Staff:

Garett Brownlee Plantz

Vice President of Programs & Operations | Interim Executive Director

Erika Smith

Interim Chief Financial Officer

Karen Antonacci

Donor Database & Communications Manager

Arica Avila

PROGRAM COORDINATOR: BROADWAY EAST CLASS

Karen Benker

Financial Assistant

Meg Clymer

AmeriCorps Director

Lupita Crespo

Program Director: Alicia Sanchez Classes @ Alicia Sanchez Elementary School

Cendy de la Torre

Development Coordinator

Lucía Díaz

Program Coordinator: Phoenix and Broadway East Classes

Elyana Funk

Senior Director of Culture & AmeriCorps

Matt Gleason

Program Coordinator: Rocky Mountain Class

Holly Gordon

PROGRAM COORDINATOR: ASPEN CLASS

Seth Hays

Program Director: Aspen Class @ Timberline PK-8 School

Travis Herbert

Senior Director of Secondary Programs and Wellness

Jaimie Kerka

Program COORDINATOR | GRIFFIN CLASS

Lauren Laurenti

Executive Assistant

Tracy Leffingwell

Program Director: Oak Class @ Casey Middle School

Carlos Lerma

Director of Parent Partnerships

Carla Maniscalco

Director of Volunteers

Mario Martinez-Varélas

Program Director: Griffin Class @ Centaurus High School

Keelin McGill

Director of College & Career

Francisco Medina

Program Director: Diagonal Class @ Diagonal Court Housing Site

Olimpia Mejia

Program DIrector: Rocky Mountain Class @ Trail Ridge Middle School

Francisco Mejias

Program Director: Phoenix Class @ Boulder High School

Elena Mendoza

Senior Program Director of Primary Programs and Academics

Megan Miller

Interim Tutor Coordinator

Gary Moore

Assistant Volunteer Coordinator

Sophia Oliveira

Grants Manager

Katharine Reece

Donor Relations Manager

Sonia Rivera

Program Director: Alicia Classes @ Alicia Sanchez Elementary School

Lupita Sanchez

Program Coordinator: Oak Class

Aurora Santos

Program Director: Carbon Valley Class at Thunder Valley K-8 School

Beatrice 'Bea' Salazar

Program Director: Griffin Class at Centaurus High School

Danielle Staunton

DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR

Anakary Valenzuela

College & Career Coordinator

Paulette Warembourg

Office Manager

Garett Brownlee Plantz

Vice President of Programs & Operations | Interim Executive Director

303-444-3636 x112 | garett.brownlee.plantz@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Garett leads IHDF’s program staff and partnerships. She has a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Speech Communications from Utah State University and a Licensed Master of Social Work degree from the University of Texas-Austin. She served as an AmeriCorps member with IHDF for three years before eventually joining the staff in her current role in 2016.

Erika Smith

Interim Chief Financial Officer

erika.smith@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Karen Antonacci

Donor Database & Communications Manager

303-444-3636 x113 | karen.antonacci@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Karen Antonacci comes to the “I Have a Dream” Foundation of Boulder County from Homeless Outreach Providing Encouragement, a nonprofit organization in Longmont. Karen started at HOPE as a program manager for the nightly shelter and shifted to the development manager role. Prior to her work at HOPE, Karen worked as an award-winning local news reporter at the Longmont Times-Call and Boulder Daily Camera newspapers, where she covered everything from City Council meetings to wildfires.

Arica Avila

PROGRAM COORDINATOR: BROADWAY EAST CLASS

303-444-3636 | arica.avila@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Arica has a bachelor’s degree in History SETS (Science, the Environment, Technology, and Society) and master’s degree in Education from Montana State University. She spent three years working as a school counselor in Montana before joining IHDF’s Broadway East Class as a Program Coordinator in 2019.

Karen Benker

Financial Assistant

303-444-3636 x117 | karen.benker@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Karen has a bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Montana, with coursework in Economics and Public Administration from George Washington University and University of Colorado-Denver. She worked in government finance and for Colorado Workforce before joining IHDF in 2018.

Meg Clymer

AmeriCorps Director

303-444-3636 x121 | megan.clymer@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Meg has a bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies and a minor in Sociology from Baldwin Wallace University. She served two terms as a Notre Dame AmeriCorps member at IHDF starting in 2016 before joining the staff. She worked with the Rocky Mountain Class and the Programs department before assuming her current role in 2018. 

Lupita Crespo

Program Director: Alicia Sanchez Classes @ Alicia Sanchez Elementary School

720-491-2181 | lupita.crespo@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Lupita serves as Program Director for the Alicia Dreamer Scholars at Alicia Sanchez Elementary. She is a Longmont, CO native and graduated from the University of Colorado-Boulder with a bachelor’s degree in Communications and Business. She has been working directly with local youth for over 5 years and joined IHDF in 2018.

Cendy de la Torre

Development Coordinator

Cendy was born in Jalisco, Mexico and moved to the U.S.A. at the age of 5. She earned a degree in Ethnic Studies from the University of Colorado at Boulder, where she developed a passion in advocating for the needs of students in marginalized communities. Before joining IHDF, Cendy applied her strengths and experience within the financial aid realm of higher education, as she supported students and their families in better understanding financial tools and resources to achieve their educational goals. She is very excited to begin her journey with IHDF and continue the work towards making higher education more accessible for students with underrepresented identities.

Lucía Díaz

Program Coordinator: Phoenix and Broadway East Classes

303-444-3636 | lucia.diaz@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Lucía came to IHDF in 2019, serving both the Phoenix and Broadway East classes. She is originally from Mexico City, Mexico. In 2015, she graduated from Universidad Centro Eleia with a Psychology degree, where she had various internships in both a clinical and school classroom setting. In addition, she recently earned a diploma from The Montessori Institute in Denver.

Elyana Funk

Senior Director of Culture & AmeriCorps

303-444-3636 x121 | elyana.funk@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Elyana leads IHDF’s Notre Dame AmeriCorps team. She has a bachelor’s degree in Comparative Area Studies: Latin America & North America, and minors in Cultural Anthropology and Spanish from Duke. She joined IHDF as an AmeriCorps member in 2000, and was previously the Sanchez Class Program Director for 12 years before serving in her current role.

Matt Gleason

Program Coordinator: Rocky Mountain Class

303-444-3636 | matthew.gleason@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Matt came to IHDF in January 2017. A half year of service lead to a full one, and then some more serving three terms with the Rocky Mountain Dreamer class. He has now found myself as the Program Coordinator with the class, something that he says continues to keep him grounded in his everyday life. Matt graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder in May of 2016 with a degree in Communication. His path has been one of service, experimenting with City Year in New Orleans, riding/leading two cross country cycling trips across the country to raise money and awareness for affordable housing, along with a few other regular volunteer opportunities throughout the Boulder Denver area.

Holly Gordon

PROGRAM COORDINATOR: ASPEN CLASS

Holly came in IHDF in 2019. She has worked in Education for the last ten years, from teaching English and Leadership abroad, to creating a college prep program for low-income high school students in Denver. Recently, she moved from Jackson Hole, Wyoming where she served as an Americorps member and an Instructor at Teton Science Schools, teaching outdoor place-based education. She enjoys adventuring in the mountains year-round and experimenting in the kitchen. She has a B.A. in International Studies & Spanish, with minors in Leadership and Gender Studies.

Seth Hays

Program Director: Aspen Class @ Timberline PK-8 School

720-480-4499 | seth.hays@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Seth joined IHDF in 2013 as Program Director for Longmont’s Aspen Dreamer Scholar Class. He has a bachelor’s degree in Biology from Colorado Christian University and a master’s degree in Earth Sciences from the University of Northern Colorado.

Travis Herbert

Senior Director of Secondary Programs and Wellness

303-444-3636 | travis.herbert@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Travis joined IHDF in 2018 and oversees our middle and early high school sites and prevention programs.  He has over 20 years experience working with youth. He has a Master’s in Social Work from the University of New England and a bachelor of science in Recreation Management from Appalachian State University. He is a registered psychotherapist in Colorado and working toward his LCSW licensure.

Jaimie Kerka

Program COORDINATOR | GRIFFIN CLASS

303-444-3636 | jaimie.kerka@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Jaimie Kerka spent the 2018-2019 academic year as a Notre Dame AmeriCorps Service Member with the Griffin class, implementing programming and working closely with Dreamer Scholars and their families. She joined the Griffin Class at the Project Coordinator in summer 2019. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Wakefield University.

Lauren Laurenti

Executive Assistant

303-444-3636 | lauren.laurenti@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Lauren joined “I Have A Dream” in 2019 to provide executive support to the organization. She grew up in Saint James on Long Island, NY and received a bachelor’s degree in Social Action Advocacy from Endicott College in Massachusetts. Lauren finds herself most fulfilled when working hand in hand with non-profit organizations. After relocating to Boulder, Colorado, she remained determined to apply her professional background in areas that would create a positive impact in the community. Lauren has an extensive legal background, working in the areas of domestic violence advocacy and leading free clinics for low-income individuals to obtain divorces or file for bankruptcy. When Lauren isn’t in the office you can find her exploring the mountains with her rescue pup, Wrigley.

Tracy Leffingwell

Program Director: Oak Class @ Casey Middle School

303-444-3636 | tracy.leffingwell@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Tracy joined IHDF in 2015. She has a bachelor’s degree in Spanish Language and Literature from the University of Colorado–Boulder and a master’s degree in Foreign Language with a Teaching Emphasis from the University of Northern Colorado. She worked in education and as a teacher before coming to IHDF.

Carlos Lerma

Director of Parent Partnerships

303-444-3636 | carlos.lerma@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Carlos joined “I Have A Dream” in 2019 as the Director of Parent Partnerships. Carlos comes
with a wide range of experience working with parents and communities in several organizations, bringing with him experience in authentic connection, confidence in an inclusive process, and the ability to convene others around shared goals. He is also a Dreamer Scholar Alumni from the Broadway Class, adding additional program experiential value.

Carla Maniscalco

Director of Volunteers

303-444-3636 | carla.maniscalco@ihaveadreamboulder.org

As Director of Volunteers, Carla brought more than 20 years of working with volunteers in a variety of organizations, and of all ages and backgrounds, when she joined IHDF in 2018. She has a Bachelor’s of Arts in Behavioral Science from Metropolitan State University and a Certificate in Volunteer Management from Metro Volunteers and the Points of Light Foundation.

Mario Martinez-Varélas

Program Director: Griffin Class @ Centaurus High School

mario.martinez@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Mario is Program Director for the Griffin Class. He served as the La Vista Program Director at Alicia Sanchez Elementary before assuming his current role. He earned a bachelor’s degree in International Affairs with minors in Leadership and Political Science from the University of Colorado-Boulder. Prior to joining IHDF in 2018, Mario worked with at-risk students in Boulder County.

Keelin McGill

Director of College & Career

303-444-3636 | keelin.mcgill@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Keelin grew up in West Virginia, and attended WVU for technical writing. After taking a gap year to teach Citizenship, GED, and English as a foreign language in DC, she decided she’d much rather work with people than computers. Keelin started at “I Have a Dream” Foundation in 2015, where she served her second Americorps service term with the Oak class and was later hired on with the Phoenix Dreamer Scholar Class. She returns to “I Have a Dream” after working in Section 8 and affordable housing, where her primary focus was on high school success, post secondary education, and career access. Keelin remains committed to service as an “I Have a Dream” mentor, CASA advocate, and Blue Sky Bridge Associate Board Member.

Francisco Medina

Program Director: Diagonal Class @ Diagonal Court Housing Site

303-323-5422 | francisco.medina@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Francisco is Program Director the Dreamer Scholars at the Diagonal Court housing site in Boulder. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a minor in Women’s Studies from University of Colorado-Boulder. He worked locally with juvenile offenders before joining IHDF in 2018. 

Olimpia Mejia

Program DIrector: Rocky Mountain Class @ Trail Ridge Middle School

720-369-3442 | olimpia.mejia@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Olimpia “Oli” joined IHDF in 2014 as Program Director for the Rocky Mountain Class in Longmont. She graduated from the Universidad Autonoma de San Luis Potosi, Mexico. She spent several years in bilingual education and programming before coming to IHDF.

Francisco Mejias

Program Director: Phoenix Class @ Boulder High School

720-564-0819 | francisco.mejias@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Francisco “Cisco” has a bachelor’s degree in Education and Bilingual Education from Metro State University. After working as a teacher, he joined IHDF in 1999 as Program Director for the Broadway Class until 2009 and served as Iris Class Program Director from 2008-2018. He is now the Phoenix Class Program Director.

Elena Mendoza

Senior Program Director of Primary Programs and Academics

303-444-3636 | elena.mendoza@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Elena Mendoza joined “I Have A Dream” in 2019. Elena has a master’s degree in Administration and Supervision from the University of Phoenix and bachelor’s degree from the University of Northern Colorado. Elena is an experienced school administrator with a demonstrated history of working in the education field. She is skilled in coaching, classroom management, lesson planning, instructional design, differentiated instruction, and English language development.

Megan Miller

Interim Tutor Coordinator

303-444-3636 x119 | tutors@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Megan just recently graduated from CU Denver, with her bachelor’s degree in psychology and a minor in sociology. She plans to further her post-graduate studies with the end-goal of becoming a counselor. She enjoys spending time with family and friends. Megan has been with us since August, starting out as the Volunteer Department intern. She loves working with Team Dream and continuing to help with the volunteer side of the organization.

Gary Moore

Assistant Volunteer Coordinator

Gary came to IHDF in 2019 with a passion for service and non-profit work. He is a Colorado Native currently living in Frederick. He attended the University of Colorado at Boulder where he received his Bachelor’s in Economics and Minor in Political Science. After college, he spent two years as an AmeriCorps member traveling around the country performing disaster relief and environmental conservation efforts.

Sophia Oliveira

Grants Manager

303-444-3636 x115 | grants@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Sophia joined IHDF in 2019 to manage its large grants portfolio. As the daughter of Brazilian and Argentinean immigrants, she looks forward to motivating youth from low-income communities. She has over 5 years of experience working with and writing grants for nonprofits. She earned a BS in Biology from Rochester Institute of Tech and an MS in Environmental Studies from Green Mountain College.

Katharine Reece

Donor Relations Manager

303-444-3636 x140 | katharine.reece@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Katharine joined IHDF in 2018 to manage its large grants portfolio. She now manages the Foundation’s donor relations. She has over 10 years of experience as a writer, editor, and non-profit fundraiser. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Wellesley College and a Master of Fine Arts in non-fiction writing from Sarah Lawrence College.

Sonia Rivera

Program Director: Alicia Classes @ Alicia Sanchez Elementary School

720-341-9719 | sonia.rivera@ihaveadreamboulder.org

 

Lupita Sanchez

Program Coordinator: Oak Class

303-444-3636 | lupita.sanchez@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Lupita came to IHDF in 2019.  She was born in Zacatecas, Mexico and raised in Boulder. She was the first generation in her family to graduate, recently earning a degree in international business from the University of Colorado, Denver.

 

Aurora Santos

Program Director: Carbon Valley Class at Thunder Valley K-8 School

720-494-3895 | aurora.santos@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Aurora grew up on a small Pacific island called Saipan, then earned a bachelor’s degree in Biology and played volleyball at West Virginia University. Before joining IHDF in 2016 as Program Director for the Carbon Valley Class, she worked in education and education support roles for a variety of organizations.

Beatrice 'Bea' Salazar

Program Director: Griffin Class at Centaurus High School

303-444-3636 | bea.salazar@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Bea brings a wealth of experience working with both high school and postsecondary students, and will be a tremendous asset to the Griffin community (and our organization at large) in helping students think about their educational journeys, postsecondary options, and turning their dreams to realities. “Helping individuals achieve their academic goals!” has been Bea’s mantra for working with students. She has aiding students and their families in the college going process, and retaining in college. She has worked at Metropolitan State, Community Colleges of Aurora and Denver and the Denver Scholarship Foundation ensuring students have resources and are supported to succeed in future goals.

Danielle Staunton

DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR

Danielle transitioned to the nonprofit world in 2016 when she recognized the need for healthier food in our schools. After over three years with the Chef Ann Foundation, an organization that supports school districts throughout the country to cook from scratch, Danielle joined the “I Have A Dream” Foundation to support the needs of children and their families in her own community. Danielle has a Bachelors from San Francisco State University, is a mother of two, and teaches spin class.

Anakary Valenzuela

College & Career Coordinator

Anakary is a Dreamer Scholar Alumna from the Sanchez Class, who graduated from Centaurus High School in 2012. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Integrative Health Care from Metropolitan State University. In this role Anakary will continue to  focus on health equity activation in our North Boulder community – through partnership and outreach.

Paulette Warembourg

Office Manager

303-444-3636 | office.manager@ihaveadreamboulder.org

Paulette is the office manager at “I Have A Dream’s” central office.

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