Rachel Thomas & Steven Lamb
Rachel Thomas is from the Bilagáana Clan and born for the Tsi’naajinii Clan of the Navajo Nation and a National Board Certified Teacher. A former local business owner, Steven Lamb is a TIG/APS Education Foundation Innovation Award winner. It is through their love of teaching and their desire to help students and teachers leverage technology to improve communication, that brought the pair and their students together.
Gifted Program Educator
Amanda Champany has lived in the border towns of Northern New Mexico, the Bay Area, Denver, England and South Korea and has enjoyed experiencing the traditions of each location.
Amidooli grew up on a reservation known as Santo Domingo Pueblo, aka “Kewa.” He attended a four-year military school in Roswell, New Mexico then enlisted and served honorably in the United States Marine Corps. Amidooli graduated from Central New Mexico Community College with an Associates Degree in Liberal Arts. He currently attends the University of New Mexico studying Native American Studies and Philosophy. Amidooli speaks Keres, Spanish, English and studied Arabic.
André is a high school senior from Las Cruces, NM. He was recently named one of New Mexico’s two delegates to the United States Senate Youth Program. As the Chairman of the Las Cruces Public Schools Student Advisory Council, André’s commitment to developing and expanding sustainable partnerships between local public education officials and youth continues to guide his passion for youth advocacy and public service.
April is a technology integration teacher in Albuquerque. April has a passion to inspire teachers and students with powerful, engaging, and meaningful learning experiences with technology tools in enhancing curriculum. April holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership, both from UNM. April is an Apple Distinguished Educator and strongly believes that it’s not about the technology itself, but what we do with it that matters.
Dominic Pettine is a 2015 New Mexico Golden Apple Teacher of Distinction, an Apple Foundations Trainer, videographer and a leader in educational technology. Dominic works with educators and administrators across Albuquerque Public Schools and the State of New Mexico speaking and providing training on how to empower students through the creative use of technology. Dominic founded and leads the award winning videography program at Washington Middle School in downtown Albuquerque whose films are used across New Mexico to promote social justice and community health. Dominic is part of a vanguard of talented and passionate educators redefining education for New Mexico.
Mental Health Advocate
Erica is a behavioral/mental health advocate and presenter for NM communities. Erica has provided presentations concerning mental health awareness reaching over 1800 students and over 300 parents in New Mexico. She is a certified QPR gatekeeper trainer through the New Mexico Suicide Prevention Coalition, and a certified core teacher for NM Breaking the Silence. Erica also served as assistant developer for an Anti-Stigma campaign through The New Mexico Department of Health. Her personal and professional passion for community wellness collide to provide any and all applicable prevention and awareness resources in hopes to deplete the staggering rates of suicide.
Charter School Administrator
JoAnn has over 20 years of experience across the country as a classroom teacher, school psychologist, and building and district level administrator. She earned a B.A. in Elementary Education and Psychology, an M.Ed and an Ed.S in School Psychology, and a Certificate of Advanced Study in School Administration. After helping to start a charter school in NYC, JoAnn moved to Albuquerque to open her own school. JoAnn is a highly dedicated educator who deeply believes in people and is committed to creating educational equality. She leads her staff in providing life-changing opportunities to traditionally under-served student populations.
Charter School Administrator
Growing up in Los Alamos, working at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, Justin completed his degree in biochemistry at the University of New Mexico, ultimately acquiring his secondary teaching license.
Dr. Karen Wiburg is a Distinguished Professor of Learning Design and Technology at New Mexico State University. She teaches graduate students about learning, research and technology with a focus on math and English Language learning. She entered education as an outsider, never intending to be a teacher, but while volunteering discovered how to engage kids in math learning.
Kevin is a science teacher at Coronado Middle School. Kevin is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University, and Columbia University where he studied genetics, bioinformatics, and cellular biology.
STEM Education Advocate
Natalie Robinson Bruner is the Director of the STEM Gateway program at the University of New Mexico. She is dedicated to ensuring students succeed in their STEM aspirations. In the past, she has managed several educational programs and taught various science courses. Her doctoral research at the University of New Mexico focuses on creating cultural equity in STEM education. Natalie is devoted to causes related to children, education and poverty alleviation.