Dr. Cindy Cardenas-Kolak
Dr. Cardenas-Kolak is the president and co-founder of Kolak Group Inc.
Cindy earned her doctorate from the University of Houston in Educational
Leadership and Cultural Studies—school administration while working as a
teacher in the Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District and working
as an ESL Specialist at Region 4 Education Service Center in Houston, Texas.
She has been involved in the professional development of teachers and administrators
in public schools for over 15 years. Her work as a former elementary and
secondary ESL teacher provided her with rich learning experiences in which to
draw from when leading educational professionals towards greater student success
including English language learners. Cindy has authored and facilitated the
development of several Texas state professional development manuals for training
of trainers’ sessions for the Texas Education Agency, Region 4 Education Service Center
in Houston, and Region 2 Education Service Center in Corpus Christi. She
has also consulted and trained extensively throughout the state of Texas in the
field of ESL, sheltered instruction, and intercultural competencies.
Michael Kolak is the vice-president and co-founder of Kolak Group Inc.
He earned a masters degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of Houston.
A former northerner from Chicago and graduate from the University of Wisconsin—Steven’s
Point, Michael has experiences working with students with special needs other than the
acquisition of a second language. He served as a counselor for the Lion’s camp and worked
with the vision and hearing impaired while working as a math teacher in a Catholic school.
Prior to that, he traveled abroad to study his native language in the beautiful country of
Croatia. His life experiences eventually placed him in Singapore where he sold Christmas
trees while preparing students to speak English well enough to be successful in U.S. schools
and universities. When Michael arrived in Houston, Texas he found a teaching position in the
Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School district as a P.E. teacher, then later moved on to social
studies, science, and computer literacy at both the elementary and secondary levels. Michael
currently trains in and out of the state of Texas in the area of sheltered instruction,
specializing in math and science.