About Us: Team | ABQ Collegiate Inc

Team

Jade Rivera- Founder & Executive Director

Jade Rivera is a dedicated educator and leader, deeply rooted in New Mexico. She began her commitment to education through Teach for America in Las Vegas, Nevada, where she achieved remarkable academic progress with her students. Recognizing the significant role of policy in educational reform,  Ms. Rivera joined the New Mexico Public Education Department as a Policy Administrator. There, she directed statewide professional development programs and managed substantial budgets, significantly impacting education across New Mexico.

In 2016, Ms. Rivera was selected for the Building Excellent Schools Fellowship, a prestigious year-long program that trains leaders to establish high-performing, college-preparatory charter schools. This experience equipped her with the skills to design and lead innovative educational institutions.

In 2018, Ms. Rivera founded Albuquerque Collegiate Charter School in Albuquerque’s South Valley. Under her leadership, the school has achieved outstanding results, ranking among the top 5% of schools in New Mexico for literacy growth and proficiency. Her work has garnered numerous accolades, including the “Top 40 Under 40” recognition by Albuquerque Business First in 2020 and the Educator of the Year Award in 2024 from the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce.

Ms. Rivera holds a B.A. in Psychology and Sociology from the University of New Mexico and an M.A. in Education from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. She actively volunteers with several nonprofit organizations, serving on boards such as Homewise, the Hispano Philanthropic Society, and Public Charter Schools of New Mexico. Jade’s dedication to education and community service continues to drive her mission of fostering academic excellence and opportunity for all students.

Patricia Pinnere- Director of Curriculum & Instruction

Patricia Pinnere was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. As one of five daughters of Mexican and Guatemalan immigrants, she recognized the importance of education, hard work, and determination from an early age. After earning a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from UCLA, Ms. Pinnere began her teaching career with the Los Angeles Unified School District. In 2006, Ms. Pinnere relocated to New Mexico, where she served in the Rio Rancho and Albuquerque Public School districts in various capacities, including classroom teacher, ESL/Bilingual Coordinator, and Dual Language teacher. Her dedication and versatility in these roles demonstrated her commitment to improving educational outcomes for all students.

In 2017, Ms. Pinnere was selected as one of 23 educators for an MBA Fellowship in Educational Leadership through UNM’s Anderson School of Management. This prestigious program integrates school-based clinical practice with innovative business school coursework to equip graduates with the skills needed to effectively lead schools and districts while addressing achievement gaps. She completed the fellowship and earned her MBA in Educational Leadership in 2019.

Since 2018, Ms. Pinnere has served as the Founding Director of Curriculum and Instruction at Albuquerque Collegiate, overseeing the instructional and academic strategic planning for the school. In this role, she provides instructional leadership in curriculum, assessment, and professional development, and is responsible for driving the overall direction and strategy for ACCS instructional programming.

Kelsey McCaffrey- Elementary School Principal  

Kelsey McCaffrey was born and raised in Northern California. She completed her undergraduate degree at Santa Rosa Junior College before transferring to California State University, Chico. At Chico State, Ms. McCaffrey was active in her language studies and involved in extracurricular activities, including the debate team and Model United Nations. She started her career in education as a kindergarten teacher at Albuquerque Collegiate through the Teach for America program, while also working towards her TESOL endorsement to work with English Learners. In her first year of teaching, Ms. McCaffrey achieved significant academic growth with her students before the school year was interrupted by COVID-19.

In 2020, Ms. McCaffrey became active in education policy as the ACCS Teacher Liaison to the Public Education Department. The following year, she joined the ACCS leadership team as an Intervention Teacher and Coach, where she coached new teachers on the best teaching strategies in the nation. In addition to her work in the classroom, Ms. McCaffrey served as a policy fellow for TeachPlus in the 2021 and 2023 cohorts, using her teacher voice to advocate for positive policy change for New Mexico’s students. In 2023, she grew in her leadership and became the Elementary Principal in Residence at ACCS, working to create an environment focused on teacher support and high student achievement. Later that year, she joined the NM TESOL Board to broaden her network and resources to support English Learners. In 2024, Ms. McCaffrey graduated with honors from Johns Hopkins University with her M.Ed and currently works as Albuquerque Collegiate’s Elementary Principal.

Julia Burrola- Middle School Principal in Residence

 

Julia Burrola is the Middle School Principal in Residence at Albuquerque Collegiate Charter School. Born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Ms. Burrola has a deep-rooted connection to her community, which she passionately serves through her role in education.

Ms. Burrola earned her Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from The University of New Mexico and went on to complete her Master’s in Education with a specialty in Elementary Math and Science Education from New Mexico State University. With over a decade of teaching experience, Ms. Burrola has developed a profound expertise in engaging and nurturing young minds. As a Level 2 teacher, Ms. Burrola is currently advancing her professional qualifications by working on Level 3 micro-credentials. She holds endorsements in math, science, and gifted education, demonstrating her diverse skill set and commitment to catering to various student needs.

Ms. Burrola has been a prominent teacher leader on the New Mexico Public Education Department’s Secretary’s Teacher Advisory, where she has contributed to shaping educational policies and initiatives. Additionally, she has served as a Policy Fellow for TeachPlus NM, advocating for effective education policies that benefit both teachers and students.Throughout her career, Ms. Burrola has been dedicated to fostering an inclusive and stimulating learning environment. Her leadership at Albuquerque Collegiate Charter School is characterized by her innovative approach to education and her unwavering dedication to student success.

 

 

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