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Staff Members

  • Ginny Adams

    Special Education Teacher

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    Ginny grew up in Dallas, TX and graduated from high school in a small mountain town in Colorado. She graduated from University of Colorado Boulder with a Bachelors Degree in Psychology. While attending CU Boulder, she also completed the Elementary Education Program. Ginny also earned a Masters Degree in Special Education from the University of Colorado Denver. Ginny has worked as a general education teacher as well as a special education teacher. This will be her 8th year at Academy 360 (she left briefly during 2019-2020) and she is beyond excited to watch all of the students grow in mind, body, and character and be part of such a wonderful, supportive community! In her free time, Ginny loves spending time in the mountains hiking and exploring with her family. She has an almost four year old son, Henry, a two year old daughter named Abby and a newborn named Ally!

  • Sam Adams

    Social Worker

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    Sam grew up in Virginia Beach, VA and graduated from Christopher Newport University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology and minors in Women & Gender Studies and Childhood Studies. She moved to Denver two years ago and just completed her Master’s Degree in Social Work at the University of Denver, where she concentrated in Children and Youth and working towards her School Social Work Certification. In her free time, she enjoys hiking and spending time with her two cats. She will split her time between Academy 360 and Monarch Montessori!
  • Jazell Aldridge

    ECE(4) Teacher

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    Jazell is thrilled to be in her 6th year at Academy 360. Previously, she was a Lower Elementary Interventionist with additional duties, such as: school lunchroom/recess/car line duties, floating amongst the amazing three ECE classrooms, and managing the afterschool program. She is proud to have been born and raised in Denver, Colorado; growing up she was the only girl out of the four boys. She was a member of the graduating class of 2016 at Florence Crittenton High School and is the loving mother to her son, Theophus (Theo as a nickname), a 3rd grader at A360. In her spare time, Jazell finds pleasure getting lost in our downtown skyline. She also enjoys being outside playing at the park with Theo or watching him dance – he’s got the moves!

  • Ron Allen

    Family Therapist & Social Emotional Specialist

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    Ron worked for Families Forward Resource Center in Montbello for over 15 years.  Ron’s experiences are in Trauma Informed Parenting, Behavioral and Mental Illness, Fatherhood Training and Family and Community Resources.  He has his Masters in Family Counseling with a Minor in Psychology from the Aspen Christian College & Seminary and has conducted social work on behalf of Denver Human Services.  During summer 2020, he started “yardwork”, which consists of meeting with students and their families in the front yard of their homes, providing them with whole family therapy, addressing the needs of both the child and the adults in the home. 

  • Arizona Alli

    Family & Community Engagement Manager & ELA Administrator

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    Arizona grew up on the Olympic Peninsula in Port Townsend, Washington. She moved to Southern California and obtained an Elementary Teaching Credential and a BA in Graphic Design from the University of Redlands.  After living abroad for a year, Arizona moved to Colorado where she worked as an Outdoor Education Instructor and joined the A360 family. This is Arizona’s 6th year at Academy 360 and she is so excited to continue being a part of this community.  During the summer, Arizona travels around the world leading international service-learning trips for high school students. Most recently, she led a trip to Ecuador and The Galapagos! In or out of the classroom, she loves the individual passions and creativity that each student brings. When she is not at A360, she enjoys camping, hiking, swimming, or setting up her hammock in the park.

  • Oureana Armstrong

    Kindergarten Assistant

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    Oureana grew up in Montbello and is a proud Montbello High School graduate. After high school, she attended Concord Career College where she earned a certificate in the medical field. She started off as a nursing assistant with Academy 360 during the pandemic and that’s when she realized she wanted to switch career paths and start working with children. She recently became a mother to a baby boy and will be starting her first year as a Teaching Assistant at Academy 360.

  • Sammie Belter

    5th Grade Teacher and ELD & Writing Specialist

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    Sammie is originally from New Berlin, Wisconsin, a suburb of Milwaukee. She attended the University of Minnesota for her undergraduate degree with a major in Global Studies and Human Rights and a minor in Spanish. She moved to Colorado in 2016, and got her teaching license through UC Denver. Sammie is in the process of getting her Master’s degree in Educational Equity and Cultural Diversity through CU Boulder. This is her 4th year on Team A360; she loves getting to know her students both in and out of the classroom. In her free time, Sammie enjoys seeing live music, exploring Colorado, and petting every dog she meets.

  • Megan Butterman

    3rd Grade Teacher & Math Specialist

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    Megan graduated from Fort Lewis College in 2017 with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education, a minor in Psychology, and a Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Endorsement. She is also currently studying for her Master’s Degree in STEM Education at the University of Colorado Denver. She taught all subjects in 5th grade for five years in Costa Rica where she also gained fluency in Spanish. Megan is deeply passionate about creating a math classroom that encourages students to develop growth mindsets through perseverance, creativity, reasoning, problem-solving, and games. This is why she’s so excited to be starting as the 3rd grade teacher and math specialist at Academy 360; she can’t wait to help build up her students’ confidence in math and in themselves. Outside of school, Megan enjoys playing with her cat, doing yoga, painting, cooking, baking, dancing, and snowboarding.

  • Emily Cabrera

    DU School of Social Work Graduate Student

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    Emily grew up in Aurora Colorado and graduated from Colorado State University with a bachelors degree in Social Work. She is currently continuing her social work education at the University of Denver with a concentration in child welfare. She is excited to begin to pursue her dreams of creating a safe space for children to learn and openly be themselves. The opportunity to be there for and make a difference in a child’s life is absolutely incredible. In her free time, she enjoys going to the gym, reading, and spending time with her three dogs.

  • Rosie Esparza

    Front Office Manager

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    Rosie is in her 5th year at Academy 360 and has two sons at the school – Romeo (7th grader and A360 graduate) and Emilio (4th).  Rosie was born in Aguascalientes, Mexico and has been in raised in colorful Colorado. Professionally, over the last 11 years, Rosie worked in food banking, focusing on helping to end hunger amongst families and seniors through a variety of federal programs. While she loved the work, she was equally as excited to be closer to her boys while at work. On her days off, she hangs out with her kids, mostly at arcades, the movies, and at stores buying Hot Wheels & Legos.

  • Gladys Flores

    ECE Assistant

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    Bio coming soon!

  • Kristen Freeman

    Director of ECE & Lower Elementary Academics

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    Kristen grew up in a small town in Central Texas and attended Texas State University in San Marcos Texas. She majored in interdisciplinary studies and received a Bachelors degree in Elementary Education. A few years later Kristen returned to Texas State to complete a Masters degree in Talent Development with a minor in Reading Instruction. Kristen has taught in public and private schools throughout Texas. She has had the privilege of teaching a multi-age primary classroom, a mixed age 1st – 3rd grade classroom, and several self-contained 2nd grade classrooms. Additionally, she has two years experience as a reading specialist for struggling readers in grades kindergarten through 5th grades.  She serves as the Gifted & Talented Coordinator for the school.  Kristen believes that each child has a specific set of skills and talents and as an educator it is her job to help students find and grow those talents. When she is not teaching, she enjoys playing with her dogs, going on hikes, of settling in with a good book. Above all Kristen believes in the power of YET, if you do not know what that is, just ask her, she would love to tell you!

  • Michelle Foster

    DPS School Nurse

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    Michelle is originally from Indiana, but the outdoors is what drew her to make the move to Colorado with her husband and two dogs. Michelle has worked in many areas of the healthcare field such as the ER, OR, and the ICU. However, her true passion is for working with our students while educating and supporting families and staff. Michelle is excited to begin her second year as a DPS nurse!

  • Spencer Hacker

    DU School of Social Work Graduate Student

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    Spencer grew up in Bethesda, Maryland, just outside of Washington, D.C., where he was a captain on his high school baseball team and played oboe in the symphonic orchestra. He’s been in Denver for five years now. He studied Political Science, International Relations and Spanish at the University of Denver before shifting gears in his career to Social Work. He is excited to be in the classroom and get to know the community in Montbello. In his free time Spencer likes traveling, hiking, and spending time with his loved ones.

  • Debbie Haywood

    ECE(3) Teacher

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    Deborha has taught preschoolers for over 12 years and is Director qualified in ECE; she helped open A360’s ECE program 8 years ago. She is a strong believer in the power of knowledge and critical thinking that can empower young minds to grow and blossom to their full potential. She graduated from Colorado Christian University, Lakewood, Colorado with a Bachelor of Science and is in the process of completing her Masters in Counseling.  Deborha is very active in her church; she enjoys reading and just relaxing in the park.

     

  • Irene Hernandez

    ECE Fellow

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    Irene is a recent graduate of DSST: Green Valley Ranch. It is her first year at Academy 360 as an ECE Fellow; she is very excited because she loves working with kids – this is like a dream come true for her! In the future, she hopes to have a classroom of her own and is excited for this journey. Her little sister is a 3rd grader at A360; she is a mother to a bunny named Bambi. She can’t wait to be a good asset on the team!

  • Alicia Guerrero

    ECE-3 Teaching Assistant

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    Bio coming soon!

  • Olivia Kamer

    1st Grade Assistant & Reading Interventionist

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    Olivia grew up in Norfolk, VA. She graduated from the College of William & Mary in 2021, where she double-majored in Psychology and Linguistics. For the past year, she has worked as a reading fellow through AmeriCorps, during which she discovered her passion for literacy and education. She is new to Colorado and was drawn to its beautiful scenery and hiking opportunities- she loves being outside in her free time, as well as reading and painting!

  • Sage Kent

    2nd Grade Teacher

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    Sage grew up in Breckenridge, Colorado and later moved to Boulder, Colorado where she got a BA in Elementary Education and a Culturally and Linguistically Diverse endorsement. As Sage recently moved to Denver, this will be her first year at Academy 360 and is very excited to be a part of a new family. Sage is passionate about taking new opportunities to learn and is always up for a good challenge. She earned the seal of biliteracy after becoming fluent in Spanish throughout her early schooling. Sage is so excited to meet the members of her new community and is eager to learn and grow with them! Outside of school, Sage enjoys playing with her kitty Squish, skiing, camping and spending time with loved ones!

  • Becky McLean

    Executive Director

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    Becky champions health and wellness programming and strategies using the Whole School, Whole Child, Whole Community (WSCC) model, an evidence-based strategy originated by the CDC.  Over the last few years, she helped form the Montbello Collective, a community-based partnership with nine organizations all residing at A360, offering various wraparound services for the Montbello neighborhood and greater Far Northeast Denver. Before helping open Academy 360 in 2013, she spent three years working on issues related to nutrition policy and healthy food access. She has also been involved in childhood obesity prevention programming, including a semester with the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition (PCFSN), working in partnership with First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! campaign.  She is a proud former youth triathlon coach with Achieve Kids Tri in Washington, DC.  Becky received her B.A. in Law & Society and Philosophy from American University in Washington, DC and her Masters in Public Health from the Colorado School of Public Health in Aurora, CO.  She is a group exercise instructor at the Anschutz Health & Wellness Center.  Becky is a graduate of the Regional Institute for Health and Environmental Leadership (RIHEL) and serves on the Montbello Organizing Committee (MOC)’s Board of Directors.  Becky enjoys camping throughout Colorado, is an accomplished Ironman, an Orangetheory Fitness fanatic, and a rookie paddle boarder.  She most enjoys running her dogs Fyfe & Islay with her husband Andy.

  • Alyssa McMillan

    2nd Grade Assistant & Reading Interventionist

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    Alyssa is a Colorado native who loves everything about this beautiful state!  Originally from Broomfield, Alyssa now lives in Arvada with her boyfriend Jeremy and their kitty Jorah in their first home they recently bought. She enjoys reading, writing, hiking, being outside, and hanging out with family and friends. Alyssa is currently going to college to be a lead teacher and cannot wait to have her own classroom one day.  This is her 6th year at Academy 360!

  • Thomas McNiff Rueschhoff

    4th Grade Teacher & Science/Social Studies Specialist

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    Thomas is a Colorado native who grew up in Littleton. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado Denver in Music Recording Arts. Thomas continued his education at UCD earning a Masters of Elementary Education with a Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education endorsement. He has taught 5th grade and 2nd grade in Denver for the past two years. Thomas believes that through culturally responsive practices and student driven classrooms every child can be successful. In his free time, Thomas enjoys getting outside. He loves to hike, climb, and camp with his wife and stepson, and enjoys getting into the backcountry with his snowboard. Thomas is in his third year at Academy 360 and is a new father to twin boys!

  • Katelyn Mudd

    1st Grade Teacher

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    Katelyn grew up in a near-by suburb of Chicago, Illinois. She graduated from Illinois State University with a degree in Human Development and Family Science with an emphasis in Child Development and a minor in Spanish. During her senior year of college, she had internships at Illinois State University Preschool and Children’s Home + Aid. Children’s Home + Aid  is a leading child and family service agency in Illinois where she assisted with support groups for families transitioning to the United States and for families experiencing domestic violence or homelessness. Katelyn also lived and studied in Cusco, Peru. She previously taught at an international school in downtown Chicago from 2017-2021. Katelyn is a National Geographic Certified Educator. She moved to Colorado to follow her love of fresh air and nature. Katelyn started at Academy 360 in February, 2022. In her free time, Katelyn enjoys hiking, camping, paddle boarding, posting up in her hammock with a book, and spending time with family, friends, and her cat, Louie!

  • Cinthia Navarro

    ECE Assistant

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    Cinthia was born in Chihuahua but has lived half her life here in Colorado. She is a mother to a 4 year old boy who is a student at Academy 360.  She has been working with children in ECE for 12 years and loves offering them her time, love, and devotedness as we all learn together. She is absolutely happy and excited to become a part of the Academy 360 staff.

  • Anna O’Brien

    School Psychologist & 504 Coordinator

     

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    Anna was born and raised in Prescott, Arizona. She received her undergraduate degree in psychology from Northern Arizona University and her graduate degree in School Psychology from University of Arizona.  During graduate school, Anna worked part-time as an in-home behavior therapist; she has very fond memories of working with families. In 2015, Anna moved to Las Vegas, Nevada where she worked as a school psychologist for three years. She then moved to Denver, Colorado in 2018. She enjoys traveling, hiking, spending time with loved ones and lining in Colorado. Anna is passionate about working directly with students, families and staff to support health and wellness, skill acquisition, and learning. Her goal is to help students thrive at home, in school, and in life.  Anna is in her 4th year at Academy 360!

  • Larkin Odell

    ECSE Teacher

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    As a teenager, Larkin volunteered for the Idaho Youth Wheelchair Sports Camp – an experience that sparked a life-long interest in working with children of all ages with special needs. Her interests were complemented by her higher education, which fostered a personal commitment to social justice, public service, and a belief in quality education for all children.  She received her undergraduate degree in Strategic Communications and Non-Profit Leadership from Seattle University and her masters in Education and Human Development in Washington D.C. from The George Washington University. Larkin worked as a Registered Behavior Technician, honing her skills as a behavioral therapist working with young children with autism before moving to Austin, TX to start her teaching career as a lead Early Childhood Special Education Teacher. Her passions in the classroom are centered on improving long-term language and social outcomes for young children with or at the most risk for developmental differences through play-based early intervention.

    Larkin moved to Denver last summer and is in her 2nd year as the Model 1 Inclusion Lead Teacher.  When she isn’t in the classroom Larkin is hiking, reading a book, finding a new restaurant, playing in the snow, and enjoying live music.  

  • Emma Oliver

    ECE(4) Teacher

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    Emma grew up in San Diego, CA. After graduating high school, Emma went on to Vanderbilt University where she obtained a BA in Political Science and Law, History, & Society, and also a minor in Spanish. As an undergraduate, Emma became passionate about criminal justice reform and workers’ rights in Nashville through volunteering and working with both on- and off- campus organizations, namely Vanderbilt Prison Project and Workers’ Dignity (Dignidad Obrera). Emma also worked as a yoga instructor during her undergraduate years. Emma is joining the A360 community as a representative for Teach For America, a nonprofit organization working to help create equitable and excellent education system for all children. In her free time, Emma loves to practice yoga, run, hike, and spend time outdoors!

  • Grace Palumbo

    Kindergarten Teacher

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    Grace grew up in upstate New York and graduated from the State University of New York at Binghamton in 2015. She spent two years teaching first grade in Massachusetts before moving to Denver to teach kindergarten and pursue her master’s degree in teaching and curriculum. This will be Grace’s 2nd year teaching at Academy 360 and she is so excited to be part of the A360 community! In her free time, Grace enjoys hiking, reading, and spending time with her cat, Louis.

  • Maria Serrano Oliva

    ECE Assistant

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    Bio coming soon!

  • Emily Stelling

    Director of Upper Elementary Academics & Literacy Specialist

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    Emily grew up in Maryland, then attended college at the University of Oklahoma where she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. After staying in Oklahoma for a couple years after graduation, she was accepted into Teach for America and began her teaching career in Indianapolis, IN in 2013. During her first two years of teaching in Indianapolis, Emily also obtained her Master’s degree in teaching. Since her parents had relocated to Colorado, when her TFA commitment ended in Indianapolis, Emily decided to move to Colorado. She began working at Academy 360 as a 4th grade teacher in 2015. Emily continued to work as a teacher and leader for Academy 360 until moving to Austin in 2018. Emily served as a 5th grade science teacher in Austin and held a few leadership positions at her school. Emily is returned to Academy 360 because of her belief in the school, its mission and values, and the staff culture.

  • Jose Tamayo

    Building Custodian

    Biography coming soon!

  • Maricela Villa

    ECE Assistant

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    Maricela grew up in Denver Colorado and graduated from Regis University with a bachelors degree in Spanish and Business Marketing. She has worked with the latino community throughout college offering tutoring sessions and connecting college students to new latino cultures and found she enjoyed her time with all of the kids though out the years. She has been with A360 since January 2022 and is excited to be a part of the team.

  • Marvin Williams

    PE and Health Teacher & Sports Coordinator

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    Marvin was born in Virginia and has lived in Denver for over 48 years, including high school in the Montbello/Park Hill/Montclair neighborhoods.  Marvin is an Upward Bound graduate from Metro State University which led to his Manual High School diploma.  Marvin graduated from Hastings College, Nebraska earning a BA in Human Resources Management and Business.  In 2016, Marvin was named to the of the Hastings University’s Hall of Fame for his many tenured individual athletic and coaching accomplishments in track and field.  Marvin is in his 7th year at Academy 360; he previously was with EXOS where he worked six and half years as a fitness specialist, wellness advisor and coordinator at University of Colorado Denver’s Anschutz Health and Wellness Center in Aurora, Colorado.  He served people involving research programs with nutrition, exercise and behavioral health.  Marvin promotes a variety of community youth fitness which includes being a CHSAA certified official (basketball, baseball, volleyball, softball) and coach; he holds a Certified EXOS Performance Trainer Certification and is a Certified Health Coach through ACE.  Marvin enjoys any time with family especially with his wife (Renee)  traveling, studying the bible, or attending special events such as a grandson’s football games or weddings. He is the father of one daughter (Kayla) and bonus children and grandchildren.

  • Sally Sorte

    Founder

    Sally founded Academy 360 through a partnership with the Catapult (formerly Get Smart Schools) Fellowship and the Colorado Health Foundation because she fervently believes that every child deserves an excellent education, so that every child may pursue his or her dreams.  She has teaching and business experience through her tenure with Teach for America and Google, respectively. Sally earned her Bachelors degree from Whitman College, Masters in Education and Teaching from the University of Hawai`i at Manoa, and Masters in Public Administration from the University of Colorado Denver. Sally is a 2017 graduate of Leadership Denver and is currently a student at Harvard Business School.  Sally enjoys running, skiing, yoga, and traveling with her husband Austin, daughter Olivia Moon, and dog Moxie.

     

    Thank you to Jake Myles Photography, for capturing the spirit of the Academy 360 staff!