Darlington School: Private Boarding School in Georgia School welcomes new faculty and staff
Darlington School: Private Boarding School in Rome, GA
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School welcomes new faculty and staff

August 8, 2016 | 7238 views

Darlington is pleased to welcome the following new faculty and staff members for the 2016-17 school year. All began Aug. 1, 2016, unless otherwise noted.

Audrey Ashworth has been named assistant director of admission for boarding. She holds an A.S. in Business and a B.S. in Business and Public Policy from Young Harris College. Ashworth has worked in the Admission Office at Young Harris for the past four years, most recently serving as assistant director of admissions and admissions coordinator. She has also fulfilled the roles of regional admissions counselor and senior admissions counselor. 

Jennifer Bagby will be assistant director of admission for ELA-5. She holds a B.S. in Sociology from Shorter College and has spent the last eight years as director of Garden Lakes Baptist Church Preschool.She and her husband, Tripp ('91), are the parents of Will ('22) and Chandler ('25). 

Jennifer Broome will be band director for grades 4-8. She holds a B.S. in Music Education from Toccoa Falls College and completed M.M.Ed. coursework at VanderCook College of Music. She also holds Georgia PSC Certification in P-12 Music Education. Broome has 14 years of experience in music education, most recently serving as band director at Northpoint Christian Academy in Carrollton, Ga. She also teaches private lessons and is owner and director of the Sounds of Summer Band Camp for middle school students in Villa Rica, Ga. Broome is a member of the National Association for Music Education and the Georgia Music Educator’s Association. She is married to Jonathan Broome, Darlington's new director of instrumental music.

Jonathan Broome will serve as director of instrumental music. He holds a B.M. in Music Education from the University of West Georgia and an M.M. in Music Education from VanderCook College of Music. He also holds Georgia PSC Certification in P-12 Music Education. Broome has a decade of experience in music education, serving most recently as director of bands at Fairplay Middle School in Douglasville, Ga. He has also worked with a variety of summer instrumental programs and performed professionally. Broome is a member of the National Association for Music Education, the Georgia Music Educators Association, the Professional Association of Georgia Educators, and the National Band Association. He is married to Jennifer Broome, Darlington's new band director for grades 4-8.

Justin Bruce will be a learning specialist at the Upper School. He holds a B.S. in Collaborative Special Education from Auburn University, a Masters in Special Education Adaptive Curriculum from the University of West Georgia and an Ed.S. in Curriculum and Instruction from Lincoln Memorial University. Bruce has nearly a decade of experience in education, most recently as a self-contained special education teacher at Model Middle School, where he also coached basketball and football. He is married to Elizabeth (Collier) Bruce ('03).

Jennifer Collins will be content manager in the Communication Office. She holds a B.S. from Shorter College and multiple certifications, including HubSpot's Inbound Marketing Certification and the Southeast Tourism Society's Tourism Marketing Professional Certification. Collins has nearly 20 years of experience in marketing and public relations, serving most recently as inbound marketing manager at SAI Digital. She is a member of the Downtown Development Authority Promotions Committee and a graduate of Leadership Rome. 

Chuck Flaherty will be web developer in the I.T. Office. He holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Towson State University. Flaherty is a Sun Certified Java Programmer and holds additional certifications in Microsoft Visual Basic 6.0, Microsoft SQL Server Database Implementation, Microsoft SQL Server Database Administration for Microsoft Windows NT, and Developing Applications with C++ Using the Microsoft Foundation Class Library. Most recently, he served as senior developer and security audit team member at Fidelity National Information Services for three years. Flaherty also spent three years as a senior web developer at Lockheed Martin.

Kayla Heflin will teach Spanish at the Upper School. She holds a B.A. in Spanish and Anthropology from Berry College, where she was director of the Berry College ESL Program for two years and an ESL instructor for one year prior. Most recently, Heflin has been a Cuban education services member at New American Pathways in Atlanta. Her international experience includes serving as an English teaching assistant at Fundación Progreso Guanacaste (Santa Cruz, Costa Rica), and as a service learning volunteer at Spring Hill College Italy Center (Bologna, Italy).

Stephanie Horah will teach first grade. She holds a B.S. in Communications from Kennesaw State University, an M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education from Berry College, and a T-5 Georgia Educator Certificate. Horah has more than a decade of teaching experience and recently served as a long-term substitute teacher in Darlington's first grade class. She also spent three years teaching at Cloverleaf Elementary School in Cartersville, Ga. She is the mother of Dawson ('16) and Natalie ('19).

Molly Jordan will teach second grade. She holds a B.A. in Communication from Auburn University, an M.Ed. from Jacksonville State University, and an Ed.S. in Curriculum and Instruction from Lincoln Memorial University. Jordan has taught in the Polk School District for the last 13 years, the last 11 of which have been as a second-grade teacher. During her tenure there, Jordan has served on and led several committees and initiatives for the school. No stranger to Darlington, she is the mother of current students Neelley ('29) and Caroline ('25).

Brendan Leezer will teach science at the Upper School and serve as head boys' lacrosse coach. He holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh, a B.S. in Science from the University of Georgia, an M.Ed. in Science Education from Georgia State University, and certifications in Science (6-12), Earth/Space Science (6-12), Health & P.E. (P-12), and Math (6-12). Leezer has 13 years of teaching experience and nine years of coaching experience, most recently at Lassiter High School in Cobb County. There, he taught chemistry, physics and Earth systems, while also serving as men's lacrosse coach. As a coach, Leezer led Lassiter to five consecutive playoff appearances, including two state finals, and produced a total of six All-Americans, 15 All-State, and two Academic-All American players in five years.

Kurt Luitwieler will teach math at the Upper School and serve as head boys' soccer coach. He holds a B.S. in Anthropology and History from Carnegie Mellon University and numerous coaching certifications. Luitwieler taught and created a variety of different math courses at Holland Hall School in Tulsa, Okla., for 17 years before moving into his most recent position as director of coaching education and player development for the Oklahoma Soccer Association. At Holland, he was an academic advisor, a Student-Faculty Senate member, an Honor Council member and founder of the Math Mentors program between the upper and primary schools. Luitwieler looks forward to getting back into the classroom and to combining his two passions, teaching and soccer, for the benefit of students.

Catherine Manning will teach Spanish to grades 6-8. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish from Mercer University and studied abroad at Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador. For the past three years, Manning has served as North American language and culture assistant at Palma de Mallorca in Balearic Islands, Spain, where she works with students ages 8-16. She is also an English language tutor. Lee is passionate about serving the community. In college, she taught remedial courses to youth through Campus Clubs of Macon, volunteered at Young Life Greater Macon and served as missions fundraising chair for Mercer's Baptist Collegiate Ministries. She also speaks French.

Thad Mathis ('10) will teach fourth grade. He holds a B.S. in Early Childhood Education from Shorter University, where he was a member of the football team. He is also a member of Teach for America. Most recently, Mathis served as a fourth-grade master math teacher and International Baccalaureate teacher at the Academy of Science and Foreign Language in Huntsville, Ala. While there, he also worked with the robotics team and coached football. Mathis looks forward to returning to Georgia and, specifically, to his alma mater. A 2010 graduate of Darlington, he was highly involved as a student and won the Vincent Dooley J. Award as a senior.

Ben McVetywill serve as choral director for grades 6-12. He holds a Bachelor of Music from the College of William and Mary and a Master of Music Education from Indiana University. McVety has three years of teaching experience, most recently at Marianapolis Preparatory School in Connecticut. There, he has also directed school musicals, coached soccer, served as a dorm parent and sophomore adviser, and much more. He has also served as assistant director of the Indiana Children's Choir and worked with other civic organizations related to music. 

Alicia Raymond will teach English to grades 6 and 7 in addition to serving as head swim coach. She holds a B.A. in English and an M.A. in Creative Writing, both from Longwood University, as well as a Teaching Certificate in Secondary English from the University of Richmond. Raymond has worked in education for nearly 10 years, most recently serving as athletics administrative assistant and facilities coordinator at St. Catherine's School for Girls.

Catherine "Kiki" Rowsey will teach math at the Upper School. She holds a B.B.A. in Finance from the University of Georgia and an M.A. in Teaching from Emory University. She also studied abroad at Oxford University (England). Rowsey holds multiple certifications, including Gifted, AP Statistics, High School Economics, Middle Grades Social Studies and Mathematics, and High School Mathematics. During the last three years, she has taught a variety of math courses at Norcross High School, including AP Statistics, Accelerated Geometry, Algebra and Strategies for Algebra. There, Rowsey also served on the Vertical Math Team, was a new teacher mentor and coached tennis. 

Samantha Rush will teach history to grades 7 and 8. She holds a B.S. in Education from Shorter College and multiple Georgia Educator Certifications, including Gifted; Behavior Science, Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, grades 6-12; Special Education General Curriculum, grades P-12; and Special Education Social Science Cognitive Level P-12. Rush has 14 years of experience teaching social studies at the middle and high school levels, serving most recently as a social studies and special education teacher at Pepperell Middle School.

Charles Steeves has been named assistant director of admission for boarding. He holds a B.A. in English Literature from Colorado State University. Steeves has nearly a decade of experience in sales, marketing and relationship management, most recently serving as a branch manager for Wells Fargo in Atlanta. There, he and his staff have been consistently recognized among the top-performing branches. He is married to Molly (Kelly) Steeves ('98). 

Jon Wagshul will serve as chairman of the history department and head tennis coach. He holds a B.S. in Russian from Georgetown University; a J.D. from Washington and Lee University School of Law; an L.L.M. in Military Law from The Judge Advocate General’s School, U.S. Army; and an M.A. in International Relations from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University. Wagshul speaks four languages and has studied abroad in Canada, Germany and Russia. He has 16 years of teaching experience, most recently at The Episcopal School of Texas, where he also coached tennis and cross country, served as an adviser and college counselor, sponsored the Honor Council, and led the ongoing development of the human geography curriculum. A Navy JAG officer for 22 years, some of his previous roles have included interim director of the Defense Institute of International Legal Studies; adjunct faculty at the Naval War College; professor at The Judge Advocate General’s School, U.S. Army; and head of the civil law department at Naval Justice School. He is married to Nan Wagshul, who will serve as Darlington's admissions associate.

Nan Wagshul will serve as admissions associate, handling initial correspondence with inquiries, coordinating the Tiger Expert Program, and providing administrative support to the Admission Office staff, among other duties. She attended Southern Seminary Junior College and pursued a degree in business administration at St. Leo University. She later received a paralegal certificate from Old Dominion University, earning what was, at that time, the highest GPA in the history of the program. Wagshul comes to Darlington from The Episcopal School of Texas, where she currently serves as assistant registrar. She has previous administrative experience as a human resources assistant and a legal assistant. She is married to Jon Wagshul, who will be chairman of Darlington's history department.

Gabriela Zini will teach Spanish at the Upper School. A native of Argentina, she holds a degree in biochemistry from Córdoba National University and completed additional training at the National Academy of Medicine before earning her specialist degree in immunology, also from Córdoba. Later, she earned additional degree validation in biological sciences from the University of Turin, Italy. Zini had a 20-year career in the medical field, earning multiple fellowships in Italy; teaching graduate-level courses; and being published numerous times for her research. She has also taught private beginner and intermediate Spanish lessons and, in the past year, has lectured Berry College Elementary and Middle School students (grades 5-8) about Italian language and culture. 

Note: This article will be updated as new faculty and staff members are hired. To view a list of the employment opportunities currently available at Darlington School, please click here.