The Tandem Friends School Board of Trustees is a diverse group of individuals with a common purpose to serve and support the School in its mission and in its strategic vision. The TFS Board is comprised of alumni, current parents, past parents, local community members, and Friends. The Trustees volunteer their time, talents, and resources to aid in the continued and long-term success of the School.
Mary Chinn joined the board of trustees in 2018 and currently serves as Co-Chair. Mary holds a BS from Duke University and MEd from The College of William and Mary. After several years in student affairs roles at Virginia Wesleyan College, George Mason University, and Virginia Tech, Mary came to Charlottesville in 1994 to serve as the Director of Career Services at the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia. She left the University four years later to become the first Human Resources Director for SNL Financial, where she launched the SNL Knowledge Center, an affiliate organization that delivers training to professionals in the financial services sector. Mary served as Managing Director of the Center until the arrival of her second child. Mary has served as a Director and Human Resources Chair on the boards of the AIDS/HIV Services Group and Charlottesville-Albemarle SPCA. She currently volunteers as a Court Appointed Special Advocate for children in the foster care system and designs costumes for Tandem’s drama program. Mary’s two children, Lilly and Austin, currently attend Tandem Friends School.
Laurel Reiman Henneman joined the board of trustees in 2016 and currently serves as Co-Chair. She graduated from Friends Seminary, a Quaker school in New York City, and holds a BA from Wesleyan University (elected Phi Beta Kappa) and a JD (cum laude) from New York University School of Law, where she served as Executive Editor of the law review. She worked for three years as a management trainee at JP Morgan & Co. between college and law school. When her first child was born, Laurel took a hiatus from full-time law practice at the New York firm of Davis Polk & Wardwell. In 2004, her family relocated to Charlottesville so that her husband, Charlie, could take a position with CFA Institute. Since 2006, Laurel has worked as a freelance writer and editor, primarily on projects for local nonprofits. From 2009–14 she served as the Foundation Relations Manager at the Legal Aid Justice Center and continues as an active member of legal aid’s advisory council. She has also served as an elder at Westminster Presbyterian Church, an elder at the First Presbyterian Church in the City of New York, and as Vice President and a member of the Executive Committee at Molly Michie Preschool. Laurel’s son, Wyatt, graduated in the TFS class of 2019.
Susan E. Beers joined the board of trustees in 2018. Susan holds a BS in Psychology from the University of Washington (Seattle) and a PhD in Psychology from the University of Connecticut. In 2015, Susan was awarded Faculty Emeritus status at Sweet Briar College, having served on the faculty from 1983–2014, teaching courses in personality, social and cognitive psychology and the psychology of religion. Susan has attended the Charlottesville Friends Meeting since 2002, and has been a recorded member of the meeting since 2008, serving on a number of committees, and completing a two-year term as Clerk of the meeting in 2018.
Evangeline (Vonnie) Calland joined the board of trustees in 2015, and served as Chair from 2016–18. Vonnie is a member of the Charlottesville Friends Meeting, where she has served as Presiding Clerk and Recording Clerk. Vonnie holds a master’s degree in theology from Harvard Divinity School and a bachelor’s degree in religion from Kenyon College. She graduated from Sidwell Friends School in Washington, DC and taught at Brooklyn Friends School from 1995-1997. She currently works as a Palliative Chaplain at Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital. Vonnie’s daughter, Julia, graduated in the TFS class of 2018.
Geoffrey Carter joined the board of trustees in 2017. Geoff received his BA, with distinction, from Stanford University, and his JD from the University of Chicago, where he wrote for the law review. In 2010, Geoff was appointed as an administrative law judge for the National Labor Relations Board. He has also served as a judge for both the Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals and the Social Security Administration. Before becoming a judge, Geoff worked as an Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Columbia, a trial attorney in the Educational Opportunities Section of the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice, an appellate attorney for the EEOC, and as a law clerk to Judge Diane Wood of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Geoff’s son, Eli, currently attends Tandem Friends School, and Geoff attends Charlottesville Friends Meeting.
Sharon Deal joined the board of trustees in 2018. Sharon holds a BA from Virginia Tech, and an MA from Brown University. From 1994–2007, Sharon was on staff at Tandem Friends School as an English teacher, and as Director of College Counseling and Director of the Upper School. For ten years after leaving TFS, Sharon worked as a research scientist at the Center for Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning at UVA, and as Executive Director of the Public Education Foundation of Charlottesville-Albemarle. She is also a founding board member of Charlottesville’s Community Public Charter School, and has maintained a private college placement consultancy. Prior to her years at TFS, Sharon taught at the Foxcroft School, the Madeira School and Georgetown University, and held administrative positions at Brown University and Georgetown University. Sharon’s children, Ephraim (‘04) and Hannah (‘08), graduated from TFS.
Robert Fudge joined the board of trustees in 2019. He graduated from Carolina Friends School, a Quaker school in Durham, NC, and holds a BA in Drama and Literature from the University of North Carolina at Asheville. Robert worked for the National Park Service for 36 years specializing in natural and cultural resource interpretation, curriculum-based education, and park management. Upon his retirement in 2011, Robert and his husband moved from Philadelphia to Charlottesville. For the past few years, Robert has been self-employed, providing garden design and botanical services to clients. Robert is an active member of the Religious Society of Friends, and currently attends the Charlottesville Friends Meeting.
Margaret McNett Burruss joined the board of trustees in 2017. Margaret, a 1983 graduate of Tandem, holds a BA from UVA’s McIntire School of Commerce, as well as an MA in East Asian Studies from UVA. Margaret has a professional background as a business and systems analyst in addition to more than 15 years’ experience in nonprofit management. She most recently served as the first Executive Director of Charlottesville’s Loaves & Fishes Food Pantry from 2013–16, during a period of dramatic growth for the organization. Prior to joining Loaves & Fishes, Margaret worked for 11 years as an associate director with China Harvest, a non-profit providing humanitarian and other assistance to the poor and underserved in China.
Jake Minturn joined the board of trustees in 2016. Jake is an Account Manager for the design agency, Journey Group, where he works with humanitarian and higher education institutions. Prior to his work with Journey Group, Jake worked in advancement communications at the University of Virginia, first as the Director of Digital Media at the UVA Alumni Association and then as the Director of Communications for the Curry School of Education Foundation. Jake is a graduate of Tandem Friends School (Class of 2003) and the University of Virginia.
Seth Pates joined the board of trustees in 2018. Seth, a certified public accountant, is a 2006 graduate of Tandem Friends School, and holds a BBA from The College of William & Mary, as well as an MS in accounting from UVA’s McIntire School of Commerce. Seth currently works in tax consulting and compliance at McCallum & Kudravetz in Charlottesville, and previously worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP in Northern Virginia for financial services sector clients. Prior to joining the board, Seth served as a non-trustee member of the board’s finance committee.
Karen Ratzlaff joined the board of trustees in 2019. Karen graduated from the College of William & Mary and earned a master’s degree in education from the University of Virginia in 2008. Since 2013 she has led the fundraising and communications team at the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank to share with donors, volunteers, and friends the story of hunger in the Blue Ridge region. Prior to her work at the Food Bank, Karen served as Director of Development at Hospice of the Piedmont for seven years. Before that, she enjoyed a 14 year tenure at the UVA School of Nursing, culminating in the role of Managing Director of Development & Alumni Affairs. Karen has served as an elder at Westminster Presbyterian Church where she served a term as Clerk of Session. She and her husband are proud parents of two Tandem School graduates -- Eli (Class of 2016) and Logan (Class of 2019).
James H. Scott, III joined the board of trustees in 2017. Jay holds a BA in economics and an MBA, both from UVA. From 2007 to 2019, Jay served as President and Managing Director of CBO Partners, consulting to institutions of higher education and academic medical centers. In 2019, CBO Partners merged with Opus Partners where Jay now serves as an Associate Partner. He previously held the position of Senior Associate Dean for Finance and Administration at UVA’s School of Medicine for nine years, where his responsibilities included accounting, budget, and compensation operations; administrator development programs; capital projects and space management; grants and contracts management; information technology management; and marketing and public relations. Jay has also served as Director of the Budget for UVA, and Director of Administration for the Department of Ophthalmology, and Director of Budget and Payroll at UVA’s School of Medicine. Jay has additional previous career experience in the management of small businesses and investment management. Jay is also involved in a number of community philanthropic organizations and serves as an Outdoor Emergency Care Technician with the National Ski Patrol. Jay’s brother-in-law and sister-in-law are Tandem graduates, and his two sons, Ford and Alden, currently attend Tandem Friends School.
Katherine Smith Meyer joined the board of trustees in 2019. Kit, a 1983 graduate of Tandem, holds a BA in Latin American Studies from the University of Virginia and is currently enrolled in UVA’s Curry Master of Education program. She also holds a Graduate Level Certificate in Project Management from SCPS and has done graduate coursework at UVA’s School of Architecture. Kit has a professional background in facilities and landscape architecture and is currently employed as Senior Project Manager for UVA’s Facilities Planning and Construction. Kit has been involved with multiple large-scale projects at the University, including the recently announced Alderman Library $160 million renewal.
Melissa Warren joined the board of trustees in 2016, and currently serves as Secretary. Melissa is a 1996 graduate of UVA with a BA in Economics and a BA in French (Distinguished Major). Melissa worked at SNL Financial where she met her husband, Galen. At SNL, she served in several capacities including Research Analyst and DataSource Manager. Melissa later taught and tutored French at the International School of Charlottesville and the Alliance Francaise of Charlottesville. After having two children, Josh and Anna (both of whom currently attend Tandem), she took on volunteer roles including Religious Education Leader at Church of the Incarnation and Greenbrier Elementary School’s representative to the Charlottesville City Schools Quest Advisory Committee. In 2015–16, she served as TFS’s PTA President. Melissa enjoys watching her children, Josh and Anna, play Tandem Friends volleyball, soccer, basketball, and track.
Bernard D. Whitsett, II joined the board of trustees in 2015. Bernard earned a BA in Economics from the University of Virginia and an MBA in Finance and Managerial Economics from the JL Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University. Bernard has spent his career in the investment industry, and is currently working with fellow professionals identifying and pursuing consulting and business opportunities from Northern Virginia to NYC. Bernard has served on many boards in the Charlottesville area, including the Charlottesville Regional Chamber Minority Business Council, the Face Project, UVA’s Ridley Scholarship, 100 Black Men of Central Virginia, and Ebenezer Baptist Church’s Diaconate.
Tandem Friends School is a co-ed Quaker day school for grades 5-12 in Charlottesville, Virginia.