Meet Our Staff

Mr. Ben Lewis


Mr. Lewis has been with the TAPESTRY Program for 5 years. He has worked at various different sites over his time at West 40 and has experienced numerous different roles. He works well with students and staff within the High School communities and enjoys having an impact on such a large population of students. Besides working with students Mr. Lewis is an avid soccer fan and coaches youth players around the Chicago-land area.

Mrs. Lindsay Bondiman

Mrs. Bondiman has been with Project TAPESTRY for 4 years.   “My favorite part of my job is seeing a student connect with me, who may have not connected with one other adult in the building.”  Lindsay received her Undergraduate Degree in Elementary Education from Butler University and earned her Master’s Degree in School Counseling from Roosevelt University in 2010.  Prior to working in the Tapestry Program, Lindsay worked at Maine West High School as a long term Substitute Teacher in the Student Services Office and as a TA. When she began working at West 40, she was first a Student Advocate at Morton East High School and is now currently an Advocate at West Leyden High School.  Lindsay enjoys discovering new restaurants, baking, and travelling when she is not helping students.

Mr. Pedro Peralta

Mr. Peralta is a Tapestry Student Advocate who is currently in his 4th year with TAPESTRY at West Leyden High School.  His favorite part about the job is “being able to create a connection with students which has a positive influence on them and also encourages them to give their best effort in school, while reaching their goal of obtaining a high school diploma.” He feels privileged to be working in this program and is looking forward to many more years of having his students be successful and proud of their accomplishments.  He received his Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics with a teaching certificate in Secondary education from Dominican University in River Forest IL in January 2012.  Before joining Tapestry, Mr. Peralta was working as a long-term Math sub at West Leyden High School right after he graduated from college. While working at Leyden, he heard about the Tapestry program starting up and was interested in being part of such a great initiative that would help the students that he was teaching. He was fortunate enough to get hired in June 2012 to continue working at the West Leyden campus in the Project TAPESTRY.  In his free time, Mr. P enjoys playing soccer, catching up on his favorite TV series, and searching for math related activities/games that the students can enjoy playing.

Mrs. Lori Weiss

Mrs. Weiss has been a part of the Tapestry program at West 40 from its inception and has enjoyed watching the program grow.  I really enjoy building relationship with my students. I enjoy watching the success that comes from the encouragement and positive reinforcement I give to each one of my students on a daily basis. I feel rewarded when I see the change in their work habits and beliefs.  She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Business from Trinity College and earned a Masters in School Counseling from Lewis University.  Prior to her time at West 40, Lori casted and directed kids in National Commercials for 14 years. She has helped, encouraged and built relationships with children throughout the different careers she has pursued.  I have raised a family of six kids and I am blessed with watching them grow and mature into responsible, achieving adults. I love to laugh and enjoy life to the fullest.

Ms. Beth Novotny

Ms. Novotny has been working as a Student Advocate in the Tapestry Program at West Leyden High School since October of 2015.  After graduating with a degree in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, Beth began working in Family Services.  After eight years of working with the families of children 0-5 years of age in the Head Start program, Beth was ready to take her skills and experience to a new challenge.  She was excited to explore the opportunity to work with high school students!  “I enjoy getting to know each student and family, and helping them take steps towards building a more positive life, starting with a high school diploma.”   Beth is looking forward to a very rewarding experience with West 40 and the Tapestry Program!   Outside of work, Beth enjoys all sorts of outdoor adventures including snowboarding in the winters, and camping in the summers. She also loves to read, travel, and visit family whenever possible!