Andrea Michelle taught in New York City prior to moving to Florida. She has a BA in General Education from the State University at Oneonta and a Masters in Special Education from New York University. She is one of the founding Director of the TOFA Gratitude Camp in Lake Worth and the mastermind behind Virtue In A Pocket (V.I.P), a transformational character development program. Currently, she is an exceptional third grade teacher at the South Grade Elementary School, founder at Under 21 Art Program and the curriculum developer for Virtue In A Pocket.
Andrea Michelle Ible, a single mother of two, discovered her passion for education and empowering young people by the time she was ten years old. Her personal learning experience and later academic studies led her naturally to working with kids requiring special attention helping them wrestle with challenges ranging from Learning Disabilities to Autism. Andrea Michelle is passionate about drawing out the potential of each student. She is committed to improving their communication and self-motivating skills through character development. She believes all students can be successful by transforming the way they think about themselves and the world they live in. Her joy to maximize possibilities for every student is palpable.
Staci Smith is a Certified personal chef, a member of the United States Personal Chef’s Association, and is a Holistic Nutrition coach obtaining a bachelors degree from Clayton College of Natural Health. Over the past 4 years Staci has personally coached and cooked for dozens of people, supporting them in reaching their health and nutrition goals. She believes that through proper education and support, vibrant health can be achieved.
Stephen Backhus is an interdisciplinary artist and educator. He completed his undergraduate studies in Drawing and Sculpture at The Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design in 2002 and completed his Master’s degree in Sculpture/Expanded Formats at Indiana University in 2008. Stephen creates site specific installations and performances that incorporate his Drawings, Sculptures, and Collages. He has exhibited his work nationally and internationally utilizing both traditional and alternative venues, to include Art Basel. Stephen’s teaching practices mirrors his art practices utilizing a variety of mediums and creative vehicles to create site specific educational art programs. As the Outreach Program Manager for the Milagro Center, he develops unique and tailored programs that teach youth to discover their individual creativity which empowers them to reach their highest potential . Through the Milagro Center’s Outreach Program Stephen has served hundreds of youth involved through Palm Beach County at organizations such as the Haven, The Arc, The Quantum House, Virtue in a Pocket, Kids in Distress, and Head Start.