Meet Our Wonderful Teachers & Staff

We have a wide range of talented professionals at Quentin STEM Academy. Our team of administrators, teachers, instructional aides, and support staff all have the same passion: teaching. They all want one thing: for your children to be and feel successful during their academic career at Quentin. We believe a good education empowers students to follow and achieve their dreams. Please don’t hesitate to contact your child’s teacher with any questions or concerns. Parents are as important to our team as the rest of our wonderful members.

Administration

Eric Atuahene
Principal
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Biography

Eric Atuahene
Eric Atuahene
Principal

Meet Eric Atuahene

Hometown

Toronto, Ontario

Favorite Subject

Physics

Hobbies

Sports

Message

Work hard, play hard!
Grand Canyon University
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Loni Fife
Assistant Principal
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Biography

Loni Fife
Loni Fife
Assistant Principal

Meet Loni Fife

Hometown

La Blanca, Texas

Favorite Subject

Math and science

Hobbies

I enjoy reading, running, and cooking.

Message

"Who you are on a daily basis is who you are when you compete. If you want to be a champion, you have to have the mindset of a champion every day." - Jerry Ignalls, Olympic Weight Lifter
Park University University of Houston Clear Lake Grand Canyon University
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Kari Chicas
Dean
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Biography

Kari Chicas
Kari Chicas
Dean

Meet Kari Chicas

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Office Support

Elizabeth Garcia
Library
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Biography

Elizabeth Garcia
Elizabeth Garcia
Library

Meet Elizabeth Garcia

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Maria Del Toro
Admin Secretary
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Biography

Maria Del Toro
Maria Del Toro
Admin Secretary

Meet Maria Del Toro

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Ana Arce
Support Specialist, Sr.
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Biography

Ana Arce
Ana Arce
Support Specialist, Sr.

Meet Ana Arce

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Jaquline Chan
Support Specialist, Jr.
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Biography

Jaquline Chan
Jaquline Chan
Support Specialist, Jr.

Meet Jaquline Chan

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Stephanie Holstein
Health Aide
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Biography

Stephanie Holstein
Stephanie Holstein
Health Aide

Meet Stephanie Holstein

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Teachers

Kindergarten

Thomas Schneider
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Biography

Meet Thomas Schneider

Hometown

Omaha, Nebraska

Where I Started Teaching

California

Favorite Subject

Art and theater

Hobbies

Working out, baking, crafts, drawing, reading, and ceramics

Message

Looking forward to the new school year.
University of Nebraska California State University Long Beach
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Sarah Steward
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Biography

Meet Sarah Steward

Hometown

Columbus, Ohio

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary

Favorite Subject

Math

Hobbies

Volleyball, hiking, and traveling

Message

Tall people can be nice too.
Union University Grand Canyon University
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Karen Williams Riffenburg
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Biography

Karen Williams Riffenburg
Karen Williams Riffenburg

Meet Karen Williams Riffenburg

Hometown

Phoenix, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

2nd Grade, Alhambra District (Phoenix)

Favorite Subject

Language arts

Hobbies

Reading, crafts, grandparenting, and traveling

Message

I believe that life is a bold and dashing adventure!
Brigham Young University University of Phoenix
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First Grade

Christine Leppla
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Biography

Meet Christine Leppla

Hometown

Long Island, New York

Where I Started Teaching

Littleton School District

Favorite Subject

Writing, reading, and theater

Hobbies

Reading, cooking, concerts, and spending time with family and friends

Message

I am excited to get to know my students and their families. I strongly believe that when parents and teachers work together, great things happen for the child. We are going to have a great year!
Long Island University
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Brittany Bonner
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Biography

Meet Brittany Bonner

Hometown

Army Child

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin STEM Academy

Favorite Subject

English

Hobbies

Basketball, volleyball, and reading

Message

I am so excited to be joining the Quentin first grade team. I am looking forward to making great memories with all the super first-graders in my class!
University of Maryland Potsdam State University of New York
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Angelica Robles
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Biography

Meet Angelica Robles

Hometown

Rancho Cucamonga, California

Favorite Subject

Math

Hobbies

Traveling, snowboarding, soccer, and volunteering

Message

I am looking forward to working with the students. I hope to have a positive impact on them. I am very excited to get to know them and teach them.
Grand Canyon University
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Rhiannon McGowan
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Biography

Meet Rhiannon McGowan

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Second Grade

Brenda Alamillo
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Biography

Meet Brenda Alamillo

Hometown

Los Angeles, California

Where I Started Teaching

Arizona

Favorite Subject

Math

Hobbies

I like to read books, and I also like to explore and eat at different restaurants.

Message

I am excited to start a new school year at Quentin. Thank you to the parents, Quentin teachers, and staff for making our students our number one priority.
University of Phoenix Grand Canyon University
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Ashley Avechucco
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Biography

Meet Ashley Avechucco

Hometown

Phoenix, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary

Favorite Subject

English

Hobbies

Card making and scrapbooking

Message

Hand in hand together we can!
University of Phoenix Grand Canyon University
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Karin Middeker
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Biography

Meet Karin Middeker

Hometown

Rochester, New York

Where I Started Teaching

Gila Bend, Arizona

Favorite Subject

Math

Hobbies

All things dog-related and exploring the west coast.

Message

I am excited to start my second year at Quentin Elementary and grow with my students.
University of South Carolina Upstate
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Nicole Conn
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Biography

Meet Nicole Conn

Hometown

Surprise, Arizona

Favorite Subject

Language Arts

Hobbies

Coloring, reading, and going to the movies with friends

Message

I cannot wait to grow along side my students!
Northern Arizona University
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Third Grade

Araceli Barrera
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Biography

Meet Araceli Barrera

Hometown

Los Angeles, California

Where I Started Teaching

4th Grade, Fowler District (Phoenix)

Favorite Subject

Reading and math

Hobbies

Playing with my kiddos, reading, and shopping

Message

I am excited to be part of Shark Nation!
"I am so lucky because I teach—I get to do what I love." - JH
National University Grand Canyon University California State University Dominguez Hills
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Rosa Garcia
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Biography

Meet Rosa Garcia

Hometown

Surprise, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary

Favorite Subject

Math

Hobbies

I love to craft, play softball, play volleyball, and figure things out.

Message

"Working hard is important, but there is something that matters even more: believing in yourself." - Harry Potter
Arizona State University
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Mary Mesich
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Biography

Meet Mary Mesich

Hometown

Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Where I Started Teaching

Avondale, Arizona

Favorite Subject

Reading and science

Hobbies

Taking care of my doggies, playing with the plants, and wondering around

Message

Believe in yourself and you can learn anything!
Arizona State University Northern Arizona University
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Megan Holman
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Biography

Meet Megan Holman

Hometown

Tacoma, Washington

Where I Started Teaching

This is my first year teaching.

Favorite Subject

English and history

Hobbies

Reading, coloring, music, going to hockey games, spending time with family and friends, and playing soccer

Message

I am so excited to be joining the Quentin family, and I look forward to teaching and helping my students become responsible citizens who love to learn.
Northern Arizona University
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Fourth Grade

Marilyn Gutierrez
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Biography

Meet Marilyn Gutierrez

Hometown

Albuquerque, New Mexico

Where I Started Teaching

Yuma, Arizona

Favorite Subject

Science

Hobbies

Traveling

Message

Life is good!
Northern Arizona University
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Christine Russell
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Biography

Meet Christine Russell

Hometown

Fontana, California

Where I Started Teaching

El Dorado Private School

Favorite Subject

Math

Hobbies

Shopping and bike riding

Message

"Be the change you wish to see in the world!" - Ghandi
University of Phoenix Ottawa University
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Michelle Thiede
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Biography

Meet Michelle Thiede

Hometown

Scottsdale, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Winslow, Arizona

Favorite Subject

Math

Hobbies

Hiking, traveling, watching sports, and shopping

Message

I am happy to be back at Quentin. I am ready to show my students how to be better people and show them how to get where they want to go.
Northern Arizona University
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Monique Hines
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Biography

Meet Monique Hines

Hometown

Las Vegas, Nevada

Where I Started Teaching

Las Vegas, Nevada

Favorite Subject

Science

Hobbies

Spending time with family, movie watching, listening to music, and traveling

Message

"You could be the greatest! You can be the best!" - The Script
University of Nevada Las Vegas
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Fifth Grade

LeAnne McKanna
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Biography

Meet LeAnne McKanna

Hometown

Dallas, Texas

Where I Started Teaching

Southlake, Texas

Favorite Subject

Social Studies

Hobbies

Traveling, baking, and spending time with friends and family

Message

Texas Woman's University Arizona State University Grand Canyon University
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Melissa Saucier
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Biography

Meet Melissa Saucier

Hometown

Grand Rapids, Michigan

Where I Started Teaching

Yuma, Arizona

Favorite Subject

Reading

Hobbies

Reading, swimming, spending time with my family

Message

Michigan State University University of Indianapolis Grand Canyon University
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Meagan Spencer
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Biography

Meet Meagan Spencer

Hometown

Peekskill, New York

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary School

Favorite Subject

ELA

Hobbies

Yoga, hiking, and reading

Message

I am looking forward to this school year!
"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go." - Dr. Seuss
Michigan State University University of Indianapolis Grand Canyon University
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Cameron Stevens
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Biography

Meet Cameron Stevens

Hometown

West Des Moines, Iowa

Where I Started Teaching

Northern Iowa University

Favorite Subject

Writing

Hobbies

I enjoy being around friends and family. My hobbies include watching movies, listening to music, hiking, fishing, reading, and sports.

Message

Never stop grinding for your goals in life!
University of Northern Iowa
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Sixth Grade

Adam Johnson
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Biography

Meet Adam Johnson

Hometown

Phoenix, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary School

Favorite Subject

Science

Hobbies

Reading, dancing, gym-going, cooking, and playing soccer

Message

You are your biggest obstacle. When you believe you can, you will.
Arizona State University
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Andy Schaefer
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Biography

Meet Andy Schaefer

Hometown

Frankenmuth, Michigan

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary

Favorite Subject

Math

Hobbies

Video games, Netflix, hiking, ASU and Patriots football, golfing, weightlifting, and running 5K's

Message

I look forward to making a positive impact in the lives of my students this year and in all the years to come!
Concordia University Chicago Arizona State University
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Ryan Taylor
ELA/Social Studies
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Biography

Ryan Taylor
Ryan Taylor
ELA/Social Studies

Meet Ryan Taylor

Hometown

Phoenix, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Pikuni Indian Reservation

Favorite Subject

History

Hobbies

Sports, hiking, coaching, exercise, reading, politics, comedy, learning, and travel

Message

"There are two choices in life: accept things as they are or accept the responsibility to change them."
University of Montana University of Hawaii
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Erin McAlear
Math & Science
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Biography

Erin McAlear
Erin McAlear
Math & Science

Meet Erin McAlear

Hometown

Twin Bridges, Montana

Where I Started Teaching

Ennis, Montana

Favorite Subject

Math and biology

Hobbies

Watching my children do sports, Fantasy Football, and anything competitive that does not require running

Message

I am excited to be part of the Quentin team and work with your children!
Montana State University Billings Lesley University
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Seventh Grade

Sean Flynn
ELA
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Biography

Meet Sean Flynn

Hometown

Orland Park, Illinois

Where I Started Teaching

Benito Juarez Community Academy

Favorite Subject

Mythology

Hobbies

Travel, hiking, and fishing

Message

"Learning never exhausts the mind." - Leonardo da Vinci
University of Illinois Chicago
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Thomas Simpson
Math
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Biography

Thomas Simpson
Thomas Simpson
Math

Meet Thomas Simpson

Hometown

Albemarle, North Carolina

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin STEM Academy

Favorite Subject

History

Hobbies

Running, hiking, basketball, and enjoying the outdoors

Message

I am still learning, and I enjoy learning. My desire is to help students enjoy developing the skill of becoming lifelong learners.
Lee University
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Larry Lopes
Science
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Biography

Larry Lopes
Larry Lopes
Science

Meet Larry Lopes

Hometown

New Bedford, Massachusetts

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary

Favorite Subject

History

Hobbies

Coaching

Message

Focus and Follow Through
University of Massachusetts Northeastern University Southern New England School of Law
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Abby Dickinson
Social Studies
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Biography

Abby Dickinson
Abby Dickinson
Social Studies

Meet Abby Dickinson

Hometown

Elk River, Minnesota

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary

Favorite Subject

History

Hobbies

Being outdoors and spending time with my family and friends

Message

University of Northern Iowa
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Eighth Grade

Kaitlin Vasil
ELA
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Biography

Kaitlin Vasil
Kaitlin Vasil
ELA

Meet Kaitlin Vasil

Hometown

Nampa, Idaho

Where I Started Teaching

Challenger Private School

Favorite Subject

English and science

Hobbies

Soccer, cooking, traveling, and exercising

Message

I am excited to begin a new adventure at Quentin. My goal is not only to educate my students but also to question and challenge their own thoughts of literature.
College of Idaho
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Jeremiah Gallegos
Math
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Biography

Jeremiah Gallegos
Jeremiah Gallegos
Math

Meet Jeremiah Gallegos

Hometown

Litchfield Park, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Copper Trails Elementary School, Avondale District

Favorite Subject

History

Hobbies

Soccer, reading, and PS4

Message

In my classroom, everyone is a teacher and everyone is a student.
Arizona State University Northern Arizona University
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Suzanne Hudson
Science
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Biography

Suzanne Hudson
Suzanne Hudson
Science

Meet Suzanne Hudson

Hometown

Clearwater, Florida

Where I Started Teaching

Desert Oasis Elementary

Favorite Subject

Music

Hobbies

Crocheting, reading, camping, and hiking

Message

It is great to officially join the Quentin team! I am excited to be here and look forward to a fantastic year with all of my fellow sharks!
Arizona State University Northern Arizona University
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Marcos Quintana
Social Studies
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Biography

Marcos Quintana
Marcos Quintana
Social Studies

Meet Marcos Quintana

Hometown

Phoenix, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Copper Trails School, Goodyear, Arizona

Favorite Subject

History

Hobbies

Cooking, camping, college ready mentoring

Message

Everyone is capable of success; they just have to prove to themselves they want it bad enough.
Phoenix College Arizona State University Grand Canyon University
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Exceptional Learning Teachers

Cecilia Stratton
MD Classroom
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Biography

Cecilia Stratton
Cecilia Stratton
MD Classroom

Meet Cecilia Stratton

Hometown

Cashion, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary

Favorite Subject

Math

Hobbies

Cooking and hosting family gatherings

Message

Learn all that you can!
Arizona State University
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Jaime Mercado
Resource 4-5
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Biography

Jaime Mercado
Jaime Mercado
Resource 4-5

Meet Jaime Mercado

Hometown

Union City, California

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary

Favorite Subject

History

Hobbies

Netflix, sleep, traveling to new places, and trying new foods

Message

I want to help my students learn and grow as individuals and reach their greatest potential in whatever they set their mind to!
Arizona State University
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Keith Carter
Resource 7-8
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Biography

Keith Carter
Keith Carter
Resource 7-8

Meet Keith Carter

Hometown

Lakenheath

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin STEM Academy

Favorite Subject

PE

Hobbies

Family time, listen to music, watch movies

Message

Success does involve you trying.
Grand Canyon University Ottawa University Maricopa Community College
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Jami Rivera
Resource K-2
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Biography

Jami Rivera
Jami Rivera
Resource K-2

Meet Jami Rivera

Hometown

Military brat—I was born in Germany.

Where I Started Teaching

In Arizona - Dysart School District

Favorite Subject

Reading

Message

"You might be the first smile your students see each morning or the first hug they've had since Friday! We have the most important job of all!" - Author Unknown
That we do, teachers are the best! Love what you do, I know I do!
Arizona State University
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Nonubari Nsagane
K-8 Gifted
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Nonubari Nsagane
Nonubari Nsagane
K-8 Gifted

Meet Nonubari Nsagane

Message

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Student Achievement Coach

Samantha Armstrong
Student Achievement Coach
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Biography

Samantha Armstrong
Samantha Armstrong
Student Achievement Coach

Meet Samantha Armstrong

Hometown

Phoenix, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Western Valley Middle School

Favorite Subject

Literature and yearbook

Hobbies

Reading, puzzles, and being a band mom

Message

I am looking forward to continuing to work with the Quentin community to help foster a growth mindset for teachers and students so we can put in the effort needed to be our best!
"Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you're right." - Henry Ford
Phoenix College Arizona State University
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Reading Interventionist

Kimberly Buckner
Reading Interventionist
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Biography

Kimberly Buckner
Kimberly Buckner
Reading Interventionist

Meet Kimberly Buckner

Hometown

Syracuse, New York

Where I Started Teaching

Glendale, Arizona

Favorite Subject

Language arts

Hobbies

I love to spend time with my family, shop, read, watch movies, and travel.

Message

I love being a part of the Quentin family and look forward to the Sharks achieving more great things. Here's to another amazing year!
Northern Arizona University Arizona State University
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Special Areas

Gabrielle Angulo
Art
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Biography

Gabrielle Angulo
Gabrielle Angulo
Art

Meet Gabrielle Angulo

Hometown

Chihauhua, Mexico

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary

Favorite Subject

Art

Hobbies

Creating art and spending time with my family and friends

Message

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Brianna Cramer
PE
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Biography

Brianna Cramer
Brianna Cramer
PE

Meet Brianna Cramer

Hometown

Glendale, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary School

Favorite Subject

PE, math, and psychology

Message

I'm excited to be teaching at Quentin! Go, Sharks!
"You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." - Christopher Robin, Winnie the Pooh
Northern Arizona University
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Brayden Crowe
PE
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Biography

Meet Brayden Crowe

Hometown

Wichita, Kansas

Where I Started Teaching

Quentin Elementary School

Favorite Subject

PE, psychology, and sociology

Hobbies

Exercising, reading, and hiking

Message

I'm looking forward to a great year.
Wichita State University
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Brittany Lott
Music
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Biography

Brittany Lott
Brittany Lott
Music

Meet Brittany Lott

Hometown

Petersburg, West Virginia

Where I Started Teaching

Braxton County High School

Favorite Subject

Music and math

Hobbies

Playing the ukulele, baking, spending time with my family

Message

Glenville State College
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Sarah Pigza
5-8 Band
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Biography

Sarah Pigza
Sarah Pigza
5-8 Band

Meet Sarah Pigza

Hometown

Goshen, Ohio

Where I Started Teaching

Littleton Elementary School

Favorite Subject

Band

Hobbies

Playing instruments, reading, and outdoor activities

Message

I am so excited to make music with your students this year!
Youngstown State University
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School Support

Aimee Dolejs
Psychologist
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Biography

Aimee Dolejs
Aimee Dolejs
Psychologist

Meet Aimee Dolejs

Hometown

Surprise, Arizona

Where I Started Teaching

Ohio

Favorite Subject

Psychology

Hobbies

Spending time with my family, reading, and exercise.

Message

Lycoming College John Carroll University
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