Faculty and Staff
Tami Adams became the Executive Director of CMS in August 2013. She also teaches Algebra I, Part I. Mrs. Adams holds a B.A. in Education with a focus on Secondary Mathematics from Bowling Green State University, and has taught junior high and high school mathematics in Ohio and Colorado.
Lara Breeze-Troyer teaches Pre-Algebra, Algebra 1 Part 2 and Physics. She received a B.A. in Mathematics and a B.A. in Physics with a certification in Secondary Education from Goshen College, Goshen, Indiana. She has previously taught high school and elementary school, tutored students of a variety of ages, and homeschooled her own children. Lara lives in Savoy with her husband and three children, including one CMS alumna.
Kirstin Buford provides Instructional Support at CMS. Born in Chicago, she earned her Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Eastern Illinois University. She has taught in Champaign County since 1995 and is the proud parent of 2 CMS alums.
Debbie Derr Weaver has been teaching 7th grade quilting and 8th grade sewing classes at CMS since 2008. Debbie received her BFA in Commercial Arts from Texas State University. She worked as a graphic artist for many years and has been a professional seamstress since 1993. She has taught numerous sewing seminars at University Primary and Yankee Ridge schools. Her quilting work has been recognized and awarded for its creativity and local ties to the community.
Eva Ginsburg is the knitting instructor. She holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of Houston. Prior to joining CMS, she taught creative writing in Houston public schools, as well as English and liberal arts classes at the University of Houston, Houston Community College, and Parkland College. She has been knitting since 2004, and is passionate about helping others understand and enjoy the craft. Two of her three children have attended CMS.
Beth Hogan teaches 6th and 7th grade English at CMS. Previously she taught at Centennial High School and Urbana High School. Ms. Hogan is certified in both English Language Arts and TESOL. She earned her undergraduate degree from The University of Illinois in Rhetoric and Women’s Studies, her TESOL certification from The University of Illinois, and her teacher certification and M.S. Ed from Illinois State University. She is a Great Books-trained teacher and a National Board Certified Teacher.
Robin Kearton, music teacher at CMS, holds a BM in viola performance, is certified to teach Alexander Technique, and has performed in professional orchestras and has taught violin/viola privately since the mid-1980s. Robin performs with the C-U Symphony, Sinfonia da Camera, and an undefinable band called "Robin & The Toad”. Robin gives lessons, directs ensembles, and serves as Executive Director at C4A, which she co-founded with her spouse, Tom Faux, in 2006. She enjoys gardening and cooking.
Sara Holleman is the CMS Office Manager and Physical Education teacher. She holds a degree in Child Development, and was the Director of Kids First Childcare in Champaign for 12 years. She lives in Champaign with her husband.
Katie Leininger teaches 6th and 7th grade Biology and 8th grade Science. She earned a B.S. in Biology from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana, and worked in a laboratory setting for six years in the Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology industries. Katie lives in Champaign with her husband and two children.
Debra Casey Miller is the Director of Communications & Outreach. She also teaches history and Humanities. She has a M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction, a B.S. in Social Sciences Education from Illinois State University, and a B.A. in English from Indiana University. Mrs. Miller taught English and Social Studies for 11 years at Lowell High School in Lowell, Indiana where, for 8 consecutive years, she was named “Most Influential Teacher” by students in the top 10% of the graduating class.
Anna Nesbitt teaches Computer Science. She earned a Ph.D. from Cornell University in Biochemistry and Structural Biology. Dr. Nesbitt was a lecturer at the University of Illinois for just over a decade where she taught a variety of courses on the topics of data science, climate change, sustainability, and earth systems modeling. She started at CMS in 2013, and enjoys teaching girls computer literacy and programming with a STEAM powered approach.
Traci Pines is the Fine Arts Educator at CMS. She holds a B.F.A. and a M.A. in Art Education with Special Visual Arts (K-12) teaching certification from the University of Illinois. Traci has been a professional artist and a community arts organizer for over 20 years. Her custom visual arts curricula focus on formal studio processes, as well as Upcycling, Found Object, and Assemblage art. Painting, sculpture, printmaking, wooden cutouts, power tools, and humor are central to her artwork.
Lola Sanjurjo-Espino has taught Spanish at CMS since 2005. Before coming to Champaign-Urbana, she taught for several years in public schools in Connecticut. She is originally from Spain where she earned a degree in Education from the University of Santiago de Compostela. Later she moved to the USA, where she earned a B.A. in Arts and Sciences from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She recently completed her M.A. degree in Spanish Literature and Linguistics at Illinois State University.
Alexandra Warwick teaches drama at CMS. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Maharishi International University and a Master’s of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Illinois. She also holds a K-12 endorsement for teaching ESL. A native of Champaign-Urbana, Alexandra performed as a company member of Champaign Urbana Ballet for six seasons and previously taught youth dance and theatre classes at Champaign Ballet Academy.
Katie Wennerdahl teaches 8th grade Seminar and the 6th/7th grade social-emotional learning courses. After graduating from the University of Illinois in 2020 with a B.A. in Elementary Education, she taught 5th-grade. She is currently working on her M.A. at the University of Illinois in Library and Information Science. She is a proud CMS alumna and enjoys reading YA literature, creating bullet journals, and baking.