Photos by Sadie Glass Photography
The Board of Directors is the governing body of our incorporated not-for-profit school and endeavors to protect and develop the school community. Its primary concerns are the financial and program functions of the school, for which it defines a program mission and operating policies. Over time, as the program develops, its operations may be delegated to the Head of School and administrative staff. The corporate power of this school is vested in the Board of Directors, acting in accordance with the written bylaws.
The Board of Directors is composed of nine to eleven voting members plus the school Head of School, who serves as a non-voting ex officio member. Whether appointed or elected, Board Members are selected for their commitment to the mission of the school and for their ability to contribute particular expertise or experience. Board members model the respect and mutual support that is central to the philosophy of this Montessori school.
Leslie Thomas (President)
Leslie is honored to contribute her diverse skills to the Board, including experience in management and real estate. She and her husband Mike have been fortunate to witness first-hand the benefits a Montessori education brings to children’s development, with one child currently enrolled at BMS and a second who attended previously. Her commitment to the Board and BMS is fueled by the inspired learning that happens every day at Bloomington Montessori. She encourages families to become involved with the school community and to take full advantage of the lifelong benefits of Dr. Montessori’s philosophy.
Amanda Cook (Vice President)
Amanda holds a B.A. in Early Childhood Education from Marian University and brings teaching and writing experience to her work on the Board. After receiving her degree, she taught briefly before becoming a full-time parent in 2006. After moving to Bloomington in 2008, she joined the Bloomington Moms Meetup Group, becoming a co-organizer and running many events and activities. A lifelong reader and occasional blogger, she turned to fiction writing in 2009 and self-published her first novel in 2014 under her imprint, A. Cook’s Books. Her second novel, When We Were Forgotten, a speculative fiction story set on a space station, was self-published in September 2017. It won the 2018 Bronze Medal for Best Sci-fi/Fantasy/Horror E-book from the Independent Publisher Book Awards. She and her husband have two sons, who are current BMS students. Amanda is looking forward to her fourth year on the BMS Board of Directors and her second year as vice president of the board in 2018-19.
Phuong Thang (Treasurer)
Phuong is an accounting professional who currently works for Cook Group, a medical device company in Bloomington. Prior to that, she worked at Platformatics, a Bloomington-based tech company focused on providing “smart” lighting solutions through Power over Ethernet (PoE), and also for two of the big four accounting firms in Indianapolis. Raised in The Netherlands, Phuong obtained her undergraduate degree from the Erasmus University in Rotterdam and her M.S. in Accounting from the Kelley School of Business at IU. She and her husband Matthijs have one child enrolled at BMS, and one who will join in the 2018-2019 school year. Phuong is excited to help contribute to the BMS community as Board Treasurer and is looking forward to work together with the other Board members.
“I have always wanted to give back to the BMS community after witnessing the important role it plays in helping develop our kids into intelligent, independent, and caring individuals. I hope my background and experience in accounting will allow me to be of added value to the Board.”
Betsy Feeny (Secretary)
Betsy works in Principal Giving at the IU Foundation and has been a development professional for almost eight years since leaving the corporate world to return to IU Bloomington for graduate school. She has two degrees from IU, including a B.S. in Marketing from the Kelley School of Business and a M.S. in Higher Education and Student Affairs from the School of Education. Betsy is on her third boomerang trip to Bloomington and is confident this time she’s staying. Betsy and her husband Scott have one son, currently enrolled in the Magnolia room, and a happy goldendoodle, who would love to come play with the children at BMS all day if he could. Betsy and Scott spend their weekends keeping up with these two and are typically out enjoying one of Bloomington’s many outdoor activities. Betsy is excited to become more involved in the Montessori community through the BMS board.
Stacie Farmer (PR and Communications Chair)
Stacie grew up in Columbia City, Indiana, and graduated from Indiana University with a degree in Journalism. She has been in the medical device sales industry for nine years. Stacie and her husband Tony relocated to Bloomington in the Spring of 2015, and they have one son at BMS in the Lower Elementary program. The Bloomington Montessori experience has been such a positive one they have decided to make their Bloomington relocation permanent. The family is thrilled to be part of the Bloomington Montessori community, and Stacie is looking forward to serving the community as part of the board.
Grace Findley (Fundraising Chair)
Grace came to Bloomington in the spring of 2015 when she accepted a position at the IU Foundation. She and her husband Andrew have two boys, one currently enrolled at BMS. In among all the baseball, soccer and hockey, the family enjoys traveling, hiking, kayaking, biking and running. Grace and Andrew are thrilled to be part of the BMS community and Grace looks forward to contributing to continuous success of school.
Amelia Lahn (Policy Chair)
Amelia is a criminal defense attorney in Bloomington whose practice primarily consists of student conduct and legal issues relating to students, usually of college age. Amelia has served on the Girls, Inc. board, including chairing the risk management committee, as well as on the Middle Way House events committee. Amelia received a B.A. in Italian from IU in 2006 and graduated from the IU McKinney School of Law in 2010. Amelia attended BMS from 1987-1996 (look for Amelia Deibert in the 1996 class photo) and taught as an assistant in April Waxler’s preschool classroom for one year. Amelia has three daughters, one currently attending BMS. Amelia loves to stay involved at BMS, as she has experienced the positive impact of a Montessori education herself and now sees it in her daughters.
Scott Pitkin (Personnel Chair)
Scott and his wife Laura have two boys at BMS, both of whom graduated from the Magnolia classroom and have shared time in Maple. Scott manages a product design team at Salesforce, in Indianapolis. Prior to Salesforce, Scott worked with design teams at Angie’s List, Yahoo! and The Procter & Gamble Company. The family moved to Bloomington in summer 2012, when Laura accepted a faculty position at IU in the department of Gender Studies. Scott joined the BMS board in 2014, serving as the Technology chair for 2014-15 and since then as Personnel chair. In this role he works closely with the Head of School and Director of Montessori Programs on personnel issues and participates on the finance committee.
Todd Schnatzmeyer (Facilities/Maintenance Chair)
Todd is a registered architect in the states of Indiana and Texas and a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). He is also a LEED ® Accredited Professional and a member of the U.S. Green Building Council. As Executive Director of the Indiana Limestone Institute, he represents its member quarries, fabricators, and associate members by promoting the industry and assisting architects, masons, and end users on the best use and care of this historically significant stone. Todd earned his Architecture degree from the University of Kansas at Lawrence in 1988 and practiced in Texas until moving to Indiana in 2003. Todd and his wife Tami have two daughters currently at BMS.
Susan Yeley (Past President)
Susan is the owner and creative director of Susan Yeley Interiors, bringing to the Board business acumen as well as a background in communication and culture change. She and her husband Brian are from South Central Indiana, met at IU, lived in Chicago, and returned here to raise their family. Susan has two children enrolled at the school and one BMS graduate, and has spent over half a decade on the Board, including five years as President.