2016-2017 Leadership Team


Lourdes Cardozo-Gaibisso

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Lourdes Cardozo-Gaibisso (B.A. English Language Teaching, M. Ed.) is a former Middle School teacher in her native Uruguay. Lourdes is currently completing her Ph.D. at The University of Georgia’s College of Education in the Department of Language and Literacy Education. She is a Research Assistant for the National Science Foundation funded Language-Rich Inquiry Science with English Language Learners through Biotechnology project and Adjunct Professor of Education at Universidad ORT Uruguay. She currently serves as President of the Georgia Association of Multilingual and Multicultural Education.  Her research focuses on teacher professional learning, TESOL, and translanguaging pedagogies.


Jason Mizell

GAOME Symposium Chair

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Jason Mizell received his MA in Bilingual-Multicultural education from the University of Connecticut, Storrs.  He worked for over 20 years in different dual language programs in the United States (Hall County and Windham Public Schools) and in Latin America (Academica Cotopaxi, Quito, Ecuador; The British School Quito, Quito, Ecuador; Davy College, Cajamarca, Peru; Escuela Anaco, Anaco, Venezuela).  He is currently a PhD student at the University of Georgia in the department of Language and Literacy Education.  He has researched and presented on teaching English as an additional language, bilingual education, and use of critical race theory in education.  His research interests include Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL), Reading instruction, Youth   Participatory Action Research (YPAR), and an examination Afro-Latinx in children’s literature.  


​Vice President

Maria Dunbar

Maria's experience as an educator spans over 15 years in the classroom in the elementary, middle, and high school levels. I hold a Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communications, a Masters of Science in Training and Development, and an Education Specialist in Leadership.  I am presently an ESOL District Support Teacher with Atlanta Public Schools. I support the Dual Immersion, World Language and ESOL programs as well the teachers.
I am a first generation American of Haitian and Dominican decent. I speak English, Spanish, and French. I am the proud parent of two sons. My eldest is a junior at Georgia State University and my youngest is entering Georgia State University this summer as a freshman.



Cathy Amanti

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​Cathy Amanti received her BA in Elementary Bilingual Education, her MA in Cultural Anthropology, and her PhD in Language, Reading, and Culture, from the University of Arizona.  She worked for 21 years for Tucson Unified School District in Tucson, Arizona as a bilingual education teacher, assistant principal, coordinator of the Language Acquisition Department, and project manager in the Department of Student Equity. Currently, Dr. Amanti teaches ESOL methods at Georgia State University.  She has written and presented on the Funds of Knowledge research project, teaching English language learners, bilingual education, educational technology, and school discipline. She recently completed a co-edited volume entitled Critical Perspectives on Teaching and Learning English Around the Globe, which is a compilation of original qualitative research studies that focus on the experiences of English language learners and teachers in various parts of the globe.  Amanti’s research interests include second language acquisition, bilingual education, bilingualism and biliteracy, globalization and education, and the intersection of race, language, and power.​



Communications Director

Christian Valdez

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Christian’s story begins in Atlanta, GA, being born in October 1990. His family’s roots stem from Guanajuato, Mexico. Christian was a first generation undergraduate and graduate student at Georgia State University, 2009 and 2017 respectively. 
Christian holds a bachelor’s of science in criminal justice and a master's of education in early childhood education. He is currently a 1st grade dual language immersion teacher at Garden Hills Elementary School in Atlanta, and the communications director for GAOME.



Jayoung Choi

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Jayoung Choi, Ph.D., was born in Incheon, South Korea. She obtained a bachelor’s degree in English literature and language at the University of Incheon, South Korea. Her master’s is in Applied Linguistics and ESL and her Ph.D. is in Language and Literacy education (with an ESOL education focus). Both degrees are from Georgia State University. She is an associate professor of TESOL in the Inclusive Education department at Kennesaw State University. She joined GAOME spring of 2017 as a regional representative (region 7). She is a mother of two young children who are growing up as trilinguals speaking Korean, Farsi, and English.




Sandra Daniel

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Sandra A. Daniel was born in South Georgia and holds a dual Master’s in International Relations and International Communications from Boston University and a bachelor’s in Spanish and French from Valdosta State University. She currently works as the Language Coordinator at the GLOBE Academy, a DLI school in Atlanta, GA. Sandra A. Daniel has worked as a foreign language teacher for seven years, and over the past three years, she as worked as instructional lead for STARTALK programs with FSU and GSU. She recently presented “Book Clubs in the Dual Language Classroom,” at the Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA). Sandra A. Daniel has been a Regional Representative for GAOME for the last two years and currently serves in the DeKalb County Region. 




The name of the organization shall be the Georgia Association of Multilingual/Multicultural, Education
hereinafter referred to as GAOME or the Association.


Section A. The Georgia Association of Multilingual/Multicultural Education is a professional non-profit organization of individuals whose purpose is to promote multilingualism and multiculturalism as assets that provide cognitive, social, emotional, educational, and employment advantages for all Georgia residents.

Section B. Educational Purposes.

GAOME’s educational purposes relate primarily to multilingual and multicultural education and include:

  • Promoting the vision of linguistically and culturally appropriate education services to children, youth, and adults.
  • Promoting public understanding and appreciation of the linguistic and cultural needs of language-minority children, youth, and adults.
  • Promoting the inclusion of language-minority students in culturally and linguistically relevant assessment systems which, to the extent practicable, assess students in a language and form most likely to yield accurate and reliable information.
  • Serving as an advocate for language-minority children and families.
  • Promoting ESL services to children, youth and adults as a way of giving them greater access to community resources.
  • Recognizing, promoting and publicizing multilingual/multicultural programs of excellence.
  • Promoting efforts to assure equal educational opportunity for people from all linguistic and cultural backgrounds.
  • Promoting development of standards of professional excellence.
  • Conducting educational workshops and conferences.
  • Encouraging research and publications.

Section C. Prohibition. No substantial part of the activities of the association shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation (except as otherwise permitted by Sec. 501(h) of the Internal Revenue Code), and the association shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements) any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.

Section D. Compliance with IRS. Notwithstanding any other provision of these bylaws, GAOME shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to be carried on (1) by section 501(c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or (2) by a corporation, contributions to which are deductible under section 170(c) (2) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code.


Section A. Membership Defined. The privilege of membership in is voluntary and is available to all persons and groups that are interested in multilingual and multicultural education, supportive of GAOME's purposes, goals and objectives, and willing to abide by these bylaws, and who make payment of annual membership dues. A member in good standing shall meet the applicable requirements set forth in Sections B-F and shall be current in dues payment.

Section B. Categories of Membership. Membership shall consist of the following categories: Regular Members, Institutional Members, and Honorary Members.

Section C. Regular. Regular Memberships shall be for individuals. Regular members receive GAOME publications and are entitled to vote in GAOME elections.

Section D. Honorary. Honorary Memberships are available to individuals or groups, who by virtue of selection by the Executive Board are awarded complimentary membership, because of their significant contributions to the advancement of multilingual education and/or the work of the Association. Honorary members have all of the privileges of regular members.

Section E. Institutional. Institutional Memberships are available to institutions of education, libraries, and commercial vendors. Institutional members receive GAOME publications, but are not entitled to participate in GAOME elections.

Section F. Affiliate. Affiliate Memberships are for organizations which agree to support GAOME's purposes. Affiliate memberships are granted by the Board of Directors after petition by an organization. The petition shall include a written pledge to uphold GAOME's purposes; a copy of the affiliate organization's Articles of Incorporation and bylaws or constitution, as appropriate; a list of the organization's elected officers and bonafide members; and payment of initial membership fee. The organization seeking affiliate membership must also demonstrate in its petition that its membership constitutes a minimum of 25 and its officers are also GAOME members in good standing.


Section A. Executive Board. GAOME shall be governed by an Executive Board of Directors, hereinafter referred to as the Executive Board, comprised of eleven people who will occupy the following positions: president, vice-president, treasurer, secretary and seven Regional Representatives (representatives from even number congressional districts shall serve on the board during even numbered years and representatives from odd numbered districts during odd number years). The Executive Board shall also appoint, as a non-voting advisor to the Board, a Parent Representative on an annual basis.

Section C. Authority. The authority of the Executive Board shall extend to all matters of policy. The Board shall also establish the criteria for membership, period of membership, annual dues, qualifications of its officers, and possess the legislative authority to adopt and amend these bylaws in consultation with its affiliates.

Section D. Officers. The Executive Board shall have four officers: President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer, who will serve a two year terms. The president and the secretary shall be elected on even numbered years and the vice president and treasurer on odd numbered years (This will occur with the exception of the first two years). The 14 representatives from the congressional districts shall be elected yearly. Upon completion of the term, the President will serve on the Board as Past-President to ensure continuity in the organization.

Section E. Vacancies. Any vacancy occurring on the Executive Board and any vacancy in an officer position may be filled for the unexpired term by a vote of a simple majority of the remaining members of the Executive Board.

Section F. Duties of Officers.

(1) The President is responsible for calling and conducting Executive Board meetings, presiding at the Association's Annual General Membership Meeting, appointing the chairperson of each standing committee(s), assisting in the development of the agenda, conducting the business of the organization and representing the Association to its members and the public.

(2) The Vice-President assists the President and shall serve as President if the President is absent or temporarily incapacitated. The Vice President shall chair the by- laws committee and will present recommendations/amendments to the Board on a yearly basis.

(3) The Secretary shall record, distribute to the Executive Board, and transmit to the Association's regional representatives, minutes of each Executive Board meeting and the Association's Annual General Membership Meeting.

(4) The Treasurer shall oversee the financial operations of the Association and shall present reports on the Association's financial operations and status to the Board and at the Association's Annual General Membership Meeting. The Treasurer shall also ensure that an annual audit of the Association's financial records is conducted and that said audit is available for inspection. The Treasurer shall chair the membership committee and provide ideas to the Board on how to increase membership.

(5) Congressional District Representatives represent the needs and interest of their constituents and provide support to the Executive Board.

(6) Parent Representative

The Parent Representative shall represent parent concerns to the Board. It is therefore required that the Parent Representative have a child or grandchild in a multilingual program. The Parent Representative shall be up to date on parent concerns. The following shall take place at the request and under the supervision of the President: contact local and state parent advisory committees for their involvement in the annual conference and/or parent institutes throughout the state; organize training sessions at the annual conference with these issues in mind; conduct broader community advocacy activities; and report to the Board on parent issues.

Section G. Removal. Any member or officer of the Executive Board may be removed from the Board for misfeasance, malfeasance, or nonfeasance in the performance of his or her duties as Board member or officer. Such removal shall be at a regular meeting of the Executive Board, and upon a vote of a simple majority, provided that a notice of the proposed removal shall have been sent by mail, certified or registered if possible, to the last recorded address of such member or officer at least fifteen (15) days before final action is taken on such removal. The member or officer shall have the opportunity to present any relevant information, in writing, in person, or through a representative, to the Board of Directors before final action is taken.

Section H. Meetings. Meetings of the Executive Board of Directors shall be called by the President, a majority of the Executive Board members, with a five-day notice to all Board members.

A quorum of the Executive Board shall consist of a simple majority of members. All meetings of the Executive Board shall be open to GAOME members in good standing. The Executive Board may, by simple majority vote, close any portion of an Executive Board meeting to non-Board members to discuss confidential matters. Any members of

the Executive Board of Directors may participate in meetings of the Executive Board by teleconference or videoconference. Proxy voting shall not be permitted at meetings of the Executive Board.

Section I. Annual Meeting. The Executive Board of Directors shall hold at least one annual membership meeting in conjunction with the Association's annual conference. Thirty members in good standing shall comprise a quorum at the Association's annual membership meeting.

Section J. Affiliates Meeting. The Executive Board of Directors shall also convene a meeting of the presidents of the Association's affiliate organizations in conjunction with the Association's annual conference. The meeting shall be known as the Delegate Assembly.


Section A. Nomination of Candidates. Qualified candidates for the Executive Board may be nominated for election by the written petition of any three GAOME members in good standing.

Section B. Qualifications of Candidates. Candidates for the Executive Board of Directors and Regional representatives must be GAOME members in good standing, and must have been members in good standing for one year prior to their nomination. Reasonable attempts should be made to ensure that candidates represent as many different congressional districts as possible.

Section C. 1 Nominating Procedure Executive Board. To be considered as candidates to the GAOME Executive Board, nominating petitions must be received at the GAOME Office no later than one month before the annual general assembly and/or conference as announced by the GAOME Executive Board. All petitions meeting the criteria in Sections A and B of this Article will be accepted, and their nominations will be certified by the Executive Director. There will be no limitation on the number of candidates.

Section C. 2 Nominating Procedure Regional Representatives. To be considered as a candidate to a regional position, nominations need to be supported in writing by at least three regional members in good standing.

Section D. Linguistic Representation. For the purposes of nominations, elections, and appointments, a reasonable attempt shall be made to have at least two different linguistic groups represented on the Executive Board.

Section F. Regional Representation. For the purposes of nominations and elections of Regional Representatives, there shall be 14 regions as setup by the state of Georgia as congressional districts. These districts may be modified if the state of Georgia changes them in the future.


Section A. Election Procedures. Voting for the 14 Regional Representatives shall be on a regional basis; such elections shall take place every year. Members in good standing who attend a specially called regional meeting will be eligible to vote. This special meeting may form part of a regularly scheduled meeting but it must be announced at least one month before the voting is to take place. Voting will take place on the last day of the meeting. In order to keep the voting process legal, members will: Present picture identification to a polling official before submitting the ballot

Have their name verified through the current membership list or conference credentials.

Section B. Executive Officer Election Procedures. Executive Officers shall be voted on by all members in good standing on the last day of the general assembly or conference as previously announced by the Executive Board of Directors. In order to keep the voting process legal, members will:

Present picture identification to a polling official before submitting the ballot
Have their name verified through the current membership list or conference credentials.

Section C. Selection of Winners. The positions shall be filled by the candidates receiving the highest number of votes for the available positions, as counted by an impartial agent that is independent of the Executive Board and the GAOME staff.


(1) President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer can serve for no more than two consecutive terms in the same position.

(2) Regional Representatives can serve for a maximum of 4 one year terms. ARTICLE VIII. DELEGATE ASSEMBLY

The Association shall have a Delegate Assembly composed of the GAOME Executive Board, and the state affiliate presidents or their designees. The functions of the Delegate Assembly are:

(1) to serve as an advisory body to the Executive Board;
(2) to provide liaison between state affiliates and the GAOME Executive Board; and

(3) to make recommendations regarding amendments to the Association's bylaws, if necessary. The President of GAOME or Vice-President in the case of President’s absence due to his/her emergency shall preside at the annual Delegate Assembly meeting. Announcement and agenda of the Delegate Assembly shall be made available to all affiliate presidents no later than July 15 annually.

Section A. Amendments.


An amendment may be an addition, a deletion, or a change to these Bylaws.

Section B. Procedures for Amendments.
(1) Amendments may be proposed by Executive Board member, Member, Delegate

Assembly or by committees of the Association.

(2) Proposed amendments to these Bylaws shall be submitted in writing to the President no later than sixty (60) days prior to the annual Conference. Should the President or his/her designee fail or refuse to transmit a proposed amendment, any three Board members may call up an amendment sent to the President in accordance with the provisions of this subsection

(3) Proposed amendments shall be printed/emailed and distributed to all members at least thirty (30) days prior to the Annual Conference.

Section C. Adoption of Amendments.

Proposed amendments shall be reviewed and clarified by the GAOME Executive Board with the assistance of the proponent of the amendment prior to the Annual Conference. All proposed amendments shall be written and published in a publication open to all members and be ready to be discussed to seek member feedback at the Annual Conference. Approval or any changes of proposed amendments to these Bylaws may be accomplished by a simple majority of the membership at the Annual Conference.

Section D. Effective Date for Successful Amendments.

Successful amendments shall become effective sixty (60) days after adoption.

Section E Majority Vote Required. Approval of any proposed amendments to these Bylaws may be accomplished by a simple majority of the membership of the Executive Board.

Approved October 25, 2014.

Adapted from NABE Bylaws September 2014 New Mexico and Massachusetts NABE affiliates bylaws September 2014.

Our Main Goal

We promote multilingual and multicultural education for all Georgia residents - because a worldly education provides cognitive, social, emotional, educational, and employment advantages!

What is GAOME


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