2017-2018 PTO Board Nominees

2017-18 PTO Board Nominees
The MLS PTO Board proudly presents the nominees for the 2017-18 PTO Board! Check out Meriwether Matters next week for information on voting.

  • Co-Presidents: Stacey Carden, Beth McCarthy
  • Co-Vice Presidents:  Carrington (Carrie) Grossman, AmyLynn Johnson
  • Secretary: Amanda Beresford
  • Treasurer: Melissa Hoover, Sarah Kelsey
  • Communications: Christina Keller, Carleen Kupcis
  • Volunteer Coordinator: Amelia Walton
  • Teachers' Representative: Meg Franco

Candidates for Co-President: Stacey Carden and Beth McCarthy

Stacey Carden has a daughter in the 3rd grade at MLS and a son in 6th grade at Henley. She served as Co- Vice President of PTO during the 2016-2017 year.  Stacey is the co-owner of a transportation company serving the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast.  Stacey has served for many years with other nonprofits but next year PTO will be the only one! Her family enjoys watching the kids’ sports teams and spending time back on the Potomac River where she and her husband both were raised.

Beth McCarthy has one daughter in 3rd grade at MLS, who has participated in the multi-age program during the current academic year. Beth served as a Co-Vice President on the 2016-2017 MLS PTO and loves being involved at the school. She works full time as a Higher Education Search Executive for Storbeck/Pimentel, LLC. In her free time you can find Beth watching her daughter’s sports activities, enjoying time with family on Leesville Lake or spending time on the tennis court. 

Candidates for Co- Vice President: Carrington (Carrie) Grossman and AmyLynn Johnson

Carrington Grossman has two children at MLS. Her daughter, Tate, is in 3rd grade and her son, Milo, is in 1st grade. This year, Carrington was a room parent and a hospitality committee volunteer. She and her family have enjoyed their first year at MLS and she is looking forward to being more involved in the coming year. Carrington works as a freelance training development consultant and enjoys spending time outside with her family. 

Amylynn Johnson has a daughter in 1st grade and a son in 3rd grade at MLS.  She has served as Room Parent, Literary Circle volunteer and Food Chair for the Fun Fair.  Amylynn is the CEO of Ivy Accounting, LLC, a tax preparation and accounting consulting company. Her family enjoys spending time outdoors and watching her kids participate in their various sporting activities.

Candidate for Secretary: Amanda Beresford

Amanda Beresford has two daughters who love MLS: a rising 3rd grader and rising 1st grader. She served as the volunteer coordinator on the 2016-2017 PTO and looks forward to another fun year with the PTO board. Amanda is a pastor and writer on the side, and you can often find her running or reading.

Candidates for Co-Treasurer: Melissa Hoover and Sarah Kelsey

Melissa Hoover has a daughter in Mrs. Carey's 4th grade class. She has been involved in many PTO committees and served as the treasurer for the 2016–2017 school year. Melissa is a math professor at Bridgewater College. She spends a lot of time playing sports and watching her family play sports.

Sarah Kelsey has enjoyed serving as an MLS room parent, library volunteer, hospitality committee volunteer, and co-vice president and co-president of the PTO Board. She is the mother of a rising 3rd grader, Carter, at Meriwether Lewis and in addition to her volunteer efforts with the school and the PTO, serves as the co-CEO of a not-for-profit public policy organization.  In her free time she enjoys being outside, watching movies, and traveling to faraway places.

Candidates for Co-Communication Coordinator: Christina Keller and Carleen Kupcis

Christina Keller has two sons, a rising 4th grader and a rising Kindergartener at MLS.  She has been a room parent at MLS for the past four years, helped with the Silent Auction as a committee member and co-chair, and served as co-communications coordinator this past year. In addition, she works part-time in the field of higher education. On the side, she enjoys attempting to be crafty, being outside as much as possible, and spending lots of time with friends and family.

Carleen Kupcis has two children at MLS.  Dylan is in fourth grade and Ellie is in second grade. She also has two step children, Madelyn and Connor, that spend a lot of time in Charlottesville, but are enrolled in Fairfax County Public Schools.  Before she had children, Carleen was a second grade teacher and is now back in the classroom as a part-time preschool teacher.  In addition to volunteering in the classroom, Carleen has served as a co-chair for the Silent Auction, co-Vice President, and last year she was a co-president for the PTO. When she is not spending time with children, Carleen enjoys playing tennis and reading.

Candidate for Volunteer Coordinator: Amelia Walton

Amelia Walton is excited to join the PTO board this year! She is the proud mama to Asher, a 2nd grader in Ms. Straume's multiage room, and Lucas, a precocious three year old. She has served as a co-chair for the MLS Silent Auction for the last two years, and when she's not hounding local businesses for donations to support the best kids and teachers around, she can be found studying, picking up an endless amount of socks and pajamas around her house, or playing outside. She is currently a full time student, pursuing her dual Masters and Education Specialist degrees in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at JMU, and looks forward to a fun year ahead!

Teacher Representative: Meg Franco

Next year will be Meg’s 20th year of teaching at Meriwether Lewis. She will be teaching Kindergarten. She grew up in Slippery Rock, PA, located between Pittsburgh and Erie. GO STEELERS!  Meg has a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education/Early Childhood Education from Juniata College in Huntingdon , PA.  She moved to Charlottesville in 1987 after graduating from college.  Meg managed a hotel and restaurant for two years and then was the Director of Forest Lakes Child Development Center for nine years.  It is her pleasure to have the opportunity to teach your children.

Teacher Appreciation Week

“Expressing Gratitude To Those Who Help our Children Grow”

May 1-5, 2017

MONDAY:  Catered lunch in teachers lounge from IVY PROVISIONS

Students with LAST NAMES A-L bring a small token to say “thank you” to their core teacher as well as assigned “Specials” teacher.  Please note that students may recognize ANY teacher/staff of their choice during their select day. **See schedule below. 

WEDNESDAY:  SWEET TREATS in the teachers lounge.

Students with LAST NAMES M-Z are asked to bring a small token of appreciation for their core teacher and assigned “specials” teacher.  Please note that students may recognize ANY teacher/staff of their choice during their select day.  **See schedule below. 

On this final day of teacher appreciation week, teachers will be treated to a taco lunch by Maria’s tacos.


You will find your child’s teacher and his or her assigned “SPECIAL” teacher below.  There are many teachers who interact with students on a daily basis, so we would like to encourage students to recognize whomever they’d like on their assigned day. 

**PLEASE NOTE: TUESDAY, MAY 2nd is for students with last names A-L and THURSDAY, MAY 4th is for students whose last names begin with M-Z.**

Meg Franco, Liz Cooke and Holly McDonnell
Kathryn DeAtley, Sarah Adair and Jillian Ratliff
Rachel Shamey, Elizabeth Brann and Yolanda Gonzalez 

June Benoit, Stephanie Taylor and Julie Horton
Sarah Jackson and Nancy Whitestone
Patti Stewart, Debbie Jackson and Jennifer Yourkavitch
Destinie Thomas, Christina Flamm and Jenny Crocker

Nancy Ealy and Alissa Etten
Kelly Oehler, Tanya Baugher and Jamie Hinson

2/3 Multi-Age:
Dena LaFleur, Betsy Noble and Sarah Robey
Heidi Robinson, Laura Emery, and Kim Nash
Anne Straume, Coby Massie and Sue Fortune

Third Grade:
Leigh Anne Kuhn and Ashley Kovach
Gwen Meeks and Kevin White

Fourth Grade:
Meghan Brodie, Dan Arrington and Andrea Atkinson
Bonnie Carey and Jennifer Underwood
Laura Scully and Susan Howard-Smith
Bob Wilson and Steve Gissendanner

FIFTH Grade:
Joseph Hicks and Scott Williams
Debbie Parmelee and Dr. Irani
Cheryl Wetmore-Simpson and Cindy Tichner

5th Grade Service Project

Ms. Wetmore-Simpson’s fifth grade homeroom is organizing a service project benefitting the Service Dogs of Virginia (SDV.) SDV is a non-profit organization that raises and trains service dogs in Charlottesville for children and adults. Please donate supplies for SDV by placing them in the large box by the school office where we will also be collecting loose change in the water bottle labeled, “Pennies for Puppies.” 

Any donations are appreciated, but the supplies most needed are:

  • Jars of Peanut Butter, creamy and without xylitol
  • New Kongs, Buster Cubes, and plush squeaky toys
  • Paper Towels
  • Dog beds for larger dogs
  • Gift cards to PetSmart or Lowe’s
  • Gift cards for gasoline
  • New or gently-used Bath Mats with Non-Skid Backs
  • Area rugs or door mats (fuzzy, non-plastic)
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Writing Pads
  • Bleach bottles
  • Postage Stamps
  • Dawn Dish Detergent (original formula)
  • Nylabones
  • Leather leashes with brass clasps


Collection Dates are April 14 – May 5

Thank you for helping us with this service project!

You are cordially invited to the MLS PTO's Spring Silent Auction this Friday, April 21st

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The MLS PTO Auction is THIS FRIDAY at King Family Vineyards, 6:30-10:30pm! Here are some details for you, so please take a look and share with other MLS families! We can't wait to see you!

Attending the auction is FREE -- no RSVP required. Please come and mingle with fellow MLS parents and teachers at this fabulous event to benefit our school.

  • You can preview the auction catalog here!
  • Complimentary hors d'oeuvres from Dinner at Home will be served; beer and King Family Vineyards wine will be available for purchase (cash and credit cards accepted).
  • Upon arrival, you may put a credit card on file at check-in to facilitate checkout and payment at the end of the evening. We only accept Visa or MasterCard - otherwise please bring check or cash.
  • Auction items "close" on a sliding schedule throughout the evening, beginning as early as 8:15! Be sure to get there in time to bid on all your favorite items. The tables will indicate approximate closing times.
  • Checkout begins at 9:30. Even if you have put your credit card on file, we request that you visit the checkout table after 9:30. At that time, you can take any items or gift cards that you have won. PLEASE take items home with you Friday night so that we do not have to track you down later!
  • We’ve assembled 200+ amazing auction items, including: A trip to a gorgeous villa in Tortola with unforgettable views, a beautiful stone fire pit with professional installation from Snow's Garden Center, and a custom made farmhouse dining table and matching bench. We also have mixers, restaurant gift certificates, art, experiences and much, much more!

In addition to silent auction purchases, you can support the MLS PTO through the following:

  • Purchase raffle tickets for the Summer Grill Package! Buy them online here or at the auction.
  • Purchase raffle tickets for local growlers (and fill certificates) from Blue Mountain Brewery, Wild Wolf Brewing Co, Three Notch'd Brewery, Sedona Taphouse and many more. There are 12 growlers to be won! And this year we’re introducing a wine pull! Come check it out!

And finally…

  • If your children are attending Kids Night Out, pick up is at 10:00pm sharp so please plan accordingly.
  • Online registration for KNO (click here) closes Thursday at 5 pm -- after that, registration is available onsite (add $5 to your registration fee). Just a reminder: Kids Night Out is only for current MLS students.

We look forward to seeing you!