Download 2018-2019 New Member Kit

REGION XI AMBASSADORS

The Ambassador Program helps new members navigate ACSA’s vast structure, while providing that first and very necessary human contact — giving the organization a face and a name. If you are a new member, we invite you to contact your Charter Ambassador listed below:

East Kern
Elaine Janson
ejanson@ssusd.org
760-499-1604

Inyo/Mono
Dr. Don Clark
dclark@esusd.org
760-932-7443 ext. 1009
707-396-6646

Kings
Bill Black
lemoore.black@gmail.com
559-318-0260

Tulare
Tom Giampietro
tomgiampietro@comcast.net
559-318-0833
Steve Graybehl (Porterville area)
sgraybehl@gmail.com
559-804-9235

West Kern
Terry Wolfe
bernardwolfe@aol.com
661-565-2773

 

BAGELS & COFFEE FOR NEW PRINCIPALS

Ambassadors throughout Region XI are kicking off the new school year by delivering Bagels & Coffee to new principals and their staffs. Take a few minutes to get acquainted with them:

Lou Saephan
Principal at Woodville Elementary School in the Woodville Elementary School District
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME A PRINCIPAL?
This is my first principal position. I want to be in a district with high poverty and unique needs. I am the son of two immigrants from Asia. I’m very strategic, well-prepared and passionate for this position. I have had administrative positions in Woodlake, Farmersville, Burton and Visalia. I love my new community and the families I am serving.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I have been an active ACSA member for over 10 years. I am proud to have the ACSA family as a resource I can rely on, and I do so on a regular basis. I am hungry to improve my district and to provide my teachers and students with a positive educational experience.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
I am so happy to be in the type of community that I have always wanted to serve. Parents, students and teachers have welcomed me with open arms and I am so appreciative of their kindness and acceptance.

Lou, left, is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.
Maria Bueno
Principal at Goshen Elementary School in the Visalia Unified School District

WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME A PRINCIPAL?
I wanted to be surrounded in an organization of networking people. I always love school and the environment. After seven years of accounting, both in public and private sectors, I followed my heart and found my passion in education and student learning. I decided that I can spend my life making a company profitable or I can enrich the minds and hearts of students. My path has been driven by my passion for student change because of my humble background. I found my way to make an impact on students lives, sparking their hearts for learning, helping them to dream for themselves and to believe in the impossible. I want to simply provide them the opportunity to improve their quality of life through education. I want students to love learning. I see a vision where all teachers and employees come to Goshen Elementary with excitement and passion to make a difference. I want all teachers to have a passion for what they teach our students.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
Learning never stops. I joined ACSA because as educators we represent learning and our lifelong learners. ACSA provides access and opportunity for continued growth, including conferences, and the opportunity to network and meet other administrators.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
Being part of the Goshen team, building relationships, and getting to know all the children. It has been a special experience in my life to reunite with the Goshen communities and families. I see my former students, who are now parents, sharing their success stories and now bringing their children to me. I am humbled.

Maria is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.

 

Bill Davis
Principal at V-Tech High School in the Visalia Unified School District
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME A PRINCIPAL? I wanted to become a principal because my previous experiences in agriculture and as a high school assistant principal have given me a broad knowledge on the change I can make as school leader. I enjoy project oriented assignments and the opportunity to work with students who have defined career paths. This job is a perfect fit for me.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I have been a member of ACSA for several years. I always enjoy going to their functions and meeting new people. As a new principal I will utilize the staff development and the ACSA academies provided to us.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
During my first week of school I was walking about campus and a young lady asked me if I were the new principal. I said yes and she said, ”I can tell you’re going to be the right one for us; I enjoy your calm personality.”

Bill is pictured with his office clerk, Karen Roebuck.

Pearl Prins
Principal at John C. Fremont Elementary School in Corcoran
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
There are many leaders that have guided and influenced my career. Some of them include Lora Cartwright, Dave Whitmore, Ken Spencer, Steve Brown and Rich Merlo. They all taught me to watch listen and learn. Our theme this year in Corcoran Unified is “Year of the Climber.” This resonates with me. To quote Laozi “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” After I married my husband, he encouraged me to complete my education. As you can tell many people helped me to change my course. I am humbled to be Fremont’s Principal.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I joined ACSA to learn from other administrators. I can’t go to the meetings, but I read the articles and glean information from other seasoned administrators. The emails keep me abreast of what is happening with regards to laws and changes in procedures. These help keep me safe so I don’t make mistakes. It is always good to have support from other leaders.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
Each day brings special moments. My job is to lead my school, but I find joy in my students when they are excited to be at Fremont. This gives me the confidence and encouragement to lead my school. I get excited about the little things. For example, today I was walking around at recess and I heard a student yell “Mrs. Prins!” Before I knew it I was grabbed in a hug. Then she ran away playing. Joy is what I feel when I make a difference with my students, teachers, staff, parents and my community. These are the special moments I treasure.

Pearl (center) is pictured with her support staff.

 

Tami Olson
Principal at the Visalia Adult School in the Visalia Unified School District
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
My experience as a high school Learning Director and Academic Dean at a private junior college makes this job the perfect fit for me. I enjoy working with adults and the many opportunities that are available to them throughout our entire community. I will provide our students a connection to industry colleges and professional opportunities as they complete our programs.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I have been an ACSA member for over three years. I enjoy the networking, publications, and the academies that are available to each of us. I am proud to be an ACSA member and will help promote this organization to anyone in Region XI.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
I have had tremendous support from my staff and from the district office as I have transitioned into this new assignment. Several people, including the ACSA Ambassador, have assured me that my experience and enthusiasm make me a perfect fit for this position. I am excited!

Tami is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.

 

Marlene Celaya
Principal at El Monte Middle School in Orosi
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I have a unique story that led me to my first principalship.
I was a math and engineering student in high school and at Fresno State. I was given the opportunity to help coach high school students and realized that my true love might be in education! I was encouraged by Yolanda Valdez and Stan Carrizosa to consider school administration and the rest is history! I love my work and the challenges.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?

I joined ACSA because of Yolanda’s encouragement and the opportunities provided to me through ACSA.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
I received a letter from one of my current students. It was heartfelt and sincere regarding how the student feels she can help as a principal and how she has shown compassion, discipline, and kindness to the students in her prior role as a learning director! The student shared how important it is to have a firm principal, and a caring one!

Marlene is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.

 

Melissa Delgadillo
Principal at Golden Valley Elementary School in Orosi
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I chose this career path because of the mentoring and leadership I observed as a youngster growing up in Orange Cove! I always wanted to be the person who students, staff, and community looked up to for leadership and stability, It is my calling!
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I joined ACSA to benefit from the networking, the on-going educational experiences and the team of district employees that encouraged me to become a member! My superintendent, Yolanda Valdez sets the tone and encourages all of her administrative personnel to enjoy the many benefits that ACSA provides!
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
I have been a learning director and vice principal for several years. When I was introduced as the principal of Golden Valley, I was greeted by staff, parents and students telling me how happy they are to have me as their new leader! I was thrilled to have this backing!

Melissa is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.

 

Valerie Botelho
Principal at Jamison High School in Lemoore
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
When I was a classroom teacher I had a lot of at-risk students in my classes. During that time I realized those students needed a voice or an advocate. The students needed someone in their corner to push them to their fullest potential. For that reason I decided I would like to go to school to become an administrator who works with at-risk youth.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
The reason that I joined ACSA is to stay up-to-date on the current trends and laws in education. I also joined ACSA to network with other administrators.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
The first week of school as a new principal I realized I was working with a staff with hearts of gold. Each and every day I watch my teachers standing outside the door between class periods, before school, and after school, greeting students as they walk in the door. I also witnessed the staff sitting at the lunch tables engaged in conversation with the students. Students who had been in tears because they didn’t want to come to a continuation school were telling me how much they loved it by the end of the first week. The students felt a sense of belonging and support. When a student feels like they belong the sky is the limit.

Valerie, third from the left, is pictured with members of her staff and Region XI Ambassador Bill Black (left) and Kings Charter Membership Chair Elizabethe Lozano (right).

 

Adriana Baza
Principal at Wilson School in Dinuba
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I grew up in Dinuba and from my earliest recollection had a desire to become a teacher and possibly a principal. My dream came true this year and I am now the principal at Wilson School! It is my desire to empower the youngsters in my school to someday become educators. I feel I can do so by mentoring and demonstrating a positive attitude!
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I am currently not a member of ACSA, but was all ears when Tom told me about the many resources ACSA can provide to me. I am especially interested in the principal academy!
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
I was appointed principal in the spring of 2018. Since that time I have been meeting with staff and getting to know the community. I also started a pet rock project that has taken off with the staff and has made me feel part of a new family. My staff has accepted me and provided many new friendships!
Adriana is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.

 

Eric Rodriguez
Principal at Kennedy Elementary School in Dinuba
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I have always wanted to become a principal that the students and staff would look up to. I was a student in Dinuba and have always wanted to return to give back the positive, sound education that I received.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I am not a member of ACSA, but I’m very interested in belonging to a professional organization that can provide me with many opportunities to meet people and to grow professionally!
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
I was not sure what to expect as a new principal, but was surprised when the students greeted me with so many nice comments! I realized my new role is to affect the many families and children in the community where I grew up!
Eric is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.

 

Tenci Brown
Principal, Pioneer Union Elementary School District, Hanford
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I have been fortunate in my career to have worked with some amazing educators. It is through their support and encouragement that I felt confident to step outside of the classroom and become an administrator. I keep the needs of my staff and students a priority and focus on what I can do to support their success.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
Last year I was teaching 4th grade at the site that I am now the principal of. The first day of school was quite surreal as I walked on campus as principal. From the encouraging notes & small gifts that sat on every student’s desk prepared by our teachers to the nicely manicured landscape that our maintenance staff worked so hard on (in the bad air quality and heat), I could not be any prouder. I have such respect and admiration for my colleagues.

 

Joaquin Elcano
Assistant Principal at Suburu Elementary in the Greenfield Elementary School District
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I was inspired to be an administrator by Larry Wilkens. He was my principal/sup growing up. He mentored me throughout school, helped me find my first job, and encouraged me to keep myself moving forward.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I joined ACSA to increase my ability to collaborate with other administrators outside of my district.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
The highlight of my year so far has been seeing a packed house for “Back to School Night.” Standing room only.
Joaquin is pictured with West Kern Charter Ambassador Terry Wolfe.

 

Stephen Bradley
Principal at Wilson Middle School in Exeter
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I chose to become an administrator because of the opportunity it provided to make a difference with many more students. I wanted to learn all phases of running a school site and to learn how I can become the most effective leader I can be! The principal position is providing me with much more input and knowledge when it comes to running a school and how I can be affective working with the district office.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
ACSA was first introduced to me when I was working in the Burton School District. I had excellent ACSA representation and mentoring while I served in that district. The information and connections that ACSA has provided to me makes me an effective and communicative administrator. I have been a member of ACSA for 11 years. I am anxious to attend ACSA events and academies during my tenure.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
I became the principal at Wilson in early August. I had very little time to transition from my previous job to my new position. I was touched by the support of the Wilson staff, the school board, and the parents and students in my school community. With love and kindness that my team has shown I am convinced I am in the right place at the right time!
Bradley, left, is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.

 

Rosa Guerrero
Principal at Summit Charter Intermediate Academy in Porterville
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I was encouraged to apply for my first principalship by my superiors, teachers and classified staff! I have a strong desire to empower my entire staff to provide the children with a life long learning environment that will motivate them to do their very best in whatever they attempt! I want the best for everyone on my campus and will continue to raise expectations for everyone!
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I am in my first year as an ACSA member. I attended the Principal Institute at UCLA this past summer. I learned so much from this experience and will focus my first year on how to develop a culture on my new campus! I am a strong ACSA advocate and look forward to contributing to this professional organization.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
Opening up a new school wasn’t easy at first because of the number of families that would be split into different schools. Many parents and students were very concerned about going to a new school. I held a parent, community, and student meeting to introduce myself and to discuss my plans for this new experience. At the end of the meeting I received a standing ovation from the audience. That’s when I knew this is where I belong!

Rosa is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.

 

Christina Gonzales
Principal at Stratford Elementary School in the Central UESD
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
When I originally entered the education field 23 years ago as a classroom teacher, I never dreamt I would leave that profession. I loved every minute of my teaching experience, ranging from first through eighth grades, and I thought I would do it forever. My daily motivation was watching my students grow physically, socially, and academically. The smiles on their faces as they greeted me each morning were a constant reminder of how important I was in their lives, and I made a commitment to my students that I would always greet them with the same warm, friendly smile. It wasn’t until I had completed my fifteenth year of teaching that I realized I could touch far more lives as a school administrator. As an elementary school principal, I choose to actively be involved in the day-to-day activities of my students. I show up early enough to greet the students as they arrive on the buses, and I make it a point to be visible on the playground and in the classrooms, so that the children understand my role as another caring adult on the school campus. I work hard to learn students’ names, and I make sure to seek children out who need a friendly smile. My time with students is precious in my new role, as it can be so easy to get trapped in the demand for paperwork and deadlines. However, with commitment and intentionality, I am able to sustain the balance necessary to positively impact the lives of many children. I have found my new purpose!
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
ACSA offers the benefit of networking with other school administrators who might be experiencing the same celebrations and/or frustrations that I am.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
Just a few days before school started, Stratford’s town well failed, and the entire community was left without running water. On Sunday, I scrambled to find portable toilets, hand washing stations, and bottled drinking water for my students. It all came together quickly for the school, however, the most difficult part was knowing that my students would be expected to return to school without access to showers and washing machines in their homes. Thankfully, the town was able to connect to an agricultural well within a few days to provide these services. We had an outpouring of generosity from many organizations who donated bottled water to our school and to our community until the town was able to repair the damaged well. In the end, it was an amazing experience that brought our school and local community closer together.

 

Melanie Davis
Principal at Mountain View Elementary School in the Visalia Unified School District
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I am new to the Tulare County area. I began my new principalship at Mountain View Elementary School during the middle of last year. I wanted to become a principal in Tulare County because the challenge of diversity and poverty is something that I have a passion for. I have found my principalship to be challenging, rewarding and everything I dreamed it would be.
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
I have been overwhelmed by the staff, parents and students as they have accepted me as their new leader. Mountain View, as a community, has welcomed me with open arms and provided me with a confirmation of acceptance!
Melanie is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.

 

Rebekah Moor
Principal at Charter Home School Academy in the Visalia Unified School District
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN ADMINISTRATOR?
I knew that I wanted to become a principal when I developed an understanding of how schools really work, from a administrative perspective. I get excited when I watch teachers respond to training suggestions and recommendations.
WHY DID YOU JOIN ACSA?
I have been an ACSA member since June 2018. I am excited to learn more about the services and programs that I will be able to take advantage of during the coming years. I feel that ACSA is so important to all new administrators who would like collegial support and the many academies that are offered on a ongoing schedule!
WHAT IS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR YEAR THUS FAR?
I am the first principal in the history of this school. I was delighted when the staff affirmed my appointment and made it very clear to me that they respect and trust their new leader.
Rebekah is pictured with Tulare Charter Ambassador Tom Giampietro.