Meet the Regional Team
Jana joined KIPP Endeavor Academy as School Leader in 2015. She is a Kansas City native and before joining KIPP founded Academia de Niños, a highly regarded elementary school. Jana also worked as a teacher coach at Alta Vista Charter School and in the Hickman Mills School District. Jana brings a wealth of instructional knowledge to KIPP.
Director of Human Resources
Michael Dayton is a native of Kansas City, Missouri and graduate of Rockhurst University, with a degree in Accounting. Mr. Dayton is in his 8th year at KIPP – where he has served as Director of Finance and Operations, Director of Student Recruitment and Community Engagement, and now serves as Director of Human Resources. Mr. Dayton started his career at Sellers & Company, CPA, was recruited by the Kansas City, Missouri School District’s (KCMSD) - Capital Improvement Program (CIP) and was promoted to Food Service Business Manager. After the KCMSD, Michael went to work for the Community Development Corporation of Kansas City (CDC-KC) as their CFO and Director of Ops. After CDC-KC, Michael went to work for the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation working on Minority Entrepreneurship
Chief Operations Officer
Prior to Roosevelt's current role as Chief Operating Officer at KIPP KC, he served as the Interim Director for KC Parks and Recreation. He joined KC Parks in 2014 as a manager of recreation and was promoted to community services division manager in 2016. He has served as the Deputy Director of Operations since January of 2019 and advocated for helping provide virtual learning sites to many in KCMO during the pandemic. Roosevelt led the effort to create the Quality of Life Investment District that focuses on improving park facilities in the six lowest life expectancy zip codes. Lyons was the youngest and first African American to serve as Deputy Director and Director for Kansas City, Missouri Parks and Recreation.
Lyons’ professional background also includes stints in the Mayor’s Office, political organizing with the Democratic National Committee, youth programming with the Missouri Division of Youth Services, and personal training. While serving Mayor Sly James, he worked on several initiatives including an ordinance mandating a Citywide youth advisory panel, creating a program for youth interested in public service careers, and the development of a summer youth program in partnership with the Parks Department.
Roosevelt holds a Bachelor’s of Liberal Arts and a Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He holds a certificate in Public Engagement from KU’s School of Public Management. He is a certified Green-Belt in Lean/Six-Sigma.R
Lyons currently resides in the Red Bridge area of Kansas City, Mo. and has two daughters.
Director of Development
Regional Operations Manager
Mayra Bencomo became part of the Team & Family as the Front Office Coordinator in the summer of 2016, the same year the Elementary School was founded. Mayra then moved to Middle School Operations Manager. Currently, she is serving as the Regional Operations Manager. She is very passionate about her work and takes pride in meeting the needs of the students, families, and staff. Mayra has 3 KIPPsters of her own which keep her busy! In her free time, she likes to spend time with family and friends.
Michael Cobbins Sr. graduated from Westport High School, Kansas City Public School District and attended Missouri Western State University where he earned a Bachelors of Science in General Physical Education and a Master's in Education Athletics/Activities Administration. Coach Cobbins has mentored and coached for over thirteen years in the Hickman Mills and Independence School Districts, and currently KIPP:KC as the Athletics Director. His knowledge, education and experience have given him the ability to build out seven sports programs (football, basketball, track, soccer, cheer and dance, volleyball and cross country) over the past four years and formed the Kansas City Metro Conference, an expansion with the Kansas City Public Middle Schools. Coach Cobbins is the current President of the league. He has developed and mentored many students from elementary and middle school to high school and college. He strives to build lifelong learners through discipline, dedication, perseverance and commitment.
Director of Support Services
Rachel was born and raised in the Kansas City area. The pronouns she feels most comfortable with are she/hers. She is a human, mom, educator, social worker, and ally who deeply believes everyone is valuable and needed in this world. She started her journey in education by teaching Title I Reading Intervention for 5 years. Then life helped her decide to take a different path by exploring Social Work and Mental Health. She obtained her Masters in Social Work from Park University and is a licensed Masters Level Social Worker in Kansas and Missouri. She has worked in areas of community mental health, foster care, and school social work in different districts in the KC Metro Area. She joined KIPP as a School Social Worker and is now the Director of Support Services. She coordinates a rock star team of KIPP support staff and community partnerships to serve our students, staff, and families. She deeply believes we can accomplish more together. She is involved with organizations and programs like; Trauma Sensitive Schools, Diversity-Equity-Inclusion, Play and Sandtray Therapy, Mental Health in Schools, and the National School Social Work Association.
KIPP Through College Director
India is a proud Kansas City, Mo native. Before joining KIPP in 2015, she worked in higher education focusing on enrollment and student support services. India was appointed by Mayor Lucas to join KC Public Library Board of Trustees. She is currently a member of Congressman Cleaver II's Black/Brown Coalition, and the philanthropy group, Sister Circle. India was named one of The Independent's 2020 Rising Stars. She formerly served as an elected official, a DEI co-chair at Big Brothers Big Sisters KC, and a member of the Jackson County Developmental Disability board.
Elise joined KIPP in 2017 and is grateful to be part of a team committed to serving and supporting all students. As an undergrad, Elise pursued a degree in Childhood Education and Bilingual Education. Prior to joining KIPP, Elise taught Kindergarten (in Spanish) and worked on staff at Teach For America- Kansas City coaching and leading professional development for pre-K-12 teachers across Kansas City. She earned her Masters in Special Education from the University of Kansas and continues to seek ways to grow and strengthen our Special Education department.
Instruction and Curriculum
Renee is a Kansas City transplant that graduated from the University of Kansas with a degree in Unified Early Childhood in 2011. She went on to teach kindergarten at Academia de Ninos until moving to KIPP to teach 5th grade in 2015. In 2016 she gladly went back to teaching Kindergarten to help KIPP open their elementary school while also earning her Masters in Administration from UMKC. In 2018 she moved into an ELL teacher role and earned her TESOL Certification from Missouri Western State University. She now serves as KIPP's ELL Director and is passionate about providing an equal and outstanding education to all families.