Students in Roanoke County head back to school on Monday, August 13– a bit earlier than usual this year. Teachers and administrators have been busy this week preparing for their return.
That includes new staff members getting acclimated to their new assignments.
William Byrd Middle School has several additions to its staff, starting with a new assistant principal, John Eggleston. He replaces Amy Duff, who accepted a position as assistant principal at Glenvar High School, closer to her home.
Eggleston is originally from Bedford and is a graduate of Staunton River High School. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Health and Physical Education and his Master’s in School Administration from Ferrum College and Concord University.
Eggleston has been living in North Carolina for the past 14 years and has now moved back home to be closer to family, who live in the Moneta and Bedford areas.
He has eight years of teaching experience and 27 years of administrative experience.
In addition to serving as assistant principal, Eggleston will be serving as athletic director and as the administrator in charge of the eighth grade.
“I am truly blessed to be a part of the William Byrd Middle School team and also part of the Roanoke County School System,” said Eggleston. “The county is known for their high academic standards, and I would like to be a productive part of continuing the tradition.”
Eggleston is married with two daughters and one stepson, all living in the Bedford/Moneta area.
Katy Nance will be serving as the sixth grade school counselor this year at WBMS. She is originally from Media, Pa., (a suburb of Philadelphia) but has lived in Vinton for the past 22 years. She majored in sociology at the University of Virginia and earned her Master of Education in Counseling from Wake Forest University.
She has been a school counselor in Roanoke County for 18 years— nine at Fort Lewis, followed by nine at Bonsack Elementary. She worked for four years in Roanoke City Schools as an at-risk counselor before joining the county school system.
For the past two years she has been a hurdle coach for the WBHS indoor and outdoor track and field team.
“I am excited to be starting this new adventure at WBMS,” said Nance. “I love being a school counselor and I am thrilled to be able to help kids become the best students and people they can be as they move through their middle school years.”
As for her outside interests, Nance said, “I love spending time with my family and my dogs. We enjoy traveling and going to baseball games in whichever city we visit. Most recently we saw the Philadelphia Phillies play the Yankees in Philadelphia and the Asheville Tourists play in their home stadium. I love to read, when I have the time, and am currently reading a biography of George Washington. I ran track through high school and then at the University of Virginia and I love being able to share my love of the sport as a coach.”
Kristi Warf will be teaching eighth grade physical science and serving as Science Department chair. She is a Vinton native and a graduate of William Byrd High School. She majored in biology at Concord University.
This is her 11th year in teaching. She taught for eight years with Roanoke City before coming to Roanoke County.
“As a graduate of William Byrd Middle School and William Byrd High School, I am excited to be returning here to teach,” said Warf. “I am thrilled to be reunited with many of my fellow classmates who are members of the faculty at both WBMS and WBHS. As a former athlete at both WBMS and WBHS, I am eager to support Terrier athletics.”
Her husband, John, is also a teacher in Roanoke County at BCAT.
Marian Levinson will be teaching sixth grade English at WBMS. She is a graduate of Hidden Valley High School. She majored in sociology at Roanoke College and has been an educator for nine years.
“My family lived in Vinton (for a short time) and we really loved the close-knit community,” said Levinson. “When given the opportunity to teach at WBMS, I jumped at the chance.
“I am eager to work in the middle school setting and to build positive relationships with the students and parents at WBMS,” Levinson said.
Levinson and her husband have two sons. She says she loves anything sports-related and loves to travel.
Ben Garden will be teaching eighth grade civics and economics. He grew up in Roanoke and graduated from Patrick Henry High School, and then majored in history at Presbyterian College. He just moved back to the area from Richmond with his wife and son. She is also from Roanoke.
This will be his eighth year in teaching. As for accepting a position at WBMS, Garden says when he knew he was moving back to the Roanoke area, “it seemed like a great place to be! The faculty and staff seem great and it just feels like a tight knit community.
“I’ve coached every year that I’ve taught so I’d like to get involved in coaching in some capacity,” said Garden. “I may also sponsor a fishing/fly fishing club, and I’ll likely sponsor an organization called ‘Men in Ties’ for eighth grade boys. I love the outdoors, particularly fishing and fly fishing.”
Bill Pratt will be teaching health and physical education at WBMS. He is from Windsor, N.Y. He earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Athletic Training and Health and Physical Education from Roanoke College and his Master of Education in Health Promotion from Virginia Tech.
Pratt has taught for 23 years– four in Chesterfield County, one in Henrico County, and 18 in Roanoke County. He transferred to WBMS from another county school. He says he is looking forward to returning to the secondary level where he was a teacher and athletic trainer at William Byrd High School from 2000-2005. He has been an athletic trainer at Roanoke College since 2005.
He and his wife Sandra have lived in Vinton since 2000. They have two sons, Will (22) and Jordan (17). His interests outside of teaching include home rebuilding and remodeling (they rebuilt their home in Vinton) along with traveling, golf, and camping.
Annette Gilmore will be teaching seventh grade English. She grew up in Vinton, attended Hardy Road Elementary School, William Byrd Intermediate School, and graduated from William Byrd High School. She majored in psychology at Roanoke College.
“I started my teaching career at WBMS in 2001,” said Gilmore. “I decided to stay home after my youngest son was born. When I went back into education, I wanted to try elementary education since my certification is PK-8. I decided to come back to the middle school because it’s a great place to work and I enjoy working with middle school students. I enjoy their personalities and sense of humor.”
She has 10 years of teaching experience— three years in seventh grade, one in fourth, and six years in fifth grade.
Gilmore says she is happy to be working at WBMS because “this is where I grew up. I enjoy working with the students in this area. I care about the people in this community. I want to invest in this area, because this is my hometown. I’ve lived here my whole life.”
Kimberly Bolling will be teaching Family and Consumer Sciences classes (FACS)— Teen Living for sixth, seventh, and eighth grades and also an Introduction to Culinary Arts FACS class at William Byrd High School.
She is from Moneta and isa graduate of Staunton River High School. She earned her degree in Family and Consumer Sciences with a minor in psychology from Liberty University, after attending Roanoke College for one year and graduating from Virginia Western.
She taught for three years at Chatham High School and eight years at Dan River High School in Pittsylvania County and ultimately wanted to be closer to her home in Moneta. She has a total of 16 years as a teacher, three years as a teacher aide, four years as a substitute teacher, and four years as a homebound teacher. She was employed in Roanoke for several years at Lewis-Gale Clinic and the Salvation Army.
She has plans for working with a FCCLA (Family, Career, Community Leaders of America) Club at WBMS in the new school year.
“I am happy to be working with students to learn life skills in Family and Consumer Sciences classes,” Bolling says. “I always tell my students that everyone needs life skills even if they seek careers in the medical, law, or business fields, or if they choose to be a stay at home parent and to help raise a family. This is the only class and club that still has the family as part of their curriculum. I hope to instill in the students the desire to take care of themselves and to help others in their families now and in their future.”
Bolling enjoys sewing, which she learned from her father and grandmother (who lived in Vinton for over 30 years). They upholstered furniture for 50+ years with most of their customers in the Roanoke Valley.
Guy Wilburn is the new building manager at WBMS. He came to the middle school from W.E. Cundiff and also worked at Northside Middle for many years.
WBMS serves approximately 850 students with a staff of around 100, led by Principal Todd Kageals. Feeder schools for WBMS include Bonsack, Herman L. Horn, Mount Pleasant, and W.E. Cundiff Elementary Schools.