CVELI Associates

Nancy Akhavan
Assistant Professor
Department of Educational Research and Administration
Kremen School of Education and Human Development

photo of nancyNancy Akhavan is a former teacher, staff developer,  principal, and assistant superintendent, currently serving as Assistant Professor and Single Subject Credential Coordinator at California State University, Fresno.  She has taught a variety of courses including doctoral courses on Educational Leadership. She also provides instructional coaching and leadership coaching to schools and teachers across the country.

In addition to her professor related duties at Fresno State, Dr. Akhavan also serves as the chair of Phonics special interest group of IRA, program director for the Center for Leadership, Equity, and Research (CLEAR), editor of the CLEAR Voz journal, Facilitator for the Central Valley Educational Leadership Institute (CVELI), and advisory board member for the Bonner Center for Character Education. She can coach your leadership team to higher performance focused on student learning with special areas of expertise in:

  • Literacy, reading and writing instruction
  • Content-based reading instruction
  • Standards-based instruction
  • English language learners
  • Educational reform
  • School and district leadership—in both urban and rural setting

Elaine Cash 
Educational Consultant

photo of elaineElaine C. Cash retired as Superintendent from Riverdale Joint Unified School District after 27 years in education. Her education career included experience as a classroom teacher, elementary and high school principal, assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction, and 9 years as superintendent. During her years as superintendent, all of Riverdale schools earned a California Distinguished Schools recognition, and Riverdale High School received the College Board National Inspiration Award in 2009. Her article, A Change in Beliefs Leads to A Change in Behavior and Student Achievement, was published in the National Staff Development Council, Journal of Staff Development, June 2010.

Mrs. Cash works as an education consultant. Current work includes Director of the Closing the Gap Project with West Hills Community College District and the Central Valley Higher Education Consortium and Regional Facilitator for Pivot Learning Partner’s Executive Leadership Center. She also serves as a Management Trustee for California’s Valued Trust’s (CVT) Board of Directors. CVT is the largest health and welfare trust in California serving CA school employees. Her areas of expertise include:

  • Executive Coach for Superintendents
  • Leadership Development
  • Change Management
  • Transforming School/District Culture
  • Instructional Rounds
  • Instructional Leadership

Dale Drew
Educational Consultant

photo of drewDale Drew is the retired Superintendent/Principal of Washington Colony Elementary School District (Fresno County). He is a graduate of California State University, Fresno (Administrative Credential, Elementary Teaching Credential) and the University of California, Santa Barbara (Secondary Teaching Credential, B.A. - History). He began his educational career in the Lakeside Union Elementary School District (Kings County) in 1973 where he remained until 1992, when he began his tenure as Superintendent/Principal at Washington Colony ESD. He retired on June 20, 2010, after 37 years in public education.

Mr. Drew served as an Executive Committee member and President of the Small School Districts' Association; member and chairperson of ACSA's Small School District Committee; Executive Board Member and Treasurer of ACSA's Fresno County Charter; member of the ACSA Region IX Board of Directors; and member of ACSA's Superintendency Council. He received the CSU, Fresno Kremen School of Education and Human Development Noted Alumni Reward and was selected as ACSA Fresno County Charter Superintendent of the Year. His areas of expertise include:

  • School/District Administration
  • Board/Superintendent Relations
  • Leadership Development
  • Finance
  • Educational Technology
  • Personne

Mark Ford
Educational Consultant

photo of markMark Ford has spent more than 34 years working in K-12 education, 31 years of which was in administrative assignments ranging from school site leadership to district administration. His last 15 years in full-time public education were in the Kingsburg Elementary Charter School District including 10 years as the Superintendent overseeing the growth of the district from 4 to 7 schools and implementing the professional development programs for all employees working in a collaborative environment to ensure the academic success of all students.

Dr. Ford has also been a part-time instructor for both the Masters and Doctorate programs in Education at CSU-Fresno and CSU-Bakersfield and as a guest lecturer at Fresno Pacific University. He has also been a facilitator with CVELI and an administrative coach to superintendents, district and site-level administrators. His areas of expertise include:

  • Executive Coach for Superintendents, district and site leadership positions.
  • Culture change at district and site levels.
  • Administration of Human Resources
  • Instructional Rounds support


Mabel Franks

photo of franksMabel Franks has more than 30 years in K-12 and higher education. She has held a variety of leadership position in Clovis Unified and Fresno Unified, including teacher mentor, school Principal and Asst. Superintendent., School Leadership and Special Education Services. Dr. Franks currently instructs aspiring principals at Fresno State and curriculum courses through Fresno Pacific University, and mentors district-level leadership teams in Sacramento and Central California. Her areas of expertise include:

  • Systems and systems thinking
  • Reform, school improvement and action planning
  • Instructional practices and student engagement
  • Coaching, interpersonal skills and conflict management
  • School and district leadership


Linda Hauser
Assistant Professor
Department of Educational Research and Administration
Kremen School of Education and Human Development

photo of lindaLinda Hauser has been in education for over 30 years, currently serving as a Professor at California State University Fresno, Educational Leadership Department, where she teaches in the Educational Leadership and Administration Master’s Program and Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership. She served over 28 years in K-12 public education as the Chief Academic Officer for Fresno Unified School District, and as Area Superintendent, Administrator for Professional Development (K-12), elementary school principal, secondary learning director, resource teacher and teacher in Clovis Unified School District. She received her BA in Communicative Disorders (deaf education emphasis) and teaching credential from Fresno State, her MA in Administration and Reading Specialist Certification from Fresno Pacific University and a doctorate in Organizational Leadership from the University of LaVerne.

Dr. Hauser has been recognized as a Fresno County Administrator the Year. Under her leadership as principal, her elementary school was recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School. She has done extensive work in schools and districts in organizational development and facilitation and has led the development of numerous programs and projects. She has been a conference presenter at AERA, National Staff Development Council (NSDC) conferences, ACSA Leadership Academy presenter and consults with schools and districts throughout the state. She was an award recipient from NCSD for a model professional development program: Project BEST (Beginning Educator’s Support in Teaching). Dr. Hauser serves as a dissertation advisor for doctoral students and research in her areas of expertise that include:

  • Organizational Development
  • Executive and Cognitive Coaching
  • Instructional Rounds
  • Performance Excellence Criteria/Developing High Performing Systems
  • Alignment of the Instructional System
  • Project Management
  • PDSA - Cycle of Inquiry - Model for Continuous Improvement
  • Data management practices and program/system evaluation

Marcy Masumoto
Rural Network, CVELI

photo of marcyMarcy Masumoto has worked in the health and education fields for over 35 years, starting as a child nutrition advisor for Riverside County Office of Education and advancing through management and leadership positions in pubic and nonprofit organizations. She holds BS degree in public health education with a minor in nutrition from Loma Linda University, a master’s degree in Community Development from UC Davis, and a doctorate in Educational Leadership from UC Davis and CSU Fresno. She published an article on her dissertation in the Journal of Research in Rural Education, entitled Case Study of Leadership Practices and School-Community Interrelationships in High-Performing, High-Poverty, Rural California High Schools.

Dr. Masumoto currently serves as Project Director of the Rural Schools Network for the Central Valley Educational Leadership Institute at Fresno State, focusing on improving education for students in Central and rural California. In that role, she enjoys networking and connecting people and resources, developing new programs, facilitating groups, and leading Instructional Rounds. Though she has taught classes at community college and university levels and worked as a substitute teacher in grades K-6, she prefers organizational and project management roles in the field of education. Major organizations in the Fresno area with which she has previously been employed include Children’s Hospital Central California, State Center Community College District, and the UC San Francisco Medical Education Program. She has served in consulting and volunteer capacities for numerous organizations in California, currently serving as a Trustee for Sanger Unified School District with 20 schools and serving approximately 11,000 students.

Marcy lives in rural Fresno County and is co-owner of Masumoto Family Farm, a nationally renowned producer of certified organic peaches, nectarines and raisins. She is co-author of The Perfect Peach: Recipes and Stories from Masumoto Family Farm (Ten Speed Press 2013), and actively works on the farm in management and seasonal work throughout the year. Her professional areas of expertise include:

  • Community development and needs assessment
  • Organization development
  • Project management
  • Rural communities and education
  • Educational leadership
  • Instructional Rounds

Don Wise
Assistant Professor, retired
Department of Educational Research and Administration
Kremen School of Education and Human Development

photo of donDon Wise has been at Fresno State since 1999. Before that he served as a superintendent in five overseas schools, and a principal overseas and in the US. Besides teaching and directing research of doctoral and master's students, he also works with the government of Guatemala to establish a nationwide educational coaching program and teaches courses in leadership in Mexico.

The opportunity to work with CVELI has kept Dr. Wise current with the many changes in schools and allowed him to visit numerous classrooms each month with school principals. His areas of expertise include:

  • Executive coach for superintendents and principals
  • Program evaluation
  • Educational planning
  • Educational leadership

Steve Weil
Educational Consultant

photo of steveSteve Weil retired from Clovis Unified School District after 34 years in public education. He has served as a secondary history and business teacher, high school counselor, middle school learning director, high school deputy principal and principal. He retired with 14 years experience as an assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction.
Since retiring in 2007, Steve has worked as a leadership coach and project lead with Pivot Learning Partners. He has also worked with CVELI on a number of leadership projects with the Rural Network and Middle Leaders programs. His areas of expertise include:

  • Executive Leadership coaching for Superintendents and principals.
  • Strategic Planning and project management.
  • Professional Development
  • Alternative Education expertise