Ambar Hanson

Chief External Relations Officer

ahanson@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-239-1893 | @AmbarHanson

Favorite hobby: Dancing with my partner and kids

Ambar Cristina Hanson, M.P.A., is the director of community engagement at Hiawatha Academies. Since moving to the United States from the Dominican Republic eighteen years ago, Ambar has been dedicated to advocating for immigrant communities and communities of color to have equal opportunity and access to higher education, jobs that provide livable wages, health, housing and safety. Over the past ten years, Ambar advocated for domestic violence and sexual assault survivors through several roles at Casa de Esperanza and National Latin@ Network for Healthy Families and Communities. Currently, Ambar oversees the recruitment, marketing, parent engagement and community collaborations for the Hiawatha Academies network. Recently, Ambar received the Mano Amiga Award from the Minnesota Latino Economic Development Center for her commitment and generous contribution of time and work in behalf of the Latino community.
She lives in St. Paul and enjoys spending time with partner and two children.

Dawn Gunderson Taylor

Chief Talent Officer

dgundersontaylor@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-998-6015

Favorite book: A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry
Favorite hobby: Traveling to destinations near and far

Dawn Gunderson Taylor holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Minnesota State University Moorhead. She was a Peace Corps volunteer in Ethiopia where she taught English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) to tenth grade students and a 2001 Teach For America corps member. She taught high school English for six years in Baltimore, MD, and returned overseas to continue teaching in Istanbul, Turkey. In 2008, Dawn joined the staff of Teach For America where her work focused on alumni affairs for over seven years. Dawn returned to the Midwest in the summer of 2014 and joined Hiawatha Academies as Chief Talent Officer.
Dawn's daughter, Neela, is a student at Hiawatha Leadership Academy-Northrop.

Eli Kramer

Executive Director

ekramer@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-581-7750 | @Eli_Kramer_

Favorite book: The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni
Favorite hobby: Board games with my daughters

Eli Kramer has been the Executive Director of Hiawatha Academies since 2012. Before joining Hiawatha, Eli was a founding Dean of Curriculum and Instruction with Uncommon Schools in New York. Prior to that, he taught for six years in New York City at the elementary and middle school level. Eli was a 2003 Teach for America corps member in the Bronx, NY. He holds a B.A. in government from Harvard, a Master's in Education from Bank Street College, and a Master's in Educational Leadership from Brooklyn College.
Eli grew up in Minneapolis and is happy to be home.

Rochelle Van Dijk

Chief Academic Officer

rvandijk@hiawathaacademies.org

Rochelle Van Dijk is a proud African-American and Cherokee educator and mother of three. Rochelle graduated from Harvard University in 2005 with a degree in psychology and earned her Master's in Educational Psychology from the University of Colorado. She joined the '05 Teach For America corps and taught science in the Rio Grande Valley. In 2011 she founded the top performing high school in Denver: Denver School of Science and Technology in the Green Valley Ranch neighborhood. Each of the students in her founding class was accepted to a 4-year college, 80% of which were first generation college-students and over 75% qualified for free-and-reduced lunch. Rochelle went on to become Chief of Schools for Denver Schools of Science and Technology and oversee 4500 students across 12 schools. Rochelle now serves students and families in South Minneapolis as the Chief Academic Officer at Hiawatha Academies.

Sara Boedecker-Johnston

Senior Director of Program

sboedeckerjohnston@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-385-6388

Sara Boedecker-Johnston is the Senior Director of Program at Hiawatha Academies. Prior to joining Hiawatha, Sara worked for ten years as a teacher and principal at a Lutheran Pre-kingergarten through eighth grade school on the south side of Chicago. Sara grew up in Michigan and attended Valparaiso University, where she completed her undergraduate degree in Psychology and Sociology and Masters of Education degree.
Living in Minnesota brings Sara closer to lakes, trees, and her husband's family, all of which make her happy. Sara loves fonts, succulents, cooking and eating interesting food (especially pie) and wiener dogs (especially hers, named Ole).

Sean Elder

Chief Operating Officer

selder@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-251-3139

Favorite hobby: Backpacking and Camping

Sean Elder has been the Chief Operating Officer of Hiawatha Academies since May 2011. Before joining Hiawatha, Sean was an Area Manager for Skyhawks Sports Academy, the nation’s largest provider of youth sports programs and served several years as an Undergraduate Admissions Counselor at the University of Minnesota. Sean was also a 2010 Chicago Cohort Fellow with Education Pioneers. An active community member, Sean currently sits on the Education and Jobs Committee for the Greater Twin Cities United Way. He holds a B.A. in Sociology - Law, Criminology, and Deviance from the University of Minnesota and an M.B.A. from the University of St. Thomas.

Abdifatah Ahmed

Enrollment & Admissions Manager

aahmed@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-559-5918

Alex Gallagher

Director of Student Support Services

agallagher@hiawathaacademies.org | 715-491-2135

Andrew Paulson

School Psychologist

apaulson@hiawathaacademies.org

AnnaKristina Yesberger

Due Process Coordinator

ayesberger@hiawathaacademies.org

Brittany Porrazzo

Data Manager

bporrazzo@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-578-3765

Carrie Roby

Network Literacy Coordinator

croby@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-236-6596

Conor Leonard

Development Manager

cleonard@hiawathaacademies.org

Edwin Ochoa

Director of Human Resources

eochoa@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-250-1324

Heather Busch

Network Literacy Coordinator

hbusch@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-310-0250

Irma Márquez Trapero

Director of Talent Recruitment

imarquez@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-237-7636

Jaquie Archer

Network Assessment Coordinator

jarcher@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-578-9326

Libby Stegger

Senior Director of Enrollment

lstegger@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-388-3259

Lisa Sass Zaragoza

Liz Pangerl

Director Marketing and Communications

lpangerl@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-695-5467

Madison McConnell

Marketing and Social Media Coordinator

mmcconnell@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-730-1480

Maria Marino

Nicole Dummann

School Health Coordinator

ndummann@hiawathaacademies.org

Rosie Kellogg

Operations Manager

rkellogg@hiawathaacademies.org | 507-269-1394

Shannon Gavin

Family Engagement Manager

sgavin@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-578-5198

Sherene Judah

Principal | Hiawatha College Prep - Northrop

sjudeh@hiawathaacademies.org

Ted Dohm

Director of Enrollment and Admissions

tdohm@hiawathaacademies.org

Tiffany Williams-Virden

Senior Director of Equity Initiatives

twilliamsvirden@hiawathaacademies.org

Vanessa Palmer

Senior Director of Data and Analytics

vpalmer@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-385-8373

Alex Trevino

Assistant Principal

atrevino@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-384-1762

Amanda Underwood

Specialist Teacher

aunderwood@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-396-8258

Angie Pfeffer

Second Grade Teacher

apfeffer@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-490-4546

Anna Dibley

Fourth Grade Teacher - Reading, Writing, Social Studies

adibley@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-306-2988

Ariana Tellez

Bryan Daly

Special Educator Teacher

bdaly@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-730-7634

Carmen Alvarado

Cafeteria Staff

Carter Haaland

Kindergarten Teacher

chaaland@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-310-0437

Catherine Chu-Lapiska

Principal | Hiawatha Leadership Academy - Morris Park

clapiska@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-408-3379

Born and raised in Minnesota, Catherine is thrilled to return home and join the Hiawatha team after a spell on the East Coast.  Catherine earned her undergrad at The University of William & Mary in Virginia, and her M.A.T. at American University.  She is a Teach for America alum and taught first through fifth grades in Washington, DC.  Catherine also enjoyed several years of teaching teachers at Relay Graduate School of Education in New York City.  Catherine is excited to be a part of the Hiawatha team supporting students, families and teachers in achieving and exceeding their goals.

Charlotte Carlsen

Fourth Grade Math and Science Teacher

ccarlsen@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-490-5652

Clare Dudzinski

School Social Worker

cdudzinski@hiawathaacademies.org | 651-558-7472

Crystal Daugherty

Third Grade Math Teacher

crystal.daugherty@hotmail.com

Daeja Carson

Third Grade Teacher

dcarson@hiawathaacademies.org

Devyn Pittorf

Kindergarten Teacher

dpittorf@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-385-8784

Diane Coddington

Reading Corps Tutor

dcoddington@hiawathaacademies.org

Emily Curtis

Second and Third Grade English Language Development Teacher

ecurtis@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-558-6180

Erin Chambers

First Grade Teacher

echambers@hiawathaacademies.org

Erin Matschiner

Third Grade Teacher

ematschiner@hiawathaacadmies.org | 612-578-5214

Guadalupe Andrade

Haven Davis

Paraprofessional

hdavis@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-998-2458

Jed Hermes

Paraprofessional

ehermes@hiawathaacademies.org | 651-558-7478

Jess Cain

Kindergarten Teacher

jcain@hiawathaacademies.org

Jordan Fitch

Physical Education Teacher

jfitch@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-490-7102

Jordan McNiven

Fourth Grade Teacher

jmcniven@hiawathaacademies.org

Justine Selsing

First Grade Teacher

jselsing@hiawathaacademies.org

Kari Kielsa

Special Education Teacher

kkielsa@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-296-5335

Kate Vishneski

First Grade Teacher

kmaynor@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-220-7550

Kelley Forsberg

Second Grade Teacher

Kforsberg@hiawathaacademies.org | 952-457-9161

Laura Harringa

Third Grade Teacher

lharringa@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-387-0478

Linde Grubb

Director of Operations | Hiawatha Leadership Academy-Morris Park

lgrubb@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-743-9816

Lindsey Kane

First Grade Teacher

lkane@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-281-7545

Maia Horsager

Specialist Teacher

mhorsager@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-807-0519

Marcela Rojas

Office Manager

mrojas@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-250-5604

Maren Daniels

Marisol Rojas

Fourth Grade Teacher

marisolrojas@hiawathaacademies.org

Maureen Fink

English Language Development Teacher

mharrington@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-281-1383

Maya Soriano

Miguel Peña

Nancy Marin

Office Assistant

nmarin@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-388-1842

Rachel Peulen

Special Education Coordinator

rpeulen@hiawathaacademies.org

Sarai Anderson

Transportation Coordinator

sanderson@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-237-0920

Shae Elliot

Special Education Teacher

selliott@hiawathaacademies.org

Stephanie Sowma

Special Education Teacher

ssowma@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-695-0013

Veronica Myers

Yolanda Pruitt

Special Education Paraprofessional

ypruitt@hiawathaacademies.org

Allison Stasson

First Grade Teacher

astasson@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-42401720

Ally Stephens

Second Grade English Language Development Teacher

astephens@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-968-8022

Amanda Snyder

Specialist Teacher

amsnyder@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-388-6671

Aubrey Hendry Noonan

Kindergarten Teacher

ahendry@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-387-2651

Bailey Marmesh

Paraprofessional

bmarmesh@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-267-2144

Bobbi Pratt

Paraprofessional

bpratt@hiawathaacademies.org

Charise Powell

Fourth Grade Teacher

cpowell@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-578-0112

Chris Vaughan

English Language Development Coordinator

cvaughan@hiawathaacademies.org | 413-281-1268

Daniela Srini Vasan

Principal | Hiawatha Leadership Academy-Northrop

dvasan@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-462-2369

Daniela Srini Vasan is the founding principal of Hiawatha Leadership Academy-Northrop. Daniela speaks Spanish and French. She attended the University of Virginia and earned her Master's Degree in Education from Georgia State University. After graduating, she served as a Teach For America corps member in Atlanta, Georgia where she taught third and fifth grade. Daniela loves to spend time with her family, travel and experience new cultures, study languages, volunteer in the community, and explore the Twin Cities. One of the best parts about working at Hiawatha Academies is working with families and students every day.

Diana Agudo

Office Assistant

dagudo@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-743-5825

Ellen Bluhm

Special Education Teacher

ebluhm@hiawathaacademies.org

Emily Peltier

Special Education Teacher

epeltier@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-584-1739

Erika Hansen

Third Grade Teacher

ehansen@hiawathaacademies.org | Work: 612-239-0827 | Personal: 815-973-6628

Hannah Forster

Second Grade Teacher

hforster@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-807-4899

Hattie Carvalho

Assistant Principal | Hiawatha Leadership Academy-Northrop

hcarvalho@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-310-8025

Jennifer Alfaro

Student Success Coach

jalfaro@hiawathaacdemies.org | 612-807-3146

Jennifer Hernandez

Paraprofessional

jhernandez@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-743-8467

Jessie Damsgard

Fourth Grade Teacher

jdamsgard@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-584-1497 (texts preferred)

Jessye Lewis

Paraprofessional

jlewis@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-432-2201

Jonny Lincoln

K-4 Physical Education Teacher

jlincoln@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-743-2359

Jordan Ebel

Second Grade Teacher

jebel@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-584-1817

Katie Cooney

Special Education Coordinator

kcooney@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-743-8721

Kayann Comeaux

Special Education Teacher

kcomeaux@hiawathaacademies.org

Kelly Setala

First Grade Teacher

ksetala@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-386-7301

Kels Bruun-Bryant

Director of Operations | Hiawatha Leadership Academy-Northrop

kbruunbryant@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-730-3371

Kelsey Romero

Social Worker

kromero@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-207-8811

Kiah Young-Burns

Kindergarten Teacher

kyoungburns@hiawathaacademies.org

Kylie Hanschman

Spanish Language Specialist

khanschman@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-584-0897

Lindsey Niznik

First Grade Teacher

lniznik@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-251-9064

Maria Alvarado

Maintenance and Cafeteria Coordinator

malvarado@hiawathaacademies.org

Micayla Irmiter

Specialist Teacher

mirmiter@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-281-1915 (texts preferred)

Michael Seely

Paraprofessional

mseely@hiawathaacademies.org | Mobile: 612-310-8116

Myasia Johnson

Paraprofessional

mjohnson@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-237-5593

Natalie Ripley

Kindergarten English Language Development Teacher

nripley@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-267-2117

Natasha Villanueva

Operations Coordinator

nvillanueva@hiawathaacademies.org | Office: 612-455-4033 | Mobile: 612-267-2286

Rachel Archer

Special Education Teacher

rarcher@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-327-7823

Rachel Knutowski

Kindergarten Teacher

rknutowski@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-281-1391

Rachel Love

Third Grade Teacher

rlove@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-568-5653

Robbi Weil

Fourth Grade Teacher

rweil@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-578-3437

Samantha Carlson

Teacher

scarlson@hiawathaacademies.org | 952-491-0242

Sheila Willson

Second Grade Teacher

swillson@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-807-4695

Steve Watkins

Paraprofessional

swatkins@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-578-4815

Tessa Buschmann

Paraprofessional

tbuschmann@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-250-1476

Tress Ahles

Third Grade English Language Development Teacher

tahles@hiawathaacademies.org | Mobile: 612-807-4689

Carlos Bedoya Ortiz

Operations Coordinator

cbedoyaortiz@hiawathaacademies.org

Cristin Craig

Dean of Students | Hiawatha College Prep

ccraig@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-990-7221

Cruz Conejo

Specialist Teacher

cconejo@hiawathaacademies.org | 847-313-8516

Gabriela Stiteler

Eighth Grade Literature Teacher

gstiteler@hiawathaacademies.org | 202-316-8271

Joana Di Meglio

Fifth Grade Humanities Teacher

jdimeglio@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-408-9038

John Kaczorek

Math Teacher

jkaczorek@hiawathaacademies.org | 651-341-7821

Kelsey Uribe

Sixth Grade Literature Teacher

kuribe@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-986-3504

Laura Rodriguez

Office Manager

lrodriguez@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-387-7047

Laura Schilling

Fourth and Sixth Grade Math Teacher

lschilling@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-353-4324

Lindsay Johnson

Seventh and Eighth Grade Drama Teacher

ljohnson@hiawathaacademies.org | 608-797-5028

Mandy Williams

Fifth Grade Science Teacher

awilliams@hiawathaacademies.org | 651-334-0992

Ryane Hardy

Eighth Grade Humanities Teacher

rhardy@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-805-3399

Sarah Black

Sixth Grade Humanities Teacher

sblack@hiawathacademies.org | 612-655-3275

Tanya Wacholz

Seventh and Eighth Grade English Language Development Teacher

twacholz@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-876-1825

Amy Carlson

Special Education Teacher

acarlson@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-220-5301

Anna Eddie

Director of Operations | Hiawatha Collegiate High School

aeddie@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-281-0123

Beatriz Alcazar Alvarez

Social Worker

balcazar@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-600-1875

Ben MacKenzie

Ninth Grade Speech and Composition Teacher

bmackenzie@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-695-3800

Caleea Kidder

Founding Dean of Students | Hiawatha Collegiate High School

ckidder@hiawathaacademies.org | 651-485-1148

Dana Hanson

Tenth Grade World Literature Teacher

dhanson@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-600-5451

Gabriela Xochihua-Strickland

Art Teacher and Paraprofessional

gxochihua@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-227-2887

Ian McLaughlin

Special Education Coordinator

imclaughlin@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-220-8829

Joe Kennealy

World History Teacher

jkennealy@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-600-3094

Jon Laven

Math Teacher

jlaven@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-600-5411

Jordan Humble

Founding Biology Teacher

jhumble@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-220-1769

Lindsay DeLand

English Language Development Teacher

ldeland@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-281-4443

Matt Toppin

Dean of Instruction | Hiawatha Collegiate High School

mtoppin@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-802-5521

Meg O’Connor

Tenth Grade Speech and Composition Teacher

moconnor@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-281-0996

Nadia Nibbs

Multicultural Literature Teacher

nnibbs@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-281-6653

Natalie Heath

English Language Development Teacher

nheath@hiawathaacademies.org | 608-386-5907

Nicole Cooley

Principal | Hiawatha Collegiate High School

ncooley@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-547-9746

Favorite book: Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann
Favorite hobby: Yoga

Ms. Cooley is the founding Principal of Hiawatha Collegiate High School. She began her career in education teaching in St. Louis through Teach for America. She then moved to Chicago, where she worked as a teacher and administrator at Gary Comer College Prep, a campus of Noble Street Charter School, the highest performing high school charter network in the city. While there, she led both students and teachers to unprecedented successes, most notably, 100 percent graduation and enrollment in college. In 2013, she joined the Hiawatha Academies as director of teaching and learning. When asked about her work, she said, "“I feel amazingly grateful to be part of a network wherein one hundred percent of students will not only graduate from high school, but will be academically and personally be prepared to experience both the success and challenge that will exist for them in college".”

Ryan Williams-Virden

Dean of Students | Hiawatha Collegiate High School

rwilliams-virden@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-281-6659

Tony Andrade

Enrichment Coordinator

tandrade@hiawathaacademies.org

Victor Sanchez Castro

Office Manager

vsanchez-castro@hiawathaacademies.org | 612-600-5573