Suffolk teacher named NCSS president

Published 10:44 pm Tuesday, July 3, 2018

National Council for the Social Studies recently announced that India S. Meissel, a social studies department chair and teacher at Lakeland High School in Suffolk, began a one-year term as president of the NCSS Board of Directors on July 1, 2018. Tina L. Heafner, a professor at the University of North Carolina in Charlotte, N.C., began a one-year term as president-elect, and is in line to be president beginning in July 2019.

As president, Meissel brings more than 30 years of classroom and leadership experience in the social studies. In addition to teaching history at the secondary and college levels, she serves as a Master Teacher Ambassador for Colonial Williamsburg, is a sought-after presenter and writer, and has consulted for numerous organizations, including the Virginia Department of Education. Within the NCSS community, she has served in numerous leadership roles, including terms on the NCSS Board of Directors, as chair of the Rho Kappa National Social Studies Honor Society Advisory Board, and on the board of the Virginia Council for the Social Studies.


“It is my honor to be able to lead the NCSS Board as we build for the future of social studies,” Meissel said. “I am grateful for the efforts of those board members whose terms just ended as they built a solid foundation for NCSS growth. The passion and enthusiasm of our new board members combined with the experience of our veterans will only help to continue to move NCSS forward. Exciting things are taking place at NCSS, and I look forward to sharing them with friends old and new.”

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Also beginning their terms are Stefanie R. Wager, a social studies consultant at the Iowa Department of Education in Des Moines, Iowa, as vice-president, in line to be president beginning in July 2020; and Terry L. Cherry, a social studies consultant in Mesquite, Texas, as past president.

Joining the Board of Directors for their first terms are Joseph Feinberg, associate professor of social studies education at Georgia State University in Atlanta, Ga.; Wesley Hedgepeth, teacher at Collegiate School in Richmond; Tracy Middleton, teacher at Hidden Valley Middle School in Escondido, Calif.; and Chanda Robinson, secondary social studies consultant for Richland County School District One in Columbia, S.C. 2018 NCSS House of Delegates Steering Committee Chair Kristin Ayala, a teacher and coordinator at Fox Ridge Middle School, Aurora, Colo., will serve a one-year term as an ex-officio member of the board.

“I am excited to partner with our new president and board members, and our entire governance team and staff, to continue building upon the bold strategic priorities that NCSS has established for our organization and, in turn, our social studies profession,” said NCSS Executive Director Lawrence M. Paska.