Our Team

Sara Gallagher-Bernall, ET/P, Executive Director

Sara holds a B.S. in Elementary Education from Montana State University, a graduate-level certificate in Educational Therapy from the University of California - Riverside, and a Professional Level Educational Therapist endorsement from the Association of Educational Therapy. She dedicated over eight years to classroom teaching in Oregon and Washington, where she pioneered an intervention program for dyslexic students at Northwest Christian Schools. Recognizing the unique needs of those with dyslexia, she pursued ongoing education as a dyslexia consultant and screener through Bright Solutions for Dyslexia in partnership with the University of San Diego. In addition, to her extensive background in Orton-Gillingham instruction and methods, Sara is an accredited instructor with the Institute of Excellence in Writing. 

Sarah Alexander, Associate Director

Sarah graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in English and from Stanford University with an M.A. in English Literature. When her daughter was diagnosed with dyslexia in 2015, she was inspired to channel her lifelong passion for language and reading into a new career path. Since then, she has pursued specialized training in addressing reading difficulties. She is a member of the Academy of Orton Gillingham Practitioners and Educators. 

 

Sarah’s previous professional career includes Program Director for Off the Beaten Path, an adventure travel company; Communications Director for the College of Letters & Science at Montana State University; and founder/owner of Market Day Foods, an innovator in local foods distribution. She is also a founding board member and coach for Bozeman Youth Cycling. 

Grace Bernall

A dedicated and compassionate instructor, Grace brings a unique perspective rooted in personal experience. Having completed an Orton-Gillingham/Structured Literacy intervention as a child, she possesses a profound understanding of challenges dyslexic students encounter and Is able to connect with students on a level that goes beyond the conventional instructor-student relationship.

Grace completed the rigorous training and practice needed to teach dyslexic students while pursuing her undergraduate degree in Psychology at Montana State University. In addition to her academic pursuits, Grace enjoys yoga, travel, cross-country skiing, hiking, and snuggling with her cat Elaina. 

Linda Brown

As a former educator and advocate for deaf children as well as the parent of a dyslexic child (now a thriving adult), Linda knows both sides of the special education equation. Linda has a Masters in Special Education from the University of Washington and, prior to joining GVLS, was a tutor and parent educator for deaf children in Seattle, a sign language interpreter in the Bozeman Public Schools, and a teacher at Pilgrim Preschool. She brings experience, empathy, vast patience, and the warmest smile to her role as an instructor at GVLS. 

Jessica Hannah

Jessica hails from upstate New York, where she received her Bachelors degree from Hartwick College as well as her Childhood and Early Childhood teaching certifications from SUNY Cortland. While training in Orton Gillingham and the Barton Reading and Spelling Curriculum, she is simultaneously completing a Masters in Special Education, also from SUNY Cortland. Jessica has a deep inner dedication to supporting children, which has propelled her to explore Montessori and TESOL (non-English speaking) certifications, outdoor education, and basically any opportunity she encounters to work with kids.  

Ann Hoy

After graduating with a B.A. in Special Education from Florida Atlantic University,  Ann Hoy began her teaching career in Colorado. She was a Reading Interventionist for over ten years in Littleton,  Colorado, and spent an additional decade teaching 4th and 5th grades in Conifer, Colorado.  Ann retired from the classroom in 2020 but continues to substitute teach while also working with READMontana students as an online instructor.  

Jenny Larson

Jenny earned her English Teaching Credential from The Master’s University in California, where she also taught for several years. She has extensive training in the Barton Reading and Spelling Program and has taken her own children through the curriculum. “My favorite part is seeing kids learn spelling rules that actually work, what a confidence booster for life!” Jenny lives in Bozeman with her husband of 19 years and three daughters (13, 12 & 9). She has homeschooled for seven years and is actively involved in the creation and administration of a homeschool cooperative. 

Rae Lilly

Rae has an undergraduate degree from MSU, as well as an M.A. Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Lesley College in Boston.  The emphasis of her graduate studies was employing creative arts in learning.  She has extensive training in all curriculum areas with a primary focus on language arts instruction, including the Orton-Gillingham-influenced Barton Reading and Spelling system and Handwriting Without Tears. Rae's 25+ years of classroom teaching provided her with a unique understanding of the diverse strengths and challenges students possess emotionally and academically.

Noah Massey

Noah has a B.A. in Art History from Montana State,  a B.F.A. from the University of Montana, and an M.F.A from the University of Wisconsin Madison, where she also took courses in the Education department “just for fun.”  Noah’s teaching adventure continued as she homeschooled her two dyslexic children before joining READMontana's instructional staff. 

When not working with ReadMT students, Noah is the Executive Director for S.L.A.M. (Support Local Artists and Musicians), a practicing artist, mom, and master of mayhem. Students working with Noah can expect lots of laughter and many, many art activities.

Jen Seessel

Jennifer graduated from the University of Colorado in 1991 with a B.A. in anthropology. Initially drawn to paleontology, she participated in excavations in Wyoming and Montana before transitioning to culinary school. In 1997, she earned her B.A. in Culinary Arts from the New England Culinary Institute (NECI) in Montpelier, Vermont. Following graduation, Jennifer worked in various roles at guest ranches and restaurants in Montana until she decided to focus on raising her two daughters.  

In addition to volunteering in her daughters' school, Jen also worked with children as a ski education instructor at Crosscut Mountain Sports Center. Jen joined the staff of READMontana in May 2002 after completing her training in Orton-Gillingham based reading instruction. 

Amy Severance

Amy completed her undergraduate education at the University of Montana, where she also met her husband, Patrick, a packer and guide in the Bob Marshall Wilderness. Amy and her husband moved to Whitehall, MT where Amy taught 1st - 6th grades at Whitehall Elementary for over 20 years. After selling their horse ranch and following their sons to Bozeman, Amy wanted to continue sharing the skills she had honed during her time as a classroom teacher. Her expertise in reading, writing, and spelling instruction led her to READMontana where she shares these talents with her students.

Diya Taylor

Originally from Vermont, Diya is a recent graduate of Colorado College where she studied neuroscience and education. Diya has worked with students as an online tutor for the past three years, was a mentor for middle-school students in Colorado Springs, and recently completed training in Orton-Gillingham instructional methods for dyslexia. And she also speaks Bengali!