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Board Officers

Jen Sacklin
ORTESOL President

Jen Sacklin is ORTESOL's President. Her educational background is in Applied Linguistics, and she has an MA-TESOL from Portland State University. She is passionate about teaching adult ESL and literacy.

Jen has taught ESL in many institutions in Portland, including community-based programs and IEPs, as well as in public schools in Spain. She currently works at Lane Community College in Eugene. Jen is originally from Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, and you’ll often find her working in the summer as a National Park Service Ranger.

Alexis Terrell
ORTESOL Vice President

Alexis Terrell has more than a decade of experience as an ESL educator at universities in the U.S. and South Korea. She joined the ORTESOL Board in 2015 as the Higher Education SIG Chair.

Currently, Alexis works at Oregon State University as part of a “First In the World” grant designed to develop innovative strategies with the goal of improving academic outcomes and retention rates for first-generation and low-income students. Previously, she was an as associate program manager for INTO Oregon State University’s Undergraduate Pathway program.

She earned her master’s degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from the New School in New York and a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Teresa Cunningham Byrnes
ORTESOL Treasurer

Teresa currently teaches at the Portland English Language Academy and Portland State University’s International Special Programs. She is excited to be part of the ORTESOL board because of the importance of the organization to ongoing professional development. Being fairly new to the profession, she especially values the ORTESOL link to her peers and to research on successful teaching practices. 

Prior to earning her M.A. TESOL from Portland State University, Teresa managed her family's rental properties while raising her and her husband's son; worked in public involvement and civil rights for the Federal government in Washington, D.C. and in Portland; and taught secondary English and history. Her undergraduate degree is in history and her first master's degree is in American Studies. She feels that she has come full circle with her TESOL work! 

Kit Emens-Hesslink
ORTESOL Secretary

Kit is excited to be a part of the ORTESOL Board as Secretary. She holds an MS in Education (TESOL) from California State University, Fullerton and taught ESL for several years in California before moving to Oregon. She also had the pleasure of teaching in Beijing, China. Prior to entering the field of ESL, Kit worked as a research scientist in San Diego, California. 

Since moving to Oregon, Kit has been teaching at Portland State University’s Intensive English Language Program and International Special Programs. She now teaches at Clackamas Community College as well. She believes that teaching students from all over the world and sharing each other’s cultures and languages is one of the best benefits of being an ESL instructor. 

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