Academy Leadership


Board of Directors

Marianna Buoni, Clean Harbors, Buttonwillow, LLC
Jess Frederick, WZI, Inc.
Jamie Thornberry, Freeport-McMoRan Oil & Gas
Jim Varley, Kern County Superintendent of Schools Office


Michael Turnipseed, Academy Director
Marlene Heise, Communications Director, Founder, Chief Strategic Officer, Heise Media Group

Faculty 2021

Romeo Agbalog, Kern Citizens for Sustainable Government
Michael Burroughs, Ph.D., Kegley Institute of Ethics
Mark Evans, Ph.D. California State University, Bakersfield
Robin Fleming, Oil and Gas Industry
Vince Fong, 34th Assembly District
Melissa Frank, Wonderful Company
Steve Gamboa, Ph.D., California State University, Bakersfield
Richard Gearhart, Ph.D., California State University, Bakersfield
Lisa Gilbert, Ed.D., Kern County Superintendent of Schools
Karen Goh, Mayor of Bakersfield, Garden Pathways
Marlene Heise, Heise Media Group, Communications Director
Barry Hibbard, ASU Associates
Scott Hurlbert, City of Shafter
Stacy Kuwahara, Kern County Behavioral Health Services
Anna Laven, Ed.D., Bakersfield Kern Regional Homeless Collaborative
Elsa Martinez, Kern County Administrative Office
Nyakundi Michieka, Ph.D., California State University, Bakersfield
Oliver Rosales, Ph.D., Bakersfield College
Amanda Avila Ruiz, Kern County Administrative Office
Richard Ryan, Ph.D., California State University Bakersfield
Bryon Schaefer, PhD., Kern High School District
Michael Turnipseed, Kern County Taxpayers Association, Faculty Director
Kristen Beall Watson, Ed.D., California State University, Bakersfield
Keith Wolaridge, Panama-Buena Vista Union School District
James L. Zervis, County of Kern