Board of Directors

Spring Bilingual Montessori Academy (SBMA) is a 501c3 nonprofit organization governed by a volunteer Board of Directors.  Our Board is comprised of current and former school parents, along with teachers and staff who offer their expertise to help guide the school.  The Board of Directors currently includes the following individuals:

Interim President – Harvey Beckham, former SBMA parent.  Mr. Beckham has served on the Board since 2011.  He has spent over 20 years working in real-estate & construction management. All three of his daughters attended SBMA in the Spanish Montessori class.

Director – Avanthi Kuruwita, current SBMA parent. Avanthi joined the Board of Directors in 2019 after being with this school since 2015. She has over 15 years of experience working as a Certified Chartered Accountant and has lived and worked in five different countries. Being bilingual and growing up attending Montessori schools in different parts of the world made her believe in the importance of diversity in education. Her daughter completed the Spanish Montessori Program in 2018 and her son is currently enrolled in the same program.

Director – Guillermo Arenas, current SBMA parent.  Guillermo joined the Board in 2019.  His daughter completed the N.E.S.T. Program and is currently enrolled in the Spanish Montessori class.

Director – Sean Newell, current SBMA parent. Sean joined the Board of Directors in 2019. He has spent over 13 years practicing as an attorney in Washington, DC, first as a commercial litigator, and currently as a federal prosecutor specializing in cyber investigations and cybersecurity policy.  His daughter completed the French Montessori program in 2019 and his son is currently enrolled in the same program.

Director – Erin Toner, former SBMA parent. Erin was delighted to join the board in 2020. She has over 13 years of experience working as a Casting Director on film and television projects in Los Angeles, CA. Additionally, Erin brings a deep appreciation for the Montessori philosophy and practice. She attended Montessori school through the 6th grade and she is lucky to have two sisters who are MACTE certified early education Montessori teachers. Her Mother worked as an administrator at a private Montessori school for over 30 years and one of her sisters started the first public Montessori preschool and kindergarten in Seattle, WA. One of Erin’s favorite aspects of SBMA is the unique combination of early education Montessori practice with daily language study. Erin will always be deeply grateful to the teachers and administrators at SBMA who nurtured, taught and loved her two children in the French Montessori program. 

Director – Melissa Gagnier-Solis, current SBMA parent. Melissa joined the Board in 2020. Melissa brings 10 years of experience in business and operations with a background in environmental engineering. She offers guidance on streamlining operations, developing and implementing processes and solving everyday problems. She has three sons, one who completed SBMA and two who are currently attending.

Director – Toni Holness, current SBMA parent. Toni joined the Board of Directors in 2020. She spent seven years doing policy advocacy for the ACLU of Maryland before joining the Appellate Division of the Maryland Office of the Public Defender. Toni’s first child completed the Spanish Montessori program in 2020.

Director – Nubia Sosa, staff liaison. Nubia is currently the Lead Teacher in the N.E.S.T. class and serves as the school’s Director of Educational Programs. Nubia began her tenure with SBMA in 2008 and brings fifteen years of experience teaching early childhood education. Her passion for education and child development comes from a devotion to self-improvement. She believes the learning process must fit the child and the tools for learning are developed inside and outside of the classroom. Nubia is devoted to developing strong relationships with parents to maximize the educational experience of each child at SBMA.

Director – Bela Ali, SBMA Schoolwide Montessori Resource. Ms. Bela served SBMA from 1989 to 2017, and ended her full-time teaching position as the lead teacher in the Spanish Montessori class as the Educational Directress. Ms. Bela will continue to serve SBMA part-time working one-on-one with students to support their classroom learning. She enjoys working with children and finds teaching a deeply rewarding profession.

Board CPA – James Brandon

We plant seeds that SPRING to life!