President: Frank Núñez
Assistant Principal, San Luis High School
Frank Núñez was born and raised in Yuma Arizona. He graduated from Cibola High School and went on to graduate from Northern Arizona University with a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice, a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish, and a Masters in Educational Leadership. He has been a school and district level administrator for 7 years. Prior to being an administrator, his varied classroom experience as a teacher of Spanish, Government, Economics, AVID, Academic Decathlon, and Advanced Placement classes provided him with an invaluable insight on the academic capacity of students, and solidified his belief that every high school student can graduate from college and be career ready.
Vice President: James Sheldahl
Superintendent, Yuma Elementary School District One
Board Secretary: Nancy T Blitz
Professor, Arizona Western College
Nancy T. Blitz has taught English as a Second Language at Arizona Western College both part-time and full-time since the late 1980s. She is a graduate of the University of Arizona with a B.A. in German, and her M.A. in TESL (Teaching English as a Second Language) is from Northern Arizona University. She spent two years as a full-time instructor of Bilingual/Multicultural Education/ESL on the NAU-Yuma Branch Campus where she continues to teach in a part time capacity. Over the years, she has had as students in NAU undergraduate and graduate programs many of the teachers who have been nominees for the Yuma County Teacher of the Year.
Board Member: Tom Tyree
Yuma County Superintendent of Schools
Tom Tyree has served in public education for 45 years. In August of 2003 Tyree was appointed Yuma County Superintendent of Schools and was elected to the position in 2004, 2008 and again in 2012. Prior to assuming his elected position as county superintendent, Tyree served as a teacher, head basketball coach, building and central office administrator in school districts in Yuma and Mesa, Arizona. Tyree is married to Mara Vitolins Tyree (former Miss Yuma County) and has two children, Tiffany and Ryan, both educators in Yuma
Board Member: Laurie Doering
Superintendent, Crane School District
Laurie Doering has been in education for over 33 years and is
passionate about this calling. She moved to Yuma in 1976 and has raised
three children in this fine community. She graduated from Yuma High
School and went on to graduate from Arizona State University and then received
a Masters in Educational Leadership from NAU-Yuma. She has been a school
and district level administrator for over 20 years.
Board Member: Helen Coffeen
Principal, Centennial Middle School
- Helen Morrow Coffeen arrived in Yuma from California in 1977 to work for the Crane School District. She has taught third, fifth and sixth grades, and has been an assistant principal and a principal. She has worked at Viejo, Rancho Viejo, Crane Junior High, Pueblo, and now Centennial Middle School. She is passionate about providing an outstanding education to our students in a safe fun learning environment that prepares our students for college and careers. She believes an education opens doors of opportunity, gives a panoramic view of the world, and allows students choices to follow their dreams.
Board Member: Michael Sabath, PhD
Associate Vice President and Campus Executive Officer, NAU Yuma Branch Campus
- Michael J. Sabath has been in higher education for 35 years. A first-generation student who grew up in a military family, he earned a B.S. in Business Administration from the Haas School of Business at the University of California-Berkeley, an MPA from California State University-Chico and a PhD from the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Dr. Sabath was with San Diego State University for 23 years serving as a professor, division chair, and Associate Dean. Prior to this, he taught in the School of Business and Public Administration at the University of Missouri-Columbia and in the Department of Criminal Justice at Indiana University-Bloomington. He is married to Maria Lourdes Sabath and has three children.
- Board Member: Liz Renaud
Director of the Center for Teaching Effectiveness; Professor, Arizona Western College
- Lizzie is the Professor of Early Childhood Education (1999-present) and Director of the Center for Teaching Effectiveness (2015-present) at Arizona Western College (AWC). Lizzie received her Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education with Montessori Emphasis from Chaminade University of Honolulu, American Montessori Society pre-primary certification, and a Masters of Education in Early Childhood from Northern Arizona University. In Hawai`i, Lizzie dedicated seven years in both mixed aged preschool and toddler classrooms as Montessori Directress, lead teacher. Upon relocating to Yuma, AZ in 1998, Lizzie has been active within the community, serving on the following community boards/committees- Yuma County Association for the Education of Young Children (YCAEYC), the Arizona Association for the Education of Young Children (AzAEYC) Newsletter subcommittee, First Things First Cocopah Indian Tribe Regional Partnership Council (CITRPC) Member and former Arizona Western College Faculty Association President and Vice President. Lizzie is a native Hawai`ian practitioner in hula, dance, and instructs hula classes at AWC. The mother of four children and a firm believer and advocate for young children and families, Lizzie joined the Education Foundation of Yuma County in 2015.
- Board Member: Kim Seh
Principal, Orange Grove Elementary School
- Kimberly Seh has been an Education Foundation Board member since 2009. She is currently the principal at Orange Grove Elementary School in Somerton School District #11. Her educational degrees and certifications include the following: B.A. in Elementary Education, M.A. in Multicultural/Bilingual Education, Early Childhood and Structured English Immersion Endorsement, Principal and Superintendent Certification from Northern Arizona University. After thoroughly enjoying teaching third, fourth and fifth grade in Somerton School District #11, she took the opportunity to serve staff and students as a Staff Developer/Reading Coach in the Crane School District. Administrative experiences include Principal and Professional Development / Curriculum/ Assessment Director for Somerton School District #11.
Board Member: Tom Rush
President, Yuma Investment Group
Tom Rush was raised on a farm in Dateland, Arizona with six siblings. Tom studied at Amherst College in Massachusetts and received his Bachelor’s Degree in Economics. Tom Rush is the founder and president of Yuma Investment Group Wealth Management. He has been dedicated to assisting his clients in achieving their financial goals for over 24 years. Today the firm employees three Wealth advisors, a Financial Planner and a support staff of nine. The firm provides wealth planning services for individuals, corporations, trusts and retirement accounts totaling in excess of 250 million dollars. Yuma Investment Group Wealth Management’s mission statement is to assist its clients in creating and protecting wealth, ultimately striving for financial independence. Tom Rush works diligently with his clients to crystallize their financial goals. He then develops a comprehensive plan to achieve these goals. Because of this "planning" driven approach, he emphasizes long-term relationships which are the cornerstone of his business practice. Tom Rush resides in Yuma with his wife Sandy and their four children: Jackson, Stockton, Savannah, and Houston. When not working, Tom enjoys his family.
- Board Member: Derek Carlson
AEA Federal Credit Union
Derek Carlson was born in Rochester, NY and has called Yuma home since 2014. He is the Senior Director of Member Experience Retail Sales at AEA Federal Credit Union and is involved with teaching financial literacy within the school district. The educators of Yuma hold a special place in his heart because AEA originally opened its doors to serve employees of the Board of Education of Public Schools in Yuma County in 1942. Derek graduated from SUNY Fredonia with a BS in Public Relations and Marketing.
- Board Member: Travis Hice Vice President, Commercial Loans Officer, 1st Bank Yuma
Travis Hice was born in Yuma and raised in Roll, AZ. He graduated from Antelope Union High School and went on to earn two Business Administration Undergraduate Degrees from NAU-Yuma. Travis also later attended the Graduate School of Banking at Colorado and earned a Graduate Degree in Bank Management. He has been in the Financial/Banking Industry going on 15 years with over 13 of those years spent in Community Banking as a Commercial Lender. Travis started his lending career with Wells Fargo Bank but later moved into Community Banking where he felt the banks focus more on the specific needs of communities they operate in. He was with Yuma Community Bank, which later became The Foothills Bank, for a combined total of almost 9 years and found what he hopes to be a permanent home with 1st Bank Yuma. Travis has been with 1st Bank Yuma over 4 years now and has grown his lending portfolio to over $52 million. His primary focus is on building solid banking relationships with a “consultant” type approach to lending where borrowers can look to him for advice and guidance to the various facets of their business and borrowing requirements. Travis plans to be with 1st Bank Yuma for many years as he feels, of all the banks he has worked for, 1st Bank Yuma holds the highest regard for the community, customers and employees. Travis is the proud parent of two wonderful children, Athena (12) and Logan (8) who are both on the A Honor Roll and are involved in several sport activities.
Board Member: Belinda Boblett
School Improvement Director/PD Director, Gadsden Elementary District #32
Belinda Boblett was born and raised in Yuma, Arizona. She earned a B.A. from Northern Arizona University in Elementary Education, M.A. in Multicultural/Bilingual Education, Early Childhood and Structured English Immersion Endorsements, and Administrative Licensure Certification from Northern Arizona University. She taught and coached teachers in the community for several years and currently is the School Improvement Director/Professional Development Director for Gadsden Elementary School District. Her main responsibility is the overall implementation of district-wide curriculum and assessments, as well as the development and improvement of instructional delivery methods. She has been involved in and chaired a number of committees throughout her career. Additionally, she has served in various coordinator roles, including District Testing Coordinator and English Language Learner (ELL) Coordinator, has led Sheltered English Immersion initiatives, developed and facilitated Move on When Reading and Gifted/Talented programs, and played a critical role in many aspects of educational professional development and district initiatives. She believes that all children can learn but each learns in a different way and at different rates. Mrs. Boblett feels that teamwork is the ultimate way a school/district can be successful in reaching the goal of helping a child attain his/her full potential.