Guidance & Counseling:
The philosophy of the Saint Francis High School Guidance and Counseling Department has its roots in the tradition of Holy Cross. Our commitment is to educate the whole person by providing an environment where students achieve their highest potential through intellectual, social and spiritual development. The Guidance and Counseling Department strives to encourage individuals to grow in awareness of their potential and to become lifelong learners with the capacity to be successful in a rapidly changing world. As a department, we seek to empower students to examine their possibilities during the high school years and to set personal and academic goals that will lead to success. Our vision is to enhance the lives of our students by assisting in the realistic and mature decisions they will make about academic and college goals.
A distinguishing strength of the Saint Francis Guidance and Counseling Department is our model of assigning students a consistent counselor to work with throughout the entire high school experience. This connection nurtures our students as they transition through the academic and social expectations of high school. Additionally, this four-year perspective makes the college counseling process more personal, enabling our students to find the best individual college fit and allowing our counselors a chance to know the student well before the college application process.
Guidance and Counseling Director
Counseling Department Personnel
Kim Oden: Guidance and Counseling Director
E-mail; 650 968-1213 ext. 250
Ms. Oden begins her tenth year as a guidance counselor at Saint Francis High School and her second as Director of the Guidance and Counseling Department. She holds a B.A. in Public Policy from Stanford University and a M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Santa Clara University. In addition to her responsibilities in guidance and counseling, she also serves as the director of the Holy Cross Achievers outreach program. She is a member of the National Association for College Admission Counseling & the Western Association for College Admission Counseling. She is also involved in Daybreak, Saint Francis High School’s grief support group.
Gregory Derus: Guidance Counselor
E-mail; 650 968-1213 ext. 641
Mr. Derus joins the Saint Francis Guidance and Counseling Department from the East Coast. Mr. Derus attended the University of Scranton and earned a Bachelor of Science in Human Services and Counseling. He continued his education at the University of Dayton, where he completed a Masters Degree in Religious Studies. Mr. Derus also holds a Certificate in Multicultural Training, as well as a certificate for Mentoring Adolescents. He served for four years at St. John’s College High School in Washington, DC as the Director of Campus Ministry and for the Chaminade-Julienne Catholic High School in Dayton, Ohio as the Dean of Student Activities as well as a Religion Teacher. Mr. Derus will work with the Lancer Varsity Football Team in addition to his counseling duties.
Dona Feizzadeh: Guidance Counselor
E-mail; 650 968-1213 ext. 223
Ms. Feizzadeh is in her second year as a guidance counselor at Saint Francis High School. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of California, Davis. Her strong interest in counseling led Ms. Feizzadeh to obtain her Masters in Counseling from Harvard University. She also holds a California State Pupil Personnel Services Credential. Ms. Feizzadeh clearly adheres to the Holy Cross mission of service to others in that she has worked at charter schools in urban areas during her career. She was a guidance counselor at Saratoga High School before her career at Saint Francis. In addition to her counseling duties, Ms. Feizzadeh is the moderator of Mock Trial.
Stacey Ho: Guidance Counselor
E-mail; 650 968-1213 ext. 268
Ms. Ho is in her second year as a guidance counselor at Saint Francis High School. She attended the University of California, Los Angeles where she received a degree in Communications. Ms. Ho then went on to attend one of the premier graduate programs in school counseling at the University of Maryland. She received a Masters in Education as well as a Pupil Personnel Services Credential in School Counseling. Following the completion of her graduate degrees, Ms. Ho moved to California where she worked in the Oakland School District as a guidance counselor. In addition to her counseling duties, she is the moderator of the California Scholarship Federation.
Sally Leitch Holden: Guidance Counselor
E-mail; 650 968-1213 ext. 251
Mrs. Leitch Holden has served as a guidance counselor at Saint Francis High School for 14 years. She graduated from Cedar Crest College with a B. A. in English and holds a M.A. in Counseling from Seton Hall University. Mrs. Leitch is a member of the Western Association for College Admission Counseling. In addition to her counseling duties, she also serves as moderator of the Teen Awareness Program and Daybreak, the grief support group at Saint Francis High School.
Annette Nassir: Guidance Counselor
E-mail; 650-968-1213 ext. 222
Ms. Nassir is in her fifth year as a guidance counselor. She has extensive experience in college admissions, most recently at the University of California at Berkeley and previously at Drexel University and Wesleyan College. She also served as a college advisor at Palo Alto High School. She graduated from Wesleyan College with a B.A. in History and Sociology and has completed course work at the University of Chicago in Social Sciences. Mrs. Nassir is a member of the Western Association for College Admission Counseling. She also serves as moderator of the National Honor Society.
Dan Quinn: Guidance Counselor
E-mail; 650-968-1213 ext. 679
Mr. Quinn is in his fifth year with the Guidance and Counseling office and his nineteenth year with the English department. Mr. Quinn has garnered much success as the Advanced Placement English Language teacher at Saint Francis High School. He graduated from Santa Clara University with a B.A. in English and holds a M.A. in English Literature from San Francisco State University. Mr. Quinn is a member of WACAC and the National Council of Teachers of English. In addition to his counseling and teaching responsibilities, Mr. Quinn coaches football and works with the track team.
Nancy Redding: Learning Specialist
E-mail; 650-968-1213 ext. 677
Mrs. Redding adds her 31-years of experience teaching, testing, tutoring and advising students who have learning or attention difficulties to the Saint Francis Guidance and Counseling Department. Her education includes a B.S. in Education from the University of Texas, Austin and a M.Ed. in Special Education from the University of Utah with a specialty in Learning Disabilities. She also taught high school English for three years. Mrs. Redding is a member of the International Dyslexia Assn. (Board Member of the Northern California branch) and the Learning Disabilities Assn. of America. She is also on the faculty of DeAnza College.
Sherrie Tasnady: Guidance Counselor
E-mail; 650-968-1213 ext. 224
Mrs. Tasnady is in her twenty-sixth year as a guidance counselor at Saint Francis High School and her thirty-fifth year in education. She graduated from the University of California at Davis with a B.S. in Education as well as a Teaching Credentials in both English and Social Science. She received her M.A. in Human Development from Pacific Oaks College. She is a member of NACAC and WACAC as well as a trained consultant of the UC Berkeley Bay Area Writing Project. She is moderator of the Stock Market club and also a counselor-leader for Daybreak, Saint Francis High School’s grief support group.