Faculty and Staff
Very Rev. James E. Lee, M.Div., M.S.
A lifetime Roman Catholic, Fr. Lee came to St. Michael's on July 1, 1997. He is the spiritual leader of St. Michael Parish (and ultimately responsible for everything at St. Michael's).
What does your faith mean to you? Everything! Without it, nothing makes sense. God is the very ground of our being, the source of all, the beginning and the end and all that is in between. I seek to have faith animate all that I do. It enables me to get through the difficult times and gives me hope to carry on. "It is the realization of things hoped for and evidence of things not seen." (Heb. 11:1) Faith in Jesus Christ and his Good News gives me eyes to see and ears to hear on a mystical plane so that I can experience the deeper reality of God's presence. It is joy beyond description and darkness so bright.
Mr. Connor Geraghty
B.A. English-Western Washington University
M.A. English-Western Washington University
M.A. Teaching-Seattle Pacific University
Principal Certification-Seattle University
I am blessed to lead our school community as we guide our students towards transformative growth in alignment with our mission. My passion for learning and my appreciation for the art of teaching has guided my life and led me to St. Michael Parish School. I previously taught high school English for nine years at Forest Ridge School of the Sacred Heart, where I conducted my administrative internship and served as International Baccalaureate Diploma Program coordinator. I believe in the power of collaboration so I look forward to working with our students, parents, faculty, staff and parish to ensure that we have a great year at St. Mike’s!
Ms. Lynn Lockard
BA in Communications from the Edward R Murrow School of Communications; Washington State University, 1991
Major: Broadcast Journalism, Minor: Psychology
I was born and grew up in Mooresville, Indiana and moved to Olympia in 1981. I attended Capital High School and WSU. I have worked various administrative/executive assistant/management positions including working as a Legislative Assistant for a Washington state senator. I have worked as the office Executive Assistant since the summer of 1996. I love spending my free time with my children, family, and friends. My husband Brian and I have two young children, Devon and Marlee. I also enjoy traveling, boating, camping, concerts, the Bahamas, the Seahawks and the Indianapolis 500!
Mrs. Barb Kirchmeier
I’ve been at St. Michael School since 2004. I graduated from Seattle University with a Bachelor of Education and worked in Early Childhood and Special Education before starting my family.
My husband Bob and I have three children - Kierstin, Allison, and David. We are outdoor enthusiasts and enjoy a wide range of activities that include cycling, hiking, winter snow sports, and exploring in and around Puget Sound and the Pacific Northwest.
Mrs. Deedee Scott
AA in Early Childhood Education
Pikes Peak Communuity College
I was born and raised in Colorado. I joined my husband in his Air Force career, and lived throughout the US and overseas raising our three children. Upon being stationed in Washington we planted our roots and I begin my teaching career in 2004 at Sacred Heart Preschool where I took over as the Director in 2007, adding Spanish into our program. In 2016, I was presented the opportunity to join the outstanding team here at St. Michael's Parish School. I have many interests: camping, painting, cooking and spending time with my family, vacationing, playing games and watching sporting events.
Early Childhood Education is my passion and a blessing to be a child's first experience into their education and I am thankful for this gift.
Mrs. Rosie Mathews
BA; Endorsements in Elementary Education and K-12 Mathematics
I graduated from St. Martin's College in 1992. I have taught 1st, 2nd, 6th, 7th, and 8th grades, all at St. Mikes, and am now very happy spending my days in Kindergarten! My husband Ron and I have 4 daughters. I enjoy reading, camping, golfing, playing and watching volleyball and spending time with my family and friends.
Ms Nancy Petruska
Certification in Elementary Education
Bachelor of Music Education
Endorsements in Elementary Education and Music (Vocal K-12)
I have been teaching for 19 years. I've had the pleasure of teaching 1st, 2nd, and 3rd graders. I am currently teaching Kindergarten where I get the chance to stretch my imagination. Every day is a new adventure! I enjoy reading, gardening, praying, music, and spending time with my family and friends.
Mrs. Sandra Quebedeaux
Endorsements in Elementary Education, Reading, and Religion Studies
I have been teaching at St. Michael School since 1999 when I graduated from St. Martin's College. I enjoy spending time with my friends and family going on little road trips. For 13 years I performed Irish Dancing and so when I have time I still enjoy performing for others. When the weather is nice I like to spend time outdoors biking or going on hikes. My plans for the future are to continue teaching at a Catholic school and promoting Catholic education. Ever since I was young I knew that I wanted to be a teacher. It has always been my dream to teach at a Catholic school and I have enjoyed my time at St. Michael School.
Mrs. Sandra Needham
BS - Washington State University
Masters in Teaching - St. Martin's University
Endorsements: Elementary Education, Reading, early Childhood Education
I came to St. Michael School in 1999 where my first position was as the Kindergarten Aide. During this time, I attended St. Martin’s University to earn my Masters in Teaching degree. I have been the third grade teacher at St. Michael since 2002. My employment prior to teaching third grade at St. Michael School included working for the state of Washington, operating an in-home childcare for many children from infant to elementary school-aged, and working as an assistant preschool teacher. My leisure time interests and activities vary with the seasons as well as with the activities of my husband and my two sons – St. Michael classes of 2000 and 2004. For relaxation I love to read (mainly mysteries and historical fiction); I also spend many hours rearranging plants in my gardens and talking with my two birds.
Mrs. Deborah Graver
Endorsements in Elementary Education and Physical Education K-12
I am originally from Fort Smith, Arkansas. My husband Chris and I moved to
Washington in 2006. I graduated from Saint Martin’s University in May 2009 and began teaching at St. Michael School in September of that year. I taught First Grade for four years then moved to Fourth Grade in September 2013. I also serve as the Athletic Director for the school and coach Middle School Girls Basketball.
My husband, Chris, and I have two beautiful children. We enjoy hiking, camping, and exploring various places throughout the Pacific Northwest. I also enjoy playing basketball, lifting weights, and watching college sports in my free time. I am proud to be a Catholic educator and love being a part of St. Michael Parish and School community.
Mrs. Marilyn Getchman
BA - Saint Martin's College
Endorsements: Reading and Elementary Education
I spent my early career in early childhood education and then as a special education instructional assistant. St. Michael Catholic School has been my home since 1994. I have taught second, third, sixth, seventh, and eighth grades. I am extremely excited about fifth grade and all the milestones it holds including Shakespeare, Ashland trip, Safety Patrol, Mass choir, and United States History.
Mr. Jered Boyd
6th Grade Homeroom; 5-8 Math
B.S. from Seattle University
M.Ed Western Washington University
I was born in Oregon City, OR and raised in Seaside, OR. This is also our favorite vacation spot each Summer. My bride Jenni is from Olympia, WA and we met at Seattle University. We have ten children: Emily, Luke, Andrew, Noah, Grace, Sophie, Lucy, Katherine, Nathan, and Dominic. I enjoy walking through my house and to my surprise finding a child in a seemingly random location. I also enjoy board and card games, basketball, Catholic apologetics, Theology of the Body, and sharing my dry sense of humor.
Mrs. Mary Lynn Fellows
Grade 7 HomeRoom, 6-8 History
BA - Loretto Heights College (now Regis University) in Denver, Colorado
Endorsements: Elementary Education and Special Education
My teaching experiences have taken me across the United States and Europe. I have primarily taught middle school aged students. Previously, I've taught in both Catholic and public schools. Before coming to St. Michael School, I was a Resource Teacher in Anchorage, Alaska. I am proud to be part of the St. Michael staff.
Mrs. Rachel Yabut
7th Grade Homeroom, 6-8 History, Campus Minister
BA - Saint Martin's University
Endorsements: English and Language Arts, Middle Level Humanities
I have been blessed to serve St. Michael Parish and School community since the summer of 2010. That same summer I married my incredible husband, Rex. We have been blessed to start our married life together at in this community. Just before accepting the call to serve here, I completed my student teaching experience in 6th grade Humanities class. I have been heavily involved in youth ministry as a youth and young adult. I love to read inspirational books and enjoy spending quality time with family and friends.
Mrs. Kathi Rafferty,
Grade 8 Homeroom, 6-8 Language Arts
B.A. in English from University of Portland
M.Ed. University of Portland
I have benefited from Catholic education since my elementary days at a Catholic grade school in Portland, OR, where I grew up. I attended St. Mary’s Academy in Portland and received both my undergraduate and graduate degrees from University of Portland where excellence in education, faith, and service are a priority. I have lived in Olympia most of my life and we raised our three sons here. Teaching at St. Michael has been both the most fun, and the most rewarding thing I have done, and continue to do. The students at our school are fabulous, and partnering with their parents in their academic and faith education continues to be a great honor.
Mr. Paul Kuss
6-8 Science and Math
B.S. Electronics Engineering, Oregon Tech
Certified Catechist - Archdiocese of Seattle
Master in Teaching, Evergreen State College
Endorsements: Mathematics and Physics
Electrical Engineer for the Boeing Company for 7 years
High School Math and Physics Teacher for the Ave Maria Academy for 2 years
6th Grade Homeroom and Science Teacher for K-8 at Holy Family
Science, math, and robotics for St. Michael Parish School for 6 years
I love to build things -- anything from woodworking projects and catapults to houses. I helped build our home in Tenino. I most recently put my skills to work building sets for the Tenino Young at Heart Theater. To keep in shape, I recently took up long distance running with my wife Trang. Together we have completed five marathons. I also love spending time with my three kids Franklin, Rebekah, and Katey, and helping in their interests and hobbies.
Mrs. Antoinette Perez
B.A. - Saint Martin's University
Endorsements: Elementary Education, Reading, and Special Education
I graduated from Saint Martin's College in 1999 and have been blessed to be a part of Saint Michael School since 2009. Prior to working here, I spent 15 years as a respite care provider caring for children with special needs and. My husband, Joseph, and I have two children, Brendan and Alexis. Most of my time is spent with my family at the beach or playing card games. I enjoy dabbling in photography, exploring new places in the Puget Sound region, and baking.
Mr. Darrel Hart
B.A. Education - C.W.U. 1980
M.Ed. Curriculum and Instruction - City University, 1995
Endorsements: Major in P.E.; Minors in Leisure Services, Sociology
Teaching in Catholic Schools since 1985
Football and Boys basketball coach
5th Grade Shakespeare Coordinator
Interests include sports, reading, movies, theater, family
Ms. Michele Berning
Technology, 6-8 Art
BA in Community Services
Elementary Education Certification
Endorsements: Elementary Education and Social Studies
My teaching career began with a junior high position at St. Charles Borromeo School in Tacoma. I moved to St. Michael School in 1989 to teach 3rd grade for many years before transitioning into the computer lab as the school's technology specialist. I spend my out-of-school hours with my husband and our shared interests in gardening, camping, cooking, and most recently, motorcycle riding! In addition, I find time for music, photography, reading, and textile crafts. I am so blessed to call the St. Michael community my home!
Mrs. Joan Joanis
B.A. major: history; minor: English
Endorsements: California Elementary Life Credential; Washington State Elementary Credential; History. Elementary Education
I began teaching in Buena Park, CA in 1971. I taught 4th, 5th, and departmentalized middle school for a total of seven years. I also substitute taught for a number of years while raising a family. In 1993 I moved to Washington state and taught 4th grade at St. Michael School from 1994 to 2013. In the fall of 2013 I transitioned from 4th grade full time to the library part time and I love it! My interests center around my family. With three grown daughters and 6 grandchildren, I find spending time with them to be my biggest joy. I like to garden and make quilts. Yearly I travel to Southern California to visit my brother and sisters and many dear friends.
Mrs. Erika Peterson
Mrs. Theresa McKenzieSullivan
Band; Extended Day Care Director
Theresa grew up Waterville, WA. After graduation she went on to pursue a music education degree from Central Washington University. She graduated in 2003 with a BA in Music with special emphasis on Percussion Pedagogy. In 2004 she and her husband went on a three year adventure to Annapolis, MD, where Theresa was hired as professor of music at Anne Arundel Community College. While there she founded/directed the percussion ensemble for the school, and also took up the post of section leader for the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra. In 2007 she moved back home to the Pacific Northwest. (She missed the mountains!)
Some of Theresa’s favorite life experiences have been spending 17 years as a circus performer in the Wenatchee Youth Circus, coaching/managing gymnastics at Black Hills Gymnastics, playing percussion in orchestra pits for over 30 different musicals on both sides the country, acting onstage with the Tenino Young-at-Heart Theatre, driving across country twice and sightseeing along the way, and seeing Rush live in Washington D.C. Her most favorite life experience to date is her son, Nathaniel, who currently attends St. Michael's School and loves that his mom is "the cool band teacher."
Mrs. Lynn Byrnes
Middle School Spanish
I'm married and have two grown daughters. After graduating from California Lutheran College, I taught elementary school for 10 years in Los Angeles, Ethiopia & Denver. When we moved to Olympia, I taught Spanish part time for 12 years while raising our daughters. I have traveled, lived and studied in Mexico, El Salvador, China and Scandinavia. I have an endorsement in World Languages from the State of Washington and taught high school Spanish in 2011 before joining St. Mike's school in 2012. I have great enthusiasm for teaching Spanish and I stay involved in the Latino community in Olympia. My interests are reading Spanish language literature, cycling, lake swimming, and gardening.
Ms. Denise M. Demers
Health Room Administrator
B.A. Biology, Boston University, Boston, MA
M.D. George Washington University, Washington D.C.
Pediatric Internship, Letterman Army Medical Center, San Franciso, CA
Pediatric Residency Tripler Army Medical Center, Honolulu, HI
Pediatric Infectious Disease Fellowship, Tripler Army Medical Center, Honolulu, HI
I enjoyed over 25 years in the U.S. Army caring for military children as a Pediatrician and training future doctors in a major military medical center. I am happy in a second career as part of the St Michael School Staff.
Ms. Brooke Sanchez
I am excited and grateful to be joining St. Mike's this year, after graduating from Saint Martin's University in May 2015. I grew up in Portland, OR and attended St. Therese grade school and Central Catholic High School there until moving to the Olympia area for SMU in 2011. I am currently working on my Master of Arts in Teaching in order to fulfill my life-long dream of becoming a teacher. In my free time, I enjoy baking, reading, and spending time with family and friends.