Trustees

The Board of Trustees includes current Willow parents, alumni parents, and members of the community.

 

2019-2020 Board of Trustees

 

David Wolfe, Chair
David is a Managing Partner at Skoloff & Wolfe, P.C, in Livingston and is an expert on commercial property tax matters. A graduate of Cornell University and New York University Law School, David lives in Bernardsville with his wife, Dominique. Their four children are enrolled at Willow, and the Wolfes are actively involved with the school. David joined the Board in 2017.

Kamran Rafieyan, Vice Chair and Treasurer
Kamran has been on the Willow Board of Trustees since 2015 and an officer since 2016. Kamran and his wife, Jennifer, have two daughters, one Willow alumna and one Willow middle schooler, and are actively involved in the school community. Kamran has a B.S.E. from Princeton University and a M.S. from the University of California at Berkeley. Kamran has spent his career in Technology and Finance, with a focus on startups.

Leslie Plumeri, Secretary
Leslie joined the Board in 2018. Leslie has a background in school-based mental health counseling and wilderness therapy. She currently works as a school social worker at an alternative school that provides quality special education and intensive therapeutic services for adolescents challenged by behavioral or psychiatric disorders. Leslie’s three children have not only attended Willow since preschool, they have also been active community members for the past nine years. She cherishes Willow’s emphasis on outdoor free playtime, experiential education, and virtues.

Pearl Johnson, Co-Founder
Pearl founded The Willow School in 2000 and has held several leadership positions at the school since that time. Prior to Willow, she taught at the Pennington School in New Jersey and at the Charles Armstrong School in Belmont, California. Pearl holds a B.A. from Brown University and a M.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders from the Institute of Health Professions at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Blake Ellman
Blake has been an entrepreneur his whole adult life, notably co-founding Net Access Corporation in 1995. Blake is currently involved in acquisitions and management of a NJ-based real estate portfolio. In addition to his business experience, Blake served for five years on another local private school’s Board of Trustees. Blake is an active member of SoundBoard Angel Fund in Morristown, NJ. He also founded the Ellman Discovery Foundation, which seeks to facilitate long-term positive social change and scientific development in NJ. Blake’s son Miles graduated from Willow in 2019.

Glenn Likus
A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, Glenn founded G.S. Likus Design Build in 1997. An active member of his community, Glenn has served on three other local not-for-profit boards. He and his wife reside in Tewksbury, and their daughter attends Willow in the Lower School.

Rob Pritchard
Rob has served as President of the James & Gretchen Johnson Family Office since 2012, providing financial, operational, and strategic support to three generations of the Johnson family. A graduate of Harvard Law School, Rob previously served as President and General Counsel of The Griffin Group of Companies, overseeing the real estate, entertainment, and financial interests of entertainer and entrepreneur Merv Griffin. Rob began his career in private legal practice with the Manhattan firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher.

Blake Silverman

Founders

Pearl Johnson & Mark Biedron

Pearl holds a B.A. in English and American literature from Brown University, and a M.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders from the Institute of Health Professions at Massachusetts General Hospital. She taught at the Pennington School in New Jersey and at the Charles Armstrong School in Belmont, California. Pearl has also worked as a private tutor, specializing in language and learning disabilities. Prior to enrolling at Brown, she attended Far Hills Country Day School in Far Hills, The Peck School in Morristown, and The Hotchkiss School in Lakeville, Connecticut.

Mark earned a B.A. in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and attended graduate school at the University of Colorado where he studied business administration. He began his business career in 1975, when he joined the family business, Con-Lux Coatings, Inc., a manufacturer of low VOC paints and coatings. After the company was sold to Sherwin Williams in 1995, he founded Solid Wood Construction, LLC, a general contracting company, specializing in green construction and historic renovation. Solid Wood Construction served as the general contractor/construction manager for both of Willow’s LEED certified classroom buildings and for the Living Building Certified Health Wellness and Nutrition Center. Mark also founded Sustainable Growth Technologies, a green building and design consulting company.

In 2011, Mark was appointed by Governor Christie to the New Jersey State Board of Education, serving six years on the board and as President of the Board, during his last three years. In November 2017, Mark was appointed by Governor Murphy to be Co-Chair of the Governor’s Education, Access and Opportunity Transition Committee and since 2015, has also served as the Co-Chair of the NJ Juvenile Justice School/Justice Partnership Task Force.

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