Faculty

Jenny Gannon, Golden Poppy Preschool
Jenny Gannon grew up in Sacramento. Her father was a painter/sculptor and her mother and aunties were quilters. When her boys were young, Jenny discovered Waldorf education, which was helpful to her as a parent, improved her family life and inspired her to become a Waldorf teacher.  She taught kindergarten at Camellia Waldorf School for eight years and preschool at BeeLoved Farm School in Shingle Springs, CA where she co-founded the Folkschool, a mixed-age kindergarten that focuses on farm-chores and folk-crafts.

Her children attended Camellia Waldorf School and Sacramento Waldorf High School and have graduated. Jenny is engaged in the arts and continues to be inspired by Waldorf education as a parent and as a community member. She is delighted to be part of our Early Childhood Faculty and looks forward to many happy hours with your children.

B.F.A., Eastern Washington University; M.F.A., Sacramento State University; Waldorf Early Childhood Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California.         

 

Mary Reeder, Lavender Preschool 
Mary Reeder (a.k.a. Mary Caridi-Gorga) has 19 years of experience working in early childhood education in Waldorf and Waldorf-inspired settings. She earned a BS in Child Development from Northwestern University near Chicago, Illinois, where she is originally from. In 2003, Mary received her Waldorf Teaching Certificate from Rudolf Steiner College in Fair Oaks.  In 2013 she completed the “Nurturing the Roots” professional deepening course in Therapeutic Approach to Waldorf Early Childhood Education in Denver. She has a grown son who attended DWS from kindergarten through 8th grade. Mary loves dancing, making music and singing with friends, hiking in nature and curling up with a good book

B.S. Child Development, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL; Waldorf Early Childhood Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California.

 

 

Jennifer Slater, Climbing Rose Kindergarten 
While pursuing a degree in Social Science, Jennifer Slater found Waldorf Education through a classmate, a former DWS teacher, and originally worked alongside her in the preschool. The stars aligned in 2013 and Jennifer took her first kindergarten class at DWS shortly after receiving her Waldorf Early Childhood Education Diploma. She enjoys crafting, traveling, hiking and camping with her husband, Chris. She is a storyteller and shares many a story of her dog, Roo, and cat, Franny, much to the pleasure of the Climbing Rose kindergarten children.  

A.A. Social Science, Sacramento City College; B.A.Child Development, Sacramento State University; Waldorf Early Childhood Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California.

 

 

 

Emily Lalande, Morning Glory Kindergarten 
Emily has worked at DWS for three years, assisting in the kindergarten and preschool as well as working in our nap program and June Bug Aftercare.  Emily also worked as a nanny with children 8 months-14 years old for more than six years and helped facilitate children/family events at her Meditation Center with children
4-9 years old for several years.

Emily completed her Waldorf Teacher Training with a focus in Early Childhood from the San Francisco branch of Rudolf Steiner College.  She has attended many lectures and conferences on Early Childhood Education, Waldorf Education and Anthroposophy.  Emily brings magic and joy into the kindergarten through her love of singing, nature and story telling. 

B.A. Fine Art and Anthropology, University of California, Santa Cruz; Waldorf Early Childhood Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California.

 

Jessica Efstratis, 1st grade, DWS Class of 2027
Jessica was born in the foothills of northern California and grew up in the Sacramento area next to the American River. She has a B.A. in Integral Studies from the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco and her Waldorf Education Diploma from Rudolf Steiner College in Fair Oaks.   Jessica has also studied Environmental Science at San Francisco State and Fine Art at Chico State.  She has worked as an environmental educator at Hidden Villa Ranch, the parent child teacher at Camellia Waldorf School, and she owned and operated the in-home preschool program, The Rainbow Bridge Preschool.  She has three children and is happy to be both a teacher and proud parent in the Davis Waldorf community. 

B.A. Integral Studies, California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco, California; Waldorf Early Childhood Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California.

 

 

Meg Connell, 2nd grade, DWS Class of 2026
Meg was raised in Northern California and graduated from Santa Rosa High school.  She previously taught middle school English and Theater and most recently taught First and Second Grade at the Singing Stones Waldorf School in the Bay Area. Meg is currently in her last year of Waldorf teacher training at the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training.  She enjoys people, the arts, being outdoors, cooking, exploring and spending time with her two sons and husband.

B.A. English with minor in Theater,University of New Mexico, Albuquerque; Secondary Theater Teaching Credential; Secondary English Teaching Credential; K-12th Special Education Teaching Credential

 

 

 

Karen Holt, 3rd grade, DWS Class of 2025
Karen Holt has been a classroom teacher for 20 years; 16 years at the Davis Waldorf School, and four years at Sacramento Waldorf School, focusing on the lower grades and teaching first through fifth grades. She has one high-school aged daughter. Karen enjoys traveling, gardening, camping, and hiking.

B.A. in Elementary Education, Augsburg College, MN; MA in Human Development, Saint Mary’s University, MN; Waldorf Elementary School Teacher Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California; Remedial Education Training, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California

 

 

 

 

Kathy Dean, 4th Grade, DWS Class of 2024
Kathy started off her professional career working for over ten years in administrative positions. After working at the Camellia Waldorf School as the registrar and receptionist, she realized that she had found an environment she loved being a part of. She decided to seek a greater challenge and develop a new career path as a Waldorf School Grade Teacher. She held her first classroom position as the First Grade Class Assistant at the San Francisco Waldorf School. She enjoys spending time in nature hiking and paddle boarding.

B.A. Sociology, California State University, San Diego, CA; Waldorf Elementary School Teacher Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California

 

 

 

Coleen Borrego, 5th Grade, DWS Class of 2023
Coleen Borrego majored in English and minored in Education at the University of California, Davis, and then continued on at UC Davis to earn her teaching credential.  She taught English at Will C. Wood High School in Vacaville for nine years.  While seeking a preschool for their eldest daughter, she and her husband came upon Waldorf education and Coleen felt as though heaven opened and the angels sang -- she had found the home of her heart.  After the birth of her second daughter, Coleen earned her Waldorf Teacher Training Certificate at Rudolf Steiner College.  In due time, both daughters enrolled at Davis Waldorf School and Coleen was ready to take up her first class.  She has taught at DWS since 2006, and loves every minute of her time with the children!

B.A. English, UC Davis, Davis, CA; California State Teaching Credential, UC Davis, Davis, CA, Waldorf Elementary School Teacher Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California

 

 

Karen Roos, 6th Grade, Class of 2022
After graduating from college, Ms. Roos joined the Peace Corps and lived in Niger, West Africa. Upon her return to the United States, she began a successful 12-year technology marketing career in the Silicon Valley. As her sons began their schooling, Ms. Roos discovered Waldorf education, and knew that her dreams of teaching creatively and holistically would be fulfilled.

Ms. Roos’ teaching career began in 2006.  She has taught at both Camellia Waldorf School and at the Santa Cruz Waldorf School. In Santa Cruz, she initiated the Poppy Mountain Waldorf Home School Program, serving as a teacher and enrichment director for elementary and middle school grades.  Ms. Roos strives to build a connected community through warm enthusiasm and respect for each individual, and is dedicated to fostering a deep love of learning and living. Her talents and passions include storytelling, history, geometric and form drawing, creative writing, handwriting, and natural sciences. 

B.S. Business Administration, San Jose State University, San Jose, CA; Waldorf Elementary School Teacher Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California        

 

Cindy Toy, 7th Grade, Class of 2021
Cindy is married and the mother of 3 boys .  She notes that being a mother has been her greatest educational experience. Her family owns and operates an organic farm in the Little Applegate Valley near Ashland, Oregon. Every moment not spent teaching or traveling to basketball games with her son, Max, is spent gardening.  During the summer, Ms. Toy holds environmental camps at the farm for children.  Her additional interests include music, textile crafts, creative writing, cooking, Ultimate Frisbee, backpacking, Shakespeare, and especially Golden Retrievers.  

Ms. Toy’s background is richly diverse and includes a B.A. in English Literature with teaching as an emphasis from UC Davis. In addition, she has her degree in nursing, is an RN, and worked at Sutter Davis Hospital in the Medical/Surgical department and at Sutter Davis Women's Health.  

B.A. English Literature, University of California, Davis. Waldorf Elementary School Teacher Education Diploma, Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, California

 

Lynn Donofrio, 8th Grade, Class of 2020
Lynn taught middle and high school Language Arts for thirteen and a half years and ran a home preschool program for two years before discovering Waldorf Education. She had been a mentor teacher and Language Arts Department Chair, giving her the opportunity to share her passion for teaching reading and writing with the entire school community. Upon discovering Waldorf Education in 2017, Lynn felt this was what she had been looking for and what was missing in all the years of her teaching. She enrolled her daughter in Kindergarten at Davis Waldorf School and began training at the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training. For the last two years, she served as an assistant teacher in our Lavender Preschool. This year Lynn hopes to bring joy, enthusiasm, and love for learning and life to the eighth grade classroom.

She grew up in Guam, where she enjoyed swimming and diving in the ocean and hiking through its jungles. She also enjoys cooking and sharing meals with family and friends. She loves, loves, loves cake and pies!

B.A. English, University of Guam, M.A. Education, University of Guam.