The KCI has brought together some of the most talented and experienced professionals with extensive backgrounds in the educational and corporate spheres with the goal of improving education in our communities.

Gay Krause, Executive Director

Gay KrauseExecutive director, Gay Krause, founded the KCI in July 1998. Gay was responsible for developing and implementing the initial vision to serve K-14 educators in professional development activities. She also led the effort to restore the former Space Science Museum into a fully equipped technology facility to serve K-14 educators, Foothill students, and the community. The KCI is available for professional development activities 24/7 both in-house and on-line throughout the state of California.

Prior to July 1998, Gay was a principal of both elementary and middle schools in the Mountain View Whisman School District. Gay served as teacher, middle school counselor, assistant principal and principal for 10 years. Gay received her B.S. degree from The Pennsylvania State University in education and special education, her M.S. degree from the University of Virginia in counseling psychology, and a credential in administrative leadership from San Jose State University and San Francisco University.

Steven J. McGriff, Ph.D., Professor-in-Residence

Steve McGriff Steve McGriff began his tenure as Professor-in-Residence at the KCI July 1, 2008. Steve had previously served as assistant professor in the College of Education, Department of Instructional Technology at San Jose State University (SJSU) for six years. His experience teaching and mentoring teachers in a master’s degree program has prepared him to lead teacher professional development programs at the KCI. Steve designs and develops the KCI curriculum, manages KCI academic operations and closely collaborates with executive director Gay Krause to direct the KCI’s mission as it grows into its second decade of educational technology excellence. Steve received his B.A. degree from Stanford University, an M.A., Instructional Technology from San Jose State University, and his doctorate in Instructional Systems from The Pennsylvania State University.

Liane Freeman, Strategy and Marketing Director

Liane FreemanLiane serves as the Director of Strategy and Marketing at the KCI. She works with the leadership team to develop and drive strategic initiatives, as well as the marketing/communications efforts of the organization. Liane is an experienced manager whose career has spanned software, energy, and education. Most recently, she held a number of management positions with Intuit, including Director of Information Management and Design, Small Business Division, where she led a team of 50 to significantly streamline and optimize customer interaction with the company. Prior to Intuit, she held leadership positions with the non-profit Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and was responsible for customer service and communications, product marketing, marketing communications, and account management. Throughout her career, she has managed cross functional teams working on large, complex projects. Liane has B.A. and M.A. degrees in English, as well as a teaching credential, from San Jose State University.

Gayle Britt, Instructional Leader

Gayle BrittGayle is currently a key member of Krause Center for Innovation (KCI) Instructional Team. For the last nine years, Gayle has been actively involved in teaching KCI courses and developing curriculum that aligns with the KCI’s mission, which is to empower educators by providing technology integration training, project-based learning training, and fostering educational partnerships to address current challenges and trends for K-14 educators. Gayle is a former seventh grade teacher and currently trains teachers in developing projects using technology tools. For Oracle Education Foundation, Gayle trains teachers globally in student project design, using the Thinkquest tool. Holding a National Board certification in social studies, Gayle supports National Board candidates in the support group at Stanford University.Gayle was the lead instructor in the Merit Fellows program, and she also led the KCI/ Sonoma Unified School District Merit program in Sonoma, California. She has a master’s degree in Educational Technology from Pepperdine University.

Kyle Brumbaugh, Instructor and Professional Expert

Kyle BrumbaughKyle is an Educational Technology Coordinator for a high school in San Jose, CA. He has been a Teacher, School Technology Coordinator, High School Administrator and Director of Technology in his over 20 years in Education. Throughout his career, Kyle has been an innovator in the use of technology in education, building a Technology Arts department at Capuchino High School. Capuchino’s Technology Arts department, the first of its kind, served over 300 students daily, created the first course in Global Communications and has been used as a model in other schools and districts.

In 2004, Kyle developed the “Digital Bridge” program, that provided home Internet access to all 9th grade students on free and reduced lunch at Capuchino. In 2006, he applied and was chosen as one of the first Google Certified Teachers. Kyle is a CUE Lead Learner, providing professional development programs coast to coast and speaking at a variety of Ed Tech Conferences; including: ISTE, CUE, MacWorld, Lead3, CLHS and others.

Elizabeth Calhoon, Instructor

Elizabeth CalhoonElizabeth is the Manager of Instructional Technology & Online Learning with the Santa Clara County Office of Education and was previously a middle school and high school site administrator, a new-teacher coach and an English Teacher and curriculum leader and developer. She is a Common Sense Media and CUE Lead Learner, Google Certified Teacher, Sony Education Ambassador, Leading Edge Professional Developer, FableVision Ambassador, California Retired Teachers’ Association Scholarship Recipient and Grant-Writer.

Steven Caringella, Instructor

Steven CaringellaSteve is a part-time instructor at Foothill College’s Krause Center for Innovation. He has an M.A. in Education from Bethany University, and an M.A. in Instructional Technology from San Jose State, Steve has provided professional development in educational technology at the school and district levels, in addition to teaching FastTech classes at the KCI. Steve has thirteen years of experience in K-12 education, and is currently a K – 12 Educational Technology Coach in the Milpitas Unified School District. He is also with the National Faculty for the Buck Institute for Education.

William Cavada, Instructor

William CavadaWilliam Cavada has worked for over 12 years as a digital artist and media arts teacher. His design experience ranges from graphic communication to web design and video production. His teaching experience includes multimedia arts, yearbook, youth media and technology. He has for the past eight years been teaching at Mt. Pleasant High School, where he teaches the multimedia courses and coordinates the site’s Adobe Youth Voices program. While running the AYV program at Mt. Pleasant, his students have had their films screened at Cinequest, MACLA, and at the Adobe Youth Summits in 2009 and 2010. He is also co-advisor to the award winning Cardinal Literary Magazine. He has for the past six years been an instructor at KCI, teaching courses in In-Design, Illustrator, Premiere and Flash; he has also participated in Adobe Teach the Teachers, and the Winter Institute.
William Cavada studied art education with a concentration in conceptual art at San Francisco State University, earning a fine arts degree and continued his studies with a master’s in Instructional Technology from San Jose State University.

Janet Davis, Instructional Leader

Janet DavisJanet Davis is a member of the KCI’s Instructional Team. Following her career as a Kindergarten teacher, Janet built educational web sites for NASA. She then became a Technology Trainer at De Anza College, and taught classes as a multimedia instructor. She became the manager for the Adobe Youth Voices Training Center at KCI, which was funded by a grant from Adobe Inc. She was recruited by Adobe to become an Adobe Education Leader, one of approximately 100 educators world-wide. She also travelled for Adobe demonstrating Photoshop at educational conferences. She has also taught for Stanford Digital Media Academy. Janet has an M.A. degree in Instructional Technology from San Jose State University.

Roni Habib, MERIT Program Director

Roni HabibRoni teaches Positive Psychology and AP Economics at Gunn High School in Palo Alto, California. He is the director of the MERIT program at Foothill College, and has recently launched EQSchools, an organization that empowers schools through Emotional Intelligence training. Roni trains teachers nationally and abroad in Ed-Tech, Design Thinking, and Positive Psychology. In addition, he is consultant for Ed-Tech companies, and a Google Certified Innovator. Roni lived in Israel and Belgium before coming to the U.S. where he got his Masters of Education and teaching credential in Mathematics and History at Harvard. He currently lives in Sunnyvale with his wife Allison, and two children Eli and Leah.

Chris Heumann, Instructional Leader

Chris Heumann

Chris has been a KCI Instructional Leader in various capacities for eight years, beginning with his own participation in the KCI Earn-While-You-Learn professional development program in 2003. He became a Fellows Mentor the following year and then led the MERIT program for three years thereafter. Chris’ strength as a KCI instructor arises from the passion and pace that he has learned through his 23 years as a middle school science, math, and English teacher. He “walks his talk” by using technologies with his students in creative and innovative ways.  For more than two decades, his energetic, practical and personalized style of instruction has empowered thousands of teachers to increase the effectiveness of instruction through the timely and finely-tuned utilization of a wide variety of existing and emerging technologies. Chris has a M.A. in Instructional Technology from San Jose State University.

Lisa Highfill, Instructional Leader

Lisa HighfillLisa, the k-12 Instructional Technology Coach for the Pleasanton Unified, has a passion for innovative learning strategies and actively works to share and collaborate with teachers, parents, and community members in order to improve the quality of education. She has presented at numerous conferences across California, sharing ideas to improve the way kids experience learning. Lisa is a Google Certified Teacher and a part of the inaugural group of YouTube Star Teachers. She is a lead learner for CUE and a part of the MERIT Staff at the Krause Center for Innovation.

Rushton Hurley, Instructional Leader

Rushton HurleyRushton  served as the MERIT Program Director at the KCI from 2010 through 2012. Rushton Hurley has taught at the high school and college level, been a school principal, worked with charter and traditional schools, and organized and run an online school. His graduate school background at Stanford includes exploring technology-enhanced learning through multi-media and speech recognition. Given Rushton’s professional experiences and training and having built connections to interested educators around the world, he used his energy to establish Next Vista  []. Next Vista works to make learning more engaging, with a focus on helping students start strong with any topic they study. Its central project is a free, online library of teacher- and student-made short videos for learners everywhere. Next Vista believes a strong four-minute video could save students days or weeks of frustration by providing a variety of presentations on the topics that give them trouble. Helping students become more engaged in and confident with their learning is the underlying philosophy that drives Rushton’s passion and resources to make this project succeed. Give him a few minutes, and he’ll convince you, too.

Michael Simkins, Ed.D.

Michael SimkinsMichael is an experienced educator and lifelong learner. Over the years, he has been an elementary schoolteacher, principal, director of large-scale educational technology projects, non-profit COO, and consultant to educational, governmental, and non-profit organizations. Since 2001, Michael has worked as creative director, executive director, and now consulting director for the Technology Information Center for Administrative Leadership (TICAL). From 1996 to 2001, Michael directed the Challenge 2000 Multimedia Project, one of the original Technology Innovation Challenge Grants funded by the U.S. Department of Education. In 2014, CUE, Inc. awarded Michael the “Making IT Happen Award” for commitment and innovation in educational technology. Michael holds Leading Edge Certification for the Administrator and for Online and Blended Teaching. He currently sits on the board of directors for California ASCD. Michael earned his B.A. at UC Santa Barbara and his master’s and doctorate degrees at UCLA.

Linda Ullah, Instructor

Linda UllahLinda Ullah currently works part time as a Support Coach for the Friday Institute for Educational Innovation’s 1:1 Initiative and as an online instructor for Foothill College’s Krause Center for Innovation.   She was Teacher in Residence at the KCI from 2000-2006.  She helped develop the Earn While You Learn Institute which is now KCI’s MERIT Program. Linda has been a School Development Coach for the New Tech Network. She was one of the co-authors for  the curriculum for the Oracle Education Foundation’s Project Based Learning Institute and co-taught that institute. During the late 1990s she was a Technology Learning Coordinator for the former Challenge 2000 Multimedia Project.  Linda’s background includes teaching a variety of K-12 classes including special education, gifted and talented and Title 1 programs. Linda holds an M.Ed in Special Education from the University of Cincinnati and a M. A. in Instructional Technology from San Jose State University. She is the recipient of the Harold H. Hailer Award in Instructional Technology and the SJSU Gold Award for the College of Education.