OUR TEAM

Maria 3.jpg

Maria Costadini

Head of School

Originally from California, Maria has been a lifelong entrepreneur and leader.  From owning and operating restaurants to pastoring Churches, Maria has decades of experience leading teams and organizations.  Maria discovered her passion for Montessori Education ten years ago and is undergoing her Montessori Administrators Diploma from Montessori Live.  She earned her B.A. and Masters in Theology from Life Christian University.  Maria loves traveling with her husband and visiting her daughters and granddaughter.  She is a strong and dynamic leader and is focused on fostering an incredible team culture for the staff and an inspiring and inviting environment for children and families.

Stephanie 1.jpg

Stephanie Alva

Lower Elementary Guide

Originally from Peru, Stephanie has been immersed in Montessori education since 2011.  She completed her Montessori certification in 2017 and graduated from California State University, Long Beach in 2020 with a B.A in Sociology.  She started out as an educational assistant for the Montessori School of Manhattan Beach followed by Primary Lead Teacher for eight rewarding years.  She has extensive experience in teaching young minds as early as 3 years of age but her true passion is working with the lower elementary group.  To instill the love of learning in all her students and help them realize their own unique potential is what she strives for as an educator.  

Chris.jpg

Chris Deery

Upper Elementary Guide

Originally from Australia, Chris grew up playing cricket and Australian football.  Growing up on a Merino sheep farm, Chris got to experience the pleasure of completing work he found deeply meaningful.  Chris studied Philosophy and Writing at the University of Queensland.  He received his Montessori diploma from Association Montessori Internationale and has been in the classroom for 10 years.  When Chris is not in the classroom, he is working on his Tacoma truck, powerlifting, hiking, reading, or enjoying nature.

Greg.jpg

Greg Biorkman

American History Teacher

Originally from Southern California, Greg discovered his passion for History from his Grandfather Phil Wright, who served in the US Navy during WWII.  Phil brought history to life for Greg through gripping stories.  Greg’s curiosity and love of history has been alive ever since.  In addition to leading the Elementary History program, Greg leads boot camp class for both Kindergarten and Elementary students.  He also oversees property maintenance and security.  Greg and his wife Jennifer founded Harpeth Montessori in 2021.

Eri 1.jpg

Eri Nakanishi

Toddler Lead Guide

Originally from Japan, Eri Nakanishi has over six years’ experience as a Montessori Guide.  She earned her B.A. in Psychology from Musashino University (Japan) and her Montessori Diploma from Association Montessori Internationale.  Eri became interested in Montessori when her son was born and has been a passionate advocate of the method ever since.  When Eri is not in the classroom or leading parent seminars on Montessori she is out on the open road.  Eri loves to travel and has visited cities all over the world.

Karolina 2.jpg

Karolina Dornhofer

Toddler Assistant Guide

Karolina is originally from Costa Rica, and recently relocated to Franklin from Georgia.  Since graduating high school she has worked in childcare and found her passion for helping children grow and develop.  When she's not in the classroom, Karolina is spending time with her 3 year old son and operates a small chocolate business called Lina's Chocolate Experiences.

Emily 1.jpg

Emily Allison

Primary Lead Guide

Originally from Northern Virginia, Emily has found her life’s calling in Montessori education.  She earned her B.A. in Psychology & Child Studies from University of Tennessee, her Masters of Education in Montessori Education from Xavier University, and her Montessori Diploma from American Montessori Society.  Emily has over six years’ experience as a Montessori Guide.  Emily’s positive attitude and smile brings a wonderful energy to Harpeth Montessori.  When she is not in the classroom you can find her working out, practicing yoga, or reading books.

Eny 2.jpg

Enid Moore

Primary Assistant Guide & Spanish Teacher

Originally from Puerto Rico, Enid has been working with Montessori students since 2011.  Spanish is her first language.  She first started teaching Spanish to Primary and Elementary grades, then moved into a teacher's assistant role for a few years before deciding to shift gears in 2021 and go back to teaching Spanish and support classes as needed.  Enid has had a passion for teaching long before Montessori and homeschooled her three children K through 12.  Enid is married and enjoys trips to the beach with her husband.  Enid's new found hobby is house plants and she has been an avid user and sharer of essential oils to improve wellness.

Martine.jpg

Martine Swanick

Primary Lead Guide

Martine graduated from Eckerd College with a Bachelor's degree in Biology.  She obtained a certification in Montessori Early Childhood and is currently working on her certification in Montessori Lower Elementary.  Martine recently relocated to the Nashville area after living in Florida for the last 22 years.  She is thrilled to be here in Tennessee with her husband of 15 years and her beauiful children.  Outside of school, she enjoys cooking, reading, traveling, and spending time with her family.  Teaching and watching children grow is her passion.

Tina 2.jpg

Tina Royer

Primary Assistant Guide

Originally from Nashville, Tina has been working with children since her adolescent years.  She earned her B.A. in English Literature from University of Tennessee.  Shortly after graduation Tina started working in a Montessori school and fell in love with Dr. Montessori’s approach to self-care and courtesy for young children.  Tina is a huge fan of music and plays the piano and ukulele.  She is also an avid reader and spends her weekends hiking, paddle boarding, and camping. 

Jessica 1.jpg

Jessica Gil

Teacher's Assistant

Originally from New Jersey, Jessica has a passion for working with children of all ages.  She earned her B.A. in Romance Languages and Literature from Harvard University.  Jessica is interested in the intersection of education and whole-person flourishing.  She is extremely thoughtful and introspective and enjoys hiking, reading, writing, and painting. 

Rachel 2.jpg

Rachel Costadini

Admin Assistant

Originally from California, Rachel has fifteen years’ experience working with children in a variety of different environments, including six years' in Montessori classrooms and administration.  She earned her B.A. in Theology with a minor in Graphic Design from Southeastern University.  You will see Rachel every morning at drop off and again at pickup in the afternoon.   Rachel enjoys the outdoors, especially hiking and kayaking.

Harpeth Montessori is an independent, privately owned school, founded in 2021 by a local Franklin family.