About Governing Council & Representatives

Canyon School is administered by the Governing Council, the school's decision-making body, which is made up of teachers, parents and guardians, administrators, and other staff. The Governing Council reviews and advises on new programs and activities at the school. The Council then asks Booster Club to raise funds to implement their decisions.

The members of the 2016-17 Governing Council include Principal Nicole Sheard plus:

Amy Hopper (Community Member) 
Julie Lee (Parent)
Inbal Gonen (Parent)
Mona Huizar (Teacher)
Doug Stoll (Teacher)
Tamara Gorman (Teacher)
Nicole Sheard (Administrator)
Barbara Blake (Classified)
Akimi Sujishi-Watson (UTLA Rep.)

1. Jason Fink (parent)
2. Dustin Hall (parent)
3. Lisa Riddle (teacher)
4. Kellie Howard (teacher)

To contact a parent representative about concerns or ideas you wish to make known to the council, email govboard@canyoncharter.com or contact one of the parent representatives directly.

All parents and guardians are eligible to run for an elected position on the Governing Council. Elections are held in May.

Governing Council - Parent Representatives

Amy Hopper (Voting Member, 2016-2018)
When we moved to this neighborhood, 4 years ago, I realized what a special place it was, and immediately embraced the community by joining BOCA, helping Rustic Canyon Park with Rustic Nights, becoming a board member of the SMCCA, while being Annual Giving Director for 2 years at Canyon and, last year, serving as the Canyon Booster Club President. As Annual Giving Director, I became more involved with Governing Council and as President I implemented some new ideas and goals. I worked hard to reinforce the relationship between Booster Club and Governing Council, to return the business of creating and enforcing policy to Governing Council, while leaving fundraising to the Booster Club, and re-establishing a budget committee comprised of Booster leadership, administration, teachers and Governing Council representatives. As an elected Governing Council Representative, I want to continue to encourage the important connection between Governing Council and Booster Club, and continue to act as a liaison between Canyon Charter School and the Canyon community.

Julie Lee (Voting Member, 2016-18)
My name is Julie Lee.  I am a mother of three, Audrey (2nd), Vivian (TK) and Claire (age 4).  I have a Masters in Public Health with a concentration on families and communities.  I was an attorney with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission before taking time off to manage our household.  Over the past two years, I have gotten to know and love our school as a room parent and frequent volunteer at all our great functions. We have many years of elementary school left so I am very invested and committed in making sure Canyon continues to be a fantastic school.

Inbal Gonen (Voting Member, 2015-17)
My name is Inbal Gonen. I am a mother of three kids, Noah (4th), Lev (2nd) and Tali (K). I have a Masters degree in Early Childhood Education and have always been involved in my children's education. I have worked as a teacher, staff educator and parent educator. This has allowed me to get both sides of the coin in education. I was involved in the recent Canyon Chapter rewrite and therefore have an understanding of what our school stands for. I look forward to serving on the Governing Board and doing what I can to continue in our joint effort to keep our school great.

Jason Fink (Alternate, 2016-2018)
Originally from Los Angeles, I have lived in New York City and Europe (Paris and Germany) for many, many years before returning to Santa Monica four years ago. I went to U.C.L.A. for undergraduate, and Yale University and University of Michigan for graduate school. I taught at university for several years, before going to Fordham University Law School in New York City. I have been a practicing attorney for the past 11 years. I am married to Dr. Samantha Ali Fink, who can play one mean game of ping pong (or "table tennis" as she describes it), for the past 24 years. I am the proud parent of two, Moshe (who is now a middle schooler) and Chana (who is entering 3rd grade in 2016). From my first moments at Canyon, I recognized that it was a very unique space: precious, safe, engaging and filled with the sweetest, most endearing children. I quickly understood that an essential element is the degree and intensity of the parent community involvement.

Dustin Hall (Alternate, 2016-18) 
My name is Dustin Hall. I am the proud father of Mina (4th) and Emma (2nd) and husband to Alessandra. There is not a day that goes by that we don't feel privileged to be at our school with the amazing faculty, amazing support staff and amazing community of Canyon. I graduated from Paul Revere and Palisades High School. I have a degree in Media Studies from Menlo College. I currently work as a Broker Associate for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices in Pacific Palisades, where I have resided for the past 12 years.