Board of Advisors
The mission of the Loyola School of Education Board of Advisors is to assist the dean and the leadership of the School to enact the vision, values, and plans of Loyola University Maryland in the lives of the undergraduate and graduate students and faculty, administrators, and staff of Loyola University Maryland.
Emily Widger Maurer, '06, Chair
B.A. in Sociology, Loyola University
M.S. in Early Childhood/Special Education, Johns Hopkins University ‘11
Emily is a special education preschool teacher in a Multiple Intensive Needs Classroom- Early Learner (MINC-EL) program in the Howard County Public Schools System. Prior to teaching in HCPSS, Emily worked as an Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapist, implementing home programming for young children on the autism spectrum.
Emily and her husband, Scott, reside in Baltimore City.
Yvonne Barhight, ‘03
CAS, Organizational Change, Towson University
M.Ed., Literacy Education, Reading Specialist, Loyola University Maryland
B.S., University of Maryland College Park
Yvonne is currently a Director of School Performance for Baltimore County Public Schools (BCPS). Prior to this position she served as the Principal of Hawthorne Elementary in Middle River, MD. Yvonne began her career as a teacher at the Shrine of the Sacred Heart in Mt. Washington. For the last thirty years, she has worked in various roles within BCPS including classroom teacher, reading specialist, resource teacher, Supervisor, and Director for the Office of Elementary Language Arts in BCPS.
Yvonne and her husband Scott reside in Towson, MD.
Erin Bennett, '07
B.A. in History and Certificate in Elementary Education, Muhlenberg College
M.Ed. in Reading Specialist, Loyola University Maryland
Erin is currently teaching third grade at Calvert School in Baltimore, MD. This is her seventh year at the school. Prior to teaching at Calvert, she taught at the School of Cathedral.
Erin and her husband live in Towson, MD.
Francis Chiaramonte, Jr., Ph.D.
Parent of Caroline, EE, '17
Dawn Cunnion, '93
B. S in Elementary Education/minor in music, University of Wisconsin – Whitewater
M.Ed in Educational Administration with an emphasis on private school leadership, Loyola College in Maryland (now Loyola University) 1993
Doctor of Education in Educational Administration and Leadership Policy Studies, Arizona State University
Dawn is currently the Associate Head of Brentwood School, and independent K-12 school in Los Angeles, CA. Prior to this position she served as Brentwood’s Lower School Director and Assistant Head of School. Dawn began her career as a fourth through sixth grade teacher at St. Rose of Lima School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin which is where she also began her administrative career as principal of the school. While serving as principal of St. Rose Dawn was the recipient of the Marquette University School of Education Award for designing and implementing field experience programs for undergraduate students. After leaving St. Rose, Dawn went on to be the principal of St. Clement School in Chicago; Director of Admissions and Financial Aid and Director of Communications at McDonogh School in Baltimore; Admissions and Curriculum Consultant at Phoenix Country Day School; and, Head of the Lower School at Laguna Blanca School in Santa Barbara. She is a member of the honor society Phi Kappa Phi and currently serves on two school boards, Our Lady of Malibu, where she is the chair, and Westmark.
Dawn and her husband Bob reside in Malibu, California.
Victoria A. Elasic, Ed.D.
American Montessori Society Elementary I & II Certified Teacher, Delaware Institute for Montessori Education
B.S. in Primary Education, Wilmington University
M.Ed. in Instruction: Gifted and Talented, Wilmington University
Ed.D. in Innovation and Leadership, Wilmington University
Victoria is currently the Curriculum Coordinator, Extended Care Director and Summer Campus Director at The Hockessin Montessori School in Delaware. Prior to her current position, she taught in the school's Upper Elementary program teaching fourth through sixth grade for eight years. Before joining The Hockessin Montessori School, Victoria served as a founding teacher for Serviam Girls Academy, a Nativity Miguel Network school.
Victoria's publications focus on improving intrinsic motivation of elementary students in the Montessori classrooms as well as improving Montessori teacher effectiveness.
Victoria is an adjunct for Wilmington University's College of Education graduate program.
Victoria and her husband, John ('06) reside in Wilmington, Delaware with their daughter.
Tom Grzymski, ‘77
B.A. in Sociology, Loyola College in Maryland (now Loyola University Maryland)
M.A.S. in Information Technology, Johns Hopkins University
Tom Grzymski has worked in the Office of Systems at the Social Security Administration for over 36 years. He is currently an Associate Commissioner responsible for the agency’s data centers and network. In this capacity he is overseeing the migration of the Information Technology infrastructure from the Baltimore data center to their new facility in Urbana, Maryland. Tom served for five years on the Baltimore County Board of Education. While on that board he chaired the Budget and Audit Committee as well as served for one year each as the board’s vice president and president.
Tom resides in Baltimore County, Maryland.
Jean C. Halle, ’80
B.A. in Accounting from Loyola College (now Loyola University Maryland)
Parent of Danielle, '10
Jean C. Halle is currently Acting President and COO of Curiosityville. Prior to this she worked as the chief executive officer of Calvert Education Services from 2002 to 2010. From 1983–2001 Ms. Halle held ever increasing roles of responsibility with the Baltimore Sun, eventually becoming the chief financial officer and vice president of new business development for Times Mirror Interactive. Halle is currently a member of the board of directors for American Public Education, Inc., a provider of online higher education.
Her current business and civic responsibilities include:
Advisory Board Member for Stevenson University
- Advisory Board Member for Citybizlist, Baltimore
- Member, Women’s Education Alliance, Archdiocese of Baltimore
- Board of Directors Member, American Public University System
- Senior Advisor, Dinnertime, Inc.
- Board Member and Treasurer for Catholic Distance University
- Fellow, National Association of Corporate Directors
- Board Member, Pebblecreek Community Association
Halle resides in Lutherville, MD.
Bill Heiser, '95, '97
B.A. in Sociology, Loyola College (now Loyola University Maryland)
M.Ed. in School Counseling, Loyola College (now Loyola University Maryland)
Ed.D. in Higher Education Administration, Morgan State University
Certificate of Advanced Study in Organizational Change, Towson University
Bill Heiser is currently the President of Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Baltimore. He is the past principal of Catonsville High School in Baltimore County and North County High School in Anne Arundel County. In 2013, he was named a Principal of the Year by the Maryland Association of Secondary School Principals. Prior to his work in secondary education, Dr. Heiser was an assistant dean of Loyola University’s College of Arts & Sciences.
Bill and his wife, Tracy (’95), reside in Linthicum, MD with their two sons.
Hannah Ruth MacDonald, '13
B.A. in Elementary Education
Kappa Delta Pi
Loyola University Maryland
Hannah is a fifth grade teacher at Solley Elementary School in Glen Bernie, MD, a position she has held since graduating from Loyola University Maryland. Hannah is the president of the school’s mentoring program; a program designed for at risk children within the school community. Additionally, she is a head coach for “Girls on the Run”, a national organization that inspires girls to be confident through an experience based running curriculum.
Hannah is a certified swim instructor and a certified water aerobics instructor. She has recently completed two marathons. Hannah also enjoys playing golf.
Currently, Hannah is a candidate in the Masters of Education in Literacy ~ Reading Specialist Program, Loyola University Maryland.
Hannah grew up in Short Hills, NJ. She now resides in Baltimore, MD.
Audrey Rose McGonigle, '12
B.A. in Elementary Education, Loyola University Maryland
Audrey McGonigle is a Pre-Kindergarten teacher at The Primary Day School in Bethesda, Maryland. Prior to teaching Pre-K, Audrey taught for two years in Washington, DC as an Early Learning Center teacher at Beauvoir, the National Cathedral Elementary School. During her time at Loyola, Audrey student taught in a Baltimore City first grade class and a Baltimore County third grade class. Audrey also taught in a Danish Vuggestue, or nursery school, while studying abroad in Copenhagen. Audrey resides in Washington, DC.
Adrian Palazzi, '84
B.A. in Business Administration, Engineering Science
Deborah Phelps, '97
B.A. in Education, Fairmont State University
M.Ed. in Educational Management and Supervision, Loyola University Maryland
Deborah Phelps is the newly appointed director for The Baltimore County Public Schools Education Foundation which provides resources for students and teachers and funds for innovative programs. Widely regarded as an innovative, talented leader and master teacher with more than three decades of teaching and administrator experience, Ms. Phelps began her career as a teacher in Harford County Public Schools in 1974. Over the course of her distinguished career, she evolved her experiences from teacher to team leader to department chair to middle school principal in Baltimore County. She has been a BCPS Teacher of the Year Finalist, twice named Maryland Family and Consumer Science Teacher of the Year, and was named Baltimore County’s “Baby Boomer of the Year, 2004.” She co-chaired the “One Campaign” for the Harford County Boys and Girls Clubs of America, and is a member of the Board of Directors for Maryland Character Education, The Children’s Guild, Northwest Hospital and The Michael Phelps Foundation. She serves on the national advisory board for The American Students’ Fund and Rachel’s Challenge and is an education presenter for many organizations throughout the United States. Ms. Phelps has also written a book titled "A Mother for All Seasons," released in April 2009.
Phelps resides in Baltimore, MD.
D. James Prey III (Jim), '11
B. A. in Politics and Government, Ohio Wesleyan University
M.A.T. in Elementary Education, Loyola University Maryland ‘11
Jim is currently teaching middle school math at St. Paul’s School in Brooklandville, MD. The prior two years he held various teaching positions in the Baltimore County Public School System. Before his second career in teaching, he worked the prior 27 years in the investment arena. The last 13 years he was employed as a senior equity trader at T. Rowe Price. Jim is a member of the Advisory Board of the Paul Reed Smith / Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center Annual Concert and Golf Outing. Additionally, Jim is on the Executive Board of The Summer Solstice Foundation which raises money for children’s health and education charities through annual golf outings.
Jim and his wife Kim live in the neighborhood next door to Loyola in Baltimore.