Friends School of Virginia Beach is a non-profit corporation and the School Committee is our Board of Trustees.
While there is no set number of Trustees on the School Committee, at least 20 percent of its members are members of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). The Head of School and our Financial Advisor serve on the School Committee in an ex officio capacity. In addition, the School Committee includes a representative from the Faculty, the alumni, and the Friends School Community Association.
Ex officio members and representatives serve one-year terms; trustees serve for three years. School Committee members have no proprietary interest in the school.
In general, the School Committee is responsible for:
Born and raised in Stafford, VA., Clarke graduated from the University of Virginia with a B.S. in Commerce. He moved to Virginia Beach in 1998 with his wife Carey. Clarke and his wife have three sons, Charlie, David and Michael.
Clarke is a Finance Manager for Cox Business (division of Cox Communications) in Virginia, where he has worked for over 22 years. Her has held various audit /accounting / finance roles with Cox. Prior to Cox, Clarke worked as a Senior Auditor with KPMG in Washington, D.C. His interests include traveling and biking.
Clarke currently serves as School Committee Treasurer.
Tim is a native of Virginia Beach and currently resides there with his family. His Friends School experience began in 2006 with enrollment of a student now in the Upper School. He is also the parent of a Friends School alumna currently studying at James Madison University. Tim volunteers at school regularly and enjoys attending school events and being part of the vibrant Friends School community.
Tim is a Virginia Tech Hokie and Professional Electrical Engineer. He is responsible for building electrical system design and construction. His practice includes implementation of sustainable design and continuing education to stay current with the constant evolution of building technology. Tim’s experience includes numerous facilities throughout the Mid-Atlantic region for clients in the government, healthcare and education markets.
Tim currently serves as the School Committee Convener of the Building and Grounds committee.
Joanne Gingrich Crass
Joanne was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pa. where she received her BS in Nursing at Temple University and her MS in Nursing at University of Pennsylvania. She taught Nursing at the University of Minnesota and several other colleges. She currently operates a local private neurofeedback practice.
Joanne and her husband have adopted four children from foreign countries. Her son, JJ, attended Friends School starting in eighth grade and graduated in 2008. He is a graduate of Guilford College. While JJ was at Friends School, Joanne was active in the parent organization, serving as both recorder and clerk for several years. At Friends School, Joanne has taught science courses and filled in at the office. She is very committed to VBFS and the values it embodies.
Joanne is currently serving as Recording Clerk.
Ann was born and raised in Hopkins, Minnesota. She graduated from The College of William and Mary with a BBA in Business Management. A Hampton Roads resident since 1981, she worked as a wholesale purchasing agent before the arrival of her children, and for five years in the preschool division of a Virginia Beach private school while her children were students at the school.
Ann and her husband Alan have two sons, both of whom were adopted from Romania. The younger of the boys came to Friends School in the seventh grade and is a member of the Class of 2014.
Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Michele has lived in Hampton Roads (off and on) for approximately 20 years. She received her BS in Psychology from Old Dominion University and her MA in Urban Education from Norfolk State University. Michele currently serves as an officer-learning site lead, instructor/facilitator of leadership and various life skills courses at Learning Site Damn Neck, U.S. Navy. She is a Master Graduate of Rapport Leadership International, a licensed Zumba instructor, and aspiring leadership coach.
Michele has two daughters. Her affiliation with Friends School began with her youngest daughter’s enrollment in 2012, gradually increasing from school event appearances to periodic volunteer efforts. She admires the foundational principles and values of Quakerism, and has been a regular attendee at Virginia Beach Friends Meeting since Dec of 2013.
Hank Ghittino is a long time member of Virginia Beach Friends Meeting where he has served on various committees, as treasurer, and is presently Clerk of Ministers, Elders, and Overseers, and a member of the Joint Property Task Force. Hank also served as a Meeting member during the School’s Long Range Planning process. Although raised in Queens, NY, Hank has called Tidewater, particularly Virginia Beach, home since 1970. He graduated from TCC, JMU, and took graduate course work at ODU. His two step-children attended Friends School for a time in the early 1980”s
Hank is a professional geologist, retired from a thirty-six year career as a hydrogeologist. During his career, he worked in the environmental sections of local, regional, and international consulting firms. He spent his last seventeen working years with the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality in the groundwater resources management program, which is a permitting program that regulates groundwater based public and private water supply systems, individual industries, and agricultural and golf course irrigation.
Although born in North Carolina, Diane has called Virginia Beach her home since the 1950’s when her parents relocated to the area and soon after co-founded the Virginia Beach Friends Meeting and School. Although too old to attend Friends School, which began with kindergarten through second grade, she has been related to the school in one way or another since its inception.
Diane graduated from Westtown School, a Quaker school near Philadelphia, in 1962 and received a BS in psychology from Old Dominion College (now University) in 1966, the same day she married fellow student Charles Hofheimer. Diane and Charles’ three children and grandchildren all attended Friends School.
A board member of Prevent Child Abuse Hampton Roads for many years, Diane has been an advocate for children most of her adult life. She is a trained mediator and values the Quaker testimonies that are at the heart of the Friends School experience.
Diane currently serves as Convener of the Spiritual Life Committee.
Born and raised in Newport News, VA, Nancy graduated from Westhampton College of the University of Richmond with a B.A. In political science. She moved to Virginia Beach in 1970 with her husband Fred, now a retired Circuit Court Judge. Fred and Nancy have two daughters and five grandchildren.
Nancy has been active in church, educational, and environmental endeavors serving on the session of the Presbyterian Church, various volunteer positions in the Virginia Beach Public Schools, The Citizens Program for the Chesapeake Bay, as a docent at the Virginia Marine Science Center, and on the Virginia Beach Wetlands board.
Her relationship with Friends School began in the mid 90's where she has worked as a teacher, office receptionist, and volunteer.
Nancy currently serves as Convener of the Advancement Committee.
James A. Metcalfe and his wife Lisa, Teacher Lisa Metcalfe (past teacher and current volunteer), are the parents of two former VBFS students who are now grown and in their fourth decade.
Jim is a returning member of School Committee, having served from 1977 through 1991. He attended Germantown Friends School in Philadelphia, PA in 1946. He graduated from the U. S. Naval Academy in 1963 and has lived in Virginia Beach since 1968. He is a retired federal prosecutor and a retired Navy Reserve captain and aviator
Lewis is a water quality hydrologist and a professional engineer. He is the parent of two former Friends School students and is a member of the Friends Meeting. He served on the school committee from 1986 to 1991. He assisted the school in the transition and expansion to include the upper school by providing site designs for the upper school building, the administration building and Wilson Building.
Both he and Mary Pelham were born and raised in Suffolk and have lived in Virginia Beach since 1970. Lewis is a graduate of VMI. His interests include the environment and he is a member of Lynnhaven Now, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and the Great Lakes Beach Association. Lewis is a member of Engineers Without Borders and has traveled to southeastern Cambodia to assist small villages with clean water and sanitation.
Lewis currently serves as Clerk.
Virginia Association of Independent Schools
Member: National Association of Independent Schools
Member: Friends Council on Education
1537 Laskin Road, Virginia Beach VA 23451
757-428-7534 - Phone
757-428-7511 - Fax
Summer Office Hours: 9:00am-3:00pm