It’s our nature to nurture.
Board of Trustees
The Board of Trustees of Escuela del Sol Montessori and Harwood Art Center
guides the organization toward our vision to inspire a passion for lifelong learning.
Maria Garcia Geer
Board President, Community Rep.
Maria is a Principal at Geer, Wissel, Level & Harwell P.A.
Community Education Programs Supervisor – University of New Mexico
Paige has been in the early childhood field since 1991. She was previously a New Mexico PreK Consultant, a preschool teacher, a theater teacher, an art teacher, a movement teacher, a Montessori mentoree, along with other positions in the education field. She holds an Master’s degree in Education from Bank Street College in New York City and a Bachelor’s degree from The Colorado College.
She upholds the significance of Loose Parts (recycled, open-ended materials safe for children) for their ability to nurture the creative, independent, and problem-solving spirit of all children and adults through an approach that emphasizes learning by doing. Wemagination offers a rich learning environment tailored to support early childhood educators and other community members who work with young children. Paige believes children should have a lifelong opportunity to grow through joyful learning experiences that are relevant to their lives.
Emilie has helped nonprofits in the arts, culture, and education fields achieve transformative milestones for more than 25 years. She’s managed capital campaigns ranging from $5-100+ million most of her career, including major gifts for the Modern Wing expansion at the Art Institute of Chicago, Steppenwolf Theatre’s expansion, and multiple endowment campaigns. A fourth-generation New Mexican, Emilie moved back home to Albuquerque with her husband and son in 2016 to reunite with family and rediscover sunshine. Her consulting work helps clients locally and nationally. She Chairs the City of Albuquerque’s Arts Board and is a trustee of FUSION Theatre Company.
Ann Edenfield Sweet
Escuela Alumni Parent
Ann Edenfield Sweet is the founder of Wings For LIFE International, a program for family members of inmates. She is also an internationally recognized motivational speaker and author. She has served on the board of Escuela del Sol since 1983. Her four boys are Escuela alumni, and Ann was Escuela’s first Director of Development. Ann serves on the board because she believes in the Montessori methods of teaching; believes in the vision of the school to be a fun, interactive place of learning for people of all ages; and recognizes the dedication and calling of the staff and faculty at Escuela. Ann is proud of her years on the board and will continue to help Escuela maintain its reputation of quality education and programming as a leading Montessori School in the United States.
Escuela Parent & Alumni Family
Seemi works at Generation Justice.
NPG Partner and Escuela Alumna Parent
Linh C. Nguyen is a nationally recognized leader in organizational strategy, talent development, and change management with over 30 years of experience in management consulting and organizational leadership across the mission-driven sector. Linh is currently the Vice President for Equity, Culture, and Talent for Lumina Foundation. He has served as Chief Operating Officer at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) in Battle Creek, Michigan. His contributions to the foundation included introducing the networked organizational model to drive continuous collaboration, improvement, and empowerment in partnership with communities; rebuilding the foundation’s learning and evaluation function to align with community-driven outcomes; and strengthening its talent and human resources capacity to build a culture firmly grounded in racial equity, diversity, and inclusion. Linh helped to shape and operationalize WKKF’s external programs such as the Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation initiative as well as internal programs to enhance intercultural competency, using the Intercultural Development Inventory among other tools.
Linh holds a Bachelor of Arts in anthropology from Yale University in New Haven, CT. He lives with his college sweetheart and their teenage daughter in Albuquerque, NM. In his spare time, Linh is also an avid artist, musician, and cook.
Alumna – 5th Grade Class of 1995
Allison Chavez works at Kaiser Permanente and helps with Alumni Relations for Escuela del Sol. A board member since 2017, Allison serves on the board because “Escuela has always been part of my life and I love it.” She attended Escuela from Toddler through 5th grade, and feels like the teachers and the school have become her extended family. She is also proud of the vital service Escuela provides to the local community by expanding its outreach programs and welcoming home those who wish to share their creativity and ingenuity with the Escuela community. Allison’s vision for Escuela is aligned with the mission of the school – to inspire passion and lifelong learning in students who will become citizens of the world.