MEET OUR TEAM

Newport Beach Campus

morgan hall

Morgan Salas-Hall

TK/ECE - Newport Beach
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I have been a teacher for six years. Through my teaching journey, I have adopted multiple philosophies of advocacy for children; from infancy through six years old. I have adopted ways of incorporating hands-on learning experiences through nature and sensory play and incorporating balance into my teaching method, and this is important during a child’s early developmental years. My background includes a certificate and degree in Early Childhood Education. I then studied Early Childhood Education at National University!

katie pfeif

Katie Pfeif

TK - Newport Beach
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I was born and raised in Newport Beach. I got both my BA in Communication and MA in Education at USC. I have 4 children: Reagan is a senior at the University of Wisconsin, Maddy a junior at the University of Georgia, Brady is a senior at CDM, and Dylan is a sophomore, also at CDM. I love spending time with my family and friends. When I’m not working, I also enjoy reading, paddle boarding, and swimming. I’ve been at Seashore for 3 years now…I taught Kindergarten and now I’m in TK at the Newport Beach campus. I love my job and am so thankful to be working at Seashore, as we have the best staff and families!

yukka garrett

Yuka Garrett

Kindergarten - Newport Beach
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I am a Kindergarten teacher at the Newport Beach Campus. I was born and grew up in Japan. I have an amazing 11-year-old daughter who loves animals and I love to watch her riding horses every week. I love to travel and have visited five continents; (Maybe the next trip will be Antarctica?) After I moved to America, I enjoy visiting the National Parks. I also love Salsa and Swing dancing. I love baseball, Go Ohtani-san!

alexis weber

Alexis Weber

Kindergarten - Newport Beach
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I was born and raised in Scottsdale Arizona and moved to California five years ago. I have a strong passion for teaching and inspiring the little minds of our youth. I have been teaching kindergarten at Seashore Academy at the Newport Beach campus for three years and wouldn’t trade it for the world. Outside of school, I enjoy being with family and friends, traveling, and spending time at the beach.

natasha shumante

Natasha Shumate

Kindergarten - Newport Beach
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I’m the mother of two teenage daughters Hannah and Keira. All three of us are originally from Kauai, Hawaii, and are pretty much beach girls! I have a background in dance, gymnastics, cheer, and surfing. I’m also a fitness and nutrition coach. I love our Newport Beach campus. It’s unique in its location and filled with the most positive wonderful students and staff. I couldn’t feel more blessed!

ashley aguilar

Ashley Aguilar

1st Grade - Newport Beach
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I was born and raised in Orange County. I teach 1st grade on the Newport Beach campus and my goal is to create an inclusive classroom that results in a successful learning environment. I am recently married and we have three dogs that keep us very busy. When I'm not teaching or playing with my dogs I enjoy reading and playing card games. I am so excited for my first year at Seashore!

kim wiltjer

Kim Wiltjer

1st Grade - Newport Beach
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I work at the Newport Beach campus teaching first grade. I am so excited to shape the minds and create memories with the students of Seashore Academy. When I am not teaching, I enjoy being creative and hanging out with family. I cannot wait to share my passion for learning and my joy of working with students.

nikki hezar

Nikki Hezar

1st Grade - Newport Beach
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I am so excited to be teaching first grade at the Newport Beach campus! I grew up in Orange County and then lived in Dallas, Texas for 7 years, before returning back to California. My goal is to create a warm, loving, and supportive environment, where my students are excited about learning and look forward to coming to school every day. I am passionate about nutrition and wellness and enjoy sharing that passion with my students. Outside of school, I love spending time with friends and family, traveling, going to concerts, and enjoying the outdoors.

clare dahl

Clare Dahl

2nd Grade - Newport Beach
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I was born and raised in Orange County. This is my third year at Seashore Academy teaching 2nd grade at the Newport Beach campus. My goal for all my students is for them to love school and learning. In my spare time, I enjoy sailing, being with friends and family, going to the lake, and traveling. I am looking forward to another great year!

alex olsen

Alexandra Olsen

2nd Grade - Newport Beach
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I grew up in Scottsdale, Arizona, and moved to Newport Beach last November which lead me to join the Seashore Academy team. This will be my second year teaching the 2nd grade here at the Newport Beach campus. With a background in art and design, I also work with Seashore Academy to produce newsletters and other marketing content. In my spare time, I love to hang out with my puppy named Otis, travel, horseback ride, camp and spend time at the beach. Teaching remains to be a passion of mine year after year, and I am thrilled to be a part of the Seashore team!

anthony velazquez

Anthony Velazquez

3rd Grade - Newport Beach
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I am inspired by the arts, music, literature, classic cinema, cultural anthropology, mythology, hiking, and nature. In my free time, I enjoy writing music and strumming my guitar. My aim in teaching is to foster the creativity and imagination of my students, and I am thrilled to be a part of the team at Seashore Academy!

tina yang

Tina Yang

Mandarin Immersion / 3rd Grade - Newport Beach
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I have been with Seashore Academy for more than 10 years. I teach Math and Science as well as Mandarin for all grades. I became a teacher because of my love for children and the opportunity to not only teach but to mentor and watch children grow and thrive! I love the hands-on learning experiences that Seashore offers and values the safe and joyful environment. When I am not teaching, I enjoy going backpacking and spending time in nature! I also love trying new foods!

shainna

Shainna Breslow

4th Grade - Newport Beach
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I am a Fourth Grade teacher here at Seashore Academy, Newport Campus. I teach Language Arts, Science, Art, Creative Writing, and Yoga. Seashore is such a warm, friendly, comfortable, fun, and enriching learning space! I truly enjoy working here and am extremely happy with my daughter’s experience in Kindergarten with Ms. Weber, Ms. Natasha, and Ms. Yuka. She is thrilled to be here and so am I! My favorite hobbies are surfing, exploring the town with my daughter, music, nature, and rock collecting.

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Janice Dreyer

4th Grade - Newport Beach
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I teach 4th grade at the Newport Beach campus. I enjoy teaching all grades and I'm really enjoying the 4th-grade curriculum. Additionally, I enjoy teaching young children in the lower grades to read. When not working, I like to go to the beach, read and spend time with my family, especially taking mini road trips with them. I am excited to be working at Seashore.

susie keough2

Susie Keough

5th Grade - Newport Beach
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Public Speaking, Novel Studies, and Speech and Debate are some of my favorite classes to teach! In my free time, I like to paint, read, swim, and hike!

corbin bricks

Corbin Bricks​

6th Grade - Newport Beach
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I was fortunate enough to advance with the students, teaching 5th grade last year. I love watching the students grow throughout the year and building relationships with them. When I'm not at school, I love to spend time lying on the beach, working out, drinking coffee, and hanging out with my friends and family.

tawnya rider

Tawnya Rider

6th Grade - Newport Beach
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I am so happy to be at our Newport campus teaching 6th grade ELA and History. In my spare time, I love traveling and learning about and experiencing new cultures. I also enjoy being outdoors, listening to music, reading, and just spending time with my family and friends. I am looking forward to a wonderful school year and learning about and from my students and their families.

emma olson

Emma Olson

7th & 8th English - Newport Beach
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Emma graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in English Literature and Psychology. She spent four years teaching writing and reading comprehension through USC’s Joint Educational Program in Los Angeles. In addition, Emma has tutored middle and high school students for over five years as a volunteer for 826LA. She was a substitute teacher for Seashore last year and is excited to be a member of the Middle School team this year. If she is not reading, painting, or writing, you might find her out on the water sailing!

mike bohen

Mike Bohen

7th & 8th Math - Newport Beach
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I am presently teaching Pre-Algebra and Algebra (7th/8th grades) on the Newport Campus. I live in Irvine with my wife, Jennifer, and my dogs McGee and Olive. I spend my free time practicing yoga, riding/hiking, and tutoring.

wade banowsky

Wade Banowsky

7th & 8th History, Director of Student Engagement - Newport Beach
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I am from Dallas, TX, and graduated from the University of Arizona with degrees in Education and Marketing. I teach 7th and 8th grade World History and am the Director of Student Engagement at our Newport Beach campus. I believe through positive engagement and guidance, kids have the opportunity to reach their highest potential. I spend most of my time outside the classroom either skydiving, coaching, riding my motorcycle, or at the beach. I truly enjoy working with middle school students and hope to instill positive values in all of my students.

savanna farrell2

Savannah Farrell

7th & 8th Science - Newport Beach
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I teach 7th-grade life science and 8th-grade physical science at the Newport Beach campus. I love teaching and getting to see the children grow in their academics and social skills throughout the year. I love to teach all ages but have found that I gravitate towards first-grade and middle-school ages. Outside of teaching, I love to do art, go to the beach, and be with my friends, family, and my dog.

angel wang2

Angel Wang

Mandarin Immersion - Newport Beach
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I was born in Taiwan and earned my degree in Visual Communication from the National Taichung University of Science and Technology, Taiwan. I am currently a 3rd-grade teacher at Tzu-Chi Academy at Irvine and a K/1st teacher at Seashore. This is my 10th year teaching and 8th year teaching at Seashore. I believe learning Mandarin is important for the language as well as understanding Chinese culture and history. I design projects for children using my creative talents and integrating language in a fun way. I am able to keep children engaged in learning Mandarin while I meet curriculum goals and objectives

stefanie baeker2

Stefanie Baeker

Spanish Immersion - Newport Beach
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I have started as a substitute teacher at Seashore Academy in February 2020. Later in 2020, I started teaching History, Science, and Spanish at the Huntington Beach Campus to TK/K and Elementary level, as well as Spanish to various grades in Newport Beach. I’m currently co-teaching TK/K levels in our Spanish Immersion program in Newport Beach. Besides my love to teach and learn for myself, I’m passionate about Astrology, travel, good food, and spending time in nature. To stay fit, I take Yoga/Tai chi classes, and also bike, hike, and swim.

amanda harrington

Amanda Harrington (Johnson)

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Spanish Immersion - Newport Beach
I grew up in Newport Beach and played Varsity golf at Corona Del Mar High School. I then graduated from USD with a double major in Communications & Sociology and a minor in Spanish. In my free time, I love to go to the beach, golf, and spend time with family and friends! I am also currently in Graduate School obtaining her Masters in Education. I love teaching the younger kids and am excited to be at the Newport Beach campus again!

jocelyn quintana2

Jocelyn Quintana

Spanish Immersion - Newport Beach
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I am the Spanish Immersion teacher at Newport Beach to grades TK - 2nd grade. Spanish is my first language and being able to teach it to little ones has been an amazing experience! My hobbies include working out, hanging out with friends, and trying new things.

kathy mcguire

Kathy McGuire

Principal - Newport Beach
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Education is my jam. Touching the hearts and minds of those entrusted to my care is the purposeful work I am privileged to do every day. I am thankful to be a part of Seashore’s community of young minds, and excited learners. Favorite activities that bring me joy: a great find at the bookstore, any type of beach or water recreation, gathering with family and friends, all types of music, my faith, painting, bike riding, learning new things, camping, skiing, and most importantly time with my 3 boys: Connor 22, Barrett 18, Brodey 16, and husband of 29 years, Matt.

Huntington Beach Campus

melissa seidemann

Melissa Seidemann

TK - Huntington Beach
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I am excited to teach TK on the Huntington Beach campus because of the incredible opportunity to impact these students and foster their love for school. The Huntington Beach campus offers a unique opportunity to personalize the education experience and I am excited to be a part of it! I enjoy spending time outdoors with my two dogs Ghost and Houston. I also enjoy all aquatic sports, especially water polo! My favorite holiday is Halloween and I love movie theater popcorn!

alexandra florent2

Alexandra Florent

TK - Huntington Beach
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I grew up in Canada and spent my summer traveling the world. I have been to over 20 countries including living in Asia for an entire year. I was born deaf in my right ear which inspired me to learn American Sign Language. I enjoy paddle boarding, horseback riding, reading in my hammock, and playing board games with my family. On the weekends, you can find me trying new coffee shops, painting, and serving in the Children's Ministry at my local church in Newport Beach.

kenzie weller droll 2

Kenzie Weller-Droll

Kindergarten - Huntington Beach
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I am a Kindergarten Teacher in Huntington Beach! I’m recently married and am soaking in the newlywed stage. I love traveling, shopping, watching sunsets on the beach, and spending time with my family and friends!

lisa lowe2

Lisa Lowe

1st & 2nd Grade - Huntington Beach
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This is my second year at Seashore HB, and I absolutely love being here in this community! My hobbies include: spending time with my husband, 3 boys, and our dog, Nellie, bike riding, running, reading, and cooking. We also love to hike, go to the beach, and explore new areas throughout California. I’m grateful to live and work in a community, where surfing, learning, and friends/families are strongly supported!

jenna niemes

Jenna Niemes

3rd Grade - Huntington Beach
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My favorite part about teaching is building relationships with my students and their families! Because Seashore Academy has small class sizes and such a strong community bond, I’m able to teach to my full potential! When I’m not teaching, I love to cook, travel, and exercise. I also love riding my beach cruiser to the beach with my family.

rob lyons

Rob Lyons

4th & 5th Grade - Huntington Beach
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I am in my second year teaching at the Huntington Beach campus. I enjoy all subjects but have a particular passion for English and History. In my free time, I love to read, surf, and play beach volleyball.

tom ficcadenti

Thomas Ficcadenti

6th & 7th Grade - Huntington Beach
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I’m known as "Mr. F", and I teach middle school & junior high at the Huntington Beach campus. My favorite subjects are Math & Science, but I also have an affinity for the arts & humanities. I have been playing the piano since childhood and enjoy reading classical literature in my spare time.

amanda katchka

Amanda Katchka

Site Director - Huntington Beach
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I have thoroughly enjoyed the past two years at Seashore as a mom, teacher, and now director. When not at the beach, or hanging with the teachers and kiddos on campus, I enjoy camping, coaching softball and soccer, endless games of Uno with my husband and kids, and spending as much time as possible with my family.

Mission Viejo Campus

natalie seidemann

Natalie Seidemann

TK & K - Mission Viejo
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I am a TK/Kindergarten Teacher on the Mission Viejo Campus. I have always loved teaching TK and Kindergarten age students. I love to paint and do crafts at home to relax. I enjoy doing anything outdoors; camping, hiking, swimming, walking, and backpacking. Anything in the sunshine! I also love spending quality time with my family and friends to keep me grounded.

andrea peltier

Andrea Peltier

3rd-5th Grade - Mission Viejo
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This is my second year with Seashore Academy and I could not be happier! My co-workers and administrators add support, motivation, and experience to my teaching experience every day! For the last two years at the San Juan and Mission Viejo campus, I have taught combo classes TK/K/1/2. What I look forward to most is when students experience that special moment when they understand or have mastered a concept, math problem, word, reading passage, or challenge. Seeing the relief and joy in their eyes and smiles is very rewarding! I enjoy country line dancing, Texas two-stepping, camping, hiking, swimming, kayaking, and most outdoor activities. I have traveled to 34 countries and have set a goal of 50 countries to see during my lifetime!

paul hines

Paul Hines

3rd-5th Grade - Mission Viejo
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I teach grades 3, 4 and 5 at the Mission Viejo campus. I enjoy sailing, reading, and watching good Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. I was inspired to become a teacher by a middle school teacher/sports coach named Mr. Minnix. Mr. Minnix encouraged me to do my best at all times. I am thankful to be working at Seashore Academy Mission Viejo because it offers the opportunity to be creative and adapt the curriculum to each student's needs. I have many years of experience teaching to multiple grade levels in a regular classroom. My class laughs a lot and Seashore's motto of joyful learning is my goal each day. Every student is respected for who they are and they try their best in every subject.

anne marie hines

Anne-Marie Hines

6th-8th Grade - Mission Viejo
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I teach middle school grades 6,7, and 8 at the Mission Viejo campus. I enjoy reading biographies, walking on the beach with my family, and organic gardening/cooking. I home-educated my son, Samuel, for 12 years who is now taking college courses and support his progress in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. I am thankful for Seashore Academy because our educational model is designed to instill life skills in students that will give opportunities for future successes.

katilin hogan

Kaitlin Hogan

Site Director - Mission Viejo
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I felt called to Seashore and this role because I want to make a positive impact with our next generation. I enjoy traveling, reading, exercising, USC football, swimming, and bargain shopping. I spend most of my downtime with my family and my favorite quick getaway is the desert.

Los Angeles Campus

madeleine goddard

Madeleine Goddard

TK-5th Grade ELA & History - Los Angeles
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I'm the 3rd through 5th-grade homeroom teacher at the Westside campus. I teach ELA and History to TK through 5th grade and Book writing and Financial Management to TK through 8th. My personal passions include health freedom, agnotology, writing, and language (including foreign language). I enjoy teaching/tutoring French to native English speakers, and English to native French speakers) and have begun my first foray into translation, after being asked by an author friend to work on the English translation of his first novel (written and published in French).

amy dedeaux

Amy Dedeaux

TK-5th Grade Math & Science - Los Angeles
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Spending time with my family and friends is my favorite. I am a proud mother of two teenagers. We are a sports family. Being in nature brings me joy, especially on the beach. Listening to music makes me happy.

jessica thompson

Jessica Thompson

6th-8th Grade - Los Angeles
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As the homeroom teacher for our Middle School, I deliver instruction in all Core Subjects - Mathematics, English Language Arts, Science, and History - to our 6th, 7th, and 8th graders. Leveraging my experience as a business owner, I love teaching Entrepreneurship and Product Design to our entire student body. I am extremely passionate about health and wellness - I enjoy a variety of outdoor activities like mountain biking, hiking, running, and rollerblading (you can find me often on the boardwalk between Will Rogers and Venice Beach). I am an avid reader, and consume massive amounts of information daily via podcasts - my favorites are Brené Brown (Social Science), Tim Ferriss (Success & Self-Actualization), and Dr. Andrew Huberman (Neurobiology).

kye sook kim

Kye Sook Kim

TK-5th Grade English, Arts & Math - Los Angeles
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I am the newest member of the Los Angeles Seashore Academy. I am working with students in K-5th in English Language, Arts and Math. When I'm not teaching, you'll find me riding my bike, roller skating around my neighborhood, going to garage sales, or exploring new places that have a cool history (and delicious food).

darius hays

Darius Hays

Administrator - Los Angeles
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I was born and raised in Oklahoma. I decided that I needed a change of scenery, so I chose to come to LA. In my spare time I enjoy going to the gym, playing pick-up basketball, and hanging out with friends and family. Fortunately, I was given the opportunity to join the Seashore family and I am super excited to be a part of the Westside team.

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Kathryn Stoney

Principal - Los Angeles
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I am the principal in LA County. I grew up in the mountains of Colorado. My favorite places are the beach or the mountains, so Westside and Topanga are the perfect fit for me! When I'm not working, I enjoy going to the movies or the gym.

Management & Staff

ivy rose ladera

Ivy Rose Ladera

Remote Admin
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I joined Seashore Academy last March 2022 as their Remote Admin Assistant. It has been a childhood dream to be part of a community where children are given the best possible experience for their education. I'm a mom to a fifth grader and 3 cats. I am a big coffee drinker and love listening to music in my free time. I also enjoy catching the sunrise on the beach and exploring scenic places with my trusted motorcycle during weekends.

chrissy bentsen2

Chrissy Bentsen

Controller
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I joined Seashore Academy in March 2022 and I am really enjoying being part of a business with such a great mission. I grew up in upstate New York and reside there with my husband and cats. In my spare time I enjoy being outdoors, gardening, cooking, making furniture, construction, and quilting. I love nature, creating things with my hands and living life simply, and of course I have a passion for accounting & finance

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Tyler Stoney

Head of Security & Athletic Director - Los Angeles
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I am the Director of Athletics and Security for Seashore Westside and soon-to-be Topanga. I spend a lot of time at the beach and I either start or end each day at the gym lifting weights.

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Stacy Stanich

HR
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Arrianne De Claro

Admin Assistant to Bobby
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I am thrilled to be part of a team who values high-quality education as much as I do! I am a licensed teacher, and working with Seashore Academy has been a blessing that I will always be grateful for. I am a bookworm and a writer during my free time; I have always believed that my purpose in life is to help and uplift others, and make them feel that all people are worthy of love.

grace blancaflor2

Grace Blancaflor

Admin Assistant to Marlene
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I joined Seashore in April 2022 as an administrative assistant to Marlene Dandler. Working at Seashore Academy is exciting and transformative for me because it allows me to play a role in a community that values traditional learning as well as the freedom for parents to customize their children's education as they see fit! In my free time, I enjoy being with nature, running, listening to podcasts, socializing with friends and playing with my cats!

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Ellen Abrams

Admin Assistant to Kathy
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I grew up in Huntington Beach and am excited to join the Newport team. I am a mother to 3 children, who are my pride and joy and drive me to be successful in my other endeavors. In my spare time, I like to run on the beach, explore different campgrounds, and visit the Happiest Place on Earth, Target.

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Amy Cara

Admin/Front Desk
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A Southern California native I joined the Seashore Team in February of 2022. I am a mom to 4 sons ages 25 down to 13. My 13 year old is an 8th grader at Seashore Academy and this is his final year here and we've loved every minute of it! I enjoy time with my family including cooking for them, going to the beach as often as possible and staying active!

kimberly gonzales

Kimberly Gonzales

Curriculum Specialist
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I was born and raised in the Philippines. I joined Seashore Academy last Aug 2022 as a Curriculum Specialist. I loved teaching and imparting my knowledge and skills to students. In my spare time, I’d love watching series movies and being with my loved ones.

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Chester Cruzado

Web Developer, Graphic Artist & SEO Specialist
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I am a licensed teacher, and I have a Bachelor's Degree in Philosophy, and Master’s Degree in Applied Theology. With a degree and certificate in Web Development and Digital Arts as well, after teaching for more than 10 years, I am currently living my passion and purpose, i.e., technology, programming and innovations. It is my honor to be part of this great team in informing the minds, forming the hearts, and transforming the lives of the young generation. I love anything related to music, technology, cryptocurrency and the Internet!

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Annabel Estevan

Seashore Accounts
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I joined Seashore in February 2021 and oversee tuition billing and accounts for OC campuses. I love working for such a unique school. I spent most of my life in Orange County and raised my children there, but currently live in Texas with my husband. I enjoy spending time with my adult children, paddle boarding on the local lake with my husband, taking my dog for walks, or tending to my newest hobby, a vegetable garden. I also volunteer for a food allergy program that has changed our lives and given my daughter freedom from life-threatening food allergies. I am passionate about sharing the program with others so another child does not have to be limited by food allergies.

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Lowella Salaysay

Senior Bookkeeper
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I joined Seashore Academy in April 2022 and I really love my work. I am happy working with awesome folks. I love reading and watching suspense movies during my free time. I'm a nature-lover, I enjoy watching the calmness of the ocean that brings peace of mind, the sunrise that awakens flowers, and the sunset that promises tomorrow. And most importantly, I can't let the day go by without my mugs of coffee.

cassy espinosa

Cassy Espinosa

Admissions & Operations Director
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I joined Seashore last fall of 2021 as my values aligned with Seashore's traditional philosophies. My favorite aspect of my role is building relationships with families and providing an environment where students can thrive. When I am not at Seashore, I love spending time with my 3 children, going to the beach, paddle boarding, and hiking. I am also a Seashore parent and enjoy both the opportunity of being an administrator and an academy parent.

ashley west

Ashley West

Student Affairs Director
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I have been working as a director of the Newport Beach campus since 2019 when there were about 45 students. It has been an incredibly rewarding, fun, and exciting journey to be a part of Seashore's continued growth and positive transformations over the years; the Newport campus currently has over 300 students. I have been honored to work with the best families, students, teachers, and staff who inspire me daily. As Director of Student Affairs, my duties vary on a daily basis; some include but are not limited to coordinating field trips, organizing all on and off-campus events, substitute teaching, and one of my favorites, which is working with and teaching the middle school leadership class. When I'm not at Seashore, I enjoy golfing, writing, working out, volunteering, and spending time with family, friends, and my 7 lb dog Rambo who also loves Seashore.

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Marlene Dandler

Founder, Seashore Academy
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Robert Mendoza

Chief Operations Officer
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