Board of Directors

Jennifer Meyer-Glenn


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Jennifer Mayer-Glenn ALAS-Utah BioJenny is the Director of University Neighborhood Partners (UNP) and Special Assistant to thePresident for Campus-Community Partnerships at the University of Utah. Previously, she servedas the Director of Family-SchoolCollaboration at the Salt Lake City School District (SLCSD)working to build authentic family-school and community partnerships focusing on the varied needs, hopes and dreams of underserved communities in SLC. She was an administrator atGlendale Middle School, Mountain View Elementary and Community Learning Center. She alsoserved as the Alternative Language Services Coordinator and language and culture coach (forteachers) for the SLCSD. Prior to that she was an ESL and Special Education teacher.


WhenJenny isn’t working toward social justice in an educational setting, she is doing communityadvocacy work with the Utah Coalition of La Raza (UCLR) and working to increase the number ofLatinx teachers and administrators with the Association of Latino Administrators andSuperintendents-Utah (ALAS-U). Jenny earned a fellowship with the National Institute of LatinoSchool Leaders from 2013-2015. She was invited toparticipate in the Harvard BusinessSchoolYoung American Leaders Programin 2016.She also served as the Chair and member of theSalt Lake City Human Rights Commission for 6 years during which time the commission wonawards from Equality Utah and the ACLU of Utah.

Dr. Bernardo Villar

President Elect

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Dr. Bernardo Villar served as an Elementary Administrator for the 18 years. He worked as a Jr. High and High School Assistant Principal, Counselor, and Foreign Language teacher. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Business, a Master’s degree in Educational Counseling and Educational Leadership, and he researched the perceptions of bullying in schools in the United States and Mexico to gain his doctoral degree. He has been in education for over 29 years and is currently serving as the Director of Educational Equity and Federal Programs for Davis School District.

Paula Espinoza

Past President

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Paula is currently an Improvement Advisor with Marshall Street Initiatives. Previously she was a School Support Technical Assistance Provider at the Utah Education Policy Center, where she supported schools and districts in school improvement. She was the Title I Coordinator, Assistant Principal at Escalante Elementary, and a Data Mentor/Coach for Salt Lake City School District,where her focus was improving systems to provide equitable services to all students. She began her teaching career at Pinnacle Canyon Academy, where she taught elementary, middle and high school. While at Pinnacle she also began her administrative career where she served as the Assessment Director, Technology Director, Business Manager/Human Resources, CTE Director and Child Nutrition Director, she also filled the role of high school Assistant Principal.Paula holds a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership and Policy from the University of Utah, a Bachelor’s of Science in Elementary Education from Utah State University, an Associate Degree and an Applied Associates Degree in Business Administration from the College of Eastern Utah. Paula is a founding member of ALAS-Utah and is currently serving in the Past President Role. Paula is a former President of the Utah Coalition for Educational Technology and a former President of the Carbon County Gifted and Talented Association.Paula is a big advocate for underserved populations in schools and the community at large.It is Paula’s goal to help students establish an excellent foundation so they can become strong active citizens.Paula also founded the Utah Pride Center People of Color and Allies program.

Anabel Richards


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Anabel Richards has devoted her life to children and to education. After earning a degree in elementary education, she put that expertise to work in her own home as she raised seven children. She also welcomed an additional nineteen foreign students, each of whom stayed with the family for the duration of their English language studies in Provo, Utah. Their determination to hone language skills earned her admiration. Eventually Anabel returned to school, earning an MBA degree in 2009. Thereafter she went to work for Imagine Learning,a language and literacy software company, where she currently serves as Chief of Staff.Anabel has served on the ALAS-U Executive Board since its inception in 2015. She is also a member of the Global Supply Chain Advisory Board at Brigham Young University

Patrick Garcia


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Patrick retired in October 2015 as the Associate Superintendent for the Salt Lake City School District. During his career, he taught elementary school for eight years and was an elementary school principal for 10 years. He also worked as an Area Director, Assistant to the superintendent and the executive director for Human Resources for the district. He participated in the development and implementation of three cultural exchanges for students between his schools here in Salt Lake City and Mexico. He established Parent Advisory Groups while a Principal. He oversaw the implementation of a well-known national reform initiative to help struggling schools. He worked with former Secretary of Education,Dr. Ted Bell, to implement an early high-tech instructional model to change instructional practices of teachers. Patrick has presented at state-wide conferences and frequently speaks to educators and community groups about educational issues. Patrick worked for Salt Lake District for over 33 years.In addition to his professional work, Patrick has been involved in the community. He currently serves as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Chicano Scholarship Fund associated with he University of Utah. He also serves as the treasurer on the Board of Directors for the Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents of Utah. He is a charter member of a local Knights of Columbus fraternal Organization And is a Lay Leader of Prayer for the Catholic Church. In the past, he served as the chair for the Catholic Diocese of Utah Committee for the Protection of Young People and Vulnerable Adults. He also served on the Board of Directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah and was appointed by the Utah Governor to serve on the Utah Board of Juvenile Justice. He was also a member of the Children’s Dance Theatre Board of Directors.Patrick received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education from the University of Utah and his Masters and Doctorate in Educational Administration also from the University of Utah.Patrick enjoys reading, hiking, running, and spending time with his family in his spare time

John Zurbuchen

At Large Director

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John currently services as an Assistant Superintendent for the Davis School Districti n Farmington, Utah. Prior to this assignment, John served as Federal Programs Director, principal, assistant-principal and teacher over his 23 years in Davis School District. As Federal Programs Director, John was instrumental in being an early adopter of Latinos in Action, bringing that program to 11 secondary schools.A 37-year educator, John taught secondary language arts and social studies, and has served as an assistant principal and as a principal in both rural and suburban settings. He has worked in education is Minnesota, Montana, Washington,Wisconsin and Utah.John received his BA in Secondary Education from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and his Masters in Educational Leadership from Montana State University

Adrienne Lobato

At Large Director

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Bio Coming Soon

Dr Verenice Gutierrez

At Large Director

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Dr. Verenice Gutiérrez is a nationally recognized leader on Bilingual Education, Special Education, diversity and inclusion, racial equity and educational leadership. Working directly with school and district administrators, Dr. Gutierrez leads a national dialogue on the intersectionality of bilingual and special education. Directing research-based workshops and training in bilingual education, special education and the intersectionality of the two, Dr. Gutierrez continues to pave the way for new teachers to benefit from her own experience and study. She has directed research-based workshops and training in bilingual education and special education program development & evaluation, instructional design for bilingual and special education programs, policy development and bilingual and special education program evaluation and assessment.

Dr. Verenice Gutiérrez is also a Racial Equity & Healing Fellow, W.K. Kellogg Foundation and a first generation Mexican-American born and raised in El Paso, TX. A graduate of the El Paso Independent School District Dr. Gutierrez was exposed early in her own childhood to the subtractive schooling experiences that considered her Spanish speaking abilities, blue collar background and immigrant parents reasons to label her an “at risk” student. Numerous marginalizing experiences throughout her K-16 educational experience led Dr. Gutierrez to a vocation and career as a bilingual educator.

Dr. Gutierrez received her B.A. and M.A. from the University of Texas, El Paso and her Ph.D. from New Mexico State University. She received postgraduate training in Women’s Leadership Development from Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government. Dr. Gutierrez’s spent the early years of her career teaching in rural southern New Mexico in a colonia. Dr. Gutierrez worked with 3rd graders during the day and taught their parents English in the evenings. She assisted the principal in bringing the first two-way Spanish dual language program to the Chaparral, NM colonia.

As an administrator Dr. Gutierrez has supervised middle school two way dual language programs in Spanish and Mandarin Chinese. She also built a two-way dual language program at the school where she was principal. Most recently Dr. Gutierrez has served as a consultant for K-12 school districts to support initiatives that address the educational gap that exists between second language learners and white, monolingual English-speaking peers.