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Meet our Westlake Village Tutoring Staff


Great Teachers Inspire

Our tutors and staff in Westlake Village consist of passionate educators who love inspiring children to succeed. Warm, caring and great at relating to kids, our tutors in Westlake Village know how to engage and motivate each child in a personal way—building confidence and smiles, as well as skills and better scores. We selectively choose tutors who know local curriculum and can link Sylvan lessons to what’s being taught in school. Get to know our tutors and staff in Westlake Village!

  • Todd Crabtree, Executive Director

    Todd Crabtree

    Executive Director

    Todd is our Executive Director and has a life-long passion for helping kids achieve academic success. Todd is passionate about college preparation.  If you have a question about SAT/ACT, ask Todd.  He has been running learning centers since 1998 and he understands the advantage kids who get tutoring have over those that don't get the extra support.  Todd graduated Summa Cum Laude from Cal State Fullerton and is a 12-year Marine Corps veteran.  He's also a full-time soccer dad.  When you see him in the center, please say, "Hi," he would love to hear about how you learned about Sylvan.
  • Joy Cookson, Center Director

    Joy Cookson

    Center Director

    As Center Director, Joy leads the day to day operations for Sylvan of Westlake Village. A former substitute teacher and tutor, Joy chose a career in the tutoring business because working to enrich children's lives and connecting with families is her passion. She studied psychology at UCLA. When Joy isn’t at Sylvan, you’ll find her spending time with family and friends, watching movies, and going to the beach.
  • Carrie Thurmond, Teacher

    Carrie Thurmond


    Carrie is an instructor in Westlake Village, CA and holds a degree in Multiple Subject Education from Cal State University Channel Islands. She specializes in bridging skill gaps in students with Attention Deficit Disorder - mainly because she has ADD hers-- Oh hey, look, a squirrel!  Anyway, Carrie is an avowed super nerd and gamer, and if she's not at Sylvan, she's probably gabbing on Twitter, watching Let's Play videos on YouTube, or designing her own games, and remember: it's not a blank stare, it's the long gaze of an evil genius.
  • Ally Hatter, Tutor

    Ally Hatter


    Ally Hatter is a math major at California Lutheran University working towards obtaining a teaching credential. While Ally has many tutoring talents, she finds her greatest joy in helping students build self confidence in their academic abilities, specifically in mathematics. When Ally isn’t at Sylvan, you’ll find her beach bound singing in the car, laughing with friends, or in the library studying hard to fulfill her dream of teaching middle school math. In ten years, she hopes to have given a Ted Talk about how to eliminate the fear of mathematics, have rescued a couple of goats and many dogs, and above all else, made a difference.
  • Reilly Zaloom, Teacher

    Reilly Zaloom


    Reilly is an excellent teacher here at Sylvan, with a unique ability to connect with students. While she has many teaching talents, her favorite subject to teach is reading. Reilly obtained her Bachelor's Degree in Liberal Arts from CSU Channel Islands and a Multiple Subjects Teaching credential from there as well. Currently, she is in the process of obtaining her Masters in Reading Instruction at LMU. When Reilly isn't at Sylvan or working on school-related activities, she is out collecting vinyl, posting pictures of her pets on social media, or painting. 

  • Shimon Mendelsohn, Teacher

    Shimon Mendelsohn


    Shimon is a part time teacher at Sylvan in Westlake Village, CA with a gift for working with kids. While Shimon has many tutoring talents, he finds the greatest joy in reading comprehension and creative writing. He studied at Columbia College, double majoring in both writing and film directing. When Shimon isn't at Sylvan, you'll find him writing at a Starbucks or Barnes and Noble, spending quality time with his friends and family, watching good movies and traveling up and down the California coast.
  • Brihanna Pyanowski , Teacher's Assistant/ Teacher

    Brihanna Pyanowski

    Teacher's Assistant/ Teacher

    Brihanna Pyanowski is a teacher here at Sylvan of Westlake Village, CA with a passion for learning and teaching. Currently, she is attending California State University, Northridge and is in the process of completing her Master's Degree in Environmental and Occupational Health. The one thing Brihanna cannot live without is coffee! When she isn't at Sylvan, you can find her studying at a Starbucks, watching her favorite shows on Netflix, or catching some laughs at a comedy club. 
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    This information is pulled from the Manage My Center Information section on slclink. Visit that section on slclink to update your center’s contact information.