EARLY YEARS FACULTY
Nina Moore: Preschool Teacher
Ms Moore moved to Whistler in May 2010, after first visiting as a tourist in 2007. She has worked at the Whistler Waldorf preschool since September 2010. She has 8 years experience working with young children in nurseries, daycares, kindergartens and elementary schools in Ireland, Japan and Canada, and many more years experience as the oldest in a family of 9 children!
After a BA degree in Politics and History, Ms Moore gained her ECE qualifications in Ireland, and is licensed in BC. She is a trained Simplicity Parenting Group Leader. Ms Moore has also started along the journey to becoming a fully certified Waldorf Grades Teacher. Nina lives in Whistler with her husband Sean, and their daughter Blossom. She is an artist, crafter, is learning to ski and becoming comfortable in the bike park: You may have met her face painting at the Farmer’s Market in the summer. Whistler, and the Whistler Waldorf School, feels like home.
Karina Pena: Preschool Teacher
Karina is one of our preschool teachers. She has 4.5 years experience as an assistant teacher in both the preschool and kindergarten classes at Whistler Waldorf. She completed her ECCE (Early Childhood Care and Education) certification last year, 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 nine years ago.
Orsa Horvath: Kindergarten Assistant
Orsa is the assistant teacher for the kindergarten this year. Her passion for children, sports (skiing, triathlon, tennis, soccer, gymnastics, and hiking) and the outdoors lead her to work for Whistler Blackcomb as a Ski Instructor and Coach, for the past 12 years. She also taught English as a Second Language in the summer months in Whistler after completing a TESOL Diploma program at Vancouver Community College.
Before moving to Whistler, Orsa completed a Business Degree, at the Budapest Business School, majoring in International Communication, and specializing in Translating and Interpreting in Hungarian, English and German. Orsa was introduced to the Waldorf school last year, when she worked as a substitute for the preschool. She continues her studies towards her ECE certificate. Orsa has a young daughter, and loves to play the classical guitar and write.
Alison Hahn: Kindergarten teacher
Allison joins our Early Years team this year to lead a Kindergarten class. She first joined Whistler Waldorf last year when she worked as a special needs assistant for a grade 2 student. She worked with special needs children for over 10 years, and completed her degree in education in 1999. She previously worked in schools in northern BC, Victoria and the Sea to Sky corridor.
She also worked as an Outdoor Education Instructor for canoeing, kayaking, rock climbing and survival skills, as well as a lifeguard and fitness instructor. Alison has a 2 year old daughter and lives in Pemberton.
Tracy Graham: Kindergarten Teacher
Ms. Graham has worked at Whistler Waldorf since 2003, and is the Kindergarten lead teacher. She has over 18 years experience working with young children through ski schools, preschools, and daycares in Nelson and Whistler.
Her education includes ECE certification from Capilano College, a Bachelor’s of Education from UBC, and the Waldorf Teacher Training- Early Childhood Program. Tracy comes from a family of teachers from preschool to high school and university, and always knew she wanted to continue the family vocation. She fell in love with the homelike feeling of the Waldorf Kindergarten while living and working in Nelson, and decided this was her chosen path. Tracy loves life in Whistler and spends her time skiing, hiking, practicing yoga and going for picnics at the beach with her daughter Emily.
GRADE SCHOOL FACULTY
Christine Cook: Class 8 & 9
Aegir Morgan: Class 7, Principal
Aegir Morgan knows first-hand the difference a Waldorf Education can make. As a child, he attended a classic British primary school and comprehensive school in Cornwall, England—and despised it. “It was a factory,” he says, and admits he cut classes and completely lost interest in what was being taught. Aegir was switched to a Waldorf school for his final four years, and flourished with the individual attention, the connection with the teachers, and the inspirational curriculum.
He began studying Film and Photography at university, but says he always knew he was destined to be a teacher. He completed a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Media Studies and Education Studies, and a Diploma in Steiner Waldorf Education at the University of Plymouth, UK. At 26 years old, he became one of the youngest teachers in the UK Waldorf system and took a class to eighth grade. After doing charity work in India and traveling to Iceland to reconnect with his roots, he took a job as a substitute teacher, filling in at Waldorf schools across England. While teaching throughout the country, he met his wife-to-be, Christine Cook. In 2008, the couple moved to Canada and both started at Whistler Waldorf.
Aegir is an accomplished musician (guitar, voice, drums and flute) and an athlete (skiing, basketball, soccer). Today, he and Christine live in Pemberton with their son and enjoy the wide open spaces, the mountains, the trails and the ocean nearby.
Mollianne Reynolds: Class 6
The consumate Waldorfian, Mollianne Reynolds is caring, creative and dedicated. As Grade 6 teacher, 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 biodynamic 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 both her Main Lessons and her handwork classes. She is a talented chalkboard artist, painter, illustrator and fabric artist. She is also highly skilled at knitting, crochetting sewing and needlework and usually has several projects of her own underway at once.
Ali Franklin: Math and Science, Resource
Ms Franklin is the upper grades math and science teacher, and the resource work teacher. Her 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 its outdoor activities and athletic opportunities.
Pierre-Maxime Richer: Grades 4 & 5
M. Richer is the grade four and five class teacher. He completed a BA in Education with a minor in French from SFU, a BA in Tourism Management from Capilano University, as well as a diploma in Outdoor Recreation Management. His past teaching experience includes 3 years in North Vancouver teaching Grade 6/7 French Immersion and 2 years of substitute teaching in Whistler. He has taught at Whistler Waldorf since 2010, and is currently pursuing Waldorf teacher training each summer.
Pierre moved to BC 10 years ago following his passion for nature and outdoor activities. He worked as a sea kayak guide, and ran his own adventure camp for children, before meeting his wife and starting their own family – he is now the proud father of three girls. Pierre is an accomplished musician who continues to deepen his learning with new instruments, and enjoys exploring his artistic side through form drawings, blackboard chalk drawings and oil pastels.
Riva Karklin: Grade 3
Ms. Riva Karklin is the grade three class teacher. Previously, Riva worked at Whistler Waldorf as a teacher’s assistant since 2008 for a special need’s student. She was deeply inspired by the work of the teachers, and is currently enrolled in the Elementary Waldorf Teacher training at Sunbridge Institute in NY where she completed her second term this summer.
Her previous teaching experience includes positions as a substitute teacher and teacher’s assistant in Manitoba for various grades, and a preschool teacher at the Whistler Children’s Centre. She completed a Bachelor of Kinesiology and Health Studies at the University of Regina, with a major in disabled sports and recreation.
Riva first came to Whistler on a 3 month contract with the Whistler Adaptive Sports Program, and like many other Whistlerites, she decided she could not leave this beautiful place.
Evan Ragland: Grades 1 & 2
Mr. Ragland is a new addition to The Whistler Waldorf School. Raised in the Pacific Northwest Evan has always held reverence for the mountains, bodies of water, trees and all the creatures of the natural world. As well as being immersed in a natural environment, Evan was also raised in a dual language environment. He attended a Spanish/English bilingual immersion school in his youth and has familial ties to Latin America.
Evan graduated from The Evergreen State College with a bachelor’s degree of Liberal Arts focusing on Bilingual Education, Visual Arts, Humanities and Science. Evan later earned his teaching certificate in Waldorf Education from The Sunbridge Institute in New York, and had the privilege to student teach at some of the founding Waldorf schools in North America like the Rudolf Steiner School.
Evan is extremely thrilled to begin a new chapter in life back in this glorious part of the world, working, growing and contributing to a caring community here in Whistler, B.C.
Katherine Fawcett: Music and Violin
Katherine Fawcett is leading the Whistler Waldorf music program with violin, choir and music theory. She is also kicking off the Whistler Waldorf School’s first adult choir this fall, and despite never having led an adult choir before, she is convinced of the joy and sense of community that music can provide.
Katherine has been a piano teacher for over 25 years; she studied with the Royal Conservatory of Music, and has a BA from the University of Calgary. An eternal student of music herself, Katherine loves exploring new types of sound, new instruments, and new ways to share rhythm and melody. She has played with the Pemberton String Quartet for several years, sang with the Pemberton Community Choir, and is currently with the Pemberton Orchestra.
Last June, Katherine attended the Waldorf Music Teachers’ Conference in San Diego, California, and says it was a truly inspirational experience.
Katherine is also an award-winning writer and author. Her family has been with the school for six years. Her children Jack and Lilah are in Grades 8 and 4.
Sylvie Paré: French & Games
Sylvie teaches French for all grades at Whistler Waldorf this year, following six years of teaching at École Passerelle and other schools in Whistler and Pemberton. She completed a teaching degree in Montreal, as well as a 2 year diploma in communications. Sylvie is a mother of three, and is looking forward to bringing a love of the French language and culture to her students at Whistler Waldorf.
Vicky Bunbury: Administrator
Before she decided to create and grow a Waldorf school, Vicky Bunbury was part of a team that created and grew a ski school. Vicky’s career began as a ski instructor on Whistler Mountain; she later became manager of Ski Scamps children’s ski school. A versatile and visionary leader/organizer, Vicky was involved in financial forecasting, hiring, training, marketing, and programming for the ski school. She was also part of the design and construction of the Whistler Children’s Learning Centre on Whistler Mountain, and developed a long range plan for the Whistler Kids program, including branding and marketing.
Besides her busy professional career in the ski industry, Vicky volunteered her time to build an education alternative for her two sons. From a home-school co-op with a few friends to a one room school house in the suite of a home on the shores of Alta Lake to Whistler Waldorf School’s current location, Vicky has been instrumental in the school’s existence. Whether it’s painting walls, sewing capes and crowns for the kindergarten, crafting at fairs and festivals, hosting open houses, spreading the word about Waldorf education or overseeing the construction of our current location in the summer of 2002, Vicky has been involved. She became the school’s full-time administrator in 2004.
Officially, Vicky’s role is to run the ‘business’ of the school, but she is just as often seen bandaging scraped knees, kicking soccer balls, acting in the school play, and “just being there” for students and parents who need someone to talk to.
Michelle Kirkegaard: Community Liaison / Mentor
Michelle Kirkegaard currently serves as our Community Liaison and Faculty Mentor. She was formerly the Principal of the Whistler Waldorf School since the school’s inception in 2000. She holds a Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Calgary and started her teaching career with the Calgary Board of Education. Michelle began her journey and passion for Waldorf education in Denver Colorado where she taught and was on the Board. In 1998 Michelle moved to Whistler with her family and initiated the Waldorf education opportunity in Whistler as a founding parent and faculty member of the Whistler Waldorf School. Michelle is a community leader in Whistler for learning opportunities as well as the arts. She is a Task Force member for the Whistler 2020 Learning Strategies, serves on the Board of Directors for the Whistler Arts Council; and is an active member of the Whistler Forum for Dialogue and Women of Whistler business organization. Michelle also owns and operates the Adele Campbell Fine Art gallery, a favorite of Whistler’s locals and visitors for the past 13 years.
Peggy Vogler: Director of Development
Peggy Vogler is a founding parent of the Whistler Waldorf School. Her son Jonathan was in the first graduating class (2008) and her twins Melissa and Katie graduated from ninth grade last year.
Despite being born in Ontario, Peggy is a BC woman through and through. She grew up in North Vancouver and spent most winter weekends racing on the slopes of Whistler. Peggy and her family left the big city for our mountain town in 1984, and indulged her love of skiing and racing with the Whistler Mountain Ski Club. It wasn’t long before Peggy became a professional skier, and for the next 22 years she was employed by Whistler Blackcomb Ski and Snowboard School as instructor, children’s program supervisor, trainer and recruiter.
Peggy’s experience with Whistler Kids and the Ski and Snowboard School—including human resource management, risk management, event planning, business budgeting and communication—has enhanced Whistler Waldorf immeasurably. An incredibly organized and passionate leader with a “let’s do it” attitude, Peggy is especially active in fundraising, from event planning and execution to spearheading the annual Giving Campaign and submitting grant applications. When she isn’t at school, Peggy spends time inVancouver where she manages the restaurant her family started: Aphrodite Organic Cafe and Pie Shop.
Laura Street: Director of Communications
Laura Street first joined Whistler Waldorf as a volunteer on the Board in 2007. Her professional experience includes six years at Tourism Whistler in a number of positions including Manager of Media Relations, and Manager of Media Projects. Her career in Communications began with a four year contract with the Commonwealth Games Society working in Communications and Information Services. She holds a Bachelor Degree in French Language and Literature, and a Diploma in Public Relations from the University of Victoria. She joined the administrative team at Whistler Waldorf in 2011 as Director of Communications. She moved to Whistler with her husband Marshall in 1994, and they have two children enrolled at Whistler Waldorf.
Diane Riley: Administrative Assistant
Diane Riley is our administrative assistant, greeting you at reception and on the phone. She joined the School at the beginning of the 2012/2013 school year. Before the dawn of time, Diane earned a BA from York University in Toronto with a major in Arts Administration. She has been an administrative assistant supporting cultural organizations, small businesses and large corporations spanning a 25 year work history. Diane and her family have been a part of the Whistler Waldorf School community since 2006.