Stephanie Watkins is originally from Chicago, Illinois. After leaving a 20-year career in banking, she was encouraged to pursue teaching because of her work with adolescents with severe emotional disorders. Upon receiving her certification as a special education teacher, Stephanie taught in both charter and public schools in Chicago. For the past year, Stephanie has been the special education teacher for grades 5-12 in the Bering Strait School District at Tukurngailnguq School. Connections with her students’ families and culture are integral to her teaching based on her own background as a mother of eight adult children, a grandmother to twelve, and a great-grandson.