Instructor Bio Web Header 2024

Instructor Bios

  • Dora Bonaventura

Dora Bonaventura

Dora Bonaventura Dora Bonaventura teaches all levels of Italian. She holds a Bachelor's from the Istituto Universitario in Scienze Motorie of Rome and a Masters in

  • Karen England

Karen England

Karen England Karen England, an herb gardener of over 30 years, is on the board of directors of the International Herb Association and a regular food

  • Joseph Casciani

Dr. Joseph Casciani

Dr. Joseph Casciani Dr. Joseph Casciani has a 35-year history in aging as a psychologist and manager of mental health practices. He was awarded the

  • Farima Tabrizi

Farima Tabrizi

Farima Tabrizi Real Estate Broker Certified Senior Home Specialist and Certified Probate and Trust Specialist As a Senior Real Estate Specialist, Farima is keenly aware of

  • Brian Devore

Bryan Devore

Bryan Devore, REALTOR®, SRES • DRE #0139‌7835 Bryan is a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and Director of the Senior Division of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California

  • David McGee Headshot

David McGee

David McGee, Certified Senior Advisor (CSA) David McGee is a Senior Loan Officer for C2 Financial Corporation with over 30 years’ experience in residential lending. David

  • Laura Muto Headshot

Laura Muto

Laura Muto, Certified Fitness Instructor In 2011, I discovered Zumba Gold at Oasis and immediately loved the class where you get a great workout while

  • Pam Toomes Headshot

Pam Toomes

Pam Toomes, Certified Fitness Instructor I’ve been teaching group exercise & yoga classes for 30 years, from Hi-Lo aerobics, step aerobics, toning and weights, as

  • Julia Doughty - Web

Julia Doughty

Julia Doughty, MFA, Certified Yoga Teacher and Therapist, Holistic Health Practitioner Julia Doughty has over 50 years of experience as a yoga practitioner, therapist, and

  • Andra Valencia - Web

Andra Valencia

Andra Valencia Andra is a certified cardio drumming and cardio dance instructor. She has taught fitness classes since 2016. Her passion in life is to

  • Michelle Baker - Web

Michelle Baker

Michelle Baker Michelle Baker has been studying, practicing, and teaching yoga and meditation for 30 years. It is her great joy to share these practices

  • Danielle Deaton - Web

Danielle Deaton

Danielle Deaton Danielle Deaton was born in Paris, France, and came to the U.S. many years ago to join her father. After many years of

  • Bill Simmons - Web

Bill Simmons

Bill Simmons Bill Simmons is a retired lawyer who has been involved in end-of-life issues for over 15 years. His website,, is a great

  • Bob Basinger - Web

Bob Basinger, MBA (Accounting), MSEE

Bob Basinger, MBA (Accounting), MSEE Bob Basinger, MBA (Accounting), MSEE, retired from a career as a software engineer then switched to another obsessive-compulsive occupation –

  • Beatrice Ricart - Web

Beatrice Ricart

Beatrice Ricart Beatrice Ricart grew up in France and at a very young age helped her mom in the kitchen. As a teenager, she started

  • Silhouette in blue and green

Joe Nalven, Ph.D. JD

Joe Nalven, Ph.D. JD Joe Nalven grew up in Brooklyn, New York and came to San Diego in 1970. Along the way, he served in

  • Matilda Parente - Web

Matilda Parente

Matilda Parente Matilda Parente, MD, Certified Specialist of Wine: Matilda has taught wine for more than a decade, as wine director and wine educator at

  • Jacqueline A. Silverman - Web

Jacqueline A. Silverman

Jacqueline A. Silverman Jacqueline Silverman is a compassionate Certified Senior Advisor® and Aging in Place Specialist with Aging Advisory Services. Her expertise lies in assisting

  • Vincent Rossi - Web

Vincent Rossi

Vincent Rossi Vincent N. Rossi is a freelance writer/researcher with a special interest in history. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Saint

  • Dr. Ken Druck

Dr. Ken Druck

Dr. Ken Druck Recipient of the Distinguished Contribution to Psychology award for his groundbreaking work on healing after loss, Ken Druck has inspired and guided

  • Preet Srivastava - Web

Preet Srivastava

Preet Srivastava From painting the figure to keeping the figure! Instructor Preet Works has taught in the art industry for over two decades, primarily in

  • Kevin Hirst - Web

Kevin Hirst

Kevin Hirst I am a retired Pastor and special education teacher, so I know how to patiently guide people into new knowledge. I was president

  • Gopal Alagarswamy - Web

Gopal Alagarswamy

Gopal Alagarswamy Gopal Alagarswamy received his Ph.D. from the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium in 1972. On completion of studies, started his career at the

  • Nadin Benrey - Web

Nadin Benrey M.A. NBC-HWC

Nadin Benrey M.A. NBC-HWC I am a National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coach, passionate about helping others achieve their goals to live healthier. I

  • Fred Bercovitch - Web

Fred B. Bercovitch, Ph.D.

Fred B. Bercovitch, Ph.D. Wildlife Biologist & Conservation Scientist Fred Bercovitch received his B.A. (University of California, Berkeley), M.A. (Arizona State University), and Ph.D. (University

  • Sonya Caruso - Web

Sonya Caruso

Sonya Caruso M.A., CFRM, MCHC, NBC-HWC Sonya Caruso has a Master’s Degree in Nonprofit Management and enjoys a rewarding career as a Non-Profit Executive. She

  • Sheryl Chesivoir - Web

Sheryl Chesivoir

Sheryl Chesivoir Mah Jongg Instructor Sheryl Chesivoir is an American Mah Jongg teacher. She follows the NMJL rules and guidelines. She has been playing this

  • Pam Chilton - Web

Pam Chilton

Pam Chilton Certified Personal Trainer/Fitness Instructor Pam Chilton’s passion of having an active lifestyle began at a very young age practicing cartwheels and handstands. So,

  • Costa Dillon - Web

Costa Dillon, M.P.A.

Costa Dillon, M.P.A. Experienced National Park Ranger/Superintendent Constantine (Costa) Dillon is a retired National Park Service (NPS) ranger and park superintendent who worked in more

  • Carolyn (Lyn) Earl

Carolyn (Lyn) Earl

Carolyn (Lyn) Earl Sewing Specialist After learning to sew in the 7th grade I honed my skills making clothes, home decor items and quilts for

  • Ed Griffith and Lee Wells

Ed Griffith and Lee Wells

Ed Griffith and Lee Wells Verlosity | Soul Line Dance Instructors Ed Griffith and Lee Wells are Soul Line Dance instructors for Oasis San Diego

  • Chuck Gunderson - Web

Chuck Gunderson

Chuck Gunderson Chuck Gunderson was raised in San Diego, California, the site of the Beatles 8th stop on the 1965 North American tour. He was

  • Linda Hawley -Web

Linda Hawley, Ed.M.

Linda Hawley, Ed.M. Former teacher & college adjunct professor of 28 years in New York State & Ohio, Linda received her Master’s in education from

  • Marcia Howard - Web

Gigi Howard

Gigi Howard Gigi Howard is an active resident of Rancho Bernardo's Seven Oaks 55+ community. She retired in 2020 after thirty years of teaching in

  • Nancy Isbell - Web

Nancy Isbell, BA

Nancy Isbell, BA Former Owner/Founder of Bravo School of Art, Mural Artist & Instructor Nancy Isbell is an artist, muralist, illustrator born and raised in

  • Kathy Jorgensen - Web

Kathy Jorgensen

Kathy Jorgensen Certified Fitness & Yoga Instructor Kathy is a group fitness instructor, certified personal trainer and yoga instructor with a passion to guide and

  • Richard Lederer - Web

Richard Lederer

Richard Lederer Union-Tribune Language Columnist Senior instructor and Union-Tribune language columnist Richard Lederer is the author of 60 books about language, history, and humor, including

  • Anna Brown Massey - Web

Anna Brown Massey

Anna Brown Massey Choreographer, Performer, and Teacher Anna Brown Massey draws from a background in North Atlantic percussive and Scottish dances to bring rhythmic attention

  • Marilyn McPhie - Web

Marilyn McPhie

Marilyn McPhie Storytellers of San Diego; TEDx Speaker Marilyn McPhie, professional speaker and storyteller, once had to choose between cleaning bathrooms and telling stories. The

  • Lynn Morgan - Web

Lynn Morgan

Lynn Morgan ZIN Member since 2010 Lynn loves to dance! She studied dance in Alberta, Hawaii, and California. The 70’s dance fitness craze meant she

  • Barbara Norman - Web

Barbara Norman

Barbara Norman CFP®, ChFC® CDFA® is the CEO of the financial planning firm, Sage Path Solutions™ Barbara Norman specializes in helping divorced and widowed women

  • Trina Pascale - Web

Trina Pascale

Trina Pascale Art Instructor I love to share my love for stamping with others. Over 12 years ago, I attended a stamp workshop and have

  • Marti and Dave Peck - Web

Drs. Marti & Dave Peck

Drs. Marti & Dave Peck Dr. Dave Peck is a physician and author of two books on the famed Lewis and Clark Expedition; Marti Peck

  • Melissa Mia Routh - Web

Melissa (Mia) Routh

Melissa (Mia) Routh MS (Cellular and Molecular Biology), Registered/Licensed Occupational Therapist, PWR! Moves Certified Therapist, Certified Dementia Care Practitioner Mia is a native San Diegan

  • Sid Shapira - Web

Sid Shapira

Sid Shapira Author, Public Relations and Corporate Communications Specialist Sid Shapira is a San Diego-based author, public relations and corporate communications specialist. A journalism graduate

  • Glenn Smith - Web

Glenn Smith

Glenn Smith J.D., LL.M., Professor of Constitutional Law (ret.) Glenn Smith confesses to a lifelong interest in the intersection of law, government, and politics. This

  • Nancy Velick Smith - Web

Nancy Velick Smith

Nancy Velick Smith American Mahjong Instructor After decades as an artist and interior designer, Nancy Smith is introducing the marvelous game of mahjong to beginner

  • Rose To - Web

Rose To

Rose To Rose To, M.R. Ed, M.S. Ed (TESOL) is a professional teacher, trainer/coach & speaker/presenter. She has taught diverse age & ethnic groups in

  • Allison Weisman - Web

Allison Weisman

Allison Weisman Owner of Allison's Custom Confections Allison is an experienced instructor in jewelry making and baking as well as cake decorating. She was a

  • John Wolf - Web

John Wolf

John Wolf Produced two television series for public access television (The Writer’s Loft, Creative Collaborations), musician, and author of five books. John is also a

  • Alan Zacharin Headshot

Alan J. Zacharin

Alan Zacharin Alan has had a varied career in education, business, and law. He earned a bachelor's degree in Business Administration from U.C. Berkeley and

  • Linda A. Canada

Linda A. Canada

Linda A. Canada Historian & Author Linda Canada holds an undergraduate degree in History from UCLA, and a law degree from Loyola University in Los Angeles. More than

  • Michael Birmingham

Michael Birmingham

Michael Birmingham Tai Chi Instructor Michael Birmingham has been studying and teaching fitness for the last 6 years and has worked diligently to understand the body and movement.

  • Lisa Claycomb

Lisa Claycomb

Lisa Claycomb Founder, Financial Advisor, Custom Retirement Strategist, LGC Financial Lisa is originally from Ohio and has lived in San Diego for over 30 years. After many years

  • Keith Mesecher

Keith Mesecher

Keith Mesecher Registered Investment Advisor, Ordained Zen Buddhist Keith has been a Registered Investment Advisor since 1994. His practice has enabled him to invest for individuals, as well

  • Richard LeVine

Richard LeVine

Richard LeVine Attorney Richard LeVine has worked in two professions, having served as a San Diego Superior Court hearing officer, Judge Pro Tem, and arbitrator. Further work in

  • Lisa Benton

Lisa Benton

Lisa Benton Oasis Instructor Lisa Benton is a lover of mysteries and has been leading the Whodunit Book Club at San Diego Oasis since 2013.

  • Owen Coyle

Owen Coyle

Owen Coyle Reverse Mortgage Specialist Owen Coyle is an 85-year young “seasoned citizen” living in Escondido, California. As of April 2021, he began his 21st year as a

  • Melynnique Seabrook

Melynnique Seabrook

Melynnique Seabrook M.A. in Spain, UCLA and Middlebury College After Melynnique finished an M.A. in Spain from UCLA and Middlebury College, she followed her dream of performing aboard

  • Philip Pryde

Philip Pryde

Philip Pryde, PhD Professor Emeritus, San Diego State University Philip Pryde, PhD, is a Professor Emeritus at San Diego State University, where he taught courses in environmental policy

  • Danisa Mardones

Danisa Mardones

Danisa Mardones B.A, Business Administration, major in Marketing in Santiago de Chile Danisa Mardones is Chilean, and has a bachelor's degree in business administration with a major in

  • Dr. Phil Goscienski

Dr. Phil Goscienski

Dr. Phil Goscienski Pediatric Infectious Diseases Specialist, UCSD School of Medicine (ret) Since Dr. Phil Goscienski, a pediatric infectious diseases specialist, retired from active practice and the

  • Kim-Keeline

Kim Keeline

Kim Keeline, Ph.D English Literature, University of Southern California Kim Keeline has a Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of Southern California. Her field of study was

  • Aniko Makranczy

Aniko Makranczy

Aniko Makranczy MFA, B.A. Aniko Makranczy, received her MFA from the University of Maryland, College Park and her B.A. in Anthropology from UC Riverside. She taught studio art

  • Lola Sparrowhawk

Lola Sparrowhawk

Lola Sparrowhawk International award-winning author and historian Lola Sparrowhawk is an international award-winning author and a historian in the interdisciplinary world history genre. Her history specialty is integrating

Chris Burns

Chris Burns, M.A. Chris Burns, M.A., has taught “history through music” for over 40 years, originally focusing on world history through the lens of classical music and United

  • Muriel King

Muriel King

Muriel King Succulent Designer and Owner of the Perfect Plant Muriel creates a variety of succulent and air plant designs. In addition to one-perfect-plant to one-perfect-pot, she

  • Chris and Jamie Burns

Many Strings

Many Strings Musical collaboration of Chris and Jamie Burns Many-Strings is the musical collaboration of Jamie Burns on her hammered dulcimer and Chris Burns on guitar. Their

Julie Derry

Julie Derry MBA, CSA Julie Derry, Board Chair, is an expert at creating and leading vision, execution and measurement of customer focused strategies that align with company

  • Paula Matthews

Paula Matthews

Paula Matthews, MA Professor of Italian Language and Culture at Mesa College Paula Matthews is a long-time Oasis instructor who is always delighted to share her knowledge of

  • Mary Burns

Mary Burns

Mary Burns, MS, MA Community College Instructor Mary Burns is an instructor for San Diego Community College District, teaching in the Emeritus Department. She has taught with Oasis

  • Barbara Smith

Barbara Smith

Barbara Smith, MA Community College Instructor Barbara Smith is a community college instructor and teaches classes in the fields of technology and writing. She has a B.A. from

  • Jacki Montierth

Jacki Montierth

Jacki Montierth Founder of Wiseboomer.Com Jacki Montierth is a retired educator and founder of With degrees in psychology, mathematics, educational administration, as well as technology and instructional

  • Patrick Griffith

Patrick Griffith

Patrick Griffith Sifu Patrick Griffith has been teaching Tai Chi since 1997 and has been working with Oasis and the Escondido Senior Center since 2002. He has worked

  • Henry George

Henry George

Henry George Engineer, Archaeologist Geologist After retiring from his career as a Geological Engineer for a large construction firm, Henry returned to college and earned a MA in

  • Oliva Espin

Oliva M. Espín

Oliva M. Espín, Ph.D. Oliva M. Espín is Professor Emerita in the Department of Women’s Studies at San Diego State University and the California School of

  • Julia Fister

Julia Fister

Julia Fister, MA Studio ACE Executive Director Julia Fister, a St. Louis, Missouri native, graduated from the University of North Carolina in Charlotte with a Bachelor’s

  • Russell Rowe

Russell Rowe

Russell Rowe MS, Exercise Physiology Russell Rowe has an eclectic assortment of interests which are reflected in his trainings and credentials. He received his bachelor’s degree in Mechanical

  • Peter Bolland

Peter Bolland

Peter Bolland MA, Professor of Philosophy and Humanities at Southwestern College Peter Bolland is a long-time Oasis instructor who brings the life-changing insights of the world’s wisdom

  • Lorelei Taylor

Lorelei Taylor

Lorelei Taylor Realtor®, Certified Antiques Appraiser and an Interior Designer Lorelei Taylor, a San Diego native, assists with all aspects of Aging in Place Design, home buying,

  • Laura Diaz

Laura Diaz

Laura Diaz Board Certified Coach (BCC) Laura Diaz is a professional trained life and business coach. She is the founder of In Harmony Coaching, a company whose mission

  • Eddie Omens

Eddie Omens

Eddie Omens Artist Since 2010, Eddie Omens has had the honor of sharing his passion for art and watercolor with his Oasis students and friends. Eddie grew up

  • Barbara Norman

Barbara Norman

Barbara Norman CFP®, ChFC® CDFA®, CEO of Sage Path Solutions, The Women’s Financial Academy Founder Barbara Norman lives and works the philosophy that we only

  • Blain Davies

Blaine Davies

Blaine Davies, MA Professor of U.S. History Blaine Davies earned an MA in history and a BS degree in Business. He taught US history at Boise