Creating Life-Changing Value in Special Education

Creating true change in special education requires a passionate and knowledgeable team of experts. That is why we assembled an Advisory Council and Board of Directors that are second-to-none. They actively represent the voices of parents, educators, students, and school administrators to help ensure we build a solution that is life-changing for students with special education needs.

Advisory Council
Amplio mission

Our Mission

Amplio’s mission is to help all students with special learning needs reach their full potential. Our Special Education Learning Management System with evidence-based curricula is designed to deliver intensive, rigorous instruction that helps prepare students for success, both academically and in their lives.

Advisory Council

Dr. Kathleen Whitmire

Senior Advisor

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Dr. Kathleen Whitmire is a senior advisor for Amplio. She has held positions at the National Center for Learning Disabilities, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), universities, and public schools. A nationally certified speech-language pathologist, Dr. Whitmire is also a board-certified specialist in child language and language disorders, an ASHA Fellow and the recipient of ASHA Honors. She has published and presented extensively at the international, national, and state levels, and served on a number of professional boards. Dr. Whitmire holds a PhD from the University of Rochester.

Matt Montaño

Advisory Council

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Matt Montaño is superintendent of Bernalillo Public Schools in New Mexico, the same district where he began his career as a substitute teacher and served as a teacher, assistant principal, and principal. Prior to returning to Bernalillo Public Schools, Matt was deputy commissioner of special populations at the Texas Education Agency, where he oversaw efforts to strengthen and support special education throughout the state. That work encompassed programs at every level of the public education system and involved close collaboration with students, families, and teachers, as well as campus- and district-level administrators. Matt also served as deputy secretary of teaching and learning at the New Mexico Public Education Department. Before that, he was the state education department’s director of educator quality. He holds a master’s in special education from the College of Santa Fe and a bachelor’s in history and religion from the University of New Mexico.

Dr. Jean Blosser

Advisory Council Chair

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Dr. Jean Blosser is passionate about creating service delivery systems that are educationally relevant, collaborative, and outcomes based. She consults with schools and organizations to build interprofessional teams and to develop innovative solutions to difficult special education challenges. Her numerous publications include books and resources for SLPs, educators, and parents including: School Programs in Speech-Language Pathology: Organization and Service Delivery; Pediatric Brain Injury: Proactive Assessment and Intervention; and Let’s Talk Today: A Calendar of Daily Activities for Teaching Language Skills at Home. She is a Fellow of The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and The National Academies of Practice.

Marie Ireland

Marie Ireland

Advisory Council

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Marie is an adjunct research associate at Charles Sturt University.
She worked as a school-based SLP and administrator and after 16
years retired from Virginia Department of Education SLP specialist
position. She is an ASHA Fellow and a Board-Certified Specialist in
Child Language. Marie was the American Speech-Language-
Hearing Association’s Vice President of SLP Practice from 2018-2020
and served on numerous state and national association committees
and councils. Her areas of interest include public policy, school-based practice, the
impact of poverty on language, cultural and linguistic differences,
curriculum relevant treatment, dynamic assessment and
comprehensive evaluation practices. She was awarded the ASHA
Editor’s award (2014) and the Topics in Language Disorders Katherine
Butler Trailblazer award (2020) for her research and has authored
several book chapters. She is frequently an invited speaker for
school districts, universities, and professional organizations across
the US and Canada.

Dr. Judy Rich

Advisory Council

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“Dr. Rich is the 2022 President of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She is a retired public-school administrator and currently active in teaching, consulting, and advocating for children with communication disorders from disadvantaged backgrounds due to poverty, race/ethnicity, cultural and linguistic diversity, and other risk factors that create challenges for equity, justice, and inclusion. She retired as Assistant Superintendent for Student Services in Irving, TX, a poverty-impacted school district with a high proportion of English learners. Dr. Rich is currently a Professor of Clinical Practice in Speech-Language Pathology at the University of Texas at Dallas.

Prof. Scott Yaruss

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J. Scott Yaruss, PhD, is a professor of Communicative Sciences and Disorders at Michigan State University and president of Stuttering Therapy Resources. He has published more than 100 peer-reviewed manuscripts and more than 250 other papers on stuttering and stuttering therapy, as well as several clinical resources, including the Overall Assessment of the Speaker’s Experience of Stuttering (OASES), Early Childhood Stuttering: A Practical Guide, School-Age Stuttering Therapy: A Practical Guide, and the Minimizing Bullying program.

Dr. Luann Purcell

Advisory Council

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Luann L. Purcell, Ed.D. is President of Luann Purcell, LLC. She consults with and is a strategic analyst for education and professional organizations. She recently retired as the Executive Director of the international Council of Administrators of Special Education, Inc (CASE), a division of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). In that role she consulted with and advised administrators on best practices for leadership and development of quality programs for students with disabilities. She has presented nationally and internationally on educational issues and proactive leadership. Previous positions included teacher of students with emotional and behavioral disorders, coordinator of a regional resource center, and assistant district superintendent.

Dr. Herbert Baum

Dr. Herbert Baum

Advisory Council

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During his 35-year career as a statistician and program evaluator, Dr. Herbert Baum has worked for the National Institutes of Health, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and a number of consulting firms. His research has been published in numerous refereed journals and presented at international and national conferences. In addition, Dr. Baum has served on numerous professional boards. He received the NIH Director’s award, among other accolades. Currently he is an adjunct faculty member at Guilford College teaching Elementary Statistics, runs his own program evaluation consulting practice, and reviews education grants for the State of North Carolina. He received his doctorate from the Johns Hopkins University, Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Dr. Elsa Cárdenas-Hagan

Advisory Council

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Elsa Cárdenas-Hagan, Ed.D, is a Bilingual Speech Language Pathologist and a Certified Academic Language Therapist. She is the Director of Valley Speech Language and Learning Center in Brownsville, Texas, and is the author of Esperanza (HOPE), a Spanish language program designed to assist students who struggle with learning to read. She was the co-principal investigator of a longitudinal study funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and the Institute for Education Science that examined the oracy and literacy development in English and Spanish of Spanish-speaking children. Elsa serves as the Chairperson of the National Joint Committee on Learning Disabilities and is the Past Vice-President of the International Dyslexia Association. She has authored numerous curricular programs, book chapters, and journal articles.

Dr. Joan Mele-McCarthy

Dr. Joan Mele-McCarthy

Advisory Council

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Dr. Joan Mele-McCarthy, CCC-SLP is the Executive Director at The Summit School in Edgewater, MD, an independent school serving children with dyslexia and other learning differences. Prior to this position, Dr. Mele-McCarthy served as Senior Policy Advisor and Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services (OSERS) in the U.S. Department of Education (ED). Her work includes presentation of peer reviewed research-to-practice papers and presentations on dyslexia, executive functions, and oral language foundations for academic achievement. Her publications include articles and book chapters related to policy for federal education legislation, students with disabilities, and English Learners with disabilities.

Dr. Amanda VanDerHeyden

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After a career as a school district leader and a faculty member in higher ed, Dr. VanDerHeyden started her own consulting business. Her client list includes a large number of regional, state and federal departments, centers and institutes. For the last 20 years, she has helped schools use their data to become more effective, directing and evaluating schoolwide improvement efforts with strong results on student learning. Amanda is a frequent speaker and has given more than 100 keynote addresses. During Amanda’s career, technology has become the new frontier for education. Basing instruction on technology, Amanda built the programs Intervention Adviser and Spring Math.

Kyle Epps

Advisory Council

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Kyle Epps is the Coordinator of the Speech and Language Program in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). He oversees a dynamic administrative team that supports close to 700 speech and language providers in LAUSD who provide services and supports to more than 30,000 students. Kyle has served ASHA as a member of the Continuing Education Board, a committee member of the Ad hoc committee on the Next Generation and participated in the Leadership in Schools Leadership Development Program. He has also been very active in the California Speech Language Hearing Association. He received a MA in Communicative Disorders and Deaf Studies with an emphasis in SLP from CSU, Fresno.

Ellen Estomin

Advisory Council

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During her 40 year career with the School District of Pittsburgh, Ellen Estomin has served in numerous administrative positions and finished her career as Executor Director, Program for Students with Exceptionalities. Throughout her career, she was an advocate for changes in legislation, funding, and service delivery, for implementation of caseload/ workload strategies, and for development of partnerships to address the needs of students and families underserved because of poverty, race/ethnicity or cultural and linguistic diversity. She is an ASHA Fellow and served in a myriad of leadership roles as a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and as an invited speaker for numerous presentations. Currently Ellen is a consultant for school districts, universities and non-profit management.

Teresa Laney

Advisory Council

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CCC-SLP, Speech-Language Coordinator for the Mississippi DOE, State Education Agencies Communication Disabilities Council Board member.

Andrea Lowe

Andrea Lowe

Advisory Council

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Bringing the parent perspective to the Advisory Council, Andrea is passionate about community and effective whole-life education. She serves to cooperate within the collective voice to assist in developing solid and abiding solutions.

Charlette McRay Green

Advisory Council

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Charlette McRay Green is the Executive Director of 504 and Special Education for the Cherokee County School District in Canton Georgia. She is an ASHA Fellow and a Board Certified Specialist in Child Language. Charlette is a Georgia Council of Administrators of Special Education past president and she formerly worked for the Georgia Department of Education as an Education Program Specialist.

Michael Towey

Advisory Council

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Michael Towey, M.A., CCC-SLP, directs the Speech Language Pathology program at Waldo County Hospital in Belfast, Maine. He leads a department of 19 speech pathologists who provide speech therapy via telepractice nationally and internationally. He is a Fellow of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and recipient of the Lindamood Award for Clinical Leadership and The Lifetime Achievement Award from Northern Arizona University. Mike provides professional training for voice, swallowing disorders and telemedicine, including groups in Israeli, Finland, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Italy. His publications include: Speech Therapy Telepractice & Cost Savings for Vocal Cord Dysfunction (2012), Speech Telepractice (2012) and Telepractice & Voice Therapy: Lights, Camera, Action (2018).

Eydie Tricquet

Eydie Tricquet

Advisory Council

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Director, Special Programs, The Florida Diagnostic & Learning Resources System (FDLRS)

Our Advisors In Their Own Words 

Dr. Kathleen Whitmire

Senior Advisor

Dr. Judy Rich

Advisory Council

Dr. Luann Purcell

Advisory Council

Board of Directors

Connor O’Keefe

Board of Directors

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Connor O’Keefe joined Quad in 2015 and is a Vice President. He leads efforts in deal generation, transaction execution and portfolio management. He is currently a board member of Streamline, Gardner School, and Amplio. Prior to Quad, Connor worked in investment banking at Moelis & Company. He holds a BBA from the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.

Dr. Daniel Serfaty

Dr. Daniel Serfaty

Board of Directors

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As Aptima’s Founder and CEO, Daniel Serfaty has led Aptima to become the premier Human Performance Engineering business in the world. His work optimizes the integration of humans with intelligent technologies in defense, healthcare, aerospace, and education. Among his many industry and non-profit leadership activities, Daniel is a member of the IAC Boston Council and the current Chair of the NE Technion Alumni Association. His interdisciplinary background includes degrees in mathematics, psychology, aerospace engineering, and international business from the Université de Paris, the Technion, Israel Institute of Technology, and University of Connecticut. His doctoral work has pioneered the study of distributed command teams. He is the recipient of the UConn Distinguished Service Award and has been inducted in its Engineering Hall of Fame.

 Dr. Paul Volosov

Dr. Paul Volosov

Board of Directors

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Paul Volosov, Ph.D., founded New Story Schools in 1997 to help children with serious and complex challenges live high-quality lives. Paul received his master’s degree in human development from the University of Maryland in 1972 and his Ph.D. in school psychology from Temple University in 1976. After being certified as a school psychologist and as a licensed psychologist, Paul founded several companies that support individuals with serious and complex challenges so that all can live satisfying and contributing lives.

While education systems have adopted a variety of technologies, special education lags behind. Amplio revolutionizes this immensely important field, addresses an acute need of vulnerable students, educators and education systems, and has gained considerable recognition and buy-in from the market.

Connor O’Keefe
Vice President at Quad Partners, Amplio Board of Directors

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