S C HO O L S O F AU G U S TA
W INDOWS W W
WESTMINSTER SCHO O L S O F AUGUS TA
WESTMINSTER SC HO OLS OF AU GU S TA
FACULTY FOCUS: On the Flipside of the Desk FINE ARTS: If the Shoe Fits IMAGINE 2020: Celebrating Success
WESTMINSTER S C HO O L S O F AU G U S TA
WESTMINSTER SCHOOLS OF AUGUSTA
WINDOWS a publication of Westminster Schools of Augusta Westminster Schools of Augusta 3067 Wheeler Road Augusta, GA 30909 706-731-5260 or wsa.net Steve O’Neil Headmaster
Table of Contents A Word from the Headmaster
>Learning for Life Equipping for Academic Excellence
On the Flipside of the Desk
Joey Menendez Upper School Principal
Brian Case Middle School Principal
Craig Johnson Academic Dean
Sue Ames Lower School Principal Bill Wright Interim Director of Finance and Operations Carrie Brigham Director of Development Andrew Bryan Athletic Director
If the Shoe Fits
Fine Arts Accolades
>Athletics Athletic Spotlights
Mike Freace Director of Student Life
> SPECIAL SECTION
Aimee Lynch Director of Admissions
Imagine 2020: Celebrating Success
Katie Tuck Director of Marketing and Communications Windows Editor Trey Keenan Windows Design and Layout
Special thanks to contributing photographers: Phil Ames, Anna Brown, Katie Tuck and Pete Wilson. Special thanks to contributing writers: Haley Barinowski (’12), Anna Brown, Mary Elizabeth Goodell (’12) and Sarah Grace Smith (’07) Windows is published as a service to our alumni, families and friends. Please submit questions, comments or news items to firstname.lastname@example.org Cover: Joshua Jackson (’15) leads the Pledge of Allegiance during the 2013 Veterans Day Chapel at the Upper School.
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>Community Anyone Can Dance and Cook
>Alumni Placing Faith First
On the Job: Career Conversations in Math and Science
Dear Friends, What’s the “secret sauce” that makes a great teacher? What are its special ingredients? And what does that look like for a Westminster teacher? These are the questions I have been asking our faculty this school year.
A Word From The Headmaster
year teachers, I have crossed the halfway point of interviews in the Conversations Tour. I’m more encouraged than ever about what takes place each day, hour and minute with the students we have been entrusted to educate at Westminster. Some of the great lessons I’ve learned from our faculty is that they…
While reflecting on our annual faculty summer reading, “Conversations with America’s Best Teachers,” I decided to have my own conversations with America’s best teachers right here at Westminster. For the school year, I set an ambitious goal to sit down for an hour or so with each of our almost 60 faculty members. I have simply been asking them many of the same questions the author asked the 18 National Teacher of the Year Award winners and finalists he interviewed, and I sit back and really listen. I’ve called it my Conversations Tour.
• Were and are called by God to teach
Before diving into my interview questions, I’ve been reminding them of my hopes in having these conversations. First, in listening well to our faculty and hearing what they need to be the best, I will be able to better lead and serve them. Second, in my unique role as headmaster, I am in a position to act as a conduit, facilitating the movement of ideas and rich advice from the faculty’s brain trust. Finally, hearing about their commitment, expertise and passion will allow me to be a better Westminster ambassador as I share their stories with others.
• Love to learn and never stop learning
• Become students of their students • Expect greatness from their students • Do whatever it takes to help students learn • Had and have teacher role models and mentors • Evaluate and reinvent their teaching regularly • Pray faithfully for their students
• Have fun and try not to take themselves too seriously My faith in our ability to fulfill Westminster’s mission stems from my confidence in the faculty, our greatest asset. Although we are far from perfect, I am greatly heartened listening to our faculty share their unique recipes making up Westminster’s “secret sauce.” All of these ingredients are characteristics of excellence, making our school a truly extraordinary place.
Although I don’t ask them all, there are 18 questions that I’ve been asking each faculty member to reflect upon before Warm regards, each conversation. Some of the questions I’ve been asking are: What do great teachers do? What motivates you or most helps you be a great teacher? How do you integrate your Christian faith in teaching? Steve O’Neil What is one of the biggest challenges you have faced as a teacher and how did you Headmaster overcome it? What was the biggest change you’ve made in your career that made your teaching more effective? Beginning with our most “seasoned” faculty and working my way to our first-
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Learning for Life
Equipping for Academic Excellence Like many things in life, the field of academics is ever-changing. If students are to excel at the next level, a school’s curriculum cannot remain static. Instead, reviews of subject matter must be made periodically and changes implemented in order to stay current in new academic and pedagogical trends. Over the past year, Westminster has been doing just that. Crucial to ensuring that our students are being equipped to excel academically, however, is the need to know our students better – how they learn, engage and grow from year to year. Throughout all divisions and subject areas, a system of curriculum mapping is being implemented in order to track what and how our students are learning so that gaps and redundancies can be identified and corrected through each grade level. During the 2013-14 school year, Westminster overhauled its curriculum in numerous subjects and established new academic coaching and testing methods across its divisions. Here are some of the improvements Westminster has made and others that are pending.
in order to provide a seamless transition as students move from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. “The hope is that we see improved preparation in math and standardized test scores and readiness to move to the next level,” said Academic Dean Craig Johnson. Similar revisions are also currently being made to the Bible curriculum. As the curriculum committee amends standards, new textbooks and a mapping process will be adopted over the next year to implement these changes.
Foreign Language Tradition meets innovation. Foreign Language Preparation, taught by Mrs. Cindy Bramhall (’01), is a new course that is required of all seventh-graders and will provide an excellent foundation for Latin, French and Spanish. This course is designed
as a means to better position our students for success in their first years of true foreign language study. The course covers English structure, such as parts of speech and verb conjugation. Students also learn high frequency Latin and Greek roots, prefixes and suffixes that are the basis of the majority of words in English and the languages our students study. Foreign Language Department Chair Randall Nichols explained, “If students understand English as a logical language system before they begin the study of a foreign language, they will be better prepared to place the individual units of a foreign language into a larger context.” Westminster’s Spanish courses have also seen changes this school year with the implementation of a new Spanish curriculum written by Middle and Upper School Spanish teacher Mrs. Stephanie Waldecker. Four years in the making, Mrs. Waldecker completed her first custom textbooks for
Math and Bible Thanks to the leadership of Lower School Curriculum Coordinator Julie Wiggins, a new math textbook series has been implemented across all Lower School grades. In addition to adding new webbased and testing features, the curriculum also establishes uniform math standards that teachers can use to map their students’ progress. Now, teachers are able to use their textbooks as a resource to teach to Westminster’s math standards, not just an arbitrary grade-level math curriculum. Over the next couple of years, the goal is to unify the math curriculum across divisions
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Learning for Life
the Upper School.”
Spanish 1 and Spanish 2 during the summer of 2013. She is currently working on her Spanish 3 textbook. Since the gradual advent of her personalized curriculum, she has already begun to see the fruits of her labor. “When I revamped the curriculum last year to meet the National Spanish Exam standards, I found that my students did much better and were overall much more prepared and confident when taking the National Spanish Exam,” she said.
Throughout the semester, students examine leaders, explore different leadership styles, discuss leadership topics and are challenged to think critically about their own leadership style, the value of self-discipline and the skills to lead. By the end of the course, students will be able to define leadership, understand characteristics of leadership, and be able to articulate their own style of leadership.
Advanced Placement Curriculum With the College Board regularly requiring that AP course curriculum be updated based on new advancements and standards, teachers must periodically complete an AP course audit. This audit might result in a complete restructuring of the course or only modest adjustments. Westminster’s AP teachers spend ample time during the summer revamping their curriculum to ensure they are teaching to current College Board standards. Last year, Westminster’s AP biology and world history curriculum was updated, with AP chemistry receiving the most recent restructuring this year. Coming up this summer will be an overhaul of the AP U.S. history curriculum.
Academic Support: Arrowsmith Program The 2013-14 school year marks the launch of Westminster's pilot Arrowsmith classroom within the Academic Support department. This program is dedicated to helping students (primarily Middle School students) with diagnosed learning disabilities become independent learners by strengthening weak cognitive capacities that affect learning through intensive cognitive exercises. The
goal is that students will grow in their cognitive capacities and be better prepared to succeed in Westminster's college preparatory curriculum. Leading this initiative is Mrs. Traci Boutwell, who received intensive training from the Arrowsmith Program in Canada. Westminster is fortunate to offer this program as one of the many ways it serves students in the Academic Support department.
ERB Standardized Testing To comply with the Council on Educational Standards and Accountability, of which Westminster is a member, Westminster is required to switch all standardized testing from the Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS) to the Educational Records Bureau (ERB) program. ERB is the only educational member association offering achievement and admission services for independent and public schools nationally and internationally from pre-kindergarten through grade 12. While adhering to higher standards than the ITBS test, the ERB provides the added benefit of clearly showing our students’ areas of weakness, which in turn aids in the evaluation of curriculum in terms of where revisions are needed. “The ERB standardized test has also recently developed a way for us to track student performance from one year to the next, and we look forward to better understanding our students with this data,” said Mr. Craig Johnson. The ERB standardized test will be expanded to grades three through nine this year, with the goal to include grades one and two next year.
Middle School Leadership This new eighth-grade elective course, taught by Middle School Principal Mr. Brian Case, is designed to acquaint students with the principles of leadership from a biblical perspective. Mr. Case said, “One of the most important skills in life is leading others, so it is very important that we begin discussing leadership skills and challenging students to lead at the Middle School level as they prepare to serve in larger leadership roles in
Learning for Life
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Green-Orr Award Winners Since 2005, one Lower and one Middle/ Upper School teacher have been recognized for excellence in their field with the GreenOrr Award. The award has helped celebrate the achievements of our faculty and aided in honoring the memory of Juanita and Charlie Green and Roberta and Harry Orr, parents of Peggy and Charlie Green. This year, the Green-Orr Award was presented to Susan Kious and Mike Merwin. Both Mrs. Kious and Mr. Merwin meet and exceed the criteria for the award, which includes: showing clear evidence of consistent support and advancement of Westminster’s mission; demonstrating significant impact on students through regular contact via teaching, coaching and/or mentoring; providing a positive Christian role model; and having completed at least five years on the faculty at Westminster. Below are excerpts of their nominations that demonstrate why they are so worthy of this recognition:
Lower School Academic Support Coordinator
Upper School Bible, Modern Thought and AP Environmental Science Teacher
“Mrs. Kious compassionately cares for her students and works hard to bring about their success. She embodies Westminster’s core value of “made in God’s image” by recognizing and developing our students’ unique gifts and abilities so they can accomplish God’s purpose for their lives. Although it would be easier for her to teach every child the same way, she always adjusts her teaching to develop each student’s potential.”
“Mr. Merwin has had a positive impact on students at Westminster for many years. In today’s world, his commitment to challenging our students to engage the Scriptures and know what they believe is more important than ever. His example has also helped shape fellow teachers, and his spirit keeps them inspired. He demonstrates Christ’s love for his students and colleagues through his excellence in teaching, genuine concern for others and pointing others to Christ through his words and example. He embodies Westminster’s core value of “placing Christ at the center of everything you do.” Congratulations to these excellent educators! Thank you for caring deeply for our students’ hearts and working tirelessly to ensure that their education is exemplary.
L to R: Susan Kious, Mike Merwin and Peggy Green
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Learning for Life
On the Flipside of the Desk By: Sarah Grace Smith (’07)
Sweaty palms. Butterflies. Spending hours deciding what to wear. These are all hallmarks of the first day of middle school. Then the questions start. “What will they think? Will they like me? Will I be cool?” Most of us go through the first day of sixth grade only once at the same school. But this year, I had the privilege of experiencing my second first day of sixth grade at Westminster. In 2000, I was a student. This year, I’m a teacher. Caroline I have dreamed of (Green) Whitcomb being a teacher ever (’95) since I discovered the joys of reading in the same halls that I walk as a teacher today, and Westminster gave me that opportunity. The school gives me the chance to teach what I truly love in an environment where I can pray with my students and offer them the encouragement and grace of the Gospel in a way I would not have been able to in other schools. Like other faculty members at Westminster, I was drawn back to the school when I began my search for a teaching job.
11 are alumni. Many cite the Christian work environment as the impetus behind their return to the school. Brad Joiner (’92) felt the need to give back to the community that gave him so much. Caroline Whitcomb (’95) echoes his sentiments.
Headmaster Steve O’Neil recognizes the unique position that alumni faculty are in. Mary Charles Coleman (’05)
“One of the richest blessings in my life has been the gift of a Westminster education,” Mrs. Whitcomb says. “I attended Westminster from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, and it would take me hours to share all the ways that the faculty and staff impacted my life during those years! I love having the Vanessa (Pena) Johnson opportunity to serve at this (’90) school and a chance to give to others what I was given as a child.”
“Alumni are Westminster’s finished products, not perfect, but reflecting our beliefs and values,” he says. “Having received our inputs, they’re in a great position to deliver Westminsterspecific outputs. Alumni have invested in Westminster during their student years and land at Westminster ready to invest even further.” As an alumna, it is easy for me to see how Westminster has changed in the years since I graduated. Although the Christian atmosphere and emphasis on academics has remained intact, it’s amazing to see what the school looks like now.
For William Jewett (’04), it took leaving the school and going away to college “The school has grown in just to help him realize the about every way,” says Mr. impact Westminster had on him. Leaving Joiner. “There are many more Westminster and coming back gave students and a great variety of him perspective on the value of the extracurricular activity that can complement community and what he could do to the excellent academic resources at the further equip Westminster students to school.” face the secular world It is a great testament to ahead of them. At Amanda Westminster’s impact and staying (Middlebrooks) times in his classroom, Mr. Williams power that alumni feel called back. Jewett encounters student(’04) All of the faculty, staff, students and teacher interactions that he parents work to create such a unique has experienced before, only and transformative environment. this time he is on the other side. Kelly Hitchcock (’92) sums it up best, “I am thankful for a school “Sometimes I have to where teachers want to stay and actively avoid chuckling out loud in class students desire to come back.” when this happens,” he says.
Among the Westminster faculty and staff,
Caroline Ames (’08)
William Jewett (’04)
Cindy (Whitcomb) Bramhall (’01)
Sarah Grace Smith (’07)
Kelly (Watts) Hitchcock (’92)
Ryan Lutz (’89) Brad Joiner (’92)
Learning for Life
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Caleb Lively (’14) has been named a semifinalist in the 2014 National Merit Scholarship Program. Brenton Durkee (’14), Chandler Holgate (’14), Will Newton (’14) and Caroline Page (’14) have been named Commended Students in the 2014 National Merit Scholarship Program.
Caroline Page (’14), Caleb Lively (’14) and Brenton Durkee (’14) attended Elevate, Gordon College’s leadership lab, during the summer of 2013. Caleb and Caroline received awards of $3,000 and $1,000, respectively, to implement their community service ideas.
Congratulations to the 28 newest members of the Beta Club who were inducted on Sept. 26. View the names at wsa.net/news/2013-beta-clubinductees/
Classroom Kudos Fall 2013 Winter 2014
Nate Brooks (’17) and Natalie Battle (’17) were awarded a BPGOAL Scholarship to attend Westminster for the 2013-14 school year. Representatives from BP and the Georgia GOAL Scholarship Program presented the awards at an assembly at Westminster on Sept. 27.
Thirty-six Westminster students and alumni received recognition as AP Scholars. View their names and awards at wsa.net/news/2013westminster-ap-scholars-named/
Fifth-grade teacher Theresa Bone received a $500 Ace Grant award from the Junior League of Augusta to use toward the fifth grade’s Patriot Day event.
Alyssa Carrad (’18) won the school-wide spelling bee on Nov. 9 as well as the independent school spelling bee on Jan. 31.
Upper School teacher Mike Merwin was recognized by the Georgia Independent School Association with the Distinguished Service Award for 25 years of service to independent school education.
Congratulations to the 19 newest members of the Agape Chapter of the National Honor Society who were inducted on Nov. 19. View the list of names at wsa.net/ news/2013-national-honor-society-inductees/
Upper School science teacher Dwight Redick was presented with the WJBF News Channel 6 Semper Fidelis Award for demonstrating the United States Marine Corps values of honor, courage and commitment.
Congratulations to Joe Berman (’19) for winning the Middle School geography bee on Jan. 13.
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Learning for Life
If the Shoe Fits Dreams really do come true, and not just in fairy tales. This past fall, Westminster Theatre Director Paul Owen saw one of his dreams become reality as he directed the performance of his very own musical, “If the Shoe Fits.” "I found myself standing in the back of the theater and just kind of had a surreal moment,” recalled Mr. Owen. “I had been so busy and so stressed for the last three months, but hearing the laughter and applause and seeing the faces of the crowd as they reacted to the plot made the whole process so worth it. I will never forget it." The musical was a culmination of many months of arduous work, but Mr. Owen had known for quite a while that he wanted to one day write his own theatrical masterpiece. “Over the years, I’ve continually had people tell me I should write my own plays and musicals,” said Mr. Owen. “So I started writing introductions for plays.” In 2013, the duo interpretation piece he wrote for Lawson Powers (’14) and Grace Goodell (’14), “The Best Worst Date,” took home three first-place wins at forensics competitions. After that, the possibilities were endless.
Once he returned from the beach, Mr. Owen was off and running, writing songs and drafting the script. When the students returned to school in August ready to audition for the Evening of Theatre, they were excited to learn that Mr. Owen was writing the piece they would be performing. However, only half of the musical had been written by the time auditions began, so no one, not even Mr. Owen, knew the ending to the musical. Another month went by, and the script still had not been finished, despite the students having begun rehearsals several weeks prior. Finally, by the end of September, the finished script was ready, and the cast learned the ending to the musical for which they had been rehearsing for almost a month. “It was amazing to see the flexibility of the students during rehearsals,” said Mr. Owen. “Because the musical was a work in progress, we went through many revisions along the way. Some of them even came from the students based on the particular actor playing the part.”
“Once I started writing, I realized that I really enjoyed it,” said Mr. Owen. “I enjoyed storytelling and making stories entertaining.”
All along, Mr. Owen knew he wanted his version of the Cinderella story to focus on the perspective of the fairy godmother, rather than the traditional perspective of the famous princess. He even named the two main fairy godmother characters in memory of his actual grandmothers, Talitha and Lucy.
This knack for storytelling came in handy during the summer of 2013 when he began looking for a musical to perform during October’s Evening of Theatre and couldn’t find one that was affordable or familyfriendly.
“I also gave the characters of Talitha and Lucy the same personality traits as my grandmothers,” chuckled Mr. Owen. “Talitha, like her namesake, is a very proper, polite figure, while Lucy is quite the opposite – bold and outspoken.”
“I found a Cinderella musical online and got inspired to write my own version,” mused Mr. Owen. “I couldn’t stop thinking about it during our family vacation at the beach, so I finally decided to write it.”
Mr. Owen surprised his parents with this special tribute to their mothers by not revealing the secret to them until they watched the live performance in October.
Now that the curtain has closed and the next theatre production is underway, Mr. Owen has time to reflect on the inspiration that led him to his first musical piece. “In the end, I knew I wanted the musical to be a story of forgiveness and redemption, as seen by Lucy’s and Cinderella’s relationship,” said Mr. Owen. “These spiritual themes are important and not often found in theatre these days.” With one written musical under his belt, Mr. Owen does not plan to stop there. In addition to going through the process of publishing “If the Shoe Fits,” he already has four other productions in the works. We look forward to another Paul Owen production coming to Westminster stages in the future! Editors note: Mr. Owen’s duo interpretation piece, “The Best Worst Date,” received approval for publication in January. Congratulations to Mr. Owen on his first published piece!
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Congratulations to Nathan Bailey (’16) for winning Best Actor and Grace Goodell (’14) for being selected for the All-Star cast at the Georgia Theatre Conference for their performance in the Westminster one-act play “Harvey.”
The cast and crew of “Harvey” placed first at the GISA Region 4-AAA one-act competition. This is Westminster’s fifth championship in the last seven years. Nathan Bailey (’16) and Chris Morgan (’16) won Best Performer awards, and Grace Goodell (’14) and Emily Colley (’16) were selected for the All-Star cast.
Rod Bayliss (’16) and Thomas Williamson (’16) placed first in JV Policy and earned a first place and third place JV Policy Speaker Award, respectively, at the North Hall Debate Tournament on Sept. 28.
Fine Arts Accolades FALL 2013 Winter 2014
Grace Goodell (’14) and Lawson Powers (’14) earned first place in duo interpretation at the Griffin Forensics Tournament on Sept. 7.
Seventeen Westminster Middle and Upper School students performed in the District Honor Chorus, comprised of 300 local public and private school students. See who they were at wsa.net/ blog/district-honor-chorusperformance/
Jarred Hanner (’14) received a Best Performer Award and Nathan Bailey (’16) was named part of the All-Star cast at the state one-act competition.
Nine Middle and Upper School students were selected for All-State chorus, a record for Westminster! View the list of names at wsa.net/blog/ninestudents-selected-for-all-statechorus/
Our Lower, Middle and Upper School students had an exciting showing at the Georgia-Carolina State Fair art contest by winning more than 40 total prizes. See the winners at wsa.net/blog/fair-art-contest-success/
Congratulations to Jack Berman (’19) for winning the 2014 Westminster Fine Arts Talent Show with his piano and violin solo. Second place went to Lawson Powers (’14) and Nathan Vital (’14) for their band performance, and third place went to Robin Lee (’16) for his guitar solo.
Chris Morgan (’16) was awarded first-place speaker in public forum debate at the GISA state debate tournament. Westminster also came away with several finalist and semifinalist placements. Read full results at wsa.net/blog/state-debate-results-3/
Artwork by Jarred Hanner (’14) and Amy Chan (’14) was on display at Georgia’s capitol as part of the Capitol Art Exhibit during Youth Art Month.
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Football Athlete Spotlights Joshua Jackson (’15) Running Back/Defensive Line 2013 Season Highlights: • 1,239 rushing yards • 20 touchdowns • Named GISA All-Region and All-State What Coach Bryan said: “Josh really emerged this year as a star running back. He rushed for over 1,000 yards, and with hard work, he will pursue his dream of playing at the next level. He's a very good football player as well as a solid person who is great to have on our team.” What Joshua said: “I’m inspired by my parents to be the head and not the tail, to be above and not beneath and to be a leader and not a follower.”
Ethan Lynch (’16) Offensive Line/Linebacker 2013 Season Highlights: • 88 tackles • 2 interceptions • Named GISA All-Region What Coach Bryan said: "Ethan has been incredible this year as a leader and as a football player. He was the key to making our defense as good as it was. He has really good technique as a linebacker, and with his will to get to the ball on every play, it makes it hard for an opposing offense to gain any ground." What Ethan said: “Football is the greatest way a high school boy can build character, bond as brothers and hit other people.”
Gym Floor Named Coach Tebbs Court For more than 20 years, Mark Tebbs has been the face of boys basketball at Westminster. Along with the many players he has coached, he has also touched the lives of hundreds of students in physical education on the Middle/Upper School gym court. For his long-standing commitment to Westminster, the newly refurbished gym floor has been named in his honor. “With all that he has meant to Westminster and the type of man he is, it's only fitting to honor Coach Tebbs in this way,” said Athletic Director Andrew Bryan. “He is a man of character and integrity, and I am thankful for his leadership and dedication to Westminster athletics. I am excited that our new hardwood basketball court will forever be known as Coach Tebbs Court.”
During the official court dedication on Nov. 23, Coach Tebbs was presented with a framed plaque featuring a rendering of the “Coach Tebbs Court” logo along with a piece of the actual hardwood from the court. Following the varsity boys basketball game that afternoon, Coach Tebbs and his former players in attendance for the dedication were treated to a special reception.
• 462 total career wins, with 372 of those wins at Westminster
About Coach Mark Tebbs:
• 2 Final Four appearances
• Coach at Westminster since 1991, making this year (2013-14) his 23rd season
• Coached 10 All-State players
• Served as Westminster’s athletic director for 15 years
• 8 20+ winning seasons • 3 regular season region championships • 3 region tournament championships • 17 state tournament appearances • 10 state quarterfinal appearances
• 9 of his players have gone on to play college basketball
• Has coached 114 players through the end of the 2012-13 school year • Has impacted hundreds of students at Westminster through physical education, basketball and athletics
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Evan Downs (’16) came in first place in both the GISA Region 4-AAA and the GISA AAA state cross-country championship races in October. He was also named The Augusta Chronicle Player of the Week on Nov. 4.
Austin Stokes (’14) scored his 1,000th point for the Wildcats during the varsity boys basketball game against Spartanburg Christian on Dec. 13 and was presented with the game ball.
Emily Rogers (’17), Tyra Kimbler (’17) and Catherine Paulk (’16) were named to the All-Region cross-country team.
Joshua Jackson (’15), Ethan Lynch (’16) and Will Newton (’14) were named GISA AllRegion for football. Joshua also took home GISA All-State honors for football.
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Both the Middle School girls and boys tennis teams won the CSRA championship on Oct. 23. This is the third year in a row that the girls team has won.
Wildcat Wows Fall 2013 Winter 2014
The Middle School girls crosscountry team placed first in the CSRA Championship on Oct. 19. Caroline Paulk (’18) won the girls race with a time of 14:40.
Congratulations to the varsity boys and girls cross-country teams for placing second at the GISA Region 4-AAA tournament.
Joshua Jackson (’15) was named an WRDW News Channel 12 Player of the Week for his offensive work on the football field.
A large number of our Middle School student-athletes earned special recognition at the Middle School Fall Athletic Awards Assembly. See the list of awards and photos at wsa.net/blog/ middle-school-fall-athletic-awards/
Matt Kuhn (’14) played in the GISA all-star football game at Mercer University in Macon on Dec. 7.
Congratulations to our studentathletes named to The Augusta Chronicle’s independent All-Area football team: Joshua Jackson (’15), Will Newton (’14), Michael Almond (’15) and Ethan Lynch (’16).
Imagine 2020 Celebrating Success
We will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done. -Psalms 78:4
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Imagine 2020: 2020: Celebrating Celebrating Success Success
Dear Friends of Westminster, Dear Friends of Westminster, This special section serves as a celebratory epilogue for This special section serves as a celebratory epilogue for Imagine 2020, the strategic plan that guided our work from Imagine 2020, the strategic plan that guided our work from 2009 through 2013 and kept us focused on a bold vision 2009 through 2013 and kept us focused on a bold vision for did we we realize realize when when we we for Westminster’ Westminster’ss future. future. Little Little did started economists would would later later started the the planning planning process process that that economists refer as the the Great Great Recession. Recession. refer to to some some of of this this time time period period as But recession or or strategic strategic plan. plan. But God God isis much much greater greater than than aa recession Introducing the Westminster Westminster community, community, Introducing Imagine Imagine 2020 2020 to to the my prayer that that in in the the end, end, we we my preface preface letter letter stated, stated, “It’ “It’ss my my prayer will 78, ‘we ‘we will will tell tell the the next next will declare declare the the words words from from Psalm Psalm 78, generation of the the Lord, Lord, his his power, power, generation the the praiseworthy praiseworthy deeds deeds of and In the the following following pages, pages, you you will willsee seethat thatthe theLord Lordhas hasdone done and the the wonders wonders he he has has done.’” done.’” In great Unlike most most schools schoolsacross acrossthe thenation nationduring during great things things at at and and through through Westminster. Westminster. Unlike these enrollment growth, growth, program programexpansion expansionand andstrong strong these last last few few years, years, we we experienced experienced enrollment giving giving participation participation and and support. support. There deserve thanks thanks for for their their roles roles in indriving drivingthis thisplan planforward forward There are are so so many many people people who who deserve and want to to especially especially thank thankthe theboard boardofoftrustees trusteeswho who and all all that that has has been been accomplished. accomplished. II want care its mission mission in in trust, trust, and and advance advanceits itsvision visionto toserve servestudents students care deeply deeply for for our our school, school, hold hold its today thank my my leadership leadershipteam, team,the thefaculty facultyand andstaff, staff, today and and for for years to come. I also want to thank current students for for all all of of their theirhard hardwork, work,volunteerism volunteerism current and and alumni parents, alumni, and students and completion. and prayer prayer in seeing Imagine 2020 through to completion. Many achieved without without the the financial financialsacrifices sacrificesfrom from Many of of our our goals would not have been achieved many. generously to to support supportthe theBridge BridgeCampaign, Campaign, many. Thank Thank you to everyone who gave so generously Westminster Georgia GOAL GOALScholarship Scholarshipprogram. program. Westminster Fund, endowed scholarships and Georgia Through much. Through you, you, we were able to accomplish much. In been for for one one purpose purpose--to toglorify glorifyGod Godby by In the the end, end, all that has been accomplished has been providing students to to live live extraordinary extraordinarylives livesfor forJesus Jesus providing an an excellent education that equips students Christ. So So for for now, let’s celebrate God’s great work Christ. work at at Westminster, Westminster,and andinindue duetime, time,we wewill will further advance advance the vision for 2020 and beyond further beyond which which the the Lord Lordisiscalling callingus ustoward. toward. Warm regards, regards, Warm
Steve O’Neil O’Neil Steve Headmaster Headmaster 14 | WINDOWS - SPRING 2014
We We will will provide provide opportunities opportunities for for students students to to broaden broaden and and deepen deepen their their education education and and develop develop their their faith, faith, and and we we will will provide provide academic academic support support to to help help each each student student meet meet or or exceed exceed Westminster’s Westminster’s standards. standards.
Grew Grew enrollment enrollment by by 17 17 percent. percent. Added Added many many new new courses courses in in the the Middle and Upper Schools, including Middle and Upper Schools, including five five new new Advanced Advanced Placement Placement (AP) (AP) courses. courses. Created Created aa distinct distinct Middle Middle School School program and experience, providing program and experience, providing continued continued academic academic challenges challenges and and new student leadership opportunities. new student leadership opportunities. Created Created Winterim, Winterim, aa two-day two-day opportunity for Upper School opportunity for Upper School students students to to serve serve others others in in the the Augusta community. Augusta community. Added Added four four new new fine fine arts arts courses: courses: AP studio art, AP music theory, AP studio art, AP music theory, creative creative writing/literary writing/literary magazine, magazine, and public speaking. and public speaking. Established a Fine Arts Academy Established a Fine Arts Academy and expanded Sports Academy to and expanded Sports Academy to provide additional opportunities for provide additional opportunities for after-school student enrichment. after-school student enrichment. Created the Friends of Fine Arts Created the Friends of Fine Arts parent organization to promote parent organization to promote and support fine arts programs at and support fine arts programs at Westminster. Westminster. Began a football program. Began a football program. SPECIAL SECTION
Launched Launchedaaunique uniqueSummer SummerProgram Program experience, experience,serving servingover over200 200students students from fromthe theAugusta Augustacommunity. community. Expanded ExpandedAcademic AcademicSupport Supportservices services to better serve Westminster students to better serve Westminster studentsinin reaching reachingtheir theiracademic academicpotential. potential.
Imagine 2020: 2020: Celebrating CelebratingSuccess Success Imagine
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FACULTY & STAFF
Imagine 2020: Celebrating Success
We will recruit and develop the very best faculty and staff and challenge and equip them to advance Christian education locally and worldwide.
Trained all faculty in the professional development program All Kinds of Minds, which aims at helping faculty adjust their teaching methods according to how individual students learn best.
Developed a “Portrait of a Graduate” to both evaluate our educational program and guide its development. Developed “Characteristics of Professional Excellence” to enhance our professional development and teacher growth programs. Received full membership in the Council on Educational Standards and Accountability, a national association serving America’s best Christian college-preparatory schools. Added an academic dean position to oversee curriculum, professional development and academic support (PK-12). Added a director of student life position to oversee spiritual formation, leadership and service (PK-12). Added a fine arts coordinator position to oversee the fine arts program (PK-12).
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Grew the international student program to 16 students. Increased the racial and ethnic diversity of the student body. Launched new branding and an interactive website. Created a consistent marketing plan focusing on the value of a Westminster education. Deepened the relationship with our sponsoring church, First Presbyterian Church of Augusta. Successfully completed 40th anniversary celebrations.
Imagine 2020: Celebrating Success
We will be known throughout the region for the embodiment of our core values and our pursuit of excellence in all things.
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Imagine 2020: Celebrating Success
FACILITIES & PROPERTY
We will develop and implement a campus master plan to ensure that we have the necessary land and facilities to fulfill our mission, to realize our vision, and to achieve our goals.
Added Building 100 to create new space for Middle School and the fine arts. Began development of an updated community/athletic center as part of the first phase of the Bridge Campaign. Added new ground level and cottage classrooms to support growth at the Lower School. Extended the existing soccer field to create a regulation football field. Added air conditioning in the Middle/Upper School gym. Repurposed space to create an athletic building with a larger weight room and locker room.
We will strengthen Westminster’s financial position while ensuring its affordability for present and future students.
Developed a comprehensive financial plan to strengthen Westminster’s financial position while ensuring its affordability for present and future students. Raised nearly $4 million for both the Bridge Campaign and Westminster Fund. Established an endowed scholarship from the estate of Mr. Bland Goodwin in honor of John W.P. and Christina Hope Oliver. Raised $562,000 to support the Georgia GOAL Scholarship Program to expand access to students through need-based financial aid.
Added a cross-country course. Acquired almost four acres of land adjacent to campus to support athletics and Lower School programs. Updated technology throughout the campus to enhance student learning and teach students the skills necessary for the 21st century.
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Anyone Can Dance and Cook By: Anna Brown, Summer Programs Coordinator This past summer, Westminster Summer Programs and the Augusta Ballet partnered together to bring children of all ages and backgrounds together to simply be kids, have fun and learn about healthy living through the art of dancing and cooking. On July 16, 32 students from across the Augusta community joined together in a big circle and began to express themselves through dance. What started off in that circle as timidly showing their favorite dance move to some new friends transformed into a group performance with proud and confident smiles. Over the three-day camp, the students learned classical and contemporary ballet, hip-hop, ballroom and Latin dance. To top it off, they learned how to cook each day during lunch. The Anyone Can Dance and Cook camp was originally founded by the Augusta Ballet as part of the Ballet’s Good Moves outreach to fight childhood obesity through empowering children to move well, eat well and be well for life. Westminster Summer Programs decided to partner with the Ballet to host a summer version of the camp. Goodwill Industries and Heritage Academy of Augusta provided 13 full scholarships to students who could otherwise not attend the camp. Goodwill’s Edgar’s Grille, Coca-Cola and Fireside Outdoor Kitchens and Grills all donated supplies for the camp.
hosted his own TV cooking show, “The Kitchens of Biró,” on PBS. On the first day, Chef Biró and his assistants helped the students make personalized pizzas. Using a kid-friendly food like pizza, students were challenged to learn more about vegetables and fruits by using them as toppings. On day two, Chef Biró taught the kids about food safety as they made kebabs. These young chefs were so smitten with Chef Biró that they braved the heat to stand outside with him as he grilled the kebabs. The students made quesadillas on the last day, and several tasted guacamole for the first time.
The 2013 Anyone Can Dance and Cook summer camp received rave reviews, and Westminster looks forward to partnering with the Augusta Ballet once more for the 2014 summer camps.
Students also learned that dance is a great way to stay active and be healthy. The kids loosened up quickly as Maggie Salley (’11) and Anna O’Neil (’13) taught them how to creatively combine dance moves in the contemporary dance class. Alyssa Cameron (’10) had the students twirling, leaping, bending and gliding across the room in classical ballet. Will Crews, Westminster Upper School French teacher, had the students syncopating their feet as they learned the rhythm of Latin dance. Claire Zecha (’14) had kids asking for more as they were bouncing and kicking in the hip-hop dance. The students were also introduced to ballroom dancing, which several of them had never seen before. There is something magical about seeing kids learn to dance and cook. It is the moments when you see a child light up as they are about to perform their favorite dance or the pure excitement that can be seen across the cafeteria as a child pulls their masterpiece out of the oven that makes all the hard work worth it.
Chef Marcel Biró of Edgar’s Grille provided lunchtime cooking lessons and taught about healthy eating habits. Chef Biró, a master chef, currently serves as vice president of hospitality at Helms Career Institute and head chef at Edgar’s Grille. Previously, he
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Rania Williams Frederick (’02) Jared Williams (’06)
Placing Faith First By: Haley Barinowski (’12) The faculty and staff at Westminster deeply desire to see alumni successfully carry out the truths they learned at the school in their lives after graduation. Despite how encouraged the Westminster community is to watch individual alumni thriving in the real world, it is especially exciting to see multiple alumni from the same family displaying the strength of character and pursuit of excellence that Westminster strives to cultivate in its students. Siblings Rania Williams Frederick (’02) and Jared Williams (’06) are excellent examples of such former Wildcats. Although they headed in two very different directions upon leaving Westminster—Rania to Indiana Wesleyan University and Jared to Georgia College and State University—they have maintained the same goal of living out their faith wherever their circumstances take them. Rania left Westminster in 2002 and headed to St. Marion, Indiana, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in English literature, the first of three degrees. Following her undergraduate education, she attended the University of Florida, where she completed both a Master of Arts in rhetoric and composition and a doctorate in public relations. Rania points to her Westminster experience as a key factor in her academic success. “Both Dr. Bailey and Mrs. Goodenough fostered my love of literature and reading, and they are part of the reason why I pursued two degrees in English,” she says. In addition to continuing her studies, Rania also met her husband in graduate school, and they married in 2009. Although Rania has not yet entered the workforce—laughingly referring to herself as a “professional student”—she has been able to integrate her faith into her career as a student so far and will continue to do so as she takes the next step after receiving her doctorate.
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Her transition to the University of Florida after attending two Christian institutions presented a new challenge, but she focused on maintaining the same priorities that had always been important to her. “I stayed true to myself and to the foundations I was given through my family life and my time at Westminster,” she commented. “Now I look for areas of my life where I can retain the small community of accountability partners, friends and social groups where I can strengthen my faith and be a witness to others outside of these groups.” Like his sister, Jared has also found that his faith is very applicable to his daily work. After completing his undergraduate degree at Georgia College and State University, he spent the last three years at Stetson University College of Law, graduating with a Juris Doctor in May 2013. As a prosecutor, he sees the potential consequences of his decisions and takes seriously the power he holds. “I do use my faith in my profession, as it's needed more than ever,” Jared says. “Invariably, I ask that God will let justice be done. Not my justice, or the defendant's justice, but God's justice. I take that same prayer into every case,
because what I do affects too many lives for me to leave it up to my own discernment.” After spending several years at different schools as well as traveling around the country to compete in mock trial competitions, Jared has returned to Augusta. In October 2013, he was sworn in as an assistant district attorney for the Augusta Judicial Circuit, serving Richmond, Columbia and Burke Counties. Even though Jared could have taken jobs in other locations, he expressed the importance of returning to his roots to begin his career. “I have no doubt that coming back here was the right choice,” he said, “and I've never had to look back in regret, because my decision to return here was one made through much prayer.” With Jared and Rania both continuing to place their faith first in their lives while achieving success in their respective fields, Westminster is privileged to count them among the ranks of Wildcat alums. As remarkable siblings, they bring honor to their family through their accomplishments, and as outstanding alumni, they are a huge source of pride to the Westminster community as they continue to display Westminster’s core values.
customers implement our solution, customized for each company's needs and their unique environments.
On the Job:
Career Conversations in Math and Science
GB: I am an associate analyst for the Homeland Security Studies and Analysis Institute, a federally-funded research and development center that provides support and independent analysis primarily to the Department of Homeland Security. An average day consists of meetings with fellow project members and clients, such as representatives from the Transportation Security Administration and Federal Air Marshal Service; conducting various types of mathematical analysis; and writing reports for clients.
What would be your dream job? Where do you see yourself in 10 years? KM: My dream job would be to have a crossappointment professorship in archaeology and chemistry, ideally running my own laboratory for the study of archaeological materials. In 10 years time, and hopefully sooner, I will be teaching in some form. I feel that it is incredibly important to share knowledge with the world.
By: Mary Elizabeth Goodell (’12) Kristine Merriman (’04)
AJ: I'm still digesting my latest career change, so I haven't put much thought into my next steps. I would like to eventually start or be a part of a small upstart company. I've also always been interested in personal finance and investing.
At Westminster, students are equipped to learn how to solve all kinds of problems. For many alumni, that interest in finding the answer turns into a career. Alumni Allen Joiner, Jr. (’94), Kristine Merriman (’04) and Ginny Boone (’08) are all working in the world of math and science, finding ways to combine their faith with finding out the facts. Each of them has found what they are passionate about and is using tools they acquired at Westminster to lead exceptional lives for Christ in their occupations.
GB: Honestly, I am not at all sure where I see myself in 10 years. I love my current job, and I would enjoy continuing to work in a field that calls for both mathematical analysis and effective communication in an effort to provide real solutions that help real people. Ginny Boone (’08)
Which teachers at Westminster specifically influenced you?
Allen Joiner, Jr. (’94)
Can you give a summary of what your current occupation is? What does an average day look like for you? KM: I am currently finishing my doctorate in archaeological science at the University of Oxford. On any given day you could find me in the chemistry laboratory prepping samples of archaeological vessels for analysis, in a coffee shop researching and writing, or in the field digging. At the moment, as I am working towards the submission of my thesis in April, I am spending most of my time analyzing and writing up data. AJ: I recently started working at AirWatch, which provides mobile device management software and services to other companies. We are actually the number one company in that new and quickly growing industry. I lead a team of consultants who help large enterprise
KM: It almost goes without saying that I could not have accomplished nearly as much in the sciences or done as well in chemistry as I have without the encouragement and sound foundation that Mrs. Smith provided in her courses. AJ: Most of the teachers had their own unique impact during my years at Westminster, but the most notable was Mr. Modarelli (now Dr. Brian Modarelli), who was my senior calculus teacher and baseball coach. On the field, he taught me lessons in character and discipline. In the classroom, he encouraged me to think critically and get to a deep understanding of concepts. I think he was instrumental in preparing me for my transition to Georgia Tech. GB: I was influenced by far too many teachers and coaches at Westminster to name them all, but Coach Freace demonstrates to me what it looks like to take a firm and unapologetic stand for the Gospel and to mentor others to do the same.
What would you say to a current Westminster student interested in your field? KM: My biggest piece of advice to any Westminster student is to find your passion and allow God to guide you in finding that passion. In the broad scope of a student going into academia, I would tell them to keep their minds and hearts open, most importantly, love what you do and avoid saying “never.” This is especially true in academia. Academia is tough and if you do not love your field and thesis topic, you will not get through it. AJ: I would actually encourage most Westminster students to get training in a computer-related subject, like programming or information systems, no matter what field they plan to study or work in. This can give you advantages in the workforce like problemsolving and logic skills and a solid foundation in understanding technology that can be applied in so many business situations. GB: I would say to work on your weaknesses. It's easy to focus on your strengths, improving skills you already possess, but be sure not to neglect other areas. In homeland security specifically, and the real world in general, you will encounter all kinds of bizarre problems that you never expected that call for skills you never thought you would need.
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Big brothers Tyler, Joshua and Samuel, and parents Corrie and Dan Linsz (’88) welcomed Amos Christian to the world on Dec. 30, 2013. He weighed 7 lbs., 5 oz. and measured 20 inches long.
Alumni Notes 1997 Mimi Coleman Grinalds (’97) and her husband, Allen, welcomed Southy Norwood Grinalds on March 4, 2013. Southy weighed 7 lbs., 13 oz. and was 20 ¼ inches long. The Grinalds family recently moved back to Augusta where Allen works at Hull Storey Gibson. They have four other children, three of which attend Westminster: Allen (9), Charlie (7), Porter (5) and Mimi Barrett (3).
Jennifer (Jones) Rivers (’97) and Todd Rivers (’97) joyfully welcomed Helen Leary Rivers into the world on June 24, 2013. Leary weighed 7 lbs., 9 oz. and was 19 inches long. Jennifer and Todd also have two other children: Isabel (7) and Hodge (3). Jennifer is a lecturer for the Tull School of Accounting in the Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia. Todd also works at the University of Georgia and is the chief preparator at the Georgia Museum of Art. The Rivers Family
Mimi Grinalds (’97)
2002 Gavin Ortlund (’02) and his wife, Esther, welcomed their first child, Isaiah Daniel, into the world on March 6, 2013.
Gavin Ortlund (’02)
2003 Lauren Elizabeth Dixon (’03) graduated from the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University in May 2013. She passed the Georgia bar exam the following July and was sworn in at the Bibb County Superior Courthouse in November. Lauren and her husband Adam reside in Macon.
1998 Kristen (Thigpen) and Barry Middleton (’98) live in Augusta with their daughter, Adeline Belle Chris and Danielle (Huckabee) Middleton (1). Kristen is an Meikrantz (’97), along with big sister outpatient pediatric dietitian at Mary Stewart, welcomed Charles Children’s Hospital of Georgia at August Meikrantz into the world on Georgia Regents Health System. Sept. 16, 2013. Charlie weighed 6 lbs., Barry is a lawyer at the Tisdale 10 oz. and was 19 inches long. The Middleton law firm. Meikrantz family resides in Augusta.
Charles August Meikrantz
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Lauren Elizabeth Dixon (’03)
2004 Dr. Amy (Rhoden) Smith (’04) received her Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Texas at Austin, where she studied a type of DNA-binding molecule called an intercalator in the lab of Brent Iverson. Her husband Daniel (’04) is currently an executive chef for Southern Foodservice Management in Austin. They will be moving to Boston, where Amy will be working at Moderna, a biotech company specializing in RNA therapeutics. ALUMNI
2005 Kelly (Griffith) Jacobs (’05) and her husband, Rody, welcomed daughter Caroline Sullivan Jacobs on Aug. 12, 2013. She was 20 ½ inches long and weighed 8 lbs., 5 oz. The Jacobs live in Augusta. Caroline Sullivan Jacobs
Captain W. Aaron Adams, M.D. (’05) graduated from the Savannah campus of Mercer Medical School in May 2013. As one of his fourthyear electives, he spent a month in the children’s ward at Kijabe Hospital in Nairobi, Kenya, and worked at a hospital in Cochabamba, Bolivia. While in Africa, Aaron had the opportunity to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. Aaron is now a resident pediatrician at the Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma, Washington.
2006 Jeff Chrjapin (’06) went BASE jumping in October 2013 at the Perrine Bridge in Twin Falls, Idaho (Editor’s Note: BASE jumping is an activity where participants jump from fixed objects and use a parachute to break their fall.). Jeff and Kevin Bransfield (pictured) made five jumps. Jeff currently resides in Englewood, Colorado, one of the suburbs of Denver.
Jeff Chrjapin (’06)
Caitlin (Davison) Vinson (’06) graduated from Georgia College and State University in 2010 and went on to receive her masters in community counseling from North Georgia College and State University in Dahlonega, Georgia. Upon graduation, she became a national certified counselor and will be eligible to become a licensed professional counselor after she completes her post-graduate supervision. Caitlin married Brooks Vinson in 2012. The couple lives in Greenville, South Carolina, where Caitlin works in the Achievement Center at Christ Church Episcopal School.
2007 On March 30, 2013, Brent Carter (’07) married Tiffany Martin at The Sanctuary of Augusta in Evans. Other alumni in the wedding included Megan McGahee (’11) and current Westminster students Lauren McGahee (’14) and Bradley Carter (’15). The couple resides in Augusta. Brent Carter (’07)
Claire Tarpley (’07) married Michael Whitlow (’07) on Dec. 21, 2013, at First Baptist Church of Augusta. Other Westminster alumni and students in the wedding included Sarah Coleman (’07), Virginia Dent (’07), Caleb Mellinger (’07), Mitchell Snyder (’07), John Allen Whitlow (’09), Ben Whitlow (’14) and junior bridesmaid Kaleigh Bakeman (’21). The couple resides in Martinez, where Claire is a speech pathologist at Riverside Elementary School. Michael is in his third year of medical school at Georgia Regents University.
Caitlin (Davison) Vinson (’06)
Captain W. Aaron Adams, M.D. (’05)
Claire Tarpley (’07)
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Melissa Walters (’07), daughter of Dr. Alan Walters (’79) and Mrs. Shirley Walters, married Lance McLeroy on Aug. 3, 2013, at First Presbyterian Church of Augusta. Other Westminster alumni and students participating in the ceremony included Mary Hester Hill (’07), Kirsten McCrary (’07), Samantha Osteen (’07), Anthony Lehn (’07), Ryan Walters (’09), Natalie Walters (’11) and Mallory Walters (’14). The reader was Claire Tarpley (’07), and the program attendants were Palmer Brigham (’15) and Lauren Broadway (’16). The couple lives in Athens, where Melissa is a senior accountant at EvoShield, LLC, and Lance is a fourth-year medical student at the University of Georgia/Georgia Regents University partnership campus. Melissa Walters (’07)
2008 On May 10, 2013, Maxwell Mitchell (’08) earned a master of accountancy, specializing in taxation, from the J.M. Tull School of Accounting at the University of Georgia. This follows his completion of a cum laude Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting with honors in 2012 from UGA’s Terry College of Business. While at UGA, Maxwell was a member of the Blue Key National Honor Society and a Leonard Leadership Scholar. He received the business school’s 24 | WINDOWS - SPRING 2014
Excellence in Leadership Award and served two years as the executive finance director for the campus philanthropy, UGA Miracle. After passing the CPA exam, Maxwell began his career in Atlanta with the global accounting firm Deloitte & Touche as a tax consultant. Maxwell Mitchell (’08)
2012 Pfc. Paul Smith (’12) enlisted in the United States Marine Corps, graduating from recruit training at Parris Island in November 2013. He is the third person in his family to claim the title. He is currently training for his job as a cryptological linguist in Monterey, California.
Wildcat Packs Christi (Volpitto) Wildes (’92), Maggie Salley (’11) and Jarred Hanner (’14) performed in the Augusta Players’ performance of the world famous musical, “Les Miserables,” in September 2013. Les Mis
Westminster alumni attended the Auburn vs. University of Georgia football game on Nov. 16, 2013. Left to right is Ned Pruitt (’12), David Newton (’13), Trey Newton (’13), Joshua Adams (’13), Drew McCartney (’12), McCamy Pruitt (’10), Mary Frances McGahee (’12) and Will McCartney (’10).
Auburn vs. University of Georgia
Pfc. Paul Smith (’12)
Headmaster Steve O’Neil visited with Westminster alumni Akonwi Ngoh (’11) and Mary Elizabeth Goodell (’12) at Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois.
Headmaster Steve O’Neil , Akonwi Ngoh (’11) and Mary Elizabeth Goodell (’12)
On Nov. 23, 2013, several alumni returned to honor Coach Tebbs at the official dedication of Coach Tebbs Court. Left to right is Michael Bone (’10), Eric Doman (’98), Travis Bone (’02), Anthony Lehn (’07), Coach Mark Tebbs, Joseph Morris (’03), Austin English (’03), Matthew Tebbs (’12), Jared Tebbs (’07), Dustin Curry (’07), Caleb Mellinger (’07), Marcus Tebbs (’09), David Cantrell (’99) and Chris Hearon (’07). After the dedication and reception for Coach Tebbs, the alumni played a pick-up game on the new court.
Alumni from the classes of 20092013 gathered at the Newton’s home on Dec. 18, 2013, for the Fifth Annual Young Alumni Christmas Social.
Homecoming 2013 Go Wildcats! We enjoyed seeing each of you who came out to the first Westminster Alumni Association meeting, the Alumni Soccer Game, the Friday night football game and all the other Homecoming events.
Young Alumni Christmas
The Second Annual “Old” Alumni Christmas Social was held on Dec. 26, 2013, at Teresa’s Mexican Grill for the classes of 1977-2010.
Coach Tebbs Court
class of 2004
Ann Elizabeth (Pollard) Lazari (’04), Jenny Wiggins (’05) and Lauren Snyder (’08) went to Cusco, Peru, on a medical mission trip in December 2013. Lauren was one of the two trip leaders, Ann Elizabeth is the Medical Campus Outreach woman’s director, and Jenny was an occupational therapy provider. On Dec. 13, 2013, the Westminster alumni team won the Alumni vs. Faculty/Staff Basketball Game played during halftime of the varsity boys basketball game. Thanks to both teams for a great game!
Allen Joiner (’94) and Michael Bone (’10)
class of 2007
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Holiday Community Service The Middle and Upper Schools participated in Operation Christmas Child during the month of November. The goal was to collect at least 75 shoeboxes to send to children around the world at Christmas. The students surpassed the goal by completing 126 boxes and collecting over $650 in donations.
New Mobile Site We are pleased to announce that wsa.net has gone mobile. Use your smart phone to quickly access contact information, events, school news, our social media pages and more. Users are able to add an icon to their mobile device's home screen to allow for “one tap” access to our website. For instructions on how to install the icon, visit wsa.net/news/announcing-our-new-mobile-site/
Carter Wilson, one of the Upper School service prefects, said, "We decided to choose this project because it allows poor and underprivileged children to experience the love of Christ by receiving gifts in His name. I have been involved with Operation Christmas Child since I was about five years old. It has opened my eyes to see how blessed I really am. Each year I watch the new video that they create that shows the children opening the boxes. It is always so amazing to see needy children receive gifts while hearing the Gospel." The Lower School also jumped into the holiday spirit by collecting canned food for the Golden Harvest Food Bank. The food drive, organized by the fifth-grade classes, was an opportunity for the Westminster community to ensure that those less fortunate in the area would have enough food for the winter. The total number of cans collected during the month-long drive was 2,300.
Special thanks go to Jay Miller from Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Evans for speaking to our Middle School students and Jon Kelly from Grace Community Church in Great Bend, Kansas, for speaking to our Lower and Upper School students.
HOMECOMING KING AND QUEEN Christina Rentas (’14) and RJ Strauss (’14) were crowned Homecoming Queen and King during the 2013 Homecoming football game in September. They were crowned by 2012 Homecoming Queen Nina McCallie (’13).
Spiritual Life Emphasis Week The week of Oct. 21 was reserved for Westminster’s annual Spiritual Life Emphasis Week. This is a week set aside for all members of the Westminster community to become immersed in God’s personal message of redemption and salvation. The hope and prayer for the students is threefold: • That those students who have a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ would have their eyes opened to God’s plan for their lives. • That those students who are lukewarm in their relationships with God would seek God more passionately. • That those students who don’t yet know God personally would be given a clear picture of who He is.
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One of the privileges of my job as the director of development is serving on the development committee of the board of trustees. This amazing group of people takes time from their busy schedules to support the development office and help oversee the important role of fundraising at Westminster. This year, I am thrilled to have board of trustee member Blanche Conger serving as the chair of the committee.
Developing News WESTMINSTER FUND GOAL $300,000
As a new member to the board of trustees, Blanche was introduced to you in our last edition of Windows. She wasted no time rolling up her sleeves and getting right to work. Other members of this fabulous committee include Eric Swierski, Becky Mecredy, David Hanks, Melissa Oremus and Randy Cooper. The committee supports the development office by speaking into fundraising for the school, which includes the Westminster Fund, Bridge Campaign, Auction, GOAL scholarship tax credits and endowment/ planned giving opportunities. These are all areas they, and you, generously support to enhance the mission and programs of our school. At this time of year, we are focused on meeting our Westminster Fund goal of $300,000 by June 30. I am so grateful for all of you who have already made gifts to support this effort. Currently, we have raised $131,000 toward this goal.
Our committee and board of trustee members always lead this charge with one hundred percent participation. Our board members were recently asked why they feel it’s important to support Westminster with their financial gifts. In reading their responses, I was overwhelmed by the many reasons they believe in supporting our school and want to share just a few of them with you.
“WSA faculty and administrators care deeply for our students. They care about their spiritual, intellectual, social and emotional development.” “As Westminster prayerfully and intentionally pursues its spiritual mission statement and core values, God molds the school into a ‘pearl of great value’ (Matthew 13:46) in our community that pays eternal dividends. Who can refuse to invest time, talent and treasure in a ‘pearl of great value’ that reaps eternal dividends?” Your gifts to the Westminster Fund make an immediate impact on our students, no matter the amount. I am grateful to all of you who have already supported this year’s Westminster Fund and invite all to join us by making a gift today. You can return the enclosed envelope or make a gift online at wsa. net/giving/westminster-fund/. What greater investment can we make than in our school that seeks to glorify God by providing an excellent education that equips students to live extraordinary lives for Jesus Christ. Gratefully,
Carrie Brigham Director of Development
“I always want to put my resources into something I believe in and first of all, education is instrumental in molding our future citizens and world leaders. I believe Westminster’s strong college prep foundation, rooted in a biblical world view, is the best-case scenario for our children’s education.” DEVELOPING NEWS
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Join us for our Upcoming Events! Spring Musical: March 27-29 AP Art Show & Fine Arts Banquet: April 24 Spring Choral Concert: April 28 JV & Varsity Athletic Awards Banquet: May 6 Commencement: May 17 Visit wsa.net for more information and events!