MIKE GORDAY became Director of ABC-Stewart School in August 2007. He has earned an ED.S. Degree in School Administration from Indiana University, a M.S. Degree in Education from the University of Tennessee, and a B.S. Degree in Education from Troy State University. Mike worked for Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation (BCSC) for 34 years--25 years as Assistant Director of Special Education and 9 years as a teacher.
Mike has numerous administrative, supervisory, curriculum, and community public relations experiences. He has conducted workshops in both public and private schools on a variety of educational topics including Creative Problem Solving and Quality Educational Tools. Mike has published articles in state and national educational journals. He is a member of AMI (Association Montessori International/USA), Indiana Council of Administrators, and numerous professional committees. He recently received the President’s Award from ARC of Bartholomew County for his work with individuals with physical and intellectual challenges.
Mike’s administrative expertise and collaborative leadership style contribute to his unique ability to design and implement educational experiences that enable students to become self-reliant, productive and confident members of society. He has a strong commitment to continuing the schools’ philosophy, reputation, and standards for excellence.
Mike has been married for 39 years to Kay, a BCSC Health Careers teacher. He has one daughter, Kristin, who teaches Dental Assisting for BCSC/Ivy Tech Community College. Mike has two granddaughters, Mikayla and Alyssa, both of whom have attended ABC-Stewart and are active on a competitive, traveling Cheer Team. Mike and Kay enjoy running and have completed several half-marathons.
ABC-Stewart School Founder
MERRY STEWART CARMICHAEL, ABC-Stewart School Founder, began ABC Early Learning Centre in 1969 and added Stewart Elementary in 1977. She had previously taught in Indiana public schools. She earned her B.S. and M.S. in education from Indiana University.
She has completed two courses dealing with the Montessori materials and philosophy. Mrs. Carmichael has represented ABC Learning Centre and Stewart Elementary School at a number of national Montessori and other educational conferences. She has taught several education courses at IUPUC.
Mrs. Carmichael was included in the publication Outstanding Young Women of America. She thanks parents and staff for nominating her for the Shining Star Award. She has served as a Deacon and an Elder for her church, served as President of the Hamilton Center Skate Club and been an active swim team parent in the past.
Merry and her husband, Tom, have four children. Cherie enjoys running Marathons, competes in Ironmen, and is the mother of four daughters, Lauren Elizabeth, Madeleine Stewart, Megan Nicole and Allison Lynd Fernandez.
Suzie is a licensed social service provider. She and husband, John, are the parents of daughter, Erica, and son, Trevor.
Paul, who earned a Bachelor's in Elementary/Secondary Education from Indiana University enjoys running.
Rebecca is a licensed Mental Health Counselor. Rebecca and husband, John Kleihege, are the parents of Abby. Merry's children attended ABC, and the three younger children graduated from Stewart Elementary.
Mrs. Carmichael’s husband, Tom, a former teacher, is retired from his position as Vice President of the Kroot Corporation. The family enjoys traveling (especially to New England), swimming and music. In the last few years Tom and Merry traveled to Alaska, Russia, Latvia, Great Britain and Northern Europe, and Costa Rica.
LINDA BECKER joined the staff in August 1981 and is honored to be the Administrator at ABC-Stewart. She spent her youth in Kansas, and attended the University of Kansas before moving to Kentucky and Southern Indiana, attending the Indiana University Southeast Campus in New Albany. Over the years, Linda has attended a number of regional and national Montessori conferences, as well as the Administrators Program at MECA-Seton Montessori Training Center near Chicago in 2007.
Linda has two daughters, both ABC-Stewart graduates. Kathryn Glover is a fellow ABC-Stewart staff member who manages the school accounts receivable and payable. Dominic and Kathryn Glover have one daughter, Siena, born April 2009. Amy and husband, Charles Baxter, reside in Columbus, Ohio and are the parents of Harrison (2006) and Grant (2009).
In her leisure time Linda enjoys traveling (especially to large bodies of water) and reading, as well as any time spent with her family and friends.
KATHRYN GLOVER has worked part or full-time at ABC-Stewart since her sophomore year at Columbus East High School in 1989. Kathryn is a graduate of Indiana University with a B.S. in Applied Health Sciences (Human Development and Family Studies).
She is married to Dominic Glover, a Columbus attorney in private practice. They are the proud parents of Siena Grace, born in April 2009. Kathryn enjoys her time with friends in a number of local women’s groups: literature discussion, cookbook group, magazine club and garden club.
Administrative Assistant, Webmaster, Network Administrator
LISA BURNS began in 2003 as the network administrator, webmaster, administrative assistant and yearbook editor, and now primarily works from her home.
Lisa and family live in Greenwood.
She enjoys reading, avoiding her cell phone and deleting all personal information from her facebook page on a regular basis.
Two's More or Less
LAURA DONOVAN continues in the Twos “More or Less” class where she began in 2003. She is a Columbus native who attended Indiana University. During the summer of 2010 Laura attended a Montessori Training Session. She has been an active parent since 2001 with her daughters enrollment at the school.
Laura and her husband, Ed, have three daughters: MacKenzie and Sidney, Stewart graduates, and Delaney, a 5th year Stewart student. Laura also has a stepdaughter, Jenelle.
In her free time Laura is an active member of Sigma Phi Gamma sorority, and also enjoys reading, walking, crafts, travel and spending time with her family and friends.
Two's More or Less
SUSIE SIGNORINO-RICHARDS joined the ABC-Stewart School staff in August 2004, and returns to the Two’s “More or Less” Classroom. This summer Susie attended a Montessori Training session.
She earned a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from the School of the Art Institute in Chicago.
Susie is an artist who has illustrated and published a children’s book “May There Always Be Sunshine”. She enjoys painting, graphic design, silversmithing and gardening.
Her husband, Andy, is a biologist for the Department of Natural Resources in Martinsville. They have a daughter, Georgia, a forth year Stewart elementary student.
Two's More or Less, Splendid Days
NIKKI SCHUETTE returns for her 11th year in the Splendid Days classroom. She attended Ivy Tech Community College and recently attended the MECA-Seton Montessori Paraprofessional course. Nikkie has also taken courses in child care, child development, interpersonal relations and family relations.
Nikki has a daughter, Grace, a 6th year student and Abram, a first year student in Stewart Elementary. Nikkie enjoys walking, scrapbooking, reading, attending her childrens sporting activities and spending time with her family and friends.
ABC Preschool & Kindergarten
LARRY POWELL is returning in the ABC Pre-school/Kindergarten program, where he began in August 1985. He manages the math/social studies area.
He received his B.A. degree in business and economic theory from Franklin College in 1973, and his M.S. in Elementary Education from IUPUI in 1979. He began his interest in education with volunteer work at Stepping Stone Pre-School and broadened his experience through 13 years of teaching at Children, Inc. Larry was the first recipient of the Reams Family Awards for Teaching Excellence for 2006-07, from the Heritage Fund of Bartholomew County.
Larry enjoys reading, motorcycling, hiking, sports and crafts. He is owner/builder/designer of his home, and has worked as an electrician, apprentice pattern maker and auto body man.
Larry has three daughters: Meghann, Amanda, an ABC-Stewart graduate and a Ball State graduate, and Carly. He has five grandchildren.
Children's Garden Preschool & Kindergarten
AMY KIEL began her career at ABC-Stewart in January 1992. She will continue team teaching in Children's Garden. Amy attended Ball State and Indiana Universities. She received training and certification at Meca-Seton Montessori Teacher Training Center, and is certified in childcare.
Amy and her husband, John, have sons, Henry and William. In her free time Amy enjoys running, gardening and traveling.
Amy is the recipient of the 2010 Reams Family Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Children's Garden Preschool & Kindergarten
KYMBERLI ROCKHOLD returns to the Children’s Garden classroom. She joined the staff in August of 1997. She received her Montessori certification from the American Montessori Society. She has also attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City.
Kymberli, her husband, Aaron, their daughter Maya, and son Elijah live in Brown County. With her family, Kymberli enjoys singing, playing guitar, camping, hiking, canoeing, photography, gardening, enjoying wildlife and playing with their dogs.
Kymberli grew up on a 100 acre farm in Illinois with two brothers, a sister, horses, chickens, cows, pigs, ponies, rabbits, and a few sheep. As a child she was active in 4-H, sports and she started acting in musicals at CIRCA 21 Dinner Theater.
Educare Preschool & Kindergarten
PATTI KRAMB began her career at ABC-Stewart in 1992. She will continue her work in Educare. Patti divided her time between Stewart and Educare her first two years, and has since co-directed the Educare classroom.
Patti attended Northern Michigan University in Marquette, and Marazette College in Rochester, New York, where she majored in Special Education. Prior to moving to Columbus she taught at Southminister Nursery School in Mt. Lebanon, a suburb of Pittsburgh, PA.
She and her husband, Rick, have four children and seven grandchildren. In her free time Patti enjoys reading, knitting, gardening and walking.
Educare Preschool & Kindergarten
KIMBERLY BEAN co-teaches in the Educare classroom and began at ABC-Stewart in 1999. She received her Elementary Education degree from Indiana University. She has worked in our pre-school Summer Days program, Splendid Days, and for two years in the reading area of Stewart School.
Kim's husband, Nate is a teacher. They are the parents of daughter, Meredith, and son, Mason. They enjoy swimming and any outdoor activities, as well as watching movies together.
Stewart First Year
LORI LYNN joined the ABC-Stewart staff in 1995. Lori earned a degree in Elementary Education from Indiana University Bloomington. She completed an Orton-Gillingham graduate reading course at Butler University. Lori received the Reams Family Awards for Teaching Excellence for 2007-08, from the Heritage Fund of Bartholomew County.
She is one of the teachers in the first year room in the elementary school. She team-teaches with Tonnie Lane. Lori focuses on teaching reading, while Tonnie concentrates on the math area. The both teach culture and science. She enjoys working with the first year students and making their transition from the kindergarten programs to the elementary school go as smoothly as possible. Lori and her husband, Keith, have a son, Bryce, and a daughter, Isabel.
Stewart First Year
TONYEL LANE joined the ABC-Stewart staff in the spring of 1998, and returns to the first year room in Stewart. A graduate of the University of Southern Indiana, Tonnie received a Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education with a kindergarten endorsement. She completed an Orton-Gillingham reading graduate course at Butler. Tonnie and husband, Chris, have a daughter, Taylen.
JERRY MAULIN has been a Reading Room teacher for Stewart since 1998. In his time at Stewart he has coached basketball and Spell Bowl. He has also led many summer workshops for the students that include creativity and drama. Jerry graduated from Indiana State University with a degree in Elementary Education. He is also a recipient of the Distinguished Educator Award and the Red Apple Award. Jerry received the Reams Family Awards for Teaching Excellence for 2009-10, from the Heritage Fund of Bartholomew County.
His wife, Hanna Guy Maulin, is the Bereavement Coordinator of Hospice in Columbus. Their son, Joseph, a Stewart graduate, is a university student. The family lives on an old dairy farm near school.
Jerry also is a performing songwriter, with two CD’s to his credit. He also enjoys motorcycle riding, racquetball, golf and other sports. While not holding an actual patent, Jerry believes himself to be inventor of “Pin Dodge Ball”, enjoyed on rainy days here at Stewart.
CHRISTINE BUTLER returns for her 2nd year in the Stewart Reading room. She received her B.S. in elementary education from Indiana University, Bloomington. She is an avid reader of children's literature and is looking forward to sharing her love for reading with the students at Stewart.
Christine and her husband, Jordan, reside in Franklin. In her spare time, Christine enjoys reading, scrapbooking, cake decorating and spending time with family and friends.
TERRY HILEMAN begins his 9th year in the Science room of Stewart School. A graduate of IUPUC with a degree in elementary education.
Terry is married fellow Stewart teacher, Autumn Finnell. He enjoys spending time with his beautiful wife, and also values time spent outdoors with fishing and golf.
AMIE SMITH will return to the Stewart Culture Room this year, after having taught there in 2009-10, as well as in Children’s Garden (for 5 years) and Splendid Days. She has also substituted in many of the classrooms since 1994.
She studied elementary education at Wright State and Ohio State Universities. She holds a Montessori certification from the MECA-Seton Montessori Training Center near Chicago, and most recently has been training teachers in the Montessori method at a Carmel public school.
Amie and husband, Theo, have two daughters, Emma and Olivia, both Stewart graduates. She loves to spend her free time at her daughters’ activities, as well as hiking, biking, reading, gardening, cooking and entertaining.
MICHAEL YATES is returning to the Culture room at Stewart, where he began in August 2001 and shares classroom responsibilities with Amie Smith.
A 2001 graduate of Huntington College with a Bachelor of Arts in History. Mike also holds a degree in biblical counseling from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville. He is a life-long native of Jennings County.
Mike married his wife, April, in June 2003. They live in his childhood home, a farmhouse built by his great-grandparents. Mike and April are parents of two daughters Cara and Rebekka. When he is not at school, Mike enjoys spending time with his family, as well as reading and working around the house.
NANCY HIQUET returns to the Stewart Math Room, having joined the staff in 2002. She has been married to Barry for 19 years and is the proud mother of girls, Kaitlin and Karly , and a son, Kamden.
Nancy considers herself a nerd who enjoys all things, including Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, crocheting, Scrabble, Sudoku and solving complicated algebra problems.
After attending Purdue University for two years, she graduated with honors from IUPUC with a B.S. in Elementary Education in 2000. She taught in a public school for 2 years before settling in here at Stewart. After a short stint at the ABC pre-school, she found her true home in the Stewart Math Room.
AUTUMN HILEMAN will return for her 11th year at ABC-Stewart . She began in the Twos' classroom, moved to the ABC Pre-school/Kindergarten Science area, and has now settled into the Stewart Math area. Autumn received her B.S. in elementary education from Indiana State University. She is married to Stewart Science teacher, Terry Hileman. She enjoys scrapbooking and time spent with family and friends.
Bobbie K Owens
BOBBIE K OWENS, international artist and Columbus resident, returns to ABC-Stewart School as elementary art teacher. He taught in this capacity in the early 1990's, and returned in 2002.
Bobbie K's paintings have been featured in exhibitions across the United States, Canada, Japan and Russia. He exhibited his work in the first Visual Arts Exchange project in Russia. He was then invited to have a series of three, one-person museum shows in Bishkek and Moscow. Previously he showed in Soho, New York, at Atelier International Art Gallery. Over the course of twenty-eight years of painting and exhibiting work, Bobbie K has had the good fortune to participate in shows with artists David Hockney, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Milton Avery. Some of the artists he has had the opportunity to discuss art with are Philip Pearlstein, Daryl Pottorf, Robert Rauschenberg and Donald Lipski.
Bobbie K taught at IUPUC, ABC-Stewart, Art Gallery of Ontario School of Art, Ball State University, John Waldron Art Center in Bloomington, Dayton Art Institute and was resident artist at YMCA's of Greater Indianapolis. He has worked with the NEA, The Kennedy Center and The Center for Arts and Basic Curriculum in Washington, D.C. Bobbie dedicates most of his time to painting, however, enjoys sharing his art knowledge and experiences. Bobbie and wife, Libby Jewel, have two daughters, Ale, an IU grad, who lives in Wisconsin and Carleigh, a college student.
Stewart Computers, Splendid Days
LALITHA IYER will return to the Splendid Days program, after completing student teaching in the Stewart Elementary Reading room and assisting there one year. In 2010 Lalitha also will teach computer class to the Stewart Elementary students. She completed the Montessori Assistants program at the Montessori Training Center (MECA-Seton) during the summer of 2009.
She began teaching in Splendid Days in the Spring of 2007. Her first ABC experience was volunteering when her daughter, Dee, started in the Two’s class. She loved to be around children and as a result started her Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education at Ivy Tech. She graduated in July 2007 Magna Cum Laude.
Lalitha was born in India and did her Bachelors in Science in Chemistry from Mambai University. She has also completed a two-year computer course.
She believes in the motto that “Today’s children are tomorrow’s citizens.” She has confidence that the education and cultural values that we instill in the children will carry them forward.
Lalitha has been married for eleven years to Vasu Iyer, who works at Cummins. They have a daughter, Deetya (Dee), who is a student in the Stewart elementary.
Stewart Physical Education
MARIAN RODRIGUEZ joined the Splendid Staff in 2007. She has been a volunteer parent for the past 7 years, helping with lunches, grading spelling and in Splendid Days.
Marian has completed the 2009 Montessori Assistant training by Meca-Seton (associated with the America Montessori Socity).
Marian has two daughters in Stewart Elementary - Leah, a 6th year student, and Kieran, a 3rd year student. She enjoys swimming, cooking (especially decorating cakes) and spending time with friends and family.