The interim dean for the Kremen School of Education and Human Development says she is sad to leave the region she has served most of her career. As a faculty member and executive director for Programs for Children, Dr. Laura Alamillo has seen many changes in education since she came to Fresno State in 2004.
Alamillo is moving her family northwest and will be continuing her leadership and commitment to education as dean at Sonoma State University’s School of Education.
“I know that the decision to leave the city and region was not easy. I am grateful for her loyal and passionate leadership. As the interim dean, Dr. Alamillo led the college with integrity and efficiency. Dr. Alamillo’s legacy at Fresno State is praiseworthy: She was instrumental in building the residency-teacher preparation and graduate programs within the Department of Literacy, Early, Bilingual and Special Education. I admire Dr. Alamillo because her scholarship grounds her vision for the role of higher education: Empowering individuals to become multicultural and respectful agents of change who elevate the quality of life in the Valley and beyond,” said Dr. Saúl Jiménez-Sandoval, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs.
Alamillo received her Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley in language, literacy, and culture before coming to Fresno State. Prior, she taught migrant education in an East Bay elementary school district. In addition to her experience in schools, Alamillo has continued her research in the education of emergent bilingual children looking specifically at additive teaching practices used in classrooms to recognize and validate racially, culturally, and linguistically diverse classrooms.
“I appreciate Dean Alamillo’s commitment to the children of the Central Valley,” said Dr. Juliet Wahleithner, assistant professor of literacy. “And the work done to ensure they have the most qualified teachers.”
During Alamillo’s service as executive director for Fresno State’s Programs for Children, the early education center created a Spanish, dual-immersion preschool program, the first of its kind in the area.
Alamillo was appointed as interim dean of the Kremen School of Education and Human Development during the summer of 2018. She says that the past fourteen years at Fresno State have flown by and she has seen the Kremen School transform in educator preparation. She worked diligently alongside her colleagues on promoting residency based models in teacher preparation and Bilingual Teacher Academies in local districts.
Dr. Julie Olson-Buchanan states that Alamillo is an incredibly genuine person, and as a leader is motivated by one purpose and one purpose only – to do the right by children, community members, and the university. Olson-Buchanan served alongside Alamillo as interim associate dean during the 2018-19 academic year and is now serving as interim dean of the Craig School of Business.
In 2018, Alamillo co-edited the book ‘Voices of Resistance, Interdisciplinary Approaches to Chican@ Children’s Literature‘. The book focuses on the study of children’s and young adult literature by and about Chicanos, seeking to address social transformation of Chicano Studies programs.
“Her heart really shows through all that she does,” stated Dr. Carol Fry Bohlin, curriculum and instruction department chair.
Fresno State thanks Alamillo for her long-lasting contributions to Fresno State and congratulates her on her new position as Dean of the School of Education at Sonoma State.
“I am honored to continue my work in a system that promotes equity and access for all students, including first generation and our DREAMER population of students. Sonoma State reflects the racial and cultural diversity of California. I work best in places where the student population mirrors my family and life experiences,” said Dr. Laura Alamillo, interim dean of the Kremen School of Education and Human Development.
(Photo credit: Vida en el Valle)