Gates coaches act as resources to guide students in the development of their innovations or inventions. The coaches help, but they do not design or build. They DO:
  • Keep students on track with deadlines.
  • Ensure needed supplies and equipment are available.
  • Assist with budgeting.
  • Nurture and guide.
  • Conduct preliminary reviews of projects to ensure compliance with competition requirements.

List of 4 items.

  • Dan Barklund

    Grade 8 Science Teacher
    Science thinker with sole access to the chemicals locked away in his classroom. Technical expertise with a focus on coding. 
  • Michelle Benge

    Lower School Science Teacher
    Brings a logical approach to problems that keeps inventors moving in the right direction. Expertly guides them toward the next step.
  • Jorge Chavez

    Co-Director Gates Invention Program
    Innovation Specialist

    Brings tech skills and is the 3D printer expert. Can source materials online in a flash.
  • Andrea Crane

    Art Teacher
    Uses creativity to guide inventors in creating visually appealing presentations.

List of 4 items.

  • Steve Collins

    Grade 7 Science Teacher
    Global perspective on problem-solving having lived and worked overseas in Africa as a former Peace Corps volunteer. A strong analytical yet creative thinker.
  • Ben DeVoss

    Dean of Grades 5/6
    Grew up tinkering in his father's workshop and brings a counselor's mindset to nurture empathy-based ideas. 
  • Andy Dodge

    Co-Director Gates Invention Program
    Grade 5 Science Teacher
    Science Dept. Chair

    Science minded thinker who clearly sees the root of problems and challenges inventors to think of multiple solutions. Expertly leads inventors and other coaches by example.
  • Jake Dresden

    Dean of Grades 7/8
    Comes from a business background to evaluate marketability. Monitors use of the power tools to ensure digits stay intact.

List of 5 items.

  • Elizabeth Leddy

    Innovation Specialist
    Applies Graland’s innovation skills, including empathy, critical thinking, and grit/perseverance, to support student thinking. Asks questions and guides students to problem-solve and come to their own solutions. 
  • Mitch Masters

    Grade 6 History Teacher
    The tool guy who teaches inventors how to get the results they want. Loves to deconstruct things and put them back together. Co-leads the program and is a resource for other coaches.
  • Justin Miera

    Music Teacher
    Divergent thinker who opens doors to broader possibilities. Challenges inventors to imagine ideas that are outside the box.
  • Dana Rankin

    Purchasing Manager
    Teaches sewing machine skills and runs other power tools. Uses her purchasing know-how to ensure needed supplies are on hand for inventors.
  • Martin Twarogowski

    Director of Innovative Learning
    Gives tech minded help with all things digital, including the 3D rendering tools and app development.

Graland Country Day School

55 CLERMONT STREET    DENVER, CO 80220    303.399.0390   
Graland Country Day School is a private school in Denver, Colorado, serving students in preschool, kindergarten, elementary, and middle school. Founded in Denver in 1924, Graland incorporates a rich, experiential learning approach in a traditional classroom setting, emphasizing the development of globally and socially conscious leaders who excel academically.