Colley Bell / Head of School & History Teacher

Colley Bell considers himself first and foremost a teacher. His thirty year career in independent schools has covered a wide range of roles and responsibilities (most recently and notably as new Head of School at Middleburg Academy) and he has been a classroom instructor for many of those years. His very first position, with the Darrow School in New Lebanon, New York, was as teacher, dorm parent, and coach. He then went on to teach and coach at the Worcester Academy (MA), where he was named Teacher of the Year; Louisville Collegiate (KY); Lake Forest Academy (IL); and Tower Hill School (DE). He has a known passion for Civil War, Russian and English history (and even studied the history of the Anglican Church in Oxford), as well as the Shakers and American communitarian experiments. Conversations with Colley Bell often lead to historical topics, whether it is a curiosity about “Homeland” – the original farm property upon which our campus is situated — or his own family’s fascinating past. Visitors to the Head of School office will note the maps, pen and ink drawings, and similar treasures that attest to a mind that gathers and assimilates all matters historical.


Carla Adgate / Dean of Students & athletic director


Carla Adgate grew up in Leesburg, Virginia.  After graduating from college, she spent the next 10 years as a tennis pro before deciding that she wanted to be in the world of education. She first came to Middleburg Academy in August of  2005 as the Assistant Athletic Director and Girls’ and Boys’ Varsity Tennis Coach. She became the Athletic Director in 2007, and is now thoroughly enjoying her role as the Dean of Students.

Carla lives in Fauquier, Virginia with her husband, Steve, and daughters, Carleigh and Jennifer. In her spare time, Carla enjoys travelling, hiking, and wildlife photography.


Edwina Bell / Director of Admissions and Advancement

Before arriving at Middleburg Academy, Edwina was the Director of Development/Communications at the Chrysler Museum of Art in Norfolk, VA, a position she held for five years. During her time at the Chrysler, Edwina spearheaded a $45 million capital campaign which involved a complete renovation and expansion of the building, endowment growth, and the creation of a fully functioning Glass Studio.  She was credited for the museum receiving accolades with the nationally ranking service, Charity Navigator, designating the museum with 5 stars for its efficiency in raising money. She was also part of the executive team that was instrumental in having the Chrysler designated as a "Magnetic Museum."

Before her work at the Chrysler Museum of Art, Mrs. Bell was the Director of Development and Communications at the Tower Hill School and guided a $12 million campaign to completion in three years.  Her independent school experience included Associate Director of Development at Lake Forest Academy, part of a career in development that has spanned over 25 years. She has taught classes in Women’s Leadership with wonderful visits to Washington D.C. to meet leaders who shape our national political landscape. She has served in independent schools from New England to the Midwest and is a graduate of Notre Dame Academy in Worcester, MA.

Edwina graduated from Clark University in Massachusetts with a B.A. in Psychology.  Edwina resides on campus with her husband, Colley W. Bell III, the Head of School at Middleburg Academy, and their son Colley W. Bell IV who is a member of the Class of 2020.


TRISH BOGER / Registrar

Trish Boger has been with Middleburg Academy for over twenty years; before working with our school, she accumulated fifteen years of administrative experience from credit to facility responsibilities. She says that "There is great gratification assisting and watching young adults make their way through high school to graduation. I enjoy each day working with a great group of people."


Jonathan Cook / English Teacher

“It is very fulfilling to see our students get into good colleges. Several of our graduates each  year go to UVA, William & Mary, and other top-tier schools . . . . I also really enjoy seeing books they’ve read in high school change their thinking.”

Amazing senior year English” is UVA graduate Carol Yacoub’s immediate response when asked which subject she felt most prepared to tackle in college.  “If you’ve had Dr. Cook,” the 2011 Middleburg Academy graduate goes on to explain, “you can handle anything.  He’s incredible . . . and has taught me so much about writing.”

Carol’s professors are no doubt impressed with her verbal clarity since Dr. Jonathan Cook is known to be relentless about vocabulary acquisition, grammatical correctness, and expressive concision.  He encourages the use of mnemonic devices for new vocabulary, but nothing beats a round of “Stump the Teacher” to get students fully engaged in learning new words.  It is rare for students to come up with one that isn’t already familiar to Jonathan, but he does admit to being caught out by a few sesquipedalian examples.

Jonathan’s students study a variety of literary classics that continue to enrich young people’s minds, as well as some notable contemporary works.  Jonathan is a nationally recognized scholar of the writings of Herman Melville, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Edgar Allan Poe, with many publications on these and other authors.  He has served on a number of panels at literary conferences and as a consultant for various publications.  His book on Moby-Dick and the Bible, Inscrutable Malice, was  published in December 2012 by Northern Illinois University Press.

Jonathan was born in Washington, D.C., grew up with four siblings in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York, and lives with his better half in Sterling, Virginia in a house full of books.


janet dewey / Dean of studies & English Teacher


Reading has always been Janet's passion, and it naturally followed that she became an English major in college. After graduating from Furman University and working briefly in the banking industry, she returned to graduate school, earning a PhD from the University of South Carolina. Janet wrote her dissertation on six Victorian novels, focusing on gender issues in "sensation fiction" - a form of mystery novel popular in the 1860s.

After teaching English and Women Studies at the college level, Janet decided to relocate closer to family on the East Coast and try a new educational arena. Since then she's taught 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th grade English at The Potomac School, coached JV and varsity cross-country, and chaired the English Department. She's also led school tours for Great Country Farms and coordinated weddings for Bluemont Vineyard.

Here at Middleburg academy, Janet teaches 11th and 12th grade English and gender studies. She says that working with high school students is "never predictable, always exciting, and immensely rewarding."


bob eliot / Chemistry Teacher


Bob Eliot retired after 30 years as a federal contractor providing technology support services to Department of Defense and civilian agencies.  His responsibilities included software engineering, sales, and management. Since retirement, he has taught both general and AP Chemistry.   Bob holds a BS in Geology from St. Lawrence University and a Collegiate Professional License - Teaching from Shenandoah University.

He and his wife Joan have lived in Middleburg for 38 years.  They have two married sons and six grandchildren.


Brenda fowler / Business Manager

Brenda Fowler is the Business Manager at Middleburg Academy.


kelly hart / Latin & Music teacher


Kelly Hart has lived in Western Loudoun for majority of her life, having attended Waterford Elementary all the way up through Woodgrove. Seeking a change of pace and environment, she called the University of Virginia her home for five years. During that time she earned her B.A. in Classics as well as Linguistics, and Master of Teaching in Foreign Language Education after student teaching Latin in Albemarle County Public Schools.

While at UVA, she busied herself with not only her academics, but also extracurricular activities. An avid singer and cellist, Kelly helped lay the foundation for UVA’s Broadway a cappella group as music director, and Cavalier Symphony Orchestra as conductor. She also enjoyed serving the international community by promoting intercultural events for residents of the International Residential College as Prime Minister.

However, “home sweet home” called her back to Waterford. Outside of the classroom, Kelly takes advantage of her new-found hobby of hiking, hopes to perform once more in the Loudoun Symphony Orchestra, and plays Dungeons & Dragons with friends on the weekend. Most of all, she is stoked to be a part of and begin her career with the Middleburg Academy family.



Erik Hennigar / Physics Teacher


“I live in the Leesburg area with my wonderful partner, Alice. My love of science and logic drives me to teaching and encourages me to inspire others to ask questions and to answer the questions of the future. I hope to inspire my students to enjoy learning and find strategies that work for them.”

A graduate of the University of Mary Washington with a Physics major and Biology minor, Erik also brings personal independent school experience as a graduate of Christchurch School in Tappahannock, VA.  At Mary Washington he was employed as a physics department lab aide, and he was personally responsible for the very popular Physics Game Nights in the lab.  Erik spent four summers on the Chesapeake Bay as an ecology teacher for Summer Camps on the River as well as working as an intern and librarian for the Deltaville Maritime Museum.  Erik brings a great deal of energy and enthusiasm to our labs.  In addition to teaching physics, AP Physics, and AP Environmental Science, Erik sponsors the Green Club and coaches fencing.



Wendy Johnson joined Middleburg Academy three years ago, drawn to the sense of community and positive atmosphere. She is looking forward to seeing everyone from her new position in the front office as our lead receptionist.

Ms. Johnson was born and raised in Alexandria, Virginia but now resides in Stephens City with her husband, David. In addition to having held a CDL license for 22 years and working with special needs transportation, Ms. Johnson has an over 26 year career as a hair stylist.

When she's not here at Middleburg Academy, Ms. Johnson loves spending time with her three children and one grandchild, as well as the newest addition to her family: a Belgian Malinois.


Mary Kruck / English teacher

“I enjoy the beautiful campus, the intellectually engaged students, the dedicated faculty, and the small classes.”

Nothing is more fulfilling for teacher Mary Kruck than “when a student finally connects with a concept that has been difficult up to that point, or when I witness a student helping another student with a problem.”  She sometimes wishes more people knew how intellectually challenging Middleburg Academy is for its students.  Yet when she bumps into her former scholars, what they often recollect is not so much the academic rigors – though there is that memory, too – but the pleasure of Mary’s classes held under the tree outside Mary House.  Sitting in the warm sun, soaking up knowledge and understanding, discussing alternate interpretations of a passage in a novel . . . it is a fitting image for the Middleburg Academy goal to stretch students’ critical thinking skills within a small and supportive learning environment.

Mary is married with two grown children as well as “Kate,” the German Shepherd she enjoys taking on long walks.  She also loves reading, traveling, and visiting her four granddaughters.


April Marini / Math Teacher


Although she is originally from the great state of Ohio, April Marini attended the University of Kentucky and obtained her undergraduate degree in Mathematics. While she was there, one of her professors was the inspiration for her to pursue a career as a teacher. She enrolled in a graduate program at DePaul University to complete her Master's in Secondary Education. She was happy to graduate in the spring of 2017 after finishing student teaching in Chicago Public Schools.

While at DePaul, April also tutored in the Math Center, winning the loyalty of many grateful undergraduates as she supported them through their math studies. She further expanded her knowledge of computer science by attending a Project Lead the Way training seminar in the summer of 2017.

April is an avid reader and movie lover, and she truly enjoys a good story well told. She loves horses and has a passion for riding. Some of her other interests include community service, soccer, and softball. April is pleased to start her career at Middleburg Academy and to live in the beautiful area of Northern Virginia with her cat, Arya. They are both excited about this new adventure!


Monika Martin / Math teacher


Monika Martin was born in Washington, DC and has resided in northern Virginia her entire life. After completing her Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics and education in 3 years, she began her career in Fairfax County.  She taught all levels of secondary math in Fairfax County for 26 years, but primarily Pre-calculus and Calculus for the final 6 years. She has studied math in some form her entire life and has continued graduate studies at UVA, George Mason, Mary Washington, and many other universities.  Her love of teaching mathematics and her fondness for her students has kept her returning to the class room.

Monika has traveled extensively with her family and has made many transcontinental driving trips, visiting all 50 of the United States in addition to most of Canada. The family has also traveled extensively in Europe and cruised the Baltic, the Mediterranean, the waters of Alaska, and the Gulf of Mexico. A tour of Australia is in the planning stages.

Monika and her husband, Paul, have operated a private hobby and limited breeding kennel, Briardachs Longhaired Dachshunds, for over 30 years. The sport of pure bred dogs has been a second passion for them and resulted in world renowned recognition of their quality longhaired standard dachshunds, outstanding in bench and field.

The Martins have one son, Alex. He is a graduate of Penn State University with a BS in Meteorology and has recently completed his Masters at UMBC.

In 2003, Monika and her family relocated to Orlean, VA, and in 2007 she joined Culpeper County Schools. There, she developed the AP Calculus program at the new Eastern View High School. Her students achieved consistently high AP test scores and an outstanding pass rate percentage.

In 2013 Monika retired from Culpeper and with her husband undertook the renovation of the Beavers’ cottage on St Louis Road. They became full time residents there in early 2014. With Middleburg Academy nearby, Monika inquired about possible teaching or tutoring opportunities. When a teaching position became available she joined the faculty, excited by smaller class sizes and the school philosophy of teaching the whole child. This concept enhances her lifetime goal of providing her students with a quality education.


cheyenne mongeon / Spanish Teacher


A native of New Hampshire, Cheyenne Mongeon joins Middleburg Academy as a Spanish teacher. Her love of all things Spanish goes back to her high school days, especially to her junior year, which she spent in an immersion program in Santander, Spain. She went on to study Spanish, education, and Teaching English as a Second Language at Plymouth State University, where she earned her Bachelor’s degree with honors. Since then, she has lived and served in Panama as a Peace Corps volunteer, working in schools with students and helping to train Panamanian teachers, and she has also worked as a counselor at Camp Wawenock and as a manager at The Wellmet Project. Most recently, she taught Spanish and was a Resident Assistant at North Cedar Academy in Wisconsin.

Cheyenne is thrilled to be relocating to the Mid-Atlantic area, where she plans to enjoy the outdoor activities she loves. She is certified in CPR, First Aid, and AED use and has also coached tennis and sponsored various clubs during her time as an educator. She and her beloved dog (an AKC certified Canine Good Citizen!) will be living in Julie Hall.


brett morris / History teacher


Brett has had an interest in history, government, and politics since high school, where he participated in the International Baccalaureate program and Model United Nations. He was also captain of the high school swim team.

After high school, Brett went on to graduate from Virginia Tech with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies, with an emphasis in History and Religious Studies. Brett developed an interest in teaching at this time, and served as an undergraduate teaching assistant for a career exploration course at Virginia Tech's Smith Career Center.

Brett moved abroad to teach English for several years after college, and traveled widely during this time, especially throughout East Asia.

While not teaching, Brett can be found reading and hanging out in coffee shops.


Kasey Morris / Advancement and Admissions officer


Kasey Morris enters her third year with the Middleburg Academy family in the capacity of Advancement and Admissions Officer, working with Edwina Bell in Mary House. She also oversees much of the school’s communications, including sending out our weekly newsletters, The Dragon (general news) and The Dungeon (athletic news) and developing our social media presence on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

Kasey graduated magna cum laude from Princeton University with a degree in Classics; her undergraduate research focused on Julio-Claudian island exile and won the departmental prize for best senior thesis. After Princeton, she moved abroad and completed her masters degree in Classical Archaeology at the University of Oxford. Prior to working at Middleburg Academy, Kasey was involved in the art world. She runs her own art management business and has catalogued ancient Roman coins for both Princeton and the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford--but perhaps one of the most interesting things that Kasey has done is to have spent a summer in the Transylvania region of Romania excavating human remains in a medieval cemetery.

Outside of work, Kasey is a passionate equestrian; she foxhunts and enjoys polo, having played in tournaments in China, England, Italy, and the United States. She also loves reading, playing sports, and traveling. Her pet snake, Henry, sometimes visits her office at Middleburg Academy and greets guests in the capacity of her "Personal Ahisstant".


Nasruddin Nazerali / Math Teacher


Nasruddin Nazerali attended primary school at Saint Joseph School, and high school at Sandford English Community School on a full achievement scholarship, both in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. He then went to MIT to do a B.S. degree in Physics with minors in Environmental Engineering and Comparative Media Studies. After teaching mathematics in a Maryland high school, Nasruddin went back to MIT to study Environmental Engineering and Geophysics, achieving an M.Eng. in 2007 and an M.S. degree in 2015.

During his studies, Nasruddin travelled for field work and teaching assignments to Barbados, St. Lucia, Cyprus, Turkey, and Kuwait. Since graduating, he has started an engineering consulting company focused on water and has worked for National Oilwell Varco and Philips Healthcare. Professionally, he is interested in sustainable development and resource management, water prospecting and reclamation, and disaster preparedness. Teaching/training has been a major aspect of this focus. Every summer, he has returned to MIT as a short term lecturer to assist in the practical computer laboratories for a popular professional continuing education class on 'data and models'.

Nasruddin's passion for teaching was sparked in middle and high school by his mathematics and physics teachers, and by the English teacher who opened his eyes to the wonderful world of Shakespeare through a close reading of Julius Caesar. His college professor in literature and film is his continuing inspiration for great teaching and mentorship. Nasruddin likes to read, watch good films and enjoy the outdoors.


Wayne Paige / Chair of the Art Department

“As an artist and teacher, I believe that each student is inherently creative.  One of my goals is to nurture students' creativity and develop their artistic skills.  I have a passion for the arts, and a willingness and desire to share this passion with my students along with my knowledge, experience and resources.  Ultimately, I would like to see each student develop an appreciation of the arts and to live life creatively.”

Wayne Paige has attained a remarkable record of teaching.  For forty-plus years, he has helped high school students explore their interests and talents in a variety of visual arts media.  Under his direction and encouragement, an impressive number have gone on to study at such preeminent institutions as the Corcoran College of Art and Design, the Royal Academy of Art (London), the Pratt Institute, the Savannah College of Art and Design, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.  Architectural drawing classes he established fifteen years ago – then unique in a college preparatory school setting – introduce students to the skills and techniques involved in this exacting profession.  Mr. Paige’s former students have recently completed their studies and received degrees in architecture at Cornell, the University of Virginia, Syracuse University and Virginia Tech.

An active professional artist, Wayne's work has been shown in New York and at galleries and museums throughout the country.  Wayne is a graduate of the University of Illinois (B.F.A. Painting) and The George Washington University (M.F.A. Painting).  He also attended the Corcoran School of Art and The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.


Stephen Rueckert / Art Teacher


For Stephen Rueckert, drawing lines had always come easier than finding words. By the time he graduated from high school he had become an expert in day-dreaming and a pretty good artist! His calling to art school, studies in Europe, travels abroad, and twenty years as a working artist and teacher in New York City, helped make many of those earlier dreams become a reality.

Stephen's work can be found in the permanent collection of Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC and The Brooklyn Museum and has been featured in publications such as Art Forum, the New York Times, the Washington Post and The New Scientist.  His sculptural installation, The Standard Model (abandoned), which explores the crossroads of science and art, linking current scientific models of the universe with his own deeply personal artistic vision, gained international recognition both in the art world and the scientific community. It was followed by a commission from the Public Art Fund to create On-On-On, an installation exploring the surface and "gadgetry" of science, at MetroTech Center in Brooklyn, New York.

A graduate of The Rhode Island School of Design (BFA) and Brooklyn College (MS), his teaching journey brought him from New York City Public schools to Washington D.C. in 2001 where he taught figure drawing and sculpture in a Washington D.C. private school for fifteen years. His passion for S.T.E.A.M., teaching, art, and love of nature lead him to Middleburg Academy.

Simply said, his mission states, “I want to share with my students how well the world is made.”



Bala Selvakumar / Biology Teacher    


Balakrishnan Selvakumar (Bala), grew up in Chennai (formerly Madras), a coastal city in southeastern India, before coming to the US to pursue doctoral studies. He received his PhD in Cell Biology from Duke University and then completed a research fellowship in Neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University where he worked as a Research Associate until his decision to teach Biology at Middleburg Academy.

Bala chose biology as his profession because he is fascinated by how living things function. Much of his research work has focused on the cell-signaling role of the reactive molecule nitric oxide. Specifically, he identified mechanisms by which this molecule influences the physiological function of the vascular system and the brain. His research has been published in journals such as the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences; it has been selected as Editors Choice by the journal Science Signaling; and, it has been cited as being "of special significance in its field" by an academic for the directory, Faculty of 1000 prime.

Bala enjoys being a home cook as much as being intrigued by the relationship between food and people. With the help of a scholarship from the Culinary Trust USA, he graduated from a gastronomy program in France organized by Le Cordon Bleu, Paris and the University of Reims, Champagne-Ardenne, writing a thesis on food and human interaction. He explores this relationship drawing from primary literature in biology and the humanities through a two-semester course he teaches at Middleburg Academy while blogging more informally at

Bala lives with his wife and daughter in Fairfax, Virginia.


Eduardo Sevilla / Math Teacher

“The best thing about Middleburg Academy is its student body, and its tremendous willingness to learn.”

Though he may have graduated from UVA and MIT, ask anyone on campus and they will confirm that Eduardo Sevilla is a Dragon at heart, and Middleburg Academy cannot boast of a better booster. Ever-present at school events and activities, with his camera always at-the-ready, Eduardo’s combined love for the school and for photography is a useful and treasured asset.

Eduardo is never hesitant to share with students, parents, and colleagues the inner workings of his mathematical mind and, more broadly, the immense rewards of mathematical pursuits.  “Many students, and their parents, see math in isolation and not something that can or will be used unless you are an engineer or accountant or something in those lines. But math is more than that. It is a language that tells stories. It is a philosophy of how to think and develop. It is an art in picking the right starting point because of a gut feeling. It is a history of the struggles and strivings of innumerable individuals. It is the realization that one misplaced point has often changed the world.  Math is not just adding 1 and 1, any more than reading is the combination of letters or music the stringing together of tones. Math is big. Math is fun. But math is what you make of it.”

He finds teaching extremely fulfilling, too, and speaks warmly of those students who have discovered abilities they didn’t even know they possessed.  He recounts one, for example, “who realized she could, indeed, do math through positive reinforcement.  She went on to take AP Calculus, when people doubted her abilities to survive Algebra One!”

Self-described as “the quiet one growing up in an Army family,” Eduardo enjoys, in addition to photography, comic books, history, traveling, and cataloging.


David Sturdevant / Drama & english Teacher


David studied English and Theatre at the College of William and Mary and continued his education at the University of Louisville, earning a Master of Fine Arts in Theatre. Along the way, he developed a deep interest in Shakespearean performance, which led to a study abroad experience in Cambridge, England and a summer studying classical acting at the Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, DC (where he met his wife).

David has performed and directed locally with numerous theatres, including Shakespeare in the ‘Burg, Loudoun Centre Theatre, the Pickwick Players, and Not Just Shakespeare, and has taught acting to students at the middle school, high school, and college levels. Before joining Middleburg Academy, David worked in the training and development field, including producing award-winning educational programming for PBS and National Geographic Television.

David is most at home when working on a great script. His favorite playwrights include Shakespeare (of course), Chekhov, Arthur Miller, and Neil Simon. He lives in Upperville with his wife and two children, both of whom attend Middleburg Academy (Allegra ‘18 and James ‘21).

At Middleburg Academy, David teaches 10th grade English, all levels of drama, and also directs the school’s mainstage productions.


Jacob Todd / Assistant Dean of Students and English & History Teacher


For as long as Jacob Todd can remember, his passions have revolved around community involvement and development. While attending high school in Suffolk, Virginia, Jacob explored these interests through time as a class officer, team captain, and school ambassador. As an undergraduate at Virginia Tech, Jacob furthered these experiences through extensive involvement working with New Student and Family Programs, as well as serving his undergraduate fraternity as an executive member.

Jacob was always drawn to reading and writing, which led him to earn his degree in English Literature. He found a strong interest for interdisciplinary application of his acquired research skills and worked as an Undergraduate Archivist within Virginia Tech Special Collections for two years. Since graduating, he has developed a particular affinity for the works of Thomas Wolfe.

When not at Middleburg Academy, Jacob will be spending as much time as he can at his family's home in the Outer Banks of North Carolina or back in Blacksburg, Virginia, watching some Hokie Football.


Tom Valandra / assistant athletic director


Tom Valandra graduated high school from Minneapolis Southwest in Minnesota. He received his Bachelor of Arts in both Political Science and History from Presbyterian College in Clinton, SC, where he was part of its Division I lacrosse team. Tom then continued his postgraduate studies at Pfeiffer University, working towards his Master in Science of Leadership (M.S.L) in Misenheimer, NC.

Tom hails from Minneapolis, Minnesota - arguably he is an incredibly talented Ice Hockey player too. Before coming to Middleburg, Tom traveled extensively throughout Europe and the United States. Tom oversees Nova West Lacrosse, an extraordinary lacrosse program based here in the Northern Virginia area. Some of his favorite things to do are traveling, playing all sports, watching movies, and being among friends.

“I am excited to be even more involved in the growth and development of Middleburg Academy.  The students I have come to know in lacrosse are so special to what we value in the sport and spirit of the game - and the very mission of our school. . . . I am eager to work with the great team that is ambitious for our students, and to continue to make Middleburg a school and community everyone wants to call their own!”