Our Instructors

Jo Carter

Operations Manager. Jo owned and operated for 14 years Physical Element boutique in Portland's Pearl District. Before that she was marketing manager for Jantzen. She has a bachelors and masters from UNC in apparel design and textile products marketing. She is on point for creating new products & services for you.
apparel draping instructor adam andreas at portland fashion institute

Classes: Flats & Techs, Advanced Specs. Adam Andreas graduated with honors from Art Institutes' apparel design program. After winning raves for his first menswear collection, he went to work in product development for Leslie Jordan sportswear then as a senior product developer for Columbia Sportswear.

Alyson freelance patternmaker and technical designer of fashion apparel

Class: How to Work with Production. Alyson is an in-demand freelance pattern maker and technical designer. She started her own business in 2014 after working many years as a product developer for Amer Sports/Wilson Tennis and Nike. She has her own line of curvy girl fashions called Clair Vintage Inspired.

ben herman owner of mad fish digital marketing agency in portland

Class:  Social Media Marketing. Co-founder of Mad Fish Digital, Ben Herman has been working in digital marketing, SEO, PPC and Analytics for over 13yrs.
amelia forsberg instructor intellectual property for fashion designers

Class: Protect Your Intellectual Property. Amelia completed a Bachelor of Science in Bioengineering at the University of California, San Diego in 2009 and completed her JD degree at Lewis and Clark Law School in 2013. Prior to joining Chernoff Vilhauer, Amelia worked as a patent attorney in Portland, Ore.

britta hellquist couture dress fashion design instructor

Classes: Couture Techniques, Couture Dress, Drapin. Along with a BFA in Apparel Design, Britta has pursued her interests in historical costuming and fine sewing in many forms and has worked as a costumer in theater and film. She has also worked with many local designers, helping them to bring their creations to life

instructor cathy libnic graphic design at portland fashion institute

Classes: Graphic Design, Computer Print Design. Cathy Libnic started her own brand of hand illustrated women's and children's apparel in Los Angeles. Her products were sold in Fred Segal, Neiman Marcus, and specialty boutiques from NYC to Honolulu.She also worked in Los Angeles for several surf wear brands. In 1995 she became a senior graphic designer for Nike, working on men’s, women's and youth apparel. Cathy has been freelancing since 2012 for brands such as Columbia Sportswear, Fred Meyer, Wilson Sporting Goods, Basin + Range and Barre 3.
celeste sipes fashion instructor on working with boutiques

Class: Working with Boutiques. Celeste Sipes owns Radish Underground, a boutique at 414 SW 10th "in the heart of Portland's trendy West End." When she opened Radish in 2008, "we set out to be detectives, finding independent lines you can feel good about supporting: designers/companies who give a damn about the world we live in and the people in it."

Classes: History of Fashion, inside the Fashion Industry, Overseas Production. Dana Ditto has more than 20 years of apparel industry experience across Sourcing, Costing, Planning, Merchandising and Sales. After graduating with a bachelor of science in Apparel and Merchandising from Colorado State University, Dana has grown her career with companies such as Limited, Harold’s Stores, GAP and Nike. She currently works at Nike in Global Sourcing and Manufacturing.

debra bruneaux fashion and costume design instructor

Classes: Corsets, Petticoats, Costume, Textile Design. Debra Bruneaux has been a theatrical costumer for many years, working primarily on the West Coast for theaters such as Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Old Globe Theater in San Diego, Center Theater Group in Los Angeles, Berkeley Repertory Theater and currently is the cutter/draper for Portland Opera. Her expertise in corsets and petticoats reflects historical fashions on which period costume design is based.
dina pham adobe illustrator for fashion design instructor

Class: Adobe Illustrator for Fashion Design A local native to Oregon, Pham's interests lies in apparel functionality and creativity. With a BFA in apparel design and merchandising, she has taken her interest in the technical aspect of design and has worked at SportHill and most currently at Columbia Sportswear in product development.
elizabeth mollo instructor of fashion event production

Class: Fashion Event Production. Elizabeth Mollo got her start producing fashion shows in 2004 with the first Doom Town Rock and Roll Fashion Show, where she participated as one of the designers and helped to coordinate the show. Since then she has helped produce FashioNXT, Open Season, Alley 33, The Portland Sewing Fashion Forward Show, and many other shows and events including Fade to Light, which she conceived and produces.

eden dawn instructor of fashion design pr techniques

Classes: PR Techniques, Fashion Styling Eden Dawn (yes, that is her real name) spends her life submerged in fashion as a stylist, writer, and tastemaker and fashion editor for Portland Monthly. Born and raised in Oregon, she began her style career while still a child, by cheerfully violating numerous dress codes at her private school before turning that troublemaking into her trademark as one of Oregon’s top fashion experts.

emily weltman instructor of fashion history at portland fashion institute

Classes: Concept & Development, Line Sheets/Look books, Portfolio. Emily Weltman received her BFA from the Fashion Institute of Technology. After graduation, Emily worked as a designer and director for the Gap, Old Navy, Puma and Nike. After receiving her Masters in Art Education at PSU, Emily joined PFI as a mentor of the Fashion Forward program. Emily now works as design manager for Wieden+Kennedy.

jason clageron instructor apparel marketing and trade shows

Class: Truth about trade shows. Designer: West Daily, J.Calderon Apparel. Designs, patterns, and constructs garments for sampling, industry shows, and retail sales. Responsible for branding, promotions, direct marketing, and relationship building .

jennifer bynum fashion illustration instructor at portland fashion institute

Class: Fashion Illustration Intensives. Jennifer Baggett Bynum received a scholarship to the Art Institute of Portland based off a collection of fashion illustrations she designed. After graduating, she began a career in product development and is now the senior art director for private label product for Kroger & Fred Meyer.

Classes: History of Fashion, inside the Fashion Industry, Overseas Production. Jennifer Hasper holds her master of science in global affairs from New York University and wrote her thesis on sourcing/trade in the apparel industry. Her background ranges from product development to delivery execution on a global level. She has worked for major brands such as Gap Kids and Nike.
koko wright industrial machine sewing and patternmaking instructor

Classes: Industrial Machine Sewing, Outerwear, Shoemaking. Since completing her bachelors in fine arts in apparel design, KoKo Wright has worked as a patternmaker for Pendleton, and as head product developer for snowboard brand Airblaster. Now KoKo is currently Lead Soft Goods Developer for Sigma Designs, an engineering and design firm, building the future.

lisa silveria apparel construction and sewing class instructor

Classes: Apparel Construction, Intermediate Sewing, Special Classes. One of Lisa Silveira's greatest passions is travel, from which she draws much inspiration. In 2005 she spent 4 months in Florence, Italy studying silk painting, batik, jewelry design, oil painting, and the ways of Italian fashion and “La Bella Figura”, a way of life emphasizing beauty, good image, aesthetics and proper behavior.

marcy newton fashion business instructor at portland fashion institute

Class: Funding for Your StartUp. Marcy Newton works with Ascent Funding, a nonprofit organization providing loans and support to local businesses. She is a passionate supporter of small business. Previous experience includes leading the Women’s Business Center at Mercy Corps NW, running entrepreneurial education programs and working with numerous startups and small businesses.
moona page fashion buying and merchandising at portland fashion institute

Class: Product Development. Moona Page is a senior apparel designer and developer with 10 years of experience for larger retailers such as Kroger and Dillard's. Her expertise extends beyond trend direction into garment production and brand development. She graduated from the University of North Texas with a bachelors in apparel design and a minor in retail merchandising.

nancy mitchell instructor of fashion design accounting basics

Class: Accounting Basics. Nancy Mitchell earned her bachelors in accounting at San Jose State University in 1983. Nancy has worked in the accounting arena in various corporate roles from accountant to Chief Financial Officer. In 1999, she began Option-E with her partner providing CFO and Human Resource consulting to small businesses.

owen schmidt instructor of contracting basics for apparel designers

Class: Contracting Basics for Apparel Designers. Owen Schmidt has worked more than 32 years as an attorney. He has served as Senior Counsel with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the General Counsel in Portland, Ore. He was a Special Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Oregon and an attorney for the Bonneville Power Administration. Schmidt received his J.D. from Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College. He is a frequent author andserved as a Vice-Chair of the American Bar Association’s Book Publication Committee.

stephanie magoulas fashion buying and merchandising instructor

Classes: Fashion Buying & Merchandising, Visual Merchandising. Magoulas is a merchandising specialist with 20+ years of experience in large retailers such as Fred Meyer, Kroger, and Ross Dress for Less. Stephanie has worked all aspects of the retail world from merchandising big boxes, leading teams, developing financial goals, managing special projects, product development and buying.

instructor suzi gurney who teaches beginning sewing

Classes: Beginning Sewing, Kids & Teens. Suzi Gurney is passionate about fashion and sewing. She's worked behind the scenes in the fashion industry for over 30 years, first as operations manager at Mercantile and now as the FIDM Fashion Club advisor for CHS. She creates beautiful clothing under SG Custom Clothing.
portland fashion institute patternmaker instructor valerie furcron

Classes: Fit and Pattern Alteration. Valerie Furcron has more than 35 years of experience in the apparel industry primarily as a pattern maker both in Los Angeles and in Portland for Jantzen, Hanna Andersson and Pendleton. She currently works at Columbia Sportswear as an apparel fit engineer.