Dear Lotus School for Excellence Community,

       I am honored to introduce myself as the new Executive Director of Lotus School for Excellence (LSE). It is with great humility and excitement that I step into this role, committed to upholding our school’s mission and vision of providing a safe learning environment and a rigorous college preparatory curriculum.

      Quality education lies at the heart of our mission at LSE. With over 30 years of experience in education, starting as a teacher and progressing through roles as an assistant principal, principal, and superintendent previously, I understand the transformative power of education in shaping the lives of our students. I am dedicated to ensuring that every student at LSE receives a high-quality education that prepares them for success in college, career, and life.

       As we strive to cultivate well-rounded and globally-minded citizens, our commitment to STEM education is paramount. By fostering curiosity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, we empower our students to thrive in an ever-changing world and pursue careers in STEM fields.

        In addition to academic excellence, we recognize the importance of nurturing positive character traits and fostering a sense of social responsibility in our students. Our vision for LSE is to develop students who not only excel academically but also demonstrate integrity, compassion, and leadership qualities. We aspire to instill in our students the values of respect, empathy, and civic engagement, preparing them to be active and contributing members of their communities.

        I am committed to working collaboratively with our dedicated staff, supportive families, and engaged community members to ensure that every student at LSE receives a holistic and enriching education that prepares them to thrive in a complex and interconnected world.

        Together, let us continue to uphold the legacy of excellence and innovation that defines Lotus School for Excellence.

        Warm regards,

                  Mehmet Nalcaci
                  Executive Director
                  Lotus School for Excellence

Dear Lotus Family,

It is with great pleasure that I introduce myself as your new Assistant Executive Director, John Kara. With a loving family of three children, I bring forth over two decades of invaluable experience in K-12 Charter Schools, spanning diverse regions from Oklahoma to North Carolina. My journey in education has been deeply rewarding, encompassing roles ranging from Science and Chemistry Teacher to Department Head, Assistant Principal, and Principal. Notably, under my guidance, our previous institution consistently achieved an ‘A’ rating, a testament to our unwavering commitment to excellence. Furthermore, I am humbled to have received recognition as the principal from the NC Department of Public Instruction for our school’s exceptional academic achievements, an accolade that underscores our collective dedication to educational excellence.

In addition to my responsibilities as Assistant Executive Director, I am honored to take on the role of acting Principal for both our middle and high schools until the end of the year. I am committed to ensuring a seamless transition and maintaining our high standards of excellence during this period.

With a strong background in STEM, I have initiated numerous STEM programs in my previous roles, enhancing our students’ learning experiences and better preparing them for future challenges. Equipped with a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership and a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry, alongside additional studies in Biochemistry, I am enthusiastic about harnessing my extensive background and network to make meaningful contributions to our Lotus family.

Thank you wholeheartedly for the warm welcome extended to me. I eagerly look forward to the opportunity to meet each of you in person soon!

John Kara,
Assistant Executive Director

Dr. Ronald Reeves joined the Lotus School of Excellence (LSE) in the Winter of the 2023-24 school year as the Dean of Students and Athletic Director.

Reeves comes to LSE with over 20 years of education leadership and athletic administrative experience. He has previously worked at higher education institutions such as the University of North Carolina, University of Colorado, Florida A&M University, Southern Illinois University (SIU), among others. He has led as a sport administrator, lead fundraiser (endowments, scholarships, major gifts, annual, and sponsorships).

Prior to working with collegiate athletics, Reeves worked within the government and non-profit sector, including positions with the Pentagon Athletic Center, Parks & People Foundation, United States Air Force and Internal Revenue Service.

Reeves earned a bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Detroit Mercy (UDM), where he was a member of the track and field team. At UDM, he also worked as a student assistant for the ticketing, operations, equipment and intramural staff. Reeves holds a master’s degree in sport management from Ithaca College, where he served as the men’s track & field graduate assistant. He also volunteered for ISP Sports and Cornell University during his time in Ithaca. Reeves also holds a doctoral degree in higher education administration at SIU.

Reeves is a native of Detroit, Michigan, where he attended Cass Technical High School and lettered in track & field and football. He is also a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., a FreeMason, a member of the Karis Community Board, and coaches Special Olympics. Reeves has one daughter, Marisah. His hobbies include travel, attending concerts and events, hiking and outdoors, watching professional wrestling and spending time with his family.

Dr. Ronald Reeves,
Dean of Students / Athletics Director

Greetings Parents/Guardians, Students and Staff,

My name is Kelly Renee (Banks) Hamm, and I am thrilled to serve as the HR Director for Lotus School for Excellence. I am dedicated to ensuring that our school attracts, and retains the best talent. In my career as a Human Resources professional, I have demonstrated a commitment to excellence in all aspects of HR Management. I have witnessed the special challenges and opportunities that arise in the K-12 public charter school environment. I am constantly working towards reinforcing HR strategies to meet the specific needs of the faculty, administrators and support staff.

As the Human Resources Director, my role includes the full spectrum of HR functions including payroll, compensation, benefits administration, recruitment, employee onboarding, policy development, and employee relations. It is my goal to implement recruitment strategies that attract highly qualified educators who possess a passion for student growth and success, and who are equally skilled in their craft.

I hold a Master’s degree in Human Resources Management and possess multiple certificates in HR practices and employment law. I am a member of the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) and I regularly attend Human Resource training to stay abreast of industry best practices.

As the HR Director at Lotus School for Excellence, I am dedicated along with our administrative team to cultivate a workplace that values Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and empowers our staff to make a profound impact on our students’ lives. I am eager and excited about continuing to help achieve success in the school environment and helping to develop the future of education.

I look forward to working together with our dedicated team of professionals at Lotus School for Excellence to ensure that we continue to provide the best educational experience possible for our wonderful students.

Kelly Hamm, MBA
HR Director

It is with great pleasure and enthusiasm that I introduce myself as your Secondary Assistant Principal. I feel fortunate to be given the opportunity to be part of this wonderful community. This will be my 14th year as an educator. Prior to becoming an assistant principal, I was a classroom teacher, reading interventionist and an instructional coach within DPS. This last year, I served as an Assistant Principal of Instruction at Rocky Mountain Prep Creekside. During my tenure as a teacher, I was able to teach second language learners in their native language. As a reading interventionist, I had the opportunity to work with students from 19 different countries. Even though my background was in criminal justice, I quickly fell in love with teaching when I was given the opportunity to teach ESL to adults. As an educator, I strive to create an inclusive, safe, motivational learning environment in which all students have equal access to learning regardless of their background and needs. The biggest joy for me is seeing my students grow academically, emotionally and socially.

I was born and raised in El Paso, TX. I am a first generation Mexican-American and college graduate. I received a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Texas at El Paso. After moving to Colorado, I obtained my Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Denver and recently, my Principal Licensure from the University of Denver.

I am blessed to have two sons and a husband who have supported me in all my professional endeavors. As a parent, I have learned to greatly appreciate the partnership between school and family in order to maximize every child’s potential. The aspirations I have for my sons are the same aspirations I have for my students. I want them to excel and become productive human beings with bountiful opportunities to accomplish their dreams. In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my family and my doodles. I enjoy traveling and experiencing new places and cultures.

I look forward to personally getting to know and work with this amazing community!

Kind Regards,

Adriana Felix
Middle School Assistant Principal


I am excited to join the Lotus community as the elementary principal. I have 16 years of experience in education; 10 years in the classroom as an elementary school teacher and 6 years between elementary and middle school administration.

I am from Austin, Texas and thrilled to be part of the growing community in Aurora. It has been a pleasure working with children in the primary and intermediate grade levels; watching them grow into young adults and building friendships.

My leadership thrives from building the confidence in students through social-emotional learning. I believe educators should create strong, impactful, and enriching relationships with students to teach them the academics of learning. The foundation of learning comes from the trust built between the student and teacher.

You will see me building relationships with all stakeholders – teachers, parents, students, and community members while leading the elementary division of Lotus School for Excellence with Mr. Huerta.

Feel free to reach out to me at anytime to discuss how we can make the best educational experience for your children.


Masters of Education, Concordia University

Bachelor of Science in Advertising, University of Texas at Austin


(303) 360-0052

“We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community.” – César Chávez

Welcome to the LSE Community,

It is with great enthusiasm and excitement to continue to serve the LSE community as the Elementary Assistant Principal.  I am truly honored beyond words to know that I have the support of all stakeholders.  I will continue the work of advocating for and providing all students and families with an educational experience, where values and diversity are celebrated.  I am committed to working with the rest of the administration team as we continue to provide leadership and build a structure of collaborative relationships in the school and community so that all students have a variety of opportunities to succeed.

My decision to become an educational leader came from my desire to make a positive impact on an entire school community.  I will work diligently with our staff, and community to carry out the vision and mission of LSE.  This role provides me the chance to work collaboratively with teachers daily, while also remaining connected to our students’ growth and learning that takes place in the classroom.  Diversity and inclusion are pillars of my educational mantra.  I am committed to continuous professional growth and ensuring educational equity and access for all of our students.

Without education, people have no chance to impact the lives of others in their community. I want to give the children I teach a chance to give back to their community and society. It seems as though my entire working life has been devoted to children and their well-being. Hearing the laughter of a child, or just the smile brought to a little one’s face has made my decision in becoming a member of the educational society an easy one.

I am forever grateful to be part of the LSE community and excited for the future.

Thanks for all you do,

Elias M. Huerta, M.A., M.Ed.