MINDFULNESS BASED SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL LEARNING: K-2 | 3-5 | 6-8
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Our Team

Noah Teitelbaum, MBA

Noah Teitelbaum, MBA

Executive Director

Noah started his 20 years in education with 5th graders in Harlem and then went on to teach in other schools serving low-income students in the NYC area. He knows firsthand the need for  tools for teaching SEL and Mindfulness. Noah has also been an instructional coach, an author of teaching handbooks and curricula, a consultant to some of the most innovative schools in the country, and a business manager and product innovator for a national test-prep business. He’s earned his Masters in Education, and an MBA, and has done significant course work in Instructional Leadership.

nteitelbaum@empoweringeducation.org

Charlie Merrow, MA

Charlie Merrow, MA

Program Director

cmerrow@empoweringeducation.org

Blake Wilfong

Blake Wilfong

Social & Emotional Learning Coordinator

As the Social & Emotional Learning Coordinator, Blake is responsible for providing support to our school partnerships. Having experienced first-hand the benefits of SEL as a student, Blake is committed to offering that same support to the students he works with. His hope is that all students receive the emotional support and guidance needed to ensure a bright and sustainable future. Blake currently supports SEL programming at Cole Arts & Science Academy in Denver Public Schools. Blake graduated from the University of Northern Colorado with a BA in Psychology.

bwilfong@empoweringeducation.org

Cody Wiggs, LPC, MA

Cody Wiggs, LPC, MA

Curriculum Contributing Author

Cody is the primary contributing author of the Empowering Minds K-8 curriculum. Cody is a licensed professional counselor, a licensed school counselor, a certified yoga instructor, and a long-time practitioner of mindfulness. His work is informed by his travel and study of indigenous healing practices in SE Asia, South America, and North America. Currently, Cody specializes in treating PTSD and depression in his private practice in Denver, CO. 

Caitlin Calhoun, MA

Caitlin Calhoun, MA

Curriculum Contributing Author

Caitlin is a contributing author of the Empowering Minds curriculum with a background in teaching primary elementary. As a teacher at the Denver Green School, Caitlin focuses on teaching the ‘whole child’ and encouraging young students to invite challenges, to be creative problem solvers, and to change the world for the better. She is trained as a Mindful Educator through Mindful Schools and she received her Masters in Teaching from the University of San Francisco.

Carolyn “Carrie” Schmitt, OTR/L

Carolyn “Carrie” Schmitt, OTR/L

Curriculum Contributing Author

Carrie is a 1996 graduate of the Medical College of Georgia Occupational Therapy program. She has worked in a variety of pediatric settings in her career. The Sensory Therapies and Research (STAR) Institute in Greenwood Village, CO currently employs Carrie on a contract basis while she is pursing a Post Professional Occupational Therapy Doctorate (PPOTD) at Boston University. As a wife and mother to four children, one of Carrie’s favorite things is coming alongside families to learn more about their child’s unique, individual strengths and challenges through education and research-based intervention.

Andreas "Andy" Wilfong

Andreas "Andy" Wilfong

Board Chair

Andy is the Board Chair and founder of Empowering Education Inc. (EE) and has also founded two additional companies headquartered in Colorado. One of the companies was awarded best small business in Colorado from 2008-2010 and in 2010 was ranked 25th nationally. Andy has extensive experience with business start-up operations and subsequent business sustainability.

Marie Revak, PhD

Marie Revak, PhD

Board Member

Marie has a MA and PhD in Math Education. She taught secondary math before joining the Air Force as an orbital analyst. After three Air Force assignments, she returned to the Air Force Academy where she taught math, trained faculty, and led the academic assessment program. Marie worked for Lewis-Palmer School District as the Professional Development and Assessment Director. Now retired, Marie co-leads a volunteer math tutoring program and teaches undergraduate math courses online.

Charis Whitnah, MA

Charis Whitnah, MA

Board Member

Charis Whitnah is the Senior Manager of Student Services at Rocky Mountain Prep Charter Schools. She spent the first five years of her career teaching special education at SOAR and the Tennyson Center for Children. Charis is passionate about educational equity and social and emotional learning. She is a 2013 Teach For America alumna who earned her BA in Philosophy from Colorado College and her MA in Special Education from the University of Northern Colorado.

Maryann Wiggs, MA

Maryann Wiggs, MA

Board Member, Executive Editor

Maryann has over four decades of experience in education. She is the founder of Educational Performance Consulting, providing engaging seminars and workshops on a wide range of educational topics both locally and nationally. She is the author of five books on understanding and implementing standards-based educational practices and former Assistant Superintendent and Executive Director in two Colorado school districts.

 

Emma Espel, PhD

Emma Espel, PhD

Board Member

Emma seeks to encourage social and emotional learning in education settings through informed programming. This passion is fostered by her experience as a research associate for RMC Research, consultant work for educational and community programs, and experiences encouraging health and mindfulness in youth through activities and research. Emma earned her BA in Psychology from Gustavus Adolphus College and her MA and PhD in Developmental Psychology from the University of Denver in 2015.

Marina M. Mendoza, PhD

Marina M. Mendoza, PhD

Board Member

Marina is the Director of Enrollment and Evaluation at the Denver Preschool Program. She has a strong passion for ensuring that all children at every age have access to social-emotional learning curriculums and programs. Marina received her PhD from the University of Denver in Developmental Psychology with a specialty in Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience.

Dennis McCarthy

Dennis McCarthy

Web Master

Dennis spent 15 years in K-12 professional development with an emphasis on curriculum and technology. Later, he developed customized technology solutions for school districts in the area of curriculum and standards alignment. More recent work includes web marketing at agency level working with national clients including nonprofit, publishing and e-commerce. Currently Dennis specializes in large-scale, web-based video and publishing membership systems.