DLD Secretary Report

Michael Faggella-Luby

It has been another busy year in the life of DLD!


The 2017-2018 academic year was marked by several important events for DLD including transitions and new members for the DLD Executive Board, conference attendance in Maryland and Florida, ongoing collaborations with organizations interested in students with specific learning disabilities, awards distinguishing several of our members, and planning for future endeavors.


Leadership Transitions

New Officers began their terms on the DLD Executive Board on July 1, 2017. Stephanie Al Otaiba is now DLD President with Linda Mason now serving as the past-President to replace Laurie de Bettencourt. Jeannie Wanzek is now the President-elect leaving her position to newly elected Vice President Kristin Sayeski. Finally, Peggy Weiss was re-elected Treasurer and Michael Faggella-Luby remains for his second year as Secretary.


Additionally, the Executive Board welcomed Jessica Wery as the new Chair of the Professional Development, Standards, and Ethics Committee, and Emily Solari as the new Membership Chair replacing Devin Kearns during the year. They join the current committee chairs, William (Bill) Therrien (Publications), David Bateman (Policy), Bryan Cook (Research), and Diane Rodriguez (Cultural and Linguistic Diversity). Kristi Baker was the new Student Representative succeeding Carlos Lavin.


The team at DLD also includes Nancy Mamlin as the interim Executive Director, as well as Sarah Watt and Shaqwana Freeman-Green as co-editors of New Times DLD newsletter. Linda Mason is the editor of DLD’s peer-reviewed journal LDR&P. Additionally, LDR&P now has its own App live and available for DLD members. For more see: https://appsto.re/us/MawDab.i


Fall 2017: Collaboration in Baltimore, MD

The DLD board conducted two formal meetings this year to fulfill the DLD mission of education, advocacy, and outreach. For the second straight year, the Executive Board collaborated with the Council of Learning Disabilities (CLD) for a fall conference, this year hosted in Baltimore. Thanks to the many DLD members who joined us for presentations, fellowship, and fun!


Winter 2018: CEC International Conference in Tampa

DLD members escaped the cold to attend the February meeting of CEC in Florida. The new timing of CEC, no longer in April, brings a fresh opportunity for DLD members to connect and share ideas prior to the school testing season.


Each year, DLD presents a Showcase session to highlight research-based practices in the field of learning disabilities. This year’s session entitled Something I Can Use Tomorrow: A Classroom Practice, A Resource, and Identification of Students with SLD involved a collaboration of DLD members Miriam Ortiz (SMU), Kristi Baker (SMU), DLD President Stephanie Al Otaiba (SMU) and Michael Faggella-Luby (TCU) in collaboration with Devin Kearns (UCONN) and Bill Therrien (UVA). A special thanks to the DLD members who attended!


The DLD Annual Business meeting and Reception was held for members on Thursday evening. This year those who joined us received a white DLD embossed water bottle or a swiveling cell-phone holder! The business meeting is always a wonderful chance to honor the hard work of members across the country. During the business meeting the following awards were presented:


  • Janette Fleischner Award presented to Dr. Mary Brownell (University of Florida)
  • Outstanding Educator Award presented to Cecelia Hampton of Metro Nashville Public Schools, TN
  • Marva Collins Award presented to Ms. Jocelyn Muñoz (Miami Public Schools)
  • Sam Kirk Award was presented to two teams of researchers. First, The best research article was awarded to Christine A. Espin, Miya Miura Wayman, Stanley L. Deno, Kristen L. McMaster, and Mark de Rooij for their paper on data-based decision making related to CBM graphs by teachers. Second, the best practice article was awarded to Margaret E. King-Sears, Anya S. Evmenova and Todd M. Johnson for their work on using technology for accessible chemistry homework for secondary students with SLD.
  • John Lloyd Outstanding Dissertation Award presented to Abigail Allen, PhD


After the Annual Business meeting about 150 conference attendees joined us for the DLD reception. Student representative Kristi Baker helped organize research poster presentations by 9 graduate students for reception attendees to enjoy.  


Moving Forward

The DLD Board is actively working to make this another great year for DLD members.  The Executive Board will be meeting virtually in May to set the agenda for the coming year. In October, several DLD Executive Board members will be representing children with learning disabilities by again partnering with CLD at their annual convention in Portland, OR October 11-12. Finally, we hope you will join other DLD members for the CEC Conference next year in Indianapolis, IN from January 29-February 2.


Additionally, the Board will be undergoing some transitions this year as Peishi Wang (Queens College, CUNY) replaced Diane Rodriguez as CLD chair and Diane Haager (CSU, LA) will replace Bryan Cook as Research Chair. Additionally, we are pleased to announce that Miriam Ortiz (SMU) as the new Executive Director for DLD. Miriam received her Ph.D. in Education and Human Development from Southern Methodist University in 2017 with a focus on Special Education and Response to Intervention. Prior to completing her Ph.D. Miriam worked in Tallahassee, Florida as a K-12 teacher for students with severe behavior and emotional disabilities. 


If you would like to be more involved with DLD activities, please contact officers, committee chairs, or editors by referencing contact information at http://teachingld.org/officers