Daniela Feldhausen (Founder, Tutor Mentor and Coach), was a lawyer in private practice and later Associate General Counsel for Fannie Mae in Washington, DC for more than 20 years, until she took advantage of an early retirement package to change careers and focus on her true passion - teaching kids to read.

Inspired by her experience with one of her sons, whose self-confidence dropped dramatically in elementary school as he realized he couldn't read as well as his peers, Daniela obtained an MA in Special Education (mild-moderate disabilities) from the University of Arizona.  She has been trained to teach struggling children to read by a professor with a PhD in dyslexia, a reading specialist who trains teachers and school districts around the country on the science of reading, and the Institute for Multi-Sensory Education (Orton-Gillingham).  


I love watching children's faces light up as they realize they can do this! Just don't get me started on the Science of Reading vs. the 3-cueing system (aka "whole language" or "balanced literacy"), unless you've got a lot of time on your hands...



Crystal McCue (New Student Intake, Tutor Mentor and Coach), is a retired teacher in Tucson, AZ. She has taught children from preschool through 8th grade. She discovered a love and a talent for teaching reading, and eventually became a Reading Interventionist for K-6. She attended IEP meetings and worked closely with the teachers to help them meet the needs of their students. Now, she goes back to her former school as the administrator of the school-wide reading assessment, and she acts as a consultant for teachers who need further training in reading instruction. Crystal is an Orton Gillingham-trained instructor.


I often say that I was born to teach but my favorite part of being a regular classroom teacher was seeing kids flourish as their reading skills developed. Watching their confidence skyrocket and hearing from the families how excited they were that their kiddo was reading for pleasure was deeply rewarding. So when I was able to do that full-time at my school, my career came to life and I really felt like I’d found my calling! When I'm not working with kids, I enjoy creating art through fabric, brunch with friends, and cooking.

Laurie Warner (Operations and Coach), has been an educator and teacher coach in Arizona for 27 years. Recently retired from teaching, she started a business as an educational consultant and Special Education advocate to ensure that both students and educators receive the knowledge and training to ensure that ALL students are learning.

Laurie received her Bachelor’s degree in Speech and Hearing Science at the University of Arizona and after minoring in Special Education, realized that was her true passion.  After receiving her master’s degree in Special Education, Laurie worked for the next 14 years as a Special Education teacher. During her profession, she has had the opportunity to work with a variety of grade levels from K-6.  She is highly qualified to teach in the state of Arizona and holds certifications in both Special Education (K-12) and Elementary Education (K-8).  In addition, she is endorsed in Early Childhood (Birth-8), Language Arts(6-8) and Social Studies (6-8). 


As a parent of a son with special needs, my passion is to ensure that ALL students learn to read and to not give up until they do–just like I expected for my son.  My favorite part of teaching is being able to witness the light bulb go on after so many days, weeks and months of struggle.  There is nothing better than that smile when that light goes on!

Stephanie Friend (Marketing and Communications), lives in Tucson, Arizona and is a graduate of Arizona State University with a degree in Community Advocacy and Social Policy. She has dedicated more than 20 years of service to local and international children’s causes including education, housing, health and welfare. More recently she has volunteered in canvassing efforts for candidates for local and national offices and advocating for children’s causes. Stephanie promotes the Science of Reading through Kids Up Reading Coaches to individual families as well as schools and school districts, with a special focus on underserved communities.  She is OG-trained, but does not work directly with students.

When not working or volunteering, Stephanie loves playing with her new granddaughter, visiting her three grown children, traveling with her husband, swimming, hiking and enjoying all things Tucson.


Raising three kids through the public school systems and being a “class mom” exposed me to the wide variety of learning abilities and skills among young children. I am continually amazed and thrilled by the excitement children share when they master new skills.

Anna Kazanchev (Coach) is a graduate Speech-Language Pathology student at the University of Arizona. Hailing from the Evergreen State, Anna earned her Bachelor’s in Biology at the University of Washington in 2022. Initially drawn to biology due to her interest in human anatomy and physiology, her direction shifted when she learned more about speech therapy. She fell in love with the combination of the medical field and helping others regain their ability to connect with the world. It is the compassion, care, and sincerity in the field of speech-language pathology that makes her certain she wants to pursue her love of children and medicine as an SLP.

Anna’s personal journey provides her with a unique lens. With English as her second language, she went to speech therapy herself when she was a child. Anna has been working closely with children since 2019, including being a Certified Behavior Technician where she worked with children on the autism spectrum, and being an early education teacher where she helped children achieve milestones and learn reading, writing, math, and science.


My favorite part of teaching is witnessing the triumphant moments when a child achieves their goals. I feel genuine excitement with each breakthrough, seeing the impact it has on your young one and fueling my passion to help others. When I am not in school or tutoring, you can find me swimming, playing tennis, or painting. 

Caitlin Cordovana (Coach) is a graduate Speech-Language Pathology student at Arizona State University. She graduated from Barrett, the Honors College at ASU, in May 2023 with a bachelor's degree in Communication Disorders, a minor in Family and Human Development, and a speech-language pathologist assistant certificate. She interned at the ASU Speech and Hearing Clinic, where she worked with school-aged kids, focusing on language, literacy, fluency, pragmatics, articulation, and phonology. During her senior year of undergraduate studies, she completed a thesis in collaboration with the ASU Speech and Hearing Genetics research team. Caitlin has experience working with children throughout her life and in many different settings. Some of these include summer camps, Sunday school programs, and babysitting. 


My favorite part of teaching is seeing the progress of each student and knowing that I impacted their life! Creating a bond with them in order to implement new skills in their routine is such a complicated but fun process! When I am not in school or tutoring, you can find me hanging out with my friends, watching movies, hiking, or traveling! 

Carly Czyzyk (Coach) is getting her master's degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Arizona. She earned her B.A. in Communication Sciences & Disorders at the University of Central Florida. During her graduate coursework, Carly has worked with both speech and language clients within the pediatric UA Speech & Hearing Clinic and the UA Wings on Words Preschool. 

Carly has experience working with children in many different settings. Some of these include summer camps, after-school programs, public schools, daycares, preschools, and more. While working in the preschool setting, Carly worked with AmeriCorps to prepare at-risk preschoolers for kindergarten through intervention targeting language and literacy skill development.


My favorite part of teaching is seeing students achieve their goals and seeing all their hard work pay off when they learn something new! When I am not teaching, you can find me exploring nature, hiking, or reading.  

Colin Grogan (Coach) is a senior at the University of Arizona, getting his undergraduate degree in Elementary Education with an ESL endorsement. He has completed courses in bilingual children’s literature, linguistics, reading instruction, and exceptional student services.

Colin has wanted to be a teacher for most of his life. Through his coursework and classroom experience, he discovered a love of reading and language development in particular. He has been working with students of all ages for many years, including time spent as a paraprofessional, Spanish tutor, and substitute teacher in schools throughout Tucson. Currently, Colin works in a supporting role in K-5 classrooms, where he helps emergent bilingual students develop proficiency in English while honoring their native language.


My favorite part of teaching is watching students have those “lightbulb” moments, where they grasp something that was previously challenging. Getting to watch this growth in real time motivates me to be a better educator so ALL students can have these moments. When I am not teaching, you can typically find me outside gardening, camping, reading, or running!

Madison Graham (Coach) is a graduate speech-language pathology student at Arizona State University. She is originally from Atlanta, GA, but got her bachelor's degree in Speech and Hearing Science from Arizona State University online while she lived in Fairbanks, AK. During her senior year of undergrad, Madison was a teaching assistant for a phonetics class. She also worked in an elementary school while in Fairbanks as a teaching assistant in a kindergarten and first-grade classroom. 

Madison's love for working with kids has been a driving force in her journey to become a Speech-Language Pathologist. Getting to watch the joy it brings a child when they learn something new and gain confidence in themselves is the greatest reward. 

Rachel Ellsworth (Coach) is a graduate Speech-Language Pathology student at Arizona State University. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Communication Disorders and a minor in Linguistics in Spring 2023. Her research interests are neurodivergent-affirming language intervention for people with autism and gestalt language processing.


Rachel’s passion for her current field of study began with a love for language and how it works, leading her to study linguistics and Spanish for the first several years of her undergraduate program. However, as she began working in a kindergarten classroom teaching the foundational principles of language to the sweetest group of five-year-olds, she fell in love with the field of speech-language pathology. Rachel has since worked with young people of all ages in school and therapy clinics with an emphasis on supporting neurodivergent populations. Rachel is passionate about providing all children the opportunity to learn ways to communicate regardless of neurotype, background, or developmental level.


My favorite part about teaching is getting to know each child’s unique way of thinking and problem-solving together to reach their goals. Seeing a student’s progress is one of the most rewarding things in the world! When I am not teaching, you can find me making oatmilk lattes, playing the piano, visiting National Parks with my husband, or playing the new Zelda game."

Regan Bakke (Coach) is a senior at the University of Arizona finishing her undergraduate degree in Elementary Education with a minor in music. She has completed courses throughout her studies in linguistics, children’s literature, and classroom management. 

Regan’s passion for teaching began in her senior year of high school where she worked in both a 2nd grade and 4th grade class, assisting the teacher by creating and instructing science lessons for small groups of students. Now, as a senior in college, she has gained experience teaching children in grades K-5 through student teaching in the Tucson Unified School District  She has also completed reading and math workshops in her university classes, where she did phonological awareness and phonics screeners with students. 


My favorite part of teaching is getting to know each child I work with. Their interests, hobbies, and stories all matter and often motivate learning, so creating a bond with the students is a priority. When I am not teaching, you can find me outside, hiking, skiing, or playing tennis. I also enjoy singing and discovering new music.

Sasha Santiago (Coach), is a third-year linguistics PhD student at the University of Arizona. He graduated from the University of South Florida in 2020 with an MA in Applied Linguistics and Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL).

Sasha is a phonologist interested in language acquisition and pedagogy more broadly, whose current research investigates variation / alternation in orthographies of historical materials for language revitalization. Sasha has taught college undergraduates Spanish and has previously tutored students in Russian, Kanien'kehá:ka (Mohawk), Spanish, and Linguistics. He is also a substitute teacher for his local elementary school district.


My favorite part of teaching is observing students' process of and joy in discovery, especially when they make their own unique unexpected connections. When I'm not teaching, you can find me cooking, hiking, and studying new languages!

Kristina Mihajlovic (Coach) is a recent linguistics graduate from the University of Arizona. She graduated from Indiana University in 2017 with her BA in Linguistics and received her MA in Linguistics from the University of Arizona in 2021. Kristina's graduate research work focused on heritage speakers of South Slavic languages (those who used it at home), namely their phonetics and phonology.

Kristina has lots of experience teaching all ages, starting when she was in high school, tutoring her peers and younger classmates in math, science, Latin, and reading. In grad school, Kristina became a substitute teacher in the Tucson Unified School District, where she got to interact with students of all ages in K-12. She has been a full-time 7th grade math teacher and a full-time 4th grade teacher for TUSD, both completely online. Apart from her work with K-12 students, Kristina has also taught college-level statistics for four years. Kristina has also taught salsa dancing classes to adults for the U of A's Latin dance club.


My favorite part of teaching is seeing my students' confidence soar as they gain independence in whatever skill they're working at, whether that be reading, math, or dancing! When I'm not teaching, I'm trying out new things and learning myself: new kinds of dancing, cooking, hiking locations, languages on Duolingo, and making new friends, many of them dogs.