Leadership Innovation presents…
Administrators - Summer 2009

DENNIS GUIKEMA    dennis.guikema@ousd.k12.ca.us   
Assistant Principal, Urban Promise Academy, Oakland Unified School District
Dennis Guikema earned his BA from the University of Michigan.  He taught high school
English in the Oakland Unified Schools for eight years before becoming the lead teacher
of a small environmental-themed school he helped to design.  In recent years, he has
been the principal of an alternative middle and high school and is currently the assistant
principal of a neighborhood middle school.  Dennis’ interests in social and environmental
justice are present in both his personal and professional life.  He is an avid cyclist and
loves traveling.
Skype name: dennis.guikema  

ELIZABETH BERNAL   Bernal.Elizabeth@sbcglobal.net    
Assistant Principal, Partnership for Los Angeles Schools
Elizabeth received her administrative credential and masters of administration from
Loyola Marymount University and her B.A. from Harvard University.  She has been in
education for the past 12 years as a teacher, math specialist, and administrator.  Prior to
coming into public education, she worked for an education consulting company and for
the Department of Children and Family Services.  She loves to travel and workout, often
times combining both passions by traveling both domestically and internationally to attend
fitness conventions.  

MISTIE BARELA     mistie.barela@lausd.net
Assistant Principal, Partnership for Los Angeles Schools
Mistie received her Administrative Credential, Masters of Administration and Bachelors
of Art in Liberal Studies and Chicano Studies from California State University,
Northridge. She received her Teaching Credential from University of California, Los
Angeles. She began her career in education 12 years ago as a teacher assistant.  She has
also been a teacher, EL Coordinator,  EL Expert and an administrator. She is an
advocate for urban education and social change. Mistie enjoys traveling, taking long
drives, being outdoors, and loves cute shoes.

GREG STANLEY    greg.stanley@wcusd.org
Assistant Principal, West Covina High School, West Covina USD
Greg received his M.A. in educational administration from Cal State San Bernardino, his
credential from Cal Poly Pomona and BAs in English and Art History from the University
of Redlands.  Greg taught English and journalism for 14-plus years before entering
administration as dean of students first at Covina High School and then South Hills High
School.  He is currently assistant principal of curriculum and instruction at West Covina
High School.  Greg coached several sports during his teaching career and still enjoys
running, biking and other forms of fitness.  Travel, reading, film, music and the outdoors
are also some of his passions.

ESTHER BENJAMIN-GASS    esther.gass@lausd.net
Assistant Principal, Le Conte Middle School, Los Angeles Unified School District
Esther Gass is currently enrolled and completing her dissertation about the effects of
untreated secondary school teenag stress related trauma, at Pepperdine University,
where she also received her MS and administrative credential. She received her BA at
CA State University, Northridge, and is a part time secondary education faculty member
there.  After 14 years in the private sector - eight years in marketing, and six years in
purchasing she found her true calling as an educator. In the last 17 years in education she
has been a teacher, literacy coach, magnet coordinator, reading specialist, and has just
completed her first year as a middle school administrator. New hobbies include knitting
and she hopes to one day start a “Knits for New Orleans- Rebuild the City” donation

VICTORIA DYE     vdye@ssfusd.org
Assistant Principal, South San Francisco High School, South San Francisco USD
Victoria earned her BS from UCLA and her teaching credential and Masters in
Education Administration from SFSU.  She taught science for a total of eight years at
Hoover High ( Glendale , CA ), Thurgood Marshall Academic HS ( San Francisco ) and
UPA ( Oakland ).  For the last five years, she has worked as an assistant principal at
South City High, a diverse community of lively, wonderful students and dynamic staff.  
Her interests outside of work include traveling, cooking, eating and reading.

DAVID GOTTLIEB, M.S., M.F.T. dgottlieb@mpms.org
Director of Learning Resources, Marin Primary & Middle School
David is on the leadership team at MP&MS, directing special education, gifted
education, technology, library/media, health services and after school homework support
programs and personnel.  His 20 years in the field has focused on helping families and
professionals address the complex learning profile and learning differences of each child
with compassion and respect. Along with teaching, school counseling, and administrative
credentials, David is also a licensed marriage and family therapist. His masters degree in
counseling is from San Francisco State and his B.A. in psychology is from UC Santa
Cruz. David had lots of outside interests before 3 children came along, and hopes to get
back to travel, camping, t'ai chi, and a good night's sleep once the kids are a bit older.
Skype name:  dbgottlieb

ELIZABETH LABORDE  elizabethllaborde@yahoo.com
Assistant Principal, Tamalpais High School, Mill Valley, CA
Her BA is in English from UC Berkeley, her credential from CSU Northridge and MS in
Educational Leadership from National University. Her experiences include seven years
of teaching in a variety of environments including high school generalist in a Yupik and
Athabascan Native village on the Kuskokwim River; a year of ESL to Gypsy students in
Portland, Oregon as well as two years in a LAUSD high school.  She has been
described as a Renaissance woman: a classical pianist, published poet, avid reader,
fiction writer, meditator, backpacker, and yoga practitioner. Currently, she is taking
improv acting classes through Bay Area Theater Sports and fiction writing through
UCLA’s online program.
Skype name: lizziewrites

DAVE NYGREN   dknygren@gmail.com  
Assistant  Principal, Rim of the World Unified School District
Dave earned his B.A. in English from Westmont College in Santa Barbara and his
Masters in Education Administration from Azusa Pacific University.  He taught
elementary school and was an administrator at both the elementary and junior high
school levels in the Chino Valley USD for 13 years before moving to the San Bernardino
Mountains to be a high school assistant principal in his current position.  Dave was
instrumental in starting the Inland Valley Debate League for junior high students, and
travelled with his team to the nationals as they became national champions.  His varied
interests include travelling, golf, snowboarding, poker, and music.

AMPORN SUWANPRATET   amporn.dawn@gmail.com
Meet Amporn Suwanpratet!  She will become your new best friend in Thailand.  She is a
key support member of our Thailand Program for School Leaders, and speaks excellent
English.  And each candidate from the past 5 summers, has come to rely on her for a
multitude of reasons. You will too.  Amporn works in the International Relations
Division, Office of the President at Chiang Mai University.  In addition, also operates a
travel agency service.  She can help will all your travel plans in Thailand, and even to
Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam.  Our international program is truly lucky to work together
with her. Amporn has a 4 year old son named 'Dawn'.  Skype-name: amporndawnjd

LINDA OROZCO, PH.D.   orozco@leadership-innovation.org
Founder & Director, Leadership Innovation
Dr. Orozco received her Ph.D. in educational administration from the University of
Minnesota; her M.A. from Calif. State University, Long Beach; and her B.A. from
Whittier College.  She is past Director of the Professional Administration Credential
Program and Professor of Educational Leadership at California State University,
Fullerton. Her experience includes 23 years in educational leadership including both
public and private educational settings, district and county offices of education, and
higher education administration.  Major research and publication endeavors include
technology in education and administration, educating diverse populations, as well as
effective interagency collaboration.  She continues to conduct research internationally
including Brazil, Thailand and Vietnam.  She is an avid surfer and runner.  Skype-name: