Faculty & Staff Directory

Leadership Team

Ms. Margaret Steele

Head of School
BA, Yale University
MEd, Lesley University

Ms. Steele became a teacher to accompany children as they navigate developmental stages and discover who they are as people and learners. She most loves those opportunities to connect individually with students, whether through a moment of laughter or a serious conversation. At Woodlands, she finds great joy in watching girls grow into young women, make decisions, and find their voices. Ms. Steele has been at Woodlands since 2015.

Mrs. Christine Schmidt

Principal
BA, Northern Illinois University

Mrs. Schmidt has held several positions through her years at Woodlands including social studies teacher, dean of students, director of student services, and currently principal. She works closely with the students as she oversees all aspects of student development outside of the classroom. Mrs. Schmidt especially loves co-directing the advisory program. Mrs. Schmidt strongly believes in single gender education and in the Sacred Heart mission. She has been at Woodlands since 1990.

Ms. Kimberly Clark

Director of Enrollment and Community Outreach
BS, Wake Forest Univ.

Ms. Clark has extensive experience in sales and marketing for the financial sector as well as admission experience at the graduate level. She is passionate about Woodlands mission, which empowers girls to make a difference in the world. Her favorite time of the year is the first day of school when the new students arrive and the current students return. She enjoys that her role allows her to share with prospective families the incredible opportunity a Woodlands education provides. Ms. Clark has been at the school since 2015.

Mrs. Tami Rocha

Class of 1980
Director of Advancement
Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart
Barat College

Mrs. Elizabeth Maher

Director of Finance & Operations
BS, Marquette University
MBA, Keller Graduate School of Management
CPA

Mrs. Maher spent many years in the private sector working in accounting for small to medium size businesses. She brings that vast skill set to her work at Woodlands. Mrs. Maher came to Woodlands because she was impressed with the school’s mission and reputation. Her favorite Woodlands tradition is the annual Christmas concert where the members of the choir sing by candlelight. She finds culture of the school to be one of support and warmth. Mrs. Maher has worked at Woodlands since 2017.

Faculty

English

Ms. Jennifer Brostrom

English Teacher
BA, University of Michigan
MFA, American University, Washington, D.C.

Before becoming a published author under the pen name "Jennifer Allison," and setting out for 14 years traveling the country as a visiting author and writing teacher, Mrs. Brostrom taught English and served as the Writing Center Director at Connelly School of the Holy Child in Potomac, MD. Mrs. Brostrom has also worked in the educational publishing world and as a journalist, as well as working as a writing instructor at the University of Baltimore and American University. She is the recipient of many writing awards for her work as a poet and children's author. Visit www.gildajoyce.com for information on her two children's series, The Gilda Joyce mysteries and the Iggy Loomis chapter books.

Mrs. Erin Brysiewicz

English Teacher
BA, Lake Forest College
MSEd, Northwestern University

Ms. Brysiewicz became a teacher because she thinks it’s essential for students to learn to communicate their ideas clearly and effectively. Also because she loves talking about literature and writing. Her favorite classroom moments include when a student’s eyes get wide because her mind has opened to a new idea. At Woodlands, she loves the warmth and support of the community, the curiosity of the students, and the trust and freedom teachers are given to shape what and how they teach. She has been at Woodlands since 2008.

Ms. Jessica Campbell

English Teacher
MEd, University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley
Ms. Campbell knew in high school she would pursue a career in education because she likes working with adolescents and wanted a job that would be different every day. She most enjoys the opportunity to explain to her students that they will be the leaders of the future and have the power and responsibility to decide how to make this world a better place. While teaching at our sister school Duchesne Academy in Houston, Ms. Campbell completed a ropes course with a student and found it to be a profound experience—supporting each other in a vulnerable moment 30 feet in the air! The mission of the Sacred Heart speaks to Ms. Campbell’s soul and allows her to be the best teacher she can be. Prior to teaching in the United States, Ms. Campbell spent five years teaching in Singapore. Ms. Campbell has worked at Woodlands since 2017.

Mr. Matthew Nuccio

English Teacher, Social Studies Teacher, ESL Support and Theatre Director
BA, University of Illinois, Chicago
MA, University of Chicago
With nearly twenty years in the classroom, Mr. Nuccio chose a career in education because he enjoys working with young people. Additionally, he loves books and ideas and relishes that his job is “socially constructive.” Each year he delights when a student who is unsure of herself in the beginning begins to grow in self-confidence and takes on a more vocal role in class. At Woodlands, he is most proud to be a part of a school that has created an environment that prioritizes the holistic wellness of its students while still maintaining the highest academic standards. Mr. Nuccio has worked at Woodlands since 2018.

Fine Arts

Mr. Kevin Burrow

Music Teacher
BAMus, Carthage College
MMEd, Northwestern University

Mr. Burrow became a teacher because he wanted to share the same musical experiences that he encountered in high school with my own students. He continues to be a teacher who nurtures students into well rounded human beings that possess a knowledge and appreciation for the musical arts in their lives. His favorite teaching memory includes when he took his first choir group to Chicago, which included a clinic experience at Northwestern University, a short concert in the lobby of the Field Museum and attending a performance of Wicket at the Cadillac Palace Theatre. Those students, who are now in their thirties, still reminisce about the trip. Mr. Burrow greatly admires how the Woodlands staff and administration create an educational environment that is truly student-centered. He has worked at Woodlands since 2018.

Mr. William Gabaldon

Art & Ceramics Teacher
BFA, University of New Mexico
MFA, University of Pennsylvania

Mr. Gabaldon teaches to share knowledge as well as keep learning himself. He relishes the moment a student gets excited about understanding a concept. He enjoys the many great people who make up the community at Woodlands Academy. Mr. Gabaldon has worked at Woodlands since 2016.

Ms. Lauren Moldenhauer

Orchestra Teacher
BM, Northwestern University
MM, Catholic University of America

An accomplished musician herself, Mrs. Moldenhauer loves working with young musicians to impart her knowledge on the next generation of musicians. Her favorite teaching moments include bearing witness to the faces of pure elation on her students’ faces when they receive awards/trophies at the annual national music competition Woodlands’ students take part in. At Woodlands, she finds the way the girls support each other an their enthusiasm to be truly unique. Mrs. Moldenhauer was named to the principal flute position in the Lake County Symphony Orchestra in 2017. Mrs. Moldenhauer has worked at Woodlands since 2013.

Ms. Jamie Tuttle

Photography Teacher
BFA, Kansas City Art Institute
MFA, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Global Education

Mrs. Amy Perlick

Director, Center for Global Studies
BA, Macalester College
MA, Marquette University

Ms. Perlick became a teacher to share her love of the Spanish language and open new worlds to her students. As a former exchange student in high school, she loves the opportunity to send Woodlands students to other Sacred Heart schools all over the world through the exchange program. She most enjoys working with wonderful, inquisitive young women who want to change the world. She has twice been the recipient of the Sr. Frances de la Chapelle Excellence in Teaching Award. Ms. Perlick has worked at Woodlands since 1999.

International Languages

Mrs. Bev Adamczyk

Latin Teacher
MA, of Ancient Greek

Ms. Teal McCartney

Spanish Teacher, Director of Student Activities
BA, Clarke College
MAT, Clarke College

Profe McCartney felt called to the role of teacher because she is not only passionate about the Spanish language, but about giving all students a voice and building their confidence. She finds that learning a foreign language is a perfect vehicle for this endeavor because it enables and encourages students to take healthy risks in a safe environment. Profe McCartney has implemented an organic, student-driven, wholly immersive curriculum for her students of Spanish. She has most enjoyed watching the girls bring their own topics to the table to learn and discuss. At Woodlands, she finds a community of values and sisterhood that gives girls the confidence to speak out in the classroom and feel empowered to take charge of their learning. She feels privileged to have the opportunity to implement a creative and innovative curriculum. For her, every day is like teaching in her own home. Profe McCartney was the 2007 recipient of the Heart of the School Award: Rising Star from the Archdiocese of Chicago. Profe McCartney has worked at Woodlands since 2013.

Ms. Julia Sands

French Teacher
BA, Indiana University at Bloomington
MA, The American University of Paris
MEd, Loyola University of Chicago

Ms. Sands found her love of teaching while working with adult ESL students in Rome where she found great joy in helping them learn to express themselves in a new language. She thinks that the relationship created between teacher and student is incredibly important. Her favorite teaching moments are when a student shares that she understood something in French and it made her feel happy. At Woodlands, she admires the atmosphere of kindness and civility created by the administration. She finds that it sets the tone for the school and makes her work a pleasure. Ms. Sands has worked at Woodlands since 2018.

Ms. Katherine Stewart

Class of 2006
Spanish Teacher, ESL Teacher
Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart
University of Minnesota
Saint Louis University in Madrid, Spain
Ms. Stewart became a teacher to share her love of learning—a love that was cultivated during her time as a student at Woodlands. She loves when students can talk about what they are learning in other classes in Spanish in the case of her Spanish classes or English in the case of her ESL classes. Ms. Stewart enjoys that Woodlands students are engaged, excited and willing to push their own boundaries in the classroom. Ms. Stewart has worked at Woodlands since 2015.

Physical Wellness

Ms. Rosemary Briesch

BS, University of Illinois at Chicago
MS, George Williams College
Ms. Briesch pursued a career in education because, as a student, she loved school, her teachers, and her coaches. Ms. Briesch’s favorite teaching and coaching moments include witnessing a student have a “light bulb moment.” At Woodlands, she most appreciates the tight-knit sense of community. Coach Briesch has earned the distinction of Volleyball Coach of the Year five times and Softball Coach of the Year nine times from the Independent School League. The Illinois Coaches Association recently honored Ms. Briesch with a Coach of the Year Award. She is also the recipient of the Illinois Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (IAHPERD) Quarter Century Award, awarded to a member who has dedicated 25 years of more to the profession.

Ms. Briesch has worked at Woodlands since 1973.

Mrs. Christine Ohlwein

Physical Wellness & Health Teacher
BA, Illinois State University

Ms. Ohlwein finds that teaching allows her to watch students succeed at both simple and complex tasks. She feels that no matter what a student’s passion is, she should be given the opportunity to succeed. Ms. Ohlwein has twice been named the Illinois School League’s Coach of the Year and earned recognition as coach of the year by the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association. Ms. Ohlwein has worked at Woodlands since 2007.

Science

Mrs. Kristen Black

Science Teacher
BA, Knox College
MAT, National Louis University

Ms. Black enjoys working with high school students to pass on her love for chemistry. At Woodlands, she most enjoys the single-sex environment, the small class sizes, and her opportunity to form close bonds with students and their families.

Mrs. Cheryl Breckinridge

BA, Dominican University
MS, Dominican University

In her 30 years of experience teaching biology, Ms. Breckinridge aims to institute a respect for life at all levels from the smallest cell to the largest ecosystem. She has worked at Woodlands since 1995.

Mr. John Denman

Science Teacher
BS, Illinois Institute of Technology

Mr. Denman became a teacher to make science a fun and enjoyable experience, which he does on a daily basis at Woodlands. His favorite teaching moments include when students find connections between the material in class and everyday phenomena. He finds Woodlands to be an environment that embodies a love of learning. Mr. Denman was the 2017 recipient of the Frances de la Chapelle Excellence in Teaching Award. He has worked at Woodlands since 2014.

Ms. Devon Mann

Science Teacher
BS, University of Oregon
MS, University of North Carolina
MEd, Concordia University

In addition to her passion for marine invertebrates, Ms. Mann found her passion for teaching when, after much “bench-work” at the University of Chicago, she began instructing biology courses at a community college. What excites her most is witnessing students make the connections between complex scientific concepts and their own personal experiences. At Woodlands, she loves the pedagogical autonomy she is granted as well as the progressive teacher philosophy and supportive administration. Ms. Mann has taught at Woodlands since 2018.

Social Studies

Mr. Peter Cashman

Social Studies Teacher
BA, University of Rhode Island
MA, George Mason University

Mr. Cashman has a deep love for history. He also feels a responsibility to help create knowledgeable, kind, and responsible citizens. The teaching moments he most loves include watching his students fully engage in and take ownership of whatever task is at hand independent from his direct involvement. At Woodlands, he loves that the environment fosters the ability to interact with students not as a superior, but as an equal in the process of learning and discovery.

Mr. Matthew Nuccio

English Teacher, Social Studies Teacher, ESL Support and Theatre Director
BA, University of Illinois, Chicago
MA, University of Chicago
With nearly twenty years in the classroom, Mr. Nuccio chose a career in education because he enjoys working with young people. Additionally, he loves books and ideas and relishes that his job is “socially constructive.” Each year he delights when a student who is unsure of herself in the beginning begins to grow in self-confidence and takes on a more vocal role in class. At Woodlands, he is most proud to be a part of a school that has created an environment that prioritizes the holistic wellness of its students while still maintaining the highest academic standards. Mr. Nuccio has worked at Woodlands since 2018.

Mrs. Amy Perry

Social Studies Teacher
BA, Indiana University
MEd, National Louis University

Mrs. Perry became a teacher because of a particularly passionate psychology teacher in high school. Going onto college, Mrs. Perry initially started in the study of Psychology but soon learned that she most wanted to shape the lives of students through sharing her love of learning. She finds great satisfaction when students return from college and share with her stories of success—such as knowing all the material in a Psychology class and being the “go-to student” to whom others come to for help. Mrs. Perry most loves Woodlands students’ inquisitive natures and that they feel comfortable asking questions. She finds that they always want to learn more and continually challenge her to be the best teacher possible. Mrs. Perry has been named the ISL Field Hockey Coach of the Year. She has worked at Woodlands since 2010.

Mathematics & Computer Science

Mr. Elliot Coffey

Mathematics Teacher, Educational Technology Support
BS, Northern Illinois University

Mr. Coffey pursued a career in teaching because of his high school Algebra teacher, Mrs. Highstone. Up until then, he had not been a successful math student. He cites her positive, no-nonsense attitude and willingness to connect with him individually at what helped him recognize his ability in mathematics. Now as a teacher in his own right, Mr. Coffey particularly enjoys teaching the order of operations, which he approaches as GEMS (Grouping Symbols, Exponents, Multiply and Divide, Subtract and Add). He loves that this method usually provides great insight due to a frequent misunderstanding of the PEMDAS acronym. Mr. Coffey finds it easy to come to work and do his best every day, because students at Woodlands have a contagious vitality and energy. They also strive to always do their best and articulate an appreciation for their teachers. Mr. Coffeey has worked at Woodlands since 2013.

Mr. Rocco Gargiulo

Assistant Principal. Mathematics Teacher
BS, University of San Francisco
BBA, Grand Canyon University
MAT, Grand Canyon University
Mr. Gargiulo became a teacher to influence adolescents in a positive way. He appreciates the “ah-ha” moments that occur every day with his students. At Woodlands, he most values that students and adults care deeply for one another and push each other to do their best. He has taught at Northwestern University’s Center for Talent Development and has scored AP exams for the College Board. Mr. Gargiulo was named Master Teacher of the Year from the Mathematics Teachers Association of Chicago and its Vicinity. In 2013, he received the Sr. Frances de la Chapelle Excellence in Teaching Award.

Ms. Courtney Pomije

Mathematics Teacher
BS, Illinois State University
Ms. Pomije always wanted to be a teacher and she loves working with math every day. Her favorite teaching moment includes forming a bond with a student who was doing poorly in her class and he eventually became one of her top performing students. At Woodlands, she values the community—the friendly faculty, staff, parents, and, of course, the students. Ms. Pomije has been at Woodlands since 2018.

Dr. Valerie Rickert

BS, Mundelein College, Chicago, Il
MA, Dominican University, River Forest, Il
PhD, Loyola University of Chicago
Dr. Rickert became a teacher after some prompting from her sons. She remembers a time when her students articulated that they knew the material better after participating in a video math scavenger hunt—that same group then created their own video which placed in the top twenty out of 300 for a video competition. At Woodlands, Dr. Rickert loves the welcoming atmosphere, friendly and motivated students, and small class size. She has served as the Chair of the Application Committee for the Blue Ribbon School, received a Presidential Award Nomination for Science as well as the a Presidential Award Nomination for Math. Dr. Rickert has served on the Archdiocesan math curriculum committee and has worked at Woodlands since 2018.

Theology

Ms. Melissa Otter

Theology Teacher, Campus Minister
BA, Loyola University
MEd, Creighton University

Ms. Otter greatly values her own education and the teachers she had who she found to be passionate and caring people—she wanted to pass that same zeal onto future generations. Her favorite teaching moments always occur outside the walls of a classroom when learning by experience whether doing service together, going on a field trip, or traveling the globe, those are the moments that stand out most. At Woodlands, Ms. Otter loves the opportunity to really get to know her students and that they can get to know her. She also finds the all-girls atmosphere special. Ms. Otter has been at Woodlands since 2017.

Mrs. Christine Zapf

Theology Teacher
BA, University of Notre Dame
MAPS, Loyola University

Ms. Zapf became a theology teacher because she is passionate about sharing the faith and creating opportunities for her students to experience the joy of loving and being loved by God. Her best teaching moments include witnessing when a student’s natural curiosity and passion for learning motivate her to make new connections and discoveries. Ms. Zapf experiences Woodlands to be an amazing, supportive, learning community where each person is respected, cared for, challenged, and appreciated. She was the recipient of the St. Benedict Preparatory School Teacher of the Year. Ms. Zapf has worked at Woodlands since 2017.

Administration & Staff

Admission & Communications

Ms. Kimberly Clark

Director of Enrollment and Community Outreach
BS, Wake Forest Univ.

Ms. Clark has extensive experience in sales and marketing for the financial sector as well as admission experience at the graduate level. She is passionate about Woodlands mission, which empowers girls to make a difference in the world. Her favorite time of the year is the first day of school when the new students arrive and the current students return. She enjoys that her role allows her to share with prospective families the incredible opportunity a Woodlands education provides. Ms. Clark has been at the school since 2015.

Ms. Kathleen Creed

Class of 1991
Director of Admission and Affordability
Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart
BA, University of St. Thomas

Mrs. Victoria Gadomski

Associate Director of Admission
BA, Villanova University
MS, Cabrini College

Mrs. Gadomski has spent over a decade in secondary school admission. She is a passionate advocate for all girls education. Her favorite Woodlands tradition is the annual Flag Ceremony where the community celebrates it’s internationality at the start of each school year. Mrs. Gadomski also cherishes the caring relationships that are developed between adults and students. She has worked at Woodlands since 2015.

Mrs. Alexandra Maegdlin

Director of Communications
BA, Denison University
MS, Northwestern University

Mrs. Maegdlin believes in the transformative power of an all-girls education for young women. She has worked in the Communications role for two other independent secondary schools as well as leading the marketing, communications, and public relations efforts for countless clients during her time in an agency. Mrs. Maegdlin most loves that Woodlands helps each girl find and develop her own voice and explore the unique talents she alone has to offer this world. She also feels deeply connected to the mission of Sacred Heart and the atmosphere it creates. Mrs. Maegdlin has been at Woodlands since 2016.

Mr. John Rodas

Associate Director of Marketing
BFA, Illinois Institute of Art

Advancement

Mrs. Kathy Fivelson

Associate Director of Advancement for Events

Ms. Kathleen Reidy

Class of 1977
Associate Director of Advancement, Alumnae Relations
BA, DePauw University
MBA, University of Notre Dame
Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart

Ms. Reidy is a member of Woodlands class of 1977. She was a passionate contributor to the Woodlands Academy Alumnae Board prior to taking on her current role. Previously, she served as the Director of Communications for the Lake Bluff School District after many years in Marketing and Advertising. Her favorite memories of Woodlands include Reunion every year; she relishes the opportunity to welcome alumnae “home” to Woodlands. Ms. Reidy has worked at Woodlands since 2015.

Mrs. Tami Rocha

Class of 1980
Director of Advancement
Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart
Barat College

Mrs. Colleen Treutler

Associate Director of Advancement

Mrs. Treutler is a strong believer is single-sex education. She has held many roles in secondary education, including database management, development, and registrar. She also spent many years as a travel consultant. Mrs. Treutler knew Woodlands was a special place when she first walked through the door, a sentiment that was reinforced by her friends who graduated from the school. One of her favorite Woodlands memories was traveling to France to visit the home of Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat, the foundress of the Society of the Sacred Heart. Mrs. Treutler enjoys watching the growth of each Woodlands student as she works hard and develops during her time here—much like watching a plant grow from seed into a beautiful flower. Mrs. Treutler has been at Woodlands since 2011.

Business Office

Mrs. Elizabeth Maher

Director of Finance & Operations
BS, Marquette University
MBA, Keller Graduate School of Management
CPA

Mrs. Maher spent many years in the private sector working in accounting for small to medium size businesses. She brings that vast skill set to her work at Woodlands. Mrs. Maher came to Woodlands because she was impressed with the school’s mission and reputation. Her favorite Woodlands tradition is the annual Christmas concert where the members of the choir sing by candlelight. She finds culture of the school to be one of support and warmth. Mrs. Maher has worked at Woodlands since 2017.

Mrs. Laura Falco

Controller
BS, University of Illinois-Chicago

Mrs. Falco spent more than twenty years a controller in the private sector as well as nearly a decade in banking. She loves working at Woodlands because she feels she can integrate her personal values into her career as well as contribute something truly meaningful. One of her favorite things about Woodlands is it’s warm, welcoming community. Mrs. Falco has worked at Woodlands since 2018.

Mrs. Christine Grasenick

Receptionist, Cashier, Attendance
BA, Loyola University

Mrs. Grasenick is the first face our students see when they walk in the door every morning. She loves that her role allows her to greet the students on a daily basis and check in with them. Her favorite Woodlands memory is when the students selected her to be the recipient of the adult Sacred Heart award in recognition of her warmth and caring. Mrs. Grasenick has been at Woodlands since 2015.

Head of School

Ms. Margaret Steele

Head of School

Ms. Steele became a teacher to accompany children as they navigate developmental stages and discover who they are as people and learners. She most loves those opportunities to connect individually with students, whether through a moment of laughter or a serious conversation. At Woodlands, she finds great joy in watching girls grow into young women, make decisions, and find their voices. Ms. Steele has been at Woodlands since 2015.

Ms. Mary Ryan

Assistant to the Head of School

Ms. Ryan is a graduate of Barat College, a Sacred Heart School formerly located across the ravine from Woodlands. She felt a philosophical and spiritual alignment with the school when she came to work more than two decades ago. She has loved when she has had the opportunity to serve as a substitute advisor—enjoying the day-to-day, casual interactions with the girls. In those particular moments, among many others, she sees the advancement of the mission of the Sacred Heart and the encouragement of women’s voices in the public arena. Ms. Ryan has worked at Woodlands since 1996.

Principal's Office

Mrs. Christine Schmidt

Principal
BA, Northern Illinois University

Mrs. Schmidt has held several positions through her years at Woodlands including social studies teacher, dean of students, director of student services, and currently principal. She works closely with the students as she oversees all aspects of student development outside of the classroom. Mrs. Schmidt especially loves co-directing the advisory program. Mrs. Schmidt strongly believes in single gender education and in the Sacred Heart mission. She has been at Woodlands since 1990.

Mr. Rocco Gargiulo

Assistant Principal. Mathematics Teacher
BS, University of San Francisco
BBA, Grand Canyon University
MAT, Grand Canyon University
Mr. Gargiulo became a teacher to influence adolescents in a positive way. He appreciates the “ah-ha” moments that occur every day with his students. At Woodlands, he most values that students and adults care deeply for one another and push each other to do their best. He has taught at Northwestern University’s Center for Talent Development and has scored AP exams for the College Board. Mr. Gargiulo was named Master Teacher of the Year from the Mathematics Teachers Association of Chicago and its Vicinity. In 2013, he received the Sr. Frances de la Chapelle Excellence in Teaching Award.

Mrs. Patricia Drummond

Registrar, Assistant to the Principal
AB, Augustana College
MEd, University of Illinois

Mrs. Drummond worked at Barat College, a Sacred Heart School formerly located across the ravine from Woodlands. After Barat’s closure, she yearned to return to the mission of Sacred Heart and bring her extensive experience of school records management. Mrs. Drummond loves all the Sacred Heart traditions from hearing the school song, to preparing the quarterly Sacred Heart Awards to waving a white handkerchief when students leave on a trip (a tradition dating back to Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat). Her daily interactions with the girls bring her great joy.

Mrs. Christine Grasenick

Receptionist, Cashier, Attendance
BA, Loyola University

Mrs. Grasenick is the first face our students see when they walk in the door every morning. She loves that her role allows her to greet the students on a daily basis and check in with them. Her favorite Woodlands memory is when the students selected her to be the recipient of the adult Sacred Heart award in recognition of her warmth and caring. Mrs. Grasenick has been at Woodlands since 2015.

Student Services

Dr. Meg Kincaid

Psychologist, Student Services Coordinator
BA, SUNY Binghamton
MA, University of Southern Florida
MA, Hofstra University
PhD, Hofstra University

Dr. Kincaid pursued a career in education because learning has served as a delightful motivator in her life. In her work, she finds it to be a privilege to witness a student have a compassionate insight about themselves. At Woodlands, Dr. Kincaid most values the prayerful atmosphere, the student-centered approach the school takes in all things, the collaborative engagement amongst faculty members, and the innovative approaches to teaching. She also enjoys the school’s continuity between past and present. Dr. Kincaid has been recognized in the Who’s Who in American Education. She is an active member in numerous professional and academic societies, including Northwestern University’s Insight Program for Mentoring Adults. Additionally, Dr. Kincaid has been published in multiple psychology and peer-reviewed journals. She has worked at Woodlands since 2013.

Ms. Allison Barnes

Learning Program Instructor
MFA, Savannah College of Art & Design

Mr. Michael Ford

College Counselor
BS, Michigan State University
MA, Wayne State University

Mr. Ford began his career as an admission counselor for his alma mater. He soon discovered that his favorite part of his work was helping students find the right college fit. He most enjoys getting to know his students and hopes he can be a positive presence for them as they narrow down their college options. In 2014, Mr. Ford was awarded the James A. Alexander Newcomer Award from Illinois Association of College Admission Counselors. Mr. Ford has been at Woodlands Academy since 2016.

Ms. Brianna Malin

Learning Program Instructor
BSW, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
MSW, Brown School, Washington University St. Louis

Ms. Malin is a passionate advocate for students with learning differences. During her undergraduate, she found the University of Illinois chapter of “Eye to Eye National,” a mentoring movement for students with learning differences. While pursuing her MSW, Ms. Malin worked in the Disability Resource Office at Washington University, organizing testing accommodations for more than 1,000 students. Additionally, she created new tools for students to utilize to enhance their academic success. She was drawn to work at Woodlands because of the schools Goals & Criteria, recognizing the unique opportunity for faith to be integrated into students’ daily lives at school. Ms. Malin most loves that Woodlands girls motivate and empower each other. She has worked at Woodlands since 2018.

Residence Life

Ms. Danielle Campanella

Houseparent
BS, University of Illinois, Champaign

Ms. Jennifer Clinton

Houseparent
BS, Saint Joseph's College

Ms. Kathleen Fayard

Director of Residence Life
BA, St. Norbert College

Ms. Fayard has traveled extensively both living and working abroad, including teaching English in South Korea and as an international volunteer coordinator for Habitat for Humanity. Her experiences in foreign countries has made her especially fond of nurturing hospitality and warmth and developed her empathy for newcomers to a country or culture. This informs her role in creating a welcoming home for all of our boarding students, especially those experiencing American culture for the first time. Ms. Fayard worked at Woodlands from 2007-2010 as a houseparent and the community’s warmth and support for each other made an indelible mark. She returned to take on the Director of Residence Life in 2015.

Ms. Katherine Stewart

Class of 2006
Spanish Teacher, ESL Teacher
Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart
University of Minnesota
Saint Louis University in Madrid, Spain
Ms. Stewart became a teacher to share her love of learning—a love that was cultivated during her time as a student at Woodlands. She loves when students can talk about what they are learning in other classes in Spanish in the case of her Spanish classes or English in the case of her ESL classes. Ms. Stewart enjoys that Woodlands students are engaged, excited and willing to push their own boundaries in the classroom. Ms. Stewart has worked at Woodlands since 2015.