Meet NDP’s new faculty, staff


Ms. Brittney Kosar shows students how to conduct a science experiment. She is one of this year's new teachers.

From Staff Reports

Fifteen new faculty and staff members have joined the NDP community this school year: eight subject area teachers, two full-time subs, three counselors, and two staff members.

NDP also welcomes a new assistant principal for academics, Emmy Robison. She replaces Tanya Bartlett, now principal at St. Gregory Catholic School in Phoenix. No newcomer to administration, Matt Rylski has assumed more responsibilities He is now director of student life in addition to being director of enrollment after Jerry Zander who was assistant principal for student life accepted a position to teach math at Brophy College Prep.

The most recent teacher to join the faculty is Shelia Charbonier, who started on Monday to teach Spanish.

In an effort to get to know these newest Saints, The Seraphim asked them to share their past experience, where they grew up and few fun facts about their favorite hobbies and family.









Emmy Robison

Title: Assistant Principal for Academics

Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA

Education: B.A., University of Notre Dame; M.A., University of Notre Dame

Previous Jobs: Taught in Eugene, Oregon and in New Orleans, Louisiana

Hobbies: Drinking coffee, watching Netflix, traveling, attempting to get better at golf

Family: Newly married to Matt Robison (7/27/18!)

Why did you choose to be a teacher? I became a teacher because I know that teachers change the world by forming disciples who will build a better future for all of us. Helping students to know, love, and serve God through knowing and loving themselves is my vocation. Plus, kids make me laugh, and I love watching the light bulb go off when they master a new concept.








Jennie Tyma

Subjects: English 1 and English 2

Hometown: I am originally from the suburbs of Chicago, Illinois.

Education: I earned my bachelor of arts at the University of Michigan and my master’s at Northwestern University.

Previous Jobs: I started my career teaching high school English in the Chicago suburbs. When my husband and I relocated to Arizona, I taught yoga for awhile and then started teaching at Tesseract School. I taught both high school and middle school for Tesseract. Most recently, I taught online courses and worked from home. I’m happy to be back in the classroom and teaching at Notre Dame!

Hobbies: I enjoy hiking, exercising (particularly Pilates), and spending time with my family. Right now one of my hobbies seems to be going to/watching the various sports and activities that my kids are involved in.

Family/Pets: I’m married and have two children. My son Adrian is 8, and my daughter Giuliana is 5. A fun fact is that my daughter and I share a birthday.

We also have two cats, Julius and Cleopatra.

Why did you choose to be a teacher? I think I have always wanted to be a teacher. My family tells me that when I was growing up, I was always trying to get someone to “play school” with me. I love literature, and I feel fortunate to get to share that with my students. I also love the vivacity and energy of high school students; they keep me on my toes and laughing.









Dr. Annette Siemssen

Subjects: Geometry, Algebra 2 Honors, and Probability & Statistics

Hometown: Born in Portland, Oregon, but lived most of my life in Orange County, California

Education: B.S. in Interdisciplinary Studies focusing on Math and Physics from New York Institute of Technology, master’s in Teaching from St. Martin’s University, Ph.D. in Teaching, Learning, and Culture, focus in Mathematics, Science, and Technology

Previous Jobs: Math and Science teacher/department chair in California, Math teacher in Washington, Math teacher/Instructional Coach in Texas, Graduate Research Assistant/Instructional Assistant at the University of Texas in El Paso

Hobbies: Hiking, sewing, and reading

Pet: One really mean cat

Why did you choose to be a teacher? I was raised by my aunt who was a teacher. She encouraged me to be a teacher so I could spend summers with my children. I fell in love with teaching and decided to pursue advanced degrees to learn more about education.









Katie Miller

Subjects/Title: Physical Science, Algebra 2 and Swim Coach

Hometown: Akron, Ohio

Education: B.S. in mechanical engineering from the University of Notre Dame

Previous Jobs: Project Manager at an air pollution control company

Hobbies: Dancing, Swimming, Spending time outdoor (preferably near a pool!), and watching American Ninja Warrior

Family/Pets: One older brother and a lovable schnoodle named Coco.

Why did you choose to be a teacher? Because I realize when I wake up in the morning, my desire is to help others. I’ve had influential teachers affect my outcome in high school, and I can think of no better way to influence this upcoming generation. The opportunity to work with individuals differently and affect their lives in some degree is why I became a teacher. There is a level of human interaction in teaching that technology can never replace.



Brittney Kosar

Subjects: Anatomy and Physiology and AP Biology

Hometown: Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

Education:  B.S. Marine Biology, University of Hawaii; M.S. Marine Biology, Texas A&M Corpus Christi  

Previous Jobs: Pan American High School, Central Arizona College, Mesa Community College, Benedictine University Mesa, Gateway Community College

Hobbies: Scuba diving, hiking, rock climbing, cliff jumping, relaxing anywhere near the ocean. I love the water and discovering all the life under the ocean!

Pet: 8-year-old puppy named Jetski–He is the best dog in the world (in my humble opinion).

Why did you choose to be a teacher?  I fell in love with teaching anatomy and physiology after my graduate assistantship at Texas A&M. Our knowledge of medicine and the human body is always advancing, and teachers are the first people who get to hear about it. We get to share all the amazing advances with our students.  I plan on being a lifelong learner, continuing to share everything I learn along the way.


Social Studies

Mike Jenkins

Subjects: World History/U.S. History/U.S. History Honors

Hometown: Phoenix

Education: B.A. University of Arizona, Master’s Courses at University of Phoenix, Stanford University

Previous Jobs: Vice President- Burlingame Dragons Football Club (Burlingame, California), Vice President of Operations- Phoenix Rising Football Club; 17 years teaching experience

Hobbies: Watching/playing sports, hiking, traveling, hanging with the family

Family/Pets: Wife, Jennifer; daughter Carter, 4, and son Nathan, 2

Why did you choose to be a teacher? I never thought I would be a teacher at first, but really enjoyed it as once I finally got involved with it. Helping young people realize their potential and being apart of that journey is truly rewarding.


Social Studies/Technology










Tim Schultz

Subjects: Social Studies / Technology Instructor & Assistant Athletic Director

Hometown: Johnstown, Pennsylvania

Education: Bachelor’s Degree, Secondary Education, University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown

Master’s Degree, Sports Administration, Ohio University

Previous Jobs: Teacher and Athletic Director at Bishop McCort Catholic High School in Johnstown, Pennsylvania.

Hobbies: Crossfit, Sports (Go, Pittsburgh!), Hikes, Music, and Food

Family/Pets: One younger sister

Why did you choose to be a teacher? I’ve had some great teachers and mentors throughout my life. It’s those people who inspired me and continue to inspire me.



Bob Young

Subjects: Health and Wellness, Sports Medicine

Hometown: Phoenix

Education: B.A. in Education from ASU

Previous job: Teacher/ Head Football and Baseball Coach at Mingus High School for the past 30 years

Hobbies: Running and weight training

Family: Wife, Pam; four children, and five grandchildren


World Language







Sheila Charbonier

Subject: Spanish

Hometown: I was born in La Habana, Cuba.

Education: I graduated from Arizona State University with a B.A. in Secondary Education (Spanish)

Past Experience: I worked for Glendale Union High School District in previous years.

Hobbies: I enjoy being with my family and friends, travel, watch movies, and going out to eat. 

Family: Husband and a 9-month-old daughter J

Why did you choose to be a teacher? I choose to be a teacher because I enjoy teaching something new to people. I love my language and wanted others to learn it as well. I couldn’t see myself anywhere else but in  a classroom.



Liz Barnes

Title: College Counselor

Hometown: Norman, Oklahoma

Education: B.A. in Psychology from the University of Oklahoma, M.A.Ed. in Educational Counseling from the University of Phoenix (the original in Phoenix)

Previous Jobs: Loan processor, special education teacher, middle school and high school counselor

Hobbies: Reading, writing (I recently had my first children’s book published…..Lacie Lue and Maddie Sue), traveling, watching football

Family/Pets: Married to a teacher and football coach, two sons ages 3 and 7, one brother.

Why did you choose to be a teacher?  I watched my mom teach and mentor high school students when I was young, and I saw the impact she had. I wanted to be in a helping profession.









Crystal Brooks

Title:  Learning Resource Specialist

Hometown:  Hampden, Massachusetts

Education: Bachelor of Science, Keene State College; Master of Arts, University of Massachusetts; Doctoral Learner, Grand Canyon University

Previous Experience: Professional Development Specialist at the AZ Department of Education, Speech and Language Pathologist

Hobbies: Cooking, hiking, travel

Family/Pets: I have been married for 22 years, have 3 amazing children and 1 lazy Labrador retriever.

Why did you choose to be a teacher?  Being a teacher feels like home to me. I love helping others reach their full potential in anything they do.


Kristin Garcia

Title: College Counselor

Hometown: Born in Houston, Texas, then lived in Minneapolis, Minnesota, then Armonk, New York, then New Canaan, Connecticut, and the list goes on!

Education: B.S Business/Spanish from Skidmore College, M.Ed Elementary Education from University of Phoenix, Master of Arts in Human Services & Counseling from University of Colorado Colorado Springs

Previous Jobs: Spanish Teacher

Hobbies: Cooking and Traveling

Family: 1 younger brother and 17-month-old son

Why did you choose to be a counselor? I taught from 1998-2012, and my most favorite part of teaching was getting to know my students and supporting them along their educational journey. So, back to school I went. Being a school counselor has been so extremely rewarding empowering teenagers to realize their dreams!   


Full-Time Substitute Teachers








Jeff James

Title: Full-time substitute

Hometown: Seattle, Washington

Education: B.A. University of Washington, M.E. Northcentral University

Previous Jobs: Health and Fitness Teacher at Maya High School, Assistant Baseball Coach at Seattle University

Hobbies: Spending time with my family, cooking, and watching sports.

Family/Pets: My wife, Darcee, and two daughters, Jorja and Payton

Why did you choose to be a teacher? I’ve always enjoyed seeing young adults grow and mature in their pursuit of academics and athletics.  I’m excited to be apart of this great community.


Ian Olivieri

Title: Assistant Varsity Boys’ Basketball Coach and Head JV Boys’ Basketball Coach.  Full-time substitute teacher.

Hometown: Bayonne, NJ

Education: Grand Canyon University

Previous Jobs: Assistant Varsity Boys’ Basketball Coach at St. Anthony’s High School in Jersey City, New Jersey.  Assistant Varsity Boys’ Basketball Coach and Head JV Boys’ Basketball Coach at North Canyon High School.  Teacher in the Paradise Valley School District.

Hobbies: Apending time with my children.

Family: 12-year-old son Nick and 9-year-old daughter Gabby.

Why did you choose to be a teacher?    One of the reasons I got into coaching was to make sure kids don’t waste their talents.  Some kids get lost in the shuffle and fall through the cracks and don’t get the help they need.  



Maria Aldrich

Title: Director of Capital Campaigns and Major Gifts

Hometown: Charlotte, NC

Education: Davidson College – B.A.

Previous Experience:  I began my career in advancement at Davidson College (Davidson, North Carolina) where I held senior fundraising leadership roles, including Director of Annual Giving and Senior Major Gifts Officer. Through these roles, I had the opportunity to help plan for, implement and serve as a frontline fundraiser for a $425 million comprehensive campaign while sustaining one of the highest alumni participation rates for all colleges and universities. My success at Davidson afforded me the opportunity to start a small consulting practice which allowed me to gain additional campaign experience within higher education and private school settings. Most recently, I worked for Sewanee: The University of the South (Sewanee, Tennessee) where I helped position their annual giving and major gifts program and advised them through the public launch of their $250 million comprehensive campaign.

Hobbies: Running, volunteering, reading and Davidson basketball

Family/Pets: My husband Steve and I met in college. We have been married for 12 years and have two young children — Caroline, 6, and Patrick, 3.

Why did you choose to be an NDP Saint? I wanted to continue my career in advancement in an educational setting and enjoyed my past experiences consulting for private schools. Additionally, I valued my own faith-based education and appreciate NDP’s relationship with the Catholic Church.


Anthony “Tony” Fondell

Title: Day Porter

Hometown: Wausau, Wisconsin

Previous Experience: USAF, Construction Crew Manager, Restaurant Owner, Corporation CEO

Hobbies: Golf, landscaping, cooking

Family/Pets: Four daughters and sons-in-law, eight grandchildren, wife

Why did you choose to be an NDP Saint? I chose NDP because it is a welcoming place to be.

Staff writers Lacey Robertson, Sabrina Arevalo, Skylar Brown and Erika Kramer contributed to this report.