Virginia Council for Exceptional Children Annual Conference 2017


Tom Moran
Thomas E. Moran, Ph.D., CAPE is an associate professor in the department of Kinesiology at James Madison University. His specialty area is adapted physical education. Dr. Moran’s passion stems from his personal experiences as an individual with Cerebral Palsy. His scholarly work revolves around two areas: (1) addressing barriers to community based participation for individuals with disabilities and (2) Inclusion Pedagogy (providing educators/coaches/instructors a systematic approach to adequately meet the needs of individuals of ALL ABILITIES, including disabilities. Dr. Moran is the executive director of Empowerment3, the Center for Physical Activity and Wellness for Underserved Youth. He has given over 120 professional presentations.
Patricia Winter
Patricia received her Bachelor’s of Science degree in music therapy from Elizabethtown College, in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania and her Master’s of Music Therapy Degree and Ph.D. in Music Therapy from Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Patricia’s full-time clinical experience includes working with adults with psychiatric diagnoses, Alzheimer’s disease, patients in an acute medical setting, as well as working with children and adolescents on the Autism spectrum, and those who are Deaf and hard of hearing.
Patricia has actively presented regionally, nationally, and internationally at music therapy conferences as well as conferences in other disciplines about the benefits of music therapy for diverse populations. Her current interests include the impact of music therapy interventions for children with speech and language disorders and international music therapy practices.
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Jacqueline Rodriguez
Jacqueline Rodriguez is an assistant professor of special education in the department of Curriculum and Instruction. In her role, Jackie teaches courses that include pre-service general and special educators in the K-12 classroom as well as higher education doctoral students in the area of special education law and legislation. Her courses include topics on accommodations and modifications for exceptional learners, classroom management and organization, collaboration, standardized assessment, and policy to practice.
Darren Minarik
Dr. Darren Minarik is a special education teacher educator in the School of Teacher Education and Leadership at Radford University and is Director of Curriculum and Professional Development for the American Civics Center, a nonpartisan organization dedicated to preparing young people and adults for active and responsible participation in democracy. His current teaching and research addresses educational intersections between social studies and special education, with topics addressing self-study, disability history, citizenship education, self-determination, transition, collaboration, and inclusive practices.
Elizabeth Altieri
Dr. Liz Altieri is a special education professor in the School of Teacher Education and Leadership at Radford University. She is a founder of the special education/elementary education collaborative co-placement teacher preparation model and works in inclusive classrooms in Montgomery County schools. She is also the Graduate Coordinator for Special Education programs at RU, and is the liaison and advisor for the VA Consortium programs in Adapted Curriculum and Visual Impairment. Her career has always been sparked by her passion for inclusion and she has a long time interest in the skills needed by general and special educators in supporting the inclusion of students with disabilities in the general education classroom.
Taylor Flavin
Ms. Taylor Flavin is an early career Special Education teacher at Wenonah Elementary School in Waynesboro, Virginia. Her goal is inclusion for everyone. Ms. Flavin works tirelessly to use evidence-based practices to provide access to the general education classroom for all students.
Taylor Flavin
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Patricia Abrams
Patricia Abrams serves as the Director of the Office of Special Education Instructional Services at the Virginia Department of Education. Her areas of expertise include learning disabilities, intellectual disabilities, and administration. She oversees special education leadership academies and the Department’s technical assistance and professional development centers. Dr. Abrams has worked at the state level for 24 years in several other areas including the provision of regulatory technical assistance and as the personnel development specialist. She completed her Bachelor and Master Degrees in education at the State University of New York and her Doctorate of Education degree in administration at Virginia Tech.