Faculty & Staff
Christina Drake was born in Ohio and later attended a fine arts magnet school in Georgia where she studied oboe, theater, and voice. After graduating from the University of Georgia with a B.A. in English Education, she entered the world of advertising for 12 years before having her daughter and entering the Waldorf teacher training program at the Micha-el Institute in 2008. She received her certificate 3 years later. Christina has been an indefatigable supporter of the Micha-el School since its founding. She has served various roles in our community, including 3 years teaching grades 2-4, and 2 years as the school’s key administrative manager. Christina is a founding member of our College of Teachers. She is also a Micha-el School parent to daughter Eva Sue. Everyone who knows Christina is aware of her loyalty and tireless efforts to support our school in any way she is able. We are very happy to have her back in the classroom!
Ivana Deletis was born in Croatia and emigrated to the USA when she was ten years old. After completing her studies at New York University and working at private schools, she was delighted to lean about Waldorf Education. Ms. Deletis came to Portland to study at the Micha-el Institute in 2003. She has been working at Waldorf Schools ever since in many different capacities. In her free time Ms. Deletis can be found in her garden, painting and drawing, dancing, getting lost in nature and crafting.
Deborah was born and raised in New Jersey, and has also lived in San Francisco, Germany, and Thailand. She earned her B.A. in Psychology and Women’s Studies from Rutgers University in 1993. Deborah worked for 10 years in the fields of marketing and event planning before moving to Portland, discovering Waldorf education, and completing her teacher training at the Micha-el Institute. Since 2005 she has held a variety of teaching and teacher support positions at Portland Waldorf School, Shining Star School, and the Micha-el School. Deborah is passionate about traveling, good food, her family, and her work with a very special group of students. She likes to read non-fiction books when time allows, particularly those about history, anthroposophy, food and nutrition, comparative religion, spirituality, and gender studies.
Jen Davis received her Waldorf teacher training certificate from the Micha-el Institute. Moving to Portland from San Antonio, Jen discovered her passion for Waldorf education through her experience homeschooling her children in grades 1 to 3. She delights in the new experiences gained daily from her involvement in the Waldorf community in Portland. In her free time, Jen enjoys training for races, reading good novels, and spending time with her family.
Jaia Bollard grew up in Hawaii, where she attended Malamalama Waldorf School as a faculty child. She moved to Portland to attend Lewis and Clark College, and after receiving a BA, completed the Elementary Education Masters program at Portland State. She completed her Waldorf Teacher Training at the Micha-el Institute. Jaia has been a Waldorf class teacher since 2011. She likes hiking, camping, and kayaking with her husband and dog.
Jenna Dalton was born on a farming community in rural Nevada, attending a two room school house through 8th grade. In 1990, she moved to Oregon, completed high school and spent two years adventuring before graduating with honors from Prescott College with a degree in Alternative Ed. During this time she learned Native American living and Wilderness Survival skills from the master tracker Tom Brown Jr. and recorded and produced her first album.
Prescott College taught every subject experientially which allowed for four years of hands on time in classrooms varying in diversity from inner city magnet schools to farm based “open” schools. The outdoor education component of this college gave her a deep seated sense for the natural world and her first exposure to Waldorf Education. She completed a Foundation Year at Rudolf Steiner College and pursued her Master’s Degree in Waldorf Education at Sunbridge College in New York.
Matt Burns was born and raised on Staten Island, NY. While a student at Florida State University, he chose to spend a year long school exchange in Bellingham, Washington, where his love for the Pacific Northwest was experientially confirmed. After graduating with a B.A. in Communications and English, he learned about Waldorf education. In 2000, he began his Waldorf teacher training in Eugene, Oregon, and in 2002 earned a Master’s in Waldorf elementary education from Sunbridge College in Spring Valley, NY. In 2003, he completed the Consciousness Studies program at Rudolf Steiner College in Fair Oaks, CA.
Joseph Steffen was raised in Spring Valley New York, where he attended Green Meadow Waldorf School. He moved to the Northwest during his junior year of high school and he graduated from the University of Washington. Joseph attended Sound Circle Center, obtaining his Waldorf Teacher Certificate. He has spent the last seven years as a class teacher and continues that work with the Seventh Grade of Micha-el School. His passions include lacrosse, singing, tournament poker and summers spent exploring local swimming holes with his wife Karin and his kids, Yma, Idris and Siddiqa.
Marcya Rosecrans has taught Waldorf early childhood for many years and comes to Micha-el from Corvallis Waldorf School.
Alejandra Cornejo is a passionate language learner, so far she speaks five! She studied German language and literature at the University of Cologne, Germany. She is a native Spanish-speaking Waldorf educator with nine years of experience. Alejandra aims to instill in students an appreciation for the Spanish language and culture in its written and oral forms, using diverse and multicultural techniques and resources to reach students with various learning styles. Looking for more ways to continue to use her language skills, she recently started a career as a medical interpreter for German and Spanish. In her free time, she enjoys painting, salsa dancing and spending time outdoors; rafting, scuba diving, camping and hiking.
Jolanda Frischknecht was born and raised in Switzerland. She went to a Waldorf School there from 1st to 10th grade. She finished High School in public school studying languages. Her love of movement and music led her to study Eurythmy at the Goetheanum in Dornach, Switzerland. After her training she went for Post Graduate Studies to the Eurythmy School in Spring Valley, New York. Jolanda taught and performed in Switzerland for five years before moving to Austin, TX in 1996. She is one of the founding members of the Austin Eurythmy Ensemble, which performs locally and tours annually in North America, Canada and Europe. She taught Eurythmy to students in grade 3 to 8 at the Austin Waldorf School from January 1998 until Summer 2006 before moving on to teaching High School for three years. In spring of 2010 she started the Therapeutic Eurythmy Training and graduated two years later. She started teaching Eurythmy and Therapeutic Eurythmy at the Micha-el School in 2011. She loves the outdoors, hiking, swimming and camping just as much as going to concerts and dance performances. She sings with the Bach Cantata Choir and plays her viola in the Jewish Community Orchestra.
Jen Dadek was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. She received her B.A. in Russian History from U.C. Davis and a M.L.I.S. from San Jose State. She discovered Waldorf Education while searching for educational alternatives for her children. She then earned a LifeWays certificate and quickly determined that just wasn’t enough training. Shortly after, she enrolled in Foundation Studies and Grades Teacher training at Rudolf Steiner College and graduated in 2014. A mentors suggestion brought Jen to Portland in search of a school community for the whole family. She found it here at the Micha-el School. She’s been teaching Handwork at our school since January 2015, and this is the first year she’s teaching the entire Handwork program. Her four children attend Micha-el and she spends her free time chasing them, reading, square dancing with her husband, and of course, knitting.
Kelly Tidrick, Administrative Coordinator
Kelly Tidrick began her journey in Waldorf education in 1997 when a friend introduced her to the work of Rudolf Steiner. When Kelly had her first son, she had no doubt he would attend a Waldorf school. Both of her children have attended Waldorf school since preschool, with her oldest graduating from Portland Waldorf High School in 2017. Before motherhood and after traveling in Europe, Kelly returned home to study psychology at the University of Oregon. Active in her neighborhood, Kelly is a founding member of the Woodstock Farmer’s Market.
Tristiane Masterson-Miller, Administrative Assistant
Tristiane attended Waldorf schools from Kindergarten through 12th grade, eventually graduating from Portland Waldorf High School. After studying History and Design at the University of British Columbia, Tristiane is happy to be back in the Waldorf community. Along with being a wonderful office assistant here at Micha-el, Tristiane is also a certified Yoga teacher with Tualatin parks and Rec.