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Staff Information

Principal: Mrs. Elizabeth Trela                                                                                                                                 

Looking back at her own educational experiences, it is very easy for Mrs. Trela to realize that she is in the right career. She loved school from the first minute that she stepped into Mrs. O’Connell’s kindergarten classroom. Mrs. Trela lived most of her life in Grants, New Mexico, a small town west of Albuquerque. She graduated from Grants High School and moved to South Bend, Indiana to attend the University of Notre Dame. She earned her Bachelor and Master Degrees from Notre Dame in 2002 and 2004 respectively. She is currently a member of the University of Notre Dame Mary Ann Remick program where she is receiving her Masters in Administration, which she will complete in 2023. As a principal, her focus is to create a community of partnership and collaboration. This is the philosophy that she has used throughout her educational career.  There is nothing that cannot be achieved when we work together.  Mrs. Trela was a teacher and principal at another DSJ Catholic school for 17 years prior to transition to MHT. She is proud to have joined the Most Holy Trinity community this school year and looks forward to the future. 

Vice Principal: Ms. Darlene Sanchez
My name is Darlene Sanchez, and I am honored to serve in the role as Vice Principal at MHT for the next academic school year. For the past eight years I’ve had the incredible experience of teaching in the Diocese of San Jose at St. Patrick School. During that time, I served students in the classroom and in various youth groups, collaborated with faculty regarding best teaching practices, and partnered with parents and families on various school enhancement projects. Prior to beginning my journey with Catholic schools, I worked for the Alum Rock School District, where I gained perspective and experience with educational policy on various levels. I received my Master of Arts in Teaching and Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from Santa Clara University, and my Bachelor of Arts from San Jose State University. As a parishioner of MHT, and community member of East San Jose, I am fully committed to and highly value educational attainment and college readiness. I have personally witnessed how transformative equitable education can be for our students, families, and region. I am eager to serve the students of MHT and look forward to collaborating with you in the next academic year as we adjust to new norms and walk together with hope and faith, guided by love from our Lord.

Kindergarten/Transitional Kindergarten: Ms. Melanie Salgado
Hello my name is Melanie Salgado and I am so excited to be joining the Early Elementary team as a lead teacher for the upcoming 2021-2022 school year. I am a lifelong resident of East San Jose and joined MHT school as a preschool teacher in 2018. I have worked with children for 20 years in various roles such as teacher’s assistant, tutor, substitute teacher, nanny, etc. In the last 2 years, I realized it is my calling in life to work with young children. I have my Bachelor’s Degree in Child Development and will be working on earning my teaching credential in the next year. As a teacher at MHT, it is my goal to nurture the development of each child’s academic, emotional, and spiritual growth.  On a personal note, I am a fan of all things Disney and Pixar and love connecting with nature as a way to relax and recharge on my time off.  I look forward to working and connecting with you all!

1st Grade: Ms. Thelma Pedroza-Valadez
Hello MHT community! My name is Thelma Pedroza-Valadez and I will be teaching at Most Holy Trinity in the fall. I am delighted to join the teaching ministry at Most Holy Trinity. Since I graduated from Santa Clara University, I have been working at the Front Office at Sacred Heart Nativity School in San Jose for the past 4 years. While working at Nativity, I was motivated and encouraged to obtain my Master's degree in Teaching. Now, I am pursuing a Master's of Arts in Teaching at the University of San Francisco (USF). I am pleased to be part of a Jesuit school like MHT, whose mission is to be lifelong learners. I am looking forward to meeting my future students and families. 

2nd Grade: Ms. Ashley Howell
My name is Ashley Howell, and I am excited to teach second grade at Most Holy Trinity school! I am previously known as Ms. Ronsse and taught kindergarten at MHT for the last 2 years. I just got married and am now Mrs. Howell. Before coming to MHT, I was the aide in second grade at St. Mary in Gilroy. I loved participating in the second-grade students faith formation as they prepared for their First Reconciliation and First Communion. I received my Bachelor of Arts in Communications and Media Studies from Sonoma State University and a Master of Arts in Teacher Education from the University of San Francisco. I also received a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential from the University of San Francisco. I enjoy teaching in the diocese because it allows me to share my faith with my students. I am called to teach at MHT because of the mission to educate the whole individual.

3rd Grade: Carla Oliveira
My name is Carla Oliveira and I teach third grade. I love third grade because the students are independent and they eager to learn. I have taught in the Diocese of San Jose for twenty-two years.  I have taught second grade for eight years and third grade for fifteen years. I have a BA in Child Development from San Jose State University. I took my credential classes at National University and I have Blended Learning Certificate from Santa Clara University. I have been teaching at Most Holy Trinity School for fifteen years because I love the students and their families. I love the feeling of community and our Catholic identity. Both of my daughters attended MHT. My oldest graduated in 2018 and my youngest graduated in 2021. 

4th Grade: Ms. Susan Hestand-Lewis
Hello, my name is Susan Lewis, and I am excited to join the community at Most Holy Trinity as a teacher in the Fall. I grew up in the Bay Area and attended San Jose State University where I completed an undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences for teaching with minors in European History and Physical Sciences. I am currently attending National University where I am working on my Master of Education with a multiple subject teaching credential. For the last four years I have had the pleasure of being a third-grade teacher and then a middle school science teacher at St. Clare school. When I am not working, I enjoy going on adventures with my children Kyra and Conner, spending time with family and friends, playing with my dog, Freya, and reading a good book. I am looking forward to starting this new adventure at Most Holy Trinity

5th Grade: Ms. Morgan Holscher
My name is Ms. Holscher and I am so excited to be your teacher. I grew up in this neighborhood, and I am fortunate enough to start my fourth year here at Most Holy Trinity. I have previously taught 5th-8th grade. I believe that it is my job to make sure students excel in their academics, and teach students life skills they can use beyond the classroom. I have a Bachelor's in Liberal Arts with a Concentration in Teaching from San Jose State University, and a Masters of Teaching and Teaching Credential from the University of San Francisco. I have a strong passion for reading, sports, and traveling. I look forward to our year together.

Middle School Religious Studies & Social Studies / 6th Grade Homeroom: Ms. Madison Martin
I'm very excited to be starting my second year at Most Holy Trinity as the 6th, 7th, and 8th grade Social Studies and Religion teacher! I love middle schoolers because they are starting to become more responsible and curious about the world around them, while still soaking in the final years before entering high school. I recently received my BA in History and Secondary Education from Loyola Marymount University, and am currently attending Santa Clara University to receive my MA in Teaching. I am inspired by the commitment to celebrating diversity at MHT, and I am grateful to be coming into such a strong school community.

Middle School Math & Science / 7th Grade Homeroom: Mr. Steve Carroll
This is my third year teaching at MHT. I received a bachelor’s degree from San Jose State University, and completed my MA and teaching credential at University of San Francisco last year.  I grew up in San Jose, and I know MHT has a long history of serving the community.  I am grateful to be here.

Middle School English Language Arts / 8th Grade Homeroom: Douglas Laurora
Hi, I am Mr. Laurora. I have a Bachelor’s In English from Saint Mary’s College of California, and I received my credential from CUS East Bay in Secondary English.  I have travelled and taught around the world. I have taught Special Education and at low-income schools in the Bay Area. On my journey to MHT, I have come to believe the ELA skills are practiced daily, and the single most important thing I can do for my students is build reading as a personal habit.   After spending a year at MHT, I look forward to may more. Our students and community have created a school in which kids are excited to show up every day.  I feel the same way.

Physical Education: Ms. Alyssa Vacheron
Hi! My name is Alyssa Vacheron and I am so excited to be joining Most Holy Trinity School as a Jesuit Volunteer this year! I will be assisting in the classroom as well as your PE teacher. Catholic school was an important part of my childhood and I can't wait to share in the gift of Catholic education with the MHT community. Although I am not from San Jose, I am from San Diego and I love California. I have just finished my college education receiving a Bachelors of Science in Environmental Engineering and a Bachelors of Arts in Dance. I love so many academic subjects and I have been fortunate enough to have some experience teaching dance, engineering, and art classes in the past. I look forward to meeting you all and teaching and learning in this community!

Clinical Counseling Trainee: Ms. Teresa Lopez
My name is Teresa Lopez and I am the previous PE teacher and Social Emotional Health instructor from 2017 leading up to the COVID quarantine.  My role at MHT next academic year will be to provide one on one therapeutic services and social emotional health instruction.  I received my B.A. in Sociology at CSU Chico and have been working on my M.A. in Counseling Psychology with a Dual Emphasis in Correctional Psychology and Latino Psychology at Santa Clara University, which will be completed next May.  I currently hold a full-time role as a Program Supervisor at a local agency that serves youth in the greater Santa Clara County community.  I have a passion for working with youth of all ages, particularly those that are labeled “At-Risk.”  I realize how stigmatizing that label can be and prefer to view every youth at HOPE for a bright future!  I believe anything is possible when we lead with love!  I look forward to reconnecting with my former students and families, and to meet those I have not had the pleasure of meeting just yet.