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About Us

About CEC

The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) is the largest international professional organization dedicated to improve the educational success for children and youth with disabilities and/or gifts and talents.

CEC advocates for appropriate policies, sets professional standards, and provides professional development, and helps professionals obtain conditions and resources necessary for effective professional practice. CEC is known as THE source for information, resources, and professional development for special educators. 

CEC has local Units in all 50 states and Canada, as well as 18 optional Special Interest Divisions focused on a specific topic, specialty area, role, or exceptionality. We also have CEC Student Chapters at hundreds of colleges and universities.

Why Join

About Hawaiʻi CEC

This Hawaiʻi State Unit of the Council for Exceptional Children (Hawaiʻi CEC) is organized for charitable, educational, and scientific purposes to advance the education of children and youth with exceptionalities and to establish and administer programs and activities for the education of its members. Specifically, the Hawaiʻi CEC intends to assist and provide support to the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) in all its efforts on behalf of children and youth with exceptionalities, and to participate in all appropriate governance activities of CEC subject to the general supervision and control of CEC.

Executive Committee

About the Board of Directors:

Our Board of Directors (BoD) work together to organize events, programs, and professional development opportunities for the member of HICEC. Our board is in regular communication with CEC International to ensure we are bringing the best information and experiences to our state members. We look forward to expanding our BoD to involve new faces and incorporate new ideas and initiatives as we work to change the narrative of special education in Hawai'i. 

Hawaiʻi CECʻs Membership

Hawaiʻi CEC membership consists of all members of the Council for Exceptional Children affiliated with the Hawaiʻi. Membership consists of professional personnel and other persons interested in the education of children and youth with exceptionalities.

Access Hawai'i CEC's Current Bylaws Here

Executive Committee

Past President:

Gloria Niles
Gloria Niles has served as a special educator in Pk-12 and higher education. In addition to leadership in Hawai’i CEC, she has also served for four years on the CEC Leadership Development Committee.


Derek Govin
Derek Govin
Derek Govin is a former special education teacher where he served students with extensive needs including intellectual disabilities, autism, and multiple disabilities in middle and high school classroom settings for nine years. He is the co-founder and co-coordinator of the SPEDucator Project, and currently working for the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa as the Project Coordinator for Project Equal Access

President Elect:

Vacant Position  


Rhonda Black
Rhonda Black is a Professor of Special Education at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.


Natalia Sandoval
Natalia Sandoval is a Special Education Preschool Teacher at Waikiki Elementary School on Oahu, and an Adjunct Professor in the College of Education at Hawaii Pacific University.

CAN Coordinator:

Kristel Brogdon
Kristel Brogdon
Kristel Brogdon is a Special Education Teacher at Keaʻau Middle School and also serves on the DOE-HSTA Special Education Committee.

Membership Chair:

Janet Kim
Janet Kim
Janet Kim is the Assistant Specialist College Recruiter for the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa College of Education. She has previously taught as a K-2 Special Education Teacher at Pearl Harbor Elementary School on Oahu.

Bylaws Chair:

Jessica Ford
Jessica Ford
Jessie is a Special Education Teacher at Molokai High School on the island of Molokai.

Awards Chair:

Charmaine Nuesca-Ganer
Charmaine Nuesca-Ganer
Charmaine is a Special Education Teacher at Lahaina Intermediate School on Maui.
Web Chair: Vacant Position  


Last Updated:  15 May, 2023

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