Julie Pepe, Principal
Julie was born and raised in Anchorage. She attended Inlet View, Central Jr. High and graduated from West High school. Julie’s educational career was originally inspired by her grandmother, Audrey Daut who came to Cordova in 1927 as a young teacher and then went on to become principal of Cordova High School. Julie has an undergraduate degree in Business Management from California State University, Sonoma, a Masters in the Art of Teaching from the University of Alaska Southeast (UAS) as well as a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership from UAS. She is currently working on her Masters certificate in Waldorf Education through Antioch University.
Julie and her husband, Greg have owned and operated a construction company for over thirty years while raising four delightful children. After an active volunteer career in her children’s schools, Julie decided to become a teacher’s aide in the Kindergarten class at Winterberry Charter School. From there she went on to become the founding teacher for the Winterberry Hybrid Program and then was hired as Winterberry’s principal.
When not at Winterberry, Julie enjoys spending time with her growing family, cooking, singing, playing guitar, practicing the Fine Art of Grandparenting, beachcombing in Homer, traveling in Europe and visiting relatives in Northern California.
Shana K. Garrels, Business Manager
When then President of WPG, Craig Lyon came out of the interview with Ms. Shana, he said, “She is the one!” Since that day in 2016, Ms. Shana has been the backbone of Winterberry’s Administrative team.
She graduated from Dimond High School. She soon after began a career in optics as an optician while taking college courses in Optical Science. Working both as optician and office manager, Ms. Shana helped her family build a thriving business, Cook Inlet Eyewear. She obtained her American Board of Opticians Certification (ABO) in 2000, and National Contact Lens Examiners Certification (NCLE) in 2003
Ms. Shana continued to study accounting and business while raising her three sons (six month old twins and a three year old boy) and working full time. For her efforts she was the only Alaskan recognized at the 10th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Business in 2009. In 2010 she received her BA in Accounting from the University of Alaska Anchorage.
Ms. Shana is Winterberry’s IT guru, budget magician, purchasing Queen, solo HR department and she does it all with grace, style, confidence and best of all laughter. Holding our school together in so many ways, that is Ms. Shana.
Colleen Morris, Administrative Assistant
Ms. Colleen was not looking for a job when by twist of fate she received a phone call from a Winterberry Parent asking her to apply to be the Administrative Assistant at Winterberry. At the time, she had just received her teaching certification for Hatha Yoga and Kids Yoga and was teaching at a couple of studios in town.
After accepting the job at Winterberry, she found that the principles of yoga and of Waldorf pedagogy are similar. She comes everyday seeing the inner light of each student. Holding children who might need help with stillness or with finding a calm place is one of her strengths. With Ms. Colleen as our front desk, “It is always a Wonderful Day at Winterberry”.Maria Klein, Hybrid Program Coordinator
Nurse Katrina Seater
Nurse Katrina joined the Winterberry team in 2018 as their school nurse. She was born in Greeley, Colorado, and moved to Ashland Oregon at the age of 7. Throughout her life, she has spent summers commercial fishing with her 3 sisters and mother in Nikiski Alaska, (and continues this family tradition to this day). She obtained a Liberal Arts degree from The Evergreen State College in Olympia Washington, and then migrated to Seattle Washington where she completed her nursing degree at Seattle University. She worked briefly in Seattle with Health Care for the homeless as a TB nurse, and then relocated to Chinle, Arizona to work on the Navajo reservation. In 2000, she accepted a nursing position at Kanakanak Hospital in Dillingham, Alaska. She has lived in Alaska ever since. In 2005, she moved to Anchorage to work as an emergency room nurse at The Alaska Native Medical Center, where she worked for 9 years. After, Nurse Katrina took a year off to spend time with her daughter and their 4 (now 6) alpacas, and completed a 200 hour yoga certification.
Nurse Katrina fell in love with Winterberry the moment she stepped through the doors of the school. Her daughter started Kindergarten when Winterberry planted new roots on Bryn Mawr Court and she immediately felt the warmth and beauty that permeates the halls of this school. She feels so blessed to be a part of the Winterberry community not only as a parent but as a staff member.