photo of Jan Serak
CADRE Senior Consultant
Greendale, WI 53129
United States

Jan Serak, M.S. is the co-founder and served 22 years as CEO (1995-2017) of the WI Family Assistance Center for Education, Training, and Support (WI FACETS), a parent-led, family-serving agency located in Milwaukee, WI. Serak was the co-founder and Parent Partner (1996-2017) of the Wisconsin Special Education Mediation System, where she provided administrative oversight, training, and consultation in WI and nationally on topics including mediation, IEP facilitation, and collaborative problem solving. She is interested in building equitable dispute resolution systems and local-level capacity. Serak currently is the Director of Serak Consulting Services, LLC, where she provides consultation and training for boards of directors, interim agency management, assistance with strategic planning and grant writing, and curriculum development and training (on IDEA, literacy, leadership-related topics). She received her B.S. from the University of WI and M.S. in Educational Psychology and Dispute Resolution from Marquette University.

Prior to her retirement, Serak served as the Co-Director of WI FACETS’ Regional Parent Technical Assistance Center ( The Regional Center provided TA for 11 Midwest Parent Centers. Serak was the Co-Director of Wisconsin’s Parent Training and Information Center, serving Wisconsin families of children with disabilities for 17 years.  She co-directed WI FACETS’ Community Parent Resource Center serving Milwaukee parents for 7 years. Serak was Executive Director of Parent Education Project of WI for 5 years. Serak was a founding Board member of the National Center for Parent Leadership, Advocacy, and Community Empowerment (National PLACE), advocating to ensure a place at the table for every family and family organization. She served on the National CADRE Advisory Board and the IDEA Partnership Creating Agreement national training team. She was a Senior Advisor for the National Center for Parent Information and Resources and a consultant for the National Center for Systemic Improvement. Other leadership roles included: National Center for Deaf-Blindness Family Engagement Technical Workgroup, Family Support Research and Training Center Advisory Board, Advisory Panel for the National Autism Indicators Report, OSEP P&A/Parent Center Collaboration Workgroup, WI Superintendents’ Exceptional Education Council, WI Governor’s School Accountability Design Team. She served on multiple review panels for USDOE/OSEP and the National Institute of Mental Health. She served as Board President of the Autism Society of WI, President of the Autism Society of SE WI, and as a Board member and Legislative Chair for the Autism Society of America. Serak has two sons (Ben, who has autism; and Jeff, CFO for Racine Unified School District). She loves watching her grandchildren’s sports activities (Aria Serak, Luke Serak) and traveling with family. She passionately believes that every child deserves a chance to shine.