M e e t  T h e   F a m i l y

Core Mentors/Founders

The Kiva Center Kasey Schelling

Kasey Schelling, Co-Founder, Lead Mentor, Co-Director


Kasey is a devoted educator with the gift of igniting the spark in the eyes of her students.   Prior to founding The Kiva Center in 2014, she spent five years teaching English (ELL) and the Spanish language throughout the United States and Spain.  She is a certified Permaculture Educator by the Learning Gardens Institute and strives to bring students back into their roots as integral elements of the Earth ecosystem.  She has a BA in Spanish Language and Literature with a Minor in Business Administration  from the University of Colorado at Boulder (2011).  As a dancer and percussionist of Mokomba, a traditional West African Drum and Dance group, she is passionate about using rhythm, song and dance as tools to strengthen community.

The Kiva Center Garrett Braun

Garrett Braun, Co-Founder, Lead Mentor, Co-Director


Garrett is an experienced educator, known for his natural knack for teaching and connecting with children. Before joining the founding team in 2014, Garrett taught at Bixby School, a progressive and experiential learning institution in Boulder.  Before starting his teaching career, Garrett traveled around the world, getting his first glimpse at the variety of cultural expressions humanity has to offer. Garrett then graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts with a concentration in Humanities from Soka University of America in 2011. Since graduating, he lived in El Salvador to complete a project to help a rural community write their first written history book. Garrett brings his experiences with cultures around the world to his teaching. 

The Kiva Center Ashley Kulik

Ashley Kulik, Co-Founder


Ashley is a mentor, connector, and vocalist. Ashley was instrumental in getting The Kiva Center off the ground and has since moved onto traveling and pursuing her music career. 

Board of Trustees


John is a strategic corporate finance consultant.  He has spent the last twenty years helping companies from start-ups to global organizations build, transform and restructure their businesses.

John became passionate about The Kiva Center after enrolling his son in the initial homeschool enrichment program offered by Kasey and Garret and seeing the knowledge and understanding the program offered...


Corey Hollister, Vice President

Corey currently operations Corey Hollister LLC providing strategic advisory and consulting services with specific expertise in corporate social responsibility, regulated cannabis/hemp sectors and early stage companies. Previously, Corey co-founded and served as CEO and Chairman of American Cannabis Company Inc. in Denver, CO (Stock Ticker: AMMJ) from 2013-2017.  He also co-founded one of the state’s first licensed medical cannabis dispensaries, The Village Green Society located in Boulder, CO. Before relocating in 2007, Corey spent 10 years working in advertising and marketing in Boston, MA. Corey and his wife Carmen married in 2006 and moved to Colorado together. They welcomed their first son in 2008 and second son in 2010. Going on crazy adventures, or sitting around the table drawing and chatting, they love to share each other’s company. 

Lynele Jones, Treasurer

Lynele has been a Certified Public Accountant for decades, and is now semiretired.  Her CPA work concentrates of not-for-profits organizations, individuals, and small businesses.  She deeply values her time spent outdoors.  Her daughter Sandy is an outdoor educator in Boulder and has worked with Kasey and Garrett.

Jill Ryerson, Secretary

Jill Ryerson is an educator who has spent her career working with children as a classroom teacher and a tutor.  She loves thinking critically about learning, education, and life. Originally from Washington, DC, Jill moved to Colorado in 2001 to pursue a teaching position and a lifestyle more connected to the outdoors.  She delights in spending time with children in nature, and marvels at the learning, growth, and healing we can all experience when we give ourselves this time. The mission of the Kiva Center is one that Jill is honored to support by being a member of the board.


Lindsey Hall is a public relations executive by day – and eating disorder activist by night. She is the author behind the award-winning eating disorder recovery blog, "I Haven't Shaved In Six Weeks," which she started following a six-week experience at an inpatient treatment center for an eating disorder...

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Our Amazing Mentors/Interns

Hannah Baird, Homeschool Farm Mentor

Hannah is an environmental educator dedicated to using her endless energy and love of teaching to help bridge the science-to-society gap. Hannah grew up in Homer, Alaska, where she spent her life out on the ocean cliff jumping, fishing, and backpacking with brown bears. She attended Bard College in New York where she graduated with double degrees in Ecology & Conservation and Music, as well as playing divisional women’s lacrosse and men’s club hockey. Hannah has spent time studying puffins off the coast of Maine, has designed and implemented her own eDNA field research study to map anadromous waters in Alaska, and has taught classes everywhere from Alaska to New Zealand. She strongly believes in the power of place-based learning, and strives to bring her love of all living things to every student she teaches.

Chris Hopper, Homeschool Farm Mentor

Chris Hopper is a passionate, multi-talented human from Boulder, CO whose main desire is to create a more connected, loving, and free world through teaching life skills to children. He has over 11 years of experience working with children of all ages. He discovered his natural ability to connect with kids when he began teaching gymnastics as a young adult. At the same time, he began teaching piano lessons and playing music professionally which helped him balance his love of movement and music. Years later he delved into both circus skills and parkour, having a love for juggling and ground skills as well as the freedom which comes through the “art of overcoming obstacles.” 

Chris has a deep love for nature and has spent much time backpacking, rock climbing, mountaineering, spearfishing, sailing, and surfing. In 2014, he joined the AscenDance Project, a dance troupe that dances on a climbing wall and has performed all along the Colorado Front Range as well as in Singapore. Your kids are sure to have fun, develop skills, and be inspired in his presence.

Amanda Tynan, Westwood After-School Lead Teacher/School Outreach Coordinator

Amanda is a Denver-based marketing consultant, writer, and lead instructor with the Kiva Center. Her foundation in STEM and passion for communication allows her to distill complex ideas into fun, engaging lessons for her students. When she isn’t teaching, Amanda loves helping local, small businesses grow through innovative marketing and excising her creative muscles through screen-writing and acting for film.

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