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Staff

Dan Alvarez's picture

Dan Alvarez

Payroll & HR Coordinator
dalvarez@sffriendsschool.org
Dan Alvarez's picture

Dan Alvarez

Payroll & HR Coordinator
Dan is a Bay Area native who recently returned to the area from El Paso, Texas. Dan enjoys everything in the great outdoors! An avid hiker, camper, and backpacker, he is also interested in homesteading, so he has long list of interesting projects from goats to gardening that he is tackling at his new home. He is joined at home by his wife and three children, a grown daughter and two boys aged 12 and 10. When he is not busy in the country, he loves the city—he grew up in the Mission! He brings his kids in to explore all the city has to offer on weekends.
Jennifer Arnest's picture

Jennifer Arnest

Lower School Head
jarnest@sffriendsschool.org
Jennifer Arnest's picture

Jennifer Arnest

Lower School Head
Jennifer grew up in Chicago, Baltimore, and Pasadena—for this, she considers herself tri-coastal. In her East Coast chapter, she and her two brothers attended Baltimore Friends School. Jennifer’s father is a professor, and her mother was a teacher, and Jennifer felt like a “school person” from her earliest years. Jennifer brings over twenty years of teaching and administrative experience to SFFS, from Children’s Day School in San Francisco, to the International School of Tanganyika in East Africa, to University Child Development School in Seattle, and The Nueva School on the Peninsula. She has taught kindergarten, first and second grades, and has served as Assessment Committee Chair and faculty Board representative at the Nueva School. Before coming to the Friends School, Jennifer worked at the Children's School at Mills College, in the School of Education, where she taught and supervised the work of the graduate students entering the profession. Jennifer and her partner Martin live in the East Bay, and are the parents of two children, Sofia (SFFS class of 2018) and Luca (SFFS class of 2022).
Ramiro Hernandez's picture

Ramiro Hernandez

Facilities Staff
rhernandez@sffriendsschool.org
Ramiro Hernandez's picture

Ramiro Hernandez

Facilities Staff
Ramiro is a long-time San Francisco transplant from the land of mariachi music, Jalisco, Mexico. He was raised on a ranch outside the municipality of San Juan de los Lagos and moved to the United States in 1983. Ramiro spent twenty years as general laborer on construction projects and is no stranger to how facilities operate, as he helped build many buildings in San Francisco, including the Four Seasons Hotel. At SFFS, he puts his experience to good use maintaining our school. Ramiro enjoys his wife's cooking and spending time with his four children. His youngest son is in elementary school and his three older children have all graduated from high school; one of them is a Marine. Ramiro loves spending time on his property in Jalisco where he enjoys the fresh air and the beautiful scenery.
Katherine Preston's picture

Katherine Preston

Mental Health Specialist
kpreston@sffriendsschool.org
Katherine Preston's picture

Katherine Preston

Mental Health Specialist
Katherine joined our developmental support team in the spring of 2011. She collaborates closely with teachers, advisors, learning support staff, and parents. Katherine has maintained a private practice in San Francisco for many years, and also teaches lifespan development, systems theories, and other graduate level classes at Sofia University in Palo Alto. Katherine has worked with youth and families for over 20 years, holding clinical leadership positions overseeing and providing treatment, training, and supervision for therapeutic services throughout the Bay Area. She lives in Pacifica with her husband, Alex. They have two children: Sam and Isabelle. Katherine also facilitates workshops in Marin focused on psychology and spirituality.
Kim Plough's picture

Kim Plough

Director of Finance and Operations
kplough@sffriendsschool.org
Kim Plough's picture

Kim Plough

Director of Finance and Operations
Kim is a New Jersey native who received her BA in Economics from Middlebury College in Vermont. After a quick detour to New York to start a career in banking, Kim transferred to the West Coast. She completed her MBA at Stanford and joined The Boston Consulting Group where she worked to improve business operations across a wide range of industries before turning her attention to managing the internal operations of BCG. Kim led the San Francisco office support teams including finance, HR, operations and graphic arts and managed global marketing for the consumer and retail practice. In her spare time, Kim has pursued her interest in education. She led the PTO for nine years and participated on numerous projects for her local school district, supported the founding team for a local charter school and consulted (pro bono) to a local independent school to optimize their summer programs. Kim continues to support Bay Area non-profits as a member of the board of ACT, a pro bono consulting group organized by Stanford Business School. When Kim steps away from the office, she enjoys hiking in the local hills with her girls—two human and one canine—or relaxing with a book at the beach.
Alissa K Moe's picture

Alissa Kinney Moe

Director of Communications
akinney-moe@sffriendsschool.org
Alissa K Moe's picture

Alissa Kinney Moe

Director of Communications
Alissa is originally from Upstate New York, and has since lived in Providence, Boston, Brooklyn, Atlanta, and the Bay Area. She recently returned to Oakland with her family after a brief stint in the South, and is thrilled to be back in the place she feels is truly home. Alissa was a history teacher at Emma Willard, a boarding school in New York, and an editor at Art New England magazine before finding her way to school communications, where she was able to combine her loves of education, design, and wordsmithing. She was the associate director of communications at the Nightingale-Bamford School in Manhattan and, most recently, was the communications director at San Francisco University High School, where she re-imagined the school’s biannual print magazine, oversaw two website redesigns, worked with renowned Bay Area artist Michael Schwab on the development of a new school logo, and mentored 13 high-schoolers through graduation. Alissa received her BA in Art History from Brown University and her MA in Writing and Publishing from Emerson College. Alissa and her husband Scott live in the Lake Merritt area of Oakland with their two boys, where they love to spend time exploring their new neighborhood; enjoying the California sunshine; and discovering new lunch spots that don't mind small, noisy customers. 
Ariel Mendez-Peñate's picture

Ariel Mendez-Peñate

Horizons Academic Program Director
amendez-penate@sffriendsschool.org
Ariel Mendez-Peñate's picture

Ariel Mendez-Peñate

Horizons Academic Program Director
Ariel Mendez-Peñate was born and raised in Marin County.  He received a BS degree from University of Santa Cruz in Geophysics.  Ariel is currently working on his Master's degree in Mathematics Education at San Francisco State University. He has taught both math and science at the middle school and high school levels. In his teaching practice Ariel is passionate about math fluency and fostering a curiosity about science.  He enjoys taking students into the outdoors and exploring new environments. Ariel is excited to join the Horizons at SFFS team and to build a strong connection with the program's community in the neighborhood in which he lives. He spends his free time chasing after his two children, riding mountain bikes, and cooking a variety of different cuisines.  Ariel grew up bilingual (Spanish) and bicultural (Cuban American) and hopes to instill pride in his children for their multi lingual and cultural heritage.
Liam McCarthy's picture

Liam McCarthy

Americorps VISTA Associate
lmccarthy@sffriendsschool.org
Liam McCarthy's picture

Liam McCarthy

Americorps VISTA Associate
Liam was born and raised in San Francisco. He graduated from Boston College last May with a BA in English and Secondary Education. While in college, Liam worked on a number of research projects, studying youth basketball coaching and emergent bilingual curriculum. Through these projects, he developed a passion for positive youth development and social justice through education. He previously worked as a Teaching Fellow for Citizen Schools, an after-school program for middle-schoolers located in Redwood City. With Citizen Schools, Liam helped volunteers teach their passions, like coding and yoga. Outside of work, Liam loves music and reading. He is looking forward to working with Horizons to bring quality educational opportunities to children in San Francisco!
Tracie Mastronicola's picture

Tracie Mastronicola

Academic Dean
tmastronicola@sffriendsschool.org
Tracie Mastronicola's picture

Tracie Mastronicola

Academic Dean
Tracie excitedly returned to SFFS as our Academic Dean in the summer of 2016. Tracie brings her enthusiasm and 16 years of experience in and around the classroom to her new role at SFFS. After finishing her own education on the east coast, the native New Yorker packed up her car and drove out west where she's been acting like a tourist in San Francisco ever since. Tracie's first introduction to teaching was at the Nueva School; it was there that she realized the innovative, dynamic, and sometimes chaotic nature of a school was where she felt most at home. Tracie dove into both teaching and learning, spending the next two decades focusing on science and math curriculum, project-based learning, advising young adults, and leading service learning trips with students to far off places. After teaching in the classroom at SFFS, Tracie most recently worked with a team designing science simulations at CK-12 Foundation, an educational non-profit organization aimed at providing free material to students and teachers. In her free time, Tracie loves eating and, subsequently, running through Golden Gate Park. Tracie, her wife Alyssa, and their twin boys live​​ and play in San Francisco.
Melina Machuca's picture

Melina Machuca

Academic Administrative Assistant / Registrar
mmachuca@sffriendsschool.org
Melina Machuca's picture

Melina Machuca

Academic Administrative Assistant / Registrar
Melina joined Friends School in 2017 from the Department of Human Services where she helped clients identify and access the range of social services and programs available from the City and County of San Francisco. She has also worked at La Posada Social Rehabilitation Center where she facilitated mindfulness training sessions for clients coping with stress. Melina holds a B.A. in Psychology from San Francisco State University and is fluent in Spanish. In her free time, Melina is an avid reader, loves dance, and has recently started work with pottery and ceramics.  
Victoria Kopelevich's picture

Victoria Kopelevich

Controller
vkopelevich@sffriendsschool.org
Victoria Kopelevich's picture

Victoria Kopelevich

Controller
Victoria has worked in various Business Office roles in independent schools for well over a decade and comes from a family of school administrators. Originally from Kharkiv, Ukraine, she relocated to LA with husband Alex and first daughter Veronica. She now has two girls—Veronica, who lives in LA and works in advancement, and Michelle, who attends St. Mary's College in the Bay Area. Victoria enjoys traveling, good food, and sports, especially basketball. Go, Warriors! 
Shane Hihara's picture

Shane Hihara

Technology Systems Support Administrator
shihara@sffriendsschool.org
Shane Hihara's picture

Shane Hihara

Technology Systems Support Administrator
Shane is a Southern California native who recently returned to the Bay Area after half a decade in New York City. Shane is a graduate from U.C. Santa Cruz where he was on the Dean’s List and worked in the Jean Fox-Tree Lab, supporting innovative studies and experiments in psycholinguistics. After graduating, Shane moved to NYC to work at the intersections of education, sports, IT, and non-profit industries, including leading institutions such as the Trevor Day School, Manhattan Kickers, and Millennium Development. When not at SFFS Shane can be found playing soccer all over the Bay Area, supporting charities and non-profits through grant writing and program management, and stopping randomly to pet dogs.
Ed Hewitt's picture

Ed Hewitt

Director of Facilities
ehewitt@sffriendsschool.org
Ed Hewitt's picture

Ed Hewitt

Director of Facilities
Ed is a Bay Area native who brings over ten years of facility management experience to the SFFS, most recently working as the Assistant Director of Maintenance for the San Rafael City Schools. Early in his career, Ed pursued his passion for woodworking and took a position working for a custom furniture maker as an apprentice. He has always had an interest in education, and was fortunate to work for a non-profit teaching woodworking and vocational skills to disabled adults for over ten years. In his work he strives to make the educational environment exceptional and supports teachers any way he can. Ed lives in San Rafael with his partner Susan, and when he isn’t working on the house, he enjoys sailing on San Francisco Bay in his boat.
Mike Hanas's picture

Mike Hanas

Head of School
mhanas@sffriendsschool.org
Mike Hanas's picture

Mike Hanas

Head of School
Mike joined Friends School in the summer of 2016, previously working as the Principal of Carolina Friends School (CFS), a pre-K­–12 Quaker school in Durham, North Carolina. A born teacher and a lifelong learner, Mike grew up on Chicago’s Southside, where he was the first in his family to graduate from high school. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Classics from the College of the Holy Cross, where he was elected Phi Beta Kappa, and his Master’s degree in Education Administration, Planning, and Social Policy from Harvard University. Mike has taught Latin, Greek, and humanities, served as a college counselor and assistant director of admissions, and coached basketball, football, and lacrosse teams at Tabor Academy, St. Paul's School in Concord, NH, and Durham Academy in addition to CFS and SFFS. He also serves currently on the Board of Trustees for the Friends Council on Education. Mike and his wife, Sue Gouchoe, met when they were coaching competing girls’ varsity basketball teams (Sue’s team won). Mike and Sue have two children: their daughter, Kyle, is a graduate of Smith College and faculty member at the Friends School of Wilmington (NC), and their son, Matt, currently attends UNC Chapel Hill, where he captains Darkside, UNC's ultimate frisbee team. Mike’s interests include reading, art, travel, outdoor adventure, the music of Bruce Springsteen, the Chicago Cubs, and long conversations with good friends.
Abby Rovner's picture

Abby Rovner

Director of Horizons Program
arovner@sffriendsschool.org
Abby Rovner's picture

Abby Rovner

Director of Horizons Program
Abby Rovner served as the Friends School's Middle and High School Transition Coordinator from 2011 to 2015. In this role, she led the high school transition process, welcomed and oriented students and families new to the middle school, spearheaded the launch of the new Friends Community Scholars program, and strengthened partnerships with a range of Mission based education and youth development agencies. Prior to coming to Friends, Abby started and ran "I Have a Dream" — San Francisco (IHAD-SF), a nonprofit college and career preparedness program that served 65 youth from San Francisco's Mission and Bayview/Hunter's Point neighborhoods. During her 12 years as Executive Director of IHAD, Abby and her team helped “Dreamers” grow up healthy, educated, and college bound. Abby earned a B.A. in Modern Thought and Literature and an M.A. in Educational Policy Analysis and Evaluation from Stanford University. Bilingual in Spanish and English, she has taught language arts, literature, and English as a Second Language to recently immigrated middle school students, worked in the administration of a community charter school, and served as mentor and guide for Waking the Village, a nonprofit that brought eighteen at-risk and homeless youth on a cross-country bicycle trip across the country. She is proud to build the first west coast Horizons program, providing enrichment opportunities for underserved children with the collaboration of the Mission community, the guidance of the Friends School's vision and values, and the support of its talented and committed faculty and leadership.
Kim Gitnick's picture

Kim Gitnick

Learning Specialist
kgitnick@sffriendsschool.org
Kim Gitnick's picture

Kim Gitnick

Learning Specialist
For over twenty years Kim has taught first through fourth grades, and has been a learning specialist in the Bay Area. Most recently she taught first grade at San Francisco Day School where she helped faculty deepen their understanding of Structured Word Inquiry (SWI), an approach for teaching word structure, vocabulary and spelling. Kim has worked extensively with Pete Bowers, the designer of this inquiry-based approach. Kim is originally from LA and attended UC Berkeley and San Francisco State University. She is the busy mother of her teenage son, and likes to practice yoga, run, hike, fly fish, and go on travel adventures with her son.
Suzanne Geller's picture

Suzanne Geller

Lower School Librarian
sgeller@sffriendsschool.org
Suzanne Geller's picture

Suzanne Geller

Lower School Librarian
Raised in Curaçao in the Caribbean, Suzanne is fluent in Spanish, Dutch, and Papiamentu and enjoys using her Spanish with the students, staff, and families at SFFS. A graduate of Smith and Bank Street College of Education, Suzanne has more than 20 years of experience as an educator and administrator—she has worked at the International School in Curacao, at Corlears and Ethical Culture School in New York City, and at Santa Catalina, Nueva, and Ring Mountain Day School here in California. Suzanne enjoys guiding students in discovery and learning and is thrilled to be doing so with books in the library. She lives in San Francisco with her partner, Stephen, and their son, Anemo (SFFS class of 2021).
Ryan Gallagher's picture

Ryan Gallagher

Director of Educational Technology
rgallagher@sffriendsschool.org
Ryan Gallagher's picture

Ryan Gallagher

Director of Educational Technology
Ryan brings a wealth of technological, classroom, and management experience to his role as Director of Educational Technology. Ryan is originally from Washington State and he has also lived in Florida, Chicago, and New York City. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Stetson University in Florida. Ryan currently resides in Oakland with his partner and their two children. Prior to joining SFFS in 2007, Ryan worked in technology leadership roles at startups, as founding member of The School for Children at Columbia University, at a Stanford University managed K-12 school, and as a technology consultant for independent schools. When he is not working on a computer, Ryan enjoys ‘unplugging’ and exploring the Northern California landscape with his family.
Frances Dickson's picture

Frances Dickson

Developmental Support Coordinator & K–4 Learning Specialist
fdickson@sffriendsschool.org
Frances Dickson's picture

Frances Dickson

Developmental Support Coordinator & K–4 Learning Specialist
Frances joined the SFFS team in 2008 after working for five years at The Nueva School as a reading specialist and for thirteen years at San Francisco Day School as a classroom teacher and learning specialist. Originally from Kentucky, Frances began her career in as a third grade teacher in a rural public school in Central Florida. After relocating to San Francisco, she completed her M.A. in Learning and Instruction at USF and has since attended professional development workshops to keep up with the developments in the understanding of learning. Frances has been active with the Northern CA branch of the International Dyslexia Association (NCBIDA) for many years and is currently the branch president. She has an extensive background in structured literacy, specifically the Slingerland approach, and is riveted by her new learning of Structured Word Inquiry, an approach that expands structured literacy and reaches a broad range of learners. Frances enjoys gardening, yoga, Burn—an indoor bootcamp of sorts—eating, and traveling. She and her partner live in Pacifica with their two teenage daughters, Grace and Vivianne, and their two elderly cats, Roses and Gracie.
Kristen Daniel's picture

Kristen Daniel

Director of Middle School and High School Transition
kdaniel@sffriendsschool.org
Kristen Daniel's picture

Kristen Daniel

Director of Middle School and High School Transition
Kristen Daniel brought nine years of teaching experience to our founding sixth grade team when she joined SFFS in 2007. She attended Brown University and jumped immediately into the classroom at Summit Middle School to fulfill her New Jersey Governor’s Teaching Scholarship. She taught language arts and social studies in a mixed seventh/eighth grade, and attended Rutgers to complete her master’s degree. After six years at Summit, Kristen moved into New York City, and joined the faculty at Intermediate School 413/School of the Future. During her two years there, she trained at the Columbia University Teachers College Writing Workshop, developed a portfolio assessment program, and supervised both student teachers and first-year teachers. She is now delighted to work with both students and parents, supporting them in their transition into middle school and with the high school application process. Kristen enjoys the beach, reading, and cooking for her partner, Jeff, and daughters, Lily (SFFS class of 2015) and Clementine (SFFS class of 2017).
Omar Cotom's picture

Omar Cotom

Janitor
ocotom@sffriendsschool.org
Omar Cotom's picture

Omar Cotom

Janitor
Eswin “Omar” was born and raised in Quetzaltenango (Xela), Guatemala, along with his five brothers and sisters. After graduating with a technical degree as a lathe operator, Omar married his wife Gloria and had three children before coming to the United States. Omar now has over twenty years of experience working as a school custodian. Omar and his family have found their spiritual home at Ministerios Cosecha (Harvest Ministries). Omar loves to help with his community and he is currently studying theology at Latin University of Theology.
Gloria Cotom's picture

Gloria Cotom

Janitor
gcotom@sffriendsschool.org
Gloria Cotom's picture

Gloria Cotom

Janitor
Gloria was born and raised in Quetzaltenango (Xela), Guatemala, where she married and started a family with Eswin Omar. Gloria loves children and works closely with them at her family’s spiritual home, Ministerio Cosecha. In her spare time, Gloria enjoys cooking traditional Guatemalan dishes in her kitchen, reading about spirituality, and making original greeting cards. Her oldest daughter, Lorenis, lives in Guatemala. Her son Osmar is a graduate of City College of San Francisco and her youngest daughter, Tanya, is a student at San Francisco State University and a lower school teaching assistant here at SFFS. Gloria loves working at San Francisco Friends School.
Violet Borowski's picture

Violet Borowski

Assistant to the Head of School
vborowski@sffriendsschool.org
Violet Borowski's picture

Violet Borowski

Assistant to the Head of School
Violet came to SFFS in 2012 from Southern California, where she earned her B.A. in Graphic Design from CSU San Bernardino. She made San Francisco her home in 2005, and has worked as a kindergarten assistant teacher at Hamlin, as well as over three years as an Executive Assistant for PACT, an educational nonprofit specializing in free collegiate assistance to underprivileged youth. Before joining Friends, she had the opportunity to immerse herself in the world of stationery stores, working at The Desk Set and Cherish in San Francisco. Violet speaks fluent Spanish and enjoys spending time with family and friends, warm sunny days, and exploring the many activities and treasures the city has to offer. She calls the Inner Sunset home, where she lives with her husband and daughter.
Yvette Bonaparte's picture

Yvette Bonaparte

Director of Admission
ybonaparte@sffriendsschool.org
Yvette Bonaparte's picture

Yvette Bonaparte

Director of Admission
Yvette came to San Francisco Friends School in 2002 as part of its founding staff with experience as an office manager and conferencing coordinator at The WELL, an online discussion community. She studied classical violin at the Manhattan School of Music, graduated from State University of New York at Purchase, and has an MA in Creative Writing from the University of San Francisco. She represented San Francisco Friends School at the 2003, 2015, and 2017 NAIS Diversity Leadership Institute. She has served on the board of the Bay Area chapter of the People of Color in Independent Schools (POCIS), and, at Friends, as co-clerk of the SFFS Diversity Committee. She is a member of the school's board Equity and Inclusion Steering Committee and currently serves on the board of the Bay Area Directors of Admission. Yvette lives with her husband Mark, and has two sons, Elijah (SFFS class of 2025) and Liam (SFFS class of 2013). In her spare time she is an online Scrabble fiend, enjoys farmers' markets, and loves to make unique ice cream flavors from the many ice cream recipe books she owns. 
Jose Azucena's picture

Jose Azucena

Maintenance Engineer
jazucena@sffriendsschool.org
Jose Azucena's picture

Jose Azucena

Maintenance Engineer
Jose is a native of El Salvador who has lived in San Francisco since 1976 with his family. His extensive experience working as a maintenance engineer made an impression on SFFS staff and he is happy to be part of such a prestigious school. He loves sports and has played and coached adult and youth soccer all his life, being a semi-pro coach for the Sons of Italy Soccer Club. He is also a fan of the Barcelona soccer team. His favorite music is salsa and jazz and he loves jogging at the beach regularly. 
Kori Riordan's picture

Kori Riordan

Learning Specialist
kriordan@sffriendsschool.org
Kori Riordan's picture

Kori Riordan

Learning Specialist
Kori Riordan is a Learning Specialist and Tutor at San Francisco Friends School, providing one-to-one and small group support for students with learning challenges. Her training includes multi-sensory instruction in language arts and math. Kori previously worked as a middle school math teacher, learning specialist, and 1st and 5th grade teacher. Kori earned an MBA from Loyola Marymount University and holds a Multiple Subject and Education Specialist teaching credential, an MA in Special Education from Notre Dame de Namur, and a Certificate in Educational Therapy. She is a Certified Mindfulness Instructor, active with the Northern California Branch of the International Dyslexia Association and member of the Association for Education Therapists. She is a mom of four children and loves to cook, hike, swim, practice yoga, and experience live theatre. 
Kelsey Sass's picture

Kelsey Sass

Evening & Weekend Front Desk Receptionist
ksass@sffriendsschool.org
Kelsey Sass's picture

Kelsey Sass

Evening & Weekend Front Desk Receptionist
Kelsey has lived in the Bay Area her entire life enjoying the options of having both fast and slow passed atmospheres. She is currently finishing up her teaching credential in Physical Educational at San Francisco State University and is following her dreams of helping the younger generations stay healthy, happy, and active. She is an avid soccer player, hiker, and backpacker. Outside of Friends School she coaches youth soccer as well as teaches group exercise classes including spin, barre, and High Intensity Interval Training, to adults. She enjoys working with all age levels as well as their different skill levels and feels a warm sense in knowing that she is an encouraging and positive presence in anyone’s life that will let her be. She is excited to be working at Friends School and can’t wait to see where her future takes her!
Guybe Slangen's picture

Guybe Slangen

Director of Community Engagement
gslangen@sffriendsschool.org
Guybe Slangen's picture

Guybe Slangen

Director of Community Engagement
Guybe comes from an international family of educators—his father (from Belgium) was a professor for nearly three decades and his mother (from the Philippines) taught in public schools for many years. Guybe joined SFFS in 2009 from the Head-Royce School where he was the Dean of Students. Prior to that he worked at independent schools in both Colorado and New York. Whether leading students to China on summer trips or taking them to serve meals at homeless shelters, Guybe believes strongly that learning has the greatest impact through experience. At Friends, his work centers around building and sustaining strong relationships between the school and the greater community. He also manages grade-level trips and supports diversity and service efforts throughout the school. Guybe is a graduate of Dickinson College and completed his Master’s in Educational Leadership at Columbia University’s Teachers College. He has served on the boards of the Northern California POCIS (People of Color in Independent Schools), the Asian Educators Alliance, and presented workshops nationally on the topics of leadership, diversity, and community engagement. Guybe lives in Oakland with his partner Susan and their daughter Livi.
Clarke Weatherspoon's picture

Clarke Weatherspoon

Middle School Head
cweatherspoon@sffriendsschool.org
Clarke Weatherspoon's picture

Clarke Weatherspoon

Middle School Head
Clarke joined San Francisco Friends School in July as the Middle School Head. He served as history instructor, 9th/10th Grade Dean, and Dean of Inclusion during 13 years at the Urban School of San Francisco. He is graduate of University of California, Santa Barbara and Teacher’s College at Columbia University. Clarke is a meditator, former water polo coach, and cyclist who lives in San Francisco with his family. 
 
Marina Vendrell-Ouali's picture

Marina Vendrell-Ouali

Director of Extended Day & A3
mvendrell@sffriendsschool.org
Marina Vendrell-Ouali's picture

Marina Vendrell-Ouali

Director of Extended Day & A3
A native of the Bay Area, Marina attended Humboldt State University, where she received a B.A. in Fine Arts, and California College of the Arts, where she completed her Master’s in Fine Arts. She has taught children and adolescents and served as a guest artist, artist-in-residence and lecturer at the San Francisco Day School and Marin Academy. She has directed the Extended Day Program here at Friends for over a decade. Marina is trained in the Responsive Classroom teaching method and has delved into the joys of play with Playworks. She served as an assistant in the very first Friends School Summer camp in 2003, and then directed the school’s growing summer camp for seven years. Marina and her 5-year-old son, Rezki, are deeply inspired by the Maker Movement, and spend their time making everything from granola to solar cars to paper monsters.
Jayla Tharp's picture

Jayla Tharp

Accounting Clerk
jtharp@sffriendsschool.org
Jayla Tharp's picture

Jayla Tharp

Accounting Clerk
Born and raised in Oakland, Jayla now lives in San Leandro with her three children. Jayla brings over 15 years of accounting experience to SFFS and holds a B.A. in Social Science (with a concentration in education) from Ashford University. She loves to help others and serves as a volunteer in her Oakland community, teaching young girls and women through ministry. After seven years of temping, Jayla was thrilled to start calling Friends home in the 2012–13 school year. Though she loves crunching numbers, Jayla also hopes to explore a career as a teacher or counselor in the future. She loves to dance!
Dan Sullivan's picture

Dan Sullivan

Development & Communications Associate
dsullivan@sffriendsschool.org
Dan Sullivan's picture

Dan Sullivan

Development & Communications Associate
Dan grew up in Maryland. He moved to Minnesota to attend Carleton College, where he recently graduated with a degree in Sociology/Anthropology. While in college, Dan volunteered with his school’s annual fund and alumni relations offices in a number of different roles, and he is excited to continue working in development at SFFS. SFFS’s emphasis on building a diverse and engaged community is what drew Dan to this role in particular. Outside of work, he loves to cook, bake, and try new foods. Dan recently moved to San Francisco, and he is excited to explore the city.
Jason Stone's picture

Jason Stone

Learning Commons Coordinator
jstone@sffriendsschool.org
Jason Stone's picture

Jason Stone

Learning Commons Coordinator
Born to a school teacher mother and a Baptist minister father, Jason grew up in a small town in North Carolina before attending Duke University to study the German language and Medieval art history. In 1994, after returning from teaching at a school in southern Germany, he moved to the Bay Area and began working at San Francisco Day School. During his first role there as an assistant librarian, Jason discovered his passion for helping children and adults learn to use technology as a tool for learning, discovery, and play. After helping to formalize the technology department, he eventually accepted the role of Director of Technology and helped SFDS integrate the rapidly evolving world of educational technology into its classrooms. In addition, he cherished the relationships he developed through his role as a sixth and seventh grade advisor. He joined Friends School in 2012 as the Learning Commons Coordinator. When not at school, Jason resides in the outer Richmond with his partner, Adra, and their cat Chester McMeowypants. Jason has been known to play bass guitar in the SFFS teacher band Testimony, and enjoys motorcycling and bicycling on any rain-free weekend.
Emma Sonduck's picture

Emma Sonduck

Annual Fund and Alumni Manager
esonduck@sffriendsschool.org
Emma Sonduck's picture

Emma Sonduck

Annual Fund and Alumni Manager
Emma joined Friends in 2015 from California College of the Arts, where she oversaw their annual giving for five years. She began her career in development over ten years ago as a grant writer for small arts organizations in San Francisco; from there, she worked for Family Service Agency San Francisco and the Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse. Originally from Massachusetts, she moved the the Bay Area after earning her BA from Mount Holyoke College. Emma resides in Oakland with her partner Christopher and their two cats. She enjoys cooking, going to the movies, and cheering for Oakland sport teams.
Marlene Sloger's picture

Marlene Sloger

Director of Development
msloger@sffriendsschool.org
Marlene Sloger's picture

Marlene Sloger

Director of Development
Marlene joined SFFS in 2008 with more than a decade of development experience as the Associate Director of Leadership Gifts at Princeton University, the Director of Development at the Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern California, Bay Area Local Initiatives Support Corporation, and Common Cause, a Washington, D.C. based nonprofit organization working for open and accountable government. Marlene grew up in suburban Maryland outside of Washington, D.C., the second daughter of two scientists. Perhaps due in part to her proximity to great museums, she developed an early love of history and pop culture, earning her undergraduate degree in American Studies at Eckerd College and Master’s in American Civilization from Brown University. Her first experience with Quaker education came at age seven when she attended a Quaker summer camp in the mountains of western North Carolina. The five glorious summers spent at Camp Celo were instrumental in her finding her way to SFFS. A Mission resident, Marlene is usually on the go with her husband, Hans, and sons Julian (SFFS class of 2021) and Hank.

Lower School

Amabelle Sze's picture

Amabelle Sze

3rd Grade Teacher
asze@sffriendsschool.org
Amabelle Sze's picture

Amabelle Sze

3rd Grade Teacher
Amabelle grew up in Madison, Wisconsin, and the suburbs of Chicago. She was inspired to become a teacher early on by her first and second piano teachers, Barbara Tiao and Olive P. Endres. Amabelle attended the University of Southern California and received her B.F.A. from the University of Illinois. In 2000, she migrated to San Francisco, a city she had fallen in love with after her first visit. She began as an assistant teacher in second and fourth grades at Stuart Hall for Boys and then taught third grade at Cathedral School for Boys while earning her teaching credential from San Francisco State University. Amabelle came to the faculty of SFFS in 2006, becoming part of the founding fourth grade team. She has participated in Lucy Calkins’ Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University’s summer programs and webinars, Responsive Classroom’s institute, Harvard's Project Zero Summer Institute, as well as the National Association of Independent Schools’ People of Color Conference. In the spring of 2015, Amabelle received the Herbst Award for Teaching Excellence. Amabelle spends her free time bouldering with her partner, Matt, and daughter, Maddy, outside near Lake Tahoe, or indoors at Dogpatch Boulders.
Courtney Wilde's picture

Courtney Wilde

1st Grade Teacher
cwilde@sffriendsschool.org
Courtney Wilde's picture

Courtney Wilde

1st Grade Teacher
Courtney grew up in Columbus, Ohio and graduated from Tulane University in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree. She began teaching elementary school in the New Orleans charter school system as a Teach for America corps member. Courtney then grew as an educator, union organizer, comedian, and meditator. A spiritual calling to focus on her meditation practice brought her to Green Gulch Farm in Marin for a year and a half of Zen practice. Courtney really impressed us with her intellect, intuition, pure joy, thoughtfulness, and her way with the children in her teaching practice. We a re thrilled that she has decided to join us and the first grade team at SFFS this fall, and she is excited to be of service to our school community and home.

 
Marina Vendrell-Ouali's picture

Marina Vendrell-Ouali

Director of Extended Day & A3
mvendrell@sffriendsschool.org
Marina Vendrell-Ouali's picture

Marina Vendrell-Ouali

Director of Extended Day & A3
A native of the Bay Area, Marina attended Humboldt State University, where she received a B.A. in Fine Arts, and California College of the Arts, where she completed her Master’s in Fine Arts. She has taught children and adolescents and served as a guest artist, artist-in-residence and lecturer at the San Francisco Day School and Marin Academy. She has directed the Extended Day Program here at Friends for over a decade. Marina is trained in the Responsive Classroom teaching method and has delved into the joys of play with Playworks. She served as an assistant in the very first Friends School Summer camp in 2003, and then directed the school’s growing summer camp for seven years. Marina and her 5-year-old son, Rezki, are deeply inspired by the Maker Movement, and spend their time making everything from granola to solar cars to paper monsters.
Andrea Snyder's picture

Andrea Snyder

2nd Grade Teacher
asnyder@sffriendsschool.org
Andrea Snyder's picture

Andrea Snyder

2nd Grade Teacher
Andrea is thrilled to be coming to San Francisco after five years teaching in international schools in London and Hanoi. Prior to moving abroad, she lived and taught in Brooklyn, NY, long enough to be considered a New Yorker. She earned a BA in American Civilization and English from George Washington University and an MEd in Elementary Education from Vanderbilt University. In her 18 years as a classroom teacher in independent schools, she has taught children from ages four to 11. She never grows tired of the joy, optimism, humor, and creativity that come along with spending days with young children. When she’s not teaching, Andrea enjoys traveling, hiking, running, baking, and finding tasty things to eat. 
Syd Shannon's picture

Syd Shannon

Lower School Teaching Assistant
sshannon@sffriendsschool.org
Syd Shannon's picture

Syd Shannon

Lower School Teaching Assistant
Syd is back home in the Bay Area after four years in New York City! They spent their time in NYC earning a Master’s in Sociology of Education with a focus on Anti-bias Early Childhood Education and Progressive Education. Syd took this time to conduct interview research on the experiences of Transgender and Gender non-conforming educators on the East Coast, support anti-bias practices in public and private schools in Manhattan, and volunteer with a camp serving Transgender youth. Home has since called Syd back to their art, passion for teaching, and SF Friends. Syd is thrilled to be working with a community grounded in compassionate education and community engagement.
Maureen Ray's picture

Maureen Ray

4th Grade Teacher
mray@sffriendsschool.org
Maureen Ray's picture

Maureen Ray

4th Grade Teacher
Maureen is delighted to join the SFFS community! For the past 10 years, she has taught 3rd and 5th grades at Black Pine Circle School in Berkeley. A Bay Area native, Maureen earned her undergraduate degree in Critical Gender Studies from UC San Diego, with a minor in education, and her MEd from UCLA. Maureen loves to learn, and was fortunate to be selected for numerous summer seminars through the Gilder Lehrman Institute, Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association, and National Endowment for the Humanities. Among her favorite seminars were The Civil Rights Movement in Memphis; American Immigration Through a California Lens in Los Angeles; and Age of Lincoln in Oxford, England. In her spare time, Maureen enjoys reading, biking, yoga, dance, and theatre, and serves on the Board of Directors and Artistic Advisory Committee of Contra Costa Civic Theatre in El Cerrito.
Gavin Odabashian's picture

Gavin Odabashian

Lower School Teaching Assistant
godabashian@sffriendsschool.org
Gavin Odabashian's picture

Gavin Odabashian

Lower School Teaching Assistant
Gavin was born and raised on the Peninsula by her two loving moms. She and her family have been active in the fight for marriage equality and LGBTQ rights since she was young. Gavin received her B.A. in Sociology from Scripps College in 2013, with a focus on gender and women’s studies. Most recently, she worked with middle schoolers in a variety of out-of-school-time programs that aimed to develop both academic and social and emotional learning at Peninsula Bridge, a nonprofit that serves low-income students in the area. Gavin is fluent in Spanish and has just returned from four months of travel in Colómbia, Chile, and Argentina—a dream of hers after she lived and studied abroad in Chile in 2012. Gavin is passionate about social justice and playing an active role in caring for and supporting the needs of children and families from a variety of backgrounds. In her free time, she loves cooking, hiking, painting, and spending quality time with loved ones. Gavin lives in Berkeley and attends the Berkeley Friends Meeting regularly.
Robelene Novero's picture

Robelene Novero

4th Grade Teacher
rnovero@sffriendsschool.org
Robelene Novero's picture

Robelene Novero

4th Grade Teacher
Robelene was an independent on-campus reading specialist here at SFFS for three years, where she worked with children in 1st–5th grades in foundation support to help them excel in the regular classroom program. In the fall of 2014, Robelene became a lead teacher. She has deep skills to meet a range of learners, and brings a depth of experience to our upper elementary team. Robelene received her Master's in Reading Leadership and earned her B.A. and teaching credential at Sacramento State University focusing primarily on multicultural education. She’s a first generation, SF-born, public-school-raised kid, who recalls wanting to be a teacher from her earliest years. She and her partner, Irman Arcibal (an art teacher at Riordan High School), live near Land's End and love to hike, salsa dance, and root for the Giants and the Warriors. Robelene is a life member of the United States Judo Association.
Cale Nickerson's picture

Cale Nickerson

Lower School Teaching Assistant
cnickerson@sffriendsschool.org
Cale Nickerson's picture

Cale Nickerson

Lower School Teaching Assistant
Cale was born in Los Angeles, CA, and lived there until he was four years old. He then moved to Pacific Grove, CA, where he graduated high school in 2010. During Cale’s childhood years, he loved basketball (Go Lakers!) and drawing portraits, dinosaurs, and music. He chose to attend Dominican University of California in San Rafael, CA, which is how he ended up in the Bay Area. He graduated from DU of C in 2014 with a BA in Education. Cale has lived all over the Bay Area, from Oakland to Marin to Concord, and has been working in the Mission District for the past two years as an art director for the Mission Boys & Girls Club. Cale looks forward to continuing his involvement in the Mission community while shaping youth into productive, thoughtful, and empathetic people who can effect change positively. 
Nick McGrane's picture

Nick McGrane

Kindergarten Teacher
nmcgrane@sffriendsschool.org
Lisa McEachron's picture

Lisa McEachron

PE Teacher
lmceachron@sffriendsschool.org
Lisa McEachron's picture

Lisa McEachron

PE Teacher
Lisa joined the SFFS staff in 2009. Lisa taught P.E. at Katherine Delmar Burke School in the mid-1990s for three years. Previous to that, she taught in the East Bay at an elementary school and at a K–12 school for emotionally troubled students. Lisa brings a host of physical education skills to our school—she is a seasoned bike tour leader, an experienced coach, and an events coordinator. Lisa pioneered our first Field Day in the spring of 2010. She is an ardent believer in preparing students for lifelong fitness and physical activity. Lisa has both a B.A. (Cal State, Chico) and M.S. (Cal State, Hayward) in Physical Education, and an abiding interest in health education. She is an avid camper, hiker, and biking enthusiast, having biked 2,000 miles from Oregon to Colorado. She enjoys reading, gardening, and cooking. Lisa has two children, Elizabeth and Annie (SFFS class of 2011).
Tracie Mastronicola's picture

Tracie Mastronicola

Academic Dean
tmastronicola@sffriendsschool.org
Tracie Mastronicola's picture

Tracie Mastronicola

Academic Dean
Tracie excitedly returned to SFFS as our Academic Dean in the summer of 2016. Tracie brings her enthusiasm and 16 years of experience in and around the classroom to her new role at SFFS. After finishing her own education on the east coast, the native New Yorker packed up her car and drove out west where she's been acting like a tourist in San Francisco ever since. Tracie's first introduction to teaching was at the Nueva School; it was there that she realized the innovative, dynamic, and sometimes chaotic nature of a school was where she felt most at home. Tracie dove into both teaching and learning, spending the next two decades focusing on science and math curriculum, project-based learning, advising young adults, and leading service learning trips with students to far off places. After teaching in the classroom at SFFS, Tracie most recently worked with a team designing science simulations at CK-12 Foundation, an educational non-profit organization aimed at providing free material to students and teachers. In her free time, Tracie loves eating and, subsequently, running through Golden Gate Park. Tracie, her wife Alyssa, and their twin boys live​​ and play in San Francisco.
Ben Lopez's picture

Ben Lopez

Lower School Teaching Assistant
blopez@sffriendsschool.org
Ben Lopez's picture

Ben Lopez

Lower School Teaching Assistant
Ben is a Bay Area Teacher Training Institute student. He earned his B.A. in English at San Francisco State University. Ben was the caretaker of his grandparents for ten years, helping him to develop compassion, empathy, and patience. More recently Ben worked for six years as a bookseller at Christopher’s Books, where he found joy in community and art. Ben strives for balance within himself and the outside world, practicing mindfulness and meditation regularly. An avid reader and Giants fan, Ben lives with his partner Ema and their daughter Mika in Potrero Hill.
Erin Kendrew's picture

Erin Kendrew

1st Grade Teacher
ekendrew@sffriendsschool.org
Erin Kendrew's picture

Erin Kendrew

1st Grade Teacher
Erin Kendrew was born and raised in New Zealand, graduating with her B.A. in English and History from Massey University in Palmerston North, New Zealand. She went on to receive her teaching diploma, and launched her career immediately. In more than a decade of teaching, Erin has taught kindergartners in Wellington and Christchurch in her home country, first and second graders in Egypt and England, and kindergartners in Oakland. Erin was trained with Harvard’s “Project Zero” curriculum and year-long fellowship with the Making Math Real program, and has experience in numerous reading, writing, and literacy programs. At Head-Royce School, Erin coordinated with two Oakland public schools to implement a service-learning program. Erin moved to the Bay Area with her Dutch husband, Dieuwe, and young daughter, Ava, in 2007 and has taught kindergarten and first grade here at SFFS.
Mike Hanas's picture

Mike Hanas

Head of School
mhanas@sffriendsschool.org
Mike Hanas's picture

Mike Hanas

Head of School
Mike joined Friends School in the summer of 2016, previously working as the Principal of Carolina Friends School (CFS), a pre-K­–12 Quaker school in Durham, North Carolina. A born teacher and a lifelong learner, Mike grew up on Chicago’s Southside, where he was the first in his family to graduate from high school. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Classics from the College of the Holy Cross, where he was elected Phi Beta Kappa, and his Master’s degree in Education Administration, Planning, and Social Policy from Harvard University. Mike has taught Latin, Greek, and humanities, served as a college counselor and assistant director of admissions, and coached basketball, football, and lacrosse teams at Tabor Academy, St. Paul's School in Concord, NH, and Durham Academy in addition to CFS and SFFS. He also serves currently on the Board of Trustees for the Friends Council on Education. Mike and his wife, Sue Gouchoe, met when they were coaching competing girls’ varsity basketball teams (Sue’s team won). Mike and Sue have two children: their daughter, Kyle, is a graduate of Smith College and faculty member at the Friends School of Wilmington (NC), and their son, Matt, currently attends UNC Chapel Hill, where he captains Darkside, UNC's ultimate frisbee team. Mike’s interests include reading, art, travel, outdoor adventure, the music of Bruce Springsteen, the Chicago Cubs, and long conversations with good friends.
Dianne Hurvitz's picture

Dianne Hurvitz

Lower School Music Specialist
dhurvitz@sffriendsschool.org
Dianne Hurvitz's picture

Dianne Hurvitz

Lower School Music Specialist
A New England native, Dianne has lived and taught in the Midwest, the Rockies, and the Northeast, and is now having a wonderful time settling here in California. After earning a BA in music from Oberlin College, where she played any and all musical instruments she could get her hands on, Dianne then spent time in the worlds of musical theater production and filmmaking. A love of working with students inspired Dianne to return to Oberlin to earn a Master’s in Education. She began her classroom teaching experience as a kindergarten teacher in Boston, MA, later combining her love of teaching and music as the founding music teacher for a K-8 charter school. She was drawn to the Bay Area by friends and family, and the opportunity to help build the Khan Lab School as the music and wellness teacher. Dianne is passionate about coaching students to embrace their curiosity, wonder, and imagination, and to foster a lifelong love of learning.
Andrea Green's picture

Andrea Green

3rd Grade Teacher
agreen@sffriendsschool.org
Andrea Green's picture

Andrea Green

3rd Grade Teacher
Andrea is thrilled to be joining the 3rd Grade team at Friends. She has over 20 years teaching experience, most recently at SF Day School. She received a BA in Liberal Studies and Women’s Studies at SF State University and a MA in Teaching from University of San Francisco. Andrea lives in the Inner Sunset with her 11-year-old son, Emmett, and their kitty, Willie. Andrea is passionate about elementary education and especially enjoys teaching mathematics, Structured Word Inquiry, and social/emotional curriculum. During her free time, Andrea enjoys cooking, traveling, and camping, and loves belting out 80’s covers as the lead singer in her teacher band, The Red Slips.
Marisa Graham's picture

Marisa Graham

Lower School Teaching Assistant
mgraham@sffriendsschool.org
Marisa Graham's picture

Marisa Graham

Lower School Teaching Assistant
Marisa, a San Francisco native, graduated from California College of the Arts with a BFA in Illustration, where she gained experience drafting art lessons and working with classmates, teachers, and local communities on collaborative art projects, sparking her interest in teaching. After graduating, Marisa wanted to further pursue her interest in education, and joined San Francisco Friends School as an Extended Day teacher in 2016. In addition to teaching as an enrichment teacher and substitute, Marisa has taught art at SFFS and Horizons. In her spare time, Marisa enjoys sewing stuffed animals, painting, baking, hiking, watching films (especially drama and documentary), and reading (anything science fiction or mystery). On weekends, you can spot her browsing flea markets for vintage art prints and cat figurines, grabbing a milkshake and a movie at the Alamo Drafthouse, or heading to the Point Isabelle Dog Park.
Jon Burnett's picture

Jon Burnett

3rd–8th Grade Drama Teacher
jburnett@sffriendsschool.org
Jon Burnett's picture

Jon Burnett

3rd–8th Grade Drama Teacher
Jon started acting early—he fondly remembers performing at the Pacific Yearly Meeting of Friends while growing up in a Quaker family. Jon has performed Shakespeare in Hungary and Kafka in Slovakia, taught drama in Tennessee, Washington, and California, directed theater productions at the Willows Theater camp, and performed locally at La Luna Theatre. Along with his work here at SFFS, Jon teaches Improvisation, Middle School Performance Ensemble and Play Creation at the Berkeley Rep School of Theater. He lives in El Cerrito with his partner, Rebecca, and their son, Leo.
Angie Gonzalez's picture

Angie Gonzalez

Lower School Teaching Assistant
agonzalez@sffriendsschool.org
Angie Gonzalez's picture

Angie Gonzalez

Lower School Teaching Assistant
Angelica was born and raised in Los Angeles. She moved to the Bay Area in 2012 to attend San Francisco State University where she earned a B.A. in Latina/o Studies and a minor in Race & Resistance Studies. Angie started her career in education at 19 years old when her high school coach asked her to be the Academic Decathlon assistant. To this day, the Academic Decathlon program is very dear and near to her heart, and she continues to volunteer at the Regional and State competition. Since then, she worked with Transitional Kindergarten and Newcomer High School students from Central America. Most recently, she has worked with middle school students through the Aim High program, and as a first and second grade after school teacher at Paul Revere Elementary. During her free time she visits her family in L.A as often as she can, loves to cook, and runs in small (5K, 12K, 15K) races all over the city. She aspires to one day run a full marathon and to be a culturally relevant and critically conscious educator.
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Suzanne Geller

Lower School Librarian
sgeller@sffriendsschool.org
Suzanne Geller's picture

Suzanne Geller

Lower School Librarian
Raised in Curaçao in the Caribbean, Suzanne is fluent in Spanish, Dutch, and Papiamentu and enjoys using her Spanish with the students, staff, and families at SFFS. A graduate of Smith and Bank Street College of Education, Suzanne has more than 20 years of experience as an educator and administrator—she has worked at the International School in Curacao, at Corlears and Ethical Culture School in New York City, and at Santa Catalina, Nueva, and Ring Mountain Day School here in California. Suzanne enjoys guiding students in discovery and learning and is thrilled to be doing so with books in the library. She lives in San Francisco with her partner, Stephen, and their son, Anemo (SFFS class of 2021).
Alexandria Garcia's picture

Alexandria Garcia

Lower School Teaching Assistant
agarcia@sffriendsschool.org
Alexandria Garcia's picture

Alexandria Garcia

Lower School Teaching Assistant
Alexandria is a Bay Area native, currently residing in the East Bay. Alexandria’s love for working in schools began her first year at university, where she became a 6th grade classroom volunteer who provided extra support to English Language Learners. From there, the seed was planted for her to pursue a degree in Liberal Studies with a focus in Childhood Studies, which she received in the Spring of 2017 at Cal State East Bay. In the past, she has worked in Newark, Hayward, and Oakland Unified School Districts. For the past two years, she’s been an associate 1st grade teacher at Park Day School. This year, she will be finishing the final stretch of earning her Multiple Subject Credential and Master’s with BATTI. In her free time, you’ll find Alexandria exploring flea markets for hidden clothing gems, enjoying drive- in movies, and searching the web for the next airline sale to take her to a new destination to explore.
Beth Espinoza's picture

Beth Espinoza

Technology Integrator
bespinoza@sffriendsschool.org
Beth Espinoza's picture

Beth Espinoza

Technology Integrator
Beth is a Bay Area native, born and raised in Pacifica. Her interest in black and white photography has taken her on a path of discovery of filmmaking and media literacy, culminating in eight years’ experience as a K–5 technology integrator in Marin County and as a fourth grade teacher in Daly City. She has a B.A. in Education from CSU Humboldt and her teaching credentials from SFSU. Along the way she partnered with media organizations such as the San Francisco Film Society, KQED, Common Sense Media, and Glide Memorial to produce community-inspired media projects. She has shared this passion of integrating engaging best practices into the classroom with various professional learning communities, presenting at CUE conferences and networking with various educational Meetups, Edcamps, and online communities. When not collaborating with her PLC, Beth enjoys traveling the world as well as hiking and biking Bay Area trails with her partner Mateo.
Nina Eckhoff's picture

Nina Eckhoff

Lower School Teaching Assistant
neckoff@sffriendsschool.org
Nina Eckhoff's picture

Nina Eckhoff

Lower School Teaching Assistant
Nina started working with children in 2010, when she become part of the Glenridge Cooperative Nursery School community. Since then, she has worked at Pacific Primary School, and in 2016 joined SF Friends as a substitute teacher in the lower school. Nina lives in San Francisco with her husband and son, and enjoys camping and baking with her family. Most weekends, you can find Nina attempting new moves in a big dance class.
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Frances Dickson

Developmental Support Coordinator & K–4 Learning Specialist
fdickson@sffriendsschool.org
Frances Dickson's picture

Frances Dickson

Developmental Support Coordinator & K–4 Learning Specialist
Frances joined the SFFS team in 2008 after working for five years at The Nueva School as a reading specialist and for thirteen years at San Francisco Day School as a classroom teacher and learning specialist. Originally from Kentucky, Frances began her career in as a third grade teacher in a rural public school in Central Florida. After relocating to San Francisco, she completed her M.A. in Learning and Instruction at USF and has since attended professional development workshops to keep up with the developments in the understanding of learning. Frances has been active with the Northern CA branch of the International Dyslexia Association (NCBIDA) for many years and is currently the branch president. She has an extensive background in structured literacy, specifically the Slingerland approach, and is riveted by her new learning of Structured Word Inquiry, an approach that expands structured literacy and reaches a broad range of learners. Frances enjoys gardening, yoga, Burn—an indoor bootcamp of sorts—eating, and traveling. She and her partner live in Pacifica with their two teenage daughters, Grace and Vivianne, and their two elderly cats, Roses and Gracie.
Tanya Cotom's picture

Tanya Cotom

Lower School Spanish
tcotom@sffriendsschool.org
Tanya Cotom's picture

Tanya Cotom

Lower School Spanish
Tanya was born in Guatemala and raised in San Francisco, California. She is a native Spanish speaker, and received her BA in Child and Adolescent Development and Master's in Elementary Education at San Francisco State University. She has spent summers teaching with Horizons and was a teaching assistant in the Lower School for three years before moving into her current role teaching Lower School Spanish. Tanya feels drawn to teaching the language she loves as an expression of her true voice as a teacher. She loves art, music, reading, running, and spending her free time with her family.
Tracy Coleman's picture

Tracy Coleman

1st Grade Teacher
tcoleman@sffriendsschool.org
Tracy Coleman's picture

Tracy Coleman

1st Grade Teacher
Tracy was born and raised in London, England. She attended college in the United States and received her B.S. in Early Childhood Education from the University of Vermont. Following graduation, she came out west as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer to work in Richmond, CA at the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts and subsequently completed her M.A. in Elementary Education at San Francisco State. Over the last 20 years, Tracy has taught kindergarten at the French American International School, first grade at Discovery Center School, and a kindergarten/first multiage class at White Oaks School in San Carlos. She joined the faculty of SFFS as the lower school drama teacher in 2006 and is now a first grade teacher. Tracy is also a supervisor of student teachers for the BATTI (Bay Area Teacher Training Institute) program. Tracy, her husband, Jordy, and their two sons (ages seven and nine) live in San Francisco. In her free time, she serves on the parent board and volunteers at her children’s school. She loves baking and chocolate and spends as much time skiing with her family as possible.
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Mick Colburn

Director of Athletics, PE Teacher
mcolburn@sffriendsschool.org
Mick Colburn's picture

Mick Colburn

Director of Athletics, PE Teacher
Mick brings over decade of coaching and teaching experience to SFFS. He worked as a coach, P.E. instructor, and Athletic Director at the San Francisco Waldorf School and as the Youth Athletic Program Coordinator at the JCCSF. For two summers he returned to his native Massachusetts to teach in a summer school program that included both morning P.E. classes and an after-school program focused on character building through sports and teamwork. Recently, Mick has been directing an after-school arts enrichment program serving 135 kids from twelve different San Francisco public schools. When he’s not working, Mick loves to take care of his orchids, cook with his wife, and explore San Francisco.
Sunné Clarke's picture

Sunné Clarke

PE Teacher
sclarke@sffriendsschool.org
Sunné Clarke's picture

Sunné Clarke

PE Teacher
Sunné Clarke started teaching PE in the charter school world, first in her hometown of Chicago then in New York City. She spent twelve years in the Big Apple, ten of which were at the Trevor Day School teaching lower school PE and coaching. Sunné also taught health and wellness and built out Trevor’s athletic program to include track and field and rugby! A competitive swimmer in high school, Sunné is passionate about teaching students to be life-long learners in fitness as well as tapping into each child’s unique inner spirit. At Friends she teaches lower school PE, middle school electives, health classes, and coaches in our athletic program. Sunné has a degree in English with a minor in education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Anhvu Buchanan's picture

Anhvu Buchanan

2nd Grade Teacher
abuchanan@sffriendsschool.org
Anhvu Buchanan's picture

Anhvu Buchanan

2nd Grade Teacher
Anhvu served for two years as a Bay Area Teacher Training Institute (BATTI) intern in both 2nd and 3rd grades at Friends before spending two years in the lead teaching position at The Berkeley School (TBS), where he has thrived in a combination 1st and 2nd grade classroom. Hailing from Virginia, Anvhu has two master’s degrees, one in Education from UoP, and one in Creative Writing from SF State. A published writer, he spent several years as a Writer’s Corps volunteer in the Juvenile Justice Center teaching poetry. Anhvu has been drawn to Quaker education for some time; while he was here, he committed himself to the ideals of the school by working with Horizons. While Anhvu has truly enjoyed his time at TBS, he describes Friends as a pull he could not deny. We are so happy to welcome him back to the team.
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Noah Bowling

Kindergarten Teacher
nbowling@sffriendsschool.org
Noah Bowling's picture

Noah Bowling

Kindergarten Teacher
Noah joined the Friends School team in the 2003–04 school year after teaching for three years in the Riverside Unified School District in Southern California and at Jump Academy, a charter school in San Francisco. Noah received his B.A. in Early Childhood Education from Boston College, and served as an assistant teacher in public schools in the Boston area. He has worked with children from preschool through third grade as both teacher and mentor. Passionate about baseball, Noah coaches baseball at the Urban School of San Francisco. He directed SFFS “Friends in Nature” Summer Camp during the summer of 2004, and traveled to Japan with a Fulbright Memorial Fund Grant in the fall of 2005. Noah and Danielle St. Amand were married on the shore of Narragansett Bay in 2007 and reside in Pacifica with their son Liam. Noah recently completed his master’s at Notre Dame de Namur University with his thesis about empathy entitled “Caught or Taught?”
Jake Ban's picture

Jake Ban

3rd Grade Teacher
jban@sffriendsschool.org
Jake Ban's picture

Jake Ban

3rd Grade Teacher
Jake taught in upper elementary school classrooms at the Aspire East Palo Alto Charter School for four years. He earned his master's and teaching credential at Stanford and his bachelor's degree at Swarthmore College (a Quaker college), and spent a summer as an English instructor in La Joya, Ecuador, funded by a Swarthmore Summer Social Justice grant. Since 2013, Jake has been active with Teachers College at Columbia University, piloting curriculum and attending five institutes for reading, writing, and content literacy. He has mentored a student teacher from the Stanford Teacher Education Program as well as pursued additional literacy coursework in at Stanford’s Center for Excellence in Teaching. Jake hails from St. Louis, and currently resides with his partner, Grady, in Noe Valley. Jake has a background in piano and song, having studied piano for over 20 years.
Jennifer Arnest's picture

Jennifer Arnest

Lower School Head
jarnest@sffriendsschool.org
Jennifer Arnest's picture

Jennifer Arnest

Lower School Head
Jennifer grew up in Chicago, Baltimore, and Pasadena—for this, she considers herself tri-coastal. In her East Coast chapter, she and her two brothers attended Baltimore Friends School. Jennifer’s father is a professor, and her mother was a teacher, and Jennifer felt like a “school person” from her earliest years. Jennifer brings over twenty years of teaching and administrative experience to SFFS, from Children’s Day School in San Francisco, to the International School of Tanganyika in East Africa, to University Child Development School in Seattle, and The Nueva School on the Peninsula. She has taught kindergarten, first and second grades, and has served as Assessment Committee Chair and faculty Board representative at the Nueva School. Before coming to the Friends School, Jennifer worked at the Children's School at Mills College, in the School of Education, where she taught and supervised the work of the graduate students entering the profession. Jennifer and her partner Martin live in the East Bay, and are the parents of two children, Sofia (SFFS class of 2018) and Luca (SFFS class of 2022).
Caren Andrews's picture

Caren Andrews

K–4, 7/8 Art Teacher
candrews@sffriendsschool.org
Caren Andrews's picture

Caren Andrews

K–4, 7/8 Art Teacher
Caren is a practicing Teaching Artist with over 25 years of working with both children and adult learners. In addition to teaching kindergarten through fourth grade, and a 7/8th grade elective at SFFS, she is a faculty member for the Alameda County Office of Education’s Integrated Learning Specialist Program. Caren holds a B.F.A. from UCLA and a Master's Degree in Education specializing in Arts Integration from Lesley University. She lives (and paints) in Oakland with her husband, Mike. They have two daughters.

Middle School

Sunné Clarke's picture

Sunné Clarke

PE Teacher
sclarke@sffriendsschool.org
Sunné Clarke's picture

Sunné Clarke

PE Teacher
Sunné Clarke started teaching PE in the charter school world, first in her hometown of Chicago then in New York City. She spent twelve years in the Big Apple, ten of which were at the Trevor Day School teaching lower school PE and coaching. Sunné also taught health and wellness and built out Trevor’s athletic program to include track and field and rugby! A competitive swimmer in high school, Sunné is passionate about teaching students to be life-long learners in fitness as well as tapping into each child’s unique inner spirit. At Friends she teaches lower school PE, middle school electives, health classes, and coaches in our athletic program. Sunné has a degree in English with a minor in education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Jon Burnett's picture

Jon Burnett

3rd–8th Grade Drama Teacher
jburnett@sffriendsschool.org
Jon Burnett's picture

Jon Burnett

3rd–8th Grade Drama Teacher
Jon started acting early—he fondly remembers performing at the Pacific Yearly Meeting of Friends while growing up in a Quaker family. Jon has performed Shakespeare in Hungary and Kafka in Slovakia, taught drama in Tennessee, Washington, and California, directed theater productions at the Willows Theater camp, and performed locally at La Luna Theatre. Along with his work here at SFFS, Jon teaches Improvisation, Middle School Performance Ensemble and Play Creation at the Berkeley Rep School of Theater. He lives in El Cerrito with his partner, Rebecca, and their son, Leo.
Sabrina Brooks's picture

Sabrina Brooks

Middle School Humanities Teacher
sbrooks@sffriendsschool.org
Sabrina Brooks's picture

Sabrina Brooks

Middle School Humanities Teacher
Sabrina joined the original SFFS team in 2010 after teaching middle school at The Town School in New York City for nine years. In her time at Town, Sabrina taught and created curriculum for social studies and English classes in the sixth and eighth grades and served as an advisor. Outside of the classroom at The Town School, Sabrina worked to improve student assessment and design faculty evaluations. She also co-chaired the school’s accreditation process, worked with the diversity committee, and helped design curriculum. Here at SFFS, Sabrina pioneered an eighth grade trip to the Central Valley of California, and worked with her colleagues to design a fully integrated curriculum around immigration, agriculture, and water policy. Sabrina has taught middle-schoolers for many years and particularly loves the curiosity and energy of this age group. A native of the Bay Area, Sabrina is happy to be back in California; she lives in Marin with her partner, Andy, and their two children, Charlie and Hannah.
Diali Bose-Roy's picture

Diali Bose-Roy

Middle School Math Teacher
dboseroy@sffriendsschool.org
Diali Bose-Roy's picture

Diali Bose-Roy

Middle School Math Teacher
Diali joined the SFFS team after completing her Master’s in Education Leadership at Columbia. The daughter of a nuclear engineer and a civil engineer, Diali grew up just outside of Los Angeles. Her extended family hails from Kolkata, India, and her family speaks Bengali at home. Diali and her older brother both attended public schools, and Diali went on to study biology at Scripps College, where she was drawn first to medicine, and eventually to documentary filmmaking. Upon graduation, Diali worked for several years in television production and postproduction until deciding to begin her journey as an educator, first running an after-school enrichment program in southern California and then enrolling at Boston’s Lesley College elementary education graduate program. When Diali is not studying or teaching, she goes underwater—scuba-diving in the Caribbean or on the Great Barrier Reef of Australia, exploring the lava tubes of Hawaii, or shark diving in Belize.
Kelsey Barbella's picture

Kelsey Barbella

Middle School Math Teacher
kbarbella@sffriendsschool.org
Kelsey Barbella's picture

Kelsey Barbella

Middle School Math Teacher
Kelsey Barbella is a New Jersey native who followed her heart and moved to the city four years ago. While living on the east coast, she obtained her bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering at the University of Connecticut. She then volunteered with AmeriCorps, where she not only served as an ambassador for the watersheds of New Jersey, but also educated over 2,500 students, pushing them to explore, analyze, and solve water issues themselves. This work sparked a love of teaching and a hunger for adventure outside of the program. As soon as the program ended, Kelsey moved to SF to begin teaching middle school math at Convent Elementary School. Kelsey strives to bring real-world, 21st century math into her classroom and integrates play as much as possible. She believes all students are able to learn math at the highest levels and views collaboration and values exploration as fundamental to learning. Kelsey lives in the Sunset with her boyfriend Shaun and two cats, Harrison and Patty Cake.
Ester Azucena's picture

Ester Azucena

Middle School Spanish Teacher
eazucena@sffriendsschool.org
Ester Azucena's picture

Ester Azucena

Middle School Spanish Teacher
Originally from El Salvador, Ester became a San Franciscan at age four. After attending public schools in the city, she earned her B.A. in both Liberal Studies and Spanish at San Francisco State University. Ester began teaching Sunday school at the age of thirteen and has remained connected to kids ever since. As a teenager, she also worked as a receptionist and an intern with the Private Industry Council of San Francisco, a local organization that specializes in supporting low-income youth and families. Ester has taught Spanish and served as an administrator for “Language in Action,” a preschool and elementary language immersion program. She taught lower school Spanish before joining the middle school team in the fall of 2012. Each spring, Ester accompanies SFFS seventh-graders on their trip to Nicaragua.
Caren Andrews's picture

Caren Andrews

K–4, 7/8 Art Teacher
candrews@sffriendsschool.org
Caren Andrews's picture

Caren Andrews

K–4, 7/8 Art Teacher
Caren is a practicing Teaching Artist with over 25 years of working with both children and adult learners. In addition to teaching kindergarten through fourth grade, and a 7/8th grade elective at SFFS, she is a faculty member for the Alameda County Office of Education’s Integrated Learning Specialist Program. Caren holds a B.F.A. from UCLA and a Master's Degree in Education specializing in Arts Integration from Lesley University. She lives (and paints) in Oakland with her husband, Mike. They have two daughters.
Luz Andino's picture

Luz Andino

Middle School Spanish Teacher
landino@sffriendsschool.org
Luz Andino's picture

Luz Andino

Middle School Spanish Teacher
Luz grew up in Argentina where she studied psychology and communication and received her degree in education from the College of Italian Culture in Buenos Aires. Over the next ten years, she taught elementary-aged students in an array of subjects including music and English literature. She moved to Mallorca, Spain, where she studied art at the Joan Miro Art Institute and where her daughter Clara was born. Luz has taught Spanish for the past eleven years to both adults and children at San Francisco Friends School, French American High School, the Hamlin School, and Children’s Day School. Luz’s passion and concern for the environment led her to pursue her certification in permaculture design; she completed an internship in Taos, New Mexico learning bio-construction. She enjoys working in her backyard, where her two chickens and 500,000 bees reside.
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Kristen Daniel

Director of Middle School and High School Transition
kdaniel@sffriendsschool.org
Kristen Daniel's picture

Kristen Daniel

Director of Middle School and High School Transition
Kristen Daniel brought nine years of teaching experience to our founding sixth grade team when she joined SFFS in 2007. She attended Brown University and jumped immediately into the classroom at Summit Middle School to fulfill her New Jersey Governor’s Teaching Scholarship. She taught language arts and social studies in a mixed seventh/eighth grade, and attended Rutgers to complete her master’s degree. After six years at Summit, Kristen moved into New York City, and joined the faculty at Intermediate School 413/School of the Future. During her two years there, she trained at the Columbia University Teachers College Writing Workshop, developed a portfolio assessment program, and supervised both student teachers and first-year teachers. She is now delighted to work with both students and parents, supporting them in their transition into middle school and with the high school application process. Kristen enjoys the beach, reading, and cooking for her partner, Jeff, and daughters, Lily (SFFS class of 2015) and Clementine (SFFS class of 2017).
Mick Colburn's picture

Mick Colburn

Director of Athletics, PE Teacher
mcolburn@sffriendsschool.org
Mick Colburn's picture

Mick Colburn

Director of Athletics, PE Teacher
Mick brings over decade of coaching and teaching experience to SFFS. He worked as a coach, P.E. instructor, and Athletic Director at the San Francisco Waldorf School and as the Youth Athletic Program Coordinator at the JCCSF. For two summers he returned to his native Massachusetts to teach in a summer school program that included both morning P.E. classes and an after-school program focused on character building through sports and teamwork. Recently, Mick has been directing an after-school arts enrichment program serving 135 kids from twelve different San Francisco public schools. When he’s not working, Mick loves to take care of his orchids, cook with his wife, and explore San Francisco.
Marcell DeBarros's picture

Marcell DeBarros

Middle School Teaching Assistant
mdebarros@sffriendsschool.org
Marcell DeBarros's picture

Marcell DeBarros

Middle School Teaching Assistant
Marcell is a SoCal native who grew up between Orange County and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. As long as weather permits, you will find him at the beach or enjoying the sun at the park. Marcell expresses his creative side through dance and watercolor painting. He studied psychology and education through the University of San Francisco’s dual-degree teacher preparation program. Marcell is excited to share his love of creative expression and community-building in the classroom. 
Mitch Neuger's picture

Mitch Neuger

Middle School Learning Specialist
mneuger@sffriendsschool.org
Mitch Neuger's picture

Mitch Neuger

Middle School Learning Specialist
Before joining the SFFS community, Mitch worked with elementary, middle, and high school students as a classroom teacher, tutor, and educational therapist. Mitch has a B.A. in American Studies from Yale, a teaching credential from San Francisco State, an M.Ed. in educational therapy from Holy Names, and sore wrists from the Academy of Art. He is trained in Making Math Real and the Slingerland Language Approach. Since childhood, he has loved doodling (“cartooning”), playing in the dirt (“gardening”), and singing in the car with the doors and windows closed.
Marina Vendrell-Ouali's picture

Marina Vendrell-Ouali

Director of Extended Day & A3
mvendrell@sffriendsschool.org
Marina Vendrell-Ouali's picture

Marina Vendrell-Ouali

Director of Extended Day & A3
A native of the Bay Area, Marina attended Humboldt State University, where she received a B.A. in Fine Arts, and California College of the Arts, where she completed her Master’s in Fine Arts. She has taught children and adolescents and served as a guest artist, artist-in-residence and lecturer at the San Francisco Day School and Marin Academy. She has directed the Extended Day Program here at Friends for over a decade. Marina is trained in the Responsive Classroom teaching method and has delved into the joys of play with Playworks. She served as an assistant in the very first Friends School Summer camp in 2003, and then directed the school’s growing summer camp for seven years. Marina and her 5-year-old son, Rezki, are deeply inspired by the Maker Movement, and spend their time making everything from granola to solar cars to paper monsters.
Christine Tantoco's picture

Christine Tantoco

Middle School Science Teacher
ctantoco@sffriendsschool.org
Christine Tantoco's picture

Christine Tantoco

Middle School Science Teacher
Christine grew up in Ohio and attended the University of Chicago and Northwestern University, to study biology as a part of the Golden Apple Teacher Education program. While teaching in Chicago, she earned her Master’s degree in Science Education from the Illinois Institute of Technology. Christine has taught middle school students for over a decade, most recently at the Overlake School in Seattle, where she taught science, served on the technology committee, and sponsored a variety of extracurricular activities for her students. She and her partner Marshall have two children, Olivia and Alexander. In her free time, Christine enjoys reading, dancing, crafting, and playing strategy board games.
Jennifer Stuart's picture

Jennifer Stuart

Middle School Art Teacher
jstuart@sffriendsschool.org
Jennifer Stuart's picture

Jennifer Stuart

Middle School Art Teacher
Jennifer grew up in Chappaqua, New York. In the center of the town was a statue of Horace Greeley (a Quaker) with the inscription "Go west young man.” Jennifer promptly moved to the Bay Area in her early twenties bringing with her a philosophy of art education that grew from her undergraduate experiences at Rhode Island School of Design and was formalized at Columbia Teachers College, where she received her master’s degree. Jennifer came to our fine and performing arts department from the California College of Arts where she taught courses on art education to undergraduate students as well as public school teachers from Alameda County. Jennifer has also taught at Mills College and Harvard’s Project Zero Summer Institute. Her teaching career includes eight years at San Francisco Day School, where she directed the advisory program, the student council, and a school-wide service-learning program. Jennifer co-founded Out of Site, a nonprofit dedicated to serving youths from public and charter schools where there is no arts instruction. A believer in meaningful arts integration, Jennifer has co-edited a book on the subject called “Artful Teaching.” She has presented her work in education at national conferences and various universities. Jennifer lives on Potrero Hill with her partner Josh and her son Erez, who is a student at SFFS (class of 2020). When she's not making art or playing cowboy with her son, Jennifer likes to travel, practice her Spanish speaking skills, cook, and read.
Jason Stone's picture

Jason Stone

Learning Commons Coordinator
jstone@sffriendsschool.org
Jason Stone's picture

Jason Stone

Learning Commons Coordinator
Born to a school teacher mother and a Baptist minister father, Jason grew up in a small town in North Carolina before attending Duke University to study the German language and Medieval art history. In 1994, after returning from teaching at a school in southern Germany, he moved to the Bay Area and began working at San Francisco Day School. During his first role there as an assistant librarian, Jason discovered his passion for helping children and adults learn to use technology as a tool for learning, discovery, and play. After helping to formalize the technology department, he eventually accepted the role of Director of Technology and helped SFDS integrate the rapidly evolving world of educational technology into its classrooms. In addition, he cherished the relationships he developed through his role as a sixth and seventh grade advisor. He joined Friends School in 2012 as the Learning Commons Coordinator. When not at school, Jason resides in the outer Richmond with his partner, Adra, and their cat Chester McMeowypants. Jason has been known to play bass guitar in the SFFS teacher band Testimony, and enjoys motorcycling and bicycling on any rain-free weekend.
Caro Spring's picture

Caro Spring

Middle School Spanish Teacher
cspring@sffriendsschool.org
Caro Spring's picture

Caro Spring

Middle School Spanish Teacher
Caro grew up in SF and earned her bachelor’s degree in history at Dartmouth College. During a stint as a National Park Ranger guiding tours at the Statue of Liberty, she realized that she wanted to be an educator. Caro got her master’s degree in Spanish at Middlebury College School in Spain and taught Spanish for the next 12 years at the Julia Morgan School for Girls in Oakland. While there, she engineered a more robust Spanish program and shifted the pedagogy toward Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling (TPRS) and started a flamenco dance program and a salsa dance team. For fun, Caro listens to podcasts, cooks (poorly), and teaches salsa rueda to adults in the Mission. Caro lives in the city with her favorite people: her partner Camilo (also a middle school Spanish teacher), her son Roque, and her daughter Belén. They love to spend summers at the beach and visiting relatives in Argentina, Spain, and Hungary, but during the school year they can be found most afternoons playing soccer in Golden Gate Park.
Patrick Smith's picture

Patrick Smith

Middle School Teaching Assistant
psmith@sffriendsschool.org
Patrick Smith's picture

Patrick Smith

Middle School Teaching Assistant
Originally from the Chicago area, Patrick graduated from Butler University and spent a year in Montreal before relocating to the Bay Area two years ago. In those two years, he has enjoyed the opportunity to be the head coach of the 6th and 7th grade boys basketball teams at SFFS. His first introduction to Quaker pedagogy was at First Friends Meeting in Indianapolis, where he was involved in their youth program. Patrick is looking forward to spending more time connecting with students and staff at SFFS, and has aspirations to become a credentialed middle school teacher himself. He lives in Oakland with his partner and enjoys spending time outdoors with their dog, as well as going for bike rides in the Oakland hills and watching sports whenever he has a spare moment.
Jesse Scott's picture

Jesse Scott

Middle School Music Teacher
jscott@sffriendsschool.org
Jesse Scott's picture

Jesse Scott

Middle School Music Teacher
An accomplished conductor and musical director, Jesse has a number of graduate degrees in music (BM, MM, MMEd). He toured both Europe and the entire United States after winning a concerto competition for the Marin Symphony. He has recorded with the Taipei Symphony on the “live” Air Supply album Now and Forever and later performed with the Boston Philharmonic. For over a decade, he has brought his talents to The Red Rocker Experience and Rock Skool, among other bands. In 1999, he began his career teaching music at the Brandeis Marin School. As the Music Director and Instructor, he has guided his students’ musical futures—some have become songwriters, some have majored in music at college, and one of Jesse’s students became the lead guitarist for singer John Legend. 
Jenn Rothstein's picture

Jenn Rothstein

Middle School Humanities Teacher
jcusworth@sffriendsschool.org
Jenn Rothstein's picture

Jenn Rothstein

Middle School Humanities Teacher
After living most of her life on the East Coast, Jenn is thrilled to live in the Bay Area and enjoy more sunshine and less snow. Jenn graduated with a BA in Linguistics from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and went on to receive an MS in Education from Bank Street College of Education. After graduate school, Jenn moved back to Western Massachusetts, where she worked as a fifth and sixth grade teacher at the Greenfield Center School and grew her skills and appreciation for socially and emotionally responsive learning environments. For the past year, Jenn has been teaching 6th grade history at Brooklyn Friends School. There, she was able to grow her passions for social justice-based learning opportunities. Jenn sees education as a form of activism and loves connecting history with our world today. She lives in the Bay Area with her partner and two dogs.
Jeff Porter's picture

Jeff Porter

Middle School Math Teacher
jporter@sffriendsschool.org
Jeff Porter's picture

Jeff Porter

Middle School Math Teacher
Jeff was born in the Panama Canal Zone. He earned a Bachelor’s degree from Ohio State University and a Master's of Fine Arts from the San Francisco Arts Institute. He has taught in independent and public schools throughout the San Francisco Bay Area for over twenty years, joining the SFFS team in the school's second year. Jeff has devoted seven summers to Lucy Calkins’ Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University, and is honored to be a member of the Teacher Institute on Science and Sustainability, a two year science teacher training program at the California Academy of Science. He is working with Stanford and Cal Academy on developing an instructional tool for teaching science in lower school grades. In addition, Jeff has studied with Harvard’s Project Zero and has taken courses on teaching math taught by Jo Boaler, David Berg, and Ron Ritchhart. Jeff was a member of the 2011–2013 cohort of the Friends Council on Education SPARC (Spirited Practice and Renewed Courage) program. In his free time, he loves to travel, read, write, and garden.
Rich Oberman's picture

Rich Oberman

4th Grade Teacher
roberman@sffriendsschool.org
Rich Oberman's picture

Rich Oberman

4th Grade Teacher
A Speech and Communications graduate of San Francisco State University, Rich began his work as an educator as the coordinator of the after-school program at Schools of the Sacred Heart, and continued as third grade teacher at Stuart Hall. He has devoted three summers to the Lucy Calkins Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University, and completed Making Math Real training with David Berg. In the spring of 2010, Rich received the Herbst Award for Teaching Excellence for his commitment to excellence in the classroom. The child of a Japanese-Hawaiian mother and German father, Rich has a long-standing passion for Taiko drumming and is also a trained medic with extensive experience as a first-aid teacher.
Sara Melman's picture

Sara Melman

Middle School Science Teacher
smelman@sffriendsschool.org
Sara Melman's picture

Sara Melman

Middle School Science Teacher
Sara is a native San Franciscan and graduate from University High School. She attended Cornell University and graduated in 2006 with a degree in geological sciences, teaching middle school science in NYC while earning her master’s in secondary science from City College of New York. In 2008, Sara took a teaching position at Washington Heights Expeditionary Learning High School (WHEELS), where she taught high school earth science, started a drama program, a student government program, and developed an outdoor education program. Sara moved back to SF in 2015 and began teaching high school biology; recently, she’s been focused on integrating technology into science labs and projects as a vehicle for student thinking and problem solving. We are delighted to have Sara on our team here at SFFS teaching middle school science. Sara lives in the city with her partner and 8-month old son.
Frances Elsberry's picture

Frances Elsberry

Middle School Math Teacher
felsberry@sffriendsschool.org
Frances Elsberry's picture

Frances Elsberry

Middle School Math Teacher
Frances grew up in Arizona and moved to San Francisco after graduating from Pomona College with a degree in Politics. While teaching 5th grade at SF Day School, she received her multiple subject credential and MA in Education from the University of the Pacific through BATTI. After graduate school, she taught 5th and 6th grade math at Children’s Day School. She coached beginning teachers at Breakthrough San Francisco in the Summers of 2018 and 2019, returning to where she first started teaching in college! Frances enjoys snorkeling and buying too many books to possibly read from Green Apple.
Lisa McEachron's picture

Lisa McEachron

PE Teacher
lmceachron@sffriendsschool.org
Lisa McEachron's picture

Lisa McEachron

PE Teacher
Lisa joined the SFFS staff in 2009. Lisa taught P.E. at Katherine Delmar Burke School in the mid-1990s for three years. Previous to that, she taught in the East Bay at an elementary school and at a K–12 school for emotionally troubled students. Lisa brings a host of physical education skills to our school—she is a seasoned bike tour leader, an experienced coach, and an events coordinator. Lisa pioneered our first Field Day in the spring of 2010. She is an ardent believer in preparing students for lifelong fitness and physical activity. Lisa has both a B.A. (Cal State, Chico) and M.S. (Cal State, Hayward) in Physical Education, and an abiding interest in health education. She is an avid camper, hiker, and biking enthusiast, having biked 2,000 miles from Oregon to Colorado. She enjoys reading, gardening, and cooking. Lisa has two children, Elizabeth and Annie (SFFS class of 2011).
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Tracie Mastronicola

Academic Dean
tmastronicola@sffriendsschool.org
Tracie Mastronicola's picture

Tracie Mastronicola

Academic Dean
Tracie excitedly returned to SFFS as our Academic Dean in the summer of 2016. Tracie brings her enthusiasm and 16 years of experience in and around the classroom to her new role at SFFS. After finishing her own education on the east coast, the native New Yorker packed up her car and drove out west where she's been acting like a tourist in San Francisco ever since. Tracie's first introduction to teaching was at the Nueva School; it was there that she realized the innovative, dynamic, and sometimes chaotic nature of a school was where she felt most at home. Tracie dove into both teaching and learning, spending the next two decades focusing on science and math curriculum, project-based learning, advising young adults, and leading service learning trips with students to far off places. After teaching in the classroom at SFFS, Tracie most recently worked with a team designing science simulations at CK-12 Foundation, an educational non-profit organization aimed at providing free material to students and teachers. In her free time, Tracie loves eating and, subsequently, running through Golden Gate Park. Tracie, her wife Alyssa, and their twin boys live​​ and play in San Francisco.
David Louis's picture

David Louis

Middle School Math Teacher
dlouis@sffriendsschool.org
David Louis's picture

David Louis

Middle School Math Teacher
David grew up in Southern California always enjoying school and always moving—playing soccer, swimming, and running. After graduating from Pomona College and starting his teaching career, he escaped to the Bay Area where he studied Math Education at Stanford. While there, he had a number of influential experiences, including research, writing, curriculum development and helping students engage in meaningful mathematics discourse. He has worked as a math teacher for over 20 years in both public and private schools and came to SFFS in 2009. He loves math and enjoys engaging young people in true mathematical thinking. David also teaches teachers and recently helped teach a summer course on “Thinking Like a Mathematician” through the Bay Area Teacher Development Collaborative. Finally, he is also a fierce advocate of outdoor education and has reveled in leading backpacking trips with the eighth grade. David and his partner, Eleanor, have two children, Aliza (SFFS class of 2015) and Aaron, (SFFS class of 2019).
Marc Kim's picture

Marc Kim

Middle School Teaching Assistant
mkim@sffriendsschool.org
Marc Kim's picture

Marc Kim

Middle School Teaching Assistant
Marc is an East Bay native, a super-sociable person, and feels he aligns best with the Quaker testimony of Community. Marc’s current obsessions include weight lifting and the sneaker game. He hopes to one day become a middle school PE & history teacher and is thrilled to be part of the Friends community.
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Mike Hanas

Head of School
mhanas@sffriendsschool.org
Mike Hanas's picture

Mike Hanas

Head of School
Mike joined Friends School in the summer of 2016, previously working as the Principal of Carolina Friends School (CFS), a pre-K­–12 Quaker school in Durham, North Carolina. A born teacher and a lifelong learner, Mike grew up on Chicago’s Southside, where he was the first in his family to graduate from high school. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Classics from the College of the Holy Cross, where he was elected Phi Beta Kappa, and his Master’s degree in Education Administration, Planning, and Social Policy from Harvard University. Mike has taught Latin, Greek, and humanities, served as a college counselor and assistant director of admissions, and coached basketball, football, and lacrosse teams at Tabor Academy, St. Paul's School in Concord, NH, and Durham Academy in addition to CFS and SFFS. He also serves currently on the Board of Trustees for the Friends Council on Education. Mike and his wife, Sue Gouchoe, met when they were coaching competing girls’ varsity basketball teams (Sue’s team won). Mike and Sue have two children: their daughter, Kyle, is a graduate of Smith College and faculty member at the Friends School of Wilmington (NC), and their son, Matt, currently attends UNC Chapel Hill, where he captains Darkside, UNC's ultimate frisbee team. Mike’s interests include reading, art, travel, outdoor adventure, the music of Bruce Springsteen, the Chicago Cubs, and long conversations with good friends.
Annie Gwynne-Vaughan's picture

Annie Gwynne-Vaughan

Middle School Humanities Teacher
agwynnevaughan@sffriendsschool.org
Annie Gwynne-Vaughan's picture

Annie Gwynne-Vaughan

Middle School Humanities Teacher
Originally from Charleston, South Carolina, Annie lost her Southern accent by spending 14 years teaching middle and high school in New York City. She holds a BA in English from Warren Wilson College, an MA in English from Middlebury College, and a Master's in Education from The New School for Social Research. Annie has received grants from NEH and Fund for Teachers to travel the country in an ‘88 Volvo and develop curricula in American History. Before leaving NYC, Annie also administered a federal grant that encouraged collaborative problem-solving and restorative justice practices in public schools. Annie and her partner Lauren live with their son Henry (SFFS class of 2022) in San Francisco.
Kyle Gouchoe-Hanas's picture

Kyle Gouchoe-Hanas

Middle School Science Teacher
kgouchoe-hanas@sffriendsschool.org
Kyle Gouchoe-Hanas's picture

Kyle Gouchoe-Hanas

Middle School Science Teacher
Kyle is a Carolina Friends School alum and a graduate of Smith College, where she majored in Education and Child Study and Studio Art, with a concentration in oil painting. Since then, Kyle has served as a Progressive Education Lab teaching fellow and long-term substitute at the Cambridge Friends School. Most recently, Kyle finished a two-year stint as a full-time middle school social studies teacher and coach at the Friends School of Wilmington. Kyle’s interests span far and wide from athletics including soccer, tennis, basketball, ultimate frisbee, and dance to painting and fashion to social justice, leadership, and human development. Her teaching experience began at CFS as a young student, and she is looking forward to continuing her study of the teaching and learning process in what she considers a “home” in Friends education.
Christopher Gonzalez-Crane's picture

Christopher Gonzalez-Crane

Middle School Humanities Teacher
cgonzalez-crane@sffriendsschool.org
Christopher Gonzalez-Crane's picture

Christopher Gonzalez-Crane

Middle School Humanities Teacher
Christopher is a native of San Francisco. After graduating from The Urban School, he attended Carleton College. He graduated in 2002 with a degree in English and American literature. After working for a year in NYC in publishing, Christopher began teaching middle and high school English in Concepcion, Chile. After moving back to San Francisco in 2004, Christopher was a middle school teacher at Children’s Day School, where he taught traditional black and white photography, assisted with the high school application process, and developed the middle school study hall program. For the last nine years, Christopher has been teaching and studying in London. In 2010, he received a Master’s of Research from The London Consortium. He is currently in the final stages of his PhD in Humanities and Cultural Studies. His own academic work is concerned with the historical origins of self-help culture in the American West. He has a particular interest in the construction of the responsible, ethical self.
Evelyn Florin's picture

Evelyn Florin

Middle School Humanities Teacher
eflorin@sffriendsschool.org
Evelyn Florin's picture

Evelyn Florin

Middle School Humanities Teacher
A native San Franciscan from Noe Valley, Evelyn has three degrees from UC Berkeley: a B.A. in both Anthropology and Economics, and a Master’s in Business Administration. She spent nearly decade as a business manager at Hewlett Packard, and then took time to raise her two children. Evelyn then attended San Francisco State for a multiple-subjects teaching credential and taught at Robert Louis Stevenson Elementary School here in San Francisco and at the Ethical Culture School in New York City. Evelyn’s professional development includes attendance at the White Privilege Conference and Reading and Writing Institutes at Teacher’s College. Evelyn and her husband, Larry, have two grown children—Jennifer, who is involved in a multitude of artistic pursuits in Brooklyn, NY, and Peter, who just graduated from Cal with a Master's in Engineering degree focusing on renewable energy.
Beth Espinoza's picture

Beth Espinoza

Technology Integrator
bespinoza@sffriendsschool.org
Beth Espinoza's picture

Beth Espinoza

Technology Integrator
Beth is a Bay Area native, born and raised in Pacifica. Her interest in black and white photography has taken her on a path of discovery of filmmaking and media literacy, culminating in eight years’ experience as a K–5 technology integrator in Marin County and as a fourth grade teacher in Daly City. She has a B.A. in Education from CSU Humboldt and her teaching credentials from SFSU. Along the way she partnered with media organizations such as the San Francisco Film Society, KQED, Common Sense Media, and Glide Memorial to produce community-inspired media projects. She has shared this passion of integrating engaging best practices into the classroom with various professional learning communities, presenting at CUE conferences and networking with various educational Meetups, Edcamps, and online communities. When not collaborating with her PLC, Beth enjoys traveling the world as well as hiking and biking Bay Area trails with her partner Mateo.
Clarke Weatherspoon's picture

Clarke Weatherspoon

Middle School Head
cweatherspoon@sffriendsschool.org
Clarke Weatherspoon's picture

Clarke Weatherspoon

Middle School Head
Clarke joined San Francisco Friends School in July as the Middle School Head. He served as history instructor, 9th/10th Grade Dean, and Dean of Inclusion during 13 years at the Urban School of San Francisco. He is graduate of University of California, Santa Barbara and Teacher’s College at Columbia University. Clarke is a meditator, former water polo coach, and cyclist who lives in San Francisco with his family.