League of Education Voters Board of Directors
Betsy Johnson, Chair
Betsy Johnson has been active in education in Bellevue and Washington state for the past 13 years. She has been a PTSA volunteer, past PTSA and Bellevue Schools Foundation president, and Bellevue School Board member. She has been volunteering for Eastside Pathways on the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading since its inception, currently serving as lead for the overall initiative and facilitating the Summer and Extended Learning collaborative. Betsy is a former Microsoft executive. She has four children in the Bellevue schools in middle and high school.
Lee Lambert, Vice Chair
Lee Lambert is Washington STEM’s STEM Network Director, leading the charge on the organization’s statewide effort to advance STEM education in alignment with local economic development. He previously worked as the Director of the Washington College Access Network (WCAN). Lee is a native of Tacoma and a graduate of Foss High School; he has a degree in political science from Washington State University and a Master of Public Administration from Seattle University. Prior to joining WCAN, Lee worked in the Seattle office of Senator Maria Cantwell, serving as the State Grants Coordinator and Special Project Manager. Earlier in his career, Lee had the opportunity to work for Congressman Adam Smith and Congressman Norm Dicks, as well as the Bates Technical College Foundation. Lee lives in Shoreline with his wife Adrienne and their two children. They are active members of the Meridian Park Elementary PTSA.
Tom Weeks, Immediate Past Chair
A Seattle native, Tom Weeks earned a BA in American Studies from Middlebury College and an MA and PhD in Public Policy from Harvard University, where his dissertation analyzed the Latin American debt crisis of the 1980s. He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Republic of Palau (Micronesia) with his wife, Deborah Oyer, MD. He was an elected member of the Seattle City Council for two terms and was Executive Director of Human Resources for the Seattle Public Schools prior to Chairing the Board of the Seattle Monorail Project. For several years he taught at the Evans School of Public Policy at the University of Washington and has consulted in public policy and negotiation. He has served on numerous boards, including the New School Foundation and People for Puget Sound. Tom and his children are proud graduates of Seattle Public Schools.
Kevin Washington, Treasurer
Kevin C. Washington is a semi-retired consultant in the fields of business to business electronic commerce and retail logistics, who now spends the majority of his time as a volunteer across a host of local and state childhood education projects. Kevin worked previously in the private sector for more than 25 years, including 18 years of retail management at REI. Kevin is the Chair of the Seattle YMCA Black Achievers Program, board member of the Meredith Mathews East Madison YMCA branch, board member and Co-chair of the Grants Committee for the Seattle Foundation and serves on the boards of numerous education and civic organizations including Thrive By Five, Tabor 100, and the Coalition for Equal Education Rights.
Vange Ocasio Hochheimer, Secretary
Dr. Ocasio moved to the US from Puerto Rico at the age of eleven. She received her BA in Philosophy, Politics and Law (PPL) from Binghamton University in New York. She received her Master’s and PhD degrees in economics from Colorado State University. Dr. Ocasio’s vocation as a teacher and a researcher is centered on the idea of equal access as a way to reduce economic and social inequalities. In her work, she finds that when there is access to resources, the population develops both, socially and economically. This premise is inherent in Dr. Ocasio’s teaching philosophy, her research and her involvement in the community. She was recently appointed to the Mayor’s Advisory Council on Multicultural Affairs for the City of Spokane and will be reporting to the Mayor and his cabinet on the stability, health, and status of underrepresented groups in the city. Dr. Ocasio joined Whitworth University as a tenure-track Assistant Professor of Economics in the School of Business in the fall of 2011. Dr. Ocasio moved to Spokane from Colorado with her husband, Manny Hochheimer, in 2011. They have two little boys, Noah and Luca. Dr. Ocasio is a runner and enjoys camping and skiing. She also enjoys major league baseball (go Mariners!) and is a devout Whitworth Pirates fan!
Sarah is an education advocate and the Co-Founder of SEL for Washington, and is currently associated with the WA State Special Education Advisory Council (Exec Vice Chair), WA State Achievement and Accountability Workgroup (representing WA State PTA and SEAC), and Untapped Potential Project (Advisor). She has a strong connection to systems issues within education impacting students with disabilities and other learning needs related to their social, emotional and behavioral health. She will bring an inclusive lens to the work and bring connections to advocates and organizations working in special education, trauma-informed practices, physical health and mental health and well-being. Sarah lives in Bellevue with her husband and 3 children.
Erica is the State Director of Fight Crime: Invest in Kids. Erica brings expertise in Early Learning and has a finger on the pulse of Spokane. She is currently involved with Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission, YWCA Spokane (Women of Achievement) and Greater Spokane Inc. (GSI).
Dean Nielsen is a political strategist and Principal of Cerillion N4 Partners. Since starting his political career in 1992 working for Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign, he has worked on political campaigns in 32 states on every level of campaign, from school board to Congress to Governor to President as well as advising candidates and political parties in Eastern Europe. He’s worked on numerous government relations and communications projects for corporate and nonprofit clients including the Palms Casino in Las Vegas, a major sports team ownership group, a Fortune 500 agricultural interest, Seattle’s Harborview Hospital, and the Seattle McCaw Performance Hall. More recently, he has expanded his portfolio to include companies focused on clean energy, biomass generation, online cable TV, spectral pattern matching, data processing, and other services. Mr. Nielsen holds a bachelor’s degree from Bradley University.
Robert O’Hara earned a BA in Architecture from Penn State University and an MS.CS from Union College. He is a software and wireless industry veteran, with over 40 years of experience at companies including IBM Research, Microsoft, and Motorola. He has been involved in the mobile wireless data industry since it began, working with companies such as AT&T Wireless and Qualcomm. He is Vice Chair of the Trustees of Union Graduate College, now merged with Clarkson University, and is Chair of the Redmond City Planning Commission. He taught Computer Science at the graduate level for six years, and currently teaches it part time at the high school level.
Frank Ordway served as the Director of Government Relations for League of Education Voters from 2008 to 2015, until he was appointed as the Assistant Director of Government and Community Relations for the Department of Early Learning (DEL).
Frank has worked in non-profit and consulting for the bulk of his professional career, providing strategic planning, negotiation, staff and budget development, community outreach and policy for various organizations dedicated to public advancement.
One of Frank’s top career goals is to create sustainable institutions that are both entrepreneurial and have positive, wide ranging community impact.
Frank earned a MPA in Public Affairs, Political Science and Women’s Studies from the University of Washington in 2006.