Exceptional Student Services & Intervention

Lisa Dunham

Email: lmdunham@aurorak12.org

Interventionist

I am excited to be a part of the Harmony Ridge community. This will be my 19th year in education serving in a variety of roles within public and private schools. I was born and raised in North Dakota. I received my Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from the University of North Dakota with an endorsement in Linguistically Diverse Education. I began my teaching career in Southern California at a private school where I taught 1st grade for several years. My husband and I moved to Denver in 2009. During the past few years, I have worked as a reading curriculum coordinator, a literacy coach, and most recently a reading interventionist.
In my spare time, I love traveling with my husband and our 5 year old daughter, practicing yoga, walking my Golden Retriever, and hiking. I look forward to meeting you and inspiring the students at Harmony Ridge.


Stacey Katz

Email: svkatz@aurorak12.org

Interventionist

My name is Stacey Katz and I am one of the intervention teachers at Harmony Ridge. I have been teaching in Aurora since 2011. I have taught fifth grade, kindergarten and reading during my time in Aurora. Before that I taught in Brooklyn, NY and Douglas County, Colorado. In between I took some time off to raise my own three children. When I am not teaching, I love to spend time with my family! My husband, Robert and I, have three children. Our son, Sam is almost 20 and is attending Cornell University, studying Bio-engineering. Our daughters, Jaimie and Sydney both attend Mountain Vista high school in Highlands Ranch. Both girls play competitive soccer and you can often find us cheering for them on the pitch.
I love working with students and teaching reading. I truly believe I am in one of the most rewarding professions! I go to work hungry to teach our kids all about the strategies that will help them feel successful in their classroom. Watching young minds work inspires me to be the best


Tiffany Thomas

Email: tjthomas@aurorak12.org

ESS Social Worker

Hello! My name is Tiffany Thomas. I am excited to join the Harmony Ridge family. I started my School Social Work journey in 2018 with APS. This will be my third year. I am glad to continue serving ESS as their school social worker. I love collaborating and building positive relationships with my students, families and community.
I am originally from Georgia. I received my Bachelors in Psychology with a minor in Child and Family Development from Georgia Southern University. I went on to receive my Masters in Social Work from Clark Atlanta University. In my spare time, I love to travel home to see family and friends, enhance my makeup skills, and get lost in a good book and practice art. Harmony Ridge family I cannot wait to meet you all!

Allison George

Email: algeorge@aurorak12.org

Exceptional Student Services

Hello Harmony community! My name is Alison George, and I am so excited to be the staffing chair for the Exceptional Student Services team at our new school.I am the daughter of two immigrants, an English father and a French mother. They are both retired professors who now live in Ohio. I grew up in Ohio for the most part, but we lived in London on and off, which was an amazing experience for me as a kid!I have one older brother who has cerebral palsy and autism, and is what led me to have a career in special education. I lived in Ohio and did my undergraduate work at University of Findlay. I graduated with a bachelor’s in special education with a minor in special ed law. When I was 21, I wanted to move to California. I moved across the country and lived in Santa Cruz for a few years and then moved to San Francisco. I began teaching there and I loved it! I also went to graduate school at Chapman University and earned my master’s in special education, specializing in autism. During my time there I learned to surf and love baseball. Go SF Giants!I moved to Denver in July 2016, and have found a wonderful new home here. I love being outdoors, and this state has so many beautiful places in nature to visit! I snowboard, camp, hike, bike, and love to explore waterfalls and lakes.When I am not enjoying the outdoors, I spend time baking, making jewelry, reading, painting, and potting new plants. I am also a huge music fan, and I both play instruments and attend live shows. I can’t wait to meet new students and embark on the Harmony adventure. Looking forward to being part of a team that is eager and passionate about STEM learning.

Jenny Murray

Email: jrmurray@aurorak12.org

Exceptional Student Services

I am so delighted to be a part of the Harmony Ridge community. My name is Jenny Murray, and I grew up in California. After high school, I studied Sociology and French at the University of Arizona (Go Wildcats!!). After I graduated from the University of Arizona, I started teaching in Madagascar where I was a Peace Corps Volunteer. This was an amazing experience, and I learned to be very flexible in my teaching and to create a curriculum that is interesting to the student population. I have worked in schools for five years as a school counselor assistant, a special education teacher for middle school, and a language arts teacher at residential treatment centers. My favorite thing about teaching is building relationships with students.
I have a 4 year old daughter and a 1 year old son. We also have a cat named Bubba and a new puppy named Quinn. We love to explore everything Colorado has to offer, especially the zoo, and the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. You can often find me running with my kids in a double stroller on the trails throughout SE Aurora, or riding my Peloton. I am so excited to be a part of the Harmony Ridge community and to help every student be happy, healthy and successful!


Chrssy Wilson

Email: chawilson@aurorak12.org

Exceptional Student Services

I am so excited to be part of the team and community at Harmony. I grew up and am from all over, including Austria. I grew up being able to have the privilege of seeing and experiencing many different cultures and languages. I’ve lived on the East Coast including upstate New York and Massachusetts, the Midwest and also the South. Although Colorado is home and I’ve lived in the Denver area for a little over 20 years now, Arkansas is also considered “home” for me as well since most of my family still lives there. I am a big Arkansas Razorback fan and also enjoy cheering on the Broncos and the Nuggets.
I went to the University of Northern Colorado for my undergraduate degrees and majored in Audiology, Speech-Language Sciences and also Writing. I then went to the Metropolitan University of Denver for my graduate program in Special Education. I have been in the special education field for 10 years including working in residential, day treatment and self-contained settings for mental health/behavioral programs for 8 of those years. I have been a mild-moderate needs special education teacher for the last two years with Aurora Public Schools. I am extremely excited to further my professional career at Harmony Ridge and cannot wait to build more connections with the community and students.
When I am not working, you can find me spending time with my husband and dog (Penny Lou), going fishing, playing games like Dominoes or Phase 10, and spending time with family and friends. I also love being able to talk with my 5-year old granddaughter via video chat since she lives in Florida. I am in the process of training Penny Lou so that she can be certified as a therapy dog which takes us out and about into places and different situations. I enjoy playing the piano, listening to music, baking, and cooking. I am an avid reader and enjoy reading, especially with a cup of coffee or tea, any chance I have some extra time.

Emma Ellis

Email: ejellis@aurorak12.org

Speech/Language Pathologist

I am so excited to be part of the Harmony Ridge P8 team as one of the speech-language pathologists! This will be my third year with APS, previously working at Meadowood Child Development Center, various community preschool sites, and Yale Elementary School. I am looking forward to collaborating with fellow staff members to ensure each student has a voice.
I am originally from Massachusetts, and attended both undergraduate (Hofstra University) and graduate school (University of Connecticut) on the east coast. Three years ago, I moved to Colorado and have been loving it here! In my spare time you can find me reading, painting, hiking, snowboarding, and watching baseball (go Red Sox AND Rockies).

Emily Rutherford

Email: eerutherford@aurorak12.org

Speech/Language Pathologist

Hi Harmony Ridge community! I am very excited to be part f the team as one of the speech-language pathologists. I recently graduated from the University of Northern Colorado with my Master’s in speech-language pathology. During graduate school, I completed my school externship with APS. I look forward to connecting with the Harmony Ridge community where I can collaborate with team members and provide communication support to students to help them feel empowered. I am a Colorado Native who loves the many days of sunshine! When I am not at school, you can find me enjoying a warm cup of coffee, running, spending time with friends and family, or traveling.

Holly Lavin

Email: hplavin@aurorak12.org

ESS Social Worker

Hello! My name is Holly Lavin and I am so excited to be a part of the Harmony Ridge team. I grew up in Rochester, New York, and I earned my undergraduate degree from the State University of New York at Fredonia, with a major in psychology and a minor in Spanish. I also have a master’s degree in social work from the University at Buffalo. During my undergraduate and graduate careers, I studied abroad in Mexico and completed an internship in the Dominican Republic, where I improved my Spanish language skills and developed a passion for learning about Hispanic culture. In 2019, I moved to Colorado in search of a new adventure, as well as to pursue a career in school social work. Over the past year, I have truly enjoyed working with students, families, and staff members at APS in order to support the students’ behavioral health needs. I look forward to building these relationships at Harmony Ridge. In my free time, I enjoy hiking with friends, reading, and rooting for the Buffalo Bills!


Morgan Embry

Email: mlembry@aurorak12.org

Teacher of Students with Autism

Hi my name is Morgan Embry and I am one of the special education teachers here at Harmony Ridge. This summer I will receive my Masters Degree in Exceptional Student Education from Florida Atlantic University with a Focus in Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA).
I have just moved to Colorado from sunny South Florida. I am very excited to be back in a place with all four seasons. This will be my 4th year teaching. Before coming to Harmony Ridge, I worked in an Autism Special Program with Elementary age students for three years. I am passionate about individual student growth and creating independence in and out of the classroom. I am looking forward to meeting my new students and becoming a classroom family. Apart from teaching, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, cooking, being outdoors, and napping with my two cats Ash and Atticus!

Carly Keeshen

Email: clkeeshen@aurorak12.org

Teacher of Students with Autism

I am thrilled to be joining the Harmony Ridge family as an Autism Teacher!
This will be my 4th year teaching - previously I’ve taught 2nd grade, K-2 inclusion, and at an alternative school for students with severe disabilities.
I pride myself on building strong relationships with all my students and I truly can’t wait to be together and start celebrating our success!
I grew up in New Jersey and moved to Virginia to attend Longwood University where I received both my Bachelors of Science and Masters of Science in Special Education. I’ve been teaching in Virginia until now. I fell in love with Colorado on a girls trip and when visiting family so I can’t wait to explore more of all the great local spots! In my free time you can find me playing with Louie, my mini dachshund puppy, or hangout with friends. I can not wait to meet you all!