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Meet Our Counseling Staff & Faculty
Dean: Elizabeth David
Las Positas College Full Time Counseling Faculty
Las Positas College Part Time Counselors
- Sara Alturk
- Nadia Dadgar
- Leanna Jack
Dean, Student Services
Interim Administrative Assistant to the Dean, Student Services
Office: 1616 P
Senior Counseling Assistant
Office: 1616 Front Office
- M.A., Saint Mary’s College – Counseling
- Registered Professional Clinical Counseling Intern (PCCI)
- B.S., San Francisco State University – Business Administration (Accounting)
After building a career in designing and managing global learning programs in high-tech and biotech industries, Kimberly shifted careers to follow her passion in counseling. Kimberly started her career in counseling and teaching at LPC in 2015. In effort to support college access and equity, Kimberly co-coordinates the Umoja learning community, a two-semester student success program. Kimberly enjoys meeting the needs of Bay Area communities in a variety of capacities, such as currently serving on the board of Santa Clara based non-profit, Jump into Writing (serving K-14), creating a program to treat depression and alcohol abuse in Contra Costa County that was funded $1,000,000 through an innovation grant, and providing free career services to Santa Clara and San Mateo County residents (2009 – 2014).
Kimberly’s favorite hobbies are playing piano and traveling domestically and internationally. She said that serving the great students of Las Positas College is a dream come true and she can’t think of a better place to live out this dream.
Office: 1616 N
- M.S., San Francisco State University – Counseling
- B.A., California State University Hayward – Human Development
Gabriela has been a full-time counselor and instructor at Las Positas since fall 2014. She is bi-cultural and bi-lingual (English/Spanish). Gabriela provides academic, career and personal counseling in both languages, and enjoys working with students from diverse backgrounds on a one-to-one basis to help develop a successful academic experience. As a counselor, Gabriela works closely with ESL students, provides online counseling services, and teaches the Psychology-Counseling 30 – Student Success and the College Experience course. Prior to Las Positas College, Gabriela worked at Chabot College, Laney College, Merritt College and College of Alameda as a part-time counselor for various learning communities & special programs including Centro Latino, TRIO, Adelante, APASS, Gateway to College, and General Counseling, as well as the Tri-Valley Career Center. Her past career included Case-Management services with parenting teenagers throughout Alameda County & leading high school groups. On her space time you can find her enjoying time with her family, and attending cultural events in the community.
Office: 1616 T
- B.A., University of California at Santa Barbara – Business Economics
- M.A., Saint Mary’s College of California – M.A. Counseling
Joel Gagnon started working at LPC in 2011. His responsibilities include counseling student athletes and general students regarding their personal, academic and career related issues. He enjoys teaching Psychology Counseling 8 – Theories and Concepts of Group Process, as well as Psychology- Counseling 13 - Multicultural Issues in Contemporary America. When he’s not working he enjoys spending time in the outdoors and relaxing with his family. If he could give one piece of advice to his college aged self, it would be to read more.
Office: 1616 J
Counselor/HSI G2S Counselor
- M.A., San Jose State University – Counselor Education
- B.A., University of California at Berkeley – Sociology
- A.A., Chabot College – Liberal Arts
Jared Howard is currently serving as the counselor for the Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) Gateway to Success (G2S) program at Las Positas College. Jared has been a full-time counselor at Las Positas College since 2016, but has been a part of the Las Positas family since 2011 serving a number of different functions. He comes with counseling and teaching experience from a number of Bay Area Community Colleges, including Diablo Valley College, Santa Rosa Junior College, Ohlone College, and Merritt College.
As a former community college student, Jared has a clear sense of what it takes to get through the community college degree and transfer process! Make sure you schedule a time to meet!
Office: 1616 S
- M.S., San Francisco State University – Counseling
- B.A., University of California at Berkeley – Political Science
Christina Lee has been a counseling faculty at LPC since 2006. She provides academic, career and personal counseling services to all students at LPC. Christina also enjoys teaching Psychology Counseling 10 - Career & Educational Planning and Psychology Counseling 13 - Multicultural Issues in America courses. Christina appreciates and welcomes the opportunity to work with students from all diverse backgrounds and experiences to help them reach their educational and career goals. In her spare time, she likes to read, try out new cooking recipes, and garden.
Office: 1616 B
- M.S.W., UC Berkeley - Social Welfare
- B.A/B.A, Sonoma State University - Criminology and American Multicultural Studies
- A.S., Santa Rosa Junior College - Liberal Arts and Sciences
Marina began her community college career in 2005 where she has served in various capacities as a counselor, instructor and program coordinator. She joined the LPC counseling team in 2011 as the Puente instructor/counselor/coordinator and Articulation Officer, and currently serves as the Articulation Officer and as a general counselor/instructor. While her background also includes supporting students as a Financial Aid and Transfer counselor, she is most impassioned by her time supporting students in special programs such as Puente, EOPS and CalWORKs. She also enjoys teaching Psychology-Counseling courses such as Multicultural Issues in America, Study Skills, University Transfer Planning and Student Success and the College Experience. Prior to embarking on her community college career, Marina worked with Migrant Education supporting at-risk, first generation, second language students and their families with their transition from high school to college.
When asked about what she likes most about counseling, Marina said, “I most enjoy providing a source of support and guidance for students while instilling hope and confidence in those who may be overwhelmed with the process of navigating college culture and the system of higher education. It is truly an honor to help shape the life of a student and to watch them grow, develop and succeed.”
Office: 1616 Q
- Ph.D., Higher Education, Indiana University
- M.A., Counseling, University of San Diego
- B.A., Psychology, University of California, Davis
- A.A., Liberal Arts, Santa Rosa Junior College
Michael has worked at Las Positas College since 2006, when he joined the counseling faculty as Transfer Center director, counselor, and instructor. As a former community college student who participated in the Transfer Admission Guarantee (TAG) program with UC Davis, he is passionate about helping community college students achieve their educational goals. Prior to joining LPC, Michael worked at the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), as a counselor at UC Davis, as a counselor/instructor with San Diego Mesa College and Santa Rosa Junior College, and in bank operations at multiple financial institutions. He recently completed a doctorate in Higher Education, focusing his research on student engagement outside of the classroom and its impact on transfer student success. When not working, Michael enjoys spending time with his family, sports, outdoor activities, and travel.
- B.S., San Francisco State University - Business Administration & Computer Information System
- M.S., Capella University - Psychology with Specialization in Counseling Psychology
Rafael Valle started at LPC as a counseling intern in 2010, and was hired as a full-time counselor in 2014. He worked with the Puente Program and in general counseling for the first three years. In 2016, he transitioned as Director of the HSI Gateway to Success (G2S) program. He teaches several courses as required in the Puente program, but also enjoys teaching Psychology Counseling 13 - Multicultural Issues in America and Psychology-Counseling 30 – Student Success and the College Experience. Prior to working at LPC, Rafael spent three years working at Skyline College also as the Puente counselor. Simultaneously he was the Director of the Tri-Valley One Stop Career Center. And prior to that, he worked for a little bit over ten years in the financial field, more specifically in the brokerage and banking industry.
Rafael’s most extraordinary moments in his counseling career have been attending his Puente Northern California Regional Conferences. Rafael said that having an opportunity to collaborate with individuals of similar backgrounds, and who overcame similar challenges, was very rewarding. He said his involvement with the Puente Program was extremely memorable because everyone had the same goal of making higher education more accessible and a better place.
Counselor/ Student Interventions Developer
Office: 1616 R
- M.S., California State University, Sacramento - Counseling
- B.S., University of Iowa – Sociology
Angella joined LPC in 1998 as Student Interventions Developer & Counselor. Her responsibilities included developing programs that help students be successful. She has spent much of her time researching student success best practices, and putting several of those strategies into practice in programs here at LPC. Some of her areas of expertise are Positive Psychology, Growth Mindset, & Grit. Angella also enjoys teaching Psychology-Counseling 30 - Student Success and Experiences, Psychology-Counseling 10 – Career and Education Planning. Angella enjoys working with a variety of student groups including basic skills, new and returning students, career/technical and transfer students, and students who are on probation and dismissal status. Before joining LPC, Angella worked as a social worker with foster youth in Sacramento and Napa.
In her spare time, Angella likes to hike the trails in the Bay area, read, travel to Europe, attend the theater, and workout at her favorite gym- Orange Theory Fitness!
Marcelo Sanchez Heredia
LPC Student Services offices will be closed on Convocation and College Day for professional development but will reopen for online AND in person services on Wednesday, August 18th.
Online/Virtual Office Hours
Starting 8/18/21- 12/22/21
9:00 am – 5:00 pm
9:00 am – 7:00 pm
9:00 am – 5:00 pm
9:00 am – 5:00 pm
9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Drop-in may close early due to high demand
Call Us: 925.424.1400
Building 1600, First Floor