Lisa Wysel is an educator and activist who believes passionately that making a difference for a single child or family can have a far-reaching impact on a larger community.
Wysel’s professional background is in nearly every sector of education with a particular emphasis in language and literacy. She served a publicly elected term as School Board President in the Montecito Union School District, has taught language and literacy skills to every age group from first graders through adults, and has held leadership roles in several groups seeking to improve the quality of education and caliber of teachers within the public school system. Outside the education sphere, Wysel has taught parenting classes, volunteered with National Charity League, and been involved in numerous community projects.
Wysel’s interest in Latin America began in 2007 with a trip to Antigua, Guatemala, and soon after the vision for the Open Wide Foundation was born. She enjoys growing ever-closer to being truly fluent in Spanish and when she isn’t practicing her Español, Wysel enjoys spending time with her children and grandchildren.
In 2011, Lisa Wysel co-founded Open Wide Foundation together her husband Dr. Glen Wysel, Drs. Frank and Charlene Spear and Imtiaz Manji. The mission of the foundation is to significantly impact better oral health to communities in need. Open Wide partnered with dental corporations, local government and local dental schools to open a sustainable first class dental clinic in an impoverished neighborhood near Guatemala City in January 2012. The clinic is staffed year round by a combination American dentists, local Guatemalan dentists, local Guatemalan dental students, and the occasional American dental students. Lisa has maintained continual and integral involvement from the envisioning of the project to the development of the foundation’s core values and scope. Her numerous trips and continual involvement in the success of the project have been rewarded by a project that has flourished and grown beyond what any of the founders ever expected.
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