Dr. David Balsamo
David Balsamo is running for the position of President of NYSAWLA> He is the World Language Coordinator in Syosset Central School District on Long Island where he leads a K-12 department of about 50 teachers. Recent accomplishments in this role include implementing integrated performance assessment in middle and high school courses, adding Chinese and Korean as grade 6-12 articulated languages, adoption of AAPPL testing in grades 8, 10 & 12 in all languages, and the development of a new curriculum aligned with the revised NYS World Language Learning Standards. In Syosset currently the middle school program features five languages, while the high school program boasts nine language offerings. A former Spanish teacher, Dr. Balsamo is a graduate of Hofstra University (BA cum laude), Saint Louis University Madrid Campus (MA in Spanish) and St. John’s University (Ed. D). His doctoral research centered on ways school administrators foster world language teacher quality.
David’s previous leadership in our field includes serving as Secretary on the executive board of FLACS (2006-2012). His presentations at state and local conferences promote professional development in language teaching methodology, assessment, and curriculum development. Additionally David serves as a member of the New York State Seal of Biliteracy Task Force. At his core David believes in the power world language teachers have to not only increase learners’ communicative skills, but also to instill in our next generation the intercultural understanding and empathy necessary to bring peace, dignity, and social justice to communities near and far.
Vincenza Graham is running for First Vice President. She currently serves as the Director of World Languages, English as a New Language, and Library Media Specialist for the Smithtown Central School District. She graduated from Long Island University/C.W. Post with a B.A. in Italian, earned an M.A. in Spanish Education and the Advanced Certificate in School Administration and Supervision from Queens College. She has spent over fifteen years teaching Italian and Spanish and has supervised teachers for over 11 years. She was a member of the FLACS Executive Board as the Asst. to the First Vice President in 2016-17 and helped manage all communication with individual districts regarding FLACS membership and the consortium. Ms. Vincenza Graham is a member of FLACS, LILT, ACTFL and ASCD and is currently completing her second term as First Vice President of NYSAWLA.
Judith Goris Moroff
Judy Goris Moroff is running for the position of Treasurer. She currently is the Director of Bilingual Programs and World Languages in Huntington UFSD. Ms. Goris-Moroff has years of experience in Multilingual Education, including her service as an EL teacher, bilingual classroom teacher, Spanish teacher, and Bilingual Specialist at the LI-RBERN. In her current role in Huntington, Ms. Goris-Moroff serves and promotes the academic success of all language learners through professional development that builds teachers’ instructional and pedagogical content knowledge. Ms. Goris-Moroff is deeply passionate about equity and advocacy for multilingual learners and fights for access and inclusive opportunities for children and families.
Tara Tassani is running for the position of Board Liaison. She is currently the Director of World Languages and ENL and has been teaching World Languages on Long Island for 24 years. She has experience teaching all levels preK-adult in both French and Spanish. She is passionate about advocacy and in researching best practices in World Language education. She has presented at numerous conferences on these topics. Tara currently serves on the New York State World Language standards revision committee. She served as the New York state representative for NNELL and as a board member for NYSAFLT. She is the founder and facilitator of the NYC-LI FLES Collegial Circle and is a member of many professional organizations such as AATSP, AATF, ACTFL, LILT, NNELL, and NYSAFLT. Tara is currently a candidate in the St. John’s doctoral program in Educational Leadership.