Hi. My name is Susan David. This is my second year of teaching special education at Hillis. I’m so glad to be working with students here! I love working with students and seeing their excitement as they work toward meeting their personal goals in math, writing and reading. Before joining the team at Hillis, I taught at Wallace Elementary and Monroe Elementary. I also taught conversational English in northern Japan for three years. It was a fantastic experience!
In my spare time I enjoy playing the piano and reading. My husband and I also love to try new restaurants and travel. It is our goal to visit all seven continents.
Colleges Attended: Northwestern College, University of Northern Iowa, Viterbo University
Highest Degree Earned: Master’s Degree
Endorsements: K-6 Elementary Classroom, K-8 Social Studies, Mildly Disabled, Learning Disabilities, Multicategorical Resource/Mild, Instructional Strategist 1: Mild/Moderate, English as a Second Language
Years of Experience: 20
Years at Hillis: 2
Original Hometown: Pella, Iowa
High School Attended: Pella Community High School
Biography: My name is Greg Laraia and I am a second year teacher at Hillis Elementary. I grew up in Ankeny, Iowa. I attended Des Moines Area Community College and graduated from Grand View University in Des Moines, Iowa. In my spare time I enjoy traveling, playing golf, and spending time with family. I enjoy each day that I get to work with my students and am proud of the hard work that they constantly show!
Colleges Attended: Des Moines Area Community College, Grand View University
Highest Degree Earned: Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education
Endorsement: K-8 Instructional Strategist I, Reading, Language Arts
Years of Experience: 2
Hometown: Ankeny, Iowa
High School Attended: Ankeny High School
My husband Bruce and I live in Des Moines with our three children, Tristen, Evelyn and Elsie. We enjoy playing outside, watching movies and we are active in our church.
Highest Degree Earned:BA Elementary Education
Years of Experience: 2 years teaching preschool, 15 years volunteer teaching Sunday School, 5 years Special Education Associate
Years at Hillis: 5 years
Original Hometown: Des Moines
High School Attended: Norwalk High School
Biography: My Name is Kaitlyn Norgaard and I teach special education. I love working at Hillis because of how welcoming and wonderful the students and staff are. In my free time I like to spend time with my husband and our puppy, Rudy. I also like to volunteer, read, bake, and create fun projects such as, painting and woodworking.
Colleges Attended:Undergrad: Central College
Graduate Program: Morningside College
Highest Degree Earned:Bachelors
Endorsements:K-8 Reading, K-6 Special Education Strat I, and working towards K-8 Strat II Intellectual Disabilities
Years of Experience: 3
Years at Hillis: 3
Original Hometown:Walford, Iowa
High School Attended: Cedar Rapids Prairie
I attended UNI majoring in Publics Relations/Communications
Travel and Tourism Degree
Property and Casualty Insurance License- Insurance Industry for 6 years.
Project Management for 8 years.
I have worked at Hillis 6 years.
My hometown was Chatsworth, IL.
I attended Sigourney High School.
My family at home includes my husband, Mark, and daughter Taylan.
I am an Iowa State Cyclone Fan. My family and I are avid hiker’s. We love to travel whenever we have the time.
Colleges Attended: UNI
Highest Degree Earned: Masters Degree
Years of Experience: 16
Years at Hillis: 4
Original Hometown: Vinton, Iowa
High School Attended: Vinton-Shellsburg High School