Meet Our Staff

Kevin Cessna-Buscemi - Director

cessna2011KEVIN CESSNA-BUSCEMI is the Director of the National Spanish Examinations. Growing up in an Italian-American family in culturally and linguistically diverse Gary, Indiana, he attributes his early interest in modern languages and cultures to his Sicilian grandfather who inspired him to learn Italian and his Uruguayan godmother who motivated him to learn Spanish. Kevin holds a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration from Indiana University and a Master's Degree from Purdue University with Spanish coursework from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. He has authored several articles and conducted many seminars of language teaching, learning and testing. After 31 years of teaching high school Spanish and serving as the Director for Curriculum Development and Assessment, Kevin now holds the position of Adjunct Professor of Spanish at Purdue University Northwest and serves as a curriculum consultant for school districts throughout the United States.

 

Kara Majchrowicz - Director of Test Administration

Kara1KARA MAJCHROWICZ joined the NSE staff in October 2009 and serves as the Director of Test Administration. She has a Bachelor's Degree in Accounting from Purdue University. She has enjoyed the past ten years raising her two children. Before beginning her family, Kara held business positions for Arch Communications and Welsh Oil. Her business background has provided an excellent base for her various responsibilities with the NSE.

 

Lesli Mikenas - Public Relations / Tech. Support

mikenasLESLI MIKENAS joined the NSE staff in October 2011 and is the Public Relations Specialist, Technical Services Support Coordinator, and the Indiana Chapter Coordinator. Lesli is a graduate of Purdue University Northwest with a degree in Public Relations. Prior to joining NSE, she was employed by Porter County Government, ran a local franchise pizza company, and was self-employed in the residential/commercial cleaning services business. The most important aspect of her life is family, her husband and two daughters.

 

Melanie Flick- Technical Services Support Specialist

Janet pic

Melanie Flick joined the NSE staff in December 2015 and is the Technical Services Support Specialist and Member Outreach Coordinator. She graduated from Purdue University Northwest with a bachelor's degree in Finance. After graduation, Melanie worked in the banking industry for 7 years. She was also employed as the office manager for a locally owned company before taking time off to raise her family.

 

Bob Campuzano

Robert1

BOB CAMPUZANO serves the NSE as Board Member, Director of the Global Citizen Scholarships and NSE Coordinator for the State of Maryland. Additionally, he has served the AATSP as past president of the Maryland Chapter. A graduate of the Catholic University of America with a B.A. in Spanish and Religious Education, Bob has over 33 years Spanish teaching experience and currently teaches Upper School Spanish at Severn School in Severna Park, MD. In 1998, he received the University of Maryland Certificate of Teaching Excellence and was awarded the Faculty Chair in 2007. He believes that “when one educates the mind and enlightens the spirit, one has truly given life to the future.”

 

Robert Céspedes

ROBERT CÉSPEDES has served as a writer for the NSE and has been a language teacher for many years. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Science in Secondary Education with an emphasis in Spanish from Indiana University. He has created and taught a Latin American cultural studies class designed for the middle school level. He has taught at both La Universidad de Piura and El Instituto Cultural Peruano-Norteamericano in Piura, Peru. Currently, he is a Spanish teacher in the International Baccalaureate program and department chair of the World Languages Department at Valparaiso High School in Valparaiso, IN.

 

Teresa Corgan Henry

2015 TerriTERRI HENRY serves the NSE as Board Member and as a writer for the National Spanish Examinations. Terri holds both a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in Spanish from Indiana State University. In 2016, she retired from teaching Spanish at Ramapo High School in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey and at William Paterson University in Wayne, New Jersey.

 

Patricia Donahue

2017 PatPATRICIA DONAHUE has been the coordinator of the National Spanish Exam in Massachusetts for 30+ years and currently serves as a member of the NSE Board. She holds degrees from Regis College, Salem State University and Harvard with additional studies at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. In addition to having taught at both the secondary and university levels, Patricia has developed curricular units and taught many workshops after having been awarded numerous scholarships and grants to study in Spain, Puerto Rico, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic. Pat has a particular interest in the indigenous cultures of Mexico and Peru and Jewish and Moslem Influence in Spain Before and After 1492. Presently she teaches Medical Spanish as an adjunct faculty member at Regis College and at several regional family health clinics.

María Luisa García-Verdugo

Marisa1MARIA LUISA GARCIA-VERDUGO (MARISA) is a native of Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain. She has been a Spanish-language reviewer of the National Spanish Examinations since 2010. Marisa holds a B.A. in education from the Universidad de Extremadura in Cáceres, Spain; a M.A. from Michigan State University at East Lansing in Hispanic Literature and Linguistics; and a Ph.D. in Hispanic Studies from the State University of New York at Albany. Marisa currently serves as the Head of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at Purdue University Northwest.

 

Jamise Kafoure

Jamise 2016JAMISE KAFOURE serves the NSE as Board Member, Director of the Junior Travel Awards and Senior Scholarship Programs. She is from Indianapolis, Indiana. Jamise holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Spanish and French and a Master's Degree in Education from Indiana State University and a Master's Degree in Counseling Education from Butler University. She taught Spanish and French for several years in the Indianapolis Public Schools and was a Senior Lecturer in Spanish at Butler University where she initiated and directed the Guadalajara Study Tour in Mexico for Spanish students. Retired from public teaching in 2012, Jamise currently works as a bilingual counselor and is an Anger Management facilitator for Families First in Indianapolis. Her duties include counseling clients, couples, families, and victims of domestic violence.

 

Salvatore Muffoletto

smuffoletto3SALVATORE MUFFOLETTO joined the NSE team in 2012 and serves as an exam reviewer, writer and marketing specialist. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish Education from Indiana University. Sal has studied and traveled throughout Spain. He grew up in a bilingual household speaking both Italian and English. He attributes his desire to learn and work with the Spanish language and culture to his high school Spanish teacher and his Argentine Godparents. He is currently teaching high school Spanish at Valparaiso High School in Valparaiso, Indiana. In 2011, the Indiana Chapter of The American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese recognized Sal as being a Rising Star Teacher.

 

Maritza Sloan

lzinke1 Maritza Sloan She has been teaching Spanish since 1993 with a major focus on AP Spanish Language and Culture and AP Spanish Literature and Culture. She currently teaches at Ladue Horton Watkins High School in Saint Louis, Missouri. Prior to that, she taught for 15 years at Plano West Senior High School in Plano, Texas where she developed the AP Spanish language and AP Spanish Literature Curriculum for the Plano ISD district. Maritza has a B.A. degree in Spanish from Oklahoma State University and a M.A. degree in Education from Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota. In addition to her degrees, she has studied Spanish literature at the University of Salamanca and University of Santiago de Compostela. Maritza is an AP Language and Culture and AP Spanish Literature and Culture consultant for College Board. She has presented many AP Language and AP Literature workshops and sessions at a variety of state, regional and national conferences. In 2012 Maritza was named Texas Foreign Language of the year. Maritza currently lives in Saint Louis, MO with her husband and daughter and travels to Costa Rica, her home country, as often as she can to visit her family and friends.

 

Ken Stewart

ken1KEN STEWART has served as a writer for the National Spanish Examinations and currently teaches Spanish at Chapel Hill High School in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Having studied in Seville and Salamanca, Spain, he is a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill with degrees in International Studies and Spanish. In addition to his work for NSE, Ken has been the Spanish content editor for AP Central, an AP reader, table leader, and a College Board national consultant. He is the author of The Golden Age Art of Spain, Spanish Flip-O-Matic Vocabulary and Lazarillo de Tormes: A Kaplan Spanish Language Vocabulary-building novel. Ken has traveled extensively throughout Europe and Latin America. He has received many awards for his contribution to the profession: Teacher of the Year by the North Carolina Chapter of the AATSP, the Central North Carolina Teacher of the Year by the State of NC, Foreign Language Teacher of the Year by FLANC, Regional Teacher of the Year by SCOLT (Southern Conference on Language Teaching), and ACTFL National Foreign Language Teacher of Year.

 

Stana Sukunda

stana1STANA SUKUNDA serves the NSE as a consultant on various test development and scholarship committees. From 2006-2015, Stana served as the Director of Test Administration for the NSE. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts from Wayne State University. Before her retirement in May 2009, Stana taught Hispanic Film, Spanish Peninsular Literature, and Introduction to Translation courses and classes at all levels of Spanish language at the University of Michigan-Dearborn. In addition to her teaching duties, Stana also coordinated the Spanish area's Summer Program in Spanish at the Institute of International Studies in Valencia, Spain. Stana served as one of the faculty advisors for students enrolled in the College of Arts, Sciences, and Literatures.

 

Mirtha Toledo

MIRTHA TOLEDO has served as one of the primary reviewers and editors of the NSE since 2001. She was born in Cuba, and came to the U.S. in 1960. In Cuba, Mirtha studied at Villanova University where she obtained her doctorate degree of Law. In the States, she obtained her B.A. and Master's degrees from Indiana State University. She worked on her PhD at Indiana University with a major in Peninsular Literature and a minor in Latin American History. In 1964, she started teaching at Valparaiso University in Indiana. After 36 years of teaching, she retired in 2000 with the title Professor Emerita. She has been very active in AATSP, serving as a member of the Executive Council for three years and working on several committees.

 

Tanya Vernaza Joseforsky

Tanya Vernaza Joseforsky is a native of Cali, Colombia and serves as a writer of the NSE. Tanya moved to the United States with her family when she was 9 years old and was enrolled in school not understanding the English language. Six months later, at the end of that school year, she was proficient in English. Tanya holds a B.A. in English from James Madison University and an M.A. in Counseling from the University of Maryland. Tanya currently serves as the Director of Social Services for LifeSTEPs a Life Skills Training & Educational Program in California. Tanya agrees with Edmund De Waal that “With languages, you are at home anywhere.”