Our Team

Together We Can Do More

We wouldn’t be able to do the work we do without our creative and talented team. They make our mission possible.

Cathy Jones, Ph.D.

Executive Director

Cathy joined APIE in 2012 and is an experienced teacher, campus administrator & assistant superintendent. With a Ph.D. in educational administration through UT’s Cooperative Superintendency Program, she is a true Longhorn.   Cathy has 2 children and enjoys running & cycling. Being a Math Classroom Coach is her weekly highlight.

Barbette Cooper

Finance/HR Director

Barbette joined the APIE finance team in 2011. She has an MBA from UT Austin and many years of experience in the management of financial and administrative function for nonprofits. She loves watching Longhorn football, ballet, and Broadway shows.

Wendi Gordon

Development Director

Wendi joined APIE in 2016 with extensive nonprofit development experience in education and an MBA from George Washington University. Originally from Washington, DC, she enjoys the outdoors, food, travel, and her miniature dachshunds.

Frances Barrera

Salesforce Specialist

Frances joined APIE in 2014 as a College Readiness Advocate. She is a City Year San Antonio and AmeriCorps NCCC alum. She enjoys traveling, watching reality tv, gardening, and learning about all things Salesforce.

Sandy Bootz

Math Classroom Coaching Manager

For over 10 years, Sandy has worked in multiple APIE programs. She believes that volunteers are extraordinary people and feels privileged to work with those committed to supporting our schools.

Tiffani Borcherding

P-TECH Program Specialist

Tiffani joined APIE in 2021 with experience as a secondary teacher, case manager, and department chair.  After earning a M.Ed in Curriculum & Instruction from UT Austin, she focused her work in education on equitable access to the curriculum for at-risk student populations. She enjoys creating new playlists, exploring museums, watching history documentaries, and spending time with her son.

Joe Jacobsohn

Development Coordinator

Joe joined APIE in July 2018 as an AmeriCorps VISTA. He enjoys seeing live music, running, and playing the guitar. 

Chris Lagarde

Saleforce Specialist

Chris joined APIE in 2017 and is responsible for the configuration, support, and improvement of our Salesforce database. He enjoys spending time reading, cooking, hiking, and hanging out with his kids.

Aidan Larson

College Readiness Supervisor

Aidan joined APIE this year and along with a background in education and college essay coaching, brings enthusiasm for student outcomes and advocate experiences to the GEAR UP and College Readiness programs. She holds a BA in English from UT Austin and Texas teaching certifications in EC-6 Generalist, 6-8 ELAR, and 7-12 English. Originally from Texas, she’s lived abroad in Ireland and France and has spent much of her adult life in Austin. A parent of three growing children and partner of 24 years, Aidan loves writing, reading, and learning in equal measure, and finds joy in supporting others on their path to their best selves.​

Amy Moore

College Readiness Manager

Amy joined APIE back in 2009. She loves working with middle school students, teachers and volunteers. She enjoys running, reading, traveling, and spending time with her kids in her free time.

Wen Nguyen

School Connections Manager

Wen joined APIE in 2022 after working several years in prevention programs to serve AISD middle and high school students. She believes all students deserve access to quality wrap-around supports so that they may thrive. During her free time, Wen likes to hang out with her nieces and nephews, watch comedy, and adding vegan fish sauce to her food.

Ashley Yeaman

Communications & Volunteer Recruitment coordinator

Ashley joined APIE in 2019 after completing her master’s degree in journalism at Baylor University. She is an AmeriCorps VISTA alum and worked previously at the Texas Hunger Initiative. Ashley enjoys traveling, searching for unique vintage finds, and spending time with her family, friends, and two cats.

Val Williams

P-TECH Research & Program Manager

Val joined APIE in 2022 with extensive experience as an Educator and Program Director in ELA, Early Childhood, and Arts Education spaces. Val is passionate about connecting the needs of students and educators with effective and responsive policy and implementation frameworks, and is excited to be completing her M.Ed. in Policy & Leadership (American University) in early 2023. Val enjoys history, music, spirited discussions around socio-political issues, road trips, and-most of all-spending time with her adorable little one: Ruthie!

Join Our Team

Want to be part of an energetic team committed to changing lives through education? If you’re passionate about supporting students and helping them succeed, we want to hear from you. Apply with us today!