JGEMS Faculty

Doug Gunter
Email: Doug Gunter
Subjects: Language Arts / Social Studies / Physical Education
  • Master of Arts, Adolescent Literacy and Technology - Walden University
  • Bachelor of Science, Education of Social Sciences - Western Oregon University

Educating young minds has always been a passion of mine, which is why I chose the education field. I originally set out to become a high school teacher but found my true calling when I was hired at Stephens Middle School. While there, I taught social studies for four years and realized that middle school students are more unique and very inquisitive. Though my time at Stephens was exciting and fulfilling, becoming a teacher at JGEMS has been unbelievable. Every day I am amazed by the caliber of students here and their talents and abilities. JGEMS truly prepares students for success in their academics, communities, and citizenship. I am proud of the work we do as JGEMS teachers and enjoy seeing students grow and flourish.
Nathan Suderman
Email: Nathan Suderman
Subjects: Technology / Math / Robotics

  • Bachelor of Science, Information Technology - Fresno State University
  • Master of Arts in Teaching - Willamette University

I am excited to work here at JGEMS and look forward to meeting each new class of students. So far I have been impressed with the caliber of students that JGEMS attracts and see how their passion for environmental concerns fuels their desire to learn. I hope to draw on this and am eager to integrate what I do with the other teachers here at JGEMS. Before teaching I spent many years in an IT career, as a webmaster, internet liaison, and ultimately network administrator. Since leaving the IT field I have been the coach of several robotics teams, several of which went on to compete at the state and even national level. I also spent several years building our home which I now live in in West Salem with my wife JulieAnn, while raising our 4 children; Natalie, Amanda, Connor and Harrison. I never thought I would be a middle school teacher, but after spending my first few years teaching at Howard St, I fell in love with this age of student as they are still so very full of wonder. My passion lies in Technology. Through responsible use of technology, simple people can accomplish great things. Technology is integrated into our daily lives to a degree that few even recognize. Students that can manipulate this tool rather than just be a user of it will be better able to direct their own future, regardless of their career path. In the course of three years at JGEMS I will teach your student how to use a variety of tools, but will not consider myself to be successful until your student begins to integrate these tools as part of their normal school routine.

Rachel Mitchell
Email: Rachel Mitchell

Subjects: Project Coordinator / General IA
  • Bachelor of Arts in Psychology - Willamette University

I developed an interest in education while I was working at a school in Malawi Africa shortly after graduating from Willamette University. My interest in education was turned into a passion when I was hired by JGEMS. Specifically, my passion is for seeing students overcome obstacles to reach their full potential both educationally and in life as well.
Shauna DeVos
Email: Shauna De Vos
Subjects: Office Manager

  • Teaching Degree - Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington.

I grew up in Salem, and got my teaching degree from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington. My first 4 years of teaching were in Puyallup, Washington. I then taught Kindergarten - Fifth grade at Clear Lake Elementary in Keizer for 14 years. I wanted to make a change, but still work with kids...JGEMS has been a perfect fun new challenge for me! I enjoy my time in the office, and with the kids in classrooms and at recess!
Willow Myrland
Email: Willow Myrland
Subjects: Integrated Science / Conservation Biology / Math
  • Bachelor of Science in Biology - Southern Oregon University
  • Master of Arts in Teaching - Oregon State University

After working as a field tech doing amphibian surveys for USGS for seven years, Ms. Myrland found her true calling in teaching. She still loves amphibians, though, and always jumps at the chance to help students find some out in the field!  Ms. Myrland feels incredibly lucky and grateful to work at JGEMS and loves taking kids out in the field to conduct research and discover the natural world.  She enjoys spending time with her twin boys, hiking, finding salamanders, doing art, and traveling
Unfilled Open
Subjects: Science, Art

No Bill does not actually teach here, but we wish he did. Whoever fills this spot will create awesome hands on science content, that hopefully will engage all students and create a love of science, and a quest to discover more.

JGEMS Emeritus Faculty

Cindy Lehmann

Subjects: Language Arts / Social Studies / Art

    A native Oregonian who lives in Coburg with her husband John, Mrs. Lehmann enjoys traveling to warm places, hiking, skiing, cooking, and gardening. She has a Bachelors degree from the University of Oregon and a Masters from the University of Portland. She has been teaching for 30 years, the last 10 years at JGEMS. Mrs. Lehmann enjoys working with kids and sharing her love of the outdoors with her students.
    Mike Weddle
    Subjects: Conservation Biology / Technology / Physical Education


      Mike Weddle was born at a very early age, as was the custom in his family. He has been teaching for 35 years, the past 10 at JGEMS. He graduated from San Francisco State University and has a master’s degree in education from Oregon College of Education. He has worked extensively overseas for the Jane Goodall Institute in Tanzania and South Africa, for the Snow Leopard Conservancy in India and for the Smithsonian Institution in Myanmar.
      Marie Carver
      Email: Marie Carver
      Subjects: Integrated Science / Conservation Biology / Gardening

      • Bachelor of Science, Resource Interpretation with a minor in journalism - Humboldt State University
      • Master of Arts in Teaching - Willamette University

      After a career in journalism, where I wrote many stories about students who were passionate about saving animals and the environment, I turned to teaching because I wanted to share their enthusiasm and help them make a difference. I started my teaching career with JGEMS and have felt incredibly lucky to be able to be part of making this program work for kids.

      JGEMS' Partners

      JGEMS could not work the way it does without the help of its partners.
      Those partners are:

      Center for Research on Alpine Ecosystems – CREA  

      Center for Research on Alpine Ecosystems – CREA of Chamonix, France is supporting us in our ongoing phenology research – the study of how organisms adjust their yearly cycles in response to climate change.
      Diack Ecology Education Fund  

      The Diack Ecology Education Fund has provided several grants for our field-based science inquiry projects.
      Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife  

      Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife helps with all our local fish, stream, macro and turtle studies. Karen Hans has been particularly helpful.
      Oregon Watersheds  

      Oregon Watersheds has provided research and restoration project opportunities, equipment, training, plants and so much else for as long as JGEMS has been JGEMS.
      Oregon Wildlife Institute  
      Oregon Zoo  

      The Oregon Zoo has helped with our 8th grade research projects (e.g. Stereotypic Behavior in Polar Bears) and our 7th grade endangered species project. Dr. David Shepherdson has advised research groups for years and has served as an expert panelist for our presentations since 1994.
      Smithsonian Institution  

      Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, formerly the Conservation and Research Center, has been working with JGEMS since 2000. We are part of their Biodiversity Monitoring Project which provides us with a variety of field research ideas. Willow Myrland did a summer internship at SCBI in 2008.
      The Jane Goodall Institute  

      The Jane Goodall Institute and its Roots & Shoots organization have been a part of JGEMS since even before we were JGEMS. Among other things, hey are responsible for getting Jane Goodall to visit us every few years.
      The Snow Leopard Conservancy  

      The Snow Leopard Conservancy has been a partner for our endangered species project for years. They provide us with the latest information on snow leopard conservation and research and we, in turn, have raised funds for their corral improvement project and for educational materials.
      U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service  

      U. S. Fish & Wildlife Service and the Newport office of the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge have been long-time partners, providing some of our most successful research and restoration projects.
      U.S. Forest Service  

      US Forest Service ( has provided both suggestions for educational research and staff support for students in the field. We would especially like to thank Dede Olson for her hours of help.
      Wildlife Safari  

      Wildlife Safari in Winston, Oregon, has been willing to advise students on their endangered species projects and has allowed us to conduct behavioral research on their animals. Students have even camped out on the zoo grounds.

      JGEMS Board of Directors

      Board Meeting Time Information:

      The JGEMS Board of Directors meets on the last Tuesday of the month at 4:00 in a JGEMS classroom. The public is invited.

      Doug Gunter Jennifer Neahring Kathleen Huun
      Angela Obery Mike Weddle Steve Nelson
      Odi Campos Willow Myrland Kim Hanson
      Nathan Suderman,
      Nov 21, 2017, 8:14 PM
      Nathan Suderman,
      Oct 20, 2017, 10:27 AM