Meet our instructors
Click on the instructors name for a full bio!
Harvest's path to a career in performing arts began as an elite rhythmic gymnast in California at age 8, attending the U.S. Olympic training camp by age 13. Her high school years in Springfield, OR found her in lead roles of several popular musical productions followed by her education at Western Baptist College pursuing a major in music education.
Harvest continued with dance and gymnastics by becoming a coach and instructor teaching at places such as American Elite, Gym Kids, Mt. Hood Ballet Academy and others. From cheer leading to costume design, Harvest brings a rich diversity to the world of performing arts.
Her competitive nature combined with her depth of experience as a performer and instructor are the catalyst for her passion to see kids of all ages and skill sets to enjoy the performing arts to their fullest.
Regina "Mimi" Stewart Badger
Regina "Mimi" Stewart Badger
Co-founder with Harvest Moormann of Salt Academy for the purpose of serving the youth and adults of our community. Regina began her music studies at the age of 9 with piano, accompanying by age 12 and voice instruction at age 14. By 17 she was singing as a soloist in a folk trio and gospel rock band that toured California for 10 years. Her early experience in Madrigals and ensembles; cheer and dance; then performing in lead and supporting roles in high school, college and adult musical productions, sparked her love for the theater and performing arts. Her later education was both private and public but her unconventional education became the most valuable, studying with professionals in Southern California in the Hollywood entertainment and music industries, helping to lay the foundation of her methods of teaching.
Regina’s career spans over 40 years in performing arts and includes production administration and artistic oversight, writing and directing. She has acquired and maintained an extensive knowledge and understanding of multiple styles of vocal techniques and drama methods. Her desire, is to see anyone who wishes to be a performer, be given the opportunity to acquire a solid working knowledge of voice, acting and dance. She believes that a student’s self-discipline, accountability and hard work applied with heart and motivation can bring hidden talent and enriched opportunities to life no matter what career is pursued.
Gabriella is a former SALT student and has had a passion for singing and dancing since 2007 when she first attended the Academy. She has landed several lead roles in previous SALT theatre productions, performed dance and vocal solos and choreographed many of her own dance routines.
Advancement as a student positioned her to become a student-teacher and now teaches Ballet, Lyrical, Hip Hop and Drama classes full time. Gabriella’s enjoyment comes from being able to impart her knowledge into her students while encouraging them to have fun.
Melissa Soares began dancing at the age of 20. She took her first dance class with Empyrean Movement (now MOVEO Performing Company), a professional dance company located in Portland, OR under the instruction of Lorena Aranda and Damon Keller. With the company, Melissa has performed in many venues including Los Angeles, Canada and Times Square to name a few, and recently on the same stage with SuperCr3w (America’s Best Dance Crew).
She has done industrials with Nike and performed at the Vans Invitational 2007 Mt. Dew Tour as a back-up dancer. She has also collaborated with Northstar – a Native American dance troupe who is sponsored by OPB and Painted Sky and the list goes on. Melissa has toured as an assistant on Moveo’s Workshop Tour, teaching classes in hip-hop.
It was with Moveo where she realized her innate passion for dance and was able to gain knowledge and experience in most styles of dance. After performing and training with Moveo for 6 years she decided to explore her passion for teaching. Her desire is to motivate and inspire people to always reach for higher goals, and seek their dreams regardless of the obstacles that may stand in the way. Melissa received specialized training in Hip-hop, Jazz, lyrical, tap, ballet and has a love and passion for all genres of dance. She has experience teaching hip-hop, creative movement, beginning tap, and parent-tot classes. Melissa has been teaching Hip-Hop to all age levels for the past 8 years and loves it.
Jenell holds her Bachelor of Science degree in Dance from the University of Oregon. Through her young years and college education she gained experience in many styles of dance from ballet, African dance, break dance, improvisation, modern and more.
She has had the opportunity to train under Barbara Remington, Julane Stites, Brad Garner, and Shannon Mockli, and has taken classes from Kathleen Hermsdorf, Garth Fagan Dance Company, and Alexandrous Ballard just to name a few. Jenell has over 6 years’ experience teaching ages 2-adult.
She believes that anyone can dance and is passionate about helping her students find the most freedom and joy in dancing according to each students physical abilities. She also enjoys leading movement explorations that allow her students to unlock their greatest artistic potential.
Bio coming soon!
Leticia Varela, a native of Mexico, moved to Oregon in 2001 to teach the customs and traditions of Mexican Folk Dance. Leticia was accepted to the National School of Fine Arts (SNEPD_INBA), Mexico - the equivalent of New York's Juliard. She studied there for 10 years gaining proficiency in theatre, art history, ballet, contemporary dance and folk dance.
Following her eduction, she was accepted by audition to the Traditional Dance Company of Mexico and had the opportunity to travel to Greece, China, Canada, Singapore, Scotland and Australia. She later worked in the U.S. traveling from Texas to the East Coast and even peformed in the audience of former president George Bush in 2001.
Jean started teaching fitness in 1988 as owner and manager of a fitness franchise for 19 years while teaching 4-8 classes per week. She has been an ACE Certified group fitness instructor since 2006 with several program certifications including: Zumba, Zumba Gold, Zumba Toning, Group Power, Group Centergy, Group Groove, Refit and Pound.
Jean worked at Cascade Athletic Club for 8 years and currently teach fitness as a community outreach at East Hill Church. She has been helping people improve their quality of health and fitness for over 26 years. In 2004, she joined AdvoCare to increase her knowledge of the benefits of supplementation to improve performance and increase results.
Jean’s mission is to help people look, feel and perform better every day by empowering them to value their unique individuality and love themselves well!
Shannon has been dancing since she could walk. She has won numerous performance awards throughout her performance years, including Performers of the Year with her ensemble of All That Jazz Dance Studio, in Grants Pass, OR. Following that award, All That Jazz was chosen first out of five dance companies across the nation to travel to Europe and tour with Tanzsommer.
After high school, she was a lead dancer for a pre-professional dance company in Portland, OR currently known as Moveo. At 21, she received the Assistant Teacher Award with Co. Dance Convention. She has trained and worked with many of today’s well known choreographers including Gregg Russell, Mandy Moore, Jessie Santos, and Super Cr3w.
Shannon has performed at various venues such as Town Square in New York City, stages throughout Europe, NBA half time shows, and the list goes on. Shannon has found a new form of love in the dance world...teaching. She has been teaching at Grande Finale Dance Studio for over 7 years now. She has won multiple choreography awards including "Best Concept", "Most Entertaining", and "Regional Champion". She also has been rewarded at the National level for her choreography. Shannon's recent endeavors are launching two separate businesses; A New Dance Experience; Portland's new edge competition and Dancer's Corner; retail shop and sponsor of Portland's National Tap Dance Day.
Savannah knew she wanted to dance from a very young age. As early as age six, she was blessed with the chance to take her first dance class. Before coming to SALT, she trained at many different studios including Deborah Messinger School of Dance, The Beat Dance Academy and Body and Soul Creative Dance.
After spending the first seven years of her dance journey testing out different studios, she finally found SALT. Once there, she spent the next six years dancing with the company "family" and at age 13 advanced to dancing on pointe. Her main focus has been on ballet and pointe with additional focus on contemporary and lyrical styles.
Savannah has performed to music pieces from the Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Alice in Wonderland, the Sound of Music as well as performed solos on pointe.
Her desire is "...after all that SALT has given me, I want to give back and provide that same experience for another child, while also keeping the art of Ballet alive in the next generation of dancers."
Hayley Hoffmeister Green
Hayley Hoffmeister Green
Hayley Hoffmeister Green received both her Master's and Bachelor's Degrees in Vocal Performance with an emphasis in Musical Theatre from Oklahoma City University. Not only has she been teaching private voice for the past 9 years in various places in the United States, but is also a working performer.
As a performer, she has been on contract several times for Disney Cruise Lines as a mainstage performer and served as the vocal captain onboard. She has performed in national tours and regional theatres nationwide, serving as vocal captain in this capacity as well. As a playwright, she has had several projects produced in New York City as well as Washington DC and has had the priveledge to work with renowned directors, stage managers, music directors, producers and performers in the performing industry. She also continues to maintain a private voice studio.
Hayley has a deeply embedded passion for the performing arts industry and works hard to instill this same passion in her students. She has coached many professional performers in acting in a play and acting in a musical. Since she is a playwright, she is very intuned to using the words and meanings in the text of songs, melodic lines and spoken lines to truly bring the work to life. Through the use of various techniques she teaches her students a combination of Bel Canto singing and the Caruso Method.