Jesseca Toovey studied Biology at Colorado Mesa University of Grand Junction Colorado where she received her Bachelors of Science with a minor in Chemistry. Jesseca has been an active part of Ambleside for over 3 years now and has served as a board member for 2 years. Jesseca helps lead worship at New Creation Church in Glenwood Springs and is very involved with her church life. Jesseca grew up in the Roaring Fork Valley and has called this place home for over 28 years. You will find Jesseca singing, hiking, and spending time with family. Jesseca is married and has 4 boys, 2 of which attend Ambleside and 2 that are grown. She and her family consider it a gift to be part of the Ambleside community and their commitment to growth of mind and spirit to everyone they influence.
Carrie Bowen is in her fifth year at Ambleside School. A native of Grand Junction, Carrie heard about the school from a friend and co-worker in the valley. After teaching first and second grade for four years, she made the switch to third and fourth grade this school year. She loves spending the day with her students and observing the joy and fervor they experience as they read and learn. This is her second year in Ambleside Schools International’s Master Teacher Training Program, a three-year study of all subjects and an intensive study of Charlotte Mason’s philosophy. Previously, she studied Early Childhood Education at Grand Canyon University. She enjoys reading and hanging out with her dog, cat, and fiancé.
Audrey Poindexter teaches the fifth and sixth grade class this year. She has worked at the school as the Administrator as well as the third and fourth grade teacher for five years. She first heard about Ambleside years ago at her church, and when a good friend started working here, Audrey became more curious and interested. She loves the philosophy that emphasizes a rich atmosphere, the discipline of good habits of character, and texts that are full of living thoughts and ideas. She holds an Associate Degree and certificate in education from Colorado Mountain College where she continues to study. Audrey has lived in the valley for 25 years and enjoys outdoor activities with her family. She is known for her diligence and quality of work as a teacher and her consistency with her students.
2020-2021 marks Paola Amengual’s seventh year at Ambleside School at Skylark. She has been with the school from the start, working in many different roles including Art teacher, office assistant, first and second grade breakout teacher, substitute, Spanish teacher, and Kindergarten teacher. This is her fourth year teaching Kindergarten as a lead teacher and her first year teaching first grade. Originally from Puerto Rico, she has lived in the valley for 12 years and likes to snowboard, read, and spend time with her family. She studies Elementary Education with a focus in Interdisciplinary Studies at Liberty University in Virginia. Paola found out about the school through her church. Here she is known for her enthusiasm and joy in the classroom.
Lisa comes to Ambleside with 18 years of teaching experience. She received her bachelors degree in Elementary Education and a masters degree in Linguistically Diverse Education from the University of Michigan. Her passion for children and love for developing students in their relationship with Christ is evident. Lisa is married and has 2 children, Effie and Hank who will be attending Ambleside. Lisa has lived in the Roaring Fork Valley for 16 years. She enjoys spending time with her family outside in the mountains hiking, camping, and skiing.
Sage O’Neil came to Ambleside at Skylark at its year of inception. She was drawn to the school for its small classroom sizes, familial atmosphere, and joy from learning. Sage received a Bachelor of Science in Horticulture from Colorado State University. A Colorado native, she has lived in the valley for over 14 years. You will find her trail running, camping, hiking with her family, and enjoying all that the mountains have to offer. Her two daughters attend Ambleside and this year marks her seventh year as Parent Volunteer Coordinator and her fourth as Admissions Coordinator. Sage is known and valued for her vast knowledge of the inner workings of the school and her deep care for the community.
Jennifer Zwickl is a native of Glenwood Springs and has been part of the Ambleside School community since 2015 when her son Marc started Kindergarten. She graduated magna cum laude from Liberty University in 2016 with her Bachelors in Psychology with an emphasis in counseling and is currently attending Simmons University working on her Master’s in Clinical Social Work with a certification in Mental Health. She taught GED math classes for Colorado Mountain College for 4 years prior to coming to Ambleside. In 2016 she became the Arrowsmith Program Teacher and then Director at Ambleside. She and her son homeschooled through the COVID-19 pandemic for the 2020-2021 school year and are both excited to be back at Ambleside this year.
Leslie has been a part of Ambleside School since its inception both as a mother of three students and over the past three years, a substitute teacher. Leslie has always had a passion for children and during the past few years of substitute teaching, realized she wanted to share that passion with her students everyday. She grew up in the Roaring Fork Valley and after spending time both out of state and on the front range, moved back 15 years ago. Leslie received a Bachelor of Science in Health and Exercise Science from Colorado State University. She lives in Carbondale on a small farm and spends her spare time taking care of all her animals.
Rebekah comes to Ambleside with almost 20 years of music experience. She received her Bachelor of Music Education magna cum laude in 2005 with a minor in Biblical Studies from Crown College in St. Bonifacius, Minnesota. Rebekah has traveled on choir tours throughout the United States, Canada, and seven European countries. In most recent years she has taught as a music teacher for public schools around the valley as well as done private vocal and piano lessons. Rebekah is married and has 3 children. She loves spending time with her family, playing in the outdoors, singing, crafting, and doing art!
A life-long Coloradan, Jill was born and raised in Steamboat Springs. After four years on the east coast at Colgate University followed by three years on the west coast at Lewis and Clark Law School where she met her husband, Jill realized the mountains of Colorado were home. She and her husband seized on an opportunity to move to Glenwood Springs in 2006 for a job opportunity and have been here since. Jill currently works as an Assistant County Attorney for Garfield County and her husband is a partner at a local law firm. She and her husband have two children who both attend Ambleside School at Skylark. Jill enjoys skiing with her family in the winter, family rafting trips in the summer, and hiking year-round with her dogs
Born in California and raised in the Midwest, Peter moved to Colorado in 1986. Peter attended the University of Colorado at Boulder where he earned a degree in Civil Engineering. With a love for the mountain lifestyle, Peter moved to the Roaring Fork Valley in 1998. A year later he started Peter J. Martin Insurance in Basalt. In 2011, he merged his company with Steve Martin (not related) to form the Martin Insurance Group based in Carbondale. Peter currently splits his time between the Carbondale and Eagle office locations.
Peter lives in New Castle with his wife Eileen and children Mikal, Gage and Starr. He enjoys watching his kids play hockey, riding his road and mountain bikes, playing Adult Rec Hockey, and trying to collect trophies on Strava.
Aaron Shaffer moved to the RFV after graduating with a degree in Construction Management and a Masters in Leadership and Ethics from John Brown University in Siloam Springs, AR in 2008. Aaron works for the Aspen Skiing Company in the Planning and Development Department and oversees the Facility Management Department. He met his wife, Caitlyn, when he moved to the valley. Aaron and Caitlyn have two sons, Hudson and Jacob.
Leslie found the writers of Charlotte Mason while in pursuit of a life giving education for her own young children. With over 23 years of experience with Charlotte Mason philosophy of education she has served in many roles: Co-founder of Ambleside School in McLean, VA; board chair; classroom teacher; and now as a Director of Member Schools for ASI. Prior to becoming a mom of three Ambleside students, she served as the regional director for Estee Lauder Companies, served on several boards including Young Life, and received her BS in Biology and Health from the University of Richmond. Her greatest delight is spending time with her three grown children and two grandchildren, spread between Virginia, Arizona, and Colorado!