Board of Directors 2014-2015

Mary Jo Cleland, board chairperson

Mary Jo Cleland, PE, is a civil engineer with ZMM Architects & Engineers located on the west side of Charleston.  She is a licensed professional engineer in WV and Ohio, and prior to ZMM, worked at Potesta & Associates and served in the Air Force as an Aerospace Project Engineer.  Mary Jo is a graduate of the US Naval Academy with a BS degree in Aerospace Engineering, and also holds a BS degree from WV State University in Science and Math 5-12 Education.  She is a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers and was recently appointed to the City of Charleston Board of Zoning Appeals.  Mary Jo is married to Rob Cleland, and has four sons.  Jack is a 4th year student at CMS, Alex and Quin attend Capital High School, and their oldest son, Noah Moody, attends Shepherd University.  Mary Jo joined the CMS Board of Directors in 2011.  “Jack’s experience at Charleston Montessori has made me a true believer in the Montessori method of education.  I wish all of my children had this experience.  It creates an environment where the love of learning, creativity, and curiosity can flourish.  I am on the board to support the school community. It has been a real joy to watch the school grow and flourish.”

Emily Hopta 

Emily Hopta coordinates our Read Aloud program and our school and community-based TerraCycle recycling program.  She is a graduate of WV Wesleyan College and earned a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.  Emily also serves on the board of Read Aloud West Virginia. She is employed by the Office of Communications in the WV Department of Health & Human Resources.  Emily and her husband, Jack Hoblitzell, are parents of two Charleston Montessori students.

Ian McIlvaine 

Ian McIlvaine is a financial advisor with Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC.  He received a B.A. in Communications from Oral Roberts University with a minor in Human Resource Development. Ian and his wife, Nikki, live in Charleston and have three children.  Ian and Nikki come from families with multiple generations of teachers.  Both have personal experience with public, private and homeschool environments and are dedicated to helping make exceptional educational experiences available in the local area.  They are very excited to be a part of the Charleston Montessori family and see the wonderful growth and development of both the children and all involved.

John Meadows 

John J. Meadows is an attorney with Steptoe & Johnson PLLC in the energy litigation division.  He is a graduate of the University of Richmond – T.C. Williams School of Law, Georgia Regents University, Augusta, (B.A., M.P.A.) and Hampden-Sydney College.  He is also the treasurer of the Charleston West Side Neighborhood Association and a Community Board Member of womanSong Chorale.  John and his wife, Becky McClintock, have lived in Charleston since 2003, and have two a sons: Charlie, a CMS student in Lower Elementary, and William (two years old). John joined the Board in 2013 to continue his interest in benefiting the school for his sons and the entire community.

Lata Menon

Lata Menon has been a Charleston Montessori Board Member since 2010, and a Montessori mom since 2004 when her oldest child began preschool at the Montessori Early Learning center in Elkins, WV.  Her youngest child started her Montessori education at the age of 3 and is currently a sixth year student at Charleston Montessori.  Lata holds a Masters of Public Administration, as well as a Masters of Social Work, from WVU and is the State Director for Outreach Services for Home Base Inc.

Marisa Moss Staten

Marisa Moss Staten is the parent of a lower elementary student and joined the board in February 2012.  She chairs the Parent Teacher Committee. Marisa is a graduate of Marshall University Graduate College with M.A. in Clinical Psychology and is a Quality Assurance Specialist for the Division of Rehabilitation Services.  “We enrolled our son at Charleston Montessori School the summer of 2011. I observed him in the classroom, familiarized myself with the faculty and began to understand that we were not just sending our son to school; we were a part of a community! I wanted to support our son’s education and the school so I started attending board meetings as a parent. Our son continues to thrive in this creative and supportive learning environment.”