We’re not exactly a revolving door here at Eagle Rock, but staff members do come and go on occasion, as was the case this summer when we said farewell to last year’s Public Allies Fellows and a handful of staff members.
And now we’re turning around and tossing down the welcome mat for eight new full-time staffers — some of whom we already know who have taken on new positions, and some who are brand new to our mountain side high school.
Without further ado, let’s introduce our new staff members, in no particular order:
Brighid Scanlon, World Languages Instructional Specialist, Ponderosa House Parent
Brighid has a Master of Arts degree in foreign language pedagogy (Spanish focus) from the University of Delaware Newark, Del., and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the same institution in Spanish studies and mass communication.
Recent Eagle Rockers will recall that Brighid was the World Languages Fellow two years ago, and this past year was the interim performance and music instructor after Ike Leslie moved on. She will be co-house parenting this year with second-year Public Allies Science Fellow, Sara Benge.
Dan Hoffman, Language Arts Instructional Specialist
Dan received his teaching certification in secondary education and social studies From Prescott College after earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Urban & Environmental Policy from Occidental College in Los Angeles.
Some of you will recognize Dan from his year as the Eagle Rock/Public Allies Societies and Cultures Fellow in 2009-10. Dan returns to Eagle Rock having worked at Voyager Academy High School in Durham N.C., as a curriculum specialist and social studies teacher.
Dan will join the Ponderosa House team.
Diego Duran-Medina, Societies Cultures Instructional Specialist
Diego’s impressive creds include a Bachelor of Arts degree from Colgate University; a Masters of Arts degree from New York University; and, a Masters of Education degree from Teachers College, Columbia University. While at Columbia, he studied educational administration at The Klingenstein Center for Independent School Leadership.
Diego has extensive experience with independent schools, having worked at the Punahou School (Honolulu, HI) and The Edmund Burke School (Washington, DC).
He will join the Juniper House Team.
Stephanie Dixon, Registrar and Life After Eagle Rock Counselor
Stephanie worked for five years as a career and post-secondary counselor and teacher in the high-need Denver Public Schools that featured a diverse population of young people between 14 and 24 years of age — most with multiple obstacles to educational success.
She was also a Workforce Investment Act (WIA) case manager to former dropouts where she focused on non-traditional opportunities for students. And she managed the development of a Post-Secondary Success team to support 400 first-generation college students where the continuation rate was 85 percent.
Stephanie has a Master of Arts degree in nonprofit management from Regis University in Denver, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in theology from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wis.
She joins the Lodgepole House Team.
Becky Poore, Math Instructional Specialist
A former Peace Corps volunteer for two years in Uganda, Becky taught biology and mathematics at a rural secondary school.
In addition to that unique classroom experience, Becky also possesses extensive experience as a backcountry guide and as an instructor for Deer Hill Expeditions in Mancos, Colo.
She holds a Masters of Arts degree from the University of Colorado in Boulder’s Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, School of Education – Curriculum & Instruction for K-12 math and science education. And she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree at Colorado College in Colorado Springs.
Becky will join the Spruce House Team.
Meghan Tokunaga-Scanlon, Music & Performance Instructional Specialist
Meg is a native Coloradoan, having received her Bachelor of Arts degree in music from Chicago’s VanderCook College of Music.
She comes to Eagle Rock having taught in Chicago public schools for three years. Meg has coordinated a dance team, taught music and theater and is a seasoned choir director. She jumped in with both feet this summer, having participated in the Berklee College of Music, City Music Network PULSE curriculum training. Meg is excited to continue the Eagle Rock legacy of amazing ensembles, world class musical theater, and she looks forward to deepening the Berklee partnership.
Meghan will join the Pinon House Team.
Jacques Fournet, Residential Life Coordinator
Many Eagle Rockers will remember “Jaco” as the Eagle Rock School orientation coordinator and wilderness instructor. Jacques worked at Eagle Rock from 2000-2009 before getting married and joining the Peace Corp where he and his wife, Alana, spent three years in the Philippines.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in general studies from the University of Southwestern Louisiana, a Master of Education degree in instructional leadership and secondary counseling certification from Colorado State University.
We are increasing support and focus on the residential aspect of the school and the residential life coordinator position — a new one for us — will go a long way toward supporting our students as they strive to live in respectful harmony with each other.
Because of the nature of Jac’s position, he will not be affiliated with any particular house team.
Sarah Bertucci, PDC Associate, Juniper House Parent.
As many of our stakeholders know, Eagle Rock is committed to serving our students and working with schools around the country on re-engagement efforts.
Sarah Bertucci, our new Professional Development Center (PDC) associate, is expected to play a significant role in both of those endeavors. Sarah was a Princeton intern at Eagle Rock in 1993, returned in 2001 for what was then a yearlong science internship. Since leaving Eagle Rock, Sarah has held numerous school leadership positions including program coordinator for Big Picture South Burlington; the senior organizing fellow for the Institute for Democratic Education in America; and most recently, personalized, proficiency-based graduation fellow for the Burlington and Winooski Partnership for Change.
In addition to Sarah’s PDC work around the country, she and her husband, Jason Cushner, will serve as Juniper House Parents. Some of you will recall that Jason was our math instructional specialist and Ponderosa House Parent for seven successful years.
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About the Author: Jeff Liddle is the head of school at the Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center — a nationally recognized, tuition-free residential high school in Estes Park, Colo., that offers a second chance to students who have not been able to succeed in a traditional high school setting, and a professional development center that supports high schools nationally in re-engaging youth in their own education. As head of school, Jeff is responsible for leading Eagle Rock’s school community and its executive leadership team; interfacing with the organization’s board of directors; and, overseeing the vision and financial health of the organization.
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