Founders

School Advisory Board

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Sophie Wallas Rasmussen

Co-Founder & Head of School

Sophie holds an MS in Human Nutrition (Functional Medicine) from University of Bridgeport, an MSc in Social Anthropology from London School of Economics, a BA in Anthropology from Copenhagen University, and a Diploma in Multi-disciplinary Project & Innovation Leadership from Copenhagen Business School.

 

She is the founder of the holistic health institute HOLISCOPE LLC since 2013, which offers functional nutrition and holistic health guidance and training for families in upstate NY. Her former work experiences include college lecturer in cultural studies and personal (re)presentation, business liaison for careers services for university graduates, running personal and organizational development courses as a sub-contractor for various organizations and businesses, and has conducted research projects for national and international NGOs in Europe.

 

As a Montessori child alum herself, Sophie enrolled her firstborn in a Montessori School in NYC after maternity leave, and is now excited to return both of her kids to this learning method. She is currently completing her Montessori Leadership Institute Courses offered by the Montessori Foundation, and has so far completed 3 Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) Orientation Certificates in 2021, for ages 3-6, 6-12, and 12-18. She will be completing her final Orientation course for 0-3 this April 2022.

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David Madie

Co-Founder & Head of Business

David holds a MSc in Economics and Business Administration from Aarhus Business School (Denmark). He has been a serial entrepreneur for over 35 years, most recently as the founder and CEO of GrowthWheel International Inc., a training and software company with 20 employees working for economic development agencies worldwide. Prior to this, he has successfully started more than 10 companies across the globe, including in Scandinavia, North America, South and Southeast Asia, as well as East and South Africa.

 

David is the principal creator and designer of GrowthWheel, a visual toolbox and software platform for business advisors who work with small businesses. David has trained and certified over 3,600 small business advisors in 49 US states and 50+ countries. It is the intention that GrowthWheel will design a child-centered, Montessori-inspired, entrepreneurship toolbox for the school’s curriculum. David also sits as the chairman of the School Advisory Board.

David is married to Sophie and together they have two kids who are currently attending Bovina Center Montessori School.

We are inspired by the children

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Elizabeth Lamont

Elizabeth is a C-suite executive with 30 years of experience leading the marketing departments of the world’s top beauty brands. Her skill set covers marketing, sales, education, and PR. 

 

Personally, her upbringing brought her to the Catskills, as summers spent at canoe-tripping camps and family cottages in her native Canada led her to seek a rural balance to her urban life. Six years ago, Elizabeth and her husband bought a three-season, camp-style cabin in Bloomville and are planning to relocate to Delaware County permanently. 

 

Elizabeth was a volunteer Child Care Assistant at Mother’s Choice in Hong Kong, where she lived for several years, comes from a family of Montessori educators, and has an AMI Montessori Assistants Certificate (3-6 Years) from the Maria Montessori Institute in London.

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Donna Dickson-Noonan

Donna is a native “Bovinian”, her family having lived and farmed in the area for generations. She is currently the President of the Board at Cornell Corporate Extension of Delaware County, which serves as an educational system that enables people to improve their lives and communities through partnerships that put experience and research knowledge to work, in the areas of agriculture, human ecology, and youth development. 

 

Donna is also a member of the Town of Bovina Board, and holds a degree from Western New Mexico University, previously working in healthcare in New York, Wyoming, Minnesota, Montana, and New Mexico. She runs her Glenanore Farm with her husband Mike, where they produce meat and dairy to the local community in Bovina. She is a proud mother and grandmother to several children and grandchildren still living in the county.

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Catharine Du Bois Sherry

Catharine is a lawyer and a professor at Brooklyn Law School teaching legal rhetoric and legal communication. She has been teaching lawyers and soon-to-be lawyers to communicate more effectively for over a decade. Catharine also consults on curriculum development and effective learning technique. As a mother of a four-year-old and as a supporter of the community, she is looking forward to working with the Bovina Montessori School.  

Montessori School Advisors

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Tim Seldin

Tim Seldin is the President of the Montessori Foundation and Chair of the International Montessori Council. He is a noted Montessori teacher trainer, school consultant, and keynote speaker at scores of Montessori conferences around the world, including the Montessori Foundation’s annual international conference, which is held in Sarasota every November.

 

Tim has 49 years of experience in Montessori education, beginning with 25 years as a Montessori teacher and Headmaster of the Barrie School in Silver Spring, MD, which was founded by his family in 1932 and which he attended from age 2 through high school graduation.

 

As President of the Montessori Foundation, he served as Head of the NewGate School from 1993 through 1999, during the years when NewGate was the Lab School of the Montessori Foundation. Tim was, with Harvey Hallenberg, the co-founder and Director of the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies. Tim earned a B.A. in History and Philosophy from Georgetown University, an M.Ed. in Educational Administration and Supervision from the American University, and his Montessori certification from the American Montessori Society. He is the author of several books about Montessori education. Tim served for many years as an officer on the Board of the American Montessori Society. He is also an International Baccalaureate Diploma Program Instructor.

Tim is currently assisting our school with private consultation during the administrative start-up of the school, as well as ensuring the establishment of a strong Montessori curriculum.

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Michele Hutchinson

Michele owned and operated a successful, private Montessori school for over 20 years, and improved operational efficiency for a number of AMI Montessori schools in the DC area.

She holds AMI Montessori diplomas for birth through age 12, as well as a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Rochester and Masters degree from St. John’s Graduate Institute. She currently mentors Montessori school administrators and guides in best practices.

As Director of Conference Operations and a member of the Core Executive Team for Youth for a Better World, LLC, she chairs committees, trains teacher-coordinators, and inspires elementary and adolescent students to become young change-makers through programs such as Montessori Model United Nations.

Michele is excited to help our growing school evolve into a strong AMI affiliate.