Principal - Edwin Salem My college education/degree: Iona College/ Masters in Education Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I believe everyone needs another chance to make improvements. A small community environment like Legacy Options can provide the right supports to make that happen. My Goal in life: I’m living it! A learning experience that changed my life: Working with schools like Legacy earlier in my career has given me a new perspective to education. My favorite book: The Count of Monte Cristo My hobbies/interests are: Muay Thai, Kickboxing, Biking Where I am From: New York
Assistant Principal- Mrs. Marie Bencomo I am originally from Tucson, Arizona. Along with my 3 dogs, I have two daughters, both who have graduated and live in Denver, Colorado. I also have a 2 year old granddaughter. I began my career as a Program Analyst for Home Depot, in Atlanta, Georgia. While working for Home Depot, I graduated from Kennesaw State University, with a Major in Elementary Education. After a 15 year teaching career in Austell, Georgia, I moved to Colorado. This is my sixth year with Denver Public Schools and my first year as the Assistant Principal at Legacy Options High School. I am excited about supporting Legacy students in pursuing their goals and aspirations. Go Panthers!
Brenda Diosdado-Luevano Secretary I have been working for DPS for 5 years always with the motivation of students first. In my spare time I like to be with my family. I don't have kids therefore I can be considered the "cool aunt" hanging around all my nieces and nephews. If I travel, I prefer the beach. Nothing like waking up and hearing the calm ocean breeze and continuous waves. I love interacting with new families and learning about different cultures. If there is anything I can do to assist you, I am one phone call away. I look forward to working with Legacy Options High School families this year. 720-424-3100
Dr. Senella Baldwin School Psychologist My college education/degree: University of Arizona/BA Psychology Argosy University-Phoenix/Doctorate of Psychology Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I am committed to supporting our students because they deserve to be supported, uplifted and heard. As well as reminded that their journey may be tough, however, in the words of Nelson Mandela “It always seems impossible until it is done.” My Goal in life: My goal in life is not to waste any of the talents that have been bestowed to me. A learning experience that changed my life: I have had several experiences that have changed my life in some aspects. Overall, they all have boiled down to me working harder, accepting what I cannot change and being proud of the accomplishments that I have earned. My favorite book: Dibs in Search of Self - Virginia M. Axline My hobbies/interests are: ·Watching & Playing Sports ·Traveling ·Reading ·Watching Movies ·Playing Games Where I am From: Denver, Colorado
Maria Maclin Counselor My college education/degree: Roosevelt University /BA Psychology Liberty University / M.Ed: School Counselor (TL) Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I want to support students in their college and or career endeavors. Because I didn't have that in my high school experience. I believe all students deserve a fair chance to succeed at whatever they believe their life should be. My Goal in life: Be the best me I can be while helping others. A learning experience that changed my life: I wouldnt say its a specific learning experiences. But always being underestimated and wanting to prove people wrong. My favorite book: Year of yes -Shonda Rhimes Becoming -Michelle Obama My hobbies/interests are: Walking my dog Working Out Yoga Spending time with family Movies Shopping Where I am From: Chicago, Illinois
Alma Salas Dean of Culture My college education/degree: MSU Denver With a major in Chicana/os studies and a minor in political science Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I am committed to sharing my passion, my love, and knowledge with each and every student that walks into this home. I will empower our students to be more than they ever could have imagined, as some of my teachers did for me. Meanwhile, experiencing fun activities, new adventures and a new perspective of life after High School; while coaching them about the “adult world.” My Goal in life: To show my daughter that life is beautiful. A learning experience that changed my life: Understanding that I could not attend college because I was undocumented. (come talk to me if you have questions) My favorite book: Las enseñanzas de don Juan- Carlos Castañeda My hobbies/interests are: Art, food, traveling, movies and watching my baby grow. Where I am From: Guadalajara, Jalisco Mexico
Steven L. Jones Operations Coordinator My college education/degree: BS: Criminal Justice / MA: Human Services Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I was a student that spent my 9th grade not being the best student I could be. However, I could do math, read, and write. When the light bulb came on I was able to graduate high school early in the month of December and start college in January. Everyone has a different path, I want to support our students to find their path to success. My Goal in life: After I worked for the Illinois Department of Corrections, my college fraternity brother went to work for International Business Machines (IBM). It was my goal to work for IBM and retire from IBM, which I was able to do. My next goal in life: Is to live o be 112 years old. A learning experience that changed my life: Being elected my high school sophomore class President, taught me about the election process and leadership. My favorite book: Treasurer Island My hobbies/interests are: Chess, Bicycle Riding, Swimming Where I am From: Bloomington, Illinois
Mr. B Campus Safety Officer My college education/degree: Fayetteville State University - Fayetteville, NC (BA in History) Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: Primarily to give back to my community; to be an example to the students as well as protect them and staff. My Goal in life: To help as many people as I can for as long as I can anyway I can. A learning experience that changed my life: Tough teenage years challenged me to be a positive person and not waste my life, in a nutshell I came to Jesus. My favorite book: Life Application Study Bible My hobbies/interests are: Reading, writing, drawing, working out and family Where I am From: North Carolina
MINDA MCGURK OGC-CCS Implementation Coordinator My college education/degree: Colorado Mesa University, BA in Performing Arts, Regis University, MA Nonprofit Management Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: Every student is unique and different and learns in a different way. I am passionate about tapping into each individual student's needs and strengths to become successful. I strive to cultivate creativity and curiosity to promote life-long learning. My Goal in life: To always try to leave an experience wiser than I entered it and better than I found it. A learning experience that changed my life: I always did really poorly on tests and I had a wonderful social studies teacher, in high school, that realized something just wasn't right. He gave me the opportunity to re-take a test verbally and I nailed it. We found out I had severe testing anxiety and was unable to take multiple choice tests successfully. He allowed me to finish his class doing tests with essay or verbally and shared the issue with my other teachers. I was able to feel more confident in my abilities and it was my first lesson that kids don't all learn the same way and it's important to figure out our students individually. My favorite book: Becoming by Michelle Obama My hobbies/interests are: I teach dance classes (primarily tap and choreography) and have been dancing for decades! I LOVE to bake and started a little side cupcake project for family and friends! I also LOVE football! Where I am From: Born in Cedar Rapids, IA (GO HAWKS!), raised in Aurora, CO
Branden Lane Biology and Computer Applications Teacher My college education/degree: MSU Denver/ BA Biology UCD/ MA Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education Curriculum and Planning Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I believe all students are entitled to an education. Traditional school does not work for everyone so being able to be more personal with each student is important to the students success. My Goal in life: To be a parent A learning experience that changed my life: By skydiving I have learned that there is no need to be afraid of heights. If I can fall 18000 feet and be okay then 8-10 is nothing My favorite book: IT My hobbies/interests are: Skydiving, Fishing, Camping, Hunting, Traveling, Fish Tanks Where I am From: Denver, CO
Leslie Canon Art Teacher My college education/degree: BFA from DU and MAT from RISD Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I enjoy helping young people succeed and reach their goals in creative ways. My Goal in life: Make it to 100 A learning experience that changed my life: Living overseas 3 times My favorite book: A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle My hobbies/interests are: Running, yoga, outdoors, art Where I am From: Memphis, TN
Liz Gavrys Social Studies Teacher My college education/degree: LaSalle University – Bachelors of History Master of Education Arcadia University – Teaching License Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: Helping students succeed in school and life is why I wanted to support Legacy students My Goal in life: To make a lasting impact on those around (family, friends and students) A learning experience that changed my life: Playing competitive soccer had a large impact on my life. It allowed me to travel, make life-long friends and assist in attending a prominent university. My favorite book: So many, that I can’t name them….ask me! My hobbies/interests are: Outside of school I enjoy spending time with family and friends. Staying physically active (playing soccer, skiing, hiking, ect.) is important as it helps me keep all aspects of the life in harmony. Where I am From: Born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA. Attended college in Philadelphia and lived there for almost 13 years. My family moved to Colorado in 2003.
Mr. Williams Social Studies Teacher My college education/degree: I have a Master’s in Education from Grand Canyon University. I got my Bachelor's in History from Colorado University Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I truly believe that everyone should have an education that relates to them in someway, and have people in their lives that are kind. I try to accomplish both these in my classroom. My Goal in life: That at the end I’m happy with the impact I had on others. A learning experience that changed my life: In college the first time a professor let me explore a topic that was only slightly related but showed me how it related. I did a whole paper on Star Trek and related it to U.S. History. My favorite book: My favorite book is 1984 My hobbies/interests are: I love bowling, trivia, and board games. Where I am From: I’m from Denver.
Samantha Radcliffe Math Teacher My college education/degree: B.A. in Mathematics and Secondary Education from Saint Louis University. (I am currently working on a Masters Degree from CSU Global) Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: This is my 4th year teaching at Legacy. I love working with high school students and seeing all the amazing things they continue to accomplish! This school truly feels like a family to me, and I am proud to be a part of the Panther community. My Goal in life: I am passionate about teaching math as a tool to seek justice, think critically, and make sense of the world. I hope to continue to do this for my students, while also always being ready to learn alongside them and improve myself as an individual. My favorite book: Tiny, Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed My hobbies/interests are: I like to hike, travel, read, go to concerts, stay active, and spend time with friends and family. I am a big Chicago sports fan (go Cubs!). I learned how to ski a couple years ago, so that’s a new hobby of mine! Where I am From: Chicago, IL
Scott Davis II Teacher - Chemistry & Physics My college education/degree: Western Kentucky University 1. B.S. Recombinant Genetics 2. B.S. Chemistry Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: All students deserve a teacher that cares about them and wants and believes they can succeed in all things in life. My Goal in life: To become the best version of myself in all aspects of life - physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. A learning experience that changed my life: Mr. Gerber was my physics teacher in high school and he showed me how to love learning and science. My favorite book: Can’t Hurt Me by David Goggins My hobbies/interests are: Hiking, Golfing, Camping, Coaching, Self-Improvement, Where I am From: Ohio
Lexie Paul Math Teacher My college education/degree: Bachelors: Health and Exercise Science Masters: Secondary Education with content area in Mathematics Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: Our students deserve better than what they were handed in this life and teaching at Legacy Options is one way that I can do better by them. My Goal in life: My life's aspiration is to make at least one positive change for every student I teach. A learning experience that changed my life: When I was done with my undergraduate degree and out in the real world working with adults, I came to the realization that working with the youth was my passion. My favorite book: Catcher in the Rye My hobbies/interests are: Volleyball, camping, being on the lake, and snowboarding Where I am From: Parker, Colorado
Dalton Dennis Language Arts Teacher My college education/degree: Metropolitan State University of Denver: Bachelor’s - English w/ a concentration in Literature, minor in Psychology University of Colorado Denver: Master’s - Curriculum and Instruction in Critical Pedagogy Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I am dedicated to helping each student find their strengths, passions, and voice so that they may thrive in their future pursuits. My Goal in life: I’m living the important ones! I have a million others. (Also, to publish at least one novel) A learning experience that changed my life: Every new day. My favorite book: The Idiot by Fyodor Dostoevsky My hobbies/interests are: Traveling, writing, reading, the outdoors, music/collecting vinyl records Where I am From: Southwest Denver
Mrs. Moser Language Arts Teacher My college education/degree: BA in Language Arts, Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction, Master’s in Educational Leadership Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I have worked at Legacy since we opened and watching both this school and my students grow since day one is something that I am immensely proud of. My Goal in life: To see and do as much as possible A learning experience that changed my life: Stop stressing about the small stuff that will not matter a year from now. My favorite book: Harry Potter My hobbies/interests are: Cooking, Reading, Ella Where I am From: Colorado
Luke Mossell Physical Education Teacher My college education/degree: Bachelor of Science (Southern Illinois University) Colorado Teaching License in Enlgish as a Second Language K-12 Colorado Teaching License Physical Education K-12 ( Metropolitan State University- Denver) Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: To empower students with knowledge and confidence to lead healthy lives. My Goal in life is: To help others and have fun along the way! A learning experience that changed my life is: When I lived in Central America for a long time for a multitude of reasons My favorite book: The Secret. My hobbies/interests are: Snowboarding, surfing, hiking, camping, swimming, traveling,laughing, playing different sports, being with family and friends. Where I am From: Evanston, Illinois
Pynette Thomas Special Education My college education/degree: Johnson C. Smith University Bachelor of Arts History Minor Sociology Pfeiffer University Master of Arts Christian Education Metropolitan State University Certification Special Education University of Denver Certification Educational Leadership Why I am committed to supporting the students at Legacy: I am committed to helping students realize their full potential. As Zig Ziglar states " It's not where you start but where you finish that counts." My Goal in life: My goal in life is to visit all 50 states. A learning experience that changed my life: After taking my first trip out the country I realized that there is so much more I wanted to do in life. My favorite book: A Thousand Splendid Suns My hobbies/interests are: Reading, playing the saxophone, genealogy Where I am From: Washington D.C.