Meet Our Staff

Theresa Embry

Theresa was born and raised in Santa Barbara.


For the twelve years prior to joining the Oaks, she worked with The Outdoor Classroom Project in Santa Barbara County and nation-wide, delivering workshops and trainings to increase the quality, quantity, and benefits of outdoor learning experiences for young children. She taught at Antioch University as adjunct faculty in the Nature-based Early Childhood Education Program. She was a teacher, a lead teacher, as well as the Preschool Coordinator at the University of California, Santa Barbara Early Care and Education Program. Additionally, she has worked as a teacher and director for a local non-profit, and for private child care programs. Theresa has presented nature-based workshops for professional organizations such as CAEYC, NAEYC, and Nature Explore.


Theresa earned her Bachelor and Graduate degrees at Cal State Northridge in Early Childhood Education. She enjoys gardening and long walks on the beach with her husband and their two dogs, Sadie Sue and Bella Boo. Playing with her four grandchildren is the best! She loves to camp and is looking forward to more camping trips throughout the United States. 

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Andrea Howell
Assistant Director

Andrea is originally from Kansas and moved to California thirteen years ago. Soon after arriving, she found a home teaching preschool at Wagon Wheel School in Los Angeles. Her expertise and love of teaching served her well; she was instrumental in opening Wagon Wheel's sister school in Malibu. Andrea now lives in Goleta with her partner Drew.


On the weekends, Andrea loves camping with Drew in their 1990 VW Vanagon Westfalia, playing beach volleyball, rock climbing, cycling and hiking.