Edúcate Ya, Inc.

Latinos Furthering Education Through Participation

Staff – 2017

Rafael Arellano-Barrera : Executive Director

Rafael Arellano-Barrera

Executive Director

Rafael was born in Cuernavaca, México, the City of the Eternal Spring. He started teaching Spanish when he was 16 years old and is still doing it at Edúcate Ya. He received a BA in Pastoral Ministries from Marylhurst University, and did his graduate studies in Theology at Mt. Angel. He has been an advocate for education among Latinos, has offered opportunities for those that are interested in learning Spanish and about Latino cultures, and has provided the opportunity to study abroad.  He has a MA in Spanish Literature and has taught in four community colleges in the Portland area.  He is the founder and executive director of Educate Ya. Some of his hobbies are: Going to the theater, live concerts, the beach and reading.

Ada Garcia : Spanish Instructor

Ada Garcia

Spanish Instructor

Ada was born in Havana City, Cuba, where she started studying English at Havana University, but later decided to change her major to Biology. Sometime later she moved to Spain, where she lived for more than 10 years. In 2011 she moved to Portland to be close to her family and resume her studies in Biology at Portland State University. Her love for her mother tongue brought her to Edúcate Ya, where she started teaching Spanish in October, 2012. From March to October you can find her the last Saturday of every month volunteering as a crew leader for Friends of Mt Tabor Park Weed Warriors (‘’come and join us!’’, she says). She also loves nature, hiking, photography, art, traveling, attending Death Metal shows and, of course, her career, among many other things.

Indira Funk : Spanish Instructor

Indira Funk

Spanish Instructor

Indira Funk is from Barranquilla, Colombia and currently studies in Portland State University. She is working on getting her degree in World Languages (specializing in Spanish) and linguistics, along with a TESOL (Teaching English As a Second language) certificate. She's a word nerd! When not studying, she enjoys teaching Spanish, dancing, and spending time with her family. She hopes to see you soon as a student at Edúcate Ya!

Cory Latimer : Assistant to the Director / Spanish Instructor

Cory Latimer

Assistant to the Director / Spanish Instructor

Cory Latimer started working in Edúcate Ya in June, 2016 after spending almost seven years living and working as an ESL teacher in Bogotá, Colombia. During that period he studied Spanish extensively, both formally and independently, and managed to secure a spot in the certificate course 'Teaching Spanish as a Second Language' (La enseñanza de español como lengua extranjera) in the prestigious Spanish Language Institute Caro y Cuervo, despite the high number of applicants. After passing the course, and being certified as a ELE teacher (Spanish as a Second Language teacher), Cory returned to Portland to be close to his family. Cory enjoys hip hop, intelligent conversations and anyone who is a decent human being.

Jason Schuurmans : Events Coordinator

Jason Schuurmans

Events Coordinator

Jason began working at Edúcate Ya in February 2015 as our Events Coordinator and Development Associate. He came to us first as a Spanish student, seeking to connect with the other half of his community. Outside of Edúcate Ya he is an events and multimedia professional representing several national brands, and also gigs in film and TV.

At Edúcate Ya, he focuses on our yearly fundraisers such as our Cinco de Mayo and Fourth of July fundraisers, as well as our yearly gala Dando Bailando. Jason works hard to coordinate sponsors, donors, venues, volunteers, caterers, decorators, entertainers, design and distribution of print materials, social media promotion… and more!

When not working Jason volunteers with other non-profits and good-causes in his native town of Portland. And of course spends plenty of time on walks with his partner Samantha, their dog Inu, and two cats Thunder and Whisper (yes, they walk their cats!).

Sara Geonczy : Program Coordinator

Sara Geonczy

Program Coordinator

Sara Geonczy is the Program Coordinator for the Intercambio and Health Educator programs. She is half-Colombian, half-Hungarian, and loves to connect with part of her culture through working with Edúcate Ya. Sara enjoys learning, playing music, being outdoors, and gardening, among other things.

Moses Weir : Program Coordinator

Moses Weir

Program Coordinator

Originally from Los Angeles, Moses has his Bachelor's in Sociology from Oregon State University, and is currently getting his Master's in Social Work from Portland State. He has worked with youth nationally and internationally and is excited about the opportunity to work with Edúcate Ya.

Carlos Muñoz : Program Assistant

Carlos Muñoz

Program Assistant

Carlos was born in Queens, New York from Ecuadorian parents. He has been married for over 23 years and has three kids. After serving in the military he moved to Portland in 2010.  Carlos obtained an MBA with a specialization in Public Administration from Devry University and a BA from Columbia College in Missouri.

He is a middle-aged Latino whose roots lay in the Hispanic/Latino community and who has passion for its growth and development. He volunteers with Edúcate Ya in the Portland Metro area with the Intercambio and Health Educators programs.

William Lomasney : Events Coordinator

William Lomasney

Events Coordinator

William Lomasney is a Dog Trainer originally from San Jose California. He is now working to help organize the fundraisers for Edúcate Ya as well as participating in the Avanza program. Will works full time at a pet store and also attends PCC. In the little spare time he has he likes to play with dogs, work on motorcycles, and spend time with friends.

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