Board Elections 2018

Meet the Candidates!

Alan Turner, OFLA President-Elect

After working with the OFLA Nominations Committee, it is time to present the members that will be running for OFLA Board positions during the upcoming election! Please take the time to read about each the eligible professional members and to cast your vote for the leadership of the organization.

During this election cycle, as with each year’s election, a new member of the presidential track is elected to a four year term to serve as Executive Vice-President, President-Elect, President, and Immediate Past President. This four year term gives the person time to learn the function of the board and time to develop projects and ideas for the membership. In addition to the election of a new Executive Vice-President, the Executive Treasurer, Public Relations and Advocacy Chair and Bylaws and Parliamentarian Chair are also being elected on a three year rotation. These positions will begin the 2018-2019 school year.

The OFLA Board also voted to accept a slate of Committee Chairs for a one year term, 2018-2019. These candidates are elected as a slate and are listed below the biographies and vision statements of the executive position candidates.

Please watch your email for voting details.

 Presidential Track 2018 – 2022

Cheryl Johnson

Cheryl Johnson earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Kenyon College and a Master of Arts in Spanish Literature from the University of Kansas. She began her professional career as a Spanish teacher. Cheryl taught at Douglas County Christian School in Lawrence, Kansas and then moved to New Jersey where she taught middle school at Princeton Day School and then high school Spanish at The Pennington School. Shortly after returning to Ohio, she began to explore using technology to solve pedagogical problems in the classroom. In 2000 Cheryl accepted the instructional technologist’s position in the Department of Modern Languages at Denison University. She supports all pedagogically appropriate uses of technology for the department and it is her responsibility to recommend and support technologies and online tools to help students in their language learning.

Vision Statement

I am honored to be nominated for OFLA’s Executive Vice-President position. I have been involved with OFLA since 2006, when I joined the board as the chair of the committee for Articulation and Assessment. Next, I served as Vice-President of Publications and finally as Editor for Electronic Media. I have enjoyed being part of the OFLA community and always look forward to the annual conference. It would be a privilege to serve again on the OFLA board.

If elected, I see my role as one which would support our OFLA members in keeping abreast of what is happening in our organization, the Ohio Department of Education, the nation and beyond with regards to language learning and teaching. I would continue the good work that my predecessors have done and continue to do in supporting and developing great workshops and conferences, keeping lines of communication open and encouraging a supportive environment for the sharing of ideas and materials. I also see myself finding ways to further ACTFL’s LEAD with Languages initiative since it is vital to raise our communities’ awareness of the importance of learning languages.

Executive Treasurer 2018-2021

Lucas Hoffman

Lucas Hoffman is currently a Spanish/French Teacher and World Language Department Chair at Southview High School in Sylvania, Ohio.  He received his Bachelor of Art and Bachelor of Education from the University of Toledo, majoring in both French and Spanish.  While in university, he completed coursework at the language institutes at the Université de Pau et des pays de l’Ardour and the Universidad del País Vasco.  After graduating, he returned to France to teach for one academic year as an English language assistant at Lycée Ravel in Saint Jean de Luz.  He returned to Ohio in 2006 to teach French and Spanish with Toledo Public Schools.  He has been teaching at Sylvania Schools since 2008.  In his current position, he is working as a RE mentor and department chair.  He joined the OFLA board in 2008 and has served as the Beginning Teachers Chair, the AATF-Ohio representative, and the 2016-2017 President.  He has been serving as the OFLA Treasurer since October.

Vision Statement

It would be an honor to continue serving OFLA as Treasurer.  I will seek to fund professional development opportunities and support for members while ensuring OFLA’s future financial stability.  I have enjoyed serving the organization these past months and look forward to the opportunity to continue.

Public Relations & Advocacy Chair 2018-2021

Angela Gardner

Angela Gardner teaches Spanish at Ross High School. She holds a Master of Arts in Teaching from Grand Canyon University and a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Languages from Longwood University. Angela has been an active member of the Ohio Foreign Language Association, serving on the Technology and Advocacy committees in the past, and as the AATSP Buckeye Chapter President and Liaison in 2017. Angela is a Certified OPI Tester/Rater and AAPPL Rater and is active in professional publications and presentations at workshops and conferences.

Vision Statement

I am interested in serving as the OFLA Advocacy Committee Chairperson because I believe that language and cultural learning is vital to a robust and competitive education for our nation’s children that will launch us into an improved future. Students gain self-confidence, risk tolerance, creative thinking skills, and empathy and tolerance through language and cultural acquisition, and all of these skills are valuable in life and in the work force.

I hope to empower and propel the OFLA membership to advocate for language and cultural learning through efficient and effective methods for informing public stakeholders of    the merits of language and cultural learning and for retaining, supporting, and growing existing programs. I expect to achieve this by sharing information through sessions and workshops at conferences, publishing information on these methods in relevant forums, and striving to model the practices in my own district, in addition to participating in advocacy efforts in conjunction with legislature

Bylaws & Parliamentarian Chair 2018-2021

Richard Emch

Richard Emch graduated from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor of Science in Education and a major in French in 1991. He graduated from Cleveland State University with a Masters in Curriculum and Instruction in 2000.

Richard was the President of the Ohio Foreign Language Association 2014-2015 and is currently serving as Bylaws Chair & Parliamentarian. He has presented numerous sessions at the OFLA Annual Conferences and was a recipient of the All-Star Award in 2001.

He has been the Recording Secretary of the Central States Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages since July 1, 2016. He was Secretary/Treasurer of the American Association of Teachers of French –Ohio Chapter 2006-2008, Vice-President of the American Association of Teachers of French –Ohio Chapter 2008-2010, and President of the American Association of Teachers of French –Ohio Chapter 2010-2012.

Richard was also a member of the Ohio Department of Education’s World Language Model Curriculum Writing Team from 2004-2005.  He teaches French and English Language Learners at North Royalton High School and is the advisor for the French Club and the Société Honoraire de Français. Richard is a lifetime member of OFLA. Additionally, Richard is a member of AATF, ACTFL, CSCTFL, and is Treasurer of the North Royalton Educational Association.

Vision Statement

It has been a pleasure and an honor to serve as Parliamentarian & Bylaws Chair for the past three years. I would like to continue the work of our current committee to keep the bylaws and policies of the Ohio Foreign Language Association current. Theses bylaws and policies should allow the Ohio Foreign Language Association to efficiently serve the needs of its current and future members while maintaining the historical vision of our founding members. My experiences on the OFLA board, the CSCTFL board, as an officer of AATF-Ohio, as president of a condominium association, and as treasurer of the North Royalton Education Association have given me unique insight on how organizations must draft bylaws and policies that allow them to achieve their mission. It would truly be and honor to continue to serve one of the best foreign language associations in the nation.

Committee Chairs: Elected for one year term, 2018-2019
(Elected as a slate)
Beginning Teachers Committee Chair: Nicole HanlonNicole is in in her fourth year at Buckeye Valley High School in Delaware, OH, where she teaches French 1, 2, 3 and 4. In addition to being the Beginning Teacher Chair for OFLA in 2017-2018, she is also the Vice-President of the Ohio chapter of AATF. Outside of school, she loves hiking with her husband and dogs, spinning, doing DIY projects on her house and cooking.Vision StatementI am interested in this position because, as a fairly new teacher myself, I know how hard it can be to start out in a profession. As many world language teachers are frequently the “only” teacher of their language in their building, having the support, professional development opportunities and networking through OFLA can be invaluable for creating connections and helping teachers feel less isolated in their teaching. I know this was the case with me, since my first two years teaching, I was the only French teacher in my building. The first few years of teaching can be very challenging and, in this position, I hope to be able to help connect beginning teachers with support, networking, and targeted professional development to help them start their careers feeling supported, positive and connected.

As Chair of the Beginning Teacher committee, I want to help connect pre-service and beginning teachers with the resources available at OFLA for networking and support. I will also continue to update the Beginning teacher social media with useful resources and discussion for new teachers. Finally, at the annual conference, my committee and I want to make sure beginning teachers feel comfortable and have many sessions geared to their specific experience being new in the profession. As a fairly new teacher, I know that my experience with OFLA, the conference, and the friends I’ve made as a result have been invaluable to me in my career. My hope is to help other new teachers find the same types of connections so they feel strong and supported as new world language teachers.

Early Language Learning Chair: Samantha Bremner

Samantha Bremner is a Toledo area elementary Spanish teacher. She received her degree from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio in Spanish language education. While studying at BGSU, Samantha ventured to Alcalá de Henares, Spain where she studied at la universidad de Cardinal Cisneros. Upon graduation, she became employed at Maumee Valley Country Day School in Toledo, OH. She taught there for four years and has been on leave to raise her family at home for two years. She still continues to support the World Language Department at Maumee Valley in addition to writing curriculum for a startup company, ZidZidKids. Additionally, Samantha teaches Spanish at Camp OFLA and has been the Spanish teacher for camp for the past five years. Samantha has been on the Board for one year as the Elementary Language Learning Chair.

Vision Statement

It would be a privilege to continue my service as the Early Language Learner Chair. I will continue to support and provide resources and connections for fellow elementary language teachers. It’s been a pleasure being the ELL Chair and I hope that I can continue serving OFLA.

Secondary Language Learning: Maureen Gerber

Maureen Gerber is a career French teacher, having taught French in public and private schools for over 30 years in Indiana, suburban Chicago, and for the last two decades at Perrysburg Exempted Village Schools in Perrysburg, Ohio.  She earned her BA in French and her MA in English Literature from Indiana University.  Maureen has taught all levels of French, kindergarten to AP.  She has created exploratory programs in three states, organized student travel to France, presented at conferences including: Central States, OFLA, IFLTA and ISACS.   She currently teaches French 2-5/AP at Perrysburg High School.  She also serves as World Language Department head and French Club co-advisor.   She and her department colleagues, ten dynamic teachers representing four languages, are currently revamping curriculum to align vertically and horizontally with Ohio’s new standards for World Language Education. Married for 37 years to husband Joe, Maureen is the mother of four children, all Perrysburg high school graduates who have studied / plan to study in France as part of their college degree programs.  She and her husband have 4 grandchildren.  She enjoys travel, gardening, reading, exercise walks and time spent with family.

Vision Statement

I am interested in leading the Secondary Language Learning Committee because It is my fervent belief that together world language teachers can accomplish more, and that a network of sharing and culture of collaboration will help us all do great things in our classrooms.  It is an exciting time to be a world language teacher!  I hope to work with committee members to build a network of authentic resources so that as teachers create units, IPA’s and lessons we have examples and materials to embed culture, foster deep learning and encourage new creative pathways.    We all have good things to share.   Together we can plant seeds of ideas and watch them grow into amazing support for our students and for our programs.

Scholarship: Denise Broda

Denise is a graduate of The College of Wooster where she majored in Spanish and was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Sigma Delta Phi.  Upon receiving an Ohio Regents Fellowship for graduate school, she earned an MA in Spanish Literature and an MA in Education from the University of Akron.   For more than twenty years, she has taught all levels of Spanish from seventh grade through AP, she has university teaching experience, and she currently teaches at Wooster High School.

Vision Statement

Teachers of World Languages in Ohio are incredibly fortunate to have a state organization that is respected across the country and that has a long history of advocating for and supporting its educators.  Our annual conference is one of the best and well-attended in the country, and as the chair of OFLA’s scholarship committee, I am able to share the opportunity to attend it with future and current educators.  We also help future teachers with immersion experiences, and we provide scholarships to campers for Camp OFLA. I believe that one of the most rewarding aspects of my teaching career has been mentoring and helping future and new teachers, and I love sharing my passion and enthusiasm for our profession.  I am dedicated to our colleagues and to our profession, and I am honored to serve in this capacity.

Teacher Education and Licensure: Dr. Barbara Sposet

Barbara is currently a Foreign Language Methods Instructor and Professor of Education in the Middle Childhood Program at Baldwin Wallace University.  She also served as Assistant and Associate Professor at Notre Dame College of Ohio.  She is a retired 7-12 Spanish teacher and former OMLA Secretary.  Barbara earned a B.A. in Spanish/Journalism from Kent State University, an M.Ed. in Foreign Language Education from Millersville State University (PA), and a Ph.D. in Curriculum & Instruction from Kent State University.

Vision Statement

As chair of the Teacher Education and Licensure Committee, I intend to:

  • ·         To advocate for the teaching profession and in particular, the world language teacher
  • ·         To keep members aware of the changes in teacher licensure in the state of Ohio
  • ·         To continue research on topics that explain or promote the teaching profession.

Technology Integration Committee Chair: Leah Henson

Leah Henson is a Senior Lecturer at Miami University in the Departments of Languages, Literatures, and Writing (Regionals) and Spanish and Portuguese (Oxford).  She earned her master’s degree from Miami University in 1999, which included a focus on Spanish linguistics and a thesis identifying cyberspace as a language domain.

Leah currently teaches Spanish language and introductory linguistics courses.  In addition to her teaching duties, Leah has also worked with E-Campus as an Instructional Designer.  In 2008, she piloted the inverted or “flipped” classroom approach in her Intensive Basic Spanish courses, which then led to the development of hybrid (2010) and online (2012) language courses.  Leah has authored and maintains five online courses and assists faculty in training, course set-up, and course facilitation.  She was also instrumental in creating a modified program for students with language learning-difficulties and revamping the writing component of the basic language courses to a proficiency-oriented approach.  Most recently, she has worked to transition her language courses from a grammar-based approach to one that blends technology, achievement, and performance-based activities to build students’ language proficiency.

Leah has presented at numerous state, regional, and national conferences on topics including proficiency-oriented writing, flipped/hybrid/online classes, and integrated performance assessments. She enjoys sharing information and collaborating with fellow educators!

Vision Statement

I have enjoyed working as part of the OFLA Tech Committee this year, and I would like to continue that collaboration as chair next year.  Overall, I believe that technology should be used as a tool to enhance the education of our language students; it is not the focus of our instruction.  As chair of the OFLA Tech Committee, I will strive to:

  • ·         continue building on the work from previous Tech Committees
  • ·         provide information to educators on various technologies available for increasing input, assessing comprehension, and more
  • ·         distribute technology-related updates and/or “how-to” presentations regularly via the OFLA listserv and the @OFLATech Twitter account
  • ·         create/collect and distribute activities across the three modes that integrate technology
Watch your email and the OFLA listserv for the upcoming voting dates!