Susan Hoffman, Director
For the past 25 years Susan has worked at UC and CSU campuses launching new interdisciplinary and international programs. For the past eight years, she has led OLLI’s academic research team in developing partnerships with campus colleagues at Berkeley and UCSF, studying the impact of learning on neuroplasticity, cognitive reserve and dynamic aging. Her creative work includes being a writer and filmmaker. Her faculty appointments have been in creative writing, theatre and political philosophy.
Lisa Hardy, Business & Operations Manager
Lisa Hardy began her career with UC Berkeley in 2004, and worked for several years at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory as both a UC and a Federal Contractor. She has broad experience in business analysis, program and organizational change management, specializing in identification and analysis of stakeholders with the incorporation of these relationships for business development. Lisa brings more than 25 years of operational knowledge and expertise from private and public sector businesses and prides herself in engaging all levels of an organization through trust, respect and integrity. When not working, she focuses on spending time with her family, hunting for unique antique furniture pieces, and polishing her crystal collection.
Matt Shears, Curriculum Coordinator
Matt has taught courses in the humanities at schools including the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, Washington State University, and California College of the Arts. He received his Ph.D. from UNLV, where he was a Schaeffer Fellow, and his M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers Workshop. A practicing writer, Matt's most recent book is called Dear Everyone.
Nancy Murr, Marketing & Outreach Coordinator
Nancy is a UC Berkeley alum who began her marketing and communications career at the advertising agency J. Walter Thompson/San Francisco where she rose to become a senior copywriter developing TV, print and radio campaigns. After the birth of her first child, she ventured into the world of freelancing where she wrote countless brand stories, websites, marketing materials, and more for clients as varied as Whole Foods and UCOP. She’s also been a longtime volunteer in — and advocate of — the Oakland public school system.
Max Godino, Classroom & Facilities Coordinator
Max previously worked as a classroom coordinator with San Francisco State's College of Extended Learning for 13 years before joining OLLI in the Fall of 2016. He graduated from UC San Diego with a degree in political science and used that interest to live and work and travel on 5 continents for many years before returning to the Bay Area where he grew up. He is also a co-owner of Adobe Books in San Francisco, a cooperative used bookstore and art gallery dedicated to the preservation of knowledge, art, and community. In his leisure time you can find him riding bikes, building a log cabin, working on various art projects, and going on adventures with his family.
LaeCharles Lawrence, Classroom Coordinator
LaeCharles Lawrence comes to OLLI after nine years' experience in facilities management and customer service for companies and organizations such as SunPower Corp., AirBnB, and the San Francisco Ballet. As a performing digital musician and video editor, he brings the skills of presentation and presentation support. He’s also a freelance videographer, master of ceremonies, and composer of music for television and advertising. Hobbies include vegetable gardening, fantasy football and cooking.
Rob Chew, Classroom Coordinator
Rob manages our Lafayette classrooms, as well as helping out in Berkeley. He majored in Sociology at Arizona State University, and has lived in the Oakland area as well as Arizona for large portions of his life. The son of two educators, Rob also spent a formative year in the Virgin Islands, and is fluent in Japanese. A father of two, Rob is a maker who enjoys building, creating t-shirt artwork, restoring classic cars, and spending time traveling and watching movies with his kids.
Cheryl Brewster, Research Program Associate
Cheryl Brewster, Research Program Associate, facilitates the OLLI Research Program and staffs the Advisory Research Team (ART). She also wears other OLLI hats as a member and as a volunteer who recruits Class Hosts and Co-Chairs the Strategic Planning Committee. Cheryl moved to Berkeley in 2011 after a career in Chicago as a hospital and health care administrator and a medical outcome research program director. She lives in Berkeley and is a proud mother and grandmother.
OLLI Student Staff are undergraduates at UC Berkeley who provide technical support for classrooms and programs as well as administrative office support.