James Ramsey is Executive Director for the St. Luke’s Performing Arts Academy, Director of Music and Arts at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, Adjunct Faculty at the University of Denver’s Lamont School of Music and Artistic Director for the Wesley Choral Festival. James has worked with various orchestras and ensembles in the area as well as served as Music Director and Conductor for the Littleton Chorale, Music Director for the University of Colorado Summer Opera Program, Chorus Master for the Colorado Music Festival, Associate Conductor of the Carolina Chamber Chorale and Assistant Conductor of the Grammy award-winning San Francisco Symphony Chorus preparing for several maestros including Michael Tilson Thomas, Sir Roger Norrington and Libor Pesek. Ramsey has conducted choral and orchestral performances across Europe and the United States including professional engagements at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Red Rocks Amphitheater, and Kennedy Center (2015). As a baritone soloist, he has performed with CU Opera, Pikes Peak Opera, Opera Colorado, and Rochester (NY) Light Opera Theater. James earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Colorado, Boulder, a Master of Music degree in conducting at the Eastman School of Music, and a Bachelor of Music Education at Middle Tennessee State University. Mentors and teachers include Joan Conlon, Vance George, Donald Neuen, Alfred Mann, and Samuel Adler. As an instructor, Ramsey has taught at the University of Colorado, Whitman College in Washington, and Brighton Central Schools in Rochester, NY. He has served as the American Choral Directors Association’s Repertoire and Standards Chair for Community Choirs for both Colorado and the Southwest Region. James resides in Littleton with his wife, Leigh, and their sons, Jack and Luke.
Since the age of three, Jenna has been performing and since the age of seven she has been directing. Her first show was a summer stock performance written with the help of her sisters and included original choreography, magic and storytelling that was memorable for every neighbor in attendance. As she grew, she followed her passion to the stage and performed in roles such as Glinda in The Wizard of Oz, Mrs. Frank in The Diary of Anne Frank, Maize in The Boyfriend and most recently, Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing. She has also directed many productions including Aladdin, Narnia, The Bear, The Proposal, The Wizard of Oz, and She Loves Me. She holds a Bachelors of Arts in Musical Theater from Friends University and has over 14 years experience directing and producing theater.
Samantha serves as Director of Early Childhood Ministry at St. Luke’s UMC and supported Assistant Producer roles with PAA for the last 3 years. Samantha's 16 years of personal and professional experience coupled with her genuine love of children and strong integrity has allowed her to develop her passion for the care and tutelage of children. Samantha joins our team with strong relational skills with the ability to focus on others strengths as a way to stimulate personal and group excellence. She is grateful for the opportunity to join our PAA staff as she knows the impact creative outlets have on transforming the lives of children. Samantha resides in Highlands Ranch and leads many volunteer outreach programs through St. Luke’s. She is also the proud mother to two daughters, Keara and Ryann who attend CU Boulder.
Taletha Pogge has been an accountant for over ten years, specializing in accounts payable, accounts receivable, and payroll. She graduated from Walla Walla University with a degree in accounting. She volunteers in her community for a variety of non-profit organizations and has served on the PTO board at her children's school. Taletha's hobbies include hiking in Colorado's great outdoors, sewing, and knitting. She and her husband have lived in Colorado for 7 years with their two wonderful and energetic boys. She enjoys being active and participating in the community.
Natalie La Scala is a Denver based artist and educator. With a background in Film and Digital Media, her work experience is in content production, digital asset management, and project management. Most recently, she has taught at the Art Institute of Colorado, working closely with students and the industry to create market ready graduates, design supporting curriculum, and provide real world professional experiences for students and graduates. Natalie holds a BA from the University of Kentucky, and a MFA from the Savannah College of Art and Design. She is married to artist Damon La Scala, and they have two energetic sons that keep them on their toes. She is proud to be part of the team at St. Luke's PAA, and is inspired by providing experiences that shape students through art and education.
Laura Benson has always enjoyed being involved in her community and supporting worthwhile causes. She is the former treasurer of the Junior League of Fort Collins where she gained her experience working with non-profits. After ten years in banking and wealth management, she became a Certified Public Accountant currently working in manufacturing. As our most recent staff member, she is pleased to be part of managing the financial aspect our growing programs.
As a Professional in Human Resources, recognized leader in business, and the current Director of Client Services for a multinational learning and development company Kim, brings more than 15 years of operational experience, success, and a solid work ethic to her new role at the Performing Arts Academy. While serving as an HR Business Partner, focused on Learning & Development, Kim managed a team in the US Corporate Headquarters while also serving her internal clients globally. She has been certified to facilitate Ken Blanchard’s “Situational Leadership” program as well as having proficiency in instructional design, executive coaching and human dynamics assessments including SDI, The Devine Inventory, and Extended DISC. As the Director of Client Services for Sandler Training Kim manages and leads a team of 10 people as well as coordinating the efforts of hundreds of independent franchise owners and their associates around the world. Kim is a life-long learner and continues to pursue advancements in all areas of her life. She has a deep love of the Arts with a great appreciation for all types of music and dance. Since moving full time to Colorado Kim has taken a serious interest in both golf and skiing and practices both regularly.
Kate holds a BFA in musical theater from Syracuse University. She was a Radio City Rockette for four years and represented the U.S. twice in the World Tap Dance Championships. Professional performance credis include: 42nd Street International Tour, Funny Girl Tour, Cirque's Christmas Dreams, Singin' In The Rain, Chicago, and A Chorus Line. An award winning choreographer with choreography previously featured in national tours and regional theater productions, Kate teaches dance master classes throughout North America.
Matthew received his MFA from the University of Houston in May of 2014. He earned a BFA from the University of Wyoming. He has been an Assistant Scene Designer for the 2014-16 seasons at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. He has also worked as a carpenter at McCloud Summer Play House, Black Hills Play House, and Texas Shakespeare Festival. He has served as the technical director for the St. Luke's Performing Arts Academy in Highlands Ranch, Coloado for four years.