Meet the ThriveWay Team

Allison Moore
President

Allison is the Co-Founder and President of ThriveWay, LLC. She has chaired statewide committees on K-12 youth suicide prevention including policy and school personnel training development. Allison has presented at numerous conferences and led interactive discussion groups concerning youth mental health. She holds a BS in Human Environmental Sciences and has passionately worked to support educators and students through the modern-day issues in which they face. Also, Allison is the Executive Director of the Jennifer Claire Moore Foundation and serves on youth focused committees in her local community and across Alabama. Allison enjoys family time with her husband and boys as well as being on the water and movie nights! 

Ruby McCullough
Vice President

Ruby is the Co-Founder and Vice President at ThriveWay, LLC. She has extensive experience in the Customer Service and Education Industry. She was instrumental in helping to build a company that has served educators and students both across the United States and 20 countries. As President/CEO of the company Ruby enjoyed leading a great group of employees to grow the company to be recognized as one of the leading providers of administrative software and services to K-12 schools. Ruby enjoys her five grandchildren, reading, and spending time with family and friends.

Julie Champion
Curriculum and Instruction Director

Julie is committed to serving others as the Curriculum and Instructional Specialist of ThriveWay. She enjoys sharing the message of Peer Helping so that other schools can experience the value, depth and life changing support it brings students. She holds a B.S. in Secondary Education and a M.Ed. in School Counseling. She has worked with youth and taught the Peer Helping course at Foley High School since 1999. Julie has facilitated student Peer Helper trainings at all age levels and Peer Helper Coordinator Trainings in many other school systems, as well as presented on Peer Helping Programs at numerous conferences. Julie enjoys life with her husband and three sons, is an avid sports fan, and loves beach days with family and friends!

Meredith Miller
Program and Portal Specialist

Meredith supports educators in learning about and implementing our Peer Helper Portal. She holds a BS degree in Elementary Education with a combined total of 15 years in the field of education. Her experience as a classroom teacher, as well as years of training and supporting educational programs give her an understanding of the many aspects of implementing a successful program. Her knowledge, hands on experience and passion for helping others succeed is what allows her to provide great customer service. She loves watching her kids play sports and spending time with family and friends.

Kathy Hayes
Controller

Kathy supports the finance and human resources functions, with over 15 years in the field. She is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology. She is excited to support ThriveWay in its mission to empower educators and students. Kathy enjoys genealogy, travel, and spending time with family and friends.

E.J. Delaino
Marketing and Technology

E.J. has worked in the education sector for over 20 years and brings a love of creating and designing to ThriveWay. With an extensive background in technology and design E.J. wants to make ThriveWay and Peer Helpers a valuable asset for K-12 schools. E.J. enjoys Gator athletics and spending time with family and friends.

Jenny Ozbirn
Senior Program Specialist

Jenny is a retired teacher/instructional coach, mother to three teen-aged girls, and wife to Bob. After teaching English in Huntsville for two years beginning in 1994, she spent the rest of her career in Florence, at Coffee High School and the Florence Freshman Center. She loves all things crafty, and has a lavender farm in Tennessee. Her happy places are the beach, the mountains, and almost anywhere else outside. She grew up as an army brat, moving sixteen times by the age of seventeen, before moving from Germany to Florence to attend the University of North Alabama.

Kelly Richards
Senior Program Specialist

Kelly has 25 years of experience in education as a teacher and school counselor for elementary, middle, and high school students. She has worked with ThriveWay as a Support Coach for two years, and has recently transitioned into her role as Senior Program Specialist.  She works with a team of support coaches to train school systems across the state to implement the Peer Helpers Program. Her goal is to assist school districts, school leadership, and educators in developing a plan to make the school environment a friendlier place where all students feel accepted and valued. She enjoys travel, tennis, and spending time with family - especially her two grandchildren, Lucy and Finn.

Dena Caldwell
Peer Helpers Program Trainer

Dena supports the mission of ThriveWay as a Peer Helpers Program co-coordinator and trainer. She has been a teacher and counselor in the Baldwin County School System since 1996. Dena has worked to establish Peer Helpers Programs at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. She has facilitated Peer Helpers Coordinator Trainings in school systems throughout Alabama, and presented multiple times at the Annual National Peer Program Conference. Dena enjoys keeping up with her husband and two daughters, exercising, and spending time with family and friends.

Donna Dickson
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Donna is a retired educator of 33 years with Shelby County Schools -- serving as a high school business teacher, administrator, and central office Student Services Coordinator. She lives in Montevallo, Alabama, and is the proud mom and “Nonna” to two children and five grandchildren. Since retiring, Donna has remained involved by working with the ALSDE and Johns Hopkins University in the areas of student attendance and at-risk education.  Donna enjoys traveling and training her new English Bulldog puppy, Rosie.

Terry Foster
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Terry is a Support Coach, helping school districts in Southwest Alabama implement the Peer Helpers program. He is a retired teacher and principal with 30 years’ service. He has a B.S. Degree in Elementary Education, Master’s Degree and ED. Specialist Degree, Class A Administrative Certificate all from University of West Alabama. After retirement in 2004, Terry worked for Software Technology, Inc. as a Customer Support/Trainer, as well as a Starbucks barista. Terry has been married to Diane Foster for over 40 years, and has 2 grown children and 6 grandchildren. He enjoys cooking, and traveling to Texas and to Malaysia to see his grandchildren. 

Ke’Andrea Jones
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Ke is a Peer Helpers Program Coach and retired educator. She spent the last 25 years as a Federal Programs Supervisor, principal, and adjunct professor. She has a B.S. and M.A. in Elementary Education, as well as an Ed.S and Ed.D in Educational Administration. She strongly believes that her purpose in life is serving others, and looks forward to working with all schools within her assigned area. She is married, and has one daughter. As a family, they enjoy traveling, and experiencing new cuisine.

Cleo Larry
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Cleo is a retired educator with nearly 35 years of service as a teacher and principal. She received her B.A. in Biology/Chemistry from Talladega College. She matriculated further to the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where she obtained an M.A. in Secondary Education (Biology/Chemistry), an M.A. in Administration, an Ed.S in Secondary Education, and an Ed.S in Administration and Supervision.  Cleo also earned her Doctorate from The University of Alabama in Curriculum, Supervision, and Administration. She became a member of the ThriveWay family in 2020. Cleo’s motto is a quote by John Cassis, “It’s nice to be important, but it’s more important to be nice.” Cleo enjoys traveling, shopping, fishing, and watching football.

Joanna Lowe
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Joanna joined ThriveWay in 2019, as a Peer Helpers Support Coach. She has 28 years of experience as an educator. She is passionate about helping and encouraging others. Her years of experience as an educator, combined with her passion for helping, makes her role as a coach a perfect fit! Joanna loves worship music, travel, and quality time with family and friends.

Jim Miller
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Jim has 33 years’ experience in education, as well as nearly a decade in the business world. He earned his BA from St. Bernard College, an MA and MBA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He and his wife, Kathy, have 3 children and 2 grandchildren. Jim believes that all children need to know every day that they have at least one responsible person to whom they can go. This should be every child, every day.

Kathy Miller
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Kathy lives in Cullman, Alabama and graduated with honors from Southern Benedictine College in 1979. She spent the first half of her working career in the healthcare field. In 1993, Kathy received her master’s degree in education from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She taught at Cullman High School, Wallace State Community College as adjunct professor, and Oak Mountain High School over the next 16 years. Kathy worked the final six years of her career as the Executive Director and principal at the DAY Program (Developing Alabama Youth Foundation, Inc.) a non-profit, day treatment school for at-risk youth in Shelby County. She is married to Jim Miller. They have three grown children, Ben, Leah, and Emily, and two amazing grandchildren, Marlowe and Lucas.

Terisa Pittman
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Terisa is a Peer Helpers Program Coach, and retired school counselor of 38 years. She has been married to Bo for thirty-eight years, and they have two sons and one granddaughter. She and Bo were instrumental in implementing the CU4 Reality Fair for eighth-grade students in Lauderdale County Schools. As a military wife and a mother of a special needs child, she understands the social and emotional challenges that children endure. She loves to travel, garden, and spend time with her granddaughter.

Laura Pollard
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Laura is a Peer Helpers Program Support Coach, mother to Adam and Abby, and wife to Eric. She has a BS in Accounting, and a MA in Elementary Education from the University of North Alabama. She spent 24 years as a classroom teacher. Laura enjoys spending time with family and friends, traveling to visit her children, and working in her yard. She is passionate about supporting teachers to help them empower students to be emotionally and socially successful, as well as academically successful. 

Mona Robinson
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Mona is a retired teacher of 32 years, and is now serving as a Peer Helpers Support Coach. She has a desire to see all students succeed in academics. Most importantly, she desires to see them grow in their relationships with those around them, and learn to be confident in who they are as a person. She enjoys music, reading, and spending time with her family. Mona has been married to her husband, Steve, for 36 years, and they have two children and four beautiful grandchildren with whom Mona thoroughly enjoys spending time.

Cindy Smith
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Cindy is a retired Business Teacher from Ozark City Schools. She holds an M.B.A. from Troy University, and earned National Board Certification. Her husband, Mike, works at the local high school repairing student computers. They have three sons in their early twenties, who are all working while going to college. In her spare time, she enjoys time with family – especially anything that involves food or the outdoors!

Jerry Smith
Peer Helpers Program Support Coach

Jerry is a retired educator, with 37 years of experience. Since retiring in 2008, he has continued to work part time with the Walker County Board of Education and Headstart program as a teacher evaluator.  Jerry has been a ThriveWay Coach since 2020. He enjoys representing the Peer Helpers Program because of its positive impact on today’s youth, creating a more connected society.

Juli Parrish
Peer Helpers Program Trainer

Juli is a career educator with over 30 years of experience as a classroom teacher, high school administrator, and district level coordinator for At-Risk Student Services. She began her journey with ThriveWay as a Coordinator for the middle and high schools in her school district, served as a Peer Helpers Coach in 2020-21, and is currently a Peer Helper Trainer. She recently relocated to Mobile, Alabama, where she and her rescue dog, Bo, are enjoying life in the big city! She is the proud mom of two adult children, and has two incredible grandsons with a third on the way! In her spare time, she enjoys working in her flower garden, spending time with her family and friends, and watching SEC football games.