Board of Directors


Karen Paxton

Director / KMS Board of Directors, President

Karen has been a familiar face around Khalsa School since the early 1980s. She began as a young parent, PTO Board member, and finally a staff member, substituting at every campus in the Khalsa School system in the 1990s. Her three daughters have all graduated from Khalsa School. In addition to her role at Khalsa School, she enjoys gardening, cooking, yoga, and meditation. She is a certified Kundalini Yoga Teacher.

She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree from Millsaps College in 1977 and worked as a VISTA volunteer before moving to Arizona in 1979. She worked in the medical field and administered a multi-site primary care practice for eleven years. She has completed graduate courses in business and education. In 2002, Karen completed her AMS certification as a Montessori Middle School teacher at the Houston Montessori Center.

As the Director of Admissions for the charter elementary and the private primary/toddler schools, she coordinates the application and registration process for both campuses. She is the primary contact for communicating information about Khalsa School to prospective parents as well as maintaining effective contact with them throughout the year. She also conducts tours of the school for prospective parents.

Tom Caglio

KMS Board of Directors, Vice President

Thomas Caglio is a Community Representative and former Parent Representative on the KMES and the KMPS Board of Directors. He serves as the Vice-President for both boards. Tom recently retired from the Phoenix Union High School District where he served as a Systems Analyst in the Curriculum Division and gained expertise with regard to computer programming and statistics. Two of Tom’s children attended and graduated from Khalsa Montessori School.

Cynthia Huebscher

KMS Board of Directors, Secretary and Treasurer

Cynthia Huebscher joined Khalsa Montessori School in April 2016 as a Primary Guide. Her 25+ years of experience in education as a teacher, trainer, mentor, and tutor to students of all ages offers her a wide perspective. She understands where children begin and where we can help guide them for success in school and life.

Cynthia received her American Montessori International Diploma from the Montessori Institute of La Jolla. She obtained her California Teaching Credential from National University and her BS in Liberal Studies from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. Cynthia enjoys sharing her knowledge and experience to the Primary and Toddler classrooms and staff at Khalsa.

This is her first year as a Board Member.

Bryan Murphy

KMS Board of Directors, Member

Bryan Murphy is a Community Representative and former parent representative on the KMPS and KMES Board of Directors. He has a B.A. from Yale University and received his J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. He has practiced law with a Phoenix firm since his admission to the Arizona Bar in 1980. His two children have both attended the Khalsa Montessori School.

Carie Modeer

KMS Board of Directors, Member

Carie joined the Khalsa School in 1999 as a Lower Elementary assistant. After graduating from Penn State University with a degree in Elementary. Outside of gaining her degree in education, Carie worked for six years as an assistant teacher in a Christian Daycare in Pennsylvania. She also held part-time positions in childcare throughout her college years. After experiencing Montessori for the first time at Khalsa and gaining a passion for the Montessori method she made the choice to become trained as a Montessori Lead Teacher. Carie has been a Lower Elementary Lead Teacher since 2004 and joined the Charter Board of Directors as a Teacher representative in 2021.

Sara Park

KMS Board of Directors, Member

Sara is a Parent Representative on the KMPS and KMES Board of Directors.

Dr. Sara Park has served as a parent representative on the KMES and KMPS Board of Directors since 2013.  She has 2 children that have attended Khalsa.

Dr. Park received her B.A. from the University of Chicago, and her MD from the University of Chicago, Pritzker School of Medicine.  She completed her residency at the Phoenix Children’s Hospital & Maricopa Medical Center Pediatric Residency Program in 1995.

She practiced and taught clinical pediatrics to students from the University of Arizona as well as Residents at the Phoenix Children’s Hospital/Maricopa Medical Center Pediatric Residency Program at Maricopa Integrated Health System (MIHS).  Her special interests include underserved and vulnerable populations and she initiated the Pediatric Refugee Program at MIHS.  Dr. Park is also a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Arizona, Department of Child Health.

In October of 2015, she joined the Comprehensive Medical and Dental Program (CMDP) at the Department of Child Safety as a Medical Director.  Her current position as a Medical Director at CMDP is right up her alley, as she has been able to continue her dedication to serving vulnerable populations, by working with and for the children in out of home care.

Liz Bernreuter

KMS Board of Directors, Member

Liz is a Parent Representative on the KMPS and KMES Board of Directors.