Meet Team Literacyhead, a creative caboodle of idea addicts with prodigious training in literacy and/or art, wide experience teaching all kinds of people (and some animals), and a persistent bent toward doing all of the above in ways that are seriously novel and fun.

a bit idealistic +

Jan Burkins - Executive Editor & Publisher

Jan has an Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Reading. She was an elementary school teacher for seven years and a literacy coach for six years. She has worked as a part-time assistant professor at the University of Georgia in the Language and Literacy Education Department, and has published three books about literacy and literacy coaching. Currently, she is a full-time writer, editor, and consultant, blogging daily with Kim Yaris at BurkinsandYaris.com. Jan has four mentally agile sons who help keep her brain young. Constantly in the grips of idea mania, Jan just likes to think and create. When the weather permits, she plays in the dirt.

Jamie D'Angelo - Editor

Jamie has a Bachelor of Science in Art Education and a minor in Art History from Penn State University. She has a Masters of Education in Early Childhood Education from the University of Georgia. Her teaching experience varies from working as a self-contained third-grade teacher to working as the elementary art teacher in a cyber school. With her one-year-old in tow, she is constantly looking at art, making art, or thinking about art. She sews, paints, decorates, and lives in a world of ideas. In her head, she is composing books for children and adults; one day soon they will be in print. She and her husband have been knee-deep in renovations on their 1907 home for the past two years. She just knows that when they are finally finished, there will probably be cause to move.
a bit artsy +
a bit tenacious +

Carrie Laird - Technical Editor

Carrie has a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Georgia. She worked for four years in elementary education and was the webmaster of Discoverlife.org for two years. She is also the Pastry Chef for The National, a restaurant in Athens, GA. She wears hats, drives a square car, and has a female dog named George. She is, quite possibly, the hardest working woman in show business.

Rachel Watkins - Assistant Editor

Rachel has a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from the University of Mississippi and an M.Ed. from The University of Georgia in Adult Education. Rachel is the quintessential people person and, while also raising her two young children, she reads and writes constantly. When Rachel grows up, she wants to be a librarian. She avidly enjoys cheese (especially goat), books (particularly those that change her mind), and people (pretty much all of them).
a bit exuberant +
a bit idealistic +

Kelly Storm - Developer

Kelly is the technological mind that keeps Literacyhead's site humming. His creativity with programming is surpassed only by his creativity with profanity. With a Ph.D. from the University of Georgia in Computer Science, Kelly founded Black Box Operations, a place where he and his partner, Doug Brewer, make complicated ideas simple realities. Kelly thinks in algorithms and Latin and sometimes translates his obtuse thoughts into the vernacular of lay nerds so that the rest of the team can understand him. We just know that Kelly makes our ideas into real stuff that shows up on the site for people to use. 

Amina Patton - Graphic Artist

Amina has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Communications Design from Washington University in St. Louis. She is now pursuing a Masters of Fine Arts with a focus on research that closes the gap between her two loves, education and design. Using her nickname and middle name as an alias, Mina Machelle, she freelances as a graphic designer specializing in print design. As a champion multitasker, Amina is typically listening to music, researching some random inquiry, watching movies, or creating and thinking of what to do next. She is the youngest of seven, with seven nieces and nephews who always seek her out as "the artsy aunt," able to make a puppet or encourage coloring outside the lines.
a bit innovative +
a bit unconventional +

Cameron Brooks - Writer

Cameron Brooks has a Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education and is a third-grade teacher. When he is not practicing tai chi or chi gong with his students, you may find him planting succulents in unlikely planters such as old skateboard decks, army helmets, or broken seashells. In addition to writing essays and reviews for Literacyhead, Cameron is also a surfer, a skateboarder, a vegan chef, and a photographer. He photoblogs at Pedagogy of the Plants .

Tony Hart - Graphic Artist

Tony has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Computer Art and Motion Graphics from Savannah College of Art and Design. Originally from Boise, Idaho, he studied art in Lacoste, France. When he is not designing for Literacyhead, he is enjoying newlywed life since his June 12th nuptials with an extraordinary first-grade teacher. Curious George was Tony's favorite childhood book. He loves coffee, ice cream, and coffee ice cream. Quite possibly the nicest man on earth, when he is not doing something for someone else, he is often listening to National Public Radio podcasts of 'This American Life' whilst creating design wonders on his computer.
a bit meticulous +
a bit domesticated +

John Pence - Communications

John has been, at different times: a sorcerer, a bass angler, a PR man for the American tombstone industry, a taxi driver, and a book editor. Some of his writing has been published in print and online, and much more of it has not. He currently teaches workplace communications skills at Athens Technical College and talks about stuff with his kids.

Kim Yaris - Writer

Kim is dedicated to all things literacy.  By day, she works alongside children and teachers coaching for more effective literacy practices and by night, she reads and reviews professional literature, writes lessons for Literacyhead as well as Literacy-Builders.com  and blogs about the Common Core with Jan Burkins at BurkinsandYaris.com.  Ki m is also a dedicated early-riser and wakes Jan regularly at 5AM to work on the book that they are writing together.
a bit dedicated +
a bit creative +

David Rowe - Permissions

David graduated from the University of Georgia School of Law in 2002. He fills his days practicing law, spending time with his wife, and caring for his two young daughters, ages three and five. In his spare time, he reads smart-people stuff, like books on economics and history. He is an avid major league baseball fan and a self-professed Fantasy Baseball geek.

Morgan Fleming - Artist

Morgan has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a Masters of Education in Early Childhood Education, both from the University of Georgia. A resident of Athens, GA for the last decade, Morgan spends her days teaching and learning from children. She spends most afternoons and weekends in a yoga posture or loving on her dogs, Sophie and Bogart. Morgan is excited to be putting her years of doodling to good use creating for Literacyhead.
a bit flexible +
a bit dramatic +

Kerstin Pierce Long - Writer

Kerstin was full into her career as a premed student at Oglethorpe University when a disastrous organic chemistry experience persuaded her to look at other academic options. She successfully matriculated from that august institution with a BA in psychology and a Master's degree in early childhood education. She went on to complete her Education Specialist degree in early childhood education at Mercer University, Atlanta. For 20 years Kerstin has worked, in turn, as an early literacy specialist, classroom teacher, staff developer, educational research reviewer, consultant, and instructional coach, and she's still at it. A dramatic person by nature, Kerstin has appeared onstage, in film, television, industrials, and radio. You can hear her on WUGA, Athens, where she is an on-air announcer during The Metropolitan Opera, NPR All Things Considered, and A Prairie Home Companion.

Roberta Gardner - Book Reviewer

Roberta has an Master's in Library Science and has been a librarian for whole decade. She is a self described children's literature enthusiast and even on date nights finds herself stopping at the book store to peruse- where she often ends up making book suggestions to parents and children. She loves Saturday mornings at the farmer's market and strawberry lemonade. Roberta teaches children's literature at the University of Georgia where she is also working on her doctorate in the department of language and literacy education.
a bit scholarly +
a bit imaginative +

Monira Silk - Books Editor

Monira has a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism with a Photojournalism emphasis and a Masters of Education in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, both from the University of Georgia. Her beautiful daughter, Miriam, was born in April, and is thoroughly and artistically documented by her mother, who is gifted at capturing in pictures the people, ideas, and events that move her. Monira taught English Speakers of Other Languages in an elementary school until Miriam came along. Monira just painted her house sunshine yellow and spends her afternoons playing with Miriam, practicing yoga, and thinking creatively about parenting and life.

Danny Silk - Cartoonist

Danny earned three degrees from the University of Georgia. He has a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts in Religion and completed his Ph.D. in Adult Education in May! He was a Fulbright Scholar in the United Kingdom and has worked as a Law Enforcement Manager in Afghanistan & Israel. Danny aims to become a college professor and, when he isn't studying, he is reading, hiking, sewing or drawing. His first-born, Miriam, arrived in April.
a bit adventurous +
a bit obsessive +

Dave Marr - Copy Editor

Dave Marr is a musician with an art-teacher wife and a ridiculous number of pets. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Film Studies and a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism with a concentration in Telecommunication Arts, both from the University of Georgia. He is the City Editor and film columnist for Flagpole magazine in Athens, Georgia. His obsession with reading, writing, music, and movies is pretty much an addiction. His favorite authors are William Saroyan, Ernst Lubitsch, and Curtis Mayfield. He is learning to eat vegetables, but has decided to stop expecting himself to grow up.

Kimberly Childs - Website Developer

When she is not working as an International Sales Engineer, Kimberly is the website guru for Literacyhead. With a Bachelors of Science in Computer Science from the University of Georgia, along with beau coups of hands-on experience, Kimberly spends her days negotiating for transformers (not the robots that can turn into cars, but still pretty cool) and spends her evenings designing and developing websites for businesses, as she has for Literacyhead. An avid reader since her first-grade teacher introduced her to The Boxcar Children, much of Kimberly's reading these days is in digital environments. Although she logs long work hours each day, Kimberly still finds time to spend with her dogs, Bella and Hines, who are virtually spoiled.
a bit level-headed +
a bit versatile +

Jason Snape - Graphic Artist

Jason Snape's BA in Environmental Design is from SUNY at Buffalo. He also has an MFA in Graphic Design from Rochester Institute of Technology, where his thesis was about humor as an element of graphic design. He fills a sketchbook every year, using them as creative playgrounds where he is free to make mistakes. This year he is filling journal #19. He has been a stay-at-home dad for seven years, caring for his two children while he does illustration work on the side and teaches classes in typography and illustration at Kennesaw State University. He has also built houses, driven fork trucks, designed a card game, and written a book about flying pigs.