The Board of Directors generally meet once a month throughout the year on the third Thursday of the month at CHMS.
Board meetings are open to all Friends of Montessori members.
Officers and Directors 2012/2013
Pam, raised in Florida, returned in 2009 after being 15 years away. Her husband, Matt, is an Asst. Professor at Stetson in the department of Integrative Health Sciences. Their son, Zachary, is excited to start Lower Elementary. Their daughter, Sammie is in Primary enjoying Ms. Teresa's class . Pam is a small animal veterinarian with an emphasis on emergency medicine and critical care. She is a graduate of the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, and did further training/teaching at the Univeristy of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine. Although most of her career was spent at a 24-hour animal hospital in Washington D.C., she has been working very part-time since the arrival of Zach and Sam, and currently practices in Port Orange. She has been thrilled with CHMS and pleased to be able to support it however she can through the FOM board.
Laura grew up in Nashville, TN, and attended High School in Birmingham, AL. She attended Samford University in Birmingham and went on to graduate from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. She received her degree in Speech Language Pathology. Upon graduation she started a 14 year career as a flight attendant at Northwest Airlines. During the last couple of years as a flight attendant, she completed her Pilot Training at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. She was employed as a pilot at two separate United Express carriers. She commuted to both Denver and Washington DC from her home in Florida. After an extended time off from the flying world to stay home with her children when they were (really!) young, she started a career as a corporate pilot. For the last 5 years, Laura has been employed locally as the Chief Pilot for Mark Martin Enterprises.
She presently serves on the nominations committee at Coronado United Methodist Church where in the past she also served as Chairman of the Board of the Cormeth Day School in New Smyrna Beach, FL.
She and her husband Brad have been married 17 years and have two children. Addison attends Middle School and Erickson is in the lower elementary class. Addison is in her third year of Montessori while Erickson has been in Montessori since the age of three. The positive influence of the Montessori education has been a blessing to the entire Buck family. It is an honor and pleasure to be part of the FOM Board during this exciting time of growth at Children's House Montessori.
Lisa hails from Montreal, Quebec and moved to Florida back in 2003 when her husband Daniel received a job offer from Electronic Arts. She has a degree in the Study of Women and Religion and a Masters in Education. She is very passionate about education and has always worked in some capacity in the nonprofit sector and so she felt joining Friends of Montessori would be a great fit. Lisa and Daniel have two kids Ellora and Jack; Ellora is in Ms. Teresa’s class and Jack will follow in a year. She is enjoying the CHMS environment and is excited to be part of the Friends of Montessori.
Jennifer, born in Orlando, earned her bachelor’s degree in recreation at the University of Florida.
She first came to Children’s House in February 2000 to teach Physical Education. Jenn has been an assistant in Toddler, Primary and now Upper Elementary classroom.
She and her husband Tony have a daughter, Maddison, who is in her first year of the Middle School classroom.
She likes the Friends of Montessori's mission and she is enjoying to be part of that team.
Megan Cloudman recently moved to Deland in 2008 after residing in Tucson, Arizona for five years. Megan and her husband Chris, have two daughters Emily and Isobel. Emily is enjoying every moment in Ms. Maria’s class and Isobel in the toddler class. Currently, Megan is the Community Relations Director for New Horizons Service Dogs, a local nonprofit. Megan is active in the Deland community and is thrilled to be a part of the Friends of Montessori.
Tom and his wife, Bette Heins, have resided in Deland for the past 17 years. They have a son, Wiley 27, who is in his 3rd year of law school at Stetson. Bette is a professor at Stetson University, and the Director and Chair of the Nina B. Hollis Institute of Educational Reform. Tom has a very strong passion for education. He was an associate professor at Daytona State College, and is an adjunct instructor and intern supervisor in the Teacher Education Department at Stetson University. His philosophy of education, while eclectic, strongly favors the constructivist view, paralleling that of Dr. Montessori. Tom has a B.A. in Elementary Education from William Penn University, and a M.Ed. in Counselor Education from the University of Virginia. Tom has been an elementary school teacher and guidance counselor. In addition, he was the executive director of a federally funded drug abuse program with an alternative school component. Tom believes in the Montessori method and is happy to be part of the FOM team.
Born and raised in Orlando, FL and received Bachelor of Science in Nursing from University of Central Florida in 1998. Met husband John Jett while working at Sea World and married shortly after graduation. Have lived in Oklahoma and Missouri but returned to Florida in 2008 to make Deland her home. She currently works at Florida Hospital Deland in the Intensive Care Unit and John works in the Biology department at Stetson University. Their daughter Maya is 4 and it is in Ms. Teresa's class this year. They enjoy getting outdoors, exercising and working in their yard. They are happy to be back in Deland and are fortunate to have found Children's House and it's wonderful group of educators. Looking forward to another great year.
Many of you know Teresa as your child’s primary teacher! Teresa has been on staff at Children’s House since 1988. She received her AMI certification in 1994 from the Southern Montessori Institute.
Teresa earned her BA in modern dance and choreography from the University of South Florida, and speaks fluent Spanish as well as basic Italian and French. She lives in DeLand with her husband Gary and has two adult children Mathew and Jessica, alumni of Children’s House.
Brian is a native Floridian who grew up on the Space Coast. He began his career in the hotel and catering business, managing convention and catering operations in Orlando, Tampa and Daytona Beach. He decided to follow his passion in the arts, and went back to school to earn his Bachelor’s degree in both Digital Arts and Fine Art from Stetson University. Brian has worked over the past 8 years in creative departments in both the private advertising agency and government sectors. He is currently the Principal and Creative Director for Red Crane Creative, a boutique advertising agency specializing in design development, brand strategy and interactive design. Brian, his wife Michelle and their son Ethan reside in Glenwood. Ethan is in his last year of Lower Elementary with Ms. Clark and Ms. Koletsky. As a FOM board member, Brian is excited about the opportunity to contribute his service to support the school, its students and the Friend’s of Montessori Boards’ mission.
Kris was born and raised in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, moving to Florida in 2000. She and her husband Davor have two children, Roderick and Rori. This year, Roderick will be starting Middle School and Rori will be starting Upper Elementary. Kris is looking forward to being a part of the Friends of Montessori and having another great year at Children’s House Montessori.
Biography coming soon
Dean, an Oklahoma raised boy, moved to Florida in 1997 and to DeLand in 2000. His two boys, Diego and Andreas both in Lower Elementary, will be continuing their education this year at CHMS. When Dean first toured CHMS, he left thinking he had seen some sort of educational utopia. He understands that no school is perfect, but he and his boys have loved their experiences at CHMS! Dean went to Hendrix College in Arkansas, University of Oklahoma, and Stetson University. He holds degrees in Psychology, Philosophy, Zoology, and Educational Leadership. Dean has taught both middle school and high school Biology. He is currently teaching Biology at DeLand High School and loving it! Dean is happy to contribute as a board member of Friends of Montessori.
Amy has spent the majority of her life as a Floridian, residing in Tampa, Port Orange, and now New Smyrna Beach. She received her B.S. in Elementary Education from the University of South Florida in Tampa where after graduation promptly began teaching. Amy married her high school sweetheart, Jay, in 1997. After Jay completed medical school from USF, they moved to Port Orange so Jay could attend residency at Halifax. Amy then took a break from teaching and they started their family of two daughters. Suzi, now 10, attends Mr. and Mrs. Connors' upper elementary class. She has been in the Montessori environment for 3 years. Lori, who is 7, is enjoying lower elementary and has benefited from Montessori since age 2 having started in Little Ones Montessori of South Daytona. LOM is where Amy stepped back into the classroom by substituting in the toddler and primary rooms frequently. Amy looks forward to being involved in her children's education and helping the school maintain success. She is a stay-at-home mom enjoying their new move to the country, taming 8 1/2 acres, raising chickens, and playing with her children.
She is also on the board for Surfscape Contemporary Dance Theatre of New Smyrna Beach, Chair of Education and Outreach, she is excited to participate actively in Friends of Montessori.
Ella Wheeler is a native of Lima, Peru. She earned a degree in computer programming and small business administration from Inca Garcilaso de La Vega University. She came to the United States in 1998 with 15 years of technical support experience, including IBM of Peru, married Thomas H. Wheeler III, and landed her current job as senior system programmer for Volusia County.
They have three children, all attending Children's House Montessori School. Ella and Thomas named their first child, Wendy Willette Wheeler, WWW, to honor their internet romance. Wendy is excited to be in her first year of Middle School now with Ms. Lauren Rondeau and Mr. John Davies. Wendy started since she was 3 and completed Primary with Ms. Teresa, Lower Elementary with Ms. Clark and Upper Elementary with Mr. and Mrs. Conner. Amber is in her second year of Upper Elementary with Mr. and Mrs. Conner. Amber completed Primary with Ms. Maria and Lower Elementary with Mrs. Clark. Thomas H. Wheeler IV, Tommy, completed the Toddler Program with Ms. Helen, completed Primary with Ms. Teresa and is now in the second year of Lower Elementary with Ms. Clark and Ms. Koletsky.
Ella chose Montessori education for her children after reading several books written by Dr. Maria Montessori. She joined the Friends of Montessori to help fulfill the goals of the school. She is also a member of Faith Lutheran Church and feels blessed to have met wonderful people at the school and church.
George Williams was raised by a single mother in a small West Virginia town along the Ohio River. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Service at West Liberty State College in West Virginia and a Master’s Degree in Social Work at Virginia Commonwealth University in 1981. Since then he has worked in a variety of Social Work settings; including child abuse investigation, hospital Social Work, and addiction treatment (as some examples). He is now self-employed as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (counseling) in nursing homes (since 1995), and in a private office. He also works under contract for two home healthcare agencies, helping to provide direct services to patients. He and his late wife, Beverly Ednie, moved to Florida in 1986, and have two children (both CHMS alumni). Caitlin, 20 (a senior at Stetson University), and David, 14, (who is entering high school in the fall of 2011).
George and Beverly wanted an education that best allows children to flourish. CHMS was their choice. Beverly left her career in retail and became the administrator of CHMS after serving as a classroom assistant and teaching science classes (with her degree in microbiology from Ohio State). She passed away due to breast cancer in January 2003.
Beverly loved CHMS and its community of families. Her mission was to see the school prosper and spread the wonder of Montessori education. Montessori was her passion and joy, and George is committed to being involved in that goal.
Dora Mallett has been at Children’s House since 1986 and was appointed as the school administrator in 2006. Mrs. Mallett has a B.S. in Education from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio and taught in public schools in Michigan for 13 years. The transition from traditional education to Montessori philosophy has been enlightening and Mrs. Mallett particularly enjoys sharing her observations and experiences with visitors. “Our exceptional teachers bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise along with the gift of Montessori training offering the children of our community an unparalleled educational opportunity. It is a privilege to be a part of this school.”
Dora is also a very active member of Faith Lutheran Church and enjoys nurturing the relationship between the school and the church. Summer vacations are usually spent in Innsbruck, Austria with the Stetson University Program.
Karen, a businesswoman with experience in agribusiness, real estate and retail, was an active Children’s House parent for 11 years while her daughter, Amy, was a student at the school. Many of us with older children remember her daughter Amy at age three, bringing a baby goat to show and tell - a hint of things to come! Karen holds a Bachelor of Science degree in pharmacy from the University of Florida. In addition to her considerable financial support, Karen has been very generous with her time, serving as the first President of Friends of Montessori, Inc. We are indeed fortunate to have to her on our Board of Directors.