Executive Director, Master Urban Educators, LLC



Jo-Anne Mello Hodgson is a career educator. She became a classroom teacher, an assistant principal and principal in urban settings. She is certified as a supervisor, principal and teacher. Mrs. Hodgson is known for her ability to build and develop cohesive teams with a clear focus and a common shared vision. She led her school team to achieve the distinction of a Commissioner’s Commendation School. This team changed the paradigm for instruction in an inclusive urban school. The success of this program was evidenced by state testing results that yielded commensurate success for all student subgroups.


After 35 years in public education, Jo-Anne reunited her team and opened the educational consulting firm, Master Urban Educators, LLC. She serves as the Executive Director. The MUE team brings their expertise and ability to model and facilitate team building, instructional and leadership to schools and organizations in the Commonwealth. Recognizing that no school or organization is successful unless there exists an intentional culture that comprehensively supports teaching and learning. That culture must address the needs, growth, input and participation of every stakeholder. At Master Urban Educators, Jo-Anne and her team have created Purposeful Instructional Equity, P.I.E.© which is a comprehensive approach fostering the transformation of the overall culture of teaching and learning reflected in the instruction, communication, student outcomes, student engagement, social emotional learning, development of growth mindsets, resiliency and accountability in a school or district. P.I.E. © addresses the needs of all subgroups of students because every student’s experience is equally important. The team’s PD for principals and administrators is customized to be responsive for the school or district. It focuses on various aspects of developing professional culture such as developing personal resiliency, leading a shared commitment to high standards, focused decision making, building consensus, improved communication, creating and developing a direction through core values, developing cultural proficiencies to affirm individual differences, continuous learning for all stakeholders in their school, and responding to conflict resolution using a variety of strategies to resolve conflict constructively. Lastly, developing the ability to self-regulate greatly increases the ability to achieve.


Jo-Anne has served the general community in the service of education by serving on the Bristol Community College Board of Trustees and as a member of the Governor’s Education Transition Committee. She is a member of the Advisory Board for the Discovery Language Academy. Jo-Anne serves as an educational liaison for the DeMello Educational Foundation to Lesley University in their partnership in the Rising Tide Educational Initiative, public private partnership to raise the educational and economic opportunities for the Southcoast.



Donna Marsland holds an M.Ed. in Reading and is a licensed reading specialist in Massachusetts with K-12 certification. She worked as an urban literacy coach in Central Falls, Rhode Island and New Bedford, Massachusetts. She has done district and state training for teachers in Rhode Island and has presented at the IRA annual conference. She was also, a coach in Early Reading Success, a Haskins Laboratory initiative affiliated with Yale University. She is experienced in building capacity in teachers, data analysis, Common Core, and all areas of literacy. Donna is extremely well versed and current in her study of educational trends and research. Mrs. Marsland is a certified instructional videographer.



Lynne Poulos is an experienced educator who specializes in teaching and learning. She has extensive classroom experience in an urban center where she was subsequently an interventionist, academic coach and teacher mentor. Lynne is well known for her creativity which permeates her professional development workshops, modeling strategies which are highly engaging for students. Her specialty is in leading teachers in developing and expanding their instructional capacities. She is a dynamic teacher of teachers. Lynne is a primary specialist whose limitless energy and vast cachet of resources make her a valuable asset to any professional development endeavor.



Pauline Lopes has been an educator for more than 35 years. Pauline was a very successful classroom teacher who hosted a model classroom for other teachers to observe her instructional practices. She was chosen as a candidate for the Partnership for Advanced Learning in Math and Science and after intensive training became a state certified PALMS specialist. Pauline is a literacy coach and specialist in the integration of literacy across the curriculum. Pauline is a trained facilitator for Rigby’s Balanced Literacy courses, Developing Literacy and Supporting Literacy. She has been formally trained in the implementation of Reading Street, Junior Great Books, Collins Writing, 6 + 1 Traits, and Wonders. Mrs. Lopes is certified as an instructional videographer. She created and implemented a very successful blended learning intervention program which yielded celebrated student outcomes. Children are Pauline’s passion. In the community she fostered many children and was named foster parent of the year. Pauline has a gift for helping teachers learn to unlock the formula to seek solutions for students by embracing the ‘Whole Child.’



John Gomes is a Technology Specialist who has worked extensively at the district level as the Computer Program Developer in facilitating the adoption and use of instructional technology. He is dedicated to inspiring enthusiasm and dynamic teaching with the use of technology. This gentleman could be considered a pioneer in this area. He holds certifications in Instructional Technology and secondary Math. John has administered, developed and facilitated over 25 online faculty professional development courses. He is an undisputed resource for teachers and administrators in online work. He possesses a strong working knowledge of all aspects of Microsoft Windows, Word, Excel, Adobe Dreamweaver, Photoshop and many others. He is conversant with multiple platforms as well as Canvas, Moodle and Blackboard LMS. His unique combination of educational experience coupled with hands-on technology implementation makes John a valuable asset. He has worked extensively with students and teachers from elementary through the college level. John is working to develop online learning opportunities for MUE to support teachers.



Lawrence Burns is a career Technology Specialist. He began his career as a secondary Math teacher in an urban setting but his love of technology and his understanding of the impact of technology on both teaching and learning defined his career path. Larry was instrumental in bringing technology into common use in his 12,000-student populated district. While in the district, he provided countless hours of professional development and technical assistance to educators. His sense of humor and people skills are at the heart of why teachers like to work with Larry as he is keenly aware that adults like students, learn in a parallel process, at their own pace. Larry has worked extensively with at risk youth as a Grant Facilitator through ARRA Grants and as a Supervisor of Attendance. The self pacing and inherent engagement of technology for these students is a natural fit on which he capitalized to motivate students. Larry has developed and facilitated many blended learning courses for professional development credit for teachers in the state of Massachusetts including Scratch and Code. He is conversant with multiple platforms as well as Canvas, Moodle and Blackboard. His contribution to MUE is in supporting our efforts to bring integrated technology to districts, schools and classrooms.



Katie has over thirty years of experience providing organizational consulting, employee assistance, training, and coaching to a wide range of corporate clients in the areas of organizational culture, resilience, performance management, strategic planning and leadership development. In addition to her work with municipalities, law enforcement, manufacturing, financial institutions, transportation, healthcare and energy companies, Katie has worked extensively within urban and suburban school districts. Her work with superintendents, principals, teachers and paraprofessionals has brought Katie a keen awareness of the challenges faced at each level of public education.


Katie is a life-long learner and has completed many post graduate training programs in business, coaching and psychology. In 2015, she was introduced to the principles- based teachings of Sydney Banks which explain the logic of the human psychological system and the true source of human resiliency. This realization has completely changed her approach with her clients and helped them to regain mental clarity and focus, improve relationships, resolve problems and generally increase their overall mental well-being.


Katie is the founder and CEO, Outlook EAP Inc, Business Outlook.



Cheryl is an accomplished learning and organizational development professional with over 20 years of experience that span a variety of corporate cultures including a pioneering high technology organization, a large international law firm, and a Fortune 100 insurance provider. She established Essential Resilience in 2012 to devote all of her energy to a principle-based approach for increasing individual and organizational resilience and well-being.


Prior to founding Essential Resilience, Cheryl spent 14 years as a senior organizational development consultant working in various divisions of BAE Systems, Inc., one of the world’s largest Department of Defense contractors. She partnered with senior leadership teams to provide support for talent management, team performance, conflict resolution, and executive coaching. Cheryl was also a lead instructor and designer for a curriculum of residential executive leadership programs designed to increase individual and organizational resilience and well-being. Nearly a thousand leaders participated in these programs.


Cheryl is an associate with Camden Consulting Group in Boston providing assessment and executive coaching for leaders in healthcare, technology and medical device companies. She is on the faculty for the Conscious Leadership School, an international 9-month leadership program. She is an associate consultant with Insight Principles in Lexington, Massachusetts.


Cheryl is the founder and President of Essential Resilience.




Brandy and Matt Jackson have dedicated their entire professional careers to supporting STEAM education in the classroom and beyond. Brandy is a career K-12 educator who has integrated science, coding, engineering, ecology and art into her curriculum for 15 years. Matt is a 17 year veteran of the US Air Force and Air National Guard who has spent an entire career perfecting the teaching of adults. Both Brandy and Matthew have Masters of Education in Instructional Technology and have a proven record of performance in the field. The Jacksons specialize in customized professional development such as integration of EdTech into an existing curriculum, or extended project-based learning unit that teaches technology as a means to other objectives. They offer professional development, summer program curriculum and Ed Tech consultation.

Brandy & Matt are the founders and operators of Mobile MakerSpace.

Copyright © 2018 Master Urban Educators. Google Chrome, Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox recommended.