D. Ray Reutzel is the Emma Eccles Jones Endowed Chair and Distinguished Professor of Early Childhood Education and Director of the Emma Eccles Jones Center for Early Childhood Education at Utah State University. He works regularly with teachers and children in local public schools and in the Edith Bowen Laboratory School on the Utah State University campus. He is a former provost and vice president for academic affairs at Southern Utah University, associate dean of teacher education in the David O. McKay School of Education, and former chair of the Department of Elementary Education at Brigham Young University. While at BYU, he was the recipient of the 1992 Karl G. Maeser Distinguished Research Professor Award. Several years ago, he took a leave from his university faculty position to return to full-time, first-grade classroom teaching in Sage Creek Elementary School to pilot comprehensive balanced reading practices. He has taught kindergarten and the first, third, and sixth grade.
Dr. Reutzel is the author of more than 130 articles, books, book chapters, and monographs. He has published in Reading Research Quarterly, Journal of Reading Behavior, Journal of Literacy Research, Journal of Educational Research, Reading Psychology, Reading and Writing Quarterly, Reading Research and Instruction, Language Arts, Journal of Reading, The Reading Teacher, and Instructor, among others. He is the past editor of Reading Research and Instruction and coauthor of the best-selling college textbook Teaching Children to Read: Putting the Pieces Together (4th ed.) and Strategies for Reading Assessment and Instruction: Helping Every Child Succeed (2003), published by Merrill/Prentice Hall. He is or has been a reviewer for the Reading Teacher, Reading Research Quarterly, Reading Psychology, and Reading Research and Instruction and a past reviewer for Journal of Reading Behavior, Journal of Literacy Research, and Elementary School Journal. He is also an author of Scholastic Incorporated's Literacy Place 1996 and 2000 School Reading Program. He received the A.B. Herr Award for Outstanding Research and Published Contributions to Reading Education from the College Reading Association in 1999. He was recently appointed with his colleague, Judith P. Mitchell, editor of the International Reading Association's elementary section journal The Reading Teacher.
Dr. Robert Cooter is Professor of Reading & Urban Literacy Education and Chair of the Department of Instruction and Curriculum Leadership at The University of Memphis. His primary research focus is urban literacy issues in grades PK-12. Dr. Cooter has taught grades 1, 3, 4, 7, 11, and 12 in the public schools and has also served as a Title I reading specialist.
Professor Cooter formerly served as the first "Reading Czar" (or Associate Superintendent for Reading/Language Arts) for the Dallas Independent School District (TX). He engineered the district's highly acclaimed Dallas Reading Plan, a collaborative project supported by Dallas area business and community enterprises involving the training of approximately 3,000 teachers in "comprehensive literacy instruction." In March of 1998, Dr. Cooter was recognized as a "Texas State Champion for Reading" by then-Governor George W. Bush and Texas First Lady Laura Bush as a result of the many successes of the Dallas Reading Plan initiative.
In addition to coauthoring the best-selling text Teaching Children to Read: Putting the Pieces Together with D. Ray Reutzel, currently used at over 200 universities to prepare elementary teachers, Cooter has also authored or coauthored six other professional books. These include The Flynt/Cooter Reading Inventory for the Classroom (Merrill/Prentice-Hall, 2004), Strategies for Reading Assessment and Instruction: Helping Every Child Succeed (Merrill/Prentice-Hall, 2003), and The Flynt/Cooter English-Espanol Reading Inventory (Merrill/Prentice-Hall, 1999). Cooter recently served as contributing editor to Perspectives on Rescuing Urban Literacy Education: Spies, Saboteurs, & Saints (Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2004).
Professor Cooter is currently working on a new book tentatively titled Urban Literacy Instruction: Helping City Kids Succeed as Readers (Merrill/Prentice Hall). He has published well over 50 articles on reading research and instruction in such journals as The Reading Teacher, Journal of Reading, Language Arts, and the Journal of Educational Research. He currently contributes a regular column on Urban Literacy Issues for The Reading Teacher, a professional journal of the International Reading Association.
A native of Nashville, Tennessee, Dr. Cooter now lives in Memphis with his wife, Dr. Kathleen Spencer Cooter, a popular education consultant and Special Education professor at The University of Memphis. He enjoys vacationing with his wife on their houseboat, christened Our Last Child; performing Southern folktales for children of all ages; listening to good blues; and dining on catfish and cheese grits. Bob is the proud father of five children and three stepchildren, has nine grandchildren (so far), and is owned by a hound dog of unknown breed and questionable utility.