Emerson is Past President of the International Dyslexia Association and a member of the National Joint Committee on Learning Disabilities. Emerson is a member of the Professional Advisory Board of the Center for Development and Learning the Professional Advisory Board of The Children’s Dyslexia Centers, Inc. a charity of the Scottish Rite, was a member of the Professional Advisory Board for the National Center for Learning Disabilities for six years, a member of the Learning Disabilities Roundtable sponsored by the Division of Research to Practice of the U. S. Department of Education, and Chairman of the Protection and Advocacy Agency for the State of New Jersey for five years. In 1994 and again in 2002 he served as Chair of scientific consensus meetings sponsored by the National Center of Child Health and Human Development of the NIH resulting in the research definition of Dyslexia used in research throughout the United States. In 2004 Emerson organized an invitational forum attended by 33 organizations to address the issue of R.T.I. and Building Capacity to Deliver Multi-Tiered Reading Intervention in Public Schools. Emerson has been an invited speaker at conferences in 23 states, Hong Kong, England, Brazil, India, and the Czech Republic. Among the cases he has handled are leading precedents (New Jersey Supreme Court) protecting the due process rights of pupils in special education (Lascari) and the constitutional rights of adults with developmental disabilities (J.E.). Emerson has received numerous honors; most recently the 2012 Margaret Byrd Rawson Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Dyslexia Association.
Emerson’s legal practice has specialized in advocating for individuals with disabilities for over 35 years (http://www.dickmanalliance.com/).
Breakout Session: Experience Dyslexia ®, A Simulation Activity
Mark Brugger joined Learning Ally in 2012 in product management to develop services with a parent advocacy perspective. As a dyslexic from a family with several dyslexics and the parent of a special needs child, Mark is uniquely positioned to understand the educational needs of the child and the parent perspective. Mark is well-versed in special education and working with the public school. He has also been a case manager for a university Office of Student Disabilities, serving primarily young diagnosed/undiagnosed adults with SLD. Mark has been active in improving special education and 504 accommodations locally in his school district. Prior to Learning Ally, Mark lead teams in the telecommunications, networking, software and career services fields as an entrepreneur, change agent and major contributor.
Breakout Session: Transition to College: A Plan for Success
Elizabeth is a Columbia University learning specialist, working at the college level for over 15 years after starting her career in the field as a high school special education teacher and case manager. Since 2008, she has been making presentations at high schools throughout the region and at national conferences to educate professionals, parents, and students about the changes students will find at college and how to best prepare them for success there. In addition to her book, 7 Steps for Success: High School to College Transition Strategies for Students with Disabilities, she has published numerous articles on this topic. She offers advice and information on her website at http://www.LDadvisory.com.
Breakout Session: Advocating for Your Child
Breakout Session: Tech Tools and Tips: Using Assistive Technology
Brian is a West Windsor-Plainsboro High School South senior who has been using assistive technology to overcome his dyslexia since the third grade. A member of the advisory board for Bookshare (the free online digital library for children with qualiﬁed print disabilities), Meersma also shares information about assistive technology devices and software through his blog at bdmtech.blogspot.com.
Breakout Session: Dyslexia in the Classroom
Dee has been the Director of Education at the Newgrange School and Educational Center for the past six years. She has a Masters in Learning Disabilities from Montclair University and is a certified Learning Disabilities Teacher Consultant. Dee has had over twenty years of classroom experience at both elementary and high school levels, as a regular and special education teacher. She is a Wilson Language Teacher Trainer, a trainer of Developing Metacognitive Skills, and she has had intensive training in several other multisensory structured language programs. Dee has consulted with many school districts and has trained teachers in New Jersey and nationally to improve student achievement through the use of good assessment and research-based literacy programs. She has lectured nationally and internationally on improving literacy and other issues related to special education. Dee is the immediate past president of the Board of the New Jersey Branch of the International Dyslexia Association
Breakout Session: Strategies for Reading at Home with Your Child
Judy has been the Director for the Children’s Dyslexia Center in Scotch Plains for the past 15 years and has helped hundreds of children receive free Orton-Gillingham tutoring, the lifeline to improving reading and spelling skills. She is an adjunct professor and coordinator of the Center for Dyslexia Studies at Fairleigh Dickinson University and a past President of New Jersey Branch of the International Dyslexia Association. As a Certified Learning Disabilities Consultant, Orton-Gillingham advanced trainer and twenty five years as a special education teacher, Judy shares her wealth of experience as a presenter at International Dyslexia Association conferences and school districts throughout NJ and NY.