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Faculty and Staff
Lincoln J. Tamayo – Head of School
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1101
Lincoln received his B.A. in History from the University of Notre Dame, his J.D. from The University of Florida College of Law, and his Ed.M., Administration, Planning, and Social Policy from Harvard University. In December 2002, Lincoln assumed the responsibilities as Academy Prep’s Head of School, and since 2005 has also served as Vice President of Operations, overseeing the operations of both Academy Prep campuses. In 2001 and 2002, he was Chairman of English for the Children of Massachusetts, the successful initiative petition campaign to reform the bilingual education laws of Massachusetts. He was subsequently invited by Governor-elect Mitt Romney to serve on Mr. Romney’s transition team through January 2003. From 1997 to 2001, he was Principal of Chelsea High School in Chelsea, MA, as well as the lead principal of Chelsea’s two middle schools. He has also served as Assistant to the President of Boston University, Secretary to the Boston University Board of Trustees, Assistant to the Chairman of the Massachusetts Board of Education, a community columnist for the editorial board of the Tampa Tribune, and a member of the Board of Trustees for Jesuit High School (Tampa). He currently serves as a member of the boards of trustees for the Tampa Museum of Art and Cristo Rey High School of Tampa, as well as the Citizens Review Board for the Tampa Police Department.
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.
J.F. Bracey – Boys’ Science Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1112
Jay has called Tampa his home since July 2004. He holds a B.S. in Sports Management from Temple University. He has much experience working with non-profits and has coordinated youth sports programs in economically disadvantaged communities in Richmond, VA and Philadelphia, PA. Prior to joining Academy Prep, he worked at the Y and volunteered regularly at our school. Jay served as an AmeriCorps teacher for one year and is currently the boys’ science teacher.
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.
Samantha Denis – Graduate Support Coordinator
Samantha was born in Brooklyn, New York and was raised in Haiti. She moved to Florida in 2010 and has called Tampa her home for the past 6 years. She graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelors of Arts and Sciences in Biological Health Sciences. While at USF, Samantha was a member of the service organization Alpha Phi Omega, the Multicultural Greek Council, and Big Brothers Big Sisters. Samantha worked under the USF Wellness Education Center as a peer health educator and was also the student chair of the Intercultural Student Leadership Conference, the biggest leadership conference at USF. Samantha strongly believes in the power of education and instilling values in our youth, as they are the future of this world. She is eager to be a part of the Academy Prep family.
Jenna Dufficy – Boys’ Math Teacher
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 minor in Pathways to Teaching. While at UF, Jenna also held multiple leadership roles in Reitz Union Board Entertainment, the university’s student event programming board. In her free time, Jenna enjoys developing her skills in photography and spending time with her Pembroke Welsh Corgis, Einstein and River. Jenna loves being a part of the Academy Prep family and looks forward to making a positive impact on the lives of our students for many years to come.
Amanda Fleischbein– Art Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1117
Amanda received her B.F.A. in Art Education from the University of South Carolina. There, Amanda served as a resident mentor for three years, garnering recognition as Hall Government Advisor of the Year and receiving the Resident Student Learning Model Implementation Award. She served as an AmeriCorps teacher for one year, and is now the art teacher.
Leigh Gale – Grants Specialist
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1131
Leigh is a graduate of the University of Florida with a B.S. in Public Relations. While at UF, Leigh became involved in non-profit work as an intern with the Cris Collinsworth Foundation. After moving to the Bay area, she stayed committed to non-profit work with several area organizations. With over nine years of development experience in media relations, event planning and grant writing, Leigh enjoys being an advocate for the students and sharing the wonderful mission of Academy Prep.
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 he’s currently working on a Doctorate in School Psychology from Argosy University. 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.
Gina Guthrie – Boys’ English Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1115
In addition to teaching English, Gina oversees our supplemental English courses and supervises one of our enrichment classes. She has a B.S. in Psychology with an M.B.A. from the University of Florida. She worked in marketing and sales before raising a family. Turning to education as a career as her children went to school, Ms. Fuller taught English, math and history at Mary Help of Christians and LLT Charter School before coming to Academy Prep. She is proud to have three wonderful children.
Cristina Gutierrez-Brewster – Program Director
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.
Pamela Hooks – H.R. and Meals Coordinator
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.
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 looking forward to helping Academy Prep fulfill its vision and by helping our students reach their potential.
Henry Ibanez – Boys’ History Teacher and Dean of Faculty
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1113
Henry graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.A. in Marketing in 1992 and an Ed.M. in 1999. Henry came to Academy Prep from Sickles High School, where he taught Advanced Placement Economics and Honors Philosophy. Henry decided to join Academy Prep after volunteering here during the spring of 2005.
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.
Patrick MacLeod – Boys’ English 2 Teacher
Patrick is a graduate of Florida Southern College, where he earned a B.S. in Psychology with a minor in Art History. He has worked as the director for a non-profit educational summer camp in his home state of Rhode Island. In his free time he enjoys boxing and music. Patrick is looking forward to working with the students and joining the Academy Prep family!
Lauren Malone – Girls’ History Teacher
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1138
Lauren is a University of Tampa graduate with a B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Spanish. She grew up in upstate New York, where she earned her A.A. in liberal arts at Onondaga Community College. While earning her undergraduate degree she was a nanny and fell in love with teaching and looking after young kids. Originally born in Tampa, Lauren is excited to be a part of the community and give back to the neighborhood that is her second home. Lauren feels very blessed and honored to be a part of such an amazing institution and looks forward to getting to know each and every student.
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 an M.A. in Latin American Studies with a concentration in International Communication from the University of Florida. Prior to joining Academy Prep, Maggie worked as a Development and Public Relations Coordinator with the New Tampa YMCA, and as a Community Representative with the American Cancer Society in Pinellas County, where she focused on fundraising, development, event planning, and marketing. While in graduate school at UF, she also worked as a researcher and undergraduate advisor. Maggie is passionate about women’s and children’s issues, and has volunteered locally for the past five years with Metropolitan Ministries, area children’s homes, and women’s outreach organizations. As head of the volunteer program at the New Tampa YMCA, Maggie worked with hundreds of teenagers to engage them in community outreach initiatives.
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.
Olivia Phillips – Girls’ English 2 Teacher
Olivia graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a B.A. in Political Science and a minor in Gender Studies. She has served both college and high school students as a student manager at the Notre Dame Office of Student Disabilities and resident advisor at Columbia University’s Summer Program for High School Students. Eager to work with middle schoolers, Olivia is excited to be part of the Academy Prep team!
Amy Ragg – Community and Administrative Manager
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 almost fifteen 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 join 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.
Ron Scarcelli- Technology Coordinator
Tampa Phone: 813-248-5600 x1166
St Pete Phone: 727-322-0800 x2107
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 so excited to join 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 x1102
Luly graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.S. in Engineering. After several years as a design engineer she started a new and most fulfilling career – that of mom and volunteer. From PTA president to Girl Scout leader, Luly has stayed very involved with her children and their schools. Believing in the power of education to transform lives, Luly is excited to be a member of the Academy Prep staff.
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 – Boys’ & Girls’ Tech Lab and Math 2 Teacher
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.
Hillary Vass – Girls’ English Teacher
Hillary recently 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.
Anita Ives – Guidance Counselor
Phone: 813-248-5600 x1139
Anita, a.k.a. “Ms. Nita”, was born and raised in Chicago and has a master’s in Social Work. Before coming to Academy Prep, Anita served over 14 years as a social worker for the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services and the Florida Department of Children and Families. Ms. Nita’s diverse background offers experience in the areas of individual assessments, developing case plans, evaluating coping skills, linking people to available resources, advocating for clients and conflict resolution. Ms. Nita prides herself on her leadership skills and the ability to work harmoniously with peers and students.
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.