Phone 1-877-388-8678
704-892-4533
Fax 704-892-5977

About The Davidson Center Staff

Mary Jane Freeman, M.A.ED.

Mary Jane Freeman is a lifelong educator and brings more than thirty years of experience in working with children and families. After twenty years as a classroom teacher and guidance counselor in both middle school and high school, she has worked privately as an educational consultant and has assisted hundreds of students and families in finding the right colleges, boarding schools and special needs programs. A Certified Educational Planner, she has traveled extensively to visit colleges, boarding schools and therapeutic programs that serve children and adolescents with special needs. An active member of IECA (Independent Educational Consultant Association), she has served as an officer and board member as well as serving on numerous projects and committees. In addition to a B.A. from San Jose State University, Mary Jane holds a M.A. Ed. in Counseling from Washington University, St. Louis and a Certificate of Advanced Study in Administration and Supervision from Fairfield University. Originally from California, she has also lived and worked in the states of Arizona, Missouri, Connecticut, New York and North Carolina. As the co-founder of The Davidson Center, she had the unique opportunity to bring together highly qualified professionals to address the learning needs of children and adolescents.

Mary Jane recognizes that improving school performance can be a complex process and often requires an integrated approach that considers a child’s abilities, motivation, confidence, emotional well-being, and his or her school environment; simply working on academic skills, without direct application to current school work and confidence building, is not sufficient in improving school performance and achieving higher grades.

For the last sixteen years, Mary Jane has worked closely with Dr. Gary Patrick in conducting psychological and academic evaluations. The comprehensive results provide diagnostic information leading to individualized recommendations and a specific plan outlining interventions and solutions.

Gary L. Patrick, Ph.D., ABPP

Gary L. Patrick, Ph.D., ABPP has worked with children and adolescents for over thirty years. Initially, he was a teacher of children with learning disabilities prior to becoming a psychologist. In addition to doctoral training in school and community psychology, he also has had formal education in special education and speech and language as well as the unique opportunity to complete his dissertation in the vision training practice of a past president of the American Optometric Association.

He has also studied teaching approaches for those with special educational needs in the Scandinavian countries, and he completed a practicum experience in a German school for children with learning disabilities. Dr. Patrick is also board certified in organizational and consulting psychology by the American Board of Professional Psychology.

His unique educational experiences have been employed in providing and supervising school psychological services for a number of school systems, assisting in the development of a child and development center, and engaging privately with individuals, schools, and learning centers. He has worked with a wide range of children and adolescents with handicapping conditions in a variety of settings.

He has recently coauthored a book with Rosanne Manus to assist parents to be more effective in helping their children to learn. The title is Tackling Academic Barriers: A Parent’s Guide to Understanding the Complexities of Learning and Choosing the Right Professionals to Help Your Child Learn. Dr. Patrick and Ms. Manus sincerely hope that their insights into learning and child development can assist parents to better meet their children’s psycho-educational needs.

Over the past decade, Dr. Patrick and Ms. Freeman have evaluated over one thousand students at the Davidson Center. They look forward to continuing to meet the needs of students and families in the future.

Abbe Granelle

Abbe Granelle serves as our Office Manager and direct assistant to Mary Jane Freeman. Abbe has been with The Davidson Center for seven years. As a mom of children with special needs, she has a unique understanding of our mission and the struggles many of our families face. She resides in Mooresville with her husband and three children.

Donna Boucher

Donna Boucher is a magna cum laude graduate of C.W. Post College of Long Island University and continued as a graduate assistant with a concentration in Shakespeare.  Prior to joining The Davidson Center office staff, she worked as a Copy Editor for the American Institute of Physics and as an Office Administrator for a Charlotte construction firm.  She enjoys reading, writing, and editing.

 Jean Bonnyman, B.S., M. Ed, Ed. S.

For over 30 years, Jean Bonnyman has had an extensive range of experience as an educator and counselor. She holds three degrees from the University of Virginia in education, sport psychology, and counseling. For the past decade, she has been a college counselor, learning specialist and sport psychology coach at Darlington School in Rome, GA. Because Darlington is a college preparatory, day, and boarding school for a very diverse student body, Jean has worked with a broad range of students in grades 9-12. Jean also helped her students with the entire college application and decision process. She is certified as an Independent Educational Consultant and a member of the National Association for College Counseling. She has served as a sport psychology coach for equestrians, golfers, runners, and tennis players. Jean also draws on the experience of parenting her own children, two of whom graduated from Princeton University. Before working at Darlington, Jean consulted privately with students and their families, as well as athletes and coaches.

Beth Carroll, M.A.

Beth Carroll is a retired teacher from Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools.  She is a graduate of Appalachian State University in Special Education K-12.  She completed her graduate degree at the University of North Carolina Greensboro in Reading Education K-12.  Beth also holds a certification in grades K-6 all subjects, and has over thirty years of experience as a regular classroom teacher, a special educator and a literacy specialist.  Beth diagnoses reading difficulties and offers tutoring and remedial services in reading and elementary math and special education.  In addition, Beth serves as a special education consultant; she is qualified for active involvement in the IEP process with the school system.

Tanya Chartier, M.A.

Tanya Chartier holds a B.A. in English Literature from Denison University and a M.A. in the Teaching of Reading from Western Michigan University between which she was awarded a Fullbright Grant to study literacy in Japan.  She has taught at the elementary, middle school, and collegiate levels.  Previously an Adjunct Lecturer in Education at Davidson College, Tanya has stepped into the role of Executive Director and continues as an Educational Therapist at The Davidson Center.  Tanya enjoys empowering readers, writers, and mathematicians following diagnostic work from which she crafts individualized plans to remediate literacy and math skills and builds critical strategies for understanding.  Tanya is a featured artist and master teacher in local, state, national, and international settings.  She is passionate about structuring learning environments that ignite students’ intrinsic initiative as well as guiding each individual to become a lifelong learner who finds joy in reading, writing and engaging in mathematics.  Tanya resides in Davidson, NC with her husband and their two children.

Kathy Hervey

Kathy is a licensed K-12 Spanish teacher. Though born in New Jersey, Kathy grew up in Latin America and is therefore a native speaker.  Kathy has been a teacher and interpreter for many years. She enjoys tutoring and teaching at The Davidson Center as it gives her one-on-one time with the students.  She specializes in getting students organized, teaching them to visually see how the language works, and building on that base.  Having a written notes binder gives them something to refer back on in class.  Spanish builds on itself so each year’s understanding is vital to the next.  She reviews concepts they miss in previous years/months, with a lot of repetition and written exercises, which enables the student to feel confident about their knowledge.  She wants her students to enjoy learning the language.

Connie Johnston

Connie Johnston received her B.S. degree from Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana with a major in Computer Science. She spent ten years working in the insurance industry doing software development. While there, she received her M.B.A. from the University of Indianapolis. She went on to teach in the Indianapolis Public Schools for 23 years. She has taught all levels of mathematics from middle school through AP Calculus AB. Prior to joining The Davidson Center, she worked with Hands on Charlotte in their tutoring program.

Judy Martin

Judy Martin was hired as the very first tutor by The Davidson Center for Learning in January 2000 and has continued working until the present as the company made its transition to Davidson Center. Judy received her B.A. in French at UNCG and tutors in both French and Spanish. Judy, who retired from Charlotte Mecklenburg School’s Mountain Island Elementary in May 2009, also specializes in elementary reading and writing. She is certified in Orton-Gillingham Curriculum and has hundreds of hours of training in other specialized reading and writing programs. Judy is currently a member of the International Literacy Association.

Candice Meyer, Ph.D.

Dr. Candice Meyer holds a Ph.D. in Educational Administration with a minor in Curriculum and Instruction; an M.S. in Reading; an M.S. in Educational Administration; and a B.A. in Art Education. She has experience teaching children, adolescents, and adults from emergent reading to college preparation. She has 25 years of experience as a reading specialist in public education; 2 years of experience as a reading research associate at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte; and is presently a reading instructor at Central Piedmont Community College. She assists Davidson students with all levels of reading, GED, and SAT preparation.

Amanda Miller

Amanda is a well-traveled and very energetic graduate of Davidson College. Before returning to Davidson, she taught world history and mathematics to 7th and 8th graders in Lake Village, Arkansas as a Teach For America Corps member. As a tutor at the Davidson Center, she enjoys providing bright minds with the tools and the confidence they need to succeed in the classroom and beyond. Although she specializes in the areas of math, SAT preparation, and study skills, she is comfortable assisting students with a wide variety of subjects including biology and elementary Japanese!

Larina Pierce
Larina holds a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy, a Masters in Arts in French and a Juris Doctor.  She began her career in admissions at Davidson College over a decade ago, served as an independent counselor for several years in Wilkes County, and is now a member of the Independent Educational Consultants Association.  Larina has an extensive background in writing, editing, career counseling, and application management, and truly enjoys working with families who are navigating the world of college admissions.  She lives in Davidson with her husband and two young daughters.

Chris Rocca

Chris Rocca is a graduate of Georgetown University (B.A. History ’73) and UNC Charlotte (Master of Arts in Teaching ’06) and holding a NC license to teach both Social Studies and English.  Chris has taught at North Mecklenburg High School for the past 11 years.  While at North, he coached the vaunted North Meck Debate & Speech team which is competitively active in both the area and national levels.  He was honored as the NC “Coach of the Year” for debate and speech in 2009 and 2011.  He currently resides in Concord, NC with his wife of 34 years.

Caroline Stevens

Caroline earned her B.A. in English at Amherst College and her M.Ed. in School Psychology at Georgia State University. She has 14 years of experience working with students, from psycho-educational testing to ACT/SAT tutoring and college planning. Caroline specializes in guiding high school students toward their ideal college “fits”, and in helping families negotiate the logistical, financial and emotional realities involved. Her background includes helping student athletes navigate the athletic recruitment process, including NCAA Clearinghouse regulations and changes in FAFSA filing rules and can advise students on the 80 college Coalition’s application and portfolio platform, an alternative to the Common Application that will debut in 2016. She has been an Amherst college alumna interviewer and served on the College’s Regional Alumni board. Caroline and her husband have three children, a daughter and two sons who have received degrees from Williams College (B.A.s), and Sewanee, The University of the South (B.A and M.A.), and Smith College (M.A.T.).

Mike Sutton, Ph.D.

Dr. Mike Sutton grew up in northeastern North Carolina. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1971 until 1977 and was a crew member of the attack submarine USS Seadragon SSN 584, stationed in Pearl Harbor, HI, from 1973 until 1977. After completing military service he obtained B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees in mathematics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Mike has taught mathematics and statistics at four and two year colleges, and at public and private high schools. He has tutored mathematics professionally and as a volunteer. His volunteer tutoring has been with minority students who were college bound or trying to get their GED. Mike likes to see the expression on a student’s face when he or she grasps for the first time a mathematical problem that had been a real struggle for them.

Vinod Thomas

Vinod Thomas is a graduate of North Mecklenburg High School and Davidson College. Additionally he has studied at Cambridge University in England, and is pursuing graduate studies in general science education at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Vinod earned his B.A. from Davidson College with a major in history and a minor in chemistry. Vinod tutors in a broad range of subjects ranging from the humanities to the sciences, as well as offering specialized test prep for the SAT and the ACT. Vinod serves as Test Prep Coordinator at The Davidson Center.

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