Board of Directors

Board Meetings

All regular meetings of the Board of Directors are open to the public and are held by Zoom teleconferencing until further notice.

Meetings begin at 7:00 pm unless otherwise noted.

Upcoming meetings:

August 13, 2020 at 7PM

September 10, 2020 at 7PM

October 8, 2020 at 7PM

November 12, 2020 at 7PM

December 10, 2020 at 7PM

January 14, 2021 at 7PM

February 11, 2021 at 7PM

March 11, 2021 at 7PM

April 8, 2021 at 7PM

May 13, 2021 at 7PM

June 10, 2021 at 7PM


TO BE SCHEDULED

Board Orientation/Training in August/September


Board Minutes of the public charter school Board of Directors meetings for the current school year can be accessed from the Board Minutes page where they are added once approved. Prior school years' minutes are available upon request.

Note that minutes are not approved until the following month's meeting.

Committee Meetings

The public charter school Board of Directors currently has four committees:

Executive Committee

Board Development Committee

Finance Committee

Operations & Programming Committee

Meeting dates, times, and locations can be found on the school calendar located here. All charter committee meetings are open to the public.

Volunteer Opportunities

Board of Directors and Committee Volunteers

Do you have a desire to support Willow Oak Montessori in furthering its mission? April is typically the time of year we reach out to our community to recruit new board members and committee members. We’ve come up with this FAQ and would love to talk to you about joining. Please email BoardInterest@willowoakmontessori.org so we can set up a good time to chat.

Our Board of Directors

The following individuals are the Directors for Willow Oak Montessori Charter School, Inc.; Willow Oak Montessori Children's House, Inc.; and Willow Oak Montessori Foundation, Inc.

Tiffany Cooper, President & Design Team Leader

Tiffany is a Pittsboro native who moved away from the rural country life to the big city only to return to her roots. She graduated from Meredith with a BA in psychology and completed a Masters in Organizational Management in Arizona. Most of her corporate career was spent in healthcare focused on organizational development, process improvement, and strategy. Desiring more flexibility with her kids and creative work she changed careers to hops farming in 2016. Tiffany was first introduced to Montessori in Phoenix, and when the family returned to NC in 2011 she enrolled her son at Children’s House Montessori in Burlington, where the family was living at the time. Tiffany’s son and daughter both attend the Charter School. She is excited to be part of the growing Willow Oak community and is looking forward to contributing to the success and development of the board efforts.


Melissa Robinson, Vice President


Mark Smith, Treasurer & Finance Chair

Mark grew up in upstate New York and earned his B.A. in English at St. Lawrence University. After college, he attended Albany Law School, was admitted to the New York Bar, and went to work for an asset/wealth management firm based in NYC. While in law school he supplemented his legal education with accounting courses and after passing the Bar, became a Certified Public Accountant. Mark spent the majority of his career working in public accounting as an auditor in the high tech and private equity, venture capital industries. Mark now holds a position with the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants in Durham, NC. Mark and his wife Julie have two girls and have been a part of the Willow Oak Montessori community since 2014. He welcomes the privilege to serve on the board during this exciting time of growth to help ensure that current and future students and families benefit from all that Willow Oak Montessori has to offer.


Charleen Cody, Secretary & Board Development Chair

Charleen’s parents moved to Chatham County while she was in elementary school and she graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill, so she has been a long time local. Prior to starting a family, Charleen worked for a company that consulted to biotech and pharma in their marketing department. Charleen and her husband currently live in the North Chatham area with their children. Her oldest has attended Willow Oak Montessori Charter School since its inaugural year. Since she left her corporate career, Charleen has been an active volunteer in her community and in her children’s schools. She is also a part-time assistant at her youngest child’s preschool.


Colleen Selleck, Institutional Advancement Chair

Colleen has a long history of entrepreneurship, from early lemonade stands to helping her father with his business to running companies with her husband most recently. Simultaneously, she spent about 11 years in executive roles with YMCAs in NY and NC. Colleen moved to Chapel Hill 3 years ago with her husband Dan and their 5 children: Evan, Max, Molly, Jackson and Oliver. While the move was due in part to business, their driving motivation was to get into “better schools.” As expected, the traditional public school system was far better than their previous schools, and the supportive services some of the children needed were exceptional. What they quickly found was that as others in the family were eager to reach beyond the boundaries of their worksheets and classroom rules, there was nothing for them. Thankfully, Willow Oak has become home for most of the Selleck children, providing the exact opportunities each has needed to grow. Outside of school, Colleen stays busy managing their company, Progressive Water Solutions in Durham, and trying to get an ocean view as frequently as possible.


Janet Weed, Board Member

Janet Weed has been an Educator and Administrator for over 15 years in a variety of roles and settings. A highlight of her career was creating and leading a Visual Literacy Program for HS students and teachers in Ghana, West Africa. In 2006, Janet started her Montessori journey and has since worked at Heartwood Montessori, Montessori School of Raleigh, Montessori Community School, Raleigh Progressive School, Peace Montessori and many other schools in the area and in the Northeast. She was on the Board of Directors at Sterling Montessori and is thrilled to join the board at WOM. Janet managed the Triangle Montessori Schools Association, which provides professional development and collaboration to all of the Montessori schools in the area. Janet has taken many certification courses in the Primary and Lower Elementary Montessori levels. Janet went to NYU for both Undergrad and an Advanced Graduate Certificate in Arts Administration. Before she transitioned to education, she was a professional costume designer on Broadway and Primetime TV. She and her husband live in Chapel Hill and have three sons. Her boys are proud Montessori kids and are so happy to be at WOM! In her free time, Janet helps two run two organizations, The One Open Door and Wholistic Connections. She also owns her own Healing Arts and mindfulness practice called Tenth & Divine.

Judy Malloy, Board Member

Judy brings 15 years of engineering and project management experience to the Board. She holds Bachelors and Masters degrees in Engineering, from her native Scotland. After graduating, she joined an international company which took her around the world, where she met her husband, and finally to North Carolina in 2014. Her most memorable projects include upgrades to London Underground’s subway system ahead of the Olympics and rebuilding water treatment plants in Iraq. Her current project, a mum to daughter Evelyn and son Ewan, is her most challenging to date. In her spare time, Judy likes to ride her bike, walk the dog and is learning to play the piano. Judy is comfortable in complex and changing environments. Her project mindset will benefit the development of the school in these uncertain times. She is delighted to have this opportunity to serve Willow Oak Montessori.


Frank Brainard, Board Member

Frank is a native Oklahoman who began his career as a high school history teacher. He transitioned to teaching Montessori at the 3 to 6 age level under the guidance of Margaret Loeffler and Bea Pape, two Montessorians who supported his decision to move to Bergamo, Italy where he completed his Montessori Elementary credential. A few years after his return to the USA, Frank and his wife, Margaret Borrego, established a Montessori School in the southern Appalachian community of Cashiers, NC. After several years of co-directing their school, Frank completed his EdM at Harvard University and subsequent principal certification through internships in Marblehead, MA and Auburn, WA. He worked in school leadership positions in Chicago, IL and near Seattle, WA where he began his doctoral studies at The University of Washington. Frank was Head of School at The Greensboro Montessori School for 17 years. He is a past member of the AMS Board of Directors, and the AMS School Accreditation Commission the Montessori Accrediting Council for Teacher Education Board of Directors. Frank has chaired or been a member of over 100 school and teacher education accreditation teams. He is currently on the board of B’nai Shalom Day School and Noble Academy in Greensboro, NC. Frank and his wife are strong supporters of Montessori theory and practice in public and independent schools. He is happy to serve on the Willow Oak Montessori board because of the sense he gets that this board is totally committed to the sustainability and future of this fine member of the Montessori community of schools.


Mike Dasher, Board Member

Mike was born in Toledo, Ohio and moved to North Carolina in 1989. He and his wife, Selbe Bartlett, arrived in Chatham County in 2004. Mike is a builder and developer and also serves as a Chatham County Commissioner. He is a graduate of Barton College where he earned degrees in Political Science and Finance. After college Mike joined AmeriCorps and spent a year building houses with Habitat for Humanity, and discovered a passion for building, service, and for creating community. He continued working for Habitat for Humanity for another 6 years, and eventually founded his own company to develop smart, sustainable communities. Mike enjoys spending time with his two children, both of whom attend Willow Oak Montessori. Mike and Selbe have found the Montessori principles reflect their core values of trust, respect, mindfulness, and community.


Danielle Ward, Operations Chair

Danielle was born and raised in NYC but found that big city life did not suit her. She looked for a college in a small town setting and found it in Davidson College in Davidson, NC, where she obtained her undergraduate degree in Psychology and met her husband, Mattison. After a brief stint in Connecticut, she returned to North Carolina in 2001 and settled in Wake County. She graduated with honors from UNC Law and went on to clerk for a judge on the North Carolina Court of Appeals, an engaging and personally meaningful position. Her recent years have focused on raising her two children, Riley and Cassidy, both Willow Oak Montessori students. She is thrilled to serve on the board during this exciting time of growth for the Willow Oak Montessori community.


Laura Jacobs, Equity Team Liaison

Laura is a stay at home parent who has lived in Chatham County since 2005. A native of eastern North Carolina, she attended Johnson & Wales University and graduated with a culinary arts degree. Laura has worked as a pastry chef in fine dining, a caterer, and a personal chef. She has been volunteering at Willow Oak since 2016, when her child began attending Willow Oak Montessori Children's House. The values of independence, creativity, and diversity that Willow Oak fosters in its community greatly appeal to Laura and make her excited to be involved on a more formal level. In her spare time, she likes listening to music, tackling home improvement projects, cooking, and photography.


Thomas Petley, Board Member

Originally from England, Tom grew up in Milan, Italy and returned to the UK after high school. After earning an undergraduate degree in accounting and a master degree in finance, Tom wound up working at Motorola in Munich, Germany. In 2006 he moved to Chicago with Motorola and a few years later to North Carolina, where his wife Amy is from. Together they have two daughters, Lilly and Hannah, at Willow Oak Montessori.