Staff and Instructor’s Bios

Instructors and Always Active Staff, November 10, 2023


Genny PinzonHealth Promotion Program Manager
On Lok Always Active at 30th Street Senior Center

“If you want to travel fast go alone, if you want to travel far go together” African Proverb.

Genny began her career as an instructor in 2010. She started by teaching Zumba Gold to older adults and felt in love with the possibility that she had to impact their lives through movement.
Now that she leads the Always Active program, she has the opportunity to incorporate movement, strength, cardio and flexibility in one class. For her it is rewarding and powerful to see participants who could not move well, regain their independence, build a community and continue to live their lives to their full capacity. Genny invites you to try a free class!

Certifications: NASM Corrective Exercise Specialist 2023, NASM Personal Trainer 2021, AFAA Personal trainer 2017, AFAA Group Exercise Instructor 2015, Zumba instructor since 2010, Licensed to teach, Strong by Zumba®, Zumba® Toning, Aqua Zumba®, Zumba Sentao®, Zumba Gold®, Zumba® Kids & Kids Jr., Zumba® Step, Zumba in Circuit. AED/CPR 2023

Luz Ibarra – Always Active Program Specialist and Instructor
On Lok Always Active at 30th Street Senior Center

“San Francisco is my hometown and I am honored to be able to serve its communities.”

Luz has worked in the field of Modified Exercise and Functional Restoration for 18 years, mainly with seniors and adults with injuries or disabilities. For the past 10 years, she has worked for On Lok as a Health Promotion Program Specialist. Before her career at On Lok, she worked as a medical interpreter for the Latino community for 8 years. She worked with the injured in every stage of their recovery, from diagnosis to surgery and physical therapy. In both roles, she has been a part of comprehensive interdisciplinary teams who support individuals and their wellness with diverse resources and education on nutrition, exercise, social and artistic engagement, and medical lectures.  Before working in exercise, she received her certification in Nutrition. She enjoys sharing how all the branches of daily life can be sources that contribute to our wellness and longevity at any age.

Certifications: Nutrition, Yoga, Senior Fitness, Tai-Chi, Group Exercise, Functional Aging Specialist, Personal Training, CPR/AED/First Aid

Diana Lara,  Health Promotion Program Specialist and Instructor.
On Lok Always Active at 30th Street Senior Center

You are not a drop in the ocean. You are the entire ocean, in a drop”. –Rumi

Diana Lara is a dancer, performer, and educator. She started dancing ballet when she was 8 years old in her native country Honduras. She studied contemporary dance in Mexico for 15 years, and graduated from the choreography program of the Center for Research and Choreography at the Mexican National Institute of Fine Arts in 2003. Diana has taught dance and somatic classes for 20 years in English and Spanish with different populations including older adults, professional dancers, and women recovering from domestic violence and trauma. She loves to teach skills to increase body awareness, coordination, and balance; and to get people comfortable being in their bodies and moving in space. Diana is currently studying a master in science in Kinesiology at San Francisco State University. Diana lives in San Francisco, and she enjoys taking walks in nature with her husband and dog Tino.

Certifications: M.S. in Kinesiology with emphasis in Movement Science from San Francisco State University, M.S. in population and health from Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana in Mexico City, 200-hour yoga certification, Body-Mind Centering® certification on Developmental movement and yoga, certification on tai-chi for arthritis and fall prevention from the Tai-chi for Health Institute, group exercise leader by the Functional Aging institute, CPR/AED. Visit:

Sue Mittelman, Always Active Regional Coordinator and Instructor
On Lok Always Active

Sue wanted to work with seniors around fitness and active aging after watching her mother struggle with severe osteoporosis in her final years.  Fortunately, she discovered that the Always Active program was looking for volunteers and willing to train.  The timing was perfect.  Dr. Christian Thompson (USF) and Jim Spinelli trained her to lead general group strength and flexibility classes.  Sue received additional training to lead Fall Prevention classes. That was nine years ago.  For the past 7 years she has been on the staff of the Aquatic Park Senior Center and the Always Active Program as a regional coordinator and exercise leader. 

Certifications: I am certified through the American Senior Fitness Association and the Functional Aging Institute.

Christian J. Thompson, Fall Prevention Program Director

 “If it is to be, it is up to me” ~ Frank H.T. Rhodes

Dr. Chris is an Associate Professor at the Kinesiology Department at University of San Francisco. He has been teaching with Always Active since its inception in 2007, and he created the Fall Prevention Program that is offered at 30th Street Senior Center and Aquatic Park Senior Center.  Reducing fall risk and improving fitness in older adults is his career passion.

Dr. Chris holds a  Ph.D. in Kinesiology


Susan – Fall Prevention Program Instructor

Susan has been teaching fitness for over 17 years and works as a personal trainer and group fitness leader.  Prior to her work in fitness, Susan danced professionally for many years & still occasionally performs. Movement has been her life for 50 years, and she loves to inspire others to experience health & fitness.

Certifications: She holds certifications in personal training, senior fitness, yoga & Pilates. Certified ukulele teacher for seniors in San Francisco and Emeryville.

Certifications: ACSM Exercise Physiologist Certified. FAI Functional Aging Specialist. Professional Modern Dancer.

Ann Rieger-MatthewsAlways Active Instructor

My saying:  The effort and dedication you put in toward self-improvement today, will provide the needed strength you must have to be successful tomorrow.

Retired from Pacific Bell & AT&T.  Her teaching experience started as a ski instructor many years ago.  In 2013, Ann began as an assistant in the Always Active program.  I completed my American Senior Fitness Association training in 2014 and Functional Aging Institute training in 2017.  She enjoys working with adults to improve balance, range of motion, and strength.  She has developed youth and senior programs and have experience working with Alzheimer’s and M.S. patients.  She is thrilled to be part of Always Active and delighted to help students work to improve their health and functional abilities.

Tiffany HuynhAlways Active Instructor

She likes to teach older adults to make them healthier, stronger and happier – that is her goal. When she sees them move and smile it gives her energy, it makes herself healthier too!

Jackie Wise – Always Active Instructor

Jackie was born and raised in sunny San Diego and relocated to
Sacramento after living in San Francisco for 27 years.
At 40, she realized that life isn’t about perfection; it’s about progress. The progress
of growing and turning challenges into learning opportunities and being
empowered by what one does. For her, this progress was rekindled when she
resumed an active lifestyle. She began her second act, working at a women’s fitness
center in my Outer Sunset neighborhood in San Francisco, CA. Before long, she
was teaching circuit classes and managing the gym. She discovered Zumba Fitness
in 2007 and was hooked. She instantly fell in love with the music and knew this is
what she was looking for. She is a member of the ZIN™ (Zumba Instructor Network) and has led Zumba® Fitness classes in Northern California since 2008. She is an Official licensed Zumba® Fitness Instructor with licenses in various Zumba Formats.

AEA-Aquatic Fitness Professional
AFAA- Group Fitness Instructor
FAI- Aging Group Exercise Specialist
SCW- Personal Trainer
SCW- Ballet Barre Fitness
SCW- Foam Rolling Certification
SCW- Pilates Matwork
ACE IFT Model: Personal Training Program Design
CPR PRO/AED/First Aid Certified

Zumba Fitness, Basic 1
Zumba Fitness Basic 2
Zumba Fitness Gold
Zumba Toning
Zumba Gold Toning
Zumba Kids, Kids Jr
Aqua Zumba
Zumba Fitness in the Circuit
Circle Mobility

Eva — Always Active Instructor

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

Eva has taught Always Active for 5 year. She enjoys teaching Always Active because she gets to meet many seniors during each class and enjoys seeing their smiles.  She has noticed the elderly population need more health knowledge, and she was fortunate to participate in Self-Help for the elderly (Department of Nutrition) where she helps seniors to learn about nutrition and health exercises.

Linda — Always Active Instructor

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” Mahatma Gandhi

Linda has been teaching Always Active Exercise Class for 10+ years. She is a senior too, and believes that teaching this class is also good for her. She believes that in Always Active classes seniors make friends and enjoy the class to avoid isolation.