top of page

governing board


CDLS has a strong governing board made up of Colorado educators and leaders to help support the CDLS team.

Ed Vandertook [president]

Ed Vandertook has been an educator for 46 years. He has served as a Mathematics teacher at the secondary and post-secondary levels; has been a principal, Curriculum Director, Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) Executive Director, and he was superintendent for the Strasburg School District, a small rural school district in eastern Colorado. Ed also served as the interim superintendent for the Deer Trail School District in eastern Colorado and is currently serving as the interim superintendent for the North Park R-1 School District, a small rural district with less than 200 students located in northwest Colorado.  Ed has been involved in distance learning and on-line learning since 1992.

Dianna Chrisman[member]

Dianna Chrisman has been in rural education for 27 years, serving various roles from teacher, coach, Head Start Education Coordinator,  athletic director, principal and superintendent.  Her current role is as the Superintendent of the Yuma School District in Northeast Colorado since the fall of 2015 where she serves approximately 900 students Pre-K-12.

Leon Hanhardt [member]

Leon Hanhardt  currently serves as Principal of the Bayfield High School that has an enrollment of 375 students 9-12.  The Bayfield School District JT-R is a rural district in southwest Colorado with approximately 1100 students PK-12..  

michelle murphy [member]

Michelle Murphy, stepped into the role of Executive Director for the Colorado Rural School Alliance in September 2015.  Prior to that time, Michelle served as Advocacy and Legal Counsel for the Colorado Association of School Boards.  Michelle is a city girl with a strong passion for—and commitment to-advancing the interests of rural schools and students. 


Michelle has worked in public education for almost 20 years. Michelle received a Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Denver in 1996. Following graduation, she worked as an intervention specialist in the Boulder and St. Vrain Valley School Districts where she provided counseling, advocacy and mediation services to students and their families.


Michelle received her law degree from the University of Colorado in 2002. After graduating from CU Law, she worked as a real estate associate at one of Denver’s top firms. Her passion for education brought her to the practice of school law and, prior to joining CASB, she worked with Alexander Halpern LLC.

loraine saffer [member]

Loraine Saffer has over 35 years of experience as an educator in Colorado.  The majority of her teaching career has been serving in small rural schools as a classroom instructor on multiple grade levels and as the technology instructor/coordinator for the school district.  In 2003, Loraine began serving as the Director of Technology and Professional Development for the Southeastern BOCES.  In her role as the Director of Technology, Loraine secured two separate USDA/RUS grants to upgrade and improve the distance learning systems with the school districts as well as other grants to develop and improve teaching and technology access within the school districts.  In 2013 Loraine became the executive director of the Southeastern BOCES.  Through her role as executive director, Loraine supports the member districts with E-Rate applications, dual credit course through the SEBOCES distance learning system, director of the Alternative Licensure Program and the Induction Program for all of the member districts.   

For a copy of our Bylaws, Conflict of Interest Policy, and other governing documents, please contact Dan Morris at

bottom of page