Nursery Program Teachers

Heidi Schwarzenbach is the founding Nursery Program Director and has been at SFWS since 1999. Heidi was born and raised on the East Coast. She graduated in 1977 from Colgate University with a BA in English Literature and Biology. After working in textiles in New York City for five years, she was transferred to San Francisco. Heidi completed the San Francisco Extension Program of Rudolf Steiner College in 2001 and is also certified by the State of California. Heidi ran a Waldorf-inspired nursery in her home before coming to SFWS.  She is an avid cycler who enjoys ocean swimming, backpacking, and reading. She is a founding member of the Magic Lantern Traveling Marionette Theatre. Her twin sons attended SFWS from Kindergarten through 12th grade and currently attend college at the University of Puget Sound and at the University of Montana.

Diane Aurelius is a Lead Teacher who has been working in the field of early childhood education since 2001. She was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, graduating from the University of California at Santa Barbara in 1983 with a BA in Liberal Arts and from The Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training in 2004. Diane holds a Site Supervisor’s permit with the State of California. A passion for language and travel, Diane has lived and worked in Israel, and Holland, as well as visiting parts of Africa, Cuba, India, the Middle East, and Europe. Before working with children, Diane worked for 7 years as the house manager for The American Conservatory Theater and 5 years as an account executive in packaging design. She most recently served as Program Director for Urban Sprouts Day School and as a teacher at The Treehouse Nursery and Friends of Potrero Hill Nursery. A student of music, Diane enjoys singing and playing music with others. 

Sachi Gowe is an Assistant Teacher who has also taught in our Parent-Child Program. She is a graduate of the San Francisco Extension Program of Rudolf Steiner College and holds a B.A. in English Literature from Kobe College. Sachi has completed 15 ECEs and taught at a Waldorf-inspired preschool for two years. Sachi was born and raised in Japan. After the birth of her twin sons, she discovered Waldorf Education and knew that this would be her path. During her free time she enjoys creating handmade puppets and performs puppet shows featuring stories from Japanese folklore. Her three sons attend SFWS.

Julie Sauton is an Assistant Teacher. She is a second-generation Waldorf alumni and a graduate of the residential Waldorf Teacher Training Program at Rudolf Steiner College. She also founded a Waldorf Nursery program in Fremont. Julie earned her BA from Portland State University in Community Development where her work with nonprofit education programs proved instrumental in her decision to pursue teaching. Julie is proficient in French and trained in the fine arts. She enjoys singing and playing the flute, outdoor activities, cultural events, painting and drawing.

SusannaSusanna von Rombs directs the Nursery Aftercare Program as well as assists during the morning.  She has taught in the SFWS Parent-Child Program for five years and leads both Observation and Work and Play classes. She is a graduate of the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training and ran a small Waldorf-inspired nursery program in her home in Glen Park (Little Orchard) for six years. Susanna was born and raised in Munich, Germany and attended Ludwig Maximilian University, where she completed a bachelor's degree in Special Education. Before moving to the US, she worked in public relations with a start-up company and completed a goldsmith apprenticeship. Besides baking and knitting, she enjoys gardening and exploring together with her family in nature. Susanna's three sons attend SFWS, where she is an active parent volunteer.