Meet Our Team

Our staff are devoted to your kids. We all bring expertise in (and a passion for) special education and a commitment to inclusion. Many of us have uniquely-abled kids of our own. 

Faculty & Staff

Terri Zobel

Co-founder, Teacher, & Director of Education

Hello, my name is Terri Zobel!  I teach Language Arts, our new Pathfinders course, Projects and act as a mentor for new teachers so they can be successful with our unique model.  I have 30+ years of experience in special education and went to school at SUNY Binghamton for my BA.  Then, I moved to NC to get my Master’s degree in special education at UNC Chapel Hill. 

My husband and I fell in love with the area and raised our 4 children here. We have always created a community wherever we are. We were foster parents and then adopted our two youngest children and now we foster dogs for a local rescue. It is not unusual to see one of our trained dogs at school helping with the kids!

As one of the founders of Dynamic, I have a deep personal interest in seeing it succeed.  My youngest two children attend the school and my oldest daughter, who also has unique challenges, is a teacher here.  My oldest son is an exhibits designer at The Durham Life and Sciences Museum. Everyone in our family is deeply committed to education!

I love the book The Education of Little Tree by Forrest Carter. One of my favorite quotes sums up how we teach:

“Ye see, Little Tree, ain’t no way of learning, except by lettin’ ye do. Iff’n I had stopped ye from buying the calf, ye’d also have thought ye ought to had it. Iff’n I told ye to buy it, ye’d blame me for the calf dying. Ye’ll have to learn as ye go.”

Virginia Stanley

Co-founder, Teacher, & Director of Professional Development

Hello, my name is Virginia Stanley. I enjoy teaching Science, Social Studies, Cooking, and a variety of Project-Based Learning Units.

I was born and raised right here in North Carolina. I like to cook southern-style meals for my family when we’re not going to the beach, Tennessee, or West Virginia to visit family!  I love animals, especially my own.  I have 3 dogs and 2 cats. They can be rambunctious but are very loving and will make you smile and laugh. 

I have been married for 36 years and have 3 beautiful adult daughters.  Education and being an advocate for unique students is my passion; I am happily starting my 20th year of teaching.  My journey started as a one-on-one for a blind student.  I have also worked in a self-contained Behavior and Emotionally Challenged classroom, the school library, Kindergarten and as a Projects teacher in a charter school.  I was also a 4-H leader for 12 years at Polenta Road 4-H Club where we raised and showed animals for the Johnston County Livestock Show and the North Carolina State Fair. 

Some of my favorite things are coffee, Mexican food, fruit, and – wait – did I say coffee?  I love to watch movies from the 19th century and movies that have a lot of suspense. I love children’s books and books that take you on a trip like Travels With My Aunt by Graham Greene. I am fortunate to have the opportunity of teaching students here at Dynamic Opportunities. I’m sure you will love it just as much as I do!

“Every child deserves a Champion: an adult that will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection, and insists they become the best they can possibly be!”   (Rita Pierson)

Kristen Braxton


Hi, I’m Kristen Braxton. I was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia. My family and I moved to Fuquay-Varina 17 years ago after living in Wake Forest, Virginia, and Florida. I have worked at Dynamic Opportunities for 4 years.  

I graduated from East Carolina University with a B.S. in Early Childhood Education with a concentration in Reading.  I taught for Granville County Schools before starting a family.  As my family was growing, I taught preschool on and off for 10 years. My husband and I have been teaching a class at our church for young adults with special abilities for 5 years now.

My husband and I have 8 children, five still at home. Three of our children have special abilities. Our oldest daughter is a part of the Dynamic Opportunities Transitions Program.  We love doing things as a family. Our favorite vacation is a week in Florida with our own private pool, 10 minutes from the beach. The dream is to retire there one day.

I have taught Life Skills, Technology, Cooking, and Math since I have been at Dynamic Opportunities.  There are many other classes that I have co-taught. I’m always willing to teach something new. My other role at Dynamic is to take lots of photos, this role is one I truly love!  Rarely will you see me without my camera.  It brings me so much happiness to take photos of our Dynamic students.  I love capturing their concentration, joy, teamwork, connections, etc.  It’s just proof we are making a difference!

Dynamic Opportunities has given my daughter and I a place where we both feel we belong. The students and staff are very accepting of differences and strive to make everyone feel comfortable.  At Dynamic, every day is a gift!

“This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it!”  -Psalm 118:24

Ethan Brown


Hello, my name is Ethan Brown, but most of our students refer to me as Mr. E, and I am super excited to begin my third year teaching at Dynamic Opportunities. I grew up in Poughkeepsie New York and attended Hobart and William Smith Colleges where I majored in Educational Studies with a concentration in Special Education and a minor in History. I have been living in Cary now for just over two years with my dog CeCe. Before joining DO I worked primarily with special needs youth in settings outside of schools, including residential centers and as a 1 on 1 advocate for youth struggling at school but who were also involved in the juvenile justice system.

I believe very strongly that every student deserves an opportunity to be successful and that my job as their teacher is to figure out what each of my students need to be individually successful, no matter how we define that success. When students see us working alongside them to figure out what tools they need in order to achieve their success, they buy into the process a whole lot more, and eventually begin to trust.  And that’s when the real learning can begin.  This is what I love most about working at DO:  our staff’s commitment to setting all of our students up to be successful no matter what difficulties we encounter.

“Life moves pretty fast, if you don’t stop to look around once in a while, you could miss it…”

Tommy Freeman


My name is Tommy Freeman and I am a Raleigh NC native. I have lived here my whole life and I am very excited this will be my second year at Dynamic Opportunities!  Prior to being here, I worked in this field for 13 years with 5 years of in-home care and 8 years teaching at a day program for adults where I was the music teacher. I have been a musician since I was young and play a multitude of instruments that I also teach. I am so happy to be sharing my love of music at Dynamic. Having been an Eagle Scout, I enjoy nature and hiking and I have a degree from NC State in Horticulture.  I am also an accomplished long distance hiker and have completed thru hikes of the Appalachian Trail and Pacific Crest Trail. My mantra has always been 

“HYOH:  Hike Your Own Hike” (go at your own pace)

Katie Zobel


My name is Katie Zobel. I am from Raleigh NC and have been with Dynamic since the beginning. I have worked and lived with people with special needs my whole life. I attended Jacksonville University and Wake Tech, focusing on Sociology and Criminal Justice.

I am a teacher at Dynamic Opportunities, and I teach or co-teach Art, Technology, and our Projects class. I live with challenges that make my perspective of teaching SPED unique. I am also passionate about behavior management, so I will help with students who are having hard moments and who need extra support.

I love many parts of my job, but I most appreciate that I go to work every day knowing we never do the same thing twice. No matter what we are teaching, it is a new adventure with our students, and I constantly feel inspired by them!

“If you’re going to live, you might as well do painful, brave, and beautiful things!”


Will Jackson


Hi my name is William Jackson, but you can just call me “Coach Jackson”.

I grew up in Georgia but I have lived in North Carolina for the past 24 years now.  I am married to my wife Julie and we have 3 wonderful grown kids.  I am excited to begin my first-year teaching at Dynamic Opportunities!  I hold a Bachelors Degree in Christian Studies and a Masters in Christian Studies from South Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary. I have four years’ experience in Special Needs: two years as an Instructional Assistant and two years as Lead Teacher in the classroom. I was also a Full-Time Substitute teacher in Health and Physical Education for 3 years.

I also have an extensive back ground in sports. I have coached baseball at the high school level for the past several years.  I am also a huge University of Georgia fan, Atlanta Braves fan, and a Duke basketball fan!  I have passed the state teaching exam for Physical Education and Special Needs.  I have a lot of experience in the area of Health and Physical Education, especially when working with students with special needs. I look forward to joining the team at Dynamic Opportunities and having a wonderful year.

“Each day is a new opportunity to change someone’s life!”

Lise Minzes

Instructional Assistant

Hi, I’m Lise Minzes!  I hail from DC and lived in Peoria, Illinois for 7 years before moving to NC to be closer to family.  I am a multidisciplinary artist and love being involved in the local community through my artistic skills and values.  I have always been an artist ever since I was a kid from drawing to writing fanfiction to making music and so much more.  Art is involved with everything I do and never stops being a part of my life, even down to my bedtime ritual!  My background in art and education involves work with local museums, art collectives, non-profits, and vulnerable communities.

When I’m not at work, I love movies (especially horror), dancing, creating new experiences, reading, interior design, thrifting, going to museums and art shows, hanging out with my kid sister, and cooking vegan meals.  I look forward to bringing my skills to the students of Dynamic Opportunities to help them embrace the complexities of being human and the beauty of what it means to be part of a collective.

“May the wind under your wings bear you where the sun sails and the moon walks!”

Ms. Carly

Carlotta Harper

Instructional Assistant

Hi!  My Name is Carlotta Harper, and I have been a resident of North Carolina for about 24 years.  St. Augustine’s University, studying Business Administration, brought me here from my hometown of Hartford, CT.  I also received an Associates degree from Wake Technical Community College.

I came into the special needs arena, I feel, by the Grace of God. I began substituting for elementary school and became involved the Special Education Department. From there I went into middle school where my child was a student.  I worked in public schools the last three years. I began in Behavioral Support to enter again into our Special Education program as a Math & ELA Instructional Assistant.  I also work with Autistic clients as a Behavioral Therapist.  I have been working in this area the last two years.

This will be my first year at Dynamic Opportunities as an Instructional Assistant. I’m excited to meet and work with the children and faculty. 

On the personal side, I am a mom of two children – one boy and one girl.  The oldest is an adult now.  I have also run my own event and catering business for now over six years.  Also a new author, I’ve just released my first cookbook which is available on Amazon.  I look forward to being able to share and learn from everyone here at Dynamic!

“You are BRAVER than you believe, STRONGER than you seem, and SMARTER than you think.”  -Alyssa Shanahan

Landon Johnson

Landon Johnson

Transitions Program Coordinator

Meet Mr. Landon Johnson, a dedicated and compassionate Transitions Program Coordinator/ Head Coach with a strong commitment to empowering youth on their journey towards independence. With multiple years of experience, Landon has played a pivotal role in designing and implementing personalized transition plans that facilitate seamless shifts from adolescence to adulthood.  His expertise in fostering a supportive environment, collaborating with educators, therapists, and families, and tailoring programs to individual strengths makes Landon a true advocate for inclusive and transformative transitions. Through his unwavering passion, Landon continues to make a meaningful impact in the lives of those he serves…

“Championing Abilities, Redefining Possibilities.”


Kassidy Stanley

Dynamic Dayz! Coordinator

My name is Kassidy Stanley and I am happy to be apart of the Dynamic family. I am 22 years old and am a student at Wake Tech, transferring to a 4 year college to obtain my Fine Arts degree. I am an artist & my hobbies include anything dealing with art. This will be my second year as Dynamic Dayz! Coordinator and I couldn’t be happier than to be in a place where everyone is accepted and able to thrive!

“I dream of painting and then I paint my dream.” – Vincent Van Gogh