Faculty / Creative Teams


 

Lower School Creative team (K-3)

Heidi Gomez
Kindergarten, Project-Based Learning Specialist (Social Studies)

Heidi Gomez graduated from Southern Adventist University with a B.A. in Liberal Arts Education and a minor in English. Teaching is Gomez’s passion, and she uses her skills as a bilingual speaker to facilitate communication and enrich her lessons. She applies her cultural background to teach children about the beauty and diversity of God’s world.

Gomez loves to make learning fun, personal, and interactive, and enjoys teaching through centers, small group instruction, and engaging activities. She takes the time to sit with each of her students individually to help each one learn how to make learning personally meaningful. Through this one-on-one time, she helps her students develop the skills they need to think critically and creatively. Gomez believes strongly in teaching her students to respect and love each other just as God loves them.

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Danielle Cameron, MS.ED.
First Grade Teacher

Danielle Cameron was born in Chicago and has lived in many different places across the midwest and the northeast. She’s been married to Richie for 12 years, who is also an educator and a coach. They have three children— Khali (8), Alaya (6), and Ellis (3)—who are also here at North Tampa. She graduated from Oakwood University in Alabama with a B.A. in English and an A.S. in Accounting. After teaching for a couple years, she went to graduate school at University of Pennsylvania for an M.S. Ed in Elementary Education. She’s taught for 13 years in various roles, but for the past two years, she was homeschooling her children. She enjoys teaching every subject, but her favorites are reading, writing, and facilitating project work with students.

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Helen Mateo, MA
First Grade Teacher, Math Specialist K - 3 Creative Team

After receiving her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Fitchburg State College, Helen Mateo earned a Master’s degree in Bilingual Bicultural Education from the University of Connecticut. Her passion for teaching led her to 23 years in both public and private schools. During her time at Tampa Adventist Academy, Mateo established the Title 1 Program and spent five years serving as a Special Needs Coordinator. Not only did she tutor 11th and 12th grade English, but thanks to her fluency in Spanish, she taught 7th and 8th grade Spanish and translated letters and meetings. She now serves at North Tampa as a first grade teacher as well as the Math Specialist for the K-3 Creative Team.

When Mateo isn’t in the classroom, she loves to read, take walks, and spend time with family. Her son currently attends Adventist University of Health Sciences in Orlando and her daughter is a North Tampa 8th grader.

Mateo is devoted to helping students enjoy learning, and she is committed to providing developmentally-appropriate experiences in the classroom. She is intentional in creating relationships with her students and their families and helps her students see Jesus in all aspects of their lives.

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April Nowotny, MS
Second Grade Teacher, K-2 Project-Based Learning Specialist (Science)

As a young girl, April Nowotny knew that she wanted to become a teacher. She grew to attend Andrews University in Michigan, where she obtained her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education with an emphasis in Language Arts. She then went on to receive a Master of Science with an emphasis in outdoor education from Southern Adventist Academy in Tennessee.

She has instructed students ranging from kindergarten to fourth grade, and finished her most recent position at Tampa Adventist Academy, where she served for eight years, teaching second grade.

Outside of the classroom she enjoys reading, photography, scrapbooking, and traveling, and she and her husband have two children who will be attending North Tampa. Nowotny is passionate about teaching and showing her children the love of Christ. She strives to instill a love of learning in all of her students while helping them walk closer with Jesus.

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Manouchka Louine
Third Grade Teacher, 3-6 Literacy Specialist

Manouchka Louine has been teaching elementary students for eight years.  Born and raised in Ft. Lauderdale, she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Health Administration. While working on her degree, she had the opportunity to work with children at a local elementary school, and there developed a passion for teaching. She then went on to receive her elementary certification.

She is married to Chris, I.T. Director, and they have three beautiful boys, Ethan-Louis, Allan, and Matthew.

She loves watching children grow and flourish and become passionate about their learning. She also enjoys challenging and encouraging them to be the best they can be. Her desire is to use every opportunity to find ways of making the classroom environment and lessons stimulating and exciting.


Middle School Creative Team (4-6)

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Rachel Frescino
Fourth Grade Teacher, 3-6 Project Based Learning Specialist (Social Studies)

Mrs. Rachel Frescino began her career here in Florida teaching first grade at Forest City Adventist School in Altamonte Springs. She then traveled abroad with her husband, Joseph Frescino, to teach in the warm Pacific waters of Micronesia, in the Republic of Palau.  There she taught 4th grade and learned to love the rich culture and beauty of island life. After two years in Micronesia, they settled back home in Central Florida. She has taught third grade at Walker Memorial Academy in Avon Park for the last two years.

Mrs. Rachel Frescino loves adventure, innovation, and most of all children, and is thrilled to be joining the North Tampa team. She received her degree in Elementary Education from Southern Adventist University in Collegedale, Tennessee. She is passionate about student engagement and creating rich, hands-on experiences that make learning come to life.

Besides teaching her students, she enjoys sunshine, Disney World, spending time with her family, and expressing her creativity through hand-lettering, design, taking pictures, and crafting.

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Sonia Hernandez, MA
Sixth Grade Teacher, 3-6 Project Based Learning Specialist (Science)

Before joining the North Tampa team, Sonia Hernandez was a teacher at Walker Memorial Academy in Avon Park, Florida.  During her time at Walker, she taught fourth grade and 7-11th grade science. There, she received the Rising Star Award for excellence in teaching. She also taught 5th grade in Fort Meade, Florida, where she was voted Teacher of the Year, and served as chairperson for the 5th grade teachers.

Mrs. Hernandez has a Bachelors in Business Administration, but when she realized her calling was to teach, she obtained her Masters in Elementary Education. She is married to Pastor Orlando Hernandez, and they have three children: Orlando III, a sophomore at Adventist University of Health Sciences in Orlando; Isaac, a senior, and Isabel, a seventh grader. Mrs. Hernandez and her family love Jesus and spending time together. Her hobbies include fishing, camping, hiking, sports, and theatre. Mrs. Hernandez has a passion for making education fun for students, allowing them to take control of their education, and encouraging students to think outside the box, which is an integral part of her motivation in teaching!

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Ruth Cress
Fifth Grader Teacher, 3-6 Math Specialist

Prior to joining North Tampa Christian Academy, Ruth Cress, taught 5th and 6th grades at Tampa Adventist Academy for 8 years.  She has also taught Algebra, Geometry, Physical Science and Biology.

Ms. Cress started her teaching career 23 years ago after graduating from Union College inn Lincoln Nebraska with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education.

In 2003 Ms. Cress, was nominated for the NASA Teacher in Space program.   She has held membership in several professional organizations, such as the Association for Curriculum and Development and the National Science Teachers Association.

Ms. Cress enjoys the outdoors, spending time with family, reading, crocheting and knitting.  She loves to travel to visit her children and grandchildren all around the country.

It is her desire to help point her students to the Kingdom of God and develop their character for this life and for eternity.

 

Upper School Creative Team (7-12)

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Kevin Cameron, MEd
7-12 Integrated Media/Video Production Specialist

Kevin Cameron, a Canadian, started his career as a high school English teacher at Crawford Adventist Academy, in Toronto, where he spent 10 successful years.  The highlight of his time at Crawford was developing a media department, writing and producing sold out stage plays, such as the locally celebrated feature film entitled “Hush”.  With a B.A. in English Language Arts Education and a Master’s in Education with an emphasis in Leadership, Mr. Cameron was called to serve as principal at Ramah Junior Academy, a Pre-K-8 school in Cleveland, Ohio from 2011-2016.

As an entrepreneur with his own film and video marketing business, Kevin Cameron has made over 200 videos in the form of commercials, documentaries, promotional, and music videos through his media company. Kevin loves positively impacting young people and has a passion for storytelling. He loves sports, traveling and scintillating conversation; but most of all, you will probably find him spending quality time with his wife and two daughters.

Kevin Cameron is passionate about life and is honored to be a part of the team at North Tampa!

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Ronnie Pittman
7-12 Physical Sciences Specialist, Physics, Chemistry

Ronnie Pittman graduated from Southern College with a BA in Biology and a minor in Chemistry and Education. After graduating, he began his teaching career at East Pasco Adventist Educational Center in Dade City, FL, where he taught math and science for 6 years. Afterward, Pittman moved to Bass Memorial Academy in Purvis, MS, where he taught for 4 years as a physics teacher, IT director, and was an assistant coach for the acro gymnastics team. Most recently, Pittman spent 13 years at Collegedale Academy in Collegedale, TN. He instructed students in physics, math, video editing, the Adobe suite of products, and gymnastics.

Pittman enjoys a variety of hobbies including machining, fabricating, off-roading, and coaching gymnastics. He is Cuban-American and was born and raised in Miami, Florida. He has a lovely wife, Marggie, and two beautiful daughters. What he enjoys most about teaching is forming relationships with his students and helping them expand their horizons and their God-given talents.

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Monique Rothe
7-12 Humanities Specialist, Writing

Monique Rothe graduated from Southern Adventist University in Tennessee with degrees in Secondary Education and English. Since then, she has accumulated over twenty years of teaching experience in literature, writing, and Language Arts. She has also served as a yearbook sponsor for more years than she can remember!

Rothe shares parenting with her husband as they finish raising their two sons, one of whom graduates in 2019. She is also the mother to two cats, who assure her they are more important than everyone else in the house. When she has free time, Rothe enjoys cooking, painting, drawing, reading, snorkeling, and scuba diving (when it’s possible). However, spending as much time as possible with God and her family is always a priority.

Her favorite thing to do is show students that being an author is an artful skill which they can all develop. She has a passion for helping students exercise their creative talents and finding the humor in all things human.

 

K-12 Creative Team

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Felix Alicea
K-12 Health and Fitness Director

Before joining the North Tampa team as the Health and Fitness Specialist, Mr. Alicea started his career at Tulsa Adventist Academy in Tulsa, OK, as their K-10 P.E., 9-10th Science, and 7-8th Math Teacher. After three years, he and his wife relocated to Lincoln, NE, where Mr. Alicea was a K-12 P.E. teacher, 9-12th Athletics/Activities Director, and girls basketball coach.

Mr. Alicea received his Bachelor degree from Union College in Lincoln, NE, in K-12 Physical Education.  Since graduating from college, he has been heavily involved in athletics from coaching, developing and running athletic programs,, as well as expanding different P.E. classes.

Mr. Alicea and his wife have a boy and girl, and live in the Saint Petersburg area.  Some of his favorite hobbies and things to do include exercising, playing a wide variety of sports, and being from Colorado,  exploring in the mountains.

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Lani Hosei
K-12 Music Specialist

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Daveen Williams, MA
Special Needs Director/Reading Specialist

 

Staff

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Joseph Frescino
Ambassador/Music and Spiritual Outreach

Mr. Frescino graduated in 2013 from Southern Adventist University in Tennessee where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Music. Since then, he married his wife, Rachel, and they spent three years as missionaries on the island of Palau, located in the Micronesian region of the Pacific Ocean. During his time there, he taught many different subjects at Palau Mission Academy, in addition to a variety of extracurricular commitments. His last year on the island he worked as a Youth Pastor discovered his love for youth and passion for ministry.  After leaving Palau in 2016, Mr. Frescino and his wife moved to Walker Memorial Academy in Avon Park, Florida, where he worked as teacher and chaplain.

He loves playing guitar, leading worship, preaching, and spending time with his students. He also loves watching sports, live performances, and being outdoors. “I can’t wait to see what God has in store,” says Mr. Frescino. “I’m excited to spend time with our students and work with the team. God has big plans for this school and I’m glad to be a part of that!”

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Marggie Pittman
Administrative Assistant