Ms. Sarena attended East Carolina University with the Teaching Fellows Scholarship. Majoring in Exercise Science and minoring in Interdisciplinary Human Studies, she graduated with a teaching license in K-12 Health/ PE. Ms. Sarena’s first teaching job brought her to Morganton, where she taught high school dance, gymnastics, and health. Collaborating with the Fine Arts department she established the 1st Annual Art Expo, a night that celebrated all forms of art. Ms. Sarena earned her National Board Certification, a Master’s of School Administration degree from Appalachian State University and was honored as Burke County’s Teacher of the Year.
After earning her master’s degree Ms. Sarena was an Instructional Coach, Assistant Principal, and Principal at North Carolina School for the Deaf. She enjoyed the opportunity to learn a new language and being embraced by a different culture. During her tenure at NCSD, Ms. Sarena was recognized as the STEM Administrator of the Year by the NC SMT Center for developing the STEM program. Ms. Sarena is also in the process of completing her doctorate in Educational Leadership at Western Carolina University.
Ms. Sarena enjoys traveling and seeking new adventures with her husband and twin daughters.
Esteve was born in Spain, in the Barcelona area. He moved to the USA in 1995, lived in California, and finally settled in the mountains of WNC. He has a degree in Economics and Finance from UNC-Asheville and came to Artspace in June of 2019 after a 15 years career in the credit union industry. His connection to Artspace goes back to 2008 when his son started in Kindergarten. Esteve enjoys all kinds of outdoor activities, from hiking to mountain biking as well as cooking Spanish food.
Hollis McKeownKindergarten - Fourth Grade DirectorArtspace Charter School
This is Ms. Hollis’ third year as K-4 Director and Testing Coordinator. 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 Schools as well as in the Chicago area. Ms. Hollis holds a B.A. in Sociology from Tulane University, and her teaching licensure through Western Carolina University. Hollis loves hiking the mountains of Western North Carolina with her husband and two sons. She is an avid runner and will be completing her first half marathon this school year.
Lucy SawyerDirector of Grades 5-8 Artspace Charter School
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.
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.
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 the 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.
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 CarrCommunications and Marketing CoordinatorArtspace Charter School
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 also studied photography, printmaking and art history at Marshall University. Erin spent most of her growing up years in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Erin loves to garden and cook. She and her husband are currently converting their grass filled yard into a permaculture food forest. She enjoys cooking the food growing in her yard, as well as reading, laughing, photography, and spending time with her family.
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.