Board of Trustees

STRIVE Prep’s Board of Trustees brings a deep passion and diversity of perspectives to accelerate our impact in classrooms, campuses and communities across Denver.


Helem Aranguti, Southwest Parent Representative

Helem is a parent of STRIVE Prep students at STRIVE Prep – Federal, STRIVE Prep – Ruby Hill, and STRIVE Prep – SMART. She attends over ten school events a year and volunteers regularly with both schools. She is an advocate for her children, schools, and STRIVE Prep in the STRIVE Together program. She is employed by the Food Bank of the Rockies.

Reed Dixon, Rye Ridge Resources

Reed has owned and managed his own business in the oil and natural gas industry since 2015. Previously, he had differing financial and business development roles in the manufacturing, tech, and energy sectors. He graduated from the University of Denver with a finance degree and business ethics/legal studies minor. He grew up in Portland, Oregon, and now lives in Denver with his wife and two daughters.

Ulysses Estrada, IBM


Ulysses is a consultant for IBM in Washington DC. Prior, Ulysses was an Associate at the Middlesex Coalition for Children, where he created data reports used to drive policy at the local and statewide level. In previous years, Ulysses served a three-year term on the Denver Mayor’s Youth Commission and was a Denver Youth Representative at the National League of Cities Conference. Ulysses graduated from Wesleyan University with a Bachelor of Arts in both Economics and Government, and is also a member of STRIVE Prep’s founding class.

Dietz Fry, Endeavour Capital


Dietz is a Principal at Endeavour Capital, a firm that he joined in 2004 and opened a Denver office for in 2009. Previously, Dietz worked at Green Manning and Bunch, attended the United State Air Force Academy and graduated from the University of Colorado with a degree in Biochemistry. He lives in Denver with his wife and sons.

Abi Fadeyi, Principal at MBHE Holdings

Abi is a Principal at a private investment firm in Denver. He has 15+ years of investment banking and private investing experience and has advised numerous companies on M&A, capital formation, and general corporate development. He holds an A.B. in Economics from Princeton University and an Executive MBA from the University of Denver. He grew up in Colorado and lives in Denver with his wife and four children.

Leticia Gonzalez Levya

Leticia is an immigrant born in Mexico who moved to Colorado as a teenager. She is the proud parent of a STRIVE Prep – RISE alumni. Leticia is a graduate of Regis University where she obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with emphasis in Healthcare Administration. She was recently an appointee for Mayor Hancock’s administration; she is now the Director of Administration at the CEO’s office at Denver Health & Hospital Authority. Leticia is involved in her community and attends regular neighborhood meetings, community gatherings, social justice rallies and parades that emphasize civic responsibility. Leticia has three children Adriana (20), Ephraim and Antonio (both 26).

Peter C. Groff, MCG2 Consulting, LLC

Peter is the Principal and Chief Strategist at MCG2 Consulting, LLC and is a noted public policy innovator, national policy and political analyst, and leadership lecturer. Groff has held senior level positions at all three levels of government and has more than 25 years of public service impacting education, criminal justice, and health care. He is currently serving as a policy and political consultant to numerous individuals and entities across the country. Before starting his consulting firm, Groff served as the first ever Visiting Fellow at the Johns Hopkins University School of Education. During both of President Obama’s terms, Mr. Groff served as Director of the Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships at the U.S. Department of Education. President Obama also appointed Groff to the White House Commission on U.S. Presidential Scholars. Groff served as the 47th President of the Colorado State Senate, where he was the first African American in Colorado to ascend to the post and only the third African American in the nation’s history to hold the gavel as State Senate President.

Josh Rael, Executive Director of Alliance Colorado 

Josh serves as the Executive Director for Alliance, a nonprofit statewide association of Community-Centered Boards (CCBs) and Program-Approved Service Agencies (PASAs) in Colorado. Alliance members serve over 20,000 individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and employ over 4,000 direct support professionals and IDD case managers throughout Colorado. Josh is a Colorado native and received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Colorado State University-Pueblo, a Juris Doctor from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law and a Master of Public Administration with an emphasis in Nonprofit Management at the University of Colorado-Denver. In 2020, Josh received the prestigious “40 Under 40” Award from the Denver Business Journal. In 2011, Josh was selected to attend President Obama’s White House Hispanic Policy Conference in Washington, D.C. And in 2007, Colorado’s Governor Bill Ritter appointed Josh to the Colorado Creative Industry Board (formerly the Council of the Arts) for two terms. 

Kayla Tibbals, Nexus Policy Group

Vice Chair

Kayla is a native of Colorado with experience in both political campaigns and state advocacy at the Capitol. Kayla holds a Bachelor’s Degree in International Affairs and Russian from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Kayla, has lobbied for nearly a decade at the State capitol. As a Partner at Nexus Policy Group, Kayla uses her extensive experience in issues impacting education, healthcare policy, non-profits, and energy to benefit her clients. She has deep knowledge of the business issues and the business environment at the capitol and is well connected with legislators of both parties. Before joining Nexus Policy Group in 2012, she previously held the position as lead lobbyist for the education advocacy organization, Stand for Children Colorado. Notably, while at Nexus, during the 2014 legislative session, Kayla successfully lobbied on behalf of the Colorado League of Charter Schools for the largest increase in capital funding for public charter schools ever. Kayla has extensive experience with educating and empowering networks and memberships to take action at the state and local level.

Amber Valdez, Valdez Public Affairs, LLC


Amber is a Colorado native and partner at Valdez Public Affairs, LLC, a governmental consulting firm. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Colorado State University and holds a Master of Public Administration from University of Colorado Denver. Amber is a voting member of the National Western Stock Show and was a finalist for the Hispanic Chamber of Metro Denver’s Young Professional of the Year award. She lives in Denver with her Yorkie Poo, Dexter.

Caleb Fields

Caleb is a Chicago native and a graduate of Northwestern University. After a career in professional baseball, he began to work in education before moving to Colorado and eventually joining the STRIVE Prep network as a staff member. He was the Assistant Principal of Culture and Operations at STRIVE Prep- Lake Campus and Director of Recruitment at the STRIVE Prep Central Office. Then he moved to the Denver Public School district, where he led the Teacher Through Leader Talent Acquisition Team and served as the HR Chair for the African American Equity Task Force. Most recently, he served as an HR Director and lead for Inclusion and Diversity initiatives for the North Face and now is an HR Director with Crocs, Inc. in Broomfield, CO.

Toni Salais-Alvarado, Far Northeast Parent Representative

Toni was born and raised in a small town in southeastern Colorado to Mexican immigrants.  She has worked for Lennar Homes Colorado, LLC for over 22 years, currently in Customer Care. Toni and her husband, Alberto, have been married for 20 years and have two daughters. She is a parent to a junior at STRIVE Prep – RISE and a parent representative for the Far Northeast Area. Her oldest daughter started at STRIVE Prep – GVR middle school. At the previous elementary school, her daughter left 5th grade at a 3rd grade reading level; by the end of her 6th grade year at STRIVE Prep – GVR, she was reading at grade level and Toni became involved in STRIVE Prep’s family engagement program where she was able to get more involved with her child’s education. Toni looks forward to her youngest daughter following in her sister’s footsteps by attending STRIVE Prep – GVR then STRIVE Prep – RISE when she is old enough. In addition to being a parent representative on the Board of Trustees, Toni also serves as a Family Ambassador at STRIVE prep, assisting with family engagement and enrollment initiatives.