OEA President & Vice President
OEA President Johanna Vaandering
Johanna “Hanna” Vaandering, a Physical Education teacher from Ridgewood Elementary in the Beaverton School District, was elected OEA President in April, 2013. Prior to her election, Hanna served as OEA Vice President for four years and as Beaverton Education Association President, OEA Region I Vice President and as Pacific Regional Director for the National Council of Urban Education Association.
Hanna taught elementary physical education for 17 years at Ridgewood. While at Ridgewood, Hanna started a successful rhythms program to help her students understand the importance of movement and dance. The most rewarding aspect of her seventeen years at Ridgewood was having past students come by the school and tell her “you made a difference in my life”.
Vaandering’s experience with OEA started early in her career as a building representative. “Advocating for those who make a difference in the lives of our students on a daily basis made me understand the importance of our union,” said Vaandering. After serving on her first bargaining team, Hanna was elected to the BEA Executive Committee and then served as Vice President prior to becoming President. Assuring the rights of each and every member are protected and advocating for stable and adequate school funding are top priorities for Vaandering as OEA President.
Hanna was born and raised in Washington County, she enjoys traveling, but is proud to call Oregon home. A graduate of Pacific University in Forest Grove, Hanna was a two-time All-American and Academic All-American catcher for the lady Boxers. Scuba diving, water skiing and spending time with family and friends are ways in which Hanna likes to spend her free time.
OEA Vice President John Larson
John Larson is an English teacher from Hermiston High School, serving both the Hermiston and Morrow County School districts for nearly 25 years. Most recently, John’s days consisted of teaching remedial reading courses to high school seniors, as well as AP Language and Composition. While many may find this an unusual assignment, John relished the task of problem solving at multiple levels throughout the day.
John is the son of two exceptional public school teachers and his commitment to the union was a part of his culture growing up. His first experience with OEA came early in his career with the Morrow County Education Association as a building representative. He then served as President for four additional years. Throughout his career as an educator, John has continued to serve OEA as a leader in various roles including: bargaining chair; President of the Hermiston Association of Teachers; NEA Board Director; NEA PAC Captain; on NEA and OEA Resolutions Committees and as a member of the OEA Executive Committee. He was proud to be elected to his current role—OEA Vice President—in April, 2015.
John’s primary focus is ensuring excellence in public education through member empowerment. He believes deeply in the voices of educators as a driving force for students and public education.