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About Us


Dr. David A. Lewis


Dr. David Lewis is a native of Saginaw, Michigan, and attended Chesaning Public Schools. He received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Saginaw Valley State University. In 2016 he received his Doctorate of Education from Central Michigan University. Prior to working in the School/University Partnership Office, Dave worked as an administrator in three different school systems in Michigan. Before his public education experience, he worked at SVSU in Admissions and as Director of Minority Services. Dave returned to SVSU in July 2010 as a School Improvement Specialist in the School/University Partnership Office. As Director, Dave's main function is to lead the operations of the office, focusing on the best outcomes for students in the academies authorized by SVSU.

Candice Casey

Interim Director

Candice provides academic support to teachers and leaders through professional development, educational program reviews, and assessment monitoring. Previously, she served as an instructional coach, a literacy specialist, and a high school English teacher for schools in the Saginaw and Flint regions. Candice earned her Education Specialist in Central Office Administration, Master of Arts in Literacy Education, Bachelor of English, and Secondary Teaching Certificate from Saginaw Valley State University.

Dawn Gillespie

Administrative Assistant

Dawn is the only School/University Partnership Office staffer who has worked in the office since its inception in 1995. During that time, she has assisted six different Directors and countless other staff members. She is an invaluable resource to the office staff, to SVSU in general, and to all stakeholders in the academies SVSU authorizes, including teachers, school leaders, management companies, and board members. Office staff rely heavily on her historical perspective concerning all aspects of charter school operations and her keen planning, analytical, and organizational skills. Dawn also serves as the University State Continuing Education Clock Hours (SCECH) Coordinator.

Chantra Williams

School Improvement/Student Initiatives Specialist

As a School Improvement Specialist, Chantra's focus areas are curriculum/instruction and professional development. She is a former elementary and middle school teacher, academic interventionist, and curriculum/instructional coach. She enjoys partnering with schools for educational consulting, program reviews, and professional learning communities. Chantra assists with college readiness, social and emotional learning, and retention supports for students enrolled in the School/University Partnership Office sponsored PSA Scholar Program. She has a Master of Education in Leadership/Principalship and an Education Specialist degree in Central Office Administration. She has formally served in education for 20 years.

George Copeland

Public School Academy Transition Coordinator

George supports our Public School Academy students on campus as well as works with Academies to facilitate next steps for college preparation. George graduated from SVSU in 2016 with a Bachelor's in Management and began his career in SVSU's Academic Advising Center. He brings with him a wealth of institutional knowledge and a passion for helping our PSA Scholars succeed. If you would like to schedule a visit, please contact George for more information.

Cathy Malotka

Quality/Curriculum Specialist

Cathy Malotka has over 30 years of experience teaching elementary, middle school, and university students, in both rural, suburban, and urban settings. She brings to the team, not only her vast teaching experience, but also years of experience developing and providing professional development sessions in many disciplines. Cathy earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from Central Michigan University, and a Master of Art in Teaching degree from Saginaw Valley State University.

Doug Newcombe

Field Representative

Doug has spent the past 40 years working in both private and public sectors. He spent 32 years in public education with 26 of those years in the Bay City Public Schools as the finance director, as assitant director from 1989-2009, and as Superintendent from 2009-2015.

Prior to his work in the Bay City Schools, Doug spent two years in public accounting specializing in audits of state and local governments and five years in the banking industry.

Currently, along with his position at the SUPO office, Doug serves on the Board of Education at the Bay Arenac Intermediate School District as Vice President and consults with K-12 school districts throughout Michigan.

Ken Tesauro

Field Representative

For the first 35 years of his career, Ken worked in public education as a teacher, coach, Athletic Director, Principal, and Superintendent. For the past 16 years he has worked in different capacities with charter schools. As a representative of Quality Performance Resource Group, Ken has provided a variety of services for Michigan Charter School Authorizers since the year 2000.

Cindy Shinsky

Special Education Specialist

Cindy has a passion for working with school leaders and staff to support quality programs and services for students. She comes to us with more than 40 years of experience serving within charter and traditional school systems. Cindy’s experiences include serving as a School Support Specialist with special education oversight at GVSU, Director of Special Education for National Heritage Academies, Assistant Superintendent at two ISDs, Director of Special Education at one local district, Special Education Supervisor at one ISD and as a special education teacher. Currently, Cindy serves the SUPO as a contracted provider supporting Special Education compliance.

Cindy graduated from Michigan State University with her B.A. in Elementary Education/Special Education, M.A. in Special Education and Ed.S in School Administration. She is married, has two children and five grandchildren. In addition, she and her husband opened an orphanage in Mexico 12 years ago and have served over 200 children (link: ).The orphanage is part of NPH.

Donald Bachand


SVSU Board of Control

Contact Us
(989) 964-4623(989) 964-4623
(989) 964-4636


Gilbertson Hall GN-135


M-F 8:00 am - 4:30 pm