Faculty and Staff

Whistler Waldorf School Faculty and Staff

Whistler Waldorf School’s faculty consists of all teachers employed at the school and is responsible for delivering the Waldorf curriculum to the students. Our Administration Team works together to support the Faculty of Teachers, Board of Trustees, and Parent Council and ensures the smooth functioning of daily operations of the school, including admissions, implementation of BC Ministry of Education policies, enrollment, facility management, community relations, and marketing.

ADMINISTRATION  |  HIGH SCHOOL  |  GRADE SCHOOL  |  STUDENT SUPPORT |  EARLY YEARS

Administration

Rubeena Sandhu: Director of Education

Rubeena Sandhu joined Whistler Waldorf School in 2015 as the Grade 6 class teacher. She led this class through to their high school years continuing as Guardian, facilitating healthy relationships in both student and parent work. Her expertise as a teacher at the Whistler Waldorf School spans both the lower school and high school, giving her first-hand experience of how our school values are implemented in the classroom. During this time as a teacher, Rubeena fostered countless relationships with students, parents and faculty. She took on leadership roles on the Board of Trustees, Student Support Executive Group and the High School Task Force. Supporting all areas of the school has fostered the healthy development of our students and program.

Prior to joining Whistler Waldorf, Rubeena was a founding parent and teacher at the Cedar Bridge School in Lumby, BC, a Waldorf-inspired farm and forest-based early childhood and grade school. Rubeena taught Grades 1 to 7 at the school before serving as the upper grades teacher. During this time Rubeena focused on community development, healthy growth and parent education. Cedar Bridge is currently a thriving Waldorf school in the interior of BC, serving many families and students in Waldorf pedagogy.

Rubeena holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Thompson Rivers University where she married her passion for creativity with practice. She holds a Waldorf Teachers Certificate from the West Coast Institute and continues to promote, and support, Waldorf education in BC serving as the BC Sub-Regional Representative for the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America. Rubeena has two wonderful children, one child in the lower school and one graduating from the high school this year, at Whistler Waldorf.

Jennifer Dodds: Admissions Manager

Ms. Dodds serves as our Admissions Manager. She has a Bachelor of Arts as well as a Masters of Arts Education. She has six years of non-profit administrative experience and extensive experience working in the education sector. Jen has been involved with Waldorf education since 2006 and currently has three daughters enrolled in the school. In addition to being a Waldorf parent, she is also a certified Simplicity Parenting Coach. Her door is always open and she warmly welcomes ideas on how we can further deepen our collective understanding of Waldorf education and child development through Parent Enrichment offerings and how we can cultivate increased community connection.

Mary Waldolf: Reception/Registrar

Ms. Mary joined Whistler Waldorf in September 2018. Prior to this, she had been working in health care as a Program Coordinator for 4 years at the Cancer Centre and the Surgical Ward in the Fraser Valley. Looking for a change of scenery, It wasn’t long until the mountains were calling her name where she could pursue her passion for snowboarding, training dogs, and making the most out of BC living.

Ms. Eva Bergersen

Eva Bergersen: Finance Manager

Ms. Bergersen has been with the school for two years now and really enjoys working with a team that is passionate about lifelong learning, appreciation for the environment, and respectful, supportive relationships.

Eva has been living in whistler for over 15 years and enjoys being on her bike and in the mountains. How many places can you be skiing with in 15 minutes of your house?

High School Faculty

Ms. Ellen Maclean

Ellen Maclean: High School Math and Science Teacher; High School Chair

Ms. Maclean is working alongside Mr. Power and Ms. Blancher as part of our science and math team. She has a BSc in Biochemistry, a BEd with a focus on Environmental science, Biology and Experiential education and she recently completed her MA in Education and Waldorf High School Teacher training at Rudolf Steiner College, Sacramento.

Emma Wardrop: High School Humanities Teacher; Grade 12 Guardian

Ms. Wardrop joined Whistler Waldorf School’s High School Humanities Department in 2015. Emma moved to Whistler in 2014, being drawn to the beautiful natural landscapes and the spirit of adventure surrounding the mountains. She completed her undergraduate studies in English and History at Queen’s University, and then moved to New Zealand where she attained her Graduate Diploma in Teaching at the University of Otago. She gained teaching experience in New Zealand at International Baccalaureate and mainstream high schools. In 2017, Emma completed the Waldorf High School Teacher training program run through the Centre for Anthroposophy in New Hampshire.

Emma has always had a passion for teaching and working with youth, whether as a coach, camp counsellor, ESL teacher, or mentor for those in her community. She has coached high school soccer teams, and was a provincial level soccer player. She enjoys the curiosity and vigour with which teens approach the world about them, and is drawn to the Waldorf approach due to its focus on encouraging the discovery of truth and beauty. Emma has a deep love for literature and stories which nourish our understanding of life, and enjoys writing in her free time. She loves being able to ski, bike, explore and play in the mountains she now calls home and is thrilled to be working with the vibrant Whistler Waldorf School community.

Ms. Emma Wardrop
Mr. Lucien Power

Lucien Power: High School Math and Science Teacher

After graduating from Wynstones Steiner school in Gloucester, England, Mr. Power spent a year working for a geotechnical engineering company. This sparked his interest in engineering and he went on to study civil engineering at the University of Nottingham. During this time, Mr. Power also worked for an engineering company in London, England. He continued working in the engineering field after graduating until he decided that working with children and teenagers was his passion. After enrolling at the University of Gloucester and completing the Post Graduate Certificate of Education, Mr. Power spent a few years teaching in state (public) schools until 2009 when he moved to Vancouver to teach at the Vancouver Waldorf School. There he taught physics, chemistry and maths, and served as guardian to the graduating class. Lucien moved to Squamish with his partner in 2014 and is enjoying working with the students at Whistler Waldorf School!

Ali Blancher: High School Math and Science Department

Ms. Blancher’s education includes Bachelor degrees in Geography and Environmental Sciences from Queen’s University, and a Bachelor of Education from UBC. She is currently completing her Waldorf high school teacher training in math, Life Sciences, and Physical Sciences at the Centre for Anthroposophy in New Hampshire.

Ali moved to Whistler in 2005, and worked as a teaching assistant in Whistler and Pemberton for two years. She first joined Whistler Waldorf in 2009 as a teaching assistant in the Kindergarten class and fell in love with the school. She was therefore thrilled to return as a science, math and resource teacher in 2011 after completing her Bachelor of Education. Ali gained extensive experience with adolescents over past ten years directing leadership programs, coaching field hockey and softball, and working at the Pemberton Secondary School. She loves the Whistler life with all of its outdoor activities and athletic opportunities.

Mr. Stephen Maskell

Stephen Maskell: High School Math and Science Department; Grade 8 Guardian

Mr. Maskell grew up in Wales and while studying at Cardiff High School he took part in an engineering competition which sparked his want to pursue a career in a technical field. Upon graduation, he went on to study Aerospace Engineering at University of Hertfordshire with an exchange year at West Virginia University in the United States. During university, Steve continued volunteering with Scouts and participating in outdoor activities. It became apparent that working with children and youth was the direction he wanted to take.

The next few years were spent working with young people and combining his love for the outdoors by managing a Scout Campsite and working in the outdoor education sector. During this time, Mr. Maskell completed a Graduate Apprenticeship in Outdoor Education. There was something missing though; that technical, analytical side wanted to be aired and so he worked at the Ministry of Defence before completing a Post Graduate Certificate in Education. Steve then moved to Whistler and after working in the adult education sector at Blackcomb Aviation, he has now returned to what he loves, teaching mathematics to awesome adults of the future.

Charlotte Jacklein: French, Humanities Teacher

Ms. Jacklein joined the Whistler Waldorf School faculty in 2015 as a high school humanities and outdoor education teacher. Prior to coming to Whistler, Charlotte taught in both public and independent schools, most recently at the Halton Waldorf School in Ontario as a class teacher. She has an Honours BA from University of Waterloo in English with a Minor in Peace and Conflict Studies, a Bachelor of Education from Lakehead University in English and OE3 (Outdoor Experiential Environmental Education), and a Masters of Education and Waldorf teacher training from Antioch University New England.

A Waldorf graduate herself, Charlotte is grateful that this remarkable opportunity gave her a strong foundation and inspired a deep commitment to lifelong learning. In addition to her classroom teaching, Charlotte has over a decade of experience working as a wilderness guide and outdoor instructor in Canada and internationally. Through her work with organizations such as Outward Bound and the YMCA, Charlotte has a wealth of experience working with children and youth in a wide range of settings from Australia to the Arctic. In her free time Charlotte loves exploring the great outdoors, playing with the Sea to Sky orchestra and growing tasty food with her Pemberton gardening collective.

Ms. Charlotte Jacklein

Grade School Faculty

Kristen Andreasen: Grade 1 Teacher

Ms. Andreasen began working at the Whistler Waldorf School in 2015 as a teaching assistant. She worked as a preschool and kindergarten classroom assistant. After working as an assistant for many years in various locations, she soon realized that working with children brought great joy to her life.

Ms. Andreasen attended the University of Waterloo and completed her undergraduate honours degree in Applied Health Sciences in 2007. Upon finishing her degree she moved out west to find many of her dreams come true in the magical corridor of the Sea to Sky. After working for WWS in 2015, she decided to move back to Ontario. She enrolled herself in the full-time teacher training at the Rudolf Steiner Centre. It was here that she discovered more about Waldorf Education and began her journey as a teacher. Ms. Andreasen taught at the Squamish Waldorf School as a Kindergarten teacher for one year prior to making her move back to Whistler Waldorf.

Ms. Andreasen loves the great outdoors, cooking, yoga and gardening. She has lived in Whistler with her husband and her lion-like cat for 11 years.

Nina Moore: Grade 2 Teacher

Ms. Moore joined the Whistler Waldorf School in 2010, working in the Early Years department as a Preschool teacher, Parent-Child program facilitator and Kindergarten teacher.

She completed her Waldorf Grade School Teaching Certificate in 2015, through studying at the West Coast Institute and the Rudolph Steiner Centre, Toronto, and took her first Grades class in 2017.

She has two children enrolled in the school.

Kyle Kirkegaard: Grade 3 Teacher

Ms. Kirkegaard is an alumna of Whistler Waldorf School and graduate of Denver Waldorf School. Kyle cultivated a strong interest in Waldorf education from her own experiences with the curriculum as a student, which carried her into teaching. She gained a Bachelor of Arts and Science degree from Quest University and is completing her Masters of Education and Waldorf Training Certification at Antioch University, New England.

Kyle finds inspiration trail running, skiing and rock climbing, with a great appreciation for the natural environment. Her energy, enthusiasm and caring nature are contagious and she is thrilled to be fulfilling her dream of teaching at the Whistler Waldorf School.

Ms. Kyle Kirkegaard

Joanna Berringer: Grade 4 Teacher

Joanna completed a Bachelor of Education degree at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota in 2007. During her university years, she spent a lot of time in canoes working as a canoe tripper for a YMCA program, as well as Outward Bound Canada. She has worked in many outdoor education programs in BC, as well as Ontario. In the winter of 2007, Joanna fled west to the coast mountains and has been living in Whistler ever since.

Joanna began working at the Whistler Waldorf School in 2012, after five years of teaching skiing for the Whistler Kids Ski School program. She guided a class of students from Grade 2 to 6, and has now returned to the school as the Grade 4 teacher. Joanna is passionate about young people and the outdoors and found the perfect fit in the Waldorf curriculum. She has completed training at Rudolf Steiner College in Sacramento, California.

Angela Brooks: Grade 5 Teacher

Ms. Brooks comes to Whistler Waldorf with her family from Southern Ontario, having taught grades kindergarten to grade 6 for 13 years with the public system. She holds an undergraduate degree in child development from York University in Toronto as well as a Master’s in Education, specializing in motivation in the classroom, from Niagara University in New York State. Ange was so inspired by the Waldorf philosophy she decided to continue her teaching studies part-time at the Rudolf Steiner Institute in Toronto.
In their spare time, Ange and her family enjoy everything sporty in particular skiing, riding horses, volleyball and playing soccer.

Brian Gohlke: Grade 6 Teacher; Lower School Chair

Mr. Gohlke joined WWS in 2015 as the Grade 7 teacher. Brian was a class teacher at the Vancouver Waldorf School since 2007, taking a class from Grade 2 – 7 and then another class for Grade 7 and 8. He has a BA in Economics and International Business and a Diploma in Rudolf Steiner Education, having completed his Waldorf teacher training in New Zealand in 2006. Previous to his work as a Waldorf teacher, Brian worked as a class teacher for eight years at a school in Taiwan.

Catherine Mitchell Roy: Grade 7 Teacher

Ms. Roy joined Whistler Waldorf in 2016 as the new Grade 5 teacher. She has taught Science, English and Art at a Tibetan school in India and Visual Arts and Science at New Westminster Secondary School in the Lower Mainland. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in Environmental Studies and a minor in Fine Arts from Bishops University, as well as a Bachelor of Education from Simon Fraser University. Cat began working with youth as a lifeguard and swim instructor in 2003 before coming to Whistler in 2009. She immediately felt at home in our mountain community with its vibrant arts scene. She gained additional experience while living in Thailand, volunteering with an elephant rescue and rehabilitation program and teaching at the local school.

Cat is very excited to be a part of the Waldorf community and bring her passion for art, creativity, and adventure to her class. She’s thrilled to be working in a school where curiosity and connectivity to nature can flourish.

Ms. Catherine Roy

Special Subject Faculty

Ms. Katherine Fawcett

Katherine Fawcett: Lower School Music Teacher

Ms. Fawcett has been teaching music for over 28 years. She began as a piano teacher, and moved into violin and voice at the Whistler Waldorf School approximately 8 years ago. Katherine has lived all over Canada, including Montreal, Yellowknife, Calgary and Canmore, and even spent several years in Japan where she taught English. She and her husband currently live in Squamish with their children Jack  and Lilah. Katherine is also a yoga enthusiast, trail runner, skier, an award-winning writer and a member of the Sea to Sky Orchestra Orchestra.

Joshua Suhrheinrich: High School Music Teacher

Mr. Suhrheinrich has taught guitar, music theory and improvisation for over twenty years. He has performed professionally throughout Canada and the US, was awarded first place at the 2011 Roland National Loop Competition in Vancouver, BC and performed as a finalist at the 2012 Roland World Loop Competition in Frankfurt, Germany. Josh performed frequently in Whistler from 2005 to 2013 before relocating to Seattle and is now excited to return to this vibrant community and share his knowledge and passion for music.

Mr. Suhrheinrich studied and performed Jazz while earning a degree in Religious Studies at Indiana University. He then earned a Master’s degree in Jazz Performance from Northern Illinois University, where he was awarded a scholarship from the Liberace Foundation and was a member of the esteemed NIU Jazz Ensemble and NIU Jazztet. Josh served as guitar faculty at the Shell Lake Jazz Camp in Wisconsin as well as the NIU Jazz Camp in DeKalb, Illinois. He developed his own workshops and camps in Bloomington, Indiana as well as in Whistler and Pemberton, BC. In addition to teaching at Waldorf, Mr. Suhrheinrich also currently teaches guitar at Dusty Strings Music School in Seattle and performs along the west coast.

Yuko Iwanaga: Strings Teacher

Ms. Iwanaga has been supporting the High School strings since September.
Yuko studied the Suzuki Method in Japan and completed a post graduate No 4. After completing Suzuki Method, she played in a String Orchestra and a quartet before coming to Canada for the mountains.
She has been teaching violin privately for 13 years in Sea to Sky corridor and created the Sea to Sky string orchestra to share her passion for music in ensembles. In her free time, you can find her in the coast mountains and in the U.S. backcountry skiing, climbing and hiking. And if she doesn’t have a committed performance soon, she skateboards and mountain bikes.
She lives with her husband and two cats in Squamish.
Ms. Dionne

Marie-Christine Dionne: French Teacher

Madame Dionne joined the Whistler Waldorf School in 2016, teaching French in the lower school and high school. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Education and a Certificate in Second Language Teaching from Concordia University. Marie-Christine also spent a semester in Geneva where she taught a Grade 2 class. She is thrilled to be given the opportunity to expand the French program at Whistler Waldorf by bringing a part of her culture and her love for languages. Marie-Christine visited BC many times before officially making it her home in 2016. The mountains and outdoor lifestyle brought her here, and when she is not teaching, she enjoys climbing, hiking, snowboarding and travelling.

Wes Feagan: Teaching Assistant

Mr. Feagan joined Whistler Waldorf School in 2013, working in student support as a classroom assistant. He brings 15 years of experience and training working in special needs education and in children’s recreation. He completed a Bachelor’s degree at the University of Victoria, and post grad studies in Australia in group facilitation, HR and education. Although Wes was born and grew up in Toronto, he is drawn to the mountains of BC and loves his life in Whistler.  Along with his wife and two children, Wes takes full advantage of the beautiful outdoor environment in Whistler through running, mountain biking, skiing, as well as playing and coaching soccer.

Mr. Wes Feagan
Ms. Romy Grayson

Romy Grayson: Substitute Applied Arts Teacher

Ms. Grayson joined Whistler Waldorf in November 2016. She has worked as a certified Carpenter in the Whistler area for the past 10 years and prior to that, was an Administrative Assistant and Event Manager for over 13 years. Romy was born in Eastern Germany and grew up in Stuttgart. She decided to come to Whistler with her dog in 2006 on a Work and Travel Permit and never left. She is now Canadian and has her daughter attending the school.

Ms. Molli Reynolds

Mollianne Reynolds: Handwork Teacher

Ms Reynolds is caring, creative  and dedicated. She combines a firm hand with a sense of humour to make her an adored teacher and faculty member. Mollianne attended Waldorf schools in Vancouver, Germany and Toronto, and after a few years in the health and vitamin industry and at a bio-dynamic farm, she decided to become a Waldorf teacher herself. After completing a Bachelor’s degree in English, she went to Germany, to study at the world’s first Waldorf school. She completed her Waldorf Teacher Training in Stuttgart Germany. Mollianne joined Whistler Waldorf in 2004, with the Grade 6 / 7 class, and led them to graduation before starting with a group of 15 Grade 1 students in 2006.

Mollianne brings incredible creativity to her handwork classes. She is a talented chalkboard artist, painter, illustrator and fabric artist. She is also highly skilled at knitting, crocheting, sewing and needlework and usually has several projects of her own underway at once.

Student Support Department

Edrie Henderson: Classroom Assistant

Ms. Henderson provides teaching support to our Grade School and High School students, as well as Advisor/Coordinator for AEP and Exchange Students. She has a BSc from UBC in Physiological Psychology, a Diploma in Outdoor Recreation Management from Capilano College and a Diploma in Special Education for Teaching Assistants from Kwantlen. Edrie worked as a Wilderness Trip Leader for five years in the Whistler and Pemberton area taking at risk youth on extended wilderness canoe, backcountry skiing and backpacking trips. Ms. Henderson has also worked with youth in remote areas of Alberta and has worked for the past 18 years as an educational assistant and private tutor.

Edrie grew up in Vancouver and now lives in Pemberton with her husband. She has a son and a daughter. Ms. Henderson is excited to be living where she used to work and is especially happy to be working at the Whistler Waldorf school.

Megan Hewitt: Classroom Assistant

Ms. Hewitt provides learning support for our lower school as a classroom assistant. She earned her BA in Journalism from California State University, Chico in 1995 and completed her Multiple Subject Teaching Credential in 1998. She taught grade school for seven years and loved the challenges, opportunities and learning it brought into her life.

Once in Whistler, which she has lovingly called home since 2005, she began work at the Whistler Youth Centre and LUNA (Late & Unique Nighttime Alternatives) designing programs for youth.  At this time she started a family with her husband, Lon. Her daughter Lola, and son Niko, both attend Whistler Waldorf. Living in the snow-covered mountains has been a childhood dream since riding ski lifts in California, Utah and Colorado on family ski trips. And although living in Whistler is her dream come true, she still loves to soak up the sun, ride the waves and spend time with family in California.

Ms. Megan Hewitt

Early Years

Mrs. Ute Grimm

Ute Grimm: Briar Rose Teacher

Mrs. Grimm moved with her family from Germany to Canada seven years ago. Being a Waldorf alumnus herself, she completed her Eurythmy training in Stuttgart and taught this subject for more than twenty years. Following this, she turned to her long time passion of helping children with special needs and completed a post graduate diploma for Waldorf Class Teachers, as well as a Certificate in Remedial Education. Mrs. Grimm worked as a full time Remedial Specialist at the Vancouver Waldorf School for five years, and then stepped into a class teacher position. Her deep understanding of anthroposophy, her remedial background, her rich experience in Eurythmy and, last but not least, raising four children has contributed to her success in teaching, remedial work and consulting with parents.

Ute has enjoyed continuing her teaching career at the Whistler Waldorf School as Eurythmy and Remedial teacher, as well as getting to know the Whistler Waldorf School community. Ute has been appointed as our school’s 1st Liaison to the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America.

Andree Montigny: Early Childhood & Educational Assistant

Akiho Matsunaga: Early Childhood Assistant

Ms. Matsunaga has worked with young children over 25 years in Japan, Canada and Indonesia as a teacher and cultural exchange facilitator.  After completing ECE diploma and BA in Child and Youth Care at Malaspina University-College on Vancouver Island, she moved to Whistler in 2001, drawn to the beauty of the summer mountain’s nature.   Since then, Ms. Matsunaga has worked for daycares and preschools in Whistler and Pemberton as a teacher, HR assistant and supported child care workers.  She started substituting at Whistler Waldorf in 2012 and became an Assistant Preschool and Kindergarten teacher since September 2018.  Originally from Hiroshima, Japan, she obtained a BSc in Biology from Shimane University.  She lives in Whistler and enjoys family rock climbing, as well as growing vegetables at Community Garden during summer. Ms. Matsunaga has two children that attend Whistler Waldorf.

Orsa Horvath: Little Cedars Teacher

Ms. Orsa first joined the Whistler Waldorf  School in 2010 and was deeply moved by the peaceful setting offered to the children, as well as the ideas and philosophy behind Waldorf Education, which reminded her of her own childhood in Europe. Although she first completed a Business Degree at the Budapest Business School in Hungary, she had always felt a strong desire to work with children.

Orsa moved to Canada in 1999 and worked for Whistler Blackcomb, coaching skiing for 14 years, working with children between 3-12 years of age.  She completed a TESOL Diploma at Vancouver Community College, and taught ESL in the summer months in Whistler. Orsa completed her Early Childhood Education certificate in June 2013 and has completed her Waldorf Early Years training in May 2015. She loves the active outdoor life in Whistler, which fits perfectly with the Waldorf Early Years curriculum of closely following the beautiful changes that take place in our surrounding natural environment.

Ms. Orsa Horvath
Ms. Karina Pena

Karina Pena: Early Childhood Assistant

Ms. Pena has nearly 8 years of experience as an assistant teacher and co-teacher in both the playschool and kindergarten classes at Whistler Waldorf. She completed her ECCE (Early Childhood Care and Education) certification in 2010, and continues to work towards her Waldorf Teacher Training – Early Childhood certification each summer. She has several years experience as a nanny, and also worked at Whistler Blackcomb. Originally from Peru, Karina moved to Whistler ten years ago.