Lorne Brandt

Program Director

Lorne Brandt, Baishan AWS Program Director, began his education career in 2000 after graduating with a teaching certificate from Winthrop University. His first eight years were spent teaching Advanced Placement visual arts and coaching boys varsity soccer for a large public school near Charlotte, North Carolina. During these years he became chair of the Fine Arts department.

In 2009, Mr. Brandt became certified by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards and then earned a master’s degree in Curriculum & Instruction in 2012. Seeking international teaching opportunities, he joined an international school in Qingdao, China, to establish the International General Certificate of Secondary Education Arts program and implement the school’s new information system.

Mr. Brandt returned to the U.S. in 2017 and married his wife, whom he met in Qingdao. He worked at a reputable school system in the fastest growing county in America. He returned to China in 2017 to establish a high school art program at an international school in Chengdu and was named Head of Faculty for the Expressive Arts and P.E., and chaired the Standards Committee.

Lorne and his wife are residents of the beloved city of Qingdao, China, where they are close to family and intend to stay. They both enjoy exercising, hiking, and traveling. Mr. Brandt is a practicing artist, producing oil paintings and pastel drawings that often illustrate traditional Chinese architecture. He is passionate about international education and continues to teach International Baccalaureate Diploma Program students.

Susan Bauska

Associate Head of Annie Wright Schools, Tacoma, USA

Susan joined Annie Wright Schools in 1990 as an English teacher and later College Counselor and Director of Upper School. After earning English and education degrees from the University of Puget Sound and Lewis and Clark College, Susan was a teacher and administrator at Oregon Episcopal School in Portland, OR. In addition to her leadership duties, Susan teaches an Upper School English class, enduring her passion for students, English and teaching.

Rex Bates

Director of International Advancement

Annie Wright Schools, Tacoma, USA

Rex joined Annie Wright Schools in 2008, although his association with the school as a parent, trustee and Board Chair dates back almost 25 years. Rex's first career was in independent education as a history teacher, dorm parent and coach at Shattuck St. Mary's School. He followed that with almost thirty years in multiple leadership positions at State Farm Insurance Company.

James Lerch

Social Studies Teacher

James C. Lerch earned a B.S. in Business Administration from Northern Arizona University in 1984, a J.D. from University of Oregon in 1987, and a Master of Arts in Economic Education from University of Delaware in 2019.

Before becoming an educator, Mr. Lerch was an attorney for fourteen years, working simultaneously as both a contract public defender and a private attorney for most of that time. After changing careers from law to education in 2003, he worked briefly on the White Mountain Apache Indian Reservation before working overseas teaching primarily economics, history, and government in various locations in Africa, East Asia, Central Asia, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East. This experience includes teaching IB Economics and History.

Mr. Lerch has served as an educator at University High School in Tucson, Arizona since 2016, teaching Advanced Placement Microeconomics and Macroeconomics, and AP Seminar, and working as a mentor teacher. He has been an AP Macroeconomics Reader since 2018. He recently earned the Arizona Council for Economic Education’s Economic Educator of the Year and was also awarded 2018-19 U Outstanding Educator of the Year for Southern Arizona.

He is looking forward to working with the students, families and educators who have chosen AWS Baishan.

Jenn Roth

English Language Arts Teacher, Department Chair & Advisor

Jennifer Roth began her international teaching career over ten years ago as an EAL teacher and trainer in Southeast Asia. She has had the pleasure of teaching to every age and proficiency level, from pre-K to business English for adults. In the past five years, she has focused on teaching native English language and literature to high school students, gaining experience in the IBDP, Cambridge Key Stage, and US Secondary Common Core curricula. She has a passion for literature and is especially keen to help students develop their writing skills in advance of their admission to university.  

Kim Brauer

Humanities Teacher & Advisor 

Kim Brauer taught high school social studies, journalism, and studio art at the American School of Kuwait, trained technology teachers in China, Saudi Arabia, Korea, and Japan, taught undergrads at Ohio State, and launched an online STEAM high school in the United States. She earned her BA at Wellesley College and her MFA at The Ohio State University. Her classes involve lots of inquiry-driven investigations, hands-on projects, and lively discussions. She believes that in the face of quick and constant change, the ability to learn has become our only sustainable competitive advantage – and beyond work, lifelong learning brings us a greater sense of purpose and meaning, and richer lives more engaged with the world. 

Thiago Silva

Science Teacher

Mr. Silva has been an international educator for five years. Before that he worked with outdoors environmental education, renewable resources research, reforestation projects, and technology. He is passionate about sports and has been coaching middle and high school soccer and Brazilian martial art called capoeira in after-school programs. Mr. Silva began his career in Brazil, teaching Biology to high school students in 2015, he moved to the United States to teach middle school Integrated Sciences at a Charlotte-Mecklenburg school in North Carolina, USA. After that, he joined the American School of Yaoundé in Cameroon to teach IB DP Biology and IB MYP Sciences. He enjoyed the IB curriculum so much that he attended professional development for IB MYP, IB DP and Internal assessment, and he is currently working on his M.Ed. in International Education.

Mr. Silva enriches the students' school life with a diversity of experiments, cultural exchange performances, music, field trips, tournaments, and career advice.

Elena Guedes (Starting August, 2021) 

Mathematics Teacher

Ms. Elena Guedes is a Mathematics teacher with over 10 years of international experience, and an IB examiner for DP Mathematics. She also likes to assist students with SAT-prep and web development. 

Ms. Guedes graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science and Mathematics from Saint Peter's University in Jersey City, New Jersey, and a Master's degree in Educational Leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia in the United States. A Bulgarian-Canadian, she holds a teaching certification from Ontario College of Teachers for Mathematics and Business Studies. In 2018 she also graduated from a Software Engineering boot-camp at the University of North Carolina. 

Ms. Guedes taught at American schools locally, in the US, and also in American international schools in Brazil and Cameroon. She also taught in Peru and Canada. She has worked with the IB curriculum since 2010. 

Ms. Guedes enjoys reading, traveling, learning new languages, and learning about different cultures. She believes that a person should always keep learning, and encourages her students to be curious, and excited about learning as well. 

Laki Faamamafa

Physical Education Teacher

Mr. Faamamafa grew up playing sports in his home country of Samoa – an island nation in the South Pacific.  He studied in China at the Hefei University of Technology, where he earned his Bachelor’s degree.  He has experience teaching English, Computers, and Physical Education.  Additionally, Mr. Faamamafa has worked as a personal trainer and is a certified boxing coach.  Coach Faamamafa loves helping develop students with their skills and understandings of various sports.  He is especially passionate about rugby, boxing, track & field, badminton, basketball, American football, as well as mountain climbing.  He can often be seen exercising on the beach in the early mornings, and likes traveling and food.  Mr. Faamamafa is fluent in Samoan, English, and Chinese languages. 

Ting Guo

Math Teacher & Advisor

Originally from Qingdao, Ting Guo has spent most of his academic and professional life in Australia, starting in 2001 and returning in 2018.  He received his Bachelor’s of Science degree in Mathematics from Macquarie University.  Ting continued his studies at the University of Technology in Sydney where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Teaching in Secondary Education.  He has traveled to Japan, USA, New Zealand, and Singapore.  Mr. Guo has been teaching since 2010, including 11- 12 Maths at Canberra College, 7 -12 Maths at Melrose High School also in Canberra.  He is also experienced with teaching British A-levels.  Prior to starting with Baishan in 2018, Ting owned his own business.  When he is not teaching, Ting enjoys weightlifting and watching all kinds of sports, especially soccer and basketball

Richard Kytle

Physics Teacher 

Richard is a professionally certified American teacher from the state of Georgia, U.S. He has a degree in Economics and is currently finishing his Masterdegree in Technology and Instructional Design. He has been a teacher for a decade working with students of all ages. He has taught a variety of courses, including Geography, Literature, Chemistry, Biology, Physics, U.S. History, World History, and ESL of all levels. When he is not working he likes spending time with his wife, son, and daughter here in Qingdao. Richard enjoys going to the beach, camping, trying out new foods, as well as traveling to new places. He also has a passion for science fiction novels. 

Shiwen Zhan

Chinese Language and Culture Teacher, Chinese Department Chair

Mr.Zhan is a first-grade teacher and he has 32 years’ experiences in teaching. In 1996, Mr.Zhan joined Baishan school as a middle school Chinese teacher, later upper school Chinese teacher, the class teacher and the Director of middle school department. Mr.Zhan joined Baishan AWS program in 2020. He is the class teacher, meanwhile he is in charge of giving high school Chinese lessons. Mr.Zhan was awarded Advanced Teacher in Qingdao and Prominent Teacher in Laoshan District. During the teaching, He is good at student-centered philosophy, good at identifying students strength, good at organizing learning and practice activities. He focuses on helping students to learn, to use and to improve Chinese Language ability in their daily lives.

JiaJia Li

Chemistry Teacher

JiaJia’s love for Chemistry kept her studying at university for 7 years.  After earning a Bachelor degree in Applied Chemistry, she continued to achieve her Masters in Organic Chemistry.

Jiajia has been teaching Chemistry for eight years, including six years at international school and two at Chinese traditional school.  She is experienced with IB DP Chemistry, AP Chemistry and Chinese Chemistry. In addition to teaching AP Chemistry for Baishan AWS, JiaJia also teaches IBDP Chemistry at Qingdao Amerasia International School.  

She enjoys cooking, traveling, and reading in her spare time.

Iris Jia

English Language Teacher and Executive Administrative Assistant

Iris graduated from Shandong Normal University in 2006. She has since been engaged in English Language teaching and administrative work. Iris has taught many English courses, including English Literature, SAT, TOEFL, ESL. Iris has been teaching for more than 15 years and during her working, she has received many positive evaluations for her responsibility and proficiency. Besides, she is good at communicating with students in accordance of their aptitude.

Helen Du

AP Coordinator, College Counselor & TOEFL Teacher

Helen graduated from the University of Southern California with a Master’s degree in Teaching. She has over ten years of language teaching experience in both China and the United States, instructing students from Korea, Japan, Indonesia, Ecuador, U.S., etc. Helen once served as the head of middle school English department in China’s largest Education Group, Qingdao branch and the high school director of the branch school of Southlands Christian School in Los Angeles, U.S.  She has rich experience in bilingual curriculum setting, professional language training, university guidance and American university application process 

Also, Helen obtained the Beijing Language and Culture University Teaching Proficiency Certificate of Teaching Chinese As a Second Language, University of Cambridge TKT Certificate and the Central Conservatory of Music 10th Level Certificate of Playing Guzheng. 


Emilia Zheng

Chinese Language and Culture Teacher

Emilia graduated from Beijing Language and Culture University with a Master of Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages (MTCSOL). Since 2008, Emilia has taught with different international schools in Beijing and Qingdao, with over 10 years teaching experience, including AP Chinese, IB Language and Junior high school Chinese curriculum. As the leader of Chinese group, Emilia excels at integrating multi-cultural and human history disciplines with management and curriculum development experience. She has earned a high school Chinese teacher qualification certificate as well as the Chinese international teacher qualification certificate.  She also keeps current with training.

As an experienced Advisor, Emilia is also familiar with helping young adults with growing needs. She enjoys teaching and is happy to be part of the continuous improvement and educational transcendence.

In her spare time, Emilia enjoys reading, traveling and sports. The world is a kaleidoscope to her. She explores beautiful scenery and discovering interesting different customs and cultures, constantly seeking to be a global citizen with an international vision.

Carol Hu

Administrative Assistant & Admissions

Carol graduated in 2008 with a master's degree in Management from Beijing International Studies University (BISU). Carol has worked for 10 years in the top American College Application Consulting Company in Beijing, and has accumulated 10 years of experience in American College Application. In 2016, she returned to Qingdao to continue her work in international education. Carol served as Director of Marketing and Admissions at Melton International School and is now responsible for marketing, admissions, and administration at Baishan AWS program. She likes hiking, watching movies, and likes Sichuan and Japanese food.

Kristine Qiu

Curriculum Facilitator & Administrative Assistant

Kristine Qiu studied in France for six years pursuing her bachelors and master degree in Lyon 3 Jean Moulin University, majoring in Applied Linguistics and Business Management. Kristine’s experiences include working in the French Embassy in China - Beijing in 2018 with responsibilities of checking student online Visa application documents and helping Chinese students pass the Visa interview. Additionally, Kristine has experience as a marketing assistant for a French E-commerce company in Paris during 2020.  

Kristin has always been passionate about languages, specifically French and English. She loves dancing, hiking, and doing yoga in her spare time.

Our Affiliations:Qingdao Baishan School Qingdao Amerasia International School Annie Wright Schools
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