A national benchmark in
Educational excellence through integration of the arts

Staff Directory

Amanda Cox First Grade Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 640

Betsy Homan EC Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 635

Lori Cozzi Executive Director Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 303

Lori has worked in education for over 25 years. She began working at ArtSpace in 2003 as an Arts Integration Specialist, and has been the Executive Director since 2007. Lori holds a B.S. in Communications and an M.S. in Arts Education from Florida State University. Lori is a National Board Certified Teacher in Middle Childhood Education, and she holds NC teaching licenses in Art Education and Elementary Education. She has taught art to students ranging from pre-school through adult, and has also been an Elementary Teacher and an Academically Gifted Teacher.

Lori has been a Teaching Fellow with the NC A+ Schools Program since 1999, and in this role has traveled throughout the country presenting and instructing other educators on best practices in arts integrated learning. In addition to spending time with her family, she enjoys dance, art history, gardening, and soccer.

Hollis McKeown Assistant Director, Kindergarten-Fourth Grade Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 308

This is Ms. Hollis first year as our kindergarten-fourth grade assistant director. She joined our staff in the 2009 school year, as a third grade teacher. Ms. Hollis was voted Teacher of the Year at ArtSpace in 2011.  Before working at ArtSpace Ms. Hollis taught with Asheville City School’s preschool program as well as Chicago Public Schools as a third grade teacher. Ms. Hollis holds a B.A. in Sociology from Tulane University, and her teaching licensure through Western Carolina University.  She is a member of LYLAS, an all-female comedy troupe in Asheville.  She loves to travel and spend time with her husband and young son.

Elizabeth Russell Business Director Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 307

Elizabeth Russell holds a B.A. in Art and Pre-Med from Douglass College at Rutgers University and an M.A. in Art and Architectural History of the Middle Ages from Columbia University.  She has thirty-plus years of experience in public and non-profit executive leadership. She has garnered further studies in Human Resource Management, Accounting, Real Estate Finance, Creating Public Markets for Public Spaces, Grant Writing.  She has been a participant in Leadership Asheville for 14 years. Elizabeth has been a member of our administrative team since 2011. Elizabeth’s hobbies and interests include art, organic gardening, community building, and family.  She also is a group fitness instructor.

Carol Davis Systems Administrator Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 313

Carol holds certificates as a Microsoft System Adiministrator, Analyzing and Troubleshooting TCP/IP Networks with Wireshark,  as well as taken course work in Microsoft Active Directory, Powershell and most recently  in Microsoft Server 2012 through AB Tech Community College.  Carol has also been a member of North Carolina Education Technicians since 2014. She served as a Board Member from 2001 to 2003, and co-founded the ArtSpace parent organization in 2001. Ms. Carol has been an ArtSpace employee since 2003.  Her personal interests include family, reading, baking, fishing, and of course technology.

Lucy Sawyer Assistant Director: Grades 5-8 and Exceptional Children Program Director Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 305

Lucy has worked in education for over 17 years. She holds a B.A. in English and American Literature and an M.Ed. in Special Education from the University of Tennessee. In addition, she holds North Carolina teaching licensure in Cross-Categorical K-12 and Middle School Mathematics. She enjoys spending time with her family, outdoor activities, reading, and science fiction shows.

Darlene Dimenna Administrative Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 304

Darlene holds an M.A. in Health Psychology from Appalachian State University. She joined ArtSpace as a parent and volunteer in 2001 and joined the front office staff in 2009. She is passionate about health and wellness and shares this with the  ArtSpace community through the wellness committee and annual Health Fair.  She  coordinates the ArtSpace garden growing flowers, herbs, the occasional vegetable and cultivating a love of plants and fresh healthy food with students. She is also an herbalist and currently serves on the board of the North Carolina Herb Association.  

Jane Horning Office Manager Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 322

Jane holds a B.S. in Business Education from Florida Southern College. She has been involved with ArtSpace from its inception, first as a volunteer.  Jane has been on staff at the school since 2003.  She enjoys reading, hiking, and music.

Beth Garrison Librarian Artspace Charter School

Beth has a BA in Art from University of California, Santa Cruz and a Masters in Library and Information Science from University of North Carolina, Greensboro.  She has a long history of working in libraries, which began as a page shelving books in a public library during college over 20 years ago, and the last being in the Asheville-Buncombe Public Library as a children’s librarian. Beth has been an ArtSpace parent since 2013 and joined the ArtSpace staff in 2015.  She enjoys reading, crafting, swimming, and spending time with her husband and three daughters.

Erin Carr Communications and Marketing Coordinator Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 321

Erin has taught 3rd and 4th grade at ArtSpace, working with the school since it’s inception in 2001.  She earned a B.A. in Literature from Earlham College, an M.A.T. from the University of St. Thomas in Secondary Language Arts Education. Erin has also studied photography, printmaking and art history at Marshall University. She enjoys reading, fun conversations and laughing, cooking and eating good foods, photography and spending time with her family.

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Michelle Migyanka Student Information Coordinator Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 326

Michelle earned a Business Associate degree from Broward Community College with an added emphasis in psychology.  She joined the ArtSpace staff in the fall of 2012 however she has been an ArtSpace parent since 2008.  Michelle is a beekeeper, an avid gardener, loves to travel and spend time with her family.

Robin Allred Community Partnerships and Volunteer Coordination Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 309

Robin graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 1983. She has been working in schools since 1999, beginning with the Charlotte Jewish Preschool, Shalom Preschool of Asheville, Claxton Elementary and finally landing at ArtSpace in 2007, as a member of the Board of Directors. After serving 3 years as an ArtSpace  Board Member, Robin began working as a Teaching Assistant in 2011. She now serves as Volunteer and Community Partnerships Coordinator and is charged with daily operations of the new 2nd Act Thrift and Gift Store. Robin enjoys hiking, reading, being crafty and spending time with her wonderful family!

Stephanie Coggins Office Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 625

Stephanie joined the ArtSpace staff in 2013, after working several years as a  substitute teacher and a parent volunteer. She holds a B.S. degree in Criminal  Justice from Western Carolina University, where she was a member of the Phi  Gamma Mu honor society. Stephanie’s interests include reading, art journaling, and mastering the art of crochet.

Thomas Solesby Building Manager Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 644

Thomas has worked in residential and commercial construction for 17 years and has experience in carpentry, electrical and plumbing. He studied at Haywood Community College and Western Carolina University. He enjoys fly tying, fly fishing, and walking through the woods with his children.

Beth Lexa Theatre Arts Specialist Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 631

Beth holds a B.S. in Theatre Arts from Towson University and an M.A. in Theatre Arts from the University of Illinois at Chicago.  She is also licensed in Theatre Arts, Middle Grades Language Arts, and Special Education.

Ms. Beth began her career as an intern at The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in the education department. She then served as a Teach for America corps member teaching in South Louisiana for two years.  Beth then worked as a teaching artist in Chicago Public Schools with the non-for-profit, Reading in Motion. After moving to western North Carolina, Beth taught theatre arts at East McDowell Junior High. Beth joined the ArtSpace Faculty in 2008.  She enjoys books, movies, yoga, and chocolate!

Jocelyn Reese Visual Arts Specialist Artspace Charter School
Phone: 298.2787 ext.628

Jocelyn has worked in arts education, arts programming and school administration for over 15 years. Her job experiences vary from LEAF Schools & Streets Director, Assistant Principal for Asheville City Schools, and Art Teacher for Chicago Public Schools.  Jocelyn holds a BA in Art/Art History from DePaul University, a MAT in Interdisciplinary Arts Education from Columbia College Chicago and a MSA in School Administration from Western Carolina. She was a NC Principal Fellow and has done extensive training in school management, strategic planning and positive behavior support.  She is NC licensed in K-12 Art Education as well as School Administration.  Her love for teaching art and inspiring youth brings her back to the classroom.

In her spare time, Jocelyn enjoys drawing and painting and creating site specific installations.  She also co-produces the Asheville Fringe Arts Festival with her husband each January.  This 4 day performing arts festival highlights new and emerging interdisciplinary performances from both local and imported artists for culturally adventurous audiences.

Rebecca Triplett Dance Specialist Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787 ext. 617

Meg Boerner Music Specialist and Band Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 641

Meg holds a BSE in Music Education from Millersville University in Pennsylvania.  She was ArtSpace Charter School’s Teacher of the Year 2014-2015, as well as Mountain Xpress Best Of Winner: 2nd Best Music Teacher (2015, 2016.) Meg has been a part of the ArtSpace community since 2013.  In addition to K-5 general music classes, Meg serves as the director of the choral and instrumental ensembles, and teaches private lessons through the After Care program.  Meg has experience working in the field of behavioral health, and with children who are visually impaired.  She has been an Assistant Coach with Girls on the Run for the past three years, and soccer in Spring 2016.  Meg enjoys running, yoga, and exploring Asheville’s restaurants and live music!

Michael Barfield Physical Education Specialist and Exceptional Children’s Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 638

Michael holds a B.S.Ed. in Physical Education from Western Carolina University and is also licensed to teach Special Education. He was born in Georgia and raised in Canton, North Carolina. Before coming to ArtSpace, Michael taught at North Buncombe Elementary for 2 years in an intensive intervention classroom for students with significant disabilities.  He enjoys going to church, fishing, and playing disc golf, basketball, and softball.

Steve Lipe Instructional Technology Specialist Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 610

Since its inception in 1999, Steve has been associated with ArtSpace Charter School.  He wrote the school’s first state technology plan as the school’s charter was being finalized. After 10 years in traditional schools, serving as a 4th and 5th grade teacher, technology specialist and media coordinator, Steve joined the original ArtSpace staff as a 5th grade teacher, which he did for 5 ½ years, before transferring into the technology program.

 

Steve holds a B.S. in Recreational Resources Administration from NC State University, an M.A. in Communication Studies from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and an M.L.S. from Appalachian State University. He completed his teaching certification at the University of North Carolina at Asheville. With over 25 years of experience, he holds North Carolina professional licensure in K-6 General Education, K-12 Computer Science, and K-12 Media Library Science. In addition, Mr. Lipe is a North Carolina A+ Fellow, and has presented integrated technology workshops at regional, state and national conferences. His personal interests include reading, traveling, camping, and history. His daughter, Alex, is attending college at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, and his wife, Roberta, is a co-founder of ArtSpace Charter School, and an art teacher at Vance Elementary in the Asheville City Schools, where she was chosen as the 2015 Vance Elementary Teacher of the year.

 

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Rebekah Walker Kindergarten Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 602

Rebekah holds a B.S. in Elementary Education from Central Methodist College.  She won the Elizabeth Stephenton Award in Art Education for making a four-foot King Babar puppet. Rebekah has been an educator for 18 years and has worked as a tutor at a private tutoring center, a teacher for Buncombe County Schools and in Delaware. Ms Rebekah joined the ArtSpace staff in 2002.  Rebekah enjoys laughing, spending time with family and friends, hiking, knitting, and volunteering for non-profit organizations.

Andrea Giglitto Kindergarten Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 647

Andrea earned a BA in modern languages and linguistics from the University of Maryland, and her teaching certification from University of North Carolina at Asheville. Andrea also earned her National Board Certification in Literacy: Reading and Language Arts in 2010. She has worked one-on-one with developmentally disabled children and taught first grade for Asheville City Schools for eight years.  For the past three years Andrea volunteered for the Ministry of Education for the Commonwealth of Dominica, assisting primary and secondary teachers with implementing reading interventions for struggling readers.  Andrea has traveled extensively throughout her life and believes experiencing other cultures is the best path to personal growth. This is Andrea’s first year at ArtSpace. In her free time she enjoys trail running, mountain biking, hiking and backpacking.

Heidi Blozan Kindergarten Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 649

Heidi earned a BA in education for middle school science and reading from Warren Wilson College.  She also possesses Montessori certification for 1st-3rd grades.  Heidi is one of the founding educators of the Swannanoa Valley Montessori School in Black Mountain. Heidi is the parent of an 8th grader at ArtSpace and an alumni currently a junior in High School. This is Heidi’s first year as a staff member at ArtSpace. In her spare time Heidi enjoys gardening, knitting and contra dancing.

Adrienne Chaney 1st Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext. 626

Adrienne Chaney has enjoyed her years of working with children teaching in public schools, private schools, and Montessori charter schools for over 20 years. She has excitedly engaged in different teaching techniques to enhance the learning experiences of her students and is enthusiastic about learning even more during her time at ArtSpace as she collaborates with the amazing staff!  Along her journey as an educator she has also received certification and training in meditation for children, Positive Discipline, the Connection Practice and has been working with children on mindfulness, self-awareness, and peace education for many years.  Adrienne is relatively new to Asheville having moved here in the spring of 2015 with her 12 year old daughter.  She loves spending time in nature, drawing, painting, and writing, as well as all the many cultural events here in this beautiful area of Western North Carolina.  She is very excited to be a part of Art Space!

Claire Spence First Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 614

Claire has a B.A. in Elementary Education and a M.Ed. in Special Education Early Intervention from UNC-Charlotte. She joined ArtSpace in 2012, but before that she taught in schools in private and public settings across NC.  Claire studied and trained with the famous developmental Reggio Emilia schools in Italy and in the summer 2015 she taught English to middle school students in Shanghai.  She also was privileged to research and explore elementary mathematical instruction with the Ministry of Education in Singapore. Claire was selected to be a member of the Governor’s Teacher Network 2014, conducting, reporting and presenting action based research on dramatic play in kindergarten.  Claire is an A+ Fellow, training teachers in other schools to embrace the arts integration philosophy in North Carolina. When not teaching or lesson planning, she enjoys exploring the Asheville area and travelling overseas.

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Alison “Ali” Mellander Second Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 606

Ali holds a B.A. with Honors in Environmental Studies from University of California-Santa Cruz, and an A.S. in Horticulture from Santa Rosa Junior College. She has been an educator for 13 years. Ali is a Master Gardener and chair of the ArtSpace Bulbs and Butterflies committee.  She loves animals of all kinds, especially dogs, and spends her time gardening, hiking, nature, poetry, and yoga.

Annabell Lisa Second Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 605

Annabell earned a BA in education from Warren Wilson College.  Before joining the ArtSpace staff in 2004 she taught ESL in Brazil and Venezuela.  Annabell was ArtSpace teacher of the year for the 2012-2013 school year.  She enjoys hiking, painting, dancing, and gardening with her son Coltrane.

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Elise Fuller Second Grade Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 615

Elise graduated from Appalachian State Cum Laude. She played varsity Field Hockey and taught snow skiing and snow boarding throughout her college career. After graduation she was the director of the children’s ski school. Elise completed prerequisite course work for veterinary school in Charleston, South Carolina. She joined the ArtSpace staff in 2014. Elise was a stay at home mom for several years. While at home she started a mini-farm where she raises rabbits, chickens, and pigs. Every summer Elise runs a science and art camp for children ages 4-12.

Melissa Redden Third Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 639

Melissa earned a Bachelor’s degree from Georgia College and State University with a certificate in Arts Integration. Before coming to ArtSpace, she taught third grade for 8 years at Brevard Elementary where she was Teacher of the Year in 2014. In her free time Melissa enjoys creating all kinds of things (mostly knitting and sewing, but also jewelry, drawings, paper crafts, and visual design pieces). She also tremendously enjoys reading, kickboxing, and hiking.

Mary Wray Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787 ex: 601

Mary received her degree from Appalachian State University in Recreation Management.  After working briefly for the Forest Service in Lake Tahoe and being home with her son for three years, she started teaching at a Montessori School in Spruce Pine, where she spent the next fourteen years. Mary completed her elementary certification through UNCA in May 2014 and has taught second grade at Two Rivers Community School in Boone for the last two years. She has now joined Artspace teaching third grade. Mary enjoys guiding children through the process of discovering what inspires them, and igniting a passion to learn about the world. Mary’s bucket list includes becoming a master pasta maker on the Italian Riviera, going on safari in the Serengeti, and learning the mysteries of Angkor Wat (previous life goals were to become Indiana Jones).  Mary’s other interests include reading, cooking, hiking, camping, music, and spending time with family and friends. Mary is slightly obsessed with tubing on the river and can be found at the river near her house on most sunny summer days.

Julie Williams Third Grade Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 650

Tonya Clanton Fourth Grade Language Arts and Social Studies Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 608

Ms. Tonya earned a Master of Education in Reading from the University of Florida.  She taught 4th – 8th grade at The Learning Community in Black Mountain for 5 years where she trained in and utilized reader’s and writer’s workshop.  She also collaborated with the arts teacher to integrate social studies curriculum with visual and perfoming arts.  After leaving TLC Ms. Tonya taught 5th – 8th grade language arts and social studies at two different charter schools.  She feels very fortunate to be a part of a community that nurtures the whole child and fosters critical thinking, problem solving, and independence through the arts.

 

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Victoria Sibley Fourth Grade Math and Science Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 632

Victoria holds a B.A. in Elementary Education with a minor in Special Education from High Point University.  She also holds a M.Ed in K-12 Literacy from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  Victoria has six years of experience as a fourth grade teacher and is in her second year at ArtSpace.  Other professional experience includes district math curriculum development for 3rd-5th grade and leadership on Positive Behavior Interventions and Support Teams.  Her personal hobbies include yoga, backpacking and traveling the world.

Chris Williams Fourth Grade Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 630

Chris earned an Associate of Arts degree from AB Tech Community College.  He has worked for Eliada Home for Children in their day school program as well as a house parent at the Black Mountain Home for Children for 8 years. Chris joined the ArtSpace staff for the 2015-2016 school year. In his spare time Chris enjoys hiking,  mountain biking, playing guitar and being a dad.

Marni Rubin-Flanigan Fifth Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 637

Marni joined the ArtSpace faculty in 2006 and was Teacher of the Year in 2013-14. Marni holds a BFA and a MEd from West Virginia University. Marni lived in Taos, New Mexico for 5 years where she began her teaching career in an Expedition Learning Outward Bound school. She directed a camp in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and she also taught 6th grade at a charter school in New Mexico. In her free time, Marni enjoys spending time with her son, husband, and dog, reading, and exercising.

Heather Burrows Fifth Grade Social Studies and Language Arts Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 619

Heather began working at ArtSpace in 2008 as a Teacher Assistant, and has been teaching her own class since 2009.  She taught seventh grade Language Arts for five years, before becoming the fifth grade Language Arts and Social Studies teacher.  Heather holds a B.A. in English from Keene State College, in New Hampshire, where she is originally from. Heather holds NC teaching licenses in Middle Grade English Language Arts and Elementary Education.

In 2009, Heather completed a NC Teacher’s Initiative Outward Bound program, where she gained experience with experiential learning and teaching.  In 2015, Heather completed a National Endowment for the Humanities training in Concord, Massachusettes, focusing on the Crossroads of a Revolution, where she gained expertise on the eve of the Revolutionary War.  Heather co-leads the GRITS program, where she fosters a love of science and builds community with girls in grades 5-7.  She is a proud recipient of the AmeriCorps Education award for three years in a row.  In addition to spending time with her family, she enjoys music, exploring the mountains, reading, and yoga.

John Hall Sixth Grade Language Arts and Social Studies Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 611

John, a National Board Certified educator, has a long history with ArtSpace, beginning in 2003.  He was the ArtSpace Teacher of the Year in 2008-09, and North Carolina Charter School Teacher of the Year in 2009-10. He also served on the State Superintendent’s Teacher Advisory Council in 2010 and 2011. He earned his B.A. in Humanities from Milligan College and has taught for 15 years. A professional entertainer, John enjoys performing in theatre and cabaret in the Asheville area. He also enjoys attending local theatre productions featuring former students, as well as hiking and reading. John has a daughter, Anna Kate, a sophomore at Catawba College. 

Lyn VanOver Sixth Grade Math and Science Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 609

Lyn has been in education for 21 years. She began as an outdoor educator and naturalist. Lyn is one of the  founding faculty members at ArtSpace, helping to get the school off the ground in 2001.  She is a National Board Certified Teacher in Middle Childhood as well. She holds a B.S. in Biological Anthropology with a minor in Environmental Science from the University of California, San Diego, and a M.A. in Elementary Education from Spalding University.  Lyn enjoys gardening hiking, and music. Lyn has two daughters. Lyn’s daughter Glory is a graduate of Artspace and is currently a sophomore at  UNCW and Lyn’s daughter Grace is in 7th grade at Artspace.

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Ian Canary-King Seventh and Eighth Grades Social Studies Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 648

Ian holds a B.A. in history from Macalester College and an Master’s of Education in social studies from the University of Minnesota. Over the past seven years he has worked in schools as a teacher, tutor, mentor, and college access coach. He joined the ArtSpace staff in 2014. Outside of school, he enjoys music, reading, and walking his dog along the French Broad River.

 

Leila Wheless Seventh and Eighth Grade Language Arts Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 643

Leila holds a BA in Comparative English and French Literature from Davidson College and a Master of Arts in Teaching Secondary English from Agnes Scott College.  She has taught kindergartners through high school seniors subjects including French, humanities, phonics, creative writing, and martial arts. Leila joined the ArtSpace staff in 2014. Leila loves Shakespearean theater, poetry, long distance running, and bouldering.  Leila also enjoys spending time with her husband, three children and many cats.

 

Megan Smith Seventh and Eighth Grade Mathematics Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 636

Megan earned a B.S. in Environmental Studies at Juniata College, and a M.A. in Teaching from Western Carolina University.  She is one of the few to have through-hiked the Appalachian Trail.  When she is not backpacking or hiking, she enjoys swimming, cooking, and playing the piano or guitar.

Nick Rogowski Seventh and Eighth Grade Science Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 612

Nick has worked in education for 17 years. He holds a B.A. in Arts and Architecture from the University of New Mexico, and a teaching degree from Appalachian State University.  He enjoys painting, playing with his son, bike riding and racing, car racing, hiking, and time with his family.

Sue Cummings Middle School Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 620

Sue holds a B.A. from Montreat College in Liberal Arts, with an emphasis in Bible and a minor in Cross-Cultural Communications.  Sue has been a part of ArtSpace in one way or another from the beginning.  She will be the one opening the door in the morning for morning care.  In her spare time Sue enjoys canoeing and spending time with her wonderful husband Bob.

Adina Arden-Cooper School Counselor Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 323

Adina Arden-Cooper has been at ArtSpace since 2008. She holds a B.A. in English and Photography and an M.A.Ed. in School Counseling. She has North Carolina professional teaching licensure in School Counseling and is a National Board Certified Teacher. She is also a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and an accredited Triple P Parenting Program provider. Prior to serving ArtSpace, Adina worked as a School Counselor and a School Based Therapist. Additionally, she worked as a Teaching Assistant for a K-2 classroom, and in After School programs, serving children Pre-K through 8th grades. She completed a term of service with AmeriCorps Project Power, tutoring students in literacy and teaching anger management, conflict resolution and service learning.

In her spare time, Adina creates various types of visual art. She also loves to write and is an avid reader. She enjoys the great outdoors and loves to travel, listen to music, and explore the universe.
If you would like to find out more about counseling program at ArtSpace follow this link.

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Dede Keasler Exceptional Children’s Teacher Grades K-3 Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 306

Dede has been at ArtSpace since 2007. She has worked with children for more than 15 years. Her earlier experiences include various summer camps including a camp for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Director of Recreation at Lake Royale and 10 years in the Wake County Public School System. She holds a B.S. in Recreation Administration from Wingate College and Special Education Certification from Western Carolina University. She enjoys interior design, home remodeling, watching movies and spending time with her dogs.

Eric Florence Exceptional Children's Teacher/Intensive Intervention Classroom Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 613

Eric taught in Exceptional Children’s programs for 9 years in McDowell County and for 3 years at Owen High School before coming to ArtSpace in 2015. He has worked in a variety of outdoor recreation and therapeutic programs for people with special needs over the decades. He has a BA in Biology from Albion College in Michigan and has taken graduate classes in Special Education from Western Kentucky and Western Carolina University. He is licensed in Special Education and Biology. He has earned National Board certification in Exceptional Needs Specialist; Early Childhood through Young Adulthood. He enjoys playing with his boys, doing just about anything outdoors, reading, and playing chess.

Amy McDuffie Student Support Coordinator Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 603

Amy joined the ArtSpace staff for the 2014-2015 school year as the second grade teaching Assistant. In the 2015 -2016 school year she  changed roles and is working with students with behavioral needs. Amy holds a BA in Psychology and a M.Ed. in Special Education. She has taught in residential treatment facilities as well as 2 other charter schools. She is very excited to be a part of a community that fosters creativity. She loves painting, hiking and spending time with her husband and two children.

Tara Reese Exception Children's Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 633

Tara studied Early Childhood Development at McDowell Technical Community College.  She has been involved in ArtSpace since its inception: while her husband served on the original Board, she was a co-founder of the ArtSpace parent organization.  Tara has worked at ArtSpace for eleven years.  A coach in local soccer and baseball associations, she enjoys cooking, her church, and time with family.

Jake Ware Exceptional Children’s Teaching Assistant Grades 6-8 Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 624

Jake first began working with children in high school, volunteering in an afterschool program for elementary students. Upon graduating from the University of Maine at Farmington with a degree in creative writing, Jake found himself working as art director for a girl scout camp in Cuba, New Mexico. In 2001, he was hired to work in an afterschool program and sub at an elementary school in Shutesbury, Massachusetts, where he remained in many different capacities, (pre-school assistant, one-on-one assistant, office manager, union president) until 2011. Jake joined the middle school and EC teams here at ArtSpace in 2012. He enjoys sharing his passion for writing and the arts, and is proud of his time spent coaching the middle school spelling team to several region-wide victories.

Hal Smith Exceptional Children’s Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 618

Hal holds a B.A. in History and English Wofford College. He joined the staff in 2003.  Hal also coaches the middle school Odyssey of the Mind team each year as well as coaches flag football and soccer for the hospitality league. When not at school Hal enjoys reading, tennis, camping, and photography.

Terri Fletcher-Frye Exceptional Children's Teacher Grades 4-5 Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787 Ext.627

Ms.Terri earned a B.A. in psychology and communicative disorders from San Diego State.  She earned an M.A. in education with a focus in special education from UC Riverside.  Ms. Teri has worked with children for over 6 years and has experience working with adults with traumatic brain injury. She joined the ArtSpace staff for the 2016-17 school year. In her free time Ms. Teri enjoys spending time with her family hiking, biking and playing games. She also enjoys reading, going to concerts and gardening.

Clay Magidson Fifth Grade and Exceptional Children's Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 622

Clay holds a degree in Fine Art from Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design, and is currently pursuing a license in Art and Special Education certification at the University of North Carolina at Asheville. Clay joined ArtSpace in 20011 and has worked in the classroom as a teacher assistant, as well as a one on one in our Exceptional Children Program. Clay is also involved in the ArtSpace extracurricular program as both a painting and pottery instructor.

Glenda Brouwer Title I Coordinator and Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 621

Glenda holds a B.S. in Bible and Bible Teaching from Columbia International University and an M.A. in Human Resource Leadership from Azusa Pacific University. She holds NC teaching licensure in Bible (K-12) and in Reading (K-12) and has worked in education for over 15 years. Glenda joined the ArtSpace staff in 2008. She enjoys spending time with her family, travel, reading, and scrapbooking.

Christie Kendall Title 1 - Reading Specialist Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext. 616

Ms. Christie joined the ArtSpace staff in the 2016-17 school year. Ms. Christie graduated from Columbia International University in South Carolina. She has years of experience working with children of all age.  She has facilitated cross-cultural teams to Central America and Eastern Europe, worked as a dorm parent in a middle school boys dorm at an international boarding school in Kenya and as a youth ministry counselor.    In her spare time she enjoys reading, thrift shopping and spending time with her family which includes a growing number of grandchildren.

Beth Watman Speech Language Pathologist Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 629

Ms. Beth earned her degree from Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, IL.  Ms. Beth just recently moved to WNC from the Chicago area.  She is enjoying the natural beauty and mild winters of the area. She has worked for 37 years with children 3 years -14 years in ages.  She also has 13 years experience with children birth to 3 years old. moved here from Chicago about one year ago.  I love this area for the natural beauty and mild winters.  She enjoys hiking, jogging, cooking and playing golf.

Tami Magidson After Care Coordinator Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 646

Tami holds an A.A. in Cultural Studies from Brevard College as well as a B.A. in Foreign Language and Cultural Studies from UNC-Asheville. Tami enjoys traveling abroad and has lived in England, Austria, Italy, and Argentina, and though she grew up in Buffalo, NY and Baltimore, MD she now enjoys the beauty and tranquility that western North Carolina provides. Tami coordinates all AfterCare related programs at ArtSpace as well as teaching the afterschool Pottery class.

Amanda Annarino After Care Staff Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 646

Amanda joined the ArtSpace AfterCare staff in August of 2012. She studied at AB Tech before transferring into the English program at UNC-Asheville. Ms Amanda was a nanny for 7 years traveling to Europe and other places in that position. Ms. Amanda also worked with high risk youth in an after school program while in college  She is a certified travel and tourism agent, and is a CNA 1. She loves travel, especially in Europe and Africa, gardening, hiking, pottery, and glass art.