Meet the Team

At Imagine Schools, we believe our quest for excellence is a journey, not a destination. To lead us on this continuing path is a national team dedicated to transformational education. This team brings focused expertise that accelerates academic outcomes; innovation that drives performance; collaboration that strengthens lives and communities.

National Team:

Jason Bryant

CEO & President, Imagine Schools, Inc.

Jason Bryant joined Imagine Schools in 2005, where he has put his extensive set of people and professional skills to use within Imagine Schools. He served as Development Director, Regional Director, Interim Principal and Executive Vice President of Operations before being named by the Board of Imagine Schools, Inc. as Chief Executive Officer and President.

Prior to Imagine, Jason worked at the AES Corporation. His tenure at AES included operations oversight of multiple power plants in California, leading development efforts in Kazakhstan, and overseeing operations in Brazil and Spain as commercial and financial director.

Barry Sharp

CEO & President, Imagine Schools Non-Profit
CFO, Imagine Schools, Inc.

Barry joined Imagine Schools, Inc. as CFO in 2006 and continues to serve in that role. Additionally, in 2013, he was appointed to serve as CEO, President and CFO of Imagine Schools Non-Profit, Inc.

Before joining Imagine, Barry served as CFO at The AES Corporation, a global power company.  He earned his BBA from The College of William & Mary in Virginia where he also serves as a member of the Board of Trustees of the William & Mary Business School Foundation.

Isabel Berio

Senior Vice President and General Counsel

Isabel Berio has been part of the Imagine Schools family since 2000, first joining the development team of then Chancellor Academies, Inc. and transitioning to the legal team in 2002. She has served in her current role as General Counsel since  2004.

Prior to joining the Imagine Schools team, Isabel worked as a litigation associate at the law firm of Katten Muchin & Zavis in Chicago, Illinois. She also held fundraising positions with the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts and the American Red Cross of Greater Miami & the Keys. Isabel received a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School and a B.A. from Tulane University.

James McFadden

Vice President of Finance

As Vice President of Finance for Imagine Schools, James is responsible for all aspects of accounting, financial reporting, financial statement consolidation, annual audit oversight and management of treasury functions. James joined Imagine Schools in 2004, strengthening the organization’s financial management and fiscal operations.

Prior to joining Imagine, James served as Corporate Controller for Innovative Logistics Techniques, Inc., with responsibilities for all aspects of accounting, financial reporting, budgeting, income tax preparation and credit facility management. Previous experience also included increasing roles of responsibility at Comsat Corporation, a division of Lockheed Martin. He is a graduate of Oakwood University and completed his graduate studies at Hood College.

Marisa Preuss

Chief Communications Officer

Marisa leads Imagine Schools’ communications and external affairs, ensuring a consistent and compelling message that furthers our mission and vision. She is responsible for shaping and advancing Imagine’s internal and external communications, including media relations, digital marketing and promotional materials.

Before joining Imagine Schools, Marisa served a variety of organizations, including those in the education, non-profit and corporate arenas where she gained significant experience in graphic design and marketing communications. She has a B.A. in Journalism with a concentration in Advertising and PR from the University of Central Florida. Marisa lives in Northern Virginia with her husband and three children.

Regional Team:

Amy Buttke

Executive Vice President

Amy currently serves as an Executive Vice President for Imagine Schools in the Midwest. She joined Imagine Schools in 2006 and has served both as an educator and administrator. Her experience began as a kindergarten teacher with increasing responsibilities as an academic coach, principal, and regional director. Within Imagine Schools, Amy served as principal of a highly performing school that grew from 200 students to more than 800 under her leadership.

Amy holds a B.A. in elementary education from Otterbein College. She prides herself on putting students and parents first and doing what is best for each individual child. She credits successful schools to a strong team of individuals who inspire growth in each person, every day.

Monte Lange

Executive Vice President
Arizona, California

Monte joined Imagine Schools in 2004 and has served more than 25 years as an educator and administrator. His experience began as an elementary teacher with increasing roles of responsibility, including special education teacher, special education director, and charter school leader. Within Imagine Schools, his leadership has included roles as assistant principal, founding principal, and regional director.

Monte holds a B.A. in Elementary Education and Special Education, and a M.Ed. in Educational Administration and Supervision from Arizona State University. Monte is an active member of Rotary International. He has served as a board member, committee leader, club secretary, and finally as club president.  Monte operates from a conviction that all children are capable of success – no exceptions – and that the purpose of education is to empower them to achieve, transforming them from youth into successful adulthood.

Rod Sasse

Executive Vice President
West Florida & South Florida

Rod Sasse has over 50 years of experience in education. He started his career as an English teacher in Kentucky before moving to Florida, where he served Broward County Public Schools in many roles including teacher, administrator, assistant to the Superintendent, and a division director. Rod joined the Imagine family through Chancellor Beacon Academies in 2000 and then transitioned to the Imagine Regional Director role in 2003. In 2010, Rod accepted the challenge to serve as the Executive Vice President for West and South Florida, which is home to 11 Imagine campuses.

Rod has a B.A. in English from Western Kentucky University and an MA in Guidance and Counseling from Xavier University. He received his Certification in Education Administration and Supervision – Principal K-12 from Florida Atlantic University.

Diane Thorne

Executive Vice President
North Florida

Diane Thorne has a diverse background in education, serving in both the private and public sector as a teacher, curriculum developer and headmaster/school leader. Her 33 years in the education field have afforded opportunities to study school leadership and its impact on effective instructional outcomes for students while maintaining a sustainable operating facility.

Diane has a B.S. degree from the University of North Florida, a Master’s degree from NOVA University in Educational Leadership, and an MBA from Rollins College.

Shawn Toler

Executive Vice President

Shawn Toler has more than 15 years of experience in transforming and positively impacting the lives of children through education. Prior to joining Imagine Schools, Shawn served as an English teacher, academic facilitator, adjunct professor in Education, and principal. He has served students, educators, and families in North Carolina, Maryland, and the District of Columbia. Within Imagine Schools, his leadership experience includes serving as an educational specialist, regional director, and vice president.

Shawn earned a B.S. in English from Radford University and holds a Master’s Degree in Education, focusing on School Improvement Leadership and Supervision from Goucher College. Shawn believes education should be inspirational and transformational. He is passionate about school being the daily highlight for every student as well as the beacon for every community.

Bradford Uchacz

Executive Vice President
Arizona, Nevada, Texas

Brad Uchacz joined Imagine Schools in 2008. During his time at Imagine, he has served in the roles of assistant principal, principal, and regional director.

He earned a B.S. in Education from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, a Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Phoenix, and his Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Argosy University in Phoenix.

Throughout his career, Brad has been actively involved in raising the level of education in Arizona. He is currently an active member of the Arizona Charter Association, serving on the advisory board. He served several years as a judge for the Arizona Educational Foundation, identifying exemplary schools throughout the state of Arizona.

Before joining Imagine Schools, Brad taught at public schools in the Phoenix area. He is a firm believer in always asking the question, “What is best for students?”

National Academic and Character Team:

Karen Gayle

National Director of Curriculum & Instruction

After 20 years of teaching elementary students in rural Virginia, small town Wisconsin, and inner-city and suburban Miami, Karen joined the charter school movement in 1999 with Chancellor Academies, which later became Imagine Schools in 2004. She holds a B.A. in Education and Psychology from Mary Washington University and M.S. in Education from Florida State University.

Karen leads implementation of evidence-based instruction at Imagine Schools through the development of the Academic Excellence Framework, Acceleration Model, Standards-based Curriculum Guides, Summer School/Intervention Curriculum, Literacy Position Paper and Literacy Focus Strategies. In addition, she coordinates and guides the work of the regional academic directors, task forces, school coaches, and teachers by providing professional learning opportunities through Imagine U courses, webinars, workshops, book studies, blogs, and educational bulletins. She is passionate about supporting our schools with current best practices in curriculum and instruction.

Alex Fernandez

Assessment Director

Alex Fernandez currently serves as the Assessment Director for Imagine Schools. As a member of the Imagine Schools National Assessment and Character Team her career spans over 20 years of service within the Miami-Dade Public Schools and more than 20 years with charter schools. She began as a classroom teacher and progressed through various administrative positions both at school sites and district offices. Alex joined Chancellor Academies in 2001 as an Instructional Leadership Director providing support to schools within the Arizona and Mid-Atlantic regions. Alex later co-developed the concept behind Chancellor Supplemental Educational Services, under Imagine Schools, and was responsible for overseeing the daily operations of the supplemental tutoring component of that program. She then began the transition to her current role as Assessment Director in 2008. Alex has extensive curriculum and school administration experience, instructional technology expertise, and has provided training to school officials across the United States and internationally in the areas of curriculum and instruction. Alex holds a Bachelor and Master of Science in Elementary Education from Florida International University and her Educational Leadership certification from Nova Southeastern University.

Dr. Julia Brady

National Director of Character Development

Julia joined Imagine Schools in 2007, serving first as Development Director and then Regional Director in Texas for over 15 years, ensuring the successful founding and daily operations of our schools there. She holds a B.A. in Sociocultural Anthropology with a minor in Economics and a graduate certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from Brigham Young University, an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership & Organization from
the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a doctorate in Education Leadership & Innovation from Arizona State University.

She leads the implementation of character development efforts at Imagine Schools by working closely with to support each of our schools in achieving and maintaining State School of Character certification to demonstrate the positive impact of character development on student behavior, academics, and school culture. In addition, she continues to support our school boards in Texas with strategic planning and development.

Our Stories

Discover Imagine Schools through the lives of our students, families, and community stakeholders.

Our Partners

Discover the Board members and community partners who enrich the education of Imagine Schools students in communities across the nation.

Our Campuses

Discover campuses in 7 states where students are prepared for lives of leadership, accomplishment, and exemplary character.