The Coordinating Body consists of majority teachers and other key community stakeholders who represent our region
SB182 defines various requirements for representatives that must be included in the Coordinating Body. In addition to the requirement of a majority teachers, it defines various stakeholders from the community, such as: school board members, community based education organizations, state agencies, tribes, etc. This is to ensure that we have diverse perspectives involved in the decision making process, working collaboratively to improve the systems for teachers across the region.
Coordinating Body Members
Ben Baldizon has worked in education for over 15 years across the K-16 system. His experience includes being an educational assistant, bilingual liaison, tutor, and SUN manager as well as working to support teams of educators in increasing racial educational equity. He is currently the Project Manager of Paraeducator Professional Learning at Multnomah Education Service District (MESD).
Dorothy Berry has spent over 22 years in elementary education. She is currently a third grade teacher in the Oregon City School District where she spent 7 years as the I-Team Chair facilitating the SST/SCT team in her building. She serves as the Equity Coordinator for John McLoughlin Elementary. Dorothy believes that our education system is at its best when there is collaboration among our community, our families, and our schools. For this reason she became a member of the Oregon City Equity Steering Committee in the fall of 2021.
I am very passionate about education, especially equitable education. Being a part of the work of the REN is one step to building a more equitable space for the young people who are in our education system, and I am honored and excited to be a part of this important shift.
I have worked in education for 16 years, I spent the majority teaching middle school English and student leadership, I was a high school activities director and student leadership advisor, then spent five years as a New Educator mentor, and am currently in my second year as Vice Principal for Portland Evening and Summer Scholars, and alternative program through Portland Public Schools.
As a bi-racial woman, who grew up in Portland and experienced public education, I want to make the experiences of our students, particularly our students of color, a positive, engaging, and meaningful one.
Amy Chapin is entering her seventh year as a physical education, health, and leadership teacher at Molalla River Middle School in the Molalla River School District. This past spring she served in a TOSA position supporting the counseling department. She has been involved in the school and district level leadership teams as a teacher representative for the past four years, including the district equity team and district improvement team.
Kathy Childress is currently the principal of Corbett High School. She previously worked as a science teacher in Lake Oswego and Gresham-Barlow schools for over 27 years. Her experience at Gresham High School included coordinating the International Baccalaureate program and coaching soccer.
Jessica Classen has been in education since 2006. She’s spent the last three years as a New Teacher Mentor in the David Douglas School District, and prior to that, taught multiple levels of ELA at David Douglas High School. In addition to her work at David Douglas, Jessica serves at the regional and state level as a member of the Coordinating Body of the Multnomah/Clackamas REN and as a TSPC commissioner. She also taught at the now-shuttered University of Phoenix MAT program for nine years. She initially received her MAT from Concordia University and later completed the Reading Specialist program there. She also received the Oregon Writing Project’s Certificate in the Teaching of Writing from Lewis and Clark
Mayra is currently the Executive Director of Students and Family Services in North Clackamas School District. As an administrator, she has held the positions of assistant principal at Reynolds High School and Federal Programs Coordinator at Centennial School District as well as Director of College and Career Readiness in West Linn-Wilsonville School District. In the community she holds the position of Board Chair for the Gresham-Barlow School Board and Board member of El Programa Hispano and the Oregon Association of Latino Administrators (OALA).
Gabe Hunter-Bernstein has worked in education for over forty years in New York, Massachusetts, California, and Oregon in positions ranging from teaching preschool and elementary, directing professional development in arts education, directing a teacher education program, directing k-12 education-related programs at a community college, to his present position as School Partnership Director at Portland State University College of Education.
Theresa Just is entering her eighth year as an elementary learning specialist in a resource room setting in the North Clackamas School District. Prior to receiving her teaching license, she worked as an instructional assistant in Title I and special education programs for five years in NCSD. Theresa is a member of her district’s Affinity Group for BIPOC educators, and a member of the MCREN Coordinating Body.
SPED Instructor, K-5 Learning Center, Creative Science School
Duncan is a 4th year Special Education Teacher currently working in a K-5 Learning Center at Portland Public Schools. Prior to this, he worked as an Instructional Assistant in multiple special education schools in Lane/Clatsop County and led an after-school program through an AmeriCorps program in the Bay Area. In his first years of teaching, he worked with Junction City SD to develop and implement an equity lens, a five-year strategic vision for their Racial Justice Team, and created trainings on racial discrimination and harassment for staff. He works with MCREN to transform the systems that have been central to his own development and to ensure more equitable outcomes for students from historically underserved communities.
Michael is in the seventh year of elementary education, working in both the Centennial and Gresham-Barlow School Districts. Formerly a fourth and fifth grade teacher, he is now a Behavior TOSA at Hall Elementary in GBSD. He has been a perennial member of the school’s leadership team and served as the building’s liaison to the Right Brain Initiative. Additionally, he is member of the Racial Equity Education team. Working closely with All Hands Raised, this team makes data driven decisions to eliminate inequities in student discipline and increase attendance and student engagement for minorities through systematic changes and targeted professional development.</span>
Gustavo Olvera currently serves as the Interim Dean of Education at Warner Pacific University. He previously worked as a district office and building administrator in the Hillsboro School District. His experience includes being a bilingual teacher, bi-literacy coach, English language acquisition specialist, and instructional coach in the Salem-Keizer School District. His work in the field of education expands from P-12 to higher education serving as an assistant professor of education and teacher candidate supervisor.
Robi Osborn is currently the Assistant Director of Teaching and Learning at Clackamas Education Service District (CESD). She has been in education for over 26 years as an educational assistant, classroom teacher, elementary and middle school administrator, and social studies content specialist.
Dr. Cheryl Proctor
Dr. Cheryl Proctor is an educational leader with a track record of building opportunity and disrupting barriers to joyful learning for students. Dr. Proctor joins PPS as the Chief Academic Officer.
Dr. Proctor leads the Office of Teaching and Learning, which includes PK-5 Academics, Middle School Academics, High School Academics/College & Career Readiness, and Academic Programs, focused on accelerating progress to provide every PPS student with a “rigorous, high-quality academic learning experience that is inclusive and joyful.”
Cheryl previously worked with the School District of Philadelphia, the 18th largest public district in the country, where she has served as Assistant Superintendent. In her current role, Dr. Proctor supports high school principals to drive academic achievement through instructional improvement. She first joined the district’s central office in 2016 as Executive Director of the School Improvement Planning and Evidence-based Support Office, providing leadership and guidance to school leaders in the planning and implementation of programs geared to increase student achievement, especially for Philadelphia’s predominantly Black student population. Before her time in Philadelphia, Dr. Proctor enjoyed a 17-year career with Broward County Public Schools (Florida), where she served in school leadership roles for more than ten years.
An accomplished academic, she earned a Bachelor of Science in Communication, with a minor in Advertising, from the New York Institute of Technology; a Master of Science in Special Education, with a minor in Reading, from Florida International University; and Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership and Research Methodology, with a minor in Education Policy, from Florida Atlantic University.
MTSS/SEL Instructional Coach, North Clackamas School District
Holen Robie has been in education for almost twenty years. She has taught 1st, 4th, and 5th grades, been an English Language Development Coordinator, a Program Manager at a nonprofit, and is now an instructional coach helping principals, teachers and teams improve their Multi-Tiered System of Support. The heart of her work has focused on education as a tool to dismantle the disruptive forces of inequity and systemic oppression. She was trained at Stanford’s d.school on designing for social systems and her newest adventure is using improvement science and design thinking to improve learning and life outcomes for students. She loves to nerd out on educational research, read fiction, hike, camp, and go on adventures.
Abby Rotwein currently works as the Director of Equity & Inclusion K-12, and Restorative Justice Coach 9-12, for the Riverdale School District in Portland, Oregon. She has spent over a decade teaching in the elementary grades and leading DEI work in public schools in the Portland Metro Area. She has won numerous awards for her teaching and leadership around social justice, equity, and inclusion, including winning the award for Oregon Social Studies Teacher of the Year in 2017. She has spoken at conferences and universities in the Pacific Northwest and internationally. Her work has been honored in the following ways:
- 2021 National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute Scholarship Winner, Heart Mountain Incarceration Camp
- 2020 Critical Race Theory and Intersectionality Summer Institute Selectee, African American Policy Forum, Columbia Law School
- 2019 Minidoka Incarceration Camp Pilgrimage Scholarship Winner, Japanese American Citizens League
- 2019 Lewis & Clark Graduate School MAT Alumni Teacher of the Year
- 2017 Oregon Elementary Social Studies Teacher of the Year, Oregon Council for the Social Studies
- 2015 Young Audiences Arts for Learning National Conference Scholarship Recipient
- 2009 Playworks Oregon “Rookie Teacher of the Year”
Bekah Sabzalian has worked in education for over twelve years in Oregon. Her education experience spans the nonprofit sector, teaching elementary and middle grades in North Portland and education-focused philanthropy. Each position she’s held has been centered on strengthening education equity and racial justice in Oregon’s public schools. She is currently the Equitable Education Portfolio Program Officer with Meyer Memorial Trust.
Matt Wilensky has been an upper elementary educator for 9 years and has worked in Hawaii, Florida, and Oregon. He is entering his 4th year of teaching in the Estacada School District as a 4th grade and 4th/5th blend teacher. He has served on his school’s leadership team for the past two years.