Governor's Educator Advisory Council

Governor's Educator Advisory CouncilOverview

Governor Gretchen Whitmer created the Governor’s Educator Advisory Council, within the Michigan Department of Education, on April 11, 2019 via Executive Order 2019-9.

The Governor’s Educator Advisory Council consists of 15 voting members appointed by the governor and includes individuals representing various roles in Michigan’s public education system, including the Michigan Teacher of the Year.

The responsibility of the Council is to advise the governor and make recommendations for legislation relevant to Michigan’s public education system, including:

  • Identifying and analyzing issues impacting the effectiveness of Michigan’s public education system; 
  • Identifying best practices in public education; 
  • Recommending changes and improvements to our public education system; 
  • Reviewing and making recommendations regarding legislation relevant to our public education system. 

 

Agendas, Minutes and Public Notices

Draft Meeting Minutes - Oct. 11, 2019
Meeting Agenda - Oct. 11, 2019
Public Notice of Meeting - Oct. 11, 2019

 

2019-2020 Governor’s Educator Advisory Council

Governor's Educator Advisory Council
Seated: Annie Markey, Angela J. Pérez, Gregory Talberg (Chair), Dr. Margaret “Gigi” Lincoln and Ruth J.L. Ryynanen
Standing: Jeffery C. Whittle, Cathy Longstreet, Dr. Mandy R. Stewart, Zeinab Chami, Anthony Greenburg, Marcus A. Walton,
Benedict L. Pineda, Dr. Ramont M. Roberts and Dr. Lisa R. Rivard
Not pictured: Cara Lougheed

 

Council Member Bios

Zeinab Chami
Anthony Greenburg
Dr. Margaret Lincoln
Cathy Longstreet
Cara Lougheed
Annie Markey
Angela J. Pérez
Benedict L. Pineda
Dr. Lisa R. Rivard
Dr. Ramont M. Roberts
Ruth J.L. Ryynanen
Dr. Mandy R. Stewart
Gregory Talberg (Chair)
Marcus A. Walton
Jeffery C. Whittle

 

Zeinab Chami
Fordson High School

Zeinab Chami is the daughter of immigrants, born and raised in Dearborn. She graduated from the University of Michigan-Dearborn with a bachelor’s in English Literature. She later returned to obtain her second bachelor’s and master’s in teaching concurrently. Before moving into education, Zeinab’s drive to serve her community led her to work in communications and education at a number of prominent non-profits in Metro-Detroit, including the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS), the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) Michigan, and the Arab American National Museum. She is currently in her ninth year of combining her passions for literature and community as a teacher at her alma mater, Fordson High School. [Term expires: May 9, 2023]

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Anthony Greenburg
The Early College at Lansing Community College

Anthony Greenburg helped establish and has worked for the Early College at Lansing Community College since its founding in 2011. He is currently the English instructor, but also serves as a student mentor, a recruiter, and a liaison to the college and the school’s area partners. Prior to the Early College, Anthony worked for the Lansing School District as an Assistant Principal and a high school English teacher. At Eastern High School, while department chair, he contributed to the authorization of the International Baccalaureate® (IB) program and taught English Language Learner (ELL) students, many from the school’s large refugee population, in an effort to provide meaningful access to the full curriculum. Anthony is actively involved in the Michigan Early and Middle College Association (MEMCA). He also volunteers at his children’s schools and serves on the board of a community lacrosse club. [Term expires: May 9, 2021]

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Dr. Margaret Lincoln
Lakeview Public Schools

Dr. Margaret “Gigi” Lincoln has been District Librarian and National Honor Society Advisor at Lakeview High School in Battle Creek since 1973. A lifelong learner, she earned a Ph.D. in Library and Information Sciences from the University of North Texas in 2006. She is a co-author of Designing Online Learning: A Primer for Librarians. Together with Miriam Brysk, she wrote The Stones Weep: Teaching the Holocaust Through A Survivor’s Art. Gigi is an American Memory Fellow with the Library of Congress and a Teacher Fellow with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Under her leadership, the Lakeview High School library received the Michigan Department of Education’s 2018-2019 Model 21st Century School Library Award for its outstanding dedication to collaborative instruction among school library staffers, educators, and community groups. [Term expires: May 9, 2023]

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Cathy Longstreet
Hastings High School

Cathy Longstreet has worked in the Hastings Area School District since 1996. Although entering the educational profession as a second-grade teacher, she has spent the majority of her career as a school counselor. Cathy is currently serving as a high school counselor assisting students within the academic, social/emotional, and college and career realms. She spends the majority of her professional time crafting programs and working alongside students as they create and implement their post-secondary plans. Cathy is passionate about college equity and access as it relates to both rural/underrepresented students, as well as school counselor professional development.
[Term expires: May 9, 2021]

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Cara Lougheed
Stoney Creek High School

Cara Lougheed is the 2019-2020 Michigan Teacher of the Year. She has taught multiple levels of English, as well as U.S. and World History for 21 years in Rochester Community Schools – beginning at Rochester High School and as a founding staff member at Stoney Creek High School when it opened in 2001. Over the years, Cara has also been a social studies teacher leader, a building activities director, union building representative, and a national delegate at the annual NEA Representative Assembly. Cara has an ongoing passion for improving student learning through the mentoring and training of new and young teachers. She has mentored a number of Rochester teachers and trained six student teachers from four different Michigan universities over the last decade. Cara believes educators never stop learning, and that we must seek ways to grow and embrace equity in the classroom and beyond.
[Term expires: August 31, 2021]

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Annie Markey
James and Grace Lee Boggs School

Annie Markey has been working in elementary education since 2013. She is the Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) and Curriculum Coordinator at the James and Grace Lee Boggs School in Detroit, Michigan. In her role, Annie supports K-8 teachers in developing and implementing place-based curriculum, coordinates the intervention program, and teaches reading intervention. She has served on her local union’s bargaining committee for two years, including in a leadership role on the finance committee. Annie previously taught kindergarten and first grade in Detroit and worked as a curriculum consultant. In her free time, she teaches aerial circus classes for the Detroit Circus. [Term expires: May 9, 2020]

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Angela J. Pérez
Muskegon Public Schools

Angela J. Pérez has served as an educator for Muskegon Public Schools since 2001. She is currently a K-6 English Language Learner (ELL) teacher where she provides support for students who are English Learners and their teachers. Prior to her work as an ELL teacher, Angela held a variety of instructional and leadership roles, including as a lead teacher in a Spanish two-way immersion program and as support for at-risk students. She is passionate about bilingualism and is a long-time member of the Michigan Association for Bilingual Education. In her free time, Angela enjoys spending time with her husband and two daughters, as well as coaching youth soccer. [Term expires: May 9, 2020]

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Benedict L. Pineda
Haslett Middle School

Benedict L. Pineda is in his 32nd year of teaching, with 29 of those years at Haslett Middle School – a majority of which he has served as an 8th grade social studies teacher. In addition, Ben is the advisor for the middle school’s Gay-Straight Alliance Club, Conservation Club, Fishing Club, and Junior Achievement Club. Ben also serves as the mentor teacher for Michigan State University (MSU) teacher education seniors. In addition, he facilitates two monthly educator meetings – a support network for teachers who serve as mentors for MSU teacher education interns and NEST (New Educators Support Team), which offers support and guidance to help new teachers navigate and thrive in their profession. Ben also works with the Michigan Department of Education to evaluate and write standardized test items for social studies and language arts. [Term expires: May 9, 2021]

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Dr. Lisa R. Rivard
Macomb Intermediate School District and Wayne State University

Dr. Lisa R. Rivard is a K-12 Language Arts Consultant for Macomb Intermediate School District (MISD)and an Adjunct Professor at Wayne State University. She earned her Ph.D. in Learning, Design, and Technology from Wayne State University. Lisa has a passion for literacy and in recent years has served as Director of Elementary Programs for Utica Community Schools and president of the Michigan Reading Association. Currently, Lisa serves on the Michigan Association of Intermediate School Administrators’ (MAISA) Early Literacy Task Force. Lisa recently completed Michigan State University’s Educational Policy Fellowship Program – a national program of the Institute for Educational Leadership. She also serves on the Advisory Council for the Institute for Humane Education.
[Term expires: May 9, 2022]

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Dr. Ramont M. Roberts
School District of the City of Saginaw

Dr. Ramont M. Roberts was appointed Superintendent of Saginaw Public Schools in September 2018. Ramont was previously a social studies teacher in Mt. Clemens Community Schools. He then moved back to his hometown of Saginaw and served as a middle school Assistant Principal and Principal, high school Principal and as the Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources and Labor Relations. Ramont is a member of numerous professional organizations, including serving as the board chair for the Middle Cities Workers Compensation Fund and as a member of the executive committee for the Middle Cities Risk Management Trust. In addition, he is a former board member of the Saginaw County Sports Hall of Fame. Ramont is dedicated to the continued development of his home community of Saginaw through education, as well as other facets in which he can assist. [Term expires: May 9, 2023]

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Ruth J.L. Ryynanen
Houghton High School

Ruth J.L. Ryynanen hails from Hancock, located in the Upper Peninsula’s Keweenaw Peninsula, where she teaches English 12, AP English Language and Composition, and theater at Houghton Central High School. She is also the head of the English department and the women’s golf coach. In 2015, Ruth co-founded “Right Start UP,” a non-profit organization that promotes the healthy physical and psychological development of children and families. She currently serves as the chair of the organization, and is working to expand its non-profit childcare center, “Right Start Kids Academy.” Ruth holds bachelor’s degrees from the University of Michigan and Michigan Technological University, and a master’s degree from Northern Michigan University. She enjoys golf, skiing, being with her family, and traveling. [Term expires: May 9, 2022]

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Dr. Mandy R. Stewart
Charlotte Public Schools

Dr. Mandy R. Stewart has worked in education for more than 20 years as a teacher, Principal and currently as the Superintendent of Charlotte Public Schools. She earned her Ph.D. from Wayne State University and is passionate about bringing that knowledge back to the public school system that directly influences our children. Mandy’s research experiences connect with her areas of interest: acceptance of diversity in our school system and socio-economic disparities in academic success. In her free time, Mandy enjoys reading, spending time with her family, and volunteering as a proud baseball mom. [Term expires: May 9, 2021]

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Gregory Talberg (Chair)
Howell Public Schools

Gregory Talberg is a husband, parent, and educator. He has been a secondary social studies teacher for more than two decades, teaching AP Psychology, U.S. Government, social issues, and sociology courses. Greg has pursued his passion for public service by serving as a trustee and president of the Williamston Community Schools Board of Education from 2015 to 2018, by participating in the Michigan Political Leadership Program, and as a proud member of the MEA. He has master’s degrees from the University of Florida and Michigan State University (MSU) in Social Studies Education and Educational Administration. He also has a bachelor’s from MSU in Anthropology and a certificate of Latin American and Caribbean studies. Greg enjoys traveling with his family, reading, cooking, and playing tennis, as well as serving as the Williamston women’s tennis coach. [Term expires: May 9, 2023]

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Marcus A. Walton
Detroit Public Schools Community District

Marcus A. Walton is a Special Education teacher for the Detroit Public Schools Community District where he has taught exceptional students with severe multiple impairments for 25 years. In 2011, Marcus was named Detroit’s Special Education Teacher of the Year. Marcus earned his bachelor ‘s in Special Education from Wayne State University and is a graduate of Detroit’s Cass Technical High School. Outside of the classroom, he is a union activist and agent for social change. Marcus has served as chair of the Detroit Federation of Teacher’s Special Education Chapter, as a building representative at the Jerry L. White Center, and as a member of the Council for Exceptional Children. Marcus is married with three children and three grandchildren and enjoys all things sci-fi. [Term expires: May 9, 2022]

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Jeffery C. Whittle
Macomb Intermediate School District

Jeffery C. Whittle has been a paraprofessional with the Macomb Intermediate School District (MISD)for 28 years, working primarily with children with Autism. He has spent time in the classroom, as a community job coach, in group homes, and as a home trainer. Jeff holds a Paraprofessional Certificate and Job Coach Certificate. He has served as president of the Macomb Intermediate Paraprofessionals Union for eight years and is a member of both the Michigan AFT Administrative Board and the AFT National Program and Policy Council. [Term expires: May 9, 2022]

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