Spotlight on our Staff

We are proud of the talented and diverse staff we have working at the Coxsackie-Athens Central School District and want you to get to know them better!

Ms. Hoffman

My Name:   Michele Edwards

My Current Position:  7-12 Choral Director and Music Theory Teacher

I work at Middle School & High School

My history at C-A: Began September 2009

Where I live:  Latham

Pets:  Two cats, Oliver and Lily

Favorite Hobbies:  Playing with 8 month old son Jackson; Making music; Hanging out with family and friends; Reading

Favorite memory from when I was in high school: Singing in Chorus

What I like about working at C-A:  Making music with amazing students and the wonderful faculty and staff

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now:  Emily Griffin, First Comes Love

Ways I give back to my Community: Volunteering at the animal shelter;  Taking Select to various places to perform during the holiday season (Hope's Mission and the Ravena Women's Club)

People might be surprised to know that,  I was a math genius in high school. I got a 5 on my AP Calculus exam. 

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be a, a veterinarian. 

Mrs. Watson-HS

My Name:   Tracy Watson

My Current Position:  Social Studies Teacher

I work at the High School

My history at C-A:  Class of 1986 graduate;  Substitute and tutor prior to becoming FT

Where I live:  Athens

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  Enduring friendships that were begun during HS years

What I like about working at C-A:  Very neat to work where one graduated from 

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now: 

Ways I give back to my Community:  In a variety of ways, hopefully always open to the needs of the moment

Ryan Palmer

My Name:   Ryan Palmer

My Current Position:  Math Teacher

I work at High School

My history at C-A: Start Date: 9/1/2016 - New to C-A for 2016-2017 School Year

Where I live:  Schodack, NY

Pets:  Freshwater Fish

Favorite Hobbies:  Watching Sports: Soccer, Football, Olympics, Coaching: Soccer & Wrestling, Freshwater Aquariums; Watching Movies; Trying New Foods

Favorite memory from when I was in high school: Mastery on French Regents

What I like about working at C-A: Great math department!

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now: Called to Coach by Bobby Bowden

Ways I give back to my Community: Coaching, supporting community fundraisers

People might be surprised to know that,  I am an avid Freshwater Fish collector and aquarium nerd. I am still relatively new to the hobby, but have gone crazy with my fish tanks at home. 

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, I would be an accountant, but probably the worst ever because I can't sit still.

I'd also like you to know,  I love talking about college and assisting students in the process of applying and committing to schools and programs.

Mrs. Decker-HS

My Name:   Amy Decker

My Current Position:  Spanish Teacher

I work at the High School

My history at C-A: Began September 1991, Was the Fall Cheerleading Adviser my first year.  Have been the adviser for the Freshman and Sophomore classes, co-advised Student Council, (which is when I organized my first and only town parade), and have been a long time adviser for the Language Club.  The Language Club hosts an annual Welcome Party for Exchange students, as well as new and returning ones; and has hosted a few Talent Shows bringing fame to several C-A staff and students!

Where I live:  New Baltimore

Pets: Two Cats

Favorite Hobbies: Singing and playing guitar at church. Swimming and reading.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  Performing in the school musicals and the school wide Arbor Day competitions in the gym, similar to our pep-rallies, and hanging out with friends after school are among my favorite memories from High School Days.

What I like about working at C-A: It is a pleasure to work among dedicated, caring and compassionate professionals. Working in a place where people work hard to help and see others succeed, where you are challenged to expand your horizons on a daily basis is a gift.  Each day you can find a student or staff member that will make you smile .

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now: I am currently reading, "The Eight Habits of the Heart", by Clifton Taulbert, who spoke recently at a Student Leadership Summit at Russell Sage College in Troy.  It is an autobiography about growing up in the Mississippi Delta during the time of legal segregation, and the role community played in his life.  Today Taulbert is the President and CEO of a human capital development company that serves clients nationally and internationally such as Fortune 500 Companies, small businesses, federal agencies, professional organizations, community colleges and K-12 leadership

Ways I give back to my Community: During the summer months I like to volunteer at the Matthew Project in Ravena.  We make and deliver lunches to several locations where there are numbers of children 18 and younger. Besides serving on the worship team at church year round, I teach Sunday school to children ages 6-12 and help with special events.

People might be surprised to know that,  ...once "boxed the ears" of an Algerian in Paris who, along with another man, had grabbed my friend who was steps ahead of our group, to give her a kiss on New Year's Eve at the Champs Elysee.  She seemed to have disappeared between them when I arrived to jump on his back and say, "Leave her alone!"  (Let that be a lesson not to mess with me or mine!)

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, Traveling in a Spanish-speaking country and teaching little children English. Either that or sitting around reading romance or fantasy novels.

Stacey Hopkins

My Name:     Stacey Hopkins

My Current Position:  Level III Teaching Assistant Genius Bar; Distance Learning ASL 3

I work at   High School

My history at C-A:  I started September of 2015 in the Middle School as a level I TA. I had 3 Distance Learning classes that I received and I had 5,6,7 grade study halls. I also stayed 10th for Genius Bar. 

Where I live:  Kinderhook Lake, Niverville

Pets:  2 Beta fish

Favorite Hobbies: I love to travel with my family. My favorite place is Disney World. I enjoy boating, reading, walking, playing board games.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school: My favorite memory from high school was hitting my first home run in softball as a sophomore on Varsity against New Lebanon.

What I like about working at C-A: There are many things I enjoy about C-A. Some of them are that I get to work with all of the buildings with all staff and students. Being able to resolve tech issues is a favorite. I love having 50 students and being able to teach each other. The sense of community here is also very comforting.

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now: I love James Patterson books and I just finished the newest Women's Murder Club!

Ways I give back to my Community: The Shaker Museum was very important to my mom who passed away when she was 49. I have volunteered there for many years. I was also the VP of my children's PTA and helped in classrooms. I was a member of the Ghent VFW because my dad served in Vietnam.

People might be surprised to know that, I am a mother to 4 daughters and 2 step daughters. Sadie 18 attends the U Buffalo for Environmental Geo-science. She just made the Deans list.  Anna 17, is a senior at Chatham and will attend Russell Sage for nursing. She received a Presidential scholarship.  Gabrielle 12, is in 7th grade and plays modified basketball and the violin.Elizabeth is 10 and in 5th grade. She plays basketball and the saxophone. My step daughters, Izabel is in 7th grade and plays modified basketball and is an avid rider. Madison is 6 and in 1st grade and loves to ride horses.
If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, selling real estate, which is what my mom did.

I'd also like you to know, I want to go back to school to become a teacher.

Ted Nugent

My Name:   Theodore Nugent

My Current Position:  I am currently the Transportation Director, Central Registrar, McKinney-Vento Liaison, Courier, and Attendance Officer

I work at District Wide with an Office in Coxsackie Elementary

My history at C-A: I started at C-A in July 2007 as Transportation Supervisor and Courier. I became a NYS Certified Director of Transportation in July 2010. 

Where I live:  Greenville

Pets: a Golden Retriever, a Jack Russel and 4 Cats ( My Wife was a Vet Tech!! :) 

Favorite Hobbies: Cooking, Camping, Traveling, Model Railroading, spending time with my grandkids and listening to my son play the church organ.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school: MUSIC...  I loved playing brass in the jazz band, concert band and musicals.

What I like about working at C-A: I felt welcome from day 1! C-A is a caring community. It is great to see the kids grow in knowledge and maturity and how the C-A family cares about the kids.

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now: I enjoy books on railroading and food! I am currently reading Diners,Drive-Inns, and Dives: An All American Road Trip.

Ways I give back to my Community: I have been a volunteer firefighter and EMT for the past 35 years, 15 of those as a Chief Officer. I am the Chairman/Commissioner of the Greenville Fire District Board of Fire Commissioners, I am Chairman/Director of the Board of Directors of the Greenville Rescue Squad.I am a member of the Greene County EMS Task Force, I am a 911 Dispatcher for Greene County, I am a choir member/cantor at St John the Baptist, I have cooked for the Greenville Old Timers Christmas party for the past 5 years, I taught an ACE program on Model Railroading/Railroadiana last year at CE, I am the Vice-President of the Capital Area Chapter of the NYS Association for Pupil Transportation and actively involved with "Operation Safe Stop"

People might be surprised to know that I drove tour bus and limousine for 10 years, got to meet a lot of celebrities and got to see this great state and country. 

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, I would be running a food service establishment or bed and breakfast.

I'd also like you to know,  I love being a grandpa or "papa" as I'm called by my two grandchildren, Kevin and Reagan. I have been married to my beautiful wife and best friend Hope for 30 years. We have two great kids Victoria(Kevin)Crawley and Ted Jr., who heads to SUNY Cobleskill this fall. An implant from Brooklyn, I grew up in an Italian Restaurant in Greenville, which is where I met Hope and now with my wife and family we run a small catering/concession business. Mangia!

Mrs. Matson-CE

My Name: Anne Matson

My Current Position:  Third Grade Teacher

I work at Coxsackie Elementary

My history at C-A:  I started teaching at C-A in September 1976. It was an exciting time since another teacher and I were hired over Labor Day weekend for two openings that had just happened and that also required two other teachers change grade levels with short notice. I have seen many changes over the years even though all of my years have been in Coxsackie Elementary in either third or fourth grade. The most important part - the students - is still the reason what makes me smile as I come to school each day.

Where I live:  Athens

Pets: We have a dog and one cat, as well as a fresh water aquarium.

Favorite Hobbies:  I love spending time with my family. In my free time I love to read books and crochet.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  LOL....who remembers high school at this point. Graduation?

What I like about working at C-A: I enjoy working with my fellow staff members and the students at CE!

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now: My favorite type of book to read is a mystery/thriller. Of course you will often also see me reading a book at the third or fourth grade level also.

Ways I give back to my Community: I am active in our Church and help out with Hope's Mission. 

People might be surprised to know that I  loved riding as a passenger on my husband's motorcycle.

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, I really can't think of another thing that I would do. It is one of the reasons that I continue to work - I wanted to become a teacher as young as second grade. I love working and seeing the growth my students make each school year!

Mr. Loughran-HS

My Name:  Anthony Loughran

My Current Position:  High School Science teacher

I work at the high school

My history:  1989 I started teaching at C-A, prior to that I worked for SUNY Stony Brook Research Foundation as a lab technician doing cancer research for Dr. Michael  Viola for three years after graduating college. Worked construction and landscaping while in college summers.

Where I live:  Coxsackie, NY

Pets: Kia - Female German Shepherd 

Favorite Hobbies: Bee Keeping, hikes in the woods with my family and dog, football

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  Playing Lacrosse, Photography class, Learning from my favorite teacher Mr. Newman 

What I like about working at C-A:  Teaching

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now: Catcher in The Rye in HS, and currently reading : Langstroth on the Hive and Honeybee

Ways I give back to my Community:  Coaching, volunteering for school and community events , donating to various causes and fund raisers, helping those in need.

People might be surprised to know that I am an avid birdwatcher 

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing,  working in the medical field 

I'd also like you to know, I enjoyed raising my family here at C-A

Mrs. Wright-MS

My Name: Jennifer Wright

My Current Position:  8th Grade Science and Accelerated Earth Science

I work at the Middle School

My history at C-A:  Began here in the Fall of 2007

Where I live:  Albany

Pets: 2 pittbulls, Luca and Amos

Favorite Hobbies: Cooking, Hiking, Working out, Aerial Yoga, Gardening, Vacationing

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now:  The Art of Racing in The Rain by Garth Stein

Ways I give back to my Community: Volunteer at the Humane Society

People might be surprised to know that like hip hop and aerial yoga 

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be running a restaurant in the Caribbean

Mrs. Pacuk-EJA

My Name: Desiree Pacuk 

My Current Position  4th Grade Teacher

I work Edward J. Arthur Elementary School

My history at C-A:  I started in October of 2001 as a special education teacher, consultant, and worked with third and fourth grade students.  After a few years I started teaching third and fourth grade students, looping, until we stopped looping at EJA.  Currently I teach fourth grade.

Where I live:  Hannacroix

Pets: Cooper, the most pathetic coon hound you have ever met, George the ageless gray cat, Clara, the disappearing cat and Sebastian, my son's cat.

Favorite Hobbies: I like to read.  I have been making my own cards.  Spending time with my grand daughter is my favorite thing to do.  Hiking and running are things I do for fun.  My husband and I are planning to start traveling a bit,now that our children are grown.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school: I was involved in the drama club.  We put on the play Dracula and I was up on the catwalk flying a paper mache bat that would be reeled across the stage, the bat was supposed to be pulled up after it hit a certain spot and Dracula would jump out.  The bat got stuck center stage and I had to hold the wire that the bat was attached to up over my head until the scene was over and we could close the curtains and untangle to bat.  The students talked about that bat for years, inf act, years later my high school wrote a memory piece in their newsletter and the bat was even mentioned.

What I like about working at C-A:  The students and staff.

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now:  I love Pride and Prejudice, anything by Jane Austin.  I recently read The Martian, which was very good.

Ways I give back to my Community:  I have been involved in scouting for many, many years.  I volunteer with my church and with Hope's Mission.  I organize EJA's can tab collection of Ronald McDonald house and recently, with my coworkers, cooked dinner for the families staying at the house in Albany.

People might be surprised to know that I am trying to learn Italian.

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be I am sure I would be doing something to do with children, maybe combined with the outdoors.

I'd also like you to know I love to bake.  When the boy scouts are going on a trip or hike I usually send cookies and brownies along for them to enjoy.

Catherine Heinzinger

My Name: Catherine Heinzinger

My Current Position:  One-One Teacher Aide

I work C-A High School

My history at C-A:  Began May of 2006 at EJA as a teacher aide, MS, teacher aide and  , HS teacher aide

Where I live:  Coxsackie

Pets:  Dog

Favorite Hobbies:  Painting 

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  Representing my school at the largest youth orchestra gathering in England 

What I like about working at C-A:  You learn something new everyday 

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now:  The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time 

Ways I give back to my Community: I am a member of the Booster Club. Co leader of Girl Scout Troop 1274 & active parent in my sons Boy Scout troop , troop 45

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be Nursery teaching

I'd also like you to know

Mr. Wilkinson-MS

My Name: Curtis Wilkinson

My Current Position:  Physical Education Teacher

I work at C-A Middle School

My history at C-A:  Start Date September 2004.  Have held all three positions since my start date.

Where I live:  Sleepy Hollow, Coxsackie, NY

Pets: Dog and Cat

Favorite Hobbies: Playing Men's League Soccer and Softball, Paddle Ball

Favorite memory fromwhen I was in high school:  Friends and p laying on school sports teams

What I like about working at C-A:School Community and CA Community

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now:  The Matheny Manifesto

Ways I give back to my Community: I offer kids opportunities to learn and play the game of soccer for all levels.I run a year round program called Soccer Sunday as well as run a summer soccer camp for grades 1-12. 

People might be surprised to know that  Enjoy watching HGTV

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be most likely working at a YMCA as a director

I'd also like you to know I enjoy playing board games and help run a chess club in the Middle School.

Collar

My Name:  Amy Collar

My Current Position:  First Grade Teacher  

I work at Coxsackie Elementary School

My history at C-A:  I started teaching at Coxsackie Elementary in September 2006.  In those years I taught both Kindergarten and First Grade.

Where I live:  Albany

Pets:  Dog named Reggie 

Favorite Hobbies: My favorite thing to do is spend time with my son Grayson Robert Collar.  He is my pride and joy.  We have a lot of fun playing, reading, laughing and running around enjoying life.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  My favorite high school memory was playing sports and being a team player.  I also enjoyed spending time with my friends and being part of my school community.

What I like about working at C-A:  I like that C-A is a community.  I have made many friends and have been a role model for many children in the years I have worked here.  The students always come back to say Hi and that makes me feel special. I am glad they know they can come to me anytime they need guidance.

My favorite book and/or What I am reading now: My favorite books to read right now are Grayson's bedtime books.  We enjoy reading before bed every night.  In my classroom I like to read the Kissing Hand at the start of every school year.

My favorite TV show/movie.  Sons of Anarchy and Wheel of Fortune

Ways I give back to my Community: I try my best to donate my time wherever and whenever needed.  In years past I helped coach the JV and Varsity Basketball Cheerleading teams at C-A.  I enjoy donating and walking in special events for special causes such as the breast cancer, the cystic fibrosis, and the autism awareness walks.

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, possibly working in a pharmacy or in a hospital.  I thank God that I met a great family who I had the opportunity to nanny while going to undergrad school.  This family helped me see that I have what it takes to work with children.

I'd also like you to know, I recently got married to my best friend in September of 2016.

Grassi.jpg

My Name:  Lori Grassi 

My Current Position:  Special Education Teacher  

I work at Coxsackie-Athens Middle School

My history at C-A:  EJ Arthur- General Education Teacher & Special Education Teacher;  High School-Special Education Teacher; Middle School-Special Education Teacher

Where I live:  West Coxsackie

Pets:  2 dogs, 1 cat, fish 

Favorite Hobbies:  

Gardening;  Traveling; Spending time with my kids;  Cooking; Reading

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:   

Being on the track team and breaking a record;  Good friends;  Awesome teachers  

What I like about working at C-A:   

Smaller district allows all students to have great learning and extra-curricular activities;  Staff can get to know each individual student and staff

Favorite Book/What I am reading now:  

 

Favorite All Time Book: The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein; 

 

Reading Now: Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli- with my 5th graders;  

My favorite TV show: NCIS Los Angeles

Ways I give back to my Community: Advisor: High School National Honor Society;  Adopt-A-Family Program; Hope's Mission

People might be surprised to know that I:    

Love to clean and my vacuum is my favorite toy!

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, in a related field with children: social work, counseling OR Landscaping, Horticulture, or owning my own flower/plant store

I'd also like you to know,  

That I love my job and what I do and feel blessed to be able to do something that I thoroughly enjoy.

Roberg

My Name:  Leif Roberg

My current position:   

10th Grade Global History Teacher  


I work at 
Coxsackie-Athens High School

My history at C-A:   

After 17 years, I'm about half way done with my career, all of which has been spent here teaching 9th and 10th grade Global History in the High School.

Where I live:   

Coxsackie


Pets:  
1 dog

Favorite Hobbies:  

When I have the time, and the money, I try to travel as much as possible, particularly overseas. I have been fortunate to have visited Europe a number of times (specifically England, Spain, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Denmark, and Norway), northern India (4 weeks), Israel (3 weeks), China (4 weeks) and  Japan. I am hoping to put together a trip to Japan for students and adults for the summer of 2016. When I'm not traveling, I enjoy playing a variety of sports including golf, basketball, soccer, etc.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  

Being part of the sports teams, ranging from soccer, basketball, baseball, to tennis, provided me with wonderful friendships and memories that have lasted a lifetime.

What I like about working at C-A:   

This school district truly represents the community it serves: hard-working, kind, peaceful, generous, and fun 

Ways I give back to my Community: As a member of the Greene County YMCA Board, I am helping to shape the programs that are offered to our local families. I also coach the Varsity Boys Golf team which gives me a great opportunity to interact with some terrific young people while teaching them a game that will last a lifetime.

People might be surprised to know that I:   

Enjoy extreme sports or activities. I have gone skydiving, scuba diving, ziplining, canyoning, and would love to do any or all of these again.


If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing,
 something in the field of business. I admire people who start and grow businesses that provide products people use. 

Schug

My Name:  Denise Schug

My Current Position:  Teaching Assistant  

I work at E. J. Arthur Elementary School

My history at C-A:   

 I started working for C-A 15 years ago. My journey with the district begins with me subbing at EJA since both my children attended there. I then attended Co-Greene to get my TA certificate. I worked at EJA for 10 years and worked in many areas. I was an aide in the library for a year, worked in the special ed classroom for 3 years as a teaching assistant ,was a teaching assistant in both kindergarten and first grade qclassrooms. I was one of the assistants to be laid off 2 years ago but was fortunate to come back as a one on one aide at CE last year. I worked in the high school last year.  This year I am blessed to be back with my EJA family and am loving it!  I work with a wonderful team of teachers who I truly appreciate!

Where I live:  Catskill

Pets:   

 I have a miniature pincher named Eden

Favorite Hobbies:   

My favorite hobby is camping with my friends and co-workers! We have the best time ever! Playing games and interesting conversation makes our evenings a blast!!

 What I like about working at C-A:  

 I have met some really wonderful teachers who have become some of my best friends! I have always enjoyed working with the children especially in the elementary setting. I love seeing the world through their eyes and their love of learning new things! 

Favorite Book/What I am reading now:  Favorite book is Pet Semetary by Stepehen King

My favorite TV show:   

Sons of Anarchy! So addicted

Ways I give back to my Community:  

I donate food and clothing to local centers

People might be surprised to know that I:   

 I have panic attacks on the Thruway

  

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, 

 

I really don't know, I can't picture doing anything else that I love as much as working with children.

I'd also like you to know,  

My children are my everything. I have learned to appreciate all people, to always look for the good in someone even when it can be difficult. To not judge people by the way they look, dress, mental status, ect. Never use words out of anger to hurt someone, you can never take it back. My children opened my eyes to many wonderful things and I am forever thankful for that!

Sunkes

My Name:  Christine Sunkes 

My Current Position:  First Grade Teacher  

I work at Coxsackie Elementary School

My history at C-A:  2016 marks my 12th year teaching first grade at CE.  Prior to teaching at CE I was a building sub and long term sub in 2nd grae at South Colonie.

Favorite Hobbies: I love to travel (especially to Vegas), shopping, going to nice restaurants to try new foods, listening to music, and spending time with my family.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  I sold 500 boxes of cookies to earn a free trip to Montreal with the French Club.  At that point I was pretty sure I wanted to be a French teacher.

What I like about working at C-A:  C-A gave me the opportunity to do what I love in a great community with a caring staff and sweet kids!

My favorite book:  Charlotte's Web.  I read it in 1 day when I was in 3rd grade.  I find the message of the story so sweet and innocent.

My favorite TV show:  I have so many but 90210 (the original) Dawson's Creek and One Tree Hill (I know you just belly laughed)

Ways I give back to my Community: I try to incorporate contributing to the community into my classroom on a daily basis.  Recently my first graders made turkey centerpieces for Hope's Mission for Thanksgiving.  Outside of my classroom I volunteer for PTO events such as the ACE program.  Last year I taught a jewelry class and the year before a scrap booking class.  A few years back I brought one of our friends from Vegas, Patrick Seiben to our district to give a concert and help the PTO raise money for our CE playground.

People might be surprised to know that I: I was a travel agent for 8 years and teaching is my second career.  I worked for an Irish Tour Operator.  I used to take groups to Ireland.  I have been there 5 times.  Also, I have been to Mexico several times, the Bahamas, Canada, and many other places.

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, My husband and I would be living in Las Vegas enjoying the dessert weather and sun!

I'd also like you to know, I have had the opportunity to meet so many nice families and made lifelong friendships since working at C-A.  It's such a great community!

Essex

 My Name:  Dawn Essex

My Current Position:  School Counselor

I work at C-A High School

My history at C-A:  I have worked as a High School Counselor at Coxsackie-Athens since 1994.

Where I live:  Greenville

Pets:  1 dog, 2 cats, 5 rabbits, and 1 Nubian goatFavorite Hobbies:  Tae Kwon Do, Swimming, Attending AHL Albany Devils ice hockey games, spending time at Schroon Lake with my family, and attending my daughter's sporting events.Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  Science and Math were my favorite subjects.  I always enjoyed learning new things in these subjectsWhat I like about working at C-A:  I like helping students plan for their futures.  Coxsackie-Athens CSD is such a a nice community.My favorite book:  Passages by Gail SheehyMy favorite TV show:  Favorite TV Show:  Hawaii Five O.  Favorite Movies:  Top Gun and MiracleWays I give back to my Community:  I am a member of the Coeymans-Ravena Women's Club and the United Methodist Church of Greenville/Norton Hill's Dayare CommitteePeople might be surprised to know that I:  Adopted my daughter from China in 2004 and I am currently working towards a Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing,  something in the medical field

Mrs  Durant-CE

 My Name:  Melissa DurantMy Current Position:  Elementary Teacher 

I work at Coxsackie Elementary School

My history at C-A:  I have always been grade 4 at CE. Over the years, I picked up projects such as our award winning Community Service Program, social studies curriculum leader, teacher coach and now the Coxsackie Aqua Lab.

Where I live: Ballston Lake

Pets:  My Maine Coon, Holmes, several aquariums, including a 7 foot long 225 gallon saltwater reef tank system. Additionally, I have kept my Red Ear Slider named Tiny and a 55 gallon Freshwater tank with clown loaches.Favorite Hobbies: Aquariums.  I am Vice President for Capital District Marine Aquarists Society for Education. This keeps me very busy as it's an educational non for profit that is working toward 501c3 status. We support many school outreach programs such as Aqualabs. Some of our supported labs are local like the one at Berlin Central where they are studying shark eggs and jellyfish. One of the supported labs is in Bellevue Ohio, where they are breeding sea horses, and then there is the Coxsackie lab, where we are studying microorganisms and aqua cultured fish and corals.Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  Has to the numerous musicals I performed in. I was going to be an actress and then I fell in love with teaching. Figures since I was the bossy kid on the block!What I like about working at C-A:  I like that I am able to pursue my interests and set goals that are supported by my peers, students and administrators. I am fortunate to teach with some pretty amazing people, and I'm thankful daily for the support of my other half, Mrs. Rausch. We work very well together and I see our impact on the children daily.What I am reading now:  I absolutely lived The Hunger Games, all of them.My favorite TV show:  I don't have time for TV and Movies. I do miss shows like Lost, Friends and Seinfeld though.Ways I give back to my Community: I work collaboratively to run the very first Community Service Program our elementary school has ever had with my dedicated partner Mrs. Houghtaling. I would be lost without her, as her contribution is invaluable to our program.  People might be surprised to know that I: In stark contrast to my diligent deans list honors in college, I was not always a good student and throughout my grade schooling, I struggled with math and reading. I had to work hard to be the teacher I am today. Nothing has ever come easy to me and I want my students to know that what seems impossible today may be something amazing in their future. Always do your best, follow your dreams and never give up! If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, Radio and broadcasting, or something in the video documentary world prior to 7 years ago, but now I know that I could probably be a very successful entrepreneur in the aquarium industry or aquarium educational outreach field.I'd also like you to know, I am happiest working with the children and only want the best for my students. I strive daily to be a role model and try new things so that I can deliver the best possible instruction. Change is good, and change is difficult. I reinvent myself each year in hopes to be the best I can be. I hope that some day, my students will remember me as the teacher that helped them get to a successful adulthood, by inspiring them to dream, set goals and make things happen. 

Mrs  Whiting-EJA

 My Name:  Michelle Whiting

My Current Position:  Elementary Teacher

I work at  E. J. Arthur Elementary School

My history at C-A:   I began teaching at C-A in 2001 after serving as a substitute teacher for 3 years. I have been teaching first and second grade and hope to teach P re-K or Kindergarten in the near future. In addition to my classroom teacher position, I am proud to be a co-coordinator of the district's Professional Partner program, a curriculum leader and a member of the E.J. Arthur P.T.O.

Where I live: Coxsackie

Pets:  NoneFavorite Hobbies: I enjoy gardening, cooking, and going to the beach.Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  There are too many to mention!What I like about working at C-A:  I love working in the community in which I live. I enjoy the children and the people that I work with. Because we're a small district, it's easy to stay in touch with former students and encourage them long after they've left my classroom. I like the fact that I have the ability to work with colleagues from kindergarten through 12th grade and stay in touch with all of my students!What I am reading now: One of my favorite children's books is Winnie-the-Pooh. I love the language used in the book. My favorite adult author is Agatha Christie and her Hercule Poirot stories.My favorite TV show:  James Bond moviesWays I give back to my Community:   My husband and I have been involved in our community since we moved to Coxsackie. I volunteered at the elementary school, taught religion at St. Mary's, helped build the McQuade Park playground, and have served on several school committees prior to teaching full time. In addition, I was a member of the Coxsackie Elementary P.T.O and high school Booster Club. Since I've started teaching I have had a focus on the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse. Each year my students travel to the lighthouse and throughout the year we sell note cards to raise awareness and money for the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse Preservation Society.People might be surprised to know that I..have been playing the piano since I was in second grade. I play classical and ragtime/jazz. My favorite composer is Scott Joplin.If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, ...I'd be traveling the world! Italy, Greece, France, the Caribbean...If I had to work I'd be teaching in Eleuthera, Bahamas.I'd also like you to know,  that I have 3 children, all of whom graduated from C-A! They all went on to a 4 year college and the 2 oldest kids are pursuing their dream of working in professional baseball and becoming a photographer. Finally, I grew up in New Hampshire and hope to someday make my way back to The Granite State!

Mrs  Berlin-CE

My Name:  Georgette Berlin  

My Current Position:  Speech Language Pathologist

I work at:  District-Wide

My history at C-A, and other experience:  2014-15 is my eighth year in the district . I have been a Speech Language Pathologist for 30 years with experiences at Albany Med, and in the preschool settings.

Where I live:  Athens

Pets:  None

Favorite Hobbies:  I have hobbies related to furniture refinishing and restoration. I love to repurpose furniture and gadgets for new uses. If you know me , you know I LOVE chairs like most people love shoes.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  My favorite memory from HS on Long Island was when I was a prop master for the school play. We drove into Manhattan to buy a Russian newspaper as a prop. Unnecessary, but absolutely authentic!

What I like about working at C-A:  Kids, kids, kids. Every day, I hear something from a student that brings me joy.

My favorite Book:  Recently I have read the unabridged and original Grimm's Brothers fairytales. They are generally short stories and fabulously gruesome. If you get a chance, read the original Cinderella. It's wonderful.

My favorite TV show:  I am a movie geek, and love all movies, even the bad ones.

Ways I give back to my Community: I am huge believer in the local and regional food pantries. I good meal is the beginning of good health, well being, and readiness to learn.

People might be surprised to know that I:  I hate shopping and exercising. Both are evil vices. People also might be surprised that I have a funny bone because I am very serious about my work with children.If I didn't work at what I do now:   Nothing, because I hate shopping and exercise.   I hope someday to be the best Grandma in the world.

Mrs  Copleston-DO

My Name  Leslie Copleston

My Current Position:  Assistant Superintendent of School Services

I work at:  District-Wide

My history at C-A:  I began attending CACSD in fourth grade and graduated in 1980. I began working at C-A in the District Office as Treasurer in the Fall of 1991. I served as District Treasurer until I became the business official in September 2002.

Where I live:  Coxsackie

Pets:  Middy the cat

Favorite Hobbies:  Gardening, working on my house, music

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  I really can't think of just one...but school was where I felt the most valued, positive, and productive.

What I like about working at C-A: School was always a good experience for me. I enjoyed coming back to an environment which was fulfilling.

My favorite Book, or What I am reading now: The Fault in Our Stars

My favorite TV show or movie:  Big Bang Theory

Ways I give back to my Community: I am Treasurer of the Coxsackie Regional Chamber of Commerce. I was Treasurer of the Greene County YMCA for several years. I served as Treasurer of a political campaign and I am co-chair of the RCG Health Insurance Trust.

People might be surprised to know that I: I come from a long line of Educators. My Grandfather moved to NY from San Antonio Texas in the 1950s to become Assistant Commissioner of Education. He authored many textbooks along the way. My mother taught for 36 years and my uncle did as well.

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, nursing.

Mrs  Krajeski-MS

My Name  Pam Krajeski

My Current Position: 7th Grade ELA Teacher/Team Leader

I work at:  Coxsackie-Athens Middle School

My history at C-A and Other Related Experience: 2001-present CA grade 8 (1 year) and grade 7.  Taught 9th, 10th and 12th grade in the Bronx for 4 years.  Taught English Composition at Fordham University (Rose Hill Campus) for 1 year

Where I live:  Durham

Pets:  3 dogs, 3 cats, 1 love bird and a few chickens

Favorite Hobbies:  Reading, Travelling , listening to music, watching classic old movies

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  Graduation and looking forward to going to college.

What I like about working at C-A:   It's a close knit group of people- like a family. I have had many, many positive experiences with my colleagues, students and their parents. I have made some very close friends here during my 14 years here at CA.

My favorite Book, or What I am reading now:   Jane Eyre and Pride and Prejudice -I love the classic novels

My favorite TV show or movie: Big Bang Theory

Ways I give back to my Community:  I was a 4H co-leader for a few years. I have volunteered at senior citizen functions for several years.People might be surprised to know that I: Can read Old English and almost went to the University of Oregon to get my doctorate

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, I might still be working for a bank..... or maybe I'd be a pirate. That might satisfy my desire for travel and adventure

I'd also like you to know:  I love working with the students here at CA. They never cease to amaze and inspire me. They have taught me a great deal over these past 14 years.

Proper - Admin

My Name -  David Proper

My Current Position:   Principal

I work at:  Coxsackie-Athens Middle School

My history at C-A:  Started working at Coxsackie-Athens in 1998, Held the position of Athletic Director and Administrator for Student Discipline until September of 2009. I have been the Middle School Principal since then.

Where I live:  Coxsackie

Pets:  A dog, Tess and one cat, Reptar

Favorite Hobbies:  I participate in rec softball and basketball leagues. My family and I like to ski and hike. I also enjoy hunting.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  9th grade Social Studies with Mr. Lizzi. Learned a lot and had fun.

What I like about working at C-A:  The staff is truly talented and dedicated.

My favorite Book, or What I am reading now:   I just finished reading The "Last Kind Words Saloon" by Larry McMurtry

My favorite TV show or movie:  Seinfeld

Ways I give back to my Community:  I am an active member of St. Mary's Parish. I was a member of the YMCA board of directors for a number of years.People might be surprised to know that I:  Have seven siblings.

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing; My mother and father both grew up on dairy farms. I probably would be a farmer of some sort.

I'd also like you to know:  Public education is still the great equalizer. You can become anyone you want to be. No matter what your background is.

Mr  Dial-HS

My Name  - Bob Dial

My Current Position:  English Teacher

I work at:  Coxsackie-Athens High School

My history at C-A: I started teaching (as a second career) at C-A in September 2004.

Where I live: Glenville

Pets:  2 cats (Wheezer and Stelli)

Favorite Hobbies:  Reading, writing, plus outdoors activities like jogging, biking, hiking, softball, golf and cross-country skiing. Also, watching New York Yankees baseball.

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  Studying English with Dan Dinicola at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School. He was a teacher there in addition to being the movie critic for WRGB-TV Channel 6 and the Schenectady Gazette newspaper. His classes always made you think!

What I like about working at C-A:  The small-town family atmosphere.

My favorite Book, or What I am reading now:   I am currently reading "The Storytelling Animal: How Stories Make Us Human" by Jonathan Gottschall.

My favorite TV show or movie: New York Yankees games on YES Network

Ways I give back to my Community: I served in the U.S. Army Reserve and N.Y. Army National Guard for 12 years (1984-96). Currently, I am a member of American Legion Post 983 in Cairo, N.Y. and a life member of the National Association of the 10th Mountain Division. I have also worked as a Literacy Volunteers reading tutor in Schenectady, and I currently teach during the summer in the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) at Skidmore College.People might be surprised to know that I am a YMCA-certified SCUBA diver and have made 9 open-water dives in Lake George and also the Caribbean. I also made 8 parachute jumps (including some "hop-and-pop" freefalls) during the 1980s at the former Drop Zone Parachute Club at Fulco Airport in Johnstown, N.Y.
If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing,
 teaching and/or tutoring at a community college.

I'd also like you to know: 

Mrs  Weinstein-HS.jpg

My Name  - Jennifer Weinstein

My Current Position: Attendance Clerk, Athletic / Discipline Secretary

I work at:  High School

My history at C-A:   I began working for CA in 2007 as the Attendance Clerk & Athletic Secretary for the High School. Since then, my tasks have changed a bit each year to where I sit now at the Main Entrance of the High School. From here I do the High School attendance, assist with parts of the Middle School attendance, I work with Mr. Hanley and Mr. Z on discipline and I help Mr. Nash with athletics.  I began advising the High School Student Council in 2007 and have coached the JV Field Hockey team since 2012.

Where I live: I live in Coxsackie with my husband, Seth, and our children, Sydney & Logan. 

Pets:  We have 1 cat named Amos.

Favorite Hobbies:  As many moms know, once you have children your hobbies take a back seat and your kid's hobbies become your's. This means instead of traveling, reading and quilting as I once did, I now spend my extra time at Irish Dancing classes, field hockey, basketball, soccer, baseball or flag football games!

Favorite memory from when I was in high school:  .In the early 90's the Student Council sponsored a Scholarship Spaghetti Dinner and my Senior year as we prepared for it, realized we needed more salad dressing. Dr. Maxwell, our principal, allowed three of us to take his car, which happened to be a convertable sports car, to what was then the Grand Union for the dressing while he continued the pasta prep. Coxsackie is a small place, so word spread quickly that we were cruising the village in that car, my Dad still talks about that!

What I like about working at C-A: I have a certain amount of pride for my work here, because my family is truly vested in Coxsackie-Athens. This is where my parents graduated from in 1971, I graduated in 1993 and before I know it my children will be CA graduates. It certainly wasn't in my master plan to return here and spend my days cracking jokes with late students, but when I think really hard about it (and I know how cliche this sounds, thank-you-very-much) I can't imagine how I would want to be anyplace else. I loved CA as a student and I want the students I see each day to love it that same way.

My favorite Book, or What I am reading now:   I am currently reading 'Gone Baby Gone' by Dennis Lehane because I belong to a WICKED AWESOME book club. Ask Mrs. Roberg or Mrs. Seekamp how awesome we are!

My favorite TV show or movie: I am a Netflix junkie right now, catching up on past episodes of Parenthood. My favorite movie is Serendipity.

Ways I give back to my Community: I serve on the Library Board of Trustees for the Heermance Memorial Library, I have served on the Pastoral Council at St. Mary's Church where I am also a 2nd grade religious education teacher. I have volunteered with the Christmas By The River committee.People might be surprised to know that I am deathly afraid of the Blue Man Group.

If I didn't work at what I do now I'd probably be doing, I've been told that I've missed my calling and I should be an event coordinator. I have a background in marketing and really enjoy everything from planning to publicizing events and charitable campaigns.

I'd also like you to know:  I played a season of field hockey at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut where I also played rugby (soley for the cool jacket, not because I was tough). While I was anxious to return to Coxsackie (trust me, one day you will probably consider coming back, too) I loved my time in Connecticut and I made friends there that have become like family to me. I am a die-hard Syracuse Basketball fan (be quiet, we're a young team this year) and it's on my Bucket List to take a 'selfie' with Jim Boeheim. My next chance will be on January 24th when we head out to the SU vs. Miami game and I'll be 7 rows back from the bench for my 40th birthday...stay tuned. My husband is a life-long UCONN fan, so sometimes we don't speak to each other in March.   I spend my summers working at Crossroads Brewing Company in Athens, I am probably the best pint server you'll ever meet.