Maggie O'Sullivan
School Leader
Rainier Prep Founding School leader Maggie O’Sullivan has served as a teacher, a para, a coach, and a principal in public schools throughout the Seattle area for over 15 years. A graduate of Bowdoin College, Ms. O’Sullivan also holds a Master’s in Education from Stanford University as well as a Master’s in Liberal Studies from Wesleyan University. In addition, she is a graduate of the Danforth Leadership Program at the University of Washington. Early in her career, Ms. O’Sullivan assisted her school’s successful application for the Gates Achievers Scholarship, ensuring 10 years of college funding for low-income students at Foster High School. She also received the Martin Luther King Closing the Achievement Gap award as a principal in Federal Way Public Schools. Her experience working as a teacher at Foster High School and later as a principal in Federal Way inspired her to think differently about what is possible when a group of people commit to changing the odds for all kids.
Hong-Nhi Do
Assistant Principal
Ms. Do looks forward to learning and growing with her students every year! A South Seattle native and proud Garfield High School Bulldog, Ms. Do is excited to return “home” after a teaching career in New York City that included working with children in grades 1-8 in public district and charter schools in the South Bronx, Chinatown, and Brooklyn. The daughter of Vietnamese refugees, Ms. Do believes in the power of hope, hard work, and education as a pathway to success. Ms Do holds a B.A. from Whitman College, M.S.Ed. in General and Special Education from the Bank Street College of Education and is a graduate of the Danforth Educational Leadership Program at the University of Washington.
Kamille Dye
Director of Operations
Kamille Dye is happy to be using her varied education and work experiences to contribute to a school that is both community focused and success driven. While her professional work has primarily been in the world of politics, her focus has always been on empowering communities to support future generations. Kamille’s most recent position had her managing the logistics and operations for a multimillion dollar political campaign with 17 offices in the wilds of Alaska. Kamille received her Bachelor’s Degree in Technical Theatre from the University of Montana in Missoula where she also studied Psychology and Drama Education. Her professional experience includes time managing a childcare center, acting as a community organizer in her home state of Montana and work in Washington as an in-home child care provider. Kamille is excited to be back in Seattle getting to know her new community and helping students plan for their own life’s adventures.
Karen Lobos
Director of Engagement
Ms. Lobos is excited to be working and giving back to the community in which she grew up. As a Cohort II Alumna of Rainier Scholars (RS), a First-Generation graduate of Scripps College, and daughter of Latino immigrants, Ms. Lobos understands first-hand the impact of instilling the power of education and hard work in students that face a number of barriers to achieving higher education. Ms. Lobos began working in education as a RS Student Advisor when she was in 10th grade. During her time at Scripps College, Ms.Lobos interned and organized with various labor and immigrant rights organizations. Upon graduating, Ms. Lobos received two awards (Davis Project for Peace Prize and Napier Fellowship) to create a summer program centered around Food Justice and a community garden in a low-income/food-desert area in Pasco, WA. Ms. Lobos most recently worked with high school students at risk of dropping out and encouraged them to work hard towards their high school diploma and beyond. Ms. Lobos is excited to be back home and to share with prospective families the unique educational opportunities Rainier Prep has to offer.
Gisela Mella
Operations Coordinator
Ms. Mella was born and raised in the South Seattle area. She is currently attending Northwest University, where she is working towards her Bachelors in Organizational Management. Ms. Mella is excited to officially join the Rainier Prep team and looks forward to growing alongside the Rainier Prep Community.
Gabie Brosas
5th Grade Science Teacher
Ms. Brosas joins the Rainier Prep team after completing a year of service with City Year in Seattle’s nearby South Park neighborhood. She served at Concord International Elementary School, primarily tutoring and mentoring fifth graders. Prior to City Year, Ms. Brosas attended Whitman College where she majored in Race and Ethnic Studies. A Seattle native, Ms Brosas is excited to join the Rainier Prep community to learn alongside her students and fellow staff.
Indi Ekanayake
8th Grade Science Teacher
Mr. Ekanayake (Mr. E for short) is a happy new arrival in the Pacific Northwest. His previous teaching and instructional coaching experience was primarily in North Philadelphia, and he brings experience and passion for culturally responsive teaching and inquiry-based science instruction to Rainier Prep. He graduated from The Ohio State University with a BS in Health Management and from the University of Pennsylvania with a MS in Education. Mr. E is excited to work alongside passionate, intelligent, and dedicated colleagues in pursuit of the best possible educational outcomes for our students.
Krystel Ferris
Student Support Specialist
Ms. Ferris is originally from New Jersey and moved to Seattle two years ago. For the past two years she was serving with City Year, an Americorps program, where she worked with 4th graders at Highland Park Elementary in West Seattle. She attended Hofstra University in New York where she studied elementary education and plans on continuing her path to a degree this year. She is extremely excited to join the Rainier Prep team and work and learn with students who live in her neighborhood!
David Fleming
7th Grade Math Teacher
Mr. Fleming, originally from San Francisco, has lived in the Pacific Northwest since 2010. He studied Music and Psychology at Whitman College and was heavily involved in student affairs at Whitman, several music groups on campus, and the local education scene in Walla Walla. After school, he dabbled in the technology scene in Seattle before moving to a full time role as an Associate Teacher at Rainier Prep. Mr. Fleming is excited to return as the STEM Inquiry teacher for the 2016-2017 school year, in addition to being enrolled as a M.Ed. Candidate at the University of Washington. He is passionate about working to provide opportunities to the students he serves and is thrilled to be a part of the Rainier Prep team!
Scott Hicke
6th Grade Science Teacher
Mr. Hicke has enjoyed exploring the Pacific Northwest for the last five years. After teaching science in DC, Philadelphia, and Seattle, he’s excited to introduce Inquiry, design thinking, and problem-based learning at Rainier Prep. He has also worked as a ghostwriter, musician, chemistry researcher, hospital aide, mindfulness coach, hurricane relief worker, librarian, grantwriter, neuroscience teacher, ethics professor, and curriculum consultant. He is really looking forward to helping the 5th and 6th grade develop their critical thinking, problem-solving, and collaboration skills—and to learning from the creative solutions his students design. He deeply believes these skills will help Rainier Prep students on their pathway to success in their future adventures.
Alie Ibarra
5th & 7th Grade Social Studies Teacher
Ms. Ibarra, originally from Southern California, moved to Seattle to continue her own education. She has, however, stayed to help others pursue their academic goals. During the past three years she has spent her career working in an independent school and at Rainier Scholars. She is very excited for the opportunity to teach 5th Grade Humanities by combining English Language Arts with History (which is her passion).
Morgan Krieger
Dean of Student Support
Ms. Krieger is a Pacific Northwest native and is happy to be home after living and working for many years on the East Coast. For the past five years, she has taught in a high-performing charter school in Washington, DC serving a diverse student population. As a teacher in an Expeditionary Learning school, Ms. Krieger brings an inquiry and service-based mind to the classroom. She graduated from Colgate University with a B.A. in Peace and Conflict Students and Religion and from Trinity Washington University with a Masters in Teaching. Ms. Krieger is eager to support middle school students in their journey to excellence in academics and leadership.
Shauna Larson
Student Support Specialist
Coming from a center focusing on Autism clinical services, training and research, Ms. Larson is excited to be back in the school environment. Ms. Larson earned degrees in Psychology and Spanish at Scripps College in Claremont California. After graduation, Ms. Larson returned home to Seattle to work at a local independent school in Global programs and the Office of Diversity and Community. Ms. Larson received her Masters in Social Work from the University of Washington, and is thrilled to join the dynamic learning community at Rainier Prep this year!
Shannon Moe
Dean of College Success
Ms. Moe loved growing up in the Pacific Northwest! After high school in Mill Creek, WA she earned degrees in Biology and Economics from the University of Washington. Post-graduation, Ms. Moe served in Paraguay, South America for 2+ years as a Peace Corps Volunteer. There she reignited her passion for education and moved on to earn an M.Ed from Harvard. She returned home to teach Biology and AVID at Federal Way H.S. for six years where she became a National Board Certified teacher. She joined the Rainier Prep team in 2015 and is excited for her new role as Dean of College Success. She looks forward to partnering with local schools, staff, families, and community members to build an incredible support program for students as they transition to high school.
Nora White
6th Grade Math Teacher
Ms. White is thrilled to be back in the Seattle area after spending the past few years living in Minnesota. After graduating from Carleton College with a degree in Mathematics, most recently, Ms. White has been working as an academic coach for high school students in St. Paul who will be first-generation college graduates. She is excited to be able to work with the students, families, and staff at Rainier Prep, who share her belief that education is a pathway to success.
Brie Wattier
6th Grade Language Arts Teacher
Ms. Wattier is a born and raised Seattle native. She grew up on the eastside toward the mountains and then moved to Seattle where she studied Child and Adolescent Psychology and Drama at the University of Washington. Ms. Wattier is thrilled to return to Rainier Prep and share her passion of art with the 6th and 7th grade students and continue working alongside such a talented staff.
Emilyann Zotz
6th Grade Math, Mentor Teacher
Ms. Zotz’s recent move to the Seattle area is just one of many recent adventures. She was born and raised in Massachusetts and then headed to Rhode Island for college where she received her degree in Elementary and Special Education. Though an East Coaster at heart, she has spent the past four years teaching 5th graders on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. She is excited to bring her passion for her favorite subject, Math, to the students at Rainier Prep and be a part of the charter school movement alongside a very talented staff.
Devlin Carey
8th Grade Language Arts Teacher
Mr. Carey is originally from Philadelphia, PA and graduated from Saint Joseph's University with a B.A. in English and a minor in leadership, ethics, and organizational sustainability. He's spent the past three years teaching World History on the southside of Chicago. As a newcomer to the Seattle area, Mr. Carey is excited to partner with and grow alongside the Rainier Prep community as we forge pathways of success and fulfillment.
John Masla
7th Grade Language Arts Teacher
Mr. Masla is happy to be back in the Seattle area where he grew up. He spent the past two and half years teaching abroad, first in Bornean Malaysia on an English Teaching Assistantship with the Fulbright Program, and most recently in Rome, Italy. Before leaving the U.S., he studied History at Whitman College in beautiful Eastern Washington. He looks forward to joining the Rainier Prep community and contributing to his students’ curiosity and intellectual growth.
Perry Anderson
7th Grade Science Teacher
Ms. Anderson is thrilled to be a part of the Rainier Prep team! After spending the past two years teaching in Jaipur, India and serving with AmeriCorps as a 4th grade teacher in New York City, Ms. Anderson is excited to be returning to the beautiful state of Washington. Ms. Anderson holds a BA from Whitman College in Sociology-Environmental Studies and is a Minnesota native.
Amy Sept
5th Grade Language Arts Teacher
Ms. Sept has returned Pacific Northwest after a long stint in California where she completed a BA in English Literature and her MA in Education. She grew up near Vancouver, British Columbia and is happy to be near the mountains and the rain again. Education has taken her many places over the past 5 years: from teaching English in Seoul, South Korea, to serving an AmeriCorps year coordinating a literacy intervention program in Sacramento, CA. For the last 3 years she’s taught Kindergarten, 2nd and 3rd grade at a high-performing public charter school in Stockton, CA. On a typical day you’ll find Ms. Sept riding her bike up big hills around town or reading a good book in her hammock in the trees. Ms. Sept is thrilled to join the amazing and talented staff at Rainier Prep, and looks forward to welcoming the incoming 5th grade class to a year of rigorous thought and active engagement with their community through the lens of literature.
Renn Gutierrez
5th Grade Math Teacher
Mr. Gutierrez (or Mr. G) is originally from a small town called Fowler, CA. He went to UCLA (Go Bruins!) in Los Angeles, CA and moved up to Seattle to serve as an AmeriCorps Member with City Year Seattle/King County. He served in a 3rd grade classroom at Highland Park Elementary School, and then served for a second year as a Team Leader at Highland Park Elementary School. He is so excited to be joining the Rainier Prep team as a 5th grade math teacher, and can't wait to support students in learning and loving mathematics.
Dinorah Flores
Learning Specialist
Dinorah Flores is of Mexican and Salvadorian background, she grew up in south Seattle and found that the majority of her learning happened in community settings, through volunteer work, and organizations. She double majored in Community Psychology and Culture Literature and The Arts from the University of Washington, Bothell. She is currently working on her MA through the University of New Mexico. Ms. Flores believes in the power of people-centered community development and sustainability, and finds that her work as a teacher makes that possible. Ms. Flores is happy to join the Rainier Prep team and to serve the families and communities that make our school a wonderful place to learn. She is committed to the mission of preparing strong college ready students that will lead in their fields and communities.
Omar Jimenez
5th & 7th Physical Education Teacher
Mr. Jimenez was born and raised in New York City where he attended Long Island University earning his BA in Sport Science and a minor in Inclusive Fitness. Before journeying to Seattle Mr. Jimenez worked in Harlem as a Dean communicating with parents and helping students succeed in their school environment. He has worked with children all over New York City as a Para-professional, Afterschool Instructor and Camp Counselor. Mr. Jimenez is excited to bring his passion of health and fitness to scholars at Rainier Prep.
Julius Ifurung
7th Grade Language Arts Teacher
Mr. Ifurung has worked in different capacities for the Bremerton School District as a paraeducator, truancy specialist, graduate specialist, and substitute teacher. His most recent work was at an alternative high school working with at risk youth. Mr. Ifurung graduated from the University of Washington with a BA in English. He is very excited and grateful to be part of the Rainier Prep team where he will be teaching English Language Arts. Mr. Ifurung is an avid fisherman, football and lacrosse coach, plays guitar, and writes songs about the Puget Sound. He also still plays lacrosse on a men's team.
Samantha Shotwell
Learning Specialist
Ms. Shotwell is loving being back in her home state after residing in Philadelphia for the past two years. A PNW native, she grew up in the Puget Sound region and attended the University of Washington. It was here that her interest in local politics grew, and became centered upon equal and quality access to public education. After graduating from the UW with a degree in Political Science, and minor in Education, Learning, and Society, she went on to achieve her M.S.Ed. in General and Special Education from the University of Pennsylvania. She taught as a Special Educator in West Philadelphia during her time in PA, and she is so excited to bring her passion for teaching and education equality to Rainier Prep!
Taylor Williams
8th Grade Algebra 1 Math Teacher
Mr. Williams grew up in Ohio, where he attended the Ohio State University. He earned both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering. Mr. Williams began his teaching career in Federal Way, teaching a full range of high school math and computer science courses. Before joining the team at Rainier Prep, Mr. Williams taught middle school math and computer science in Kent. He is passionate about helping all students build confidence in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). Mr. Williams is thrilled to be able to work with this year’s first graduating class of 8th graders from Rainier Prep. In his free time, Mr. Williams loves hiking, camping, and photography.
John Kim
6th & 8th Physical Education Teacher
Mr. Kim honorably served in the United States Marine Corps for 4 years. He graduated from Columbia University and was one of the founding teachers at Democracy Prep Endurance Public Charter School in East Harlem. He is very excited to join the Rainier Prep team and start a new Physical Education program that is inclusive and rigorous.
Carolea Waldrip
6th & 8th Grade Social Studies Teacher
Mrs. Waldrip is so excited to begin a new chapter at Rainier Prep. After spending the first 12 years of her life in Oregon, Mrs. Waldrip's family relocated to Texas where she would complete a BA in History at Southwestern Adventist University in 2009. Once she completed college, Mrs. Waldrip moved to four different states to experience various local cultures in the United States. In 2014 she received a BS in Social Science Education from Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska. In her free time, Mrs. Waldrip enjoys playing games (of both the board and video varieties) with her husband as well as reading, traveling, and hanging out with her fur-children.
Regina Elmi
Family Advocate
Regina is the founder of the Somali Parent Education Board and believes the biggest role in this world is being a parent. She considers it a privilege to be working with parents like her every day and learning from them.
Joan Hsiao
Chief Financial Officer
Joan holds an AB from Harvard and MPPM from Yale. The daughter of Chinese immigrants, Joan’s family taught her the value of education from her early years and now she shares that with others through her work as an Historian in Residence teacher as well as a community volunteer. She brings critical expertise in finance and budgeting, with private and public sector professional experience in finance and budget analysis. Prior to becoming a teacher, Joan worked as an investment banker in corporate and public entity financings and also as a budget and policy analyst for the Office of Management and Budget in New York City where she managed a $1.6 billion budget. As a community volunteer, Joan has enjoyed service roles in a number of schools. In addition to board memberships, she has held a variety of leadership position in PTAs, including service on the Board of Trustees at the Lakeside School.
Nico Andrade
Operations Manager
Nico Andrade was raised in Seattle his whole life and is very excited to join the Rainier Prep team and be able to give back to the community he was a part of. As a Cohort II alumnus of Rainier Scholars and a part of the Alumni Board, Nico is passionate about promoting success for future generations. After graduating from Union College in Upstate New York with a degree in Psychology, Nico came back to Seattle working in graphic design and consistently volunteering with Rainier Scholars to promote Alumni engagement with the current program. He is eager to help support Rainier Prep and the community and help them create pathways towards success.
Dolores Bernal Ortiz
Kitchen Manager
Dolores Bernal Ortiz is the kitchen manager at Rainier Prep. She enjoys being around students, staff and volunteers in our community. Ms. Dolores is the proud mother of three children - one in middle school, one in high school and one in college. She is a founding family of Rainier Prep and strongly believes in our school’s mission of preparing all students to excel at four- year colleges and to become leaders in their community.
Anna Casey
School Psychologist
Dr. Anna grew up on the foggy coast of California and has adopted the Pacific Northwest as her home. As a school psychologist with Seneca Family of Agencies, her goal is to support teachers and administrators in making school accessible to and supportive of all learners, particularly those with disabilities or who have experienced trauma. She earned her BA in psychology from Reed College and her PhD in School Psychology from UC Berkeley. She has worked at Rainier Prep since its first year, and is thrilled to be a part of its community of dedicated staff and driven scholars.
Sarah Wheeler
Student Support Counselor
Sarah Wheeler joins the Rainier Prep team as a Student Support Counselor with Seneca Family of Agencies. Ms. Wheeler holds an Associate’s Degree in Math and Science from Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, CA and a Bachelor's Degree in Community Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz. From coaching soccer and sailing to classroom teaching and educational program coordination, Ms. Wheeler has worked with K-12 students, college students, and adults. Ms. Wheeler is committed to providing individualized support to the students she works with to make education accessible to all.
Laura McGuigan
Speech & Language Pathologist
Ms. Laura McGuigan is excited to be a part of Washington’s charter schools for her 2nd year. Ms. Laura is a Seattle native and Speech and Language Pathologist for Seneca Family of Agencies traveling to charter schools throughout Puget sound in order to provide speech and language therapy. She graduated from University of Washington with a BS in Speech and Hearing Sciences and University of Hawaii with an MS in Communication Disorders, Speech Language Pathology. She loves all aspects of speech and language, however she is extremely passionate about helping students learn, understand, and expand vocabulary and grammar structures to help them more clearly communicate their thoughts and feelings. She spends most of her time working within special education to provide direct services for students with areas of need in speech and/language, collaborating on development and implementation of interventions, and conducting speech and/or language evaluations. When she is not thinking about communication disorders, she is walking her Labrador retriever or making to-do lists. Ms. Laura is thrilled to continue to work with the passionate Rainier Prep team this school year!