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HIGHLY TRAINED. ALWAYS ENGAGED. CONSTANTLY INSPIRING.

Each member of our experienced Faculty is trained by one of the nation’s American Montessori Society-accredited training centers, holds a Bachelor’s degree, and often has further educational training or a Master’s degree. Classroom teachers have at least one Assistant, many of whom also have a Bachelor’s degree or are completing their Montessori internship. All teachers are committed to enhancing their professional development through workshops, classes, and special events.

Siobhan Sullivan, Toddler Teacher, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from Columbia College in Columbia, Missouri. Siobhan first joined MSD in 2000. She has served as a field consultant and teacher trainer for the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies (MECR), where she was trained in both Infant/Toddler and Primary education levels. She has also served as a supervising teacher, field consultant, and course instructor for MECR. Email Siobhan at ssullivan@msd-co.org.
Lara Tyler, Toddler Teacher, joined MSD in 2007 at the start of our Toddler Program. She attended Florida State University and is completing her Bachelor of Arts degree with an emphasis in English. Lara is trained in Infant/Toddler from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. Email Lara at ltyler@msd-co.org.
Mary Bareis-Golumb, Primary Teacher, has over 20 years of experience as a Montessori teacher. Mary received her training from the Midwest Montessori Teacher Training Center in Illinois. Prior to teaching in Colorado, Mary taught in Montessori schools in South Dakota as well as in Chicago. Mary has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Studies and is committed to environmental education in the classroom. Mary has served as both a supervising teacher and field consultant for the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. She joined MSD in 2005. Email Mary at mbareis-golumb@msd-co.org.
Karin Cassidy, All Day Primary Teacher, has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Behavioral Science/Elementary Education from Metropolitan State College and her Primary Montessori certification from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. She has also served as a supervising teacher and course instructor for the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. Karin worked at MSD from 1990 to 1998, and rejoined our Faculty in 2007. Email Karin at kcassidy@msd-co.org.
Kelly Elio, All Day Primary Teacher, joined MSD in 2010. Kelly completed her Primary Montessori training at the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies and her internship at MSD. Kelly grew up in Colorado and has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology from Metropolitan State College in Denver. Email Kelly at kelio@msd-co.org.
Erin Gaskin, All Day Primary Team Leader and Teacher, received her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Florida State University. She completed her AMS Early Childhood teacher training at CMTE/NC and has worked with children in Africa and Europe, as well as in the US. Erin joined the MSD Faculty in 2011. Email Erin at egaskin@msd-co.org.
Robin Haugland, Primary Teacher, is a graduate of Colgate University with a double-major in Anthropology and Sociology.  Robin received her Primary Montessori certification from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies (MECR) in 2002. She has also been a supervising teacher for MECR. Robin first joined our community as a parent in 2000 and then as a staff member in 2002. Email Robin at rhaugland@msd-co.org
Deborah Matyjevich, All Day Primary Teacher, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Sociology from Emory University. She received her Primary Montessori certification from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies (MECR). Deb completed her internship at MSD and rejoined our Faculty in 2008. She has been a supervising teacher for MECR. Email Deborah at dmatyjevich@msd-co.org.
Rachel Northrop, Primary Team Leader and Teacher, received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Child Psychology from the University of Minnesota. She completed her Montessori Primary teacher training at the Center for Contemporary Montessori Programs in Minnesota as well. Rachel has been a supervising teacher for the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. Rachel joined MSD in 2001. Email Rachel at rnorthrop@msd-co.org.
Paul Bareis-Golumb, Lower Elementary Teacher, received his Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from the University of South Dakota. He holds a Master’s degree in Christian Education from the McCormik Theological Seminary. Paul was trained in both Lower and Upper Elementary Montessori education at the Midwest Montessori Teacher Training Center in Chicago, Illinois. He has also served as a supervising teacher and course instructor for the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. He has also presented at the American Montessori Society (AMS) National Conferences. Paul has been teaching since 1982 and joined the MSD Faculty in 2003. Email Paul at pbareis-golumb@msd-co.org.
Anne Beyer, Lower Elementary Junior Teacher, graduated from the University of Colorado Boulder with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Linguistics and completed the Undergraduate Licensure Program.  Anne attended Lower Elementary training at the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies this past summer and is Colorado State certified, Kindergarten through Fifth Grade. She joined MSD in 2013.
Peggy Donohoe, Upper Elementary Co-Team Leader and Teacher, holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Management and Marketing from Purdue University. Peggy has worked at MSD since 2002 and completed her Montessori Upper Elementary teacher training at The Center for Montessori Teacher Education in New Rochelle, New York in 2009. Prior to working at MSD, Peggy owned her own business. Email Peggy at pdonohoe@msd-co.org.
Gary Guenther, Upper Elementary Teacher, completed his Lower Elementary training at Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. Gary holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education from Southern Illinois University. He has worked as a Physical Therapist and a Personal Trainer. Gary has been a member of the MSD team since 2005. Email Gary at gguenther@msd-co.org.
Anne Hewetson, Lower Elementary Teacher, earned her Bachelor’s degree in French from the University of Puget Sound. She received her Lower Elementary training from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies (MECR) and joined MSD in 2003. Anne has served as a supervising teacher for MECR. Email Anne at ahewetson@msd-co.org.
Min Kim, Lower Elementary Team Leader and Teacher, is a graduate of the University of Colorado (Boulder) with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology. She is Lower Elementary certified from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies and is fluent in English, Chinese, and Korean. Min has spent time working in Korea and Taiwan for an international education committee. Min joined MSD in 2007. Email Min at mkim@msd-co.org.
Nathan LeMasters, Upper Elementary and Drama Teacher, graduated from Prescott College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education. He holds an International Montessori Teaching Diploma from the North American Montessori Center, British Columbia. Nathan studied Theater and Film at the University of Colorado, Denver, has directed Children’s Theater, and has performed in a number of productions across the state. He joined the MSD team in 2006. Email Nathan at nlemasters@msd-co.org.
Annie Rodman, Upper Elementary and Middle School Language Arts Teacher, double majored at Tulane University where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree in English (creative writing) and Theatre (performance). She recently completed her Master’s in Educational Psychology from University of Colorado, Denver. She completed the Friends School Teacher Preparation Program in 2010, earning her Colorado State Teaching License in Elementary Education and is currently working on her Montessori teacher training through the North American Montessori Center, British Columbia. Annie joined MSD in 2011. Email Annie at arodman@msd-co.org.
Jennifer Straus, Upper Elementary Co-Team Leader and Teacher, joined MSD in 2003. She is a graduate of Colorado State University and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Botany. Her experience prior to MSD includes her work as an environmental science education officer for schools in Jamaica, West Indies. Email Jennifer at jstraus@msd-co.org.
Karen Weary, Lower Elementary Teacher, has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Science/Elementary Education as well as a Masters in Education with a Montessori emphasis from St. Catherine University in Minnesota. She completed her Montessori training in Boulder, Colorado at the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. Karen joined MSD in 2012. Email Karen at kweary@msd-co.org.
Jamie Widler, Lower Elementary Teacher, received her Bachelor of Science degree in Behavioral Science with a minor in Elementary Education from Metropolitan State College of Denver. She completed her Lower Elementary training at Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. Jamie has significant experience with differentiated instruction and teaching all kinds of learners, including gifted and talented students. Jamie joined MSD in 2011. Email Jamie at jwidler@msd-co.org.
Chris Imhof, Director of Global Studies and Middle School Teacher, received his Bachelor of Arts degree in History and Anthropology and a Bachelor of Science degree in Classics from the University of Colorado (Boulder). He holds a Master’s degree in Archeology from the University of Colorado (Denver) and took Upper Elementary teacher training at the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies. Chris worked as an archeologist prior to joining MSD in 1996. Chris has presented at the American Montessori Society (AMS) National Conference, the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) Annual Conference, has written for the publication, Montessori Life, and was named one of the 25 NAIS Teachers of the Future. Email Chris at cjimhof@msd-co.org.
Kevin Nugent, Middle School Teacher, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech Communication from Colorado State University, Denver, and is working on his Masters of Education at the University of Colorado, Denver.  Kevin completed the Stanley British Primary Teacher Preparation Program, obtained his K-5 state certification, and has taught Science, Writers Workshop, and Photography.  He is a Professional Development Instructor at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, providing teachers with the tools and strategies to integrate health and movement into the classroom.  Kevin is an avid cyclist, outdoor enthusiast, and works as a Big Brother Program Mentor.  He joined MSD in 2013.
Chris Bangs, Physical Education Teacher, joined MSD in 2007. He graduated from Union College in New York with the Bachelor of Science degree in Biology. Chris is also a Certified Massage Therapist and an avid outdoor enthusiast. Chris attended a Montessori school when he was young. Email Chris at cbangs@msd-co.org.
Crystal Walker, Librarian, joined MSD in 2013. Crystal graduated from Utah State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education and from Sam Houston State University with a Master of Library Science degree.  She holds certifications as a generalist teacher and for English as a Second Language, Early Childhood through Fourth Grade. Email Crystal at cwalker@msd-co.org.
Joy Giles, Specials Team Leader and Art Teacher, has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in printmaking from the Kansas City Art Institute. She is an accomplished artist who has shown her work from Kansas to Japan. Joy has taught children from ranging in age from three through 21. Joy joined MSD in 2004. Email Joy at jgiles@msd-co.org.
Loribeth Gregory, Music Teacher, holds a Masters of Arts degree in Ethnomusicology from the University of California, Riverside, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music, with a minor in Anthropology, from Webster University.  She has 15 years experience teaching music at all levels and most recently founded and directed Denver World Music Studio.  Loribeth also speaks Spanish and Japanese, and loves to teach Blue Grass band.  She joined MSD in 2013. Email Loribeth at lgregory@msd-co.org.
Nathan LeMasters, Upper Elementary and Drama Teacher, graduated from Prescott College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education. He holds an International Montessori Teaching Diploma from the North American Montessori Center, British Columbia. Nathan studied Theater and Film at the University of Colorado, Denver, has directed Children’s Theater, and has performed in a number of productions across the state. He joined the MSD team in 2006. Email Nathan at nlemasters@msd-co.org.
Magdalena Ortega Neri, Primary and Lower Elementary Spanish Teacher, has experience in a public dual language Montessori program, as well as with Spanish curriculum design. Magdalena joined MSD in 2007, and is passionate about curriculum integration – believing that you need to teach people about the places, food, traditions – not just the language. Email Magdalena at mortega-neri@msd-co.org.
Sonny Zwierkowski, Upper Elementary and Middle School Spanish Teacher, joined MSD in 2001. He completed his Elementary Montessori teacher training at the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies (MECR), as well as served as a supervising teacher for MECR. Sonny taught in the Lower Elementary program for twelve years prior to teaching Spanish. Sonny received his Bachelor of Arts degree in English (with an emphasis in writing), from Metropolitan State College, and a Master’s degree from University of Colorado, in Applied Linguistics. He has a passion for all things Asian and is proficient in Spanish and Japanese. Email Sonny at szwierkowski@msd-co.org.
Kirsten Braley has worked at MSD for six years as the Literacy Specialist, but she has been in private practice for over ten years. She received her BA in Sociology and Psychology from Creighton University in 1995. Several years later, she discovered the joy of teaching reading to children. She has received specialized post-graduate training in several systematic, multi-sensory reading intervention programs. In addition to her private practice, at MSD she teaches small groups of Kindergarten and First Year students who need additional and targeted support with certain reading skills. Kirsten says, “I love working at MSD! It is such a vibrant and supportive community. The students are amazing and energize me with their passion for learning.” Email Kirsten at kbraley@msd-co.org.
Sara Knickerbocker works at MSD as the Director of Learning Support.  She has a BA in English from Metropolitan State University and has completed all but her dissertation for her doctoral degree in School Psychology from the University of Northern Colorado. Her previous experience includes working as a teacher, tutor, and educational consultant. Sara has also completed internship hours in various settings including an educational nonprofit, Cherry Creek School District, and a private practice assisting with psychoeducational testing. At MSD, she works with teachers and families to support students academically at both ends of the learning spectrum as well as on social-emotional, developmental, or behavioral challenges. Sara says, “I love working at MSD because I get to problem-solve, build relationships, and match up needs with resources to help kids be successful in school and in life.” Email Sara at sknickerbocker@msd-co.org.
Carole Baran, Director of Parent Programs and Events, has a Marketing degree from the University of Colorado (Boulder). She has experience as a Special Events Coordinator and has logged lots of volunteer hours with other non-profits in the Denver area. She joined MSD in 2007. Email Carole at cbaran@msd-co.org.
Ginny Bishop, Director of Advancement, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy and History from Mundelein College, as well as a Master of Science degree in Corporate Communications from Northwestern University. Ginny, a published author, previously worked as the Development Director at a Montessori school, as well as served as a consultant to many independent schools. She has vast experience with marketing, public relations, and curriculum development. Ginny joined MSD in the summer of 2012. Email Ginny at gbishop@msd-co.org.
Julie Bragdon, Assistant Head of School, has duel Primary Montessori certifications from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies (MECR) and Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. Julie has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Humanities with a minor in Art History from the University of Colorado (Boulder), and a Master of Education degree with an emphasis on Montessori Education from Xavier University. She has served as a field consultant, supervising teacher, and course instructor at MECR and is a current member of the American Montessori Society (AMS) Board of Trustees. She has presented at the AMS and National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) Annual Conferences and served as an accreditation consultant. Julie joined MSD in 1993 as a Primary Intern and was a lead teacher in the All Day Primary Program from 1997-2005 before becoming the Director of Primary Education. Email Julie at jbragdon@msd-co.org.
Lydia Desmarais, Business Office Assistant, joined MSD in 2002. Lydia attended Plymouth State College in New Hampshire and served in the United States Army. Prior to working at MSD, Lydia worked for a children’s publishing company. Email Lydia at ldesmarais@msd-co.org.
Ed Feist, Director of Technology, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech Arts from Colorado State University. He earned his Master’s degree in Theatre Arts from the University of Northern Colorado. He holds a Doctorate in Education from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Ed taught computer classes in public high schools for 31 years. He joined MSD in 2001. Email Ed at efeist@msd-co.org.
Stephanie Pax Flanigan, Head of School, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in American Studies from Mount Holyoke College and a Juris Doctorate from Case Western University School of Law. Stephanie first came to MSD as a parent, and served on the Board of Trustees for three years, two years of which she was Chair. She then joined the staff in 1997 and prior to becoming Head of School served as Associate Head of School. Stephanie has 15 years experience as a trial lawyer and has taught and directed children’s theater. Currently, she is the President of the Association of Colorado Independent Schools (ACIS) and is the former chair of the ACIS Accreditation Committee. Stephanie has presented at the American Montessori Society (AMS) Annual Conference, National Association of Independent Schools Annual Conference, and is a frequent presenter at the annual ACIS Trustee/Heads of School Workshop. Email Stephanie at sflanigan@msd-co.org.
Tara Gehrke, Director of Admission, joined MSD in 2005. Tara graduated from the University of Idaho with a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education. Tara is an experienced Fourth Grade teacher as well as an experienced Administrative Assistant. She also works collaboratively with the other ACIS Admission Directors throughout the school year and looks forward to placing MSD graduates in high schools of their choice. Email Tara at tgehrke@msd-co.org.
Tom Graham, Director of Plant Operations, is a long-standing member of the MSD community. He holds certification from Colorado State University as an A.H.E.R.A. Inspector and Management Planner. He has trained in computer technology related to hardware and network construction. Email Tom at tgraham@msd-co.org.
Kindra Headrick, Director of Communications, holds a certificate in Early Childhood Education from Arapahoe Community College. Prior to joining MSD, she worked as a nanny for six years. Aside from Communications, Kindra also coordinates MSD’s After School Enrichment Program. She joined MSD in 2004. Email Kindra at kheadrick@msd-co.org.
Tiffany Kimmell, Receptionist, holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and a Minor in English from the University of Arizona in Tucson. She joined MSD in the winter of 2012. Email Tiffany at tkimmell@msd-co.org.
Ann Poundstone, Business Manager, earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre from William Woods College. Ann has worked at MSD since 1989, during which time she filled a variety of roles. Ann is recognized nationally for her work as a Business Manager and was presented with the Will J. Hancock Award from the National Association of Business Managers in 2008, for her excellent work. Email Ann at apoundstone@msd-co.org.
Carrie Ross-Kelly, Assistant Business Manger, holds a Bachelor of Arts in Humanities and Social Sciences from Colorado State University.  Carrie is an enthusiastic and accomplished equestrian.  She joined MSD in 1996. Email Carrie at cross-kelly@msd-co.org.
Kara Zwierkowski, Admission and Development Associate, joined MSD in 2007. Kara has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Work and Psychology from Loyola University as well as a Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She is also a certified Yoga Instructor. Email Kara at kzwierkowski@msd-co.org.