Chris O’Reilly

School Leader

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I am a long time resident of Keene and Marlborough, New Hampshire, and currently live in Hillsborough, New Hampshire with my wife and teenage son, who will also be attending our school. For the past twelve years I worked in the Learning Disabilities Collaborative at Keene High School as an English teacher and special educator. I studied and earned my teaching and administrative credentials at Keene State College, Antioch University New England, and Plymouth State University. The most fascinating learning experience that I ever had was when I spent a summer teaching and learning at the Bapagrama School in Bangalore, India. In my former professional life I was a small business owner, worked in the residential and commercial construction trades, and was a technician in the recreational motorsports industry. I enjoy spending time with my family, hiking, kayaking, and cycling whenever I get the chance.  I am very much looking forward to my new leadership role at the Making Community Connections Charter School in Keene and am eager to begin working with our new staff, students, families, and community partners.

Elizabeth Cardine

Lead Teacher/Advisor

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I began my teaching career at the original Monadnock Community Connections program from 2003-2010. It was a great fit for me coming out of college with a dual degree in Physics and Studio Art. I am a Keene native (born Kuhn) married to a Swanzey local and together we have three young boys who keep us very busy and our home full of Legos. My family is a teaching family, passionate about creativity and learning, and we are all life-long participants in the creative problem-solving program Destination ImagiNation (formerly Odyssey of the Mind). I’m always ready for a pick-up game of Ticket to Ride or Ultimate Frisbee.

Sarah Mandel

Administrative Assistant

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I am very excited to be joining the MC2 team as the Administrative Assistant!  For the past seven years I have been a substitute teacher for Surry Charter School, SAU #29 and Montessori Schoolhouse.  Until recently, I have also been serving as the part time Administrative Assistant for Montessori Schoolhouse.  I am married with a 13 year old son and I live here in Keene.  I enjoy doing anything creative such as cooking, crafting, drawing, painting, party planning, poetry writing and more.  I also love to organize – anything from spreadsheets to closets. I am looking forward to getting to know your wonderful children and being a part of the MC 2 community.

Jason D’Amboise

Internship Coordinator/Advisor

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I grew up in Swanzey and have lived in the area for most of my life. I received my undergraduate degree from Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vermont, and my Masters degree in education from Antioch University New England here in Keene. The phrase “I know a guy” definitely applies to me. Throughout my life I have worn many hats and held jobs in numerous fields before finding my calling in education. To name a few, I have been a roofer, an assembler, a landscaper, a program director and a crew chief for a professional moving company in Boston. My wife and I recently moved into our first home here in Keene, and the first thing we bought was a gigantic table where we can play our expansive, highly complicated German style board games. The multiple entry points for winning definitely appeal to my non-linear and creative problem solving mindset. When I am not playing board games you can find me hiking far into the woods with my dog, cooking in my kitchen, or rolling on the mats at our local Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu school. I am thrilled to be joining the MC2 community and look forward to working with such a highly energized and team oriented staff and student body.

Alaura Carson

Teacher/Advisor

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I have lived in the Monadnock Region all of my life.  I grew up in Swanzey and attended Keene State College upon graduation from Monadnock Regional High School.  I earned a BS in Secondary Education and a BA in Pure and Applied Mathematics with a minor in Business Management.  While searching for my first teaching position, I was an assistant manager at a local convenience store. I have previously taught at Brattleboro Union High School, Jaffrey-Rindge Middle School, and Monadnock Regional High School. I currently live in Troy with my fiance Matt and our pugshund (pug/dachshund mix) Lilly. In my free time, I love to spend time with my family, especially my beautiful, one-year-old niece.  I am very excited to be part of the MC2 community and look forward to continually grow as a teacher, an advisor, and a learner here at MC2.

Sarah LeClair

Teacher/Advisor

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I grew up in Fitzwilliam on a cattle farm. I also participated in 4-H and various other youth groups. I received my teaching credentials at New England College in Henniker, NH. My degree is in Comparative Literature with a concentration in Secondary Education. I began my teaching journey at a Montessori school and then moved to Marlborough Elementary before joining the MC2 team. I have two dogs, a horse, and two step-children, all of which keep my significant other and me very busy. When I’m not teaching or with my children, I am in the barn or walking with my pups. I am very excited to be a part of this learning community.

Nate Gray
Teacher/Advisor

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Hello, MC2 community! I am a long-time resident of Cheshire County, having attended Surry Elementary, Keene Middle, and Keene High. I received my undergraduate degrees from Keene State College, where I studied Political Science, Economics, and Gender Studies. After spending a number of years in the professional world, I eventually joined the MC2 startup team as an AmeriCorps member during the summer of 2015. At the end of my AmeriCorps term, I left Keene to pursue graduate study in Political Science at Brandeis University, where I focused my attention on education politics and policymaking. In my free time, I enjoy creating music (guitar and piano are my instruments of choice), reading (especially literary and science fiction), and hiking. Finally, I’ve also been known to be a fierce “doc week” competitor, having shattered my collarbone in a spirited game of capture the flag in the spring of 2016.

Owen Coursin

Support Staff

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I am ecstatic to be joining the MC2 team. I lived in Gilsum, NH for many years and love the Monadnock region.  I received a Masters in the Art of Teaching (MAT) from Earlham College for high school biology in 2011. Since moving to Keene a few years ago, I have been working on a master’s degree in Environmental Education from Antioch University New England. My final internship for my program is a nine week artist-in-residency program at Pendle Hill in Pennsylvania. I am exploring the link between spirituality and nature through pottery. When I am not outside hiking, biking, swimming, or traveling you can find me playing games with friends, cooking, or making pottery. I have spent about a decade working with clay and love the way I feel more centered and grounded through making pottery. I believe that experiential learning leads to the most lasting understandings. I knew from the first moment that I set foot in the MC2 school that it was an environment that I wanted to be a part of.

Eric Snare

Support Staff

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I have been involved with theatre since early childhood, and with improvisational theatre since joining ActingOut in 2000. With a BA in Improvisational Arts from Keene State College, I have taught both beginning and advanced improv skills for MoCo Arts’ Creative Arts at Keene Summer Camp and as a Staff Member. I have also served as an Americorps Volunteer. I have seen theatre transform both the students I teach and the communities I live in, time and again. It is this capacity for spurring positive change and growth that ultimately brings me to both the classroom and the stage, and that fuels my passion for teaching.

Wendy Rezzonico

Support Staff

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Born, raised, and living in Keene, I spent 20 years away to “round out my character” in places as diverse as Boston, North Carolina and the wilderness of the Canadian Rockies. I’ve had a lifetime of community involvement through churches, non-profits, schools, co-ops, musical groups, volunteer work, working with disabled individuals and living in intentional community. I’ve run a successful creative business for over 30 years and raised two children. Recently I spent 14 years enthusiastically teaching and learning from our youth in KHS’s Learning Disabilities Collaborative. I love the outdoors and have relished the last 18 summers as a co-leader of Roots and Wings Nature Camp for children. My lifelong passion for singing has brought involvement in a wide variety of groups. Loving songs of heart and spirit, I’ve spent the last 40 years performing, recording, and leading sacred songs and chants from many of the world’s Wisdom Cultures. I’m honored to be part the MC2 community.

Lynn Keneipp

Support Staff

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“Do what you love, love what you do.”  I made this promise to myself in my late 20s.  I have lived by this ever since.  I am very excited to be a part of Making Connections Charter School.  Teaching is a passion of mine, I hold a State of NH, Board of Education, Paraeducator II certificate and worked for 15 years at Keene Middle School.  I teach Yoga every Sunday morning and own my businesses, Lean and Serene and Pop Up Yoga.

When I am not working, you will often see me riding my bike or walking my dog around Keene.  I am a native Floridian, but I fell in love with New England in 1999 and decided to move here.  I enjoy spending time with my two daughters,  my cat, and my  dog. I am happy to be doing what I love and being a part of the MC2 community.

 

Danielle Sanderson

Case Manager/ Reading Specialist

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After I received my undergraduate degree and teaching credentials from Keene State College, I fell in love with the quaint little town of Keene, NH and decided to stay!! I later received my Masters of Education with a focus in Special Education from Plymouth State University. After working in public schools as a Special Educator and Case Manager for 10 years (where I received multiple certifications in specialized reading programs such as the Wilson Reading System, Lindamood Bell and Orton-Gillingham programs) I decided to start my own business as a Reading  Consultant, which I have been doing for the last 12 years.  My love for learning differences and teaching students to learn reading in new ways has lead me to MC2! I have been with MC2 since 2015 and I’m so happy to be here! I look forward to working closely with students to help them in their journey to become the best learners they can be, along with the staff and parents who support them!

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