Four new members beginning two-year terms on Eastern Mennonite School’s Board of Directors bring diversity of denomination, life experience, and race.
“I am grateful these four are willing to serve at this time in the institution’s history,” says Jeff Shank ‘90, chairperson of the Board.
“Our school will be strengthened by voices that more closely represent our student body and local community. We have ongoing work to do in this area, but this is a step in the right direction.”
The new members are:
David Berry, member-at-large, who will serve on the advancement committee.
Andrew Fairfield, representing the Central District of Virginia Mennonite Conference, who will sit on the committee on directors.
Scott Rogers, member-at-large, who will sit on the advancement committee.
Wendy Malvaez,member-at-large, who will sit on the committee on directors.
David Berry, is assistant professor and chair of the music department at Eastern Mennonite University and a member of Divine Unity Church in Harrisonburg.
David received his bachelor’s of music with high distinction from the Eastman School of Music, and master’s and doctor of musical arts degrees in piano performance from the Juilliard School. In addition to his accomplishments as a classical musician, David is an avid improviser of jazz, gospel, and popular contemporary piano styles, and also enjoys composing his own concert arrangements of hymns. EMS students have enjoyed hearing from David at EMS chapels.
David has two sons David, 12, a rising 7th EMS student, and Joshua, age 2. He serves on the boards of the Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival and Shenandoah Valley Children’s Choir.
“EMS has been a blessing for our family since moving to Harrisonburg,” he says. “We love the Christian mission, approach to education, and care for students.”
Andrew Fairfield is a 2003 graduate of EMHS and is pastor of Christiansburg Mennonite Church in Christiansburg, Virginia. He and his wife, Molly, are parents to two young children, Simon and Sarah.
Andrew earned a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and Bible and religion from Goshen (Indiana) College in 2007, after which he worked as a handyman and pursued seminary studies part time. Following a term of service with Mennonite Central Committee in China, the couple located in Princeton, New Jersey, where Andrew studied at Princeton Theological Seminary, graduating in 2016. The family then moved to Menno House in Manhattan for a year while Molly completed a master of public administration program at New York University.
“My hope is always to find ways to build and support communities of peacemakers, people willing to struggle for justice and equality,” writes Andrew of his commitment to the EMS board.
Wendy Malvaez is a credentialed minister at Manantial de Vida Mennonite Church which she co-founded with her husband, JuanCarlos Malvaez in 2003. While establishing the congregation, she worked as a social worker for Harrisonburg City Schools.
Wendy began her career as a counselor in the private sector and built a network that allowed her to contract with local governmental agencies. Wendy earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s in counseling from Eastern Mennonite University.
In her role as a minister, Wendy says, she has appreciated the opportunity to speak and teach about trauma to women and to advocate about educational attainment in her community. As a board member, she says she is looking forward to “being a support and contributing to a community of educators, parents and students that value academic excellence and faith.”
Wendy and Juan have two EMS students and another student who is home schooled. Her parents immigrated to the United States from Honduras, and she grew up in New York City.
Scott Rogers has been a full-time realtor with Funkhouser Real Estate Group since 2003, and is a member of Asbury United Methodist Church. Other professional involvements include developing online real estate resources for the local community, and operating the online businesses TakeThemAMeal.com (now used by more than 5 million people worldwide) and PerfectPotluck.com online.
Scott is married to Shaena, and is father to two EMS students, Luke and Emily. “EMS has been a wonderful and transformative educational experience for my children,” says Scott, who is the middle school girls volleyball coach. “I am happy to contribute however I can to help continue to improve that educational experience and ensure it is available for even more young people for years to come.”
Scott grew up in Montgomery County, Maryland, and moved to Harrisonburg to attend James Madison University where he studied media arts and design with a minor in Spanish. He earned a master’s of education in counseling psychology, also at JMU.
Scott’s community involvements have included church commitments, James Madison University Alumni Association, Explore More Discovery Museum, Shenandoah Valley Children’s Choir, Harrisonburg Community Foundation and the Shenandoah Valley Builders Association.
Additional Board Members
Other EMS Board of Directors members are: Amy Mumbauer, vice chair and member-at-large; Timothy D. Stutzman, treasurer and parent representative; Dawn Monger, secretary and member-at-large; John Beiler, member-at-large; Caitlin Helmuth ‘05 Tice, Alumni Board representative; Susan Huyard, member-at-large; Mike Piper ‘91, member-at-large; Radella Vrolijk, Virginia Mennonite Conference Northern District representative; Aaron Yutzy ‘06, member-at-large; Michael Weaver ‘86, member-at-large.