Brian King, President
Brian King has worked in the field of government and not-for-profit project finance for more than 20 years. Brian worked for the City of Chicago as its Deputy Comptroller and Debt Manager during which time he structured and sold dozens of bond issues to finance city infrastructure or to provide funds for programs such as first-time homebuyer assistance. Brian currently works as a Managing Director in the Public Finance group of Mesirow Financial in Chicago, Illinois. Brian has been involved in school governance for eight years, having served on the Board of Directors of Near North Montessori in the role of Treasurer and as Chairman of their Finance Committee. Brian has a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from Knox College and an MBA from J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. Brian has two children currently enrolled at Near North.
Patty Abrams, Vice President
Patty Abrams is the parent of two montessori-educated daughters. She has worked as corporate project manager for Solo Cup Company, and has served as a board member and officer at Corporate Imaging Concepts, a brand marketing company. She was on the board of directors for the Montessori School of Lake Forest before serving on the founding board of Beacon Academy. She has tutored both adults and at-risk youth in North Chicago. She has a BA in Humanities from John Carroll University and is currently in the MLS program at Lake Forest College. She and her husband Brian live with their children in Lake Bluff.
Roc Roney, Secretary
Roc is a parent and former board member at Near North Montessori School where he chaired the Facility Committee during a period of extensive facility upgrades and served on several committees during his tenure as trustee. Roc has a general contracting firm, Crescent Rock Builders, Inc. with years of experience design/building architectural homes and commercial and industrial sites with a concentration in the reuse and adaption of historic properties. Roc attended Albion College where he graduated in 1986 with an Economics degree and where he is currently involved with economic development activities in the community. Roc and his wife Debbie have been involved in national health organization advocacy and advancement. They have three teenage daughters and live in the Lakewood Balmoral Neighborhood of Chicago.
Robert Goldman, Treasurer
Bob is a Vice President at Charles River Associates, an economics consultancy, where he provides valuations of intellectual property for companies and litigation attorneys. He is also an adjunct professor at Northwestern Law School where he teaches intellectual property valuation. Bob is a recovering engineer, having worked at a major automaker and as a founding team member of a start-up sensor company in his early career. He has an MBA in finance from Northwestern, and bachelor and master degrees in engineering from the University of Illinois. Bob has served on a variety of boards, including as Treasurer of a national professional society and cooperative apartment corporation. He lives with his wife, Anne Ryan, and daughter Annelise (a proud Beacon senior) in Evanston.
Monique Brunson Jones
Monique was appointed President & CEO of Evanston Community Foundation (ECF) in 2015. ECF supports local organizations in pursuing their missions through grant making, civic engagement and capacity building. With an endowment of $25M the foundations strategy is focused on supporting a thriving nonprofit sector, creating an equitable community and assuring that the community is collaborating within and across sectors. Locally she also serves on the board of the Evanston Chamber of Commerce and See Chicago Dance (Formally Audience Architects). Regionally she serves on the Alliance for Illinois Community Foundation and nationally she serves on the Community Foundations National Standards Board assuring best practice for community foundations. She is a lecturer in the Kapnick Center for Business Institutions at Northwestern University teaching the campusCatalyst seminar: Lessons in Nonprofit Management. Monique is a graduate of The University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and The University of Texas at Austin.
Lynn Lillard Jessen
Lynn co-founded Forest Bluff School and was its first teacher, leading the original primary class in 1982. Two years later, she established the Young Children’s Community for the youngest children, ages 18 months to 3 years. Lynn is co-author with Paula Polk Lillard of “Montessori From the Start,” a guide for helping the young child at home from birth on. Lynn is a graduate of Smith College and has AMI training at both the Assistants to Infancy and Primary levels. She is married to Ned Jessen and their three children are all graduates of Forest Bluff. Her youngest daughter is also a graduate of the Montessori High School in Cleveland, Ohio, the first Montessori boarding school at the high school level in the United States. Lynn and Ned both serve on its Board of Directors.
Jim Masterson started his professional career in the trading pits on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade and currently owns two separate trading firms: M&N Trading and Port 22. Moreover, Jim is also the co-creator of a casual Mexican restaurant concept called Flaco’s Tacos which just recently opened up its 3rd location in Wrigleyville. Jim attended Indiana University and graduated in 1989 with a Finance degree with a concentration in Real Estate. He lives in Chicago with his wife, Beth, and their five Montessori-educated children.
Bradley Peacock is the President of Peacock Nine, a strategy consultancy focused on business transformation, innovation, and brand-building. Peacock Nine’s clients range from leading private equity firms, management consultancies and advertising agencies to members of the Fortune 500 and entrepreneurial elite. In addition, Bradley has helped many non-profits hone their strategic focus including; Georgetown University, Loyola Press, MetroSquash, Steppenwolf Theatre, and The Art Institute of Chicago. Bradley currently is an adjunct professor at Northwestern University teaching Marketing for Innovators. He is also a Trustee of The Pembroke College, Oxford Foundation of North America for which he serves as Secretary. Bradley holds a B.A. from Bates College and a M.A. from Oxford University. He and his wife Tracy live in Wilmette, IL with their sons George and Tasker—the latter of whom is a happy, engaged member of Beacon’s Class of 2020.
David Rhind is a lawyer and parent of a recent Beacon graduate. For twelve years David was General Counsel, North America, for Hudson Global, Inc., a global, publicly-traded professional staffing and recruitment firm. Before Hudson, David served for eight years as Associate General Counsel at Technology Solutions Company, a technology consulting company. David spent the first five years of his career practicing corporate and securities law at Gardner, Carton & Douglas in Chicago. David is a Director of Kewaunee Scientific Corporation, a publicly-traded global manufacturer of laboratory casework, furniture, and equipment, and serves as chair of the Nominating and Corporate Govenance Committee. For thirteen years David served as a trustee of Interlochen Center for the Arts, where he was chair of the Nominating Committee. He is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago and The Lawyers Club. David received his J.D. degree from Indiana University School of Law in Bloomington, Indiana and his B.A. degree in English from Hamilton College in Clinton, New York.
Susan Sattell is a communication and PR specialist, and is excited to help Beacon showcase its image as a leader in high school education. She has a Ph.D. in Communication/Rhetoric from Northwestern University, and teaches argumentation and rhetoric courses at Lake Forest College. Previously, Susan was in public relations, and was a senior vice president and group head at a global public relations firm. She managed worldwide accounts for the Mexican government and for US clients, and is bilingual English/Spanish. Susan also has a master’s degree in English Literature from UIC and a B.A. in Journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She lives in Chicago with her husband, Chip Hunter, and their children, Gray and Emily. Gray is a student at Beacon, and Emily is in Near North Montessori School’s junior high program.
Jeannette is a proud parent of three Montessori-educated children, one a Beacon sophomore. A New York native, she has called Chicago home for nearly 30 years. In her early career upon graduation from law school, Jeannette was a development officer working on capital campaigns, major gifts, and corporate and foundation relations for some of Chicago’s leading cultural and educational institutions. She has also served as Chair of the Local School Council of a selective enrollment elementary school in Chicago. She currently co-chairs the Diversity and Inclusion Committee of her younger children’s school. Jeannette is excited to be a part of Beacon’s work as a model for high school education and lives on the north side of Chicago with her family.
Susie Steinberg is an Executive Creative Director/copywriter at BoomAgers, a boutique advertising agency based in New York, focusing on marketing and communications to Baby Boomers. Prior to joining BoomAgers, she had nearly 20 years of experience at global ad agencies, including DDB and McGarryBowen, where she helped build brands for consumer package good and retail clients.
She wholeheartedly embraces the BoomAgers mission, to do smart strategy and advertising for the coolest demographic around. She loves the energy of being part of a thriving start-up whose mission is excellence. In fact, this is how she feels about being a part of Beacon, as well.
Susie and her husband, David Axelbaum, live in the Lakewood-Balmoral neighborhood of Chicago with their two daughters, Sammie and Sunny, and their dog, Melvin. Both girls attended Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School, in the city. Sammie is now a junior at Beacon, and Sunny will be an incoming freshman in fall 2018.
In her free time, Susie enjoys jogging, reading, and hanging out with her family.
David Snyder is Chief Operating Officer of of Chicago CRED (Creating Real Economic Destiny), a Chicago-focused anti-violence initiative. Prior to joining Chicago CRED in 2017, Snyder spent more than three decades in various roles—most recently as Publisher—at Crain’s Chicago Business. He was named Publisher in October 2010, having previously served as Associate Publisher and as General Manager/Interactive where he launched and then managed the paper’s daily online publishing operation. Earlier in his career he was an award-winning journalist for Crain’s, starting as a reporter and ultimately serving more than six years as Editor (1993-2000). Snyder is on the Board of Directors of the Harris Theater—where he serves as chairman of the Finance Committee and a member of the Executive Committee —and The Polk Bros. Foundation. He is also a member of the Commercial Club of Chicago, the Economic Club of Chicago, the City Club of Chicago and The Chicago Club. A native of Easton, Pa., Mr. Snyder is a graduate of American University in Washington, D.C., where he received his degree in business administration.
Suzanne Wychocki is a principal at Vine Counseling Center in Naperville working as a therapist with adults, adolescents and families. She is a trained mindfulness educator and proponent for mindfulness in education and schools. She has been an advocate for Montessori education serving on the Board of Trustees for Montessori de Terra Linda in San Rafael, CA while all three of her children attended the preschool and elementary programs. She has a BA in marketing from the University of Illinois and an MSW from Loyola University, Chicago. She and her husband Mike recently moved to Lincoln Park and have two children attending Beacon Academy.