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Meet Our Directors
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Phyllis Robinette

Executive Director

Phyllis is a Nationally Board Certified Teacher with over 35 years in education. She has taught preschool through 8th grade and worked in many roles including classroom teacher, teacher facilitator, and staff development coach. She was nominated for Colorado Teacher of the Year in 2009.  In 2018, she was awarded Colorado Education Association’s Golden Apple award for Professional Excellence along with the Excellence in Education Award from Alpha Delta Kappa Educational Sorority. She is thrilled to be a driving force in the creation of the Center, bringing quality professional learning by and for educators to the region.


Lizz Litzelman

Director— Instruction & Career Advancement

Lizz has been in education for 15 years, primarily as a secondary English Language Arts teacher. She has also worked as a building-wide instructional coach and professional development leader. She currently works at Manitou Springs High School as the Gifted and Talented Coordinator, along with running the Teacher Cadet program - a course designed for high school students who want to become teachers. She is passionate about growing the education profession and its teacher leaders.

Avalon Manly

Director– Early Career Educator Council

Avalon joined Teach For America after graduating from UCCS with degrees in English literature, anthropology, and communications. She taught middle school in New Orleans for three years before returning home to Colorado Springs, where she currently works as an English   teacher at Rampart High School. She works in the summers for Teach For America as a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusiveness trainer, facilitating the development of new teachers across the country.