Adjunct Faculty

Jane Binns

Jane Binns, Adjunct English Faculty Email:

Hello! I have been teaching English Composition at Arapahoe Community College since 2004 and have taught all levels of Comp. classes and literature at Community College of Denver and Metropolitan State College of Denver since 2000.

I love to teach writing. There is nothing finer than to hear a student say to me at the end of the semester that they used to hate writing, but I showed them not only that they can do it, but do it well.

I love to write. I have received many accolades for my writing including Fellowships and publications. I have written a novel and am working on a collection of essays.

My educational background is colorful: I have a Bachelor of Science Degree in piano performance from Eastern Michigan University. I studied with Dady Mehta, cousin to the great Zubin Mehta. I moved along to Syracuse University, where I acquired a Masters in Science in Instructional Design, Development, and Evaluation. I worked as a technical writer during the acquisition of this degree and rediscovered my great passion for writing. I resolved to move to Colorado and attend Naropa University, where I received my Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and was awarded the Jack Kerouac Fellowship in Prose in 1998.

My biography has been published in Marquis Who's Who in America since 2004, Who's Who of American Women since 2006, and Who's Who of American Educators since 2006, as well.

The joys of my life are my son, my vast network of friends, and of course, writing. I swim and jog to stay healthy and sane.

Live a story worth writing!

Caitrin BlakeCaitrin Blake


I began teaching composition in some capacity as an undergraduate studying at the University of Vermont, where I took on the role of writing tutor in my junior year. After graduating from UVM, I moved back to Colorado and worked in the corporate world before returning to academia. In 2010, I graduated from CU Denver with my MA in English literature and began teaching composition at Arapahoe Community College. During the last 6 years, I’ve taught English 121 & 122, CCR 094 and Literature.

In my free time, I enjoy sewing, crafting, cooking, travelling, hiking, reading, running, and spending time with my family.

Eric Cameron


Lee Christopher


Susan Graham


Hila Hirad


Sharon Janusz


Hello. I've been teaching courses in English, literature, and humanities for over 16 years now, and I've been teaching online for about 8 years. I find teaching exciting even after all these years. I've taught at a variety of colleges and universities, joining ACC about four years ago. I must say that it is a great learning environment for all—instructors and students.

I have a masters in English and American literature with an emphasis in teaching writing. My bachelor's degree is in literature and English as well. Both degrees are from the University of Colorado.

I'm the author of two books, so I really do write—it is not a mere tool to torture students! My first book is The Magic of Horses: Horses as Healers. It's about the healing power of animals, mainly horses and how they can heal humans spiritually, emotionally, and even physically. My second book is When Horses Could Fly and Other Fantastic Tales. It's a children's book for adults and explains why horses snort, gallop, whinny, eat grass and have manes, tails, four hooves and are different colors. See for more information.

As you can see, I use writing to express my passion for animals and nature. I'm also a member of Colorado Author's League, Colorado's premiere group of professional writers.

Sherry Jones


Patrick KellingPatrick Kelling


I have taught literature, composition, creative writing, and journalism classes for a variety of schools across the Colorado Community College System since 2008.

In 2015, I received my doctorate in Creative Writing from the University of Denver, and I am the fiction editor for the literature magazine Gambling the Aisle. My creative work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, to Dzanc's Best of the Web, and to Best new American Voices.

kat-kempert.jpgKat Kempert


Hello! I began teaching English at the secondary level in 2008 and then was offered a position teaching in the Reading Department at Anne Arundel Community College in Maryland in 2009.  I taught until my family moved to Colorado in January 2013 and I am excited to get back into the classroom at teach again at the post-secondary level.
I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communication and a Master of Science in Professional Writing from Towson University as well as a Master of Arts in Teaching from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. 
In my spare time I like to read, work out, spend time with my husband and four-year-old twins, and participate in social and philanthropic activities with the Denver Area Alumnae Chapter of Kappa Delta Sorority.

Laura Kjosen


MaryLynne Lawson


Ashley OrtizAshley Ortiz


Ashley Ortiz is in her seventh year of teaching English courses, and also specializes in literature and Women’s & Gender Studies. She is ABD at the University of Kansas, where she is studying contemporary Latina/o literature.

Emily RicklefsEmily Ricklefs, M.A.


I am originally from Colorado, but I have traveled to and lived in many other countries and states before I came back home for good. I have a son and we enjoy many aspects of this beautiful state . We love to hike, bike, ski, snowboard, kayak, camp and travel. My BAs' are in International Relations, Latin American Studies and Spanish, and I was fortunate enough to study and travel abroad throughout my undergraduate years. After graduating with my Master’s Degree in TEFL/TESL and Education, I moved to South America and taught EFL in Bolivia for several years. Since then, I have taught in many different venues including; high school, elementary school, adult education, international and college levels. I love working at ACC and know you will find your experience here rewarding and fulfilling.

Julie Wheeler


Julie Whitman-ZaiJulie Whitman-Zai


I started teaching English Composition at ACC at the beginning of 2015 after a lengthy break from academia to raise my two now-grown children. Colorado has been my home for 22 years; its open space and mountain trails still take my breath away. I attended the University of California, Berkeley where I intended to major in Zoology, but graduated with a B.A. in English. At the University of Indiana, Bloomington, I earned an M.A. and PhD in American Literature, with an emphasis in texts before 1865 and in American Studies.

My collegiate path came full circle when my graduate research drew me to two theological writers who were passionate about the biological sciences. An interdisciplinary approach in writing and teaching is a particular interest of mine because it fosters a rich interplay of perspectives. In keeping with that approach, I encourage students to write about topics that truly engage them and to actively discuss their work as a community of diverse writers.

My dual interest in writing and science also keep me busy as a freelance editor and arachnology researcher at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. In my off hours, you can find me in the pool with my Masters swim team or around the house, gardening or knitting.