Transformations: AUSB’s New Online Alumni Magazine

tranformations-coverAUSB proudly presents the Fall 2013/Winter 2014 issue of Transformations, marking the inauguration of AUSB’s online alumni magazine.

This issue showcases a breadth of students, faculty, and alumni profiles, and reveals how their experience at Antioch transformed them and how, in turn, they are positively engaging with and transforming their communities.

The magazine also highlights recent campus news, including the 2013 Summer Writing Institute, the opening of Book Ends Café, the recent Trustee Forum, and the launch of two new programs – Women and Leadership Certificate program and the Masters of Business Administration program.



Read your copy of Transformations now:

Inspired to share your story? We want to hear it. Get in touch, and you’ll be considered for inclusion in the next magazine:

Mark Fargo, AUSB Alum, helping students achieving their dreams and aspirations.

At 58, Mark Fargo (2010) received his master’s degree in Social Justice and Leadership from AUSB and the idea for the BASC Foundation grew out of those studies. What started out as a concept grew into a reality as he saw that he could help address many of his student’s needs they had not previously had access to that they so richly deserved.

The BASC Foundation goal is to provide critical financial support to help reward all deserving students in their career choices.  The purpose of the Foundation is to provide critical financial support to select student candidates who possess demonstrated needs as well as the desire and commitment to succeed in achieving their dreams and aspirations. The BASC Foundation wants to help those who are committed to furthering their education and career choices.

Mark graduated from Buena High School in 1971. He has lived in the county most of his 58 years. He fondly remembers mechanical drawing and woodshop in middle school (junior high) and photography and auto shop in high school. Mark and his friends all had hand held transistor radios they loved to tinker with if needed. Some of his friends showed non college bound talents that involved the use of their hands and critical thinking skills that are not university bound characteristics. This was the first view of the BASC bound student he saw and some of his friends did not attend college beyond Ventura College but have successful businesses that are applicable to BASC applications.

In Europe, Mark noticed a lot of people in his travels that owned their own businesses as they were directed into trade schools because they were not on track to attend a university. When Mark returned to the states he was unsure of his future. Getting books and tuition to play tennis helped motivate him to further his academic goals. Mark graduated cum laude from Cal State Stanislaus in 1976 and finished his teaching credential in 2001 at Cal Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks. At Pacifica High School in Oxnard he teaches psychology, sociology, cultural geography and occasionally health.

After 15 years in the public school atmosphere, Mark’s teaching only reinforces the need to commit to helping those non-college bound students get the help they need to become productive self-employed citizens that help themselves and their communities.

Mark exemplifies Antioch University’s mission  “…to empower students with the knowledge and skills to lead meaningful lives and to advance social, economic, and environmental justice.” We applaud his work with students and the community.

To learn more about the BASC Foundation check out their website,

Leadership Coach, Speaker, Author, Alumni: Jennifer Van Homer, Class of 2003

This month we feature Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate Jennifer Van Homer (B.A. Class of 2003) in our spotlight on alumni.

Jennifer Van Homer, BS, MSC, CHIC firmly believes that excellence in leadership is crucial in order to address organizational challenges and create sustainable change. Jennifer works with leaders and organizations to increase their personal and professional effectiveness by bringing their actions into alignment with their most important commitments and goals.

One of Jennifer's goals was making time to complete her Bachelor's Degree. She entered Antioch University Santa Barbara in 2000, working as a full-time professional with two children as well. It was at Antioch that Van Homer gained the knowledge and experience of working with others that led her to her current position as a Master Somatic coach, trainer and organizational consultant. She uses sound principles and practices of adult development and somatic awareness.

Van Homer graduated from Antioch University Santa Barbara, in 2003 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree with an emphasis in Business. Her interest in the well being of young people led her to co-create a leadership program for youth at the Strozzi Institute in Petaluma, California. In addition to being a Master Somatic Coach she is also a certified Hudson Institute Coach.

Jennifer is a sought after leadership coach, author and speaker. Before becoming a coach she worked extensively in Human Resources Leadership, including ten years at Patagonia, a local maker of outdoor clothing, apparel and gear for climbing. She contributed to the formation of the unique corporate culture at Patagonia.

When asked about WHY she chose AUSB to claim her education, Jennifer Van Homer said: 

"I chose Antioch because it offered me the flexibility I needed to complete my degree being the mother of two children and working full-time!"

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara Difference.

Jennifer shares this message for prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara: 

"Antioch is a great place to expand your perspectives and learn to coordinate and collaborate with others. The teachers are fantastic and the learning environment is fun and challenging. I was a student in the weekend program which required a lot of collaboration with my cohort. It was a great experience and taught me a lot about teaming. It’s great to be in an adult learning environment and to be in a place that invites the whole student!"

Jennifer Van Homer lives in Santa Barbara, where she enjoys spending time with her two children and yellow Labrador. She is an avid outdoor enthusiast who enjoys hiking, surfing and skiing. Jennifer recently released the book "A Princess and Her Garden – A Fable of Awakening and Arrival" co-written with her mother, Patricia R. Adson, Ph.D. Van Homer is also the co-author of "The Relating Game: 96 Ways to Sustain Passion Over Time", which is a deck of cards designed to stimulate conversation and emotional intimacy with your partner. For more information on this Antioch Alumni please visit her websites at:

A Princess and Her Garden

The Relating Game

Leadership Coaching & Consulting 

Lifelong Learner: Sharon Woodlief, Class of 2005

This month we feature Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate Sharon Woodlief (M.A. Class of 2005) in our spotlight on alumni.

Sharon Woodlief's interest in lifelong learning began in her hometown of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. After moving to Santa Barbara to pursue a graduate study program in Political Science she found herself drawn to Psychology.

Sharon researched graduate programs that could provide a course of study that was rigorous yet consistent with her personal philosophy of Social Justice and Experiential Learning. Once she found Antioch University Santa Barbara, Sharon knew she would be on the right course both academically and personally (an added bonus was the University was located around the corner from where she lived downtown).

Woodlief graduated from Antioch University Santa Barbara, in 2005 with a Masters Degree in Clinical Psychology. The photo is of Sharon Woodlief from her graduation from Louisiana State University where she received her Bachelor’s Degree. It was significant time for her as it was at that graduation that she confirmed her objective to go to graduate school and ultimately find a path that would allow Sharon to continue to enrich her life as well as to encourage Ms. Woodlief to appreciate the world around her.
When asked about her experience at AUSB, Sharon Woodlief said:

"My classes at Antioch consisted of an array of diverse students, and the class environments were open to allowing all of those hungry and thoughtful scholars to think and challenge one another as well as being encouraged to challenge the brilliant faculty. I felt my knowledge base grow academically because the faculty was prepared to teach with skill and competence. Moreover, I felt my sense of intellect and self-confidence intensify, as I applied theories and ideas not only in my school work but in my community, and even with my family and friends."

Sharon shares this message for prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:

"There is so much that I learned at Antioch that I still find myself routinely recalling themes and lessons, and in all manner of circumstances in my life. That is what education at Antioch is: taking what is learned in the classroom and applying what is learned throughout one’s life."

Since graduating from Antioch Santa Barbara in 2005, Woodlief has gone on to earn a Ph.D. in Education from the UCSB, with an emphasis in educational leadership and organizations. Her dissertation research was focused on multicultural awareness education. Sharon worked in Admissions at Fielding Graduate University’s School of Psychology. It was there that she began work with Antioch University Santa Barbara’s current President, Dr. Nancy Leffert
Sharon Woodlief is an Editor at Out of the Woods Publishing, Inc. She has just finished work on editing a novel titled: "The Farmhand" authored by former Louisiana correctional officer David Bruce. Woodlief's role in editing this tale on the psychology of people in the Louisiana prison system was based on her background in Clinical Psychology. Sharon Woodlief states, "When you see this book on the New York Times bestseller list and on the silver screen, you heard about it here first, from an Antioch Grad! I am so honored to have been chosen to participate in this work, and I am excited about what the future holds for me." For more information on this Antioch Alumni please visit her LinkedIn profile at

Featured Antioch Graduate Melinda Kincaid is Passionate about Psychology

This month we feature Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate Melinda Kincaid (M.A. Class of 2008) in our spotlight on alumni.

Melinda Kincaid's passion for psychology stems from her belief in establishing a therapeutic bond in the working relationship between client and therapist. She has four years of experience in working interpersonally in the object relations, family systems, and experiential therapies.

Kincaid began her journey into the study of psychology with an interest in human behavior. She was intrigued with learning about how the brain works and why we do what we do. Kincaid learned that human behavior is varied and diverse, but there are certain commonalities. She found herself drawn to psychology in general from the need to grow personally. To learn more, understand and be content with herself were part of her goals and studies. Lastly, Melinda Kincaid knew that she wanted to help others.

When asked about her experience at AUSB, Melinda Kincaid said:

"My Antioch experience was wonderful. They make it a priority not only to educate you, but also to prepare you for actually doing the job when you are done with the academics. Self-awareness, examination, and growth are also important aspects to the Antioch education. Especially in this profession, as a licensed marriage and family therapist, it is essential to challenge and know yourself very well."

Melinda shares this message on WHY she chose to attend Antioch University Santa Barbara:

"I chose Antioch SB for a few reasons. I wanted a very experiential program experience and Antioch Santa Barbara offered that. Also, the accelerated program and schedule worked for me. I was able to attend without having to move from my home in San Luis Obispo, given the one day/week with some weekends class schedule. The Antioch staff and philosophy offers a very well rounded educational experience."

Mrs. Kincaid is married to her husband, Aaron who is supportive and loving. The two met in high school and were married nine years later in Yosemite, Ca. Having lost both of her parents, Kincaid credits her husband for helping her stay grounded and balanced. The Kincaids recently welcomed the birth of their son, Aden. Since then Melinda has become adamant about living sustainably and consciously with respect to the planet.

Melinda enjoys spending time in nature: camping, running, hiking, biking, swimming, snowboarding, dance and Bikram yoga. Her volunteer work has included working with at risk youth, informing and inspiring them toward higher education (EAOP). She has also worked with children on their literacy and social skills in JumpStart.

Melinda Kincaid, MA, LMFT provides individuals, couples and family therapy. She specializes in relationship issues, trauma/PTSD and adolescents. For more information on this Antioch Alumni please visit her Psychology Today profile.

Antioch Alumni Graduates and Organizational Professionals – Steve and Sara Caputo

Today we feature not one but two Antioch University Santa Barbara graduates – Steve and Sara Caputo! The couple met while attending AUSB in pursuit of their Master’s Degrees through our Academic Programs.

Steve Caputo, Class of 1997 graduated with a Master’s Degree in Organizational Management. Since his graduation Steve has been on the adjunct teaching faculty of Antioch Santa Barbara. He is known for engaging his students in experiential learning and drawing from his own professional experience. Steve is a dynamic and creative management professional with over twenty five years of experience in organizational management, corporate training, team building, and facilitation. He calls his style of training methodology, “entertrainment” (a combination of training and entertainment).

Mr. Caputo currently holds the position of Manager of Organizational Development for Cottage Health System (Cottage Hospital). Of his position at Cottage Steve said, “I feel like I get the opportunity to not just make a difference in the organization but within the community every day.”

Owner of Radiant Organizing and established productivity coach, Sara Caputo (who was recently profiled on the AUSB blog) received her M.A. in Organizational Psychology in 2003. Sara published her first book this year, “The Productivity Puzzle: What’s Your Missing Piece?”. Mrs. Caputo uses the book in her employee trainings which helps guide the clientele toward creating workflow systems and building on strengths. Sara assists a wide spectrum of organizations and people, including large corporations, non-profit groups, small businesses, independent contractors, educational institutions, financial advisors, and residential clients. Her consulting work ranges from speaking seminars, to time management and priority setting trainings. Sara Caputo also contributes a column in the Santa Barbara News-Press called the Productivity Corner.

Steve and Sara live in Santa Barbara and are actively involved in the community. The couples greatest creation are their two sons, Benjamin (3.5 years old) and Zack (6 months old).

When asked about their decision to attend Antioch University Santa Barbara, The Caputo’s said:

Steve, “I wanted to make a change from finance & accounting to organizational development. I looked at many different programs and chose Antioch because of the program flexibility and content.”

Sara, “I had heard about Antioch from many people in the community when I started thinking about getting my masters degree, so I toured it, met with a few professors to assess whether it was right for me and immediately loved the feel of it, so I enrolled. Steve was a friend at the time and really encouraged me to go to Antioch, so this was and continues to be a really nice common bond that we share in our life.”

Steve and Sara share how their AUSB education has helped them with career and life goals:

Sara, “Antioch helped me to grow up in a way that I didn’t recognize that I needed at the time, but looking back now I know it was where I was meant to be on many levels. The care of the instructors, the personal relationships developed and the ability to create my own path and forge ahead into the next level of my life was integral.”

Steve, “I wouldn’t be doing what I am doing had it not been for stopping what I was doing and starting something new.  An important practice in my life is meditation and journaling, which I try to do daily. Before Sara and I got married I took a solo camping trip and brought my stack of journals to read. As I was reading through countless entries I found one that was written about 2 years before I went to Antioch that said, “Today I talked to someone that is doing what I want to do…he teaches at a university and does organizational development for an organization” as I read it I thought to myself…“Wow – that’s exactly what I am doing!” So I tell people – be careful of what you dream…because you will get it.”

The Caputo’s shares this message to prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:

Sara, “Come ready to “claim your education”! As with anything you will get out of it what you put in. I put a lot into my education and still hold the professors, the classes, the high level people that I met along the way near and dear to my heart.”

Steve, “I would agree with what Sara said and add that one of the greatest things about Antioch is that it allows you to have flexibility within the structure. So create your own path…one that fits and works for you. Don’t limit yourself to what is in the course catalogue; create your own path within the boundaries.”

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara Difference.

For more information on Steve Caputo, M.A. visit To find Sara Caputo, M.A. Radiant Organizing on the web go to and (e-Book).

Read more AUSB featured Alumni stories.

Antioch Graduate Tamie Beeman-Gangloff Facilitates Healing as an Eating Disorder Specialist

Tamie Beeman-Gangloff, M.A. in Clinical Psychology Class of 2009, often refers to herself as “The Wounded Healer” after having overcome her own battles with an eating disorder. Tamie’s approach in helping others recover is eclectic, one that includes work on relationship and personality issues, cognitive behavior, and feminist perspective.

The Antioch University Santa Barbara 2009 Graduate received her Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology. Since her graduation, Tamie has been working with men, women and adolescents in treatment for severe eating disorders in an inpatient and outpatient level. Tamie Beeman-Gangloff  also has experience in treating clients with substance abuse, sexual identity issues, and PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).

As a “recovered professional”, who leads her practice in Pennsylvania, Ms. Beeman-Gangloff has facilitated many scale bashing events. These events inspires clients to do away with the negativity associated with the numbers on the bathroom scale. Tamie ensures a safe environment where clients can began the healing process through discussion and action. Women bring in clothing articles and even food scales. Hammers are provided for the bashing!

When asked about her experience at Antioch University Santa Barbara, Tamie Beeman-Gangloff said:

“I chose Antioch because of the small classroom environment and the focus on the experiential process. Antioch focuses on what is important – the true experience with the client – face to face, learning the detailed skills that you cannot learn from a book. We didn’t focus on memorizing material for tests, but we were pushed to the limit to study cases and come up with the best treatment for our clients. The education was also of a very personal nature – forcing us to look inward and to rediscover ourselves. Of course, it is a requirement to attend therapy while in the program, however – with each new class and subject, I started to look more at myself and began to grow and change more personally and professionally. The teachers at Antioch helped to provide a safe environment for learning and self-exploration.”

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara Difference.

Tamie shares this message of her own self-growth for prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:

“I was referred to as a wounded healer due to my own personal recovery and experiences. As you can see from my website – this is an identity I have grown into. In school, we learn that self-disclosure is to be very limited and focused on what will help the client. I do this but in a more personal way. All of my clients know that I am in recovery – I feel that this helps us to connect and relate to one another on a level that could not otherwise be facilitated. My own pain and healing has become one of my tools for helping others.”

Tamie Beeman-Gangloff, M.A., provides individual, group and family therapy. Her treatment is very individualized for each client. For more information on this Antioch Alumni please visit


Antioch Graduate James Kyriaco Excels in Local Leadership

This week we feature Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate James Kyriaco (BA Class of 2009), a fundraising and management consultant, in our spotlight on alumni.

James Kyriaco knows how to 'keep it local' with thirteen years of experience and success in managing political campaigns in the Santa Barbara community.

The Antioch University Santa Barbara 2009 graduate received his Bachelor of Liberal Studies with an Area of Concentration in Social Services Administration paving the way for James to climb the ranks in the political world and help many candidates win victories in elections.

Mr. Kyriaco was born and raised in Santa Barbara. He attended Santa Barbara High School and completed coursework at Santa Barbara City College. James has held many leadership positions with a number of non-profit organizations including the Santa Barbara Family Care Center (President, Vice President), Goleta Valley Historical Society (Executive Director), Community Action Commission of Santa Barbara County, Citizens Planning Association, and the Santa Barbara Tennis Patrons (Board Member).

James Kyriaco has consulted for numerous political clients ranging from County Supervisor Janet Wolf, Santa Barbara School Board Trustee Monique Limon to Goleta Mayor Margaret Connell, former Santa Barbara Councilmembers Roger Horton and Brian Barnwell, and Goleta Water District President Bill Rosen.

James has also been active in serving the Santa Barbara community through his work on the Santa Barbara County Historic Landmarks Advisory Committee, and as a former longtime member of the City of Santa Barbara Community Development and Human Services Commission.

When asked about his experience at Antioch University Santa Barbara, James Kyriaco said:

"I chose Antioch University because it offers a flexible schedule, strong faculty, and proven commitment to social justice through examination of individual and organizational behavior. I especially appreciated Antioch's powerful online learning tools, and its recognition of the value of experiential learning."

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara Difference.

James shares this message for prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:

"My experience at Antioch was transformative, and impacts the way I look at the world around me every day. The instructors offer "real world" as well as academic knowledge, and their commitment to students is top notch. Many of the students are very accomplished as well, and the seminar format of many classes offers opportunities to learn from the student body as well as the instructor. The online platforms used at Antioch are technologically advanced, intuitive and complement the classroom and experiential elements of the curriculum."

Mr. Kyriaco has just completed a Master's Degree program in Public Administration through California State University, Northridge. James lives with his wife Angie (also an Antioch University Alumni) in Goleta, along with their cat, Guiseppe. For more information on James Kyriaco visit his profile at

Read more AUSB featured Alumni stories

Featured AUSB Graduate Conrad Torres is a Career and Life Coach

Conrad Torres believes in living life to the fullest and staying healthy both physically and mentally. His passion is to help others reach full potential in their professional and personal lives.

The Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate received his Master's Degree in Organizational Management in 2008. Conrad serves the local community with his work as the founder of TLC (Total Life Coaching). Conrad Torres specializes in career and life renewal coaching. Directing professional and personal potential, Conrad aids people of all ages in filling their lives and businesses full of purpose and passion. He draws on his counseling and organizational management experience to help clients find and clarifying their current life purpose and vision, then taking what is identified and make it a reality through a structured process of resourceful discovery.
When asked about his experience at Antioch University Santa Barbara, Conrad Torres said:
"I chose Antioch for a number of reasons. I actually had a very polished academic record throughout my schooling and could have gone to almost any University of my choosing, but after visiting several different campuses, I couldn't compare them to the feeling I felt while visiting the Antioch campus. First off, it wasn't a HUGE campus, where you needed a road map to find every building."

"It was personal, quiet, manageable and more importantly, I didn't feel like a small ant lost in a maze, but more like an elephant walking amongst the herd. That feeling was my assurance that I could learn as much as possible if I put in the effort. The sky was the limit at this University and I wasn’t about to pass up the opportunity."

"I can still recall the first day of orientation meeting my new classmates one by one as they arrived on campus. I do admit I was a little nervous at first, but as I got to know each and every one of them, I felt a sense of calm, like I had known my fellow cohorts since childhood. From that first day, I was part of a family and have remained a part of that family ever since."
Conrad shares this message for prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:
"It's been several of years since I graduated from Antioch and I still find myself going back to visit the faculty and staff from time to time."

"I am always recommending the University to friends and family members who are interested in continuing their education. All of my friends and family know that I not only received my B.A. from Antioch, but also my M.A. I learned so much and had the opportunity to interact act with so many people from all walks of life during my B.A. program, that there was no question in my mind about where to go for my graduate degree. Even after a two year break from receiving my B.A., I still felt Antioch was the one and only choice for me."

"As I'm sitting here, I am reminiscing about all the fun I had while obtaining both of my degrees. It was truly an experience like no other. As human beings, we are constantly evolving by learning new ways of doing things and that's exactly what Antioch challenges you to do. The professors don’t just go through the so-called “motions,” they challenge you to think outside of the box. They give you the necessary tools to not only better yourself, but also those around you and because of that, I feel the Antioch experience rivals even the most prestigious Universities." 


AUSB Alumna Kandace Overgaag Shines as Self Confidence Counselor

Kandace Overgaag, M.A. in Clinical Psychology Class of 2008, is known as The Sorority Therapist and believes everyone can "learn to love the skin you're in!"

Kandace has a special way of encouraging young women to feel more confident about who they are inside and out.

The Antioch University Santa Barbara 2008 graduate received her Master's Degree in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis on Marriage and Family Therapy. Since her graduation, Kandace has been a Marriage and Family Therapist Intern specializing in individual psychotherapy, and is currently practicing under the supervision of Shannon Miles, MFT. As a therapist, Kandace has helped young people to live happier, more fulfilling lives. She believes that therapy is a positive, growth-oriented process.  Kandace works with patients on a variety of life's challenges including self-esteem issues.

As an adolescent Kandace Overgaag knew that she wanted to work with people. She always liked public speaking, communication and learning new things. Naturally the field of Mental Health was a perfect fit. Kandace's work with sororities is a large portion of who she serves in her private practice. She also does a significant amount of volunteer work in the group setting, specifically during Eating Disorder Awareness month every February. Every session is tailored to the needs of the participants, and may include topics including transitions, coping skills, communication techniques, assertiveness, self-esteem and relationship issues. Overgaag really enjoys her work with young women in the sororities as well as students from SBCC and UCSB.

Mrs. Overgaag has presented at national conferences and to general audiences on topics including learning disabilities in children and adults, promoting self-esteem, and disordered eating. She teaches classes for Carp Cares for Youth during the Summer and is studying for her licensure exams with the California Board of Behavioral Sciences.

Kandace currently resides in Santa Barbara and enjoys the sense of community and the small town feel that this area is best known for. She has two puppies and was recently married to her wonderful husband. They both enjoy traveling and visited Japan, Mexico and Italy together last year.

When asked about her experience at Antioch University Santa Barbara, Kandace Overgaag said:

"The University focused on the clinical experience piece, which was really important to me. I knew my ultimate goal was to be self-employed in a private practice. The professors encouraged me to explore traineeship sites and obtain the experience that I needed for my specific goal. Small class sizes helped with the one on one instruction each of us needed, as we all had different goals after graduate school. Not to mention, Antioch University is conveniently located in Santa Barbara, the most beautiful town in the world."

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara Difference.

Kandace shares this message for prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:

"Grad school is a life changing experience. Regardless of your age, this is a time where you will grow as a person and discover who you are going to be for the rest of your life. The Clinical Psychology program at Antioch University is a unique and fascinating method to earn the degree of a lifetime and meet some fascinating people along the way."

Kandace Overgaag, MA, MFT Intern provides individual, couples, group and family counseling. For more information on this Antioch Alumni please visit

AUSB Graduate David Sigman Shares the Good Life as a Hospitality Expert

David Sigman uses his "Antioch experience" to create the perfect Santa Barbara fine dining experience at world class establishments.

David moved to Santa Barbara to complete his Masters Degree in Organizational Management at Antioch University.

During his time at Antioch, David worked as a server and floor manager at Bouchon in Santa Barbara. His incredible experience at Bouchon, in combination with his education at Antioch, solidified his passion for the hospitality industry. David looked to fully immerse himself in the hospitality industry with an emphasis on fine dining establishments.

Upon graduating, he began working at the Bacara Resort and Spa as a Manager in the Bistro and then transferred to Meetings and Events to expand his knowledge and experience. David has over 15 years of experience in the food and beverage industry and a true passion for pleasing the guest. David's goal is to provide a warm, memorable and unique dining experience.

When asked about his experience at Antioch University Santa Barbara, David Sigman said:

"I decided on Antioch Santa Barbara for a variety reasons. The reputation of having outstanding professors, smaller more intimate class room settings and a balance of cultural diversity with the students were essential to me. The location also was involved in my decision on Antioch Santa Barbara, it is a wonderful environment to live and learn in and being a part of the community."

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara Difference.

David shares this message for prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:

"Going to AUSB was by far one of the best decisions I made for my career, personal growth and quality of life. I would highly recommend AUSB for any students looking for a amazing professors, flexible class schedule and a top notch education. Thank you Antioch!"

Mr. Sigman is married and lives in Santa Barbara. He currently is the General Manager at the Wine Cask, a local favorite restaurant with an acclaimed menu and wine list. The Wine Cask is located in the historic El Paseo complex. For more information on David Sigman visit his profile at

Antioch Graduate Sara Caputo is a Radiant Organizer and Productivity Guru

Sara CaputoThis week we feature Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate Sara Caputo (MA Class of 2003), a productivity coach, professional organizer, author, and speaker, in our spotlight on alumni.

Sara Caputo really understands the meaning of “less is more” as she helps people face the challenges that disorganization creates in one’s personal and professional life.

The Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate received her Masters in Psychology with a concentration in Organizational Psychology (Business Psychology). Near the end of completing the program Sara Caputo started down the path of productivity and organization for businesses and individuals. For her Masters thesis project, Caputo researched how clutter interruptions and emotional intelligence affect our productivity levels at work.

After graduating from AUSB in 2003 Sara established herself locally as a dynamic productivity coach, consultant, and trainer. As the Owner of Radiant Organizing, Sara teaches clients in their workplace and home how to create more space in their lives for the things they value. Caputo has helped increase daily effectiveness and profitability for numerous Santa Barbara area businesses – including large corporations, non-profit groups, small businesses and residential clients.

Part of Sara's professional successes is the recent publication of her first book, The Productivity Puzzle, a practical and applicable read that is packed with time saving tools and resources. Sara wrote this e-book with the different individuals she helps in mind; employee, manager, stay-at-home-mom, CEO, or student. Sara breaks the guide into four pieces of the productivity puzzle, the very foundation of organizational success she teaches in her trainings.

Mrs. Caputo is an active member of NAPO, The National Association of Professional Organizers as well as an adjunct faculty member of Santa Barbara City College, a trainer for The Employees University, County of Santa Barbara and a Course leader and Coach at She Negotiates University. Sara volunteers her time to various community organizations and is on the board of the Community Counseling & Education Center.

When asked about her experience at Antioch University Santa Barbara, Sara Caputo said:

"I was unclear as to what I really wanted to do and which direction to go after leaving a career that I had just put time and energy into. I knew that I wanted to one day own a business and work for myself and felt that the path I would take at Antioch towards getting my masters would help me find answers. I loved their class structure and it just felt "right". I am so proud to call Antioch University my alma mater and feel so fortunate to have been able to claim my education through the process."

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara Difference.

Sara shares this message to prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:

"I LOVED my Antioch experience. It truly is a highlight in my life. I loved the class structure, the hands-on learning atmosphere, the out of the box thinking minds and of course the instructors, which were real-time, real-life members of the working community. I also was able to participate in the study abroad trips, both as a student and as an alumni and then as Steve's wife (who ran the trips), so that was far and away the best part – learning from others in a global and international way."

Sara Caputo, MA is a dynamic productivity coach, consultant, trainer and author. She is the founder of Radiant Organizing, a company that helps businesses and their employees create organizational solutions through productivity teaching, training and learning. For more information, please visit  Her new e-book can be found at or in the Kindle Edition at

AUSB Graduate Nels Henderson Masters the Art and Science of Web Design

Nels Henderson Nels Henderson knows how to blend the art of web design with the fast-paced, ever-evolving world of website technology.

Nels is known both online and offline for his charismatic spirit and eye for detail. 

The Antioch University Santa Barbara 1998 graduate received his Master's Degree in Organizational Management allowing Nels to better serve the community in both his consulting work and as an adjunct faculty member in AUSB's master's degree program where he taught management and communication related courses. Currently Nels is a Marketing Project Manager for Citrix Online and manages website optimization for GoToMyPC. Nels has been a freelance graphic designer and marketing consultant for over 18 years.

Mr. Henderson was an aide to the former Santa Barbara Mayor Marty Blum, former County Supervisor Gloria Ochoa, State Senator Gary K. Hart and the late Rep. Walter Capps. He has consulted with numerous local clients including Earl Warren Showgrounds, State Street Ballet, CALM, Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics, and the California Coast Venture Forum.

Part of Nels' professional successes has been his leadership positions for non-profit boards of directors and political organizations in Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties. In 1990, Nels was the youngest elected chair of a political party county central committee in the State of California. He has served as President of the Board of Directors for Sarah House, Citizens Planning Association and Citizens Planning Foundation.

Nels is married to Alexis Henderson and they are parents to five year old Hannah. In his spare time, Nels enjoys cooking, playing soccer and taking photographs.

When asked about his experience at Antioch University Santa Barbara, Nels Henderson said:

"I chose Antioch University because of the flexibility it gave me in terms of my schedule as a working student while still offering a challenging educational experience. I believed in the model so much that I jumped at the chance to become an adjunct faculty member and taught classes for over a decade following my degree."

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara Difference.

Nels shares this message for prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:

"Central to the Antioch experience is "praxis" which is to be truly engaged in the idea, concept and meaning of what you are studying. This method of learning makes sure that what you are studying has a direct application to your daily life."

Nels Henderson is a SEO, Online Advertising and Social Media Consultant. He is a skilled freelance graphic designer and has been creating design and print work for over 18 years. For more information on Nels or to view his online portfolio, please visit

Featured AUSB Graduate Lorrie Thomas Ross is a Wild Web Woman

Lorrie Thomas RossWe turn our spotlight on Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate Lorrie Thomas Ross, The Marketing Therapist® – B.A. Class of 2003 and M.A. Class of 2008.

Lorrie Thomas Ross loves helping business professionals take full advantage of everything the world wide web has to offer.

The Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate put the power of her Antioch education to work by focusing her career on what she loves – web marketing! Her work as the head of a marketing agency, educator, author and speaker all ties into the wild web marketing world including: marketing strategy, branding, website optimization, search engine optimization, social media, and mobile, viral, and content marketing.

Lorrie is the CEO and Founder of Web Marketing Therapy, a full-service marketing agency launched in 2009. The agency is like a modern-day version of Mad Men – but this time it's not located on Madison Avenue or run by men. With her team of "Wild Web Women®" the she-geeky "marketing think-tank" of marketing strategics, social media gurus, account managers, creative copywriters, online advertising pros, web designers, and analysts. The Web Marketing Therapy team occupies a "virtual office space" throughout Santa Barbara County and beyond (Georgia, Oregon and London!). Her company donates 1% of their gross annual sales to 1% for the Planet to support environmental and health research.

Ross had the honor of speaking at AUSB’s 2011 Commencement ceremony, sharing her appreciation for the “Antioch experience.” When asked about her experience at Antioch University Santa Barbara, Lorrie Thomas Ross said:

"I chose Antioch because I wanted a more personal educational experience. I wanted to have access to my professors (not just a TA) and be a person, not a number in the classroom. Also, as a working professional, I loved the flexible hours and the accelerated degree program. The educational philosophy and approach was very much in line with my personal and professional values – I knew AUSB would be an investment that would last me my life!"

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara Difference.

In her trademark speaking style, Ross disseminates this positive message for prospective students of Antioch University Santa Barbara:

"Students need to know that choosing where they go to school is more than a brand name. It is about getting a quality education which sets the foundation for personal and professional success. I am who I am because of the educational experience I claimed at AUSB, both in my BA program (Major emphasis in Communications) and my Master's."

"I learned so much that has helped me achieve my goals. The experience is that you actually have an EXPERIENCE, it's not a degree mill, it's an amazing educational institution. AUSB is more than a school – it is a community that teaches you how to think. Honestly, I probably would have never finished my BA or MA if AUSB didn't exist, there was no other school out there that met my needs like they did."

Part of Lorrie's professional successes is the recent publication of her first book, The McGraw-Hill 36-Hour Course: Online Marketing, written as a learning guide with an entire semester's worth of wisdom, insight, and know-how on web marketing. With Ross' decade plus of online marketing and teaching expertise, readers are able to learn in easy terms how to communicate socially on a multitude of platforms to build credibility, visibility and sellability. These three points are the foundation for success on which Ross has based her marketing expertise.

Mrs. Ross' personal accomplishments include being nominated for the National Association of Women Business Owners "Spirit of Entrepreneurialism" awards for 2011. She also was featured in the "Who's Who in Advertising, Marketing & PR section of The Pacific Coast Business Times this Spring.

Ross teaches at UC Berkeley Extension and privately for corporations. She taught at UCSB Extension from 2005 to 2009. The USCB classes she taught for years are now taught by her Web Marketing Therapy teammate Nicki Gauthier. Ross's work has inspired and guided small business owners, entrepreneurs, and students, which illustrates her impact as an influential figure on the national marketing scene.

Lorrie Thomas Ross, MA, The Marketing Therapist®, is a marketing strategist, educator, writer, web marketing expert and speaker. She is the CEO of Web Marketing Therapy, a boutique marketing agency and training company that diagnoses, prescribes and guides healthy marketing solutions. For more information, please visit: Her book can be found at Amazon at

Featured AUSB Graduate Jennifer Freed is a Local Hero for Teens

This month we feature Antioch University Santa Barbara graduate Dr. Jennifer Freed – an accomplished author, educator, counselor and advocate for young adults in our community.

Dr. Jennifer Freed has always had young people's best interests at heart.

The Antioch University Santa Barbara 1982 graduate is a recognized expert on behavioral matters such as teen bullying, character development, marriage and family relationships, and diversity issues. She has provided thousands with the practical tools to compassionately reassess personal behaviors and make significant life changes.

Part of Jennifer's professional successes is the co-founding of the highly successful teen program called The Academy of Healing Arts (AHA!), which serves more than 1,000 families annually in the state of California and the Southwest.  The AHA! teen program is dedicated to the development of character, imagination, emotional intelligence, and social conscience in the participants.  In 2010 AHA! was awarded Youth Program of the Year by the City of Santa Barbara.

Jennifer's body of work includes an educational book series called "Become Your Best Self", which is targeted to teens and young adults.  In addition to the series Dr. Freed has published "The Ultimate Personality Guide", a popular interactive guidebook for understanding personality typologies.  Her latest book, "Lessons from Stanley the Cat: Nine Lives of Everyday Wisdom", was inspired by a beloved feline friend and is now a top seller on

Dr. Freed's personal accomplishments include being the recipient of the Santa Barbara's Local Heroes Award in 2009. She also received the Hope Award from the Sierra Tucson Treatment Center in recognition of her innovative curriculum for high school teenagers.

Jennifer is the radio host of the popular radio program "Freed Up!" on  In addition to her radio hosting, Dr. Freed has been a Guest Speaker at many locations both locally and statewide.  Her media appearances include Good Morning America, NPR, Sirius XM Radio, ABC and others.

When asked about her experience at Antioch University Santa Barbara, Dr. Freed said:

"I chose Antioch because it offered a more personal and progressive curriculum than other schools.  The campus and the instructors imparted a feeling of community and caring as well as a vision for academic excellence.  Antioch is a school where both the individual and the community are highly valued, and I am forever grateful that I chose a school where my personal contributions were part of a philosophy of what serves and promotes the well-being of others."

Read more about the Antioch Santa Barbara experience.

Jennifer Freed, Ph.D. has provided couples, families and individuals in the Santa Barbara area with effective communication, anger management, sexuality, parent-child communication, and drug and violence prevention for over 25 years. She is a licensed marriage and family counselor (MFT), group psychotherapist and educator.  Dr. Freed has lent her services to many local organizations including the Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center, Family Violence Program and the Pacific Pride Foundation.  To learn more about our AUSB Alumnus visit her website at

Antioch Alumni Association Hosts Trip to Hearst Castle and Winery

Alumni and special friends of Antioch University Santa Barbara gathered together for an enchanting day trip to Hearst Castle and Hearst Ranch Winery on May 14th. Friends, community members, and alumni made new connections from the moment we shared fresh coffee and pastries boarding the Santa Barbara Airbus.

View Our Flickr Slideshow

Upon our arrival in San Simeon, we began our “Experience Tour” of the five-story Hearst Castle Theater to watch ‘Hearst Castle: Building the Dream’. Combining vintage clips and stills from the 1920s and 30s, the documentary was a classic cinematography delight. The weather and mood at the castle were both bright and cheery as we toured the sprawling gardens, terraces and beautiful buildings of the Hearst Castle, including Casa Grande and Neptune’s Pool.

Following a fine lunch at Hearst Castle, the bus headed to Hearst Ranch Winery in Paso Robles. We were greeted by AUSB President Nancy Leffert, her husband Mark Leffert, and their son Jeremy Leffert – Hearst Ranch Winery viticulturist and winemaker.

Time on the tours allowed our group of alumni and guests to engage in inspiring conversation, sharing life stories. “We really bonded as a group, while our senses were quenched with fine art, good food, quality wine, and laughs!” commented alumna Lorrie Thomas.

For the wine aficionados, we were treated to a special tasting and enjoyed sampling the 2008 ‘Glacier Ridge’ Chardonnay and the 2007 ‘Lone Tree’ Cabernet Franc. We had the opportunity to taste a pre-release of the Hearst Ranch Vineyards stellar vintages making their debut, including the 2009 "Babicora" Malbec and the 2009 "Chileano" Tempranillo. One of the highlights of our private wine tasting was the limited release 2010 “Solace,” a Tempranillo Rosé which benefits the Hearst Cancer Resource Center located in San Luis Obispo, California.

All who attended had a spectacular time, and we’ve shared our photos here. AUSB alumni and our special guests hope to make this one of many annual events to make friends and have fantastic conversations. We hope to see you there next year!