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Faculty

Updated: Aug 28, 2020

Faculty

Updated: Aug 28, 2020

Ken Smith has strong and substantive international experience as a Waldorf educator, educational program developer, and artist. He is dedicated to the anthroposophical principles underlying Waldorf education, to the strengthening of Waldorf education, and to the importance of integrated learning in educating the whole human being. Ken began his working life in New Zealand, training in horticulture and landscape design. Then, following a period of world travel, he attended the Foundation Year at Emerson College in England in 1988-1989. This started him on a path of artistic training, and he graduated from the Visual Arts and Sculpture Course with the Waldorf Pedagogical component at Emerson College in 1993. After teaching in Waldorf schools in England, he returned to Emerson College to be Course Leader of the Visual Arts and Sculpture Course for 8 years, until 2007. Since then he has been active internationally teaching at Waldorf schools, adult education programs, and conferences in Europe, North America, New Zealand and Asia. In the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training, he teaches numerous courses in the weekend program, and Art History and Sculpture in the summer.

Carol Adee grew up in a musical and nature loving family in California and Oregon. She began teaching music and orchestra at Marin Waldorf School in 2004 and graduated from BACWTT in 2009. Her interest in Waldorf education started with her children’s enrollment at Marin Waldorf and was nurtured by many hours as a parent volunteer. At BACWTT, Carol teaches First Year Music and Recorder, introducing students to musicality through singing, dancing and an array of handmade instruments. She holds a M.M. from Yale School of Music and a B.M. from Chapman University, and has performed and recorded with professional orchestras, chamber groups and as a flute soloist throughout the Bay Area.

Dave Alsop

Dave Alsop has a B.A. in Psychology from California State University at Sacramento. In 1974, upon completion of the Waldorf Teacher Training program at Emerson College in England, he began his Waldorf career as a class teacher at the Sacramento Waldorf School. In 1988 he became Development Director of the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America (AWSNA). Shortly thereafter, in 1990, Dave became the Chairman of AWSNA (the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America), and he served in that capacity for eleven years. In 2002, he joined the Rudolf Steiner Foundation as its Director of Community Relations and Business Development. He joined the staff at San Francisco Waldorf School in May of 2004 as Development Director, and was named Head of Administration in 2008. He was deeply inspired at Emerson College to take up social and organizational issues. In addition to working on many administrative duties, Dave teaches the Threefold Nature of Social Life and Philosophy of Freedom. He is Third Year Project Mentor.

Tom Bickley

Tom Bickley grew up in Houston, sojourned in Washington, DC (studying music, religion, and library and information science) and came to California as a composer in residence at Mills College. He is on the library faculty at CSU East Bay, and has taught for the San Francisco Early Music Society. He plays with Gusty Winds May Exist, Three Trapped Tigers, and directs the Cornelius Cardew Choir. His work is available on CD at Quarterstick and Metatron Press and via https://tigergarage.org. Tom teaches the advanced recorder class at BACWTT.

Robyn Brown is the author of A Practical Guide to Curative Education: The Ladder of the Seven Life Processes. After teaching a grades cycle, Robyn decided to apprentice in Curative Education with Sunny Baldwin at Somerset School in Colfax, CA. In 2002, she started Mulberry Classroom, which began in San Francisco and is currently located in Santa Rosa. Robyn currently teaches in various Waldorf teacher trainings and serves as a mentor to Waldorf schools while living in Gold Beach, Oregon with her wife, two horses, and three dogs.

Diane David

Diane David received her B.A. in Dramatic Art from U.C. Davis and completed her kindergarten training at the San Francisco Waldorf Teacher Training of Rudolf Steiner College under Dorit Winter. Diane, herself a mother of 6 children and grandmother of 11, is a retired kindergarten teacher from the San Francisco Waldorf School. She is now the Early Childhood Director and carrying faculty member for the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training. She is a Northern California co-representative for the Waldorf Early Childhood Association of North America (WECAN), a founding member of the Magic Lantern Marionette Theatre, and mentors and evaluates teachers and early childhood programs throughout Northern California. At BACWTT, she teaches The First Three Years, Pedagogical Studies and Practicum Preparation classes in the early childhood track.

Kristine Arrigona Deason grew up in France and Germany. She has an M.A. in French Studies from the University of Brussels, an M.A. in Literature from BYU, and a California High School Teaching Credential from Mills College. She taught at the university level, then worked for IBM for ten years as a technical writer and programmer before returning to teaching. She received her Waldorf teaching certificate from the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training in 2004 and has been a class teacher at the Marin Waldorf School ever since. She taught a class from first through eighth grade, graduated them in 2012, and currently teaches Fifth Grade. In the teacher training, Kristine teaches The Kingdom of Childhood, The Child’s Journey through the Grades including Chalkboard Drawing, and Study of Man. She will also oversee the Second Year Practicum Preparation and directs the choir for the Bay Area Center for Teacher Training.

Douglas Gerwin

Douglas Gerwin, Ph.D., has taught history, literature, German, music, and life science at college and Waldorf high school levels for over 35 years. As Director of the Center for Anthroposophy (CfA), he divides his time between adult education and teaching adolescents, as well as mentoring Waldorf schools across North America.

Himself a Waldorf graduate, Douglas is the founder of CfA’s Waldorf High School Teacher Education Program, as well as the first Executive Director of the Research Institute for Waldorf Education. He is author and editor of nine books on Waldorf education, as well as numerous articles on education and anthroposophy. His most recent publication is a collection of articles entitled Trailing Clouds of Glory: Essays on Sexuality and the Education of Youth in Waldorf Schools (2014).

At present, Douglas resides on the outskirts of Amherst, Massachusetts, with his wife Connie, a Waldorf high school teacher of mathematics.

Karen Gierlach attended Waldorf schools in Germany and England. She received her B.A. from London University as well as Waldorf teacher training at Emerson College in England. Once her two children were old enough, she spent over 20 years teaching German and working in administration in U.S. Waldorf schools. Always inspired by the process of human becoming, she studied all she could about human biography and started attending and assisting in biography workshops many years ago. Now she facilitates workshops, both in the U.S. and overseas. She presents an overview of the Lifecycles to the 2nd year students at BACWTT and engages them in artistic, interactive exercises to help strengthen their self-awareness, as well as deepen their appreciation for how other people and events shape all our lives. Karen serves on the Board of the Center for Biography and Social Art.

Kate Hammond is a Waldorf alumna and has a Bachelor of Arts (Honors) in Applied Linguistics. She began studying Bothmer Gymnastics in England in 1995. While class teaching at the Calgary Waldorf School, she completed her movement training with the Spacial Dynamics Institute in 1999. She graduated from Emerson College with a certificate in Waldorf Teacher Training specializing in Early Childhood Education, and has taught kindergarten, preschool, parent and child classes, and infants. She has also taught adult literacy, parent classes, children with special needs and movement workshops. She has had a lifelong interest in adult education and has enjoyed living in many anthroposophical communities all over the world. She is a teacher on the Lifeways California Coast course, has her own in-home childcare program and is the intrigued mother of two teenage boys.

Maria Helland-hansen

Maria Helland-Hansen, born in Norway, received her eurythmy diploma in Sweden in 1985 and has been active as a eurythmist since then. After completing her therapeutic eurythmy training in Dornach, Switzerland in 1993, she moved to San Francisco and became a therapeutic eurythmist and eurythmy teacher at the San Francisco Waldorf School. She also has a private practice and is a core faculty member of the Therapeutic Eurythmy training of North America (TETNA). At the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training, she introduces therapeutic Eurythmy, constitutional polarities and ways of working with and understanding the child.

Dr. Carmen Hering is an osteopathic and anthroposophic physician specializing in childhood development, and has been in private practice in Albany, CA since 2006. She completed her osteopathic medical training at Touro University, College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2003 and then went on to complete a 3-year residency program in New York City. Encouraged by a medical student while in residency to study anthroposophic medicine, Dr. Hering visited the Threefold Community in Spring Valley and attended a physician conference there. Once in private practice, she went on to complete a 5-year training program in anthroposophic medicine and became certified to practice AM in 2012. Dr. Hering has taught at New York College of Osteopathic Medicine and Touro University College of Osteopathic Medicine, where she continues to serve as adjunct faculty. She mentors pre-med students, trains medical students and residents in her office, serves on the board for certification in anthroposophic medicine (ACAM) and is faculty for the annual International Physician Medical Training (IPMT) program for anthroposophic medicine in the US.

Deborah Krikorian

Deborah Krikorian completed the San Francisco Waldorf Teacher Training under the direction of Dorit Winter in 1996, and has been a class teacher ever since. She took a class from first through eighth grade at the East Bay Waldorf School and two classes fifth through eighth grade at the San Francisco Waldorf School. She is now with the sixth grade at the Marin Waldorf School. She has degrees in Music from UC Berkelely and an MBA in Finance at Cal State Hayward. Deborah has taught curriculum studies, Man as Symphony of the Creative Word and Kingdom of Childhood, alumni courses and summer workshops and will work with students regarding their practicum experience.

Jeff Loubet graduated from Clark University with a B.A. in philosophy in 1975 and completed teacher training at Rudolf Steiner College in 1992. Jeff has been a class teacher at the East Bay Waldorf School for 24 years. He taught grades 1 – 8 twice and grades 1 – 6 before retiring in 2017. Jeff teaches Study of Man and Grades Practicum Preparation for BACWTT and Storytelling and the Imagination for Sound Circle.

Renate Lundberg received a BA in nursing school and, after working as a nurse for 10 years, she attended the Dr. Hauschka massage and external medicine courses, including the medicinal bath therapy. After that, Renate did the eurythmy training in The Netherlands including the pedagogical trimester. Since graduating in 1986, she has been teaching in schools in Holland, British Columbia and the USA .

In addition to BACWTT, she has taught in teacher training programs in Vancouver, BC, and Minneapolis. She is retired from fulltime teaching at the Summerfield Waldorf School, where she taught for 10 years (grades 7-12). She currently teaches blocks at the Waldorf School of Mendocino County and as an independent contractor at two Waldorf charter schools in Sebastopol.

Monika Nenko leads the beginning recorder class at BACWTT. She is a BACWTT graduate and works in a Waldorf nursery classroom. Before the teacher training, she was engaged in motherhood and academic studies. She has completed a B.S. (at SFSU) and MSc (at LSE) in International Relations. She was born in Krakow, Poland.

Andrea Oey, violinist, is a native New Yorker with degrees from the Juilliard School, Oberlin College and Conservatory, and the Mannes College of Music. She is a new resident of El Sobrante and is excited to join the East Bay Waldorf School as Orchestra Teacher! Before moving to the Bay Area, she was a violinist for six years with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra. Since her arrival, Andrea has enjoyed performing with various orchestras and symphonies around the Bay Area including Sacramento Philharmonic, Berkeley Symphony, Symphony Napa Valley, and the Cabrillo Music Festival. Besides performing, she is a dedicated teacher and coach, and has held positions at the Young Musicians Program at UC Berkeley and the Musically Minded Academy in Oakland. In her free time, Andrea loves cooking, swimming, and building marble runs with her 3-year-old son.

She teaches recorder at BACWTT.

Carla Schaareman grew up in the Netherlands. She received her BA/MA in fine arts from the Willem de Kooning Academy in the Netherlands in 1990, after having studied at several other art institutions, including The Royal Academy in Den Haag and De Vrije Academie in Den Haag. Until 1998, she worked in her own studio on commissions and developing her own work. In the summer of 1998, she and her family moved to California.

Carla completed the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training in 2006. Her teaching experience includes 3 years of printmaking, veil painting, figure drawing and stone carving at East Bay Waldorf High School, and clay modeling at the Novato Charter School. Since February 2009, she has been teaching at the San Francisco Waldorf High School: 9th/10th grade drawing, 11th grade veil painting and 11th/12th grade electives in oil painting, cooking, advanced drawing and printmaking. Since 2015, she has been teaching painting and high school arts at BACWTT and wet-in-wet method watercolor painting at Lifeways and Rudolf Steiner College.

Jennifer Schmitt

Jennifer Schmitt, ND, is a board-licensed Naturopathic Doctor. She has an integrative pediatric and family practice in the East Bay of Northern California. She studied pre-med at St. Edward’s University in Austin and received her Bachelor of Science degree in biology from Marymount Manhattan College in New York. Dr. Schmitt received her doctorate in naturopathic medicine from Bastyr University in Seattle. Her medical school specialty training included: family medicine, normal maternity, advanced pediatrics, diabetes, autoimmune & cardiovascular care. She also trained in and specializes in Naturopathic Oncology with Mistletoe Therapy. She has completed the five-year post-graduate training in Anthroposophic medicine and is certified as an Anthroposophic Naturopathic Doctor. She works in Waldorf schools with classroom observation, parent education, and with the school’s faculty. Dr. Schmitt lectures and teaches at Waldorf schools and Waldorf teacher trainings in the United States. She is the current Vice-President on the board of the Society for Physicians of Anthroposophic Naturopathy (SPAN) and is on the faculty of the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training and Sound Circle Center for Waldorf Teacher training in Seattle. Dr. Schmitt is also a member of the California Naturopathic Doctors Association, as well as a member of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians, the Oncology Association of Naturopathic Physicians, and the Pediatric Association of Naturopathic Physicians.

Judith Thomas was one of the founding parents of the East Bay Waldorf School and a member of the faculty as a class teacher (1985-1993) and handwork teacher (1994-2007) in both the lower school and in the high school. She has been a weaver and fiber artist for many years and currently teaches pine needle basketry classes and weaving workshops in the Bay Area. She teaches handwork at BACWTT.

Liz Turkel Vose is a Bay Area native who worked professionally as a theater artist and drama teacher before discovering Waldorf education and Anthroposophy. She is a graduate and former faculty member of the International School of Storytelling at Emerson College in the UK. She currently divides her time between teaching workshops in storytelling, voice, music and drama at various locations around the Bay Area and caring for her two small boys at home.

Gail Weger began her work in Waldorf education in 1994 through a home preschool she created out of a need in her children’s community. She went on to take her first class at the Live Oak Waldorf School from first through fifth grade, and her second class from first through graduation. She is currently teaching Seventh Grade at the Marin Waldorf School, where she has been for the last four years.

Gail has been a mentor and teacher of teachers since 2001, in the Midwest, Bay Area, and through Rudolf Steiner College and BACWTT; and served as the Pedagogical Chair at the East Bay Waldorf School in 2013-14. Gail is a practicing artist and holds a BFA in Printmaking and Art History. She is, as well, an avid follower of biodynamic and permaculture practices, and explorer of the natural wonders of California. She has three grown Waldorf-educated daughters, a wonderful husband, Mathias, and has just begun a long career as a grandmother.

Beth Weisburn has taught at Summerfield Waldorf School and Farm since 2001. She teaches a wide range of subjects in grades 7-12, including math, earth science and senior project. In 2008, she co-founded The Center for Contextual Studies, where she collaborates with colleagues to form research initiatives into teaching and learning. Her formal preparation for Waldorf teaching was with the Center for Educational Renewal (2002) and she completed the Mulberry Curative Course in 2017. She earned a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University (1995). At BACWTT, Beth works with the students in the art of teaching High School and the practice of Goethean Observation.

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