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Professional Development Team

Meet our team of Educators

We are a team of K12 educators, curriculum designers and strategists, artists and dreamers, working to inspire and engage educators around the world. Come meet our educators at one of these upcoming events:

Curriculum Summit in Hawaii 2018
September 17, 2018 - September 18, 2018
St. Theresa Catholic School | Hawaii, United States

Curriculum Writing Workshop in Massachusetts 2018
September 28, 2018
Old Rochester Regional School District | MA, United States

Curriculum Writing + Leadership Workshops in Egypt 2018
September 29, 2018 - September 30, 2018
The American International School in Egypt Main Campus | Cairo, Egypt

Our Educators

When you visit our offices in downtown Portland, it’s likely you’ll hear lively discussion and debate around hot topics in education and the culture of learning emerging from one corner of our floor. Wait a few minutes, and peppy laughter and snappy storytelling will follow. That’s when you’ll know our team of PD Specialists are back in town.

A group of former teachers with a deep-seeded passion for teaching and learning, this team travels the globe, leading workshops for schools and districts on topics that range from curriculum writing and design to differentiated instruction and personalized learning. This same group facilitates our collaborative multi-day Leadership Institutes held at our Portland headquarters throughout the year. Read on and meet the team!

Amber Villa-Zang_Professional Development

Amber Villa-Zang

Passionate about pedagogy and the role school leaders and teachers play in creating and providing dynamic, high quality curriculum and instruction, Amber leads professional development sessions for domestic and international school districts. She has expertise in supporting districts in developing standards-aligned curriculum and guiding teachers through the process of developing integrated units of instruction. She’s collaborated with district curriculum planning teams and led professional development sessions for differentiated instruction.

Amber graduated from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon with a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in Secondary Language Arts. She spent seven years in a public high school teaching a wide range of Language Arts courses, including Senior IB. She also coached volleyball and was active in the school community.

Amy Meyers_Professional Development

Amy Meyers

Amy Meyers brings experience in international education to her team at Rubicon. She’s lived and taught internationally: first, teaching English at the Windsor Institute in Barcelona, Spain, followed by three years as an elementary English teacher in Jakarta, Indonesia. When working with schools, she draws on her diverse professional background in international education and non-profit management.

She primarily consults with independent schools both domestically and internationally and uses her experience to help guide schools in creating a successful and sustainable curriculum process. She’s a University of Oregon graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish Language and Literature and has TESOL certification.

Ashley Brown_Professional Development

Ashley Brown

Ashley Brown has worked as both an elementary school teacher and administrator. She spent several years teaching third grade in St. Paul, Minnesota, before moving to Portland, Oregon to serve as Head of Lower School for a charter school in the city. Prior to her time as an educator, Ashley worked as an attorney for the U.S. Department of Education, partnering with schools in the turnaround process to support them with their school improvement efforts.

Ashley also worked at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development on a program aimed at improving education, housing and health in low-income neighborhoods throughout the country. Ashley pulls from all of her professional experiences when she works with teachers and administrators to help them develop and maintain a successful, comprehensive curriculum process. She has a deep respect for school teachers and leaders and is committed to providing them with high-quality professional development to make their incredible work sustainable.

Christine Zimmermann

With over 25 years of service to public, parochial, and private schools in both suburban and urban settings, Christine Zimmermann brings her deep and diverse experience as a PreK-12 district curriculum director, PreK-8 principal, and teacher of every grade from preschool through eighth to the Rubicon PD team. 

Chris has presented at national (NCTE) and regional conferences on a variety of topics, including literacy leadership, curriculum development, and social-emotional learning. By supporting and empowering both teachers and school leaders as agents of meaningful change, she has helped to facilitate complex district-wide curricular updates leading to improved teaching practices and student learning outcomes 

Chris earned her BA in Psychology and Education from Rutgers University, her MA in Computing and Education from Teachers College, Columbia, and her MEd in Educational Leadership from William Paterson University. 

Kelp Zenor_Professional Development

Kelby Zenor

Kelby Zenor guides the coordination, development, and facilitation of Professional Development programs for Rubicon both nationally and internationally. She has presented at international conferences — ECIS, NESA, EARCOS — and many others on curriculum review, analysis and process. One of her great passions is bringing diverse groups together to facilitate deep conversations around meaningful curriculum reform.

Over the years, she’s been noted for her ingenuity and enthusiasm when leading events. (That, and the famous Portland donuts she totes to teachers on cross-country flights). Kelby is a graduate of St. Mary’s College in California and her former work as a director of an environmental education program and classroom teacher in New York City provides a strong foundation for consulting with schools on a range of topics.

Elizabeth Clarkson

Dr. Elizabeth Clarkson began her career in North Carolina, which she still considers her home. After earning a B.A. in birth-kindergarten education at Appalachian State University, she started her first teaching position as a PreK teacher with North Carolina Public Schools and was named the 2004 Teacher of the Year for her school.   

With an interest in young children and international education, Elizabeth completed a short study program in Reggio Emilia, Italy and completed her M.A. in Educational Psychology in Colorado. 

Elizabeth served as an Early Reading First Literacy Coach for United Way of Greater Atlanta, working with teachers of prekindergarten students.  In 2013, Elizabeth completed her Ed.D in Educational Leadership from the University of Georgia with a dissertation focusing on the relationship between a specific type of professional development, young children’s literacy outcomes, and teacher practices. 

Elizabeth began her international career in administration when she moved to Guayaquil, Ecuador and served as the Founding Academic Director for Colegio Menor, Campus Samborondón, a private bilingual school providing an American style education to Ecuadorian children and their families.  She continued her international principalship in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil at the American School of Rio de Janeiro as the Lower School Principal. 

Elizabeth volunteers her time with AdvancED as a school and district level External Review team member. Currently, Elizabeth is a consultant focusing on early childhood education and early literacy. 

Megan Davenport_ Professional Development

Megan Davenport

Megan Davenport’s passion for education is at the forefront of her work. Megan earned her master’s degree in education from Arizona State University and bachelor’s degrees in sociology and business management from the University of Montana. Thanks to her academic background, Megan takes a well-rounded approach to working with schools and benefits from knowledge of organizational structure as well as change management paired with classroom experience and a love of helping children learn.

Megan has consulted with public and independent schools both domestically and internationally and enjoys synthesizing knowledge gained from working with a wide variety of schools to provide training and professional development for educators.

Shauna Hobbs

Shauna has been the Director of Teaching and Learning at Graded, The American School of Sao Paulo, in Sao Paulo Brazil since 2016.  She has been a school administrator across the US and internationally for the past 20 years.

Prior to her position as Director of Teaching and Learning, she has served as Executive Director of Curriculum, Assessment & Instruction for Seattle Public Schools from 2013-2016. Previously, she led preschool and elementary principals and staff in their professional work as PK-5 Instructional Services Director for City Schools of Decatur, Georgia, from 2007 to 2010. Shauna also has served as a principal in Washington, Georgia and Tennessee.  

Shauna has an Ed.S. from Walden University and an M.I.T. and B.A. from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington.  

Sofía Amador

Dr. Sofía Amador, a citizen of Costa Rica, has been involved in education for over 30 years as a teacher, administrator and consultant.  She has worked in several top schools in Costa Rica, both local and international, where she has performed various roles.

Sofía graduated with honors from the University of Costa Rica, where she got a bachelor’s degree in English and a bachelor’s degree in Teaching English as a Foreign Language. She also obtained a master’s degree in General Education and a master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Framingham State University. Sofía also has a Doctorate in Education degree from La Salle University at Costa Rica. 

Dr. Sofía Amador is the founder and Director of EducArte International, an educational consulting business. She has worked on several curriculum writing and strategic planning projects throughout Central America and the Caribbean 

As part of the AdvancED Review Teams, Sofía has served in El Salvador, Colombia, Mexico and the Dominican Republic.

Currently, Sofia works at the Marian Baker School in Costa Rica as the IB and Curriculum Coordinator. 

Kate Owen_Professional Development

Kate Owen

Kate Owen has a talent for creating fun and positive learning environments and supports our participants and our Events in the field. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Education & Learning with a focus on Special Education from Pacific University, Oregon. Early in her career, she created and launched an innovative language arts program in a 1st, 2nd, 3rd grade split classroom at a newly founded school in Forest Grove, Oregon.

She also wrote and designed lesson plans for kindergarten students.  Her career path then shifted and led her to business management where she utilized her problem solving, customer service, and leadership skills with adult learners.  Kate finds joy in executing an event that allows participants to focus solely on content and learning.  She zestfully has every detail covered.

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