Hello, my name is Richard Moreno and I am the Principal for OFL-Hawthorne. I attended CSUN and received a BA in Journalism. After spending some time working as a journalist, I went back to school to get my teaching credential to teach English. I have a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from CSUDH. When I am not working, I enjoy camping with my wife and two kids. You may also find me running or biking the Rose bowl loop from time to time. My favorite part about working here is seeing our students walk across the graduation stage, because it’s proof that each student can accomplish their goals if they put their mind and effort into it.
Hello, my name is Chris Copeland and I am the assistant principal at OFL Hawthorne. I have been with OFL since 2012, and have been at the Hawthorne center since 2013. I hold a bachelor's degree in History from Cal State Dominguez Hills and a masters degree in Education from University of Phoenix. When I am not at school, I enjoy spending time with my wife, our pets, and my nieces and nephews.
Hi y'all! My name is Blanca Fernandez and I am the Post-Secondary Counselor at OFL - Hawthorne. I graduated with my Bachelor's degree in Spanish and Sociology at UC Riverside. I am currently working on my Master's degree in Educational and Clinical Counseling at Azusa Pacific University and am set to graduate in December 2020. I love working with students and helping them prepare for life post-high school. I am a first generation student and the support I had when I was in high school was life-changing, and I would like to provide that support to all my students! Fun Facts: I love spending time with my family and dogs! I am from the Bay Area. I love school, it's stressful at times, but I love learning and researching. I like watching documentaries and different types of shows. I love Disney especially Eeyore, he's my fav! Traveling all over the world is my dream! I would love to go to Ireland and Canada!
Hi! My name is Donia Ismail and I am the English Learner Specialist. I received my BA in English from Cal State Fullerton. I have always been an avid reader and I love showing students the "magic" of reading. I love to travel and one place I would like to visit again is London, England but I would love to go to Spain next because of all the history there.
Math Intervention Specialist
I am the Math Intervention Specialist at OFL-Hawthorne. I attended CSU-Los Angeles where I majored in Sociology. I enjoy working with students and helping students develop their own passion for math. Outside of academia I enjoy finding new places to go eat, watching WWE, and of course I root, root, root for the Dodgers!
My name is Hoasa Hakami, and I am a teacher at Opportunities for Learning in Hawthorne. I attended California State University where I earned my bachelor’s degree in Women’s Studies, master’s degree in English, and teaching credential in English Education. I love teaching because not only do I empower students by teaching them the art of writing but also the ability to advocate for themselves. Aside from teaching, I love taking long walks on the beach, spending quality time with my family, and traveling abroad--to places I had only read about in my childhood. I travel internationally with tour groups and seek opportunities to learn about different cultures to expand and enrich my understanding of people from different parts of the world.
Special Education Paraprofessional
Hi there! My name is Jenny Sanchez. I received my B.A. in psychology and music minor from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. I have been with OFL - Hawthorne for a little over a year now and I feel so lucky to work and connect with amazing students and teachers every single day! When I'm not working with students, I love to travel, hike/be outdoors, play and listen to music, read, and watch Gonzaga basketball (go zags!).
Hello! My name is Jorge Contreras and I am a teacher at OFL Hawthorne. I have a master’s degree in English with a focus in American literature and composition from Cal State Los Angeles. Before that, I served in the US Navy where I had the opportunity to travel to Southeast Asia and the Middle East. I became an English teacher because I have a passion for writing and literature. Being a teacher is challenging but very rewarding, and I wouldn’t trade it for any other profession in the world! In my free time, I enjoy cooking, reading fiction, and spending quality time with my family.
My name is Josie. I work at the OFL Hawthorne center as an Area Teacher. During my time earning my B.A. in Studio Art, I volunteered in programs dedicated to uplifting at-risk youth in my community. It was then that I realized how much I loved teaching and building safe spaces for youth to learn. Thankfully, I found OFL, which has been an amplifier of the values I believe in!
Howdy! My name is Merilee Norton and I teach Independent Studies at the OFL Hawthorne center - I am just beginning my fifth year at Hawthorne. I went to West High in Torrance and received my Bachelor's degree in History from Cal State, Long Beach. I also got my teaching credential in Social Science and English from Cal State, Long Beach - Go '49ers! After teaching middle and high school for several years, I went back to school to get my Master's degree from Chapman University.
I've been a teacher of middle school, high school, and college students for 27 years. I love working with teenagers as they bring a vibrancy and curiosity to life. I enjoy watching them grow into amazing individuals and I cherish the small role I can play in that process.
Outside of teaching, I spend my spare time reading, cross-stitching, researching my family tree, and watching way too much television!
My name is Nathan Hernandez and I am a teacher at Opportunities For Learning - Hawthorne. I attended California State University, Fullerton, where I majored in History and earned my teaching credential. After finishing up everything at CSUF, I joined the United States Peace Corps, and was a teacher trainer at a technological university in Erdenet, Mongolia. I lived in Mongolia for 3 years before moving back to the U.S.A. I met my wife in Mongolia and we currently have 2 boys. I enjoy video games, fishing, and curling. Go Dodgers!
Area Teacher II
Hello, my name is Rachel and I am an Area Teacher 2 or Compliance Coordinator at Hawthorne Center. I attended CSU Long Beach majoring in geography. I enjoy the type of learning experience where we can learn through others and I think our centers create a unique environment for this. The next generation is impressive in unexpected ways. When I'm not at the center I enjoy a nice coastline drive, shopping and cooking, making art, reading, and writing.
My name is Rebecca Gresham and I'm a teacher at Opportunities for Learning, Hawthorne. I attended the University of California, Santa Cruz (go Banana Slugs!) and majored in Art History with a minor in History. I earned my teaching credential and M.A. in Education at USC. One of my favorite experiences was studying abroad in Siena, Italy. When I'm not teaching, I love to read, make art, sing, and play with my dog, Rosie.
Hello! I am Shanice Aiken. I graduated from UC Santa Cruz and majored in Biology. I’ve worked at OFL since 2013, and currently, I am an independent studies and mathematics teacher. I believe that social-emotional health for students is important, so I have facilitated a girl’s empowerment group for many years. I also enjoy doing volunteer work, playing board games, going to concerts, watching movies, cooking and eating food! I love to travel and have visited 12 different countries & 16 states. 🙂
Area Teacher II
Hi! My name is Tyler Baines. I attended California State University, Stanislaus where I earned a bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice. I am an Area Teacher 2 at Hawthorne. I enjoy working at our center because it's unique. It gives students the opportunity to be independent and teach themselves, while also having teachers who are there to guide them along the way. When I am not working, I enjoy reading books and traveling.
Hello there! My name is Vincent and I have been a part of the OFL Family since January 2020. OFL has been a wonderful place to teach. I enjoy the fun and engaging environment that allows the student the opportunity to mature and grow as independent learners. I have teaching credentials in Elementary Education, English, PE, and Foundational Level Math. In my time off, I am an avid yogi with a daily yoga practice that lasts 2 hours. My other interests include Theater, Play-writing, and Dance. I've also been vegan/vegetarian since 2003.
Career Pathways Coordinator
Hello, my name is Jackie Rodriguez and I am the Career Pathways Coordinator at the Hawthorne center. I attended CSU Channel Islands and graduated 2017 with my Bachelor's in History and minor in Chicanx Studies. I enjoy working at Hawthorne because it gives me the opportunity to prepare students for employment opportunities and discuss their career goals. When I'm not helping students, I am out exploring different foods, restaurants, and learning new recipes.
Special Education Specialist
Hi! My name is Yvonne Hill and I am a teacher at OFL-Hawthorne. I am of Mexican decent (Hill is my married name). I came to the US at the age of 8 on a tourist visa. I was raised by a single mother. I lived in poverty most of my life until I was blessed with the opportunity to go to college. I went to California State University of Northridge (CSUN) and got my Bachelor's in Geography. I got my Masters Degree and teaching credential through National University. It brings me great joy to do what I do. I have the amazing opportunity to help shape the minds of young people for the better. I love motivating and teaching my students about not only academics but life. I am married and have a 2 year old son. I love going to the beach and listening to audio books on long road trips. Some things on my bucket list are to dye my hear rainbow color or pink, own a house by the beach, own my own coffee house, and go back to Mexico to visit my family (I never went back since the age of 8).
Howdy! My name is Aron Dov Rudnick and I'm a science teacher at Opportunities for Leaning in Hawthorne. I teach because I love sharing the joy of learning with students. I've been at it for a while now. I actually got my start in the classroom teaching science and English 15 years ago working at a three-room middle school in a small village in central Africa. I realized then that I had a knack for making learning fun and I've been working in education ever since. I've taught Physical Education, Baseball, Dance, English, and Biology. While each subject has its charms I particularly love science because when it is learned well it changes the way you see the world. When I see students have the experience of understanding and wonder at the natural world it gives me great joy. When I'm not working I love hanging out with my wife and 6-year old daughter, lounging in my office reading books and playing records, talking politics, or sitting in front of the tube rooting on my beloved LA Dodgers. GO BLUE!!!
Hello! My name is Jason Spann. I've been a teacher now for close to 2 decades. I graduated from Morehouse College, an Historically Black college in Atlanta. I'm a teacher firstly, to build relationships with students and inspire them to live up to their potential. Some students have never had anyone do that for them, so it is an honor to support them in that way. Secondly, I am a teacher that believes that learning has countless benefits and opens so many doors. I am living proof of that. I'm an English teacher because of the inspiring narratives out there that can also be a teacher and guide and connect us to different perspectives and experiences that we would not ordinarily have. English builds communication skills and communication skills support healthy relationships.