About Us

Several elementary school students sit in a clasroom writing at their desks

Meet Our Staff

Headshot of Clarence Burton Jr. in front of the Denver skyline

Clarence Burton Jr.

Chief Executive Officer

Headshot of Lela Johnston in front of the Denver skyline

Lela Johnston

Chief of Staff

Headshot of Felipe Vieyra in front of the Denver skyline

Felipe Vieyra

Director of Programs & Advocacy

Headshot of Cody Ostenson in front of the Denver skyline

Cody Ostenson

Director of External Affairs

Headshot of Aaron Lombardi in front of the Denver skyline

Aaron Lombardi

Program Manager

Cynthia Barrágan headshot with Denver skyline in the background

Cynthia Barrágan

Community Organizer

Headshot of Matthew Telles, Community Organizer

Matthew Telles

Community Organizer

Headshot of Keely McCaskie, Project Manager

Keely McCaskie

Project Manager

Headshot of office dog, Margaux, in front of the Denver skyline


Pawsitivity Ambassador

In a classroom, a teacher assists a student

Our Values

We know that each individual and community has unique strengths and the ability to effect change. We provide the tools and leadership to unlock that inherent capacity and empower the community to transform failed systems.

We believe that our work will never be successful without community at its core, therefore community is centered in every decision we make, every strategy we develop, and every space we co-create.

We treat every member of our community as whole people. We create inclusive environments for people to bring their “whole selves” to this work, not only because we care about their overall wellbeing, but because we know it is the only way to make this work sustainable in the long-term.

We believe that a public education system that meets the needs of every student in Denver is possible. We know that there are challenges ahead, but we will not lose hope in our pursuit of creating a school district that works for every student, family, educator, and community member.

We follow through on our commitments and take actionable steps that move us from where we are now to where we need to be to fulfill our mission.