About Us

Founded in 1986 as a non-profit language school and center for international exchange, Penobscot School is a unique community international school. Over the years, hundreds of people from the U.S. and from around the world have advanced their foreign language skills at Penobscot School and have learned more about the world in the process. You are invited to be a part of this experiment in language learning in the context of the exchange of ideas and knowledge.


Dennis Healy
Mary Catherine Ingraham
Executive Director
Joan LeMole


Penny Dunning

Dana Strout


Chinese Instructor

Jenny Tung is a native Mandarin speaker. She speaks dialect Cantonese and Taiwanese and reads/ writes using traditional and simplified Chinese characters. She holds a law degree and has taught at local schools.

French Instructors

Alain Ollier has recently relocated from Paris to Midcoast Maine. His interests include organic gardening and hockey. Alain has traveled extensively and is excited to share the language and culture of his homeland.

Margot Stiassni-Sieracki holds degrees from Williams College and Stanford University. She has taught French for many years and has conducted trainings in teacher methodology. She returns from France this fall with fresh ideas.

German Instructor

Annett Jones grew up in East Germany and later lived in Munich. She has studied agriculture and economics and enjoys gardening and sports. She teaches swimming and enjoys teaching her native language.

Italian Instructor

Danielle Tognato of Padova, Italy has taught Italian in the U.S. for several years. Students thoroughly enjoy her teaching. Her keen sense of humor and gentle, encouraging style create a relaxed atmosphere for learning.

Japanese Instructors

Sachiko Clough is originally from Osaka. B.A. German, Kyoto University of Foreign Language Studies. She is a certified Japanese language teacher and also holds licenses in Ikebana and Japanese tea ceremony.

Toshie Tesler, a native of Kobe, Japan, lives with her artist husband in Rockland, Maine. Toshie is a graduate of both Boston University and Bentley College and is a certified public accountant. She is well schooled in Japanese art and culture with certificates in Tea Ceremony and Ikebana. Her two children are also in the area, both currently serving in the United States Coast Guard.

Russian Instructors

Eva (Taran) Campbell is a native of Tallinn, Estonia, and grew up there in a bilingual environment (Russian and Estonian). She studied Estonian language and literature and economics. She moved to Maine in 2006 and has been teaching Russian for several years.

Julianna Gerrity, grew up in the Central Russia and Northern Caucasus where she studied English and Russian languages, European, American and Russian literature and philosophy. She moved to the U.S. in 1991 and has been teaching Russian, ESL and Russian literature classes both in schools and privately since 1999.

Spanish Instructors

Billy Smith studied English Literature, music and Romance Language at the University of Notre Dame then earned a Masters in English Literature at the University of Toronto and a diploma in Español como Lengua Extranjera from the Spanish Ministry of Education.

A native of Colombia, Nohora Estes has taught for many years at Penobscot School. She is also the Spanish instructor at Riley School. Nohora's excitement for language and outgoing personality make her teaching fun and engaging.

Notice of Nondiscriminatory Policy as to Students
Penobscot School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs. We do not discriminate on the basis of sex or sexual orientation