Staff Directory

Kay F. Johnson

Chief Executive Officer, Founder, Co-Owner, Superintendent, 1st Grade Homeroom Teacher:   Reading, Advanced Math and Science, Band/Guitars; Elementary and Secondary Art Teacher

Kay Johnson was the superintendent, principal, and a teacher (all at the same time!) at Flower Mound Elementary for 30 years.  She holds degrees in Art, Music, and Elementary Administration with a concentration in Curriculum, and has many hours of post graduate work in curriculum from the University of Oklahoma.  She is certified in K-8 education with special endorsements in music, art, language arts, and social sciences.  Mrs. Johnson also holds an Oklahoma Elementary Principal’s certificate and an Oklahoma Elementary Superintendent’s Certificate.

A few of the things she has done:

  • was selected for the first Gifted & Talented program in the St. Louis, MO, school system in 1955.

  • served as president of the Oklahoma Association of Gifted, Creative, and Talented.

  • worked with Senator Penny Williams for passage of the Oklahoma Law on Gifted/Talented.

  • presented workshops entitled A.B.R.A.I.N. (Applied Brain Research Alters Instructional Needs) in over 300 schools in Oklahoma and for the Nebraska Education Association.

  • was appointed by the governor to the Legislative Commission on Education.

  • was a member of the State Test Selection Committee.

  • was a Math Advisor for Teacher Certification Tests of Oklahoma.

  • served as Coordinator and a presenter for the Reading Improvement State Demonstration Site.

  • was Science Advisor for the 8th grade state criterion-referenced tests and P.A.S.S. skills.

  • is listed in Who’s Who in American Education.

  • received the Governor’s Commendation, the Representatives’ Commendation, and the State Superintendents’ Commendation in May of 1998.

(The list continues – these are just some of the highlights!)

 Mrs. Johnson has co-written (along with her daughter) the math program AMI that we currently use with 3rd- 5th graders. She has led many LAAS teams to victory in various competitions, with her most distinguished being the eCybermission team who won the Southwest Regional Award for Innovation and Creativity, netting the students over $8000 in savings bonds.

All who meet her know that her heart is invested heavily in the education of gifted students.

Jim Johnson

Chief Financial Officer; Co-owner; Teacher of Secondary Histories, Social Sciences, and HS Sciences, Robotics Mentor

Mr. Johnson is a native of Lawton, president of A.B.R.A.I.N., Inc., (the parent company of Lawton Academy), and is married to the founder of the school. He has undergraduate degrees in biology, chemistry, and history. He completed coursework for a master’s degree in history at Midwestern State University and received the Master of Social Work degree from the University of Oklahoma. He is a diplomat in clinical social work and has been in private practice for over 30 years.
At the school, he teaches biology, chemistry, and geography each year and United States and World history in alternate years. He also teaches government, psychology, Oklahoma History, and economics as the schedule permits. Beginning in 2011, Mr. Johnson took on the extra-curricular roles of robotics coach and archery coach. He also plays the cello and has been active in the Oklahoma Baptist Symphony and the Lawton Civic Orchestra.

Michelle Smith

Chief Operations Officer; Co-Owner;  Teacher of Secondary Literature and English, JK-12th Speech and Musical Theater, and Secondary Choir; Robotics Coach,  Honor Society Sponsor, Secondary Activities Director; Chess Coach; MathCounts Coach

Mrs. Smith has a degree in Elementary Education with a special endorsement in music, and she currently holds an Oklahoma Teaching Certificate.  She has taught school in California, Texas, and Oklahoma, in private and public schools over the last twenty- three years. She even home schooled for three years.  Mrs. Smith is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Johnson.  She co-authored the math program mentioned above on her mother’s bio.  She is listed in Who’s Who in American Education and has helped lead our LAAS robotics team to seven state victories. She is married to COL(R) JT Smith and has a son, Justin, first valedictorian at Lawton Academy, and a daughter, Bria, also valedictorian of her class.

JT Smith

Chief Marketing Officer; Co-Owner; 5 Homeroom Teacher; Athletic Director; PE Teacher; Running Club and Wrestling Club Coach; Groundskeeper

JT Smith officially joined our faculty in July 2016, even though he has been a part owner of Lawton Academy for four years. Mr. Smith is the homeroom teacher for 4th and 5th graders, and will teach social studies and physical education throughout the elementary. As CMO, Mr. Smith will remain responsible for marketing the Lawton Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Mr. Smith retired as a colonel from the U.S. Army in 2014 after 30 years of military service and is committed to being a positive role model for young children here at LAAS. Encouraging a love of learning and a lifetime of critical thinking is JT’s primary goal.

Mr. Smith earned a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering Management from the United States Military Academy at West Point, a M.A. degree from the School of Advanced Military Studies at Command and General Staff College, a M.S. degree from Central Michigan University School in Business Management, and a M.A. degree from the U.S. Army War College. He is a teacher at church and has taught many military courses.  His first teaching experiences were with children, though, through the YMCA and elementary sport programs.

Mr. Smith is married to Michelle Smith, and both are very proud of the impact that LAAS has had on their children Justin and Bria. The two are committed to helping others’ children achieve the success their two children have enjoyed.

Amanda Puccino

PK3/JK Teacher; Photography Teacher

Mrs. Puccino graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a Bachelor degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders and a minor in Psychology.  She also attended Cameron University where she earned 31 graduate hours in Early Childhood Education.  She holds an Oklahoma Teaching Certificate in Speech Therapy and alternative certification in the areas of Early Childhood and Special Education.

Before coming to LAAS, Mrs. Puccino worked in public schools for seven years.  There she provided language instruction and speech therapy services to students ages 3 to 12.

Mrs. Puccino is married to Robert Puccino, and they have three daughters:  Kylee and Makenna, who attend Lawton Academy, and Liliana.


Monica Austin

K Teacher, Xylophones Director, Boomwhackers Director, Secondary Accompanist, Piano Teacher

Mrs. Austin graduated from Southwestern Oklahoma State University with a Bachelor of Social Work and a Bachelor in Communications. While in college, she taught piano lessons for as many as 20 students per week, ages 4 to adult.

Mrs. Austin spent seven years with the Department of Human Services in Child Protective Services. As an avocation, she accompanied multiple musicals at the Southwest Playhouse in Clinton.

Mrs. Austin is married to Billy Austin, manager of Aaron’s Sales and Lease, and has three children:  Jace and Maci who attend Lawton Academy, and Violet.

Amy Jump

2nd Grade Teacher, Handbells Director, Lego Club Leader

Mrs. Jump is originally from Springfield, MO. She graduated from Drury University in Springfield with a Bachelor in Communication and Bachelor in Psychology.

The Jumps are an active duty military family. They have lived in Kentucky, Texas, Virginia, and Japan. While they were in Kentucky she worked for a small local bank. She worked for USAA in consumer lending while in Texas. While living in Virginia Beach, she started her own business, Little Jumps Boutique, making personalized embroidered gifts. In Japan she taught English as a second language. In 2015 she inherited a farm in Kansas. She is the co-owner of the corn and soy bean farm with her sister. Mrs. Jump plans to start working on her masters degree in the fall of 2017.

Stacy Slough

3rd Grade Homeroom; Engineering Club Director

Mrs. Slough holds a Child Development Associate (CDA) credential and attends Western Oklahoma State College where she is finishing her degree in Early Childhood Education.  Mrs. Slough helps coach volleyball, teaches engineering, and aids in classrooms at all elementary levels. She is married to Kevin Slough, Children’s Minister at First Baptist East, and is very involved with the children in this ministry.  She and Kevin have two boys, Caleb and Caden, who both attend Lawton Academy.

Laura Price

4th Grade Teacher; 4-H Leader; Master Speller Coordinator

Mrs. Laura Price was first involved with Lawton Academy in 2012 as a parent of then kindergartner, Gavin.  Through involvement with classroom activities, she became a substitute teacher for our school.  Her daughter Vivian began attending in 2014, and Laura’s involvement increased.  By 2018, she had such knowledge  of our particular style of teaching that we asked Laura to permanently join our staff as an elementary teacher.  She began with a combined 3rd/4th grade and then settled into 4th grade only in 2018.

Mrs. Price has degrees in Computer Sciences and Computer-Aided Drafting.  Her husband Jim is a Business Develop for Safari Land our of California, and Vivian and Gavin are still attending and excelling at LAAS.

Dr. Eric Mortensen

Secondary Math Teacher; Physics Teacher

Dr Eric Mortensen joined our faculty in November, 2013, as a mathematics instructor for the secondary school. His wife Charlotte owns the pottery and canvas painting studio, A Pigment of Your Imagination. His son Peter was a member of the first graduating class of Lawton Academy in 2007. His daughter Kirsten graduated from Lawton Academy a year later.

Dr Mortensen earned a Bachelor’s degree (magna cum laude) in Zoology from Duke University in 1974, and  his M.D. degree from Emory University School of Medicine in 1978. He completed his internship at Naval Regional Medical Center, Portsmouth VA in 1979,  completed his training, and was designated a U.S. Naval Flight Surgeon at Pensacola, FL in 1980. He served as a Flight Surgeon with the Marines in Iwakuni, Japan,  and for Carrier Airwing NINE.

Upon returning stateside, Dr Mortensen became an anesthesiologist. He became a Diplomate of the American Board of Anesthesiology in October, 1987, deployed with the Marines 1st Medical Battalion for Desert Shield/Desert Storm, and served a number of years as the Department Head of Anesthesiology, as the hospital’s Disaster Preparedness Officer, and as Assistant Director of Surgical Services. He deployed in 1997 with Fleet Hospital FIVE for 6 months to Port-au-Prince, Haiti, where he also served as the Anesthesia Department Head.

Dr Mortensen retired from the Navy Medical Corps as a Commander in June 1999, taking  a position as a staff anesthesiologist at Comanche County Memorial Hospital. In May, 2000 he took an appointment as an Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology at the Oklahoma University Health Sciences Center. In January 2002 he returned to Comanche County Memorial Hospital, where he stayed until  retirement from the practice of anesthesiology in July, 2011.

An Eagle Scout, Dr Mortensen is an active outdoorsman, counting among his achievements the 5 months he spent on the Appalachian Trail and his climb of Mt. Fuji during his tour in Japan. He is currently the Committee Chair of Troop 4144 at the First Methodist Church in Lawton, most recently serving as a Woodbadge instructor.


Alfred Clark

Spanish Teacher Grades 7th -12th

Mr. Clark was born and raised in Guatemala City, Guatemala. He came to live in Lawton, Ok.,  in 1983. He received his Bachelor’s degree from Cameron University (including an endorsement in Math), and also was later certified as a Spanish teacher from Kindergarten to 12. He has been an educator for 24 years. He was a Spanish teacher at Eisenhower Junior High School-Middle School for 21 years.

LMG (Mike) Swain

Freshmen Eng/Lit; American Lit; AP English Lit. & Comp; Debate; Drama; Creative Writing Teacher

LMG (Mike) Swain is the award-winning author of 15 YA novels from Simon & Schuster, Penguin, and Grossett & Dunlap.  Mike spent 34 years teaching Language Arts, speech and drama, and writing in public education. Fifteen of those years were in Altus, OK, where he won Teacher of the Year in 2010.  He has taught in McCloud, Norman, Marlow, and Earlsboro, and his final three years in public education were spent at Lawton High School. Mike retired to free up time for writing but has kept his proverbial “foot in the door” of education by teaching part time at Lawton Academy.  His classes include freshman English/Lit, American Lit, AP English Lit. and Comp., Debate, Drama, and Creative Writing.  Mike married Lisa Bloom in 2018, and the two co-write together. Mike has four children and twelve grandchildren.

Gary Leroux

6th and 7th Grade History and Science Teacher and Robotics Advisor/Logistics Support Representative

Mr. Leroux graduated from the University of Vermont in 1994 with a degree in European History and a Commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Army.  Mr. Leroux received his M.S. degree in Adult and Continuing Education from Kansas State in 2007.   Mr. Leroux retired from the Army after 21 years on Active Duty in the Field Artillery in 2015.  Prior to joining Lawton Academy of Arts and Sciences Mr. Leroux taught US and Ancient History at Lawton High School.  Mr. Leroux has long been active in the Boy Scouts of America and currently serves on the Troop Committee for Troop 4176 and has previously served as the Cubmaster for Lawton Area Pack 4001.

Mr. Leroux married the love of his life and Lawton area native Sheri Leroux (nee Walker) in 1999 and together they are the proud parents of their only son Ian. Mr. Leroux loves the outdoors and is a frequent camper and hiker.  Mr. Leroux also enjoys swimming and running for recreation and fitness.  Mr. Leroux is and avid reader with a particular fondness for Science Fiction and Fantasy.

Fleur Sargent

Teachers’ Aide in Kindergarten and Secondary; After Care Aide

Mrs. Sargent is originally from Surrey, England. She graduated with a diploma from Camborne College, with honors in Speech, Dance and Drama.  Fleur is married to Nick, an active duty Lieutenant Colonel in the British Army’s Royal Artillery currently attached to the US Army at Fort Sill.  Military life has seen the Sargent family live all over the world; in addition to their native England, they have lived and worked in California, Germany, Dubai and now Oklahoma.  They have one very active son, Archie, who attends LAAS, as well as three rescue dogs that complete their family.  Fleur was an enthusiastic runner, with a highlight being the completion of the Heart Break Ridge Half Marathon across Camp Pendleton’s undulating terrain in a little over two hours, until a knee injury made her hang up her sneakers.  She has since taken to the physical and spiritual benefits of yoga.

Kelly Hall Werner

PK/JK Teacher’s Aide; Lunch Cook


Mrs. Werner came to Oklahoma from Hawaii six years ago to start a new chapter in her life. The chapter started with marrying her husband, Fred Werner. Mr. Werner builds race cars and high performance vehicles at CFM Performance Solutions in Fletcher.  Although no longer living in Hawaii, Mrs. Werner enjoys sharing the “Aloha Spirit” with everyone she meets.

Prior to coming to LAAS, Mrs. Werner was a dedicated banker for 35 years. Beginning at First Hawaiian Bank, as a Teller and eventually holding the position of Business Analyst Officer, Mrs. Werner specialized in automating the branches’ teller and new account systems. More recently she held the position of Customer Relationship Manager at City National Bank in Lawton, where she specialized in assisting the banks “escalated customers” as well as maintaining their customer relationship system.

Mrs. Werner is the mother of two children and has a beloved five-year-old grandson. Her daughter, Tianna, is a recent graduate of Lawton Academy and is now attending the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her son is a Master Sergeant in the Air Force and is currently stationed in Washington DC.

Mrs. Werner has volunteered in different capacities which involve her passion for working with children. While with City National Bank, she participated in the Wilson Elementary Read Across America Day – Reading Dr. Suess books to their 2nd grade classes, as well as participating in a “Beautification Day” at Hugh Bish Elementary School, refurbishing playground equipment.  While in Hawaii; her daughter attended St. Elizabeth Catholic School from 1st-6th grade, and Mrs. Werner volunteered as their elected PTG Treasurer and the following year their PTG President. Mrs. Werner also volunteered in the Junior Achievement program in Hawaii for four years, teaching a five-week course entitled “Our Community” to second grade classes at Alvah Scott Elementary School.

Her second passion is spending time with their four rescue dogs, Kadi, Molly, Jack and Caesar, who are cuddly and give their love freely and unconditionally.

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