Our Faculty

Dr. Elissa Brown

Dr. Elissa Brown, a distinguished lecturer and director of the Hunter College Gifted Center, was previously the director of teacher and leader education programs and gifted education at the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. From 2002-2007, Dr. Brown was the director of the Center for Gifted Education at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, VA. She has served as a state director of gifted education, a federal grant manager, a district gifted program coordinator, principal of a specialized high school, and a teacher of gifted students. As a professor, Dr. Brown coordinates and teaches the Advanced Certificate Program in Gifted & Talented at Hunter College and has served as an adjunct professor at several universities, including Rutgers and Duke University. She is a published author in the field of gifted education and presents widely.

Dr. Lenore Cortina

Dr. Lenore Cortina, Faculty Coordinator, coordinates the gifted education certificate faculty, oversees curriculum quality and currency, and teaches gifted education courses for Rutgers. She is also the owner/director of Ingenuity Academic Talent Center, LLC, a private supplemental gifted education center in Flemington, NJ. Dr. Cortina brings significant school district experience to the certificate program, having served as supervisor of instruction and teacher of the gifted and talented (K-8) for Delaware Township School, and as an elementary teacher for the Flemington-Raritan School District. She earned her doctorate in K-12 School Administration at Seton Hall University, focusing her dissertation research on gifted education, and a sixth year diploma in gifted education from the University of Connecticut. She also holds a master’s degree in teaching from Sacred Heart University, and a bachelor’s of science from the University of Bridgeport.

Dr. Alicia Cotabish

Dr. Alicia Cotabish is the Gifted Education Program Coordinator at the University of Central Arkansas. Previously, she served as one of two Principal Investigators of STEM Starters and the program coordinator of the Arkansas Evaluation Initiative in Gifted Education (AEI), both federally-funded Jacob K. Javits projects housed at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.   She is the Immediate  Past-President of the Arkansas Association of Gifted Education Administrators and serves on the board of the Council for Exceptional Children – The Association of the Gifted (CEC-TAG).  She has authored and co-authored 4 books and more than 50 journal articles, book chapters, and products focused on K-20 STEM and gifted education. Her recent research has focused on STEM and gifted education, and examining the effects of virtual coaching on the quality of gifted and teacher candidates using Skype and Bluetooth Bug in-the-Ear (BIE) technology.

Dr. Debbie Dailey

Debbie Dailey, Ed.D., is an Assistant Professor of Teaching And Learning at the University of Central Arkansas where she is the Coordinator for the Gifted and Talented Program and director of a summer camp for talented youth, STEMulate Engineering Academy. Prior to moving to higher education, Debbie was a high school science teacher and gifted education teacher for twenty years. Debbie has authored and co-authored multiple journal articles, books, book chapters, and products focused on K-12 STEM and gifted education. She has delivered numerous professional development workshops and presentations at local, state, national, and international venues. Debbie currently serves as the secretary for the Council for Exceptional Children—The Association for the Gifted (CEC-TAG) and is a selected member of the Professional Standards Committee for the National Association for Gifted Children. 

Dr. Angela Housand

Angela Housand, Ph.D. is an associate professor at the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) and consultant to schools and districts across the country. As a former teacher, Dr. Housand brings an applied focus to her programs for in-service and pre-service teachers. Over the years, her work has been presented internationally and published in the Journal of Advanced Academics, Gifted Child Quarterly, High Ability Studies, and other professional periodicals. Dr. Housand's efforts directly support teachers as they challenge gifted students to achieve advanced levels of performance and become productive members of a global society.

Dr. Jessica Manzone

Dr. Jessica Manzone is a post-doctoral research assistant and an adjunct professor in the MAT Program at the University of Southern California's Rossier School of Education. Jessica has served as a primary teacher in Baltimore City, Maryland, as well as an instructional coach and professional development consultant.


Dr. Joyce VanTassel-Baska

Dr. Joyce VanTassel-Baska, an internationally renowned leader in gifted education, has published 31 books and over 500 refereed journal articles, book chapters, and scholarly reports, and consulted on gifted education in all 50 states and around the world. As the Executive Director of the Center for Gifted Education at The College of William and Mary, she developed a graduate program and a research and development center in gifted education. She also initiated and directed the Center for Talent Development at Northwestern University. Prior to her work in higher education, Dr. VanTassel-Baska served as the state director of gifted programs for Illinois, as a regional director of a gifted service center in the Chicago area, and as coordinator of gifted programs for the Toledo, Ohio public school system.  Dr. VanTassel-Baska holds B.A., M.A., M.Ed., and Ed.D. degrees from the University of Toledo. Dr. VanTassel-Baska developed the curriculum for the Rutgers Gifted Education Certificate Program, and continues with the program as consultant and conference keynote speaker.