Three Eagle Rock Employees Departing after Half a Century of Service

Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center is saying goodbye to three of its staff members in the coming months — a group that represents more than 54 years of service to our progressive learning community.

All three of these employees have invested double-digit years at Eagle Rock, with two of them working behind the scenes and one educator. From supervisor to receptionist, their job titles all had one purpose top of mind: a successful education for high school students who are interested in taking control of their lives and learning. Each has plans for life after Eagle Rock, ranging from settling down closer to family, to reading books and seeing the country in a new RV.

Below, we honor these three veteran Eagle Rock community members, beginning with the longest-serving employee to the most “recent.” In each case, we asked them to describe their job responsibilities, their education and past professional experiences, their memories of the school, and future plans.

Terry Tierney, Facilities and Maintenance Assistant (arrived at Eagle Rock in 2001): For 19 years, Terry has addressed Eagle Rock’s maintenance and facilities’ needs. A graduate of Kean University in Union, NJ, Terry holds an undergraduate degree in public administration/criminal justice, along with a collateral degree in environmental studies. He also received an associate of arts degree in criminal justice from Union County College in Cranford, NJ.

Terry and his wife Kerri make their home in nearby Estes Valley. Terry said Eagle Rock’s students inspire him when they follow their hearts and dreams. He’s proudest of a legacy of fulfilling the servant principle by contributing a small part to the greater good. A favorite memory includes his Bear Gatherings, which enabled him to express his awe and appreciation for resident neighbors while advocating for their respect and protection. He learned that there’s the potential for a miracle in everyone, and we should all count our blessings,

His greatest hope for Eagle Rock is that it continues well into the future, offering opportunity and hope to underserved youth, adding it has made a difference and has been a privilege. Terry will be staying in Estes Park and plans on catching up on a pile of books and resting his body.

Cindy Elkins, Art Instructional Specialist (arrived at Eagle Rock in 2002): Cindy is an artist, a mom, and for 18 years, has been an instructional specialist at Eagle Rock, where she says she was passionate about working with others to find, nurture, and develop their skills as visual artists and effective communicators. She grew up in an artistic family in Virginia.

Cindy participated in many creative projects for Eagle Rock and the local community, including several service projects with the Town of Estes Park. Having painted with watercolors and oils and worked with ceramics since childhood, Cindy studied two- and three-dimensional art forms, including glass and quilting. As a part of the Eagle Rock School Restorative Action Support Team, Cindy has a passion for working with youth.

At home, Cindy enjoys hanging out with her dogs and making art, including the art of cooking. She graduated from Colorado State University in Fort Collins with a BFA in painting and worked in public and private schools for 13 years prior to joining the Eagle Rock team in 2002, where she has memories of 18 years as a community member.

Among those memories are constant blessings, inspirational realizations, and emotions. She said she’ll remember The Lodge Hearth at the heart of the school, and acknowledged that the art building will forever be her home away from home.

Cindy will relocate near Richmond, Va., to reinvent herself and be close to her parents. But she admitted that Estes Park is her home, and she’ll be here when she can, eventually returning as a retired snowbird making tons of art. An RV is in her future, so when you least expect it, Cindy might just be in your neighborhood hoping to check-in.

Susan D’Amico, Administrative Assistant and Receptionist (arrived at Eagle Rock in 2003): For the past 17 years, Susie has kept Eagle Rock’s schedules up to date, has assisted our Leadership Team with projects and collaborated with our nurse and the Health and Wellness department in obtaining medical care for students.

Susan works with our Public Allies Fellows to provide logistics for student health appointments off-campus, and she assists teacher licensure candidates to navigate the Colorado Department of Education for their teaching licenses.

She said she is most proud of her relationships with “people of unparalleled compassion, smarts, and skill” who let her in and helped her to grow. No favorite memory; just a thousand acts of compassion and love from staff, students, and visitors. Her greatest hope for Eagle Rock is to continue its work on becoming an anti-racist social justice school that will not only change staff and students but help change the world.

Susan is staying in nearby Allenspark, Colo., and has accepted a task force position (focused on access and diversity) with the Adult Congenital Heart Association (ACHA).