Don Griffin, PhD
Phone Ext: 1701
Dr. Don Griffin was named Executive Director of Monument Academy in December 2010. As Executive Director, he oversees all operations of the school, collectively with the appropriate administrative staff, including personnel, financial matters, facilities and operations, and other areas as requested by the Board. Dr. Griffin is the sole employee of the Monument Academy Board of Directors and serves as the corporation’s Chief Operating Officer.
Currently, Dr. Griffin serves on the Leadership Program of the Rockies Board of Directors and was elected to the Delta Schools Board of Directors in 2014. In 2018, Dr. Griffin was appointed the Colorado Digital Board of Cooperative Education Service Board of Directors. He has served on the Colorado League of Charter Schools Board of Directors, as well as the Parents Challenge Board of Directors. Dr. Griffin holds a Senior Faculty position with Novartis Pharmaceuticals and was an Adjunct Professor at the University of Southern California as well as the State of Florida Community College System. Dr. Griffin is the Teaching Director for Community Bible Study’s Colorado Springs Evening Class and is one of the featured speakers for Community Bible Study’s National Leadership Conferences.
Previously, Dr. Griffin served as the President and CEO of The Schuck Foundation in Colorado Springs and is a nationally known business authority and author with more than 30 years of actual hands on senior management experience as a CEO. He is often sought after as an executive coach, strategic consultant, and communication expert.
Dr. Griffin’s educational background includes degrees in Industrial Psychology and Economics from the University of Tennessee and Middle Tennessee State University respectively. He also earned a Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration from California Western University.
Elizabeth Davis, Ed.D
Principal/Chief Academic OfficerEmail
Phone Ext: 1702
Elizabeth Davis comes to Monument Academy with a wealth of experience in charter education. She earned her B.A. in Political Science from Vassar College and her M.A. in Education from Claremont Graduate University. Additionally, she has completed a Doctorate in Education in Leadership for Educational Equity from the University of Colorado at Denver. Dr. Davis completed her Principal’s Licensure through the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.
Dr. Davis was the founding principal at Colorado Calvert Academy State Charter School and Academy Calvert Online School located in Academy School District 20. She has served on a Legislative Task Force for Online Education which developed new statutory language around online education. Additionally, Dr. Davis has served as an external consultant for the State of Colorado Charter School Institute where she reviewed charter school applications. She also consults independently for charter schools in the areas of leadership, systems, and organizational development. Dr. Davis has spoken at local, state and national conferences, including the National Charter School Conference in 2015, as well as the International Society of Technology Education.
Dean Middle SchoolEmail
Phone Ext: 1704
Mrs. Seymour is beginning her 9th year at Monument Academy. Prior to accepting the role of Dean of Students for Middle School, Mrs. Seymour taught at Monument Academy for 8 years as a preschool teacher and a sixth-grade science teacher where she served as team lead and science department lead. Prior to teaching at Monument Academy, she taught in both Aurora Public Schools and Douglas County Schools as a middle school science, English, and history teacher. Mrs. Seymour graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Education and a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from The University of Kansas.
Julie is passionate about all things science-related and curriculum-related and she has a special place in her heart for the middle-school learner. She mentors students to compete in the Pikes Peak Regional Science Fair and Colorado State Science Fair and has sponsored various science-related clubs, including Girl’s STEM and Aerospace Club. Julie has led curriculum development at Monument Academy since 2015.
Dean Elementary SchoolEmail
Phone Ext: 1703
Mr. Richardson for the past two years has served as MA’s Vice Principal. He has been in education for 10 years, 9 of which have been at Monument Academy teaching 5th grade. Mr. Richardson was elected by his peers to serve as the Teacher Representative for Elementary grades to the Board from 2013-2015. Several of our current teachers were student teachers under Mr. Richardson’s mentorship.
Prior to entering education, Mr. Richardson spent 22 years as part of the Corporate Leadership Team for a leading automotive parts supplier.
Nancy Tive, CPA
Director of Finance
Phone Ext: 1705
Nancy Tive was appointed as Monument Academy’s Senior Accountant in 2009. She currently serves as the Director of Finance for the school and on the board of directors of Monument Academy Building Corporation. Prior to joining Monument Academy, Nancy served as the Accounting Supervisor for Lewis-Palmer District 38. She has also had governmental accounting experience in four Denver area municipalities, as well as auditing experience while employed at a Lakewood, Colorado CPA firm.
Nancy attends the Colorado Department of Education’s Financial Policies and Procedures meetings every year to stay abreast of public school finance issues and completes at least 80 hours of continuing professional education required for CPAs bi-annually.
Mrs. Tive’s educational background includes a B.S. in Accounting from Regis University, as well as an M.B.A. with an emphasis in Finance and Accounting from Regis University. She also holds an active Colorado CPA license.
Director of Human Resources
Phone Ext: 1706
Sherry Buzzell has been employed at Monument Academy since 2005 and is currently the Director of Human Resources. Sherry has a Bachelor’s Degree in Organization Management and Human Resources from Colorado Christian University. Prior to coming to Monument Academy , Sherry worked for the Colorado Springs Police Department as a police officer for 12 years before staying home for four years with her three daughters, all of whom attended Monument Academy from Kindergarten through 8th grade. Sherry is a native of Colorado and married to her wonderful husband, Steve, also a Colorado native. In her spare time she enjoys reading, hiking, and spending time with her family.
Administrative Assistant to Principal/DeansEmail
Director of Admissions
Phone Ext: 1710
Amy Zarkovacki has been a part of the MA family for the last 21 years. She has been employed at MA for 14 years with twelve of those years being spent in the position of Monument Academy Registrar.
Amy was born and raised in Southern California and moved to Colorado in 1992. She is married and has two adult children who attended Monument Academy for their K-8th grade years. She enjoys time with her family, boating, running, crocheting, sun and sand.
Phone Ext: 1710
Chandy Buckingham has been Monument Academy’s Assistant Registrar since 2016. She has been an active part of MA for 5 years, volunteering and substitute teaching. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Arts with a minor in Political Science from Colorado State University.
She has been married since 2003. She has three children, all attending Monument Academy. Chandy enjoys spending time with her family and menagerie of animals, cooking, gardening and horseback riding.
Director of Instruction and EvaluationEmail
Phone Ext: 1708
Carol Skinner is beginning her 14th year at Monument Academy where she will be serving as the Director of Instruction and Evaluation. Carol received her undergraduate degree from The University of Alabama and earned her teaching certificate and Master of Arts degree in Curriculum and Instruction from UCCS. Carol’s passion is for helping teachers reach their full potential and she enjoys helping first year teachers adjust to Monument Academy. Carol is the mom of Cleone and Cydney and enjoys running, hiking, reading, and watching British T.V. shows.
Human Resources Administrative Assistant
Phone Ext: 1711
Karen McKeown has worked for over a decade in education – both as a para and a teacher in various grade levels. She received a B.A. from U.C. Davis in Economics with a minor in Organizational Studies and earned her teaching credential from Cal State Hayward. Karen and her family have been a part of the MA family since 2006. She and her husband, Jay, have 2 teenage boys. She loves to read, enjoy coffee with friends, camp, hike and spend time with her family. Her new position of Business Office Administrative Assistant allows her to combine her love for education with her enjoyment of administrative work and helping others.
Phone Ext: 1709
Julie has been the Business Manager at MA for ten years. She graduated from the University of Oklahoma. She is married with two children. She enjoys reading, decorating, hiking and hanging out with family and friends.
Front Office / Administrative Assistant to Athletic Director
Phone Ext: 1100
Julie Ritschard has been living in Colorado since 2002. She has manned the front desk of Monument Academy for over 10 years. She attended Northern Arizona University working toward a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Engineering.
Julie grew up in Southern California and worked at Disneyland. She is married with grown children. She has a second business of raising Suri alpacas. She enjoys ranching, working with alpaca yarn and quilting.
Front Office / Administrative Assistant to Executive Director
Phone Ext: 1234
Sara has been a part of Monument Academy as a parent for 8 years and as a substitute for the past few years! She has a Bachelor’s degree in Organizational Leadership and brings many years of office experience to the Front Desk position. She is a happy wife and mother of 5 boys; 3 are current MA students. Sara and her family have lived in Colorado for 11 years. When she’s not smiling at the guests at Monument Academy, she enjoy’s hiking, many cups of coffee and family game night.
Director of Health ServicesEmail
Phone Ext: 1210
Janice Latendresse has been the school nurse for Monument Academy since 2012. She brings with her over 30 years of nursing experience. Janice holds a Master of Science degree in Nursing from Grand Canyon University. She is a nationally board certified School Nurse and is adjunct faculty at UCCS.
Janice has 2 grown daughters. She moved to Colorado in 2000 and enjoys spending time in the mountains hiking and fishing with her golden retriever, Charlie.
Director - ESSEmail
Phone Ext: 1316
Born in New Zealand, Jessica Coote has been given the opportunity to teach both in America and abroad after studying education and earning her teaching degree and licensure at the University of Northern Colorado. Over recent years traveling between the two countries, Ms. Coote has expanded her toolbox of approaches and practices to better educate all children. She has worked with students of all ages and abilities in a variety of schools. Ms. Coote has been teaching at Monument Academy since 2014 and has been a part of the school since its opening in 1996. On her off time, Ms. Coote loves to read, hike, and adventure!
Director of Literacy & InterventionEmail
Karen Michael is excited to be part of the Monument Academy learning community as the Director of Literacy and Intervention. She earned her B.A. in Social Science/Elementary Education from the University of Northern Colorado and her M.A. in Educational Technology from Lesley University. Additionally, Mrs. Michael completed her Principal Licensure through Adams State University.
Prior to accepting the position at MA, Mrs. Michael has been an Assistant Principal, Administrative Teacher on Special Assignment, School Assessment Coordinator, Technology Director, MTSS Coordinator, 504 Coordinator, Gifted and Talented Coordinator, Data Analysis Leader as well as taught the various grades first through fourth all within the beautiful state of Colorado.
Outside of teaching she enjoys hiking, exploring the Colorado mountains, traveling, and watching the various professional sports that Denver offers with her family.
Phone Ext: 1722
Jim Cunningham is the school counselor and has been with Monument Academy since 2013. He is a licensed school counselor and a licensed professional counselor candidate. He is on the Colorado School Counselor Association board and an adjunct professor at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs (UCCS).
He holds Masters Degrees in Counseling from UCCS and Public Relations from the University of Florida.
Jim retired from the Air Force in 2013 after a 24-year career. He is married and has a son and daughter.
Phone Ext: 1721
Carrie started volunteering in the counseling department at Monument Academy in 2015 and presently is the school’s Social Worker. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of West Florida in Psychology, Master’s degree in social work from the University of Texas San Antonio, and is a licensed Social Worker with the state of Colorado. Carrie brings many years of experience and enthusiasm to the students and staff at Monument Academy. She has a long history working with children and adolescents in the areas of crisis intervention, running elementary and middle school groups, developing, and maintaining mental health programs. Her focus has been on anger management and suicide awareness as well as working with high-risk adolescents and teaching them social and life skills.
Carrie has been married since 1999, she and her husband have 5 daughters with 4 of them attending Monument Academy and the other previously acting in a teaching capacity. They have been a part of the military community for the last 19 years, have lived in many places and are happy to call Monument home! Carrie enjoys hiking, skiing, traveling, watching her girls play soccer, basketball, gymnastics, cheer, and track while creating lasting memories with family and friends.
Director of Educational Technology
Phone Ext: 1715
Traci Trimbach has been in education since 1997. She has been at Monument Academy since 2010. Before taking her current position as Director of Educational Technology, she was the middle school technology teacher and yearbook advisor. Both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees were earned from Colorado Christian University.
Traci grew up in Colorado Springs and has lived most of her life in Colorado, except for a five-year exile in southern California. She is married and has one daughter. She enjoys many outdoor activities and loves being in the mountains as much as possible.
Technology and Media Support Specialist
Phone Ext: 1215
Athletics Director/Assessment Coordinator
Phone Ext: 1227
Marty Venticinque was born in Chicago but has lived in Colorado since 1995. He received a Bachelor’s Degree of Science from the Metropolitan State College of Denver with a major in Meteorology, and a minor in Mathematics. During college, Marty began working as a Student Assistant at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colorado, and upon graduating was hired as an Associate Scientist. During the summer of 1999, he began working as a Meteorologist for KRDO-TV in Colorado Springs. In August of 2014 he began working at Monument Academy and currently serves as the Athletic Director and Assessment Coordinator. Marty has 3 children, all of whom began attending Monument Academy in kindergarten. In his spare time Marty runs his kids to their activities, works around the house, and enjoys being outdoors.
Communications & Marketing SpecialistEmail