Our Staff

In the Classroom

Alder Montessori Madrone Room

Katy is an AMI-trained and Oregon-licensed bilingual teacher with decades of Montessori experience in both the public and private sector across the country.

Katy Fontneau

Teacher, Alder Montessori (Madrone)
Bilingual, AMI-trained

What started as a part-time volunteer position with an early childhood parent group associated with Alder Montessori's early years soon became a full-time role in the classroom with Katy. Rosa is Montessori-trained as a classroom assistant and a key community liaison and translator.

Rosa Ortiz

Bilingual Classroom Assistant, Alder Montessori (Madrone)

Itzia is the child of immigrants who grew up in Portland in a low income household. She has been interested in early childhood education since high school and decided she wanted to become a teacher for young children. She was excited to learn about Alder Montessori because it is a diverse program serving low income households.

Itzia Martinez Venegas

Bilingual Classroom Assistant, Alder Montessori (Madrone)

Alder Montessori Cedar Room

Jamie is Montessori trained and has experience in both public and private schools.

Jamie Greene

Teacher, Alder Montessori (Cedar)
Bilingual, AMI-trained

Claudia has been closely connected with Alder neighborhood since she attended nearby Reynolds High School. Formerly, she worked assisting seniors, and has been with Alder Montessori since 2019. She chose this work because she loves to help people, especially the kids. She loves her work because she loves to see the students smile when she helps them out.

Claudia Lopez

Bilingual Classroom Assistant, Alder Montessori (Cedar)

Itzia is the child of immigrants who grew up in Portland in a low income household. She has been interested in early childhood education since high school and decided she wanted to become a teacher for young children. She was excited to learn about Alder Montessori because it is a diverse program serving low income households.

Itzia Martinez Venegas

Bilingual Classroom Assistant, Alder Montessori (Cedar)

Directors and Coordinators

Liora has over 20 years leadership experience designing, managing and advocating for quality, innovative and equitable services and supports for low-income individuals and families in our Portland-Metro community. Liora earned a Masters in Public Administration from PSU, and her BA in Social and Cultural Anthropology from UC Berkeley, and is a strong advocate on bringing free and low cost Montessori education in collaboration with our local public elementary schools.

Liora Berry

Executive Director

Having taught and lead Montessori for over 20 years on three continents, Shazia is passionate about social justice and fostering equity, diversity, and inclusion. As a person of color, it is important to her to create safe and brave spaces, and to ensure that everyone's needs are met in a respectful and equitable way. She thinks of herself as a connector, and a bridge to bring people together.

Shazia Abdulla

Education Director

Vivian has worked in Montessori schools for over two decades, at every age level except high school. Her particular areas of interest include brain development, movement, and language. In the office, her graphic design and photography background help shape AEME's public presence. She has a Bachelor's in Science from Portland State University.

Vivian Aubrey

Montessori Program Coordinator