Mission & Team

Our Approach

OUR MISSION

ACS was established to address a need in the assessment community for design, evaluation, operational support, and quality assurance. These needs align with the founders’ core capabilities and allow them to apply their experiences and knowledge of assessment policy and practice in the education, credentialing, and workforce sectors. The ACS team is committed to providing practical solutions that help organizations ensure the validity, reliability, and fairness of their assessment programs.

Our Story

Andrew Wiley, Ph.D.

Partner, Andrew Wiley,
Partner

Drew is a Partner with ACS and specializes evaluation and operational support to ensure that validity evidence adheres to industry best practices. He received his Ph.D. in psychometrics from Fordham University. His experience as the research lead for nationally recognized assessment programs, such as the SAT and the PSAT/NMSQT meant that he was responsible for ensuring the reliability, validity, and fairness of these programs. Drew has also led independent investigations into highly-visible statewide assessment programs as well as classroom based assessment tasked with evaluating consistency with industry best practices. Currently, Drew is partnering with several assessment stakeholders that are engaging in major redesigns of their existing assessment programs as well as introducing new assessment programs. Drew continues to be actively involved with the measurement community and has served on multiple committees for the National Council on Measurement (NCME) and the Association of Test Publishers (ATP), including a term as the Chair of the Board of Trustees. Drew’s research interests include program redesign, product development, and quality assurance practices, and he enjoys the challenge of finding defensible practices with assessment programs considering product changes or introducing new assessments.

For a copy of Dr. Wiley's resume, click here.

 

Chad Buckendahl, Ph.D.

Partner, Chad Buckendahl, Ph.D.
Partner

Chad is a Partner with ACS and specializes in providing evaluation and quality assurance at the intersection of psychometrics, policy, and practice. He received his Ph.D. in quantitative and qualitative methods in education from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln preparing him for work as a co-principal investigator on the evaluation of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and evaluation of the Florida Standard Assessment. Notably, Chad was an co-awardee of the 2006 Significant Contribution to Educational Measurement and Research Methodology presented by Division D of the American Educational Research Association (AERA). Chad currently serves as a principal investigator for a series of state-sponsored evaluations and sits on technical advisory committees for student assessment and accountability in multiple states.Throughout his career, Chad has prioritized service. He currently serves on the Mission Fund for the National Council on Measurement in Education (NCME), on the editorial boards of the International Journal of Testing and Frontiers in Education, and as co-editor of forthcoming volume on credentialing sponsored by NCME. He previously served as a psychometric reviewer and chair for the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). Chad’s research interests include assessment evaluation, standard setting, legal considerations, and validity, and appreciates opportunities to collaborate on creative and pragmatic solutions that bridge theory and practice.

For a copy of Dr. Buckendahl's resume, click here.

 

Susan Davis-Becker, Ph.D.

partner, Susan Davis-Becker, Ph.D.
Partner

Susan is a Partner with ACS who specializes in strategic planning and operational support for launching and sustaining assessment programs. She received her doctorate in assessment and measurement at James Madison University and has advised on the design and redesign of numerous testing programs, overseen test development operations for large- and small-scale programs, and conducted high-stakes audits and evaluations including the 2009 NAEP evaluation and the 2016 evaluation of educator credentialing policy and practice in Nevada. In her current role, Susan focuses on helping program sponsors tackle the challenges that accompany the development and maintenance of testing programs. Susan has served on several volunteer committees for the National Council on Measurement in Education (NCME) and the Institute for Credentialing Excellence (ICE) and is the lead editor for the upcoming NCME-sponsored volume on credentialing. Susan’s research interests include test design/redesign, standard setting, data analysis, and score reporting. However, the favorite part of her role is collaborating with others who are equally passionate about their work.

For a copy of Dr. Davis-Becker's resume, click here.

  

 

Deborah Schnipke, Ph.D.

Deborah Schnipke
Senior Psychometrician

Dr. Schnipke has over 20 years of experience working in measurement, providing psychometric expertise for all aspects of the test development process in a variety of fields. Her work includes conducting job task analyses studies, developing test specifications, training item writers and reviewers, performing classical and IRT item and test analyses, assembling balanced test forms, conducting standard setting studies, scaling and equating test forms, investigating test security breaches, providing guidance and psychometric services for third-party accreditation, auditing testing programs for adherence to psychometric standards, and performing differential item functioning analyses, timing analyses, etc. She has conducted and published research on a variety of topics, including job task analyses, item selection algorithms, adaptive testing, response time analyses, differential item function, test security, test design, etc. She is invested in ensuring that exams are reliable, valid, and fair, and in compliance with industry standards, such as the AERA/APA/NCME standards and NCCA accreditation standards. She has experience as a speaker, reviewer, discussant, and author for major psychometric journals and conferences. Dr. Schnipke earned her B.S. in psychology and statistics at Bowling Green State University and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Quantitative Psychology from Johns Hopkins University.

For a copy of Dr. Schnipke's resume, click here

 

 

Myrna Bacurin

Office Manager Myrna Bacurin
 Office Manager

Myrna is on the ACS team as Office Manager. She has extensive experience with finance, including: preparing cash-flow statements, income statements, balance sheets, budget reports, billing, accounts receivable and payroll. She is also responsible for handling all human resource activities within the company.

Myrna also has vast experience with meeting and project coordination. Her duties in this role include organizing, attending and participating in stakeholder meetings, documenting and following up on important actions and decisions from meetings, preparing presentation materials for meetings and keeping/distributing meeting minutes for various boards. She is also responsible for assisting the ACS staff with data collection and organization.

For a copy of Ms. Bacurin's resume, click here

 

 

Jaime Kavanaugh, MS.Ed.

Psychometric Associate, Jaime Kavanaugh, MS.Ed.
Psychometrician

Jaime is a Psychometrican who joined the ACS team in January of 2017 and maintains an office in Lenexa, KS. She has more than 15 years of experience conducting psychometric and test development activities related to licensure and certification. She also has extensive experience in assisting organizations meet the standards required to achieve and maintain accreditation and has earned the Institute for Credentialing Excellence (ICE) Credentialing Specialist Certificate. Jaime’s specific areas of expertise include data analysis, job task analysis studies, standard setting studies, and training subject matter experts to write high-quality examination items. Jaime earned her B.S. degree in psychology from Baker University (Baldwin City, KS) and her M.S.Ed. degree in Educational Psychology & Research from the University of Kansas (Lawrence, KS).

For a copy of Ms. Kavanaugh's resume, click here.

 

 

Russ Keglovits, MS. Ed.

Russ 2021 1 (3)
Assessment Specialist

Mr. Russell Keglovits is an Assessment Specialist who began working at ACS Ventures in June of 2019. Russ joined ACS after serving as a secondary mathematics consultant and the accountability director at the Nevada Department of Education (NDE). Prior to NDE, Russ was a high school mathematics teacher and an occasional adjunct professor at local institutions of higher education.  While at the NDE, Russ was responsible for the design, development, and operation of the state’s school accountability systems.  As director of accountability, Russ oversaw the collection and reporting of the state’s education data including EdFacts, the Nevada Report Card, and the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP).  Russ has served as an internal evaluator on numerous legislated, large-scale grant funded initiatives and was a member of the eighth grade Mathematics Standing Committee for NAEP.  While at ACS, Russ has led licensure exam redevelopment projects from task analysis to form development and has consulted with states departments of education on the conduct of program evaluation initiatives. He had also led item writing workshops, and has facilitated validation and alignment studies, as well as standard setting workshops. Russ is a United States Army veteran who is currently enrolled in advanced coursework in the field of measurement, evaluation, statistics, and assessment at the University of Chicago, Illinois.   

For a copy of Mr. Keglovits's resume, click here.

 

Kelley Wheeler, MS. Ed.

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Psychometric Associate

Kelley is a Psychometric Associate at ACS who recently completed an internship with them prior to receiving her M.Ed. in Measurement, Evaluation, Statistics, and Assessment through the University of Illinois at Chicago. She has a background in k-12 education and taught NGSS biology in a high school setting before relocating to Las Vegas, Nevada and to pursue her career in psychometrics.

For a copy of Ms. Wheeler's resume, click here.

 

Heather Misner M.A.     

Misner_head shot
Project Manager/Client Portfolio Manager

Heather Misner has been a project manager and program director for federally funded and grant funded projects, supporting federal and state governments and professional organizations for over 12 years.  Before arriving at ACS, she specialized primarily in public health. Heather has also worked in healthcare, at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and has been published in Health Security. She holds a Master of Public Policy from New England College and a Bachelor of Science in Health Science from the University of Central Florida.

For a copy of Ms. Misner's resume, click here.