LINC speakers and panelists to include Christine Ortiz, Stacy Hawthorne, DeLaina Tonks | MIT J-WEL

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LINC speakers and panelists to include Christine Ortiz, Stacy Hawthorne, DeLaina Tonks


Prof. Christine Ortiz, Stacy Hawthorne, and Dr. DeLaina Tonks are speaking or joining us for a panel at this year's LINC Conference! Have a look at their bios below. To see additional speakers, visit the LINC speakers page

To register for LINC, visit the registration page. Registration closes Friday, June 7th.

The MIT LINC Conference brings an international group of researchers and practitioners together to discuss how learning science, pedagogical approaches, and digital learning can provide quality pK-12, higher education, and workplace learning at scale, particularly in developing nations.


Speaker Bios

Christine Ortiz

Christine Ortiz

Morris Cohen Professor of Materials Science and Engineering

Christine Ortiz is the (tenured and chaired) Morris Cohen Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Ortiz is the founder of a new nonprofit postsecondary educational institution, Station1, that is a new model of higher education based on inclusion and equity, learning through frontier inquiry and research, and the integration of science and technology with societal perspective and impact.  Ortiz served as the Dean for Graduate Education at MIT between 2010 and 2016, supporting approximately 7,000 graduate students from 100+ countries.

With over 25 years of experience in higher education, Dr. Ortiz has led cross-institutional initiatives in global education, technology-enabled learning, new methods of learning assessment, fostering diversity and inclusion and postsecondary financial models. Ortiz has served on over 50 MIT departmental and Institute committees and working groups. Ortiz is a distinguished scientist and engineer with over 175 scholarly publications, has supervised the research projects of more than 80 students from 10 different academic disciplines, and received 30 national and international honors, including the Presidential Early Career Award in Science and Engineering which was awarded to her at the White House by President George W. Bush. Ortiz serves on numerous boards, including as a regional accreditation commissioner for the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education, New England Association of Schools and Colleges.


Stacy Hawthorne

Stacy Hawthorne

Davidson Academy
Director of Online Learning

As the Director of Online Learning, Stacy Hawthorne led the design of Davidson Academy Online programs, which now include a la carte courses and a full-time online high school for profoundly gifted students living anywhere in the U.S. Hawthorne was awarded a 2018 Blackboard Catalyst Award in the Teaching and Learning category for the unique and personalized model of online education used at the Davidson Academy.

Hawthorne has extensive experience as an educational strategist having implemented blended and online learning programs in public, parochial and independent schools in California, Illinois, New Jersey, Texas, Nevada, Ohio, Virginia and Georgia. Mrs. Hawthorne began her educational consulting career as a member of Evergreen Education Group. She has keynoted at blended and online learning events across the US, including delivering an opening Ignite session in Atlanta in 2014.

Before beginning her research and consulting career, Mrs. Hawthorne was a technology coordinator for a public school district in Ohio. She also has several years of teaching experience in gifted education.

Hawthorne is currently a doctoral candidate at Boise State University. She is working on her dissertation in the field of online learning with an emphasis in gifted education. She holds an M.Ed. in Educational Administration from Ashland University and a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) from the University of Georgia. She has been a licensed educator and administrator in Ohio and Oregon and currently holds licenses in mathematics, social studies, gifted and talented, and school administration in Nevada.


DeLaina Tonks

DeLaina Tonks

Mountain Heights Academy

DeLaina Tonks has been involved in education since 1991. Prior to coming to Mountain Heights Academy, DeLaina taught high school French and Spanish and worked as an instructional designer in Upper Arlington, Ohio. She is a 2014 “Best of State – Principal” winner and was named as one of Utah Business’s “30 Women to Watch.” She holds a PhD in Instructional Psychology and Technology at Brigham Young University, her initial alma mater, where she also earned a BA in French and Spanish Teaching. She also has a Master of Arts from Ohio State University.

Mountain Heights Academy is an online public charter school serving students in 7-12 grades and the first secondary school in the world to create, implement, and release an OER curriculum schoolwide. Since its inaugural year in 2009, Mountain Heights Academy faculty and administrators have released over 100 courses under Creative Commons licensing, and hundreds of standards-aligned artifacts in OER Commons. Teachers are systematically hired and trained in the creation, curation, licensing, and implementation of OER through the OER Passport, an online course designed to provide in-depth hands-on professional development. As a final step, seasoned teachers invite students to co-create OER to enhance course lessons as needed.