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Education Heroes: Brooke Mattern


MatternBrooke Mattern will step down as head coach for the Pacer dance program she’s been building up for seven years — after one last dance competition.

This Saturday, after the Junior Pacer Dancers compete at state, Mattern will be leaving the program to which she’s added a junior high dance team and lots of members.

Mattern, 29, wants to devote more time to her almost three-month-old baby, Paige. But, she’ll miss the Pacer girls.

“The Pacer dance team is really like a family: The girls and the parents and the coaches all developed a unique bond,” Mattern said.

It’s also been a successful connection with the Junior Pacer Dancers nabbing the No. 1 spot at state last year, and the Lakeridge High School team walking away with second place at state last month.

After leading the high school dance program for four years, Mattern brought dance to Lakeridge Junior High. In the past three years, she’s doubled the numbers at both schools with 10 dancers now at the junior high and 19 dancers at the high school. There are now two assistant coaches for the high school dance team, one of whom also is the head coach at the junior high school.

“The program has grown so much in seven years,” Mattern said.

She began dancing when she was 4 and grew up in Spokane, Wash., graduating from Ferris High School, where she participated in dance and cheer, before moving to the Beaver State to attend Oregon State University.

“I just never went home after college,” Mattern said. “I loved (Oregon) too much.

At OSU, she followed her passion for power and grace of movement, choreographing productions that the Greek houses, including her sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta, organized. Graduating from OSU in 2006 with a bachelor’s in communications, Mattern moved on to Concordia University, where she earned her Master of Education in 2010.

She lives in Southwest Portland with her husband, Miles Mattern and now works at Parkrose School District in Portland as a teacher on special assignment coaching teachers in English as a second language and literacy.

Mattern hopes to stay involved with the Pacer dancers as a consultant for the new head coach.

“It really is an incredible program, and the person they chose to take it on is so lucky to be a part of the program and part of the community,” Mattern said.

With this series, we’ll be spotlighting members of the educational community. To nominate someone, email Jillian Daley at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..