Under the auspices of our parent non-profit organization Homeschool Alumni Reaching Out, Homeschoolers Anonymous (HA) had a team of people, all former homeschoolers, that helped keep this project running. Giving direction to this team and our shared experiences was the job of HA’s community coordinators.
Our community coordinators were:
Ryan has an M.H.S. in Child Protection from Nova Southeastern University, an M.A. in Eastern Classics from St. John’s College, and a B.A. in Liberal Arts from Gutenberg College. He has served on the board of and run numerous social media campaigns for homeschool advocacy organizations, including the Coalition for Responsible Home Education and Homeschool Alumni Reaching Out. Homeschooled from kindergarten through high school graduation, Ryan worked over eight years as a public communications educator to high school students in homeschooling communities. His advocacy work on behalf of homeschooled students has been featured in national and international media and academia including The Guardian, The American Prospect, CQ Researcher, Christian Science Monitor, Washington Post, Georgetown Law Journal, Texas Observer, New Yorker, ProPublica, and Oxford University Press.
Nicholas Ducote is co-founder of Homeschoolers Anonymous. He grew up in a homeschool family immersed in an array of local, state, and national homeschooling movements – namely CHEF of Louisiana in elementary and ATI in middle school and high school. After high school, he worked at Bobby Jindal’s congressional office. He attended his first Communicators for Christ conference (CFC) in 2003, and credits homeschool speech and debate for kindling his passion for teaching. This passion inspired him to share the values of inquiry and critical thinking. He toured with CFC from 2006-2007 and, in college, he taught debate in Jordan and Afghanistan – helping to organize the first internationally-sanctioned debate tournament in Kabul. He had a fellowship with the National Center for Policy Analysis, a free market think tank in 2009, and spent the summer in Washington, D.C.
Nicholas received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and his Master of Arts in History from Louisiana Tech University. He is in the final stages of publishing his first book, a work of history profiling the Hunt family and their influence on lumber development in North Louisiana.
Our editorial team was made up of:
Social Media: Michele Hop-Ganev and Bonnie Mulholland
Editorial and Blog Team: Darcy Anne, Wende Webb Benner, Giselle Palmer, and Eleanor Skelton
Michele was homeschooled K-12 and spent a large portion of that time in a fundamentalist home-church community. She currently works in marketing for Higher Education and helps manage social media channels for Homeschoolers Anonymous. She enjoys spending her free time reading, exploring her new surroundings in Pennsylvania, and hanging out with her husband and their dog
Bonnie grew up in New Orleans – in fact, just down the street from Nick Ducote. Her family was active in ATI, CHEF of Louisiana, and CFC/NCFCA speech and debate. She graduated from Louisiana State University with a B.A. in Music Arts and now works in marketing in New Orleans. A jack-of-all-trades, Bonnie can do a little bit of everything: writing press releases and website content, graphic design and business development. Her interests include fashion, food, friends, and fun alliterations. In her free time, you can probably find her grooving to live music, singing with her band, playing with her hula hoops, or pretending to be an iron chef in the kitchen.
Darcy is a homeschool alumni, homeschooled K-12, raised very conservatively, whose family dabbled in Gothardism and has since thrown it all out the window. She loved the education part of homeschooling but could have done without all the influences and damages of the conservative Christian homeschool culture. She married her high-school sweetheart (do homeschoolers have high-school sweethearts?) and is mother to four beautiful, rambunctious children. They live in the mountains of central Montana, where Darcy is a college student finishing her undergrad and planning to go on to a grad degree in counseling. She is passionate about human rights, peaceful parenting, healthy relationships, women’s issues, and healing from spiritual abuse. When she’s not wrangling kids or studying or exploring Montana, she can be found blogging at www.darcysheartstirrings.blogspot.com.
Eleanor was homeschooled K-12 in Texas and Colorado. She left fundamentalism in 2012 after her parents gave her an ultimatum: move out or transfer from her state school to Bob Jones University. After being kicked out of her church, Eleanor and other friends in Colorado Springs formed the Underground Railroad, a network to help others, especially homeschool alumni, escape authoritarian parents and cult-like churches. Eleanor graduated from UCCS with a dual bachelor’s in English and Chemistry in 2015. While in school, she was an editor for three years at the newspaper, The Scribe, as well as a chemistry tutor on campus. In spare moments, Eleanor writes slam poetry, doodles nerdy cartoons for her webcomic, fiddles on her blue violin, and blogs at eleanorskelton.com.
Wende’s family began homeschooling the first year it was legal in NC. She was homeschooled grades 3-12 in a family that became increasingly more fundamentalist each year. They eventually joined Gothard’s ATI which they continued until she left home. She always felt like a bit of an oddity as an adopted, only child in a quiverfull movement. Wende feels that much of her adult life has been spent unraveling the untruths and healing from the damage caused by her years in a spiritually abusive cult. She married her long time best friend, Jason, and together they have two beautiful, creative children. They currently live just outside of Chicago. Wende is working to finish her degree in creative writing. Even in childhood she spent many adventurous hours lost in the fantasy worlds of her mind. She figured it was finally time to write her stories for others too. Besides writing, Wende loves reading fantasy and science fiction. She is also an accomplished pianist and piano teacher. She is passionate about helping others find healing from abuse and raising awareness of abuse dynamics.
Giselle Palmer attended private school during kindergarten in New Hampshire and first grade in Virginia. Because of her family’s frequent moves, she began homeschooling in Alabama in 1985. Other than a few months of sixth grade and her eighth grade year (both in private schools), Giselle continued to be homeschooled in Alabama, Florida, and Tennessee until graduating in 1996. She was part of the ATI program beginning in ninth grade and continuing past graduation until she began college at the age of 21. Giselle has an Associate of Science Degree from Chattanooga State, a Bachelor of Science in Human Development from Lee University, and a Masters of Education from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. She has been teaching in the public school system since 2005, and has taught at two different magnet schools in Tennessee. She is currently working in a low-income neighborhood teaching a group of adorable, hardworking, and enthusiastic students who truly believe that education is the key to a successful future.