Rob Huge, Founder and Head of School
Rob has 17 years of experience opening and growing educational centers. He has run everything from test preparation centers to groups of regionally accredited colleges. After a six-month adventure in homeschooling his family in Central America, he was convinced there was a better way to prepare children for their futures. Rob and his wife Christine are the proud parents of four kids including three Greenfields students.
Courtney McGarry, Executive Director
Courtney graduated from Concordia University as an Early Childhood Teacher. Her lifelong passion for child development has led her to a multitude of enriching experiences. These experiences include teaching first grade in a public suburban school and a school within CPS, developing an engineering curriculum for a second grade alternative program, and being the Executive Director at a private daycare/preschool in Chicago. Her belief in natural learning environments and child-driven education through exploration brought her to Greenfields Academy, where she focuses on project design and providing operational leadership.
Loretta Medeiros, Guide
Loretta has dedicated her career to helping others express themselves through the arts. She has earned both a Masters in Music Technology and her MBA. In the classroom, she believes in thinking outside of the box and looking at experiences from all angles. She spent much of her training in Boston and New York and moved to Chicago to find a new perspective. Loretta spends her evenings teaching music lessons to students of all ages and enjoys cosmetology, ZUMBA, photography, and painting in her free time. Having spent time teaching in the classroom, performing on stage, and engineering in the recording studio, she is most excited about helping young learners see where they fit into the world.
Tricia Taccone, Guide
Tricia attended St. Louis University and graduated with a degree in General Studies, with a focus in Spanish. Her life experiences have taken her from her hometown of Erie, PA to Argentina, Spain, Puerto Rico, and Washington, D.C. where she has lived, studied, and worked in various fields. She loves traveling and learning from and about different countries and cultures. However, her true passion has always been caring for and teaching children, which she has been doing for the past 15 years as a nanny, au pair, and tutor. She moved to Chicago two years ago with her husband and is excited to share her love for learning with the students at Greenfields Academy. In her spare time Tricia enjoys cooking, going to concerts, and exploring Chicago’s many neighborhoods on her bike.
Rachael Hancz, Guide
Rachael received her Master of Education in Elementary Ed. from DePaul University in June 2016. She attained her Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Performance with a minor in Broadcast Communications from North Central College where she was an active member of the Theatre Department and an on-air personality at WONC FM 89.1. Rachael has served as an educator in a multitude of roles including teaching in traditional classrooms, touring as a Teaching Artist with Prairie Fire Children’s Theatre, and facilitating a Dramatic Arts program. Rachael has worked with a wide range of students, including those in junior kindergarten through college. Her diverse experiences in a variety of educational settings have fostered her appreciation for alternative learning environments that allow students to act as innovators and creators, developing into unique individuals with passions of their own. Rachael’s passion for teaching led her to Greenfields Academy where she is excited to serve as a Guide along students’ journeys as lifelong learners.
Dan Berkley, Guide
Dan joins Greenfields having earned his Masters in Education through the New York City Teaching Fellows program and having spent over 4 years as a science and math teacher in high schools in both Chicago and New York City. Prior to teaching, Dan worked for years as a professional circus performer, most notably touring as a clown with Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey’s Circus. After leaving Ringling, he worked as a freelancer, performing in smaller shows and at private events as well as coaching and running summer camps. His time spent at summer camps greatly influenced his decision to become an educator. Dan is interested in the intersection between formal and informal education as well as the role of technology in society. When not at work, he can be found playing with and training his dog, Charlie, cycling around Chicago, playing board games with friends, or juggling. Yes, he still juggles.
Emily Shankman, After-School Guide/Coordinator
Emily attended The Boston Conservatory and Lawrence University, two intensive conservatory programs where she explored Opera, theater, ensemble music, psychology, dance, management and arts education. Her experiences working with children have ranged from nannying, to teaching private music and drama lessons, to group mentoring during and after the school day. Most recently, Emily spent the better part of three years working in the New York City public school system, developing and implementing arts-driven social emotional programming for children in low-income neighborhoods. She wholeheartedly believes that every child should be encouraged to try something new and take a giant leap towards self-discovery in a safe, supportive environment. This passion brought her to Greenfields Academy, here in her hometown of Chicago. In her free time, Emily loves to cook for her friends, watch new theater, play violin, and run around with her dog.
Maria Guasso, Art Guide
Maria attended art school in Milwaukee and the Parsons Paris School of Art and Design, where she explored painting and museum studies. She’s traveled throughout the Americas and Europe, and taught Spanish and Mexican arts/cultural studies to first through third graders in the Milwaukee Public School system, and was the lead preschool teacher in a Park Ridge school. She has taught students in preschool through 8th grade at over ten public and private schools throughout the north-side of Chicago, and volunteers as a city muralist, after-school workshop and club leader, and committee member of OpenWall community art project for Alderman Pawar. In 2010, she founded ART*eology, an organization that allows urban youth to collaborate on art for the greater community to enjoy in public spaces. Her most inspired creation? Of course, that’s her daughter who is an eighth-grader at Blaine.
Aimee Skinner, Education Consultant
Aimee brings with her not only a master’s degree in education, but valuable experience as a director of a cooperative preschool and a high school teacher. Aimee was instrumental in helping bring Greenfields to life and continues to be excited about the student-driven curriculum. Her family agrees, as her twins are both students at Greenfields! She supports Greenfields in a variety of ways in order to help our community become everything it can be.
Andrea Breech Hunt
Andrea has devoted her life to helping others reach their full potential. As a Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology she has helped people achieve mindful whole-body health through her private practice for 15 years and via a college counseling center for 10 years. She is a mother of two boys and a complete liver of life. She brings her experience and zest to Greenfields Academy as our expert in psychology. Whether it’s guiding us with a specific child, bringing intentionality and mindfulness to our community or informing us on the latest in positive psychology research, she will help make sure that each child becomes the best version of them self.
Michael invites people and ideas to come together in new and powerful ways. His traditional educational trajectory culminated in an MBA at the University of Chicago, but his last 25 years of professional practice as an internationally recognized community process specialist, is rooted in the learning he did as both student and instructor with Outward Bound USA. As our community process partner, Michael brings passion and practical support for open exploration, breakthrough learning and innovation, emergent organization, and cultivating community spirit. Together we’ll give shape to “self-directed” learning where the “self” is the school community, our individual households, and the surrounding neighborhoods.
Dr. Round loves technology and education. That may be an understatement. She holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering, M.A. in Educational Technology Leadership, Ed.S. in Computing Technology in Education, and a Ph.D. in Computing Technology in Education. She did her dissertation on cloud-based learning management systems. Her constant immersion in ed tech is great for us. She advises us not only on back-end operations systems, but keeps us up-to-date on new adaptive software breakthroughs. Kim Round is the Director of Instructional Technology at Saint Anselm College.
Carolyn has spent her life in and around education. She was the first in her family to attend college and apparently she liked it – all told, she earned a B.S. in Secondary Education, a M.A. in Counseling Psychology and a Ph.D. in Education Administration and Policy, all from Northwestern University. She followed up her studies with significant teaching and administrative roles. Her classroom experience and deep knowledge of how people learn has led many teachers to seek out her guidance and advice. Carolyn will help us identify and mentor great guides while ensuring we stay grounded in proven cognitive science methods and use the best in assessments. She is currently acting as the President of Bauder College.