Mr. Paul Gray
President of the National Council for Geographic Education, Russellville High School, Arkansas
Paul Gray has taught geography, world religions, AP® Human Geography and international relations for the past 20 years at Russellville High School in Russellville, Arkansas, where he is chair of the social sciences and humanities department. He is a National Board Certified teacher and an adjunct instructor of human and regional geography at Arkansas Tech University. Mr. Gray has been a reader, table leader, question leader and exam leader at the AP® Human Geography reading for the past 12 years and has presented at numerous geographic conferences throughout the United States, Europe and Australia. He is a former member of the AP® Human Geography test development committee. In 2008, he was named Arkansas Teacher of the Year by the Arkansas Department of Education. Also in 2008, Paul was selected as the 2008 Grosvenor Teacher Fellow by the National Geographic Society and traveled on a National Geographic expedition to Antarctica. Mr. Gray received the distinguished teaching award from the National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE) in 2003 and was named Russellville’s teacher of the year in 2004 and 2008. Paul is the 2013 president of the NCGE and is co-author of the recently released AP® Study Guide Companion to the tenth edition Human Geography: People, Place, and Culture textbook by Fouberg, Murphy and de Blij published by Wiley. Paul is also a committee member on the writing team of Geography for Life, the newly published national geography standards and the writing team of the Road Map for the 21st Century Geography Education Project - Instructional Materials and Professional Development Committee.
Mr. David Palmer
APHG Consultant, Eaglecrest High School, Centennial, CO
David Palmer has taught social studies at Eaglecrest High School in the Cherry Creek School district for over 20 years and currently teaches AP® Human Geography and world geography. Each year Eaglecrest has nearly 200 students take AP® Human Geography grades 9-12. David is a Colorado Geographic Alliance teacher consultant, College Board consultant, 2012 NCGE Distinguished Geography Teacher Award winner and is a table leader during the scoring of AP® Human Geography exams. David has taught and presented at numerous institutes and conferences and recently traveled to India and Japan to develop case studies for the AAG’s Center for Global Geography Education. David has an bachelor's degree from the University of Colorado and a master's degree from Colorado Christian University.
Dr. Michael Ritter
Professor of Geography, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Dr. Michael Ritter is a professor of Geography at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point with over 30 years of experience teaching physical geography, meteorology and climatology. He is a pioneer in online education having over 25 years experience in distance and technology-enhanced education. His scholarship interests focus on the use of technology in geography education. Ritter is keenly interested in how geography educators use online learning to improve geographic literacy. His work has appeared in the Journal of Geography, Cartographic Perspectives, Computers in Geoscience, Journal of Geography in Higher Education and the Review of International Geographical Education Online. Dr Ritter authored the first book concerning the use of the Internet in earth science education and research, Earth Online: An Internet Guide for Earth Science. Ritter is a supporter of open education having producing numerous free, online materials for learning geography. He authored one of the first open online physical geography eTextbooks, The Physical Environment, which was awarded the the 2011 National Council of Geographic Education's Geographic Excellence in Media Award. He is a blogger, podcaster and an advocate for the use of social media in education. Dr. Ritter has served as a media consultant for most major textbook publishing companies.
AP® Human Geography Instructor and Past President National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE), Sitka, Alaska, Editor of The Geography Teacher
Jody Smothers-Marcello is a teacher at Sitka High School, Sitka, Alaska. Smothers-Marcello is a National Board Certified teacher and educator; she teaches AP® Human Geography, global issues, world geography, American and world history and English. She has received multiple teaching awards at the state and national levels, including from the National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE) and National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS). She has served as NCGE president, on the NCSS Board, on the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Social Studies-History standards committee and as a table leader for the AP® Human Geography College Board reading. Recently Smothers-Marcello served on the committee which developed A Road Map for 21st Century Geography Education Assessment. She has authored multiple articles and curricula, including recent AP® Human Geography publications for the College Board and NCGE, and serves as editor of The Geography Teacher, an NCGE journal. She was a teacher contributor to the 2011 book The American Public School Teacher: Past, Present, and Future and to the Association of American Geographers Center for Global Geography Education. She received a B.S. and a M.Ed. degree from Texas A&M University. Her international travel destinations have included Portugal, Australia, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Russia, Japan and India.
Dr. Mike DeMers
Professor of Geography & GIS, New Mexico State University, President-elect of the National Council for Geographic Education
Dr. DeMers is professor of geography specializing in geographic information science, landscape ecology and geographic education. DeMers is the winner of the 2010 Anderson Medal of Honor in Applied Geography awarded by the Applied Geography Specialty Group of the Association of American Geographers (AAG). He holds positions as Vice President External Relations of the National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE), GIS Section Editor of Geography Compass, Chair of the Anderson Selection Committee (AAG), Alliance Coordinator of the New Mexico Geographic Alliance and is a member of the board of the Applied Geography Conferences. He has published over fifty articles and four texts on geographic information systems two of which have been translated into Russian, Simple Chinese and Arabic. His current educational research focuses on geogaming, geodesign and the use of immersive virtual worlds as ways of both exploring GIScience and creating new tools for both learning and practicing geography. He also does research in land classification with special emphasis on the nature, methods and accuracy assessment of land classification boundaries.
Dr. Julia Parra
Assistant Professor, Technology Education, New Mexico State University
Dr. Julia Parra is assistant professor at New Mexico State University in the College of Education. Dr. Parra's overarching areas of teaching include online teaching and learning, classroom technology integration and doctoral research topics. Specific areas of interest and research include social media, emerging technologies, personal learning networks, online collaboration tools, technology and high school leadership development.
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