Claire Thérèse Heyne - Principal
Hello, Prince of Peace Family! My name is Claire Thérèse Heyne, your new principal! I am a consecrated virgin, a little bride of Christ serving in our wonderful Covington diocese. I have been in childcare and various forms of education for nearly 20 years and have taught all ages. It is a joy and honor to have been entrusted with leading this special school, and I will do so prayerfully, enthusiastically, and faithfully. I have a passion for Christ and for Catholic education that is truly Christ-centered. Open to all who are respecting the mission of Catholic Schools, Prince of Peace will be a school that forms SAINTS and radiates the beauty of Christ and our Catholic Faith. Having been deeply involved at an outstanding Catholic Montessori in Texas recently, I am also excited about the precious and unique Montessori aspect of Prince of Peace. My great Aunt Louise was personally trained by Dr. Maria Montessori herself, so Montessori is in my blood! In addition to serving as your principal, I will be teaching art and Italian, the latter in hopes of offering a Prince of Peace pilgrimage to Rome, Florence and Assisi. My degrees are in Theology, three of them from a pontifical school in Rome where I gave official tours as well. I also have a background in ballet, tap, and clogging, so I hope to offer an after school dance class as well. Thank you for your prayers and support and be assured of mine. I cannot wait to meet you all. And, I cannot wait to help young souls become scholars and saints, to be successful in this world and (even more) the next, and to fall more in love with Jesus, our Prince of Peace!
KAREN MIDDENDORF – ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT
Karen Middendorf is the Administrative Assistant at Prince of Peace School. She is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University and spent most of her career in the Early Childhood and Montessori environment. She has been a teacher, Director, District Manager, and Trainer for the state of Kentucky.
Karen is starting her 3rd year at Prince of Peace with over 39 years of experience with children and families. She has been married to her husband, Dave, for 39 years and has three grown children.
She’s also a grandmother of two, so far! Karen enjoys decorating, reading, traveling and my favorite pastime is visiting the beach. She loves working with all of the families at Prince of Peace School and watching the children develop a love of learning.
Mr. Quinton Jefferson - Junior High Teacher (7th & 8th grade)
Mr. Quinton Jefferson earned his Master’s in Education from Xavier University and has taught in the Catholic school systems since 2007. He enjoys incorporating real world examples into his classroom instruction.
Mr. Jefferson enjoys traveling, reading, and nature. He has visited a number of countries and learning how other people live. His collection of books includes memoirs, science fiction, and a variety of other texts. Mr. Jefferson appreciates all seasons but probably likes the springtime the best. “I like watching new life. Everything is so green, and the birds are busy and chirping all day.”
Mrs. Arlene Truitt - MII Teacher (9-12 yr olds) 4th, 5th & 6th
Mrs. Arlene Truitt comes to us with 27 years of teaching experience, especially ages 9-12! She is currently being trained in the Montessori method and is so enthusiastic about it (and about learning in general!) that she has researched more than her guides! She is married with two children and has a wonderful but “crazy” family dog named Sona. She loves Jesus in the Eucharist, her parish (St. Patrick’s in Taylor Mill), reading science fiction, and rabbits. She will love our new rabbit hutch and pet bunnies, coming soon to Prince of Peace!
Mrs. Dana Roesel - MI Teacher (6-9 yr olds) 1st, 2nd & 3rd grades
Mrs. Dana Roesel is a newly-married teacher, full of love for Christ and for forming souls through Catholic Montessori education! She has taught at Mt. Moriah, St. Henry, and Blessed Sacrament and is being trained in the Montessori method, a special method she is committed to honoring in our school. She loves children and has a gift for making her surroundings beautiful, in true Montessori-fashion. Any teacher who has worked with her raves about her intelligence, work ethic, compassion, creativity, and commitment. A little-known fact is that Dana also loves to collect Christmas decor! She will surely help make Prince of Peace extra CHRISTmas-y during the Christmas Season!
Melissa Royse - Pre-K Teacher (3-5 yr olds) Preschool-Kindergarten
Mrs. Melissa Royse received her Bachelor’s Degree in Montessori in 2002 from Xavier University and has been teaching 3-6 year olds ever since! She believes the Montessori Method is beneficial to all children. She is married and has two children. She has a strong sense of faith in God. Her home parish is St. Dominic in Cincinnati.
Mrs. Marilyn Birmingham - Assistant Pre-K Teacher (3-5 yr olds) Preschool-Kindergarten
Mrs. B is married and is the mother of 5 sons who are scattered all over the world! She has two precious granddaughters who are long awaited blessings!
She loves to travel—anywhere and anytime!! Some of the most interesting places she has visited are: South Korea, Tunisia, Paris, London, Cardiff, Kiev, Ireland, Boston, Hawaii, and Charleston. (WOW!)
Prince of Peace has become a second home for Mrs. B. She smiles and says, “The students and families are wonderful and I love being ‘school grandma’!” We are blessed to have Mrs. B. at Prince of Peace!
Miss Sarah Wells -Assistant MI Teacher (6-9 yr olds) 1st, 2nd & 3rd grades
Miss Sarah Wells hails from the Northern Kentucky area, having attended high school and Covington Latin. She studied world religions in college and just recently finished a year of service at a mission for the sick and dying in Oklahoma. She just returned from working at a Catholic youth summer camp there, and she is excited to be a member of the Prince of Peace community now! She loves to sing, play the guitar, read, and enjoys working with children. She is grateful to God for the opportunity to be the TA in Mrs. Roesel’s MI class!
Carolyn Bergs - Reading Teacher
Mrs. Carolyn Berg is from Bismarck, North Dakota. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of North Dakota. After moving to Northern KY, she stayed home with her 4 kids (Karen, Mike, Adrianne, Lee) and also ran a Bread Business. When Lee was a Senior, she went back to school and earned her MEd from NKU. She says it has been a blessing teaching in the Diocese of Covington for 12 years! Her most recent job has been as the Librarian at St. Agnes for 9 years. Teaching in a Catholic school, she believes, is the best as we are able to incorporate God’s love for us in ALL aspects of our lives during the school day! She is thrilled to be able to share her love for books (through her Reading teacher position) with our students at Prince of Peace! Her passion is finding “just the right book” for students!
Mrs. Rebecca Schaffer Wells - Choir & General Music Teacher
REBECCA SCHAFFER WELLS – CHOIR & GENERAL MUSIC TEACHER
Rebecca Cecilia Wells- has served as a music performer, minister, and educator for over 25 years. She enjoyed beginning to sing in choirs in grade school and has remained a chorister ever since. Inspired by her parents, both degreed organists and well-known church musicians, Rebecca returned to church music from a career in Jazz/Commercial and a Masters degree in clarinet performance in 2014. She is excited to bring these world experiences to our students through music, languages, and an open perspective inclusive of all people, under God, to our students. “What keeps me enthused is that moment when we teachers see ‘the lights go on’ – when a student comprehends a world-truth which was right in front of him or her and they finally grasp it!”
Rebecca is the Music Minister for St. Cecilia Church in Independence and serves as Music Teacher at the school there.
Mrs. Wells has worked with Dave Brubeck, Sadao Watanabe, Peter Cetera (of “Chicago”), and Frankie Valli; the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra (favorite memory is playing the sax solo on The Wizard of Oz when the tin-man was revived and wished, “If I only had a heart…”), the Blue Ash-Montgomery Symphony Orchestra (under the wonderful baton of Maestro Michael Chertock, also keyboardist for Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and former classmate at CCM). She has served as Music Minister with Bobby Fisher and ensemble onstage at Music Hall for “Answer the Call” Men’s Fellowship Conference and at major events at the National Pastoral Musicians’ national conventions. Rebecca’s first love in playing music is the choral, orchestral, and organ music of Johann SEBASTIAN Bach, but as a pro, she loves music of all styles. “It is MOST wonderful when people ask me to help them choose music which is most appropriate to the Readings, Antiphons, and direction of the Mass.”
Rebecca loves being available for her husband, Devon, and their twin daughters (recently graduated from undergrad and serving as Catholic Missionaries in the USA), and helping him to maintain their beautiful, simple home in Northern Kentucky. Rebecca includes her middle name for 2 reasons: she was given the middle name at birth by her parents for the patron saint of music, and, “Rebecca Wells” is a REALLY common name!
Karen Kleman - Library
Mrs. Kleman returns as our School Librarian again this year. She is always excited to share her love of books and literature with the students at Prince of Peace! She absolutely
loves watching them get excited about books and reading.
She attended Xavier University for both an undergraduate a Bachelor’s Degree in History and a Master’s Degree in Education. Go Muskies!
She has mostly been a stay at home mom to her four children: Josie, Georgia, Lucy and Fritz. Her husband, Chris and she enjoy hiking, cooking and just hanging out with their kids. Isn’t that just the best!! Her favorite hobby is Reading, of course!! She is looking forward to sharing her love of books with our students this year. What a spectacular gem she is!
Bobbi Theissen - Physical Education
Mrs. Bobbi Theissen is very excited to be a part of the Prince of Peace Family. She is married with 3 school-aged children and attends St Pius X Parish.
She attended St. Henry Grade School and High School playing volleyball, basketball and softball. She went on to NKU to play collegiate volleyball and complete her Bachelors in Physical Education and Minor in Health. She completed her Masters in Exercise Science at North Dakota State University where she was a Graduate Assistant Volleyball Coach and Teacher’s Assistant.
She taught at RA Jones Middle School for 8 years and coached volleyball at St Henry High School for 5 years before deciding to stay at home with her 3 children. She loves all types of physical activities—inside and outside: road biking, triathlons and hiking with her family. Living a healthy lifestyle is near and dear to her heart and she hopes to instill the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle to all of her students through various games and physical activities.
Denise Villalpando - Cafeteria
Denise received her bachelor in management degree from National-Lewis University and has been in management since 2005. She has just moved to us from Chicago where she worked within the Catholic Schools experiencing many different activities for the students, including the hot lunch program for 5 years.
Denise is married to her husband Nick, has an amazing daughter, Jordan and a sweet black lab, Austin. She is extremely excited to be a part of the Prince of Peace family, and bringing nutrition back into the school.
Donna Moreland - School Counselor
Donna has worked at Catholic Charities for the past 20 years and has provided school counseling services at Prince of Peace for the past 14 years and at St. Agnes for twenty-two years.
She meets with students for any type of mental health concern related to behavior, educational struggles, social skill needs, emotional issues, family and adjustment issues, etc.
Donna received her Master’s Degree in Social Work from UK and her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from NKU. She also has an Associate’s Degree in Executive Secretarial Studies from Southern Ohio College. She has worked in the Social Service field for 24 years and enjoys helping children increase their life satisfaction and learn to cope with difficult feelings.
Donna is a mother of two children: Kyla who is a college junior and Brady who is in the eleventh grade. She enjoys spending time with them biking, traveling, going to festivals & fairs, chasing adventures, and play with her dogs Sophie and Little Red.
Technology Resource Teacher & Webmaster
Cathy Cool provides technology assistance for Prince of Peace students, staff and families. She also maintains the POP webpage. Cathy is a retired teacher. During her 31 years in education, she has been a regular classroom teacher, a Technology Resource Teacher, a Math Specialist. She has a Master’s degree in Elementary Education, a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts & Art Education, as well as National Certification in Elementary Education.
Cathy feels blessed to have an Elementary and High School Catholic Education. She taught 5 years at St. Joseph Elementary in Cold Spring, KY when she first started teaching. She started with Prince of Peace in 2019 and believes strongly in having a Catholic Education.
In her free time, she plays in a country music band, tunes pianos, and enjoys painting and drawing. Also, she’s an amateur conchologist (collects and studies shells) Her collection contains sea shells from all over the world!
Please email Cathy Cool with corrections, questions and concerns about our webpage.