Board of Trustees and Advisors
The Board of Trustees and Advisors at Childpeace Montessori School offer a comprehensive breadth of expertise and are committed to the preservation and implementation of the school's mission.
The Childpeace Board of Trustees and Advisors serves as the strategic planning body of the school, as well as a vital link to the larger Portland community. The Board is recruited from the parent body and the community at large. A group of advisory board members are invited to join the board as their interest and skills dictate. Our current strategic plan guides the work of the Childpeace Board. A system of committees forms the framework for completion of board work. All parent board members are recruited from and voted upon for a two-year term by the parent body. If you are interested in board membership, contact our Head of School. The Head of School /Executive Director is a non-voting board member. The HOS makes all the decisions regarding program curriculum, philosophy and implementation, and operations. The HOS is solely responsible for the hiring and management of all faculty. Childpeace is committed to its AMI (Association Montessori Internationale) recognition, and has an outside AMI consultant visit the school every three years for program oversight.
The volunteer members share a belief in Montessori education and a passion for the school and they ensure the smooth operation of the school as an independent Montessori school and tax exempt 501(c)(3) organization.
Elisa Wickstrom joined the Childpeace Community in 2013 when her daughter Minna started in the Spruce Room. She jumped in with both feet, joining the Facilities Committee, the Parent Involvement Committee and Co-Chairing the Auction. She and her husband Scott are committed to community service and believe that every hour dedicated to Childpeace is an hour well spent. Their son Oliver joined the Willow room in Fall 2014. Elisa has a background in physical and digital design and has worked for a variety of agencies and consulting firms including IBM, Mainspring and Schematic (now Possible Worldwide). While earning her Master of Architecture degree at the University of Virginia, Elisa worked for the University Architect and developed a passion for navigating the complex web of relationships between the board of trustees, the students, the staff and the state. Elisa also served on the School of Architecture Admissions Committee as well as the Curriculum Committee. Elisa currently serves on the Board of the Artist Repertory Theater.
Bill Lynch is a software entrepreneur and advisor. He is currently the VP of Products at Cloudability, a local tech startup. Previously, he was one of the co-founders of Jive Software, a company he started in 2001 and grew in to a public company. Bill is an advisor to local startups, organizes networking events for area Product Managers and was recently the Entrepreneur in Residence at the Portland Development Commission. He believes strongly in supporting early childhood education. Bill has one daughter at Childpeace and twin boys in Children’s House.
Ewan, through his company Metolius River Capital, LLC, provides distressed situation consulting services including serving as receiver, chief restructuring officer or financial advisor to parties in Chapter 11. He is also an active investor in operating businesses (including most recently the Closet Factory and Wall Beds of Oregon) and all manner of real estate assets. He is a member of the Finance Committee. He has three children at Childpeace.
Oanh and her family return to Childpeace after three years of living on the East Coast. Oanh and her husband have been Childpeace parents since their daughter started at The Terrace in 2010. Montessori education has always remained a constant for Oanh's two children despite the coast to coast moves. Previously, Oanh has been a room rep, a member of the auction committee, and held a variety of other volunteer positions. Oanh is a business consultant to authors and illustrators of children's literature.
Katie joined the board in 2013 and prior to that was active in the Childpeace community as an Auction Chair, Auction Committee member, room representative, part-time substitute and a variety of other volunteer positions. Katie brings to the board a passion for Montessori education and a deep desire to support Childpeace. Katie, her husband Speros Homer, and her family have been part of the community since 2006 and she has become a strong advocate for Childpeace and Montessori education, even attending and volunteering the International Montessori congress in 2013. She is also a practicing Physical Therapist at New Heights Physical Therapy and mother of three.
Mary joined the board in 2016 after watching her three children thrive, since 2012, in the Childpeace Montessori environment. A former product director for Nike, and current business owner of Gold+Arrow Salon in downtown Portland, Mary is passionate and committed to Montessori education. She has served as the Development Committee Board chair and assisted in the various stages of the school’s strategic planning process. What inspires her most about Montessori and Childpeace is watching children grow and succeed, at their own pace, within a caring and kind community.
Courtney joined the Board in 2016. She and her husband Kris, are supporters of Montessori education and are delighted to be part of the Childpeace community; they have two daughters who attend Childpeace. Courtney is an attorney with the law firm Mersereau Shannon LLP and advises municipal and nonprofit clients regarding financing matters. Courtney first became an enthusiast of Childpeace in 2007 while serving as counsel to Childpeace for the financing of the main building.
Caitlin Smith Cecala
Caitlin joined the board in 2017 and has been a part of the Childpeace community since 2015. She is an Account Supervisor at Edelman Public Relations, specializing in consumer and corporate communications. Caitlin is also an ovarian cancer survivor and actively works to increase awareness and prevention of this disease. Needless to say, the most important person in her life is her son Zac, now in his second year in the Pine Room, and her two crazy cool Boston Terriers - Mochi and Koa.
Emily Ip joined the board in 2017 and has been active in the Childpeace community for 5 years. She has co-chaired the school fundraiser and is currently the co-chair for the Childpeace Volunteer Collective. Emily is an Emergency/Trauma nurse, teaching undergraduate nurses at Oregon Health and Science University and is in school at Johns Hopkins University for her Doctorate in Neuroscience and Nursing Education. Emily’s son is in second grade in the Myrtle room.
To guide the development of the whole child, socially and academically, through the principles of AMI Montessori education in an urban setting.