Board of Directors

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Board of Directors

Region 1

  • Nancy Hennessy: Nancy has a B.A. in Psychology, an M.Ed. Learning Disabilities, is a Certified Regular Education Teacher, a Special Education Teacher, and a Learning Disabilities Consultant & Supervisor of Instruction (New Jersey). She is a former Lead Trainer of Wilson Language Systems & National Trainer for Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling (LETRS), OG Training. Nancy also served as the president of the International Dyslexia Association from 2003-2005.  She has developed teacher training programs and presented speeches throughout the United States.


  • Laura Daniels: Laura Daniels has taught elementary school for sixteen years. She has enjoyed teaching second, third and fourth grades and serving as a Reading Interventionist. Laura’s passion for helping all children learn to read led her to be trained in the Orton-Gillingham approach. Laura has served as a private tutor for elementary aged children. 






Region 2

  • Nancy Brewer: Nancy Brewer has been a special educator for 36 years in the public schools of North Carolina. She has also taught five summers at The Hill School in Wilmington, North Carolina. Her current passion is teaching students with dyslexia and other reading struggles. She is trained  in several evidence based reading programs and is a certified Reading Research to Classroom Practice instructor. Nancy is also trained to deliver Dyslexia Capacity Building PD. This Fall, Nancy was recognized with  the 2017 Exceptional Children’s Teacher of Excellence Award for New Hanover County.
  • Janet Rogers

Region 3

  • Jessica Wery: Dr. Jessica Wery is an Assistant Professor and the Special Education Program Chair at the College of Education at Elon University. Dr. Wery received a Ph.D. from North Carolina State University in 2013. She teaches courses for pre-service and graduate level teachers in the areas of behavior management, foundations of special education, assessment and literacy methods. Dr. Wery is currently serving as immediate past president for the Division of Learning Disabilities and she is the communications chair for North Carolina Teacher Educator Division. Dr. Wery’s research interests include the assessment and identification of students with emotional disturbance, and the relative effectiveness and efficiency of academic and behavioral interventions used with students with learning disabilities and emotional disturbance.


  • Beth Couch: Beth has been a teacher for 31 years, a literacy specialist for 15 years, a mentor coordinator for beginning teachers, student support team, team leader, school improvement team, and leadership team.  She is O-G trained by JoAnn Crawford, Wilson Certified Level I, and she is currently tutoring children with dyslexia ages 6-15.



  • Lynne Loeser: Lynne Loeser, M.Ed., is the statewide consultant for Specific Learning Disabilities and ADHD at the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. Lynne has led statewide efforts on specially designed instruction and progress monitoring within a multi-tiered system of support, dyslexia and revisions of state policy for students with Specific Learning Disabilities. Lynne graduated from the University of Kentucky with a BS in Elementary and Special Education and earned a Master’s Degree from the University of Louisville in Learning and Behavior Disorders. She has earned National Board Certification as an Exceptional Needs Specialist and serves on the boards of the NC branch of the International Dyslexia Association, the NC Council for Exceptional Children Division for Learning Disabilities and the Hill Center of Durham.

Region 5

  • Kris Cox, President


  • Lynne Melton: Lynne graduated in 1980 from East Carolina University. In 1989, she received her NC teaching certificate from UNC Charlotte. Later, while doing some graduate work at Lenoir Rhyne, she attended a weekend workshop with Dr. Lucia Karnes who introduced me to the Orton-Gillingham approach. I then sought training with JoAnn Crawford and completed both Basic and Advanced trainings and practicums under her guidance. I have been an Orton-Gillingham tutor ever since. I have contracted with both public and private schools, as well as having tutored privately. While tutoring for Noble Academy in Greensboro, NC, I was trained in The Wilson Reading Program, Great Leaps Fluency, and The Sentence, Paragraph, and Theme Writing Strategies from Kansas University. I am a member, and currently serve on the board, of the North Carolina Branch of the International Dyslexia Association.


  • Cynthia Mabe: Cynthia attended UNCG graduating with B.S in Middle Grades Education and minor in linguistics, attended Salem College graduating with a M.A.T. in Teaching Student with Learning Disabilities, and completed a certification program for school administration with Appalachian State University. Her teaching career started at Greenhills School, a school for students with dyslexia, and there she was able to train in the Orton-Gillingham Approach with mentor Marjory Roth. Her initial O-G training was provided by the NC branch of the then titled “Orton Dyslexia Society,” now the NC branch of the International Dyslexia Association; and the trainers included well know experts such Dr. Lucia Karnes and Joan Crawford . That started her passion for reading and working with struggling readers. She has since worked passionately to build her knowledge base with attending many conferences, becoming trained in multiple reading programs and continually reviewing new research. Cynthia obtained Certified level through the Orton-Gillingham Academy of Practitioners and Educators and Trainer of Teacher through International Multisensory Language Education Council the late 1990s. Once she transitioned to the public school system in Stokes County, she achieved National Board Certification as an Early Childhood through Young Adulthood/Exceptional Needs Specialist in 2003. As an EC teacher in the public schools, Cynthia has taught across all grade spans in both inclusion and resource settings. She holds NC teaching certification in K-12 Exceptional Children General Curriculum, 6-9 Social Studies and English/Language Arts, and 9-12 Social Studies and English. While teaching she also became involved with the NC State Improvement Project as an Instructor for the Reading Research to Classroom Practice professional development course and she now serves as the district NCSIP Coordinator. Her current position in Stokes County Schools is Assistant Director Of Special Programs.


  • Pinkney Green: Pinkney began to advocate for students with dyslexia six years ago when she discovered her three children would need to learn language differently.  Raising three brilliant dyslexic boys has inspired her passion to help other children with dyslexia reach their full potential.  Pinkney is an Associate Member of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators under supervising fellow Susie van der Vorst.  She has also been fortunate to study at The Key Learning Center in Asheville.  Her studies with the academy have allowed her to achieve certification as a Dyslexia Practitioner with the IDA.  She currently serves as a private tutor for students from early elementary to high school.  Pinkney also enjoys her newest position working as a site coordinator for ReadWS in Winston-Salem, NC.

Region 6

  • Ann Jolly, Secretary: Ann Jolly is the Elementary Program Specialist for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Programs for Exceptional Children. She was a special education teacher for 20 years and completed Basic and Advanced Orton-Gillingham training under AOGPE Fellow Pat Langston. Ann is a NC DPI Reading Research to Classroom Practice Trainer and Dyslexia Delegate. She holds an undergraduate degree in Special Education,  a Master’s Degree in Special Education and School Administration.


  • Pryor Rayburn: Pryor is the Director of the Lower School Educational Resource Program at Charlotte Country Day School.  Pryor taught in the classroom for 4 years and she was a reading tutor at Charlotte Country Day School for two years. After having children, she was a private tutor for ten years and she has completed the associate level and certified level Orton Gillingham training under AOGPE fellows Pat Langston and JoAnn Crawford.  Pryor is passionate about helping teachers, parents, and students with dyslexia and other learning disabilities.  She has a BA in Art History.  Credentials include CALP (ALTA) and Dyslexia Practitioner (IDA).



Region 7

  • Joan Leatherman: Joan received her BA in education and social work from Meredith College. She is certified in elementary education and she is a Certified Wilson Language Practitioner. She has completed Level II training for Wilson Language Therapy and she is a certified Orton Gillingham tutor.  She taught elementary ed in Cabarrus County and she privately tutors in Salisbury.



  • Brian Smith, Vice-President: Brian Smith is currently the RtI and Professional Development Facilitator for Newton-Conover City Schools. If you ask him however, he will tell you he is a Kindergarten teacher because that is what he loves! He has taught Exceptional Children, everything from Inclusion to Self-Contained, and Regular Education. His undergrad degree is from Lenoir-Rhyne University (although it was just a College when he went there) and his Masters in Elementary Education is from Gardner-Webb University. He is also certified to teach Academically-Gifted students. He is a Top Teacher Blogger for Scholastic and an adjunct professor at Lenoir-Rhyne University. Brian has delivered a TEDxHickory talked called Building a Better Teacher. He was named to the ASCD Emerging Leader class of 2015. He is the Vice President of the North Carolina branch of the International Dyslexia Association, treasurer of his local chapter of the Autism Society, and a board member of the the Patrick Beaver Learning Resource Center and Newton-Conover Educational Foundation. Brian started and runs a Saturday morning All Boys’ Book Club for third grade students. He has been married for 16 years to a wonderful woman who tolerates his self-diagnosed ADHD very well! They have a 11 year old daughter, Ella, who they adopted from Guatemala. She has dyslexia and is also academically gifted. She is both Brian’s greatest joy and his biggest challenge!


  • Devery Ward: Devery has NC teaching licences in special education and reading education. Her master’s degree is in Reading Education and she holds a Ph.D. in Special Education. Before joining the faculty at ASU, Devery worked as an assistant professor of special education at the University of Iowa. She is currently the associate director of the Anderson Reading Clinic at ASU and an associate professor of Reading Education.




  • Monica Campbell:  Dr. Monica Campbell has served as a professor in the School of Education since 2008. She is the Director of Teaching Scholars, a scholarship program for students who are pursuing a career in K-12 education. She is also the coordinator of the Elementary Education program, which provides students with an option of earning a dual teaching license in Elementary Education and Special Education. She received her Ph.D., MA, and BA in Special Education at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She is a proud North Carolina Teaching Fellow alumni. Dr. Campbell’s research focuses on effective practices for teaching struggling readers and students with exceptionalities. She has co-authored a reading program for primary-age students entitled Early Reading Tutor, which is published by SRA. Additional publications include research on multisensory instruction and treatment resisters.


Region 8

  • Deirdre Christy: Deirdre Schoen Christy earned her B.A. (1980) in Psychology from the University of Denver and her M.Ed. (1988) and Ph.D. (1993) in School Psychology from the UNC-Chapel Hill. She is currently in private practice in Black Mountain, NC where she provides comprehensive Psychoeducational Evaluation services for children and adolescents working in partnership with families, schools and health care providers. Dr. Christy strives to facilitate student success and well-being by expanding knowledge and understanding of student strengths, challenges and support needs across all areas of development (learning and academic, social and emotional, health and wellness). She is the happy parent of three young adults.


  • Carolyn Cole, Treasurer: Carolyn Cole, M.Ed., is a retired Exceptional Children’s teacher and Instructional Coach for the Exceptional Children’s Dept. She has a Master’s degree in Education and she is certified/well versed in several research based reading programs. Carolyn is a wife of 33 years and mother of two married sons. She loves gardening, sewing and crafts.




  • Concha Wyatt: Concha is the director of teacher training in The Key School and Learning Center and has been working at Carolina Day School since 2004. Her son, Luke Wyatt, graduated from CDS in 2009. Concha founded the “Annual Best Practices in Multisensory Teaching and Learning Symposium”, which has grown from an attendance of under 40 participants in 2009 to over 100 participants in 2013. This has become the Annual Orton-Gillingham “reunion” for practioners trained by Key Learning Center over the years, and it is also a low cost community awareness event for teachers, parents, and other professionals. Concha’s Orton-Gillingham teaching experience spans more than 10 years and includes both one-to-one tutoring and small group work with students in second through eighth grade and adult learners. She also had the opportunity take the Orton-Gillingham principles and apply them to the development of history courses, reading comprehension classes, and multisensory keyboarding classes and programs. Credentials include MaED, Fellow/AOGPE, CALT.


  • Deb Luckett: Deborah is the Grant Coordinator for the CLASS Grant (Counseling Leaders Advancing School Safety) at Buncombe County Schools.  She works with 27 intermediate and elementary schools implementing comprehensive school counseling programs utilizing both the Second Step curricula and the online Devereux Student Strengths Assessment.  She also assists with the implementation of the Compassionate Schools model that assists schools in creating caring and nurturing schools while understanding the impact of trauma and chronic stress on students.   She recently took on this role after 10 years of working as a school counselor at the elementary, middle and high school levels in North Carolina and Colorado.  Deborah integrates her knowledge about chronic stress/trauma into practical classroom strategies to help all students including students with dyslexia. Deborah graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1991 with a degree in Psychology and completed her Masters in Education, Counseling at the University of Houston in 1997.   In addition, she has been serving as a Board Member of the North Carolina International Dyslexia Association since 2014.  Deborah is also the parent of a high school daughter who was diagnosed with dyslexia in 3rd grade and now attends the Nesbitt Discovery STEM School.


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