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Meet the Mathematics Institute Team

Working Together to Improve Math Education

Why do we do it? The reason is simple: like you, our focus is on the future of today’s children. How can we best equip our students to flourish in a world that is rapidly changing? The answer most often overlooked is the importance of teaching mathematics.

Knowledge of mathematics provides a pathway to success in the data-driven worlds of finance, statistics, science, technology, and engineering, but that is not all. Mathematics is about more than numbers. Studying math teaches students how to analyze information, think critically, make informed decisions, persevere, interpret information, problem solve, discover patterns, envision solutions, make connections, reason abstractly, reason quantitatively, learn from mistakes, and be precise. These habits of mind will help them, as adults, to adapt and succeed in an ever-changing and unpredictable world.

Meet Our Administrative Team

Kathryn Leverenz, President
Kathryn Leverenz

As the daughter of two educators, Kathryn strongly believes that quality teachers change students’ lives. Kathryn loved math as a child, but quickly became discouraged when it was no longer easy for her in high school. She was drawn to the Mathematics Institute of Wisconsin by her desire to prevent kids from having a similar experience to hers, or worse yet, feeling inadequate when they struggle. It is her hope that participants in MIW programming embrace the importance of productive struggle as a key to success in the math classroom.

Kathryn joined the Math Institute in 2016 with aspirations of improving how society thinks about math and how it is taught.

Learn more about Kathryn...

Kathryn’s background is rooted in philanthropy. She has over 20 years experience in the nonprofit sector. Prior to joining MIW, she spent five years as President and CEO of the Waukesha County Community Foundation. Kathryn serves on the Board of Directors for Wisconsin Philanthropy Network and is currently the Board Chair. 

Kathryn received her M.S. in Organizational Leadership and Administration from Concordia University in 2019 and her B.A. in French from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire in 1997.

Sherry Bucholtz, Operations Coordinator
Sherry Bucholtz
Operations Coordinator

Sherry has dedicated the last twenty years to serving the nonprofit sector by providing administrative support in health care and social services. In 2015, Sherry transitioned into education because she found the mission of the Math Institute compelling. She welcomed the opportunity to improve the math experiences of the next generation, and loves how Math Institute programming supports teachers and focuses on increasing teacher confidence.

Learn more about Sherry...

Sherry has thirty five years of business, operations, and administrative experience. She started her career with RTE, which became Cooper Power Systems. After ten years there, Sherry moved to the nonprofit world. She spent six years with Stillwaters Cancer Support Services and eleven years working at Waukesha Memorial Hospital in clinical cancer research.

Meet Our Mathematics Specialists

Sara Brown, Secondary Mathematics Specialist
Sara Brown
Secondary Mathematics Specialist

Drawn to mathematics at a young age, Sara began math tutoring for elementary students when she was still in middle school. Experiencing the ‘aha’ moment when a student develops conceptual understanding and gains confidence in math is what inspired Sara to pursue teaching, and it continues to influence her work today. While traditional lecture-style teaching was accessible to her as a learner, Sara recognizes this style of instruction is limiting for many students. She strives to empower teachers to transform their instruction to create classrooms in which there are opportunities for all students to be successful in mathematics. Sara’s greatest passion is sharing her love of statistics and helping learners of all ages discover the importance of statistics and data literacy.

Learn more about Sara...

Sara is certified by Illustrative Mathematics to deliver professional learning for their open source middle school and high school curriculum. She has completed Cognitive Coaching-Foundation and Adaptive Schools-Foundation courses. Sara serves as a director for the Wisconsin Chapter of the American Statistical Association.  

Prior to joining the Mathematics Institute in 2014, she spent 15 years in rural, urban, and suburban high schools as a classroom teacher, department leader, and interventionist. Sara earned her National Board Teaching Certification in 2012. She holds a B.S. in Secondary Mathematics Education from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a M.S. in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Mathematics Leadership from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.  

Sara tweets @mathinst_Sara

Eric Kanters, K-8 Mathematics Specialist
Eric Kanters
K-8 Mathematics Specialist

Eric strongly believes that mathematics teaching should not only focus on developing math skills and understandings, but also on empowering students to see themselves as doers and thinkers of mathematics. As a former classroom teacher and instructional coach, he realizes the impact high-quality, embedded professional learning has on student learning. Eric first began his journey with the Math Institute of Wisconsin in 2015 as a consultant and then was hired a year later as a full-time employee. Eric finds working with adult learners to be equally as fulfilling and engaging as working with students, and is excited to continue to empower educators around transforming their math instruction.

Learn more about Eric...

In his current role, Eric develops and provides professional learning opportunities for K-8 teachers. He is certified by Illustrative Mathematics to deliver professional learning for their open-source middle school curriculum as well their K-5 curriculum that will be available to the public in summer of 2021.  Prior to joining the Math Institute, Eric spent thirteen years as a classroom teacher at the elementary level and three years as a Math/Instructional Coach in the Greenfield School District. He also worked as a summer school principal for two years. 

Eric holds a B.S. in Elementary/Middle Education from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and a M.S. in Educational Leadership from Cardinal Stritch University.

Sonja Twedt
K-12 Mathematics Specialist

Sonja is passionate about helping empower math educators to create engaging, active, and equitable mathematical classroom communities where students believe in their mathematical abilities and are empowered to be the authors of their own learning. Sonja was fortunate to have a dad who always instilled in her the belief that she was a “math person,” even when math was a challenge. This has inspired her throughout her career to be a tireless advocate for the idea that ALL students are mathematicians. Before joining the Math Institute team, Sonja spent 19 years in public education as a middle school mathematics teacher, math interventionist, and math instructional coach.

Learn more about Sonja...

Sonja earned her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Education from Luther College in Decorah, IA. She holds a Masters of Education in Professional Development from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse, and has her Instructional Coaching Certification from the University of Wisconsin Madison. She is trained in the fundamentals of Adaptive Schools, is a certified New Teacher Mentor, is trained in Add+Vantage Math Recovery Course 1, 2, and Fractions, and is a certified trainer for Illustrative Mathematics. She lives in Stoughton, WI with her husband, two children, and their beagle.

Meet Our Mathematics Consultants

Crystal Bullis
Mathematics Consultant

Crystal spent eight years as a mathematics classroom teacher at the elementary and middle school level. Crystal holds a Bachelors in Elementary/Middle Education from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a Masters degree in Instruction and Technology from Cardinal Stritch University. She lives in Mequon with her husband Tim and their two kids, Camden and Elliana.

Kristine Hineman
Mathematics Consultant

Kristine Hineman began her career in education over 29 years ago as a high school mathematics teacher in Utica Community Schools, MI where she also held the leadership role of system-wide chairperson. After 21 years in the classroom, she transitioned to a K–12 mathematics education consultant for the Macomb Intermediate School District serving 226 public schools. She develops and facilitates professional learning for mathematics educators and administrators in any capacity that advances STEM education at local, county, and state levels. She is passionate about uniting teachers vertically, across grade levels and across all content areas. Her goal is to provide long-term and ongoing change in classroom instructional strategies that raises student achievement. During her time away from education, she is passionate about spending time with family and friends.

Learn more about Kristine...

Kristine is certified by Illustrative Mathematics to deliver professional learning for their open source middle school and high school curriculum.

Paige Richards, Build Capacity Consulting LLC
Mathematics Coaching Consultant

Paige is an educational consultant and coach with over 25 years of experience in education and leadership. Her work focuses on supporting schools and districts to strengthen skills and systems in order to benefit students. She believes students deserve to have a joyful and intellectually engaging school experience: one that builds on each and every student’s strengths. With this in mind, Paige intentionally works to build capacity in teachers, administrators, and other education stakeholders. 

Learn more about Paige...

Paige served as chair of the Professional Development Services Committee for the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) between 2019 and 2022. She also served as an elected board member of Wisconsin Mathematics Council (WMC) between 2010 and 2016. Paige is a Training Associate for Thinking Collaborative in Cognitive Coaching.

Lisa Schuenke
Mathematics Consultant

Lisa’s passion for math began when she taught fourth grade in the School District of Fort Atkinson. She attended a math workshop to figure out how to best meet the needs of all her students and was pleasantly surprised to find herself immersed in mathematics! From there she specialized in fourth grade math and went on to become a Math Interventionist for the district, serving in the role for 9 years. Lisa has received training in Add+Vantage Math Recovery Courses 1 and 2 as well as Fractions, giving her tools to help close gaps for struggling math learners. When the district began looking for a new math program, Lisa became involved in the selection of Illustrative Mathematics, a problem-based curriculum that invites all students into the learning. She became passionate about this program. So much so that when she decided to retire from her teaching career at the end of the 2021-22 school year, she applied to be a certified IM facilitator. Lisa is certified by Illustrative Mathematics to deliver professional learning for their K-5 curriculum.

Learn more about Lisa...

Lisa holds a B.S. in Elementary Education (grades 1-9) from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. She is married to Glenn and they have one son, Charlie, and a dog, Rosey.

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