Special Education Department Staff


image of Dr. Amy Lambert

Dr. Amy Lambert, Assistant Superintendent

Dr. Lambert has worked in education for 29 years, and prior to joining the Tustin Unified School District, she served as assistant superintendent of special education for the Glendale Unified School District, while she was also the Special Education Local Plan Area director for the Foothill SELPA in Los Angeles County.

Dr. Lambert started her career in education teaching vocational and applied academics curriculum to at-risk students and students with developmental disabilities at the Southern California Regional Occupational Center (ROC). Over the following years, she served as an instructional coordinator for the center, administrator of instructional programs for North Orange County ROP, Assistant Superintendent of the Southern California ROC, and Director of Student and Special Services for the Beverly Hills Unified School District. Dr. Lambert has a bachelor’s degree in communications from Pepperdine University, a master’s degree in occupational studies from California State University, Long Beach, and a doctorate in administration from the University of Southern California.

Picture of Kate Christmas

Kate Christmas, Director


Picture of Jeanette Andrews

Jeanette Andrews, Coordinator

Jeanette Andrews has worked in public education for the past 18 years.  She began her career as a Special Education teacher with the Los Angeles Unified School District.  She then moved into Charter Schools serving students as a Special Education Coordinator and Principal. Most recently, she served as Assistant Principal at McFadden Institute of Technology in the Santa Ana Unified School District. 

Jeanette has a bachelor’s degree in Child Development from California State University, Los Angeles and a master’s degree in Special Education, an education specialist credential and administrative services credential from California State University, Dominguez Hills. 

“I am honored to become part of the Tustin Unified School District family and look forward to serving the district’s special education community.  I look forward to the opportunity to share my passion and work collaboratively with families, students, and staff” 

Picture Bianca Guillen

Bianca Guillen, Coordinator l

Bianca Guillen has worked in special education for eight years in the Santa Ana Unified School District.  Most recently, she served as a school psychologist at John Muir Fundamental Elementary School in Santa Ana.  She has also helped Tustin Unified by serving on the Ladera Elementary School Preschool Summer Assessment Team.

“Bianca has considerable knowledge and vast experiences in special education, and is a collaborative and supportive leader,” TUSD Assistant Superintendent of Special Education Dr. Amy Lambert said.  “She will make a strong addition to the District’s Special Education team.” 

Guillen has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and an Educational Specialist Degree in School Psychology from California State University, Long Beach.

Additionally, Guillen has served as a presenter of inclusive collaborative practices and programs at local and state conferences.

"I’m excited about the opportunity to share my passion in education and deeply honored to be joining the Tustin Unified community,” Guillen said.  “I believe in supporting the teachers and staff, and I want every student to achieve their personal best.”   

Picture of Diane Nicholas

Diane Nicholas, Coordinator l

Diane has worked in special education for more than 14 years. She began as a special education teacher in La Habra City School District for 7 years before coming to Tustin Unified School District. During her years in La Habra, Diane also served as a PBIS TOSA. During her time in Tustin Unified, Diane has served as a Special Education Teacher, Inclusive Schooling TOSA, Special Education Facilitator, and Special Education Coordinator.

Diane earned her bachelor's degree in liberal studies and her master's degree in curriculum and instruction from San Diego State University. She has a multiple subject credential and education specialist credential. She also holds an administrative services credential.

Diane is passionate about working with students with special needs and ensuring their needs are met. She is also focused on sharing UDl strategies and allowing access to the curriculum to all students. 

Arvin Garcia, Coordinator l


Tami Schoen-Dowgiewicz, Coordinator l


Picture of Johanna Puccio

Johanna Puccio, Coordinator


Additional Support:

Name Title Responsibilities Phone Number
Marie Sanchez Administrative Secretary Secretary for Assist. Superintendent 714-730-7301 ext 51336
Diana Markstrum Secretary II Records, Support for Coordinators 714-730-7301 ext 51386
Adriana Mendez Secretary II Autism Support, Transportation 714-730-7301 ext 51363
Sandy Yawata Secretary IV Mental Health Support 714-730-7301 ext 51391
Barbara Palacios Technologist III IT 714-730-7301 ext 51621
Veronica Boggan Information System Specialist SEIS, CALPADS 714-730-7301 ext 51313
Candice Graven Account Clerk Medical, Paradigm 714-730-7301 ext 51364