The Board of Trustees at Holland Christian is made up primarily of parents of children that attend the school. Typically, the Board members comprise a cross section of our school society. Over the decades that I have been involved with our board the Trustees have been trades people, educators, small business owners, doctors, pastors–and the list goes on. As we head into the 2022-2023 school year, we have 12 board members, but that number varies from year to year depending on the needs of the board and the availability of those willing to serve. The HC Board may be between 9 and 12 members. The common bond of all who serve on our Board is a passion for Holland Christian Schools and its mission to “Equip minds and nurture hearts to transform the world for Jesus Christ.”
Board of Trustees
Welcome to the Holland Christian Schools Board of Trustees section of the school’s website. It is our hope that the information presented here will be helpful to all school society members.
Holland Christian’s Board of Trustees is a “Governing Board” as opposed to an “Administrative Board” or a “Representative Board.” A Governing Board does not participate in the day-to-day running of the school. That is the job of the Head of Schools and his or her administrative team. The Board works to assure that there are well defined governance, policies, funding, and organizational structure. The Board also assures that we have a very capable Head of Schools leading an administrative team of highly professional, highly capable staff members to execute our mission. Functionally the Board provides leadership in the areas of Education, Finance, Stewardship, and Trustees.
The Head of Schools reports to the Board of Trustees and is solely responsible to “run the school” day-to-day, semester-to-semester, and year-to-year.
This year the Board worked for several months examining and redefining our Strategic Priorities for the next 3 to 5 years. They are:
1. Holistic Christian Education and Faith Formation: Set and achieve well-defined goals in Christian education and faith formation/integration; equip students in partnership with families and churches.
2. Better Together in Christ: Thrive as a place of belonging and discovery for all families with focus on the changing racial/ethnic and socioeconomic diversity within our Christian community and the different learning capabilities of students.
3. Academic Excellence: Pursue measurable and comparative evidence of academic excellence where each student is valued and equipped to reach his/her potential academically and with appropriate life skills.
4. Sustainability and Stewardship: Enhance enrollment growth processes and continue strong financial management to ensure long-term financial sustainability and affordability.
5. Leadership Development: Develop, empower, and retain dedicated professionals while enhancing the number of teachers and staff who are prepared to serve as academic and administrative leaders in Christian education.
Our Head of Schools, Eric Forseth, is working with his administrative team to articulate how each of these priorities will be pursued and measured operationally.
As we move forward in pursuit of fulfilling our mission at Holland Christian, it is our ongoing hope that you will positively and prayerfully engage and support this work.
Sincerely in Christ,
Board of Trustees Information
Matt Adkins and his wife, Audrey, have three children, one of whom is currently enrolled in Forest School, and two younger children still at home. Matt works as the External Relations Director at Hope College, where he also graduated from before he worked on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. He and his family are members of Zion Lutheran Church in Holland.
Matt is an energetic and personable individual who has worked in public, high-pressured environments, led confidential searches and recruitment efforts, and is now in higher education, helping students in their vocational discernment journey with a Christian perspective. He is intentionally committed to a Reformed theological perspective.
A former Christian school teacher, Doug currently is an elementary school principal for Allendale Public Schools. He and his wife, Karin, live in Holland and have sent all four of their children to HC: Caleb ’14, Jacob ’16, Elise ’20, and Larissa ’23 have somehow attended every HC school currently in existence! They are members at Calvary CRC, where Doug has served as a deacon, cadet leader, Sunday school teacher, and head counselor. Doug has had a variety of experiences in the K-12 educational field, including working with various policies, procedures, and practices that help fulfill a school’s mission. “In today’s highly competitive educational market, the product we offer must be exceptional. Our staff must be well-equipped to deliver outstanding instruction to ALL students,” he says.
Jesse and his wife, Marisol (Mari), have four children, two in Spanish Immersion at Rose Park, and two at HCMS. Jesse is the children’s pastor at Resurrection Life Church in Grandville, and previously was both a youth ministry leader and Lead Pastor at ResLife in Holland. He currently serves as a board member of Resurrection Life in Holland, as well as on our HCS Diversity Task Force.
As evidenced by his membership on the Diversity Task Force, Jesse is committed to the Strategic Priority of seeing Holland Christian “thriving as a place of belonging.” He appreciates the Reformed perspective of Jesus being Lord of all and applied to every subject in an HC education.
Stacy Jackson and his wife, Stacey, have five children who have all attended Holland Christian. Their family are members at Central Avenue CRC, and and “love the mission of Holland Christian” as well as the opportunity to “serve alongside parents and churches in the development of students.” He works at Hope College where he is the Kenneth J. Weller ’48 Professor of Management and Economics, as well as the Chair of the Economics and Business Department.
His areas of expertise at Hope College and in his field of Business and Economics are leadership, organizational effectiveness and change, and strategy and organization design. His research focuses on leadership and strategic change, power and politics in organizations, and the role of business in society. He began his career at NASA in Houston, Texas, as an internal organization development consultant. His subsequent consulting experience includes serving as a senior manager for Ernst & Young Management Consulting and as a practice leader for Hewitt Associates.
Keely Lehr ’95 and her husband, Matt, have two children at HCMS and one son in the ESS program at HCHS. A graduate of Calvin University, Keely is past president of the Rose Park Parent Board, and has served on the HCMS parent team as well as on the ditto Board. She works as the Engagement Manager at Partners Worldwide. She has over 14 years of development work at both Resonate and International Needs.
Keely brings significant experience in fundraising, leadership marketing/communication, ESS (parent advocate), and is passionate about HC’s mission. As a Reformed Christian, Keely believes “in the authority of the Bible, and the importance of weaving that into each subject at Holland Christian.” She believes it is imperative “that kids are taught the glory of God in all subjects to prepare and equip them to live for Christ.”
Jeff and his wife, Joyce, are the parents of three children, all HCS graduates: Jennifer, Kimberly DeJager, and Kyle. Jeff brings a unique perspective to the board as a former high school science teacher and as a previous Director of Operations here at HCS. Jeff retired from Fleetwood Group in July 2020 and has since become a Court Appointed Special Advocate working to represent children in the foster care system in Ottawa County. Jeff is also an involved member of Park CRC where he facilitated their “Renewal Lab,” has led Sunday school, has served as both a deacon and elder, and plays for the Praise Team. He most values HCS’s faith development in their students, and enjoys as a board member helping HCS become “deliberate about being more missional in serving the needs of the Holland community.”
Chad is the Pastor at Faith CRC and is also currently an adjunct professor at Calvin College. Previously he was a professor at Central College in Iowa, served in the Marines, and also taught in Israel. He and his wife Jodi are the parents of four children, who attend Holland Christian and Zeeland Christian Schools. He is recommended to the Board of Trustees because of his skillset in faith formation as a pastor as well as serving on the RCA General Synod as Professor of the Church. He is also committed to diversity and having students think critically about a broad range of issues from a Christian Perspective. He is a team player who, because of many diverse situations he has experienced in his own life, enjoys discussing a variety of aspects to situations and brainstorming new possibilities.
Chad values “raising my children in a community of faith, understanding that all the world belongs to God. More specifically, I value Holland Christian as it appears to give students the tools to think critically about a broad range of issues rather than merely indoctrinating them with a set of beliefs and ideas. Good theology is critical, but, to me, a sound reasoning faith trusts and thinks about God in all situations.”
Kevin ’98 has an accounting background and works as Assistant Finance Manager for the City of Zeeland. He and his wife, Alicia (Klaasen) ’98, have three children currently at Holland Christian Schools: Lauren at HCHS, and Sam and Alex both at HCMS. As a family they attend Providence CRC, where Kevin has variously volunteered as deacon, and both middle school and high school youth group leader over the past 13 years. He has also coached a variety of youth sports teams and currently serves as treasurer for Holland Little League.
Kevin appreciates the education that both he and his wife received from HCS, especially the worldview they learned here, that “God permeates everything, even math.” He says that this same worldview is “essential to instill in each generation, so as they enter the workforce they know that no matter what they are doing, kingdom building is present in that activity.” With his financial and vocational background, Kevin is well-gifted to be “part of an organization that is accountable to a much larger group of stakeholders and the challenges that go with that.” He is accustomed to working with the day-to-day “operations of an organization within a public sphere, but also being accountable for [its] long-term financial sustainability.”
Mary is self-employed as a certified health education specialist, with the majority of her efforts focusing on public health and safety. She and her husband, John, are the parents of Isabella ’20 and Julia ’31 and are members of Christ Memorial Church. She has served on the Rose Park Parent Board, Champion Gymnastics Board, as well as the PTA Board at Douglas Elementary School, where she helped launch the use of iPads, a school garden, a nutrition and wellness team, and a school-wide recycling program. As an American Red Cross Authorized Provider, she worked with HCHS freshman health teachers to help certify HCHS students in CPR, 1st Aid, and AED. She was recommended to the BOT for “her servant leadership as well as personal quest for knowledge and continual growth are in perfect alignment with HC’s mission of equipping and nurturing.”
Craig is the Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club of Holland and is a member at Christ Memorial Church. He previously spent almost 20 years in automotive manufacturing as an engineer. He and his wife Wendy are parents to three children, all who attended Holland Christian. He is recommended to the HC Board because he understands the “both-and” of protecting the values that have made Holland Christian unique while also growing enrollment by attracting students from families who have not formerly considered Christian education because of perceived and real barriers to entry. Craig says, “The daily investment the Holland Christian community makes in its children impacts our students for decades to come. I’ve seen this investment pay off in my life and my own children. The foundation of values that’s imparted through the staff at HCS is one of the treasures of the school. I firmly believe that Holland Christian produces ‘different’ graduates, who love the Lord and want to impact the world for Christ.”
Deborah and her husband, Jon, are the parents of four Holland Christian students: Claire ’22, David ’24, Jacob ’26, and Eli ’28. A former HCHS English teacher, Deb joined the Hope College faculty in 2010 as Assistant Professor of Education, where she focuses on the areas of English education, disciplinary literacy, and adolescent literacy. She is the chair of Hope’s secondary education team, founder of Hope’s Education Department research colloquies, as well as of Hope College’s faculty-student young adult literature book club. She has been on the board of editors for Perspectives, a journal of Reformed thought, since 2012. Last spring she was honored by the Michigan Read Association (MRA) for her work as the program director of the Big Read Holland Area, the community-wide reading program that takes place each November. Deb and her family are active members of Third Reformed Church, where Deb currently serves on the worship committee. She endorses Holland Christian Schools as passionately committed to the “faith and development of the whole student,” while understanding that “the Christian faith is not just for the sanctuary, but for education culture, and the arts.”
The owner and manager of Glass Images Inc., Mark Windemuller ’91 is the father of four children: Samantha, a graduate of WMU, Brad ’19 a student at FSU, Ryan ’23 and Seth ’25. He and his wife, Lisa ’95, are both graduates of HC and members at Graafschap CRC where he has served as where he has served as deacon and elder, as well as Cadet, youth group, and Sunday school leader. Mark has served since 2018 as a member of the HC Operations Committee. Those who recommended him for the board have suggested that, “As we look at non-traditional paths of education, Mark would have an insight and passion towards exploring what is best for all students. His business and people experience is also a strength he brings to the board.”
The Board of Trustees holds its meetings monthly, with the following meeting dates currently scheduled:
- August 16
- September 15
- October 18
- November 17
- December 15
- January 19
- February 16
- March 16
- April 20 (Annual Society Meeting)
- May 18
- June 15
- July 20 if necessary
The Holland Christian Board of Trustees welcomes your comments and suggestions. Please address your e-mail communications for board members to email@example.com.
A Holland Christian Trustee should meet the following expectations:
• Be a member of the Holland Christian Education Society (an HC parent or donor)
• Be a supporter of Holland Christian Schools and its mission.
• Have a passion for and commitment to Christian education; be able to provide vision for the future of Christian education in our context.
• Be a committed Christian and a member in good standing of a Christian church.
• Demonstrate a commitment to a Reformed understanding of the Christian faith by signing a Faith Covenant.
• Be willing to assist with the fundraising efforts on behalf of Holland Christian Schools, including having a passion for addressing affordability issues.
• Not be employed by HCS or be a family member (spouse, parent, child) of an HCS employee. Also, no board members of the HC Foundation may serve concurrently on the HC board.
Board Trustee Nomination Form
”I love that my school is a Christian school. I love that we share in worship each week and learn about the world through a Christian perspective; I love my teachers, how they show their faith in their teaching, and are always willing to reach out to me outside of school if I need them.
”The teachers are outstanding and go above and beyond the call to impact my kids.
”The teachers care about their students: they want to help students develop their strengths and understand that they are made in god's image with specific talents and gifts.
”I think holland Christian’s teaching staff is a huge strength. The level of care, concern, and character that most of the teachers possess is what makes the HC experience so impactful for our kids.
”No child is just a number. Teachers really know them, understand their strengths and weaknesses, lift them up in prayer, challenge classmates to care about them and for them.
Looking for more detail?
These are the highlights of why we do what we do, but if you want to read our full Statement of Educational Philosophy it goes into a lot more detail.