Meet the CERTIFIED Ambassadors

Back in February, we sent out a call to have educators apply to become CERTIFIED Ambassadors. We wanted to create a group of education experts that you can connect with for support and ideas all year round! We received hundreds of applications, and it was incredibly difficult to choose only ten.

After much deliberation, we’re proud to present our CERTIFIED Ambassadors for 2022. Stay tuned for CERTIFIED podcast episodes, blog posts, and CERTIFIED Educator Community content from these incredible educators.

Business Track

Abner Soto-Henry

Abner Soto-Henry has taught information technology education for nearly 20 years at the Latin American Youth Center Career Academy, specializing in Microsoft certifications, IC3 Digital Literacy certifications, and CompTIA certifications. In total, Mr. Soto-Henry has more than 24 years of experience in education.

Originally from Costa Rica, Abner speaks fluent Spanish, English, and Portuguese, enabling him to connect with the students he serves. He has received several awards, including being named Certiport’s 2021 Educator of the Year. A former professional soccer player, his passion for teaching is only rivaled by his love of the game.

You can learn more about Abner in our 2019 CERTIFIED Educator of the Year video here

Brandy Sevin, M.Ed. 

Ms. Brandy B. Sevin is from Raceland, LA, and has been an educator for 24 years. She is currently an Office Systems Instructor and Program Coordinator for Office Systems and Medical Coding for Fletcher Technical Community College in Schriever, LA, and a Professional Virtual Instructor of English and Business for Imagine Learning Edgenuity. She has Master’s Degrees in Educational Technology and Administrative Leadership and a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Education (grades 6-12) with minors in English (grades 6-12) and Library Science (K-12) for Louisiana. While working for Imagine Learning, she has become certified to teach grades 6-12 in the states of Georgia, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas. During her years in education, she has incorporated Certiport certifications, from becoming IC3 certified the year it was released to becoming a Microsoft Office Specialist and Microsoft Certified Educator in the past year.

Brandy shared her MOS teaching expertise during our last Month of Microsoft event. She'll also be presenting in one of our CERTIFIED breakout sessions, Using LearnKey and CertPREP to Increase Microsoft Office Specialist Certifications. You can see her session details here

Carol York, MBA

Carol York is a Business Education teacher at Cary High school in Cary North Carolina. After many years of experience in Private industry, Carol has been teaching for 12 years. She has been teaching project management for 8 years and was on the curriculum development team for both project management one and two for the state of North Carolina. She’s recently earned her PMI Project Management Ready certification, which adds to her MOS Expert certification and National Board Teacher certification.

Carol will be presenting at CERTIFIED this year, teaching a session entitled Project Management in the Classroom and Beyond with PMR Certification. You can read all about her session here

Christina Deibler, MBA

Christina Deibler currently teaches Entrepreneurship and Small Business and Project Management to her business and technology students at her alma mater, Wakulla High School in Crawfordville, Florida. Prior to becoming a teacher, she was a business and human resource professional as a Florida State University graduate with a degree in Business Management. She recently chose to change her path and help empower students to reach their goals in life and turn dreams into reality by employing her background in Business Management and Operations, as well as Project Management to help students forge their own path ahead in life. Changing career paths has proven to be satisfying both personally and professionally, and helping students has become a passion that is very fulfilling to Christina. When she's not in the classroom, you can find her on a kayak, scuba diving, traveling and going on adventures with her recently adopted chocolate lab, Cedar. Her love for the outdoors personally, and her love for helping students professionally, makes her a unique individual with an unparalleled love for life.

Denise Spence, M.Ed.

Denise Spence has been an educator for almost 25 years. She has earned her Master's degree in Curriculum and Instruction, emphasis in Instructional Technology. Over the years, Denise has taught the correlated course content and earned various IT certification credentials. Her accomplishments include being selected as 1 of 3 finalists for Lee County's Teacher of the Year in 2000; she was the 1st ever Career and Technical Education Teacher of the Year for Lee County in 2006; she was named Certiport's Global Summit's Teacher of the Year for 2010. Plus, Denise was a 2011 and a 2012 finalist for the Microsoft Innovation Forum.

Denise has been sharing her experience and expertise with Certiport for years! Check out her advice for building a bridge between your classroom and the workforce on the CERTIFIED podcast here.  

Patty Eckelman, M.Ed.

Patty Eckelman is a Business Instructor at Auburn Mountainview High School for the Auburn School District #408 in Washington state. Originally raised in Montana, Patty took her first teaching position after college in the Pacific Northwest. She’s been teaching for 31 years, working in four different schools, and has been working with the Microsoft Office Specialist certification program since 2001.

Patty’s passion is Career and Technology Education, helping prepare students for school-to-work and college-to-career futures. Auburn Mountainview High School is one of the top schools in Washington state for industry certification volume, reflecting Patty’s students’ enthusiasm and perseverance. Patty believes that the MOS industry certifications are outstanding personal and career opportunities for students.

Patty has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Montana and a master’s degree from City University. She was awarded High School Teacher of the Year for the Auburn School District in 2017. When she’s not in the classroom, Patty is spending time with her two boys (ages 22 and 18), traveling, hiking, spending time with my family, or sewing.

Creative Track

Greg King, LEED AP O+M, WELL AP, Fitwel Ambassador

Greg King is a Computer Assisted Design Instructor at McCann Technical School in North Adams, MA. Prior to leaping into a teaching career, Greg was a Senior Mechanical Designer/Project Manager for HVAC projects in both the design build and plan-spec marketplace. Greg has been an Autodesk student & user since 1997 with a primary focus on AutoCAD and Revit.

Greg has an A.S. in Engineering Technology, and holds several accreditations including LEED AP O+M, WELL AP, Fitwel Ambassador, Autodesk AutoCAD Certified User, as well as a MA Construction Supervisor License to name a few. Outside of the classroom, Greg enjoys exploring the outdoors with his family and on rainy days, blissfully trying to find ways to thank his wife for allowing him to commandeer the dining room table with 3D printers, CNC machines, and laser engravers.

Katie Watchorn, MBA

Katie is a Digital Business Education Career & Technical Education Instructor at the Sault Area High School’s Career Center. She discovered her passion for teaching while living in Italy, where she taught General/Business English, proofread scientific articles, edited CVs, advised on business presentations, designed email templates, and offered marketing services. She joined her Alma Mater in 2019 with the intention of helping students to discover what they really enjoy and what they want to do in their life. Throughout her professional career, Katie has worked within the marketing and sales sectors in Fort Lauderdale, FL and Milan, Italy for 7 years. Her objective is to inspire students, by bringing her industry experience into the classroom.

IT Track

Tracey Sigers, MBA

Tracey Sigers is the Department Chair of Information Technology at the National Center for Urban Solutions in Columbus, Ohio. Tracey holds an MBA with an emphasis in technology leadership, a bachelor’s degree in information technology, and an associate degree in technology. Tracey brings twenty years of business background in computer systems management, college study skills, and Microsoft software experience to the CERTIFIED Ambassador program. In addition to her experience with Microsoft, Tracy also works with the Adobe Certified Professional program, the Entrepreneurship and Small Business certification, the IT Specialist program, and the IC3 Digital Literacy certification.

She’s eager to bring students into the twenty-first century using enthusiastic and dynamic teaching to help them become lifelong learners.

Damiano Mastandrea, EdD

Damiano Mastrandrea is a Career and Technical Education Director at the Brooklyn STEAM Center. He manages the CTE portfolio of the school to ensure that they are highly relevant and rigorous. He also strategizes various career readiness approaches through workplace immersion programs supported by data-driven decisions. Damiano is a big believer in changing education as a system that works for everyone instead of the selected few and pursuing education to all corners. His passion for education has led him to earn three college degrees including a doctorate, as well last 26 industry certifications, in which a good portion of them are through Certiport. When he has a free moment, Damiano likes to write short stories, play games, and, if he's feeling daring, bake!

Interested in connecting in-person with these fantastic educators? Join us for CERTIFIED 2022 in Dallas! Get all the details and register for the event here.