Dafny Joy Irizarry Ortiz was born and raised in Ponce, Puerto Rico.
Dafny J. Irizarry attended the University of Puerto Rico at Rio Piedras for two years. She became a recipient of the Paul Douglas Scholarship allowing her to successfully complete her Bachelors of Arts degree in Linguistics, graduating Cum Laude from SUNY Stony Brook. Ms. Irizarry also received her teacher certification in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) at SUNY Stony Brook. Ms. Irizarry obtained a Master’s degree in Education from CUNY at Queens College. She graduated in 2000 Magna Cum Laude. Ms. Irizarry also attended Suffolk Community College and completed in 2006 the one -year program of study in Paralegal with highest distinction in 2006.
In October, 2006 Ms. Irizarry founded the Long Island Latino Teachers Association, also known as LILTA. As its president the organization continues her mission of increasing high school graduation rates and higher education enrollment and retention while being a strong advocate for high quality education for all underrepresented communities.
Currently, Ms. Irizarry teaches English as a Second Language (ESL) in the Central Islip School District. She also serves as a member of the NYS Commissioner’s Teachers Advisory Board, Advisory Board Member for the TESOL Program at Molloy College and Advisory Board member for the Professional Education Program at Stony Brook University. She served as Board Chair Trustee for the Suffolk County Community College, Board Chair for Herstory Writers Workshop, and Advisory Board Member for the Dental Hygiene Program at Briarcliffe College.
A woman with a passion for equity, justice, and inclusiveness Ms. Irizarry continues her work by empowering Long Island youth to grow educationally and become productive and positive members of our communities.