Our Presenters bring decades of experience working with students and teachers while reflecting the most up-to-date research in their training sessions.
PTI trainers have no conflicts of interest. They have no vested personal and/or financial considerations that could compromise professional judgment.
Lisa M. Brooks Director, Professional Training InstituteExpand
Lisa Brooks is the Director of the Professional Training Institute and is a Fellow of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators. She holds a Master’s degree in Special Education and licensure in several states in elementary education, reading, special education K-12, English as a second language, and adult education. Previously, she worked as a special educator in public schools in New Orleans and Tucson and served as Director of Commonwealth Learning Center’s Needham office from 1999 to 2008. Lisa trains and observes teachers and oversees the daily operations of the training department.
Mary J. Briggs Director, Orton-Gillingham Training ProgramExpand
Mary Briggs is the Director of the Orton-Gillingham Training Program. She is a Fellow and Board Member of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators and serves on its standards committee. She holds a Master’s degree in Special Education and licensure in elementary education, special education, and school administration. Mary previously worked as a special educator and staff developer in Cambridge Public Schools. She trains and supervises teachers in the Orton-Gillingham Approach and spearheaded the Center’s Orton-Gillingham accreditation process. She is the author of two workbooks that many reading teachers use in their classrooms.
Deb Morris Orton-Gillingham Specialist/Curriculum DeveloperExpand
Deb Morris is an Orton-Gillingham Specialist/Curriculum Developer at PTI. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators and serves on its standards committee. She holds a Master’s degree in Literacy Education and licensure in secondary English and reading. Prior to joining the Professional Training Institute team, Deb worked as the Literacy Coach at an innovative high school in Providence. In this capacity, she provided Orton-Gillingham training for staff members, as well as community members who completed their practicum experiences with her students. She also ran a small consulting business that provided Orton-Gillingham training to educators.
Susan C. Palmer Orton-Gillingham SpecialistExpand
Susan Palmer is an Orton-Gillingham Specialist at PTI. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Orton-Gillingham Practitioners and Educators and serves on its Information, Outreach, and Communications committee. Susan worked at The Carroll School in Lincoln, Massachusetts where she received her training and became a Fellow of the Academy in 1998. She holds a Master’s degree in Education with certifications in middle school, special education, and English. Previously, Susan worked in private and public school systems as an O-G Trainer, special education teacher, tutor, and reading/literacy leader. Susan trains teachers and observes them in their schools.
Shadi Tayarani Former Director, Commonwealth Learning CenterExpand
Shadi Tayarani is the former Director of the Commonwealth Learning Center in Danvers, where in addition to her administrative and supervision duties she offered 1-to-1 tutoring to students of all ages, diagnostic evaluation, school consulting, and teacher training. She holds a Master’s degree in Administration and Social Policy, and licensure in special education K-12. Previously, Shadi worked as a special educator in Houston, TX.