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Podcast: Torch Talk

Welcome to Torch Talk, the Collegiate School community podcast, in which we chat with some of our faculty and staff and explore how their life experiences and individual purpose help them make a difference in our classrooms and beyond. At the heart of Collegiate's mission and values are the people who make up the soul of this place. We hope you enjoy getting to know them.

Wendi Moss

Every day in Middle School, English teacher Wendi Moss seeks to help students better understand the world around them, through the literature and lessons they learn in her classroom and through the vision she executes as Coordinator of  Collegiate School's Envision Richmond 8th Grade Capstone. Listen in as she shares how her life's journey led her to a beloved opportunity to teach and transform young lives.

Brian Leipheimer

Collegiate School's Director of College Counseling Brian Leipheimer grew up in a household committed to nurturing students, with parents whose focus on doing so felt second nature to him. Listen and learn why the college counseling realm has become a niche he loves.

Susan Droke

Chief Academic Officer Susan Droke knew by 6th Grade that she wanted to be an educator. Listen in as she shares the transformative experiences along her journey that have cemented her love for both teaching and learning, and for academic excellence while honoring each learner.

Nathan Goodwyn

Middle School teacher Nathan Goodwyn grew up understanding the value of hard work and a great education. When his Middle School years threw him a curveball, he was grateful to have caring adults help him transition smoothly to the next stage. Listen as he shares how as an English teacher and coach he has gone on to provide a similar level of care to his students.

Aster Kidane

Aster Kidane learned early in life how to adapt to new people, places and cultures. Those broad and meaningful experiences have shaped who she is as a person and parent, and as a longtime Collegiate School Kindergarten Assistant teacher. Listen in as she shares how her foundation of global-mindedness began with a singular message instilled in her daily: You matter.

Tammy Dunn

Tammy Dunn is Collegiate School’s Facilities Manager; but long before she led a staff on our campus, she was a leader among the Navy Seals, helping execute missions with a steady hand and focus. As one of few females in those ranks, she learned to trust her capabilities and press forward - skills she brings to her work at Collegiate every day, to keep this campus running smoothly so that students can focus on learning. Listen in as she shares what gave her the confidence to keep learning and pushing boundaries.

Past Faculty and Staff

Susan Fourness-Ewell

n the 30-plus years she has been a teacher, the source of Upper School faculty member Susan Fourness-Ewell's joy has been the wonder she sees filling students' eyes when they push themselves to learn something new - a process that also has been her passion. Her path from her native England to teaching science at Collegiate is a journey for which she's grateful. Editor's Note: Ms. Fourness-Ewell retired from Collegiate at the end of the 2018-19 school year.

Helen Tanner

Helen Tanner '49 enrolled in Collegiate School as a 1st Grader in 1937 and went on to spend her teaching career here, imparting to students the same sense of care and commitment to service and excellence that she experienced firsthand. Enjoy Allen Chamberlain's formerly archived conversation with Ms. Tanner, in which the now-deceased beloved faculty member shared fond memories of the impact Collegiate had on her life.