Our administration is made up of passionate, experienced school leaders who understand the value of education and the importance of childhood.
- Olaf Jorgenson, Head of School
- Jennifer Glasser, Associate Head of School, Advancement
- Jane Murphy, Head of Early Childhood & Elementary Education
- Jeremy Adams, Head of Middle School
- Cecilia Robb, Director, The Learning Center
- Julie Page, Learning Support Coordinator
- Ron Siporen, Chief Financial Officer
- Greta Norager, Controller
- Mary Jo Heindel, Director of Admissions & Outreach
- Cathy Shin, Director of Marketing Communications
- Syma Latif, Director of Annual Giving & Special Events
- Buck Crockett, Director of Technology
- Michael Kim-Stevens, Technology Coach & Innovation Specialist
Dr. Olaf “Ole” Jorgenson joined Almaden Country Day School in 2008. Before ACDS, Ole served as headmaster at Hawaii Preparatory Academy, and prior to that he was a teacher and administrator in public and international schools.
In addition to his responsibilities as a school head, Ole is involved in many professional activities on the local and national levels. He’s an avid conference speaker and writer; his most recent book is Doing Good Science in Middle School: A Practical STEM Guide. Ole is currently working on a project to support schools nationwide struggling with enrollment decline. He also volunteers on the advisory board for the Klingenstein Center for Independent School Leadership at Teachers College, Columbia University, where he also mentors graduate students.
Ole remains a teacher at heart. Whenever he can, he enjoys interacting with students at ACDS, where he teaches philosophy and leadership elective courses in our Middle School.
Ole was drawn to ACDS as a perfect school for his own daughter, Juliette, who is now a college student. “I saw how confident, poised, and happy the children are at ACDS,” Ole says, “And I wanted that for Juliette, too. The positive tone on campus says a lot about the culture of the school. Everyone we met was so upbeat!”
“And I’ve learned over the years,” Ole continues, “It is who we are as a school. If you work at ACDS, you are a hopeful person, you believe 100% in the potential of every child, and in the need to balance academics with character education and joy. School should be fun!”
“While we’re always working on improving,” Ole says, “ACDS embodies what I think a school should be -- a safe, challenging, and joyful place to learn and grow.”
In his free time, Ole enjoys spending time with his family including a collection of rescue dogs, as well as traveling and bicycling. He is currently co-authoring a parenting book with Bay Area family therapist Sheri Glucoft Wong that will be published in late 2021.
Fun fact: Ole’s first paid job was racing motorcycles in high school!
Jennifer Glasser joined Almaden Country Day School in 2015. In addition to her work in Advancement at ACDS, Ms. Glasser and her husband are members of the ACDS parent community, with one son at ACDS and the other son an alumnus.
Before joining ACDS, Ms. Glasser served as Middle School Director at Menlo School. As a division head, Ms. Glasser worked with senior administration to develop the school's strategic vision and capital campaign goals. Ms. Glasser also helped to develop the school's mission statement and values proposition. Prior to her move into administration at Menlo School, Ms. Glasser taught English, history, and math for 16 years.
Ms. Glasser loves being a member of ACDS's welcoming community, in which the developmental and learning needs of each student are nurtured, and the joy of learning is cherished and celebrated. As a parent and an educator, she believes students need a learning environment in which they can safely take emotional and intellectual risks, cultivate growth mindsets and develop their own senses of self.
A native of the Bay Area and a graduate of Williams College, Ms. Glasser lives in San Jose with her family. In her free time, Ms. Glasser enjoys hiking, waterskiing, rooting for the San Francisco Giants, reading, and spending time with her family.
Jane holds a Master’s of Arts Degree in Educational Leadership, Administration, and Supervision, and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education with a minor in Psychology. She is a proud alumna of CWI’s Summer West Institute: Service Learning with a lens of Equity and Inclusion, a Design Thinking (Stanford University) Think Tank participant, and attended Apple’s Distinguished Educators Challenge-Based Learning in IB Schools Summit in Geneva, Switzerland.
Jane is innately drawn to community engagement and service-learning education in action and welcomes parents to partner with the school community. Her advice to parents: “Lead by example, your kids look up to you. Engage with your children, they need to be listened to, understood, and taken seriously. Our kids, like us, are going to make mistakes. These mistakes are wonderful opportunities for all of us to learn from.”
Jane believes in inquiry-based learning and a project-based curriculum fosters students’ connections to place, creating a sense of belonging and as a result nurtures vibrant partnerships with communities. An emergent curriculum helps students learn to take care of the world by understanding where they live and taking action in their own schools and communities.
Her advice to children: “Be observant, notice the little details in everything and everyone. Listen, so much is happening around you to learn from - everyone has a story to tell. Pause, observe, notice, and listen. When you do this, you open your heart to the many possibilities life has to offer. Most importantly, take action with compassion, leadership, kindness, and courage. Remember to watch the world - it will conspire to support your work.”
Jeremy Adams has worked in the field of education for more than two decades. His experiences range from being a park ranger in New York City to being an environmental educator in Honduras with the Peace Corps. Upon moving to California, he worked first as a bilingual resource teacher, elementary teacher, and middle school teacher. Then, he moved into school administration working as a math coach, principal, and district coordinator. Here at ACDS he started as the school's first Learning Support Coordinator, and now serves as the Head of Middle School.
Mr. Adams has his Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore as well as a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership from Santa Clara University. He holds a multiple-subject teaching credential in California, with authorizations for math and social science, as well as an administrative services credential. Currently, he is pursuing an Educational Doctorate from San José State University.
“I knew my children would have the opportunity to be happy and successful at ACDS the first time I visited the campus. This belief has only been reinforced with each passing year they attend ACDS." Mr. Adams is father to two children who attend ACDS, and one alumnus. He enjoys running, mountain biking, and sleeping, especially after running and biking.
Cecilia Robb has been part of the ACDS community for more than 25 years and is honored to be part of The Learning Center. Her interest in learning differences began early in her career, and she has been working with students individually for nearly 15 years. She has specialized training in both Orton-Gillingham and Multisensory Math, enabling her to address the specific learning needs of children struggling with language acquisition and math.
"Every child is capable. Every child has strengths and contributes in meaningful ways. Some children learn differently. The Learning Center at ACDS will provide capable children the opportunities they need to be successful and approach life with the confidence and skills that they deserve." Mrs. Robb is grateful for the opportunity to make a real difference in the lives of TLC children.
When not at school in the classrooms or with her dog Emma under her desk, Mrs. Robb might be out hiking or at home quilting or reading, or perhaps visiting with one of her three children, all ACDS alumni.
Julie Page brings her love of learning and over 25 years of experience in education to the role of ACDS' Learning Support Coordinator.
With her background in both private and public settings, Julie believes deeply in supporting the whole child and embracing different learning styles. She says, "I am excited to join ACDS because of the progressiveness and the joy that is palpable with everyone you talk to, students and adults alike. What a wonderful, creative place to learn!" As the Learning Support Coordinator, Julie interfaces with teachers, students and parents, to bring out the best support for every student.
Before joining ACDS, Julie was a teacher in Aptos and then an elementary principal in high achieving schools in Silicon Valley. She believes that excellent education is creative and flexible, embracing student interest and advocacy. Her focus includes 21st Century Learning with an emphasis in Educational Technology, Arts Integration Across the Curriculum, and Social Emotional Learning. Julie is a graduate of Mills College where she earned a B.A. in French with a minor in Teaching English as a Second Language. She earned her M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from San Jose State University. Julie holds a multiple subject Teaching Credential with authorizations in French and English -- as well as her Administrative Credential.
Julie lives in Morgan Hill with her husband, Matt. In her free time, she enjoys watercolor painting and linocut printing -- as well as traveling, cooking, gardening, reading -- and spending time with family and friends.
Ron Siporen has a long history with Almaden Country Day School. His son attended ACDS starting in 2000 in Junior Kindergarten and graduated from 8th grade in 2010.
In 2002, Ron was appointed to the Board of Trustees and served until 2009. He returned to the Board in 2018 and served until accepting the position of Chief Financial Officer in 2020. During his second tenure on the Board, Ron was a member of the Finance Committee.
Ron holds a BA in Economics from the University of California, Davis, an MBA from the University of San Francisco, and is an actively licensed CPA in California.
After starting his career as a banker, Ron started working in various finance positions in both large and small companies, typically managing accounting, HR, and facilities.
For Ron, ACDS feels like home. "I feel lucky to be working for a place that holds great memories for my family with the new opportunity to create many more."
Greta Norager joined Almaden Country Day School in 2015 and brings more than 30 years of non-profit tax, accounting and audit experience.
"I am excited to join Almaden Country Day School and am enjoying everyone on staff here. It is such a pleasant place to work and an enjoyable change from over 35 years in the corporate world."
A native of the Bay Area, Greta lives in Morgan Hill and enjoys camping, reading and spending time with her family and friends.
Mrs. Heindel brings her experience as an ACDS parent, school volunteer, Parent Service Auxiliary president, and Board of Trustees member into her role in admissions at the school. Mrs. Heindel has a degree in journalism and mass communications from the University of Colorado at Boulder and has worked in a variety of capacities including writer, editor, account and sales representative and caterer.
Watching her two children grow and blossom because of their experiences at ACDS has made her a passionate advocate of educating children in a developmentally appropriate, safe, welcoming environment with plenty of challenge and opportunities.
“I feel blessed to be working at ACDS because I get to witness the joy and happiness of children who are curious, engaged, active learners. Plus, I get to be part of this great school community even though my children have already graduated from ACDS!”
Mrs. Heindel lives in Almaden Valley with her family. She enjoys cooking, fine dining, hiking, skiing, swimming and reading.
Ms. Shin hails from the biotech/life sciences industry in Silicon Valley and brings her wide range of experience in the communications field to Almaden Country Day School. Notably she has experience in social media, advertising, website development, media relations, and branding.
She graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with her Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and attended the MFA program at Mills College for poetry and creative non-fiction. She has taught reading skills in summer reading programs and has served as editor for literary journals. Ms. Shin loves to read, cook, do yoga, and travel with her family.
She and her husband have two boys at ACDS. "As a parent, I appreciate ACDS for its culture of cherishing childhood and its whole child, developmental education philosophy. As the director of marketing communications for this school, I am proud to share what ACDS is all about to our families and communities."
Mrs. Syma Latif is passionate about serving the ACDS community -- she served as a Trustee, PSA president, and is now leading development efforts for ACDS as the Director of Annual Giving Campaign and Special Events.
Mrs. Latif, with her International Marketing and Communications education, and considerable experience as an entrepreneur, understands how to connect with the ACDS community and bring us all together for an important cause.
“As a mother of three students at ACDS, I am deeply committed to the community that has given back so much to me and my family; from our wonderful parents and inquisitive students to our nurturing teachers and supportive administrative staff. Growing our community’s philanthropic future is the most rewarding part of the role.”
A London native and a graduate of the University of Greenwich, Syma Latif is a world traveler having had two children in Chicago and one child in Qatar, Middle East. While she still enjoys traveling, she can also be found living a quieter Almaden Valley life and is always happy to entertain her ACDS friends with a spot of tea and biscuits!
Mr. Crockett is a behind-the-scenes tech guru for ACDS and collaborates with the administration team to keep the computers humming, the network at full capacity, and the computer lab on the cutting edge.
Mr. Crockett has a M.A. in Teacher Leadership from Western State Colorado University. He has a diverse background in education and technology. He has worked in both urban and rural settings. While spending a year teaching in a Yupic village in rural Alaska, he realized how critical technology infrastructure is for supporting student learning. It was there he first began to work on improving technology literacy in schools, which led to his transition into System Administration and his current position at ACDS. His background in education and leadership allows him to better support both students and staff in their utilization and implementation of technology in the classroom.
"Many schools have legacy infrastructure and computer science is not part of the curriculum. At ACDS, student creativity is encouraged and some students are writing code for 3D printers, which is really cool and is an example of our students leveraging the power of technology. I am excited to support this ideal the best I can in my IT role at ACDS."
In addition to a passion for education and technology, in his free time Mr. Crockett enjoys various outdoor pursuits such as kayaking, road biking, fly fishing, and yoga.
Mr. Kim-Stevens comes to the ACDS community after eight years of teaching secondary math and science, split mostly between Ningbo Foreign Language School in Ningbo, China and neighboring Leland High School. Having always placed a special emphasis on using technology as a tool for both learning and instruction, he is looking forward to working with the ACDS faculty to implement various technology tools to enrich the learning experience.
Drawn by the ACDS philosophy of fostering a love of learning, Mr. Kim-Stevens is also excited to be helping students explore their creativity in the Imaginarium and showcase their creations. He is also looking forward to facilitating various design challenges, student exhibitions, and other student driven projects.
Originally from California’s high desert and central coast, Mr. Kim-Stevens first came to the Bay Area to pursue his Bachelors of Science degree from UC Santa Cruz in applied physics. He then went on to get his Masters of Arts in Education and teaching credential from Stanford University. In his free time, Mr. Kim-Stevens enjoys running, watching Marvel movies, going to renaissance faires, and BBQing with family and friends. Mr. Kim-Stevens also enjoys traveling, reading, and relaxing by the beach.