English at College of San Mateo - Meet the Faculty
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English
Meet the Faculty

Salem Admassu
Rene Anderson
Robbie Baden
Peter Bruni
William Clark
Shanna Cooper
Emil DeAndreis
Vincent Fitzgerald
Deborah Garfinkle
Scott Goldstone
Eric Heltzel
Teeka James
Evan Kaiser
Daniel Keller
Jon Kitamura
Jill Kolongowski
Emily Kurland
David Lau
Sara Lawrence
Joyce Luck
Sarah Mangin-Hinkley
Timothy Maxwell
Nicola Miner
Madeleine Murphy
Roberta Reynolds
Hector Sanchez
Mick Sherer
Anne Stafford
Keira Travis
Eric Treanor
Jeramy Wallace
Kat Webster
Elinor Westfold
Laura Woltag


Salem Admassu Salem Admassu
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: M.A. San Francisco State University, English and Creative Writing

Profile: Salem Admassu is a CSM alumnus. She studied journalism and creative writing as an undergraduate and has a master’s degree in English: creative writing, as well as a master’s in English: composition. She has taught and tutored at San Francisco State University, College of Marin,  and Las Positas College, and lately has been increasingly working within the Umoja learning community.  Outside of her role as an educator, she enjoys reading and writing short fiction and creative non-fiction.
Rene Anderson Rene Anderson
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.B.A., Business Administration and Accounting, Pacific Union College; M.A., English, San Jose State University; M.A,T., Secondary School English, Virginia Commonwealth University

Profile: Rene began teaching at the college level in 2012. Prior to coming on board full time at CSM in 2017, she taught part time at CSM, Canada, De Anza, and San Francisco State (Summer Bridge program). As a licensed Certified Public Accountant, she began her professional work experience at the Commonwealth of Virginia Office of the State Internal Auditor. Her teaching experience includes grades 6-12 assignments in San Francisco, Boston, and London. In addition, she has taught internationally in both Korea and Japan. Her areas of focused study include Biblical studies, Homer, Beowulf, Milton, Shakespeare, African American literature, and post-apocalyptic/near-future speculative fantasy and fiction.
Robbie Baden Robbie Baden
Associate Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, M.F.A., English, University of South Carolina

Profile: Robbie has been a CSM Bulldog since 2015 and formerly taught at the University of South Carolina, Foothill College, and De Anza College. He has also worked as a writer for the creative team at Yelp, but working with students is his passion. We all have the power to express ourselves and to change the world — no matter what people have told us in the past — and he strives in his classes to promote confidence in our abilities and to show how our writing offers the space to achieve our goals, to be ourselves, and to change the world in ways small and large, local and global, creative and professional.
Peter Bruni Peter Bruni
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.F.A., English, Academy of Art College/University of San Francisco; M.A., English Literature/Composition, San Francisco State University

Profile: Ultimately, the study of literature and language is an exercise in seeing–one which will bring into focus more of what heretofore has gone unseen, one which will provide students the critical eye, competent hand, and enlightened spirit they need not only to succeed in college, business, and life, but to be ever thoughtfully, happily engaged.
William Clark William Clark
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., Interdisciplinary Studies, University of California - Berkeley; M.M., Jazz Performance, New Jersey City University; M.F.A., Creative Writing, University of Texas - Austin; Certificates in Teaching of Composition and Post-Secondary Reading, San Francisco State University

Profile: Will has been a member of the CSM English faculty since 2015 and also teaches at Contra Costa College and the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. He is dedicated to shaping his classes into communities of engaged thinkers and writers. When he’s not teaching he’s either writing fiction or poetry, learning Farsi, or hiking with his three year old son in the East Bay hills.
Shanna Cooper Shanna Cooper
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., Modern Literature, University of California - Santa Cruz; M.A., English, S.F. State University; Certificates, Teaching Postsecondary Reading and Teaching Composition, San Francisco State Univeristy
Emil DeAndreis Emil DeAndreis
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, University of Hawaii - Hilo; M.F.A., English, San Francisco State University

Profile: Emil’s first book, Beyond Folly, was published in 2013. His second book, Hard To Grip, will be published in 2017. When he isn’t teaching, he is writing, and assisting with CSM’s baseball team. He lives in San Francisco with his wife.
Vincent Fitzgerald Vincent Fitzgerald
Assistant Professor, English
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Deborah Garfinkle Deborah Garfinkle
Assistant Professor, English
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Profile: Deborah Garfinkle is a poet, essayist, translator and a lover of all things textual and linguistic. She received her Doctorate from The University of Texas in Austin in Czech Language and Literature with a minor in Comparative Literature. Her creative writing, translations and reviews have appeared in newspapers, magazines anthologies and literary journals in the US and abroad. The Old Man’s Verses, her first full-length translation of selected works by Czech poet Ivan Diviš, was nominated for a Northern California Book Award. Ms. Garfinkle earned both an NEA Translation Fellowship and a PEN Translation Grant for her most recent translation, Worm-Eaten Time: Poems from a Life under Normalization, poems by Pavel Šrut. This collection will be published by Phoneme Media in February, 2016. She is currently at work on her next translation and creative writing. Apart teaching at CSM and De Anza College, Ms. Garfinkle is a book critic for The Kenyon Review Online, a proud supporter of PEN’s efforts to defend free expression worldwide and a happy camper now that Stephen Colbert has finally returned from his vacation.
Scott Goldstone Scott Goldstone
Assistant Professor, English
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Profile: Scott Goldstone has been working at College of San Mateo since 2011. Some of his hobbies outside of teaching include reading, traveling and listening to and playing music.
Eric Heltzel Eric Heltzel
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, University of California - Berkeley; M.A., English Literature, San Francisco State University

Profile: Eric is one of the newest members of the CSM family.  He has worked in tech startups and has directed documentaries on Student Voice.  In addition to teaching, Eric runs a nonprofit dedicated to infusing climate action in college education.  Eric is a gym rat and an outdoor enthusiast.  He loves cooking, playing guitar, attending baseball games, and camping with his dog, Goose.
Teeka James Teeka James
Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., American Studies and Religious Studies, William Smith College; M.A., English, Graduate Certificate in the Teaching of Composition, San Francisco State University

Profile: Teeka James has taught English at CSM since 1997 and has co-coordinated Writing in the End Zone since its inception in 2004. She has no doubt that her students will, in fact, go on to be formidable agents of change in this world, for they have made all the difference in hers.
Evan Kaiser Evan Kaiser
Associate Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., Linguistics, University of California, Santa Cruz; M.A., English and Graduate Certificates, Teaching Postsecondary Reading and Teaching Composition, San Francisco State University

Profile: Evan knows from experience that reading and writing help answer big questions like "who am I, what do I think, and what do I want to do in the world?" He aims to create a supportive, rigorous class where thoughts are visible and confusion invites us to learn. After working as a cashier, a tutor, and a freelance linguist, he began teaching Composition and ESOL in 2013 and has taught at CSM since 2017. Evan is from the South Bay and lives in San Francisco. You might find him listening to a live band, practicing drums, playing tennis, or hanging out with his cat.
Daniel Keller Daniel Keller
Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, Ohio State University; M.A., English, San Francisco State

Profile: Daniel Keller has been teaching at CSM since 2001 and has worked on  a number of projects to promote student success, including several learning communities. When he is not grading papers, Keller can be found cycling, hiking, reading, or pretending to play several musical instruments.
Jon Kitamura Jon Kitamura
Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, University of California - Santa Barbara; M.A., English, San Francisco State

Profile: Jon Kitamura has been a CSM Bulldogs faculty member since 2005
Jill Kolongowski Jill Kolongowski
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, Michigan State University; M.F.A., English (Creative Nonfiction), St. Mary's College of California

Profile: Jill teaches creative writing, literature, and composition, and she also helps coordinate the Writer’s Ruckus and is faculty advisor for the Creative Writing Club. Her first book, a collection of part-personal, part literary criticism essays called "Life Lessons Harry Potter Taught Me" was published in 2017.  When she's not grading papers or working on her second book, Jill can be found re-watching Schitt's Creek, cooking, camping, or hiking. She lives in San Mateo.
Emily Kurland Emily Kurland
Associate Professor, English
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Degrees: M.A., English, Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), San Francisco State University; B.A., Community Studies, University of California, Santa Cruz

Profile: Emily has been teaching at CSM since 2014 and previously taught at San Francisco State University and Skyline College from 2008-2014. She is primarily an ESL (English as a Second Language) professor, but has credentials to teach both college level Composition and Post-secondary Reading as well. Originally from Chicago, IL, Emily has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for over twenty years. When not teaching, Emily loves reading, writing, hiking, dancing, cooking, painting and spending time with her two adorable cats, Ella and Lulu.
David Lau David Lau
Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, University of California - Los Angeles; M.F.A., English, University of Iowa

Profile: David Lau is an assistant professor in the English Department at College of San Mateo, where he teaches courses in composition and in creative writing. His books of poetry are Virgil and the Mountain Cat (UC Press) and Still Dirty (AK Press/Commune Editions). His essays have appeared in New Left Review, Bookforum, and Boom: a Journal of California. He is co-editor of Lana Turner: a Journal of Poetry and Opinion.
Sara Lawrence Sara Lawrence
Associate Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, University of California - Santa Barbara; B.A., Psychology, B.A. Italian, M.A., English, San Francisco State University

Profile: Sara has been teaching at CSM since 2013 and currently serves as a lead faculty member in the Writing Center. She loves all forms of teaching and loves teaching writing in particular because she gets to watch her students figure out what they want to say to the world. For anyone kind enough to listen, she’ll go hoarse singing the praises of Italo Calvino, Parks and Recreation, The Clash, and Dynamo Donuts. When she’s not doing teacherly things, you can likely find her at the beach, at a farmers’ market, in a roastery, in a batting cage, or on dlisted.com.
Joyce Luck Joyce Luck
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English and Religious Studies, Randolph-Macon College; M.A., English, Pennsylvania State University; M.A., English (Creative Writing), San Francisco State University

Profile: Joyce Luck is originally from Richmond, Virginia, but migrated westward to California in 1997 to earn a second MA degree at SFSU. She began teaching at CSM in 1998. Prior to joining us at CSM, she taught English full-time at North Central State College in Mansfield, Ohio, and prior to that, she worked as a senior editor and project manager for a national educational test publishing company. Joyce also writes and has been published in numerous sources ranging from Girlfriends to Patheos to Lodestar Quarterly. Her most recent work is the novel The Master Yeshua, published by Roundfire Books in May 2015.
Sarah Mangin-Hinkley Sarah Mangin-Hinkley
Associate Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English and History, Stanford University; M.A., English Literature, Certificate in Teaching of Composition, San Francisco State University

Profile: Sarah is completing her Ph.D. at U.C. Berkeley, where she studied seventeenth-century literature and religion. Since joining the CSM English Department in 2016, Sarah has been inspired by the creativity, dedication, and incisiveness of all the students she has met in her courses and in the Writing Center. Sarah grew up near San Diego, and she currently lives in the East Bay. Her perfect weekend would include a redwood hike and a Sleater-Kinney concert.
Timothy Maxwell Timothy Maxwell
Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, M.A., English, University of California - Berkeley; M.F.A., English, University of Oregon
Nicola Miner Nicola Miner
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., History, Brown University; M.S., Journalism, Columbia University; M.A. English, Mills College

Profile: Nicola has been teaching at CSM since 2016. She has also taught at Berkeley City College and is currently teaching at City College of San Francisco. She is a San Francisco native who has spent most of her life in the city, where she now lives with her husband, four children, two cats and two dogs. She loves teaching at CSM because of the rich diversity of the student body.
Madeleine Murphy Madeleine Murphy
Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, King's College, Cambridge; M. Litt., Edinburgh University

Profile: Madeleine grew up in France and the U.K., and moved to California for no reason in 1990. She has been teaching English at CSM since 1993. Best job ever. She doesn't write poems or stories, but likes hashing out ideas, and especially likes helping other people hash out theirs. Other interests include Shakespeare, movies, ghost stories, cooking, making quilts, wandering around graveyards (if they're scenic and interesting) and snoozing with dogs.
Roberta Reynolds Roberta Reynolds
Professor, English
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Degrees: A.A., English, College of San Mateo; B.A., English, College of Notre Dame; M.A., English, D.A., English, Ph.D., English, University of Oregon
Hector Sanchez Hector Sanchez
Assistant Professor, English
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Profile: Hector Sanchez was born and raised in the rainforest of Mexico. As an indigenous person of the Huichol tribe, he grew up bow hunting and farming in the deep jungle. After relocating to the United States, he attended the College of San Mateo in 2012 where he became an English Major. Having transferred from CSM, he went on to get his Bachelor's in English Writing from Loyola University New Orleans. After a few years as a short story writer, playwright, and teacher in New Orleans; he then moved to Paris and earned his Masters in Creative Writing. Hector Sanchez spends most of his time reading and writing, and bouncing between New Orleans, Paris, and the Bay Area.
Mick Sherer Mick Sherer
Assoiciate Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, Whitman College; M.F.A., Creative Writing, St. Mary's College of California

Profile: Mick grew up in New York and New Jersey, but he has always felt most at home on the West Coast, especially in the Bay Area. He teaches composition, literature, and creative writing at CSM, and he helps to organize CSM’s once-a-semester reading series the Writers’ Ruckus. Mick lives with his family in Redwood City, and when he’s not teaching, he loves reading, writing, riding his bike, playing and listening to music, tracking down Argentinian food trucks, and drinking great coffee.
Anne Stafford Anne Stafford
Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, University of California - Berkeley; M.A., English, San Francisco State University

Profile: Anne joined CSM’s English Department in 2000, after teaching at San Francisco State University for ten years. After having been transformed by her experience as a student at Diablo Valley College in the early 1980s, she knew her future lay in trying to do the same for other Community College students. She couldn’t have found a better place to do it than College of San Mateo. When she is not teaching, she enjoys camping and hiking in Yosemite, reading, cooking, traveling, and eating great food.
Keira Travis Keira Travis
Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, McGill University, M.A., English, Queen's University; Ph.D, English, McGill University

Profile: Keira Travis has taught at CSM since 2015. She sort of prides herself on her ability to handle uprooting. She has taught in rural Nova Scotia. She has held a fellowship in Shakespeare studies at Stanford. She has taught at two very different universities in downtown Montreal. She also teaches at City College of San Francisco. In every context, she bears witness to students’ tremendous growth and courage.
Eric Treanor Eric Treanor
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., Spanish, Brigham Young University; Ph.D., English-Fiction Writing, University of Utah

Profile: Eric has taught English at San Diego State Univ., the Univ. of Utah, the Univ. of Costa Rica, Foothill College, Chabot College, and, since 2012, at CSM. He has been lucky enough to live in Argentina, Chile, and Costa Rica; most of his life, however, he's spent in the Bay Area, where he grew up. His free time belongs to fiction writing, jazz, the ocean, basketball coaching, beer, and books.
Jeramy Wallace Jeramy Wallace
Associate Professor, English
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Degrees: B.S., English, M.A. English, Notre Dame de Namur University

Profile: Jeramy Wallace has taught at CSM since 2011 and is currently a faculty coordinator for the CSM Umoja Community. His hobbies include camping/backpacking, hiking, searching for great food and coffee, going to the beach, and brewing beer.
Kat Webster Kat Webster
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, University of California - Berkeley; M.A., Ph.D, English, University of California - Los Angeles

Profile: Kat has been teaching at CSM since 2017, and she absolutely loves it. (Amazing students! Breathtaking views! A menacing, yet cute bulldog mascot! What's not to love?) Her courses focus on contemporary social issues because she thinks college should help you face the very real questions you run into just trying to be a person in the world. If she's not making handouts and putting dorky jokes on lecture slides, she's probably having a nice cup of tea something British to watch on PBS.
Elinor Westfold Elinor Westfold
Associate Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., Art History and Visual Culture Studies and Classics, Whitman College; M.A. in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), University of Washington

Career Highlights: Before she found a home at CSM in 2016, Elinor taught at City College of San Francisco, the University of Washington, Seattle Central College, Antalya International University in Turkey and Shantou University in China. She loves reading, cooking, eating, exploring, and learning, and finds that the people she learns the most from are her students.
Laura Woltag Laura Woltag
Assistant Professor, English
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Degrees: B.A., English, St. Lawrence University; M.A., English, M.F.A., English, San Francisco State University

Profile: Laura has been teaching at CSM since 2015, and enjoys reading, writing and thinking with students about contemporary issues in society and culture. She is on an Education Partnership for Internationalizing Curriculum (EPIC) Fellow at Stanford University for the 2016-2017 academic year, and a Writer-in-Residence at Alley Cat Bookstore in San Francisco. She is the author of the poetry chapbook Hush Hyletics. When she's not teaching, reading, writing, or dreaming toward her first book, she loves to hike in the redwoods, play the mandolin, and persuade her garden to do its thing.