Our Leadership Team
President and CEO
John has been involved in school reform efforts on a district and national level since 1993. He has worked on secondary national literacy projects, including the Harvard PACE Project, the New Standards Project Reference Exam and Performance Standards initiatives, and the Ramp Up to Literacy and Ramp Up to Advanced Literacy programs at the National Center on Education and the Economy. He was a member of the Disciplinary Literacy team for English at the Institute for Learning (University of Pittsburgh) and has worked with SCALE at Stanford to develop Common Core State Standards-aligned performance assessments for high school English language arts classrooms. John holds a doctorate in English from Texas Christian University, has taught at secondary and university levels, and consults widely on various literacy-related projects.
Director of Partnerships
Yvette has worked with language arts/bilingual educators at the school, district, county, university, and international levels since 1993. Her experience spans school management at the elementary/middle/high school settings, oversight of county alternative programs, and supervision of doctoral candidates in educational leadership. Yvette has written a number of successful grants and directed professional development for both teachers and school administrators in the areas of literacy and English language acquisition. In 2000, Dr. Nishikawa was awarded a Fulbright scholarship, one of only 200 educators selected nationwide to represent the United States in overseas schools. She holds a doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of LaVerne.
Director of Publications/Operations
Karee has more than 25 years of experience in educational and trade nonfiction publishing for companies including Holt Rinehart and Winston, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, and Pearson Learning Solutions. Before joining Inquiry By Design, she spent ten years managing a small, independent press for commercial real estate, as well a consulting company for educational publishing. Karee holds a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from Texas Christian University.
Our Professional Development Team
Coordinator for Professional Development
Kristi Hemingway has been an educator, instructor, and curriculum developer since 1990, teaching preschool through adults in both public and private settings. Kristi worked internationally for ten years, developing and delivering workshops in English as a second language, leadership, communication, performing arts, and substance abuse for international and European schools, in addition to the U.S., Canadian, and British militaries. Most recently Kristi taught junior high and high school English, theater, public speaking, creative dramatics and elementary writing for nine years at Two Roads Charter School in Denver where she also served as vertical team leader for the humanities department. She has written curriculum for David C. Cook Publishing and writes on education, the arts, and family related topics for more than a dozen local and national publications. She has served as a consultant in arts education, classroom management, and writing instruction. Kristi holds degrees from Cottey College in Missouri and Colorado Christian University in Colorado.
Skylar DeVos began teaching in 2008 at a small charter school outside of Denver. During his time there, Skylar taught English, theatre, and speech classes for students from 7th through 12th grade, and worked extensively with the school’s data teams to support student learning. After moving to Nashville, Skylar taught 11th and 12th grade English at Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School. Skylar holds a degree in English with Secondary Education from Colorado Christian University.
Bridget Evans has been a teacher, mentor and writer for the past twenty years. She began her teaching career in Maryland and taught in Title One, magnet, and alternative schools. She headed to the Bay Area a few years later and continued her teaching career in Mill Valley, California. She co-created an experiential writing camp, mentored new teachers, and wrote several grants. Bridget co-authored the novel “Breathe” under the pen name Kate Bishop and continues to pursue her love of writing, yoga and teaching in Bend, Oregon.
Katy Goebel has spent 15 years working in urban education as a classroom teacher, a district administrator, a teacher effectiveness coach, a peer to peer learning partner, an innovation partner, and currently an implementation consultant with the Colorado Department of Education. Katy earned her BS in Elementary Education and Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her master’s in Educational Administration and Policy from the University of Denver. Katy is married and a mother of two young children, and enjoys reading and spending time in the great outdoors with friends and family. Katy’s greatest passion is her children and trying to make the world and public schools “good enough” for her own kids.
John Nolan has been teaching high school English since 1984. He has taught mainstream English classes, advanced placement, and English language development. He has taught at traditional public high schools and currently teaches at Island High School, the alternative continuation high school for the Alameda Unified School District in California. John has a BA from California State University, San Bernardino, and a Masters of Education from Chapman University. In addition to being a professional developer for Inquiry By Design, he is also a fellow of the Inland Area Writing Project and a certified professional developer for Strategic Instructional Model, KUCRL. John is also active in coaching and curriculum development.
Emily Gregson has been an educator since 1993, in the North Clackamas School District in Milwaukie, Oregon. In that time, she has taught at the elementary and middle school levels and has also been an instructional coach, leading professional development for other educators. Currently, Emily teaches sixth grade language arts at Rock Creek Middle School where she is also a cross country and track coach, as well as student council advisor. Over the years, she has participated in multiple curriculum adoptions and has developed curriculum with the Oregon Writing Project. Emily holds degrees from Western Oregon and Portland State universities.
Sally Hampton, Ed.D.
Consultant, Curriculum and Assessment
Sally Hampton, Ed.D, chaired the College and Career Ready Standards committee and was a primary author of the Common Core State Standards. She is the former Director of ELA for New Standards and the former Director of Research and Development for the National Center on Education and the Economy.
A classroom teacher for 16 years, Sally led the design and development of several nationally regarded literacy programs including Literacy Navigator, a reading intervention program for students grades 4-10, and Pearson North America’s K-12 digital curriculum. She is the author and co-author of numerous white papers, publications, and books including Reading and Writing, Grade by Grade (with Lauren Resnick) and Using Rubrics to Improve Student Writing (with Sandra Murphy). In addition to her work with Inquiry By Design, Sally currently provides leadership in ELA for the National Center on Education and the Economy and NISL.
Betsy Taleporos, Ed.D.
Consultant, Curriculum and Assessment
Betsy Taleporos, Ed.D., is a measurement and test development professional who creates assessments, provides professional development for teachers and school leaders, and works with individual schools on their assessment and data analysis needs. Her clients include Pearson America’s Choice, National Heritage Academies, Educational Records Bureau, National Institute for School Leadership, Pearson System of Courses, the Avenues School, and an Algebra 1 project for P-Tech high schools.
Before launching her consulting practice in 2011, Dr. Taleporos was the Assessment Director for Pearson America’s Choice, where her work involved creating more than 500 tests to measure progress in intervention programs and the efficacy of a comprehensive school improvement program.
Prior to her six years at America’s Choice, she worked in the assessment industry as a test developer for nine years, following ten years as the Assessment Director for New York City, where she pioneered large-scale performance assessment projects in mathematics and English language arts. Dr. Taleporos was the head of the test research and analysis unit, performing statistical analyses of performance data. She was responsible for all assessments administered in New York City, handling all aspects of test design, test development, analysis, and psychometrics for the entire city system. She has a keen interest in formative assessment and in using information from assessments to improve teaching and learning.
Our Marketing Team
Kaela’s guiding light has always been her love for literacy and learning. Volunteering as a literacy tutor, editing and publishing her university’s literary journal, and scoring student reading comprehension on state tests are just a few of the experiences that prepared her to join the Inquiry By Design team in 2010. Kaela holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Colorado State University. She is also a graduate of the University of Denver Publishing Institute. Currently, Kaela is pursuing her master’s degree in Library and Information Science with a focus on Children’s and School Librarianship at the University of Denver.
Our Support Team
Brianne Cummings is a Colorado native with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Colorado State University. She is certified as a lead teacher in early childhood education and worked as a preschool teacher for three years prior to becoming a stay-at-home mother to her three children.