Principal Juli Newman and Director of Education Krista Cross are sisters whose values, teamwork and experience are the strong foundation upon which Montessori Academy was built. As the third generation of women in their family to work in the field of education, these women have passed on their education-rich heritage through passion and talent. These exceptional leaders believe in the excellence of their team, the opportunities offered at their school and the potential of the students at Montessori Academy.

Principal Juli Newman

Juli Newman is the Executive Director and Principal of Montessori Academy and is one of the school's charter representatives. She is also the proud mother of two Montessori-educated children. Juli is the author of several papers on transforming education. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and Sociology from the University of Utah, a Masters of Arts in Education, Supervision and Administration from the University of Phoenix and is currently enrolled in a Doctoral program for Educational Leadership. Juli attended the Center for Montessori Teacher Education and is certified in Montessori School Administration. Juli has attended more than 100 training courses in topics that include Special Education Law and Leadership in Technology. 

Previous Director of Education Krista Cross

Krista Cross received a Montessori education growing up in California. She graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Speech and Hearing Sciences with an emphasis in Child Language Development. Krista earned her Montessori teaching credentials for Elementary I and II through the Center for Montessori Teacher Education (CMTE) and completed additional training from England in Early Childhood through St. Nicholas; both CMTE and St. Nicholas are certified by the American Montessori Society (AMS). Krista then earned her Master of Arts in Montessori Education from Sarasota University; she also obtained a Master of Arts in Montessori Leadership. In 2015, she became a faculty and Advisory Board member at Sarasota University, teaching online coursework in the area of Brain-based Education. in 2000, Krista was one of four recipients in Arizona chosen by the Milken Family Foundation to receive the National Educator Award. Krista resigned in July of 2023 but will always remain a founder whose legacy lives on within the community.

In Memorial of Dale Newcomb

“Integrity is doing what is right, even if nobody sees it.” – Anonymous

Dale Newcomb's legacy at Montessori Academy is the joy and integrity he demonstrated every day, in every way, to every person he met.  Sometimes referred to as "the old, happy guy," Dale brought spark, life, and depth to Montessori Academy life. Many people do not know that Dale Newcomb, a board member, was also the father to both founders Juli Newman and Krista Cross. His sudden passing on January 1, 2020, left many of his family and friends with deepened wells of love and appreciation for his life and his legacy. Dale Newcomb was an incredible man full of wisdom, and compassion. We continue to honor his memory with our words and stewardship of those values he held most dear. We love you and miss you.