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Accreditation, membership, portal access/login: Joanne Andruscavage, Director of Accreditation

Career center, database updates: LeeAnne Minnick, Director of Technology

Registration assistance, exhibits, sponsorship: Anna Taylor, Marketing Manager

Surveys, speakers, program content: Sheri Burkeen, Director of Professional Development

Social media, e-newsletter, magazine: Christina Mimms, Director of Communications

Appointment with SAIS President Kirk Walker: Carole Weems, Accreditation & Survey Coordinator

Accounts payable or receivable: Julia Grantham, Director of Administration

General questions, operational issues: Lori Spear, Executive Vice President

Site selection: Amy Clark, Helms Briscoe

MAILING ADDRESS:  6050 Peachtree Pkwy, Ste 240-199, Norcross, GA 30092

FAX:  (404) 633-2433 

SAIS Staff

  Kirk Walker, Ph.D. - President
(423) 240-9551

Kirk joined the SAIS staff in July 2015. He was born and raised in Chattanooga, TN. He is a graduate of McCallie School, was a Morehead Scholar at UNC, and completed his master's and doctorate degrees at Peabody College, Vanderbilt University. He has taught at the middle, high school, and college levels. He served as a supervisor of instruction and as head of school of Bright School, Ensworth School, and McCallie School. Most recently he served as interim president of the Webb School of Knoxville. He has served as board chair of TAIS and SAIS. In his free time, he enjoys travel with his family, hiking, reading, and badminton.

On January 11, 2018 Dr. Walker announced his plans to retire from his position effective June 30, 2019. For updates on the SAIS president search, click here.

Lori Spear, CAE - Executive Vice President
(404) 561-5841

Lori joined the SAIS staff in August 2003 after spending six years working with the Georgia Society of Association Executives (GSAE). She is an active member of GSAE, having served as chair of the GSAE Board of Directors. She received a B.A. from Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, KY. Lori earned her Certified Association Executive (CAE) designation in June 2006. She is also an advocate of historic preservation, and has served on the board of Rhodes Hall, a historic home in midtown Atlanta, as well as the board of the DeKalb League of Women Voters. Lori has also volunteered for YearUp Atlanta, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and the Red Clay Music Foundry.

Joanne Andruscavage - Director of Accreditation
(678) 231-2908

Joanne joined the SAIS staff in June 2014 after many successful years as a teacher, administrator, and head of school. Most recently, she was the accreditation coordinator for the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America. A lifelong educator, Joanne has also been a consultant on governance and leadership in independent schools and has traveled extensively to schools across the nation. Her experience in school accreditation includes work on both sides of the process and collaboration with more than 14 different accrediting agencies. Joanne received a B.S. in education from Florida International University and an M.Ed. in educational leadership from Loyola University of Maryland. She also holds a certificate in nonprofit management from Duke University. Joanne has a passion for animal rescue and dog training and spends her free time volunteering for animal welfare causes.

  Sheri Burkeen - Director of Professional Development
(901) 651-6618

Sheri joined the SAIS staff as the director of professional development in June 2017. She holds a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Memphis and a master’s degree in educational psychology from the University of Alabama. Over the past 20 years, she has served in both public and private institutions and both co-ed and single-sex schools, teaching at the early childhood, lower, and middle school levels. Sheri has experience as a classroom teacher and technology coordinator with Woodland Presbyterian School and Lausanne Collegiate School, both in Memphis. She most recently served as the curriculum development coordinator with St. Mary’s Episcopal School for Girls, also in Memphis. Sheri enjoys rolling up her sleeves and getting her hands dirty, whether it is outside in the garden or in the kitchen whipping up a new recipe.

Julia Grantham - Director of Administration
(770) 789-3432

Julia Grantham joined the SAIS staff in January 2012. In her role as director of administration, Julia is responsible for accounting and human resources. She holds bachelor’s degrees in accounting from Mercer University and business administration from University of Georgia. In her spare time, Julia enjoys playing on several tennis teams and cheering her Braves and Falcons to victory.

Christina Mimms - Director of Communications
(404) 883-5369

Christina joined the SAIS staff in August 2015. She received a B.A. in communications from Loyola University of New Orleans and also holds a certificate of nonprofit marketing from the Georgia Center for Nonprofits. She served as director of communications at St. Martin’s Episcopal School for 14 years, has presented at several conferences for the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), and has won several professional awards. Christina graduated from St. John’s Parish Day School and Tampa Preparatory School, both in Tampa, FL. She is a member of GSAE.

LeeAnne Minnick - Director of Technology
(706) 224-3530

LeeAnne joined the SAIS staff in May 2008. She graduated from the University of Georgia in December 2004 with a B.A. in anthropology and a certificate in environmental ethics. She worked as the lead project manager for J House Media before coming to SAIS. She is an active member of GSAE and is a past chair of the GSAE Foundation Board. She also serves on the board of directors for the Athens Clarke County Friends of the Library and volunteers for Hands on Northeast Georgia.

Anna Taylor - Marketing Manager
(404) 583-6452

Anna joined the SAIS staff in May 2014. She graduated from Georgia State University with a B.A. in sociology. Throughout college, she worked as an intern, administrative assistant, and substitute teacher at The Suzuki School in Buckhead. She has a love for education and a passion for working with and helping people of all ages. She spends her free time volunteering at the Red Clay Music Foundry, exploring the outdoors with her dog, and spending time with family and friends.

Carole Weems - Accreditation & Survey Coordinator
(423) 645-8965

Carole joined the SAIS staff in April 2015. She graduated from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville with a B.S. in education. She worked for 15 years at McCallie School in Chattanooga, TN, as executive assistant to the head of school as well as administrative assistant to the vice president for planning and board relations. When Carole is not at work, she enjoys spending time with her husband, family, and friends. She also enjoys hiking, reading, golfing, and porch-sitting.


Calendar more
SAIS@NAIS Reception
February 27 | Long Beach, CA
Please stop by SAIS booth #882 in the exhibit hall too!

Leadership Retreat
April 15-16 | New Orleans, LA
Join us for a real conversation about women in independent school leadership.

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