Blythe Barton earned her BFA from Chapman University and MFA from Florida State University. She is currently a dancing instructor at San Diego Mesa College. She also has years of experiencing dancing live in theaters.
Cassandra Blomberg earned her elementary education teaching credential and B.A. in Diversified Liberal Arts from the University of San Diego and earned her M.S. from San Diego State University where she studied child and family development. Her passion is supporting
children and their families from pregnancy through early childhood. She has taught first grade, opened a State-funded preschool for low-income children in San Diego, and currently is an adjunct child development instructor in the San Diego Community College District and a parent coach.
Cassandra and her husband, Ryan, have three young sons, but their journey to parenthood has not been easy. Between their first and second sons, Cassandra suffered three miscarriages and the stillbirth of their daughter, Violet. She now dedicates much of her time supporting others who have experienced pregnancy loss.
Claudia Estrada-Howell is a career counselor at San Diego Mesa College where she collaborates with other administrators to help create programs that provide free food for students on campus.
Joe Safdie has taught English composition, literature and creative writing classes for 24 years at community colleges in Washington and California, and for three years before that in the Czech Republic. He’s published two books of poems – Scholarship from Blaze Vox and Coastal Zone from Spuyten Duyvil – as well as four chapbooks and numerous essays and reviews about contemporary letters. This is his last year teaching at San Diego Mesa College: retirement – and more writing! – beckons.
Lily Nguyen is a certified massage therapist and a graduate of the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. She is currently pursuing studies in Physiology and Psychology, with the intent of conducting more research to support the benefits of massage. Her dream is to create a program that offers holistic forms of therapy for people struggling with anxiety and depression.
Ramon Hernandez received both his Masters and his Doctorate in Public Health at Boston University School of Public Health. He has spent his entire public health career working extensively with young people and their families from many cultural, linguistic and diverse backgrounds. His passion for community health and youth development has led him to build, lead and create spaces across the county in Boston, Chicago Denver and his home in San Diego. He is a strong believer in the holistic development of the young person and believes in their intrinsic capacity to do good and potential to succeed. He currently is the Section Chief for Community Health at UC San Diego School Health, Department of Pediatrics.
Susan Lazear earned her Bachelor’s degree in Consumer and Family Studies at the University of Guelph, in Ontario Canada. She received her Masters degree in Clothing and Textiles from San Diego State University. She has taught at the college level for most of her working career, but has also worked in different aspects in the Fashion industry in the San Francisco area. Susan owns a computer software business, Cochenille Design Studio, that develops software for textile artists, with Mac and Window programs for garment pattern design, and a grid-based design program for various textile media such as knitting, beading, and so on.
Tracy McDowell graduated from The University of California San Diego with a specialized degree is Storytelling. She recently left a position created for her as an elementary school Integrative Art Teacher where she was crafting storytelling and movement-centric curriculum. In her off, time she sings at a few jazz gigs, plays a lot of piano, walks her doggies on the beach, and eats anything she can find that she isn’t allergic to (which is practically nothing). She is incredibly grateful for her friend and family who love and support her. She currently works as a traveling Feng Shui Consultant and yoga teacher in the San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco areas while auditioning and deciding if she wants to dive into entertainment.