Faculty & Staff

Faculty & Staff

Faculty & Staff

Meet Our Staff

Our mission to help every student thrive academically and in life begins with a team of dedicated teachers and faculty members.

Administration

John Gulley, Principal

John Gulley

Principal

John Gulley was a principal for three years before joining St Francis Xavier as principal in 2016. He was born in Caribou, Maine, but grew up in Naples, Florida, where he graduated from St. John Neumann Catholic High School. He served in the United States Army prior to attending Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU). Mr. Gulley received a bachelor’s degree in history from FGCU, a Master’s in Education Administration from the University of Notre Dame, and an Educational Specialist degree in leadership from the American College of Education. Mr. Gulley has served in Catholic education for 15 years as a teacher, athletic coach, administrative dean, athletic director, and principal.

Jim Reynolds, Assistant Principal

Jim Reynolds

Assistant Principal

Jim Reynolds began working at St Francis Xavier in 1997, serving as a middle school science and math teacher for twelve years before moving into administration. He graduated from Penn State University with a degree in Parks and Recreation and Environmental Interpretation, then earned his Master’s degree in Catholic School Administration. Before his career at St. Francis, he worked at the Calusa Nature Center and Planetarium as a Naturalist. When he’s not at school, Mr. Reynolds enjoys spending time outdoors with his family. He’s especially fond of the beach and mountains and loves to travel. He also coached soccer at St. Francis for several years.

Monica Nelson, Assistant Principal for Curriculum

Monica Nelson

Asst. Principal for Curriculum

Monica Nelson was born and raised in Fort Myers and graduated from Bishop Verot High School. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Theater/Communications from Florida State University and her Master’s degree in Education Leadership from Florida Gulf Coast University. She has been teaching for 15 years and has taught grades k-8. She joined St Francis Xavier in 2017. In her spare time, she enjoys watching her kids play sports, going to the theater, and cheering on the NOLES in football.

Pre-K – Grade 2

JoAnna Morris, teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2015

JoAnna Morris

VPK/PK4

JoAnna Morris holds a Master’s degree in Education from Florida State University and has over 10 years of classroom teaching experience. In her spare time, she and her family enjoy the beach and visiting that loveable mouse in Orlando, Florida.

Liz Gerlach. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2019.

Liz Gerlach

VPK/PK4

Liz Gerlach is originally from Kansas but has called Southwest Florida her home for more than 20 years. She graduated from Oglethorpe University in Atlanta, Georgia, with a planned major in English and History. When it was time for a career change, she enrolled in education classes at Florida Gulf Coast University and has since completed 30+ credit hours in early childhood education. She has taught Pre-K/VPK for almost 10 years. In her spare time, she loves reading, spending time with her family, and snow skiing.

Camille Nieves. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 1992.

Camille Nieves

PK3

Camille Nieves is a Fort Myers native and has been dedicated to early childhood education since 1992. She began her career in the after-school program while still in high school. Her passion for working with children and being a part of the St. Francis family guided her to become the Director of Sister Elaine Mahoney Early Education Center. Throughout the years she maintained several accreditations and certifications, including an Early Education Directors Credential attained from Florida Southwest State College and Department of Children and Families.

Anne Boddison, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2010

Anne Boddison

Kindergarten

Anne is a St. Francis Xavier and Bishop Verot High School alum. She attended college at Florida Gulf Coast University where she received a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education. She has taught VPK, kindergarten, first grade, and third grade. She is excited to be back teaching at St. Francis after being home with her two children, Emily (SFX class of 2019) who attends Bishop Verot and John who is currently a middle schooler at St. Francis. In her spare time, Anne enjoys traveling and spending time outdoors with her husband and children.

Kimberly Ogburn, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2009

Kimberly Ogburn

Kindergarten

Kim Ogburn is originally from Fort Myers and a proud alum of both St. Francis Xavier and Bishop Verot High School. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Special Education and Master of Education in Early Childhood Education from the University of Florida. She taught kindergarten in Texas before coming home to Fort Myers to teach kindergarten at St. Francis. She loves going to the beach, traveling, reading, and cheering on the Gators.

Lisa Daley. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2019.

Lisa Daley

Kindergarten

Mrs. Daley grew up in Chicago. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Sociology from Illinois State University and her Master’s degree in Elementary Education from National Louis University. Shortly after getting married, she moved to Estero, Florida, with her husband and taught first grade in the Lee County School District for 16 years. She enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, and watching her girls play lacrosse.

Christine Macaluso, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2015

Christine Macaluso

Grade 1

Mrs. Macaluso was previously a first-grade assistant and is now a lead first-grade teacher. Originally from Chicago, Illinois, she has lived in Southwest Florida for 16 years. She received her degree from Ball State University in Indiana with an emphasis in Sociology and Psychology of Human Development. She is currently finishing her Master’s degree in Education. Mrs. Macaluso enjoys spending time with her family, going to the beach, and doing outdoor activities.

Alexis Thwaites, teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2023

Alexis Thwaites

Grade 1

Alexis Thwaites was born and raised in Delaware, before moving to Florida to attend Florida Gulf Coast University. While at FGCU, she was the Vice President of the Equestrian Team. She graduated with her bachelors degree in Early Childhood Education, and has taught Kindergarten and First grade in the Lee County School District. When she is not teaching you can either find her coaching gymnastics, working out, or spending time with family.

Andrea Orr. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2022.

Andrea Orr

Grade 2

Andrea Orr is extremely excited to be a part of such a wonderful Catholic community at St. Francis Xavier. She has a background in arts, fashion, and teaching. Andrea received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Savannah College of Art and Design. Before joining St. Francis Xavier, she worked for eight years in the Lee County School District. Andrea loves living the Catholic faith and sharing her joy with all!

Lacie Braun, teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2023

Lacie Braun

Grade 2

Lacie Braun is originally from Indiana but grew up in Fort Myers. She earned her Bachelors in Elementary Education degree and Masters in Reading at Florida Gulf Coast University. She served the Lee County community for 16 years as an instructional coach, reading coach, and K-5 classroom teacher before joining the Falcon family. She has a daughter who attends SFX and enjoys the busy gymnastics and soccer Mom life! Her husband is an educator and wrestling coach at Verot. They maximize their family time with beach trips, while also attending many high school, college, and professional sporting events! Mrs. Braun has a passion for country music and fitness too!

Intermediate (Grades 3-5)

Jenna Palmer. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2020!

Jenna Palmer

Grade 3

Jenna Palmer was born and raised in Fort Myers and is a product of Catholic education attending both St. Andrews and Bishop Verot High School. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Florida Southwestern University. Prior to St. Francis, Ms. Palmer taught in the Lee County School District for five years. During her free time, she likes to travel, go to the beach, and spend time with her family and friends.

Lindsay Engel. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2019!

Lindsay Engel

Grade 3

Mrs. Engel was born in Indiana, though she moved to California at an early age. She returned to Indiana for high school, but, after deciding she needed warmer weather again, moved to Fort Myers to attend Florida Gulf Coast University. There she earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. She has taught kindergarten, first, and second grades in the Lee County School District before joining St. Francis Xavier.

Leslie Gerfin. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2017.

Leslie Gerfin

Grade 4

Ms. Gerfin was born in Mobile, Alabama. She received her Bachelor’s degree from Penn State University and Master’s degree in Elementary Education from the University of Phoenix. Prior to joining St. Francis, she taught for 15 years in Virginia, Alabama, and Florida where she taught second, third, and fifth grades.

Lory Hendricks, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2018

Lory Hendricks

Grade 4

Lory Hendricks is originally from Point Pleasant, New Jersey. She moved to Florida in 2003 and has taught in Bonita Springs and Gateway and spent 11 years in the Lee County School District. She graduated from Monmouth University in West Long Beach, New Jersey, where she majored in Special Education. While in college, she studied abroad in London for a semester and traveled throughout Europe.

Allison Denison

Allison Denison

Grade 5

Miss Denison is originally from Fort Myers and is a proud alum of St. Elizabeth Seton Catholic School and St. John Neumann Catholic High School in Naples, Florida. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Education from Florida Gulf Coast University. Prior to joining first grade, she served as the third and fifth grade teacher’s assistant and the After Care Director at St. Francis. Allison loves cruising anywhere, going to amusement parks, reading, and cheering on the Pittsburgh Steelers (even when they aren’t winning).

Angela Nizza

Angela Nizza

Grade 5

Ms. Nizza grew up in Fort Myers and is an alum of St. Francis Xavier and Bishop Verot High School. Ms. Nizza graduated from the University of Central Florida with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and has previously taught 3rd and 4th grades. In her free time, she enjoys singing, spending time outdoors, and traveling.

Middle (Grades 6-8)

Jillian Ciulla. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2022.

Jillian Ciulla

Language Arts

Mrs. Ciulla spent the last 10 years teaching language arts for the Lee County School District at the middle school level. She graduated with her bachelor’s in middle grades language arts and reading endorsement from Edison State College. She is dedicated to her work and has always had a passion for teaching young learners. Born in New York but raised in Florida, Mrs. Ciulla enjoys going to the beach, boating, and doing anything outdoors.

Samantha Ramirez. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2014.

Samantha Ramirez

Language Arts

Born and raised in the Midwest, Mrs. Ramirez moved to Florida and earned her Bachelor’s degree from Florida Gulf Coast University. She went on to earn a Master’s degree in Pastoral Theology from Barry University in Miami. Mrs. Ramirez stays busy enjoying time with her family and their two dogs.

Sarah Pollard, teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2023

Sarah Pollard

Language Arts

Sarah Pollard grew up in the beautiful Northern Kentucky area, and relocated to sunny Florida to be closer to her bonus son who grew up in the Cape.  She earned her bachelor’s degree from Northern Kentucky University and her master’s degree from The University of Scranton.  She has spent her 20-year teaching career working with elementary students in both the public, private, and Catholic school setting, and is excited to be expanding her experience in the middle school world.  She enjoys spending her free time reading, walking, biking, and listening to music.  Her favorite times are spent with family, friends, and her sweet dog!

Stacey DelaCuesta. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2017.

Stacey DelaCuesta

Social Studies

Mrs. DelaCuesta previously taught upper-level elementary for 10 years, including one year of teaching middle school language arts, before joining St. Francis. She grew up near Indianapolis, Indiana, and her background includes 15 years of journalism/public relations, working for several newspapers, and working for the Indiana State Senate.

Quade Marinell. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2022.

Quade Marinell

Social Studies/Mathematics

Quade Marinell was born in Fort Wayne, Indiana, but grew up in Cape Coral. He, his wife, and their one-year-old son moved back to Cape Coral in June 2022 after spending 10 years in Southeast Tennessee. Prior to St. Francis, he taught two years of middle school math at an inner-city school in Chattanooga. He graduated from Lee University with an Undergraduate degree in Education in 2018 and then with a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction in 2020. When Quade is not teaching, he enjoys time with his family, playing golf, or playing pickleball.

Anna Novak. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2022.

Anna Novak

Religion

Mrs. Anna Novak started at St. Francis as a substitute teacher and returned to begin her teaching career as the middle school religion teacher. She graduated with her Bachelor’s degree in Family and Child Sciences from Florida State University. Prior to teaching, Mrs. Novak worked as a Child Life Specialist at Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida. In her free time, Mrs. Novak loves cooking, baking, and spending time outdoors with her husband and daughter.

Madeline Lukomski, teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2023

Madeline Lukomski

Religion and Specials

Madeline Lukomski was born outside of Chicago, IL and moved to Fort Myers at a young age. She is a proud alumni of Saint Francis Xavier Catholic School and Bishop Verot High School. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Business from Loyola University Chicago. Before Ms. Lukomski started teaching, she worked in Product Management and Marketing for 5 years. She joined St Francis Xavier in 2023. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with family and friends and traveling!

Sara Packer

Sara Packer

ASE Specialist

Sara Packer joined the St. Francis Xavier faculty in 2022 as a 5th grade teacher and Cross-Country Coach. She is originally from Memphis, Tennessee where she completed her Bachelor of Elementary Education at University of Memphis and her Master of Education at Union University. She taught 5th and 6th grade Language Arts and Social Studies for 5 years in Memphis and taught 6th and 7th grade Language Arts and Social Studies in Paducah, Kentucky. She moved to Fort Myers, Florida in 2022 and her two children attend St. Francis Xavier school. She loves spending time with her family and being outdoors.

Janel Massing, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2017

Janel Massing

Science

Mrs. Massing has lived in Fort Myers for over 20 years. She attended Florida State University and Florida Gulf Coast University where she received a Bachelor’s degree in Education and Health Information Management. She also completed a certification as a Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) and previously served as a fifth-grade teacher with the Lee County School District. When she’s not in her classroom, she enjoys spending time with her family, CrossFit, volleyball, and traveling to new places.

Mindy Pfleger, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2014

Mindy Pfleger

Math

Mrs. Pfleger is a product of Catholic Education attending St. Gerard and Lansing Catholic Central High School in Michigan. With an Economics degree from Michigan State University, Mrs. Pfleger has a background in mathematics, statistics, economic theory, history, and political science. She also has a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of North Florida and a Masters-level education in Curriculum and Instruction from Florida Gulf Coast University.

Pat Gill, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 1993

Pat Gill

Math

Mrs. Gill is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University where she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics. She has taught mathematics at St. Francis for the almost 20 years. Mrs. Gill enjoys hiking, cruising, visiting national parks, sporting events, crafts, and home projects.

Melissa Tortorella. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2023

Melissa Tortorella

Science/Specials

Mrs. Tortorella has been teaching middle school science for over 20 years in Illinois. She has a Bachelor’s degree from Bradley University in Education and a Master’s degree in Teaching and Leadership from the University of Illinois. While teaching, she spent over 10 years working as as a lab technician for the USDA National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research and as a teacher intern at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory on a project for the CMS detector at CERN. She recently moved to Fort Myers with her husband and began teaching at St. Francis Xavier in 2023 where their two children also attend. Mrs. Tortorella has always had a strong passion for science and a deep love of learning, but also enjoys cooking, reading, and spending time with her family.

Specials

Christina Stejskal, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2011

Christina Stejskal

Technology

Mrs. Stejskal graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University and started her career teaching middle school science. She is a native Floridian and was an Environmental Scientist prior to becoming a teacher. She has a deep care and compassion for her family and students.

Kelly Corr, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2017

Kelly Corr

Physical Education

Kelly Corr previously taught in the classroom for first, second, and third grades, and her passion is teaching and volleyball. Coach Corr is the head volleyball coach at Bishop Verot Catholic High School. She played collegiate volleyball and has been coaching and playing volleyball for 18 years.

Gregory Morgan. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2016.

Gregory Morgan

Physical Education

Greg “Coach” Morgan is a 5th generation Floridian who has taught PE for over 15 years. He is a Certified Athletic Trainer, dealing with sports injuries. His focus is to develop kids athletically, nutritionally, and spiritually to be the best versions of themselves.

Jackie Gelardi, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 1995

Jackie Gelardi

Guidance

Mrs. Gelardi has lived in Lee County since she was 12 years old and is a proud graduate of Bishop Verot High School. She attended Stetson University and Florida Southern College for her Undergraduate degree. She worked as a Counselor for Florida Southern College before starting the graduate program USF in Tampa where she earned a Master’s degree in Counselor Education. She is a licensed Mental Health Counselor with the State of Florida and a Nationally Board-Certified Counselor.

Marcia Jesse, Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2013

Marcia Jesse

Media Specialist

Born and raised in Novo Hamburgo, South America Brazil, Señora Jesse moved to the United States in 1986. She helps students check-out books and loves reading to the younger students. Her hobbies include cooking, reading, gardening, and biking. One of the most exciting things she has done in her life was become an American citizen.

Jeffrey Jodice. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2015.

Jeffrey Jodice

Music

Mr. Jodice is originally from Massachusetts and received his Music Education degree and K-12 certification from Berklee College in Boston. He has more than 30 years of professional musical experience as a music educator, performer, recording musician, and composer/arranger. He has been a drummer, bass, and piano player in many different types of ensembles including big bands, jazz ensembles, rock/blues bands, and orchestras.

Vanessa Lombardo. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2005.

Vanessa Lombardo

Art

Vanessa Lombardo grew up on Captiva and Sanibel Islands and is often found sharing her love of the islands with visitors through her art. Mrs. Lombardo is a University of South Florida graduate. With more than 24 years of teaching experience, she has taught at numerous grade levels. She is most passionate about teaching art to children and often incorporates nature and found objects into her class projects. Her love of boating, shelling, bird watching, and painting have kept her close to the beach.

Evelyn Velasquez. Teaching at St. Francis Xavier since 2001.

Evelyn Velasquez

Spanish

Señora Velasquez was born in Brooklyn, New York, before her family moved to Puerto Rico. There she attended the Universidad Interamerican de Fajardo. She continued her education at Boricua College in Brooklyn and taught for 13 years in the Diocese of Brooklyn. Her passion is teaching Spanish as well as introducing Hispanic culture and other Hispanic-speaking countries. She enjoys spending time with her family and teaching in a Catholic school.

Support

Natalie Rose, Director of Admissions

Natalie Rose

Director of Admissions

Janice Shebertes, Director of Finance

Janice Shebertes

Director of Finance

Brittney Ward, Nurse

Brittney Ward

Nurse

Jan Sorenson

Jan Sorenson

IT Specialist

Maureen Arnold, Receptionist

Maureen Arnold

Receptionist