclusive instructional and assessment practices.
Jamie has facilitated the PATH process with the Indigenous Steering Committee in MVSD to support the implementation of the Indigenous Framework. She has also worked closely with the Indigenous Education Coach and the Indigenous Education Facilitator to bring the PATH to life. It is her hope that through these sessions participants will be able to identify a path for their own schools and division that follows the Provincial Framework, Mamàhtawisiwin.
Kathy Glenesk is in her 17th year as a Literacy Coach in Red River Valley School Division and has more than 35 years of experience in early years teaching, 13 years of which included teaching Reading Recovery.
Kathy spends time with teachers across the division in Kindergarten -Grade 8 classrooms. Her work consists of mostly co-planning, co-teaching and follow-up collaboration with classroom teachers. This support with instruction in reading, writing and thinking is focused on reflecting on the ELA curriculum when planning. Ongoing workshops are part of this role as she runs workshops and continuing contact groups exploring a variety of topics based on teachers’/students’ needs in schools.
Leanne Braun & Shauna Hamm
Shauna and Leanne have both taught at the high school level and in alternative and adult education settings. Leanne Braun is the principal at Ecole Parkside School, and Shauna Hamm is the Assistant Superintendent of BLSD. In August, 2011, they began leading the implementation of Reading Apprenticeship in Border Land School Division as part of a three-year provincial pilot. They have been provincial trainers for Reading Apprenticeship since 2013 and led an annual provincial Open Institute for Reading Apprenticeship for 6 years (2014 to 2019)
Val Harder is in her 7th year as a Literacy Coach in Garden Valley School Division. She has been an educator at GVSD for 25 years, spending most of her time as a grade 8 classroom teacher. She is passionate about reading, writing and thinking, and especially loves to read and talk about middle grade realistic fiction.
As a literacy coach, Val works alongside the grade 5-8 teachers in GVSD, and supports them through modelling lessons, co-planning and co-teaching,
suggesting and finding resources and facilitating professional development. Val looks forward to working with grade 6-8 teachers on the ELA Curriculum from various divisions through the mRLC.
Wade Houle has a Master of Education in Administration from Brandon University. Wade has been a teacher for 17 years with both rural and urban experience. He has mostly worked in senior years teaching Humanities and working in Student Services. Wade’s current role in with Mountain View School Division (MVSD) is as an Indigenous Education Coach. Coaching allows him to work directly with teachers to build their practice, create safe environments, incorporate Indigenous perspectives into their curriculum, and provide professional development.
Wade has training in PATH/MAPS and also spent four years with the Teacher Led Learning Team with the Manitoba Teachers’ Society. He’s passionate about adult learning, Indigenous education, and anti-racism and anti-oppression education. He looks forward to the Mamahtawisiwin education sessions and supporting rural schools with goals and targets that will create global citizens in the education system.
Patti Lawrence currently works as the Divisional Numeracy Coach in Portage la Prairie School Division. She has over 30 years of experience working as a classroom teacher, literacy support teacher, resource teacher and teacher principal. She is passionate about the Numeracy Achievement Program and looks forward to working with others who share the same passion.
Janet Martell is the former Superintendent/CEO of Lakeshore School Division and is the Co-Director for the mRLC. She is a visionary leader whose passion for education fuels her desire for high quality learning and teaching in every classroom. As one of the co-founders of the mRLC, she sees the work of the organization as integral in achieving high quality teaching, learning and leadership. Her work as a teacher, consultant in high school improvement and in assessment, leadership at both the school and divisional levels, contributes to her understanding of teacher and student learning and systems change.
Christina began her career with the Toronto District School Board, before moving to Portage la Prairie in the fall of 2016. Since then, she has been mostly teaching in Grade 7 & 8 French Immersion. She has been using the Numeracy Achievement Program with her Grade 8’s since 2018 and loves how the program has allowed her to tailor her teaching to her students’ individual needs.
Shelby brings 13 years of experience as a classroom teacher on reservations and in urban settings across Treaty Territories 1, 5, and 6. Shelby has also served as a lead consultant to educators, principals, superintendents and support staff in the area of Indigenous Education.
In her present role, Shelby integrates her professional expertise with her gifts from Creator to guide Frontier School Division principals, educators and support staff along their path to engage all learners by connecting curriculum to Indigenous history and culture. Shelby believes that honoring students’ identities is the key to improving student outcomes. With her knowledge and experience with curriculum, Indigenous pedagogy, land-based education, current assessment practices and principles of diversity and inclusion, Shelby is committed to aligning academic rigor with Indigenous ways of knowing and being. Whether she is working with students, educators, community or administrators, Shelby uses a holistic approach and she is mindful of the practical reality of today's classrooms. Shelby uses love, humor and kindness to create safe spaces for deep reflection and meaningful learning.
Amanda Rivers has been fortunate to have a diverse and fulfilling 11-year teaching career so far. This has included her first year teaching in Ste. Rose du Lac and the remainder in Seven Oaks School Division in Winnipeg. She has taught grades Kindergarten, 4, and 6/7 Multiage (currently) as well as having been in the role of Learning Support Teacher. Amanda made the decision to "return" to the Middle Years classroom from Learning Support because that is where her passion truly lies. She believes that Middle Years students have great potential and she is passionate about helping them to evolve as readers and writers. Amanda believes that children need two main things in order to experience success in ELA: a sense of identity and purpose as both a reader and writer. The increased skillset and motivation that come as a result are the rewards.
Jim Strachan has been working with (and learning from) children for 39 years as a social worker, classroom teacher of grades 2 to 8, instructional leader for information technology, program coordinator for beginning teachers and as an education officer supporting mentorship and authentic learning for both new and experienced educators across Ontario. By modeling caring, compassion, cooperation and humour, Jim believes we can contribute to the success of all children. It is his daily challenge to live these beliefs!
Jim starts each day in his kayak watching the sun rise on Lake Ontario. In his current role as an education consultant, he’s finding lingering on the lake is more joyful now than ever.
Eileen Sutherland is a past Executive Director of the mRLC and one of the co-founding members of the organization. She has over 35 years of educational experience ranging from early years to senior years, along with leadership experience at both the school and divisional levels. Her work as a consultant in high school improvement and experience as a curriculum leader have all contributed to her depth and breadth of understanding around teacher and student learning. Eileen is committed to using credible, practical, evidence to inform both educators practice.
Jonathan is the Executive Director of the mRLC and the former Assistant Superintendent of Border Land School Division. Jonathan has over 30 years of educational experience, having taught in several school settings as well as having served in leadership roles at school, divisional, and board levels as well as with the Manitoba Association of School Superintendents. He believes deeply in the importance of professional learning as a means to foster the quality teaching that leads to students’ joy and success in learning.
Nicole is currently the K-9 Numeracy Coach in Border Land School Division. She loves working alongside teachers both in and out of classrooms and is passionate about empowering teachers to be the best math educators they can be. She has presented extensively in her school division, elsewhere in Manitoba as well as internationally.
She has been involved with the Numeracy Achievement Program with
mRLC since 2015, both as a participant then as a facilitator. She believes that this program gives teachers a structure to begin with, that allows them to critically think about how to infuse best practice into their teaching.
Nicole earned her Bachelor of Education at the University of Winnipeg and later her Post Baccalaureate in Special Education at the University of Manitoba. She has been in education for almost 30 years and is able to use her varied experience as a classroom teacher, resource teacher and an instructional coach to bring teachers professional development that they can apply to their individual situations. Nicole believes in the power of being a lifelong learner and that applying new learning from professional development is an ongoing process.
Rina Whitford is a passionate educator and advocate for equitable and inclusive education. She brings a wealth of personal & professional experience leading and supporting big picture thinking with school leaders in the development and implementation of school improvement plans, as well as supporting the establishment of programs and initiatives that are grounded on integrating Indigenous perspectives.
Rina grew up in Sandy Bay First Nation and credits her current knowledge
base to her lived experiences derived from her Indigenous roots. Rina's current research interests involve honoring the voices and knowledge of marginalized populations in educational settings through relationships, stories, and time. Being immersed in Indigenous ways of knowing and doing has provided her the foundations for working towards shifting mindsets that challenge current practices within the colonial education system in order to meet the needs of all learners in meaningful and creative ways.