I have been an educator for 20 years. I am a professional development specialist with 12 years of experience training teachers and administrators in 10 states. For the past 5 years, I have taught LGBTQ history to high school students.
Over the past 5 years, I developed a LGBTQ studies program at the Athenian School, a high school in Danville, California. I designed and taught the class on LGBTQ history, helped teachers integrate gay and lesbian history into their courses, gave leadership training to our student GSA, and worked with the administration to foster a supportive environment for students through cultural activities and policies.
In terms of understanding the challenges of adapting new material into schools, I have been both a teacher and an administrator.
I was a high school classroom teacher for 7 years. I know what it means to be a full time teacher trying to adapt to a whole new set of curricular demands.
I was also an administrator for 10 years. I founded and directed a federally funded, statewide non-profit on multicultural education with programs in 28 counties in New Mexico. I have been in leadership, having to navigate the strong emotions of conflicting communities in a debate about culture and politics in our schools.
As a professional development trainer, I have presented over 200 workshops in 10 states.
A lot of my knowledge about GLBTQ history and culture comes from my own life. For 15 years, I have volunteered in the LGBTQ Community, finding ways to strengthen our diversity, spiritual strength and our sense of our own history. For 7 years, I was a member of Q-lab, a multicultural collective that facilitated dialogs on race, class, and gender in the GLBTQ community in New Mexico.
Through all of this, my focus has been building community through education. Teaching history is a powerful way for us to discover ourselves, to bridge the historic divides that keep us in conflict. I also just enjoy exploring history with people – the comedy and drama of memorable characters, the amazing reasons why, and the entertaining surprises that light up the stories.