A free, public K-12 charter school with 7 locations in rural communities of Utah!

Donna Richens


Donna Richens

South Group

I was born in Oregon, but raised in Manti, Utah.  I was homeschooled from 4th through 8th grade.  I loved being homeschooled!  I have always been naturally curious and imaginative.  I learned the value of hard work at a very early age.  I am the youngest of 10 kids.  I did theater, speech, debate, and choir throughout high school and most of college.  I love to sing, play the guitar, play games with my family, and do anything that involves the out doors, especially in the mountains.  I currently live in Myton, UT where my husband farms and teaches high school Tech Ed. classes and I agree to help him change sprinklers once in a while when I'm feeling really generous.

My claim to fame is my brief stint as an intern working for Senator Orrin Hatch in Washington DC.  I had just finished my Bachelor's degree and was hired in August of 2001.  I was working on Capitol Hill during the 9/11 terrorist attacks.  I met a lot of senators and congressmen and was able to see, up close and personal, how our government works.  There is even a small picture of me in the background in the December, 2001 issue of TIME magazine.  

I have a Bachelor's degree in Political Science from Utah State University as well as a Master's degree in Psychology/School Counseling also from Utah State University.  I worked as a social worker for 7 years and then stayed home to raise my 3 children.  I taught music at Myton Elementary for 3 years and spent some time subbing in various classes or working as an aide.  When my oldest son was entering 4th grade I was asked to teach his class a week and a half before school started.  Even though I had no professional or educational background in elementary education, I accepted the position and fell in love with teaching.  I discovered my inner science geek as I taught the 4th grade science curriculum.  After that, I homeschooled my own children for a little over a year and loved every minute of it.  

I'm currently working as the Educational Specialist for the Distance Education program for the Ballard, UT campus.  I'm so excited to be part of the Athenian team!  I'm even more excited about all the amazing services that Athenian has to offer parents and students.  I love to see education influence people and I can't wait to see what we can do!