Skip to content

School Board

School Board Information

2024-2025 Cold Spring Board Meeting Dates

Board Meeting Agendas and Minutes

Cold Spring School

Board Members

Katie Castro Jackson

Board Chair

Katie Castro Jackson is a Project Manager at Wessler Engineering, Inc., a Environmental Engineering Consulting Firm that specializes in water resources. Katie works with communities throughout the state of Indiana to provide clean water treatment and conveyance. Originally from Wisconsin, Katie graduated from Valparaiso University with a bachelors in civil engineering and currently resides in the Sobro neighborhood of Indianapolis. Katie comes from a long line of educators and considered becoming a teacher herself. Her love for the STEM industry drove her to engineering, but she remains an advocate for public and accessible education and is grateful to serve on the board of a public STEM School. 

“Cold Springs is an amazing opportunity for young STEM minds, and a model that I would have thrived in as a child if given the opportunity. I am honored to serve on the board of this innovative education model and hope to see continued success and outreach through the school’s leadership and the students.”

Christine Wise

Board Secretary

Christine Wise is a parent to a current Cold Spring student and a Cold Spring grad. When she’s not shuttling her children to and from school and the activities they offer you’ll find her working for Wise Building Solutions managing the books and coordinating small projects. Additionally, Christine is the Director of Meridian Hills Cooperative Preschool and Kindergarten where she guides the operation of the school alongside the parent-run board and staff members. Prior to serving on the Cold Spring board Christine was the president of the Indiana Council of Preschool Cooperatives, volunteered with School on Wheels at Cold Spring, and has given her time to the Cold Spring Robotics program and other school activities. Christine and her family reside in the northwest area of Indianapolis.

“There is truly no other school like Cold Spring and I am honored to be a part of the board. I love sending my children to a school that is always looking at what works best for the students and staff. Cold Spring is family.”

JR Renbarger

JR Renbarger is Director of Capital Management at Shiel Sexton. Prior to this role, JR spent the past 7 years in various leadership positions at IU Health. In addition to his service on the Cold Spring School Board, he is active in the Penrod Society, and Horizon League Basketball Championship Local Organizing Committee. JR and his family reside in the Butler-Tarkington neighborhood of Indianapolis.

“I’m proud of the innovative model that Cold Spring has deployed to serve the students of central Indiana with a quality STEM education. Through our partnership with IPS, we are able to extend a great education to students regardless of where they live. In this board position, I’m excited to help guide the leadership team at Cold Spring as they continue to build a great environment for the students and families that we serve”

Dr. Binh Tran

Dr. Binh Tran is founding Dean of the E. S. Witchger School of Engineering at Marian University. He is recognized for his research in telehealth/telemedicine and biomedical engineering with over 100+ publications and presentations nationally and internationally. Dr. Tran has a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Iowa. In addition to over 20 years in academia, he has also worked in industry and as a member of the U.S. Naval Reserves.

Moving from Washington D.C., Dr. Tran, his wife, and 3 high school boys reside in Zionsville. “I am honored to serve on the board. I have been impressed by the quality of education, the faculty, and the leadership at Cold Spring School. I am passionate about engineering and STEM education and, as such, I am intrigued at how our new engineering school can further CSS’ mission.”

Nick Torres

Nick Torres serves as the Vice President of Leadership Giving at Marian University where he works with faculty, staff, alumni, friends and donors to raise philanthropic support for Marian’s mission.

Prior to joining Marian, Nick spent the past 13+ years working in a variety of administrative roles in enrollment and fundraising at Cathedral High School, Indiana Wesleyan University and Franklin College. Most recently, he served as the Director of Philanthropy at Cathedral High School and served on the leadership cabinet to execute the largest capital campaign in school history. Nick and his wife, Natalie, have four children; Manny, Mario, Selena and Vincent. They reside on the southeast side of Indianapolis and are active parishioners at St. Jude Catholic Church. In what little spare time they have, Nick and Natalie enjoy the outdoors and spending time with family and friends.

Michelle Kolar

Michelle Kolar is the Director of Education and the Marian L McConnell Fellow at the Indianapolis Zoo. Michelle has over 25 years of experience in science and conservation education.  During her career, Michelle has held educational positions at Brookfield Zoo, Shedd Aquarium, The Field Museum, the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy, and Zoo Atlanta. Michelle holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology and a Masters in the Art of Teaching.

Originally from the western Suburbs of Chicago, Michelle moved to Indy in spring of 2022.  She lives in Indianapolis with her husband and two of her four sons.

“I am so thrilled to be a part of the Cold Springs Community.  The mission and values of Cold Springs align with my personal lifelong goal to bring youth closer to nature and prepare them to create their own future.”

Carrie Bruns

Bio coming shortly.

Bill Petranoff

Bio coming shortly.