2014-2015 Teaching Faculty


Allan Batchelder - 6th grade English; 7th grade English; 6th Grade Washington State History; 7th grade World History Pre-1400; 8th grade World History Post-1400. B.A., Willamette University; M.F.A (Acting), National Theatre Conservatory; Masters in Teaching, Seattle Pacific University; Washington State Certified Teacher. Allan is a professional actor, educator and former stand-up comedian. He has written plays, screenplays, dialogue for computer games, greeting card sentiments and more. Allan lives in Seattle with his wife and son, where he enjoys walks on the beach, reading in the garden and puttering around on his computer.
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Eric Bright - 9th Grade US History 1860-1940; 10th Grade US History post-1940; 11th Grade European History 1914-Cold War; 12th Grade IB History HL; ELL Themes in History. B.A. (Modern European History), La Salle University; M.A. (History), Arizona State University; Ph.D. Candidate, on leave (History), University of Washington.   His primary field of expertise is Modern European History with a specific focus on Old Regime and Revolutionary France. Eric has been serving as the Transition School History Instructor at the University of Washington’s Robinson Center for Young Scholars, and spending summers working as a writing instructor for that institution's Summer Stretch Program. Eric’s Ph.D. studies and research on his thesis topic of the French Revolution have led him to live and study in Paris through a grant program at the École Normale Supérieure de Paris.   At home in Seattle, Eric spends his free time cooking and gardening with his wife Amie, playing with his four-year-old son Julian, and taking his Teddy Roosevelt rat terrier to the park.
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Barrie Hillman - English Literature.  B.A. (History), Boston College; M.Ed., John Carroll University. Barrie began teaching in the early 1990’s at St. Mary’s School in Medford, Oregon and The Evergreen School in Seattle, WA. She's been at West Sound Academy since the fall of 2008, serving as a teacher and administrator after spending many years in the corporate and consulting fields. Returning to education after working in business has been akin to putting on glasses and having everything in life come back in to focus. Barrie and her husband have lived in Poulsbo for fourteen years and are busy chasing after two kids and a chocolate lab. Winter weekends are reserved for skiing at White Pass and summer days are spent preparing for the upcoming year and digging in the West Sound vegetable garden.
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Gretchen Nordleaf-Nelson - English Literature; English Language and Literature; Mud Pie Literary Magazine; Drama Club.  B.A. Ed (Theatre, English and Secondary Education), Western Washington University. MA (Theatre) University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Teacher Certification in Washington, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. Gretchen brings over 25 years of teaching experience at the high school and college level to the classroom. She has enjoyed working and learning with students in suburban, urban and independent school settings in over four different states, most recently George School in Newtown, Pennsylvania. Over the course of her tenure she has taught IB English, IB Visual Art, ELL Literature and History, Religion, Journalism, Creative Dramatics, Acting, Directing and Play Production. Gretchen has developed and taught professional development courses for Western Washington University and Seattle Pacific University for educators focusing on the use of theatre across the curriculum and as a method and strategy for the classroom teacher. Gretchen is a national adjudicator for the Educational Theatre Association and is a member of the public review team for the National Coalition for Core Art Standards for Theatre currently under development. She lives in Tracyton with her husband, their youngest daughter and their two golden retrievers. She enjoys the adventures of parenting their four children, gardening, trying out new recipes and attending theatre as often as life permits.
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David Sumner-Smith - English Literature; IB Language and Literature in English HL; After-school Homework Café.  B.A. (British and U.S. Literature, Minor in Science Writing), University of California, San Diego; M.A. (British and American Literature), University of Essex, Colchester, England. David has returned to teaching following a ten year stint as a technical writer (Hewlett-packard, Pfizer, and Genentech).  As an avid sailor, David has built small boats and sailed near and far in the North and South Pacific.  David’s other interests include reading, languages, hiking, and general adventuring. 
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Kim Uyyek - English Language and Literature; Outdoor Experiential Education Coordinator. B.A. (French), Austin College; M.Ed. (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)), Concordia University; Certificat de Langues, La Sorbonne 
French language immersion, Université du Québec. Before coming to West Sound Academy, Kim offered private French lessons to children and adults.  She loves reading, listening to NPR and geocaching with her family.


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D'Arcy Clements - Algebra I; Geometry; Algebra II; 12th Grade IB Mathematical Studies SL; Amnesty International Advisor; Student Council Advisor. B.S. (Mathematics, Minors: Computer Science/Programming, Business Education, Fine Arts/Musical Theatre) Seattle University, M. Ed. (Secondary Mathematics Education) Old Dominion University.  D'Arcy was recently called a "Renaissance Woman", a title she has decided to keep.  Prior to being a stay-at-home mom to her beautiful daughter, D'Arcy worked in a corporate environment for 11+ years.  A few of her job descriptions included  "people and project management", "corporate education coordination", "diversity training facilitation" and "business analysis".  Since returning to the work force, she's been supporting students of all ages with learning challenges inside and outside of the classroom, teaching youth theatre and music at Bainbridge Performing Arts, playing at Kids Discovery Museum (KiDiMu), substitute teaching for Bainbridge Island School District, professing all things "mathy" at Olympic College, and contemplating a doctorate in Educational Leadership.  However, most of the time, you'll find her doing her favorite job, which is being Libby's mom.

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Catherine Freeman - Intermediate Algebra; Algebra II; Precalculus; 12th Grade IB Mathematics SL; Knowledge Bowl. B.S. (Chemistry), Scripps College, Cum Laude.  Catherine’s thesis topic “Analysis of Correlations in Concentrations of Ambient Particulate Matter Analyzed By a Particle-Into-Liquid Sampler Ion Chromatography System” underscores her commitment to mathematics as a tool, an approach she employs in both her mathematics and chemistry classes. This approach has helped Catherine guide her AP Calculus students to consistently score highly on their exams. Catherine has taught at West Sound Academy since 2007. While at West Sound Catherine has served as chaperone on many school trips, everything from National Outdoor Leadership School treks through the Utah wilderness to more civilized tours of Oregon colleges.  Catherine has also coached West Sound Academy's Knowledge Bowl team to victories in regional and statewide competitions. She enjoys the beach and being on the water.
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Karen Mattick - 6th Grade Marine Biology; 7th Grade Marine Biology; 8th Grade Integrated Experimental Science; Advanced Biology; 12th Grade IB Biology HL/SL.  B.A. (Focus on Energy Studies), The Evergreen State College; M.A.T. (Science Education), University of Iowa.  Karen taught Marine Biology at the Poulsbo Marine Science Center for 17 years before coming to West Sound Academy.  She edited the National Science Foundation funded revision of FOR-SEA curriculum project and provided teacher in-service in science to K-12 teachers.   Karen has taught life sciences, earth and space sciences and algebra for eleven years at West Sound Academy.  She is a member of the Northwest Aquatic and Marine Educators Association and the National Science Teachers Association.
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David Miller - Physics; Chemistry; Environmental Systems and Societies; 6th Grade Introduction to Technology; STEM - Real World Problem-Solving Elective.  B.A. (Sociology, Psychology Minor) Ohio State University, M. A. (Education) Ohio State University. David has been a teacher for 37 years. He was a college instructor at both Chico State University and at Southern Oregon University where he helped write the Fifth Year Masters in Education curriculum. Since 1989 David has taught math and science at the middle and high school level, primarily in independent schools in the Northwest. He teaches all of the sciences including Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Earth Science, Environmental Science, and Marine Biology, and mathematics up through Pre-calculus. Three of the last four summers David has attended the Math, Science, and Technology Institute at the Philip Exeter Academy in New Hampshire, and is hoping to be a presenter at this institute in 2014. David has led numerous outdoor educational experiences including trips to Russia, The Ukraine, Texas, Pennsylvania, Northern Ontario, Costa Rica, and destinations in the Northwest and California. He is a canoeing enthusiast, bird watcher, and tennis player. David will also pick up the banjo if provoked!
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Lionel Pummell - Middle School Mathematics; Pre-Algebra; Knowledge Bowl.  A life long Kitsap county resident, Lionel has worked in the Information Technology field for over twenty-five years. He has worked both for major corporations and small businesses, currently working part time for a local software company in addition to his duties at West Sound Academy. Lionel also brings instructional experience to West Sound having been an instructor at Olympic College for eight years teaching Information and Business Technology courses. While at West Sound Lionel has enjoyed working with the students while mentoring the Robotics Club, he's always enjoyed “watching the light bulb come on” when some one learns something. In his off time he enjoys spending time with his family, reading, and of course working on computers.


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Gretchen Nordleaf-Nelson - English Language II/III/IV.  See biography under Humanities.
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Lionel Pummell - 7th Grade Introduction to Computer Language and Logic. See biography under Mathematics and Science.
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Kim Uyyek - French I-B; French III; 12th Grade IB French HL/SL. See biography under Humanities.
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Julieta Vitullo - Spanish I; Spanish II; Spanish III; Spanish IV; 6th Grade World Languages; 7th Grade Latin. B.A. (Literature) and diploma in Spanish teaching, University of Buenos Aires; M.A. (English), Rutgers University; Ph.D. (Latin American Literature), Rutgers University. Rutgers University. Julieta left her native Argentina and came to the US in 2001 on a Fulbright fellowship. While she was teaching literature and language at Oregon State University, she finished her book Imaginary Islands: The Malvinas/Falklands War in Argentine Literature and Film, which came out in 2012.  A companion to that book is the award winning documentary The Exact Shape of the Islands, of which she is the protagonist and co-script writer. Julieta's research and teaching interests are diverse. She enjoys teaching languages as much as she loves guiding students through the process of creating their own documentary when she teaches one of her elective classes. Julieta enjoys taking trips to the beach with her husband and their three boys. She also loves dancing, practicing yoga, writing fiction and cooking.


Allan Batchelder - Stagecraft & Woodworking. See biography under Humanities.
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Paul Burback - 6th Grade General Music; 7th Grade General Music; Advanced Music Elective; After-school Conservatory Music Teacher. Paul has been a guitarist and performer in bands, both locally and internationally, for over twenty-five years. In the late 1990's Paul and WSA support staff member Derek Burns played on the album The Scroll and Its Combinations with Eddie Vedder and Matt Cameron from Pearl Jam and Ben Shepherd and Kim Thayil from Soundgarden. Paul has been an instructor with the Olympic College Edventure program and at Rock the Farm - a rock and roll camp held at a Kingston farm that culminates in a student-performed rock concert. Paul has wide experience as a private guitar and bass teacher, and as a 
coach for young rock bands, where he is involved in rehearsing, recording and performing.  Currently, Paul plays with Justine Jeanotte, former Nirvana drummer Chad Channing, and bassist, percussionist, and keyboardist Andy Miller in the band Before Cars.  Paul toured Europe with this band during the summer of 2014, playing in Ireland, England, and the Netherlands.  Visitors to the 10,000 Starbucks stores worldwide will be able to hear Paul play; the Before Cars song Fin is on the official Starbucks playlist!
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D'Arcy Clements - Vocal Ensemble Elective. See biography under Mathematics and Science.

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Gretchen Nordleaf-Nelson - Art History; Theater Foundations I Elective.
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Jennifer Silvernale - 6th Grade Art/Physical Education; 7th Grade Art/Physical Education; Advanced Visual Art; IB Visual Art HL/SL.  B.A. (Art and Business), Linfield College; M.A. (Curriculum and Instruction), Eastern Washington University.  Jennifer was a 5th and 6th multi-grade classroom instructor for the North Kitsap School District from 1994 - 1999, and after starting a family, began working as a coordinator for the Meaningful Work Program and Paraprofessional Educator from 2006 - 2008.  She has been a faculty member at West Sound Academy since 2008, teaching Middle School History, Art and Physical Education, and in the summer months directs Harry Potter and Rocket Science camps for youth at our West Sound Academy campus.  Jennifer enjoys painting, ceramics, photography, and spends her free time fishing, camping and attending many baseball games with her boys, Peter and Ben.
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Julieta Vitullo - Photography and Storytelling Elective. See biography under Language Acquisition.
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Gary White - Visual Art; Advanced Visual Art; IB Visual Art HL/SL; Yearbook Coordinator. B.A. (Studio Arts), University of New Hampshire; B.A. (Cognitive Psychology), University of New Hampshire.  Gary has over 25 years of teaching experience as well as a celebrated career as an artist specializing in woodworking, metallurgy, and intaglio print-making. He has taught visual arts internationally including in Bahrain, Namibia, The Netherlands, and Italy. Gary comes to West Sound Academy from serving as IB Visual Arts teacher at St. Timothy’s School in Maryland. Gary is passionate about examining the ways science and technology are redefining the human perception of “art” and looks forward to increasing the media arts opportunities at WSA. He is eager to participate with our theater groups and bring his experience in set design and prop making to school productions.


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Jim Kolb -  IB Theory of Knowledge. B.A. (Zoology), B.A. (Ecology), M.S. (Wildland Resource Science) University of California, Berkeley. Starting his professional life as a Research Scientist, Jim traversed the west coast studying all things living. When his wife settled on earning a teaching credential, Jim went along for the ride and found his life’s passion as an educator. His ability to create and write successful curriculum led him to a role as Curriculum Developer and manager for a regional marine science consortium and, thence to a Principal Investigator position for a National Science Foundation national teacher-training program where he further honed his financial management and “fix anything” skills.  Jim has been playing all three roles: teacher, administrator and handyperson at West Sound Academy since its beginning in 1998. He enjoys dancing and the beaches of Puget Sound.
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Julieta Vitullo - Creativity, Action, Service (CAS) Coordinator. See biography under Language Acquisition
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David Sumner-Smith - IB Coordinator. See biography under Humanities.
Susan Trower- Extended Essay Coordinator; Queer-Straight Alliance Advisor; Knowledge Bowl. B.A. Summa cum Laude (Business Administration, Accounting), University of Washington. After graduation and passing the CPA exam, Susan worked as a management accountant at Boeing Commercial Aircraft Company. She left the office to start a family, and then rediscovered her childhood love of books and reading when she volunteered at the libraries of her daughters’ schools. After mentorship from some outstanding independent school librarians and additional training, Susan became the librarian at Evergreen Academy in Bothell, then Chestnut Hill Academy in Bellevue. Susan has been at West Sound Academy since 2005, working as the librarian, website editor, and coach (with Catherine Freeman and Lionel Pummell) of the WSA Knowledge Bowl (KB) team. She enjoys reading (of course) and spoiling her mini-dachshund, Wally.