Administration & Staff

Click on an employee's name or image to see a brief biography. Within the biography, click on the employee's name to send an email.

To print a photo click here for instructions.

Head of School

MEd, Loyola University Maryland
BA, Boston College
AMI Elementary Diploma, Washington DC
AMI Primary Diploma, San Diego, CA

28 years' experience in education;
joined The Post Oak School in 2016.

Maura Joyce comes to Post Oak in the summer of 2016 after serving as head of school at Montessori in Redlands (California) since July 2000. She holds AMI diplomas at both the Primary (3–6) and Elementary (6–12) levels, a master's degree in education from Loyola College, and a bachelor's degree from Boston College. Maura has ten years of classroom teaching experience at the Elementary and Adolescent levels. She has been a featured presenter for both AMI/USA and NAMTA and has also lectured at various Montessori schools around the country and the Montessori Institute of San Diego, where she has also been an examiner for AMI. Maura served on the board of the Montessori Administrators Association for eight years and is the parent of a Montessori student, who attends Post Oak's High School. A native of New York, Maura came to Houston with her husband and son to become part of the Post Oak community and to be closer to her husband's family, who has been in Houston since 1978.

Division Directors

MEd, Loyola University Maryland
BA, University of Sri Lanka School of Music
AMI Primary Diploma, Sri Lanka
AMI Primary Auxiliary Trainer

35 years' experience in education;
joined The Post Oak School in 1992.

Mirani Smith earned her undergraduate degree and AMI Montessori credentials in her native country, Sri Lanka. She has taught in Montessori schools since 1978, and joined the Post Oak faculty in 1992. Since 2008, Mirani has been working in the capacity of Early Childhood Director. Mirani's daughter, a Post Oak alumna, graduated from Smith College in 2006. Mirani raises butterflies, enjoys spending time with her grandchildren, gardening, and cooking. She is an AMI Primary Auxiliary Trainer and is part of the faculty and staff of the Houston Montessori Institute.

BA, Southwestern University
MEd, University of Texas
AMI Elementary Diploma, Vancouver, BC, Canada

27 years' experience in education;
joined The Post Oak School in 2004.

Jeff Schneider began his career in education teaching first grade in the Texas public school system. After observing the wonderful work his own children were doing in their Montessori classrooms, he completed the AMI Elementary training and worked for six years as a Montessori Lower Elementary teacher. He has a degree in psychology, a Texas teaching certificate, an MEd from the University of Texas, and an AMI Elementary diploma. He has special interests in children's play, play environments, and early literacy. Jeff also enjoys working on his old house and growing vegetables. His three children are Post Oak alumni.

MEd, Early Childhood Special Education, University of Kansas
MEd, Low Incidence Disabilities, University of Kansas
BS, University of Kansas
AMI Primary Montessori Certification, Kansas City, Missouri
AMI Elementary Montessori Certification, Vancouver, British Columbia
NAMTA Adolescent Certification, Chihuahua, Mexico

28 years' experience in education;
joined The Post Oak School in 2013.

Jami Sweeney joined The Post Oak School as the media specialist in August 2013. Previously, he was the head of school at City Garden Montessori Charter School in St. Louis, Missouri. Jami has also taught various topics in the sciences at the junior high and high school level and was a lower elementary guide in Lawrence, Kansas. His wife Sarah is an Episcopal priest and is on faculty at The Seminary of the Southwest in Austin. They have three children, a son in Lawrence, Kansas, a daughter in Raleigh, North Carolina, and a 6th grader who is an Upper Elementary student at Post Oak.

BA, University of Minnesota
MEd, Loyola University Maryland
AMI Primary Diploma, St. Paul, MN
NAMTA Adolescent Studies, Cleveland, OH

22 years' experience in education;
joined The Post Oak School in 2010.

James Moudry joined Post Oak School in 2010. Prior to that, he served as the director of administrative affairs at Montessori High School at University Circle in Cleveland, Ohio. James has worked in Montessori adolescent programs since 1999 as a teacher, program coordinator, administrator, and soccer coach. He has presented at the North American Montessori Teachers Association's Montessori Orientation to Adolescent Studies and has spoken on program design and community-centered education nationally and internationally. He is dedicated to Montessori education, and he and his wife (also Montessori trained) have three children. James attributes his decision to work in Montessori education to his parents who sent him and his brother to Montessori school through middle school.

James has a master's degree in Montessori education, holds the AMI Primary Diploma, and a BA in mathematics, philosophy, and psychology. James enjoys home renovations and snow. His three children attend The Post Oak School.

BA, University of Florida
MS, Florida International University
AMI Primary Diploma, Austin, TX

25 years' experience in education;
joined The Post Oak School in 2000.

Miriam Winton was born and raised in Miami, Florida. She received her BA in education from the University of Florida, and earned her MEd from Florida International University. Miriam began her teaching career in public schools and was first introduced to Montessori education when she came to Post Oak as a substitute teacher in 1997. Miriam worked as an assistant at the Primary level for two years while taking her Montessori teacher’s training and received her AMI Primary diploma in August 2000. Miriam was a Primary teacher for 16 years and has directed Post Oak's summer program since 2003. In 2016, she began her new role as auxiliary programs director. Miriam is also an AMI national examiner at the Primary level. She enjoys traveling, cooking, and reading about nutrition and health in her free time and is an enthusiastic Houston Dynamo soccer fan.


BS, Southwest Texas State University

29 years' experience in administration;
joined The Post Oak School in 1996.

Debbie Henderson, Museum District Campus administrator, came to Post Oak in 1996 after working in banking for seven years. She has a BS in home economics with a minor in business administration. She and her husband have two sons. When not at work, she enjoys spending time with her family, fishing, and playing games. When she gets "alone time" she loves to curl up with a good book.

(McNeese State University)

Joined The Post Oak School in 2018.

Karly Comeaux came to Post Oak after years of working in law/finance. She comes from a background of school teachers and has always enjoyed being around children. When not at work, she enjoys spending time with family and friends and going on adventures with her two dogs.

(Wharton County Jr. College)

2 years' experience in administration;
joined The Post Oak School in 2016.

Bethany Garrett joined The Post Oak School in 2016. She works closely with Post Oak parents and staff facilitating communication throughout the office. She plans to return to school to get a degree in education. Before coming to Post Oak, Bethany coached and taught swimming for six years. She enjoys spending time with her family and dogs, cooking, and visiting the museums in her free time.

Karly Comeaux, joined Post Oak in April 2018.

BA, Southeastern Louisiana University

Joined The Post Oak School in 2018.

Jeanette Tudor originally from Alexandria, Louisiana, moved to Houston in the summer of 2018. She holds a BA in communications from Southeastern Louisiana University and her elementary education teaching credentials from Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, LA. She worked for 12 years teaching second through fourth grades in the public system in Louisiana. Jeanette and her husband have one daughter who attends a local Montessori school. In her free time, she enjoys being with her husband and daughter, traveling, reading, and exercising outdoors.


MA, Towson University
BS, Towson University

Joined The Post Oak School in 2018.

Ashley Krug graduated from Towson University with a MA in school psychology. She moved from Baltimore, Maryland, to join the Post Oak community in 2018. Prior to joining The Post Oak School, Ashley worked as the admission director at a small, independent school in Baltimore city. In 2018, she had the opportunity to present her work in admissions at the National Small Schools Conference.

In addition to admissions, Ashley has a strong passion for dance and is the owner of Twinkle Toes Dance Company, a small dance business. In her spare time, you can find her dancing, crafting, or spending time with her dog, cat, and husband.

MA, University of Houston
BA, Sul Ross State University
BA, Sul Ross State University

26 years' experience in education;
19 years in higher education;
joined The Post Oak School in 2018.

Tiffney Trimble joined The Post Oak School as associate admission director in July 2018. Tiffney is a native Houstonian but has lived in Virginia, California, and a small stint in Canada. She has had an extensive 19-year run in recruitment and counseling with the University of Houston in the areas of freshman, transfer, and international admissions. Additionally, she also worked for the UH Cullen College of Engineering as recruitment manager as well as coordinator of UH transfer events. As a leader of student groups, she was bestowed the task of volunteering as staff advisor to the UH Engineering Ambassadors as well as Phi Theta Kappa International Alumni Honor Society. She has intermittently taught as an adjunct professor at Houston Community College in college readiness. She is dedicated to student success whether, primary, secondary, or higher education.

Tiffney holds an MA in dramaturgy and BAs in communications, public relations, and theater. Tiffney enjoys music/theater/film festivals, traveling, photography, and Sunday brunches. She has one son who attends Prairie View A&M and a very cute but lazy dog named Skye.

(BA, Sam Houston State University)

6 years' experience in education and administration;
joined The Post Oak School in 2019.

Tonia Merideth joined The Post Oak School as registrar in April 2018. She and her family moved to Houston when their son decided to attend college here. Tonia is a native of Beloit, Wisconsin, but has also lived in Alabama, Illinois, Virginia, Tennessee, and Louisiana. She received her AA from Lone Star College Cy-Fair and is pursuing her BA in history from Sam Houston State University. For her Honors College research project, she wrote several historical articles relating to the Revolutionary War, which were published with the George Washington Digital Encyclopedia managed by the Mount Vernon organization.

Tonia has previously worked in admissions at Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana, and as the registrar at the Glassell Junior School/Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, as well as spent two years as a substitute teacher with Northwestern State University Laboratory schools and the Kipp/Harmony school system in Houston. Outside of education, she spent 10 years with the Internal Revenue Service in Memphis, Tennessee.

Tonia is the mother of two daughters and two sons. It was the instruction of a former Montessori teacher who assisted her son in primary school that Tonia became acquainted with Montessori. She also has a first cousin who was a Montessori student, who went on to become a Fulbright Scholar. Tonia was a dance mom for over 20 years, and loves sports (Green Bay Packers, New York Yankees, and Alabama Crimson Tide), history, and traveling. Her favorite vacation spots are Williamsburg, Virginia, Italy, and Amsterdam.

Business Office

MBA, Lindenwood University
BA, University of West Florida

20+ years' experience in finance;
joined The Post Oak School in 2016.

Kelly Vaughn joined The Post Oak School in May of 2016. She has over 20 years' combined experience with governmental, non-profit, and public accounting entities. She came to Post Oak from Wings of Hope, a global aviation charity headquartered in Chesterfield, Missouri, where she served as CFO. Prior to that she was the director of finance for two cities in the metro St. Louis area with respective budgets of $45M and $116M.

Kelly has a BA in accounting from the University of West Florida and an MBA from Lindenwood University.

AAS, Alexandria Technical College

13 years' experience in human resources;
joined The Post Oak School in 2018.

Originally from White Bear Lake, Minnesota, Emilie Anderson and her family relocated to Texas to escape the cold winters and enjoy some of the warm Texas sunshine! She holds an AAS in law enforcement from Alexandria Technical and Community College with additional study in legal administration and a certification in supervisory management. Emilie’s original aspiration was to become a police officer, but while working as a public safety officer on a college campus, she had the opportunity to work with the local campus HR office. Her interest in human resources took off from there, and she has worked in the HR field ever since. Before coming to Post Oak, Emilie worked in HR for over 12 years in the Minnesota State College System holding various titles including faculty payroll specialist, personnel aide senior, and assistant director.

Emilie and her husband have two children, a son who is ten and a daughter who is five. Both children are competition dancers, so when not at work, you can find Emilie at the dance studio cheering on her children! In her spare time, Emilie enjoys working in the garden and doing home improvement projects.

BSc(Eco), Bahria University
MBA, Institute of Business Management

9 years' experience in accounting and finance;
joined The Post Oak School in 2017.

Murad Mahmood, AP/AR specialist, came to The Post Oak School in 2017. Murad has a bachelor's in economics and a master’s in business administration. He is a certified Information System Auditor and has his certification in AutoCAD I & AutoCAD II, along with extensive experience in financial accounting.

Murad and his wife, Lower Elementary teacher Anita Taj, have a daughter at Post Oak. When not at work, he enjoys engaging in outdoor activities, spending time with his family, home renovations, and loves going on road trips.

MAcc, University of St. Thomas
BBA, University of St. Thomas

10 years' experience in accounting and finance;
joined The Post Oak School in 2018.

Emily Milani, grew up in Houston and graduated from the University of St. Thomas where she received her BBA and Masters in Accounting degrees. She has been an accountant for 10+ years, earning her CPA in 2011 and working in public accounting before joining The Post Oak School. Emily has a close connection to the education field with her husband being a high school teacher, her sister being a math specialist, and her best friend being an English teacher. In their spare time, Emily and her husband enjoy spending time with their two young children who will be attending Post Oak this fall.

Development Office

BFA, University of Houston

19 years' experience in fundraising;
joined The Post Oak School in 2005.

Christina Kopanidis-Cantu started at The Post Oak School as the development director in June 2005. Previously, Christina worked for five years at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, as the senior annual giving manager. Additionally, Christina worked at the small software-development company Rosetta, Inc. as a graphic artist for computer games. She holds a BFA from the University of Houston with a concentration in sculpture. She and her husband own a small postal and shipping business, and they have two sons at Post Oak.

BFA, The University of Texas at Austin

27 years' experience in communications design;
joined The Post Oak School in 2011.

Elaine Schweizer returned to the school in 2015 after two years away. She works diligently behind the scenes creating invitations, handbooks, and other communications materials, such as the monthly school newsletter, The Post. She can also be found behind a camera at many school events and in the classrooms. Elaine lived in Switzerland and Australia for 12 years before unexpectedly relocating to her hometown of Houston while on a round-the-world trip. In her spare time, she likes to take even more photos, go on walks with her husband, and hug her bobtail cat. She hopes to one day complete that trip with stops in Hawaii and New Zealand.

BA, Rice University

4 years' experience in development;
joined The Post Oak School in 2016.

Lucia Cerritos joined The Post Oak School in 2016. She grew up in Houston, Texas, and received her BA in art history and Spanish from Rice University. Before coming to Post Oak, she worked at the Houston Maritime Museum and the Asia Society Texas Center. She enjoys spending time with family and her two dogs, and visiting museums and historic homes. She also loves going on road trips throughout Texas to explore the landscape and history of her home state.

Facilities & Maintenance

(Lee College)

24 years' experience in commercial maintenance and repair;
joined The Post Oak School in 2010.

Matt Thompson joined The Post Oak School as facilities manager in 2010, becoming facilities director in 2016. He handles routine maintenance, repair, and renovation of Post Oak's facilities and its key systems. He directs the maintenance department as well as assorted contractors and acts as the liaison to city health and safety inspectors.

Matt served for 11 years in the United States Navy, and is well-versed in repair, maintenance, and retrofit of HVAC systems, as well as marine propulsion and auxiliary and emergency power generation. He is a State of Texas registered a/c technician and has the EPA Universal CFC certification.

In his downtime, Matt enjoys spending time with his wife and daughters and likes fishing, boating, camping, and hunting.

29 years' experience in maintenance;
joined The Post Oak School in 1985.

Manuel Mejia has worked at The Post Oak School since 1985, making him Post Oak's longest-serving employee. He is the chief custodian.

Information Technology

BA, University of Houston
BBA, University of Houston

23 years' experience in education;
joined The Post Oak School in 1997.

Mirna Andrade-Salgado joined Post Oak in the summer of 1997 as a Lower Elementary classroom assistant. The following year she became Post Oak's first technology director, using her university training in Management Information Systems. Before coming to Post Oak, Mirna taught Spanish with the Continuing Education department at the University of Houston using the Accelerated Language Method. She has been teaching both adults and children since 1995. She is the mother of four children. She enjoys spending time with her family, reading, using computers, and playing volleyball and soccer.

BA, University of Houston

10 years' experience in technology;
joined The Post Oak School in 2016.

Elvyn Mendez joined The Post Oak School in late 2016. He was born, raised, and has lived in Houston, Texas, all his life. He has been in the technology field for more than eight years supporting users in the education and legal fields. He worked for Houston Independent School District, Stafford Municipal School District, and various law offices. Elvyn recently graduated from the University of Houston and is continuing his education and certifications in the technology field. He likes to play soccer and baseball, and roots for the Houston Astros, Houston Dynamo, Houston Rockets, and Real Madrid. Elvyn also loves playing musical instruments.


Photo printing instructions:

  • Using Internet Explorer, right-click on the picture and go to "print picture."
  • Using Firefox, right-click (ctrl-click on a Mac) and choose "view image," then go to your file menu on the top and choose "print."
  • Using Opera, right-click (ctrl-click on a Mac) and choose "open image," then go to your file menu on the top and choose "print."
  • Using Safari, right-click (ctrl-click on a Mac) and choose "open image in new window," then press ctrl-P (command-P or "apple key"-P on a Mac).
  • Using Google Chrome, right-click (ctrl-click on a Mac) and choose "open image in new a tab," then press ctrl-P (command-P or "apple key"-P on a Mac).