Academic Achievement

Academic Achievement Programs Staff

Raymond Navarro, AAP Director

Bio coming soon.





Lorinda Anderson, AAP Program Coordinator

I have thoroughly enjoyed multiple career pathways over the last 35 years. Most aligned well with my degrees in Preventive Medicine and Environmental Health and Geography/Natural Resource Management while others were more off-center, but I can state with conviction that all have been deeply rewarding.

Regardless of the employment opportunity, I make it a point to be fully engaged in the work that I do. While managing venereal disease programs, conducting highly erodible land surveys, initiating county-wide waste reduction and recycling programs or directing a civic engagement/leadership development center, I felt that I was utilizing my innate desire to create something innovative and authentically making a difference in the world.

Those two beacons also led me to Central’s TRiO SSS Program. I believe that a high-quality education and a strong work ethic are some of the greatest predictors of personal and professional success. I find it very rewarding to facilitate for the success of hardworking Central students who choose to dream big and pursue higher education as a vehicle for achieving their life goals.

Although my day-to-day work in TRiO SSS is indeed quite fulfilling, traveling is my first love and perhaps the only vice I cannot control. Therefore, most of my personal time is purposefully filled with travels to unknown places. And since I only have one son who is already an adult and undoubtedly the best dentist practicing in Washington state - yes, I admit a wee bit of parental bias here - I am free to wander about the global community. Beyond traveling, I am also a pushover for any artistic endeavor from oil painting to welding and can easily lose all sense of time surrounded by mountains and big water resources.

Regardless of the personal or professional opportunities my future holds, innovation and impact will still remain at the forefront; I will continue developing an appreciation for the even the smallest of details the world has to offer and create ample opportunities to laugh heartily throughout this adventure called life.

Gina Gilbert, AAP Office Assistant 3

I am the OA3 for Academic Achievement Programs.  I was born and raised in Kittitas County. I have 3 children and 3 grandchildren. My life overflows, and my career is very important to me. I have always sought employment that is rewarding and where I can help people. AAP is the perfect department for me. I love the diversity and the needs of our students makes you feel like you are doing something important and good.


Heidi Anderson, TRiO SSS Academic Counselor

I received my Bachelors of Arts Degree in Science in Biology from Central Washington University in 2011. Recently, I have just completed Master of Science in Biology with my research focus centered upon immunology.  I was a former TRiO scholar and attribute my academic success, impart, to the TRiO Program. I am the first in my family to receive a college degree, and I have inspired my own children to pursue higher education. My oldest son Devin is currently enrolled at CWU, my daughter Holly just recently graduated from Eastern Washington University with a degree in anthropology, my son Chase is going into the military, and my youngest daughter, Brynna, will be starting as a freshman in the fall here at CWU. 

Outside of work, I love to repurpose old items and turn them into new treasures. You can find a few hanging in my office. I also enjoy creative writing, gardening and rock hounding, and I am currently talking my husband into remodeling a vintage camper. The greatest challenge I have faced has been a diagnosis of metastatic breast cancer this past year and because of this have become a strong advocate for breast cancer awareness.

Greg Rankin, TRiO SSS Academic Counselor

I am Greg, an advisor for the CWU TRiO Program.  I grew up in Footville, Wisconsin, which is a tiny town with as many cows as people.  I am a first generation college graduate.  When I first attended college, I was a naive and unprepared pre-medicine major.  After failing my first semester, I worked a few years in a lumber yard driving a forklift.  After deciding college was something I needed to do for myself, I nervously enrolled in my local community college and eventually transferred to Beloit College.  At Beloit, I was accepted into the TRiO Program, and I found my second family.  I decided pre-med was not for me, and instead, I double majored in two subjects I had learned to love: Philosophy and Literary Studies.  Beloit’s TRiO Program helped guide me into the McNair Scholars Program.  Through McNair, I conducted two research projects over two summers: one in Philosophy on Beloit’s campus and one in higher education research at Michigan State.  McNair also lead me to graduate school at the University of Wisconsin Madison.  There, I earned my M.S. in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis.  I pursued this degree largely because of my experience in and love for the TRiO Program.  I wanted to work with students whose backgrounds were similar to my own and guide them through the hoops and pitfalls that caused me such grief when I first attended college.

I was lucky enough to get the chance to fulfill this dream when I moved to central Washington in 2013 and began my work as an advisor in the STAR Program here at Central.  I was welcomed back to the TRiO family and started advising TRiO students the in the fall of 2015.  When I am off campus, I love backpacking with my TRiO alumna wife Alana in the mountains.  Otherwise, you can find me playing video games or reading.