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ACCS Commissioners

Information about current Advisory Commission on Charter Schools members, including, their terms of appointment and biographies.

Commissioners

Name Representing Initial Appointment Term Expires
Jared Austin Parents or Guardians of Charter School Students 11/09/2017 12/31/2021
Esau Berumen Charter Schools 01/09/2020 12/31/2021
Cameron Curry Charter Schools 01/09/2020 12/31/2020
Stephanie Farland Representative of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction N/A N/A
Gayle Garbolino-Mojica County Office of Education Superintendents 01/19/2018 12/31/2021
Erika Jones Teachers 01/09/2020 12/31/2020
Dr. Wesley Sever District Superintendents 11/04/2015 12/31/2020
Brent Walmsley Teachers 01/09/2020 12/31/2020
Mike Walsh Governing Boards of School Districts 01/09/2020 12/31/2021

Biographies

Jared Austin

Represents: Parents or Guardians of Charter School Students

As a California State University of Sacramento graduate, Jared Austin began his teaching career in the Vacaville Unified School District. Mr. Austin soon advanced into school administration in Vacaville, then in Sacramento. Currently, Mr. Austin is the Executive Director and Co-Founder of Kairos Public Schools, in Vacaville, California. Mr. Austin believes in getting scholars to take responsibility for their community. This belief is modeled through his own actions.

Additionally, Mr. Austin has served as an adjunct professor in Touro University’s Educational Leadership Department. He has also received multiple honors for achievements in leadership and innovation.

Currently, Mr. Austin serves on the Vacaville Public Education Foundation Board and supports many educational non-profit organizations in Solano County. He was appointed to the Advisory Commission on Charter Schools (ACCS) in November of 2017. His current term expires on December 31, 2021.

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Esau Berumen

Represents: Charter Schools

Esau Berumen is the Principal of Hawthorne Math and Science Academy in Hawthorne, California. During his tenure as Principal, Hawthorne Math and Science Academy, a school-wide Title 1 Dependent Charter High School, has been awarded the National Blue Ribbon Award by the U.S. Department of Education in 2010 and 2016.

Mr. Berumen earned his Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from Occidental College. He earned both his teaching credential and Master’s degree in Cross Cultural Education from National University. In 2004, he earned his administrative credential and second Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from California State University, Northridge. In 2012, Occidental College’s Alumni Association awarded him the Young Alumni Seal Award. Recently, Occidental College’s Alumni Association awarded Mr. Berumen the 2017 Alumni Seal Award for Professional Achievement.

Mr. Berumen has been a member of the Association of California School Administrators since 2010.

Mr. Berumen was appointed to the ACCS in January of 2020. His current term expires December 31, 2021.

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Cameron Curry

Represents: Charter Schools

Cameron Curry has an extensive background in business development prior to helping launch The Classical Academy K-8 charter school in 1999.

In 2003 he co-founded the K-8 charter school Coastal Academy, and in 2006, the Classical Academy High School. In 2018 he founded Classical Academy, Vista. His entrepreneurial spirit and experience has been a great benefit to the operation of these schools and their ever-expanding options and opportunities for students under the educational model of independent study. Students have access to facilities, credentialed teachers, and academic programming provided through a few platforms tailored to meet their individual learning needs.

Under his leadership, the schools have received the Exemplary Recognition Award from the California Department of Education and California Consortium for Independent Study for high quality programming: the first three charter schools in California to hold this recognition. In alignment with embracing quality, Coastal Academy was named a California Distinguished School in 2010 and Classical Academy High School in 2013.

Mr. Curry is also a strong advocate for school choice and he provides ongoing support to charter school developers with questions, resources, and information on independent study operations and programming. With this knowledge, Mr. Curry serves on the Board of the California Charter School Association and was an active voice in the development of their academic accountability framework benefiting all charter public schools.

In 2011, Mr. Curry received the Hart Vision Award from the California Charter Schools Association as their Charter School Leader of the Year.

In 2013 Mr. Curry authored, Charter School Leadership: Elements for School Success.

Mr. Curry continues to lead The Classical Academies with quality and The San Diego Union Tribune and Workplace Dynamics have awarded and named the organization as a Top Workplace in 2014, 2016, and 2018.

Mr. Curry was appointed to the ACCS in January of 2020. His current term expires December 31, 2020.

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Stephanie Farland

Represents: State Superintendent of Public Instruction

Ms. Farland is the Director of the California Department of Education, Charter Schools Division.

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Gayle Garbolino-Mojica

Represents: District Governing Board Members

Gayle Garbolino-Mojica was elected to Placer County Superintendent of Schools on June 6, 2006, and is currently serving her fourth term.

Ms. Garbolino-Mojica is a graduate of the University of California, Davis. She received her teaching credential from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and an Administrative Credential and Master’s Degree in Educational Administration and Leadership from California State University, Sacramento. Ms. Garbolino-Mojica was a teacher, assistant principal, and program specialist with the Western Placer Unified School District, and principal and subsequently superintendent of the Colfax Elementary School District.

Ms. Garbolino-Mojica promotes public education on a statewide level as a Commissioner with the Advisory Commission on Charter Schools for the State Board of Education and Chair of the Fiscal Crisis Management Assistance Team Board. She chairs the California County Superintendents Educational Services Association Federal Task Force and is their representative to the national Association of Educational Services Agencies Federal Advocacy Committee. She is the past Treasurer of the California County Superintendents Association.

Regionally, Ms. Garbolino-Mojica advocates for public education and Placer County through her work on the Valley Vision Executive Board, the Greater Sacramento Economic Council Board, and the Align Capitol Region Board of Directors. She is past President of KidsFirst, and a member of Class XIV of the American Leadership Forum-Mountain Valley Chapter.

Ms. Garbolino-Mojica has been awarded a Paul Harris Fellow from the Rotary Club in Auburn, California and awarded the California County Superintendents Executive Leadership Award. She is a recipient of the Sacramento Business Journal’s “Women Who Mean Business” Award and the Athena Leadership Award from the Roseville Chamber of Commerce for professional excellence and community service, and for actively assisting women in their attainment of professional excellence and leadership skills.

Ms. Garbolino-Mojica is the daughter of former Roseville Mayor Gina Garbolino and retired Superior Court Judge James D. Garbolino, and has two sons – Jack and Max.

Ms. Garbolino-Mojica was appointed to the ACCS in January of 2018. Her current term expires on December 31, 2021.

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Erika Jones

Represents: Teachers

Dedicated Los Angeles Unified School District elementary teacher and civil rights advocate, Erika Jones serves on the board of the 310,000-member California Teachers Association representing educators from the Greater Los Angeles area and the United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA).

She has taught for 14 years from kindergarten through fifth grade. Within that time, she has been part of multiple school plan writing teams and is a national professional development trainer specializing in classroom management, culturally responsive teaching, racial equity, and supporting school communities. She also co-chairs UTLA’s Racial Justice Taskforce collaborating with community organizations, students, parents, and educators.

Born in New York and raised in Kentucky, Ms. Jones has lived in California since 1990. For two years before her teaching career began, she worked in public relations and coordinated a school assembly program focused on educating children about being environmentally conscious.

She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in International Business from Mount St. Mary’s University in Los Angeles, and earned her teaching credential and a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from California State University, Northridge. She also holds a credential in Administration. Ms. Jones completed the Harvard Kennedy School Executive Education Program: Leadership, Organizing, and Action – Leading Change, and represented California’s educators as a member of Governor Gavin Newsom’s California Charter School Policy Task Force.

Ms. Jones lives in Los Angeles.

Ms. Jones was appointed to the ACCS in January of 2020. Her current term expires on December 31, 2020.

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Dr. Wesley Sever

Represents: District Superintendents

Wesley Sever, Ed.D., is the Superintendent of Kingsburg Elementary Charter School District. He received a Master’s in Educational Leadership from California University, Fresno, and finished his Doctorate in Education from the University of California, Davis.

Dr. Sever began his experiences as a Bilingual Spanish Tutor, then taught fourth, seventh, and eighth grades before becoming an administrator. Dr. Sever spent 14 years in Sanger Unified School District working as a vice principal and then as principal. During his time in Sanger, Dr. Sever's school was named a California Distinguished School and a National Blue Ribbon School. Dr. Sever was also a finalist for the Fresno County Administrator of the Year.

In 2009, Dr. Sever received national recognition when he was presented with the Terrel H. Bell Award for excellence in educational leadership. Just before coming to the Kingsburg Elementary Charter School District, Dr. Sever served as an Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction.

Dr. Sever has been a member of the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) since 2001. He served as the Region IX ACSA president in 2015, the Area Curriculum and Instruction representative in 2013, and was the ACSA Region IX Public Relations Representative in 2014.

Dr. Sever was appointed to the ACCS in November of 2015. His current term expires on December 31, 2020.

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Brent Walmsley

Represents: Teachers

Brent Walmsley grew up outside of Minneapolis, Minnesota, in the Lake Minnetonka area (if you are a fan of Prince, he references it in Purple Rain). He moved to Los Angeles after breaking his ankle on ice and decided he was done with cold winters. He graduated from Fuller Seminary with a Master of Divinity and joined Teach for America in the 2009 Los Angeles Corps. He earned a Master of Arts in Urban Education with an emphasis in Administration and Policy from Loyola Marymount University and was a Writing Project fellow with California State University, Northridge. He has taught in a variety of traditional and charter schools in West Los Angeles, Compton, Echo Park, San Pedro, and Crenshaw, and currently is the English Teacher at Da Vinci RISE at the A Place Called Home location. He is passionate about helping students reach their potential and achieve the goals they lay out for themselves, and believes that English provides the methods to think critically and communicate clearly, and hopes to instill a love for reading and learning in his students. When he is not teaching, he enjoys cycling; hiking with his dog, Renzo, and his wife, Desiree; and cooking tasty meals.

Mr. Walmsley was appointed to the ACCS in January of 2020. His current term expires on December 31, 2020.

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Mike Walsh

Represents: Governing Boards of School Districts

Mike Walsh is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Beacon Results, an organizational growth and change management firm founded in 2005 that works primarily with school districts and nonprofits to help them develop and align their strategic plans. He has both a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degree in Organizational Management and Organizational Leadership from Ashford University.

Since 2000, Mr. Walsh has served as a Leadership Facilitator for several student-based organizations including the California Association of Student Councils, Rotary Youth Leadership Awards, and the National Student Leadership Conference at the University of California, Berkeley, an annual Career Exploration Camp for students considering careers in medicine, engineering, and communications.

In addition to his work through Beacon, in 2018 he served as the President of the California School Boards Association (CSBA), a group representing nearly 1,000 California school districts and county offices of education. A 10-year veteran Trustee of the Butte County Office of Education, Mr. Walsh was elected to CSBA’s Delegate Assembly in 2010 and elected to the organization’s Board of Directors in 2011. During his time at CSBA, Mr. Walsh has served ably on numerous committees, including chairing the Legislative Committee and on the Executive Committee as Vice President, President-elect, President, and the Immediate Past-President.

He also served as Executive Director of the Oroville Economic Development Corporation and completed a three-year term as a member of the Butte Community College Foundation Board of Directors. In addition to his service to state school boards, Mr. Walsh has also served on major committees of the National School Boards Association and has written and published multiple articles focused on equity and improving outcomes for underserved student groups.

Mr. Walsh was appointed to the ACCS in January of 2020. His current term expires on December 31, 2021.

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Questions:   Charter Schools Division | charters@cde.ca.gov | 916-322-6029
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, February 26, 2020
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