Derrick Adkins headshot
Teaching Policy Fellow
11th and 12th grade social studies teacher
Mark Armijo Academy
Albuquerque Public Schools

Derrick Adkins is a 2019 Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow. Derrick teaches 11th and 12th grade social studies at Mark Armijo Academy in Albuquerque, where he serves as head of the social studies department and liaison to school administration. Derrick supports new teachers as the on-site teacher mentor, and has created and coordinates an evening school program for students in need of additional support to graduate. Derrick holds a license in school administration and serves as administration support specialist at his school site. He graduated from the University of New Mexico with a BA in History and an MA in Secondary Education and is completing his master’s in Education Administration at Eastern New Mexico University.

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Victoria Apodaca-Fisk headshot
Teaching Policy Fellow
Social studies teacher
New America School
Las Cruces, New Mexico

Victoria Fisk is a 2019 Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow. Victoria is a social studies teacher at the New America School in Las Cruces, where she is the faculty advisor to student council and founder of the group’s hygiene drive benefiting Camp Hope residents.  Victoria is active in the Military Spouse Caregiver Support Program, has participated in the 2016 Las Cruces Downtown Plaza Opening, and is a member of the anti-bullying coalition. She has been recognized as a Life Changer of the Year Finalist (2017), Charter School Teacher of the Year (2015), Engage New Mexico Educational Champion Award (2015), and Golden Apple Finalist (2014). Victoria holds a Bachelor's Degree in Social Studies with an emphasis on Latin American Studies and received her Masters in Curriculum and Education from New Mexico State University.

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Juan Aragón
Teaching Policy Fellow
AP Spanish language and culture teacher
West Mesa High School
Albuquerque Public Schools

Juan Aragón is a Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow.  Juan teaches AP Spanish language and culture at West Mesa High School where he serves as the bilingual coordinator and chair for the Modern and Classical Languages department.  Juan has served as a member of the inaugural Secretary’s advisory board, is the co-founder of La Resolana Leadership Academy charter school, and has served as principal at Robert F. Kennedy Charter high school.  Juan graduated from Colorado College with a BA in Spanish Language and Literature and earned a MA in Educational Administration from the University of New Mexico.

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Gary Bass headshot
Teaching Policy Fellow
1st-8th grade dual language digital literacy teacher
El Camino Real Academy
Santa Fe Public Schools

Gary Bass is a 2019 Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow. Gary teaches digital literacy in Spanish and English at El Camino Real Academy, where he runs an after-school STEM club. Gary is a National Board Certified Teacher in English as a New Language and the school’s liaison to the New Mexico Teacher Leader Network. He has previously taught in China, Syria, and Vietnam. Gary received his BS in Elementary Education and his MA in Curriculum & Instruction from New Mexico State University and holds a graduate Certificate of Educational Technology & Information Literacy from SUNY- Buffalo.

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Dawn Bilbrey
Teaching Policy Fellow
8th grade English and US history teacher
Texico Middle School
Texico Municipal Schools

Dawn Bilbrey is a Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow. Dawn teaches 8th grade ELA and US history at Texico Middle School and serves as the S.A.T. Coordinator and RtI Specialist for her school district.  Dawn is a member of the NM Education Secretary’s Teacher Advisory committee and is a New Mexico Teacher Leader Network Ambassador for the state.  In 2017, Dawn was selected as one of the New Mexico Teacher of the Year finalists. She graduated from Eastern New Mexico University with a BA in Secondary Education and earned a MA in Education from Eastern New Mexico University.

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Julia Burrola-Ortiz headshot
Teaching Policy Fellow
2nd-3rd grade math teacher
Mission Achievement and Success Charter School
Charter School

Julia Burrola is a 2019 Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow. Julia teaches 2nd and 3rd grade math at Mission Achievement and Success Charter School where she is also the grade-level lead teacher. Julia serves as a member of the Secretary’s Teacher Advisory and is a State Ambassador for the New Mexico Teacher Leader Network. In 2018, she was recognized as a “New Mexico True Teacher.” Julia graduated with a BA in Elementary Education from the University of New Mexico. 

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Jawna Carlo headshot
Teaching Policy Fellow
7th grade science teacher
Artesia Intermediate School
Artesia Public Schools

Jawna Carlo is a 2019 Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow. Jawna teaches 7th grade science at Artesia Intermediate School, where she serves on the leadership team and is the science department head. Jawna is a member of the National Science Teachers Association, has piloted a new science curriculum with OpenSciEd, and was involved in the NM STEM Ready Secondary Science Course Mapping working group. She graduated from College of the Southwest with a BS in Secondary Education and Science and received her MA in Curriculum and Instruction from New Mexico State University.

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Katelin Cincis
Teaching Policy Fellow
2nd grade teacher
Mesa Elementary School
Clovis Municipal Schools

Katelin Cincis is a Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow.  Katelin teaches 2nd grade at Mesa Elementary School, where she is a member of her school’s technology team.  Katelin previously served as an intern at Mission Hill School in Massachusetts, a pilot-inclusion school, working with students with special behavioral and learning needs.  She graduated from UCLA with a BA in History and a minor in Education, and earned a MA in Teaching Elementary with a focus on STEM from Tufts University. 

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Aja Currey
Teaching Policy Fellow
Special education teacher
Rio Gallinas Charter School
West Las Vegas Schools

Aja Currey is a Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow.  Aja is the head special education teacher for 1st-8th grades at Rio Gallinas Charter School for Ecology and the Arts, where she also sponsors the K-Kids Community Service Club and the Sunshine Staff Appreciation committee. She is a member of the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center Partners in Policymaking Program.  Aja graduated from NM Highlands University with a BA in Early Childhood Multicultural Education and a BA in Special Education and is currently working on a master’s degree in educational leadership at NMHU. 

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Eliana Esquibel headshot
Teaching Policy Fellow
Reading and math interventionist
La Union Elementary
Gadsden Independent School District

Eliana Esquibel is a 2019 Teach Plus New Mexico Teaching Policy Fellow. Eliana teaches K-6th grade reading and math at La Union Elementary, where she is a member of the leadership team, the literacy team, and is the lead teacher for her school’s intervention team. She was named Teacher of the Year for the 2017-2018 school year by North Valley Elementary and received a Hispanic Leadership stole upon graduation with her Masters program. Eliana graduated from New Mexico State University with a BA in Elementary Education and a bilingual and TESOL endorsement and from New Mexico State University with an MA in Curriculum and Instruction in Language, Literacy, and Culture.

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