Invited Speakers

Claudine K. Brown

Smiling woman wearing glasses, black top, and purple and green beaded necklace and earrings.

Assistant Secretary for Education and Access
Smithsonian Institution

Claudine K. Brown is the assistant secretary for education and access for the Smithsonian Institution. She is responsible for defining the Smithsonian’s education program and reports directly to the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. Her focus is the Institution-wide plan for educational initiatives, assessment strategies and funding for students in the K-12 range. Ms. Brown oversees five of the Smithsonian’s educational organizations—the Smithsonian Science Education Center, the Smithsonian Traveling Exhibition Service, the Smithsonian Affiliates, the Smithsonian Associates, and the Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access—and coordinates 32 education-based offices in museums and science centers.

Ms. Brown had been the director of the arts and culture program at the Nathan Cummings Foundation since 1995. In 1990, she joined the Smithsonian to serve as director of the National African-American Museum Project and developed the Institution’s final study on the project and a program plan for the proposed museum. Ms. Brown served for more than 20 years as a faculty advisor and instructor in the Leadership in Museum Education Program at Bank Street Graduate School of Education in New York City.

Education:
BA Pratt Institute
M Ed Bank Street College of Education
JD Brooklyn Law School


Stephanie L. Norby

Woman smiling

Director, Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access

Stephanie L. Norby, Director, Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access, oversees pan-institutional initiatives and programs including publications, education events, educational web-sites and online conferences, heritage month celebrations, and national and international education partnerships. Ms. Norby has worked with Pearson Foundation to offer mobile learning institutes at the Smithsonian, with MIT to create games based on Smithsonian content, with Microsoft to offer online conferences and quests, and with the Council of Chief State School Officers to develop curriculum resources and train Teachers of the Year. She previously worked in the Kansas City, Missouri School District as director of curriculum, professional development and assessment. In this position, she was responsible for developing the K-12 curriculum and assessments in all subjects, major curriculum purchases including library resources and textbooks, professional development for 4,000 educators and paraprofessionals, and development of magnet school themes and programs.


Christine Reich, Ph.D.

Smiling woman with brown hair wearing a lavender top, a floral-print jacket, and a necklace.

Director of Exhibit Development and Conservation
Museum of Science, Boston

Christine Reich, Ph.D. is Director of Exhibit Development and Conservation at the Museum of Science, Boston, where she has worked for 18 years. Prior to her current position, she served as Director of Research and Evaluation, overseeing one of the largest museum-based research and evaluation departments in the country, which she founded. Throughout her career, Christine has been a strong advocate for the inclusion of people with disabilities in museums, and her work in this area led to her to be named as a “Champion of Change” by the White House. In addition to her position at the Museum of Science, she serves as an Adjunct Lecturer at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education. Christine has a B.S. in agricultural and biological engineering from Cornell University, a graduate certificate in museum studies from Harvard University, a M.Ed. in museum education from Lesley University, and a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction from the Lynch School of Education at Boston College.


Jan Wintrol

Smiling woman with short, white hair. She wears a pink jacket.

Chief Executive Officer
Ivymount Corporation

Jan Wintrol is currently the Chief Executive Officer of the Ivymount Corporation and former Director of the Ivymount School in Rockville, MD. With over 40 years of experience in both regular and special education, she has worked in both public and private schools in Maryland and Washington DC.  Her diversity of experience includes classroom instruction, course and workshop development, graduate school instruction, educational consultation, staff development and supervision, and school administration.

Jan serves on numerous community boards and has consulted on special education projects and disability issues for Children’s National Medical Center, JFGH and Music for Autism. She participates on the Smithsonian Institution and the Kennedy Center’s Accessibility Program Community Advisory Committees to assist in the effort to better serve families with children who have autism and developmental disabilities. She has received recognition and awards throughout her career, most notably being named a 2013 Washingtonian of the Year for her visionary leadership in special education.


Beth Ziebarth

Director
Smithsonian Institution Accessibility Program

Beth Ziebarth has a personal interest and professional responsibility in advocacy for people with disabilities. She currently serves as the director of the Smithsonian’s Accessibility Program. In her position, Ms. Ziebarth develops and implements accessibility policy and guidelines for the Institution’s 19 museums, the National Zoo, and nine research centers, ensuring that the Smithsonian’s 30 million annual visitors experience a welcoming environment that accommodates individuals of all ages and abilities.

Ms. Ziebarth develops partnerships between the Smithsonian and disability, educational, and cultural organizations in order to increase the Institution’s audience of people with disabilities. She provides technical assistance to Smithsonian units on facility, exhibition and program accessibility issues and coordinates with Smithsonian administration to resolve formal and informal accessibility complaints.

Ms. Ziebarth has been a Smithsonian staff member for over twenty years.