STAFF

Mrs. Amy Strom

Headmistress

Mrs. Strom holds a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education, a Master in Business Administration from Marquette University and a minor in Special Education from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. She has spent the majority of her career involved in the education of children and adults in both schools and corporations. Mrs. Strom joined Providence Academy in 2008 as its Headmistress and has also taught at the Academy during her eleven year tenure. Prior to joining Providence Academy, Mrs. Strom served as a Human Resource Director for a large Midwestern company and founded and operated her own Professional Employment Organization (PEO).

Mrs. Sue Schaller

Pre-Kindergarten

Mrs. Schaller is in her 4th year at Providence Academy. She is a Mother of 6 and Grandmother of 9. While raising her family Mrs. Schaller also had a daycare in her home along with many foster children over the course of 12 years. She and her husband Joe find great joy in taking care of the little ones that God has blessed all of us with. Mrs. Schaller also has worked at Headstart as a Teacher Aide. She enjoys the energy and enthusiasm that the children have and by being around them you can’t help but feel it too. Mrs. Schaller often volunteered at Providence and was truly delighted to become a member of the Providence Staff. Mrs. Schaller says this job here is a gift from God.

Miss Brooke Pronschinske

Kindergarten

Miss Pronschinske grew up on an organic dairy farm near Rushford, MN and previous to starting teaching at Providence Academy spent two years working at St. Mary's Primary School in Winona, MN. She holds an Associate of Applied Science degree and is currently working towards her B.S. in Early Childhood Education. Her passion is working with children and she feels very blessed to be working at Providence Academy. In her spare time Miss Pronschinske likes spending time with family and friends, hiking, reading, and studying the Catholic faith.

Miss Katie Gees

First Grade

Miss Gees is in her 7th year of teaching First Grade at Providence Academy. She is a graduate of Loras College in Dubuque, IA, with a degree in Elementary Education and an endorsement in Early Childhood Education. Originally from the La Crosse area, Miss Gees is happy to be back in ‘God’s Country’ and feels blessed to continue working with such an outstanding, faith filled community. Although she loves all things ‘First Grade’, her favorite subject is reading, and she enjoys sharing that passion with her students. In addition to teaching first grade, Miss Gees enjoys coaching cross country and serving high school students in confirmation formation. In her free time, Miss Gees loves swing dancing, playing piano, and being outdoors.

Mrs. Jennifer Tradewell

Second Grade

Mrs. Tradewell has 20 years of teaching experience. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Education from the University of Wisconsin - Whitewater. During the past 14 years she has taught various grades at Providence Academy in the lower school. Prior to that, she has had teaching experiences in inner city and rural environments. She has continued her education at Viterbo University focusing on literacy and special needs. She currently resides in the area with her husband and 3 children.

Miss Emily Bot

Third Grade

Miss Bot has a Bachelor of Arts in Theology from Christendom College. Prior to joining the Providence faculty, she taught the fourth grade at Pope John Paul II Academy in Montrose, CO from 2015-2019. Originally from southwest Minnesota where she grew up on a farm, she is happy to be closer to home and to be joining the community at Providence Academy. In her free time, she enjoys reading, knitting, sewing, and going for occasional runs.

Miss Mary Liebert

Fourth Grade

Miss Liebert is a former graduate from Providence Academy. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts from Wyoming Catholic College. Having been educated in the Great Books while at Providence Academy and at Wyoming Catholic College, Miss Liebert is thrilled to be back at Providence where her interest in the Liberal Arts first began. She is in her 4th year teaching 4th grade.

Miss Kelsey Wieser

Fifth Grade

Miss Wieser holds a Bachelor of Arts in English education from the University of Wisconsin—Eau Claire. She has a passion for teaching and has received teaching certifications in both English education and Learning Disabilities. After graduation, she served as a FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) Missionary for the past 4 years, a role that has given her the opportunity to serve college students at Northern State University in Aberdeen, SD; Murray State University in Murray, KY; and, this past year, at the University of Wisconsin—La Crosse. Originally from Plum City, WI, Miss Wieser is grateful to be back in Wisconsin and has grown to love the La Crosse area. She is excited to be teaching 5th grade this year and is grateful to be a part of the beautiful and supportive community here at Providence Academy!

Mr. Jacob Barkett

Sixth Grade

Mr. Barkett is in his second year at Providence Academy. He graduated in December 2016 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from Hillsdale College, where he began to understand the necessity and beauty of classical education. Before coming to Providence, he spent a year working with a landscape company until God opened the door to Providence. He's most excited about passing on his love of God and learning through the Judeo-Christian and Greco-Roman heritage, which finds its blossom within the Catholic tradition. Mr. Barkett enjoys birdwatching and writing. He lives in Sparta with his wife and two children.

Mr. Conor Bopp

Upper School History and Literature

Mr. Bopp is in his 1st year teaching at Providence. Born in Wichita, Kansas, Conor lived in Omaha since he was 4 years old and attended Catholic grade school and high school. After obtaining a degree in Liberal Arts from Thomas Aquinas College in Santa Paula, California, he taught as an apprentice teacher for Archway Classical Academy in the Great Hearts charter school system of Phoenix, Arizona. Conor moved back to Omaha in 2013 to enter the program of seminary formation for the Archdiocese of Omaha. From 2013 to 2017, he attended Kenrick School of Theology in Saint Louis, Missouri, where he pursued a Master of Arts in Theology before leaving to discern a different vocation. Conor returned to Omaha and joined Saint Barnabas Classical Academy in the Fall of 2017, teaching there for two years. He and his wife were married in August of 2019, and they are thoroughly enjoying getting to know La Crosse! A few of Mr. Bopp’s favorite pastimes are singing, playing violin, hikes, and walking through Menards.

Mr. Austin Faber

Upper School Math and Science

Mr. Faber is in his second year as the Upper School Math and Science teacher. Originally from Sandusky, Ohio, the “Roller Coaster Capital of the World,” he came to Wisconsin initially for college before – in God’s Providence – discovering the Academy. Mr. Faber earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics and Theology from Marquette University in 2017, and deeply appreciated his liberal arts education. Mr. Faber enjoys playing and watching soccer, going on hikes, studying geography, and traveling. He has a particular devotion to his favorite saints: Bl. Solanus Casey, St. Augustine, and St. James the Greater. For the 2019-2020 school year, he is the instructor for Pre-Algebra, Algebra I, Geometry, Pre-Calculus, and Calculus.

Mr. Michael Foster

Upper School Latin and Classical Guitar

Mr. Michael Foster is in his third year as Upper School Latin and Classical Guitar teacher. Having spent his life down south, he moved to Wisconsin in 2016 where he is now happy to call home. Mr. Foster earned a Master’s Degree in Classical Guitar Performance from Georgia Southern University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Valdosta State University. During his undergraduate he began his study of Latin, which has been a passion ever since. For the 2019-2020 school year Mr. Foster will teach Latin, Grammar, Aesthetics, and Classical Guitar.

Mrs. Amanda McClernon

Upper School History and Literature

Mrs. McClernon is a former graduate of Providence Academy and is delighted to be in her 6th year of teaching here. She graduated from the University of Dallas with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. Thanks to her liberal arts education, she enjoys many different subjects including history, literature, math, politics, theology, and science. Her favorite subject is history, particularly American Military History and the Vietnam War; however, she also enjoys literature. A few of her favorite books are Jane Austen’s Persuasion, Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn, Homer’s Odyssey, Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment, Dereliction of Duty by H.R. McMaster, and A History of the American People by Paul Johnson.

Mrs. Bridget Mohr

Upper School Science

Mrs. Mohr went to college in Rapid City at South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering with an emphasis in Biochemical Engineering. During college, Mrs. Mohr started her love of teaching through religious education, specifically confirmation preparation. After graduation and marriage, she moved to her husband’s home state of Nebraska, where the bulk of Mrs. Mohr’s engineering career was spent in the power industry, specializing in combustion safety and emission control technology. In 2012, she left industry to concentrate on family life. She became acquainted with classical education when she began homeschooling her children. In 2017, her husband and she moved back to her hometown of La Crescent, MN and joined the Providence community as parents. She is now excited to expand her role as she begins teaching upper school science courses. Mrs. Mohr enjoys pun-laden jokes, teasing her five children, good books, long conversations, hiking, camping, biking, board games, and learning.

Mr. Carl Wolk

Upper School Religion

Mr. Wolk is a native of Connecticut. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Medieval and Renaissance Studies from Washington and Lee University in Lexington, VA in 2012. His senior thesis was titled, “Distributism and Medieval English Peasant Life: Testing the Historical Vision of Hilaire Belloc.” On Easter of the same year, he entered the Catholic Church, converting from Protestantism, and before that, atheism. After graduating, he began an Master's in Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville, which he completed at the Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, DC in 2015. He successfully defended his Master’s thesis, “How the Philosophical Doctrines of St. Thomas Aquinas and William of Ockham Affect Their Theological Doctrines of Grace and Charity.” This is his 4th year as the theology teacher at Providence Academy.

Mrs. Maria LaVoy

Lower School Art

Mrs. LaVoy grew up right here in La Crosse, WI. During her early college years, she worked as Assistant Youth Director for her parish youth center at St. James the Less Catholic Church. After marrying her husband, Michael, they moved to San Angelo, TX where she continued her education at Angelo State University and earned a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Child Development and Learning in 2008. She is blessed to have put her degree to use as a full-time mother of five and looks forward to further sharing her love of teaching with the children of Providence Academy!

Mr. Michael LaVoy

Upper School Art

Mr. LaVoy grew up on a hobby farm in Necedah, WI. He served four years active duty in the Air Force working as a videographer. During his enlistment, he earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from University of Maryland University College. In addition to his teaching role at Providence, he serves in the Air National Guard and works full-time as a freelance illustrator. His published work includes projects for Our Sunday Visitor, TAN Books/St. Benedict Press, Ascension Press, Voyage Comics and Publishing, Marian Catechist Apostolate, and Holy Cross Family Ministries, to name a few. He is also the busy father of five children who all love art as much as he does!

Mrs. Mary Turner

Gym

Mrs. Turner received a Bachelor of Science in Biology at Clarke College in Dubuque, IA and has a Masters in Pastoral Theological Studies from Madonna University in Ann Arbor, MI. She has a passion for fitness and activity and also serves as a substitute teacher for the school. Mrs. Turner is a devoted pro-life sidewalk counselor and her two children attend Providence Academy.

Mrs. Olivia Wolk

Music

Mrs. Wolk graduated from Franciscan University of Steubenville with a Bachelor of Arts in Sacred Music and Theology. She has taught private voice lessons for seven years, and is specially trained in both solo and ensemble singing in the sacred and classical music traditions. She teaches music to grades K-12, and directs the Providence Academy Schola. She is in her 4th year of teaching music at the Academy.

Mrs. Mary Hendrickson

Speech & Language

Mrs. Jill Marshall

Administrator

Mrs. Karla Hansen

Administrator

Mrs. Megan Laylan

Administrative Assistant

Mrs. Laylan is in her 4th year at Providence Academy. Mrs. Laylan graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology: Exercise & Movement Science. After graduating she joined the staff at the St. Paul Catholic Center on the UW Campus as the music intern for two years. She and her husband moved to La Crosse after getting married in June 2016. In addition to spending time with friends and family, Mrs. Laylan enjoys singing, playing piano, and being active outdoors.

Mrs. Elizabeth Decker

Athletic Director and Administrator

Mrs. Decker is in her 8th year at Providence Academy. She taught 3rd grade for 6 years before moving to an administrative role. Formerly known as Miss Shewmon, she just celebrated 4 years of marriage in August, has a 2 year old son, and 6 month old daughter. Mrs. Decker is originally from Arlington Heights, Illinois, and moved up to the La Crosse area for college in 2007. She graduated from Saint Mary's University of Minnesota in Winona in 2011, went back to Illinois for a year, and quickly realized that she needed to return to the area. She never doubted that this is where God wants her and she thanks Him for the gift of this classical education and the gift of this faith community. In her free time, Mrs. Decker loves to spend time with her family, travel, explore new coffee shops, and be outdoors.

Ms. Jean Kachel

Lunch Coordinator