Behind the Smile of Mr. Francisco Tellez


Kyler Pace '23

In his current role, Mr. Tellez programs all the locks and doors on campus.

For many at Ransom Everglades, the ever-wide bright smile of one man characterizes the after-school journey from campus to cars. Francisco Tellez, affectionately called Frank by those who know him, is an icon of Ransom Everglades. In his current role as an important member of RE’s maintenance and security staff, he manages all the doors, locks and IDs that keep our campus safe. But his role within the community is much more than that, molded by a history and career that gives every one of his pearly-white grins a larger story. 

Tellez’s life has been defined by change. His story begins with an immigration into Miami from his home country of Nicaragua at 16 years old. However, this endeavor was brief, lasting all of five days before he went off to Wisconsin to live with family. His high school career continued there, but ended up bringing him back to Miami and eventually to California.  

In California, he had earned all the qualifications he needed, but he faced another obstacle: the English language. The task of learning English at that age “was a little tough for me because there [was] a whole world in a new language, like math, chemistry, and all things that I [hadn’t] done in English before,” he said. But he succeeded, prompting a return to Miami. 

His Miamian career has varied, just as his living locations did throughout high school. He started as a security camera worker, describing his duties as “[watching] security cameras for buildings [throughout] the whole area of Miami Beach, from North to South.” During his time with this occupation, he gained more technological experience and had a side job fixing computers.  

Eventually, he joined Coastal Building Maintenance, the maintenance firm whose bright green shirts speckle the Ransom Everglades campus at night. Through CBM, Tellez came to RE on a two-week stint and was eventually hired for a permanent job. 

I would definitely say that for me personally, Frank is my biggest connection to the maintenance faculty. He’s the only one that I really have a true personal connection and friendship with

— Jackson Pegg '23

Tellez’s role within the maintenance staff of Ransom Everglades has transformed significantly since he started working at the school in 2009. Originally working in the cleaning sector, his technological past and skills earned him an opportunity to take on a larger role programming campus infrastructure. After showing initiative continuously, he was given more and more projects that became vital to everyday school life. Perhaps his largest project is the management of access points across campus. The ability of different IDs and different positions to open specific rooms lies in Tellez’s hands. He designed a system for controlling access that he has formulated and perfected for over two and a half years.  

His process does not solely involve programming. The design of the IDs that adorn every individual on campus is the brainchild of none other than Tellez. As he put it, “I designed the ones for the Upper School as well as the Middle School. I’m doing a different design every year to switch it up.”  

Tellez’s passions stretch all the way to Tamiami. His ultimate goal is to fly as a pilot. This dream is manifested at home with his own flight simulator, which he uses to practice after almost every shift. He has even streamed some test flights on the simulator on a startup YouTube channel, with flight videos that are around two hours long. His next stop is to join the pilot academy in Tamiami for professional training.  

When members of the RE community describe Tellez, the most prominent detail they mention is how he constantly goes the extra mile to connect with the students and faculty, fostering close bonds with many. “I would definitely say that for me personally, Frank is my biggest connection to the maintenance faculty. He’s the only one that I really have a true personal connection and friendship with,” said Jackson Pegg ’23.

Frank demonstrates his care for the community in many ways. As a chronic Playhouse parker, Liv Rubell ’23 had much to comment on the bond that she has built with Frank. “What distinguishes him from some of his counterparts are the tiny things he does. When I used to park at Playhouse, I would always have to cross the senior lot gate. He would always be there every single day, and he made it a point to protect the students from traffic a lot and manage that area, especially after school,” she said.  

When asked about the many changes in his life and career, Frank threw his head back and chuckled, keeping every hair in his gelled combover in place. “You have to venture in life sometimes, and I did,” he said. “It was a great experience, and I learned a lot of things. I’m a person who believes that everything you learn in life is going to be a plus. Everything you learn can be of use at some point, so you should never say no to that.”  

So, the next time you see the navy-shirted man with a slick combover and a blinding white smile on campus, say hello to him and give him a smile to match.