About Us

RICHARD HERRERA Board Member

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  Richard Herrera is Owner/Operator of Herrera and Associates, Albuquerque, New Mexico Area Industry Financial Services Company with responsibility for retirement and estate planning. Richard works with the top financial companies in the U.S. to help New Mexico citizens conserve, protect, and increase their economic value. He has close ties with the South Valley Community as he was born and raised in the area. Richard Herrera has worked with the South Valley community and its residents for over 33 years. Richard Herrera has been married for 18 year

JESSICA LUEVANO Board Member

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Jessica Luevano shares a vision of resilience in the community for our youth and life in general. Jessica has a BA in Sociology an AA in Education and is currently working with Social Emotional Support throughout Albuquerque Public Schools.  She states, "Its clear we need to build our children's emotional well being by providing them the tools they need to adapt and cope with today's ever challenging world". 

STACEY DUCAT Board Member

A bilingual learning facilitator with 20 years of experience,   Stacey teaches children how to trust themselves through inquiry-based and experiential learning and navigate the skill base of the Common Core.  

She states: As a Golden Apple Teacher of Distinction I feel it’s important to impart the understanding that students are the essential designers of their own learning and that they can articulate their ideas to their peers and to me.  This articulation can be a suggestion for a novel or an entire science unit.  Student learning has many shapes, and I facilitate the process of students creating their unique individual shapes.

I am a 2002 graduate of Chapman University Credential Program and a 1992 graduate of CSU Chico with a BA in Spanish.  Currently I am a Project Lead the Way Lead Teacher and a member of the FCUSD Stem Leadership Team.  STEM education is a very effective tool to deliver the above-mentioned skills and help create the leaders of tomorrow.

Sara Werner Marketing/Technology

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Sara Werner Hoskins is a writer and Language Arts teacher in Albuquerque, NM, and is excited to join the R.I.S.E. team. She studied theater and film at Azusa Pacific University in Southern California, and has since worked in all areas of production, for both stage and screen. She recently received her Masters in Secondary Education from the University of New Mexico, achieving membership in the Phi Kappa Phi honor society. She is a lover of the arts, science, and close up magic. She is currently teaching sixth grade.


Eppie R. Lopez Founder/CEO

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 Having returned from teaching in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, Eppie Lopez is currently in his home state of New Mexico teaching with Albuquerque Public Schools. Lopez was awarded Teacher of the Year in Durango, Co., inducted into the Who is Who of American Teachers, and awarded the Ray Romer Teaching Fellowship from the University of Southern California. Lopez’ continuous dedication to public service has inspired the development of R.I.S.E Curriculum. R.I.S.E is an acronym for Resilience, Inspiration, Self-Efficacy, and Empowerment.