Faculty & Staff

San Francisco Waldorf High School’s distinguished faculty is characterized by the interest and individual attention given to each student. Most San Francisco Waldorf High School faculty members hold advanced degrees in their subject areas, and many hold PhDs. Performing and fine arts teachers as well as craftspeople come from the professional arts community of the city and bring extensive work and performance experience. The faculty has an average of 8 years of experience in the Waldorf curriculum.

Alba, Caroline
High School Mathematics and Chemistry
Ms. Alba received her BS in electrical engineering and computer science from the Institut de Chimie Physique et Informatique in Lyon, France. After obtaining her degree, she became a teacher while starting her family. Ms. Alba passed the CAPES, a minimum examination requirement for professional teachers in France, and the AGREGATION, probably the most rigorous examination requirement to teach at the university level. She then taught physics and chemistry at Lyon high school for ten years. 

Allingham, Beth
Educational Support
Beth Allingham obtained her Waldorf High School Teacher training through the Kula Makua program in Honolulu and Rudolf Steiner College. She holds bachelor’s degrees in Spanish and Plant Science and an M.S. in Plant Pathology. She taught chemistry and biology at the Honolulu Waldorf School, where she was a founding faculty member of the high school, for 17 years, and Microbiology at the University of Hawaii, Manoa, for three years. She was the college counselor for ten years and taught a variety of other subjects including hula, Hawaiian crafts and English grammar. Her experience in counseling students with learning differences arose from the perceived needs of the students before her as well as observing how a dyslexic and bright son approached his learning and work in the world. She is fascinated by nutritional issues, both personal and linked to learning differences, is a Certified Healing Foods Specialist through Immunitrition.com and has published a nutrition blog. She loves to cook, sew, read, practice QiGong and hula, observe nature and garden.

Anderson, Bryan
Athletic Director
Mr. Anderson received his BA in Economics from the University of Chicago in June 1997.  While at Chicago, he played on the varsity football team and was a starting linebacker his last Junior and Senior years.  His professional career began in Minnesota where he was an international trader for a global hedge fund.  A similar career opportunity lured him to the Bay Area in 2001.  Bryan began his allegiance with the SF Waldorf School as the Assistant Varsity Baseball Coach in Spring 2010.  Seizing the opportunity to increase his role with the school, he became the Assistant Athletic Director in late 2010 and was promoted to Athletic Director for the 2012-13 school year. 

Anderson, Lisa
HS Administrative Coordinator 
Lisa Anderson started out in Silicon Valley working in Operations and Marketing Communications before shifting her focus to Waldorf Education. Lisa graduated from the Bay Area Center for Waldorf teacher Training in 2003 After her training, Lisa managed the office at the Bay Area Center for many years. Lisa is a Waldorf parent and has been strong supporter of the school over the years in her work on the high school Parent Council and as a class parent. Lisa hopes that her love of organization can help support the students, faculty, staff and parents of the community. Lisa enjoys cooking, gardening and spending time at her cabin in Twillingate, Newfoundland.

Barbee, Luke
Outdoor Education Coodinator
With a BS in Environmental Science (Oregon State University) and a Masters in Teaching (Southern Oregon University), Luke Barbee has spent the last 17 years exploring education both in and out of the classroom. With a passion for experiential education, outdoor leadership, and connecting youth to nature, Luke brings with him experience working for Outward Bound, Nature Bridge Yosemite, Adventures
Cross Country, as well as years spent as a classroom science teacher in Oregon and experiential education instructor in Southern California. Additionally Luke has led a wide variety of international and domestic service adventure and leadership courses for youth. Although Luke and his wife have been leading youth trips for years in and around the Bay Area, they have only recently called it home.

Burket, John
Biology, Geology and Math, 9th Grade Sponsor
Mr. Burket received his Ph.D. in soil science from Oregon State University, his MS in biology from the University of Oregon and his BA in geology from the University of Vermont. After graduating from college, Mr. Burket took over the ownership of his family’s farm in Pennsylvania, converting it to an organic grain and livestock operation. During this time he also earned his teaching certificate in biology and general science and taught science for two years in a public high school. He completed his Foundation Year at the Eugene Waldorf Teacher Training Program and taught math and science blocks in the eighth grade at the Eugene Waldorf School. Mr. Burket completed the High School Teaching Program through Rudolf Steiner College in 2000.

Boyce, David
World Music
David spent his formative years in NYC soaking up the city's vast multicultural offerings. After being bitten by the jazz bug in elementary school he learned to play the saxophone. It quickly became the focus of his non-academic endeavors. He graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. in Industrial and Labor Relations, taught school in the Bronx and moved out to San Francisco just in time for the Loma Prieta earthquake. Living in the Bay Area inspired him to pursue music as a full time obsession. He founded the world renowned avant jazz group Broun Fellinis (16 years running) and is an active free lance musician involved in many musical pursuits that range from straight ahead jazz to hiphop to afrobeat to experimental electronic music. His music has taken him to Europe, Japan and Canada as well as around the US.

Caldarera, Joan
High School Humanities
Ms. Caldarera, holding a BA in Englishfrom the University of Rochester and a MA in drama from the University of Toronto, iscurrently in a doctoral program in educational leadership at U.C. Davis. In 1985 Ms. Caldarera apprenticed at San Francisco Waldorf School spending a block of time with each grade class before teaching Kindergarten for four years. She graduated her first class, which she took from the fifth grade, in June 1993, then led a second class from first through fifth grades. Having chaired the high school planning committee, she joined the high school faculty in 1997, and served as High School Chair for five years. From there she moved to the Head of Administration position, which she held for four years. Ms. Caldarera is the mother of four children. The two eldest graduated from SFWS in 1990 and 1994, while son Michael-Tobias was in the first SFWHS graduating class, and son Andreas is in the twelfth grade.

Carini, Paolo
Mathematics and Physics
Dr. Carini received his BA in physics at the University of Rome in 1988. He then moved to the United States to continue his research in theoretical physics at Stanford University, California, where he later received his Ph.D. in physics. His interest in Waldorf education started when his wife, Lalla, entered the Waldorf Teacher Training program in San Francisco. Later, he lived in Massachusetts where he worked for two years at Amherst College with Professor Arthur Zajonc on problems of crystal growth and pattern formation. Dr. Carini completed his Waldorf Teacher Training in the San Francisco Teacher Training Program.

Eicher, Jessica
HS Chair
Ms. Eicher first joined the administrative staff at San Francisco Waldorf High School in 2009,  working for three years as the High School Administrator, before taking up the High School Chair position. She earned a BA in Art History from Bates College and completed the Waldorf Teacher Training Program at Rudolf Steiner College. She brings many years of administrative experience to the school, including program management at the Waldorf teacher training program and a decade of work in arts administration in the non-profit and gallery world. Ms. Eicher enjoys the complexities of collaborative leadership and is committed to the social art of working with faculty, parents, administration and students to further the impulses of Waldorf Education. She has two children thriving at the San Francisco Waldorf Grade School campus. 

Forrer, Elena
Sra. Forrer attended University Complutense of Madrid, Sciences of Education, from 1976 to 1979. Sra. Forrer also attended Madrid University School of Applied Arts and graduated in 1982. Before coming to SFWS, she taught in Madrid, then moved to San Anselmo and taught Adult Education at Mount Tam High School and Spanish at Marin Country Day School. In March of 1998, she completed a Teachers' Equivalency Training through Rudolf Steiner College. During the spring of 2000, Sra. Forrer, in cooperation with other Spanish teachers, published a book entitled Cenderos for Spanish language teachers in the Waldorf Schools. 

Golant, Aimee
Metal Arts
Aimee Golant is a sixth generation Metalsmith. She began studying jewelry fabrication and Silversmithing at California State University, San Francisco in 1992. Upon her graduation in 1996 she began her career as an independent metal artist making Judaica and Jewelry. She traveled to juried shows in New York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore selling her unique metal art nationally. Aimee won the esteemed NICHE Award for her Bars and Windows Menorah and she received the Golden Hammer Award for her outstanding community service through the San Francisco Bay Area Metal Arts Guild. Her teaching experience includes pioneering the Metal Art program at the San Francisco Waldorf High School, teaching adults and inner city youth beginning Silversmithing and jewelry fabrication as vocational skills at the Crucible in Oakland, as well as teaching beginning and intermediate jewelry making at Scintillant Studio in San Francisco. 

Greenlief, Phillip
Music Program Coordinator, Orchestra Director
Since his emergence on the west coast in the late 1970’s, Evander Music founder Phillip Greenlief has achieved international critical acclaim for his recordings and performances with musicians and composers in the post-jazz continuum as well as new music innovators and virtuosic improvisers. The multi-instrumentalist holds a BA in Music Education and a MA in 20th Century Literature from the University of Southern California and is a former instructor at Stanford University. In addition to a busy performing and recording schedule, he currently teaches saxophone and improvisation at Oakland School for the Arts, East Bay Center for the Performing Arts, and is Music Program Coordinator at San Francisco Waldorf High School.

Gressel, Zoe
High School Spanish
Ms. Gressel recently moved to the Bay Area to commence her third year of teaching at the high school level. She studied abroad in Seville, Spain at La Universidad de Sevilla and graduated from Cornell College in 2006 with a B.A. in Spanish and Secondary Education. She will begin Waldorf training this summer at the Center for Anthroposophy in Wilton, New Hampshire.

Helland Hansen, Maria
Therapeutic Eurythmist
A native of Norway, Maria worked there with biodynamic agriculture for several years, before leaving to study eurythmy in Sweden from 1981 to 1985. She worked two years at Vidarkliniken, an anthroposophical hospital in Sweden, as eurythmist and assistant nurse. She worked for four years as eurythmy teacher at Lorenskog Waldorf School in Norway. In 1992, Maria completed her curative eurythmy training in Dornach, Switzerland.

Jackson, John
Math, Health, Physical Education
Mr. Jackson completed his Waldorf Teacher Training at Emerson College in 1983. He taught for 15 years at the Summerfield Waldorf School in Santa Rosa before coming to the San Francisco Waldorf School in 2001. He was a class teacher for 11 years, and now teaches math, physical education and coaches after-school sports. Mr. Jackson has a son in eleventh grade.

McCarty, Kelli
Student Mentor
Kelli McCarty, is a guide who listens and assists students in learning to make healthy choices that unfold their innate and full potential.  Ms. McCarty has a M.A in counseling, a California State School Counseling Credential (PPS) and is pursuing her Marriage and Family Therapy License.  

McGill, Mary Anne
Ms. McGill has a BA in History and Classical Studies from Rhode Island College and a master's degree in Library and Information Science from San Jose State University. For the past eleven years, she has managed the World Affairs Council of Northern California's Library; planned and produced a weekly "Meet the Author" program series for NPR.

Renegar, Cynthia
Dr. Renegar received her Ph.D. in mathematics from Tulane University, in New Orleans. Two years later she moved to Scotland where she completed the Waldorf Teacher Training program at the Rudolf Steiner School of Edinburgh. She has taught mathematics at a number of colleges and universities, and has taught in Waldorf high schools for the past six years.

Rodriguez, Marilyn 
Marilyn Rodriguez is a professionally trained classical sculptor specialized in the human figure and horses. After graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Science from SFSU,   she moved to Europe where she had the opportunity to study Europe’s best art collections, and her fervor for classical sculpture flourished. When she returned to the U.S., she pursued her classical sculpture training and stone carving for 5 years under the tutelage of international Master Sculptor Harriet Moore. Since 1996, Ms. Rodriguez has been sharing her knowledge and passion teaching from her studio in San Francisco, California.She is the author of “An Artist’s Guide to Proportions and  Measurements of the Skeletal System”. Ms. Rodriguez teaches 9th grade “The Human Hand” and an 11th/12th grade elective, “A Portrait in Clay”.

Thiersch, Astrid
Ms. Thiersch attended the Kräherwald Waldorf School in Stuttgart, Germany, and completed her eurythmy training at the Eurythmeum Stuttgart with Else Klink. She performed with the acclaimed Eurythmeum Stage Group, and also taught in the Eurythmeum and at the Dr. Hauschka Pharmaceutical Co. Since coming to America, Ms. Thiersch has taught eurythmy from kindergarten through grade twelve, specializing in the high school. She directs the San Francisco Youth Eurythmy Troupe, which gives annual performances in San Francisco, and has toured extensively in the U.S., Asia, and Europe.

Townsend, Patricia
Arts Program Coordinator, Weaving, Basketry, Bookmaking
Ms. Townsend received her BA in psychology from California State University, Humboldt in 1975 with a California Child Care Credential. In 1978 she studied Weaving at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, in Maine, followed by completion of a Textile Arts Program at Fiberworks Center for the Textile Arts in Berkeley. After moving back to the Bay Area she worked twelve years as a commercial toy designer. Ms. Townsend began teaching in our high school when it opened, and now teaches Weaving, Basketry, and Bookbinding.

Weber, David 
High School Humanities, Choir
Mr. Weber grew up in the Bay Area. He studied politics, music and law, receiving his BA from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and JD from the University of Wisconsin. After several years in the practice of law, Mr. Weber trained as a Waldorf teacher at Emerson College in England. He has taken three classes through the eighth grade, and has taught history, music and literature in two Waldorf high schools.

Wong, Nick
High School Humanities, Drama 
Mr Wong has been a teacher since 1993. Having worked in the British state sector and then as a teacher of English as a foreign language he began his Waldorf career at the Hereford Waldorf School in England in 2000. He and his family moved to the Bay Area in 2005 where he taught part-time at the East Bay Waldorf School. He received his BA.in English from Middlebury College in 1987 and his M.Phil. in English and P.G.C.E. (teacher's credential) from Oxford in 1993. All four of his children are SFWS students.