Jistine Harrison
Student Support Services Director
Jistine is the Student Support Services Director for both the Castle Pines and Parker campuses. Her 15+ years of teaching includes experience in sixth grade, K-5 early intervention, and K-8 special education. She holds a B.S. in Elementary Education from the University of Iowa, an M.A. in Administrative Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Colorado at Denver, and a Masters of Educational Technology from Boise State University. Although she is originally from San Diego, Colorado is the state she loves to call home. She lives in Castle Rock with her husband, two sons, and the family dog, Kenosha. Outside of teaching, she enjoys running, cycling, swimming, riding her motorcycle around our beautiful country, and spending time with the family enjoying all the wonderful outdoor activities Colorado has to offer.
Andrea Bambury
Ability Group Instructor (Grades 2&3), Parker
Hello! My name is Andrea Bambury and I am super excited to be an Ability Group Teacher at American Academy this year. I moved to Colorado on January 1, 2016. I am originally from Southaven, Mississippi where I spent the past 37 years (my life). Southaven is a town that sits right beside Memphis, Tennessee. I am a Southern girl at heart, and LOVE my SEC college football!!! I am married to Kevin Bambury and we have 2 handsome boys named Collin and Carter. Collin is 17, a junior at Castle View High, and Carter is 6, a first grader at American Academy. My husband received a job transfer from Memphis to Denver, so that is what brought us to Colorado. I absolutely love it here, and only wish we would've moved here a long time ago. This is my first year at American Academy, but not my first year teaching. I taught first and second grade for the past 9 years in the largest school district in Mississippi. I graduated from Crichton College in Memphis, Tennessee with a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education K-6. I currently hold a highly qualified professional teaching license for the state of Colorado. I am SO PROUD to be a part of the American Academy team this year!
Erica Bartlett
Lead Learning Specialist, Parker
I am from Kansas City, KS, and attended the University of Kansas. I have my undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and my master’s degree (also from the University of Kansas) in Adaptive Special Education. My hobbies and interests include skiing, hiking, fishing, boating, and great food! I love spending time traveling with family and friends!
Heidi Carlson
ESL Coordinator/Interventionist, Parker
I was born in Denver, but raised in Taos, New Mexico. I obtained my undergraduate degree in Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences, from Metro State College of Denver. I acquired my graduate degree at Grand Canyon University, where I studied Curriculum and Instruction with an Emphasis in Reading. I have two children, a twelve-year-old son and a ten-year-old daughter. When I’m not running kids around I love to read books, hike, run and watch funny movies.
Beth Culberson
Lead Speech Language Pathologist, Castle Pines
Born and raised in Grand Junction, I’m a Colorado native and live in Highlands Ranch with my husband and two great kids. I love the fall because that means football (Go Broncos and Fighting Irish!), and enjoy mountain biking, duathlons, running, and camping. I am incredibly enthusiastic about speech-language pathology and empowering children to effectively communicate in their world. I am proud to be part of American Academy and the Student Support Services team!
Tammy Dale
Occupational Therapist, Castle Pines and Parker
Amy Fiscus
Speech Language Pathologist
I began my career in 2000 working with preschool age children in Douglas County after earning my Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Over the years, the age range of the kids I supported expanded to 3-16 year olds while working in private practice and at an out-patient pediatrics clinic. Helping children to develop strong speech and language skills is so important to me; I love what I do and I learn new things every day from the wonderful professionals around me! My husband and I are Colorado natives and we enjoy being active with our two girls and our dog. I love camping, hiking, skiing, going to the movies, and cheering on the Buffs and the Broncos!
Kaity Fortney
Ability Group Lead and Interventionist, Castle Pines and Parker
I was born and raised mostly in sunny Colorado. I spent 15 years in Alaska being adventurous, but recently moved back “home” to be closer to my family. I received my BA in Elementary Education from the University of Alaska Anchorage in 2009, and love being in the classroom! My husband and two children have acclimated quite well to Colorado, and enjoy all of the sporting events available to us. We enjoy hockey, swimming, riding our bikes, and enjoying all that Colorado has to offer. I love being able to share my passion of reading with children.
Nichole Guthrie
School Psychologist, Castle Pines and Parker
I’m originally from Kansas and graduated from Fort Hays State University in 2002. I spent nine years in Wichita, KS, working for a special education cooperative where I worked with students ranging from preschool to age 21. My daughters and I moved to Parker in 2012 and we are in love with Colorado!
Heidi Hassett
Educational Assistant, Castle Pines
I am originally from Roseville, MN, but grew up in Parker, CO. I received my Bachelor’s Degree, in Business Marketing, from Colorado State University (Go Rams!). My husband and I have three children. Two of them attend American Academy and the oldest attends Rock Canyon High School. I enjoy attending my children’s basketball and lacrosse games, reading, running, shopping, and getting together with my girlfriends.
Megan Isberg
Literacy Ability Grouping Instructor (First Grade) and Interventionist, Parker
Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, I moved to beautiful Colorado 16 years ago. I have undergraduate degrees in psychology and sociology, a Master’s degree in Special Education from the University of Northern Colorado, and endorsements in Elementary Education, Special Education Specialist and Special Education Generalist. I have been teaching for more than 12 years but in my free time, I love to be outdoors with my family hiking, swimming, being active and spending time with friends.
Laura Leven
Educational Assistant, Parker
Growing up I lived in Wyoming, California, Utah, Virginia and Washington. Colorado has been my home since 1997 and is my favorite. I have a Bachelor of Science in Communications from the University of Wyoming. I have two daughters and a silver lab named Lucy. In my spare time I enjoy attending my daughters swim meets, and activities, book club, and cheering on the Seattle Seahawks.
Laurie Liddick
School Psychologist, Castle Pines
Laurie is the architect of the Gifted and Talented program at American Academy. She has a degree in Biology, a Masters in Educational Psychology, and is currently working toward her Doctorate in School Psychology at the University of Colorado. She also holds a Colorado State secondary teaching license with an endorsement in Science and Gifted Education. Laurie is beginning her sixth year at American Academy and has had over 15 years of experience in education, serving as a member of a charter school board, teaching in a gifted pull-out program, instructing Kindergarten through eighth grade STEM and teaching secondary science. She enjoys collaborating with other educators and parents in order to provide the most conducive environment for students.
Donna Loy
Educational Assistant/Speech Language Pathology Assistant, Castle Pines
I was born in Anchorage, Alaska. My father was in the military so we moved quite a bit. I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and my Speech Language Pathology Assistant certification from the University of Colorado. My husband and I have one child. She attended American Academy from first through eighth grade and now attends Regis Jesuit High School. I love to travel!
Tara McMahon
Learning Specialist, Lincoln Meadows
Audrey Miller
School Counselor, Castle Pines
I am a Colorado native, and one of my favorite ways to recharge is spending time in our fantastic mountains. If I’m not taking full advantage of the great outdoors on weekends, you’ll probably find me with my nose in a book or a fork in my hand; I love reading just about everything I find, and operating on a stomach full of good food never hurt anyone! I have attended University of Colorado at Colorado Springs for both my B.A. in Psychology and M.A. in Counseling. I draw heavily from a strengths-based and solution focused background when working with students, where they are recognized as the experts of their experiences. I also love incorporating play for our younger grades, and am thrilled to be joining the AA family!
Candyce Miller
Learning Specialist, Castle Pines
I grew up in rural Indiana and was an extra in the movie Hoosiers. I went to college for my Bachelor and Master degrees at Wright State University in Ohio. Then returned to school just a few years ago to earn my Ed. S. at the University of Northern Colorado. I have been married almost 25 years and have two wonderful adult children, Blake and Jordan, and two adorable Chihuahuas, Sweet Pea and Cash. I enjoy reading and taking Sunday drives in the mountains with my husband, Greg and our little doggies. This will be my first of what I hope will be many exciting years working here at AA and its fabulous staff, students and families.
Jamie Shull
School Counselor, Parker
While I grew up in Washington, D.C., I lived in Colorado previously and I’m thrilled to be back. After several years as a teacher, coach, and mentor both stateside and overseas, I decided to pursue school counseling as a career. My eclectic approach to school counseling blends respect, creativity, humor, and strong relationships. I am committed to empower and support students in becoming their best, unique selves and am grateful for the opportunity to do this at American Academy. I also love to hike, read, rock climb, and travel with my husband. We love a good adventure together!
Kristine Valkner
Intervention Specialist/Learning Specialist, Parker
I am originally from Chicago, IL, and received my bachelor’s degree in Communication Disorders from Northern Illinois University and a graduate degree in Special Education from Northeastern Illinois University. My husband, son, daughter and I moved to Colorado in 2008. I enjoy spending time with my family, hiking, skiing, yoga and reading.
Maria Wagner
Assistant to SSS Director, Castle Pines and Parker
I have worked in education for over ten years and I believe learning should be fun! If kids are having fun, they are learning. My husband and I have been married for twenty-five years and we are both Colorado natives. I have two children and three dogs, so that keeps me pretty busy! When I am not at school, I enjoy spending time with my family. We like to swim, paddle board, camp, and hike. I also enjoy reading, cooking, and the arts - especially ballet! I am looking forward to another fantastic year at American Academy.
Katie York
Learning Specialist and Interventionist, Castle Pines
Some of you may already know me from last year as the second and third grade literacy ability group teacher at American Academy. For those of you who don’t, I grew up in Connecticut and went to school in upstate NY. I received my Bachelor of Arts degree at Hobart & William Smith Colleges where I had the amazing opportunity to teach abroad in New Zealand. I am a certificated Elementary and Special Education Teacher. I absolutely love Colorado and all the outdoor activities that this state has to offer!