Meet our Staff




Nicole Menache ( - A & E periods
This is Nicole Menache's seventh year teaching FOS, and she has been teaching English for eighteen years.  She has a Bachelor's degree in English, a Bachelor's degree in Secondary Education, a minor in Communication, and a Masters in Education Administration.  She loves working individually with students and watching them find their true passions.

Kristen Owen ( - B & C periods; Coordinator
Kristen has been teaching English for 16 years and teaching FOS for 7 years. This is her third year as the FOS Coordinator. She studied at UC Davis and earned a B.S. in Human Development before continuing her education at Cal Poly, where she earned her teaching credential in Language Arts. She is excited to work with students on an individual basis and to get to know them as people, not just students. In her spare time, she listens to podcasts while she runs and hopes to someday run a half marathon. 

Laurie Pennington ( - D period
Laurie Pennington is a science co-teacher and the I.S. of the science department. This is her third year teaching Focus and she's really looking forward to working with FOS students.  Laurie is a Bay Area native. She attended Terra Nova High School, got her A.B. at UC Davis, earned her teaching credential at CSU Sacramento, taught in Hayward while living in Berkeley and then Oakland, and originally landed at Gunn in 1993. She then taught 10 years at Paly and came back to Gunn in 2007. Laurie loves co-teaching and participating in the Choir-Staff Musical every year, and enjoys spending time with her family, attending sporting events, and traveling. 

Brian Miguel ( - F period
Brian Miguel has been a social studies teacher at Gunn for seven years. He is the Small Learning Community World History teacher and he also teaches Contemporary World History and U.S. Government. Brian is a Bay Area native, born in San Francisco. He grew up in Redwood City where he attended Sequoia High School. Brian loves working closely with students inside and out of his history class, helping them gain a sense of place in their world.

Tim Aston ( - G period
This is Tim's second year teaching FOS at Gunn, but he has been teaching freshman biology for seven years. While biological science is his passion, he is also very skilled in many subject areas, including math and English. Tim is also a photographer and spends many weekends in Yosemite, perfecting his passion. Look for Tim's booth at local Art & Wine Festivals.