GSDMC Executive Board
Brian Lawler, President
I am a professor of mathematics education at CSU San Marcos. My professional interests are the issues of equity and social justice as they pertain to mathematics education. Toward these interests, I serve on the CMC Equity committee, volunteer with TODOS, and am a contributing author to the Interactive Mathematics Program. I have been active in the California mathematics community since the early 1990s, when I began attending the CMC-N Conference at Asilomar as a beginning teacher in Denver, CO. I continued to teach high school mathematics, next in Long Beach, CA, and then Athens, GA. While in Georgia, I completed graduate degrees in both Mathematics and Mathematics Education at the University of Georgia. Since 1995 I have worked regularly with preservice and practicing math teachers in the greater San Diego region and nationally.
Cathy Williams, Past President
Currently my role is Director of K-12 Mathematics at Vista Unified School District. I have worked previously as Secondary Mathematics Coordinator for the San Diego County Office of Education and as a high school teacher in Carlsbad. I like dogs.
Nidia Rodriguez, VP Programs
I am a substitute teacher for Grossmont High School District. Previously, I had taught mathematics for 7 years at Mount Miguel High School in Spring Valley, CA. I also had experience working at Valley Middle School as a long term substitute and EL tutor. My passion is teaching mathematics to English Learners and marginalized students. I have currently been introduced to and have a new focus on equity issues in mathematics and culturally relevant pedagogy. I attend California State University San Marcos where I am pursuing my master's degree in education. I am excited about and look forward to learning and contributing to my position as Vice President of Programs for the GSDMC.
Michelle Derksen, VP Membership
For the past 8 years, I have been teaching high school mathematics. Currently, I am teaching at Del Norte High School within the Poway Unified School District. Throughout my past 6 years of service in PUSD, I have had a number of opportunities to participate in and facilitate professional development activities related to curriculum development, common core integration, vertical articulation and educational technology. I have also served as Speech and Debate coach for Del Norte High School since the school opened 3 years ago. I look forward to expanding my participation within the San Diego County mathematics community as Vice President of Membership for the GSDMC.
Jason Slowbe, Secretary
I have been teaching high school math for 8 years - 3 years in Cleveland, OH, 1 year at Escondido High School, and 4 years at my current site of San Marcos High School. I work extensively with NCTM, including on the Illuminations Advisory Board, the High School Reasoning and Sense Making Task Writing Task Force, the 2012 Hartford Regional and the 2014 Annual Meeting program committees, and as a task group facilitator for the Reasoning and Sense Making Summer Institutes last year in Orlando, FL and this year in Los Angeles. I am also the Webmaster for GSDMC.
Abi Leaf, Treasurer
I currently teach math at Valley High School in Escondido, where I also serve as our site PLC lead, math department chair and our Testing Coordinator. I specialize in working with students who feel they have been marginalized by the education system and who have had little success in mathematics in their academic careers. A great concern of mine is providing an equitable educational experience for these students and helping them to increase their feelings of efficacy about being successful in mathematics. Over the last 8 years that I have been teaching at VHS, I have kept myself busy in the greater San Diego mathematics community as a member of GSDMC and CMC, as a former chair of the North County CalPASS mathematics group, as a committee member on the ICAS subcommittee for the revision of the Mathematics Competency Statement, writing curriculum for my school district (EUHSD), teaching in EUHSD’s summer Algebra Academy, and, with colleagues, presenting workshops on equality for elementary school teachers. I am the mom of two great teenagers and I enjoy spending as much time with them as they will let me.