Holly Freeman’s travels before she landed here in Lowry in 2022 took her around the world for 35 years. Working with the Department of Defense, she taught in Germany, South Korea, and Japan. After that time she returned to California and soon found a job here in Lowry at the International School (IS). You’ll recognize their brand new addition, the Mary Louise Evans building which holds 17 classrooms and the library – where Holly resides.
Holly started life in Maine with an American father and a Dutch mother who spent seven years there before moving to Florida. “Florida was OK, but I couldn’t wait to travel. As much as I loved the ocean and outdoor life there, I knew there was a big world out there. And our mother (there are two other siblings) taught us that travel was a big adventure that was available to us.”
She headed off to Berry College in Rome, GA, where she earned her undergraduate degree in biology and chemistry plus playing soccer on the team that won the national championship in her freshman and senior years. “I loved anything outdoors and soccer is a great game.” That along with hiking, skiing, climbing and soccer, kept her busy and outside. She continued with her schooling with a Master’s Degree in Science Education and a PhD in Education. Oh, then she went back for a Master’s in Counseling. Her resume gives her a broad slate to teach and work with and she uses all of this in her job as the Librarian at the International School. “This job keeps me running,” she says. “I usually can put in 20,000 steps a day, almost eight miles a day.”
A library, she says, is the heart of a campus. “A good education is in and out of the classroom and the library is where I can help all these students.” With 16,000 books nicely lined on the shelves, she can easily find what a student can use for a class project or for reading. Several students gathered around her looking for help and she patiently dealt with one at a time. There’s a lot of heart in the library and in the librarian. “I strive to provide access to a wide array of resources as well as nurturing a love of reading.”
Students at IS who begin at three years of age pick a language – Mandarin Chinese, Spanish or French. They continue this until they graduate as 8th graders. By that time, they are fluent and ready for the world outside of IS. Rob Kapner, Principal for the Middle School says, “These students by 14 are way ahead of others and their fluency in another language is going to take them far. They move on to an IB program (International Baccalaureate) and graduate heading on to succeed in college and in life.”
He shows off the new Mary Louise Evans Building: 17 classrooms and the library. Anchoring the building on the main floor is a cascade of huge stairs where the students can come in large groups for speakers or quietly spread out and read books.
When not helping students, serving on committees and solving students’ problems, Holly returns to her home on Lowry Blvd. Her husband and nine year old daughter are always ready for hiking, biking or snow boarding. Now that she’s here in Lowry, she finds it very walkable and not only just to school and back. She’s discovered the bread at Clarks and pizza at several places. “We have met some really interesting families here and love the diversity. The Denver Beer Company has an awesome place for kids to play while the adults hang out. It is a great hidden gem.”
And more travel in the future? “We are all going to Berry College for my 30th college reunion. “I want my family to see the fabulous campus after hearing my stories of it for so many years.”
It’s great going back to the past, but for now, the IS has Holly and her heart in the library and in Lowry. And that’s a great world indeed.
Meet Your Lowry Neighbors is a monthly feature written by our intrepid reporter Sally Kurtzman, who knows everyone in our community. If you have a suggestion for a Meet Your Lowry Neighbor, please send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.