About Us

Our Mission

To provide age-relatable coaching programs to 16- to 24-year olds in the Denver metro area to improve self-efficacy, well-being, and career preparation for upward economic mobility.

Our Vision

Help every 16- to 24-year old become economically mobile.

Our Model

We train our Navigators in life coaching, classroom management, working with diverse and vulnerable populations, the AR curriculum and book.

Once our Navigators are cleared and trained we pair them up. Then they are ready to work with schools and organizations.

We partner with schools and negotiate dates, times and overall logistics. When the partnership is finalized our Navigators will be ready to travel to the partners site to work with the students.

Our Navigators will teach the program and work directly with students. We ask schools and organizations to have one of their teachers or licensed individuals present for the each class.

How we Began

Christian and Elliot met working together at a tech company selling accounting software. After countless hours of collaboration they began on a journey to write a book for underprivileged individuals. After completing their book they knew they had to find students to work with. They began to recruit high school students from local basketball gyms to come to their small groups they hosted outside at a local Starbucks. Their group grew for 1 to 3 to 20 in about 2 months. The initial group of students were all Somali immigrants or 1st generation citizens. Next, they made a website and were contacted by a school district all the way in Pomona, CA. The school district offered them the opportunity to pilot their program at an alternative high school in their district. Christian and Elliot left their full-time jobs in Denver, CO and moved to Southern California 30 days after the offer. Since the pilot they have moved back to Denver and work in 3 different school districts.

Our Leadership Team

Elliot Zettas, Executive Director/Co-Founder

elliot@alternativeroadmap.org

Elliot's Bio

Elliot grew up in Denver and graduated from East High School in 2010. Then, Elliot went on a wild college ride, playing basketball and attending six different colleges. Eventually, he graduated with a degree in Entrepreneurship from Metro State University Denver in 2015. He has always had a passion for education and knows the impact age relatable mentors can have on a students success. Currently, Elliot lives in Denver, is pursuing his MPA (Nonprofit Management concentration) and frequents local basketball gyms looking for good pick-up games.

Christian Carmody, Co-Founder

christian@alternativeroadmap.org

Christian's Bio

Christian was born and raised in New York where he learned that working with inner-city youth was his calling. He went to University of Vermont and completed his undergraduate in Statistics. Upon graduating, Christian began working with MassChallenge, one of the worlds largest accelerators. From this time he knew he wanted to be an entrepreneur and make a difference. Now, Christian lives in Maine and works as a Math teacher.

Lois Melkonian, Board President

Lois's Bio

After reporting and anchoring on Radio and Television stations around the country for 30 years, Lois is turning her focus to people and their stories. On her podcasts, in her writing and through her work for social change, she wants to inspire people who get stuck to move forward and see there is more to life. Lois no longer holds anything back and believes there is redemption in every story. She lives in Denver with her husband, two dogs and three cats.

 

Rachel Ramirez, Board Treasurer

Rachel's Bio

Rachel left a corporate career in 2002 to make a difference in the lives of inner-city children. She began her teaching career as an elementary school teacher with Denver Public Schools. She taught at Swansea Elementary School for five years and then joined the leadership team at the school. Rachel then served as an Instructional Coach and Administrator with Aurora Public Schools. Rachel currently serves in the role of Academic Principal at ACE Community Challenge School, a charter school that’s a part of the Denver Public Schools Network.

 

Anna Hogberg, Board Secretary

Anna's Bio

Anna is a TOSA/Assistant Principal and Experienced Elementary School Teacher with a demonstrated history of working in multiple roles in education. She is skilled in NPO’s, event planning, youth development, classroom instruction, and classroom management. Anna is a strong education professional with a Master’s Degree focused in Elementary Education and Teaching from Regis University. She even has an additional Master’s Degree focused in Public Administration and Nonprofit Management.