Meet the K-12 SWP Key Talent

Octavio Patiño

Director of K14 TAP
Octavio is the son of retired high school educators. He is also a native of Kern County. Octavio spent 21 years as a teacher and administrator for the Kern High School District. Octavio has worked in various positions throughout his career to help students set high-achieving goals for their futures. Octavio is excited to continue that work as the new Director of K14 TAP. Octavio has a bachelor’s degree in History and a Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction and will soon complete his doctorate in Organizational Leadership
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Yeni Lopez

K-12 SWP Pathway Coordinator

West Kern Community College District, hosted at Taft Union High School.

Yeni was previously employed for 18 years in corrections as a Correctional Counselor and as the Re-Entry Coordinator at Taft Correctional Institution. She has a passion for helping others because of her experience in helping prepare inmates to reintegrate into society and helping them obtain the skills and resources needed to succeed. As a Bilingual Instructional Assistant, she has experienced the positive impact made on students facing educational disadvantages due to language barriers and the lack of support at home. Being a K12 Pathway Coordinator allows Yeni to have an even more significant impact, assuring every student receives the support and necessary tools to meet their educational and career goals.
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Michelle Wong

K-12 SWP Pathway Coordinator

State Center Community College Region, hosted at Fresno County of Education

Michelle Wong is the K-12 SWP Coordinator for the State Center Community College Region. She entered this role with over 8 years of industry experience in Ed Tech and Video Production and 5 years of CTE Advisory board experience. She is passionate to support the important work of K-12 SWP and utilize her skills in design thinking, facilitation and project management gained in industry.
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Kenny Lopez

K-12 SWP Pathway Coordinator

West Hills Community College District, hosted at Fresno County of Education CTE/ROP

Kenny Lopez has over nine years of experience serving students in education. He worked as a Dual Enrollment Coordinator where he helped launch career pathways across the Central Valley. Kenny is passionate about providing educational access to students in rural communities to help close the college achievement gap. Outside of work, Kenny enjoys traveling, exercising and spending time with his family and friends.
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Pam Knapp

K12 Strong Workforce Pathway Coordinator

San Joaquin Community College District hosted at San Joaquin County Office of Education

Pam came on board at San Joaquin County Office of Education in July 2019, starting a new department called College and Career Readiness under the Educational Services Division. Through collaborative efforts, she is leading the first-in-the-state “High School Apprenticeship Program” called ARCH – Apprenticeship Reaching Career Horizons – for high school students to become registered apprentices. These efforts are part of a grant she co-wrote and received through the Community College Chancellor’s Office. Prior, Pam worked at Linden High School for 20 years in the capacity of College/Career Readiness and CTE Director, assisting students with their “life after high school” plans. While at Linden Pam wrote and received a variety of grants including CTEIG, Perkins, K12 SWP, CDE Facilities grants, and the OTS Every 15 Minutes grant. Before working in Linden, she worked at Humphreys College as an Admissions and Career Placement Director and at San Joaquin Delta College as the interim CalWORKs Director, implementing the state and federal welfare-to-work program, and as the Tech Prep Director, working closely with area high schools on Career Technical Education and pathways to success at Delta College.
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Kevin Fox

K12 Strong Workforce Pathway Coordinator

Yosemite Community College District, hosted by Stanislaus County Office of Education (SCOE)

Kevin Fox is the K12 Strong Workforce Pathway Coordinator for the Yosemite Community College District, hosted by Stanislaus County Office of Education (SCOE). Kevin has 25 years of experience in print and web marketing, and public communications for companies across diverse industries. Most recently Kevin was a Director at SCOE overseeing CTE, new pathways, and adult CTE education. Kevin was part of the team that launched the award-winning VOLT Institute. Kevin is passionate about Central Valley Communities and the people who live here. His professional background includes experience in agriculture, construction, photography, filmmaking, radio, podcasting, and marketing communications. Before entering the education sector, Kevin was the afternoon drive time host at Power Talk 1360 AM, an iHeart Radio station. Kevin understands the preparation required for high-skill, high-demand jobs, and as a manager Kevin creates an energetic team environment were members and pathways can achieve the greatest results together
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Carrie Bloxom

K12 SWP Pathway Coordinator

Central Motherlode, Kern K12 SWP Pathway Coordinator, hosted by KCSOS

Carrie has 20 years of experience in education. Starting with KCSOS as a Foster Youth Services (FYS) Coordinator in 2002, Carrie supported students and staff by establishing educational advocacy, academic programs, and creating workforce partnerships that created access to employment for foster and homeless youth. In 2013, Carrie moved to Sacramento where she served students as a Career Technician for both Galt Joint Unified and Elk Grove Unified School District’s. Carrie assisted with the roll out of a districtwide college and career readiness platform and curriculum for all 7th-12th grade students and introduced deeper “pathway connections” between the Los Rios Community Colleges and alternative education. This is where she became passionate about career pathways for students. Carrie is happy to be back at KCSOS, collaborating with her community, schools, students, and families, and creating new opportunities & resources.
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