I graduated from Simpson college in 2001 and later received my Master’s Degree in special education from Drake University. I was a special education teacher for 14 years. 9 of those were spent at RiverWoods elementary and 5 of them at Weeks Middle School. Special education is dear to my heart as I have had close family members move through K-12 with Des Moines Public Schools. This is my 3rd year as a special education consultant. Teaching at all levels is my passion. My hobbies include teaching fitness classes at several gyms in the Des Moines area.
I have a BA in English from Iowa State University and a MS in School Counseling from Drake University. I am married with two sons and a lethargic bassett hound. I love to travel and am an avid reader, especially of young adult dystopian novels and historical fiction.
I graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with my Bachelor of Science in Nursing. I am a native Iowan and can’t stay away from this state! I enjoy spending time with family, friends, my dog Winnie and my cat Trucker. I also enjoy being outside, reading and crafting.
Zach is in his third year of teaching at Brody Middle School. He is the BD/LD instructional strategist working with students with emotional and behavioral disorders in a self contained setting. Zach is from Monroe, IA where he graduated from PCM high school. He attended Iowa Central Community College for a year and a half earning general education credits, then transferred to Grand View University where he earned a BA in secondary education. Mr. Myers currently resides in Des Moines with his wife Stacey.
Mary Ann Nielsen
My name is Melissa, but I prefer to be called Missy. I grew up on the southside of Des Moines.
I have been in the district for 20 years. My career started with Metro Kids Care at Mitchell Elementary. From there, I became a Special Education Associate. I worked at Morris Elementary for 13 years and presently work at Brody Middle School. My husband and I have two sons: Ronnie and Duke. I have a Great Dane named Thor. When I’m not working, I love to Cricut, hangout with family/friends, and go kayaking.
“I have a B.S. in journalism and education from the University of Iowa, a M.Ed. from Buena Vista University and am certified as a Master Journalism Educator (MJE) through the Journalism Education Association at Kansas State University. I have worked as publications adviser in Des Moines Public Schools since 1994, first at Lincoln High School and most recently at Hoover, with two years as the Director of Research and Communications at the New Iowa Schools Development Corporation. This is my seventh year at Brody, continuing our successful implementation of the International Baccalaureate program as IB Coordinator.”