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Advocacy. Service. Collaboration.

Region 1 Co-Director: Shawn Williams

Shawn Williams  has served as the Principal of HF-L Middle School since July of 2006.  HF-L Middle School was designated as an Essential Elements: Schools to Watch Program in 2013.  HF-L hosted the NYSMSA State Conference in 2015.  Shawn has been a member of the NYSMSA Board since 2014 serving as an alternate prior to assuming the Director for Region 1 position in 2016. Upon graduating from SUNY Geneseo in 1987, Shawn started his teaching career as a Special Education teacher at Batavia High School.  After earning a Master’s Degree in Art Education from Florida State University in 1991, Shawn transferred to Batavia Middle School and taught there until 2003.  During his 15 years of teaching, Shawn enjoyed teaching Special Education, Art, and Grade 6 Science.  Shawn’s administrative career started in 2003 at Attica Junior High.  He served two years as the Assistant Principal and one year as the Principal.   Shawn has been married to his wife, Darcy, for over 20 years and has two teenage children, Emma and Jason.

Region 1 Co-Director:  Paul Estabrooks

Paul Estabrooks has served as a school administrator in a small school, a large school and now a perfect fit at Caledonia Mumford Middle School where he has been the Middle School Principal for almost ten years. Since 2013 he has also served as the district’s Chair/Director on Special Education.

He earned his undergraduate degree at St. Bonaventure University and began his career in education as a Middle School Social Studies teacher in south New Jersey. He traveled two hours north for three years to complete his Master’s degree at Jersey City University.

Paul and Kirsten Estabrooks have been married for 25 years and they have three children - Kailyn 21, Zack 19 and Jake 15.

Region 2 Director: Steve Dunham

Steve Dunham is the Principal of West Genesee Middle School in Camillus, NY. The West Genesee Central School District has been his home as an administrator, teacher, and coach for almost 20 years. Stephen believes that it’s time to rethink how we prepare students for the real world. "If our classrooms look essentially the same today as they did in 1985 then we clearly have some work to do!" said Stephen Dunham. 

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Region 3 Co-Director: Lisa Meade

Lisa Meade is the Assistant Superintendent for Education and Accountability for the Hudson Falls Central School District. Prior to working in Hudson Falls, Lisa served as the middle school principal in Corinth, NY. Lisa was named the 2015 Middle School Principal of the Year for SAANYS and NASSP. The majority of her career experience has been in the field of special education as a teacher, CSE Chairperson, and Director of Student Services. Some of her experiences as a Middle School Principal were also referenced in two leadership books: Collaborative Leadership: Six Influences that Matter Most by Dr. Peter Dewitt (2017) and Principal Professional Development by Dr. Joe Sanfelippo and Dr. Tony Sinanis (2015).

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Region 3 Co-Director: Patti Siano

Patti Siano is a veteran middle school educator teaching almost 30 years. She currently teaches  at Corinth Middle School and previously taught at Saratoga Central Catholic Junior-Senior HS. Patti teaches World Languages and co-teaches Technology/PBL. She also serves in the role of District Instructional Technologist, Grade 8 Team Leader, Web Club Advisor, Curriculum Council, and is a member of the PBIS Team. Patti completed two years as a NY Educator Voice Policy Fellow advocating for educational changes, and participating in national education policy hearings at the White House. She was selected as Teacher of the Quarter and Educator of the Year in her district. Patti is a member of Delta Kappa Gamma International Society for Key Women Educators from which she earned a scholarship to complete her degree in Educational Leadership and NYS certification as a school district administrator.

Region 4 Co-Director: Katie Hansen


Kathleen Hansen was the principal in Oxford Middle School for the past ten years. She has been in public education for 20 years. Kathleen has been involved with the Middle School Association since 2006.

Region 4 Co-Director: Jay Hillman


Jay Hillman was the Middle School Principal/Assistant Principal at Horseheads Middle School from 2002 until 2009. While Principal, he was actively involved in implementing Essential Elements in his building. Currently he is the Director of Educational Services at Elmira. He served on the Planning Committee for the NYSMSA Annual Conference held in Watkins Glen in 2009, and is the Co- chair for the 2016 NYSMSA Annual Conference at Watkins Glen.

Region 5 Director: Colleen Wolff

Colleen Wolff is the Principal of O’Rourke Middle School in Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Central School District since 2010.  Prior to Burnt Hills, Colleen served as the Principal of the CJ Hooker MS in Goshen, NY.   Colleen received her BA in Psychology from Russell Sage College in Troy, and MA in School Counseling from Sage Graduate School.  She earned her MA in School Administration from the College of St. Rose.   Colleen is on the planning committee for the 2017 NYSMSA Conference hosted in Saratoga Springs, NY.

Region 6 Director: Jon Schatz

Jon Schatz is in his tenth year as the Principal at Felix V. Festa Middle School in Rockland County. Prior to this position Jon was the Assistant Principal of Pearl River Middle School. As a teacher he worked as an English teacher at Tappan Zee High School for 15 years and served as a Team Facilitator, Department Chair and Colleague Teacher. Jon obtained his BS from SUNY Geneseo in Dramatic Arts and English, an MS from LIU in Reading Education and completed his administrative degree at Fordham. He has been married to Cathy for 20 years and has twins, Joseph and Olivia, in high school as well as a daughter who graduated from MCLA.

Alternate Region 6 Director: Erik Lynch

Erik Lynch...coming soon!

Region 7 Director:  Vacant
Region 7 Director:  Vacant
Region 8 Director: Vacant
Alternate Region 8 Director: Dennis Schug

The Region 8 alternate representative is Dennis Schug.  Dennis Schug is proud to serve the students of the Hampton Bays Schools community for two decades, as a teacher, assistant principal, and middle school principal in Hampton Bays, New York. As a school leader, he believes in the value of using communication, collaboration, and professional learning as a means of building capacity and engaging all members of a learning organization. He is one of the founding members of Edcamp Long Island and a lead organizer for Edcamp Leadership: New York. He is also one of the moderators of #NYEDchat, a bi-weekly Twitter chat on current topics that influence high-impact teaching and learning. He proudly serves on the AMLE Leadership Institute Faculty. 

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Region 9 Director: Katie Ralston
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Katie Ralston is the Middle School Principal at Cuba-Rushford Central School District in Cuba, NY.  Katie is also the District's K-12 ELA Curriculum coordinator, and serves on the planning committee for New York State's Middle Level Liaisons.  Prior to her principalship at Cuba-Rushford, Katie was a 6th and 7th grade special education teacher at Olean Middle School.  After teaching in the classroom, Katie spent time as a teacher on special assignment and was responsible for curriculum support and implementation at Olean Intermediate and Olean High School.  Within her community Katie serves on the board for the local homeless shelter and does presentations based on the impact of poverty on brain development and a community.  Aside from her work at Cuba-Rushford, Katie also works closely with Sweethearts and Heroes, serving as a keynote speaker at Teacher Academies and a co-leader of Professional Development at Administrator Academies. 

Alternate Region 9 Director: Monica Kwiatkowski

Monica Kwiatkowski has been an eighth grade social studies teacher at Cuba-Rushford Middle School for over nine years. She has been serving as an alternate to the NYSMSA board since 2003. A native of Buffalo, Monica received her Bachelor's degree in History from D'Youville College and earned her Masters in Middle Level Education from Walden University. She loves interdiscplinary teaching working with her highly motivated team and annually directs the Middle-High School Musical as her outlet for creative energy. 

Region 10 Director: David Vroman

David Vroman is a sixth grade science teacher at A.A. Kingston Middle School in Potsdam. He has been in public education for over 25 years; 23 of which has been at A.A.K and 20 teaching math and science in sixth grade. He has been in involved in all three successful applications for A.A.K’s designation as an Essential Elements: School to Watch, 2009, 2012 and 2015. David holds both a BS and MST degree from SUNY Potsdam. He also has served as an adjunct instructor at SUNY Potsdam- teaching an elementary science methods class. He is also a 30 year member and President for the past 5 years of IAABO Board 47, boys basketball officials. For the past four years, he has served as the President of Potsdam’s School of Education Alumni Advisory Board. David lives on the banks of the St. Lawrence River in Massena with his wife of over 30 years, Mona, the Director of Alumni Relations at SUNY Potsdam. 

Alternate Region 10 Director: Jamie Cruikshank

Jamie Cruikshank is the Superintendent of the Norwood-Norfolk Central School District. Prior to that, he was the principal of A. A. Kingston Middle School in Potsdam which was recognized in 2009 and 2012 as an Essential Elements: School to Watch. His math and science teaching career spanned the middle and high school levels. Before moving to NNCS, he also served the Potsdam CSD as a coach, athletic director, and dean of students. A native of the North Country, he obtained his BA from SUNY Potsdam, completing a middle-level program sponsored by the National Science Foundation. He then completed his MS from SUNY Potsdam and a MA in Educational Leadership from St. Lawrence University.

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