Meet Our Leadership Team

Administrative Team

Josh Drake-Executive Director

Josh Drake

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

About Josh

Throughout Josh’s career, he has worked to address issues of social justice to help our society more fully live up to its ideals of liberty and justice for all. Most recently, Josh was Vice-President at Rocketship Public Schools for six years with responsibility for its overall school program and, more specifically, helped build out its supports for the whole child and students with disabilities. Prior to that, he worked for seven years at Denver Public Schools where he served as Executive Director of Exceptional Students and was responsible for special education as well as gifted and talented. Earlier in Josh’s career, he worked to create jobs and wealth in minority communities through supporting the expansion of minority-owned companies. 

Josh holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Swarthmore College, a master’s of business administration from the UCLA Anderson School of Management, and a master’s in instructional leadership from RELAY’s graduate school of education.

Josh is fortunate to have been married for twenty plus years with one son who will be a freshman at UC Santa Cruz in the fall of 2023.

Bay Area Special Needs School Program Director Mark Nielsen

Mark Nielsen

PROGRAM DIRECTOR

About Mark
Mark spent time working with the Children’s Health Council and doing in-home ABA therapy before applying for a position as an Instructional Aide at Morgan Autism Center in 2011. As he gained experience working with the youngest group of students, he fell in love with the culture and students. He went back to school in 2013 to earn his teaching credential and led an older classroom at Morgan Autism Center for several years as a head teacher. Mark began his administrative role as an Assistant Program Director in 2018. He brings his experiences as both an instructional aide and a teacher to the office, adding a valuable perspective to the administrative staff.
Bay Area Special Needs School Hailey Barker

Hailey Barker

PROGRAM DIRECTOR

About Hailey
Hailey Barker began working with school age students as a substitute teacher for the Hillsborough School District. After accepting an opportunity for a long-term sub position at South elementary, she discovered her passion for working with students with special needs. She developed a joy for supporting families and thinking outside of the box to teach and engage students with autism and provide access for learning for all students. She went back to school in 2013 to earn her teaching credential, where she learned about the Morgan Autism Center. She began as an intern teacher for a younger classroom at Morgan Autism Center and taught in multiple post-secondary classrooms as head teacher for five years. Hailey began her role in administration as an Assistant Program Director in 2019 and has brought her organizational skills, interpersonal communication style, and creative thinking to the administrative team.
Bay Area Special Needs School Admin Team Sun Garcia

Sun Garcia

PROGRAM DIRECTOR

About Sun
Sun joined the Morgan Autism Center family, as a teacher in 1997 teaching for six years, before she journeyed around the world returning as a Program Specialist and Consultant in 2008. She manages the collaboration with Santa Cruz County Office of Education in their adoption of the Morgan Autism Center model. This entails mentoring, training, implementing structural components of the model, development of curriculum, behavioral support, and oversight of the model to fidelity.

When on site at Morgan Autism Center, Sun enjoys supporting teachers, staff and students with development of curriculum, instruction, administration, training and behavioral support. With a focus on a higher quality of life for students and clients, Sun continues to embrace the idea of lifelong education for all as she teaches the skills our students and clients need, in the most functional and practical form, with love and kindness.

Bay Area Special Needs School Office Manager Sally Hird

Maribel Sosa

STAFF ACCOUNTANT

About Maribel

Coming Soon!

Lisa Lemke

Lisa Lemke

DIRECTOR OF ADMINISTRATION

About Lisa

Lisa has been a part of the Morgan Autism Center family since 2002. She has worked in a variety of roles including an Instructional Aide, Administrative Associate, Development Associate, Development Director and now serves as the organization’s Director of Administration. 

She loves the mission of MAC and being a part of an organization that exonerates so much love and compassion for the individuals who are served. In her spare time, she loves reading, being out in nature, and spending time with her family (a husband, a son, and 3 fur babies). 

Bay Area Special Needs School Development Director Lisa Lemke

Haley Sepulveda

DEVELOPMENT AND COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER

About Haley

After graduating from California State University, Monterey Bay with a Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology, Haley was busy coaching her local volleyball teams but was searching for a full-time job that was meaningful. She found her perfect match, MAC! Haley started as an instructional aide in the School Program in January 2020 but transitioned to the administrative team as the Development and Communications Associate in November 2020. 

Haley became the Development and Communications Manager in January 2022. In this role you can find her running around planning MAC’s biggest fundraising events Starry Starry Night and Move-for-MAC, and keeping you up to date on information through MAC’s social media accounts & mailing lists. 

In her free time she loves to spend time with her family, visit her favorite beaches, and travel with her fiancé, Adrian. 

Bay Area Special Needs School Administrative Associate Amy Horan

Ching Young

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSOCIATE

About Ching
Ching is a graduate of UC Santa Cruz with a B.S. in Psychology. While in Santa Cruz, she discovered her passion of working with special needs kids in 2008, providing ABA therapy at The Bay School. She has been with Morgan Autism Center since 2014, where she started out in the classroom as an Instructional Aide for 7 years. 
After having to step away for a short time after maternity leave, Ching was able to return to her MAC family as part of the office admin team in 2022 through sheer good fortune. She has a deep connection to Morgan Autism Center and is passionate about furthering its mission of helping our students, clients, and their families thrive.
In her free time, Ching enjoys discovering new eats, cheering on the Golden State Warriors, and taking her terrier mix, Louie, to the beach.
Bay Area Special Needs School Program Nicole Ferguson

Nicole Ferguson

ADMINISTRATIVE SPECIALIST / ART THERAPIST

About Nicole

Nicole Ferguson is a BFA graduate of the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. She studied illustration, design, painting, and sculpture. During her last semester, Nicole visited an art studio for adults with special needs. At that point, her career completely changed.

Nicole met Morgan Autism Center’s Executive Director, Jennifer Sullivan. Immediately, Jennifer asked Nicole if she could teach students how to paint because they just lost their art therapist and would she be interested in a job in their Art Enrichment Program.

Ten years later, Nicole has had the privilege of teaching art to our clients and students. She is passionate about helping them cultivate their artistic skills as well as supporting their development through adaptive art curriculum. Nicole is also a part of the administration team, using her creative and administrative talents to further Morgan Autism Center’s mission. When she has free time, Nicole spends it with her family, outside gardening, and spoiling her Boston Terriers, Puka and Benny.

Eric Santiago

FACILITIES TECHNICIAN

About Eric

Eric is the newest addition to our admin team. He joined MAC in July 2021 working as our Facilities Technician. Eric is a San Jose native, and appreciates giving back to his community.
He enjoys working at Morgan Autism Center because he likes to help others, as well as make a change. In his free time, he likes to sing, create music, and be active.

Noe Lopez

Noe Lopez

Behavior Specialist

About Noe

Noe started his career in education in 2013 working for the Franklin McKinley School District as a Paraeducator and immediately knew that serving this community was going to be his life’s passion. He sought to learn and grow and quickly became the Inclusion Collaborative Specialist while also beginning to work part time as an In-Home ABA Service Provider.

After 5 years, Noe started a new journey at The Creekside School as a Teaching Assistant, honing his skills and knowledge in the behavioral field and helping to jump-start their Behavior Support Team as their Behavior Specialist. Noe spent his time training staff in least to most behavioral practices, supporting during crisis situations, and working closely with the team to always make sure a student-first approach was being taken. Today, Noe is thrilled to join us as our new Senior Behavior Analyst and is very excited for what the future will bring!

Teaching Team

Bay Area Special Needs School Teacher Kristin Schaefer

Rob McPhee

ROOM 1 TEACHER

About Rob

Rob has been with the Morgan Center for over 17 years!   Originally a theatre geek with a B.A in Technical Theatre and Design from San Francisco State University, as well as 5+ years of professional stage management experience, Rob landed at the Morgan Center completely by chance!  He fell in love with the students, the culture, the climate and the sense of family at MAC.  Having worked as an Instructional Aide, Rob is excited to have taken on a lead teaching role and is currently wrapping up acquiring his special education credential.  In his free time, Rob loves cooking, being creative, and video and board gaming.  He is also happily partnered to his wonderful husband who he has been going on adventures with for over 19 years.

Bay Area Special Needs School Teacher Claudine Pitpitan

Claudine Pitpitan

ROOM 2 TEACHER

About Claudine
Claudine graduated from San Jose State University with a BA in Art before pursuing a credential in special education. She is passionate about teaching and has been working at Morgan Autism Center for over 20 years. Claudine enjoys traveling, art, photography, music, nature, and food.

Ronald Manuel

ROOM 3 TEACHER

About Ron

Ron has been with Morgan Autism Centert for the past 4 years, working in Room 2 with the youngest students at our school. He is excited to start the next step in his teaching journey with parents and their children.  

It has been a blast getting to know the students and Ron can’t wait to see what the year has in store for them!

Ron is an easy going Californian who has way too many hobbies. A couple of favorites are building/riding surfboards and creating music in his spare time.

Bay Area Special Needs School Teacher Anna Town

Isela Lopez

ROOM 4 TEACHER

About Isela

Isela has been at Morgan Autism Center for the past 7 years. She worked with the youngest students in room 2 as well as the older students in rooms 5 and 3. Isela graduated with a BA in Communicative Disorders from SFSU as she originally wanted to be a speech therapist. However, after working at the Morgan Center, Isela realized that her passion lies more in teaching and is currently working on finishing up her teaching credential. Isela has been happily married for more than 11 years and has the most beautiful baby. In her spare time  Isela likes to keep her hands and mind busy by running, singing, knitting, beading, and embroidery. 

Bay Area Special Needs School Teacher Heather McClimans

Heather McClimans

ROOM 5 TEACHER

About Heather
Heather has been a team member at Morgan Center since 2013. She started out as a substitute, moved to an instructional aide position, and before too long she realized that Morgan Autism Center was more than just a job and began her journey of becoming a teacher. Heather has a background in Social Work. She has a desire to teach in a way that each student can learn and understand. She consistently strives to be creative, challenging, and trustworthy within her classroom to her students, student’s families, and staff.
Bay Area Special Needs School Teacher Jamilah Miller

Nick Toro

ROOM 6 TEACHER

About Nick

Nick graduated from Pitzer College in 2018 and has been teaching since 2019. Nick got his start in special education when, while working as a football and wrestling coach in 2018, he became a paraeducator. Nick is originally from New Jersey and moved to California when he was 16 years old. In 2022 he lived in Wyoming but now he’s back in the Golden State! When he isn’t teaching, you can find Nick crying because the Dallas Cowboys probably lost again. But outside of football season you can find him cooking and enjoying life with his friends and two dogs!

Bay Area Special Needs School Teacher Shaila Prabhu

Shaila Prabhu

ROOM 7 TEACHER

About Shaila
Shaila began her career teaching college students courses in Business, Economics and Management in India before emigrating to the United States with her husband. She has always wanted to teach and came across an opportunity at Morgan Autism Center advertised in the classified section of the San Jose Mercury Newspaper. She interviewed for the position of an Instructional Aide and joined the program in August 2001. Her experience working with the students and staff led her to San Jose State University for her Special Education Credentials and she graduated with a Master’s in Special Education in June 2010. She has been the lead teacher in 2 different classrooms over the last 14 years. The school’s principles regarding working with the students, the staff support, and the culture at the school is why she has stayed in the only position that she has worked at in the United States. She enjoys her work and looks forward to being at work every day.
Bay Area Special Needs School Teacher Kristin Schaefer

Kristin Schaefer

ROOM 8 TEACHER

About Kristin

Kristin grew up in Tucson Arizona and went to the University of Arizona for Elementary Education. She moved to San Jose in 2007 and has been working at the Morgan Autism Center ever since. Kristin received her masters in Special Education and enjoys cooking for her friends and family. She lives with her husband and 2 children.

Tyler Jakatis

P.E. COORDINATOR

About Tyler
Tyler has been working at Morgan Autism Center since 2004 and has been the P.E. coordinator for the past 11 years. Before that, he worked as an instructional aide in 3 different classrooms. As the adaptive PE coordinator, he works with every classroom on campus for 30 minutes a day facilitating yoga, bike riding, and adaptive sports.

In 2003, Tyler received a bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University in Child and Family Development. Following graduation, he worked as a 1-to-1 aide at a public high school with a student who had high functioning autism. Tyler then moved to San Jose and worked in a couple of different special education programs before coming to Morgan Autism Center.

Adult Program Team

Bay Area Special Needs School Adult Program Director Aya Sasaki

Aya Sasaki

ADULT PROGRAM DIRECTOR

About Aya
Aya Sasaki started working in the Adult Program in August 2008 as a skills trainer. Prior to joining Morgan Autism Center, she worked as an Events Coordinator and an art teacher at a children’s art studio. From her first day engaging with the clients at Morgan Autism Center, she knew it was where she wanted to pursue her career. She took the role as the Community Integration Program Coordinator in 2016 and has since moved on to taking the role as the Community Integration Program Director. As the director, Aya organizes and facilitates engaging and enriching community experiences for the Adult Program clients. In her free time she enjoys going to concerts and spending time with her dog Kuma.
Bay Area Special Needs School Development Associate Sara Cedano

Sara Cedano

COMMUNITY INTEGRATION PROGRAM DIRECTOR 

About Sara

After graduating from Cal State Fullerton in 2017 with a Bachelor’s in Health Science, Sara was eager to start her career in the non-profit sector. Sara discovered Morgan Autism Center and joined the organization in 2018 where she started as a skills trainer in the Adult Program working with the adult clients on a variety of skills in the community (e.g. safety, social, pre-vocational). She spent the next several years developing strong relationships with clients and a big love for the Morgan Autism Center community and mission. Since her start in 2018, Sara has worked hands-on as a skills trainer and in the office working with the fundraising and event planning team. She became the CIP director in 2020 and since then works alongside Aya Sasaki and the AP team to create enriching experiences for the adult clients .  In her free time, Sara enjoys listening to live music, making people laugh, and spending time with her family.

Board of Directors

Tom Caulfield

BOARD CHAIR

About Tom

Tom has been associated with Morgan Autism Center since his son, Thomas, started attending in 2007. He has been a Board member since 2013 and has been the Board Chair since July 2021. Tom has been the Vice-Chair and is also a member of the Boards Recruitment Committee. His long-term goals for Morgan Autism Center are to support its distance learning efforts, and to ensure that we only return to campus when it is safe to do so. His longer term goals revolve around program expansion.

Tom works at Twitter in the Supply Engineering organization and he and his family enjoy boating, hiking, biking and all things outdoors.

Bay Area Special Needs School Board Rueben Zarate

Debbie Textor

BOARD VICE CHAIR

About Debbie

Debbie has a passion for supporting students, teaching staff and families. She is a retired educator with 34 years of experience as an elementary teacher, school Principal, Director of Special Education and Executive Director of Student Services and Special Education. She is skilled at curriculum and program development, leadership development, as well as special education laws and is a fierce advocate for students with special needs. She is a compassionate and caring leader.

Debbie was honored to join the MAC Board in March of 2022. Her experience and knowledge added value as the Executive team and the Board navigated the ever changing landscape of the pandemic. Having placed students in the Morgan Center, she knows first-hand the positive impact it has on students and their families and is proud to serve on the Board.

Debbie is a certified bareboat sailor and loves to be on the ocean or sailing on Lake Tahoe. She also loves to travel, ski, tend to her garden and chickens, and play with her dogs and her partner, Ted. She enjoys spending time with her family and close friends. Debbie is an active member of the Cupertino Rotary.

Bay Area Special Needs School Board Jeffrey Eaton

Jeffrey Eaton

BOARD MEMBER

About Jeffrey

Jeffrey Eaton has proudly served on the Morgan Autism Center Board of Directors since 2018. One of his favorite lifetime memories was touring the previous campus for the first time with Executive Director, Brad Boardman, and realizing that he had never been so close to so much selfless dedication and pure love in any environment. He knew immediately that Morgan Autism Center was a ‘lifetime’ connection for him.

As an Architect, Jeffrey brings his design, construction and project management experience to help assist with the organization’s campus and logistic needs and as a member of the Campus Facilities Committee. He aspires to help guide Morgan Autism Center in its vision for the future.
Jeffrey is a graduate of Architecture from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and is the proud father of two teens, Kennedy (17) and Maverick (16) who both attend Branham High School.

Stephanie Gray

Adora Fisher

BOARD MEMBER

About Adora

Coming Soon!

 

Stephanie Gray

Stephanie Gray

BOARD MEMBER

About Stephanie

Stephanie Gray’s introduction to the Morgan Autism Center was through her attendance at the Starry Starry Night Fundraising Galas, which showcases the unique strengths of MAC and its powerful impact on families. The Galas provided an opportunity for Stephanie to reflect back on the challenges her younger brother experienced as a child and how he would have benefitted from such essential programs that MAC provides to Bay Area families. When the Morgan Autism Board invited her to join in January 2023, Stephanie was honored and excited to give back.  

Currently Senior Manager of Business Assurance Services at SRI International, Stephanie brings over 15 years of experience in financial, operational, governance, risk management and compliance to the MAC organization. 

Stephanie holds CPA, CISA and CIA certifications in accounting and auditing, a BBA from Southwestern Oklahoma State University, and an MBA from Pepperdine University. In addition, she serves on the SRI Federal Credit Union Board of Directors.

 

Bay Area Special Needs School Board Greg Finn

Rickey Green

BOARD MEMBER

About Rickey

I have been a member of Morgan Autism Center’s Board of Directors since June 2002 and have served as chairman of the Finance Committee since November 2002. I was first introduced to Morgan Autism Center in 2001 while serving as legal counsel for a private foundation that provided financial support of the nonprofit organization’s relocation from Los Altos.

On my very first visit to Morgan Autism Center, I was sold. It was clear from my exposure to the kids, the faculty, the community, and the Morgan Center teachings, that Morgan Autism Center was an incredible place. Although I do not have a child in the program, it was readily evident to me how much the lives of the students were enriched by the individualized and compassionate teachings there.

At the time I first became associated with Morgan Autism Center, I was working as an attorney in private practice, having transitioned from a 5 year career in public accounting (CPA), then pursuing my educational studies in law (JD/LLM) and initially starting my legal career as an associate attorney for a mid-size law firm. Through the years that I have assisted Morgan Autism Center in navigating its growth, I also navigated a career in private law practice as well as an executive in health care. I am currently the CEO of Power Personnel, a healthcare staffing company that my wife, Cynthia Stewart, and I provide strategic leadership for and manage. Power Personnel is distinguished for its reputation for outstanding service delivery and was named as one of the top 100 fastest growing healthcare staffing companies by Staffing Industry Analyst.

As a member of Morgan Autism Center’s Finance Committee, I have had the pleasure of working with fellow committee members Barbara Wright (Board) and Doug Stevens (Business Manager) to assist the center in achieving its financial growth. We all believe the broad community impact that Morgan Autism Center has from its conferences, educational programs, and consulting services about autism to multiple school districts makes it one of the unsung heroes of Silicon Valley. We are all proud to support the charitable mission of the Morgan Autism Center.

Bay Area Special Needs School Board Ted Moorhead

Ted Moorhead

BOARD MEMBER

About Ted

Back in 2009 a fellow Rotarian approached Ted about Morgan Autism Center. At that time the organization was looking for additional board members, and Ted was looking to give back to the community. The special needs space quickly gots his attention as he has a daughter with special needs. She is not at Morgan Autism Center, but she receives help from many well intentioned and caring people, just like they deliver. After touring the program and doing his own due diligence, it was very clear that Morgan Autism Center was a leading organization in a growing space; that Ted thought he could help.

Ted’s position and purpose of being on the board is to help focus on the long-term viability of the organization. Ted uses his background at Merrill Lynch as a Senior Vice President of Wealth Management at the Santana Row branch to do so. He is proud to say that the diligent and persistent efforts by faculty in the past are evident in the service Morgan Autism Center provides now. With the forward thinking of fellow board members and the drive of the entire staff, Morgan Autism Center can continue to prosper and be on the leading edge of the continual changing face of Autism.

A special thanks goes out to all the people who give of their time and money, allowing Morgan Autism Center to be successful in what it does!

Bay Area Special Needs School Board Joe Moriarty

Joe Moriarty

BOARD MEMBER

About Joe

Joe Moriarty joined the Morgan Autism Center board in 2017 and is an Executive Vice President at CBRE co-leading the Northern California Capital Markets Team.

Joe has a BS in Business from Southern Methodist University and an MBA from the Wharton School at The University of Pennsylvania.

Joe has three children, two which have special needs and are former students of Morgan Autism Center.

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Morgan Autism Center

950 St. Elizabeth Drive
San Jose, CA 95126-3900

Phone: (408) 241-8161
Email: info@morgancenter.org
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