Inspired experience based college preparatory education for creative and intellectually curious students
Early childhood through twelfth grade

Board of Trustees

As a non-profit public benefit corporation, incorporated under the laws of the State of California, Waverly is governed by a Board of Trustees.

The Board serves as stewards of Waverly’s mission of providing progressive, developmental educational services. The Board assures financial accountability and provides the financial management and planning vital to Waverly’s stability.

Waverly Board Photo

Max Darnell, Chair
Tammy Darnell, WPO President
Michael Dean
Jason Gottlieb, Assistant Head of School (ex officio)
Ellen Greenstone
John Michael Higgins
John Juarez
Heidi Johnson, Head of School (ex officio)
Pat Leawprasert
Debbie Lennon
Susan Lofgren
Wendy Lopata
Ashley Postlewaite
Emily Stadnicki
Rick Sternfeld
Joanne Toll
Mark Woodsmall


“Waverly is not just a great education for our kids, it’s also an inviting, inclusive, dynamic community of teachers, parents, and administrators all working together. I believe in Waverly. I want to see it grow and evolve, not just for my kids, but also for all the future kids who will walk through the doors 20 years from now. ” – Wendy Lopata


“Our son’s confidence, his ease among his peers and teachers, his ability to be himself – all come from his years at Waverly. It is so much more than a school – it is a community, a family, an outlet for our son to express himself and a support system. We value Waverly so much. Serving on the Board is just one way I am comfortable attempting to give back.” – Joanne Toll


“The familiar way of organizing an education is often described as ‘cookie cutter,’ but really, not even a box of cookie cutters contains just one shape. It wouldn’t remind you of life, and it wouldn’t make any sense. The progressive school model is directed at repairing something that doesn’t make much sense, or if it does, it only makes sense for one lucky type of learner. For twenty years Waverly has been determined to favor flexibility over dogma. Not only in its classrooms, but in its social structure and in its admissions as well. This is why I serve on the Board. Because I believe this idea deserves the best airing we can give it, all over our community” – John Michael Higgins


“My daughter graduated from The Waverly High School almost four years ago. She started at Waverly as a pre-school student, and over the course of the next 14 years developed into an intellectually curious, creative, and compassionate young woman. The education she received prepared her for the way in which she is expected to engage in her college studies and interact with professors and mentors. As a parent and as an educator who has worked in the public schools for 35 years, I find at Waverly the joy, engagement and active learning that every child should have the opportunity to experience. As a member of the Board I hope to ensure that our school and its dedication to progressive education continue to thrive.” – Debbie Lennon


“I chose to serve on the Board because I want to see Waverly have a spirited, thriving, long-term future in our community. I believe that both our children and the world they touch benefit greatly when children experience learning as vital and thrilling, when they are encouraged to think critically and imaginatively, and when they do so in an environment that is rich with a sense of community. Waverly is such a place.” – Max Darnell