Will Gayhart and his family live in Denver, Colorado. After spending over 4 years living in the Philippines, the family chose Denver based in part upon Will’s great experiences in Colorado during the 90s.
After choosing Denver, Will secured a position as part of the founding faculty of the Denver Center for International Studies, Montbello. Starting as a 6th grade math teacher, Will moved up with his students to teach technology to 7th graders during his second year in the district. Next, Will spent a year at the Gilliam School, a part of the Colorado Division of Youth Corrections, which gave him new insight into the struggles that many of our young people face, and a renewed conviction to do something about it.
In June 2014, Will took over as the Technology and Blended Learning Coordinator at Ashley Elementary School, the neighborhood public school his children attend. Ashley is the first elementary school within Denver Public Schools to go completely 1:1 with iPads for all students from ECE-Grade 5. The 2016-17 school year will mark year 3 of the iPad initiative and Gayhart’s leadership of the tech program.
Before any of this happened, Will began life on the Southside of Chicago. Even though he has lived in many places (check out where), Chicago holds the title of home in his heart. Our man earned a bachelor of science degree from Purdue University and spent a decade working as an IT consultant, including time with Accenture Consulting and IBM.
Will returned to graduate school in Colorado and Montana, and then began his teaching career in the Chicago Public Schools during Arne Duncan’s tenure as CEO of the district. This experience led to his utter astonishment when Mr. Duncan became Secretary of Education. It was at this point that it really hit home that success at the upper levels in the world of education had nothing to do with ability or competence. This realization and subsequent probing radicalized Will against the forces of corporatization in education and reform.
After 5 years teaching in Chicago, Will packed up and moved to the Philippines. What started as an intended decades-long world tour, turned into permanent residence in the Philippines, complete with a teaching job at an international school, a wife, and two wonderful children. Will’s children hold citizenship in 3 countries on 3 continents.
When he started teaching, Will became fascinated by ability of superheroes to capture students’ attention. Sacrificing his dignity, Will took on the role of Captain Ned. Captain Ned grew and evolved into the idea of SuperDudes. It seemed obvious to him that the world needs more SuperDudes, so Will founded SuperDude Productions to address this shortage.
A dad, husband, SuperDude, dreamer, idealist, and staunch supporter of public education and strong urban neighborhoods, Will looks forward to returning to a tropical island permanently someday. Until then, he’ll be fighting the good fight, staying motivated by the Ghost of Tom Joad:
Wherever a hungry newborn baby cries
Where there’s a fight ‘gainst the blood and hatred in the air
Look for me Mom I’ll be there
Wherever there’s somebody fightin’ for a place to stand
Or decent job or a helpin’ hand