“Caring for Our World, Caring for Ourselves:
Our professional learning emphasizing self-care in service of social justice continues at this year’s seminar, although through another lens. Last year we focused on learning recovery and on learning opportunities that empower teachers and students to thrive in all learning settings – online, hybrid, and in person. We will continue that journey at this year’s seminar, while also give attention to the diversity of Indigenous Voices in our communities and on what we can learn from our friends and colleagues. Have a look at the Keynote Speakers bios below as we prepare to come together at UCSB in July.
Our 2022 Keynote Speakers
Orientation Session – Friday evening, 7:30 pm
Quirina Luna Geary
Chairwoman, Tamien Nation
Keynote: Indigenous Voices and Identities: Honoring the Rich Cultural and Linguistic Heritage of Indigenous People
Quirina Luna Geary is an enrolled citizen and Chairwoman of the Tamien Nation, the aboriginal tribe of Santa Clara Valley. She is a board member for the Advocates of Indigenous California Language Survival (AICLS) and studied linguistics at the University of California Davis. Quirina has worked for over 26 years revitalizing the language of her great-grandmother, Josefa Velasquez and has coauthored several academic publications including a 600-page dictionary. In 2004, Quirina received the KQED American Indian Heritage Local Hero Award for her language revitalization efforts and community service. She is an advocate for the protection and preservation of Tamien culture and sacred landscapes. Quirina is also a cultural practitioner and believes her greatest accomplishment is raising her ten children with Indigenous values, language, and culture.
Certified yoga instructor and holistic nutrition educator
Keynote: Healing: Breaking Negative Cycles through “Radical” Self-Care
Since January 1990, Saeeda has been experiencing the power of her yoga practice, the benefits of eating a holistic health diet, and since 2012 a daily TM meditation routine. Her initial encounter with this holistic lifestyle led to a personal transformation that ultimately led her to become a certified yoga instructor and holistic nutrition educator for more than 25 years.
Saeeda Hafiz is a yoga teacher, author, and wellness expert with certifications from the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centers and the Natural Gourmet Institute. She is also a graduate of Temple University. As a holistic health educator with the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD), she focuses on sharing her knowledge of physical and mental wellness with diverse groups.
She has appeared on various podcasts, radio, and television programs and has been featured in numerous publications. Her international public speaking engagements have educated the public in yoga, holistic nutrition, and healthy living. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Ying Jin 金璎
Mandarin Educator &
2018 ACTFL National Language Teacher of the Year
Keynote: My Journey to Empowering Curriculum with California’s Transformative – Social Emotional Framework
Ying Jin has more than 20 years of experience teaching Chinese language and culture in diverse settings, including middle schools, high schools, and colleges in both the U.S. and China. She is currently a teacher of Mandarin Chinese in the Fremont Union High School District in Cupertino, California.
Ms. Jin serves as the President of Chinese Language Association of Secondary-Elementary Schools (CLASS) for 2022, and currently serves on the board of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) as well.
Ms. Jin was named 2018 Teacher of the Year by ACTFL, 2017 Teacher of the Year by the Southwest Conference On Language Teaching (SWCOLT), and 2016 Teacher of the Year by the California Language Teachers’ Association (CLTA).
Ying Jin received her M.A. in Instructional Technologies from San Francisco State University and her B.A. in Chinese Language and Literature from Peking University, China.
Dr. Celia Chomón Zamora
Director of Professional Learning and Certification, ACTFL
Keynote: My Name Has an Accent Mark, and So Do I: Understanding and Empowering Our Heritage Language Learners
Dr. Celia Chomón Zamora currently serves as ACTFL’s Director of Professional Learning and Certification. With more than 15 years serving the language education community, Dr. Zamora has been a K-12 language teacher and administrator in public and private school settings, a postsecondary language program instructor and assistant director, and researcher. The daughter of first-generation immigrants from Venezuela and Cuba, Dr. Zamora is a passionate advocate of heritage language learners.
Dr. Zamora completed her doctoral degree in Spanish Applied Linguistics from Georgetown University, where she was awarded the Harold N. Glassman Distinguished Dissertation Award in the social sciences. She attended the United States Military Academy at West Point and is a proud graduate of Florida International University where she focused on Linguistics and the study of various languages, including Portuguese, Japanese, Italian, and Ladino. At ACTFL, she is currently focusing on providing a platform to amplify the voices of underrepresented language learning communities, developing resources and communities of support for less commonly taught and Indigenous languages, and continuing to advocate and support heritage language learners and teachers.
Dr. Tiffany Lee
Professor, Chair of Native American Studies at University of New Mexico
Keynote: “I am Fluent in My Indigenous Consciousness”: Stories of Critical Language Awareness Among Indigenous Youth
Tiffany S. Lee is Dibé Łizhiní (Blacksheep) Diné from Crystal, New Mexico and Oglala Lakota from Pine Ridge, South Dakota. Dr. Lee is a Professor and the Chair of Native American Studies at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. Her research examines the holistic outcomes of Indigenous language immersion schools, Native youth perspectives on language reclamation, and socio-culturally centered education. Her work has been published in journals, such as Harvard Educational Review, the Journals of Language, Identity, and Education and American Indian Education; and in books, such as Culturally Sustaining Pedagogies: Teaching and Learning for Justice in a Changing World, Diné Perspectives: Revitalizing and reclaiming Navajo thought, and Indigenous language revitalization in the Americas. She is a former high school social studies and language arts teacher. She is currently working with colleagues to open a Diné language nest in Albuquerque. She is also working with colleagues on a teacher education program that will prepare Diné speakers into becoming Diné language immersion educators.
Executive Director, OneAmerica
Keynote: Organizing for Multilingualism: Building a Movement for Language Liberation
Roxana Norouzi has over 15 years of experience in organizing, advocacy and social justice work with immigrant and refugee populations. Currently, she is the Executive Director for OneAmerica, Washington State’s largest immigrant rights organization, where she has worked for the last decade. Through her leadership, she moved the organization through a transformational process to get further rooted in grassroots organizing, strategic policy campaigns and political power. Roxana built and developed a strategy at OneAmerica to improve education for immigrant children and families through local and state policy advocacy, community organizing, and leadership development with parents and youth. Roxana is fluent in Farsi and her experience as a first generation American informs her passion and commitment to racial equity and immigrant justice.