Keynote Bios

Dr. Okhee Lee
Conference Keynote Speaker

Okhee Lee is widely known for advancing research, policy, and practice that simultaneously promote science and language learning for all students, particularly English learners. Her research areas include science education, language and culture, and teacher education. At present, she leads collaborative research between New York University and Stanford University to develop instructional materials aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) to promote science and language learning for elementary students, including English learners. She also leads collaborative research with MIT and Vanderbilt University to integrate computational thinking and modeling in NGSS-aligned instructional materials.

Lee served on the NGSS writing team and as leader of the NGSS Diversity and Equity team. She also was a member of the steering committee for the Understanding Language Initiative at Stanford University. She has directed research projects funded by the National Science Foundation, U.S. Department of Education, Spencer Foundation, and other national and state organizations. She received her doctorate from Michigan State University and came to the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development from the University of Miami School of Education.

Dr. Mayim Bialik
Closing Keynote Speaker

Mayim Bialik is most recently known for her award-winning role as Amy Farrah Fowler on the hit CBS comedy, The Big Bang Theory. During her 8-year run on the show, she received two Critics Choice Awards, four Emmy Award nominations and a SAG Award nomination. From playing the young version of Bette Midler’s character in Beaches to her turn as Blossom Russo in the iconic 90’s sitcom Blossom, Bialik has appeared in numerous beloved roles throughout her dynamic acting career.

Following the end of Blossom, Bialik left acting for twelve years to earn a BS in Neuroscience from UCLA in 2000 with a minor in Hebrew & Jewish Studies. She went on to complete her PhD in Neuroscience, also at UCLA, and then completed her doctorate in the fall of 2007, which examined the role of oxytocin and vasopressin in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder in adolescents with Prader-Willi syndrome.

An acclaimed author, Bialik has written two #1 New York Times best sellers, Girling Up: How to Be Strong, Smart and Spectacular, and the recently released Boying Up: How to Be Brave, Bold and Brilliant. She has also written a parenting book, Beyond the Sling, and a cookbook, Mayim’s Vegan Table. Bialik has recently dedicated her skills as a writer, actress, neuroscientist and mother to driving the lifestyle website GrokNation.com, which she started in 2015.

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