Joan F. Kaywell is Professor of English Education at the University of South Florida where she has won several teaching awards. She is passionate about assisting preservice and practicing teachers in discovering ways to improve literacy. She donates her time extensively to the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) and its Florida affiliate (FCTE): She is Past President of NCTE’s Assembly on Literature for Adolescents (ALAN) and is currently serving as its Membership Secretary; she is a Past-President of FCTE twice and is still on its Board of Directors. Dr. Kaywell is published in several journals; regularly reviews young adult novels for The ALAN Review, The Journal of Adult and Adolescent Literacy, and Signal; and has edited two series of textbooks: Five volumes of Adolescent Literature as a Complement to the Classics (1993, 1995, 1997, 2000, 2010); six volumes of Using Literature to Help Troubled Teenagers Cope with [Various] Issues (Family 1999, Societal 1999, Identity 1999, Health 2000, End-of-Life 2000, Abuse 2004; and has written one: Adolescents At Risk: A Guide to Fiction and Nonfiction for Young Adults, Parents, and Professionals (1993). Her first trade book Dear Author: Letters of Hope (Philomel, 2007) is intended to get students to choose reading as a healthy escape from their life’s negative circumstances. Kaywell fervently believes that teachers and authors are often the unsung heroes of children on the brink of self-destruction. By offering books to children to help them momentarily escape the pain of growing up, teachers offer teenagers a constructive way to survive the crisis, find hope, and know that they are not alone.
Dr. Tamara O'Hearn is an experienced teacher and writing program administrator who specializes in helping individuals become better writers and stronger thinkers by diagnosing existing learning difficulties, psychological barriers and environmental obstacles to writing and learning processes. She has worked with students from elementary age, to graduate students undergoing the dissertation writing process, and with various groups of students including those from under-represented neighborhoods, ESL students and special needs students. She believes that every student has the ability to succeed and can learn essential skills to help them complete their academic journey and meet their desired goals.
Tamara previously worked with writing programs at James Madison University, Ball State University and Indiana University and has 23 years experience in college teaching and administration. She has been an assistant professor at both Ball State University and Indiana University working specifically for the Advanced College Project.
She is currently Director of the Writing Center and an Assistant Professor of English at Manchester College, living in the town of North Manchester with her twin daughters, Cassi and Chelsea, who are both avid readers and writers.
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