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Science Presenters

Team Leader: Chemistry

Mr. Todd Abronowitz earned a B.S. from Eastern Michigan University and a M.S. in Chemistry from Texas A&M - Commerce.  He has taught all levels of chemistry for 23 years and is a College Board® Consultant for AP® and Pre-AP Chemistry.  He has received local, state and national awards, including: Radio Shack® National Teacher Award, National Math and Science Initiative All-American Teacher of the Year, Shultz Award for Outstanding High School Chemistry Teacher from the American Chemical Society and Texas Chemistry Teacher of the Year.  He appeared in the book Top Texas Teachers and named one of the top 35 educators in Texas.

Mr. Toby Bane graduated from Texas Christian University with a B.A. in Chemistry. For sixteen years he has taught Pre-AP Chemistry and AP® Chemistry at The Yvonne A. Ewell Townview Magnet Center in Dallas, Texas.

Team Leader: Biology

Ms. Amy Cote earned her B.S .from The University of Texas at Austin and a M.Ed. from Texas A&M University – Commerce. She has 23 years of teaching experience including on-level, Pre-AP/ AP® Biology and Anatomy & Physiology at the high school and community college levels. She is a consultant for the College Board® and has trained teachers across the United States. Ms. Cote was the recipient of the Siemens Award for Advanced Placement in 2005.

Ms. Audrey de la Cruz earned her B.S. in Biology as well as her M.Ed at The University of Texas at Arlington. She taught high school science for over 6 years at Skyline High School in DISD before working as the Science Coordinator for the district's Alternative Certification Program. She is currently the Associate Principal for North Dallas High School in DISD.

Mr. Vern Dewees earned his B. S. from the University of Texas and his M. S. in Physics from Texas A&M Commerce. He has taught Mathematics, Physics, and Chemistry at the high school level for 30 years.  He is a trainer for the National Math and Science Initative® and has worked as a consultant for Rice University’s Center for College Readiness. He is currently the Science Department Chair at John Paul II High School in Plano, Texas.

Ms. Marilyn Dunham earned her B.S. at State University at Oneonta, New York, her M.S. at University of New Mexico, and went on to work for her PhD in Biochemistry at University of Michigan.  For 33 years she taught a wide variety of science courses including Pre AP and AP® Chemistry at Pearce High School in Richardson, Texas.  Before moving to Texas, she taught at Madonna College in Livonia, Michigan, and in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  She was a grader for the AP® Chemistry exam for five years.

Ms. Maya Jackson earned her B.S. from Prairie View A&M University. She is the lead Biology teacher for the Samuell High School Academy of Marketing and teaches Biology and Pre-AP Biology. Ms. Jackson has participated in the UT Southwestern research program for STARS and Texas A&M at Galveston Talented and Gifted Sea Camp.

Mrs. Robyn Johnson earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Secondary Education from Texas Christian University and her Master of Arts in Teaching from the University of Texas at Dallas. She has 35 years of teaching experience and has taught On-level, Pre-AP, and AP® Chemistry at the high school level as well as freshman-level chemistry at the community college.

Ms. Debra Jones earned her B.S of Science from East Texas State University and her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from Texas Wesleyan University in Fort Worth Texas.  She has been an educator for thirty years, teaching all levels of science at the secondary level including Biology, AP® Biology, Anatomy and Physiology, Chemistry, IPC, and Physics. She was a member of the Dallas Independent School Science Department as an instructional coach for 7 years.   She has been a writer and presenter of staff development training, focusing on instructional tools and content in the biological sciences for 10 years.

Mr. Ben Jones received his B.S. in Biology from Baylor University and is currently attending Liberty University for his M.Ed. in Administration and Supervision. He taught Biology (on-level, Pre-AP, AP®), Chemistry (on-level, Pre-AP), and Physics for 4 years. He currently directs STEM outreach programs as the Academic Initiatives Director for Destination Imagination, Inc. ® and conducts professional development workshops in Challenge-Based Learning across the United States and Canada.


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