Dr. Brian Bontempo
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 701
Dr. Brian Bontempo was appointed Superintendent of the Lake County Educational Service Center in the fall of 2009. As the Chief Executive Officer of the Lake County ESC, he is the primary professional adviser to the County Board of Education. He is responsible for the development, supervision, and operation of each program and service offered to our member and non-member districts. During Dr. Bontempo’s tenure, he has more than tripled the programming and the budget of the Lake County ESC by providing programs and services that meet the needs of the local districts and communities.

Dr. Bontempo joined the Lake County ESC in August 2005 as Assistant Superintendent. Prior to joining the ESC, Dr. Bontempo served as Principal at Willoughby South High School, a suburban school of over 1,200 students. Prior to being the principal, he was an assistant principal at Willoughby South and received the Ohio Assistant Principal of the Year Award in 2002. Dr. Bontempo was also recognized as the John Carroll University Alumni of the Year in 2002. His background includes working as the director of technology, classroom teacher, and head wrestling coach. In addition, he has served on numerous levy, facility labor management and dispute committees, and has considerable experience in curriculum and program development.

Dr. Bontempo is Past President of OESCA and currently serves as the Chairman of the Lake County Schools Health Care Consortium. He recently led Lake County through a STEM Strategic Plan that is near full implementation and he is often asked to serve with community leaders on numerous committees and boards.

Dr. Bontempo is very active in policy and state level work for OESCA and recently served on a policy task force charged with developing recommendations to legislative and educational leaders on a state wide system of support as it relates to the delivery and support of the new federal Every Student Succeeds Act.

Dr. Bontempo holds a B.S. in Business Education, an M.Ed. in Computer Education, an M.Ed. in School Administration, and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership. He also holds Ohio licenses as superintendent, treasurer and K-12 principal.

Dr. Bontempo and his wife Lisa, have twin boys enrolled at Miami University in Oxford, Oh., and is a proud, lifelong supporter of all Cleveland sports teams.
Melissa Fording
Executive Assistant to the Superintendent/KLA Coordinator
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 734
Sherry Williamson
Treasurer/CFO, Auburn Career Center/Lake County ESC
Office Phone: (440) 358-8006
Sherry Williamson was appointed Treasurer of the Lake County Educational Service Center (LCESC) August 1, 2014. She handles the finances for the LCESC, the Lake County Financing District, and the Auburn Career Center. The Treasurer is employed by the Board of Education to administer, in cooperation with the Superintendent, the financial, legal and contractual business of the school district. Like the Superintendent, the Treasurer reports directly to the Board and acts as the Chief Financial Officer to the Board. The community depends on the Treasurer's Office to invest district funds wisely, provide accurate financial information, and ensure that the funds of the district are spent within the confines of the law. The Treasurer also serves as Secretary to the Board and maintains Board meeting minutes. Mrs. Williamson is a graduate from Kent State University, has served in the finance sector of education since 1999, and resides in N. Kingsville, Ohio.
Debra Burke
Director, Human Resources & Operations
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 727
Debra L. Burke PHR, SHRM-CP is the Director, Human Resources and Operations for the Lake County Educational Service Center. She is responsible for the oversight of all facets of human resources for the LCESC and supports member districts with human resources projects. Additionally, Debra handles LCESC business agreements and contracts, information technology, and facility management.

Debra began her career at Reliance Electric, a Rockwell Automation Company, responsible for payroll, the HRIS/Payroll systems and accounting functions. She was employed at Cleveland Municipal School District for 8 year as an HR Manager responsible for compensation, staffing, licensure, EMIS and historical records retention. Additionally, Debra worked at Marous Brothers Construction and Cardinal Commerce as the department head of human resources.

Debra holds Bachelors of Arts in Accounting and Business Administration from Malone University. She obtained her PHR in 2005 and her SHRM-CP in 2015. She joined the Lake Geauga SHRM in 2004, joined their board in 2009 and has served as the Vice-President of Membership since 2010. Additionally, Debra holds the position of Treasurer for B.A.L.D. Run Inc., a non profit organization helping low income diabetics in Lake County, since its inception in 2006.
Becky Tressler
Human Resources Assistant, EMIS Coordinator
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 726
Early Childhood
Tippi Foley
Director, Early Childhood
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 711
Cell: (440) 251-1244
Tippi Foley is the Director of Early Childhood for the Lake County Educational Service Center. She oversees special education services for preschoolers that qualify as having an educational disability, student programming for typically developing preschoolers, as well as developing new programs.

Ms. Foley joined the Lake County Educational Service Center in 2008. Foley spent her first twelve years in education at Auburn Career Center where she worked as a Teacher, Career Pathways Counselor, and Enrollment Specialist serving eleven school districts throughout Lake and Geauga Counties. Prior to her work at Auburn, Ms. Foley was an instructor for the Dr. James H. Porter Center for Science & Mathematics in addition to coaching softball and soccer for Madison High School.

Ms. Foley is a certified Elementary and Career Based Intervention Teacher. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Kent State University in 1992 with a major in Psychology and an Administration License from Cleveland State University.
Roxanne Prine
Assistant to Director Early Childhood
Office Phone: (440) 354-7090
Julie O’Neil
Director, Special Education
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 746
Julie O’Neil is the Director of Special Education for the Lake County Educational Service Center. She oversees student programming as well as developing new programs as needs in the county develop.

Ashtabula County Educational Service Center was Julie’s first employer where she worked as a School Age Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP) for the Jefferson Local Schools and a Preschool SLP for the county for five years. Julie then worked in Kenston Local Schools as a middle school and high school SLP for three years. Next, Julie served as the district SLP for Perry Local Schools for four years. She then transitioned to Supervisor of Special Education for one year and then to Director of Student Services for four years before coming to the LCESC in 2010.

Julie is a Speech-Language Pathologist. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Speech and Hearing Science from The Ohio State University and her Master’s Degree in Speech-Language Pathology from Cleveland State University. In addition, Julie obtained a Pupil Services Administration License and a Superintendent’s License from Cleveland State University.
Leah Bartlett
Administrative Assistant
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 745
Special Education
Denise Dimatteo
Special Education Supervisor
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563
Cell: (440) 853-3525
Denise DiMatteo is a Special Education Supervisor for the Lake County Educational Service Center. She currently oversees both the PHP at Crossroads and LEAD at Lake Erie College programs. Denise also conducts CPI Trainings and coordinates state-wide testing for all LCESC programs.

Denise started her career in education as a school psychologist, where she worked in various school settings within Ashtabula and Cuyahoga counties for fourteen years. She then transitioned to Supervisor of Special Education for six years for the Cuyahoga County Educational Service Center. Denise then accepted a position for the Warrensville Heights City Schools as the Special Education/Pupil Services Director for four years before coming to the LCESC in 2015.

Denise received her B.A. in Psychology from Cleveland State University and her M.S. in School Psychology from Miami University. In addition, Denise obtained her Pupil Personnel Administration License from Cleveland State University.
Special Education
Meghan KanagaRaj
Special Education Supervisor

Cell: (440) 754-2759
Meghan KanagaRaj is a Special Education Supervisor and Behavior Specialist for the Lake County Educational Service Center. She oversees special education services, implementation of behavior modification strategies and plans, and effective instruction using best practice for specialized programs throughout Lake County.

Ms. KanagaRaj joined the Lake County Educational Service Center in 2016. She spent the beginning of her career in education working with students with autism, ages 2-22, using techniques of Applied Behavior Analysis as a classroom behavior therapist at The Lerner School for Autism at The Cleveland Clinic. She continued working in special education as an intervention specialist for the STARS program of the Geauga County Educational Service Center for eight years. Using a multi-methodological approach to special education, Ms. KanagaRaj built experience in writing, implementing, monitoring, and evaluating behavior modification plans; training paraprofessionals in direct instruction, data collection and analysis, and discrete trial; and designing daily curriculums using modifications and accommodations to meet the needs and potential of an extensive range of diverse learners. Ms. KanagaRaj also was a member of the County PBIS team and helped to plan and implement District-level PBIS programming.

Meghan KanagaRaj is a licensed preK-12 mild to intensive Intervention Specialist, and a licensed preK-12 Administrator. She received Bachelor’s degrees in Biology and Psychology from John Carroll University. She holds Master’s degrees in Curriculum and Instruction from Cleveland State University and in Educational Administration from Ursuline College.
Tim Hamman
LCESC Consultant

Cell: (440) 487-1613
Tim is the newest member of the LCESC team and serves the ESC as a Consultant. He coordinates the Junior Robotics Program, and oversees the new Pathway to High School Graduation Initiative in Lake County. In addition, he helps to facilitate the Principal, Assistant Principal, and Curriculum Leadership meetings.

Tim brings 35 years of experience in education to the ESC. The past 22 years were spent with Willoughby-Eastlake City Schools having served two stints as an elementary principal and nine years as the Director of Elementary Education.

Tim Hamman holds a B.S. in Elementary Education, an M.Ed. in School Administration, and he also holds Ohio licenses as superintendent, and K-8 principal.
Jovette Hiltunen
LCESC Consultant
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 791
This year Jovette is a Consultant for the Lake County ESC and is the Early Childhood Director for Madison Local Schools two days a week. She is an OTES and OPES state trainer and provides training and professional development opportunities to districts. Jovette also serves as an ESC representative for several workforce and college and career development committees including the Lakeland Community College Early Childhood Advisory Council. She graduates November 2015 with the first of LEAF’s Career Development Facilitation certification which will allow her to help districts design and implement career opportunities for their students.

Among her honors, Jovette was named to the Winner’s Circle of the National Association of Professional Women in 2015. Jovette is active in several forward-thinking professional development projects and is available to help you take your ideas and turn them into reality. She will write up wraparounds for you to study your idea and bring in stakeholders, look for grants that might extend your idea and help you write it, provide professional development through the ESC, or help you tap into other professionals as resources.

Jovette Hiltunen completed her associate’s degree at Lakeland Community College, her undergraduate and master’s degrees at Lake Erie College, elementary principal training from John Carroll University, and superintendent’s training from Ashland University. Jovette came to the ESC as an employee of Mentor Public Schools where she served as the Curriculum Director, grant writer, Title I Coordinator and teacher, and elementary principal for 10 years.  During her career, she has assisted in writing and implementing over $2 million in grants.

Jonna Mazza
Administrative Assistant
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 719
Denise Hunt
LCESC Consultant
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 706
Denise is the newest member of the LCESC team and serves the ESC as a Consultant. She coordinates Gifted Services, and oversees the Resident Educator Program.  In addition, she helps to facilitate the Principal, Assistant Principal, and Curriculum Leadership meetings.
Denise has taught both in the private and public school systems in Ohio including a self-contained learning disabilities classroom, and Kindergarten, First, and Fifth Grade.  She has been a summer enrichment teacher in technology, tutor, assistant varsity track coach, and varsity cheerleading coach. She has also facilitated strategic planning and professional development for several districts.

Denise Hunt is a licensed K-8 Teacher and K-12 Administrator. She received her undergraduate degree in Elementary Education from Bethany College.  She received her graduate education from John Carroll University in Administration and Supervision.
Jonna Mazza
Administrative Assistant
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 719
Nutrition Services
Kelly Minnick
Director, Nutrition Services
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563
Kelly Minnick is the Director of School Nutrition Services for the Lake County Educational Service Center. Mrs. Minnick currently serves Berkshire Local, Newbury Local, Madison Local, and Painesville City School Districts as the Director of Nutrition Services.

Prior to joining the LCESC, Mrs. Minnick served as Director of Nutrition Services for Painesville City and Madison Local Schools and began her career in Riverside Local School District. Kelly created the first ever school food service program at Fairport Harbor Schools in August of 2012 and has also consulted with Ashtabula Area City Schools. Mrs.  Minnick has 25 years of school food service experience, setting high standards for herself and the school districts' Nutrition Services staff. Her goal is for all students to have well-balanced, enjoyable meals each day at school.

Kelly attended Bowling Green State University where she received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Degree in Hospitality Management. In addition, Kelly holds a School Business Manager's License from the Ohio Department of Education and a School Nutrition Specialist credential from the School Nutrition Association.
Project Administrator
Pat McKenrick
Project Administrator
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 720
Cell: (440) 251-2240
Pat McKenrick is the Project Administrator for the Lake County Educational Service Center. He oversees the Transportation Department. The Transportation Department currently operates five school vans which are used to transport students before and after school to programs within and outside of the students’ districts. The LCESC also runs two light transit vehicles with lifts for adult programming. In addition to his Transportation responsibilities, he is responsible for Substitute Teacher Training, and works closely with other agencies in Lake County to promote educational opportunities to the various districts’ students.

Mr. McKenrick joined the Lake County Educational Service Center in September 2015. He spent his first 15 years as a Social Studies teacher in the Riverside School District and 2 years as a teacher in the Kirtland School District where he became the Principal of Kirtland High School for 5 years. Following his time in the Kirtland School District, Mr. McKenrick was an Assistant Principal in the Riverside School District for 4 years, and completed his last 9 years as a public school administrator in the Mentor Public Schools. Mr. McKenrick held the positions of Principal of Memorial Middle School for 4 years, Supervisor of Student Services for 2 years and Assistant Principal at Ridge Middle School for 5 years. Throughout his 35 years in public education, Pat McKenrick was very involved in coaching. He coached football, basketball, and track at the varsity level.

Mr. McKenrick received his Bachelor’s Degree from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in 1980, his Master’s Degree in 1987, and Administration Certification in 2002 from Kent State University. Pat McKenrick lives in Mentor, OH where he is married to his wife Ellen and has 6 children Katie, Jake, Morgan, Allison, Mason, and Peyton.
Merrie Darrah
Director, SST4
View Website
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 752
Nan Karako
SST Administrative Assistant
Office Phone: (440) 350-2563 x 755
Lake County Educational Service Center

8221 Auburn Road, Concord Township, Ohio 44077
Phone: 440.350.2563
Quick-Edit Login