TOMAS WITH WINNER BANNER

After graduating from Albuquerque Academy in 1999, Tomas attended Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas where he earned a bachelor’s degree in biology. During his summers, Tomas would return home and work as an AmeriCorps volunteer in local after-school programs. After completing his undergraduate studies, Tomas continued with AmeriCorps while working on a master’s degree in education at the University of New Mexico. During this time, he also served as a graduate assistant for the office of Community Learning and Public Service at UNM.

In 2004, Tomas embarked on his first teaching job at his neighborhood school, Washington Middle School, one of the lower performing schools in New Mexico. Tomas taught sixth grade earth science. While there, he pursued a master’s degree in public health in hopes of fulfilling his dream of starting a health care-based charter school. Tomas earned his master’s degree in public health in 2009. After four years of teaching at Washington Middle School, Tomas transferred Amy Biehl High School, a charter school in downtown Albuquerque, where he taught biology, chemistry, and physical science.

While at Amy Biehl High School, Tomas married Milagro Tognoni, a teacher at Washington Middle School and started a family of his own, continuing to look for opportunities related to his health care-based charter school dream. He soon connected with an organization that was starting a health care-focused charter school in Albuquerque. Working closely with the founders and the future principal of the school, Tomas participated in its design and started teaching at Health Leadership High School in 2013. Tomas currently teaches social studies, language arts, health, science, and Spanish.