Joshua Boyle, Assistant School Leader and English teacher,
I became a teacher because I had an English degree and my counselor suggested teaching, so I took a class and absolutely fell in love with the idea of teaching and went on to get my masters. My most memorable experience as a teacher was to see the kids grow and succeed all four years from their freshman year to graduation. I was proud of them but also sad to see them go. Some hobbies I enjoy in my free time is reading, board games, movies, and fantasy football.
Louise Campina, Special Education Coordinator.
I am currently the Special Education Coordinator at Desert Hills High School 4 days a week and Quest High School 1 day a week. I started with the Leona Group in 2013 and began teaching Special Education in the South Pointe Elementary School for Kindergarten- 5th graders. I moved into the Coordinator and Teacher position at Quest and South Pointe Junior High and Advance U in 2015. I am enjoying doing High School only and working with the students and staff here at Desert Hills. Everyone has been very welcoming to me and I am very happy to be a Cougar!!
I live in Ahwatukee with my husband Bobby, my 16 year old daughter, Allie who attends Marcos de Niza High School in Tempe. We have a dog Ginger and a cat Freckle. I love to read, walk my dog, camp, bake, play the piano and enjoy spending time with my family and friends. Recently my friend and I have started playing piano duets and are having a great time!! Once a month 8 wonderful ladies and I get together for dinner club. We have been cooking and laughing together for 10 years.
James (Jim) Collon, Dean of Students
I hold a Bachelor's degree in education with a minor in math from Southern Connecticut State University.
After leaving the Police Dept after 37 years as both a patrol officer and detective, I accepted a position of Site Supervisor as head of security for Mountain Vista Medical Hospital in Mesa. In 2016, I was subsequently asked to be in charge of discipline and campus safety at Desert Hills Hs and I’m now amidst my second school year here. My background in law enforcement and undercover street crime allows me to apply the same respect and principals here at the school as it did throughout my Police career. Mentoring young men and women is a new passion of mine while maintaining the familiarity of public service.
Jayne Collon, Office Manager
I was born in England and moved with my family to Sydney, Australia at the age of 3. I have been working at DHHS for the past two years.
My husband and I, along with our two sons and 3 little Shih Tzus moved to Arizona in 2010 from our home in Connecticut.
Before accepting the position of Office Manager and Social Media Manager at DHHS, I was the receptionist and later became the Office Manager at Apache Trail High School. I am now entering my 7th year with the Leona Group and I have a passion for our students and families. Getting to personally know the kiddos is a huge part of my job. I’m always kept busy with students (as a mom figure) and of course, I make time throughout my day to listen to students and to take their needs seriously and I make it a necessary part of my daily routine to ‘check on my kids’. I am responsible for the daily operation of the front office and staff and also the school’s database of student records, state reporting, data and business management.
I'm grandma to Ellie, the cutest baby you'll ever lay eyes on and happily married with two grown sons. I love to shop and re-decorate our home and I am a grateful breast cancer survivor.
Gregor Dieterle, Science, Biology, Earth Science, Anatomy and Plant Science teacher.
A decorated veteran of the United States Coast Guard, I left my military career to dedicate my life to the support and development of young people. After graduating cum laude from Ottawa University with a degree in secondary education, I spent ten years teaching advanced science courses at Horizon Community Learning Center before coming to Desert Hills High School.
I really enjoy the small school environment and being able to make connections with students that really need extra support. In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my three boys and two dogs. I also enjoy playing guitar and I'm a triple C rated, level 6 ping pong player. Go WaterBears!
Eric Fillerup, Math and Chemistry teacher
I graduated from BYU-Idaho in 2015 with a degree in Biology.
I began tutoring math in California shortly after. I later moved to Arizona and began tutoring with another company here. At the start of this year, I was a math paraprofessional at El Dorado High School. While working there I heard of a teaching position here and the rest is history.
Being a Californian, I love to surf as much as possible when I am close to the Ocean. I have gone to El Salvador and Costa Rica on surfing trips. I used to play pickup basketball almost 5 or 6 days a week, but my knees are too worn down in my old age, so I play less frequently now. I love most sports, which doesn't necessarily mean I have much skill in all of them (I'm awful at baseball). I love doing outdoorsy things especially having to do with water. Wakeboarding, cliff diving, bridge jumping, rope swing, etc. I also like to snowboard and ski in the winter months.
Jesus Grajeda, ALS teacher.
I have been educating others for over 10 years at Mission Heights High School, Apache Trail High School and Desert Hills High School.
I became a teacher because I wanted to experience something different other than just business all the time and I wanted to help students learn and fulfil their passions. I really enjoy watching the students as they grow and realize their potential. My best teaching experience would be seeing all of my students graduate or the progress they have made through the last 4 years. Some of my hobbies include deep sea fishing, travelling, and dabbling in the stock market.
Stephen Makowski, Paraprofessional - Art and Music Coach.
I'm entering my 2nd school year with Desert Hills High School.
I was born in Sydney, Australia but grew up in Connecticut where I discovered my passion for music. I taught myself to play guitar at age twelve. I always knew that music was something I had to do in my life. From a young age, I was involved with live performances with bands or solo gigs. When I first moved to Arizona in my early twenties, it was a bit of an adjustment at first, but now I am lucky enough to have a career that let's me share my passion everyday with very talented and enthusiastic young people. When I started at Desert Hills, I was here just twice a week coaching students in the music and art clubs. We have had an amazing response and interest from the students. The kids have full creative control of the projects they decide to work on and hopefully it will inspire some to also pursue a career related to music or the arts. In addition to the art and music classes, I help students who need extra help in their classes, usually working one on one with those students. I've discovered that my passion extends past just playing music. I'm also passionate about giving the students the gift of music and art in their lives. Everyday is a positive experience with no judgement and we're all having a blast!
Jose Rosario, English teacher
I have worked with The Leona Group since 2014, teaching students how to rite and spiel, as well as how to keep a good sense of humor. Before becoming an English Teacher at Desert Hills High School, I learned how to scoop the perfect Gelati by managing Rita's Italian Ice, in Tempe. Prior to graduating from Arizona State University with a bachelor's degree in English, Secondary Education Certificate, and TESOL Certificate, I spent 5 years tutoring underprivileged youth with the the America Reads and Counts program. When I'm not making students laugh, cry, and learn, I enjoy checkmating arrogant opponents, snorkeling with Nemo and Dori in Puerto Rico (prior to Hurricane Maria in September, 2017), playing RuneScape in Hardcore Ironman mode, and being the only staff member to wear a blue polo.
Dawn Trump, World History, Youth Entrepreneur and Government / Economics teacher has been schooling others for over 17 years all around California and various Leona Group schools.
I became a teacher by doing volunteer work as a student assistant and thought it could be a career I'd like to pursue. I thoroughly enjoy my job at Desert Hills High School and most of all, I enjoy seeing and getting to know my students every day. My best moment as a teacher would probably be when kids get the AHA! moment, when they finally understand something that they’ve been trying to figure out forever. Some hobbies that I enjoy are, hiking, biking, travelling, reading, and spending time with my family.
Robert Mitchell - Multi Media and Digital StoryTelling teacher, Mr. Mitchell is now in his 2nd year at Desert Hills.
I was raised in a family of teachers, musicians, technologists (nerds), and my Father, a veterinarian and last of the true cowboys. At 81 years young, Dad continues to run marathons and raise horses, dogs, cats, and other varmints that pass through the barbed-wire on the family ranch.
I’m pretty much a combination of all those things; a product of folks who have always kept their hearts alive to make a difference in this world.
My classes here at the family-focused, Desert Hills High School, are a combination of project-based multimedia production, digital art, storytelling, and independent learning contracts. Through a collaborative, one block, course plan, qualified students have an opportunity to pursue a rigorous, in-depth exploration of one of the following: music, graphic design, illustration, animation, video production, website development, photography, writing, video games, and 3D modeling.
My educational mantra has always been, ‘...empower students to find their own innate abilities to solve problems.’
Kathleen Pritchett - English and Spanish teacher
Ms. Pritchett is enjoying her first year teaching at DHHS.
I grew up in rainy Bellingham, Washington and moved to Arizona when I was 18 to attend Arizona State University, where I completed my Bachelor's degree in Spanish with a focus in Spanish Literature. I completed much of my degree in southern Spain, where I studied abroad for a summer and later for a full year. While living in Spain I fell in love with gazpacho and also with teaching. Whenever I wasn't studying for exams or going on weekend adventures in Rome or Paris I was planning exciting and interactive English lessons for my students. I taught an English class at a local primary school and also taught daily private English lessons to my neighbors. When I returned to Arizona I spent another year at ASU. While finishing my degree I taught a daily after-school Kindergarten Spanish class at Villa Montessori School in Phoenix. I also taught private Spanish lessons to Senior citizens.
I feel so incredibly fortunate to be teaching English at Desert Hills High School! I love coming to school every day and sharing my passion with students. I hope to inspire my students to think critically and to be their best and most creative selves. When I'm not teaching, I'm often hiking in the desert, cooking (sometimes) fantastic meals, or gardening.