MLC Director Clinical Associate Professor, Loyola Marymount University
In addition to her work at MLC, she holds a dual clinical faculty appointment in the Loyola Marymount University (LMU) School of Education and Seaver College of Science and Engineering. She is also a part-time AP Calculus teacher at a Los Angeles-area high school where she continuously innovates instruction to develop the math identity of her students.
Through her work at MLC, Kathy has developed a systems approach to help school districts identify, analyze, and solve their complex problems associated with mathematics teaching and learning. She works to bridge theory and practice so school districts can continuously improve and innovate how they develop the math identity of all K-12 students. Uniting her passion for mathematics and engineering, she adapted the Collaborative Solution Discovery (CSD) model to solve complex math education problems. She is currently working on evaluation metrics for CSD and adapting the Capability Maturity Model to an educational context. Kathy has received more than five million dollars in grant funding to pursue this passion.
Prior to MLC, Kathy founded the innovative and locally recognized Common Core Math and Science Teaching (CMAST) program affiliated with Loyola Marymount University. She is also a co-author of Mathematics Learning and Leadership by Design, a math teaching model that emphasizes mathematical thinking, problem solving, and self-regulation and applies an engineering design process to create a student learning experience that is active, connected, reflective, and embraces problem solving.
In 2015, the state of California nominated Kathy for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST), the nation's highest honor for teachers of mathematics and science. In addition, Kathy serves on the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing Math Advisory Panel.
Kathy graduated from University of California at Davis with a degree in Russian and minor in mathematics. She holds an M.A. in Teaching Mathematics from Loyola Marymount University. She also attended the University of Leningrad during the Soviet era.
MLC Senior Research Associate
Through her work at MLC, Katie works with administrators to solve routine math instruction problems using the MLC Collaborative Solution Discovery (CSD) Solution Search Path. Katie also spearheads MLC’s current research for building math identity and evaluation metrics for measuring math identity.
Katie is a co-author of Mathematics Learning and Leadership by Design, a math teaching model that emphasizes mathematical thinking, problem solving, and self-regulation and applies an engineering design process to create a student learning experience that is active, connected, reflective, and embraces problem solving.
Passionate about math education, Katie is a Doctor of Education candidate in Curriculum & Instruction at Loyola University Chicago. Katie received her B.A. in Management Consulting & Mathematics from University of Notre Dame and her M.A. in Secondary Education & Teaching from Loyola Marymount University.
Prior to graduate school, Katie taught high school mathematics in public and private schools for nine years.
Cyndia Acker-Ramirez, M.Ed.
MLC Instructional Specialist
Cyndia Acker-Ramirez is a high school mathematics teacher; she has taught in public and private schools for thirteen years.
In addition to teaching, Cyndia works for the Math Leadership Corps (MLC), a partnership with Loyola Marymount University and Los Angeles public school districts. MLC applies a systems approach to find sustainable solutions to districts’ complex problem of increasing the number of students who are mathematical thinkers, problem solvers, and self-regulated learners.
Through her work at MLC, Cyndia facilitates interactive professional learning for math teachers, coach-teachers, and administrators to be change agents and leaders within their schools. Cyndia works in her own classroom and with administrators and math coach-teachers across five school sites to analyze student evidence, continuously return to research, and identify solutions to support all students in their math learning.
Cyndia is a demonstration classroom for Mathematics Learning and Leadership by Design, a math teaching model that emphasizes mathematical thinking and applies an engineering design process to create a student learning experience that is active, connected, reflective, and embraces problem solving.
Cyndia received her B.S. in Mathematics from the California State University Long Beach and her M.Ed. in Cross Cultural Education from National University.
Christine Soldner, M.A.
MLC Assistant Director
Christine’s background is in administrative and operations management. Passionate about education and nonprofit management, Christine joined the MLC team in August 2015.
Through her work at MLC, Christine oversees a variety of project components, to include: liaising with MLC’s partner school districts, managing communication & marketing efforts for internal & external MLC stakeholders, tracking milestones and deadlines for program implementation, compiling grant applications & reports, and overseeing MLC’s budget.
Christine received her B.A. in Political Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and her M.A. in Nonprofit Leadership & Management from the University of Southern California.
Prior to joining MLC, Christine worked for an executive recruiting firm in Chicago and on a program management team with a government-contracting firm in Washington D.C.