There is a special board meeting regarding charter renewal on December 27, 2017 at noon.

Regular Board Meetings this school year will be held quarterly.

December 12, 2017

March  13, 2018

June 26, 2018

NEXT REGULAR MEETING: March 13, 2018 at 6:00 p.m. at Innovations Academy

***The Board Meeting Location for this meeting is 10380 Spring Canyon Rd. San Diego, CA 92131; Innovations Academy Campus typically at 6:00 p.m. unless otherwise noted above***

The agendas for each meeting will be posted 72 hours prior to the meeting at our facility.

Public Call-In Line: 641-715-0861 Access Code: 151642


Innovations Academy’s Board is dedicated to making a difference in the community. The Board’s main role is one of broad school oversight and connection to other organizations/partnerships in San Diego.

We generally meet on the third Tuesday of each month at 6:30pm at IA. See our school calendar to verify meeting times and days before coming. The agendas and meeting minutes are posted to our website.

To contact the Board, all correspondence should be directed to This address will send a message to all board members.

Please contact Innovations Academy if you require special assistance or a listening device to attend the Board Meeting. Request must be made 48 hours in advance.



  • Nathan Cooper

    Board President

    Nathan Cooper is Assistant General Counsel at the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority where he provides legal counsel regarding all aspects of the operation of San Diego International Airport and the activities of the San Diego County Airport Land Use Commission.  Mr. Cooper previously was an associate at the international law firm of Morrison & Foerster, where his practice focused on aviation litigation and corporate transactions.  The State Bar of California has awarded Mr. Cooper the Wiley M. Manuel Award for Pro Bono Legal Services each year from 2010 to 2013 for his legal representation of low-income individuals.  Mr. Cooper attended law school at U.C. Davis School of Law where he was a recipient of the Witkin Award for Academic Excellence, and an executive editor for the U.C. Davis Business Law Journal.  Prior to attending law school, Mr. Cooper worked in the IT field, most recently running the computer systems in a biotechnology lab at Yale University.  Mr. Cooper is active in coaching youth sports, teaching Sunday school classes for elementary age students at his church, and the father of three children.

  • Stephen Rosen

    Board Treasurer

    Stephen D. Rosen is the founder and Chief Visionary Officer for Smart Screens Network, Inc. a local San Diego software company focused on media distribution across multiple platforms and previously was the founder, CEO and President of TV Magic, Inc., a San Diego based media systems integration company that served the global broadcast, A/V, multi-media and telecommunications industries.

    Steve’s extensive television operations background, systemic approach to consulting, engineering, multi-media distribution and systems integration provided consulting services through several major turnkey projects while maintaining customers like CBS, FOX, ABC, Warner Bros., ESPN, Technicolor, many Houses of Worship along with several major educational Institutions – to name a few.

    In 2010, Steve ran for San Diego Unified School District Trustee out of Area B. While losing the election he still garnered over 100,000 votes from San Diegans who believed in educational reform, short and long term strategic planning and fiscal responsibility. Steve focused on the rapidly deteriorating financial problems of the District, their growing negative impact on children and how to solve the fiscal problems while protecting the teachers. Many of the major financial issues currently effecting SDUSD were predicated by Steve along with a strategic plan to avoid the insolvency crisis.

    Having developed professional relationships within the SDUSD, local business leaders, local, State and Federal politicians, and the local community, Steve has stayed very active in his efforts to affect change within the educational community at large and specifically SDUSD to the benefit of the children and not directly tied to the adults. As part of Steve’s active involvement, Steve recognized the importance of parent’s involvement in children’s education and to facilitate that involvement, Steve helped develop and is a founding Board member of UPforED: He now serves as the Board President.

    With two boys in SDUSD schools, and his family’s involvement in the local community and schools, Steve and his wife Susan have volunteered countless hours to the local schools and community along with cash and goods donations to support those volunteer efforts. In addition, Steve has just been elected to the Board of Directors as the Parent Rep to the Board and also as Treasurer for the non-profit Innovations Academy Charter School in Scripps Ranch.

    Having honed his consulting and project management skills as an organizer for the 1984 Olympics and 6 years of undergraduate and graduate study in the sciences (BA and MS degrees awarded), Steve has developed the tools necessary to manage and complete large scale projects on-time and on budget and understand the complexities of budgeting and fulfillment along with strategic planning.

  • Danielle Strachman

    Cofounder of Innovations Academy

    Danielle is a Cofounder of Innovations Academy and was Director of Student Growth for Innovation’s Academy’s first two years. She was inspired and invigorated knowing that she made a difference in the lives of hundreds of families in that time. Today she sits on the board of directors and is thrilled that Innovations Academy is a thriving school that all started from one conversation and a drive to create new opportunities for the children of San Diego.

    Previous to her work at Innovations Academy, Danielle Strachman was the Director and Primary Educator of Heightened Learning, a private practice educational program that focused on teaching through students’ interests and emotional needs. It was through this work that she met Christine Kuglen and worked in her homeschooling coop where she taught creative writing and fell in love with the homeschooling community there because of their deep love of learning and exploration. When Christine first came to Danielle about the idea of starting a school she was intrigued to see if they could bring what worked in homeschooling cooperatives to the public school setting.

    Currently she lives in the Bay Area and still holds the Innovations Academy vision strong in her work with the Thiel Fellowship which encourages alternative learning paths for college aged students.

  • Tony Spitzberg

    Board Member, Teacher Representative

    I am originally from Dallas, Texas and have lived in San Diego since 2001. I have a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Tulane University and received my Masters in Education from the University of San Diego. I enjoy spending time with my wife and two-year-old twin daughters, attempting to cook, dabbling in technology, reading, and experiencing different parts of the world whenever I can.

    The basis of my teaching philosophy is my firm belief that children benefit from a student-centered classroom where they are active and learn by doing. My role is to treat students as co-creators in the learning process, with their own ideas and concerns that deserve attention and consideration. I aspire to help my students discover the tools that will enable them to achieve their highest potential. This is why I am so fortunate to be a part of the Innovations Academy community, where the emphasis on self-expression, compassionate connection, and purposeful learning is second to none!

  • Faraz Sharafi

    Board Member, Parent Representative

    Faraz is an engineering manager at Intuit where he manages teams that contribute to the development of Intuit’s flagship products: TurboTax, QuickBooks and Mint. Faraz has over 27 years of experience in software engineering, architect and management in different fields but mainly focused in the area of  financial software products. He has been helping many companies in the market with setting up and executing their vision. His son has been attending Innovations Academy since kindergarten.

  • Andrea Thiltgen

    Board Member, Teacher Representative

    Dre is currently teaching 6th grade at Innovations Academy. She came with experience in teambuilding, leadership development, athletics, and most recently four years of outdoor education at YMCA Camp Surf in Imperial Beach, California.

    She grew up in East County San Diego where she lived with both of parents and a younger sister, Haley. She attended Monte Vista High School in Spring Valley, graduating in 2007. Following graduation, she attended Boise State University in Idaho earning her Bachelor of Arts in Education and competing as a member of the Division I Swim & Dive team for four years. She holds a  K-8 Idaho Teacher Credential, and  California Multiple Subject Teaching Credential.

    Dre has also been a substitute teacher  in the La-Mesa- Spring and El Cajon Valley Union School Districts. She also led the SOUL Surfer teen leadership program in outreach, community service, and developing cause-driven leaders. She has coached club swimming, worked and lived in Mammoth Lakes, and volunteered for the Y in Panama City, Panama. She also enjoys spending time with her family and two dogs, Lucy and Skippy, body surfing, being active outdoors, listening to music, and baking.

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