Our Team

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Eve Bunevich
Lead Humanities Teacher

Eve is a Quinnipiac alum who graduated in 2007 with her Masters in Education. She decided to travel the world for a year after graduating and started a non profit in Cambodia to help kids suffering from HIV. Eve returned to begin her teaching career. She taught in New Jersey for a year and then moved to New York City to teach in Charter Schools. She taught in NYC for 6 years and realized she missed being in nature. The great outdoors were calling! Eve decided to pack up and move to Denver to join the Roots team as an academic director. She is beyond thrilled to be a part of the Roots community and to lead the future scholars of America to academic success!

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Marissa Chaney
Special Education Teacher

Marissa is a Learning Specialist and an Executive Function Specialist with multiple bachelor’s degrees, graduating Magna cum Laude, and is currently completing a Masters in Education. Marissa has more than 13 years of teaching experience working with students from the collegiate level to preschool. In addition, she is certified to teach an anti-bullying program and has experience working as a trauma counselor. When not working with the amazing students at Roots, she is working hard running her own business. When not at work, Marissa can be found outdoors with her hilarious and loving dog Atzlan or having fun with her kitties. She loves to snowboard and scuba dive. The passion Marissa has for working with students with differences shows in her dedication to working with these students for most of her teaching career. Marissa firmly believes access to quality education is a civil rights issue and will work relentlessly to ensure all scholars receive an enlightening educational experience so they grow to love academics as mush as she does!

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Nora Colter
Lead STEAM Teacher

Nora graduated from Grinnell College with a BA in Psychology and a concentration in Neuroscience before receiving a Masters in Elementary Education from the University of Michigan. She taught 2nd grade for four years at Community of Peace Academy, an incredible charter school in St. Paul, MN. As someone who loves sunshine and spending time in the natural world, Nora is so excited to be moving to the Denver area. She is thrilled to be joining the dedicated teaching team at Roots and can’t wait to become a part of this Colorado community!

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Lisa Feuerstein
Teaching Fellow

Ever since she was little, Lisa felt at home in the outdoors. She’d spend hours splashing around the neighborhood creek, turning over rocks to observe and collect bugs, climbing trees to read her favorite books until the sun set, and would almost always return home to dinner covered in dirt. It’s no surprise that she aspired to pursue a degree in geology at Hamilton College, and has been spending her post-college days working as a naturalist and guide, sharing the beauty and serenity of nature with others. She has worked with children of all ages, teaching them geology enrichment classes, and leading long-distance bicycle trips and hikes through the mountains. She especially enjoys the experience of opening up her students’ imagination to the wonders of the world that surrounds them. Lisa is thrilled to be a part of the Roots community as a Teaching Fellow, and looks forward to sharing her joy for both teaching and learning with such an inspiring group of scholars.

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Jaclyn Gorman
Habits of Success Coach

Jaclyn graduated from the honors college at Arizona State University with bachelors degrees in Psychology and Family/Human Development. She joined Teach For America in 2011 and began teaching Special Education in Denver that same year. In 2014, she graduated from University of Colorado Denver with a Masters in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education. She loves working with students, and their families, to support them as they become amazing human beings both inside and outside the classroom. In her free time, Jaclyn enjoys reading young adult fiction, lounging with her dog Rusty, and eating dessert before dinner.

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Dominic Hernandez
Manager of Facility & Nutrition

Dominic is a Colorado Native.  He’s worked in the non-profit sector for the past 17 years in both Colorado and Washington D.C. and is committed to helping children thrive.

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Jon Hanover
Executive Director

Jon Hanover led the successful application of Roots Elementary to the Denver Public School Board where it received unanimous approval. He has led the organization through its early development and is the Executive Director and Principal of the school. Before launching Roots, Jon was a Founding Kindergarten Teacher, Grade Level Chair and member of the school leadership team at Rocky Mountain Prep (RMP). As a teacher, his students demonstrated over 2 years of growth in both math and reading on the nationally-normed NWEA MAP. Prior to joining the faculty at RMP, Jon worked on the investment team at the Charter School Growth Fund where he worked closely with the leaders of the most successful and innovative charter school networks in the county. Over 90% of students at these schools matriculate directly to colleges and universities, and most are the first generation in their family to do so. Jon was responsible for advising the founders and CEOs of these organizations on a wide array of strategic issues. He also evaluated new school models, recommended investments and managed a portion of the Fund’s portfolio of schools. Jon began his career at Bain & Company where he advised clients on strategy, management and operations. While at Bain he worked pro bono with the founder of Rowe Elementary during her planning year, managing financial forecasts, aligning the curriculum with state standards, designing the assessment and data-driven instruction cycle for the school, creating an onboarding plan for staff and contributing heavily to the successful launch of a high-performing K-8 charter school on Chicago’s west side. Jon graduated with honors from Harvard University.

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Kathryn is an alum of DePauw University where she majored in Psychology and Art History. After graduation, Teach For America led her to Houston, Texas where she taught first grade for two years. Returning to her hometown of Chicago, Kathryn joined the team at Rowe Elementary School, teaching first grade and third grade, before leading the academic program as the Dean of Academics for grades 3-5. Kathryn holds a Masters of Education in Teaching from Dominican University and a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership from Columbia University in the City of New York. In her free time, Kathryn enjoys reading, spending time with friends and family, and being outdoors. Feel free to reach her any time at kathryn@rootselementary.org.

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Carla Mejia
Manager of Community Engagement

Carla joins us from the Colorado Eastern plains. She grew up in Fort Morgan, and later moved to Greeley, where she attended the University of Northern Colorado. There she worked towards getting her B.A. in Psychology with minors in Biology and Spanish. While at UNC, she discovered her passion for education and worked extensively with the office of admission in order to ensure that students of all backgrounds had an opportunity to apply to the university and be aware that there were many support systems in place, to help them obtain their dreams. Carla is thrilled to be a part of the Roots team and is ready to serve the Northeast Park Hill community.

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Megan Miles
Habits of Success Coach

Though Megan hails from the small town of Gadsden, Alabama, she has spent much of the past few years in Latin America, teaching English in the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, and most recently in Argentina as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant. She graduated with honors from Harvard University with a degree in History and Literature; while there, she also served on the Board of Directors of the non-profit organization Supporting Guasa, directed a mentoring program for elementary students, and began thinking about how to overcome the disparities in our public education system. Some of her favorite things include Alabama football, camping, and encouraging our scholars to make learning a lifestyle.

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Christina Noyes
Teaching Fellow

Christina Noyes grew up in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and received her BA in International Studies from Elon University. She caught the travel bug at early age, and has worked and studied in South Africa, Rome and most recently Zambia, where she served as a Peace Corps volunteer. As an education volunteer, Christina trained 11 teachers on how to successfully implement a phonetic literacy program, reaching100 2nd and 6th grade pupils. She also worked with her neighbors to understand the assets and needs of the community and collaborated on various grassroots development projects. Christina is passionate about social justice and believes that all individuals should have access to a quality education and the resources that facilitate academic and social growth. She is excited to work and learn at Roots!

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Keenan Ross
Teaching Fellow

Keenan Ross is a native of Atlanta, GA and a graduate of South Carolina State University where he received his BA in Political Science (Pre-Law) with a minor in International Business. He is passionate about education and has volunteered at elementary schools with his fraternity Alpha Phi Alpha, Inc. to educate young minds on the importance of graduating high school and going to college. A quote he lives by is “Character, Not Circumstances, Makes A Man”.

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Jill Tew
Director of Operations and Innovation

Jill joins the Roots team after a varied career in strategy, operations, and technology. Most recently, Jill was Manager of the Email Marketing team at Craftsy, an online education company dedicated to helping its members further their creative passions. Before Craftsy, Jill was a consultant with the Boston Consulting Group, where she supported some of the world’s largest companies in solving their top-of-mind strategic and operational challenges. While at BCG, she also helped the firm expand its growing Education practice. Jill graduated with honors from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. After spending years dipping her toe into the world of education, she is thrilled to be taking the plunge with Roots!

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Mackenzie Wagner
Lead Humanities Teacher

Mackenzie graduated with honors from Elon University in North Carolina where she received a B.A. in Public Health Studies and minored in Early Childhood Education. Originally from Simsbury, CT, Mackenzie decided to head back North after graduation to teach kindergarten at Leadership Prep Brownsville in Brooklyn. In her spare time, Mackenzie enjoys playing with her dog, making feeble attempts at cooking, and listening to country music. Mackenzie is excited to develop scholars’ natural curiosity about the world around them and help them to express themselves through writing.

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Leksy Wolk
Lead STEAM Teacher

Leksy graduated with honors from the University of Colorado at Boulder in political science. In her spare time she spent five semesters coaching for the Public Achievement Program conducting service learning projects with local K-12 students, being a mentor through the I Have A Dream Foundation, running the local Students For Education Reform chapter on her campus, as well as being a Learning Assistant for the Atmospheric and Oceanic Studies department. When she isn’t stalking Arne Duncan on twitter, you can find her snowboarding, long boarding, or cuddled up watching the most recent crime drama. Leksy has dedicated her life to the pursuit of educational equity for all students, and this journey starts with learning with our scholars to be the best educator possible.

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Heidi Lang
Habits of Success Coach

Heidi was born and raised in Denver, Colorado. After traveling the world on Semester at Sea ’06, she knew I wanted to work with children. Heidi believes all children deserve a chance to embrace their innocence and their curiosities while being provided with the opportunities to learn real life skills, build their character and become lifelong learners. Her first teaching experience was in Tanzania where she volunteered at an orphanage set deep in the Eastern African village of Tengeru. Since then she taught Kindergarten in Thornton, CO, 2nd grade for four years in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and was a Math content teacher for 2nd/3rd grade within DPS. She’s so happy to be back in Colorado and in my free time I love to run, read, take photos, golf, hike, snowboard, travel and spend time with her family and friends. She is thrilled to be a part of the innovative Roots team and so excited to support the successes of our students and families. Heidi has a B.A. in Psychology from CU Boulder and I a teaching degree from CU Denver. She is enrolled in a master’s program in Educational Leadership through an online program at the University of New England.