Board of Trustees

The Shaker Schools Foundation Board consists of 20 trustees, including a member of the Board of Education and the Superintendent. Board members may serve as many as three three-year terms, and they are elected on a rotating basis. Collectively, they represent the legal, medical, business, education, and non-profit sectors. Several are Shaker graduates.

Eileen Anderson, and her husband Chad, and their three children have been living in the Mercer neighborhood for 13 years. Their daughter is a member of the Shaker class of 2016. Eileen is an anesthesiologist, holds a master's degree in speech-language pathology, and volunteers in the schools and for a number of community organizations. She joined the board in June 2016.

Cathy Belk is the President of JumpStart and has worked there since 2008.  She also has held management positions at American Greetings, the Coca-Cola Company, the Procter & Gamble Company, and Bank of America.  Cathy earned a BA in economics from Davidson College and an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.  She and her husband Jim are the parents of two sons, and the family lives in the Mercer School community.  Jim is an intervention specialist at Fernway Elementary School.  Cathy joined the board in May 2014.
Pawan K. Divakarla and his wife (Sarah Merchant Divakarla, SHHS 1988) are the parents of two boys, ages 12 (8thgrade at the Middle School) and 10 (5th grade at Woodbury). Pawan earned a master’s degree in civil engineering from Georgia Tech. He works as a marketing systems manager at Progressive Insurance, and spends much of his free time volunteering for the Shaker schools. He started his tenure as a member of the Foundation board in June 2013.
Mark Freeman served as Superintendent of the Shaker Heights City School District from 1988 until his retirement July 31, 2013. He joined the faculty in 1967 and has held senior administrative positions of increasing responsibility over the past 30 years. He holds a Ph.D. in education with emphasis in curriculum and instruction from Kent State University. Mark is a founding governing board member of the national Minority Student Achievement Network. He also is one of the charter members of the Shaker Schools Foundation and thus is a life member of the Foundation. Mark is the father of three Shaker graduates.
Steven Goldfarb lives in the Boulevard neighborhood with his wife Gail, who has been an active volunteer in Shaker’s schools. Their three daughters are Shaker graduates, one in 2007 and the other two in 2010. His daughter, Tori, is a 4th grade teacher at Fernway School.  Steve earned a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University and a JD from The Ohio State University School of Law. He is a partner, member of the Board of Directors, and co-chair of the Litigation Department at Hahn Loeser & Parks. He joined the board in June 2010 and served as president of the board from June 2013 - June 2015.
logo Fiona Green and her husband Matt are  25-year residents of the Fernway neighborhood.  Their daughter Meg is a 2009 Shaker graduate.  Fiona earned a bachelor of arts degree in art history and history from Oberlin College.  She retired in 2012 after a 30-year career in fundraising, but now works as the technical projects manager for The OPAL Group, a software development and systems integration company. She joined the board in June 2016. 

Ayesha Bell Hardaway is an Assistant Professor at Case Western Reserve University School of Law. She earned law degree from Case Western Reserve University School of Law and her B.A. in Sociology from The College of Wooster. She is a Shaker Heights High School graduate and parent of a current Shaker student and a recent Shaker grad. Ms. Hardaway previously worked in the Trial Department at Tucker Ellis LLP and as an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney for Cuyahoga County. In addition to prior board service with non-profit organizations, Ms. Hardaway serves as a member and General Counsel of the Olivet Housing and Community Development Corporation. She has also served as a chair, leader and team member of several Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association outreach efforts. She was elected to the School Board in 2017 and appointed as the board liaison to the Foundation Board in 2018.

Richard Hubbard earned a bachelor of arts and a bachelor of science degree from Bowdoin College, and is retired from his position as Vice President of Watson Wyatt. With his wife Annie, who has volunteered in many capacities for the Foundation and the schools, Rick established the Shaker Fields Development Fund. Their son and daughter are Shaker graduates, and Rick and Annie live in the Mercer neighborhood. Rick is also helping with the Shaker boys’ soccer program. He joined the board in June 2010.
Robin Johnson graduated from Shaker in 1979. She is the CEO of The Singing Angels, where she is currently serving as a board member. Robin is a 1983 graduate of Ohio University with a BFA in art history.  She was treasurer for the Judy Rawson for Mayor campaign and is the SHHS class of 1979 reunion co-chair. Robin also has served as a co-chair forThe Night for the Red & White. She and her husband, Mark, live in the Boulevard area and have two children, Courtney (SHHS 2008) and Grant (SHHS 2012). She has served on the board since June 2009.
Amy Kerr Thome is an elementary school educator who recently joined the staff at Woodbury School as a reading specialist. She has taught in Lakewood and tutored at Onaway School. Amy completed her bachelor’s degree in English literature at George Mason University and her master’s degree in elementary education at Ursuline College. With her husband Stephen, she is the parent of three daughters, one who is a graduate of and two who are enrolled in the Shaker Schools. Amy is a member of the St. Dominic choir and an a cappella group, Nightingale. She is an active volunteer for several community groups. She joined the board in June 2011.
William McGovern is a 1983 Shaker graduate and a partner of Kobre & Kim, where he focuses on international commercial disputes and international government investigations. Earlier in his career, he was a senior litigator and Executive Director for Morgan Stanley in the U.S. and Asia; a branch chief in the SEC’s Division of Enforcement in Washington D.C. and New York; and an assistant district attorney in New York. Bill is a proud uncle to three current Shaker students and son of a 30+ year Shaker staff member, Mary Lynne McGovern. Bill joined the board in June 2015.
Dorothea Polster is a 17-year Shaker resident. She and her husband Michael (SHHS 1973) are the parents of Zack (SHHS 2010) and Jake (SHHS 2013). Dorothea has been an active PTO volunteer and also served as PTO President at Mercer, Shaker Middle School, and the High School. She is a trustee for the Ohio Girls Golf Foundation, member of MacDonald’s Women’s Health Leadership Council, and volunteer at Suburban Temple Kol Ami. Dorothea has worked as a certified public accountant, business lawyer, and business owner/executive and now is CEO of TorqHoist, Inc., a specialty material handling equipment distributor. Her hobbies include tennis, scuba diving, and fitness classes. She started her tenure as a member of the Foundation board in June 2013 and was elected 1st VP in June 2015.
Lisa Nersesian Richardson has worked as a corporate banker at organizations including KeyBank and Ernst & Young, and more recently as an administrator at Phycal. She earned a bachelor’s degree in marketing and economics from Boston College and an M.B.A. from New York University. Lisa has been very active in the PTOs at Mercer, Woodbury, and the Middle School, and has served as registration co-chair for the Red & White. She also has held leadership positions with Shaker Heights Cub Scout Pack 61, Boy Scout Troop 662, and St. Gregory Armenian Church. Lisa and her husband Sean (SHHS 1980) are the parents of John, Lena, and Christopher. She began her tenure as a member of the Foundation board in June 2013.
Paul Sauerland is a member of the Shaker Class of 1979. Along with his wife, Teri Cone (a Boulevard faculty member), Paul has five children, all of whom graduated from Shaker Heights High School. He earned bachelors’ degrees in economics and electrical engineering at Tufts University, an MSEE degree from Cleveland State University, and an MBA from Case’s Weatherhead School. Paul is director of marketing for Andeen-Hagerling, Inc. He joined the board in June 2011.
Dr. Philip Shands is an ophthalmologist with MetroHealth. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Williams College, an MBA from Case Western Reserve University, and an MD degree from the Ohio State University School of Medicine. Phil and his family live in Mercer. His wife Shuara is a Shaker graduate, as is their son (SHHS 2007) and their daughter (SHHS 2012). Phil has served as a member of the board since June 2010 and was elected Secretary in May 2014.
Brian Sullivan, an award-winning multimedia producer/director, has more than 25 years’ experience developing marketing programs, trade show events, sales training, on air/in store commercials, and fundraising productions. He co-founded Second Story Productions in 2005 to provide high quality video productions for the local nonprofit community, though it now also serves the corporate community, in Northeast Ohio and across the country. A member of the Shaker Class of 1985, Brian earned a BA in communications from Hunter College, City University of New York and a certificate of nonprofit management from the Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations at Case Western Reserve University. He has served on the boards of Cleveland Sight Center and Cleveland Play House and has been active in the work of the William J. and Dorothy K. O’Neill Foundation for more than 20 years. Brian resides in Shaker Heights with his wife and their two children.  He joined the Board in June 2017.
logo Stasia Vavruska currently serves as the Senior Vice President, General Counsel for Resource International, a multi-disciplinary engineering and construction management firm. She earned her BA from Case Western Reserve University, JD from George Washington University, and a Masters in public administration from Cleveland State University. She was an active PTO volunteer while her two daughters were in Shaker, serving as co-president of the Boulevard School PTO and as corporate sponsorship chair for A Night for the Red & White. Stasia and Jeff and their dog, Henry, live on Brighton.  Stasia joined the Foundation board in June 2015.
Doug Wang is a retired Senior Vice President of The Northern Trust Bank and served as portfolio manager for the Shaker Schools Foundation from 1999 to 2011. Doug and his wife Holly (an active volunteer for the schools and part-time employee of the Shaker Schools Foundation) live in the Boulevard area. All of their four children are Shaker graduates.  Doug received his A.B. in mathematics from Kenyon College and a M.S.M. in finance from the Sloan School at MIT. He is a member of Cleveland Social Venture Partners, chair of the St. Luke’s Foundation board, and a member of the Rainey Institute, Judson and Policy Matters boards.  He started his tenure on the Foundation board in June 2013 and was elected Treasurer in June 2015.
Fred Widen is a partner of Ulmer & Berne LLP. His law practice focuses on representing real estate developers, professional corporations, and health care providers in the areas of taxation, real estate, and employee benefits. He received his BBA degree from Cleveland State University and his JD from Cleveland Marshall College of Law. Fred and his wife Ellen live on Paxton, and all five of his children graduated from the Shaker Schools. He joined the board in June 2011.
Tom Wise is an attorney serving as Senior Vice President and Senior Counsel for KeyBank National Association.  He earned his bachelor’s degree at Dartmouth College and graduated from Columbia Law School. Tom and his wife, Monika Biro, have two sons who both attend the Shaker Middle School.  During the 2010-2011 year, Tom served on the Shaker Schools Foundation’s Advisory Committee, and he became a member of the board in June 2011 and was elected President in June 2015.

Former Trustees

Advisory Committee

The Advisory Committee furthers the work of the Foundation. Current members include Shaker graduates.

Nancy Karr, Chair
Jennifer Lawry Adams
Joanie Adler
Jamie Babbit
Anne Bochert
Maxine Isaacs
Kathy Jones
Peter Lawson Jones
Cliff Mendelson
Barb Miller
K.J. Montgomery
Chris Nance
Margie Newman
Zach Paris
Terry Pollack
Deborah Ratner, Emeritus
Ronald Ratner
Susie Ratner
Robin Weaver
© 2019. Shaker Heights Schools. All Rights Reserved.
If any of the material on this page is not accessible to you or you have questions, please send us an email or call us via our contact page and we will provide alternatives.