Kentucky State Teacher Fellows

Carly Baldwin
High School Science Teacher

Carly is a National Board Certified teacher at Boyd County High School and has taught for 6 years. Carly has coached Academic Team and FPS and just started coaching Science Olympiad. She works to develop Science literacy through Carly is passionate about developing teacher leadership demonstrated by her involvement in Boyd County’s District Leadership Team, ECET2 and KASC Leading Through Learning Cadre.  She is married and loves to go hiking with her husband and two dogs. Carly earned a Bachelor’s in Biology from Murray State University and a Master’s Degree in Education from University of Tennessee at Martin.

Andrew Beaver
8th Grade Math Teacher

For 6 years Andrew has been a math teacher at Olmsted Academy North Middle School in Jefferson County. Andrew is representing his school at conferences on Standards Based Grading and Professional Learning Communities this summer. Andrew is passionate about incorporating literacy into mathematics and developing student capacity to think critically. He earned his Bachelor’s in Business from Indiana University and was recruited into education through Teach Kentucky. Andrew earned his Masters in Teaching from The University of Louisville and is currently earning his Educational Specialist Degree from Bellarmine University.

Christina Crase
9th-12th Grades Algebra II, Pre-Calculus and AP Calculus Teacher

Christina has taught at BLHS in Floyd County, KY for 12 years. Her innovative teaching methods have helped to facilitate a classroom environment more conducive to learning. She is a KVEC Stem committee lead, district professional development presenter, site based decision making council member, peer mentor and she is involved in many other school based leadership tasks. Christina earned a Bachelor’s in Secondary Education with an emphasis in math from Pikeville College (now Upike); a Master’s in Administration from Morehead State University and is currently working on a Master’s in Mathematics at Western Kentucky University.

Heidi Givens
PK-12 Itinerant Teacher of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Heidi, a National Board Certified Teacher, has taught deaf and hard of hearing students for 21 years, with 13 of those years in Daviess County. Heidi is the president-elect of the Convention of American Instructors of the Deaf and co-founder of the Kentucky Educators for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. She is a current member of the Kentucky Commissioner of Education’s Teacher Advisory Council and has recently completed her two year term as a member of the 2014-2016 Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Teacher Advisory Council. Heidi was also the 2013 Kentucky Elementary Teacher of the Year. She earned a B.S. in Deaf Studies and M.Ed. in Deaf Education from Boston University as well as a Director of Special Education certification from University of the Cumberlands.

Tiffany Gruen
4th and 5th Grade Social Studies Teacher

Tiffany has spent her 10 year career at John G. Carlisle Elementary in the Covington Independent School District. Her passion for civic education in urban settings drives the work that she does both in and out of the classroom. She’s a member of the Next Generation Social Studies Standards Writing Task Force, the Social Studies Regional Leadership Network and a Core Advocate with Student Achievement Partners. Tiffany was awarded the KCSS Elementary Social Studies Teacher of the Year award in 2014. Tiffany earned a Bachelor’s in Elementary Education and a Master’s in Teacher Leadership with certification in Gifted Education from Northern Kentucky University.

Elizabeth “Beth” Lovett
Music Teacher

Beth is an Itinerant Music Teacher in the Knox County School District for over 18 years, was a semifinalist for the 2015 Kentucky Teacher of the Year, and recipient of the Ashland Teacher Achievement Award.  Beth participates with Innovative Teacher Leader Cohort (ITL), Vice-President for KEA’s Upper Cumberland Education Association (UCEA), Knox County Education Association (KCEA), Senate Territory 21 State KEPAC Chair, and President-Elect for the Southeastern Kentucky Fine Arts Association.  Beth earned a B.A.M.M. from E.K.U., M.A., Rank I, from Union College in Music Education.  She created R.E.P.S. Program and grant lead on the E3 Grant for Lay Elementary.

Kari Patrick
High School English/Language Arts Teacher

Kari teaches at Shelby County High School where she serves as English department chair. In March of 2015, Kari hosted a Thinking Strategies Regional Lab Host Classroom with instructional coaches and Public Education and Business Coalition (PEBC) facilitators. During the 2013-2014 school year she served on the Strategic Leadership Team with the superintendent and district teachers to review and create a plan for fostering 21st-century students & teachers. She enjoys hiking with her husband and two dogs. Kari earned a BA in English at Centre College and a MA in Secondary English Education at University of Kentucky.

Joe Payne
6th and 7th Grade Special Education Teacher

Joe is a special education teacher at Beaumont Middle School.  He has taught for seven years and also serves as department chair.  Joe is a district trainer in Safe Crisis Management.  He was named an Asbury Teaching Fellow for his work with students in the university’s education program.  He also spent two years in the FCPS Aspiring Leaders program.  Joe has presented at various conferences including the 2015 Engage! KCM Conference, and the School of Teacher Education Conference at WKU.  Joe earned his BA in Special Education and MA in Educational Leadership from the University of Kentucky.

Robin “MeMe” Ratliff
Elementary Physical Education and Health Teacher

MeMe has been the PE and health teacher at Greenwood Elementary in Louisville since 1997 and was the 2013 Kentucky Elementary Physical Education Teacher of the Year. She serves on the Teacher Advisory Council of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and is the state lead planner for ECET2 (Elevating and Celebrating Effective Teaching and Teachers) with the Fund for Transforming Education in Kentucky. MeMe focuses her passions on teacher engagement and mobilization and co-founded the #KYEdvolution, a grassroots, teacher-led movement to connect the educators of Kentucky and optimize student learning. She is a proud graduate of Morehead State University.

Cassie Reding
5th Grade ELA Teacher

Cassie, National Board Certified Teacher, graduated from Murray State University and taught six years at South Todd Elementary before moving to Russellville to teach at Stevenson Elementary and coach girls’ high school basketball for the 2014-2015 school year. Cassie has devoted herself to maintaining a student-centered learning environment and instructional practice in which her students take ownership of their learning. Cassie is active in KEA and relishes the role of “hybrid” teacher-leader; it allows her to stay in the classroom while seeking professional development and sharing it with her colleagues. She is married to one of those colleagues; they are raising seven children together.

Jami Martinez Reynolds
Instructional Specialist

Jami is an Instructional Specialist at Bluegrass Middle School and has worked in the Hardin County School District for 10 years.  She is a current member of the 50-50 PGES Committee and KEA.  Jami served for three years as the math teacher leader for GRREC and is the ELA Department Chair.  She is currently the coordinator for programs such as ESS, Program Review, and KSI. Jami is passionate about empowering students with a growth mindset and using data to drive instruction. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Middle Grades Education and her Master’s Degree in Technology from Western Kentucky University.

Jonathan Rogers
7th and 8th Grade Science Teacher

Jonathan has worked for the last four years at Bardstown Middle School in Bardstown, KY. From 2011-2012, he was employed at Bryan Station High School in Fayette County as a Chemistry and Physical Science teacher. Jonathan is motivated to have his students understand real-life applications to the content they learn. Jonathan is an active member of the Kentucky Education Association at the local, district and state level. Jonathan was graduated by the University of Kentucky in 2009 with a B.A. in Chemistry with a second major in Biology (B.S.). In 2011, he was graduated by UK with a M.A. in Education with a Rank II Kentucky Teacher Certification.

Tricia Shelton
High School Science Teacher (Integrated Science, Anatomy and Physiology, Biology)

Tricia Shelton is a Teacher and Teacher Leader with a BS in Biology, MA in Teaching, and Rank 1, who has worked for 20 years in Kentucky driven by a passion to help students develop critical and creative thinking skills. Tricia is a 2014 NSTA Distinguished Teaching Award winner for her contributions to and demonstrated excellence in Science Teaching. As a Professional Learning Facilitator, Tricia has worked with educators across the United States to develop Best Practices in the Science and Engineering classroom through conference presentations, webinars, co- moderating #NGSSchat on Twitter, and virtual and face to face PLC work.

Jolena Sizemore
4th-6th Grade Teacher

Jolena is a National Board Certified teacher at WB Muncy Elementary. She has taught school for 17 years and worked in the Leslie County School District for over 10 years. In addition to her work in the classroom, Jolena works to support NBCT candidates and is currently a Statewide Coordinator for the NT3Ky/Gates Grant Project. Jolena serves as President of the Leslie County Education Association, as well as being active at state and national levels as well. Jolena earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Berea College and a Master’s Degree from Eastern Kentucky University.

Allison Slone
6th-8th Grade Emotional and Behavioral Special Needs Teacher

Allison has been a special education teacher at Rowan County Middle School for 16 years. Originally from Knott Co, Ky., Allison earned a Bachelor, Master, and Rank I degree all from Morehead State University. Allison is the Program Review Coordinator for RCMS, a third term teacher member of the school’s SBDM Council, team leader, a Campbellsville University Teacher Leader in 2013-2014,  a member and school rep. for RCEA and KEA, and a teacher member of the RCMS Schools to Watch Leadership team.

Ann Marie Stevens
High School Spanish Teacher

Marie is a National Board Certified teacher at Scott County High School, where she has taught Spanish since 2007.  Before teaching Marie sold textbooks and developed educational technology programs.  She earned a BA in Spanish and English from Texas Wesleyan University and an MA in Education from Georgetown College.  Marie fell in love with Spanish by hearing friends speak it.  She hopes to foster curiosity and global-mindedness in her students through rich classroom experiences and engagement with the community. Marie travels with her husband and son, does yoga, reads, and runs.

Sabrina Tackett
6th-8th Grade Writing Instructor

Although new to Jenkins Independent Schools, Sabrina has fourteen years of middle school experience, and has just renewed National Board Certification.  Active in the Kentucky Writing Project (KWP), she has led numerous local, state, and national trainings for more than a decade, and founded KWP Online.  Sabrina was selected as the 2015 KCTE Middle School Vice President, as a 2014 Connected Educator by the Fund for Transforming Education, and for a 2009 Ashland Achievement Award.  She completed her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees at Morehead State University.

Stan Torzewski
AP World History and AP Psychology Teacher

The 2015-16 school year will be Stan’s his 12th year in education. Stan, a National Board Certified Teacher, has held various leadership positions, including Assistant Principal during this time. However, love for the classroom brought him back to teaching from administration. Stan is active with the Center for Teaching Quality (CTQ) as well as Elevating and Celebrating Teaching and Teachers (ECET2). Mr. Torzewski is passionate about mentoring underprivileged students, and started a program at Fern Creek this past school year focusing on character development and leadership.

Leah Wheat Turner
7th Grade Writing Teacher and Component Manager

Leah teaches 7th grade writing at Wayne County Middle School. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Lindsey Wilson and graduate degrees from Eastern Kentucky University. She is currently a member of the Innovative Teacher Leader Cohort. She has been employed with the Wayne County School District as a teacher for 22 years. During the 2015-2016 school year, she will not only teach but will also be managing Wayne County Middle School’s Program Review completion and the monitoring of the school’s CSIP. She has two wonderful children who keep her busy being a baseball, basketball and bowling mom.

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