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About: Meet Our Leaders

Brian Timmerman

Brian TimmermanDirector of the Writing Center

Brian joined the writing center in 2007 and has served as director since 2011. He received his BA at the University of Minnesota, Morris and his MA in English literature at the University of St. Thomas. When he has the opportunity to work with students, he enjoys focusing on global writing issues: thesis development, paraphrasing, transitions, etc.

Amber Cook

Amber CookAssociate Director of Faculty Outreach and Support
Contributing Faculty in CAEX

Before joining Walden’s writing center in 2005, Amber served as managing editor of Music Research Forum, taught courses at the community college level, and worked in the writing center of a military university. She joined Walden as a writing tutor and has presented at many residencies and webinars throughout her tenure. In her current role as Associate Director of Faculty Outreach and Support, her main focus is supporting faculty in their work with student writers. She ensures that course instructors have the necessary resources and strategies to assist their students, providing training and development opportunities online and at faculty meetings. Amber holds a bachelor's degree in music with an English minor from Vanderbilt University and a master's degree in musicology from the University of Cincinnati.

Anne Shiell

Anne ShiellManager of Student and Faculty Webinars
Contributing Faculty in CAEX

Anne Shiell is the manager of student and faculty webinars in the Walden University Writing Center. She is also a contributing faculty member for student support courses in Walden’s Academic Skills Center. Previously, she was a writing instructor,  the coordinator of social media, and manager of writing instructional services in the center. Anne holds a BA in English from St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN, and an MA in English from the University of Minnesota Duluth, where she taught composition courses as a faculty member in the Department of Writing Studies.

Beth Nastachowski

Beth NastachowskiAssociate Director of the Office of Writing Instruction
Contributing Faculty in CAEX

Beth earned a BA in English Literature from Viterbo University and an MA in English Literature from the University of St. Thomas. Beth coordinates the Writing Center’s student webinars and self-paced modules, along with teaching at residencies and cohosting the Writing Center’s podcast. She is also a contributing faculty member for Walden’s CAEX support courses. She is passionate about helping writers clearly communicate their ideas and vision for social change to readers.

Jes Philbrook

Jes PhilbrookManager of Writing Assessment

Jes Philbrook joined the Walden Writing Center in 2015 after tutoring and teaching English and writing for 10 years at multiple institutions in Minnesota and Missouri. Jes started at Walden as a writing instructor and now manages the doctoral writing assessment and teaches at residencies. She holds a BA in English from Bemidji State University and an MA in English from the University of Minnesota Duluth, and she completed doctoral coursework in English at the University of Missouri Columbia. Jes is passionate about helping students develop their writing voices and scholarly writing skills so that they can use writing to achieve their personal, professional, and social change goals.

Ellen Zamarripa

Ellen ZamarripaManager of Residencies

Ellen joined the Walden Writing Center in the summer of 2014 as a writing instructor after completing a BA in English Literature from the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire, and an MA in English Studies from Minnesota State University, Mankato. During her educational career, Ellen tutored in multicultural centers, academic skills centers, and continues to teach writing to first-year college students. She is currently a doctoral candidate at a Minnesota university and plans to focus her dissertation topic on writing center pedagogy.

Learn more about Ellen in our blog spotlight interview.

Kelly Chermack

Kelly ChermackManager of Editing Services
Contributing Faculty in the DBA Program
Contributing Faculty in the Human and Social Services PhD program

Kelly Chermack first joined the Walden Writing Center as a dissertation editor in 2012. Since then, she has become a manager of editing services, and works to support the whole editing team.  Dr. Chermack earned a BS in Sociology (with an emphasis on statistics) and a PhD in Sociology (with an emphasis on work and organizations), both from the University of Minnesota. In her own research, she specializes in organization theory, workplace policy, and research methods. Dr. Chermack is also contributing faculty in Walden's Human and Social Services PhD and Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) Programs.

Martha King

Martha KingAssociate Director of Doctoral Capstone Quality Initiatives

Martha started as an editor with the Writing Center in 2005, having worked as a contract editor for Walden students since 1998. She was manager of the editor team for 6 years before moving to her role as associate director. She holds a bachelor's degree in philosophy and a master's degree in English as a Second Language, both from the University of Minnesota. Martha enjoys collaborating with students and faculty to help produce well-written doctoral research that reflects the students' efforts and represents the high standard of Walden dissertations.

Miranda Mattingly

miranda mattinglyManager of Writing Instructional Services

Miranda Mattingly joined the Writing Center at Walden University in 2016. She earned her MA in English from Florida State University before completing her PhD in English at the University of Missouri. Miranda has over a decade of experience working in online education and has taught a variety of professional writing, composition, and literature courses at both public and private universities, community colleges, and in the online environment. When working with students, her primary focus is on encouraging students to have confidence in their skills as writers and to cultivate their voices as critical thinkers in an increasingly global community.

Paul Lai

Paul LaiManager of Website and Information Resources

Paul Lai joined Walden's editing team in 2011 after teaching college English for 10 years. He has published academic essays on contemporary Asian North American and Indigenous writers. He has also taught information literacy courses at a community college and works at a public library in the Twin Cities area in Minnesota. Paul received his bachelor's degree in English from Yale University, a master's degree in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a master's degree in library and information studies from St. Catherine University. He now manages the Writing Center's website and other information resources.

Rachel Willard

Rachel WillardManager of Writing Instructional Services

After Rachel graduated from Northwestern College with a BA in English-Writing, she was awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to teach English speaking courses at a small university in southern Turkey. There she worked with both university students and faculty members to improve their English skills. Rachel continues to work with adult students and English language learners on both a professional and volunteer basis, and has been a part of the Walden Writing Center since the autumn of 2011.

Sarah Prince

Sarah PrinceAssociate Director of Resource Management

Sarah Prince earned a BA in English from Presbyterian College in 2004 and an MA and PhD in Women’s Studies in 2011 from Emory University. Her research interests include patterns of female friendship in contemporary women’s novels and changes to physical conceptions of self based on those friendships. At Walden University, she enjoys helping students develop the confidence, clarity, and unique critical voice it takes to become effective and articulate scholarly writers.

Tobias Ball

Tobias BallManager of Editing Services

Editor Tobias Ball earned a BA degree in Classical and Near Eastern Studies from the Univeristy of Minnesota, an MSt from Oxford University in England in Medieval and Renaissance Studies, with a focus on Religions in Antiquity, and an MLIS from Dominican University. His interests include the history of printing, early books and manuscripts, and access to information as is it relates to academic research. If you look hard enough you will find his published poetry.