I think the best way to introduce myself is to tell you my mission in life: I am going to Create Relationships, Build People and Change the World!
Where did that come from? How are you going to do that, you ask?
Well, I grew up on a potato farm in Rexburg, Idaho where I watched my family build a community, my grandma cooked two meals a day 5 days a week for 12 men. She loved to get to know people through food and conversation about what was important to them. My Dad took over the farm when I was 14 and has provided for our family and several others. I have learned how to work hard and have fun on a farm and through sport. I have been on athletic teams since age 12; volleyball, basketball, tennis and track. Through hard work and some great opportunities, I have played and coached high school as well as collegiate volleyball. I have team mates from all over the world, and two college degrees as a result of athletics.
After college, I moved to Kingman, Arizona with my husband and 1st son. My husband was a teacher and I coached volleyball. After a year of coaching, I was asked to teach Biology, Physical Science and P.E.. I have been in Arizona for the last 16 years, teaching, coaching, instructional coaching and being an administrator in the Kingman Unified School District. In those 16 years, I had another son and went through a divorce. I have coached 8 woman’s teams in volleyball and basketball. I taught Chemistry, Biology, AP Chemistry and College Chemistry to over 3000 students. In 2007, I left the classroom to be an instructional coach full time and pursue administration. In 2012, I was remarried and moved to Salt Lake City, UT. This year I happily returned to administration at Ogden Preparatory Academy. I am thrilled to be part of a community that strives to make every day a great day for kids. I am happy to be returning to my family in Utah and Idaho, and the addition of a wonderful husband and four step kids to my life. It is my mission to build your kids and families through education, create a strong community through relationships, and empower kids that will change our world through responsible citizenship.
Mr. Kennington is a dynamic figure, often seen scaling walls and crushing ice. He has been known to remodel train stations on his lunch breaks, making them more efficient in the area of heat retention. He writes award-winning operas and manages time efficiently.
Occasionally, he treads water for three days in a row. He can pilot bicycles up severe inclines with unflagging speed and cooks 30-minute brownies in 20 minutes.
Using only a hoe and a large glass of water, he once single-handedly defended a small village in the Amazon basin from a horde of ferocious army ants. He plays bluegrass cello. I was scouted by the Mets. He is the subject of numerous documentaries. When he’s bored, he builds large suspension bridges in his yard. He enjoys urban hang gliding. On Wednesdays, after school, he repairs electrical appliances free of charge.
He is a private citizen, yet he receives fan mail. He has been caller number nine and have won the weekend passes. Last summer he toured New Jersey with a traveling centrifugal force demonstration. He bats .400. His deft floral arrangements have earned him fame in international botany circles.
He can hurl tennis rackets at small moving objects with deadly accuracy. He once read Paradise lost, Moby Dick, and David Copperfield in one day and still had time to refurbish an entire dining room that evening. He knows the exact location of every food item in the supermarket. He has performed several covert operations for the CIA. He sleeps once a week; when he does sleep, he sleeps in a chair. While on vacation in Canada, he successfully negotiated with a group of terrorists who had seized a small bakery. The laws of physics do not apply to him.
He balances, he weaves, he dodges, he frolics, and his bills are all paid. On weekends, to let off steam, he participates in full-contact origami. Years ago he discovered the meaning of life, but forgot to write it down. He has made extraordinary four course meals using only a mouli and a toaster oven.
He breeds prize-winning clams. He has won bullfights in San Juan, cliff-diving competitions in Sri Lanka, and spelling bees at the Kremlin. He has played Hamlet, he has performed open-heart surgery, and has spoken with Elvis.
Mr. Kennington was born and raised here in good ‘ol Utah. He is the oldest of five kids and attended Northridge High School in Layton. After serving a two year service mission for the LDS church he attended and graduated Weber State University with a degree in Physical Education and Spanish. Mr. Kennington has been at OPA for four years. He enjoys teaching and loves coaching the incredible athletes that attend Ogden Prep. He loves playing basketball (he once played in a record-setting game that lasted 109 hours) and softball, watching good movies, and spending as much time as possible with his amazing family. His favorite color is blue, his favorite animal is the eagle, and he likes to demolish and rebuild sections of his house.
Director of Human Resources, Assessment, Student Data, etc.
I have lived in the Ogden area my entire life, and I now reside in West Haven with my husband, Darin, and four children. My children started attending OPA when the school opened and have now all moved on.
I received my Bachelor of Science in Applied Mathematics with a minor in Business from Weber State University. I attended graduate school in Computer Science at Utah State University. I have a level 2 teaching license from the State of Utah and a level 4 Math certification.
After college, I worked as an Operations Research Analyst at Hill Air Force Base, and I assisted my husband in managing our business. Prior to becoming a math teacher, I was involved with Ogden Preparatory Academy by serving on the Board of Directors as well as serving as President and co-founder of OPAPO. I also have enjoyed serving in the Ogden community.
When I have time, I love to travel, camp, sew, paint, cook and remodel things. I also enjoy riding ATVs and gardening. Mostly, I enjoy working at OPA.
A few years ago, my husband and I went zip lining in Park City and loved it! I have now zip-lined in Canada, Jamaica, Puerto Vallarta and Belize, among other places! Canada was my favorite, because I could flip upside down. ? I have now decided that cruising is my favorite vacation, and I prefer the beautiful scenery of the Caribbean.
Curriculum Director/Junior High Dean of Students
I was born in the great State of Michigan and lived there for the first 29 years of my life. During that time, I earned my BA in English Education and my MA in Curriculum and Instruction from Michigan State University – Go Green! I taught high school English in Michigan for 6 years before moving to Utah.
I always wanted to live in the mountains and finally made that dream a reality in 2010 when I moved to South Ogden and found a teaching job here at OPA. I am always amazed at the quality of students and parents in our learning community. When I’m not at OPA, I enjoy gardening, snowboarding, watching college football, and rescuing shelter cats.
Elementary Dean of Students
Hello. My name is Teryl Young. I was born in Colorado and have had the opportunity to live in 7 different states throughout my life, before settling back here in Utah. I obtained a B.S. from Weber State University in 1993. In 2006, when my son started school, I became a part of the OPA team. I began my career as a paraprofessional and discovered that teaching was “in my blood” (my grandparents and aunts and uncles were/are teachers). I went back to school to obtain my special education licensure from WSU and completed the program in December, 2009. I love working with children and watching them learn and grow. I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to have worked at OPA as a paraprofessional, a parent (of a student with a disability) and now a teacher.
I have two children who attend OPA. In our spare time we enjoy hiking, biking, skiing and camping.
Special Education Director
My name is Elizabeth Puckett. Born and raised in Idaho, I moved to Utah a couple of weeks prior to the start of the 2013 school year. I am married to a wonderful chef –Carl- who recently appeared on MasterChef. I have one stepson, Andrew, who recently graduated from high school. It has been a year of challenge and change! I graduated from Boise State University (where the Smurf Turf is!) with a Master’s degree in Special Education in 2012. Prior to teaching, I worked with adults and children with disabilities at home and in the community. I love teaching, and am an avid reader, writer, and playwright. For the past several years, I have won awards and honors in the Boise theater community for my writing and stage managing. I hope to begin producing a podcast of short radio plays this year in conjunction with a local theater group and my husband.