2019 DWTPS Stars:

Annita Bens

My husband and I moved from Belgium to Texas with our two small children in 1985. I retired in 2007 from my career in the pharmaceutical industry and academia. We still live in Mansfield, Texas, but like many of our Texan friends, we thoroughly enjoy our second home in Pagosa Springs. I grew up in a very small village in Zammel, Belgium, as the only child in a coal miners family. My fondest childhood memories are my parent’s love for music and dancing, whether it be in the kitchen of our humble home or in the popular post-war dance halls. Thanks to the encouragements of my high school teachers and the hard work and support of my parents, I was able to attend college in Belgium and later graduate school in Fort Worth. Humble beginnings and the wrong zip code do not have to be detrimental for one’s future. I’m here to pay it forward and I will dance my heart and lungs out to earn your votes in support for the great initiative of the Seeds of Learning School!

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VOTE FOR ANNITA

Jason Cox

I moved to Pagosa Springs in 2008. In 2013 I left behind a stable life and salary, working from home as a software engineer to enter the rough-and-tumble brewpub industry as a co-founder of Riff Raff Brewing Company. I now spend most of my time herding cats and trying to figure out the nuances of point-of-sales systems but I still find time to enjoy several pints with Riff Raff guests.

While not much of a dancer beyond the two-step and a crude interpretation of the Running Man, I want to dance in support of Seeds of Learning to help sustain and further the amazing model the school has established in Pagosa Springs. I am constantly amazed at the quality of education the Seeds of Learning school provides the Pre-K children of Archuleta County and believe that early childhood education forms a critical foundation for extended later life success.

My coach will have quite the task on her hands to train an out-of-shape, rhythm-deficient guy like me, and I  would appreciate your vote as a nod to the coach’s skill, patience and tenacity, as well as to support such a wonderful institution as Seeds of Learning in Pagosa Springs.

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VOTE FOR JASON

Chris Hopkins

I am very excited to be dancing this year in DWTPS.  I was supposed to dance last year but tore my ACL on Christmas Day 2017 skiing at Wolf Creek.  After surgery (thank you Dr Webb and Pagosa Springs Medical Center) and 1 year of physical therapy (thank you Mark Zeigler and Rocky Mountain Physical therapy)), I am ready to show Pagosa my moves.  After a 32 year career as a Petroleum Engineer with Chevron and Schlumberger, my lovely wife Kim and I retired and moved to Pagosa Springs a little more than 2 years ago.  My career included multiple assignments overseas including Jakarta Indonesia, Paris, and London, but we have found nothing that compares to the beauty and friendliness of Pagosa.  When we first moved to Pagosa, we got involved in supporting Seeds of Learning because of the importance of early childhood education to the community and the outstanding service that Lynne Bridges and Seeds provides in particular, and am therefore truly honored to be dancing for this great cause.

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VOTE FOR CHRIS

Mike LeRoux

South African born, my wife Kirsten and I moved from Australia to Pagosa Springs in 2013. I am currently the Director of Emergency Operations for the County and have a background as both a Civil Engineer and a Professional Ultra Endurance Athlete. My career highlight was winning the Ultraman Triathlon World Championship in 2010 and this title gave me the opportunity to move to the USA as a permanent resident. I believe that supporting Seeds of Learning and quality Early Childhood Education is in everyone’s best interests. Not just in aid of a thriving town and county today, as these little people will be making all the decisions effecting you and I when we’re in our old age. It’s an investment in our future to teach them to be good humans!

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VOTE FOR MIKE

Laura Moore

My husband, Tim, and I moved to Pagosa Springs in 2010 to open the Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts as well as co-found the non-profit Thingamajig Theatre Company that brings in professional performers, designers and directors from around the country to present year-round live theatre in Pagosa Springs.  Our oldest son, Finlay went to Seeds of Learning and we have been potty training our youngest son, Lachlan, since birth to get him ready for his admission to Seeds. We know first-hand what an incredible program Seeds is for kids learning and development and what a vital part Seeds played in the success of the Center for the Arts, by helping us keep our head above water as we try to balance managing our own business and raising a family. You should vote for me, because although I work in the theatre as a performer and producer, I don’t have one ounce of musical or dance training, but I have secretly wanted to be a ballet dancer since kindergarten, so help me pretend I awesomely grew up to be a dancer.

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VOTE FOR LAURA

Steve Potter

My wife, Anja, and I own Moutain Home Sound and Security… We stay active and enjoy traveling in our RV, boating, visiting mountain towns and Florida beaches, cooking, cycling, and fishing.

Seeds has been a customer of ours for years.  Lynne and her staff operate a first class Early Childhood Education Program that benefits everyone in our community.  It is an honor for me to step out of my comfort zone and participate with this year’s Stars Program.

Please Give to Seeds of Learning by voting for me. 

“Don’t GIVE till it Hurts… GIVE until it Feels Good!!!!!” 

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VOTE FOR STEVE

Nicki Smith

I moved to Pagosa Springs over 15 years ago to open Higher Grounds Coffee.  Throughout those years, I’ve had the opportunity to both watch and participate in the growth of this community.  From being a ‘big sister’ to my time on the Chamber, it truly has been an amazing journey to see Pagosa transform into a place I’m excited to live and raise my family.  With our son Dakota turning 2 this May, knowing that we have such an invaluable resource like Seeds makes all the difference in the world. I’m proud to have the opportunity to make an impact, and although so terrifying to dance in front of the entire town, you can bet that this introvert is going to give it all she’s got to rack up those votes.   

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VOTE FOR NICKI

Evelyn Tennyson

I’ve been a part-time resident of Pagosa Springs for the last 10 years, been coming up here on vacation for 14 years before that and have always considered it my home.  I’ve been involved with several non-profits over the years, am part-owner of Two Old Crows Gallery and love helping the community where I can.  I became interested in Seeds a few years ago when I went to my first ‘Little Black Dress’ event with friends.  Although I don’t have children, I love what Seed’s stands for and their commitment to helping the kids in this community. Why vote for me?  A vote for me is a vote for Seeds!

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VOTE FOR EVELYN