Board of Trustees

Valery Kelly, President, Trustee Development Committee, Administrative Oversight Committee

Valery was inspired by Waldorf over 20 years ago through her sister, a founding parent of the Aspen Waldorf School. In 2009, Valery began her journey of self-discovery and servant leadership at WSRF. She served on fundraising and strategic planning committees, and she was co-chair of the Parent Council.

An avid equestrian who grew up riding in the mountains of Aspen and on the ranches of Missouri Heights, Valery now helps lead the local Pony Club. She is passionate about local food, protecting wildlife, enjoying nature’s beauty, and sharing laughter with friends. Valery and her husband Kearns have two daughters who are enrolled at the school.

Brad Baetz, Trustee Development Committee

Brad began his journey in Waldorf Education in 2004. He and his wife Diana consciously established a Waldorf home and homeschooled their 3 sons with a Waldorf curriculum.

In 2014, after a year of homeschooling and visiting Waldorf schools around the nation, the Baetz family settled down in Carbondale and enrolled their sons at WSRF. Brad initiated the WSRF Dad’s group, and joined the Board of Trustees.

Brad works professionally with health care practitioners and physicians in the field of alternative medicine through business development, consulting and education. He spent the early part of his professional life as a guide, heli and backcountry skiing in Alaska and Colorado, canyoneering and mountain biking the West.

Jenny Elliot, CPA Treasurer, Finance Committee 

Jenny is Senior Vice President for Strategy and Administration at the Aspen Music Festival and School. In her current position she focuses on AMFS’s major construction project to redevelop the campus, administration of the endowment and other strategic implementation projects for the organization. She joined the organization in 1995 and, as the Vice President for Finance and Administration, executed multiple tax-exempt financings, strategic plans, and negotiated a partnership with Aspen Country Day School for the $75M campus construction project.

Prior to coming to Aspen, she was an auditor with Ernst & Young, LLC in Chicago. As an auditor she gained experience with hospitals and other non-profits. She has a Bachelor of General Studies from the University of Michigan.

Christi Small, Alumni Committee, Trustee Development Committee

Christi has been an active part of the Waldorf School since 2002 when her daughters joined Waldorf School on the Roaring Fork. She has served as Class Parent, Parent Council Chair, Annual Giving Coordinator, Hands & Heart Parent Volunteer Coordinator, and a member of the Board of Trustees.

Professionally, Christi ran a Personal Training business before moving to the valley in 2002. Currently she is a fitness instructor in Carbondale.  she holds a MS degree in Exercise Physiology.

Patricia Eagling, Community  Development Committee, Administrative Oversight Committee

Hailing from England, Patricia was introduced to Waldorf education by her husband, a Marin Waldorf alumnus.  Now through her four children, she has a combined 20 years of experience as a Waldorf parent, and is passionate about how the educational philosophy benefits all of our children.

She has been an active member of WSRF’s Parent Council, is a class parent for several grades, and currently serves on the Administration Oversight and Trustee Development Committee.

Patricia comes with a B.S. in Pure, Applied and Computational Mathematics and an M.S. in Computer Aided Design and Manufacturing. She has worked for PriceWaterhouseCoopers as a Senior Management Consultant and Project Manager. Patricia and her family enjoyed running a small homestead animal and vegetable farm in Sonoma County, CA  before eventually succumbing to the skiing and summer wildflower pick opportunities here in the Roaring Fork Valley which they happily call their true home.

Aaron Vandiver, Board of Trustees

Aaron is an attorney, consultant, and entrepreneur, and a committed member of the environmental community in the Roaring Fork Valley.  He works with a number of conservation groups dedicated to preserving wilderness and wildlife, both locally and abroad, and is active in the world of “green” business.
Aaron and his wife, Rebecca, were introduced to Waldorf education through a family friend, and they are grateful to have found the educational philosophy.  They live in Carbondale with their two young children, Estelle and William, where they enjoy the nature-centered lifestyle the area inspires.
Prior to moving to the Valley, Aaron practiced law at international firms and at the United States Attorney’s Office in Denver, and clerked for a federal appeals court judge.  He earned a B.A. from Vanderbilt University, and a J.D. from Emory University School of Law.

Sarah Jane Knous, Administrative Oversight Committee

After completing her Waldorf Teachers Certificate from Antioch New England in 2004, Sarah Jane came to the Waldorf School on the Roaring Fork where she was a teacher for nine years. Since taking a step back from teaching in 2013, Sarah Jane has worked as a substitute, mentor and evaluator at the school. She is passionate about Waldorf education and loved teaching the “whole child” based on Rudolf Steiner’s view of the developing human being. Both of Sarah Jane’s children attended WSRF and she feels their education has given them a great foundation to meet the challenges of adulthood. Currently, Sarah Jane volunteers as a storyteller for the Roaring Fork Chapter of Spellbinders.

Prior to her Waldorf training in New Hampshire, Sarah Jane taught elementary school and preschool in Las Vegas, Nevada and Salt Lake City, Utah for ten years. She has a bachelors degree in Elementary Education from the University of Utah.

Pam Zentmyer, Community Development Committee

Didianne Gilman, Faculty Board Representative

Montana State University, B.A. in English/Education; Waldorf Teaching Certificate, Rudolf Steiner College; Didianne participates in Pedagogical Council, Care Group, and Board of Trustees work. This is Didianne’s twelfth year as a grades teacher at WSRF and her three children are all graduates of WSRF.  Her teaching career was preceded by a career in business and in motherhood. When not teaching she enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, reading and participating in various outdoor activities.

Matt Johnson, Faculty Administrator, Ex-Officio Member

Matt is serving on the board this year as the Faculty Administrator rep for AC.  Matt has sat on the board in the past as a faculty rep during his years as a class teacher at WSRF.  He took his first class in 3rd grade in the fall of 2002 and graduated them from 8th grade in 2008.  After taking a year off to travel around the world, Matt came back and took another class, graduating them in 2016.  Last year Matt chose to step away from the school again and apprentice with his father, Bob Johnson (the artist responsible for the front doors as well as the bench that sits in the sunroom) for the year.  During this time, Matt learned skill in design, technical drawing, old world joinery, tool care and use, wood identification and furniture building.  Matt has returned to WSRF this year in an 80% capacity role, splitting his time between Faculty Administrator work and Student Support.

Larry SmithBusiness Administrator, Ex-Officio Member

Larry discovered Waldorf Education when he and wife Liz Kremzier were seeking a pre-school for son Oliver.  He has been a parent of two at the school since 2006, and an employee since 2011.  Leveraging over 17 years of corporate business experience and stints in bank lending and personal finance, he serves as the school’s Business Administrator as part of Administrative Council.  Larry sees his role as a facilitator – putting in place practices that help enable teachers to focus on their roles serving students.  Larry is ever-grateful for the visionaries and pioneers who came before to make this school possible, and feels privileged to work in the school community.   His formal education includes a B.A. in Political Science

From the University of New Hampshire, and MBA from Colorado State University.

Anne MenconiCommunity Development Administrator, Ex-Officio Member

Antioch University, M.Ed. (2017), Indiana University School of Philanthropy, Savannah College of Art and Design, Fort Lewis College: B.A. in Historic Preservation and Design. Anne has worked in early childhood and youth development since 1999.  Executive Director of international youth developmental agency, later Executive Director of a domestic violence and sexual assault organization. Administrative responsibilities include Administrative Council, development/fundraising, marketing, enrollment, Parent Council, and community outreach.