In addition to our talented teachers, we have a handful of dedicated and equally talented staff members helping us behind the scenes.
List of 3 items.
Ms. Betsy Davis
Tulane University, BS
Betsy Davis grew up in Long Island, New York, and studied geology and environmental science at Tulane University. Since then she has worked in education not only as a science, math and outdoor education teacher, but also as a Registrar and Database Manager. Before moving in September 2017, Betsy had been to Jackson numerous times for vacation and NOLS training. She is thrilled to work here now as JHCA’s IT Manager and Registrar, while pursuing her love of the outdoors.
Ms. Betsy Davis comes to Jackson Hole Classical Academy with a background both in teaching and school administration. After moving to Jackson only a couple of weeks ago, she has immediately begun work as both a registrar and IT manager for the Academy. Ms. Davis grew up in Long Island, New York and attended the Ethel Walker School in Connecticut. She then received her bachelor of science degree in geology from Tulane University with a minor in environmental studies
After college Ms. Davis moved to New Jersey to teach at Barnstable Academy and then at Montclair Kimberley Academy for five years. There she was a math, science, computer science, and outdoor education teacher. She also coached soccer, softball, and tennis. When her daughter was born, she left Montclair and for the next eighteen years tutored and substitute taught.
In 2010, Ms. Davis began working at the Princeton Day School as a registrar, student database manager, AP and PSAT coordinator and lower school scheduler. At this pre-K—12th grade school there were 970 students. “There are very different numbers here at JHCA!” she says. Ms. Davis sometimes misses the interactions with students that her earlier teaching career afforded. She says, “I enjoyed getting to know students; that is what I loved most about being in the classroom.” However, she has found great purpose in school administration as well. “I like detail-oriented tasks and having projects to tackle. I found that my administrative work is similar to putting a puzzle together. I like to fix problems, especially ones where you can see if you’ve solved it.” Ms. Davis has put her skills to use at JHCA, helping launch Owlnet for the 2017-2018 school.
“It’s no accident that I moved out to Jackson,” Ms. Davis says. In fact, her first memories of the area are from a family vacation when she was nine years old. From there she has visited the valley every few years. “When I was sixteen, my father convinced me to attend Teton Valley Ranch Camp, which was in Kelly at the time. I just fell in love with Jackson. From then I have always wanted to be here.”
Ms. Davis is skilled in both the science and the practical side of the outdoors. She says, “I took my first NOLS in 1981 in the Wind River Range, then another in 1987 in Alaska.” In the past five years, she completed NOLS Alumni courses in Italy, Ireland, and Wind River Range. Ms. Davis looks forward to continuing to pursue her love for the outdoors now that she lives in Jackson. She says, “I love to hike. In fact, I just did Hermitage Point this weekend. In my NOLS certification course, I did long backpacking trips, and hope to do more this summer.” Ms. Davis also skis, and is looking forward to a first season of skiing in the West. She says, “Moving from New Jersey was a big change, but knew I liked the area. Now that my children are grown it’s my big adventure!”
Miss Sarah Knight
University of Georgia, BS
Miss Sarah Knight is was born and raised in Georgia, having lived in both Columbus and Atlanta. She studied childhood development at Ole Miss and then transferred to the University of Georgia, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Family and Consumer Science. She then spent the next seven years in Atlanta teaching prekindergarten and spending much of her summer breaks working here in Jackson. During that time, Miss Knight learned what is now one of her favorite hobbies, fly fishing. She moved to Jackson to live here year-round in 2016. Miss Knight also enjoys skiing, cooking, and traveling.
Mr. Dan Walker
Northeastern University, BS
DIRECTOR OF FINANCE
Dan Walker hails originally from the forests of New Hampshire. He has lived in Jackson for the past several years with his wife, Ashleigh, and his two children, Finn and Rylynn, who both attend JH Classical. Dan brings diverse job experiences to the position of advancement and finance manager at JHCA. A former defense contractor, he has worked locally with nonprofits and businesses in accounting and financial management. Dan is excited to contribute his skills to the school and its vision.
Mr. Dan Walker came to work for JH Classical Academy in 2017. He grew up for most his childhood in New Hampshire. He then attended Northeastern University for a five-year degree in international business with the university’s co-op/internship program. During this time he studied at the ESB Business School at Reutlingen University in Germany. Initially scheduled to begin work in Germany following the program, Dan met his future wife Ashleigh while home in New Hampshire, which ultimately expedited his decision to return to the US.
Mr. Walker went on to work as an analyst with BAE Systems. His work with the Department of Defense focused on leading teams of engineers and analysts in developing capability solutions for a variety of programs. He commuted between Virginia and California and worked weekends as a paramedic while also continuing his education as a professional climbing guide and wilderness EMT. These skills afforded Dan the opportunity to join several military training expeditions to mountain ranges around the world. He recounts, “With BAE I ended up primarily working on missile defense and general procurement programs, but for a time I’d been working with the Marine Corps on mountain warfare programs following a successful training expedition in Denali National Park with Norwegian, Canadian, Australian, and U.S. military personnel. It was an exciting couple of years being involved in these kinds of expeditions.”
After living in California, the Walker family moved to Jackson Hole. The new location was a natural fit. His oldest brother Tim had recently relocated to Jackson Hole, and although it was difficult place to work from remotely, Dan and Ashleigh were determined to stay in the valley. “It’s not exactly the easiest place from which to travel to a suitable military base, and there were only so many aspects of the job I could do from Jackson.”
Wanting to remain in Jackson, Mr. Walker went on to work in the outdoor apparel industry at Cloudveil Mountain Works where he headed their retail program. He later began his own business in accounting with his wife, working with several businesses and nonprofits in the region. His knowledge of nonprofit financial management developed significantly during this time.
Mr. Walker is enthusiastic both about JHCA’s vision and his role in it. He says, “I look forward to helping build and advance JHCA. I know it’s well on its way to becoming the best school in the region. The Academy is why our family is in Jackson right now.” Remarking on his work at JHCA, “My focus is on strengthening the ties within this great community of families, organizing the school’s wonderful volunteer base, and helping the school develop a lasting presence in this region.”
The two Walker children, Finnegan and Rylynn, have attended JHCA for the past few years. As a parent, he appreciates the academic rigor and encouraging peer environment. “Our kids love it! Once I had school-aged children I realized how important this kind of environment is. I think back on the most eloquent person I’ve ever known, my grandfather—he was a former chair of economics and political science at the Naval Academy—and I wonder why nobody seems to speak like he did anymore. He received an education like what JHCA offers, and I’m hoping my children might end up more like him.”
Mr. Walker likes angling and camping during his time off. He also enjoys taking his children paddle boarding and kayaking on the local lakes and rivers. He doesn’t climb much anymore—at least until his kids are old enough to teach. When asked of it, he remarks, “My fastest time up the Grand? Ten hours car to car on the East Ridge—that’s nothing compared to what a lot of the climbers out here can do.”
Jackson Hole Classical Academy P.O. Box 7466 Jackson, WY 83002
Nondiscrimination Policy: Jackson Hole Classical Academy admits students of any gender, race, color, and national or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students. Jackson Hole Classical Academy does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, color, national or ethnic origin in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, tuition assistance, athletic, arts or other school administrated programs.