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Educator Biographies

Rhonda Bengtson 

Picture of EducatorRhonda earned her B.S. in Elementary Education from the University of Minnesota – Minneapolis, M.Ed. in Special Education from Arizona State University – Tempe, and has licensure as a psychometrician in Oklahoma. Since returning to Wisconsin in 2003, Rhonda has worked as a CESA 8 program support teacher conducting academic assessments and as a classroom special education teacher. Currently, Rhonda holds licensure in Elementary Education, SLD, CD, and EBD and teaches sixth grade special education for Merrill Area Public Schools.

Jorge Covarrubias

picture of educator JorgeJorge is an Educator Effectiveness Strategist for the Madison Metropolitan School District. In his role as a Strategist, he supports principals and assistant principals across elementary, middle and high schools engage in the Educator Effectiveness System resulting in continuous improvement in teaching and learning. Jorge’s background includes elementary assistant principal as well as teaching experience at both elementary and middle levels.  Educational degrees include a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from UW-Madison and a Master’s Degree in Educational Administration from Concordia University.  Jorge’s work is rooted in the belief that a great education is foundational to life success. 

Megan Dixon

picture of educator MeganIn her 16 years as a Wisconsin educator, Megan Dixon has been privileged to work with students and teachers in a variety of K-8 settings.  She has worked as a classroom teacher, Title 1 Reading Teacher, Reading Specialist/Coach, and Literacy Coordinator.  Currently, Megan teaches and learns with exceptional second grade students and colleagues at Glenwood School in Greenfield.  Her goal is to create academically engaging learning experiences through an environment that fosters creativity, curiosity, and kindness.  Committed to sharing her passion for literacy and learning, she also teaches courses in Literacy to prospective educators at Cardinal Stritch University.  Megan was the 2007 Wisconsin recipient of the Milken National Educator Award.

Ashley Favorite

picture of educator ashleyAshley received her undergraduate degree in urban education from UW-Milwaukee and began her career in education teaching third grade in Lac du Flambeau, an Indian Reservation located in northern Wisconsin.  During her three years in this position, Ashley earned her Master’s degree in Reading Education, becoming a Reading Teacher and Reading Specialist.  After three years of teaching in the classroom, she became a District Reading Specialist in Three Lakes.  Ashley’s service to the Three Lakes School District was short as she accepted a more flexible position as Literacy Coach in Lac du Flambeau, which would allow her to have more time at home with her children and to explore my passion of coaching fellow educators to realize their true potentials as professionals.  Ashley has served the district for two years in this capacity, adding on the duty of Educator Effectiveness Coach in 2014.

Linda Kuhaupt 

picture of lindaLinda is currently the Director of Staff Development and Continuous School Improvement in the Appleton Area School District.  Linda has led many staff developments related to Educator Effectiveness implementation and believes focusing on the process and a growth mindset are key for educators and administrators. Linda has a contagious passion for literacy instruction. Prior to her position in Appleton, Linda was the Reading Recovery Teacher Leader for the Valley Area Consortium.

Amy Lubben

picture of educator amyAmy currently teaches in a 4/5 multi-age classroom at Lakeshore Elementary in Fond du Lac.  Amy graduated from UW-Oshkosh with a dual major – Elementary Education 1-6 and Emotional Behavior Disorders K-9.  She obtained a Master's Degree from National Louis in Curriculum and Instruction.  Amy has been teaching for 16 years.  The first 5 years were spent teaching students with emotional and behavioral disabilities; the last 11 have been spent primarily as a fifth grade teacher.  Amy is a team player on her school's leadership team, involved in analyzing data and continually setting and reviewing school goals.  The last two years, Amy’s classroom has served as a lab where Fond Du Lac School District teachers are free to come and observe the teaching and implementation of Lucy Calkins writing instruction.  

Theresa Morateck

picture of educator - TheresaTheresa is currently a School Support Teacher in a K-8 school (Jeremiah Curtin Leadership Academy) in the Milwaukee Public School District. In this position, she designs and leads professional development aligned to the school improvement plan, supports teachers in the Educator Effectiveness cycle, models instructional practices and coordinates assessments in the building.  Theresa received her educator license and a M.S. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is currently a member of the Educational Policy and Leadership cohort at Marquette University where she is pursuing Director of Instruction and Administration Licensures. Last year, she had the honor to serve on the State Superintendent Tony Ever’s Task Force, Promoting Excellence for All, as a commitment to closing the achievement gap in Wisconsin.  

Vicki Porior

Picture of Vicki - educatorVicki has been an educator in the Oshkosh Area School District for 21 years.  She has taught high school social studies, middle school Gifted and Talented students, and has served as both a Peer Coach and Instructional Support Teacher.  Vicki serves as an active member of the Wisconsin State Superintendent's Social Studies Advisory Committee and will present this summer at the Department of Public Instruction's Disciplinary Literacy in Social Studies Summit. Her professional passion is working with students and staff to build authentic disciplinary literacy experiences.    

Matt Renwick

Picture of Matt - educatorMatt has taught in public education for 16 years. He started as a fifth and sixth grade teacher in a country school outside of Wisconsin Rapids, WI. After seven years of teaching, Matt served as a dean of students at a junior high, which developed into an assistant principalship along with athletic director duties. Now, as a principal at Howe Elementary School in Wisconsin Rapids, Matt enjoys the curriculum, instruction and assessment side of education.

Meghan Retallick

Picture of Meghan - educatorMegan is beginning her second year as a reading specialist/literacy coach for the School District of Rhinelander, working primarily with students and staff in grades 4-12.  Prior to this position, Meghan spent seven years as a classroom teacher working in several districts in Wisconsin teaching English/Language Arts in grades 6-12.  One of her favorite successes as a teacher was taking something many consider "boring" and making it relevant and engaging for students. One of her favorite aspects of her role as a reading specialist is being involved in collaboration between teachers and administrators to further learning to better instruct our students. 

Rachel Tassler

Picture of Rachel - educatorRachel taught third and fourth grades in the DC Everest school district for the first seven years of her teaching career. Next, Rachel was a literacy support teacher and literacy coach. In 2012, Rachel accepted a reading position in Tomahawk where she lives and her children go to school. Rachel offers reading interventions for kindergarten through grade eight and is an instructional coach.  Rachel is also the K-12 ELA department chair and just completed her Reading Specialist license. 

Ashlee Whitty

Picture of Ashlee - educatorAshlee knew she wanted to be a teacher from an early age.  Throughout middle school and high school, Ashlee pursued many outlets to develop her skills as an educator through a variety of school–based volunteer opportunities, as well as spending many summers teaching swim lessons in her hometown of Appleton, Wisconsin.  Following her first two years of college, Ashlee took a year off of school to complete a year of service in the inner city of Chicago. It was here that she realized her passion for urban education. Upon completion of her course work at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, she chose to round out her student teaching experience in the city of Milwaukee.