Leadership Initiative for Language Learning (LILL)

What is LILL?

The Leadership Initiative for Language Learning was established in 2015 to “empower individuals to become agents for change, in order to foster a growth mindset focused on effective teaching and learning, and purposeful nurturing of leadership skills, all in the service of learners.” It has evolved into a two-year initial commitment (with participation in two LILL Summer Institutes plus collegial support and sessions during the intervening academic year) that continues beyond graduation through a lifelong leadership trajectory. There are currently 126 LILL graduates from Cohorts 1 - 3. Cohort 4 started its two-year journey in Spring 2021.

How do I attend LILL?

National, regional, and state organizations of language educators nominated one Emerging Leader to be part of LILL Cohort 4, throughout 2021 and 2022. The Emerging Leader is an active member of said organization whose potential capacity, commitment, and ownership within the organization will directly benefit it. LILL Cohort 4 includes 57 Emerging Leaders representing 41 state organizations plus the Greater Washington Area (DC), four regional organizations, five national language-specific organizations, and seven specialized language organizations.

Cohort 5: Two-Year Program in 2023-2024

Language organizations should consider naming their LILL Emerging Leader starting in early 2023. Cohort 5 Emerging Leaders will begin the program in Spring and Summer 2023. Guidance can be found here.

Dates: June 21st (starting at 12 PM ET) through June 23, 2023 (ending at 1 PM ET)

Location: Savannah, GA

Cost: To be announced

Cohort 5 Facilitators

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Leo Valladares is currently the coordinator and specialist for more than 70 Spanish Dual Language Immersion programs for the state of Utah. Before his role as supervisor of language programs, Leo worked in the field of education as a kindergarten, elementary and secondary teacher as well as a district language coach. As part of his administrative responsibilities, Leo has participated in the development of language curriculum and pedagogy for secondary language programs across different districts in the state of Utah as well as supporting the hiring and training of local and international guest language teachers for dual language schools. In addition, Leo also uses his expertise in program establishment, training, and curriculum development to serve as a specialty consultant for districts that begin the process of creating Dual Language programs in Georgia, Arizona, Ohio, and Indiana. Leo was a member of LILL Cohort 2 and an active member of the Utah Foreign Language Association (UFLA) and SWCOLT.

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Mark Linsky is the World Language and Dual Language Immersion Specialist for Savannah-Chatham County Schools in Georgia. He has served as a regional representative to the National Association of District Supervisors of Foreign Languages (NADSFL) and is on the board of the Southern Conference on Language Teaching (SCOLT) working on the program committee. Mark also created and helps organize the World Languages Collaborative Conference with Georgia Southern University. Mark has successfully applied to participate in programs to bring teachers of Arabic and Chinese to serve local programs and provided support to those teachers. He also created a partnership with a German university to host pre-service teachers. Mark was a member of LILL Cohort 3.

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Vicky Wang is currently working at the St. Paul’s Schools in Maryland as the Upper School Chinese language and culture teacher. She is also serving as the AAPI students’ affinity group mentor, International Club advisor, and is an active member on the DEI Committee. Ms. Wang was the VP of the Chinese Language Association of Secondary-Elementary Schools (CLASS) for the year 2021 and served on the Board of Directors of CLASS from 2016 to 2021. She is a founding member of Courageous Dialogues with Chinese Educators (CDCE), an initiative that aims to create affinity spaces for Chinese educators to grow and learn about how to provide a safe and equitable learning environment for our students. CDCE has held regular affinity meetings for Chinese educators since December 2020 and has collaborated with institutions including New York University and Middlebury College on providing teachers with DEI related professional development trainings. In addition, Ms. Wang is serving on the Diversity and Inclusion Committee and the Leadership Development Committee at ACTFL and was a member of LILL Cohort 3.

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