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Faculty and Staff
L’Tanya C. Evans – Head of School
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1101
Ms. Evans holds an M.A. in Liberal Studies from Northwestern University and a B.A. in English and Communications from Chatham University. She brings a wealth of experience in school leadership; English, visual and performing arts instruction; and effective pedagogy to this role. She joined APT after 16 years at The Out-of-Door Academy in Sarasota, where she had been Associate Head of School for Academic Affairs since 2016 with supervision over all 12 Department Heads, the Directors of Middle and Upper School Academic Services, and had dotted line supervision over all three Division Directors and their Assistant Heads. In prior years, Ms. Evans served as Academic Dean and Head of Visual and Performing Arts, Dean of Students, and Head of the English Department. She is honored and delighted to serve as our Head of School and shares our sense of mission. She believes ours is powerful and impactful.
Keith Allen – Music Program Director
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1122
Keith moved here from Dayton, Ohio in June 2008. He is the father to four wonderful sons. He has served in the education field as a tutor, teacher’s aide and, most recently, as Assistant Music Director with a youth gospel chorus in Dayton. Keith joined Academy Prep because of its belief in embracing children and their needs in a warm and caring manner. Keith directs the Music Program at Academy Prep and feels blessed to share his life experiences of twenty five years as a professional musician, producer, and teacher with the youth of today.
Hunter Byrnes – AmeriCorps Specialist Teacher, Boys’ PE
Originally from Danville, Virginia, and Hunter graduated from George Washington High School in 2015. He attended Davidson College where he played football and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in History in 2019. Hunter is proud to serve through the AmeriCorps program at Academy Prep.
Cage Coleman – Boys’ Science Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1112
Cage graduated Cum Laude from the University of Tampa with a B.A. in Public Relations and a Certification in Japanese. He served as a Residential Advisor to both undergraduate and graduate students while also serving as an RA at the John Hopkins Center for Talented Youth over summers. At a young age he started coaching youth basketball at his local YMCA branch in Arizona. In his free time, he enjoys playing various sports and instruments, and cooking. Cage is proud to support the Academy Prep mission and philosophy.
Sam Conley – Facilities and Maintenance
Sam is a Tampa native. He does a little bit of everything at Academy Prep, doing a fantastic job of keeping the school clean, orderly, and maintained- always with an infectious smile.
Joseph DeGrinney – AmeriCorps Specialist Teacher, Math II
Originally from Scarborough, Maine, JT spent the last four years attending the University of Notre Dame, where he graduated with a B.A. in Philosophy with a minor in Italian. JT has always been surrounded by traditions that emphasize community service, from that of the Boy Scouts, where he achieved the rank of Eagle, to those of the Jesuit and Holy Cross educational systems. He looks forward to continuing those traditions through the AmeriCorps program at Academy Prep.
Brandon Delfosse – AmeriCorps Specialist Teacher, Technology Lab
Brandon graduated with his Bachelors in Sociology with a Minor in Anthropology from University of Central Florida. Leading a life of volunteerism since he was young, Brandon has worked with special needs children, enjoyed volunteering at his high school during his college years, and always found ways to give back to his community when he was able. He is proud to be part of the Academy Prep family and to help educate the upcoming generation.
Samantha Denis – Graduate Support Coordinator
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1162
Calling Tampa her home since 2011, Samantha received her B.S.A. in Biological Health Sciences from the University of South Florida, where she is currently pursuing her MPH with a concentration in maternal and child health. Throughout her journey, Samantha held many leadership positions within her organizations at USF. In her free time, Samantha enjoys painting, volunteering in her community, and mentoring the youth – especially her little brother through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay. Samantha strongly believes that children should not be limited in opportunities because of their background or their socioeconomic status. Samantha strongly believes in the power of education and instilling values in our youth, and this is one of the many reasons why she is passionate about her work as the Graduate Support Coordinator.
Jenna Dufficy – Boys’ Math Teacher and Academic Dean
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1136
Jenna graduated from the University of Florida in 2011, where she earned a B.A. in Business Administration with a specialization in Education. While at UF, Jenna also completed a minor in Pathways to Teaching. In support of our mission, Jenna works to foster a classroom environment abundant in hard work, mutual respect, and an enjoyment of learning. She is currently pursuing a M.Ed in Educational Leadership.
Brittani Fisher – Girls’ English Teacher
Kathy Goldberg – Girls’ Math Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1118
Kathy earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Rhode Island, her master’s from Rutgers University, and graduate credits from Rider University. She comes to us from our sister campus in St. Petersburg, where she did an outstanding job as the lead math teacher for six years. Before joining Academy Prep, Kathy taught math at the middle school and college levels, developed curriculum for basic skills, and extensively tutored high school students for the ACT and SAT college admission tests. As our girls’ math instructor, she believes in blending traditional math instruction with real-life problem solving.
Richard Grandy – Director of Graduate Support
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1163
Prior to arriving at Academy Prep, Rich served as a Family Support Coordinator with Northside Mental Health service. Rich earned his B.S. from Medaille College in Buffalo, New York, and his Masters in School Psychology and Ed.S (Educations Specialist) Degree. Rich has over ten years of experience working with youth and adolescents in New York and Florida, including serving as a group treatment manager for the Department of Juvenile Justice and as a dependency case manager, where he worked to reunify children and families who were involved in the foster care system. In his free time, Rich enjoys playing golf and serving as a board member for Community EFX, a non-profit organization in Pinellas County.
Cristina Gutierrez-Brewster – Assistant Head of School
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1140
Cristina received her M.S. in Educational Leadership and Administration from Florida State University and her B.S. in English and Spanish from the University of Notre Dame. During her college years, she served the Latino community of South Bend by tutoring an individual child each year through the student-run program, Teamwork for Tomorrow. She also gained experience working with children with special needs, serving as a camp counselor for NISRA (Northern Illinois Special Recreation Association). After two years of service as an AmeriCorps teacher, Cristina became the English teacher for the girls, where she worked to improve her students’ reading comprehension and writing skills. In 2012, she assumed the role of Community Relations Coordinator, working closely with our Parent Council, community partners, high school volunteers, and USF and UT work-study students.
Antonio Hernandez – Art Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1117
Tampa native Antonio has been a State of Florida Certified Art Teacher for the last two decades here in Hillsborough County. Both his father and grandfather were students on this campus when Academy Prep was the V.M. Ybor Grammar School. He earned his BFA in Painting with a Minor in Art History from the University of Florida, and has worked as a sculptor and painter for the theming industry creating props and signage for theme parks and museums. Antonio has also worked as a caricature artist for Busch Gardens, Disney World, the Florida Strawberry Festival, and a variety of fairs and festivals from Miami to New York. In addition to teaching, he also works as a freelance caricaturist, illustrator, and graphic designer.
Pamela Hooks – Executive Administrative Assistant, Academy Prep Foundation
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1103
Pam, who graduated Magna Cum Laude from American University and who headed a personnel division at a major engineering firm in Washington, D.C., is the consummate professional. Her attention to detail, work ethic, and care for the children and families we serve are extraordinary. She has a manner that puts all who meet her at ease, and the entire staff and all of our students and parents enjoy working with her.
Anusha Hudda – AmeriCorps Specialist Teacher, Girls’ English II
Anusha graduated from Robinson High School, then received her AA from the University of Florida, and recently received her Bachelors in Psychology with a minor in Educational Foundations and Research from the University of South Florida. Anusha is passionate about working with children of all ages, especially students in middle school. She believes that students are the leaders of tomorrow. To inspire each child is to spark a change in the future. Throughout her life, Anusha has been involved in her Ismaili Muslim Community, serving as teacher, mentor, and a camp counselor for several years. As an AmeriCorps English 2 Teacher, she wishes to share her knowledge with others, continue to learn and grow as an individual.
Jim Humboldt – CFO, Academy Prep Foundation
Phone: 727-322-0800 x3401
Jim is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Jim has been involved in financial management for over thirty years, including eighteen years at General Mills and as the CFO for multiple companies, including The Wing House, Beef ‘O’ Brady’s, Kanes Furniture and Crabby Bills Restaurants. Jim is following a family tradition, by coming to work for Academy Prep. His daughters, Leslie and Amy were Americorp teachers on the Tampa campus and his wife Chris worked in development at APCT. Additionally, Jim and Chris have a son Dan. Jim is honored to help Academy Prep fulfill its vision by helping our students reach their potential.
Ed Joller – Accounting Assistant
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1129
Ed is a graduate of the University of Missouri–St. Louis with a B.S. in Business Administration, specializing in Accounting. He has over 25 years of experience working in private industry in the information services field. He enjoys using his experience in a new setting – the special academic environment provided at Academy Prep.
Roxane Leary – Grant Specialist, Academy Prep Foundation
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1150
Roxane graduated in 2011 from Florida State University with a B.S. in Political Science and in 2015 from the University of South Florida with a Master of Public Administration. She has spent many years working with at risk youth in Polk and Hillsborough County as a life skills coach and substance abuse prevention counselor. After earning her master’s degree, Roxane transitioned to finance as a revenue analyst at DACCO Behavioral Health, Inc. Her passion for working with at risk youth lead her to Academy Prep Centers of Education where as a member of the development team she is able to help contribute to enriching the lives of youth in the community.
Lauren Malone – Guidance Counselor
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1165
Lauren is a University of Tampa graduate with a B.S. in Psychology. She is currently pursuing a Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Troy University. While earning her undergraduate degree, Lauren became a nanny and fell in love with teaching and looking after children. She spent six years as a teacher at Academy Prep, where her passion for education grew even more profound. As part of her role as the Guidance Counselor, Lauren teaches a Socials Skills class to our fifth graders and our Social Emotional Intelligence Life Skills courses to all students. Lauren is an active member of the Florida School Counseling Association and is a Level two Certified Google Educator. Originally born in Tampa, she is excited to call it home and honored to be able to work with the students and families of Academy Prep.
Lindsay Martin – Development Coordinator
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1110
Lindsay earned her Bachelor of Science – Double Major in Exercise Science and Creative Writing from Florida State University. Prior to joining the staff at Academy Prep, she worked as the Event Coordinator at a children’s book store, Little Shop of Stories, in Atlanta, GA. She is passionate about working with children and believes children’s literature can save the world. Lindsay enjoys volunteering and is currently a member of Emerging Leaders of Tampa Bay and the Junior League of Tampa. She is thrilled to be in her role as Development Coordinator and is proud to be a part of the Academy Prep family.
Mike Matesich – Boys’ English Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1115
A Tampa native and graduate of Johns Hopkins University’s Writing Seminars in Baltimore, Maryland, Mike returned to Florida in 2015 where he established and directed a speaker series for authors and artists with the Oxford Exchange. This year, in addition to joining the AmeriCorps team at Academy Prep, he founded a free lending library in a small storefront in downtown Tampa. When he isn’t teaching, Mike enjoys reading, writing, and feeling guilty about not doing enough reading and writing.
Maggie McCleland – Development Director
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1138
Maggie graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Florida with a B.S. in Public Relations and a B.A. in Spanish. She also received a M.A. in Latin American Studies with a concentration in International Communication from the University of Florida. Prior to joining Academy Prep, Maggie worked in development and public relations with the YMCA, and with the American Cancer Society. Locally, Maggie is a member of The Junior League of Tampa, Association of Fundraising Professionals, the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce (GTCC), USF Women in Leadership and Philanthropy, the UF Alumni Association and Tampa Bay Tiger Bay Club. Maggie graduated from the Leadership Tampa Class of 2017, and is a member of Leadership Tampa Alumni. Maggie volunteers her time serving with The Junior League of Tampa focusing on issues of child welfare and education.
Ralph Moore – Girls’ Science Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1116
Ralph Moore is a proud graduate of the University of South Florida. While in Tampa, Ralph has been a volunteer for Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boys and Girls Clubs, and AmeriCorps, to name just a few social service organizations he has served. Ralph decided to become a teacher because he not only sees education as a means to a successful life, but also as an important intellectual and social vehicle that gives children faith in themselves.
Amy Ragg – Girls’ History Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1119
Amy is a Tampa native and graduate of Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida, where she also worked as an admissions counselor after earning her B.A. in Elementary Education. She has over twenty years of experience in education, the last eleven years at Corbett Preparatory School of IDS. Amy holds an endorsement in Gifted Education from the University of South Florida, has extensive training in Kagan Cooperative Learning and the MORE approach to teaching, all of which she brings into the classroom to make learning more exciting and challenging. After being involved in our Stageworks enrichment for two years, Amy is thrilled to be a part of the faculty at Academy Prep, which has felt like home from the very first day.
Tynese Randolph – Administrative Assistant
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1100
Tynese is a life-long Tampa resident. She has four beautiful children and she does a wonderful job taking care of the Academy Prep students. She works closely with the administrative staff, parents and students. You’ll always see her with a smile on her face.
Amanda Rivera – AmeriCorps Specialist, Teacher Girls’ PE
Amanda has proudly called Tampa, FL her home for four years and recently graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.S. in Public Health — Go Bulls! While at USF, she served as the President of the USF chapter of HOSA: Future Health Professionals, an Orientation Team Leader, and as a founding member of an organization titled Developing Untapped Talented Youth (D.U.T.Y). Being in the Public Health community gave her numerous opportunities to volunteer at emergency preparedness, human trafficking, and community health events. She worked as a research assistant and Translator for Spanish speaking patients at the Morsani Diabetes Center. She is incredibly passionate about giving students the opportunity to express and explore who they are as individuals, students, and community members. She looks forward to seeing the positive impact the Academy Prep team has on each student.
Ron Scarcelli- Technology Coordinator
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1166
A graduate of Dominican College in Racine WI, Ron has taught mathematics from middle school through community college as well as computer science at the high school level. After he became a Novell certified network administrator he became the director of technology at Jesuit High School, Tampa. As director, he oversaw every aspect of technology implementation at the school including their 1-to-1 iPad initiative, live video streaming of sports broadcasts & student news shows, a state-of-the-art VOIP phone system and data migrations to the school information systems. Besides math & technology, Ron has taught band at two schools in his career and he is currently lead trumpet and President of the Voices of Jazz big band in Pinellas County. A huge sports – Bucs, Rays & a Die-Hard Cubs – fan, Ron has coached baseball, softball, football, wrestling, track and golf in his career. Ron is thrilled to work at Academy Prep as his goal is bring the most innovative technology to the classroom and make it simple to use.
Luly Socias – Admissions and Scholarships Coordinator
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1111
Luly holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering, Magna Cum Laude, from the University of South Florida. As a software systems engineer, Luly worked for Paradyne, Case Communications, and IBM. Luly loves playing tennis and traveling with her family. She is honored to be a part of the Academy Prep community and enjoys her role as coordinator of various activities including admissions, scholarship, and field trips.
Shaunacy Sutter- Fifth Grade Boys’ Math Teacher
Shaunacy relocated to the Tampa area after graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with a B.A. in Letters and Science, Spanish and a minor in Business. He is currently attending the University of South Florida in pursuit of a Master of Arts in Teaching for Elementary Education. He is proud to support the Mission of the Academy Prep Center of Tampa as the 5th grade boys’ Math teacher. Each day he is looking to inspire the students at Academy Prep Center to strive for excellence with hard work, preparation and the desire to be lifelong learners.
Elizabeth Szostak – Development Manager
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1130
Elizabeth is a proud graduate of Florida State University with a B.S. in Family and Child Sciences. Prior to joining Academy Prep, Elizabeth worked as Grant Manager and Development Manager for Girl Scouts of West Central Florida. She also served as the Associate Director of the USF Wesley Foundation. As a Tampa native, Elizabeth enjoys exploring all the activities, sights, and restaurants that Tampa Bay has to offer. She currently serves on the board of directors for the USF Wesley Foundation. Elizabeth is excited to share the Academy Prep mission and vision with the Tampa Bay community.
Daniel Tamayo – Administrative Assistant
Daniel has lived in Tampa since August 2002. He completed the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme at Robinson High School in 2013. Daniel then went on to study for two years at New York University – Shanghai, where he also taught English and interview skills to Chinese high school students, with several earning acceptances into American boarding schools. He is currently completing his A.A. and hopes to help Academy Prep students attend the best high schools in Tampa and around the country.
Tammy Vallone – School Manager
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1104
Tammy graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.A. in Sociology. She has an extensive fundraising background working at local not-for-profits including the American Cancer Society, Tampa Metro YMCA, TAMCO Foundation, and Girl Scouts of West Central Florida. Tammy is thrilled to be in her role as school manager and is proud to be a part of the Academy Prep family.
Hillary Vass – Boys’ History Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1102
Hillary graduated from The College of William and Mary in Virginia with a B.A. in English and Classical Studies. While there, she volunteered as a tutor in several area schools, which sparked her interest in working with children. Hillary is honored and excited to be a part of the Academy Prep team.
Faith Wyluda – AmeriCorps Specialist Teacher, Boys’ English II
Faith graduated Cum Laude from Flagler College with a B.A. in Political Science and Law. She started working with children when she was in high school, serving as a YMCA camp counselor and after-school tutor in New Jersey. Moving to Florida for college provided her with numerous valuable experiences such as serving in the student government association, interning for national presidential campaigns, interning for the American Civil Liberties Union, and working for a refugee resettlement agency where she was able to help design and implement their first ever summer camp program. These experiences would not have been possible without an education, and she hope to encourage students to use their education to reach their own goals and become thoughtful, engaged citizens. In her free time, she loves reading, running, and trying new food. She believes that Academy Prep is a very special place to be, where teachers are given the opportunity to work with and learn from emerging leaders.
Michael Young – Chess Instructor
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1105
Michael was born and raised here in Tampa, Florida. He graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.A. in Special Education. He has been teaching chess since 2007. He loves the game and the lifelong lessons that it teaches students. He really enjoys working with the families and kids at Academy Prep, as well as the faculty and staff.
Academy Prep’s Nondiscrimination Policy
Academy Prep recognizes and supports the inherent dignity of all persons. Academy Prep is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all employees, or applicants for employment, and to maintaining a workplace free of discrimination, harassment, intimidation or offensive conduct based on age, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, disability/handicap, veteran status, pregnancy, marital status, genetic information, sexual orientation, or other applicable legally protected category in any aspect of the employment relationship. Our policy of equal opportunity and nondiscrimination extends to recruitment, hiring, employment, training and development, promotion, transfer, termination, layoff, compensation, and all other conditions and privileges of employment, in accordance with applicable federal, state, and local laws.