Rebecca Pelton is the President of MACTE. MACTE serves as the national accreditor for Montessori teacher preparation programs and is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Rebecca has been active in the area of teacher program accreditation for the past 14 years. Prior to her work with MACTE, she served as the Vice President for Membership for the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) where she presented at many national conferences and participated in over sixty on-site visits preparing for teacher program accreditation. Rebecca earned her B.A. in Music Education from Alma College and went on to teach in public and private schools for 20 years. She earned her M.Ed. from Bowling Green State University in Education with an endorsement in Gifted Education and continued to teach, as well as develop a number of programs in gifted education and gifted enrichment. She earned her doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of Delaware. Her tenure at MACTE is based on commitment to supporting Montessori teacher preparation and thereby improving the educational experience of Montessori students.
Carolyn Pinkerton, Ph.D. comes to MACTE after a long tenure in education as an English as a Second Language teacher at multiple school sites and a support for teachers on best educational practices. Prior to her teaching experience, Carolyn worked for the Core Knowledge Foundation where she created early elementary reading curriculum and communicated with teachers in the piloting of their programs. She served as a graduate teaching assistant and guest lecturer at the University of Virginia. Carolyn has her B.A. in Spanish, minor in Elementary Education and M.S. in Education from University of Tennessee, Knoxville; a M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction from Virginia Polytechnic and State Institute University, and Ph.D. in Social Foundations of Education from the University of Virginia. Carolyn was a fellow, receiving the UVA Faculty Senate Dissertation Award after conducting in-depth research about adult online learning communities and instructional strategies. She brings with her a wealth of knowledge regarding learning communities.
With 20 years of experience in interdisciplinary roles in a range of industries and a variety of disciplines, Jay has honed his aptitude to consistently execute a variety of duties in fast paced independent and small team environments. Starting in the hardscrabble music industry, spending time in land management, to a start-up e-commerce business in the action video and production world, to international business development in low resource communities for a start-up humanitarian product, to the most recent phase of business operations and services, Jay has honed a capacity for efficient process development and effective project management. It was drawing upon this experience that guided his goal of creating streamlined processes for MACTE, using best business practices, that can be predictably and reliably repeated in order to provide a courteous and effective relationship with MACTE’s constituency. He has a Bachelor of Science degree from The Ohio State University in Family Resource Management, Specialty in Finance.
Erin has been involved in Montessori education since 2002, when she received her AMI Early Childhood credential from Montessori Northwest in Portland, Oregon. She was an Early Childhood teacher for twelve years in Charlottesville, VA and in Charleston, SC. She also worked as a Reading Specialist in a Lower Elementary classroom, as an assistant in an Upper Elementary classroom, helped redevelop an after school program, oversaw various school related projects, gave many parent presentations, and has written a myriad of parent education articles. Most recently, she served as the Accreditation Project Manager for Mountaintop Montessori School in Charlottesville as the school went through the two year process of obtaining dual accreditation from AMS and VAIS (Virginia Association of Independent Schools). It was this experience that led Erin to her next step in her Montessori career, coming to MACTE as an Accreditation Specialist. Erin has a B.A. in Sociology and minor in Spanish from Penn State University and Master in Education from Loyola College in Maryland. Erin lives just outside of Charlottesville with her husband and three children.
Elisabeth comes to MACTE after five years of teaching in the primary grades in South Riding, Virginia and Earlysville, Virginia. She attended Radford University where she received her Bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies and her Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction. She has held leadership positions for Radford University’s educational honor society, Kappa Delta Pi, as well as for her grade level team. Elisabeth lives just north of Charlottesville with her husband and daughter.
Sophia Zamudio joins MACTE with seven years of experience in the Montessori community, specializing in Montessori teacher education program Self-Study writing. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature, with a minor in Creative Writing from California State University, Chico. Sophia brings with her to MACTE her experience working in the not-for-profit sector, where she gained extensive knowledge in program development through the Self-Study writing process. During her previous work with program affiliation, she has forged relationships with Montessori program directors across the nation and internationally. Her knowledge and experience will be a great resource as new and renewing programs navigate the MACTE accreditation process. Sophia lives in the New York City tri-state area with her husband and son and is excited to be joining the MACTE team.
Alissa is an experienced Montessorian who received her AMI Assistants to Infancy diploma from the Montessori Institute of San Diego. She has over 10 years of experience as an assistant, lead guide, and parent-infant class facilitator, and has taught early childhood virtual school for two years. Alissa supports parents as a postpartum doula and childbirth preparation educator. Alissa serves on the board of the Virginia Montessori Association. She attended the University of Virginia and continues to make Central Virginia her home. She is thrilled to be working with Montessorians around the world in her new role at MACTE!
Sophie is a dedicated Montessorian with experience teaching children ranging from 18 months to 6 years in both public and private school settings. She holds a B.A. in Elementary Education from Wake Forest University, an Ed.S. in Reading Education from the University of Virginia School of Education, and an AMS Early Childhood Credential from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies (MECR). Sophie‘s Montessori experience includes starting a Toddler program in Catskill, NY and working as a Primary Guide in Denver, CO. Sophie lives in Charlottesville with her husband and their two young children.