OUR TEAM

As director of Kingfisher Academy I’ve been with the school since its very inception. I always knew that I wanted and needed to work at a small community-based school and Kingfisher is the embodiment of that desire. Kingfisher is a wonderful and challenging environment and we intend to keep it that way.

I have taught in preschools and elementary schools in the metro Atlanta area for over 31 years.  I directed a non-profit private school in West Georgia for ten years and was the curriculum coordinator for the YWCA for three years.  My degree is from Georgia State with my Masters in British Infant Schooling, which is very similar to the Reggio Emilia style of teaching. I have also taken numerous natural science courses and teach CDA courses at community colleges around the Metro Atlanta area.

I live in Clarkston (about 7 minutes away) and I have two adult children living and working in Washington, D.C. and Atlanta.  I serve on several county and city committees and task forces, I spearheaded the annual Clarkston Bike Rodeo event, I am a member of Sierra Club, Atlanta Science Tavern, Atlanta Birdwatchers Group, and am on The Clarkston 2040 committee.  I have 5 garden plots to maintain, am redoing my deck and porches at home, have two Cocker Spaniels, and one crazy cat.

I’m interested in all kinds of things, but recently have become extremely interested in urban planning and how it creates a certain quality of life for the citizens of an area. I also love crafting (art with a practical purpose) and it’s hard to resist stenciling all over the school. I recently finished a quilt made of small circles that turned into a fringe that goes all around my house–my neighbors are worried that I’m going to start a “yard art collection” next.

I’m also a bird watcher and have worked off and on with Fernbank and Audubon over the years. This year, I will be working toward my certification as a Tree-Keeper with Trees Atlanta and then will take Project Wild, Project Wet, and Project Learning Tree at Chattahoochee Nature Center (possibly this fall). Along with that, I’m aiming for the Master Gardener Program for Teachers put out by the UGA Extension Agency.

One of my most important hobbies is being a phenologist—that is I watch for seasonal events in nature and report them to Cornell—such as, when the dogwood put out their blossoms, or spotting the first Monarch butterfly of the spring. Through the work of phenologists and citizen scientists, we are collecting really important data regarding the changes in weather patterns that are being noted all over the world. When I’m tired or bored, I watch the last two seasons of Wayward Pines on Hulu or Gilmore Girls on Netflix. I am also addicted to reading complex mysteries, especially if they take place in Canada or Alaska.

Debbie Gathmann

School Director | Teacher

As director of Kingfisher Academy I’ve been with the school since its very inception. I always knew that I wanted and needed to work at a small community-based school and Kingfisher is the embodiment of that desire. Kingfisher is a wonderful and challenging environment and we intend to keep it that way.

I have taught in preschools and elementary schools in the metro Atlanta area for over 31 years.  I directed a non-profit private school in West Georgia for ten years and was the curriculum coordinator for the YWCA for three years.  My degree is from Georgia State with my Masters in British Infant Schooling, which is very similar to the Reggio Emilia style of teaching. I have also taken numerous natural science courses and teach CDA courses at community colleges around the Metro Atlanta area.

I live in Clarkston (about 7 minutes away) and I have two adult children living and working in Washington, D.C. and Atlanta.  I serve on several county and city committees and task forces, I spearheaded the annual Clarkston Bike Rodeo event, I am a member of Sierra Club, Atlanta Science Tavern, Atlanta Birdwatchers Group, and am on The Clarkston 2040 committee.  I have 5 garden plots to maintain, am redoing my deck and porches at home, have two Cocker Spaniels, and one crazy cat.

I’m interested in all kinds of things, but recently have become extremely interested in urban planning and how it creates a certain quality of life for the citizens of an area. I also love crafting (art with a practical purpose) and it’s hard to resist stenciling all over the school. I recently finished a quilt made of small circles that turned into a fringe that goes all around my house–my neighbors are worried that I’m going to start a “yard art collection” next.

I’m also a bird watcher and have worked off and on with Fernbank and Audubon over the years. This year, I will be working toward my certification as a Tree-Keeper with Trees Atlanta and then will take Project Wild, Project Wet, and Project Learning Tree at Chattahoochee Nature Center (possibly this fall). Along with that, I’m aiming for the Master Gardener Program for Teachers put out by the UGA Extension Agency.

One of my most important hobbies is being a phenologist—that is I watch for seasonal events in nature and report them to Cornell—such as, when the dogwood put out their blossoms, or spotting the first Monarch butterfly of the spring. Through the work of phenologists and citizen scientists, we are collecting really important data regarding the changes in weather patterns that are being noted all over the world. When I’m tired or bored, I watch the last two seasons of Wayward Pines on Hulu or Gilmore Girls on Netflix. I am also addicted to reading complex mysteries, especially if they take place in Canada or Alaska.

Debbie Gathmann

School Director | Teacher

Sherry Sherwood

Sherry Sherwood

Teacher: Upper Elementary / Middle School

Sherry Sherwood

Sherry Sherwood

Teacher: Upper Elementary / Middle School

Yasliz Rosario

Yasliz Rosario

Teacher: Upper Elementary / Middle School

Yasliz Rosario

Yasliz Rosario

Teacher: Upper Elementary / Middle School

Hello, I am Aimee, a Creative, Artist, and Teacher with a diverse background. Throughout my life I think I have been guided by creativity, service, and a burning desire for discovery. Kids are our most precious resource and it is my desire the help their brilliance and creativity shine. These kids will build the future of the world beyond what we can imagine. Living less than five miles from the school and being in the community, I am excited to be with Kingfisher Academy.

I have various hobbies and interests, art to science. I read mostly about history, science, mythology, technology, and the future of our society. I am involved in various creative activities with skills gained from my background such as, miniature painting, teaching robotics, various types of costuming, fabrication and prop making for film and fun, writing, and drawing. I love animals and nature, and my dog. Sassy, and I go on thrilling adventures together. I also love travel and different cultures.

I am looking forward to a fantastic new school year at Kingfisher.

Ashaa Aimee Love

Teacher: Middle Elementary

Hello, I am Aimee, a Creative, Artist, and Teacher with a diverse background. Throughout my life I think I have been guided by creativity, service, and a burning desire for discovery. Kids are our most precious resource and it is my desire the help their brilliance and creativity shine. These kids will build the future of the world beyond what we can imagine. Living less than five miles from the school and being in the community, I am excited to be with Kingfisher Academy.

I have various hobbies and interests, art to science. I read mostly about history, science, mythology, technology, and the future of our society. I am involved in various creative activities with skills gained from my background such as, miniature painting, teaching robotics, various types of costuming, fabrication and prop making for film and fun, writing, and drawing. I love animals and nature, and my dog. Sassy, and I go on thrilling adventures together. I also love travel and different cultures.

I am looking forward to a fantastic new school year at Kingfisher.

Ashaa Aimee Love

Teacher: Middle Elementary

I have a Bachelor of Science from the University of Texas Health-Science Center at Dallas and an M.S.W. degree from San Diego State University.  My professional life has been a rich and rewarding one.  I have taught Kindergarten, worked as a Social Worker in a Children’s Hospital in the I.C.U. and Trauma, developed and implemented a Child and Family Services Agency for a First Nations Tribe in Canada, worked with Special Needs Children and Young Adults as director of the Special Needs program in an agency serving children who were at risk or had suffered sexual abuse.  I also had a private practice in Southern California where I worked with children, adolescents and families.

My volunteer interests have been teaching children ages 3 to high school age in our congregation over the past 25 years, with a focus on asking their own questions and seeking their own answers.  I have also been a docent and animal handler at Zoo Atlanta and am very invested in endangered species and environmental concerns.

My husband and I live in Tucker with our two dogs, Lola & Paco.  We have 4 grown daughters.

I am thrilled to be joining Kingfisher Academy this year, to be affiliated with a school whose values and philosophy are so compatible with my own.  Every child is unique with their own personality, talents and strengths.

Jackie Spierman

Teacher: Lower Elementary

I have a Bachelor of Science from the University of Texas Health-Science Center at Dallas and an M.S.W. degree from San Diego State University.  My professional life has been a rich and rewarding one.  I have taught Kindergarten, worked as a Social Worker in a Children’s Hospital in the I.C.U. and Trauma, developed and implemented a Child and Family Services Agency for a First Nations Tribe in Canada, worked with Special Needs Children and Young Adults as director of the Special Needs program in an agency serving children who were at risk or had suffered sexual abuse.  I also had a private practice in Southern California where I worked with children, adolescents and families.

My volunteer interests have been teaching children ages 3 to high school age in our congregation over the past 25 years, with a focus on asking their own questions and seeking their own answers.  I have also been a docent and animal handler at Zoo Atlanta and am very invested in endangered species and environmental concerns.

My husband and I live in Tucker with our two dogs, Lola & Paco.  We have 4 grown daughters.

I am thrilled to be joining Kingfisher Academy this year, to be affiliated with a school whose values and philosophy are so compatible with my own.  Every child is unique with their own personality, talents and strengths.

Jackie Spierman

Teacher: Lower Elementary

Dina Blair

Dina Blair

Teacher: Lower Elementary

Dina Blair

Dina Blair

Teacher: Lower Elementary

My name is Jannette Fretwell and  I am originally from Havana, Cuba.  I came to the United States in 1966 and became a citizen in 1973.  I have lived in Georgia most of my life.

I attended Georgia State University and have a Masters in Community Counseling and Education.  I am married with two adult children who attend Duke University and the University of Georgia.  I love to garden, travel, and teach foreign languages.   I enjoy being creative, musical, and going to the movies and theatre.

Jannette Fretwell

Teacher: Spanish

My name is Jannette Fretwell and  I am originally from Havana, Cuba.  I came to the United States in 1966 and became a citizen in 1973.  I have lived in Georgia most of my life.

I attended Georgia State University and have a Masters in Community Counseling and Education.  I am married with two adult children who attend Duke University and the University of Georgia.  I love to garden, travel, and teach foreign languages.   I enjoy being creative, musical, and going to the movies and theatre.

Jannette Fretwell

Teacher: Spanish

I‘m Fatuma Ahmed, I was born in Mombasa, Kenya and have moved around quite a bit in my life. I’m the third born in a set of seven, so I’ve always had lots of people surrounding me and family is really important to me.

Since being very young, I’ve always worked with children (tutoring, teaching, babysitting, etc. Some would even say I have a ton of practice having grown up with six siblings. With the experience I’ve accumulated over the years, I’ve realized that 4-5 year olds are the most interesting to work with. It’s exciting to observe a child’s mind and world open right in front of your eyes. So, every day is an adventure to look forward to.

In my spare time, I experience adventures through books. When I have the time, I love to sit down and indulge in a good book. I would spend weeks reading if possible.  I also love anything art related, from painting and watching movies to photography or poetry.

I firmly believe that we should all try to maintain a positive outlook throughout our lives. Not for anyone else but ourselves.

Fatuma Ahmed

Teacher: Kindergarten

I‘m Fatuma Ahmed, I was born in Mombasa, Kenya and have moved around quite a bit in my life. I’m the third born in a set of seven, so I’ve always had lots of people surrounding me and family is really important to me.

Since being very young, I’ve always worked with children (tutoring, teaching, babysitting, etc. Some would even say I have a ton of practice having grown up with six siblings. With the experience I’ve accumulated over the years, I’ve realized that 4-5 year olds are the most interesting to work with. It’s exciting to observe a child’s mind and world open right in front of your eyes. So, every day is an adventure to look forward to.

In my spare time, I experience adventures through books. When I have the time, I love to sit down and indulge in a good book. I would spend weeks reading if possible.  I also love anything art related, from painting and watching movies to photography or poetry.

I firmly believe that we should all try to maintain a positive outlook throughout our lives. Not for anyone else but ourselves.

Fatuma Ahmed

Teacher: Kindergarten

Hi my name is Samiyah Bradley. I’ve lived in Tucker with my mom and two younger sisters for the past 13 years.

I am currently a freshman in college, majoring in history with an emphasis in Greek mythology.

This is my first year watching children in a school setting and boy am I excited! I look forward to learning and growing with your kids and I know we will have tons of fun.

Samiya Bradley

Teacher: After School

Hi my name is Samiyah Bradley. I’ve lived in Tucker with my mom and two younger sisters for the past 13 years.

I am currently a freshman in college, majoring in history with an emphasis in Greek mythology.

This is my first year watching children in a school setting and boy am I excited! I look forward to learning and growing with your kids and I know we will have tons of fun.

Samiya Bradley

Teacher: After School