Executive Leadership Team
Mrs. Doering was born in Washington, D.C. and lived in Maryland and New Mexico before moving to the Grand Canyon State. She graduated from Yuma High School and received her degree from Arizona State University.
About her position as Superintendent at Crane, she says, “I unconditionally love my job and appreciate the opportunity to positively impact children’s lives while valuing the huge responsibility this entails. Daily, I work alongside professionals dedicated to children. Together, they decide what’s fair and best for them; we’re comrades in this struggle to reclaim excellent education for ALL – not just some – of our students. I have loved my life’s work and cannot imagine a more rewarding profession.”
FUN FACT: A former student once broke her nose!
Dr. Mike Hoffman is Assistant Superintendent of Crane Elementary School; he’s been with the district since 2001. Prior to his current position, Dr. Hoffman was a 3rd and 5th grade teacher, served as Principal at Valley Horizon Elementary School, and spent a year as the Director of the Curriculum Department.
He hails from the East Coast, having been born in Queens, New York. Dr. Hoffman boasts a career history that runs the gamut from the arts to education, with a little forestry and land surveying thrown in for good measure. Before becoming an educator, he was co-owner of La Reta Studios, where he worked on sculptures, exhibits, and theme attractions at businesses including SeaWorld, the Pittsburgh Children’s Zoo, and Ogden’s George S. Eccles Dinosaur Park in Utah.
As Assistant Superintendent,“There is rarely a typical day and I can approach my job with a service mindset. Nearly all my favorite memories involve listening and watching students demonstrate and show others what they’ve been working on – especially when they are keenly interested in what they’re discovering.”
FUN FACT: His former business built and installed the “McDonald’s T-Rex” in Tucson.
DALE PONDER, CHIEF OF FINANCE AND OPERATIONS
Dale Ponder is the Chief of Finance and Operations at Crane Schools. He first joined the district in 2006 and has served as the Executive Director of Management Services, Director of Finance, Director of Procurement, and Procurement Manager. Given the positions he’s held, the natural and inevitable question he gets is: How do you keep all those numbers straight?
He serves as an Executive Board Member for the Yuma Area Benefit Consortium (YABC), the Education Technology Consortium (ETC), the Education Finance Reform Group (EFRG), and the Arizona Association of School Business Officials (AASBO).
Mr. Ponder enjoys the problem-solving nature of his work. “Identifying plausible solutions and resources to best meet the unique needs of our schools, students, and staff members can be challenging. Because I work collaboratively with some of the most innovative, passionate, and caring group of professionals and leaders, I have the desire to push that much harder in my work.”
FUN FACT: He was selected by his peers to present a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, DC.
LUPE LEWIS, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF HUMAN RESOURCES AND COMMUNICATIONS
Lupe Lewis is the Executive Director of Human Resources and Communications and has been part of the district since 2014. She is a self-described “HR Lady” and “Tech Geek” who uses her passions for recruitment and marketing to develop a culture of positivity and excellence in the district.
Mrs. Lewis was born and bred in Yuma, and graduated from Northern Arizona University. She’s currently working to earn a Masters degree from Arizona State University that will help her use digital strategies to communicate with the Crane learning community. She channels her creativity and passion for graphic design to create informational and awareness campaigns, and spearheads staff appreciation activities and events.
In her position, she works closely with all school administrators and department leads on various projects throughout the year. “I love recruiting and meeting my future co-workers! The best part of recruitment is finding the candidate a great place to work.”
FUN FACT: In another life, she'd be a chef because she loves to cook.