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Karen Adams

AU Instructional Assistant

I began my career with WCPSS in 1988 as a teacher assistant in special education at Cary High School.  Then I transferred to
Combs in 1989 where I decided that working with younger kids is what I love best.  Over the years I have worked with many grade levels including Pre-K and AU1.  I love being part of the Combs family and helping children grow and reach their goals.  My husband and I have two daughters and two grandsons.   In my spare time, I love spending time with my family and just playing with our grandsons and two dogs.

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Heather Barnes

Instructional Assistant

Heather initially joined Combs as a Kindergarten parent and currently has two boys attending Combs.  She immediately started volunteering in the classroom and became an active member on the PTA Board.  She has worked as the school receptionist, and is now excited to be an instructional assistant with the kindergarten team. She is originally from Arizona and moved to North Carolina in 2009.  She resides in Cary with her husband and two boys.

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Ray Broniak

Technology Support

I was born and raised in southwest Detroit along with my 9 siblings. In 1982 I graduated from the University of Detroit with a degree in Electrical Engineering. I moved to Cary and got married in 1999. My wife Janice and I have two children who have both attened AB Combs for elementary school. In 2008 I started working at Combs as a technology resource. I had a breif hiatus in 2014, but now I am back again helping in any way I can. My hobbies include music and singing in the church choir.

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Wendy Harrison

Instructional Assistant - CCR

Hello! My name is Wendy Harrison. I moved to Raleigh from Wisconsin. I received my BA in Psychology/Sociology from Framingham State College, and a paralegal degree from Northeastern University. Helping and working with children and teachers to achieve learning goals in a happy, positive nurturing environment is the greatest accomplishment I strive for every day. I love spending time traveling with my husband and two children, who are now in college, and getting together with friends. I enjoy shopping, estate sales, swimming, and tracking great white sharks

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Valerie Hobbs

Permanent Building Substitute Teacher

My name is Valerie Hobbs. I attended East Carolina University and have taught for many years in many states as I followed my active duty Marine around the states. I was a founding teacher in Oceanside, CA and helped build a performing arts department from the ground up at Scholarship Prep Charter. Once my husband retired, we decided to move back to our home state. My whole family has my passion for the arts, and we have a family business for the performing arts. When I'm not teaching, I enjoy working out and spending time with my family and friends.

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Vishaka Krishnan

Instructional Assistant

Vishaka initially joined the Combs family as a Kindergarten parent.  She participated in PTA activities and wanted to actively volunteer her time at the school.  When an opportunity came up to help as an Instructional Assistant, it felt too good to pass up. Equipped with a Masters in Psychology, and after spending over 10 years working in healthcare as a Clinical Laboratory Scientist, she decided to take a break to just be a mom. She is now very excited to continue her journey at Combs as both a current parent and an educator. She is originally from California and moved to North Carolina in 2020. Vishaka is now a Holly Springs resident with her husband and son. Her self-care outside of work includes some singing, reading and traveling. 

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Tammy Massey

AU Instructional Assistant

My name is Tammy Massey, I have been working with the school system since 1992. I have 2 sons: 2 bonus daughters and 5 grandchildren. I'm married to Jimmy Massey who teaches at Corinth High School in Johnston County. In my spare time I like making craft things, I love going to the beach and spending time with my family and friends. I'm very grateful to be a part of such a wonderful school here at Combs.

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Melanie Panepinto

Instructional Assistant

I am Melanie Panepinto and I have been part of the AB Combs family as an Instructional Coach since 2005. I have a degree in Early Childhood Education and have over 30 years of experience working with children of various ages and stages. I am happily married and have two boys that are Combs graduates. I enjoy spending my free time with my family, watching my boys play sports, hiking, photography and the beach.

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Maria Paniagua

My name is Maria Paniagua. I am thrilled to be a part of AB Combs Elementary and share my passion for teaching. I grew up in Cary, North Carolina. I have attended Wake Teach for early childhood education and have previously enjoyed teaching in an inclusive developmental day preschool for over 10 years. In my spare time, I enjoy making crafts, cooking, attending family events, and spending time with my family and friends. Teaching is my passion, and I look forward to sharing it with my new students, teachers, and parents.  I’m looking forward to teaching at AB Combs and living the 7 Habits with the wonderful staff and many students here at this wonderful school.

 

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Sophie Pellizzari

Instructional Assistant

My name is Sophie Pellizzari and I am thrilled to be part of the AB Combs team as an Instructional Assistant! I’m excited to help teachers foster a nurturing and engaging learning environment and love helping our leaders explore, grow, and find their voice.  I graduated from NC State University with a degree in communications and also completed an early childhood education certificate while serving with AmeriCorps.  I am a mom to 3 energetic boys who attend/have graduated from Combs. When I am not at school or driving to and from after school activities, I enjoy cooking, reading, traveling with my husband and kids, and just getting to spend time with family and friends!  

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Delana McAbee

AU Instructional Assistant

I began working in the Nash Rocky Mount School system in 1998. I started here at Combs in the ECU2 in January 2017. I love working with children to see how much they grow from the beginning of the school year to the end of the school year is a blessing. I recently got married in June to Lee McAbee.  But I have 3 wonderful children, Scott, Alicia, and Aaron. I have been blessed to two angels that call me Nana Kinsley Sue and Gracie Mae. I love going to the beach, karaoke, and visiting family and friends. 

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Amy Pilz

Instructional Assistant

I am grateful to be part of the Combs Family. My name is Amy Pilz, mom to Sophia and Adalyn. I was born and raised in upstate New York. After getting my degree in Elementary Education from Cortland State in 1998, I moved to North Carolina and began my teaching career. I have taught kindergarten and first grade ever since. I am also a partner in some fabulous pizza restaurants. If you can believe it, that isn’t even my favorite thing to eat! I love soups and salads of any kind! I absolutely love teaching young children and guiding them to be their best selves! My inspiration to teach came about because of my first-grade teacher, Mrs. Rundle. Outside of my work life, I enjoy running and am proud to say I have completed a few marathons. I love the beach and the mountains equally! My children and I travel to both frequently. We also love to shop, cook, garden, and be creative in our art room. My life has been full of joy and courage. I look forward to teaching and instilling the 7 Habits with this wonderful Combs community.

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Terry Proctor

Instructional Assistant

My name is Terry Proctor and I began working at AB Combs as a Teacher Assistant in 2005. I am originally from Nashville, NC and graduated from Peace College and East Carolina University with a degree in Health Information Management. I became a stay at home mom and transitioned into education as my children started school. I am married and have two children that both attended Combs and graduated in 2006 and 2009! I enjoy cooking, attending sporting events, playing golf, and beach trips!

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Lisa Ray

 Media Assistant

Hi, my name is Lisa Ray and I’ve worked in the Media Center at Combs since 1998. I grew up in Livonia, Michigan and attended Schoolcraft College. I am married and have two children who graduated from Combs; Eric in 2002 and Lindsay in 2004. My passion is reading and my goal is to inspire all children to become lifelong readers! In my spare time, I love to read, go for long runs, cook and spend time with my family.

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Sumi Sundaram

Instructional Assistant

My name is Sumathi Sundaram. I grew up in India and moved to North Carolina in 2009. I have a master's degree in Computer Science and taught undergraduate courses while working as Lecturer at Karpagam College of Arts and Sciences, India. Prior to joining Combs, I was teaching kids virtually. I am passionate about traveling and have traveled to different countries. I have two boys and my family means the world to me. In my spare time, I love doing several activities with my family, including swimming, tennis, and traveling. I am looking forward to another fun filled year with the Combs family!

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Lauren Swaim

I was raised in Raleigh, North Carolina, and attended Combs Elementary as a student from 2004 to 2010!  I graduated from North Carolina State University with a Bachelors degree in Mechanical Engineering.  After completing WCPSS substitute teacher training, I began teaching as an instructional assistant at Combs Elementary Pre-Kindergarten in the fall of 2022.  I am passionate about encouraging students in their value, intelligence, and ability to solve difficult problems. In my free time, I love to visit coffee shops, go to the movie theater, and spend time with my family and friends.  I'm very excited and honored to be back at Combs Elementary! Go Gators!