Lori Walker is passionate about the idea that learning is a natural process, and is an inherently fun process. It feels good to learn, so why are so many students bored and disengaged? Lori is the founder and Executive Director of Village Home, where learners have fun learning! Village Home is a learning community that is built on choice and autonomy for learners. Learners are all unique, with unique interests and learning styles. The Village Home model allows learners to pursue their interests as an individual while also participating in a family-friendly, community learning environment. Prior to founding Village Home in 2002, Lori was the Director of Training and Curriculum at Learning Forum, based in California, where she designed academic and life skills curriculum, trained teachers, and facilitated programs for teens. She also served as a facilitator herself at programs in the United States and abroad. Lori has over 12 years of experience teaching and training adults and children in a variety of subjects, from psychology to accounting for REITs. Lori is an engaging instructor who presents material in a way that is accessible and entertaining. She earned BA degrees, graduating summa cum laude with distinction and honors, from SMU in Business Management and Psychology, with an emphasis in child development. Lori’s two daughters provided the initial inspiration for Village Home, and her job as mom is the best job she will ever have. She lives in Beaverton with her daughters, husband, and assortment of four-legged animals.
Sherri Streicher, Accounts Manager and Registrar
Sherri has been at Village Home for over a decade and consistently serves as the voice of reason for the organization. Sherri is the mother of two sons, who grew up at Village Home, and who now are launching into the real world as young men. Her eldest is pursuing a degree in engineering, and her youngest is heading off to college in the fall. Sherri is equally at home with a calculator, or an artist’s brush, or a pen and paper (she is a poet and writer as well), and is a woman of many talents. At Village Home, she manages the financials, as well as serving as registrar. Prior to working at Village Home, she was a La Leche league coordinator, and is committed to supporting parents on all points of their parenting journey.
Loriann Schmidt, Salem Director and Teacher
Loriann is the homeschooling parent of James and also Danielle, her adult daughter who was also homeschooled. Loriann is the Director of the Village Home Salem campus, and the person who got the Village Home community in Salem started. Her son, James, attends Village Home where Loriann also teaches science classes. A self-proclaimed geek, Loriann has had stints in corporate America working as a business analyst, computer programmer, IT manager; in academia as a professional research assistant; and in self-employment as a real estate agent, database administrator, musician, and a host of other positions. These positions have given her exposure to a wide variety of settings and leadership opportunities. “My son and our whole family has found a warm and welcoming home here at Village Home. I appreciate the opportunity to serve you, my Village Home family.”
Caren de la Cruz, Outreach Coordinator and Human Resources
Very soon after the birth of her son, Caren and her husband agreed homeschooling was the best option for their attachment parenting family. Caren enjoyed the natural curiosity of her children and made sure inquiries were answered promptly and interests were further pursued. Her children have been at Village Home for their entire educational experience so far, and she can’t imagine having taken any other path (and neither can the rest of the family!)
After time at the University of Toledo, Cleveland Institute of Art, and community college, Caren moved to Portland and held administrative and office manager positions prior to becoming a stay-at-home Mom and small business owner
Catherine Bennett is the Office Manager and Volunteer Coordinator for Village Home. Catherine is the mom of two, who were homeschooled for many years. Catherine is a licensed nutritionist. In her spare time, Catherine enjoys being outdoors in the beautiful northwest and knitting.
Lori Kubelun and her husband Steve have homeschooled their daughter since 2008. Prior to homeschooling full time she worked in marine mammal rehabilitation and as an EMT in an Emergency Room. Ralph enjoys Legos, hiking, cross country skiing, baking, zombies, and all things Harry Potter. “Any day on the Quidditch Pitch is a good day!”
Andrea and her husband began homeschooling their son in 2015 when it became evident that the traditional school path was not the right fit for their eager learner. One of the first stops in their homeschooling path was Village Home where they were beyond impressed with the inviting community and unique learning opportunities. At Village Home, their son gets to learn at his (accelerated) pace. Prior to homeschooling, Andrea had a dynamic career in advertising as a media buyer. Andrea loves adventures, going to concerts, renovating her home (or dreaming of the next renovation project), and arts and crafts.
Jessica Hammond-Brouwer and Christina Barth, Salem Office Managers
Jessica has two kids in public schools and homeschools her son at Village Home. She lives in West Salem with her husband and 3 wonderful kids. When she is not at Village Home she loves spending time in the kitchen, volunteering and reading! Christina has recently graduated from Benedictine College in Kansas and was homeschooled throughout her school years. Her mother is a Salem Campus teacher and she’s excited to be joining the Village Home family as an office manager.