Our Team


Laura Hollister, Elementary Educator

Laura Hollister is a Virginia native who came to us from the Alamance-Burlington system where she taught math to 5th graders for several years. She also brings a passion for experiential learning from her time attending and then working alongside the directors of Camp Twin Creeks for the past five years. Laura believes that the summer camp experience can be a transformative for children, teaching them the confidence and independence they will need in the future. Laura received her educational training from Elon University where she studied Elementary Education, and was a violinist in Elon’s Orchestra.

Ashley Champion, Elementary Educator

Ashley Champion is a Hillsborough, NC native who uses her years of experience in early childhood education in her work with our Lower Elementary learners. She received her formal educational training at Eastern Carolina University where she studied Elementary Education and received a concentration in Child Studies.  Ashley is a firm believer in an integrated approach to learning, and applies this to her work with The Studio School. In addition to working in education, she is a wife, step-mother, learner, explorer and adventure seeker.

Julie Justice, Curriculum Design and Teacher Mentor

Julie brings her passion and enthusiasm for education to The Studio School of Durham leading our curriculum design. She earned her Doctorate of Education in Language, Literacy, and Culture from Vanderbilt University, her Masters of Education specializing in Reading Education, and her Bachelors in Middle Grades Education, English Langauge Arts and Science from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. She has spent much of her career mentoring students and teachers during her time in higher education. Julie is the coordinator of the Masters program for Elementary Education at Elon University. She also spent several years writing curriculum during her career. Julie was recently honored with the Faculty Engagement Award at Elon University for her work in enhancing the intellectual engagement of students, enriching their personal development, and work with the residence life staff and student leaders.

Julie originally came to the Studio School Family as a parent at Our PlayHouse Preschool and Kindergarten, where her son attended preschool for 4 years.  As a founding family, Julie spent time on our Community Board, led the annual fundraising auction several times, and supported the professional development of the Our PlayHouse staff.

Tori Mirian, Nature-Based Science Educator

Tori Mirian is an environmental educator with experience in garden-based and outdoor education. She is just a couple of hours from her hometown of Pinehurst, NC, and fell in love with the Triangle while earning her bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies at UNC-Chapel Hill. She previously worked as an assistant summer camp director and encouraged children to learn and play outdoors. In her free time, she enjoys exploring art museums and hiking with her dog.