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.

Elaine Grillo, Chair

Parent of Elizabeth,’08

B.A. in Education, The College of St. Elizabeth
M.A. in Administration and Supervision in Education, The College of St. Elizabeth

Elaine Grillo is a former elementary school teacher. She is currently a trustee for the Kemmerer Library in Harding Township, NJ.

Grillo and her husband, Anthony, reside in New Hope, PA.

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. 

Mary Beth Brady

B.A. in English/Pre-Med, Georgetown University M.D., Georgetown University
Residency and fellowship in anesthesiology, Johns Hopkins University

Mary Beth Brady is an assistant professor at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in the department of anesthesiology and critical care medicine, the medical director of the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit, and director of The Intraoperative Transesophageal Echocardiography Program.

Brady resides in Cockeysville, MD.

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. 

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.

Therese Karl, '96

B.A. in Elementary Education from Loyola College in Maryland (now Loyola University Maryland), 1996
M.A. in Urban and Multicultural Education from College of Mount Saint Vincent, 2004

Therese Karl began her teaching career with the Baltimore City Public School System where she taught fifth grade and then third grade at Roland Park Elementary School. In 1999, she moved to New York City where she continued her teaching career in the New York City Public School System. She taught in the Bronx at Maritime Academy, a magnet school with a partnership with the State University of New York Maritime Academy. This middle school specialized in science, math, and technology. Here she taught fifth and sixth grade math and science until 2005. Currently, Therese volunteers with her children’s elementary school and preschool in Rye, NY. She is focused on working with the local public school’s Safe Routes to School initiative, collaborating with the town’s YMCA and local government.

She resides in Rye, NY with her husband, John (BBA – Finance ’96), and three children.

 Martin Knott, ’01

B.A. in History and Philosophy, Loyola College in Maryland (now Loyola University Maryland)

Martin is the CEO of NxGenEd, LLC, an educational software company and a sheep farmer. Previously, he was Chairman, CEO, and General Manager of Moodlerooms, an enterprise education service software provider, which was acquired by Blackboard in 2012. Additionally, he established The Shepherd Group, a retained executive search firm, after serving as a managing director of three global search firms. Knott was also owner/CEO of an engineering and construction mechanical contracting company serving the mid-Atlantic region, and chairman and CEO of a major real estate holding company. He is a trustee of The Marion I. and Henry J. Knott Foundation.

He resides in Easton, MD.


Emily Widger Maurer, '06

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.


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.

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.