Staff Bios

Stephanie Welsh, Executive Director

Stephanie is RAFT Colorado’s Executive Director, but the Board of Trustees has given her another title:  the Dumpster Diving Diva.  Stephanie is passionate about education and loves that RAFT’s business model supports teachers’ ability to teach in the way kids learn best – and preserves the environment at the same time!  Launching RAFT in Colorado has drawn on her eclectic professional experience in non-profits, law, interior design, and education.

 

Chris DeKay, RAFT Wrangler (Director of Operations)

Chris started preparing for his RAFT Wrangler job when he was a six-year-old “garage floor scientist,” gradually developing into a “MacGyver of education”!  Chris has enjoyed teaching students and working with a wide variety of teachers at the Teton Science Schools, Keystone Science School, and the Thorne Nature Experience, using anything nature has to offer to spontaneously engage students in learning.  Chris has a double major in Environmental, Population, and Organism Biology and Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology and is a graduate of the Teton Science Schools Graduate Program.

AndyAndy Szekeres, Director of Development & Marketing

Andy brings years of experience in fundraising for educational non-profits and his plan is to ensure we have funds for plenty of treats and heat for RAFT members!

Nick Haag, RAFT Re-Imagineer/Resident 5-Year-Old

Nick was a para for five years, ran a before-and-after school program for four years, and has coached and worked with kids in a variety of educational settings since he was a kid himself (his mom is a teacher too!).  Nick has been hanging out and helping at RAFT practically since we opened in Denver; we finally started feeling guilty about all the free work and started paying him.  Nick has a gift for engaging and challenging children through hands-on learning and loves to share his enthusiasm and strategies with other teachers.

JanannJanann Eldredge, RAFT Re-Imagineer

With an extensive and diverse background in the arts, Janann has done it all:  directed summer camps, produced plays at the DCPA, managed volunteers, worked in retail, and recently received her Masters of Nonprofit Management from Regis!

 

TracyTracy Cress, RAFT Re-Imagineer

Tracy has been teaching in a variety of positions at DPS for the past 13 years, and has been a RAFT member since 2012.  She is very aware of challenges teachers face every day, and loves that “RAFT provides hope that teaching can still be fun, exciting, and hands-on!”