Conference Presenters

April Adkins, Teacher

Rowan County Senior High School


April Adkins is currently a Chemistry and general science teacher at Rowan County Senior High School (RCSHS). She has been teaching in her current role for four years. April spent one year in the Math department at RCSHS. Prior to her time at RCSHS, Ms. Adkins taught at Elliott County High School for six years. In addition to working with high school students, Ms. Adkins works as an adjunct professor at Morehead State University. Ms. Adkins has completed a certificate in Guidance Counseling and takes advantage of this training at every opportunity. In addition to working with students in the classroom, Ms. Adkins is the sponsor for an extracurricular club at RCSHS that is working against bullying and for diversity and inclusion. Ms. Adkins is the cosponsor of a local chapter of the Gender and Sexuality Alliance.

Erica Baker, KDE Science Consultant
Kentucky Department of Education and Washington County Schools


National Board-Certified Teacher, Erica Baker is the Elementary Science Program Consultant for the Kentucky Department of Education. She has 10 years experience as a middle school science and English language arts teacher in Washington and Nelson Counties. She has participated in the CKEC Science Network Meetings, partnered in a KDE FAST-ER grant on formative assessment in science, and presented sessions around implementation of the Kentucky Academic Standards and best practices in science at the district, state, and national level. Erica has been actively involved in KY's assessment process and planning as a member of the Assessment and Standards Setting Review Committee, participant on the TCT review committee, and a creator of the recent     Alternate Science Assessments. Erica is a member of the KSTA board of directors and     enjoys spending time with her family.

Susan Barton, WK Gear Up STEM Consultant

West Kentucky Educational Cooperative

I have 27 years of middle school science classroom teaching experience and I loved it! I have been working with science teachers for over 10 years to help them try new strategies and find ways to engage students. I love going into classrooms and interacting with students on STEM projects!

Susan Beatty, Ed.D, Gear Up STEM Consultant

West Kentucky Educational Cooperative

I am currently in my 23rd year as an educator with most of my experience as a high school science teacher. I have taught middle school too, as well as 1 year as an administrator. I earned a doctoral degree in 2017 in P-20 Education and Community Leadership and I am currently working as a STEM consultant with WKEC's Gear Up Grant, supporting science teachers in a variety of ways.

Maribeth Bowman, 2nd grade teacher

Patrick Brown, Executive Director of STEM and CTE

Fort Zumwalt School District


Dr. Patrick L. Brown is the executive director of STEAM and career education for the Fort Zumwalt School District in St. Charles, Missouri. Before arriving at Fort Zumwalt, he received a PhD in curriculum and instruction from the University of Missouri, Columbia. Dr. Brown has a range of K–12 and postsecondary teaching experience. He has taught elementary, middle-level, and high school lessons, as well as both undergraduate and graduate courses for prospective elementary, middle, and high school teachers. He has won various awards for his science methods course teaching. Known for his scholarship on instructional sequences to teach science, Dr. Brown makes frequent presentations at     international, regional, and state conferences. He is the author of the bestselling NSTA      book series Instructional Sequence Matters.

Easton Copley, Conservation Educator IV Fisheries

Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources

Easton Copley is a graduate of EKU with a bachelor’s degree in Recreation and Park Administration, focus in outdoor recreation. Working with KDFWR for 7 years, currently the Aquatic Education Program Coordinator, Easton focuses mainly on teaching adults 16+ how to fish.

Nancy Flowers, 3rd grade science teacher, National Geographic Certified Educator

Cumberland County

Hello! I am a 3rd grade science teacher at a K-5 public school. I am an advocate for science education, and I believe that learning should be genuine, rigorous, and engaging. That's why all lessons begin and end with student needs in mind. I believe that the curriculum we teach our students should serve a larger purpose. We should help them make connections to the real world, and how we teach is just as important as what we teach. I like to let my students question, explore, and truly be an integral part of their own learning.

Jessica Fries-Gaither, Science Department Chair and Lower School Science Specialist

Columbus School for Girls


Jessica is an experienced science educator and an award-winning author of books for students and teachers. Her 20+ year teaching career spans elementary school through middle school science and math, three states, and Catholic, public, and independent schools. Additionally, she spent five years in the College of Education and Human Ecology, School of Teaching and Learning at The Ohio State University where she directed NSF-funded projects and provided professional development for elementary and middle school teachers. She is currently the Science Department Chair and Lower School Science Specialist at the Columbus School for Girls in Columbus, OH. ​ Jessica is a reviewer for NSTA's elementary journal, Science and Children, and has served on several NSTA advisory boards. She presents at local, regional, and national conferences and teaches preservice elementary science and social studies methods in Notre Dame's Alliance for Catholic Education program. ​ Jessica has published several books with the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) Press and is represented by Tricia Lawrence at Erin Murphy Literary Agency. Jessica and her husband live in Columbus, OH with their four dogs. She enjoys reading, cooking, and spending time outside.

Amanda Fuller, Executive Director

Kentucky Academy of Science and


Amanda Fuller is the Executive Director of the Kentucky Academy of Science (KAS), comprised of 4000+ scientist and teacher members throughout the Commonwealth. Amanda has helped build the Kentucky Science Speakers Bureau and other programs that      bring science to Kentuckians. The The mission of the Kentucky Academy of Science is to     catalyze scientific communication and collaboration that improves research, education,     and public engagement with science in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Find out more at   

Yvonne Garrison, High School Teacher, KSTA member
Mason County High School

I am a 10-year science teacher of Mason County High School. While here, I have been able to start several classes previously not available including a dual credit college biology course and an AP environmental science course. I also began the Mason Co. Envirothon Team several years ago and am pleased to say that our team routinely qualifies for state competition. This year, I was named the 2022 Outstanding Earth Science Teacher by the National Association of Geoscience teachers. Before becoming a teacher, I worked as a field biologist. My passion is science, environmental sustainability, and      community-building and my other hobbies include camping, hiking, and all mediums of      art! 

Patrick Goff, 8th grade science teacher

Beaumont Middle School, Fayette County Schools


Patrick Goff is an 8th grade science teacher at Beaumont Middle School in Lexington, KY. He has been teaching for 20 years in Kentucky and has been working with scientists as mentors for his science fair projects for about six years as well.

Brianna Greenhill, Teacher

Rowan County Senior High School


A Morehead, Kentucky native, Brianna Greenhill is currently celebrating 13 years as as high school science teacher. She graduated from Morehead State University with a Bachelor's Degree in Biology and a Master's Degree in Teaching. The first 8 years of her career, she taught at Nicholas County High School. For the past 5 years, Brianna has taught biology, chemistry, and Forensic Science at Rowan County Senior High School. Over the past year, she has taken part in a grassroots movement to bring passion projects into the high school classroom In addition to teaching, Brianna also coaches the FPS team for      the RCSHS Academic Team and is co-sponsor for the local National Honor Society      Chapter.

Stephanie L. Harmon, PIMSER Regional Teacher Partner & Teacher

Rockcastle County High School


Stephanie Harmon is a PIMSER Regional Teacher Partner and currently teaches science at Rockcastle County High School. She was a member of the Broad-Based Lead State Committee which reviewed and provided feedback on A Framework for K-12 Science Education and all parts of the Next Generation Science Standards. Since then, she has been involved with the development of Kentucky’s summative assessment and Through Course Tasks. Specializing in both live and virtual support, Stephanie has worked with many school districts throughout Kentucky, working with both science teachers and administrators in grades K-12. She focuses on formative/summative assessments, curriculum and instructional practices. Stephanie is a Concord Consortium Teacher Ambassador and received the 2014 KSTA Outstanding High School Teacher of the Year. Stephanie Harmon is a PIMSER Regional Teacher Partner and currently teaches science at Rockcastle County High School. She was a member of the Broad-Based Lead State Committee which reviewed and provided feedback on A Framework for K-12 Science Education and all parts of the Next Generation Science Standards. Since then, she has been involved with the development of Kentucky’s summative assessment and Through Course Tasks. Specializing in both live and virtual support, Stephanie has worked with many school districts throughout Kentucky, working with both science teachers and administrators in grades K-12. She focuses on formative/summative assessments, curriculum and instructional practices. Stephanie is a Concord Consortium Teacher Ambassador and received the 2014 KSTA Outstanding High School Teacher of the Year.

Lou Hirsch, Assistant Professor, Department of Plant Pathology

University of Kentucky


Dr. Hirsch is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Plant Pathology at the University of Kentucky and serves as the Director of Undergraduate Studies for the Agricultural & Medical Biotechnology and Agriculture Individualized Programs in addition to teaching numerous courses in multiple disciplines. His work focuses on adapting professional science experiences to K-16 classroom curricula and providing science education outreach to the public.

Victoria Howard, Jackson City School Teacher

Jackson Independent Schools


Victoria Howard is a 3rd grade teacher at Jackson Independent School in Jackson, Kentucky. Victoria received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Morehead State University in 2015 and completed her Masters of Art degree from the University of the Cumberlands in 2020. Ms. Howard has a special passion for infusing her lessons with empathy building activities, STEM activities, and real world scenarios to build an entrepreneurial mindset in      her students to better prepare them for a quickly evolving world..

Ryan Hunter, Computer Science Specialist

TechWise Academy


Ryan currently owns a company in Muncie, Indiana (TechWise Academy) that teaches computer science to K-12 students. He has helped school districts implement computer science education standards through professional development, classroom modeling, and curriculum design. He is currently pursuing his M.A. in Educational Psychology at Ball State University and has received his MBA from BSU. His undergraduate degree is     Computer Science from the University of Kentucky. Before his pursuits in education, he     developed custom software for over 15 years for the Department of Defense, Ball State     University, University of Kentucky, Lexmark, and numerous other organizations across     multiple industries. He currently resides in Muncie, Indiana with his wife and four children.

Diane Johnson, Master Teacher
Morehead State University


Taught high school science for 25 years, served 5 years as an instructional supervisor, am a Regional Teacher Partner with PIMSER, Master Teacher for MSUTeach at Morehead State University, NSTA PL Cadre member, Peer Review Panel member for WestEd (formerly Achieve), and leadership trainee for BSCS STeLLA Scale-up project in KY.

Bob Jones, Aviation Camp Director - Aviation Museum of KY

Aviation Museum of Kentucky


I retired after forty-two years in education, the last 12 as a middle and high school principal in FL, where I partnered with Emory Riddle in an aerospace education program at middle school and high school. The last 3 years I have been the Director of summer aviation camps at the Aviation Museum of KY in Lexington. I've been a licensed pilot for 57 years and own and fly a Piper J-3 Cub my father bought in 1949.

Dr. Jessica Lair, Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy
Eastern Kentucky University

Dr. Lair is a native of West Virginia, earned a B.S. in Engineering Physics and a B.S. in Mathematics from West Virginia University of Technology, and a M.S. and Ph D. in Physics from Clemson University. She has been a professor of physics and astronomy at Eastern Kentucky University since 2006 and does work in physics and astronomy eduaction research as well as astrophysics research studying Type Ia Supernovae.

David E. Long, Associate Professor of STEM Education and MSUTeach Director

Morehead State University


Dr. David E. Long researches the American relationship toward science, with an emphasis on religiously and politically conservative groups. This work aims to better understand our relations to evolution, climate change, and genetic engineering. By coming to understand these relations, we are better equipped to teach students in ways that do not alienate them from their identity. Dr. Long is Associate Professor of STEM Education, and Director      of the MSUTeach program at Morehead State University.

Taylor Long, Elementary Teacher

Model Lab School

This is my 3rd year teaching and my first year at Model Laboratory School. I currently teach 5th grade all subjects but teaching science and STEM is my passion. I graduated from EKU in 2019 with a BS in Elementary Education and am also working on my masters degree in instructional design.

Rae McEntyre, Science Consultant

Kentucky Department of Education

Rae McEntyre is the Science Consultant at the Kentucky Department of Education, where she supports K12 science education. A former high school science teacher with degrees in Biology and Geoscience, Ms. McEntyre started her teaching career as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the tiny African country of Lesotho. She has also worked as an Astrophysics Educator Ambassador with NASA Education and Public Outreach. During her spare time, she maintains her science roots by observing the plant and animal life around her home.

Justin McFadden, KSTA Board Member

University of Louisville


Justin McFadden is an Associate Professor of Science Education at the University of Louisville.

Kyle McMahon, Transportation Engineer and Kentucky Engineering Exposure Network Statewide Coordinator

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet

Kyle began his career at KYTC as a Civil Engineering scholarship recipient. After graduating from the University of Louisville in 2018 with his Masters in Civil Engineering, he worked in the Covington Construction Section Office before transitioning to the KYTC District Six Design Section. Kyle passed his Professional Engineering Exam and became a Licensed Professional Engineer in 2021. In 2019, Kyle joined the Kentucky Engineering Exposure Network’s (KEEN) Board before taking on the position of Statewide Coordinator in 2020. Since becoming the Statewide Coordinator, Kyle has focused on continuing KEEN’s great mission of teaching Kentucky’s youth about engineering and recruiting more engineers to      be KEEN presenters.

Hillary McWhorter, 2nd Grade Teacher

Glendover Elementary, FCPS

I have taught elementary for 20 years. I taught a k-5 science lab for 12 years and am currently teaching 2nd grade. I have been the KSTA Elementary Science Teacher of the year, A∆K Kentucky's Excellence in Education Awardee and Kentucky's PAMEST state finalist twice.

Larry Moore, Education Consultant

KET|Kentucky Educational Television


Larry Moore is a KET education consultant with over 30 years of experience training teachers and students to use KET resources effectively in the classroom. He has also been involved in the production of several of KET’s online resources in the areas of STEM, Social Studies, and Media Literacy. Throughout his career at KET, Larry has helped students of all ages express themselves by aiding them in the creation of original media and through teaching media literacy techniques to help them navigate safely through the internet/social media landscape.

Amanda Prewitt, Elementary Science Teacher

Madison County Schools

Shayne Pry, STEAM Experience Coordinator

Kentucky Science Center

Shayne Pry has worked at Kentucky Science Center for 5 years, he has overseen the creation and implementation of our renowned MakerPlace and all things maker programming across the science center.

Brian Robinson, Associate Professor of Engineering Fundamentals

University of Louisville

Brian is an Associate Professor of Engineering Fundamentals at the University of Louisville.

Vic Sampson, Professor

University of Texas


Dr. Victor Sampson is an Associate Professor of STEM Education at the University of Texas in Austin. He received his Ph.D. from Arizona State University in 2007 and is an expert in STEM education, education theory and practice, educational research, and the development of new instructional models and materials. Dr. Sampson also has expertise in the design and development of new educational apps.

Lynn Shaffer, Education Consultant

Kentucky Educational Television


Dr. Lynn Shaffer is a K-12 Education Consultant for Kentucky Educational Television, a former English professor, a published poet, and a science nerd.

Kim Sparkman, Learning Acceleration Specialist



I am a 28 year Master Educator working for KEDC. I have had the pleasure of working with science students in elementary, middle, and high school throughout my career. I have spend countless hours crafting my skills as an educator in the field of science. I enjoy making science come alive for my students because through science you change the world.

Melony Stambaugh, Director, Kentucky Junior Academy of Science

Kentucky Academy of Science

Melony Stambaugh is the Director of the KAS’ Kentucky Junior Academy of Science and works in Student Affairs at Northern Kentucky University. The Kentucky Junior Academy was established in the 1930’s to support K12 student researchers. Find out more at

Madison Staton, KSTA Board Member and Teacher

Butler County Schools


Madison Staton is an enthusiastic and driven teacher with experience developing student-centered lessons for students of all ages. She has been teaching Environmental Science, Biology, Forensics, Anatomy & Physiology, and Integrated Science for four years at Butler County High School in Morgantown, Kentucky. By teaching students in a wide variety of settings, from teaching Astronomy for the Kentucky Governor’s Scholars Program, to teaching Lego Robotics in Westport, Ireland, she has honed her creativity and lesson-design skills. She is passionate about working with other education professionals to make a positive impact on the next generation of Kentucky’s STEM leaders.

Barbara Stegman, 4th grade classroom teacher

Boone County Schools- Stephens Elementary

My name is Barbara Stegman. I live in Florence with my husband Chris, our son Alex, my mom & Jinx, our kitten. Our daughter, Zoe is pregnant & I will be a grandma around Christmas! Along with everything else, I am starting my 20th year of teaching. My career has kept me moving between 4th-6th grade, mostly teaching math and science. I have been using the STeLLA strategies for the past 2 years. I am amazed at not only how my teaching has progressed but also how much growth my students have made.

William Thornburgh, Assistant Professor of Science Education

Eastern Kentucky University

William taught high school chemistry, biology, and environmental science for ten years in Indiana. After leaving the classroom, he completed his doctoral program in science education at the University of Louisville with the desire of working with pre-service teachers. His dissertation was in informal science education and he focused on the role of the planetarium on students' attitudes, learning, and thinking. He recently accepted a position as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Teaching, Learning, and Educational Leadership at Eastern Kentucky University.

Scott Townsend, Professor of Science Education

Eastern Kentucky University

Scott Townsend is a Professor in the Department of Teaching, Learning and Educational Leadership at Eastern Kentucky University, where he focuses on science education. He holds a Ph.D. in Science and Environmental Education from Indiana University, and an M.Ed. in Secondary Education and a B.A. in Chemistry Teaching from Eastern Kentucky University.

Sarah Trent, Teacher

Jackson Independent Schools

Sarah Trent is the Library/Media Specialist and Gear Up College and Career Navigator counselor at Jackson City School. Sarah has a passion for teaching STEM concepts and exploring STEM careers with students. Sarah has been awarded the Walmart Kentucky Teacher of the Year award, Teacher That Makes a Difference award from the University of Kentucky, and Excellence in Entrepreneurial Education award in 2018.

Rico Tyler, CO-Director, National STEM Scholars Program

Western Kentucky University

Rico Tyler is a retired Western Kentucky University master teacher. Currently he is the Co-Director of the National STEM Scholars Program and teaches astronomy with the Ky Governor's Scholars Program.

Jing Wang, Associate Professor

Missy Weatherly, National Board Certified Teacher

Stephens Elementary, Boone County

Missy Weatherly has been an elementary classroom teacher for 24 years. She has taught all the grades, but has spent most of her years in 5th grade teaching Social Studies, Math, and Science. She received her National Board Certification in 2009 and renewed them in 2018 as a "Middle Child Generalist." She has spent the last two years working with BSCS based in Colorado Springs, CO and PIMSER on the STeLLA strategies to teaching Science.

Ashley Wilkirson, STEM teacher

Patti Works, PIMSER Regional Teacher Partner, Amplify Science Professional Learning Specialist


Patti Works is a Regional Teacher Partner with PIMSER and works as a Professional Learning Specialist with Amplify Science, since completing 31 years in the classroom. She was awarded the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching for the state of Kentucky in 2012 and the KSTA Elementary Science Teacher of the Year in 2006. While teaching in Fayette County, she was a part of the state Science Leadership Network, and worked on many district initiatives addressing effective science instruction. Working with PIMSER and CRIMSTED at U of Louisville, she worked with twelve districts in western Kentucky on developing classroom embedded assessments in science, grades      K-8.

Dr. Lin Xiang, Assistant Professor of Science Education
University of Kentucky

Lin Xiang is an assistant professor of science education in the Department of STEM Education at the University of Kentucky. Her expertise lies in model-based science education, agent-based computer modeling, and science teacher education. Over the past ten years, Lin has developed an extensive collection of agent-based computer models for K-16 students to apply science practices and crosscutting concepts to explore core science ideas. Her computer modeling curricula has been published in Science Scope and The Science Teacher. Lin taught high school biology and college introductory biology courses.     At the University of Kentucky, she teaches elementary, middle, and secondary science     methods courses, as well as the STEM Education Methods courses.

Dr. Kim Zeidler-Watters, Executive Director


 @KYPIMSER     @KimWatters5

Dr. Kim Zeidler-Watters has dedicated her career to supporting math and science improvement across Appalachia and other districts in KY for 28 years. Her focus remains on the classroom teachers and supporting their success. She has also worked with KY teachers and leaders to implement the science standards since they were adopted in 2013. Training and support from national, state, and local experts in the field of science education and authors of the standards continue to raise my ceiling of implementation.

Our Partners and Sponsors

Quick links

Follow our activities

The Kentucky Science Teachers Association is an affiliated chapter of the National Science Teaching Association
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 23918, Lexington, KY 40523
Contact Us     Website Feedback

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software