Meet Our Education Faculty and Staff
Kena Avila - Associate Professor, ESOL Coordinator, Elementary Education Coordinator
Kena is very interested in bilingualism and how to help bilingual students succeed in schools. She has taught preschool through college in various bilingual schools in California, Oregon, Mexico, and Ecuador. Kena loves to travel and has spent a semester in Oaxaca, Mexico, and taught in South America in 2016-2017. This year, Kena will teach EDUC 340 Planning, Implementing and Assessing Instruction for English to Speakers of Other Languages, EDUC 401 Teaching Literacy I, EDUC 402 Literacy Literacy II, and Part-Time Student Teaching Seminar.
Learn more about Kena Avila
Steve Bernhisel - Associate Professor, Secondary Education Coordinator, Transfer Advisor, edTPA Coordinator
As a former high school chemistry and biology teacher, Steve's specialty is helping future elementary and secondary teachers teach science effectively. Additionally, Steve teaches EDUC 305 Teaching Methods & Classroom Management and EDUC 430 Science Content Methods for Middle and High School.
Learn more about Steve Bernhisel
Mindy Legard Larson - Professor of Education (Department Chair)
Mindy's areas of expertise include teaching reading and writing to elementary students, children's literature, and education policy. She has led a January term course in Norway and Sweden. Mindy is active in local K-12 schools and has taught first, second and third grades and served an Elementary Curriculum and Program Specialist. This year, Mindy will teach EDUC 401 Teaching Literacy I, EDUC 402 Teaching Literacy II, and EDUC 496 Full-Time Student Teaching Seminar.
Learn more about Mindy Larson
Tonda Liggett - Associate Professor, Graduate ESOL Program Director
Potter Hall 336
Tonda’s research focuses on the intersections of English language education and critical multicultural education. Within this nexus, she examines issues of race, culture, and language in relation to teacher identity and teaching. Most recently she has been researching and traveling to Southeast Asia to better understand the role of globalization and immigration on language learning and cultural context. This year, Tonda will be teaching EDUC 240 Foundations for Teaching ESOL, EDUC 245 Educational Linguistics and Language Acquisition for ESOL, and EDUC 302 Diversity and Inclusion.
Gennie VanBeek - Associate Professor, Accreditation Chair
Gennie’s teaching passions include meeting the needs of diverse learners and helping students improve their writing. Before teaching college students, she taught adult basic education, high school language arts, and—her favorite—middle school language arts. This year, Gennie will be teaching EDUC 150 Foundations of Education.
Learn more about Gennie VanBeek
Carrie Kondor - Director of Teacher Education
Potter Hall 110
Carrie has a strong commitment to collaborative, culturally sustaining and equitable practices in education. Her mission as a leader in higher education is to partner with faculty in ongoing efforts to take action toward systemic change for inclusivity and cultivate teachers who will work to liberate students and contribute meaningfully toward an equitable education system. Dr. Kondor values relationships, innovative and asset thinking, critical reflection and progressive practices that center on love and social justice. Her experience in education began with working as a behavior therapist for pre-school children with autism, followed by K-12 teaching experience in special education and general education settings. Additionally, she has served in schools as a reading specialist, literacy coach and administrator. As an Associate Professor of Education, Carrie has taught and developed teacher preparation courses in the areas of equity, literacy, child growth and development, and leadership at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Carrie’s Education Doctorate is in Professional Leadership, Inquiry and Innovation, and her dissertation research focused on cultural competency development and pre-service teachers.
Grace Tissell - Program Coordinator
Grace brings experience working in higher education. With a passion for learning and growth, she desires to work alongside students on their academic and career journeys. She is particularly excited to invest in educators as she offers support through organization and innovation. You will most likely find Grace in her cozy office with a drawer full of snacks, a cup of fresh coffee in her hands, and soft music playing in the background.
Diane Allen - Teaching Adjunct
Potter Hall 333
Diane is a former middle school educator, teaching Language Arts and Social Studies for grades 6-8. For the last several years, she has taught a variety of courses and supervised student teachers at Linfield. This year, Diane will teach EDUC 290 Content Literacy and Development in Adolescence, EDUC 430 Social Studies Content Methods for Middle and High School Teachers, and EDUC 450 Teaching Social Studies.
Rona Aspholm - Teaching Adjunct
Rona has taught art at Duniway Middle School in McMinnville since 2002. In 2013, Rona was awarded a Master of Arts Degree in Art Education from University of Nebraska at Kearney. She has completed the Graduate Teacher Education Program at Portland State University, and a Bachelor of Art Degree (Art) from Luther College, Decorah Iowa. Of her many interests outside of teaching, Rona is active in developing her skills at weaving and 2D artmaking. Rona will be teaching EDUC 430 Art Methods – Middle and High School this fall.
Jennifer Kumar - Teaching Adjunct
Potter Hall 335
Jenn loves to see the light in a child's eyes when they realize they can read the words on the page. Her emphasis is in early childhood and reading instruction. She taught kindergarten and first grade. This year, Jenn is teaching EDUC 270 Becoming an Early Childhood Teacher and will be supervising elementary student teachers.
Jo Sigmund - Teaching Adjunct
Jo has been an educator for more than 35 years, and considers herself a complete education nerd! She’s been both an elementary and early childhood teacher (4th-5th grade is where her heart is), supervised dozens of student teachers, taught at the university level, and is the founder of a local public charter school: The Emerson School. She loves working with pre-service teachers, and this year, Jo will be teaching EDUC 448-Teaching Mathematics
Laura Tiogangco - Teaching Adjunct
Laura taught art at a preschool-12th grade school in Maui and taught Art at McMinnville High School and South Albany High School, and currently teaches fifth grade at Memorial Elementary in McMinnville. In addition to teaching, Laura has a passion for soccer and track and field and coached both sports at the high school and collegiate level. This year, Laura will be teaching EDUC 275 Teaching Art on Thursday evenings.
Hope Walter - Teaching Adjunct
Hope’s teaching experience includes elementary, special education, middle school mathematics, and collegiate math and math education. She specializes in teaching math for elementary teachers, math methods, and supervising secondary mathematics student teachers. She has research interests in remediation of students with academic and anxiety-based struggles. This year, Hope will be teaching EDUC Educational Psychology and MATH 135 Mathematics for Elementary School Teachers I.
Student Teacher Supervisors
Greg Bradstreet - Student Teacher Supervisor
Greg taught middle school language arts and social studies and served as a school improvement trainer in the Central School District. He has supervised student teachers at all levels supporting them with instructional best practices, interdisciplinary teaching methods, and effective classroom management approaches.
Stephani DeLatte - Student Teacher Supervisor
Stephani has taught kindergarten for the McMinnville School District where she also served as the kindergarten team leader analyzing student data to create action plans to meet the needs of students. She has lead professional development trainings in effective teaching strategies and formative assessments.
Erin Moran - Student Teacher Supervisor
Erin has taught second, third, fourth, and fifth grades, along with being a Teacher on Special Assignment mentoring elementary teachers for McMinnville School District. She has an expertise in language arts, social studies and techniques for working effectively with English language learners. Erin will be supervising student teachers pursuing their ESOL endorsements.
Pat Pfrehm - Student Teacher Supervisor
Pat taught third through sixth grades and was a speech pathologist in the Hillsboro and Beaverton School Districts. She is a life-long learner and seeks any opportunity she finds to attend conferences and workshops, read professional books, and find resources that will assist her student teachers. You'll often find Pat at a coffee shop meeting with one of her student teachers to brainstorm a unit of instruction or review a lesson plan.
Jayne Preston - Student Teacher Supervisor
Jayne comes to Linfield with a wide range of experiences in education. She has been a Reading Specialist, Librarian, and has taught 3rd-5th grades at the elementary level, and language arts, math, and social studies at the middle school level.
Olga Walmisley-Santiago - Student Teacher Supervisor
Olga has taught Spanish, English, and Social Studies at high schools, community college, and universities throughout the United States and in Spain. She mentors student teachers to use a wide variety of teaching approaches to engage students in active learning. Olga will be supervising secondary student teachers.
Amy Widmer - Student Teacher Supervisor
Amy has taught 2nd and 5th grades in Spanish-English dual language programs and has been a Reading Intervention Specialist and taught in English Language Development classrooms. She has expertise in generating and teaching lessons to build comprehension and linguistic awareness in bilingual classrooms. She is trained in sheltered instruction (SIOP) and guided language acquisition (GLAD). Amy will be supervising elementary student teachers pursuing their ESOL endorsement.
Leslie Copeland - Pre-Kindergarten Lead Teacher
Assistant Director Linfield College Pre-K
Leslie’s expertise is in early childhood education. She is the lead teacher for the 4-year-old classes and serves as the assistant director of the Linfield College Pre-Kindergarten. She also supervises Linfield College interns who work in the Pre-K as a part of their coursework for EDUC 270 Becoming a Childhood Teacher, EDUC 150 Foundations of Education and EDUC 040 Community Service. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and Child and Family Studies from Washington State University, as well as a Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Gonzaga University. Leslie also has her Oregon teaching license.
Angie Gurley - Director of Linfield Pre-Kindergarten
Lead teacher of 3-year-old classes
Angie's expertise is in early childhood education and early childhood special education with experience working with children of different abilities birth through five years of age. She is the director of the Linfield Pre-Kindergarten, a NAEYC nationally accredited school, in the Education Department. She is the lead teacher for the 3-year-olds classes, and she supervises Linfield College interns who work in the Pre-Kindergarten as a part of their coursework. Angie hols an Oregon teaching license.
Douglas Cruickshank - Professor Emeritus
Professor Cruikshank began his teaching career at the elementary school level in Eugene, Oregon followed by 33 years of teacher education at Temple University (10 years) and Linfield University (23 years). Mathematics education was his main area of focus. Having retired in 2001, professor Cruikshank has been traveling with his wife Linda, enjoying the outdoors, spending time with family, and volunteering with Habitat for Humanity.
Nancy Drickey - Professor Emeritus
Professor Drickey taught middle school math for 10 years and high school math and computer programming for three years. She taught teacher education courses at Utah State University for four years while earning her doctorate. In 2001, she moved to Oregon to teach in the Education Department at Linfield University. She retired in 2020 after 19 years at Linfield, and a total of 36 years of teaching. Professor Drickey plans to spend her retirement traveling with her husband Ron and spending time with her five kids, eight grandkids and extended family.
Linda Farris - Professor Emeritus
Bob McCann - Professor Emeritus
Frederic D. Ross - Professor Emeritus