Steven Oppenheimer | Gerry Simila | Virginia Vandergon | Norman Herr | Tony Recalde | Evaluator

Steve Oppenheimer received the Ph.D. degree from Johns Hopkins University and is currently Professor of Biology and Director, Center for Cancer and Developmental Biology at California State University, Northridge. He is the author or co-author, mostly with his Cal State students and K-12 teachers, of over 140 published papers, abstracts and books, including 10 textbooks and textbook editions. He has been awarded over $5 million in research and science education grants, serving as Principal Investigator, and served on National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation grant review panels. He has directed or is currently directing National Science Foundation, California Science Project and Eisenhower teacher enhancement projects. He is the recipient of 21 awards and honors in the areas of teaching and research. In 1984 he was named a statewide Trustees Outstanding Professor of the California State University system (the system's highest honor), and in 1992 he was elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The AAAS defines a Fellow as "a member whose efforts on behalf of the advancement of science or its applications are scientifically or socially distinguished." Dr. Oppenheimer serves as a co-director of the project and is responsible for carrying out Track 2, the Inquiry-Based Research Track component of the Eisenhower program.

Gerry Simila received his Ph.D. from University of California, Berkeley. He is currently Professor of Geology and Director, Center for Earthquake Studies at California State University, Northridge. He is author or co-author of numerous published articles and abstracts in the areas of earthquake research and geoscience education. His current education grants and positions include co-director of the California Science Project at California State University, Northridge; NASA grants for pre-service teachers and geology majors; NSF grants for geology curriculum equipment; and NSF grants for the California Earthquake Center seismic project for the San Fernando Valley. He is co-director of the proposed program, responsible for Track 1, the Geoscience/Physical Science Workshop component.

Virginia Vandergon received the Ph.D. degree from University of California, Riverside. She is an assistant professor of Biology and the K-12 science education outreach representative for the Biology department of California State University, Northridge. She has a California State Teaching Credential and is a former high school Biology teacher and department chair. She has designed and taught science and math courses for grades 9-12 and has designed and taught university-level science courses for prospective teachers. She has published in her research area of expertise, which is plant molecular evolution and genetics. She has also published a biology study guide for the CLEP exams. She is one of those rare individuals with extensive expertise in both K-12 teaching and administration, and university-level teaching and research science. She is currently the implementation director of the CSP and has presented workshops that focus on the Biology component of the 6-12 science standards. She is co-director of the Track 1 component of this grant and presents content workshops and observes the teacher leaders in their classrooms.

Norm Herr received the Ph.D. degree from University of California, Los Angeles. He is Professor of Science and Computer Education in the College of Education at California State University, Northridge, and a former high school science department chair. He directs the graduate programs in science and computer education at CSUN and has also served as a chemist, college science instructor and consultant for the College Board's Advanced Placement Biology Program. He has published numerous articles on his research on advanced science instruction in American high schools and has co-authored the Physical Science Curriculum Library (1999, Prentice-Hall), a 1300-page resource for secondary school science teachers that includes Hands-On Chemistry Activities with Real-Life Applications and Hands-On Physics Activities with Real-Life Applications. Dr. Herr is the author and principal investigator of 45 grants in science and computer education and has served as a consultant for numerous other projects. Dr. Herr is responsible for all Web-based training, Web-based reporting of classroom implementation and in-servicing, Web-based forums and Web-based resources development for Eisenhower teachers.

Tony Recalde is the Magnet School Director of Reseda Science Magnet High School in the Los Angeles Unified School District. He directs all aspects of this school, including operations, records, counseling, curriculum, evaluation, innovation, and developing a rich multicultural climate. He was a founding member of the Curriculum and Test Committee, Advanced Placement Environmental Science, Educational Testing Service (ETS), Princeton, New Jersey. His many awards include Outstanding High School Teacher from the Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society, Best Instructor, Reseda High School, and Favorite Teacher, Reseda High School. Mr. Recalde will be the liaison with all partner and participating schools. He will disseminate project information and applications and will work with school principals to help assure quality classroom implementation and teacher in-service. He will assist us in reviewing project progress and intervention strategies.

Project Evaluator
Dr. Susie Hakansson, Executive, Director of the California Math Project
Assessment and Dissemination specialist


The CSUN Eisenhower Science Leader Initiative is administered by the California Postsecondary Education