The Loft is thrilled to announce the creation of The Loft Literacy Foundation! The Loft Literacy Foundation, which is a 501c3, will support individualized Orton-Gillingham tutoring sessions, as well as teacher training. It is a dream come true for us to be able to help the families in our community.
Melinda has been teaching and tutoring students for over 25 years, she has a Bachelor Degree from Auburn University in Early Childhood Education and a Master of Reading Science from Mt. Saint Josephs. She is a certified Structured Literacy Dyslexia Interventionist through the International Dylexia Association (IDA). While tutoring at Greengate, she has worked with a range of students from elementary to middle school. With a multi-sensory approach she reaches all learning styles and gives her students the visual and hands on instruction they need. Melinda helps her students gain confidence by teaching them to find and use their strengths as they become more independent learners. Growing up in the Huntsville area and raising three children with her husband Rick, she loves spending her spare time helping in her church and the community.
Christie and her family settled in Huntsville when her husband retired from the Army. As a military wife, she raised her two children while teaching in a variety of public and private settings. Christie has a B.S. in History with an emphasis in Secondary Education from SUNY Brockport, and an M.S. in Elementary Education with a Reading Specialist Endorsement from Kansas State University. She is certified through the Orton-Gillingham Academy (OGA) at both the Associate and Certified Level. In her 10 years teaching and tutoring dyslexic students at Greengate School, she discovered her passion for working one on one with students who have reading and writing difficulties. At The Loft, Christie individualizes instruction to meet the needs of each student. Her greatest joy is watching her students gain confidence and persevere through their learning challenges.
Elizabeth has taught and tutored students for over 15 years in public and private schools. She has also supported students as a Family Readiness Group Leader while serving families of deployed soldiers. Elizabeth earned a B.S. in Marketing from the University of Alabama and an M.A. in Elementary Education from the University of North Alabama. Elizabeth holds an Associate Level Certification through the OGA. During her six years' experience at Greengate School, Elizabeth taught and tutored dyslexic students in reading, writing and math. Elizabeth enjoys tailoring instruction to each child's individual needs using a structured, multisensory approach. She is committed to providing a positive environment where student growth is gained in both academic skills and confidence.
Lisa graduated from Auburn University with a bachelor's degree in Rehabilitation Services in 1998. After graduation, she worked as a case manager with the Madison County 310 Board, working with adults with special needs and their families. In 2000 Lisa obtained a master's degree in Learning Disabilities from Alabama A&M. After graduation, she worked as a special education teacher in Madison City Schools for 9 years. In 2013 Lisa began work at Greengate School for dyslexic students. While working at Greengate, Lisa was trained in the Orton-Gillingham Approach, as well as multi-sensory math. Lisa joined The Loft team in 2020. Lisa is married to her husband Jeremy Banks, and they have three wonderful children. Macie, Colton and Tate. Lisa developed a passion for working with struggling students, because she too struggled with reading, writing and math growing up.
Susan graduated from the University of Alabama with a bachelor's degree in interior design in 1993. She has been trained at the Associate Level through the OGA. She completed training in 2018 and has been tutoring at The Loft since 2019. Susan and her husband Hunter have two daughters, Tinsley and Julia. Susan developed a passion for working with struggling readers after her daughter Julia was diagnosed with dyslexia in elementary school. She has a unique understanding of learning differences from the parent perspective, as well as a strong desire to encourage young readers with the multisensory approach.
Betsy is a mom of five who has called Huntsville home for the past ten years. Her own children have taught her that educational needs are rarely ever one size fits all. Betsy graduated from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville with a major in English Literature and a minor in Elementary Education. She has spent the last twenty years employed as a private preschool teacher, online ESL teacher, and homeschooling her own children through different seasons. Betsy was trained in the Orton-Gillingham approach at the Associate level in 2017 and again as a refresher in 2021. She worked both as a private tutor, as well as on the Greengate summer school staff before joining the team at The Loft as they launched in 2020. As a lover of literature, her greatest joy is watching the lightbulb come on for a struggling reader or sitting across the desk as a young teen finishes their first novel. Betsy seeks to consciously grow her understanding of the dyslexic student by attending conferences, workshops, trainings and of course reading!
Abi graduated from the University of Alabama in 1992 with a B.S. in Special Education. She then went on to further her education with an M.Ed. from Vanderbilt in Special Education. She has taught in a resource style classroom setting for 4 years and has been an Orton-Gillingham Associate level trained tutor for 6 years. She and her husband Wesley have been married for 30 years and have 3 children, Mary Mac, Annie and Gray. She enjoys the challenge of "solving the puzzle" for each student and understands that each child has different strengths and weaknesses.
Tracy is a Huntsville native and a full time Madison County teacher. She has been teaching at the Elementary level for 16 years. She graduated from Auburn University with a B.S. in Elementary Education. Tracy is Orton-Gillingham trained at the Associate Level through the OGA and LETRS Certified. Her son was diagnosed with dyslexia in 1st grade and began tutoring at The Loft. Tracy was so impressed with what The Loft was providing for the community, that she joined the team so she could reach even more kids. Tracy enjoys creating an environment where everyone feels safe and successful.
Stephanie started her career in Education 25 years ago after graduating with a bachelor's degree in English and History from Athens State University. She went on to earn her Master's degrees in both Gifted Education from the University of South Alabama and Educational Leadership from The University of Alabama. Over the years, she has spent time in the middle school classroom and as an instructional leader. She is currently completing her associate-level Orton-Gillingham training and has rediscovered her love for one-on-one, individualized instruction. Stephanie strives to help students regain their confidence and master the skills they need to be strong and competent learners. Stephanie and her husband Stewart (who is also in Education) stay busy with their two girls, family, and church activities.