President: Cathy Sosnowski has worked in public education for thirty-six years. She has been a teacher, department coordinator, department chair, assistant principal, assistant principal of teaching and learning and a director of curriculum, instruction, assessment for secondary English and Social Studies. She is an active member in the New England Association of Teachers of English where she has presented multiple times. Cathy has spent the last six years working with teachers to create trauma-informed classrooms and teacher self-care. Currently, Cathy works as an adjunct professor at CCSU in the M.A.T. program working with pre-service ELA teachers.
Vice President: Kris Nystrom is Department Supervisor for secondary English and literacy intervention programs at West Hartford Public Schools and English Methods instructor for the CT State Department of Higher Education Alternative Route to Certification (ARC). Kris taught high school for twenty-one years and worked in child psychiatric education for five. He has taught courses in humanities, art history, English composition, and education philosophy at Goodwin College, Southern Connecticut State University, and Central Connecticut State University. He completed his BA in English at Salisbury University; MALS in humanities at Wesleyan University; and Ed.D. at Central Connecticut University, where his research focused on adolescent literacy. He lives in Killingworth with a wife and two daughters and is learning to play bass guitar.
Recording Secretary: Martha Curran teaches language arts at Polson Middle School in Madison where she has taught for 20 years. Since 2009, she also has served as the K-8 ELA program coordinator for the district. In this role, she finds the best of both worlds: teaching students (“Still the best part of my day,” she says) and working with teachers to implement effective strategies for teaching and learning. Part of this position also includes writing curriculum and delivering professional development. Martha was a 2018 Finalist for the Connecticut State Teacher of the Year Program, and that same year, she was chosen as the 2018 CAS Middle Level Educator of the Year. Outside the classroom, Martha has facilitated workshops on Teacher Leadership and Adult Learning for NNSTOY (The National Network of State Teachers of the Year). Prior to teaching, she worked for 15 years in public relations, marketing, and sales training.
Treasurer: Lucia Fonseca is a grade 6 language arts teacher at Thomas Edison Middle School, an ACES Magnet. As a content leader for ACES, Lucia writes district-wide curriculum. She is deeply involved in working with teachers and school leaders to implement Common Core aligned units, lessons, and assessments. In addition, she is committed to developing children’s love of learning, reading, writing and communicating. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism at Marist College; Master of Arts in Curriculum & Instruction at Fairfield University; and Sixth Year Diploma in Education Leadership at Southern Connecticut State University. She lives in Prospect, Connecticut and enjoys traveling the world.
Membership Chair: Dina Secchiaroli is a Professional Learning Specialist with over 23 years of experience as an educator, facilitating learning for both adults and students. She specializes in literacy, curriculum design, blended learning, project-based learning, PLCs, data teams, and instructional coaching at ACES Professional Development and School Improvement (PDSI). Dina is a reader for the Foundational Skills for Evaluators and is a certified Cognitive Coach™. She is currently training to become a certified trainer of Cognitive Coaching. Dina helped revive the CT Council of Teachers of English and serves on the board. Dina has co-written a chapter on scientific argumentation in Toward Inclusion of all Learners through Science Teacher Education and has five curriculum units published through Yale New Haven Teachers Institute.
Newsletter Editor: Rob Ford, a 6-12 ELA Coordinator and Teacher for North Branford Public Schools and a district teacher-of-the-year in 2017-18, has taught high school English for 14 years. He has published articles in The English Journal and The Explicator, and also presented at several national and international conferences, including conferences on educational technology at the University of Connecticut as well as current topics in ELA at the National Council of Teachers of English ("NCTE") and the New England Association of Teachers of English ("NEATE"). His mostly-updated CV can be found here. He regularly reviews articles for The English Journal and The Leaflet and also edits the newsletter for NEATE, which was recently recognized as a "newsletter of excellence" from NCTE, a recognition he is hoping to bring to CTCTE in the near future.
Mentoring Co-Chair: Nicole Martone is co-chair of our Mentoring Program. Nicole has taught English for 18 years and has served as a high school English department head, a grades 6-12 English/language arts instructional leader, and an administrator for academic programs. She has English teaching experience at the middle school, high school, and college levels. She has also been recognized by the NCTE as an Emerging Leaders Fellow and by Kappa Delta Pi, International Honor Society in Education as a Master Teacher. Her interests include supporting the growth and development of teachers and students, by fostering effective teaching and learning practices and by promoting efforts that support and sustain positive school and student- learning climates, respectively.
Mentoring Co-Chair: Julie Sochacki is a Clinical Associate Professor of English and Director of the Secondary English Education Program at University of Hartford. She is a former urban educator and has the Connecticut credentials as an ELA teacher, literacy specialist, and intermediate administrator. Julie holds a Juris Doctor (J.D.) and is also a member of the Connecticut Bar. In her supervising/coaching practice she meets teacher candidates where they are and moves them forward with wisdom, motivation, and grace. Julie is piloting two resilience courses this semester and is in her second season of her podcast on Apple Podcasts, The Resilient Teacher Project. Julie is a 200 hour Kripalu Yoga teacher; she also brings mindfulness into the classroom. Her courses are engaging, collaborative and reflective. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two boys.
Meredith Sinclair is an associate professor of Secondary English Education at Southern Connecticut State University and a former high school English teacher. She has a BA in English, MA in Teaching and Ph.D. in Education, all from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her research and teaching focuses on critical, anti-racist pedagogy and critical literacy as a component of justice education for adolescents, pre-service teachers, and practicing educators. She is the co-director of the SCSU Educational Justice Collective and a founding organizer of Change from Within, a professional development model for educational justice. Meredith lives in New Haven with her husband and 4 children.