Staff Bios

AriasMichelle Arias, Elementary 2 Teacher

Michelle has always pursued being a teacher for students with special needs and through her education she knew she was meant to teach in an ESE setting. Michelle earned a Bachelor’s degree in Exceptional Student Education from University of North Florida and is a certified Florida educator in kindergarten through sixth grade with an ESOL and ESE endorsement. Prior to coming to Mainspring, Michelle worked with a company that provides ESE services to private schools in Duval County. Michelle has always wanted to be a teacher and after working with students with special needs, knew that she was meant to teach in an ESE setting.  Michelle plans to further her education by pursuing a master’s degree.


BowmanAlisha Bowman, Transition 2 Teacher

Alisha graduated in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary early childhood education from Western Kentucky University. She continued her passion for teaching and just graduated from University of West Florida with a master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction with a reading endorsement. Alisha’s teaching experience includes assistant toddler teacher while attending WKU and then preschool teacher at a Head Start in Shelbyville, Kentucky. While there, she had the opportunity to work with several families who had children with special needs. This experience led her to the realization that special education was the field in which she wanted to work. Alisha is excited about teaching at Mainspring.

BrunoLauren Busta, Secondary 2 Teacher

Lauren graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech Pathology. In December 2016, she graduated with a Master of Education in Special Education degree, with a concentration in Autism. This is Lauren’s second year with the Secondary 2 class. She says that her students teach her something new every day, while constantly put a smile on her face. Lauren is inspired by the staff and students at MSA, and is thrilled to be a part of the thriving community. In her free time, Lauren enjoys being outdoors with her husband and pup, Rusty!


Steve Capista, Behavior Interventionist Specialist


CrismonAmy Crismon, Transition 1 Teacher

Amy is a native of Mobile, Alabama. She moved to Jacksonville to pursue her love of working with children. As one of five siblings who grew up in a family of teachers and caregivers, Amy has always known she wanted to work with children. After she had the pleasure of becoming a nanny for a young boy with autism, she realized her passion and gift for working with children who have special needs. Prior to her move to Jacksonville, Amy earned a dual bachelor’s degree from the University of South Alabama in special education and elementary education for kindergarten through sixth grade. This two-year candidacy program focused specifically on working with children with special needs in various small group and one-on-one settings.

Maya Crosby, Resource Teacher

CrossElizabeth Cross, Elementary 3 Teacher

Elizabeth started working with children with special needs in high school through the Best Buddies program. Since then, she has worked as a teacher’s assistant and a caregiver for many children with special needs. Elizabeth graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Science. She has taught for six years and is certified in Florida for teaching children with autism and exceptional student education. In 2013, she was accepted into the Project SPD program at the University of Central Florida. She has a Master of Education degree in Exceptional Student Education with a graduate certificate in Severe Profound Disabilities. She is currently completing coursework to become a registered behavior technician and eventually a BCBA at Florida Institute of Technology

 EgidioRoseann Egidio, Art Teacher

Roseann attended Parsons School of Design in New York and graduated from Newark school of fine and industrial arts with a degree in advertising design. She worked as an art director in an advertising agency in New York City for many years before working on the child study team at the local high school. Over the past several decades, Roseann has taught art and design at all levels of education. After moving to Florida in 2005, Roseann has taught art at Mayport Elementary and community education for Duval County Public Schools. Roseann served as senior artist in residence at UF Health in the Arts in Medicine Program, doing art therapy with patients for four years. She has provided art education to students of all ages and exceptionalities. Roseann is a member of the Florida Watercolor Society as well as the Jacksonville Watercolor Society and is continuously creating and representing her work as an artist. She has won a number of awards for her watercolor paintings and is a past recipient of the distinguished Community Foundation of Northeast Florida Art Ventures grant.

Leslie Frith, Intermediate 1


FullerChris Fuller, PE Teacher

Chris received a Bachelor of Science degree in physical education specializing in teaching and a master in education degree specializing in physical education and leadership from Jacksonville University. He is a member of the Kappa Delta Phi Educator’s Academic Honor Society. While in college, Chris was a Division 1AA collegiate athlete for the Jacksonville University Dolphins playing football three years as defensive back and on special teams. He also works in the community volunteering for Florida’s First Coast YMCA’s, and coaches varsity athletics for Wolfson High School Chris was a part of the 2008 National Championship team at JU. Chris’s experience includes teaching adaptive physical education to the students at The North Florida School of Special Education.

Keri Gorman, Primary 1 Teacher


Keri graduated in 2015 from the University of North Florida with a Bachelor of Arts in Pre-K/Primary Education.  Keri’s teaching experience includes being an assistant teacher to toddler/preschool as well as Kindergarten in Duval County Schools teacher while attending UNF. While in the Duval County Schools system, she had the opportunity to work with several children with special needs. This experience led her to the realization that special education was the field in which she felt the most passion. Keri then completed her ESE Certification testing through the Florida Department of Education. Keri enjoys being part of Mainspring and is excited to enhance the education of each students she encounters.

HardyTom Hardy, Upper School and Intermediate 2 Teacher

Tom is originally from Massapequa, New York. He graduated from Southern Connecticut State University with a bachelor’s degree in history and was a four-year student athlete in swimming. He attended Touro College where he received a master’s degree and teacher certification in special education, while working as a teacher assistant with Developmental Disabilities Institute in Smithtown, New York. Tom teaches in the upper-school working on Common Core Curriculum used in the public schools along with social and vocational skills in  his class.


KlayDonny Klay, BSN, RN

Donny is the school nurse and  holds a bachelor’s in nursing science from the University of Cincinnati, and is currently working towards a graduate degree as a Nurse Practitioner. Donny’s experience includes inpatient and outpatient psychiatric nursing of all age levels, medication management, and high acute cardiac telemetry/progressive care. His experience in both hospital based care and community based care offers a balanced approach in serving Mainspring students, which allows him to deliver excellent daily care coupled with his ability to respond to emergencies.

MohlerRachael Mohler, Transition 3 Teacher

Rachael graduated from the University of North Florida with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology. She also received her Master’s Degree in Special Education with a Concentration in Autism at the University of North Florida. Upon completing her Master’s she completed her coursework to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst at the Florida Institute of Technology. She will be sitting for the BCBA exam in February of 2017.  Her previous work consisted of scoring behavioral assessments as an intern at a pediatric behavioral services clinic, where she moved on to serve as a behavior therapist. She also worked with children in the mental health field in community-based centers.

Javareal Nicholson, Secondary 1

Elizabeth Oxford, Primary 2 Teacher

Elizabeth graduated in 2015 with a Bachelor’s degree and a Certification in Athletic Training from Mercyhurst University. Her love for teaching came when she started working at a provider for behavioral services as a Clinical Assistant in the fall of 2015. Since passing her teaching certification test in 2017, she is pursuing higher educational training to further her teaching career. Elizabeth loves working at Mainspring Academy and working with the staff and students that attend the school.

John Pauls, Elementary 1 Teacher

John earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Organizational Leadership and an MBA from Bethel University, and is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Education with a concentration in Curriculum, Learning, and Instructional Technology from the University of West Florida. In addition to his doctoral pursuits, John is currently completing coursework in Applied Behavior Analysis at the Florida Institute of Technology.

John is a Florida certified educator with certifications in Prek-6th grade General Education and K-12 Exceptional Student Education, and he also holds an Autism Spectrum Disorders endorsement through the state of Florida. Prior to coming to Mainspring Academy, John worked for Duval County Public Schools as a classroom teacher for students on the Autism Spectrum, as well as the Supervisor for an Emotional and Behavioral Disabilities program at a local elementary school.

John is currently exploring the capabilities for distance learning and instructional technology as they pertain to the educational pursuits of students on the Autism spectrum for his dissertation, and is working towards finding an effective merger of instruction and technology to further facilitate learning for those students. John is extremely passionate about serving individuals with Autism and other related disabilities, and works tirelessly to push boundaries and raise the bar for all of his students. John is devoted to serving the whole child at Mainspring Academy, partnering with parents and caregivers to help every child meet their individual potential.

ReymanKira Reyman, School Coordinator

Growing up in the military, Kira has called Jacksonville her home for the past seven years. She earned her Bachelors of the Arts in International Relations at the University of North Florida and is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Elementary Education with a concentration in teaching English as a secondary language. Her responsibilities at Mainspring Academy include coordinating all school events and activities, maintaining student records, facilitating with the process of incoming students, and bookkeeping. She also assists the school nurse with various medical tasks as needed. Outside of Mainspring, Kira volunteers at the Women’s Center of Jacksonville and the Jacksonville Korean School as an ESL instructor.

SwillingRonnie Swilling, Resource Teacher

Ronnie holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Georgia Southern University.  In his junior year there, Ronnie volunteered as a coach for adaptive Physical Education.  It was through this experience that Ronnie realized his passion for working with students with special needs.  Ronnie has completed his ESE Certification testing through the Florida Department of Education.  At Mainspring Ronnie serves as a Resource Teacher and is the main point of intervention for behavior support and crisis calls.  He also serves as academic support and facilitates brigance testing to students on an individual basis.

Molly Wagner, Paraprofessional

Molly recently relocated to the Jacksonville area from Louisville, Kentucky. She graduated from the University of Louisville in 2010 with a Bachelor’s in Psychology. After graduating she began working for the Bluegrass Center for Autism as a paraprofessional. Through her experience at Bluegrass Center for Autism she found her passion for working with special needs children and has continued to work with these gifted individuals since. Molly is currently completing the Registered Behavior Technician certification through Florida Institute of Technology and hopes to continue to enhance the students lives here at Mainspring.