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DDEL Executive Board

Current DDEL Board Members


Alta Joy Broughton, Ph. D., is Assistant Professor of Special Education at Saint Mary’s College of California. Dr. Broughton's scholarship revolves around the equitable education of emergent bilingual students who may or may not have learning disabilities. Her dissertation titled, Cultivating Educator’s Critical Consciousness of the Language and Learning Needs of Emergent Bilinguals, proposes an interdisciplinary framework for coaching general educators rooted in Frierian pedagogy. 

As a doctoral student, Joy was awarded Special Education Policy Scholarship and served as a policy fellow at the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) in the Department of Education the summer of 2017. Joy continued to address policy and research in local schools level as a Research Fellow in Partnerships and Professional Development for the David C. Anchin Center initiative, Educational Policy Information Center, at the University of South Florida. She also served as founding president for the College of Education Graduate Student Council to promote intercollegiate collaboration among doctoral students.

Her work is informed by nine years of teaching experience as a special education teacher and literacy coach in multi-lingual elementary schools in the United States, Brazil, and Honduras. Joy has published works addressing issues of teacher preparation, leadership in special education, and disproportionate identification of emergent bilinguals in peer-reviewed national and international journals. Recently, Evaluation of the Quality of Education Offered to Students with Special Needs in Brazilian Public Schools, a collaborative work with Brazilian colleagues, was awarded Best Paper Award at the International Conference on Special Needs Education, Educational Reforms and Practices. Joy is trilingual in English, Spanish, and Portuguese.

Christopher J. Cormier

Dr. Christopher J. Cormier is a former special education teacher in the Greater Los Angeles Metropolitan area. He has taught all grades from first through 12th exclusively in Title 1 schools. His research program is the social and cultural contexts of minoritized learners and teachers in special education. Under this overarching theme, he examines two lines of scholarship. The first is surrounding the professional and socio-emotional lives of minoritized teachers. The second is around culturally informed identification of minoritized students in special education. Dr. Cormier brings a comparative lens across national and international contexts to both of his research lines. He is the current President-Elect for the Division for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Exceptional Learners (DDEL) of the Council for Exceptional Children and also serves as chair for the Research and Professional Issues Committee.

Endia J. Lindo

Dr. Endia J. Lindo is an Associate Professor of Special Education at Texas Christian University, core faculty in the Alice Neeley Special Education Research and Service (ANSERS) Institute and President of Council for Exceptional Children (CEC)’s Division for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Exceptional Learners (DDEL).


Dr. Lindo worked as an elementary resource teacher prior to earning her Ph.D. in Special Education from Vanderbilt University and completing an Institute of Education Science (IES) Postdoctoral Fellowship at Georgia State University. She has been a member of CEC for over 20 years. In addition to serving on DDEL’s executive board, she is currently a member of the Professional Development, Standards, and Ethics Committee for the Division of Learning Disabilities (DLD) and the Teacher Education Division. Dr. Lindo’s scholarship focuses on improving the reading comprehension of students with learning difficulties and disabilities by examining approaches for implementing and enhancing school and community-based interventions and increasing the teaching and cultural competence of our teaching force.

My Goals for DDEL
My goal for DDEL in 2020 is to create a community to uplift scholars, leaders and practitioners working for the advancement of students with intersecting vulnerabilities within our educational system. I aim to help position DDEL to be a resource for educators and educational units in developing and implementing culturally responsive practice and to inform pre-service and in-service training guidelines to promote culturally sustaining pedagogy. 


One only needs to look at the decades of research and data showing the differential academic and social outcomes for culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) students, especially those with disabilities, to see there is much work to do.  DDEL provides an essential forum to enhance the research, advocacy and policy focus on these student’s needs.


Dosun Ko (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison) is an assistant professor in the School of Education at Wichita State University (WSU). Formerly, he worked as an inclusive elementary classroom teacher in South Korea. As an immigrant scholar, his scholarship centers primarily on equity issues in special/inclusive education at the intersection of different social markers. He has been working with a school community to design and implement a culturally responsive behavioral support system to address racial disproportionality in school discipline that American Indian youth and community experience at a rural High School. He is currently working with Wichita Public Schools (USD-259) to design and enact culturally sustaining, inclusive support systems for addressing racial disproportionality in special education. He serves as a director of research-practice partnerships at the WSU Center for Educational Research and Evaluation Services

Choiseul Praslin

Belkis Choiseul-Praslin is the Special Education program lead and Assistant Professor at the University of the Pacific. She has been a DDEL member since 2017 and executive board member since 2018. Her research interests include assessment validation for linguistically diverse students with disabilities and special education teacher preparation.

Dr. Kathleen A. King Thorius

Dr. Cristina Santamaría Graff

Dr. Seena M. Skelton

Andrea Jasper

Andrea Jasper is a Professor in the Department of Counseling and Special Education at Central Michigan University. She has been a member of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) since 2008 and has served in a variety of leadership positions within the organization including: Chair of the Diversity Caucus of the Teacher Education Division (TED), Treasurer of the Division for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Exceptional Learners (DDEL), Reviewer on the Editorial Board for the TEACHING Exceptional Children journal, and in 2016 she was elected to serve on the CEC Board of Directors as a Member-at-Large for Diverse, Ethnic, and Multicultural Groups. She currently serves as the Constitution and Bylaws Chair of the DDEL.


Dr. Jasper is passionate about the field of special education. Her strong record of teaching at the university and PK-12 levels, as well as her record of scholarship demonstrate this commitment. Dr. Jasper earned her master’s and doctoral degree in special education from Purdue University.

Tammy Ellis-Robinson

Dr. Tammy Ellis Robinson is an assistant professor co-appointed in the Division of Special Education and Educational Psychology and Methodology, Department of Educational and Counseling Psychology at the University at Albany. Prior to joining the faculty, she was a special education teacher for students with a range of disabilities in an urban high school and worked in theater education with adults and children with and without disabilities through the Arts Center of the Capital Region and the Center for Disabilities and the ARC of Rensselaer County. As a member of the faculty in the Division of Special Education, Tammy teaches a number of methods courses for pre-service special education candidates.   Her research and community engagement efforts and interests include empowering student, teacher, and community voices through writing and write to learn instructional methods, equity and social justice across the lifespan.  She has been a member of CEC since 2011, serves on the New York State Executive Committee and is excited to join DDEL’s leadership team.

Dr. Okyoung Lim

Dr. Okyoung Lim is an Assistant Professor of Special Education/English as a New Language at Marian University. She holds a Ph.D. in Special Education from the University of North Texas, and M.Ed. in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from the University of Maryland at College Park. She had served as an ESL teacher for 5 years prior to becoming the faculty. Her current research focus is the use of simulation in promoting pre-service teacher’s self-efficacy. She has been a member of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) since 2010 and she is very excited to serve as a Newsletter editor in DDEL.

Dr. Evette Simmons-Reed 2019

Dr. Evette Simmons-Reed, is an Assistant Professor in the Applied Behavior Analysis graduate program, in the Department of Special education, at Ball State University.   As a special educator, she taught elementary, middle, and high school students with intellectual disabilities, and serves as a program manager at The Ohio State University at the Nisonger Center. She was the past President of the Division for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Exceptional Learners (DDEL) for the Council of Exceptional Children (CEC) in 2019. Dr. Simmons-Reed is also the program manager for the Disability in Postsecondary Settings Graduate Certificate Program with an Emphasis in Autism, and the director and co-founder of the CAPS2 Mentor Program for Autistic College Students at the Ball State Center for Autism Spectrum Disorder (CASD). Her research interests involve the use of mentoring supports in higher education and improving diversity, equity, and inclusion in and outside the classroom for Black children in particular and children and youth with dis/abilities in general. Currently, her major research projects involve developing a student-centered model program that leverages campus resources, to increase access, persistence, and graduation of college students on the autism spectrum and intersections of race, ability, and gender on the recruitment and retention of Black women in higher education

Dr. Shaqwana Freeman-Green

Dr. Shaqwana Freeman-Green, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Specialized Education Services at the University of North Carolina Greensboro. Her research interests include empirically based teaching and learning strategies for adolescents with high incidence disabilities in secondary schools. Specifically, her research focuses on mathematics education in urban settings and the use of culturally and linguistically relevant pedagogy to address the research-to-practice gap in special education.


As an educational researcher, Dr. Freeman-Green has delivered over 35 research presentations at international, national, and state conferences. She has published several articles, book chapters, and national and state reports.

Kim Reddig

Kim Reddig

Kim Reddig is a doctoral student in Special Education at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She earned her Bachelor's Degree in Special Education from Coker University in Hartsville, SC., and her M.Ed. in Special Education from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Prior to becoming a doctoral student, she served as a Special Education teacher in the public and private sector for over 32 years. Kim's research interests include (a) diversity, (b) culturally responsive teaching, and (c) inclusive practices for diverse students with disabilities. 


Ms. Amber Brown

Ms. Melinda Rossi

Choiseul Praslin

Belkis Choiseul-Praslin is the Special Education program lead and Assistant Professor at the University of the Pacific. She has been a DDEL member since 2017 and executive board member since 2018. Her research interests include assessment validation for linguistically diverse students with disabilities and special education teacher preparation.

Last Updated:  10 November, 2020

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