Our Alumni

Our Alumni

Universities throughout the nation compete for our graduates, offering scholarships. Lee Academy graduates have been accepted at and/or attended numerous distinguished universities across the nation, including Agnes Scott, American Conservatory Theater, American University, Art Institute of Tampa, Auburn, Bard, Bard College Berlin (Germany), Boston University, Brown, Case Western Reserve, Clemson, College of William and Mary, Columbia, Cornell, Eckerd, Elon, Embry-Riddle, Emory, Eugene Lang, Florida State, George Mason, George Washington, Georgetown, Georgia Tech, Guilford, Harvard, Hillsdale, Marquette, New College, Maryland Institute College of Art, Northwestern, Oxford (England), Pomona, Pont Even School of Contemporary Art (France), Queens University (NC), Rabat International University (Morocco), Rennes Business School (France), Ringling School of Art & Design, Rollins, Rutgers, Sarah Lawrence, St. Leo, Stetson University School of Law, Taylor, Tufts, Tulane, University of Chicago, University of Evansville, University of Florida, UNC Chapel Hill, University of South Florida, University of Nebraska, University of Tampa, Vassar, Virginia Tech, Wilkes and Wooster.

Note: Please click name to view the description.

Claire Winters (’92)

graduated from the American Conservatory Theater and has played numerous roles on stage and screen in New York and Hollywood. She often writes about psychology, business and women’s issues and helps individuals, brands and non-profits make deeper connections to their audiences and feel better about their work.

Jimmy Chang (’93)

holds an MA degree in Mathematics and Theatre from Eckerd College and is Dean of Mathematics at St. Petersburg College. He received the Distinguished Teaching Award from the Mathematical
Association of America. Jimmy gave Lee’s 2018 Commencement Address.

Dan Guy (’95)

earned his BA in Information Technology from Wilkes University.
He is founder and Chief Technology Officer at Clutch Holdings and was named 2014’s Startup Tech Star in the Philadelphia area.

James Thoms (’97)

holds a Master’s degree in History from the University of South Florida and is working for a testing company in Tampa.

Chaz Preston (’99)

holds a PhD from the University of Chicago, was an Assistant Professor at Northwestern University and is presently  doing post doctorate work at the University of Mississippi. Chaz found time to marry (in India and in the US), has several published works, presents his papers at academic conferences and completed a Fulbright-Nehru Project on Sanskrit Dramas.

Leo Bermudez (’99)

earned his Bachelors Degree in Nursing while serving with the United States Army. Presently a 2nd Lt. stationed at San Antonio, Texas, Leo served two tours in Iraq.

Chris Thoms (’99)

earned his BS in Physics (USF), then joined a local engineering firm. He is now pursuing his Master’s degree.

Chintan Thakkar (’99)

earned his Master’s degree in Computer Science (USF) and is a delivery lead and software architect at Deloitte, He is also Co-Founder and Managing Member for Object Lounge’s Empower
Network in Tampa.

Brian Dudley (’99)

holds a PhD in Genetics from Case Western and a Juris Doctor from American University. He is presently an associate at Sterne, Kessler,
Goldstein & Fox in Washington, D.C. in the Biotechnology/Chemical practice group. Brian has authored publications on stem cell biology, genetics and molecular biology.

Melissa (Ratcliff) Champagne (’00)

holds a Juris Doctor from Boston University Law School. She is President of Community Law & Title in Palm Harbor and focuses on
real estate law.

Philip Dudley (’00)

has a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from George Mason, is active
in politics and was campaign manager for Mary Geren, winner of the Democratic primary for Congressional District 9 in South Carolina.

Sally Moore (’01)

earned her PhD in School Psychology with specialization in Early Childhood from the University of Florida. She passed the APA exam and is a licensed Psychologist at Desoto Elementary School in Tampa. Sally gave Lee’s 2014 Commencement Address.

Amanda Leaders (’01)

graduated with honors from USF with a BA in English and finished
her Master’s degree in Medical Science from the College of Medicine at USF. She is now in an intensive code school learning to be a  developer.

Lee Hildebrand (’01)

holds Masters degrees in Management (USF) and Teaching  (Belmont) and is Senior Salesforce Developer at HCA IT&S in Nashville, Tennessee.

Jennifer Field (’01)

graduated from USF with a BA degree in Education and Mass
Communications. She worked as ACH Client Advocacy Manager at JP Morgan Chase.

Jake Zydek (’01)

holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the University of South Florida, where he is presently working toward his Master’s degree.

Becky Preston (’02)

holds a BA in Psychology and Early Childhood Education from National-Louis University. After working as an early childhood teacher in Chicago, Becky returned to Tampa and is working with young children.

Katherine (Field) Johnson (’03)

earned her PhD in Discrete Mathematics at the University of Nebraska and is an Associate Professor on the faculty at Florida Gulf Coast University. Prior to joining FGC, Katie was a Monroe
Scholar in Mathematics at William & Mary, a recipient of the Jack Kent Cooke scholarship and an intern at the National Security Agency.

Julie Zydek (’03)

earned her BS in Geological and Earth Sciences and Master’s degree
in Geology from the University of South Florida and is working as a Hydrogeologist at the Southwest Florida Water Management District. Julie recently passed her Professional Geologist licensure exam.

Kathy Thoms (’03)

graduated summa cum laude with an MA in Secondary Social Science Education at USF and is teaching in Tampa.

Sarah Grimme (’03)

holds a BLA from New College and a JD from Stetson Law School.
She is now a Grants Specialist at the University of Florida. Sarah was previously a Development and Policy Associate with a nonprofit
community development institution.

Jenna (Leitao) Bullard (’04)

earned a BA from the University of Rhode Island in Psychology,
following a year of study at Oxford (England). Jenna returned to Tampa, where she is a Marketing Specialist.

Spencer Moore (’04)

majored in Journalism in the University of Florida’s ROTC Program. He is serving in the Army as a Training Infantry Staff Sergeant in Pennsylvania and awaiting his next overseas deployment.

Avirut Thongsuriyapong (’05)

(’05) is working as an engineer in his home country of Thailand, after completing his BS and graduate work in Engineering at Cornell.

Jenna McCulloch (’06)

(’06) holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a Master’s degree in Government and International Relations from USF.

Erin Derrick (’06)

graduated from Hillsdale College in Physics and is an EOS Tabel
Fel low f inishing her doctorate in Geophysics at the University of South Carolina, where she is also an Instructional Assistant. Her research has provided essential information for planning emergency responses to earthquakes in South Carolina. Erin is working as a Science teacher at The Hammond School in South Carolina.

Melanie (Ratcliff) Perdue (’06)

graduated in Fine Arts from Ringling, was account manager at Sun God Medicinals in Portland, Oregon and has recently moved to Montana.

(’07) Adrian Errico

graduated summa cum laude from USF in 2011 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts/Digital Video & Electronic Media and is completing her Masters in Classical Art at Florida State. Adrian also attended the Pont Aven School of Contemporary Art in France.

Brendan Collett (’07)

graduated from USF with a BA in Public Relations and studied with Harvard Business School. He is Senior Vice President – BA Group Manager at Citibank’s AML Operations.

Jeremy Evans (’07)

graduated with a BA in Neuroscience and Psychology from New
College. He is CEO of the BBB Online Marketing Firm in Boulder, Colorado.

Nicolas Stemm (’07)

earned his Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science at the University of South Florida. He is now working independently as a Mobile Application Developer.

(’07) Andrea Williams

holds a BA in Economics from Bard College and majored in Chemical Engineering at USF. She is presently a marine systems engineer and technician on a ship in the Caribbean.

Matthew Gil (’07)

earned his BA in Mass Communications and Political Science at
USF. After operating his own copywriting/marketing firm, he joined Kernel, Spectrum’s in-house agency, as Copywriter for their six-state South Division.

John Kluwin (’07)

has an MBA in Management and Entrepreneurship from Rollins and is Chief Development Officer at Sea Oak Capital, specializing in renewable energy. John was the commencement speaker at Lee Academy’s 2017 graduation ceremony.

Tedder Bridges (’08)

is presently a Sergeant in the 82nd Airborne Division and served two deployments in Afghanistan.

Tung Bui (’08)

completed two Master’s degrees at St. Leo University (Business
Administration and Cybersecurity). Tung is managing a local business, but intends to secure a position in cybersecurity.

Harrison Gross (’09)

holds a BA in Creative Writing – Poetics from Columbia University.
He founded a charity-focused poetry & music publisher called Sphirah and authored several poetry chapbooks. Harrison
is Digital Media Manager at Tekcapital.plc and co-founder of Media Lead at Lucyd in Miami.

Colin Pritchard (’10)

completed Bachelor’s degrees in Mechanical Engineering at both Elon and Clemson. He is a Project Engineer at B & I Contractors in Fort Myers.

Greg Sinadinos (’10)

earned his Bachelor’s in English from Florida State University and
his MBA from St. Leo. Greg is working as a financial advisor while taking classes at the American College of Financial Services.

(’10) Orion Brader

is majoring in Biology at St. Petersburg College and intends to  pursue graduate studies.  He also teaches science projects for “Mad Science.”

Erik Fink (’11)

is finishing his senior year at Rutgers University, He intends to take his Media Studies major and Sociology minor into the field of public policy. Erik was recently inducted to the Kappa Tau Alpha journalism honor society.

Samantha Jones (’11)

received her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida in Information Systems with a minor in Computer Science. She is a Programmer Analyst for the Orange County Supervisor of Elections.

Olivia Harries (’11)

received her Bachelor’s degree in Media Studies and Anthropology from Vassar, where she still holds three swimming records. Olivia is Senior Product Development Specialist at Imperfect Produce, a new “startup” company in the San Francisco Bay area.

Nghi (Nguyen) Tong (’11)

graduated  with a 4.0 from USF with a BS in Finance and was named the King O’Neal Scholar in 2015.

Jonathan Jones (’12)

attended the Honors College at USF, where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Interpreter Training for Sign Language. He plans to become an interpreter.

Cara Shields (’12)

earned a Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology from the University of Tampa and is a student at Emory University in Atlanta, working on her PhD in Cancer Biology.

Manuel Thornberry (’12)

holds Bachelor’s (USF) and Master’s (Georgia Tech) degrees in Chemistry. He currently works at Infiniti Labs in Florida as the Assistant LC/MS Manager.

Meghan Kelley (’12)

graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology. She recently moved to Atlanta and is Project Manager at a print & design shop.

Alexandria Sinadinos (’12)

earned her Bachelor’s degree in Marketing, with honors, from Florida State University and is Social Media Coordinator at the Ultimate Medical Academy in Tampa.

Joshua Joseph (’13)

attended Florida Atlantic University and is working for Humana here in Tampa.

Othman El Alaoui (’14)

completed his Bachelor’s degree in Business Studies at Rabat International University in Morocco. He spent his junior year in France, studying at Rennes Business School.

Aaron Ortiz (’14)

just completed his first year of graduate school at Georgia Tech, studying Computer Science with a Computational Perception and Robotics focus. Aaron was selected for a robotics internship with Delta this year and had the
opportunity to travel to Singapore over Spring Break. He will be working with a team this summer as a graduate research intern at Google.

Lukas Harries (’15)

graduated in May with a Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry at Vassar and recently made a presentation at a Biochem conference in Orlando. He intends to take a “gap year,” then decide on grad school. With GRE scores in the 95th percentile, he will have many choices.

Donovan Bottini (’15)

will graduate from St. Leo University this fall, with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Donovan also modifies
gaming software. He currently has over 4,000 followers keeping track of his projects.

Phong Tran (’15)

is pursuing his doctorate in Pharmacy at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences. He successfully
completed his “White Coat Ceremony” and is President-Elect of the Boston chapter of the APA’s Academy of Student Pharmacists.

Nicholai Babis (’15)

graduated from Vassar with Bachelor’s degrees in both International Studies and German Studies. He will be working in New York City as a paralegal for an international law firm. Nicholai’s’s future plans include grad school.

Han Nguyen (’15)

completed her sophomore year at HCC with plans to transfer to USF for a career in pharmacy or nursing.

Alexander Strid (’15)

completed his junior year at USF St. Pete, majoring in Mass Communication and Journalism. Alex hones his skills as a
writer with TFW2005. He has also continued with his hobbies – photography and drumming.

Kaylie Caraway (’16)

completed her senior year at USF and plans to complete a Master’s degree before entering medical school. Kaylie’s
interests center around orthopedics and trauma.

Augustine Haile (’16)

completed her junior year in the Honors College at USF St. Petersburg, majoring in Anthropology and minoring in
Geospatial Analysis. She works as a research assistant at the Museum of Fine Arts. Augustine has continued with her sailing as a member of the USF Sailing Team and competed in several qualifying events for the Sailing National Championships.

Samantha Lochmandy (’16)

completed her junior year at The New School in New York, where she is pursuing a double major (Psychology, Culture & Media). Samantha is interning at Baboon Animation, which develops animated projects for film and TV, including Disney and Nick.

Marisol Thornberry (’16)

will graduate in August with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Sciences and Disorders. In the fall, she will enter graduate school at USF to pursue a Masters’ degree in Speech Pathology. She is VP of a USF student organization for Bilingual Language & Literacy.

Sebastian Babis (’17)

completed his sophomore year at the Georgetown  University School of Foreign Service. He is also a violinist with the Georgetown University Orchestra. Sebastian volunteered to teach Washington DC middle school students and plans to study abroad in Berlin next semester.

Nicolas Ortiz (’17)

just completed his sophomore year at the University of Florida. A political science major, he has also been studying
languages and cultures in preparation for a study abroad opportunity in the Spring. Nick is a Conversation Partner with the English Language Institute at UF, where he helps international students improve their language skills and better their understanding of American culture.

Jackson McMillan (’17)

is in his Junior year at the University of Florida in pursuit of a Biology degree. He volunteers in the Paleontology department and is currently in talks to do an extended internship with the US Department of Agriculture. He is also deciding between several options for post  undergraduate studies, including Genetic Engineering and Law School.

Jackson McMillan (’17)

is in his Junior year at the University of Florida in pursuit of a Biology degree. He volunteers in the Paleontology department and is currently in talks to do an extended internship with the US Department of Agriculture. He is also deciding between several options for post  undergraduate studies, including Genetic Engineering and Law School.

Greyson Bottini (’17)

has been engaged in his culinary classes at the Art Institute of Tampa, and is on track to earn a degree in Culinary Arts. Greyson is also apprenticing at Jamison B. Breadhouse Bakes, a wholesale artisan bread company in Ybor City.

Nicholas Strid (’17)

is attending the University of South Florida, but as yet has not declared a major. He has continued to stay active in hockey as a member of the Ice Bulls Hockey Club.

Kendal Bottini (’18)

is attending the University of Florida, majoring in Linguistics and minoring in Communication Studies and Teaching English as a Second Language. He is also Assistant Director at Gatorship, an inclusion and diversity program.

Dat Do (’18)

will graduate in August with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Sciences and Disorders. In the fall, she will enter graduate school at USF to pursue a Masters’ degree in Speech Pathology. She is VP of a USF student organization for Bilingual Language & Literacy.

Ashtyn Kelley (’19)

has been at Lee Academy for seven years and is well respected by both her fellow students and the faculty. She has taken a very active part in all aspects of school life, participating in field trips to The Keys, The Everglades, Costa Rica and Death Valley. Ashtyn enjoys the theater, has taken classes in Acting and Improv and played key roles in all our drama productions. She also likes music and plays the ukulele and the trumpet. Her Senior Capstone Project is titled Seed Bombs – A Solution to Pollution. Ashtyn participated in our dual enrollment program with local
colleges, receiving excellent grades in Anthropology, Public Speaking and Understanding Visual Art. She is a recipient of a Bright Futures Scholarship and will be heading to the University of Florida in the fall to pursue a degree in Religious Studies. After that, Ashtyn hopes to obtain a degree in embalming, which has been a long-time interest.

Cayman Bull (’19)

started his career at Lee Academy as a member of our
Early Childhood class and stayed with us through part of his elementary school years, before leaving. As a young child he was extremely curious about everything and very involved in all aspects of his classes. We followed his progress through middle and early high school years and were
delighted to welcome him back at Lee Academy for his junior and senior years. Cayman participated in last year’s visit to Death Valley and performed in this year’s school play. He volunteers with the fStop Foundation in The Everglades, whose mission is about creating a positive impact in conservation through photography. The title of his Senior Capstone Project is the Plight of the Florida Panther. Cayman plans to attend the Maryland Institute College of Art to pursue his interest in film and photography.

Jules Smith (’19)

has spent her entire school career at Lee Academy and is among Lee’s youngest graduates. Always involved in school life to the fullest, we have seen her participate in many activities through the years, including visits to the Everglades, the Keys and Costa Rica. Jules has appeared in school plays and gave one of her best performances ever in our recent production of Almost, Maine. She also played her ukulele in our Spanish Heritage and Cinco de Mayo Performances. Outside of school Jules has
been a member of a youth group since her middle school years and a youth band in her freshman and junior years. She is involved in various volunteer activities in and around her local community. Her Senior Capstone Project is Preventing Waste with Edible Plates. Jules is a recipient of a Bright Futures
Scholarship and plans to major in Psychology.

Nguyen (Bin) Le (’19)

came from Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam in 2015 to complete his high school career. Following the curriculum in his second language has been a challenge but one which Bin has risen to, consistently
maintaining high grades. Bin is always cheerful and willing to help, which has endeared him to his fellow students and the faculty. He enjoys music, movies and sports. Bin’s Senior Capstone Project is titled The Bio Pot: Re-purposing Food Waste into Something Useful. He volunteers in our aftercare program with the younger students and is very reliable. He was a stage hand in our recent drama production and has also helped with fundraising events for local charities, as well as a school in Costa Rica. Bin will complete
courses for international students at HCC before heading to USF to study pharmacy.