ARCHIVE - 2017 School Accountability Committee - Candidate Biographies

The 8 candidates profiled on this page are running for 3 open parent seats on the Stargate School Accountability Committee. Two of these seats will be for a two-year term and one will be for a one-year term. Those elected will determine among themselves who takes which seat/term, per the election policy.

All information was provided by the candidates running for election.

Among its key responsibilities, the Stargate School Accountability Committee is responsible for providing input to the Board of Directors to assist in establishing (and evaluating progress toward meeting) school goals and improvement plans, including the school's Unified Improvement Plan (UIP). As part of a continuous cycle of planning, evaluating, measuring and reporting, Committee members also conduct the school's annual surveys of the stakeholder community and work to analyze data collected, glean insights and develop recommendations for further supporting the school's progress toward fulfilling its mission,vision and strategic plans. For more information about the work this group does, visit the School Accountability Committee page.

Stargate community members will receive voting instructions the week of Sept. 18 - either in their Monday folders (grades K-5) or via the U.S. mail (grades 6-11). Eligible voters may cast ballots between Sept. 18 (midnight) and Sept 25 (4pm MT). If you have any questions about the election process or about the voting instructions provided to eligible voters, contact

NOTE - there are 8 candidates running for election. If you cannot view information for all 8 candidates, please open your browser in a desktop environment to view all of the candidate information.

 Candidate Biography

Rob Cernich

I am a software engineer by trade, a mechanical engineer by degree and have applied both skill sets in a variety of industries including aerospace, desktop publishing, enterprise software, and finance. In my spare time, I enjoy watching soccer, playing chess, spending time with my family, and volunteering. At our previous school/district I was an active volunteer from helping out in the classroom to PTO president. I served on the school accountability committee for four years and the district gifted and talented advisory committee for three years. Through the course of my volunteering efforts, I have become fairly well educated in many of the challenges faced by public schools, most specifically in the areas of finance, performance evaluation, and gifted education. After taking a few years off to recuperate, including a year to become acclimated to Stargate, I feel refreshed and prepared to start doing what I can for the Stargate community.
Paul Darrah

Paul Darrah

I am a parent of a gifted student who has needs that are quite different than those met by the standard public school system. I am thankful to have the Stargate option which better serves my student and, by nature of being a Charter School, affords many opportunities to get involved and help improve our community as a whole.

My background is in automotive engineering where I ran test facilities and laboratories working on development, data analysis, root cause analysis, and research projects. I have many years of management experience working with engineers, technicians, administrative, and staff levels to identify and solve problems, manage risk, and find and exploit opportunities. I am also a business owner, running a family business with my wife serving domestic and international customers. I have a strong desire to contribute to our community and I believe that my experience has provided me with many transferable skills that could be useful.
Kathy Henson

Kathy Henson
I grew up in Denver and Omaha, attended college in Dallas, TX and Columbus, Ohio. After three years in Chicago, my husband, Dennis, and I moved to Denver in 1998. We've lived in Thornton since 2003 and have two boys at Stargate, a seventh grader and a sixth grader. I hold a bachelor's degree in vocal performance from the Capital University Conservatory of Music and did my graduate work in acting at DePaul University in Chicago. I have been a member of the professional actor's (AEA) union since 2001. I worked full time in performing arts as and actor/singer/dancer, choreographer, director and producer before our kids were born. Since then I have continued working part time as a choreographer and performer, choosing projects that fit our family schedule.

In addition to parenting and working in the arts, I'm active at church, and have served on congregational council twice, worship committee, and several search and call committees to locate and recommend qualified candidates for hire. I also teach music, direct Christmas programs, program worship and perform with choir/ensembles.

This type of work in the arts requires organization, negotiation and collaboration: skills I would like to share on SAC.
Kellie Herbert

Kellie Herbert

I have spent the last two decades in a professional leadership environment navigating complex HR issues, loss prevention, performance management, managing and measuring work, employee engagement, conflict management and curriculum development as well as other relevant experience. In addition, I have spent the better part of my life serving the communities I have lived in.

Currently I serve on the Board of Directors for a global non-profit that has the broadest reaching impact of any other organization of its kind. Joining Stargate's Accountability Committee allows me to both lend my experience and continue to quench my thirst for serving others. I feel fortunate to have my son attend Stargate and am looking forward to helping the school prosper for many years to come.
Hannah Lapperre

Hannah Lapperre

Hannah Lapperre moved to Colorado in the summer of 2014 and resides in Thornton, CO. She is a wife and mother of three children, Caitlin (Stargate freshman), Ian (Rocky Top 8th), and Emily (Eagleview Elementary 3rd). Hannah works as a property manager and enjoys being involved with the community. She has recently graduated the Adams 12 Leadership Academy which trains and educates district members on operations, finances and staffing of our district schools and charters.

Hannah was selected to sit on the review panel for the principal selection of the new Anthem school last spring and currently serves on the Adams 12 Long Range Planning Committee. She hopes to earn a parent seat on the Stargate School Accountability Committee to continue to develop experience in school governance and to aide the board in their tasks at hand.
Adrian Miller

Adrian Miller
This is my 11th school year as a Stargate parent, as my eldest began Kindergarten in the Fall of 2007. Over the years, I have weathered changes in Heads of School, Teachers, Support Staff, math curricula, switching the Junior High 7-8 to a Middle School 6-8, the expansion from K-8 to include a High School, and the major move to our new campus. As much as we like to admire our beautiful buildings and complain about our parking loop, it is what takes place inside the classroom that makes Stargate a school for gifted learners. Our mission depends on collaboration between staff and parents to meet the needs of our gifted students every day. This is, after all, is the reason why we came here. Our challenge is to keep this focus on gifted learners despite the distractions that an expansion can naturally present.

As a private music educator, I served for over 5 years at the national level to review thousands of online parent surveys on music classes. I believe this experience with analyzing parent feedback prepares me for the level of listening that will be required in order to digest the content of the Stargate Community Satisfaction Survey, the main task of the Accountability Committee.
Patrick Millmore

Patrick Millmore

I have been in education since 1990. My first role was as a paraprofessional in an elementary school followed by twenty three years as a school counselor for middle school, high school, and first year college students. Presently I am working as a full time school counselor and part time college professor. Both of these positions emphasize preparing students to focus on their college and career aspirations while also becoming global citizens after high school.

I view this opportunity to become a member of the Accountability Committee as an opportunity to assist Stargate in furthering their mission of developing life-long learners to include developing life-long productive global citizens with a mission to improve the communities in which they live and work.
Amanda Szymanski

Amanda Szymanski

My name is Dr. Amanda Szymanski. My son is a 4th grader, and my daughter is in kindergarten. I was a YMCA Camp Director responsible for hiring and training staff, planning activities and daily field trips as well as maintaining the safety of 500+ kids. I moved to Colorado and helped start a company before going back to school and obtaining my Doctorate. While there, I completed some doctoral education classes which facilitated my understanding of our education system. After graduation, I have been successfully running my own business. In addition, I'm actively involved in our school community by volunteering in the classroom, attending each months regular Board meetings, being a member of the Fundraising Committee, was elected to the Bond Allocation Committee and I am now the Chair of the Fundraising Allocation Committee for the school. I'm also the Director of Volunteers for the Adams 12 GT Super Saturday Program & I'm the parent liaison to the Adams 12 GT Program. I'm interested in serving on the SAC because I'm passionate about continuing to ensure our mission and vision are maintained throughout the full expansion of our school.

Election - Quick Links

Q&A Responses
Candidates' views on school issues and why they're running for a seat on the SAC, click

Skills Profiles
Candidates' areas of expertise and professional skills, click

Cast Your Vote
1. Go to the Simply Voting site between Sept 18-25
2. Enter the information provided in the election letter you received in your Monday folder or via the USPS
3. Follow the on-screen instructions to make your selections and cast your vote

Elections at Stargate
Overview page, click