Keynote Speaker Biographies

Dr. Marieta Simeonova Pissarro Director, English Language Center, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Dr. Marieta Simeonova-Pissarro is the ESL Director at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. She holds an MA in English Language Philology from the University of Veliko Turnovo, Bulgaria and a doctorate in Literacy/TESOL from the University of Cincinnati, OH. Marieta has earned the prestigious ELT Leadership Management Certificate from the TESOL International Association (TESOL National Convention, Toronto, 2015) and the Quality Matters: Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) Certification. Dr. Simeonova-Pissarro has served as a member of the National Screening Committee for the English Teaching Assistantship Program (ETA) Awards from 2016-2019, offered by Fulbright and the Institute for International Education in New York City. Marieta speaks Bulgarian, Russian, Serbo-Croat and has taken college classes in German, French, and Russian. Marieta values life-long learning and on-going professional development in English as a Second Language, Program Administration, and Computer Assisted Language Learning. Marieta is an active member of the International Teachers of English as a Second Language (TESOL) Association. With over 19 years of combined EFL/ESL experience in various capacities: ESL teacher educator, ESL assistant professor, and ESL director/administrator, Dr. Simeonova-Pissarro has worked for the University of Cincinnati's TESOL Endorsement Program and the Post-secondary Literacy Program; University of Concordia, Chicago's ESL Department, Northern Kentucky University's American Language and Culture Program (AELP); Morehead State University, Kentucky, and University of Nevada, Las Vegas. In addition to designing and implementing two Intensive English Programs in two different universities, Marieta has also designed curricula for short-term ESL summer camps at Morehead State University and University of Nevada, Las Vegas; and has substantial experience in program administration, budget management, web design, and social media program promotion. Her most recent publications are in the area of Teacher Talk and Teacher Attitudes published in the very first TESOL Encyclopedia in the United States; and a book review in the area of English for Specific Purposes - Teaching English for Tourism: Bridging Research and Praxis edited by Michael Ennis and Gina Petrie.

Professor Leon Rubin Dean, Faculty of Performing Arts, Lasalle College of the Arts, Singapore

Professor Leon Rubin has recently joined LASALLE, coming from East 15 Acting School, the internationally distinguished conservatoire in London, the UK where he was Director of the school for 13 years. He transformed E15 from a small, UK focused institution into an international powerhouse with staff and students from across the globe. In his final year as Director, the school was top of all three major league tables in the UK: The Times and Sunday Times Good University guide, The Guardian University league table and the National Student Survey (NSS). He began his career as Assistant Director at the Royal Shakespeare Company and was soon after the Associate Director at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin. Before joining E15, he was Head of Performing Arts at Middlesex University in the UK and former Artistic Director of three prominent UK theatre companies: Bristol Old Vic, Watford Palace Theatre and Lyric Theatre, Belfast. He has also directed theatre productions for key companies in many parts of the world, including Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong, the USA, Canada, Bali, Chile, Scotland, Ireland, the UK and other countries. He directed a long-standing project in Phuket, Thailand, Phuket Fantasea, that (until its temporary suspension due to COVID-19) has been running for over 20 years. He has a passion for creating international partnerships, has received honours for his teaching from Romania and Russia, and has been a Visiting Professor in Japan, Hong Kong, China, South Korea and other countries. He also works as a theatre consultant to various organisations in the UK and overseas and has worked on a project for the former king of Thailand.

Prof. Dr. Djohan Director of Graduate Program ISI Yogyakarta, Indonesia Institute of the Arts, Yogyakarta

Prof. Dr. Djohan is a Professor at the Faculty of Performing Arts, Indonesian Institute of the Arts (ISI) Yogyakarta. He actively teaches at the Department of Music Presentation, Masters and Doctoral Programs at ISI Yogyakarta, Masters Program at the Faculty of Psychology, Satya Wacana Christian University, Masters Program in the Study of Performing Arts and Fine Arts, Gadjah Mada University, and Masters Program in Art Education, Yogyakarta State University. In addition to serving as the Postgraduate Director of ISI Yogyakarta, Prof. Dr. Djohan is also a researcher, reviewer, and speaker in the Asia Pacific region. In addition, he is also active as a member of the Javanese Karawitan Society (MASKARJA) and the Basic Education Dynamics Foundation (DED), as well as a researcher at Brain Science and Engineering Innovation Research, Bangkok. Several books with the theme of psychology and music have been written by him.

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