Meet Our Staff
Our teachers and faculty are the heart of Neskowin Valley School. They are imaginative professionals who use their expertise to guide each child to enjoy learning and achievement through mastery of skills. The school’s integrated curriculum reflects the rich interests and diverse talents of its teachers. At NVS, each student’s innate intelligence and natural curiosity is fostered in an environment where children can grow confidently.
Head of School
Sari brings extensive experience in education and youth development to the leadership of Neskowin Valley School. Hailing from Portland, Oregon, Sari spent her summers supporting the coastal community in immersive camp programming. Sari holds a Bachelor’s of Arts in Science Education and Youth Development from the University of Redlands and a Master’s of Education from Vanderbilt University. With an emphasis on studying the unique interactions between the human and natural worlds, Sari is eager to lead NVS in discovering our world’s past, celebrating its present, and protecting our future. In her free time, Sari can be found walking the beach with her dog Roger.
Originally from Upstate New York, Emily moved to Oregon in early 2021. She holds a Bachelor's of Arts degree in International Relations and Spanish from the State University of New York at New Paltz, and is currently pursuing a Master's of Arts degree in International Relations, concentrating in International Security from Norwich University. With experience in campaigning, professional and legal writing, and office management, Emily is excited to join the team and dive into developing projects to support and enhance the NVS mission and vision! Some of Emily's favorite hobbies include backpacking, camping, kayaking, and scrapbooking her adventures!
Elementary School Teacher
Brandon Lucas is a recent graduate from the University of Colorado Boulder, where he received his degree in Geography and Arctic Studies. He is an experienced science educator with a background in museums and state parks, where he gained a love for teaching science to people of all ages. Brandon has contributed to research and publications on a wide range of scientific topics such as the Slumgullion earthflow and permafrost thaw in the Alaskan Arctic. He is also a passionate artist with an educational background in music, performance, and theatre, as well as a writer and award-winning filmmaker. When he’s not playing the piano or conducting research, you can find him enjoying nature with his life partner and their three dogs.
Elementary School Teacher
Charity brings years of teaching experience to Neskowin Valley School, having taught both special and general education. She loves to learn and is excited to bring that love students. Charity earned her Bachelors in Special Education for Gonzaga University and her Masters in Curriculum and Instruction from Concordia University. When she is not working or reading, she is playing with her own children, gardening, or enjoying the great outdoors.
Elementary School Teacher
Originally from Maryland, Marye relocated to Oregon in August 2021. She has experience working in a variety of multi-age classrooms including preschool, elementary, and middle school settings. Most recently, Marye taught at a play-based school in Denver, Colorado. She values the whole child approach as a powerful teaching strategy for learning and development. Marye holds a Master’s Degree of Education from The University of Colorado, where she researched the importance of environmental literacy among young children. Some of her favorite pastimes include hiking, camping, and exploring with her dog, Charlie. She’s excited to be a part of the NVS family and looks forward to a great school year!
Middle School Teacher
Sam is a teacher who is dedicated to high quality learning through establishing a safe learning environment, and promoting higher order thinking. Sam earned his Bachelors of the Arts in Social Studies from Bard College, and his Masters in the Art of Teaching from Lewis and Clark College Graduate School of Education and Counseling. Sam is excited to share his curiosity for global and national issues/crises, and his enthusiasm for positive, diverse, solution-oriented thinking with NVS. Sam teaches the whole child by supporting the development of social-emotional skills alongside critical thinking and content literacy. Sam nurtures the abilities of his students to imagine and actuate a future where they are good citizens, good leaders, and good people.
Apprentice Teacher & Sustainability Coordinator
Chase is a recent Oregon State University graduate who obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Environmental Science with a specialization in Aquatic Biology. As a local of the Oregon Coast, Chase has spent much of his time learning about the environment around him and is passionate about teaching the next generation about their role and impact on the ecosystem. He has spent the past three years as a kayak tour guide on the Salmon River Estuary and teaching surf lessons to people of all ages. Chase enjoys surfing, hiking, foraging, learning new skills, and building projects as well as sharing experiences with his friends and family.
Since I spent most of my childhood with my nose in a book, it’s not surprising my first job out of college was as a children’s book editor in New York City. While there, I completed a master's degree in Educational Psychology at NYU and began my teaching career at an all boys school. In 2000, I moved to Oregon and began teaching in the Lake Oswego School District, where I was also an Instructional Leader and New Teacher Mentor. When I retired from classroom teaching and moved to the Oregon Coast in 2018, I hoped to find a way to stay involved in education, and I couldn’t be happier that NVS has given me that opportunity. I’m so excited to be helping with the plan for the school to reopen in Fall 2021!
Art Literacy Teacher
My love of art started at a young age when I tried to make a paintbrush from the fur of my cat’s tail taped to a tinkertoy! I grew up and attended college in Pennsylvania, then moved to Oregon in 1980. I raised 3 sons while teaching in private and public schools, mostly the Tigard-Tualatin School District. I was trained in Art Literacy at the Portland Art Museum. When I retired from classroom teaching and moved to Devils Lake, I continued to work with children and art through “Let There Be Arts,” and “Community Arts Projects,” until finding the perfect place—NVS. I have been the Art Lit teacher here at NVS since 2015, and enjoy introducing the students to art, artists, and culture. I, especially, love to see the uniqueness and creativity they bring to each project.