EIS Staff and Board of Directors

The Elementary Institute of Science has a dedicated support team that works together in order to provide students across San Diego with the learning experience necessary to excel in the growing field of STEM.


Dr. Ida Rose Florez

Dr. Ida Rose Florez

Executive Director

Ida Rose Florez, Ph.D. is a learning scientist and education management executive who specializes in creating effective local and large-scale education systems. She has worked in public and private education for over 25 years. Prior to joining EIS, Dr. Florez led multimillion dollar educational strategic initiatives in California and Arizona, directed the development of cutting-edge teacher professional development programs, and served as a senior advisor to elected and appointed state education officers.
As a senior project director with WestEd, Dr. Florez oversaw a $9 million statewide professional development project for First 5 California. She directed the creation, development, and publication of PD2GO, an innovative resource of 44 early childhood professional development modules (in both English and Spanish). Sixteen PD2GO modules help teachers scaffold children’s acquisition of early science and math skills. Ida Rose was also Senior Director, Strategic Initiatives at the Arizona Early Childhood Development and Health Board (ECDH) where she served as a policy consultant to the ECDH Board, CEO, and Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction. Dr. Florez served as the primary psychometric consultant to the Arizona Department of Education and ECDH regarding kindergarten entry assessment, early childhood formative assessment, and school readiness.
Dr. Florez is Vice President and Affiliate Liaison of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). She has over 20 years’ experience as a state and nationally certified school psychologist. Ida Rose holds a Ph.D. in educational psychology from the University of Arizona, where she was awarded the Marshall Foundation Dissertation Fellowship for her research on early childhood teacher preparation. She has served on the faculty of Penn State University and University of Arizona, and held a tenure track appointment with Arizona State University, where she researched assessment of dual language learners and teacher beliefs about school readiness. Dr. Florez has consulted with the National Governors Association, and served as an expert witness in the federal Horne v. Flores dual-language education court case. Her work as been published in Teachers College RecordJournal of Early Childhood Teacher EducationLanguage Policy, the UCLA Civil Rights Project, and Young Children.

Contact Ida Rose

Charlene Browne

Charlene Browne

Administration Director

Charlene Browne has been at EIS since 2013. She has over 20 years of experience working at San Diego nonprofits, primarily as a grant writer. Charlene is a strong believer in the power of education to transform lives. She is gratified to work for an organization committed to access to education. In her spare time she likes to be outdoors as much as possible and to travel to faraway lands. Charlene graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in American Studies.

Contact Charlene


Anthonette Peña, NBCT

Anthonette Peña, NBCT

Education Director

Anthonette Peña joined the EIS staff as Education Director in 2015.  Anthonette’s experience in the classroom includes teaching science in Title 1 schools in Florida and in the the District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS). During her tenure at DCPS, she secured and managed a $20,000 grant from DC Space Grant Consortium for participation in the Student Spaceflight Experiment Program (SSEP) to send a student research project to the International Space Station. Prior to teaching in DCPS, she served for two years as an Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellow at the National Science Foundation. Anthonette is a National Board Certified Teacher in Early Adolescence Science and was a Presidential Award in Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST) State Finalist. She earned her BA in Liberal Studies with concentrated studies in Science from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and an MS in Education in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from Nova Southeastern University.

Contact Anthonette

Will Spencer

Maintenance Manager

Sheila Robinson

Administrative Assistant

Contact Sheila

Board of Directors

Ms. Patsy Tomlin


Ms. Evonne Smith

Vice President

Ms. Katherine Wardle


Ms. Kimberly White


Mr. Stuart Bean

Ms. Julie Greenberg

Ms. Christine Hickman

Dr. Robert Matthews

Dr. Joi Spencer

Dr. John R. Walton III

Ms. Jennifer Davies

Dr. Michael (Mick) Hager

Ms. Vanitha Kumar

Ms. Dianne Moss

Ms. Mary Taylor

Ms. Patricia Winter

EIS Ambassadors

Murray Galinson

(In memoriam, d.2013)

Vi Jacobs

(In memoriam, d. 2015)

Paul Mosher

Jennifer Vanica

Walter & Lola Green

Joe Jacobs, Ph.D.

(In memoriam, d.2004)

Rev. George Stevens

(In memoriam, d. 2006)

Doris Watts