Faculty & Staff


Administrative Staff

Faculty Members

Faculty Members - Early Childhood

Faculty Members - Lower School

Faculty Members - Middle School

Special Subject Teachers - Kealahou Campus

High School Faculty


Administrative Staff

Kelly Brewer - Administrator

Kelly started her Waldorf career in 1980 and has been involved in Waldorf education as a teacher, administrator, consultant and parent over her lengthy career. Most recently Kelly was the Administrator of the Davis Waldorf School before becoming an independent consultant to other Waldorf schools. Kelly arrived in early May this year and It is a tremendous pleasure for the Board of Directors of Haleakala Waldorf School to announce the appointment of such an experienced, knowledgeable and distinguished Waldorf professional.

 

Paula Berdal - ENROLLMENT AND ADMINISTRATIVE COORDINATOR

Paula, originally from Northern California, has lived in Hawai’i since 1997. She earned her B.A. in Communication from Mills College, CA. Her son Rolando graduated from HWS in 2015 and her son Liam is currently in second grade at HWS.

 

Teresa Rizzo - FINANCE DIRECTOR

Teresa moved to Maui in 1979 and began her bookkeeping career at the famous Hasegawa General Store in 1982. She went on to complete her accounting studies at MCC and came to HWS in 2002, doing accounting and as the first non-volunteer Enrollment Coordinator. Teresa is an expert in accounting software programs, has completed many leadership training and organization workshops, and is also adept in woodworking. She designed and constructed the wooden desks for several of our classrooms. She was presented with the Haleakalā Waldorf School Volunteer of the Year Award in 2001. Her son Blake graduated in 2010 after having been enrolled at HWS since preschool.

 

 

 

Carrie Fidance - ADVANCEMENT AND MARKETING COORDINATOR

   
 

Kathie Carello-Thuro - BOOKKEEPER AND FACILITIES COORDINATOR

Kathie holds a B.S. in Computer Science/Interdisciplinary Studies and brings 35 years of office, bookkeeping, and organizational experience to HWS. Born and raised in Rhode Island, she moved to Maui in 1993. On Maui, Kathie has worked in the fields of property management, janitorial services, and construction. She is a long time teacher and practitioner of Transcendental Meditation and her interests include reading, natural farming, hiking, camping and traveling.

 

Leslie Tucker - EVENT AND PARENT VOLUNTEER COORDINATOR

Leslie Tucker grew up in Kailua on O’ahu and walked barefoot to elementary school. A graduate of Punahou, Leslie holds a B.A. in English Literature from Pitzer College in Claremont, CA, teaching credentials at Chapman College, and an M.Ed. in Special Education from Seattle University. Before moving to Maui, Leslie was a teacher for both adults and children with disabilities in Seattle for 15 years. Her two daughters, Gita (class of 2014) and Maile (class of 2017), both attend HWS.

 

Dave Luborsky - FACILITIES MANAGER

Dave has worked at several biodynamic and organic farms in Europe and North America, as well as working for small natural food companies, baking bread and selling produce at market.  He has experience working in a Waldorf kindergarten, and has also worked with children and adults with special needs. Here in Hawaii he does landscaping, property caretaking and gardening.

 

Jennifer Hamayelian, RDH - ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT / HEALTH ROOM ATTENDANT

Jenn holds an Associates of Applied Science, Kennedy-King College, IL. She has completed the Lifeways Training, and furthers her understanding of Waldorf education with AWE classes. Her son Cyrus is in the Pueo Kindergarten & has been attending HWS in the Pulama class & I’iwi class since age 1.

Jessica Susen - ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

Jessica holds a BA in History from the University of Hawaii. She is currently attending Antioch University, earning her M.Ed and Waldorf Teacher Training. Born and raised on Maui, Jessica recently returned to the island to raise her 3 children surrounded by family and immersed in Hawaiian culture.

Rainie Sunshine - LUNCH PROGRAM COORDINATOR

Jayne Craine - HIGH SCHOOL ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

Jayne has an Associates Degree in Hospitality Management from Owens College in Ohio and a Bachelor’s Degree in English from the University of Hawai’i at Manoa. Jayne’s whole family moved to Maui in 1984 from the Midwest. She has worked in the administrative offices at Haleakalā Waldorf School since her first daughter started ‘Apapane in 2006. Jane has two daughters, Acacia and Sequoia. Sequoia is enrolled in the HWS Class of 2020.


Faculty Members
 

 

 

Hannah Jackson - EDUCATIONAL SUPPORT THERAPIST

Hannah holds a Bachelor of Science in Special Education and a Minor in Psychology and German from Appalachian State University; a MEd. in Elementary Education and Waldorf Teaching Certificate from Antioch New England Graduate School; and a Waldorf Remedial Teaching Certificate from the Association of a Healing Education. She is also an Integrated Listening Systems Practitioner. Hannah has 17 years of teaching experience, and is the mother of 2 sons currently enrolled at HWS. This is her first year at HWS, and she has wholeheartedly flung herself into learning more about her new island home through hula, paddling and exploring Maui as much as possible.


Faculty Members - Early Childhood

Kim Raymond - I’IWI PRESCHOOL AND PULAMA PARENT+CHILD TEACHER

Kim came to Maui in August 2000 after teaching at Sacramento Waldorf School for eight years and Westside Waldorf School for five years. She completed her Waldorf Teacher Training at Rudolf Steiner College in 1977 and has since taught classes there. Kim obtained her Child Development Associate Credential in 2004. In addition to her extensive teaching experience, Kim offers a love of children, their parents, community life, and festivals.

 
 

Andrea Futch - I’IWI PRESCHOOL ASSISTANT

Andrea began working in our Early Childhood Department in 2001. She holds a B.A. in Communications from the University of Central Florida and Early Childhood Certification from University of Hawai’i, MCC campus. She and her family are deeply committed to HWS and Waldorf Education. Her daughter, Sabrina, graduated from HWS in 2011 and her husband, Dave, continues to serve the school on the Board of Directors. Andrea loves reading, painting, surfing, and walking her little dog Ziggy.

Gisele LaLonde - ‘APAPANE PRESCHOOL TEACHER

Gisele is a trained Orff Schulwerk music teacher with skills from classical voice to playing pentatonic instruments. For more than a decade, she worked with families teaching music and movement to children from birth to five years. She then received her teaching certificate in Early Childhood Education and a B.A. in Waldorf Education from Rudolf Steiner College in Fair Oaks, CA. In 2006, she came to HWS from the Westside Waldorf School in Santa Monica where she implemented and taught a nursery program. She continues to teach pedagogical music for the young child to Waldorf teachers as she has done for Rudolf Steiner College. Gisele also holds a RIE Foundations Certificate, Los Angeles RIE Center, Advanced Permaculture Educator Certificate, IPEC, Portland, OR and a Simplicity Parenting Group Leader Certificate. Gisele brings an immense love of Anthroposophy and Waldorf Education to our community.

Leslie Leclerc - ‘APAPANE PRESCHOOL ASSISTANT

Leslie was born and grew up in Puerto Rico, and has been in Hawai’i since 1992. She holds a B.A. in Science from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Early Childhood Certification from University of Hawaii. She is currently working towards completing Early Childhood Waldorf Teacher Training. Leslie’s two sons Justin (class of 2017) and Connor (class of 2015) attend HWS. Leslie is a wonderful dancer and is known as one of the most optimistic members of our faculty.

River Berquist - NENE KINDERGARTEN TEACHER

River Bergquist was born and raised in Washington State. She attended Western Washington University and completed her Waldorf Teacher training at Antioch New England Graduate School in 2002. She graduated with a Masters in Education and Waldorf Certification. River taught as a grades lead teacher at HWS from 2004-2007. She has a daughter, Mahina, born in the Spring of 2008. River taught grades 1-3 in a Waldorf-inspired initiative in Southern Oregon, where she then started her own kindergarten, Roots and Wings. River moved to Whidbey Island in 2013 to join the Waldorf community there and continue her work teaching in the early childhood department and facilitating Simplicity Parenting Groups . River returned to Maui this last summer, where she considers herself to be truly at home. When River is not teaching kindergarten, she enjoys being at the beach with her daughter, traveling to visit family and friends, and exploring the beautiful nature of Hawaii.

Shelley Jacobs - NENE KINDERGARTEN ASSISTANT

Shelley has been in Hawai’i since 1988 and has been part of the Haleakala Waldorf School community both as a parent and as a teacher in the kindergartens and preschool since 1998. She holds a B.A. and Waldorf teacher certificationas well as LifeWays Early Childhood Certification. She is a licensed massage therapist, a Reiki practitioner and a trained Doulah. Her youngest daughter Ezrella (aka Winnie), currently attends the Nene Kindergarden and daughter Nani graduated with the class of 2007.

Julie Ybarra - PUEO KINDERGARTEN TEACHER

Julie holds a B.F.A. from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Julie has been a Waldorf Educator since 1999 and has taught at HWS in the Early Childhood Department since 2002. She has done advanced training in remedial education and with Nurturing the Roots in Denver CO. She also serves on our College of Teachers. Julie is the mother of one daughter, RubyVal. She lives on a farm in Keokea and has a great love for animals and the natural world. She has done intense study into the Sufi Tradition and is passionate about integrating spirituality into her life and work. She has traveled around the world twice - once in each direction!

Jenny Sheehan - PUEO KINDERGARTEN ASSISTANT

Jenny received her Bachelor degree from Miami University in Ohio and has also studied at UH Maui in the Early Childhood department. She is currently working on her Waldorf Early Childhood credential at the Michael Institute in Portland, Oregon. She enjoys gardening, hiking and hula. Jenny’s two children Kyle (class of 2012) and Nora (class of 2018) are HWS students.

 

Wendy Patterson- EARLY CHILDHOOD AIDE and ECD AFTER SCHOOL CARE PROVIDER

 


Faculty Members - Lower School

                                              

Jemma Della Croce - GRADE 1 TEACHER, CLASS OF 2024

Mrs. Della Croce led a class from first through eighth grade here at HWS (graduating class of 2010), taught first grade at the Honolulu Waldorf School, and worked as the HWS educational support teacher. Jemma holds a degree in Theatre Arts and infuses her teaching with enthusiasm and a love of learning. She obtained her Waldorf teaching certificate through the Kula Makua program at the Honolulu Waldorf School in 2002. Jemma and her husband Peter, a musician and Waldorf teacher, are the proud parents of son, Brendan who is an HWS student (class of 2031).

 

 

Arne Kaiser - GRADE 2 TEACHER, CLASS OF 2023

Arne was introduced to Waldorf as a child, and is an alumni of Steinerskolen I Bergen, Norway, and the Geert Groote School in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Arne worked at the Zonnehuizen Veldheim in Zeist, The Netherlands, an Anthroposophical institute for youth psychiatry. While in Zeist he obtained his Bachelors of Education at the Waldorf teacher training at HS Helicon before starting work at the Geert Groote School in Amsterdam. After taking two classes through from 5th and 6th grades, he moved to Flagstaff, Arizona, where he worked for 13 years at the local Waldorf charter school, Pine Forest. Arne has taught all grades from 1st to 8th, and has consulted and advised Waldorf schools nationally and internationally. He came to HWS in the summer of 2015 to teach the first grade, with his wife Berber, who is currently teaching 5th grade.

 

 

 

 

 

Richard Weis, M.A. - GRADE 3 TEACHER, CLASS OF 2022

Richard earned his Waldorf teaching certificate and a M. Ed. from Antioch New England Graduate School. He holds a B.A. in Psychology. Richard started at HWS in 2014 and is currently the second grade class teacher. He has 16 years of class teaching experience in Waldorf classrooms on the Big Island of Hawaii, Arizona and Colorado. He has two children who graduated from Waldorf schools and live in Colorado. Richard enjoys living with Aloha, teaching, surfing, yoga, volleyball, and graphic arts.

Sarah Nelson - GRADE 4 TEACHER, CLASS OF 2021

Sarah returns to HWS from Vancouver, BC where she recently took a class from first through sixth grade. She left Maui in 2007 after 9 years here at HWS teaching classes from Preschool through Grade Six. Sarah holds an M.A. in Education from Antioch New England Graduate School, a B.A. in Child/Adolescent Psychology from the University of Massachusetts, and a Waldorf Teacher Certification from the Center for Anthroposophy in Wilton, NH. She has two daughters who have attended HWS, Pippin who graduated from the Vancouver Waldorf High School in 2011, and Sage who graduated from King Kekaulike High School last year. Sarah serves as College Chair and works with an assistant to help her with her strong and healthy third grade class.

Kim Dukes - GRADE 4 ASSISTANT, CLASS OF 2021

Kim began working at HWS in 2004 in a variety of capacities. As well as serving as the third grade assistand, Kim currently provides year-round maintenance of our gardens, and is also an independent landscaping design and maintenance landscaper, she previously maintained all of the School landscaping. Kim and Russell have two daughters, Cassidy and Jesse.

Ingrid Almquist - GRADE 5 TEACHER, CLASS OF 2020

Ingrid did her Waldorf Teacher Training at the London Waldorf Teaching Training Seminar. She holds an MA in Renaissance Drama from Kings College in London, a B.A. in Theater Arts/Mythology and Folklore from the University of Pennsylvania, and a Certificate in Directing from the East 15 Drama School in London. Ingrid comes to us from the Mountain Laurel Waldorf School in New York where she has taken a class from the 1st through the 8th grade. Her daughter Mirabai is in the Third Grade.


Faculty Members - Middle School

Berber Kaiser - GRADE 6  TEACHER, CLASS OF 2019

Berber Kaiser was born and raised in The Netherlands, a small country in Europe. She was introduced to Waldorf education when she entered the Waldorf School in Amsterdam as a child. Since then, she has never really left; graduating from Waldorf High school and then completing Waldorf Teacher Training. Berber also has a degree in Elementary Education/Waldorf Education, and a degree in Special Education. In her 20 years of teaching, she spent 4 years as the director of Special Education in Driebergen, The Netherlands and 4 years as a grades teacher in an institute for children with special needs in Zeist, The Netherlands. She was a grades teacher at Pine Forest School in Flagstaff, AZ for 12 years. When she is not teaching, she loves to ride horses, travel, read, work in the garden and go for long walks on the beach.

 

Jeannette Milholland - GRADE 7 TEACHER, CLASS OF 2016

Jeannette holds a BS from Vanderbilt University/Vanderbilt in France. She completed her Teacher Training Year and Graduate Work at the University of Nevada, Reno, and her Waldorf Certificate from Rudolf Steiner College. She has been a teacher for 30 years in public school, International School (Italy), and 24 years as a Waldorf Teacher. Her personal interests are Mayan culture, jewelry design, travel, playing music, reading, gardening, and learning new languages.

Mercy Kraft - GRADE 8 TEACHER, CLASS OF 2017

Mercy Kraft holds a B. Ed. University of Hawaii, Waldorf Certification from WISC, and has studied at Sonoma State University, the University of Hawai’i, the Ali Akbar Khan College of Music, and Rudolf Steiner College. She has taught high school, elementary, and special education. Mercy first came to HWS in 1995 and has graduated the classes of 2000, 2006 and 2009. Mercy is also an accomplished student of Hawaiian dance, music and ukulele.


Special Subject Teachers - Kealahou Campus

Bryen Lehto - MIDDLE SCHOOL MATH & SCIENCE SPECIALIST

Bryen Lehto has been teaching for fifteen years and worked with over a thousand students in those years. Bryen started his teaching in Detroit’s inner city while pursuing a Masters of Fine Art in sculpture, leaving behind a blossoming career crafting sets and props for television commercials. He began his teaching career as a woodworking teacher at Detroit Community High School, a Waldorf inspired charter school with a social mission to work with at risk youth in the community. Bryen also taught at the Detroit Waldorf School and the Oakland Steiner school. After grad school, Bryen went to work teaching art in a maximum security juvenile detention center in Detroit. In 2007 Bryen took a position as the practical arts teacher at the Vancouver Waldorf School. Bryen’s thesis work in graduate school focused on the connection of science, spirituality and art. He is a consummate life-long learner.

 

Maka’ala Palmore - MIDDLE SCHOOL ART SPECIALIST

Maka’ala studied art at the Art Institute of Chicago, Santa Monica Institute for Art and Design, and with master painters in Hawai’i. She has had her paintings exhibited in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles, and her work hangs in many private homes and public venues in Hawaii and internationally. She has studied Waldorf painting techniques with Iris Sullivan, Art Therapist, and Art Teacher trainer, as well as lazure painting with Gunther Weiss. She is also a certified Creativity Coach. As an artist she strives to continue to develop her own individual conversation and relationship with color, light, form and the evolution of the soul.

Shellie Smith - HANDWORK TEACHER

Shellie has been an elementary teacher for over 11 years in both public schools and Waldorf schools. She graduated from the University of Montana in Missoula, with a BA in social work and earned her teaching license in Colorado. After teaching in public schools for 5 years, running summer camps and after school programs, she went on to study Anthroposophy and graduate from the Waldorf Handwork Teacher certification program at the Rudolf Steiner College. She is an author and illustrator of children’s books. Her most recently published book is entitled, A Twisted Tangled Tale.

 

 

 

Kim Dukes - GARDENING TEACHER

Kim began working at HWS in 2004 in a variety of capacities. Kim currently provides year-round maintenance of our gardens, and is also an independent landscaping design and maintenance landscaper, Kim previously maintained all of the School landscaping. Kim and Russell have two daughters, Cassidy and Jesse.

Maka’ala Palmore - HAWAIIANA TEACHER

Makaʻala, (known as “Anake” by the children, which simply means “Aunty”) has been trained in the arts of hula by kumu hula Gordean Leilehua Bailey, of the Aunty Ma’iki Aiu Lake lineage for the past 20 years, and graduated through a traditional ‘uniki process and ceremony as a kumu hula in 2011. Anake has developed and directed the Hawaiiana program at HWS since 2004. She is the founder and kumu hula of Halau Hula Wehena o ke Ao. Her deepest commitment is to honor her kupuna (elders), and especially her beloved teacher in all that she does.

Bobbie Jo Curley - MUSIC TEACHER

A musician her whole life since age 5, Bobbie Jo has dedicated her soul to the art of sound & vibration. She has taught piano, guitar, voice & harp for over 30 years (throughout Los Angeles) & had many years of schooling in scoring & arranging. She taught for 8 years at Fremont Elementary Junior & Senior chorus to over 500 children! (per year ) After recording many albums and sailing the South Pacific (all the way to New Zealand!) with her family (son & husband), she’s relocated to Maui 5 years hence—teaching & performing (the MACC, Iao Theatre, Under Da Banyan Tree with the Lahaina Arts society, Baldwin House Benefit, Mapa Benefit, Romero Family annual party, etc…) She is absolutely thrilled to join the Waldorf Haleakala community as Music Teacher. Her hobbies include sailing, Stand Up Paddling, hiking, gardening, Navajo bead work, Lauhala (pandanas) weaving and learning to play unusual flutes.

Joseph Palmore - MOVEMENT EDUCATION TEACHER & ATHLETIC DIRECTOR

Joseph was previously a Waldorf Class Teacher at HWS for sixteen years, taking two classes through 1st -8th grade. He is currently completing his training in Spacial Dynamics. Joseph is a Tang Soo Do Instructor, Theatre, Drama and Improvisational Theatre Workshop Teacher and has taught Dramatic Arts to improve Reading Test Scores through collaboration between MAPA and the DOE. Joseph holds a BA in Elementary Education. He enjoys Pina Colodas and getting caught in the rain, is into health food, and is into fine champagne.

Vickie Conmy - SPANISH LANGUAGE TEACHER: GRADES 1-7

Vickie received her B.A. in Psychology from UC Santa Barbara. She was a bilingual teacher in California for six years before coming to Maui. She has since taught at Lihikai Elementary and Waihe’e School and was a Spanish specialist before taking over the HWS Spanish Language program in 2007. Vickie and Peter’s two sons, Nikolas (Freshman in the High School Class of 2018) and Sean (Lower School Class of 2015), attend HWS. She enjoys arts and crafts and hanging out with her husband and two sons.

Paul Levinson - LANGUAGE ARTS, STUDY HALL, EDUCATION SUPPORT TEACHER

Originally from South Africa, Paul holds a Business degree from the University of Capetown, an M.Ed. from UH Manoa, and has completed two years of Anthroposophical Studies at Emerson College in England. He helped start Three Rivers Waldorf School with Bonnie River, and was also one of the founding teachers at Shining Mountain Waldorf School. Most recently Paul has worked at MCC in the Educational Opportunity Center directing a federal college access program for disadvantaged local residents. Paul is married to Sharon Mielbrecht and has two sons, one of whom is the Eurythmy teacher at the Austin Waldorf School. Paul’s personal interests include gardening, hiking, music, birds, bocce, reading and CATS!

 

 

 

Zuzanna Furga Lathe - GRADES AFTER CARE

Zuzanna has a M.A. in English studies (Applied Linguistics) from the Institute of English Studies at the University of Warzaw. She is an educator by trade and a gardener by calling. Zuzanna worked as an English teacher in Poland and France, and she also worked as a translator for various organizations. After moving to Maui she has taken on projects as a farm careteaker, gardener, farmers’ market stand manager, and she is a raw vegan private chef.

 


High School Faculty

Matthew Clement- High School Arts, Science, & Humanities Class of 2018 Sponsor

Matthew was a Waldorf student and graduated from the Boulder Waldorf School. He studied fine arts at Oberlin College and completed his BA in Fine Arts at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Matthew is also the former HWHS Coordinator, former HWS Facilities Manager, and current Design and Construction Consultant to the Board.

 

 

 

Virginia Fish - HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER

Virginia holds a BA from Ohio state university, a MA from IUPS university in Transformative Education, and a Therapeutic Education certificate from Gradalis instituite. She has worked at HWS since its early days. Virginia’s hobbies and special interests include education in the 21st century and Ecological lifestyles, Hiking, all ocean activities, Gardening, and Writing children’s stories.

 
 

Karla K Okazaki NBCC - College Counselor

Karla holds a B.A. from UCLA, and a M.Ed from University of Hawai’i at Manoa. She has worked as a college counselor on Maui for many years. Karla is the mother of 2 young children, Kana and Kinsley. Her hobbies include surfing, stand up paddling, yoga, traveling, staying active and spending time with family and friends.

Meryl Haywood - HIGH SCHOOL ART TEACHER

Born and raised on Maui, Meryl Haywood has been making art ever since the age of two. She attended and graduated from Haleakala Waldorf School in 2005. Meryl says she would not have pursued art if she had not attended the Waldorf School. She believes the Waldorf curriculum and environment influenced and empowered her expression of herself through art. At the age of seventeen, Meryl attended the Florence Academy of Art in Italy where she studied classical drawing and painting for three years. After graduation, Meryl moved back to Maui and is currently attending part-time College at the University of Hawaii Maui College. She is pursuing a bachelor degree in Art History. Her goal in life is to push the boundaries and reach her highest potential in her art. In her unique curriculum at the Waldorf High School, she has her own philosophy that incorporates the classical techniques she has learned in Florence.

Jackson Lathe - High School Mathematics and Science Department Chair Class of 2019 Sponsor

Jackson has a BS in Chemistry and Secondary Education from the University of Nevada. He is also a Waldorf graduate himself.

 

 

Kieran Devanney - HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER CLASS OF 2017 SPONSOR

Kieran holds a BS in Education from the University of Central Florida. He moved to Maui in 2012 to teach windsurfing, and later started a small custom board company. He has a background in engineering, computer science, and fitness. Keiran teaches math, physics, and phydical education. He is the 12th grade class sponsor, basketball and surf coach, and athletic director.

 

 

Kelsey Sadler - High School English Teacher

Senior Sponsor BA English Literature, Santa Clara University Florence, Italy 2008, Syracuse University