The University of Massachusetts Amherst

WMWP Leadership

The WMWP Leadership Team includes the site director, the professional development coordinator, and six co-directors. The positions, leaders, and terms are listed below.  All of the co-directors lead teams of teacher-consultants.  If you would like to serve on a team, write

Site Director: Anna Rita Napoleone
Responsible for overall site management and coordination, budget, grants, development, university relations, and support for other members of leadership team.

Professional Development Coordinator: Jane Baer-Leighton (through 2022)
Responsible for contracting and organizing professional development programs with schools districts and other sponsors and for coaching and supporting the teacher-consultants who lead these programs.

Certificate in the Teaching of Writing Coordinator: Bruce M. Penniman
Responsible for planning and monitoring certificate program courses and candidates' progress.

Co-Director for Teacher Programs: Emily Lent Hemingway (through 2020)
Responsible for planning and implementing the annual Best Practices conference, Spring Symposium, and other summer or school-year teacher programs.

Co-Director for Youth and Family Programs: Jenn Murphy (through 2021)
Responsible for developing and organizing high-quality, low-cost summer and school-year writing programs for youth and families.

Co-Director for Summer Leadership Institute: Chris Rea (through 2020)
Responsible for planning, recruitment, implementation, and evaluation of the Summer Leadership Institute and school-year follow-up, assisted by a team of teacher-consultants.

Co-Director for Outreach: Kevin Hodgson (through 2019)
Responsible for publishing the WMWP newsletter, coordinating the Daily Hampshire Gazette Chalktalk columns written by teacher-consultants, and WMWP’s social media presence.

Co-Director for Language, Culture, and Diversity​: Momodou Sarr (through 2019)
Responsible for assisting program leaders with inclusion of insights and teaching practices from language, diversity, and culture theory and research and for developing ELL, special education, multicultural education, and/or social justice programs.

Co-Director for Technology: Tom Fanning (through 2021)
Responsible for assisting program leaders with inclusion of insights and teaching practices from educational technology theory and research and for developing programs focused on classroom uses of technology.


Executive Board

In addition to the Leadership Team, the WMWP Executive Board includes the following members. All WMWP teacher-consultants are invited to participate in Executive Board meetings.

UMass College of Humanities and Fine Arts Liaison: Donna LeCourt
UMass Department of English Liaison: Rebecca Lorimer Leonard
UMass College of Education Liaisons: Ysaaca Axelrod, Maria Jose Botelho, and Keisha Green
Project Manager: Diana Roy
Westfield State University Liaison: Jen DiGrazia
Springfield Public Schools Liaison: Declan O'Connor
Summer Institute 2019 Liaison:
Retired Teachers Liaison: Joanne Wisniewski
Past Co-Directors: Karen Miele, Wilma Ortiz, Karen Diaz, Diana Callahan
Members at Large: Samantha Briggs, Jenny Speck-Sherson