Specialist Faculty - Vancouver Talmud Torah

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Georjeana Paterson

Originally from Toronto, Georjeana completed her Bachelor’s of Arts with Honours in Psychology and Art History from Queen’s University in Kingston, ON. After taking a few years to travel the world and live in many different communities across Canada, Georjeana moved to Vancouver so she could enjoy the mountains and…

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Danica Burpee
Director of Athletics

Danica Burpee joined VTT in 2015, and was very excited to join the Athletics department. Previously, Ms. Burpee taught at West Point Grey Academy (WPGA) for five years in many different roles: primary support, Grade 3 Homeroom, Grades 6/7 French, and Volleyball and Track & Field Coach.  Prior to WPGA, Ms. Burpee taught…

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Pat Girling
Learning Enrichment

As a third generation educator, following in the footsteps of her beloved grandmother and mother, Pat Girling has always known teaching was a “natural fit.” “The children bring me incredible joy and positive energy. I love what I do.” Born in Daysland, Alberta, Mrs. Girling and her three siblings grew…

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Jim Hopson
Band Specialist

Jim Hopson is the Band specialist at VTT elementary. He holds a Bachelor of Music Degree (with distinction) from the University of Victoria, and has been a freelance musician (trombone, low brass) in the Vancouver area since 2007. An active performer, he has played concerts all over the world (Australia,…

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Elana Jacobson
Music Specialist

It’s been a long time since Elana Jacobson was busy making Hanukkah decorations in kindergarten, though the memories of spending her early years with retired teacher Sandy Baker were potent enough to bring her back to her alma mater after graduating with a Bachelor of Music from UBC. Although Jacobson began as…

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Colette Leisen
Art Specialist

Ms. Leisen, originally from Alberta, moved to Vancouver in 1987 and was hired to teach at Talmud Torah later that year. She graduated from the University of Alberta with a degree in Special Education and a minor in French Revolutionary Art and Printmaking. She also attended Emily Carr College of…

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Gerrald Lotzkar
Physical Education Specialist

Mr. Lotzkar is one of those rare breeds having been born and raised in Vancouver (not too far from our school). He is even a VTT graduate, sort of. That is, he attended Talmud Torah afternoon school on Wednesdays and Sundays, and attended Eric Hamber High School with many VTT…

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Sylvester Noel
Physical Education Specialist

Sylvester Noel has been destined for his career as a Physical Education Specialist since his early elementary school years. Whether engaged in softball, football, basketball or track and field, Mr. Noel has always excelled in sports and has felt most invigorated when physically active. Born in Trinidad but raised in…

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Keri Smith
Drama & Music Specialist

Keri Smith calls her role in the school “a dream come true!” Having started in 2006 as a Preschool 4 faculty member, Ms. Smith loves working in a department “where the kids constantly feel motivated and inspired to explore all aspects of theatre, be it voice, production, performance, etc.” A…

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Boaz Rotaro
IT Support Specialist

“For me, technology is a means to interact and work with people,” says VTT’s IT Support Specialist, Boaz Rotaro. Israel-born, he came to Canada in 1997 and has been working in tech support ever since. “I enjoy helping teachers and students by trying to make their digital lives better and easier,…

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Michal Sitbon
Library Specialist

Born in Israel, Michal worked as a librarian in the public system for more than 14 years. When she immigrated to Vancouver in 2010, Michal naturally found her place in the VTT library and learning commons. Michal earned her Master’s degree in Library Sciences from Bar Ilan University in Israel…

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Morah Anna Zeldis
Judaics Resource

To date, Morah Anna Zeldis’s life consists of three chapters. Chapter I: Born and raised in Ukraine, where she studied education and taught in elementary schools. Chapter II: Immigration to Israel where she continued her career as a teacher. Chapter III: Second immigration, this time to Canada, in 1994. Morah…

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