LPIE Art Instructors
Meet the LPIE Art Instructors
Felix Chan: Felix joined LPIE as a new Art Instructor in 2015. He teaches 3rd grade at Springhill Elementary and Lafayette Elementary. Felix is an industrial designer who earned his degree at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY. He worked for many years as a model maker, illustrator and toy designer for various studios and manufacturers in New York and Los Angeles before settling in Lafayette with his wife Janet and two daughters Tessa and Kira. When not teaching, lending a hand at Janet's optometry practice or doing house repairs, he enjoys beachcombing, tidepooling and anything related to Star Wars.
Sally Dunne: Sally joined LPIE as a new Art Instructor in 2016. She teaches 2nd grade. Sally studied Fine Art. Then went on to complete a Bachelor’s Degree in Fashion & Textile Design where she developed a broad range of design skills across print, mixed media & woven textiles. Working as part of a creative team she designed sets and made props for Nickelodeon TV in London. Sally also worked for Designers Guild a leading U.K. Interior design firm implementing latest color and style trends as design and display coordinator. While raising three children Sally set up and ran a successful home day care where art and nurture were part of the daily routine.
Susan Fuller: Susan is a 2nd grade Art Instructor at Burton Valley and Lafayette Elementary Schools. She has a Bachelor's degree in education from Carnegie-Mellon and has done extensive graduate work in Child Development at the University of Pittsburgh. She received her Master of Arts in Fine Arts from California State University in Los Angeles. She is a sculptor who exhibits locally and nationally and a published poet. She believes that art is a true form of self expression and she finds the art of second graders to be very rich in imagination, reflecting their lives and vision of the world. To quote one of her students: "Art, yes!"
Andrea Futter: Andrea started teaching for LPIE in 2017-18. She teaches K at Laf Elementary & HV. Andrea worked as a Designer and Producer of Children’s software and Interactive Toys for more than 15 years. Her work includes titles for Disney, Dreamworks, Lucas (Starwars), LeapFrog and Pixar. She has an undergraduate degree in Studio Art from Wesleyan University and an MFA in Design from CalArts but learns the most from the kids she teaches. She lives in Lafayette with her husband and two school-age children.
Valyrie Gillum: Valyrie has enjoyed teaching artists of all ages since 2013. In addition to teaching as an LPIE Art Instructor, she teaches at the Art Room. Valyrie currently teaches 5th grade classes at Lafayette Elementary and Burton Valley, and 4th grade at Springhill and Burton Valley. Her focus is on making art joyful and challenging, meditative and healing. She loves sharing her passion with your kids. Her artwork can be found here:
She is also a freelance technical Illustrator for C&T Publishing, occasional Logo designer and private art instructor.
She has two awesome artist kids who inspire her. She loves rock-climbing AND animals AND nonsense. Her education includes: BFA in Sculpture, Rhode Island School of Design 1996, Berkeley Psychic Institute 2001, Certified Surface & Pattern Designer, CA School of Professional Fabric Design 2005.
Suzette Hackett: Suzette started teaching for LPIE in 2017-18. She teaches K at Laf Elementary & HV, 1st and 2nd at BV.
Her background includes a few years working for an educational technology company in addition to teaching 2nd grade in Oakland Unified for 11 years. Suzette grew up in Orinda and raised her 2 children there as well; both her son and daughter graduated from Del Rey Elementary, OIS and Miramonte and are recent college graduates. She currently lives in Moraga and is thrilled to be teaching art to the kindergartners at Lafayette Elementary and Happy Valley Elementary.
Tim Hancock: Tim Hancock is a 3rd grade Art Instructor at Burton Valley and teaches Special Day Classes at Springhill. Tim is an artist based in the Bay Area, California creating illustrations, paintings, children's books, and poetry inspired by the natural and imaginative worlds. Tim studied illustration at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, graduating with a BFA, and has been working as a successful freelance illustrator, painter, and art educator with command of a wide range of styles, mediums, and techniques, truly loving the creative process and driven to inspire others. Tim has made his living as a teaching artist for over a decade working in several public schools, community programs, and has been recognized for his work with high-risk teens. Tim is a provincial artist heavily influenced by the California landscape and exhibits his work locally and is continually inspired by the rich and vibrant diversity of the Bay Area, which is reflected in his paintings, illustrations, and cartoons.
Kirsten Jensen-Horne: Kirsten has always loved art. She had drawings, paintings, jewelry and quilts shown in juried local and national exhibitions beginning in junior high school. After graduating from Campolindo HS, she studied Art and Sociology at UC Davis and has a masters in Public Administration from George Washington University in WDC. Though those subject areas may seem disparate, the creative problem solving skills Kirsten uses in her art help her find new and creative solutions to social science problems. Currently a mom to two girls at BVE, she loves sharing with children how art can express and elicit feelings, movement, change and growth.
Linda Kenney: Linda teaches art at Springhill Elementary. With a BAS degree in Graphic Design from Expression College and a BS degree in Advertising from Syracuse University, Linda has been involved in commercial art for a while. But her true love is being around kids. Linda initially got involved with elementary school art education over 25 years ago with her son’s art curriculum at Sequoia Elementary in Pleasant Hill. She developed the school-wide art program still in place today. She was teaching after school art appreciation classes for four years at St. Perpetua School, here in Lafayette. She then joined their extended care staff and worked her way up to Extended Care Director. She developed a program called Panther Cubs, where she put together art, cooking and science curriculum for TK and Kindergarten students as enrichment to their regular school day. Linda has established summer art camps for elementary school students based off of illustrator, Eric Carle, the author of the famous The Hungry Caterpillar. She has been doing this for six years. This coming summer she will again be teaching watercolor landscape camp for 5th through 8th grade kids. Now she shares her time between after school art enrichment, camps, and workshops as well as LPIE art. Linda says, "My soul is filled with incredible joy when I teach art, since it combines my love of art with a child's enthusiasm. Nothing can be better!" Linda joined LPIE as a new Art Instructor in 2015.
Julie Lyverse: Julie is a fourth grade LPIE Art Instructor, as well as a Stanley LPIE 6th Grade Art and LPIE Foreign Language Cultural Art Instructor. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Child Development and has worked extensively with children. Her art training includes classes at the Ecole des Beaux Arts, France and Traditional Arts School in Sendai, Japan. Julie previously served as director and instructor for an art appreciation program at Beechwood Elementary School in Fort Mitchell, Kentucky.
Joy Martin: Joy joined LPIE as an art Instructor in 2015. She teaches 1st grade at Happy Valley and Springhill, and TK at Happy Valley & Burton Valley. Joy Martin always dreamed of being an artist or a teacher as a child, and she is thrilled to be both with Lafayette Partners in Education. She enjoys introducing art concepts and artists to children in a developmentally appropriate way. When not teaching LPIE Art, Joy teaches preschool in Walnut Creek. She has two sons in Lafayette schools who always look forward to LPIE art days
Tanya Parmelee: Tanya joined LPIE as an Art Instructor in 2018-19. She currently teaches 2nd grade at Lafayette Elementary and 3rd grade at Lafayette Elementary & Springhill. Tanya firmly believes art is one of the few subjects where a student can simply immerse in the process. She believes art exploration and creative expression are important for the development of a thoughtful, aware adult that can think outside the box. Tanya is an advertising and branding creative director and devotes time to regional non-profits benefiting youth. Her high school cheer flyer daughter and elementary school soccer/rugby player son are also very skilled artists.
Corey Pigeon: Corey teaches First Grade Art at Lafayette Elementary School. She comes to us with a Bachelor of Arts in History and Fine Art from Gonzaga University. Corey is passionate about teaching children the creative process of moving ideas and observations from inside their hearts and minds, to outside of themselves. She fosters this process by teaching them they are all artists and there is no wrong in art. Corey adores spending time with her husband Will and their three children Blake, Brady and Campbell.
Kathy Sobel: Kathy is currently the Art Program Chair for LPIE. She teaches art to Lafayette Elementary 3rd graders, and Happy Valley 3rd, 4th & 5th graders. She worked as a professional illustrator and graphic designer for many years in Chicago and Los Angeles before moving to the San Francisco area with her husband and three children. Most of her work has been centered on children - from her illustrations for educational publishers to her work with schools and day camps.
Katie Stein: Katie joined LPIE as an Art Instructor in 2017-18. She teaches K at SH & BV. Katie Stein is a Burton mom of 3, and experienced educator of young children. Prior to parenthood, Katie taught elementary school for 10 years, both in Massachusetts and in Oregon. As a 2nd, 3rd and 4th grade teacher, Katie passionately incorporated art into all aspects of her classroom. A New Hampshire native, Katie loves being in nature – hiking, camping, and spending time near the ocean. She also greatly enjoys coaching youth basketball, which she has done for the past 5 years through LMYA. Teaching and inspiring children – whether it be in art, basketball, writing, riding a bike, or anything else – is one of the great sources of joy in her life. She is so happy to be a part of the kindergarten LPIE art team!
Joan Toney: Joan teaches 6th grade art at Stanley. She is a parent of Lafayette school children and has held many volunteer positions at Bay Area non-profits.