Our Staff

Parker, Arizona


Dennis O’ReillyMr. O’Reilly started working with young people as a volunteer junior high basketball coach back in 1990, and has been in education for over twenty years, starting as a middle school math teacher back in 1993. Mr. O’Reilly has been an administrator since 1999 serving as Curriculum Coordinator, Assistant to the Principal, Principal, and Head of Schools at three different private schools in Tucson, Arizona and earned his Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Chapman University. Mr. O’Reilly has been married for sixteen years to his beautiful bride Krissy, and will have two scholars attending Leman Academy, Conner and Adeline.



Jason Edwards
Jason Edwards is thrilled to be part of Leman Academy of Excellence! He studied history and education at Asbury University (B.Ed), then moved to Sao Paulo Brazil where he taught history, coached soccer, and served as Athletic Director at an international American school for grades PreK-12. He later moved to the Denver metro area in Colorado where he first taught History, then served as an administrator at two different charter schools emphasizing character education and classical curriculum. In all, he has over a decade of teaching experience and has worked as a charter school administrator since 2012. He has additionally completed graduate degrees in Educational Leadership from both Trinity Western University in British Columbia (2012) and George Fox University in Oregon (2016).

Jason loves to spend time outdoors with his wife and 3 kids, read,mountain bike, cheer for Barcelona F.C., play guitar, and make friends through pick-up soccer. His favorite things about Leman Academy are the content-rich classical curriculum, the robust and time-tested philosophy of Charlotte Mason and Dr. Leman, the culture of joy, and the strength of community that naturally develops when like-minded families and educators unite around a shared vision for healthy growth.


Starla Cordova - Office Manager

Starla CordovaStarla Cordova first became involved with charter schools in 1995 as a Founding Family of a school in Colorado Springs. Since then, she has made a career out of helping start charter schools and Leman Academy will be her fourth school to see up and running. She has served as Substitute Teacher, Office Manager, and Registrar. She is looking forward to building relationships with the Leman scholars and their families in the years to come.

Starla, and her husband of thirty years, enjoy spending time with their three daughters and two grandsons. She also enjoys hiking, building furniture, and building/remodeling homes.


Sally Allen - Administrative Assistant

Sally is very excited to join the Leman team. She has lived in CO for over 50 years and been married to her husband, Skip, for 30 years. They have 3 grown children and the oldest, daughter Lauren, will be our middle school history teacher.

Sally helped open Valor Christian High School, serving as Administrative Assistant and Assistant Dean of Students. Mentoring the students was a passion for her as she finds great joy in being able to speak into their lives.

Sally loves the outdoors, especially the Colorado mountains. She loves to ski, hike, camp and fly fish with her sons. She also enjoys reading and cooking.


Terri Donohue - Kinder Teacher

Hello! I am Terri Donohue, and I'm thrilled to be on the Kindergarten Team at Leman Academy of Excellence. This will be my sixth year teaching, and my fourth year as a kindergarten teacher. I love the enchanting world of kindergarten! Every day, we discover something new and exciting.

I have a Bachelor's Degree in Music/Vocal Performance, from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. My time at Cal Poly was magical and fulfilling. I also have a Master's Degree in Elementary Education from the University of Phoenix. After my first day as a student teacher, I knew education was my true calling.

I live in Castle Rock with my two children. Max is 19 and excited to live life to its fullest. Maggie is 12 and is both nervous and eager to begin middle school. We have two cats we adore named Murphy and Darwin.

As a family, we love going to the movies, playing board games, taking walks, exploring our beautiful state of Colorado, and just spending time together. When I have free time I enjoy singing with the Cherry Creek Chorale, knitting (a true beginner here), spending time with friends and family, and reading.


Rachel Jensen - Kinder Teacher

Interventions & RTL Coordinator

Rachel is excited about the opportunity to guide scholars both as a kindergarten teacher and interventionist at Leman Academy of Excellence. Her love for education began in high school and continues today. She graduated from Metro State University in 1997 with a double major in Elementary Education and Special Education. After graduation, she spent a year in the Englewood Public School system before moving to California to be a missionary teacher in Wyatts California. She spent several years there before returning to Colorado in 2001 to start a family. Upon her return, she taught kindergarten in Colorado Springs for several years.

In 2007, Rachel began her eleven year journey at a private school in Parker teaching third grade. Her children attended the school as well, and thrived in the rigorous environment. Rachel taught several grade levels at the school before accepting the Reading Specialist position at the school in 2010 and the MTSS Coordinator position in 2017. She earned her Masters in Teaching with her Literacy Intervention Certification from Colorado College in 2014. She became a Certified Academic Language Therapist with ALTA and earned her Reading endorsement from the State of Colorado in 2015. She currently works at a private practice as a Literacy Therapist for children with dyslexia or other literacy disorders.

Rachel's passion is literacy! She believes her dual position at Leman will enable her to bring literacy to life before and after difficulties arise. Rachel is ecstatic about the philosophy and mission of Leman and is looking forward to partnering with students, families, and staff to make the Parker Leman campus a safe place to shine in the Parker community.


Michele Sum - Kinder Teacher

Michele Sum
My name is Michele Sum and I'm thrilled to be one of the Kindergarten Teachers at Leman! I've been teaching for 15 years. I've taught Kindergarten and most recently I was a Substitute Teacher in the Cherry Creek School District. I earned my Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and my Master of Arts Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Colorado at Denver.

Outside of teaching I enjoy reading, swimming and spending time with my family.

I can't wait to be a part of the Leman Community and to help shape the minds of our young Scholars!


Elizabeth Wilson - Kinder Teacher & ELL/504 Coordinator

Leslie Kiehn - Kinder Teacher

Marsha Anderson - 1st Grade Teacher

Marsha Anderson
"Marsha Anderson discovered her love of teaching as a vocal coach when she was in High School and has now been in education for 20 years. She has worked with a diverse group of students as a teacher in both the preschool and elementary core and music classroom, along with being a private learning consultant. She seeks to stay up-to-date with current educational practices and is both a member of the Professional Association of Colorado Educators (PACE) and a certified handwriting specialist through the “Handwriting without Tears” program. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Anderson University (IN) and is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction at Colorado Christian University.

The Highlands Ranch resident enjoys spending time with her husband of twenty years, their three sons, and two Havanese dogs. As a Southern California native, Mrs. Anderson loves sunny outdoor activities including water skiing, gardening, and sprint triathlons. She also enjoys singing and chocolate.
Mrs. Anderson is thrilled to partner with the families of Leman Academy of Excellence and share in their academic journey.


Roxanne Aviles - 1st Grade Teacher

Roxanne Aviles
My name is Mrs. Roxanne Aviles and I will be joining Leman Academy of Excellence as a 1st grade teacher for the 2018-2019 school-year. This will be my 6th year teaching. I taught kindergarten for 4 years and 2nd grade for 1 year. I am very much looking forward to meeting in the middle at 1st grade and applying my knowledge of kindergarten and second grade expectations to meet the developmental needs of ALL of our scholars.

I am very happily married to my SUPER supportive husband, Mr. Aviles. Together we have 5 beautiful children. From oldest to youngest: Morgan (18), Zackary (15), Adrian (10), Alex (8), and the “baby”, Zoey (5). Adrian will be attending 5th grade, Alex will be in 2nd grade and Zoey will be starting kindergarten, all at Leman.

I graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor’s of Science in Elementary Education grades K-6th. In October of 2016 I received my Master’s in Education with a focus on Curriculum, instruction, and assessment through Walden University. I believe that learning never stops and I seek opportunities to increase my pedagogical skills on a continual basis.

I am excited to join the Leman family and build our community and I am very much looking forward to developing relationships with all of you! Welcome to the Leman Family!


Bridget D'Arcy - 1st Grade Teacher

Bridget D'Arcy
Bridget has been worked in the Education field for over 18 years, beginning back when she was 18 and worked the after care program in high school. There she discovered the joy of spending her days with young children. Bridget then went on graduate with honors from Mesa State College with a degree in Elementary Education. Bridget has worked as a Kindergarten teacher, 1st grade teacher, as well as an interventionist pulling struggling readers and advanced learners.

She's also had the privilege of teaching in other capacities, such as ski and snowboard instructor, outdoor program leader, VBS leader, summers running the mountain board program at a youth summer camp, and more.

She is passionate about teaching history, hearing the scholars recite their recitations, the whole-child approach, and the philosophies of Charlotte Mason and Dr. Leman that the Academy brings to Parker. When not teaching you'll find her either outside somewhere or reading, or both. She is married to her husband Chris, and has two scholars attending Leman, Lucy and Abby.


Kylanne Hart - 2nd Grade Teacher

Kylanne Hart
Ms. Hart was born and raised in Denver. She graduated from the University of Colorado at Denver with a Bachelor’s in Psychology. She went on to pursue her Masters in Education from Regis University, where she graduated with honors in May 2016. Ms. Hart has been working in the education field for the last 8 years working in all areas from early childhood education to elementary school, and even teaching in Thailand. She enjoys traveling to new places, being outside in the Colorado sunshine, and enjoying time with family and friends. Ms. Hart is excited to join the Leman staff and build relationships with each scholar and their parents.


John Haynes - 2nd Grade Teacher

John Haynes
Hi! My name is John Haynes, and I’m thrilled to be teaching at the Leman Academy of Excellence. I grew up here in Parker and graduated from the University of Northern Colorado with a Bachelors of Arts in Elementary Education and Linguistically Diverse Education. I began my teaching career in the Mapleton School District in Thornton and I have returned to my home town of Parker with my wife and soon to be baby boy. I enjoy being outdoors, swimming, hiking, and spending time with friends. I have three dogs, a Chihuahua, a pug, and a jack rustle.


Christina Mooney - 2nd Grade Teacher

Christina Mooney
Hello Leman families and scholars! My name is Christina Mooney and I will be teaching second grade this year and I could not be more excited! Our school’s mission and purpose is something I am truly passionate about and I know as an educator I have finally found my “home” here at Leman.

I am a native to our town of Parker, and have been teaching here in Douglas County in various roles since completing my degree from Metropolitan State University in 2014. My husband and I have a beautiful three year old daughter and an equally as rambunctious white Labrador. In my spare time, I love spending as much quality time with my family as possible. We love this wonderful state and enjoy all sorts of outdoor activities. I also have a passion for photography and am building up my portfolio in my spare time.

That’s enough about me though! I cannot wait to get to know you and your scholars and start our classical adventure together this year!


Jodi Hofman - 3rd Grade Teacher

Jodi Hofman
Jodi Hofman has been an educator for 17 years. Beginning her career in California as a preschool music teacher she discovered her love and passion for teaching children. During this time she completed her Bachelors degree in Liberal Studies at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. Jodi continued her education while substitute teaching in Arizona and received her Elementary Education Certification. While Jodi has held several different positions in both public and private schools, her last position was as a second/third grade teacher at a private school in Greenwood Village.

Ms. Hofman is married and lives with her husband and their chocolate lab. In her free time, Jodi enjoys hiking, camping, and horseback riding.


Ashley Kreh - 3rd Grade Teacher

Ashley Kreh
Ashley Faye believes that Leman Academy of Excellence is an impeccable match for her passions and understandings concerning the education of young children. She began her journey in education when she joined a renowned early learning program in Aurora, Colorado called Bright Horizons. Here, she quickly adopted much of what she was taught while being homeschooled into her daily interactions and lessons with pre-kindergarten students. After a few years in the classroom, Ms. Faye yearned to impact the curriculum and philosophy of her school and became a director for the preschool and kindergarten prep classrooms. Being a mentor and reliable listener for staff, a support and knowledgeable contact for parents, and an event organizer and advertiser for the company, Ms. Faye thoroughly enjoyed her experience as a manager. However, when she finished her teaching degree from Grand Canyon University, Ms. Faye desired to work closely with children again and served a year at a classical school teaching 3rd and 5th graders.

"Teachers have three loves: love of learning, love of learners, and the love of bringing the first two together," says Scott Hayden, an African American composer. Despite the age of this quote (early 1900s), Ms. Faye feels this today. Teaching and learning is Ms. Faye’s everyday adventure both in the classroom and in her personal life. Her family enjoys discovering exotic and innovative recipes and eats a new meal almost every week. Another passion of hers is the equestrian sport; she likes to spend her time teaching both her young daughter and other children how to respect such a wondrous beasts and learn to create a partnership with them. Ms. Faye also fosters a close relationship with rescue dogs and has two rescued mastiffs of her own, Gracie and Murphy. Lastly, being natives in Colorado, her family enjoys hunting, fishing, camping, and skiing!

Ms. Faye is enthusiastic about Leman Academy for many reasons, but the first is the teachings of Dr. Leman himself. His genuine and humble teachings of his understanding concerning life and relationships builds the foundation for healthy and respectful communication between teachers and students/ as well as teacher and administrators or parents. Furthermore, Leman Academy of Excellence is modeled after a pure and invigorating classical education that can withstand the social changes of all generations and equip scholars with a philosophical and pragmatic education they can use in their everyday reasoning. John F. Kennedy says, “Children are the world’s most valuable resource and its best hope for the future.” These words are the bedrock for Ms. Faye’s educational philosophy and she is delighted to incorporate this thinking in a classroom at Leman Academy of Excellence.


Karen Mitchell - 4th Grade Teacher

Karen Mitchell
Karen Mitchell was born and raised in the Chicago area. She earned her undergraduate teaching degree from North Central University in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and her Master's degree in Curriculum Design and Instruction from Weber State University in Ogden, Utah.

Mrs. Mitchell has taught preschool, 2nd grade, 4th grade and 5th grade, but her true passion is helping to shape the lives of 4th grade students. In her free time, Karen enjoys reading, spending time outdoors and traveling with her husband and two adult children. She loves being a part of the Leman Academy community!


Kena Contreras - 4th Grade Teacher

Kena Contreras
Ms. Contreras was born in Mexico and immigrated to the US where she started 3rd grade. She spent most of her childhood and young adulthood life in Arizona. She graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelors in Justice Studies. While working for the Foster Care Review Board under the Arizona State Supreme Court, she worked on her MBA through the University of Phoenix. Ms. Contreras transitioned out of the public sector after 8 years and started a career in pharmaceutical sales where she spent the next 13 years. Her passion and interest in training and education is what drew her to obtain an alternative license in teaching through the Stanley British Residency Teaching program and into the classroom as teacher where she has been for the past 4 years. She is excited to be a part of the Leman experience and looks forward to working closely with all families so that together we can produce tomorrow’s leaders.


Debra LeBlanc - 5th Grade Teacher

Christine Yonce - 5th Grade Teacher

Emily Martin - 5th Grade Teacher

Stacie Groves - Middle School Science Teacher

Stacie Groves
Stacie graduated from Colorado State University with a BS in Human Growth and Development. She went on to obtain her Educator License from Metropolitan State College of Denver. She earned her Master’s degree in Education with a focus on Literacy from Lesley University. Stacie has been teaching for over 15 years. She is very excited to be a part of Leman.

Stacie is married with 3 children. In her free time, she attends baseball games and gymnastics meets!


Spencer Phillips - Middle School English Teacher

Spencer Phillips
Spencer Phillips studied Philosophy at California Baptist University and received his Masters from St. John's College in Santa Fe. For the last 6 years Spencer has taught a wide amount of classes and grades ranging from 7th-12th grade and throughout the subjects: English, Philosophy, History and Logic. During these years, Spencer has focused on classical education and direct text teaching; while developing strong relationships with the students and encouraging a thirst to speak articulately, read attentively, reason effectively, and think creatively. While education is Spencer’s vocation, backpacking, cooking, and an occasional HGTV show helps for a well rounded lifestyle.


Roxanne Stasney - Middle School Math Teacher

Jordan Towne - Middle School History Teacher

Jennifer Dinsmoor - Exceptional Scholar Services Teacher

Jennifer DinsmoorI am beyond excited to join the Leman Academy team! Being born and raised in Estes Park, CO has instilled in me a strong sense of adventure, exploring and love of learning. This will be my 4th year teaching, and I am more passionate than ever to support our scholars who may have unique ways of learning and to ensure all of our students can access the incredible content and lifelong learning Leman Academy offers.

Outside of my professional life, I enjoy running, traveling and taking advantage of all that Colorado has to offer. Most of all, I love spending time with my little family-Jason, Aiden (our 1-year old), and Bernie (our Australian Shepherd). Family is everything and they are my world! I am very grateful to be a part of this wonderful community.


Ilona Shur - ESS Teacher

Ilona Shur
Born and raised in the former Soviet Union, I came to America in December of 1992. With the degree in Early Childhood education from USSR, I decided to study more in a different language. In the Spring of 1999 I received a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and in the Summer of 2006 - Master degree in Science Education from Brooklyn College. I lived in Brooklyn, New York for 14 years, moved to Colorado in June 2006, and have been living here since.

I am happily married with 5 children, 3 grandchildren, 3 dogs and a cat.

I love reading books, (real ones, not the kind you have to upload to your gadgets). I also like to cook and host parties.


Merelee Syron-Whitcomb - Art Teacher

Merelee Syron-Whitcomb
I love teaching Art! I have my degree from Georgian Court University in NJ. I have been teaching all grades for 10 years, including homeschool co-ops.

I am an artist myself, and I love it when I am able to teach students new techniques that make them proud of themselves. It is rewarding to have students that start out saying "I can't to it that good" to "Wow! This is way better than I thought I was capable of".


Sarah Keith - Music Teacher

Karli Gerber - Nurse

Karli Gerber
Mrs. Gerber is excited to be a part of the Leman Academy of Excellence team. She believes providing scholars with a safe and healthy environment will ultimately improve their attendance and academic performance. She received her BSN from South Dakota State University in 2005. She worked in the neonatal intensive care unit and later a triage nurse at an OBGYN clinic. Mrs. Gerber and her husband have two boys, one of which will start at Leman Academy of Excellence this year. She enjoys traveling, cooking and hiking with her family.


Theresa Worker - Health Assistant

Theresa Worker
I moved to Parker, Colorado 14 years ago after my husband and I were married. Two years after we were married we welcomed our daughter and two years after that we welcomed our son.

I am a Colorado native. Before moving to Parker, I attended The University of Northern Colorado, for both my undergraduate and my graduate degree.

I look forward to keeping your scholars healthy and happy at Leaman Academy!


Julie Seeley - Latin & Spanish Teacher

Julie Seeley
Julie Seeley K-2 Spanish, 3rd – 5th Grade Latin

A native of the Pacific Northwest, Julie Seeley graduated from Northwest Christian University with a B.A. in Intercultural Studies and English as a Second Language, and Spanish at the University of Oregon. Julie has taught Spanish, music and ESL to preschoolers through adults. She has homeschooled her children using Classical Education for 10 years. After moving to Colorado 15 years ago, Julie obtained her Suzuki certification in Flute and Recorder and has had an active studio over the past several years, working with children in grades K-12.

She has also worked with refugee adults and children and has trained various leaders to take on the teaching role in new programs. She is looking forward to working with the scholars at LAE, and introducing them to the beauty and fun of learning a new language, as well as leading them to know about other cultures. Outside of the classroom, Julie plays flute with her church’s worship team, goes hiking with her family, and enjoys eating international food.


Marcy Barrera - Physical Education

Marcy Barrera
Marcy Barrera graduated from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs in 2003 with a Bachelors of Science degree in Biology. She went on to be certified as a Clinical Laboratory Analyst, serving in that role until the birth of her first daughter in 2006. Marcy then began teaching on a part-time basis at a local private school in Colorado Springs. She passed on her love of science by teaching Biology, Life Science, and Anatomy and Physiology for several years. With the imminent arrival of daughter number three, Marcy set her teaching career aside to concentrate on her growing family.

The Barrera family soon relocated to the southwest portion of Colorado. Marcy served as the Children's Ministry Director for four years in the church which her husband, Al, pastored. During that time, she researched and implemented new curriculum, developed and trained teaching staff, and oversaw the broader vision of positively impacting the children of her community.

Marcy and Al have been married for 17 years. They have lived in Parker with their four daughters since 2015. Marcy spends her time enjoying her family, expressing her creativity through sewing, and baking all manner of delicious pastries and breads. She truly believes, "Butter makes everything better!" She finds joy in serving others through what she creates and she knows that life is best experienced, in the company of family and friends, around the dining room table.


Nancy Gustafson - Food Service Coordinator

Nancy Gustafson
Nancy is a Colorado native. Living in the Parker area for 30 years. Her and her husband have 3 children and 5 wonderful grandchildren. Nancy has worked in retail serving her regular customers for year. She loves going to the mountains, walking ang spending time with her friends.


Brenda Maciejewski - Instructional Assistant

Brenda Maciejewski
Hello. I'm Brenda Maciejewski i was born in Phoenix Az and moved to Parker 25 years ago. I married the man of my dreams and we have 4 children, 2 boys and 2 girls. My older children are married and i have 4 beautiful grand daughters. I love to take group fitness classes and can be found at lifetime in Parker on most days. We are a military family with my husband being an Army veteran and member of the American Legion. My sons are Marines and my youngest is still serving. My passion for years has been to teach young children and I'm doing exactly what I love.


Kirstin Sayer - Homeschool Enrichment Coordinator

Kirstin Sayer
Kirstin Sayer has always had a great desire to learn and then to share that knowledge with others. Her first job was teaching swimming lessons, and that continued throughout high school and college. After earning her bachelor’s degree in biology, she worked in a medical research laboratory for a short time. Realizing her passion in life involved interfacing with people, Kirstin started her own private music studio, offering classical piano instruction. She married, had two children, and the decision was made to try homeschooling. Fifteen years and two high school graduates later, the homeschool experiment was counted a success. During those years, Kirstin experienced the joy of working as the Children’s Pastor at her church. She also took and taught tae kwon do, earning a third degree black belt, specializing in bullying prevention and self-defense. With both children launched, Kirstin began private tutoring, embracing the opportunity to work one-on-one with students and helping them find confidence and success in academics. And now, Kirstin could not be happier to be a part of Leman Academy of Excellence and the unique opportunities it offers to our community. When she is not teaching, you can find her off-roading with her husband in the mountains, playing with her three dogs, reading a good book, or taking a nice, long walk.


Shelby Pfleiger - Advanced Learners Teacher

Shelby Pfleiger
Shelby Pfleiger has always had a passion and desire for education. Mrs. Pfleiger believes knowledge is power; she is a proud first generation high school, college, and graduate school graduate.

As an elementary student, she remembers striving to become just like her Aunt who was a Pre-School teacher. Throughout her elementary and secondary school years, she jumped at any opportunity to assist in her classroom. She studied to become a teacher, earning an Elementary Education degree, a Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction, and a Reading Specialist endorsement. She has served as an Outdoor Laboratory School leader, summer camp counselor, Sunday school teacher, tutor, Girl Scout troop leader, kindergarten teacher, first grade teacher, and literacy specialist.

Shelby is thrilled to coordinate the Advanced Learners program and Reading Intervention at Leman Academy this year!

She has been married to her husband, Regan, for seven years. They have one daughter, McKinley, and a goldendoodle, Waffles. When not chasing around her toddler, she enjoys practicing yoga, planning their next family adventure, baking, and cheering on the Broncos!