Workshop Faculty Bios

The following individuals will facilities and instruct the DMPS AP Workshop:

AP Biology – Russ Conner
Russ Conner teaches Honors Biology, AP Biology, and Conceptual Physics at Cranbrook Kingswood School in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan where he has taught for the last 42 years.  He holds both a B.S. and M.S. in Interdepartmental Biological Science from Michigan State University.  He has been a Biology AP Exam Faculty Consultant since 1996 and both an AP Biology and VP Vertical Teams consultant since 1998.

AP English Language and Composition – Mike Knoedler
Michael Knoedler has worked as a consultant with the College Board since 2005, facilitating day long workshops as a Midwest regional consultant.  He has been a co-facilitator of the English Language session at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Advanced Placement Summer Institute for the past twelve years, and for the APSI in Olathe, KS for the past two summers.  He has been a reader for the AP Language exam and has been part of the College Board mentor-mentee training program for consultants.  Before retiring from teaching in 2007, he taught Honors English, AP Language and Composition, and AP Literature and Composition at Dodgeville High School in southwestern Wisconsin. 

AP English Literature and Composition – Mary Basson
Mary Basson enjoyed a distinguished career of nearly forty years at the University School of Milwaukee as English teacher, Academic Dean, and Chair of the Upper School English Department.   A graduate of Villa Madonna College and the University of Detroit, Ms. Basson also studied at Wayne State University and was a Joseph Klingenstein Fellow at Teachers College, Columbia University. She started as a reader for the College Board beginning in 1979 and read essays for the English Composition Test with Essay as well as the Advanced Placement Literature and Composition exams.  She has been a consultant for the College Board since 1990, giving workshops across the Mid-West.  Mary is a member of the Jane Austen Society of North America and has twice presented at the Annual General Meeting.  She is published in Persuasions and is the author of Saving Kandinsky, a novel about the life of the German painter Gabriele Münter. She and her husband Stephen live in Milwaukee.  They are the parents of three grown sons.

AP Environmental Science – Carol Widegren
Carol Widegren has been an educator for over 30 years with Chicago Public Schools.  She has taught AP Biology and Environmental Science.  Carol holds a B.S. in Biology and a M.S. in Environmental Science and has several years of experience in writing curriculum and assessments for CPS.  Carol has been a reader and table leader of readers for the AP Environmental Science exam.  Her focus has been in bringing the Illinois Rivers Project, the Maury Project and Globe into the classroom to interest students in the preservation of the environment and monitoring ecosystems.

AP Human Geography – John O’Brien
John O’Brien has been involved with APHG since the first Teacher’s National Institute at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1997.  His background includes a Master’s Degree in Geographic Education from State University of New York at Buffalo.  Since that time John has done graduate work in Middle Eastern Studies at Princeton University, Urban Geography at the University of Minnesota, Agricultural Geography at Eastern Michigan University, Political Geography at Ball State University, Economic Geography at Macalester College, Geography of the American South at the University of Tennessee and Political Science at Cornell University.  He has also received Fulbright Fellowships to China, Egypt and Sub-Saharan Africa, and a U. S. – Japan Foundation Fellowship, and more recently a geographic exchange program to South Korea.  John has also received ten National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships and eight National Science Foundation grants in the social sciences.  Over the past ten years John has been an instructor at many summer institutes and workshops, training AP Human Geography teachers both in the Midwest and in the South.  He has also been a Reader and Table Leader for the scoring of AP Human Geography exams for seven years. Over the past 29 years, John has had the opportunity to teach geography at colleges and high schools in New York, Minnesota, and currently in Naples, Florida. 

AP Spanish Language – Amalia Gensman
Amalia Barreiro Gensmanis a native from Mexico City.  She has 34 years teaching experience.  She is Foreign Language Department Coordinator and Spanish Teacher at Eisenhower Senior High School in Lawton, Oklahoma.  She has been a College Board Consultant for 11 Years.  Also, she has participated in the Advanced Placement Exam Reading for 10 years.  Ms. Gensman is Former Vice-Chair of the State of Oklahoma Textbook Committee and is a current member of the State of Oklahoma Teacher Certification Examination Committee.  In September 2010, she received the Eusebio Beltran award for Educator of the Year.

AP Statistics – Chris Olsen

AP U.S. History – Kathy Mullin
Kathy Mullin is currently an adjunct at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, Illinois.  This is a very large community college serving the residents of DuPage County, Illinois.   For 8 years Kathy has been teaching American History in their Older Adult Institute which services life-long learners over the age of 55.  It has allowed her to continue to teach and share her love of history with a very appreciative audience.   In addition to her college experiences, Kathy continues to work as a consultant for the College Board presenting Summer Institutes in Advanced Placement United States History and curriculum development in Pre AP Social Sciences.   For the past 16 years she has been a Reader and Table Leader on the AP US History exam.  In 2004 Kathy retired from teaching in public high schools.  Her 35 year career included teaching a wide range of social science subjects covering grades 9-12 in the Chicago Public School System and High School District #214 in the northwest suburbs of Chicago.  The last 15 years she taught Advanced Placement United States History to juniors.  In addition to working as a consultant for the College Board, she also taught the Methods of Teaching Social Studies at DePaul University in Chicago.    

Pre-AP Strategies in English: Composition – Gabe Ceci
Gabe Ceci has a BA in English from Johns Hopkins University and MAT from Oberlin College.  He has facilitated AP Summer Institutes in Computer Programming and AP English Lit and Composition at Carleton College. Gabe taught English, grades 7-9, in Lakewood, Ohio while finishing his degree at Oberlin and then took a position at Riverside High School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  He spent 34 years there teaching English, grades 9-12, including AP English Lit.  He also taught AP Computer Science and Psychology.  Gabe also taught Intro to Computers at Lakewood College. Gabe has worked for ETS as a reader for the AP English Lit exams for nine years and as a table leader helping train readers for five years.  He has been a College Board consultant for 17 years.

Pre-AP Strategies in English: Rhetoric – David Jolliffe

Pre-AP Strategies in Mathematics: Helping Students Learn Mathematics Through Problem Solving – Stephanie Sandwell
Stephanie Sandwell is the Curriculum Design Coordinator for Northwest Iowa Community College in Sheldon, Iowa.  She works with faculty in curriculum writing and implementing learning strategies.  Prior to this position, Stephanie was a high school math teacher for 16 years in the states of Iowa, Texas and Louisiana.  For the past nine years, Mrs. Sandwell has been a mathematics consultant for the College Board.  She has conducted AP Summer Institute for PAP High School Mathematics, led numerous 1- and 2- day workshops across the nation and is currently working in conjunction with the College Board and State of New York to create a 5- day Vertical Teaming Training that will be held this summer.  She has also been a consultant with AP Strategies, Inc.  In addition to her work with the College Board, Mrs. Sandwell has presented mathematical and motivational presentations to audiences in Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana.  Mrs. Sandwell holds a Master of Science in Education with emphasis in Curriculum and Instruction from Wayne State College in Wayne, Nebraska and a Bachelor of Science (cum laude graduate) degree from Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana.

Pre-AP Strategies in Mathematics: Analyzing and Describing Data – Lisa LoConte-Allen

Pre-AP Strategies in Mathematics: Chance, Variation, and Probability – Penny Smeltzer

Pre-AP Strategies in Social Studies – Tom Sleete
Thomas F. Sleete, is a teacher with over 43 years of classroom experience, an AP US History Examination Reading Table Leader, the Gilder-Lehrman 2005 Michigan History Teacher of the Year, and a consultant to the College Board in AP US History, Reading Strategies, Vertical Teaming, English/History Interdisciplinary Strategies, Pre-AP Strategies in History and the Social Studies, and Writing Tactics Using SOAPSTone.  He is currently teaching AP US History at the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Virginia.  He also conducts several AP Summer Institute sessions throughout the Midwest.