Reading Program Staff



Cheryl Altman
has been teaching in both the Reading and English as a Second Language Departments at Saddleback College since 1982, first as a part-time instructor and then as a full-time faculty member. She has also taught English, ESL, and Reading for the Rancho Santiago Community College District. She received her B.A. in Psychology from Hunter College and MS in Education with a concentration in Reading and Language Arts from Herbert H. Lehman College of the City University of New York as well as a certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language from UCI. She has made presentations at CRLA (College Reading and Learning Association), CCHA (Community College Humanities Association), IRA (International Reading Association), and ECCTYC (English Council of California Two-year Colleges). Cheryl enjoys traveling, hiking, gardening, eating Chinese food, and, of course, reading. You can always find her with a good book in her hands; she loves to quote John Stuart Mills - "Reading is the light of the mind." Her favorite books are Peony by Pearl S. Buck and Beloved by Toni Morrison.

Janet Bagwell received her BS from Duquesne University, a teaching credential from University of Pittsburgh, and her MS in Education with a concentration in Reading and Language Arts as well as a Reading Specialist Credential from California State University, Fullerton. She continued her education at UCI where she received a certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language. In addition to teaching at Saddleback, Ms. Bagwell has been a lecturer at California State University, Fullerton where she taught in the Undergraduate Reading Program. Her interests include reading, the Civil War, nutrition and physical fitness, music and theater, and her grandchildren. Her favorite authors include John Steinbeck and Nelson DeMille, and a few of her favorite books are The Prophet, Gettysburg, and Angela's Ashes.

Margaret Carey received her BA from UCLA and her MS in Reading Education from Pepperdine University. She works full-time with at-risk junior high and high school students and at night teaches in our reading lab. She enjoys interacting with college students and finds Saddleback students especially dedicated and appreciative. Demands of her full-time job leave little leisure time; however, she takes pleasure in gardening, walking, bike riding, traveling, and reading in her spare time. She welcomes brief escapes in the works of contemporary authors Tom Clancy and John Grisham, among others.

Michelle Duffy graduated from CSU, Long Beach with a BA in Liberal Studies and a concentration in Human Development. After earning her multiple subjects teaching credential, she worked for ten years as an elementary teacher and during that time completed her MS in Education with an emphasis in Reading from California State University, Fullerton. Directly following her masters studies, Dr. Duffy began teaching part-time in the Reading departments of CSU, Fullerton and Saddleback College. She has made presentations at CRLA (College Reading and Learning Association) and at the California Regional Assessment Conference. In summer 2012, Dr. Duffy completed her Ed D. in Educational Leadership with a specialization in Community Colleges from CSU, Fullerton.  She joined Saddleback faculty as a full-time instructor in fall of 2012 and currently teaches a variety of reading classes. Dr. Duffy resides in San Clemente with her family and enjoys living near the beach and spending time with family and friends.

Teri FitzMaurice received her BA in Psychology and her MS in Education with a concentration in Reading from California State University, Fullerton.  She also holds a California Multiple Subject Teaching Credential.  She spent twelve years as an elementary school teacher before joining the Reading staff at Saddleback in 1999.  She continued her education at UCI where she received a certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language, and is currently teaching in the English as a Second Language department as well as the Reading department.  Her interests include reading, gardening, cooking, and yoga.  One of her favorite authors is T. Jefferson Parker.

Denise Green was born in Philadelphia but grew up in New Jersey. She graduated from Rutgers University with a BA in History/Education and received a teaching credential from the state of New Jersey. She lives in Dana Point with her husband and the youngest of their four children who currently attends San Francisco State. She worked for the Capistrano Unified School District for twelve years before accepting a position as Reading lab technician at Saddleback in 1998. While working in the Reading Lab she earned her MS in Reading from Cal State Fullerton. Her role at Saddleback is unique in that she is both a lab technician and an associate faculty member and acts as instructor both in the class and the lab. With her years of baseball, soccer, and swim mom behind her, she fills her free time with travel, gardening and reading.

Jill Lagatta received her B.A. in English (with a minor in Education) from Penn State and her M.A. in English from the University of Delaware. She taught English and Language Arts on the secondary school level before relocating to Southern California. She received her Ph.D. in Education (with a specialization in Reading) from USC. She taught a variety of English classes (reading and composition courses) for many years at El Camino College in Torrance before moving to San Jose. In San Jose, Dr. Lagatta taught reading and writing courses at Evergreen Valley College and also taught in the teacher education program at San Jose State University. She has additional university experience, having taught in the writing programs at USC and Rutgers, and she also taught and advised in the secondary school credential program at University of California, Irvine. She is an avid reader and likes to sample different types of literature, from mysteries by Michael Connelly, Jonathan Kellerman, and T. Jefferson Parker, to books focusing on family issues by Anne Tyler, Elizabeth Berg, and Amy Tan. She also enjoys the work of other contemporary writers, such as Richard Russo, Ian McEwan, John Irving, and John Updike, and likes the nonfiction work of Jon Krakauer and Ann Rule. During football season, she enthusiastically follows college football, cheering for the Nittany Lions of Penn State and for USC. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling and spending time with her family.

Mary McRoberts' educational path started at Antelope Valley College where she earned an AA in Math and Science. Thereafter, she earned a BA and an MA in History, a second MA in Reading Education, and secondary and adult education credentials from California State University, Northridge. Her years of teaching experience include eighteen in secondary education, twenty-five at the community college level, and fifteen with Chapman University. Her favorite author is Ernest Hemingway whose The Sun Also Rises is one of her all time favorite books. Favorite recent fiction includes Angela's Ashes and Memoirs of a Geisha.

Lori Pangborn's educational experience reveals her Southern California up-bringing: a high school diploma from Mater Dei; a BA in English from Mt. Mary's College; an MA in Education with a specialization in Reading from Chapman University; and, coursework taken at California State University, Fullerton. Ms. Pangborn also holds two Life Credentials in Secondary Education and a Credential in Secondary School Administration. Her teaching career started at Kennedy High School in La Palma where she taught for fifteen years. She has taught at Saddleback for over 30 years in both the Reading and English Departments. Aside from her professional interests, Ms. Pangborn enjoys activities with her three grown children, two of whom are Saddleback graduates, and her five grandchildren. Living near the beach, having fun with her golden retriever and reading give her pleasure as well. One of her all time favorite novels is The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. She finds pleasure and comfort in reading the Bible and in poetry.

Irene Renault received her BA in English from Merrimack College in North Andover, Massachusetts, and continued her education at the University of Massachusetts where she received an MS in Reading. She joined the Saddleback staff in 1996 after teaching high school English and reading for twenty years. She affirms that teaching at Saddleback is one of her most rewarding professional experiences. To best meet the needs and interests of her students, she reads a wide variety of materials. Recently, she's enjoyed the works of Anita Shreve, including The Resistance and The Weight of Water. She enjoys historical fiction as well such as Leon Uris's Trinity and The Exodus. Two books she will always enjoy are Sinclair Lewis's Main Street and My Antonia by Willa Cather.

Karen Sexton grew up in the local area, graduating from University of California, Irvine, with a Bachelor’s Degree in English. After moving around a bit and working in securities and law, she returned to California where she earned her Master’s Degree in Cross-Cultural Teaching and worked as a teacher, an MYP Coordinator, and department chair for more than a decade. She then received a Master’s Degree in Reading from California State University, Fullerton, and began teaching at Saddleback College. Karen enjoys reading about history, especially a well-crafted historical detective series like Lindsey Davis’ Didius Falco or John Maddox Roberts’ SPQR. She also enjoys traveling (and books set in foreign places where she would like to travel, such as Louise Penny or Martin Walker write), going to Disneyland, and finding unique new Converse to add to her collection.

Jeffrey Vogel received his B.A. in English (with a minor in Business) from Fresno State University and his teaching credential (with CLAD certification) from San Diego State University.  He then completed his M.A. in Education with a concentration in Reading Instruction from California State University, Stanislaus.  He also earned his doctorate degree in Education (Ed.D.) with an emphasis in Curriculum and Instruction from Liberty University.  He joined Saddleback College as a professor in August 2012 after fifteen years of teaching high school English, Journalism, ELD, and Reading Intervention as a nationally board certified teacher.  He also served as an English and Reading instructor at Palomar College and MiraCosta College from 2007-2011.  His current responsibilities include teaching a variety of reading courses, instructing students in the Reading Lab, and serving on various campus committees that focus on students and their academic success.   Dr. Vogel’s favorite authors include Twain, Carver, Gladwell, Krakauer, and Michael Lewis although many philosophical, biographical, and historical works can also be found on his bookshelf.  At home he is centered on his wife and three children as they spend their time together enjoying all aspects of coastal Southern California.