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Faculty Directory for WESL

Faculty Biographies

David Bell Bell, David - Director, WESL

Hello! My name is David Bell and I am the Director of the WESL Program. It is my responsibility to see that you all have a positive educational experience while you are in the United States.

I think that you will enjoy Macomb, Illinois. It is a beautiful little city which is very safe and full of friendly people who will welcome you. I have lived and worked in many different foreign countries and I enjoy learning about new cultures and speaking other languages. In my free time I like to watch movies, read and cook.

My office door is always open and I encourage students to drop in and say hello from time to time. I look forward to meeting you someday and I wish you all success in your English studies.

Armand Affricano Affricano, Armand - Lecturer

I’m so happy you decided to check out the WESL program here at Western Illinois University. It is a great place to study in a clean, quiet, safe environment with lots of friendly, helpful people and a faculty of professional, experienced, and most importantly, very kind, teachers.

We all look forward to welcoming you to WESL. I have lived and taught overseas in Canada, Korea, Japan, Bangladesh, and Saudi Arabia.

Traveling and meeting people from all over the world is my passion, and I have visited 39 countries so far. I hope I have been to your country, but if not, perhaps it will be #40!

Loraine Brasel Brasel, Deborah Loraine - Lecturer

Loraine has taught at WESL for over five years. She has been teaching English as a Second Language and college courses for 30 years at other colleges and in Thailand. She has also worked as a writer and editor for a corporation for many years.

She has a master’s degree in English and a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Loraine is married and has four children, whom she loves to talk about!


Gail Christianson Christianson, Gail Janine - Teaching Assistant

Gail Christianson is working on a Master’s in Education, Language and Culture at Western Illinois University. Her coursework includes classes to complete the requirements to earn a TESOL credential and plans to graduate in spring of 2014. She lived in Mexico for five years where she taught English to the natives and survival Spanish to tourists.

Several of her articles have appeared in Western Illinois Magazine and The Baja Times, Rosarito, Mexico.  Besides the classes at WESL she works as a Spanish interpreter and a substitute teacher in the K-12 schools. She is active in New Life Fellowship Church and manages The Samaritan Well Woman’s Shelter. Gail is the mother of three adult children and lives in Macomb, IL, where she enjoys all sports and loves to write.

John CurtisCurtis, John A - Temporary Lecturer

John has been a teacher for over 15 years. He is constantly impressed by his students’ interesting personalities and their remarkable ability to learn.

John lives in the countryside near Macomb and farms on a very human scale. He has an intelligent and beautiful wife (Karen), three precocious children, and two pets: Shadow and Kitty.

Sarah Harris Harris, Sarah Denice - Teaching Assistant

My name is Sarah Harris. I am from a town near Chicago, IL called Orland Park. Currently, I am a graduate student in the Department of Educational and Interdisciplinary Studies.

I enjoy cooking, baking and reading. Teaching with the WESL Institute has been a great experience, because the students and instructors are personable and helpful. WESL provides a supportive and encouraging community for students and professionals.


Steve Kaesdorf Kaesdorf, Steven - Lecturer

Steve has been teaching in the WESL program for more than 20 years, and he has had hundreds of students from around the world in his classes over the years. Steve has also coordinated WESL’s conversation mentors program, and is faculty advisor for the Asian-American Students Association at WIU. 

He is an active member of Phi Beta Delta, a nationwide international honorary society. Previously, before coming to WESL, he taught ESL at College of Du Page and the University of Illinois at Urban-Champaign. Early in his teaching career, he was an EFL (English as a Foreign Language) instructor overseas in Austria. 

Cathy McCabe McCabe, Catherine A - Lecturer

Cathy McCabe has been teaching ESL to students for over ten years. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in English and a Master’s Degree in Linguistics/TESOL. She is married and has two children. She likes to golf and spend time outdoors. She loves languages and language students!



Hannah Murphy Murphy, Hannah Kathleen - Teaching Assistant

My name is Hannah Murphy and I am a current graduate student at WIU. I am studying Education, Language & Culture and am a TA with the WESL program. I enjoy traveling, teaching, and volunteering. I look forward to having you join our program.



Linda RobertsRoberts, Linda M - Lecturer

Linda has been teaching in WESL for over 20 years, and loves helping international students as they acquire English and interact with people from other countries! Her Master's is in Linguistics from the University of Iowa. She has lived and taught in Korea, and spent time in several other countries, and hopes to travel again some day. But for now, she's happy living in a quiet, friendly community with a wide variety of activities to get involved in. We are happy to welcome students from all over the world!

Dustin TowerTower, Dustin - Lecturer

I love teaching English and interacting with students from all parts of the world. I started teaching ESL when I was still in high school as a volunteer, and I’ve lived in South Korea for 12 years. I’ve studied music, English, and theology, and enjoy teaching students from many different majors. I’m happy to play a role in student’s lives, providing them help with using the tool of English.



  Lynne Wayne  Wayne, Lynne S - Lecturer

 Information coming soon!




Andrea Whittenmore
Whittemore, Andrea - Lecturer

I would like to give a warm welcome to interested students. As a WESL instructor, I love to use technology in the classroom, especially smart phones and apps. Creativity and curiosity are two important qualities I encourage in all of my students. I am originally from Wyoming, but have spent the last five years teaching both English and writing classes at the university level in Washington and Idaho.