These are exciting times!
This month, the Westerville Education Foundation welcomes four new trustees to the board. We are lucky to have a fantastic current slate of board of trustees (love you guys!) but we're thrilled to have new perspectives and fresh energy on our board for 2020! It feels like we are moving in the right direction when great people want to join up to help out with our mission. We have even more amazing places we want to go and we're so happy to have these people join us in moving toward that future for our schools and our community.
Please join us in welcoming our newest WEF Board Trustees!
Lee Rutherford is a 6th grade English Language Arts teacher at Blendon Middle School and proud Westerville parent. She states, "It has always been my goal to use my platform as an educator in our community to build relationships and connections beyond the walls of my classroom." Working with student teachers from Otterbein University, actively participating in Community Conversations, hosting events like the African-American Read-In that bring school and community together are a few ways Lee tries to make those connections. "I believes strongly in investing in our young people who bring so much innovation and forward-thinking to our community; I am deeply committed to the work that will make a positive impact in this community that I love!"
Lee and Tre Rieves were grant recipients in Spring 2020 for their African-American Read-In, a guest reader for our StoryBox program in Summer 2020, and she is already helping us shape and guide our Many Voices project.
LaTresa "Tre" Rieves is just as excited to be an educator today as she was during her first year of teaching over twenty years ago. She began her career as a kindergarten teacher in a French bilingual school program in Cincinnati. With a love for children of all ages, Tre has been a primary teacher, ESL teacher, Academic Instructional Coach and now is honored to serve as ESL Facilitator for all 15 WCS elementary schools. "Being a teacher-mentor has allowed me to support teachers in their instruction and be around the greatest of treasures---the children!"
LaTresa has been humbled by being honored with the Educator of the Year Award and the G.E.M. (Great Educator Mentor Award). However, she would be the first to tell you, any accolade pales in comparison to the sheer joy of being a part of the "child magic," listening to a child share their own authentic writing or reading aloud to her.
LaTresa is overjoyed to be a part of The Westerville Education Foundation and looks forward to making projects such as Many Voices come to life for the Westerville Community. Tre was also a guest reader this summer in our StoryBox program. You can view that video here.
Tiyi Morris is Associate Professor of African American and African Studies at The Ohio State University at Newark and a co-founder/co-director of the Ohio Prison Education Exchange Project (OPEEP). She is a civil rights historian who studies Black women’s social and political activism. Having received her B.A. in African & African American Studies and Liberal Studies from Emory University, and a M.A. and Ph.D. in American Studies from Purdue University, Dr. Morris’ research and teaching combine the fields of American History, Black Studies, and Women’s Studies. With this focus, she has taught courses such as 20th century US History; Gender, Sex and Power; The Civil Rights-Black Power Movements; and Social (In)Justice and the Black Experience: An Inside-Out Prison Exchange Course. Dr. Morris is the author of Womanpower Unlimited and the Black Freedom Struggle in Mississippi (UGA Press, 2015).
Teaching in African American and African Studies, a discipline that emerged from social justice movements, Dr. Morris’ curricula underscore the need to create a more just and equitable society. She believes her role as an educator is to help dismantle systems of oppression by liberating the minds of students and empowering them to challenge the oppressions they face and/or perpetuate. For several years, Dr. Morris worked with Jackson State University’s Fannie Lou Hamer National Institute for Citizenship and Democracy facilitating NEH seminars to help K-12 and post-secondary educators transform their teaching of the Civil Rights Movement. She has also served on the Board of Women Have Options, Ohio’s statewide abortion fund.
Tiyi is interested in helping strengthen the impact of student voices in the community and is planning on working with the Westerville Student Education Foundation in the coming year to empower their initiatives.
Cam Piatt lives in Westerville with his wife, Becky and son, Caleb. Caleb is a freshman at Westerville South High School. Since Caleb began attending first grade at Hanby Elementary, Cam has been involved with helping PTOs fundraise. He is also involved at Bexley United Methodist Church (his wife is Sr. Pastor), where he serves on the Board of Trustees.
In past Westerville levy campaigns, Cam has been an active volunteer, making phone calls, and distributing literature. Cam served as Campaign Treasurer for Our Community Our Schools Levy Committee for the 2019 campaign.
Professionally, Cam has been in financial analysis and accounting roles for over thirty years. He is excited for the opportunity to support our schools by working with the Westerville Education Foundation as Assistant Treasurer.