Magnolia Class Assistant
Lucy holds a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies from Shenandoah College & Conservatory. She currently works as an assistant teacher in the Magnolia Kindergarten Class. During her 10 years at RWS, she has gained a sense of nurturing the unhurried childhood. Through the daily rhythms of play, classroom chores, and imaginative stories, this underscores an importance of growing the child within. Being a Waldorf Teacher not only has allowed Lucy to grow within as an observer and participant, but also allows for her favorite hobbies (crafting with wool, spinning, sewing, and of course, music) to be put to use.
“Each day is like a present. I like to witness a child opening their new present each day.”
Oak Class Lead
Maddie earned a bachelor’s degree in Child Life from East Carolina University in 2008, where she studied child development extensively. As part of her studies she completed several practicums and internships with children in healthcare, childcare, and school settings. Members of Maddie’s family have been part of RWS almost since the beginning as class teachers, foreign language teachers, and handwork teachers. Maddie appreciates the caring environment that RWS provides for her two children. She has been working at Richmond Waldorf School since 2018 as an aftercare assistant, substitute, and early childhood assistant. She became a lead teacher and began her Early Childhood Teacher Training Education at Sunbridge Institute in 2022. Maddie’s favorite parts about her job are singing with children, watching them discover new abilities and explore their world, and learning from all of her wonderful colleagues.
Balla was born and raised in Washington, DC, and moved to Richmond, VA to attend Virginia State University. After graduating with a bachelors in accounting he decided to stay in Richmond to build his career. Balla worked in corporate accounting for 10 years before deciding to step back and devote more time to his family. Upon this time he found Richmond Waldorf School where he brings his skills part time to the business department.
Educational Support Specialist
Noelle began her teaching career in 2000 as an adjunct instructor at the VCU Department of Fashion Design & Merchandising. In 2011, she was drawn to the creative freedom of Waldorf education and completed her Waldorf Teacher’s Certificate from Antioch University in 2014. She has worked as a Handwork Teacher and Grades Teacher from 2011 to 2022. In 2019, Noelle completed 60 hours of Orton-Gillingham coursework and developed a passion for working with diverse learners. She is currently working towards certification as an Orton-Gillingham Practitioner Associate Level and is expected to receive this in 2023. She is thrilled to take a new role at RWS as the Education Support Specialist and looks forward to supporting faculty, students, parents and administration focused on students who learn differently.
When Noelle is not at Waldorf, she is tutoring students with language-based learning differences, gardening with her son, or staying busy drawing and painting.
“Dedicated to promoting nurturing and positive learning environments that respects, encourages, and empowers students.”
Marketing & Advancement Specialist
Alexandra grew up in the suburbs of New York City and attended Bates College in Maine. After graduation, she worked in marketing and communications roles at hospitals and nonprofit organizations. She completed her master’s degree in public health (MPH) at New York Medical College.
While their children were young, Alexandra was a stay-at-home parent and the family moved often with her husband’s military career. When looking for a different type of education for her children, they found a Waldorf-inspired preschool and from then on were hooked! While stationed in DC, their family spent four years at Washington Waldorf School, where Alexandra was an active volunteer. She owes much of her festival and crafting knowledge to this talented community.
When her family was reassigned to Virginia, they chose to live in Richmond to continue their children’s Waldorf education at Richmond Waldorf School. Alexandra enthusiastically got to work volunteering with school committees and festivals. In her role as the Marketing & Advancement Specialist, Alexandra looks forward to collaborating with the community in support of Waldorf’s rich festival life and to spreading the word about the beautifully holistic education that RWS provides.
Alexandra and her family live in Richmond in Ginter Park. In her free time, she likes to explore new places and get to know people, visit museums and appreciate art, browse thrift shops for deals, and do Pilates when she can get a workout in. Waldorf has expanded her passion for crafting— particularly needle felting— and she loves making little treasures for her children and the RWS Pocket Fairies!
Susannah earned her Master of Teaching from VCU in 2000. She taught a K/1 multiage class at a Richmond public school from 2000 until 2014. In 2014, Susannah opened “Wonderings,” an in-home, play-based preschool in her Northside home, where she incorporated Montessori, Reggio-Emilia, and Waldorf methodology. In 2016, Susannah joined the faculty of RWS by becoming the lead Kindergarten teacher of the Oak Class. In 2018, Susannah began her journey as a Waldorf Grades teacher.
Susannah is constantly inspired by the knowledgeable staff at RWS and always feels supported in her efforts to educate the child as a three-fold human being. All four of her daughters have attended Richmond Waldorf School. In her free time, she enjoys spending as much time as possible in the great outdoors with her family.
“Spiritual science makes it possible that when two souls meet and one demands love, the other offers it. If something else is demanded, that other thing is given. Through such true, living wisdom do we create the basis for society…[it] may claim to lay the foundation for the human being’s most beautiful goal—true, genuine love for humanity.” -Rudolf Steiner
4th Grade, Latin
Dawn is a native of Knoxville, TN where she co-founded “Mountain Song School,” a Waldorf initiative. She and her family moved to Richmond in 2007 to become part of RWS. Dawn has been involved in Waldorf education for over 20 years as a parent, teacher, and board member. She has served in many leadership roles, including College Chair, Board Vice President, and Early Childhood (EC) Chair. Dawn taught in the EC program for over ten years before becoming a class teacher in 2017. Along the way, she taught Latin to middle school. She loves working with children of all ages.
Dawn earned a Master of Liberal Arts from St. John’s College, a Master of Waldorf Teaching from Antioch University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Emory University. She has taught philosophy to community college students and assisted in a Montessori classroom. She has traveled to Greece and England, where she was mesmerized by the Elgin Marbles. Dawn has 3 beautiful daughters with whom she enjoys spending time. She likes reading, jewelry-making, and walking in nature.
“Love starts when we push aside our ego and make room for someone else.” -Rudolf Steiner
Willow Class Assistant
Thea started working at RWS as an assistant in the Summergarden program in 2017 and has done so every year since. Thea is currently the Willow Class assistant teacher. She has also worked an Aftercare assistant and a substitute teacher in the Early Childhood program. Thea graduated from RWS after attending the school for 9 years and is happy to still be a part of the community. Thea was born in Tennessee and has lived in RVA for 13 years. Thea enjoys playing with the children and being creative.
Oak Class Assistant & Aftercare Assistant