UC San Diego – B.A. in Political Science/International Relations and B.A. in Latin American History
CSU Dominguez Hills – Masters in Educational Leadership
Awards and Recognitions
National Board Certified Teacher, 2012-13 L.A. County Teacher of the Year
A quote that inspires me
Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.
– Franklin D. Roosevelt
Reading, hiking, soccer (L.A. Galaxy, US National Team, Liverpool), playing with my daughters, digging holes for my wife to put plants in, sometimes I watch soccer, trolling on the internet, and soccer
Who was your favorite teacher and why?
I have lots of teachers who I loved (and some not so much), but my 10th grade World History teacher Dr. Donna St. George, my 10th grade English teacher Mrs. Judy Kanjo, and my last baseball coach Andy Calbreath. Dr. St. George and Mrs. Kanjo were both very influential in my education. I was a smart but super lazy student when I was in their classes and they both would not put up with me performing below my best. They convinced me to take AP classes and that’s really what led me to college and played a part in my becoming a teacher. Andy helped me build confidence on the field and that
I think all of my students should read…
lots and lots and lots of books and good journalism. I don’t have an all-time favorite book, but some of my more recent favorites are Ron Chernow’s biography about Alexander Hamilton, Between the World and Me Ta’Nihisi Coates, Lamb by Christopher Moore, and The Brief and Frightenin Reign of Phil by George Saunders.
But if you are just going to read one book ever read Between the World and Me.
What advice or words of wisdom would you offer to students?
Everything in life has a cost and a benefit. Working hard now might feel like a heavy cost, but you will feel the benefits your whole life. Taking it easy now feels very beneficial now, but you will pay the cost your whole life.
Who is/are your hero(es)?
My wife, my daughters Abby and Maddy, my Grandpa Gott, Martin Luther King Jr. Barack Obama, Alexander Hamilton, Teddy Roosevelt (don’t tell Tolteka), my students.