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Principal McAlister

Principal: Dr. Michael McAlister

Phone: X3500



This is Dr. McAlister’s fifth year as principal of Northgate. His twenty-five years in education has included the teaching 8th-grade history, with the majority of his time being spent in high school classrooms where, at Acalanes High, he taught US government, economics, AP comparative government, and psychology. He has coached swimming and water polo and has served as a technology coordinator. He served as an associate principal at Miramonte High School where he coordinated their one-to-one iPad effort as well as their mindfulness program. McAlister got his bachelor’s degree at UC Berkeley, his master’s at Cal State – East Bay and recently completed his doctoral studies at USC’s Global Executive program at the Rossier School which took him around the world, allowing him to work with schools in Asia, the Middle-East, and Europe. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his two daughters, swimming in the bay, and surfing. He leads a meditation group in Lafayette and is currently working on his second book.



Kelly Cooper

Vice - Principal (A - L): Kelly Cooper

Phone: X3502



Kelly Cooper is in her second year as Vice Principal at Northgate High School after serving 17 years as a teacher, program coordinator, and the Director of Sports Medicine at Ygnacio Valley High School. She grew up in the area, having gone to Sequoia Elementary and Middle Schools, and graduating from YVHS. She has taught in the Performing Arts, Biological Sciences, Leadership, Career Transitions, Physical Education and Career Technical Education departments, and has overseen and coordinated several programs including Musical Theatre, Positive Behavior Intervention and Support, Link Crew, Renaissance Leadership, and School Climate before moving into this administrative role. She graduated from Cal State Long Beach with a degree in Kinesiology and Athletic Training and earned her Master's Degree in Educational Administration from Concordia University.



Craig Bocks

Vice - Principal (M - Z): Craig Bocks

Phone: X3503


Craig Bocks is in his first year serving as Vice Principal at Northgate High School after spending several years as a classroom teacher in Orinda, Martinez, and Tempe, Arizona, where he also coached baseball and basketball teams at multiple levels. He also brings more than a decade of experience as a software product executive in the private sector, working for several years in the educational software and video game markets. At Northgate, he oversees Facilities, Advanced Placement, New Teacher Program, Technology, Safety, along with the Science, P.E., English, and Social Sciences departments. Bocks also brings deep experience in software development, personnel management, budgeting, and schedules. Bocks graduated from UC Berkeley with a degree in Political Science and earned his Teaching and Administrative Services Credentials from Saint Mary’s College. He enjoys spending time with his wife and two children, traveling the world, and keeping up on the latest in anything related to sports. He is thrilled to serve as Vice Principal and looks forward to becoming part of the Bronco community.


Earle Paynton

Athletic Director: Dr. Earle Paynton

Phone: X3511


Dr. Earle Paynton grew up in Walnut Creek and attended Bancroft Elementary, Foothill Middle School, and Northgate High School (1987). After graduating from Northgate he attended Los Medanos Junior College where he played baseball from 1988-1989 under Tom Strain. He then transferred to UC Davis where he played baseball and graduated in 1992. After graduating from UC Davis, Paynton attended Palmer Chiropractic School West-San Jose. After graduating from Palmer in 1995, Paynton started a private Chiropractic practice, Paynton & Paynton Chiropractic Inc. Over the last 20 years, has worked with thousands of athletes in the Mt. Diablo Unified School District and the Acalanes School District. He has also worked with thousands of collegiate athletes at Los Medanos Junior College, Diablo Valley College, Saint Mary's College, UC Berkeley, Stanford University and UC Davis. Payton also served as the Team Chiropractor at Ygnacio Valley High School from 1997 to 2007. Currently, Paynton still runs his own practice and works with over 100 NFL, NBA, and MLB professional athletes.