2022 LFLTA Teacher of the Year Nominees
José Alberto González Argáez
Jose Gonzalez, a native of Yucatan, Mexico, began his teaching career at the age of 15 at the National Institute for Adult Education in Mexico as a Spanish and Math teacher. From there he taught and served in various schools as a teacher as well as an administrator. He has experience teaching pre-k to college in Spanish, English, and math both in Mexico and the United States.
Mr. Gonzalez earned a Bachelor’s degree in Modern Languages from the Escuela Peninsular de Lenguas in Merida, Yucatan in 2004. He earned a Master of Arts in Teaching in Secondary Education from the University of Louisiana at Monroe in 2015.
Jose’s teaching experience in the states began in 2008 at Downsville High School where he taught Spanish, served as a translator and interpreter, and provided reading and math accommodations for ESL students. During this time Mr. Gozalez also served as a lecturer, speaker, and exhibitor at the Farmerville Public Library during Hispanic Heritage Month. Jose then moved to his current position at Grand Lake High School in Lake Charles where he teaches all grade levels, and continues his work as a translator and interpreter and provides accommodations for ESL students.
Jose has been married for 21 years, and has 2 teenage daughters, and two “furry” daughters. An avid sports fan, he still plays soccer for the over-30 league. He loves watching movies with his family, and going kayaking. Mr. Gonzalez plays music as well, specializing in the djembe (an African goblet-shaped drum).
Laure Warner is a native of Orange, France. She obtained a Bachelor’s degree in English and Spanish and a minor in Business/Trade from the University of Montpellier, France. She moved to Louisiana in 1996 and began a career in sales and marketing in the hospitality, tourism and TV industries.
In 2006, she made the decision to change career and in 2009 she earned her teacher certification in French and Spanish education from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. She taught French as a second language for 10 years, and she has been teaching in the French immersion program for the past 6 years. She is currently the chair of the French department and the World Language Academy Coordinator at Lafayette High School and teaches French IV, French V AP and French VI. In addition, she sponsors the French Club and the ALCFES convention.
She has served as the LFLTA Region IV representative in 2013 and 2014 and was the Alliance Française of Lafayette vice president in 2019 and 2020. She has conducted many workshops for the Lafayette Parish school system and was a presenter at the 2010 ACTFL annual conference in Boston. More recently, she presented at the 2019 ACPI (Association Canadienne des Professionnels de l'immersion) convention in Quebec City and was part of the Francophonie des Amériques delegations.
She has a passion for foreign languages, which she shares with her three children and her hundreds of students. She strives to empower them to become bilingual leaders and use their voices to advocate for language learning in their communities and beyond.
Leigh Grace Rouyer
Leigh Grace Rouyer is a Baton Rouge native and began her teaching career by obtaining both a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Psychology from Louisiana Statue University and A&M College in 2008. She then began at St. Joseph's Academy of Baton Rouge as an English and Latin instructor until 2017, when she was able to focus solely on teaching Latin and offer more opportunities for her students to continue studying the language. Mrs. Rouyer has continued her education with a Latin Major Equivalency from various universities in 2015 and a Master of English degree from Southeastern Louisiana University completed in 2016.
Leigh Grace is currently the Foreign Language Department Chair at her school and teaches four levels of Latin, including level III taught with her own curriculum as well as AP Latin. In the classroom, Leigh Grace is passionate about incorporating diversity and equity into her curriculum and frequently includes opportunities for representation for all students in projects and assignments. When asked about her goal that she has for her students, she responded that she hopes that learning Latin will allow them to experience Latin and, consequently, relate their lives to those who have gone before.
In addition to teaching, she sponsors the Latin Club, which has grown to over 100 members in her time at St. Joseph's. Mrs. Rouyer organizes and oversees activities for members, as well as accompanies and chaperones students to Louisiana Junior Classical League events. At these events, the St. Joseph's Latin Club has placed 1st in overall sweepstakes 6 times.
She enjoys including the community by guiding her Latin Club in service projects and community tutoring. In 2019 and 2021 she also led a Greek and Roman Summer Camp for girls in the Baton Rouge area to promote the classics, and combined mythology, history, and Latin to help students create art, stories, and STEM activities to connect the past with the present.
Leigh Grace lives in her hometown of Baton Rouge and bleeds purple and gold. She married her college sweetheart and together they have 3 children: Everett, Willa Grace, and Camilla. They also have two dogs, Ellie and Minnie. In her spare time she loves to read and knit.