Faculty and Staff Photo 2019-20
Jana Lombardo – Sunflower Kindergarten
Jana’s journey to become a teacher began when she was a young child, growing up in a small town in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
As children, Jana and her siblings explored the enchanted back woods surrounding their cabin and later the streets of their small town. Intrigued by the curiosity and desire within children to learn, she was drawn towards teaching and was introduced to the Waldorf community as a young college student when she took a job in the aftercare at Yuba River Charter School. Fascinated by the school’s environment, curriculum, and community, she began her educator journey. Jana has since spent over 20 years working with and learning about children. She earned a BA in Human Development and a Multiple Subject CLAD with Emphasis in Early Childhood Credential from Sonoma State. She has attended classes at Rudolf Steiner College and the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training and taught in preschools, Kindergarten, public primary classrooms, has taken a class from 1st through 3rd grade, and substitute taught in all the grades. She finds her favorite place to be in the Kindergarten.
She lives in Santa Rosa with her husband and two youngest daughters. She enjoys going on adventures in nature with her family.
Nico Rease – Rainbow Kindergarten
Nico is a proud mother and grandmother and has been working with children for the last 36 years. She is thrilled to be the Rainbow Waldorf Kindergarten teacher.
Nico weaves in a variety of valuable perspectives into her teaching from: her Masters in Consciousness, eco-therapist skills, her teaching credential certificate, her deep nature work from Regenerative Design and Nature Connection, along with her Waldorf teaching certificate.
When not working, she can be found swimming in the fresh hot springs or salt waters, hiking up a steep mountain, playing with children at the local parks, needle felting, gathering with other sisters in ceremony, hugging the trees, also organizing another incredible rites of passage gathering through her program Wild Wisdom.
Jessica James – Sunflower Assistant
Picture and Bio to come
Johanna Payne – Rainbow Assistant
Photo and bio to come.
Andrew Ward – Grade 1
Photo and bio to come.
Autumn Rose Deason – Grade 2
Bio to come.
Kathleen Austin – Grade 3
Originally from Virginia, Kathleen Austin moved to Sebastopol in 2015 to join the local public Waldorf community. Kathleen is passionate about integrating the artistic, hands-on experience of a Waldorf education with public academic standards. A former choral director, Kathleen taught middle school choir at SunRidge School and also at Sebastopol Independent Charter. Ms. Austin holds a bachelor’s degree in music education from Westminster Choir College, a multiple subject teaching credential from Cal State and is currently finishing her masters degree in Waldorf education at Antioch University.
Lynne Struye – Grade 4
Lynne began her Waldorf teacher journey in 2009 when she took a work hiatus with her family in Australia, transitioning her public school teaching into teaching in the local Waldorf schools. Concurrently, she completed her Waldorf teacher training at Sydney Steiner College. When she returned later to her Southern California home, she became the teacher of the lead class at Maple Village Waldorf School in Long Beach, guiding them through the grades to the school’s first 8th grade graduation. Then, ready for a new adventure, she relocated to Sonoma County to begin anew with another class She continues to enjoy combining the knowledge from her first career as an Art Therapist/MFT and using her Multi-Subject Teaching Credential to enliven her work as a Waldorf teacher. In her free time, she loves hiking, gardening and sunsets.
Lisa Hale – Grade 5
Lisa’s passion for teaching and equipping students to utilize their life experiences and education as a powerful tool for self expression started with her work as a field science teacher at the Headlands Institute, now Nature Bridge. Here social and academic lessons came to life and inspired her to found the Teen Environmental Education Mentorship program. This early teaching experience, along with a childhood spent along an estuary of the Chesapeake Bay, set a high bar for what education can be. Lisa’s love of teaching and desire to sow an inspired and well-balanced education for her own children led her to pursue teaching in a Waldorf school. When she is not teaching, she enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, mountain biking, swimming in the ocean, hiking, painting, cooking, and woodworking.
Shari Thierry – Grade 6
Shari joined the staff in the fall of 2012 to assist us both in the classroom and in the resource room at the main campus. A former handwork and class teacher at Highland Hall Waldorf School in Northridge, CA, Shari is Waldorf trained and has a great deal of experience in a variety of classroom settings. Ms. Thierry has a BA from Cal State Northridge in history and brings an incredible organizational sense from her background managing small businesses.
Ashley Radzat – Grade 7
Ashley Radzat has been involved in Waldorf education since 2001. In 2010 Ashley received her Waldorf certificate from The Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training. She received her California State Teaching Credential from Dominican University in 2013.. Her BA is in Human Development and Family Studies with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education. Ashley completed her Parent, Student and Family Life Coaching Certificate in 2018 were she uses her skills both with students and families. One of the biggest passions in Ashley’s life is to help students through conflict. She is deeply interested in Restorative Justice and leads the school as the Social-Emotional Coordinator. Ashley has traveled to over 15 different countries and always embraces a new opportunity or adventure. When not working with students, Ashley cares for her two daughters and crazy but wonderful family.
Heather Carpenter – Grade 8
Heather Carpenter joined Sebastopol Charter School in 2013. She completed her Waldorf training at the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training in 2012 and earned her California Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from Dominican University in 2015. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Cultural Anthropology from UC Berkeley, and is T.E.F.L certified. Prior to teaching, Heather has been a program developer (in nutrition research, as well speech and language development), a designer, a photographer, an artist and counselor. She loves to paint and draw, work in her garden, and wander off the beaten path with her son.
Lauren Ohlsen – Handwork Grades 1-5
Lauren Gold Ohlsen has been a teacher and an artist for as long as she can remember. She loves sharing her passion for handwork with children and how it creates balance between the head, heart, and hands which has endless benefits. Over the last 20+ years Lauren worked as an art teacher, an environmental educator, and taught Kindergarten-3rd grade as a classroom teacher in Sebastopol. She is also the co-creator/director of Solstice Yoga and Nature Camp which she started in Sebastopol in 2004. Lauren holds a BFA degree from the University of Arizona with an emphasis on fiber arts, painting and child development. She earned her California Multiple Subject CLAD Credential in 2005. Lauren and her husband own Permaculture Artisans and The Permaculture Skills Center. She lives with her husband and two children on their abundant permaculture homestead. Lauren loves to spend time with her family playing in their garden, walking on the beach, or just simply enjoying her handwork.
Kristen McLaughlin – Handwork Grades 6-7
Kristen McLaughlin began working at the Sebastopol Charter School in 1997 as an assistant teacher in the kindergarten then moved on to teaching handwork grades 1-8. Prior to arriving at Sebastopol Charter she was a Waldorf preschool teacher. Kristen completed her Waldorf teacher training at the Center for Education Renewal. Her prior schooling was at Dominican College in San Rafael, studying nutrition and sports medicine, at Yale studying economics, and at Sarah Lawrence studying child psychology. Kristen loves to garden, bake, learn new fiber arts skills, hike, and go camping. Kristen has a life long love of learning and hopes that she passes this passion on to her students.
Tim Zieminski – Strings Grades 3-8
Tim Zieminski is an active violin teacher and performer, born and raised in Sonoma County. He holds a B.M. in Violin Performance from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and maintains an active private violin studio. He frequently performs locally, with groups including Bellarosa String Quartet, Santa Rosa Symphony, and his Celtic band Rogues’ Regiment. When not teaching or performing, Tim enjoys spending time with his wife and children, being active in his church, and playing a variety of sports including ultimate frisbee and baseball.
Kevin Davis – Math Grade 6-8
Photo and bio to come.
Isabel Vallejo – Spanish Grades 6-8
Isabel was born and raised in a small village in Valladolid, Spain. She received her Masters degree in Law at the University of Valladolid. She worked with the Spanish Tax Agency for more than ten years in Barcelona, Madrid, Toledo, and Athens. She moved to the United States fourteen years ago. She has been teaching the upper grades and High School Spanish 1 at Summerfield Waldorf for the last two years and she has been substituting at Sonoma Academy for the last three years. She has two children and enjoys reading, hiking, and traveling.
Frank Vazquez – Special Education Teacher
Originally from Chicago, Frank has been working in special education since 2005. His career has spanned various K-12 settings, including Credo High School, and which has afforded him a bird’s eye view of the field. His interest in Waldorf came when his daughter was born in 2009, and where he found Steiner’s call to “meet the child”,to be deeply resonate with how he approached students and parenting. He has a deep interest in modern educational research and how it might be used to balance Steiner’s more holistic insights as Waldorf moves into the 21st century and beyond. Outside of continual study and spending time with his family, Frank also has long standing practices in various aspects of vedic culture, music,and art. His favorite food is probably deep dish pizza and he is happy to receive chocolate donations at any time.
Sophia Wiebe – Special Education Assistant
Sophia Wiebe decided she wanted to work with children at a young age. She loved teaching her sister the letters of the alphabet, along with other life lessons, such as how to build the perfect fort out of willow branches. After ten years of Waldorf education at the Sebastopol Charter School, Sophia went on to attend Santa Rosa Junior College, Cabrillo College, and ended with her B.A. in Liberal Studies from Sonoma State University. Throughout her studies, Sophia has valued her Waldorf education, and has always known that her future career would be influenced by it. Sophia loves to work with her hands in her free time, whether it is knitting gnomes and socks, or building bookshelves and tables out of scraps of wood found in the front yard.
Ben Klocek – Woodwork
Ben Klocek joined Sebastopol Charter in 2017. A Waldorf graduate/lifer (Sacramento Waldorf, 1998) who loved woodwork class and has been building things on the internet for the last 15 years, Ben graduated with a Liberal Studies degree from Sonoma State, with a focus on Technology and Art. As a maker and web designer, Ben brings the physical and digital worlds together. After studying and speaking on the effects of screen technology on consciousness as a digital professional, Ben jumped at the chance to work directly with those most affected by new exposure to screen-media, 6-8th graders. He continues his research, working with teachers throughout California to better support them in developing practices and curriculum for teaching digital literacy. He is the proud father of two girls, Sofia and Lucia, who attend Sebastopol Charter. When not teaching, Ben works in his small digital agency, Bracia, loves hiking in our beautiful parks, backpacking, and creating art.
Barbara Philipp – Handwork Grade 8
Many may know Barbara from working in the school’s office for many years until her retirement in 2020. When asked if she would teach 8th grade Handwork, she was delighted! Starting back in 2007, in addition to working in the office, she also taught 8th grade Handwork. Barbara is a passionate quilter/sewist and very excited to teach what she loves to students, who have waited a long time to sew on a sewing machine! Barbara graduated with a Liberal Studies degree from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, with a focus on English and Math, and also completed her Waldorf teacher training at the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training. She is the proud mother of 3, who all attended Sebastopol Charter from K-8th grade.
Mary Goodenough – Intervention Assistant and Lunch Coordinator
Mary comes to Sebastopol Chater with a diverse educational and employment background. After receiving an MA in Slavic Languages and Literatures from UC-Berkeley in 1989, Mary translated for international arts education programs and NGO’s in Russia, Kazakhstan and the US. She has taught language arts in public and private secondary schools. Mary has two children who attended Sebastopol Charter K-8, and she worked in and out of the classroom throughout their elementary years. She has also taken on leadership roles in fundraising for the Charter Foundation. Mary has published articles on popular culture and spirituality and enjoys gardening, musicking and adventures in nature.