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Meet the OET Team

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Bernadette Adams

Artificial Intelligence, Emerging Technologies and Research and Development Lead
Former White House Leadership Fellow

Bernadette leads projects to provide educators with guidance on: the impact of AI on teaching and learning; new approaches for evaluating the effectiveness of digital learning; the role of online communities of practice and social networks in supporting educators; exemplary strategies for district leaders to design, fund, acquire, and maintain technology infrastructure; and key considerations for successfully implementing personalized and competency-based learning strategies for both students and teachers. Bernadette served as a technical consultant and subject-matter expert to the National Science Foundation, 18F, and the Performance Improvement Council on projects to support innovation, entrepreneurship, and STEM education across government as a White House Leadership Fellow.  Prior to joining OET, Bernadette worked to advance the use of technology for workforce development at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and the National Partnership for Reinventing Government, and served as a consultant to design an innovative technology-based science curriculum for the Atlanta Public School District. Bernadette holds a Master’s in Education from the University of California at Berkeley and a B.S. in Biochemistry from the University of California at San Diego. She is also a former high school chemistry teacher.

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Kevin Johnstun

Student Privacy and Accessibility Lead

Kevin leads work on accessibility and assistive technology. He has also collaborated with offices across the Department on programs related to national educational technology policy, teacher professional development, and open educational resources. Kevin holds a M.S. in Instructional Psychology and Technology and a B.A. in Philosophy from Brigham Young University. There he worked on projects related to cultural interactions between students and teachers and efforts to create collaborative spaces where students and teachers learn together. He also was a middle school English language arts teacher.

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Sara Trettin

Broadband, Open Education, and Libraries Lead

Sara leads the broadband and K-12 open education work for the Department, directs digital engagement for the Office of Educational Technology and leads the office’s efforts surrounding libraries and librarians. Sara joined the Department as a Presidential Management Fellow in 2014. While on rotation to the State Department, Sara supported the ECA Collaboratory’s work on open education, open government, and education diplomacy. Prior to joining the Department, she worked as a Learning Services Librarian and served as Teacher in Residence at the Library of Congress. A former teacher, Sara holds a B.A. from Clemson University, a graduate certificate from Duke University, and a Master’s in Library Science from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Sara enjoys making salsa, digging in her backyard, and packing a tent when she travels.

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OET Fellows

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Sean Caufield

Education Pioneers Fellow

Sean serves as an Education Program Specialist and Education Pioneers Fellow within the Office of Educational Technology where he supports the Department’s efforts in communications, research, and policy framework development. After earning his B.A. in History and Religious Studies from the University of Pittsburgh he served three terms with AmeriCorps. He spent his first term working with elementary school students on reading and comprehension skills. The other two terms of service were with a college access program where he worked with a cohort of students for two years to prepare them for college. His time with AmeriCorps made him realize his passion for education and using data, program evaluation, and policy analysis to help improve education outcomes. Sean earned his M.S. in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University. Outside of the office he can be found playing with his dog, Jacob.

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Michael Ham

Education Pioneers Fellow

Serving as an Education Program Specialist and Education Pioneers Impact Fellow, Michael supports research and project management on the office’s professional development, student data privacy, and digital learning work. A proud Tar Heel, Michael graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Political Science. At UNC he discovered his passion for equity through his work with the Carolina Union’s Office of Student Life and Leadership, where he developed and executed equity-driven leadership development programs for undergraduate students. In the fall of 2017 Michael joined Teach For America in Jacksonville, Florida, where he taught sixth grade math. In three years, Michael developed into an instructional leader, mentor, and coach, and in 2020 was recognized as a Top-Five Finalist for Teacher of the Year for Duval County Public Schools – the nation’s twentieth largest school district. He is especially interested in leveraging technology to recruit, maintain, and empower high-quality teachers. Further, he is passionate about fostering collaboration between school and district leadership, nonprofit partners, community members, policy makers, and the private sector to affect sustainable and meaningful change for the most marginalized students. A life-long swimmer, Michael regularly competes in marathon-distance (5+ miles) open water swims up and down the East Coast.

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Kristina Gunnarsdottir

Education Pioneers Fellow

A graduate of the New York City public school system, Kristína Moss Gudrún Gunnarsdóttir is committed to access and equity in education for all learners. Kristína has eight years of experience working in education as a counselor, teacher, researcher, and senior college administrator. Prior to coming to the Department she worked as a Research Associate at the Harvard Graduate School of Education where she also completed an interdisciplinary graduate degree focused on systems, leadership, and organizational change. Before that she served a two-year term as Interim Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid at Hampshire College. Kristína’s interest in education policy began in 2016 while serving as a Fulbright Fellow at a public teacher training college in Mexico City. Now, as an Education Pioneers Impact Fellow at the Department, Kristína works on higher education innovation initiatives. She is particularly interested in self-sovereign identity, individualized learning pathways, skills and competency-based assessment, and digital learning records. She is also passionate about learner-centered reform in college admissions and financial aid, and how institutional research tools like appreciative inquiry can improve learner success.

When not at work, Kristína can be found walking in the woods, experimenting in the kitchen, or listening to Harry Belafonte.


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