English & Journalism Teacher, Pepperbox Adviser
Danielle Witten grew up in the suburbs of the San Francisco Bay Area. A first generation college student, she received her B.A. from UC Davis in 2002. Before becoming a high school English teacher, she worked in public radio and supported teenagers from rural Central Valley counties in participatory action.
Danielle has nearly two decades of teaching experience at the secondary and university levels. She began her teaching career in Sacramento before joining Arcata High School in Northern California where she taught English, English Language Development, journalism and advised the school’s student-run newspaper. She completed her master’s studies at Teachers College, Columbia University focusing on critical consciousness and literacy in adolescent learners.
She was the 2015 recipient of Carlston Award for Outstanding Teachers of America which identifies, honors, supports and gives voice to outstanding California high school teachers whose dedication and pedagogical excellence contribute to the academic and social-emotional success of their students. Most recently, she received the 2020 CJMA Nick Ferentinos Award for Advising Excellence.
Her pedagogy is guided by the belief that education is a fundamental right and that even in a failing educational system, individual teachers have the capacity to positively impact students' learning and lives.